Mara Wilson Asks “What Are You Afraid Of?”


“What Are You Afraid Of?” was the question of the evening, as well as the title of the show that actress/storyteller Mara Wilson brought to Haverford last week.  The popular event, hosted by students, with support from the Hurford Center for the Arts and Humanities, drew students, faculty, and community members to a packed Stokes Auditorium on Thursday night.

Wilson, known for her starring roles in such movies as Matilda, Mrs. Doubtfire, and the remake of Miracle on 34th Street, now works as a playwright, comedian, writer/blogger, and storytelling performer based in New York City. Her show, which featured local Philadelphia comedians Hillary Rea and R. Eric Thomas, focused on phobias, using storytelling as a comedic tool to process fears and connect with others.

Stories ranged from humorous takes on serious cultural issues like racism, loneliness, and stalkers (Rea’s story) to personal relationship anecdotes featuring the Christmas figure Krampus (Thomas). Wilson, who considers herself an easily scared person, bookended the two guest performances by sharing two stories of her own, centering around her irrational fear of ingesting eye drops, and a family anxiety that once led her to literally eat her own t-shirt.

After the hilarious performances from all three artists, Wilson welcomed questions from the audience about the show, her life, her writing, and her connection to show business.

Wilson also has a special connection to Haverford: her older brother, Jonathan Wilson, is a professor of Biology and Environmental Sciences at the College. During the Q&A, she also shared a few childhood stories of herself and her brother.

Philadelphia-based comedian and writer Hillary Rea was a guest performer for the evening’s show.
R. Eric Thomas, a writer and self-titled “stand-up dramedian” from Philadelphia, shares his fears with the audience.

Carroll-8403 Carroll-8370 Carroll-8364 Carroll-8357 Carroll-8398Photos by Thom Carroll.


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Love Shack


This Valentine’s Day, Haverford students got crafty.

Fords Against Boredom (FAB), an organization that coordinates free student events on and off campus, hosted their annual Love Shack gathering last Friday (2/14) in Ryan Gym. Provided with graham crackers, candy of all sorts, chocolate syrup, and colorful frosting, student teams designed their own “gingerbread” houses and other architectural masterpieces.

At the end of the night, teams were awarded prizes for the most creative, most romantic and most Haverfordian designs. Teams were free to take their creations back to their dorms, and to snag some leftover candy, whether to eat, or to share with friends.Carroll-8043 Carroll-8060 Carroll-8067 Carroll-8077 Carroll-8100 Carroll-8111 Carroll-8116 Carroll-8126 Carroll-8133Carroll-8151 Carroll-8141Photos by Thom Carroll.

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Black Love

Haverford’s  Black Students League hosted the annual Tri-College Black Love formal on Saturday night, Feb. 15, in partnership with Bryn Mawr’s Sisterhood, the Swarthmore African American Student Society, and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Mighty Psi Chapter. Unlike previous years, in which the event was open just to Tri-Co students, this year’s event, held in Founders Hall, welcomed students from across the Philadelphia area.

More than 150 students attended the RSVP-only dinner, and even more showed up for the performances and dancing that followed. The event, which takes place each year during Black History Month, is designed to celebrate black community and strength, both past and present, and to encourage black students in the Philadelphia area to connect with others in sharing their story. Students from participating colleges also helped to design a photo campaign for the event, in memory of Trayvon Martin.

Hosting duties for the event rotate each year between the colleges in the Tri-College Consortium. Haverford last hosted Black Love in 2011, when it also took place in Founders Great Hall.

 Quaker Bouncers, left, check people in at the door.
Checking in at the door.


Black Student League leaders Tolani Babatunde '16 of Haverford and El Maxwell '15 of Villanova, helped organize the event.
Black Student League leaders Tolani Babatunde ’16 of Haverford and El Maxwell ’15 of Villanova, helped organize the event.

BL_BlackLove-3 BL_BlackLove-4

Students from Swarthmore pose for a picture at the Black Love Dance February 15, 2014.
Students from Swarthmore pose for a picture at the Black Love Formal.




