Department of English Fine Arts and Communication – The Citadel Today https://today.citadel.edu Thu, 17 Mar 2022 17:41:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8.4 https://today.citadel.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Citadel-Favion-new-150x150.png Department of English Fine Arts and Communication – The Citadel Today https://today.citadel.edu 32 32 144096890 Career fair brings employment opportunities to cadets and students https://today.citadel.edu/career-fair-brings-employment-opportunities-to-cadets-and-students/ Mon, 21 Mar 2022 13:00:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=31250 As The Citadel prepares cadets and students for success in the workforce, the Career Center gives them the tools needed to find the right job.]]>

By Alaina Rink, CGC ’22

As The Citadel prepares cadets and students for success in the workforce, the Career Center gives them the tools needed to find the right job. One of the Career Center’s initiatives is to bring employers from many different industries to campus throughout the year.

Over 50 employers attended the Career Center’s spring job fair, ranging from Volvo and Santee Cooper to MUSC and the Secret Service.

Cadet Hannah Collee, ’23, was one of the 400 participants. A Computer Science and Cyber Operations double major, Collee wants to use her studies to make a difference after graduation, so she spoke with representatives from the FBI and CIA. “The Citadel’s leadership opportunities prepare you to make the first move and expand your network,” she said.

Cadet Hannah Collee speaking with recruiters at The Citadel Career Center’s job fair

Likewise, Cadet Cameron Crouse, ’24, said the classes he took as a Criminal Justice major – like Criminology, as well as Police Systems and Practices – will prepare him for the career he wants with law enforcement. The City of North Charleston Police Department, Gwinnett County Police Department and South Carolina Department of Public Safety all sent representatives to the job fair.

Representatives from South Carolina Highway Patrol speaking with cadets during The Citadel Career Center’s job fair

Cadet Keefe White, ’22, pulled double duty at the fair; he is a Mechanical Engineering major as well as an intern for Nucor, one of the company attendees looking to recruit more from the Corps of Cadets. “The Citadel prepared me for resume presentation,” he said at the Nucor table. “The Technical Writing and Communication class prepared me for being interviewed by a panel of five.” Citadel professor Alyson Eggleston, Ph.D., specifically designed this course to prepare Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science majors for professional communication in the workforce.

Professors attended too and championed their pupils. “I am so excited to see former students return to the career fair. It’s so valuable,” said Lauren Rule Maxwell, Ph.D. She encourages her Communications 216 students to be knowledgeable about the companies they apply for and to never underestimate the importance of having conversations and following up.

As the career fair’s positive energy transforms into job offers, members of the Career Center will continue helping cadets and students shine on their way to successful careers.

Jordan Yarborough, Page Tisdale, Stephanie Fye, Diana Hermann and Susan Pope from The Citadel Career Center

For more information on joining the South Carolina Corps of Cadets, click here.


Alaina Rink is a graduate assistant in the Office of Communications and Marketing while pursuing a master’s degree in English. She earned her undergraduate degree from the College of Charleston in secondary education English and taught in the Charleston area for four years.

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Citadel professor to publish companion book on internationally best-selling “Wheel of Time” series https://today.citadel.edu/citadel-professor-to-publish-companion-book-on-internationally-best-selling-wheel-of-time-series/ Wed, 16 Feb 2022 23:04:10 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=30639 "Origins of The Wheel of Time" is written by Michael Livingston, Ph.D., Secretary-General of the United States Commission on Military History and professor of medieval literature at The Citadel]]>

Note: Michael Livingston, Ph.D., (photo above) is an acclaimed academic interpreter of Robert Jordan’s literary accomplishment and legacy. Among his many other books are the Shards of Heaven trilogy of novels (published by Tor) and multiple award-winning studies of military history. At present, he serves as the Secretary-General for the United States Commission on Military History and teaches at The Citadel.

James Rigney Jr. — known as Robert Jordan, author of the Wheel of Time Series — graduated from The Citadel in 1974.

From Tor.com

Tor Books is proud to announce the acquisition Origins of The Wheel of Time: The Legends and Mythologies that Inspired Robert Jordan by Michael Livingston, including a foreword by Harriet McDougal, by Robert Davis via Paul Stevens of the Donald Maass Literary Agency. The UK and Commonwealth rights were acquired by Bella Pagan, Publishing Director of Pan Macmillan’s Tor imprint.

Origins of The Wheel of Time by Michael Livingston will be available on November 8, 2022 from Tor Books.

