In the fall of 2019, our department set out an ambitious goal: to celebrate our fortieth anniversary by producing forty stories about students, faculty, and alumni, and by increasing participation in our modest fundraising efforts by encouraging forty donations over the course of the year. I’m happy to say both efforts were a success, and all of us in the department offer our sincere thanks to the alumni, parents, students, faculty, and retired faculty who donated.
We received a range of gifts small and large, and every one makes a huge difference for our department. One recent donor made a gift in honor of Dr. Larry Kessler, who passed away in August of this year. You can read more about Larry, who played a central role in the growth of Asian Studies at UNC, in a profile written by Professor Emeritus Miles Fletcher. Many thanks to the anonymous donor for honoring a valued colleague who helped build our field at UNC, and had a positive impact on generations of Carolina graduates.
Our “Forty for Forty” campaign is ending, but the reasons to celebrate (and to give) continue. In fact, we just received the wonderful news that Sarah Mackenzie, who graduated in 2020 with degrees in public policy and global studies and a minor in Arabic from DAMES, has won a Rhodes Scholarship, allowing her to study social policy at Oxford University before moving on to law school for a planned career as a public defender.
As always, please stay in touch by checking in our website, following our Twitter account, reaching out to our faculty and staff, and if you able, contributing to our fundraising efforts.
Thank you, and happy holidays!
Chair of the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies
Professor of History and Asian Studies