Ramelcy Uribe '16, right, speaks to students and introduces other members of the BSL board.
Ramelcy Uribe ’16, right, speaks to students and introduces other members of the BSL board.
Bryn Mawr students Angel Suero '16, left, and Siobhan Glynn '17 at the Black Love Dance.
Bryn Mawr students Angel Suero ’16, left, and Siobhan Glynn ’17.
Bryn Mawr student Angel Suero '16 holds a sign that reads, "Self-love + love for my roots," when she thinks of Black Love.
Bryn Mawr student Angel Suero ’16 thinks of “Self-love + love for my roots,” when she thinks of Black Love.
Priscilla Acquaah of Villanova holds a sign stating how she celebrates Black History Month.
Priscilla Acquaah of Villanova holds a sign stating how she celebrates Black History Month.


Award winning Poet and Temple Student Kai Davis performed at Black Love.
Award-winning poet and Temple University student Kai Davis performed at Black Love.
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Scholarship Student Luncheon: Building Lifelong Relationships

Caroline Clowney '14 speaks to fellow scholarship recipients
Caroline Clowney ’14 speaks to fellow scholarship recipients.

During the annual luncheon held this year on Wednesday, February 12th, in the Dining Center, a packed room of scholarship recipients were celebrated with pizza, salad, and the locally-famous Hope’s Cookies. Students got the chance to mingle and share their stories with members of the Institutional Advancement department, hear more about their scholarships and donors, and to learn about next steps in the scholarship process.

Haverford financial aid is strictly need-based, not merit-based. Named scholarships, which take the place of Haverford grants for student awardees, instead provide a way for alumni and other donors to encourage high-achieving students on campus who have financial need. At the same time, these scholarships help the College utilize its grant money most effectively for as many students as possible. While nearly half of Haverford students are on financial aid, less than a quarter of students receive a named scholarship. ”You all were selected for your particular scholarship because of your impressive record of achievement,” said Parker Snowe ’79, director of the Center for Peace and Global Citizenship.

Students in attendance had been asked to provide a profile, to let their donors learn more about them, and were encouraged to reach out to their donors to express appreciation. “Donors don’t need a thank-you for what they have done, but [thanking them] is the right thing to do,” Snowe added. “Remember that you’re standing on the shoulders of those who came before you, so pay it forward.”

Thankfulness is a subject with which Carrie Clowney ’14, the student speaker at Wednesday’s event, is familiar. Clowney, a political science major, is the Robert J.F. ’61 and Margaret M. Brobyn Endowed Scholarship Fund recipient. In her speech, the now-college senior recalled her senior year of high school: “While many of my peers worried about getting into their top-choice college, I was worried about being able to pay for college.” But through the Office of Financial Aid at Haverford, Clowney and her family received enough support to make her dream school a reality. And with a named scholarship, Clowney is passionate about giving back to a school that has invested so directly in her future.

A donor herself, Interim Vice President for Institutional Advancement Ann West Figueredo ’84 echoed the power of the donor-student connection. “[Donors] are in your corner. They invested in you. They believe in you,” she said. As donors are asked to name their award and define specific criteria for the recipient to embody (location, major, or area of interest), the relationship forged between donor and student is personal.

Community is an essential part of Haverford tradition, and named scholarships help to create a bond between students and alumni donors. Together, students and donors illustrate the lifelong connection possible for all students, with the Haverfordian goal of keeping college affordable, both today and for generations to come.

Read more about scholarships at Haverford.


Jason Rash, assistant director of Stewardship, introduces speakers.


Interim Vice President for Institutional Advancement Ann West Figueredo ’84 speaks to scholarship recipients about the donor connection to students.


Two students speak with Parker Snowe ’79, head of the CPGC and a speaker at Wednesday’s event.

BL_Scholarship_Luncheon21 Photos by Brad Larrison.

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Tri-Co Hackathon Photo Gallery

(left to right) Alex Villalta ’14, Harry Levin ’14, Aaron Lowe ’15, and Dan Barton ’14

In January, the Tri-College Consortium held its first Hackathon, a weekend-long computer science contest in which teams of students develop web applications. At the end of the competition, teams delivered presentations about their projects to a panel of judges, all who are working professionals in the computer science field. Prizes for top three projects were awarded.