“Jordan has come to dominate the world Tolkien began to reveal.” —The New York Times on The Wheel of Time® series

Explore never-before-seen insights into the Wheel of Time, including:

  • A brand-new, redrawn world map by Ellisa Mitchell using change requests discovered in Robert Jordan’s unpublished notes
  • An alternate scene from an early draft of The Eye of the World

Take a deep dive into the real-world history and mythology that inspired the world of Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time®. Origins of The Wheel of Time is written by Michael Livingston, Secretary-General of the United States Commission on Military History and professor of medieval literature at The Citadel, with a Foreword by Harriet McDougal, Robert Jordan’s editor, widow, and executor of his estate.

This companion to the internationally bestselling series will delve into the creation of Robert Jordan’s masterpiece, drawing from interviews and an unprecedented examination of his unpublished notes. Michael Livingston tells the behind-the-scenes story of who Jordan was, how he worked, and why he holds such an important place in modern literature.

The second part of the book is a glossary to the “real world” in The Wheel of Time. King Arthur is in The Wheel of Time. Merlin, too. But so are Alexander the Great and the Apollo Space Program, the Norse gods and Napoleon’s greatest victory—and so much more.

Origins of The Wheel of Time will provide exciting knowledge and insights to both new and longtime fans looking to either expand their understanding of the series or unearth the real-life influences that Jordan utilized in his world building—all in one, accessible text.

A letter to Readers from the Author, Michael Livingston

I’m a scholar, an investigator, a historian. I’m a man who weighs facts, examines evidence, an uncovers truth. I’m sensible. I’m responsible.

And I’m here to tell you that magic is real.

Let me prove it to you.

I was fifteen when I pedaled my bike—a black huffy with dirt tires—across a dusty Albuquerque prairie to reach my local bookshop. I had allowance and birthday money to spend, and a thirst that could only be quenched with a new book. I parked the bike, locked it up, and then perused the shelves for what seemed like hours. The store had these big comfy chairs, I remember—blue and welcoming—and whenever I found a potential new book I’d sit down with it and take the first chapter or two for a quick spin.

I was into fantasy back then—the kind of magic that a fifteen-year-old on a beaten-up bike wanted to believe in as he pedaled his way here and there under the hot sun, ever watchful for scorpions and snakes. The kind of magic that isn’t real, of course.

I found such a fantasy on the new release shelves. A big and fat one. The Eye of the World, by Robert Jordan. I picked it up. I liked the nifty cover it had on the outside and the cool map it had on the inside. I thought it had the hum of Tolkien.

So I sat down in one of those stuffed blue chairs and started to read.

In pages I was hooked. I spent every dime of the little coin I had and claimed my prize as my own. I tucked it into my backpack and pedaled home faster than I’d ever done before.

Not because of the snakes or the scorpions. Because of the magic.

That magic stayed with me long after I devoured that first book. Every year I saved up to buy the latest volume in The Wheel of Time as soon as I could. I became—I am—one of its many millions of fans.

I read the books on the bus to high school. I read them in college and in graduate school, where I earned a PhD and became a specialist on the Middle Ages.

I became—I am—a serious academic. If I should read the chronicler Adam of Usk claiming there was a dragon haunting northern England 600 years ago, I will find a natural phenomenon to explain it. Because despite my love of fantasy literature—from Homer to Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, from Tolkien to Jordan and Nemisin—I know magic isn’t real.

And yet…

After I graduated, I was asked to interview for a professorship at The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina. The only thing I really knew about the place came from a single notice on the back of every book of The Wheel of Time in my library: Robert Jordan was a graduate of The Citadel.

I interviewed. I got the job. I moved to Charleston, and every day I walked past the iconic white tower on our campus. Every day, more and more, I wondered if that meant something.

A coincidence, of course. Magic isn’t real.

And yet…

In the fall of 2006, I was talking to The Citadel’s other Big Name literary alumnus, Pat Conroy, about starting student writing awards to honor him and James O. Rigney, Jr—the man the world knew as Robert Jordan. Pat suggested he could write Jim to help introduce me. Before I knew it I was exchanging emails with the man who’d given me The Wheel of Time.

I mentioned to Jim I was a fan. I told him at one point that I hoped to publish fiction myself one day, and that I planned to do it with Tor for no other reason than the fact that they’d given people like me his Wheel of Time. He said he looked forward to my success: “You have my best wishes on your rise (soon) to bestsellerdom,” he wrote me in early January 2007.

