The twelve new members of the Deep Springs Student Body (DS’14) arrived at the ranch over the Fourth of July weekend to join those second year students (DS’13) and third year students (DS’12) who did not take the summer semester off. The entire SB began the Term One Summer Seminar class today, which launches the new academic year only two weeks after the previous year ended. This summer’s course “History of Human Rights” is team taught by visiting professors Peter Rosenblum DS’77, Clinical Professor of Human Rights at Columbia Law School, and Warren Rosenblum DS’83, Professor of History at Webster University. The new students hail from China, South Africa, and throughout the U.S.
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The Valley was home to 20% of the 1960s alumni over Memorial Day weekend, with all but two classes represented on the ranch. Attendees packed a number of activities into two-and-a-half days including: a question & answer session with SB committee officers, President David Neidorf, Dean Amity Wilczek and Farmer Adam Nyborg DS’97; a guided tour of the Bufo Exul habitat at Deep Springs Lake; BBQ dinner at the Boarding House; a special Sunday evening Public Speaking for alumni participants; a discussion of how a Deep Springs education impacted career and life decisions; tours of the ranch; and review of the DS photographic archives from the era. Of course, attendees also had plenty of free time to simply re-connect with each other and make new friendships while lingering in the warm May sunshine of the high desert. We’re pleased to have had so many engaged alumni present. Their excitement for Deep Springs even after 40 years was palpable and reassuring.
President David Neidorf and Development Director David Welle DS’80 visited alumni, former faculty, and friends of the college in during December. They were joined by members of the board of trustees in several locations. Thanks to the scores of guests who attended in Brooklyn, Manhattan, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, and Los Angeles. We’re grateful to the alumni and board members who hosted the gatherings in their home or neighborhood and made the evenings possible. It is gratifying to see the energetic support we have in the DS Community.
Deep Springs hosted a mini-reunion of alumni under sunny skies and mild temperatures. Despite some last-minute cancellations (due to illness or unexpected snow on the Sierra passes) which reduced the number of attendees, those alumni who came ranged from class of 1943-1953. One of them had not spent a night in the Valley since his student days in 1948. Activities included a tour of the lower ranch environs and the lake corrals (with a thorough description of operations from Ranch Manager Janice Hunter), probing discussions about student/staff dynamics in the 1940s & 50s, a presentation on the history of the period from former president Jack Newell DS’56, an evening of public speaking with both students and alumni, and plenty of great food from the staff & students in the Boarding House. All those who attended reported that it was one of the most meaningful visits they had ever experienced to Deep Springs. Many thanks to the attendees and to the students/staff for their assistance.
The college community said goodbye to the class of 2011 on Saturday evening. (Deep Springs categorizes our students based on the year they first enter the student body.) The annual outdoor ceremony was pushed back from afternoon to early evening due to the extreme high temperatures (Death Valley is only 150 miles away) and took place on Gilbert Pass looking southwest over the entire Valley. In addition to the requisite farewell speeches from the first-years, departing second-year students each received a hand-knit cap made from the wool of Deep Springs sheep by staffers Jill Brewer, Adam Nyborg DS’97 and visiting faculty Linda Doss. President David Neidorf spoke at the ceremony, and since it was pitch dark by the time Humanities Chair Jennifer Rapp delivered the keynote address, he assisted her with a camping headlamp in true DS fashion. One member of DS’11 has elected to stay for a third year. Among the institutions the rest are transferring to are Hampshire College, University of Colorado, Brown, and Yale (where there will be seven DS alumni come this fall).