Alumni association president’s report

Ask not what your alma mater can do for you . . .

This winter I made a presentation to the board of trustees to report on the activities and accomplishments of the alumni association. The process of developing that report brought to light the fact that we have an ambitious set of projects under way that are all fueled by volunteer energy.

Chapters: Seven chapters of the alumni association around the country are all run entirely by volunteers. These kind souls make the REEDing groups, skipjack cruises, and summer picnics happen, along with all the other events for alumni in these areas. If you have a few hours a month to spare, please consider contributing your energy and ideas to the next steering committee meeting.

Career connections: Both students and alumni are asking for a more developed network of Reed graduates who can provide insight into the job market. The career services office of the college has a system in place for making those connections. Would you be willing to talk to a student who’s interested in your field? If so, please consider adding your name to the career services list of alumni mentors. You can call the career services office at 503/777-7550 or email

Oral history project: The alumni association has launched an intensive effort to collect the oral history of the college before it is lost with the passing of those who witnessed the early years of Reed. We need to identify a professional historian in each chapter area. After receiving training themselves, the chapter historians will provide professional training in oral history methods to a small cadre of alumni volunteers in each chapter. Over the course of ten years, we hope to collect 250 interviews around the country through the efforts of these groups. If you are interested in preserving the heritage and mythology of Reed, please consider joining our team of budding historians.

Without the energy and dedication of alumni volunteers, none of these projects would be possible. Please consider this a personal invitation to become involved in the exciting work that the alumni association has undertaken.

Take care,

Michele L. Funk ’94

A call for applicants

Sperling scholarship funds study at Cambridge for Reed graduates

John Sperling ’48, founder of the University of Phoenix and an alumnus of both Cambridge University and Reed College, has committed more than $1 million to support Reed graduates in the pursuit of a three-year doctoral fellowship at Cambridge University, England. Sperling, whose degree from Reed was in history, earned a master's degree in political history at the University of California–Berkeley and a Ph.D. in economic history from Cambridge University on a fellowship from the University of California.

Reed graduates from 1996 to 1999 are eligible to apply for the Sperling Studentship through Reed's Committee on Fellowships and Awards. Reed may nominate three ranked candidates to King's College for review. Pending their approval, the nominees apply directly to their chosen graduate programs for admittance. One nominee is awarded the studentship upon admittance to his or her program, with the offer being made according to the original ranking.

The 1997 recipient of the Sperling Studentship was Dorthea Sartain ’95, who received a master's degree in history at the University of Minnesota and is now pursuing a degree in history at Cambridge.

The three-year doctoral programs at Cambridge presume superior academic training and performance. Students are expected to work closely with specific tutors and to move quickly into their own chosen area of research. The 1998 application process is ongoing; more information is available on the fellowships and awards web page (, and from the chair of the committee, Arthur Glasfeld (

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