A few months later, he came to the first ceremony to bestow the student award named in his honor. He was already very ill, but he nevertheless cut a dashing figure with his lovely wife and legendary editor Harriet by his side. My script had me call out thanks to the English Department for their support. From the first row, Jim grumbled that he’d been an engineering graduate. It was awesome.

We shook hands. I thanked him for helping change my life. He was charming and kind and unforgettable.

The summer passed.

On September 16, I was making photocopies for my class on Norse mythology when I heard that he’d died.

For a moment it felt as if the magic in the world had died, too.

And yet…

Not long afterwards, the chair of my department called me into his office and told me that Jim had been elected into the South Carolina Academy of Authors. I was asked to give a speech at the ceremony, which would be held at The Citadel.

The event came in March. Harriet was in the front row and I couldn’t look at her as I talked. I was too afraid to cry.

But I got through. I sat down. A bit later, Harriet stood up to accept the award for her beloved Jim. She was gracious—by the Light, far more gracious than I could ever be—and then she publicly asked me if I’d come take part in a panel with her and Brandon Sanderson, who’d just been tapped to finish The Wheel of Time.

It might’ve felt like magic—in that moment I thought I could fly—but magic isn’t real.

Later, after that panel, I went to dinner with Harriet and Brandon and Team Jordan. They asked me if I wanted to come and tour Jim’s office sometime.

His writing desk was there when I visited: a beautiful old roll-top, where he’d spent countless hours building a world. So was his library and his armory and so much else that he used in the effort. At one point I looked up to see a saber-toothed tiger skull staring down at me and realized I was literally standing in the middle of the Tanchico Museum.

But, I forcibly reminded myself, magic isn’t real.

Not long after that I was invited down again. The Estate was going to auction off many of the weapons in his armory to raise money for medical research. They wanted me to pick one first, and they left me alone in his office to decide.

I remember staring at his desk, wanting to sit down but too afraid to do so. I felt a sudden impulse to turn around, and when I did I found my hands reaching past far nicer looking pieces to pick up an otherwise unremarkable katana leaning against the wall. I don’t know why. When I unsheathed it, I saw that it had a dragon etched into its sweeping blade.

I keep the sword in my campus office, and it was there, in later years, that one of my veteran students saw it. Turns out, he’d been deployed in Iraq when his father-in-law, an antiques dealer, had sold that very blade to Jim. He had pictures of the event.

Magic isn’t—

I wrote The Shards of Heaven, a trilogy of historical fantasy novels, and achieved that life-long dream when Tor published them. And though they hardly achieved bestsellerdom, just seeing the books come out was more than I ever thought possible. It felt like a promise fulfilled, like the result of some secret wind pushing at my back.

I continued to give talks on Jim’s literary impact over the years. Out of love. Out of a feeling of gratitude. Not long ago, I was invited to a get-together with Team Jordan, and out of the blue Harriet stunned me by gifting me that saber-toothed tiger skull I’d seen in Jim’s office on that first visit.

Magic is—

Over this past summer, the administration here at The Citadel wrote me with the news that Harriet had donated Jim’s roll-top desk to the school. She’d asked only that it be used and not simply set in a corner.

Days after my eager agreement to have that desk moved into my office—the one where he wrote those books, the one I’d been too afraid to sit at before—Tor offered me a contract to write a book about the real world in the Wheel of Time.

Somehow, that kid who pedaled home through the New Mexican dirt with The Eye of the World in his backpack would write his own book about The Wheel of Time… at Jim’s own desk, beneath his dragon-marked sword and his tiger skull, looking out at a white tower amid peaceful trees in a city between two rivers.

Magic—

Is real.

It might’ve taken a bit for me to get the hint, Jim, but I don’t think I can deny it any longer. So thank you. For this. For everything. I promise I’ll do everything I can to make Origins of The Wheel of Time worthy of the Light of your memory.

The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills.

I pray it weaves through me.

–Michael Livingston
The Citadel

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Cadets getting wild in the Charleston County Public Library https://today.citadel.edu/cadets-getting-wild-in-the-charleston-county-public-library/ Wed, 12 Jan 2022 22:20:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=29812 Wolf drawing by Citadel cadetWolf drawing by Citadel cadetThis exhibition showcases artwork by fourteen cadets selected from Prof. Rick Sargent’s popular drawing and wildlife drawing classes. Cadets used charcoal or pen and ink on toned paper to draw a variety of animals from a bear to a butterfly.]]> Wolf drawing by Citadel cadetWolf drawing by Citadel cadet

Citadel cadets’ wildlife drawings on view at the Charleston County Public Library Main Branch through January 31

Photo above: Wolf by Cadet Shaun Garza, ’24, Criminal Justice major, Fine Arts minor

“All Creatures Great and Small: Wildlife Drawings by Citadel Cadets” is an exhibition currently on view in the front lobby of the main branch of the Charleston County Public Library on the peninsula.