To read more about the Hackathon, view our news feature, and explore all Hackathon student projects on the Haverford Hackathon page.

Besan Abu Radwan ’14, Paulina Cueto ’14, and Allie Lake ’14, three of four team members, work on their project, HaverSched.
Judges Gabriel Farrell, Casey Palowitch, Mike Dershowitz, Katherine Rowe, and Beah Burger-Lenehan ’06.
Members of MatchBot, a Swarthmore-based team, works on their project.
Hackathon students present their project, What To Do.
A shot over the crowd as students present their projects.
The judges confer in Founders Basement
The judges confer in Founders Basement.
The members of the winning team TryLinGo celebrates with a group hug.
Some of the team members of TryLinGo, the winning project, pose for a group shot after the results were announced.

Photos by Thom Carroll.


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A film crew from Japan’s public television network NHK came to Haverford last week to shoot a segment for the show “Cosmic Front” that features Assistant Professor of Astronomy Desika Narayanan. The segment, which will air on NHK’s Space Channel, will focus on Narayanan’s work on simulations of star formation. Narayanan, who started at Haverford in January, was previously a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and taught in the Astronomy Department at the University of Arizona as a Bok Fellow. For more information about his research, go to his homepage.

narayan2Photos: Thom Carroll Photography

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Prison Obscura Opens at Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery

On Jan. 24, the Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery unveiled its latest show, Prison Obscura, with a reception and a talk by curator Pete Brook, the Portland, Ore.-based writer and editor of Prison Photography.

Curator Pete Brook
Curator Pete Brook



No country incarcerates a higher percentage of its population than the United States. In fact, more than 2.2 million people are currently locked up in the U.S.—a number that’s more than quadrupled since 1980. But sadly, the lives lived behind bars are all too often invisible to those on the outside. Prison Obscura sheds light on such experiences and the prison-industrial complex as a whole by showcasing rarely seen surveillance, evidentiary, and prisoner-made photographs. The exhibit, which through March 7, encourages visitors to ask why tax-paying, prison-funding citizens rarely get the chance to see such images, and what roles such pictures play for those within the system.





Photo by Lisa Boughter
Photo by Lisa Boughter



For more information on the exhibit:

Photos by John Muse, except where noted.

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Snow Day!

A major winter storm dumped a foot of snow on the Main Line on Tuesday—the first day back after Winter Break—shutting down afternoon classes and turning the campus into a wintry wonderland. Here are few frosty scenes caught by photographer Thom Carroll.





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De-Stress With Dogs!


Students slogging through final exam week got a chance to relax with some visiting furry friends on Wednesday during the De-Stress With Dogs session in Ryan Gym. Sponsored by Haverford’s pre-vet society, this is the second year for the event, which brings dogs awaiting adoption from Main Line Animal Rescue to campus to be petted, kissed, hugged, tickled, scratched behind the ears, and just generally adored for a few hours.

destressfoxydestresshounddestresstriodestresspugdestresskissyfacedestresshugdestressbulldogPhotos by Thom Carroll Photography

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Haverford Gift Guide

[This article appears in the Winter 2013 issue of Haverford magazine.]

We know the holidays can be stressful. No matter what (or if) you celebrate at the end of the year, there are so many opportunities for gift giving and receiving that it can be hard to be imaginative with your presents. This year, why not fill your shopping bag with items made and sold by your fellow Fords? Current students and alumni create all sorts of one-of-a-kind artworks and handmade crafts and even teach classes that would make great gifts. Here’s a list of a dozen gift ideas that will make your season bright.



