December 2012 Alumni EBrief




Happy Holidays from the UNO Alumni Association

Beginning with our successful transition into the University of Louisiana System, 2012 has been a whirlwind at the University of New Orleans!  This year we’ve celebrated the Investiture of our First President, welcomed a new leadership team and cheered our re-commitment to D1 Athletics. We watched UNO become more visible in the community thanks to the university's Heartbeat of the Crescent City campaign and new website, and launched our new Alumni & Friends Online Community and searchable Alumni Directory to help you reconnect.  

Throughout 2012, the Alumni Association has doubled down on its commitment to support students, to build the University of New Orleans brand and to re-engage alumni.  Through Association programs like the month-long “Alumni Role Models” pilot this fall, our Dine Like a Pro Etiquette Luncheon, and Resume Review Panels, dozens of alumni like you provided professional development help to hundreds of UNO students. With Students4Higher, the Association is providing 13 first-generation students scholarships and mentorships.  And just last month, alumni support helped UNO surpass all expectations by selling out the Investiture Gala and raising over $300,000 for UNO’s new military veteran scholarship program, EdVet. 

But it’s not all work!  As all true New Orleanians, UNO alumni love a party! After helping raise the funds to reopen the Cove and Sandbar, the Alumni Association showed it off to more than 1500 visitors at its First Annual Crawfish Mambo: Cook-off & Music Festival on the Lake.  In May, we hosted the Alumni & Senior Social at the Bulldog Mid-City for our newest grads, and the following night celebrated UNO’s first ever graduating class at its 50th Reunion.  

Just last week, Association members were invited to bask in the generous hospitality of the Loa Bar at the International House Hotel for our Annual Meeting & Soiree thanking 2011-2012 President Brian Glorioso and his board for its achievements and welcoming new President Norma Jane Sabiston and the 2012-2013 board with a toast.  With so many accomplishments to brag about, it is no wonder that our membership percentage has grown by double digits; it’s a trend we’re glad to see continue because each new member registration helps UNO build the ammunition it needs to market its successes!  

Our list of achievements in 2012 goes on and on and is a testament to the caliber of dedicated alumni, like you, who share your time, resources and talent to keep the University and each University of New Orleans diploma strong. So, as this year draws to a close, we want to thank each and every one of our members.  It is only with your support - through time, resources and talent – that the University and the Association have accomplished so much. On Saturday, when we proudly welcome over 900 new graduates into the UNO family, we’ll be celebrating not only their promising futures, but that of your University of New Orleans. Thanks to our alumni, that future will be bright. We wish each of you a happy holiday and look forward to all that 2013 will bring! 


Your Alumni Association and Alumni Affairs Staff

Privateer Basketball "Holiday Hoops" Alumni Night!

The New Orleans Privateers want UNO alumni to get into the holiday spirit when they take on Nicholls State at the Lakefront Arena on Wednesday, December 12 at 7 p.m.  Come enjoy the game plus special performances by the infamous 610 Stompers, singer- songwriter Robin Barnes (BS 09, MBA 10) and One Mind Brass Band.  And as a special holiday treat, UNO alumni tickets are only $5 with promotional code "holidayhoops" through Ticketmaster or at the Lakefront Arena box office on game day.

Click here for more information and to order your tickets.  

NASA Honors Intelligent Life at UNO

The University of New Orleans is honored to welcome Patrick Scheuermann (BS 86), newly appointed director of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, as its fall 2012 Commencement speaker on December 15th. Scheuermann was named director of the Marshall Center in September. He previously served as director of the John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Misssissippi. He is a New Orleans native who earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from UNO.


The University has recently been on NASA's radar: a team of UNO researchers led by Professor X. Rong Li have secured a 3-year, $1.5 million NASA grant to help improve the nation's air traffic system.  



Professors Awarded for Excellence in Teaching 

Our faculty is world-class and our alumni know it. To honor the instructors who inspire, challenge, and motivate today’s students, positively impacting their lives and futures, the University of New Orleans International Alumni Association presents the annual Excellence in Teaching Awards. This year, from among the many worthy nominees, the selection committee recognized Dr. Gilda Reed and Dr. Connie Zeanah Atkinson. Reed has served UNO for 18 years as a psychology instructor in the College of Sciences. She has been instrumental in increasing online course offerings in the department. Dr. Atkinson has been at UNO for 15 years, serving the College of Liberal Arts as an associate professor of history specializing in classes on New Orleans music. The two prizes carry a reward of $2,000 each, doubled since last year, and are awarded specifically for merit in instruction rather than research, publication, or other forms of excellence.  They will be presented to the awardees at Fall 2012 Commencement on December 15th.

AlumNotes: Grad Leads Transportation Revolution

Zachary Materne (BGS 07) was honored among Gambit's 40 under 40 for 2012 as general manager of The Transportation Revolution, a one-stop shop for high-end European scooters and motorcycles. Beginning as a family business in Mid-City, the store has since moved to Julia Street and expanded to include Truimph and Ducati bikes. "It's been great being part of downtown's revitalization," said Zachary. "It's really starting to feel like a community." The Transportation Revolution has recently partnered with NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, a pairing that draws corporations, athletes, dealers, and racing enthusiasts to the area from across the country. 



President Obama Nominates UNO Professor to Help Lead Mississippi River Commission

Norma Jean Mattei, professor and chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of New Orleans, has been nominated by President Obama as a commissioner of the Mississippi River Commission. The Commission combines expertise from various sources in an effort to prevent destructive flooding, foster navigation, and promote commerce. "The Mississippi River plays such an important role in the economic health of our nation, but with today's changing weather patterns, we can't forget that the mighty Mississippi can have a major impact on the safety of the people living on her banks," said Mattei. "I am very excited to serve the public in this capacity."




Alumni Association Soiree A Night To Remember

On December 5th, the International House Hotel graciously hosted the UNO International Alumni Association for our Annual Meeting and Soiree. Pitchers of perfectly-mixed cocktails and plates of hors d'oeuvres primed guests for mingling and the main event: 2011-2012 Board President Brian Glorioso (BGS 97) formally passing the gavel to 2012-2013 President Norma Jane Sabiston (BA 79). All active members of the Alumni Association were invited to join the celebration. We look forward to seeing you again in 2013! 


UNO Office of Alumni Affairs
UNO International Alumni Association
Homer L. Hitt Alumni & Visitors Center

2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70148
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8 A.M. - 4.30 P.M.
Phone: 504.280.2586 (ALUM) | 800.488.2956
Fax: 504.280.1080 |

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