Raccoon drawing by Cadet Matthew Nulman ’21, Mechanical Engineer major, Fine Arts minor

This exhibition showcases artwork by 14 cadets selected from Prof. Rick Sargent’s popular drawing and wildlife drawing classes.

Cadets used charcoal or pen and ink on toned paper to draw a variety of animals from a bear to a butterfly.

Dog drawing by Veteran Day Student, Catherine Rodriguez, ’24, Business major, Fine Arts minor

The exhibit was curated by Sargent, a Fine Arts Visiting Professor with The Citadel School of Humanities and Social Sciences, and The Citadel Director of Fine Arts, Tiffany Silverman.

Bear drawing by Cadet Mao-Xiang Hou ’21, Business major, Fine Arts minor

The library is located at 68 Calhoun Street, with free parking for visitors in a garage being the library. Operating hours are listed at this link, but may be subject to change due to the pandemic.

Due to COVID restrictions, rather than having a formal exhibition opening, there will be an informal drop-in on Wednesday, January 26 from 5-7 p.m. in the library lobby, during which Sargent, Silverman and some of the exhibiting cadets will be available to answer questions about the artworks.

Cadets with artwork on view

Butterfly drawing by Cadet Issac Koepper ’22, Electrical Engineering major

Cadets included in the exhibition are as follows. Note that the majority of the exhibitors are Fine Arts minors, one of the largest minors on campus.

Jonathon Dowell, ‘22, Electrical Engineering major/Fine Arts minor  

Shaun Garza, ‘24, Criminal Justice major/Fine Arts minor  

Mia Gervais, ‘23, Psychology major/Fine Arts minor   

Mao-Xiang Hou, ‘21, Business major/Fine Arts minor  

Alecia Koch, ‘21, Criminal Justice major/Fine Arts minor 

Isaac Koepper, ‘22, Electrical Engineering major  

Grayham Ives, ‘22, Accounting major  

Wesley Lane, ‘21, Business major/Fine Arts minor  

Princess Lopez, ‘25, Psychology major  

Kaytlynne McCord, ‘22, Chemistry major/Fine Arts minor  

Michael Mewhorter, ‘20, Intelligence major  

Matthew Nulman, ‘21, Mechanical Engineering major/Fine Arts minor  

Catherine Rodriguez, ‘24, Business major/Fine Arts minor (Veteran Day Student)

Noah Williams, ‘25, Intelligence major/Fine Arts minor  

Wolf by Cadet Shaun Garza, ’24, Criminal Justice major, Fine Arts minor
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Student artwork in Daniel Library honors veterans https://today.citadel.edu/student-artwork-in-daniel-library-honors-veterans/ Tue, 23 Nov 2021 11:00:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=28957 The Daniel Library is currently displaying cadet and student artwork to raise awareness and honor the sacrifices of veterans. ]]>

By Alaina Rink, CGC ’22

The Daniel Library is currently displaying cadet and student artwork to raise awareness and honor the sacrifices of veterans.

The pieces were created by cadets and students enrolled in Literature of War, a class taught by Jenna Adair, Ph.D., focusing on veteran-written literature like Tim O’Brien’s “How to Tell a True War Story” and Phil Klay’s “Redeployment.”

Adair says she’s been learning alongside those taking her classes since she started teaching this literature course in 2018. “It’s been a crash course,” she said. “My understanding of the issues has definitely evolved.”

They work together to understand diverse issues that veterans can face. “I’m a literature teacher trying to teach an experience I’ve never had,” she said.

Most of those who take Adair’s class are not veterans either.

“Many of them knew the hardships and sacrifice of veterans, but they just didn’t realize how extensive it was,” said Adair. “And there were some who said it helped them make sense out of some responses or some attitudes they saw in vets who mattered to them.”

Olivia Hime, ’22, painted the green monochromatic piece, depicted above, which is inspired by a poem the class read.

“In Dr. Adair’s class, I learned that there are different ways in which emotions, such as sorrow and pain, can be felt that can’t be communicated through simple words,” said Hime.

Adair challenges them to recognize that each veteran transitions through reintegration differently, and that there are multiple ways to support those who have served. “There is clearly a need for help,” Adair said.

