CLASS OF 1995 | 2020 | ISSUE 3

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 Greetings ’95ers! Bo Bell here. Sorry that I missed you all at the virtual reunion, but hoping we can do it for real next year! Here’s what’s been happening with your classmates.

I consider it to be a smashing success that I finally got dear friend Hannah Knott Rogers to send in some notes! “I am still a librarian at Emory’s Health Sciences Center Library and go to work in person every day and feel great about it—the university mostly has things 

under control—only a handful of cases among residential students (knock on wood). Our girls (14 and 16) are channeling their inner rage and future Wesleyaness into phonebanking for Generation Ratify, Sunrise Movement, student government and lots and lots of art and creative writing. Super shout out to every teacher out there hustling every day to make something that’s totally not normal seem ok. Other positives: no colds, lots and lots of family time, many trips to ramble in the north Georgia wilderness, and plenty of energy put towards plants and food. I haven’t seen anyone from our class in person, but have definitely enjoyed an uptick in texts, calls, and reluctant video conferences with old friends. I am thankful daily for the friends and experiences at Wesleyan and optimistic that my kids will be able to have a comparably meaningful college experience in the near future.”

Matthew Duffy is still living in Oakland, now in his fifth year as school superintendent in the Bay Area with his family, trying to stay healthy and sane. He recently had a great reconnect with Sherwin Yoder, and is also staying in touch with Malcolm Edwards and Brooke and Randy Jackson.

Lara Tupper writes from Maine: “I have become a chicken mama during the pandemic. Our eight hens bring us tremendous joy. My Zoom calls with Chelsea Farley ’95, Laura Pinsof ’95 and Mireille Abelin ’96 have been a saving grace. And my new book, Amphibians (a collection of short stories) will come out in March 2021 from Leapfrog Press.”

Lauren Monchik is still in NYC with husband Davison and two daughters (ninth grade and sixth grade) and is a new science teacher and loving it. 

Cheryl Mejia reports on her experience during quarantine: “Telemedicine has the sweetest commute. Trying to teach rural folks to be more open-minded so that they exercise more, eat healthfully, and act in ways that help them get more health care providers to their underserved areas. So many skilled services come from minorities, so try not to scare them off with your political signs promoting exclusion! Also, stayed in an RV for the very first time ever. This might have been the bright side of COVID-19, since the in-laws got one for the now-limited ways of travel. I miss Son “Jackson” Tran, one of my only local Wes pals that I knew. Now I got no one, to my knowledge.”

Ian Boyden writes with some news! His first book of poetry—A Forest of Names—was published by none other than Wesleyan University Press. ianboyden.com.

Old pal Julia Lazarus checks in: “The past months have been defined largely by toddler entertainment and management activities (for my daughter Ellie, now two), but I am also working on a fellowship with the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities that is exploring the relationship between cultural participation and civic health. It’s been nice to reconnect with my interest in the ways arts and humanities can deepen our engagement with public life. At the same time, it’s been a weird time to have just stepped away from working in online education­: what a thing to see people so suddenly ramping up in those practices (and grappling directly with what’s challenging and what opportunities there are for something interesting and new to take place).”

Bo Bell | bobell.forreal@gmail.com 

Katy McNeill | mcneill40@gmail.com