jewelryA second-generation goldsmith and Haverfordian—his father James Meyer is Class of ’62—Caleb Meyer ’89 produces fine jewelry and runs an American craft gallery in Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia. His sophisticated pieces, such as the engraved 18-karat yellow-gold cuff ($3,553), emerald cabochon and diamond ring ($1,651), and freshwater pearl earrings ($795) shown here, would make the perfect special-occasion gifts. There are items for men, too, such as rings and belt buckles. “I am designing jewelry for people who live an active lifestyle and who appreciate a certain understated grace in their jewelry,” says Meyer. “From our total commitment to bezel-setting [a technique that eliminates the need for prongs when setting diamonds and colored stones] to the subtle and graceful hammered textures and handmade details, this is heirloom jewelry to wear comfortably every day.”




gabbyfeltKate Mahoney ’14 has a busy year ahead of her as a senior Russian major at Bryn Mawr, but she still has time to make felted animals, like this dog, and sell them via her online Etsy store. Mahoney can make any kind of animal out of wool—horses, cats, tigers—but in addition to the stock available for purchase online, she can also create a custom likeness of your pet! That way you’ll never be far from your beloved Fido or Fluffy. All animals are $40, plus shipping, which is a small price to pay to thrill all of the animal lovers on your list with original gifts.




Do you know someone who loves the ocean? If so, the Etsy store of Cora Hersh ’16 is the perfect place to find a present for him or her. Hersh, who hails from Wellesley, Mass., a brief drive from the sea, is inspired by aquatic imagery for the crafts, jewelry, and clothing that she makes. At her online storefront you can buy organic cotton T-shirts or baby onesies featuring colorful, hand-screened pictures of dogfish, sailboats, lobsters, seahorses, or octopuses ($18 to $20 each). Hersh also makes and sells pearl and beaded jewelry ($15 to $30) for those who like to add a little luster to their seasonal attire.




socksThere are mail subscription services for everything now. Netflix and GameFly keep subscribers up-to-date with new movies and the latest videogames. Birchbox and Glossybox send beauty addicts new products every month. And now you can get your socks in the mail too. For $11 a month, SockPanda, founded by David Peck ’03, sends subscribers new footwear that they can’t find anywhere else, surprising them with one pair of either “cool” or “bold” (the wilder of the two) socks made of high-quality fabrics and featuring colorful designs. And Peck is offering a deal to friends of the College—enter the word “Haverford” at checkout and get 50% off your first month. As a subscriber, you’ll be in good company: James T. Kirk himself—William Shatner—gets his socks from SockPanda.



DogwoodThose looking for ecologically conscious gifts will be pleased to hear that the beautiful bowls laboriously crafted by Tom Pleatman ’69 are made from fallen trees. “I collect the wood from wherever the trees came down,” says Pleatman, who transforms that wood into a bowl by splitting a log in half, spinning the wood on a lathe to get a bowl shape, and then letting the wood age in that shape for more than a year. He then shapes the bowl again on the lathe and gives it about 18 coats of tung oil (a food-safe finish made from the nut of the tung tree) and beeswax. “There are two ways of looking at the finished bowl,” he says. “One is that it is an empty container that longs to be filled with something—food or trinkets. The other is that a finished bowl is completely filled as is, with all of the beauty of the wood, and not a single thing could possibly be added to it. My personal goal with each piece is to try to bring out as much of the wood’s characteristics as possible, so that this latter view is the one people see.” Prices vary with the piece but generally range between $100 and $400.



dorksporkNeed a Secret Santa gift for that Game of Thrones superfan, Sherlock lover, or Pokemon collector in your life? Look no further than DorkSpork, the Etsy shop of quirky crafter Justine Garcia ’06 and her high school friend Carrie Pena. The duo’s pop-culture-inspired small polymer charms, featuring characters from Donkey Kong and Avatar: The Last Airbender, can decorate cell phones, water bottles, wine glasses, or coffee mugs to distinguish yours from the rest. And they are a mere $8 each. “Our goal is to provide people with unique products, and we are constantly striving to produce work that can’t be found anywhere else,” says Garcia. She’s got a point; we’ve never seen a set of six beverage charms that display all the different Game of Thrones house symbols ($45) anywhere else before.