When given the chance to capture the veteran experience in an image, many students will dedicate their art to relatives who are veterans or current service members. Adair encourages many cadets and students to take their art home over the holidays to share with these loved ones.

Adair joined The Citadel in 2008 after earning her Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina.

Alaina Rink is a graduate assistant in the Office of Communications and Marketing while pursuing a master’s degree in English. She earned her undergraduate degree from the College of Charleston in secondary education English and taught in the Charleston area for four years.

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Prime placement for the world-famous story authored by a Citadel alumnus https://today.citadel.edu/prime-placement-for-the-world-famous-story-authored-by-a-citadel-alumnus/ Thu, 18 Nov 2021 17:17:36 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=28876 Wheel of Time seriesWheel of Time seriesThe Wheel of Time, based on the book series by Robert Jordan (aka James Rigney, '74) premieres on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, Nov. 19]]> Wheel of Time seriesWheel of Time series

Photo: The first book from “The Wheel of Time” series and James Rigney’s Citadel ring

The Wheel of Time premieres on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, Nov. 19

Before it became a multi-million dollar TV production, “The Wheel of Time” was a series of 14 books by Robert Jordan, published between 1990 and 2013.

And before becoming famous around the world as Robert Jordan, a pen name, the author was known as James Rigney Jr., The Citadel Class of 1974.

He enrolled at The Citadel, and graduated with a degree in physics, after joining the Army and serving in Vietnam, earning multiple decorations for his service.

Rigney began writing in 1977, and published the first book of “The Wheel of Time” series in 1990.

“The ‘Wheel of Time’ is one of the best-selling and most-loved series of books in history. It’s a powerful story, powerfully written, with legions of devoted fans around the world: an estimated 90 million copies sold in 33 languages so far,” said Michael Livingston, Ph.D., an English professor at The Citadel. “It’s a fantasy, and like many of its forerunners in that genre — from Homer’s ‘Iliad’ to Tolkien’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ — it’s a work of mythic complexity, shot through with an eye for the realism of trauma: something Rigney had seen first-hand as a decorated helicopter door gunner in Vietnam before he returned to Charleston.”

On Friday Nov. 19,, the world Rigney invented will begin streaming on screens across the country via Amazon Prime Video.

“There’s no underestimating the enormity of the excitement around the world to see the rich world he created, and the rich characters that live and breathe within it, transfer from the page to the screen,” said Livingston.

However, Rigney’s connections to The Citadel don’t end with his degree. The college awarded him with an honorary doctorate of literature in 1999. Books from “The Wheel of Time” series are also kept in the Rare Books Room in the Daniel Library on campus; the library also has a display filled with memorabilia from the author.

Livingston, who is himself a fantasy author and historian, has Rigney’s old desk and chair in his office, as well as the full collection of his books and some other personal items.

Michael Livingston, Ph.D., in his office on The Citadel campus with James Rigney’s desk and chair

“There can be no doubt that Jim Rigney, writing as Robert Jordan and more, had a tremendous impact upon the fantasy genre and sold millions of books because his stories spoke to something important in the human experience,” said Brian Madison Jones, Ph.D., dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. “We hope that Rigney’s work will inspire future Citadel cadets and students to discover the creative part of their nature and bring imagination to whatever work they choose.”

Before completing the series, Rigney died in 2007 after a battle with the rare blood disease amyloidosis. Author Brandon Sanderson was chosen to complete the sequence, based on Rigney’s notes.

Books from “The Wheel of Time” series in the Rare Books Room in The Citadel’s Daniel Library
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“I can’t think of a school that I would want to swap The Citadel with”: Meet Army veteran student Catherine Rodriguez https://today.citadel.edu/i-cant-think-of-a-school-that-i-would-want-to-swap-the-citadel-with-meet-army-veteran-student-catherine-rodriguez/ Mon, 15 Nov 2021 19:50:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=28627 US Army Veteran day studentUS Army Veteran day studentCatherine Rodriguez is a veteran day student pursuing a degree in Business Administration; she also volunteers for Greyhound Pets of America.]]> US Army Veteran day studentUS Army Veteran day student

In recognition of Veterans Day on Nov. 11, The Citadel is highlighting some of the college’s exceptional veteran students from different branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.

There are approximately 250 veterans currently studying at The Citadel, either as undergraduate or graduate students. They have the option of taking their classes as day students alongside the Corps of Cadets, as evening students with other non-cadet undergraduates or online. In addition, they are provided with multiple resources through the Veteran Student Success Center on campus.

