sintungs concertNueva violin instructor Sin-Tung Chiu and alumnus Dmitriy Cogan (class of 1975) commemorated their 21st year playing together with a concert in the Mansion Ballroom on Sunday. They first met and performed in the Ballroom in April of 1993 and have since continued their piano-violin duo. This year also marks Sin-Tung’s 23rd year teaching violin at Nueva. Their recital was a series of sonatas for piano and violin -- one each by Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms.

Sin-Tung was able to reconnect with a handful of his previous scholars, some of which are pictured here. These include (from left to right):

- Brenda Beck, mother of his former Menuhin violin scholar Kimberly Preston who is currently a freshman at Colorado University.

- Rick Trutna, Susan Payne Trutna, and sons Jean-Marc Trutna and Tristan Trutna, who are two of his former Menuhin violin scholars.

- Rich Cisek and Paisley Schade. Paisley was at Nueva until fifth grade and plays the harp. Rich and Paisley are proud parents of a young daughter. Paisley was also recently invited to join the Board of Directors at Community Music Center (CMC) in San Francisco. Sin-Tung has taught violin at CMC Richmond District Branch for 26 years.

logarhythmsDuring their Spring Break West Coast Tour, the MIT Logarhythms stopped by Nueva to perform a lunchtime concert. Students and teachers across divisions piled into the Mansion Ballroom where they were delighted to hear lively, humorous music performed by MIT's premier all-male a cappella ensemble.

Among their ranks is Nueva alumnus Will Rutter (class of 2007) who is currently a sophomore studying physics and pursuing a pre-med certification, pictured right opening the concert with a solo.

leylas nookThe library recently installed an enchanting stained glass window in memory of alumna Leyla Beban (class of 2012) who passed away November 2012. Leyla’s Nueva classmates and teachers joined with her family on December 2 to dedicate the window in the library nook where she could often be found. The window commemorates Leyla’s love of books, creative writing, imagination, and jellyfish.

To read about more ways Leyla's life is being honored, please click here.

hatsJanuary 9 marked the first Alumni Design Thinking Workshop, taught by Kim Saxe and held in the Innovation Lab. Alumni spent the first part of the evening networking with new Nueva friends and reconnecting with old ones. Then they worked on a design thinking project as Kim explained the design thinking process and facilitated group work. Alumni interviewed current ninth graders to discover what they would want in an internship experience. They brainstormed and iterated many ideas, and then presented to the students who provided feedback. In addition to answering questions, current ninth grade students also interviewed alumni about the most meaningful internship and mentoring experiences they’ve had.
 
"I was blown away by the students and am thrilled to see the types of things they are learning,” said Jon Sockell (class of 1998).
 
"This was a really valuable and fun event," reflected Harry Wornick (class of 2003). "It was really great to have current Nueva students involved—I loved hearing about their current projects."

Alumni in attendance ranged from the classes of 1983 to 2005.

In December the ninth grade gathered to hear three alumni talk about their work in community engagement and service learning through three different organizations that seek to empower people in countries around the world.

CESL panel

David Rathmann-Bloch (left, class of 2011) presented on The 21st Century Chalkboard Project which began as his eighth grade recital project programming educational computer video games to send via repurposed computers to a Haitian school that only had one textbook and a tattered chalkboard. The software teaches students various subjects as well as practical skills for living in Haiti such as building a composting toilet or preventing cholera. David has continued working on The 21st Century Chalkboard project over the last two years and won a 2013 Google Rise Award that allowed the organization to hire Haitian staff, send more computers, and impact more schools. He hopes to continue expanding the organization’s reach but ultimately plans to transfer the software coding and language translation projects to his friends in Haiti.


Aron Walker (center, class of 1999) recounted tales of teaching science and science educators with the Peace Corps in Tanzania. Over the course of his four year tenure Aron moved from teaching students in the classroom to teaching teachers to design their own science curriculum. The schools he encountered often had limited supplies for science experiments, but with a little creative thinking Aron discovered ways to collect supplies for experiments from materials already available around the local community. He then helped teachers see the potential all around them and cultivate their own resourceful creative thinking.


Anu Khosla (right, class of 2004) spoke about her professional work with Kangu.com, a crowd funding organization that sponsors safe birth for women and children around the world who can’t afford medical care. The organization partners with local clinics in Nepal, Uganda, and Burundi to underwrite the cost of maternity care, and for only $200 the chance of death is cut by 90%. As the Marketing and Community Director, Anu harnesses the power of the Internet to connect people to each other and to causes they care about. Her interest in non-profit work began when she was a child, it was nurtured at Nueva, and blossomed through her eighth grade recital project when she worked with DonorsChoose.org.

 

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