eConnections - March 2014 Issue

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March 2014
The end of an era of art

The end of an era of art

Professor of Fine Arts Nick de Vries has been at University of Houston-Clear Lake since the beginning of the university. He will retire in May 2014. His life at UHCL for almost four decades has been one of creativity, service, teaching and inspiration. He has positively affected others around the world through his art and personal style.

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Upcoming Events
Women's Worth presentation

Women's Worth
Tuesday, April 8
2 p.m. | Forest Room

Join UHCL alumnae Estella Gillette, Sandy Mossman and Natalie Saiz for an interactive panel discussion of life balance, salary negotiation and
women’s worth and work in today’s fast paced life. For more information, contact alumni@uhcl.edu.


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This spring, a new tradition was launched at UHCL... Read more.

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It's almost time for the 2014 Spring Teacher Job Fair... Read more.


Did You Know?

Did You Know?

Did you know cook-off is turning 25?
Did you know that this year University of Houston-Clear Lake will celebrate a quarter century of Chili Cook-Offs? Twenty-five years ago the new tradition was cooked up and it’s only gotten spicier as time has gone by.

Read more.


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The end of an era of art

The end of an era of artProfessor of Fine Arts Nick de Vries has been at University of Houston-Clear Lake since the beginning of the university. He will retire in May 2014. His life at UHCL for almost four decades has been one of creativity, service, teaching and inspiration. He has positively affected others around the world through his art and personal style.

Indeed, de Vries will be missed, but his legacy will remain.
De Vries joined UHCL in 1975 and almost immediately began extending his teaching and art creation through travels ranging from artist-in-residence programs in the United States to Fulbright Commission grants for workshops and travel. He has been featured in media at home and abroad, citing how his art builds bridges between people. His efforts range from developing connections through joint student exhibitions with area community colleges, to an exhibition at an American embassy in Slovakia.

As an artist renowned for his work in raku (a kind of lead-glazed Japanese earthenware), de Vries’ works have caught the attention of collectors, galleries and other universities. He has had more than 20 solo exhibitions and has participated in more than 50 group exhibitions. All the while, he remains a consummate teacher.

De Vries has been recognized for his teaching in many ways, ranging from winning the university’s outstanding teaching award four times, to being the university’s Minnie Stevens Piper Foundation Award nominee. He has also been recognized as faculty Advisor of the Year for his efforts with the student art association.

So many have been influenced by de Vries — far beyond the university’s art majors over the years — that alumni and community members have called the for the creation of a scholarship endowment fund in his name. The process is underway and you will hear more about that effort in the near future. Until then, contact Susan Conaway in the Office of University Advancement at conaways@uhcl.edu.

In addition to the endowment, de Vries’ will be remembered by an art piece he is currently creating. Once complete, it will be installed in the courtyard area near the new art studio renovations in the Arbor Building.

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Did you know chili cook-off is turning 25?Did you know chili cook-off is turning 25?

Did you know that this year University of Houston-Clear Lake will celebrate a quarter century of Chili Cook-Offs? Twenty-five years ago the new tradition was cooked up and it’s only gotten spicier as time has gone by.

Created in part by former Director of Student Activities Eileen Hulme, the first UHCL Chili Cook-Off was held in the spring 1989 as a new way to foster friendly competition and create a great event for UHCL and the local community.

At the 2013 cook-off UHCL’s official costumed mascot was introduced. Since named Hunter the Hawk, this year’s cook-off will celebrate Hunter’s first birthday. Along with the birthday celebration, this year’s cook-off theme celebrates the 80’s and the event’s history.

The hair might not be as big and the shoulder pads might be missing, but the 80’s will be alive and well. Back in 1989 when the first cook-off was held, students were listening to “Wind Beneath My Wings” and Milli Vanilli on their Sony Walkmans, and the Houston Oilers were NFL contenders.

A record number of teams have entered this year’s cook-off and will be competition for first, second or third place for “best chili,” Best Booth, Popular Vote, Student Government Association Award and Spirit Awards. As usual, the UHCL Alumni Association will have a high-flavored presence, but to learn more about their theme you’ll have to stop by their booth.

The 25th annual Chili Cook-Off will be April 5, noon-4 p.m. Chili Cook-Off is a family-friendly event and includes games and live music. It is free to attend, with tasting kits available for purchase. For complete event information, visit www.uhcl.edu/chilicookoff.

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