Named #1 Best College for Veterans in the South for three years in a row, the Military College of South Carolina is honored to help our nation’s heroes advance their education.

Q&A with Catherine Rodriguez, Class of 2023

Catherine Rodriguez is a veteran day student at The Citadel pursuing a degree in Business Administration with a minor in Fine Arts. After graduation, Rodriguez would like to own and operate her own art business. She volunteers for Greyhound Pets of America and, since Dec. 2018, has fostered 18 greyhounds.

What was your time in the military like, and why did you want to join?

After four years, I got out of the Army as an E5, so a sergeant. There are definitely a lot of hurdles that I faced while I was in the Army. But I grew so much as a person. I wouldn’t be the person I am today, if it wasn’t for my time in the Army. I became a more empathetic and stronger leader and better woman because of it. Even when I was working with terrible leaders — it’s the terrible leadership that you learn the most from because you understand how it feels to have to deal with somebody like that at work.

My dad and older sister were in the Air Force. I wanted to be like my older sister and I thought being a service member was the most admirable thing that you could do. I just wanted to be a part of it. I loved the idea of being able to be a part of something bigger than myself and being able to have an impact on so many people and be able to do so many things that I couldn’t just do as an individual person.

Did you come to The Citadel immediately after retiring, or do something else in between?

When I got out, I moved here in 2018. I didn’t feel ready to be around a military environment at the time, so I started at the College of Charleston in fall 2018. I also just started going through a separation from my husband. I don’t know what made me finally decide I wanted to do something different. I think that it felt like a lot of things were out of control. I thought it was going to be better if I went to The Citadel.

When I first got here, it was the fall of 2019. Then the divorce was so difficult. I don’t have any family here, so I was kind of by myself. And I didn’t want to let my GPA suffer, so I withdrew from all of my courses except for a painting class. I didn’t come back until spring of this year. I took a year off, just because I wanted everything to be settled down with the divorce.

I felt really bad about withdrawing. I felt dumb for withdrawing, but I ended up making dean’s list last semester. Now, when things get crazy, I try to keep in the back of my head that things will get better, things are temporary.

Greyhound art by Catherine Rodriguez

What experiences from your military service have prepared you to be a better student and/or citizen? (Or, to phrase it another way, how did the military make you better?)

Honestly, I faced a lot of challenges. And I really learned that, when bad things happen, they’re going to happen to you whether you’re a good or a bad person. It’s not like life picks and chooses — you could be the best person and things will still happen to you. So I really adopted this perspective that things just happen and it doesn’t make me a good person or a bad person. I’ve learned to not feel like bad things happen to me because I deserved them to happen to me.

I learned to appreciate things in my life. That’s probably been the biggest thing that I’ve gotten from my time in the Army. I think empathy is just so important to make connections with people. I think that’s what helps people. I don’t know that it’s going to fix a lot of the world’s problems, but I think if people were more empathetic, things would be better. I’ve tried to take all of those experiences that I’ve had in and tried to be a more empathetic person. I’ve tried to take the way that I was a leader in the military and now I’m trying to apply it and take these not-so-great situations and mishaps that I’ve seen and make something better out of it.

Are there any advantages to being a veteran at The Citadel?

It’s nice to be able to have this group of veterans that you can see in the class. It’s something that makes it easier to talk to people. You can always ask ‘Oh, what branch were you in?’

I think that the teachers are really understanding and really wonderful. And they know that I’m not an 18 year old who’s living in the dorms, I have a mortgage I pay and all these responsibilities and other things going on in my life.

Do you ever get to interact with cadets on campus? If so, what are those interactions like?

It’s nice when we talk to them and they’re really interested. It’s cool to be able to talk to people that really, really genuinely care and are excited to hear about what you have to say.

What’s your favorite thing about The Citadel as a whole?

I just feel like it’s just been such a better college experience at The Citadel than it would be at like any other university. And as veterans it’s nice to have a small, special group on campus.

I think I’m just having an overall more positive experience. The Citadel is the biggest thing keeping me in South Carolina. I mean, I really could go anywhere for school, but because of the college’s history and reputation, I really want to graduate from here. I can’t think of a school that I would want to swap The Citadel with.

Veterans interested in attending The Citadel can find information about programs and opportunities here. Additionally, information about benefits for veterans can be found here.

