Who was Richard Nixon? Students have been asking themselves this question for months as they prepared for the Theatre Department’s production of Frost/Nixon, a play based on the series of 1977 interviews conducted by the British talk show host David Frost with the embattled former President.
“The purpose of theatre is to better understand ourselves and our fellow humans,” says Frost/Nixon Director and Fine Arts Professor Matt Dubroff. “I wanted the students to know Nixon as a person, not just as a president.”
To that end, Dubroff brought in Dean of the Faculty Dennis Stevens, a political scientist, who has extensively studied the Nixon Presidency. Stevens talked to the cast about Nixon’s career and the effect of the Frost interviews on the American public. Matthew Watson ’15, who took on the role of Nixon, found Dr. Stevens’ comments insightful, but his journey to understanding Nixon accelerated after Professor Dubroff suggested that Matthew and Harrison Stewart ’16, who portrayed Frost, talk with President Emeritus Samuel V. Wilson. Full story...
The second time Dean of Admissions Anita Garland came to Hampden-Sydney, she was interviewing for a position in that department and meeting people from around campus. As she and then-president Josiah Bunting were walking along Via Sacra, he said to her, “You know, this place … this place … it just makes you want to … I don’t know, it just makes you want to … have a lot of children.” Despite being taken aback by this unusual and very unexpected comment, Dean Garland soon began working at the place that would define her career.
That was 1980. Sixteen years later, she would become Hampden-Sydney College’s first female dean. Nearly 18 years after that, she, along with retired Biology Professor Dr. Anne Lund and Director of Grants and Special Projects Eunice Carwile ’92, shared her story at the opening reception for the Atkinson Museum exhibit “First Ladies: Hampden-Sydney’s Mothers, Matrons & Favorites.” Full story...
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