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07.18.2014

A Bulldog reunion 30 years in the making

With so many University of Georgia alumni and even former professors scattered around the world, you never know where two former Dawgs might run into each other, even after decades.

John Shearer (AB ’83) recently hooked up with his old Myers Hall faculty resident friend, Dr. Joe Snow, while traveling through Madrid, Spain, in a reunion that in some respects had been more than 30 years in the making. 


Dr. Joe Snow (left) and John Shearer in Madrid

The story of their friendship began when Shearer moved into Myers in January 1982 after two years of living in the now-razed McWhorter Hall as a walk-on football player and then four quarters in University Gardens Apartments off Baxter Street. In Myers, which was two-thirds male at the time, Shearer said he finally found the closely knit, small-college-like community of male and female students for which he had been longing.

Among the many people he befriended was Snow, a Spanish and Portuguese language instructor, who had an arrangement with university housing to live there at a greatly reduced rent. Snow's only job was to circulate among the students and help break down the barriers between students and faculty. 

Through Snow, Shearer found out about a 1983 spring break trip being planned to Russia, then called the Soviet Union, by then-University of Georgia Russian language professor Dr. Harold Schefski. Shearer ended up going on the trip with his mother, Dr. Snow, Dr. Snow’s sister and several other students. Upon their return to the United States in those pre-Internet days, they learned that Georgia had qualified for the Final Four in men’s and women’s basketball for the first time.

Shearer, who majored in geography, ended up keeping a journal about his trip, and that inspired him to pursue a journalism and writing career that continues 30 years later on a freelance basis from his home in Knoxville, Tenn.  In 2013, Shearer wrote a column on the 30th anniversary of his trip and through Dr. Schefski, who now teaches at California State University, Long Beach, he reconnected with Snow via email.

Snow, who became interested in Spanish while a high school student in New Jersey, had left UGA in the early 1990s to begin teaching at Michigan State University. Today, he spends most of his time in retirement in Madrid in a residence he was able to pay for in part due to his reduced rent while at Myers Hall.


Laura Shearer (ABJ '69) and Dr. Joe Snow

After realizing he would be traveling to Madrid in June with his wife, Laura Anderson Shearer (ABJ ’69), on the way to visit her son in Portugal, Shearer made plans to reconnect with Snow. And since it would be Shearer’s first overseas trip since the Russian excursion, he could say he had been with Snow on every international trip he had taken.

“It was neat reconnecting with him,” said Shearer, who had not seen Snow since the first year or two after he graduated. “He took us to an out-of-the way restaurant with which he was familiar, and it ended up being one of the best meals on our nearly two-week trip. But the conversation was even better. His engaging and warm manner that had endeared him to students became familiar again. 

“And most of all, it was neat comparing our memories of both the Russia trip and our experiences in Myers Hall, because my time in Myers was one of the happiest of my life.”

Written by freelance journalist John Shearer (AB ’83)

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09.29.2014

Clear the Air at UGA

Uga needs your help to clear the air at UGA! 

UGA recently launched a "Let's Clear the Air" campaign to promote the University System of Georgia's ban on tobacco products on all system campuses.

The campaign, which began September 22, advises faculty, staff, students and campus visitors that "UGA is a tobacco- and smoke-free campus," in accordance with a policy adopted in March by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.

The policy, which is effective starting October 1, reinforces the USG's commitment to provide a safe and amicable workplace for all employees as outlined in the Georgia Smoke Free Air Act of 2005 and to preserve and improve the health, comfort and environment of students, employees and visitors on all system campuses.

New signage around campus and messaging on the UGA website and via social media will promote the tobacco- and smoke-free campus policy, which applies to persons in indoor or outdoor areas, including all buildings, recreational areas, lawns, university sidewalks, university vehicles and parking lots.

Banned products include cigarettes, cigars, pipes, all forms of smokeless tobacco, clove cigarettes and any smoking device that uses tobacco such as hookahs or simulate the use of tobacco such as electronic cigarettes.

For more information on the policy and resources to promote the policy as well as resources available for tobacco cessation, see uga.edu/tobacco-free or contact UGA Human Resources at 706-542-2621.

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09.26.2014

Good Eats: Alton in ATH

Notable UGA alumni Alton Brown (AB ‘04) is coming home to the Classic City on October 21 to kick off the third leg of his “Edible Inevitable Tour.”

You might recognize Alton from his Food Network shows “Good Eats,” “Iron Chef America” and “Cutthroat Kitchen.” Brown began producing his own show in the late nineties when he was dissatisfied with the quality of cooking shows in America. His dream came true in 2011 when he won the James Beard Foundation Award for Best TV Food Personality.

He brings his charm and charisma to his culinary variety show. The two-hour stage show centers around food, includes food songs, a mini lecture/stand-up segment titled “10 Things I’m Pretty Sure I’m Sure About Food” and two very large food demonstrations. One of which creates such a big mess that he gives the first five rows ponchos.

The UGA Alumni Associations wants to give YOU the chance to go see Alton Brown live when he comes to the Classic Center! Check out the UGA Alumni Association’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for more information on how to enter. Good luck and Go Dawgs!

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09.25.2014

Sic ‘Em City: Homecoming 2014

Beginning September 28, the University of Georgia will welcome alumni, friends and fans to campus for UGA Homecoming Week. This year’s theme, “Sic ‘Em City,” features several Las Vegas-inspired events for students and visitors alike, including a comedy show, game night and carnival.

The homecoming parade, with UGA Basketball Coach Mark Fox acting as grand marshal, will begin at 6:00 p.m on Friday, October 3. The parade will travel through downtown Athens and will include floats, appearances by UGA cheerleaders and a performance by the Redcoat Marching Band.

Directly following the parade, the UGA Alumni Association will host a Homecoming BBQ for its board of directors, campus administrators and Student Alumni Council members and alumni. The BBQ will also serve as a 50th reunion for the Class of 1964. It is not too late to register to attend, so please visit the Alumni Association’s homecoming page for more information and to RSVP.

Many of the colleges and schools will also host celebrations to welcome their alumni back to the Classic City on Saturday, October 4.

Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication will have a Game Day BBQ beginning at 2:00 p.m. Click here for more information.

The School of Law will hold its annual Law Dawg BBQ on Herty Field beginning at 1:30 p.m. Prepaid reservations are required to attend.

The Terry College of Business will host a tailgate on the Brooks Hall Lawn at 1:00 p.m. For tickets and more information, click here.

The College of Pharmacy will host class reunions for 2009, 2004, 1999, 1994 and 1989 graduates. It will also celebrate the 50th anniversary of the R.C. Wilson Building at 1:00 p.m. For more information, visit the College of Pharmacy’s web page.

For more information about Homecoming Week events, click here.

The UGA Alumni Association looks forward to welcoming alumni and friends back to campus for the 2014 Homecoming Week! Sic 'em!

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