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Big ballet to be in Charleston July 17 https://today.citadel.edu/big-ballet-to-be-in-charleston-july-17/ Mon, 12 Jul 2021 23:00:08 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=25224 Black and white photo of American Ballet Theater tour busBlack and white photo of American Ballet Theater tour busAs seen in Charleston Currents The American Ballet Theatre will be in Charleston July 17 for a free outdoor performance at The Citadel’s parade ground, Summerall Field. To attend, you]]> Black and white photo of American Ballet Theater tour busBlack and white photo of American Ballet Theater tour bus

As seen in Charleston Currents

The American Ballet Theatre will be in Charleston July 17 for a free outdoor performance at The Citadel’s parade ground, Summerall Field. To attend, you are asked to RSVP for the first-come, first-served performance.

Presented by the Charleston Gaillard Center, ABT Across America is being staged in eight cities across the country.  Each show will be performed without an intermission. Repertory for ABT Across America will feature Lauren Lovette’s La Follia Variations, a work for eight dancers set to music by Francesco Geminiani, Jessica Lang’s Let Me Sing Forevermore, a pas deux blending ballet and jazz vocabulary set to songs sung by Tony Bennett, Darrell Grand Moultrie’s Indestructible Light, a celebration of American jazz music, and a classical pas de deux from ABT’s extensive repertoire. 

  • Support for this program is made possible by generous donors who have committed time and resources to the Charleston Gaillard Center’s Dance Initiative. FAQ.

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Citadel begins demolishing historic Capers Hall and will construct a new academic building https://today.citadel.edu/citadel-begins-demolishing-historic-capers-hall-and-will-construct-a-new-academic-building/ Fri, 18 Jun 2021 10:00:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=24832 Demolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/StaffDemolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/StaffPhoto above: Demolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/Staff As seen in The Post and Courier, by Thomas Novelly The Citadel started demolishing its]]> Demolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/StaffDemolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/Staff

Photo above: Demolition begins on The Citadel’s Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/Staff

As seen in The Post and Courier, by Thomas Novelly

The Citadel started demolishing its largest and most historic academic buildings on campus to make space for a new, updated space to be used by cadets in 2023.

Capers Hall was built in 1949 and has housed classrooms and offices for the English, history and political science departments for generations of Citadel students. But on June 8, a demolition crane began to poke holes in the walls and rip plaster from the fortress-like white building, slowly removing it from campus one chunk at a time. 

Demolition will continue through the summer.

Citadel officials plan to build a 107,700-square-foot replacement in two years which will house classrooms, a 250-seat performing arts auditorium, an art gallery and a computer lab for the school’s Center for Cyber, Intelligence and Security Studies.

The project carries a $67 million price tag. About $15 million of that will be provided by the S.C. General Assembly, with the rest coming from state institution bonds and capital reserve funds. The Legislature also had to approve the renovation. The Citadel Foundation is also soliciting donations to offset some of the construction costs. 

Jeff Lamberson, vice president for The Citadel’s Office of Facilities and Engineering, said the seven- decade-old academic building lacked a lot of modern amenities needed for students and teachers. While he’s sad to see some of the campus history disappear, he said he’s eager for the school to provide more modern space.

“The classrooms will be much bigger and more flexible in nature,” Lamberson said. “You will be able to move around the furniture and you’ll have all types of audio and visual computer aids for students.”

Some historic elements from the old version will be repurposed for the new building. 

Concrete, masonry and stucco from demolition will be hauled off-site, crushed and recycled into the new building’s site foundation and parking area. And the distinctive iron-frame light fixtures will be used in the new offering. 

The Citadel originally sought approval from the state to do extensive renovations at Capers Hall but opted for a total rebuild after conducting a structural evaluation in 2014. Rather than spend an estimated $7 million to $8 million reinforcing those walls to meet modern international building codes, the school decided to start from scratch.

The construction of a new academic space puts a slight burden on faculty members for the upcoming school year.

Employees with Thompson Turner Construction and The Citadel watch as demolition begins on Capers Hall on June 8, 2021. Lauren Petracca/StaffLauren Petracca

Brian Jones, dean for The Citadel’s School of Humanities and Social Sciences, said some classrooms will relocate to the library, other campus buildings and even mobile trailers while the renovation is taking place.

“We’ve already transitioned the faculty, and they’re already up and running in their new spaces,” Jones said.

Capers Hall was named for two brothers, Confederate Brig. Gen. Ellison Capers and Maj. Francis W. Capers, who was superintendent of The Citadel from 1853 to 1859.

The demolition comes amid a nationwide reckoning of Confederate imagery in public spaces and in the U.S. military. Retired Marine Corps Gen. Glenn M. Walters, president of The Citadel, said in a memo last year he was “establishing a committee to further study historical figures for whom structures are named.” 