yogaDon’t know your downward-facing dog from your plow pose? No problem. Dana Miller ’86 can help. The certified New York-based yoga teacher offers classes for all levels of fitness and yoga awareness. Miller teaches a Vinyasa style of the practice, in which one pose flows into the next on the breath. If someone you know has made a New Year’s resolution to become stronger, more limber, more mindful, or less stressed, yoga classes could be the perfect gift. Especially for friends of the College, Miller is offering a fiveperson group yoga class package for $35 for anyone in the New York City area, and for those in Manhattan there’s also a package of three private one-hour sessions in your home for $225. To schedule, call Miller at 917-545-0082 or email



stonegroundAs a holistic-health coach and organic-foods demonstrator, Tim Richards ’10 was tired of the subpar almond butters on the market, so the former philosophy major decided to make his own. His Philosopher’s Stoneground line is made with sprouted almonds, which provide more nutritional value than typical roasted almonds and are easier to digest. And Richards’ almonds are stoneground—the process sustains the important nutritional enzymes, fats, and proteins in the nuts that typical nut processing destroys. The butters, which come in two flavors and in creamy and crunchy versions ($12 to $25), are currently available in some California health-food stores and farmers’ markets and should be available for purchase online soon.



botanicafloraPhiladelphia-based immigration attorney Djung Tran ’98 makes more than just legal arguments; she has also started her own line of photographic greeting cards. The cards, which feature Tran’s close-up photos of lush flowers, brightly plumed birds, and colorful butterflies, are blank inside, so they are appropriate for any occasion. The cards come in two sizes (5×7 and 6×8) and are $5.95 and 9.95, respectively, including shipping. Her Etsy store is forthcoming, so for now you can order cards by contacting Tran directly at



printsThink original prints are out of your price range? Think again. Printmaker Anna Benjamin ’13 has something for every budget. The artist, who designs all of her bold, graphic patterns digitally, sells stationary ($12), coaster sets ($35), iPod and iPhone cases ($35), framed ($59) and unframed ($38.48) art prints, prints on stretched canvas ($85), and large, hand-printed lithographs via her Society6 and Etsy online storefronts. Benjamin also takes commissions, not just for lithographs and prints, but also to handprint any of her designs onto furniture. Contact her directly at to commission work.;



stacking ringsFans of sparkle who care about the ecological impact of their twinkle will be pleased to learn that the pieces that Cassie Nylen Gray ’97 creates for her Clementine Jewelry line are not only delicate and beautiful, but are also forged from recycled metals and conflict-free diamonds using environmentally friendly tools and practices. The Ashfield, Mass.-based designer and metalsmith, who studied at Snow Farm, Metalwerx, and the Penland School of Crafts, makes chic, dainty pieces at many different price points: from gold teardrop earrings for $20 to a silver and white-topaz necklace for $72, to sophisticated black diamond studs for $315. Stumped as to what the lady in your life might want this season? Why not get her one of Gray’s stacking rings (pictured left), which are made from recycled sterling silver, recycled gold, and gems, and are individually priced from $20 to $295.








perfumeA gift of perfume is a romantic, charmingly old-fashioned gesture—who doesn’t like to smell good? But for those tired of paying for major designers’ multimillion-dollar marketing campaigns in every expensive bottle they buy, why not go artisanal and small-batch with your purchase this winter? Jessica Dunne ’98 started her own perfumery in 2007, inspired by the memories of her grandmother, Ellie (her fragrances’ namesake), and her mother. “I have always loved perfume, even though I never thought I would turn my passion into a business,” says Dunne, a Chicago-based mother of two. As a kid, “I actually created ‘perfume’ from berries and flowers in my backyard and sold it at my lemonade stand, so this was meant to be!” Dunne’s Ellie D line features two fragrances: Ellie, a combination of white florals, vanilla, vetiver, and musk; and Ellie Nuit, a blend of rose, violet, fig, cashmere wood, sandalwood, and coriander seed. The fragrances are available as 7mL roll-ons ($50) and half-ounce glass bottle parfums ($180).;


More Gift Ideas

Did you know that the Haverford College Bookstore now offers online sales? To purchase all manner of Haver-themed apparel and gifts, including caps, tees, mugs, paperweights—even a black squirrel plush toy—go to


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