The committee’s progress on researching and identifying buildings was sidelined by COVID-19, but they will resume their duties in the fall.

Presently, there are no plans to change the name of the hall when it is rebuilt. 

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Women in Defense Palmetto Chapter follows up with 2020 Scholarship Awardees at The Citadel https://today.citadel.edu/women-in-defense-palmetto-chapter-follows-up-with-2020-scholarship-awardees-at-the-citadel/ Wed, 17 Mar 2021 18:16:11 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=22741 Provided by Women in Defense Palmetto Chapter (WID) Pictured above (left to right): Cadets Lillian Layden and Catherine Guenther, 2020 Women in Defense Palmetto Chapter  Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math]]>

Provided by Women in Defense Palmetto Chapter (WID)

Pictured above (left to right): Cadets Lillian Layden and Catherine Guenther, 2020 Women in Defense Palmetto Chapter  Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Scholarship awardees

On a beautiful February day, representatives from the Women in Defense (WID) Palmetto Chapter headed to The Citadel to follow up with Cadets Lillian Layden and Catherine Guenther, the awardees of the WID 2020 Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Scholarship.

Layden is a senior and double majoring in Computer Science and German with minors in Cybersecurity and Fine Arts, and a member of the U.S. Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) at The Citadel. Guenther is a sophomore and is pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering and is also a member of AFROTC.

This academic year has been far from typical for the students. We asked Layden and Guenther whether they were on track with their goals, what unique challenges they faced this year, and what advice they would offer to other women pursuing STEM majors.

Both are on track with their ambitious goals despite restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Layden plans to commission with the USAF as a cybersecurity officer upon her graduation in May from The Citadel. She was on the dean’s list in the fall semester and is the vice commander of her AFROTC wing. Guenther has continued with her internship at the Naval Information Warfare Center (NIWC) Atlantic, where she has been able to apply fundamentals of engineering.

Campus life has new challenges such as students can’t go into each other’s rooms, and they can’t hang out with friends like they did previously. Classes have shifted to a hybrid format, adding to an already demanding year. Guenther said, “Online learning has been a major challenge. It’s difficult to sit behind a screen to learn. One day you are online, the next day you are in person.” Since many clubs have stopped meeting, Layden is no longer able to participate in Judo and choir.

Both women had advice for other females pursuing STEM majors. Guenther said, “You shouldn’t focus on what anyone says you can or can’t do.” Layden said, “A lot of times, you’re going to be the only woman in the room, and you have to own that and be proud of that. It’s going to be really intimidating at times. Remind yourself that you are here for yourself. You’re doing great things, you’re going to do a great job. Stay on track, set realistic goals, and work towards them.”

The WID Palmetto Chapter’s STEM Scholarship is an annual award for women attending South Carolina colleges or universities pursuing degrees in STEM fields. Two annual scholarships of up to $2,500 are available, one of which is reserved for a veteran/member of the military/ROTC participant. Scholarship awards are made according to financial need, academic achievement, faculty recommendation, recognition and honors, activities, and personal essay.

The WID Palmetto Chapter, based in Charleston, South Carolina, was founded March 13, 2009. Their goal is to provide networking and professional development opportunities to promote advancement and recognition of women in national defense and security, to support military service members, and to encourage partnerships between the local contractor community and Department of Defense agencies.

For more information, please email chapter officers at https://widpalmettochapter.org/contact-us/.

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Hamilton Baiden, ’91, on how Citadel experience contributed to his career success with Heritage Health Solutions, Inc. https://today.citadel.edu/heritage-health-solutions-inc-announces-new-president/ Tue, 23 Feb 2021 11:00:00 +0000 https://today.citadel.edu/?p=22326 Headshot of Hamilton BaidonHeadshot of Hamilton Baidon"In his elevated role, Baiden continues to lead the strategy and execution of Heritage's business development and growth while providing transparent leadership..."]]> Headshot of Hamilton BaidonHeadshot of Hamilton Baidon

Note: Hamilton Baiden graduated as a member of The Citadel Class of 1991 with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature. He resides in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Mr. Baiden emailed these thoughts to the college after we contacted him to congratulate him and to ask what about The Citadel contributed most strongly to his professional success.

“When I look back at all the different influences in my life that have contributed to any success I might have achieved, The Citadel is definitely near the top of the list. Most people that know my personality and learn I went to The Citadel immediately ask “How the heck did you graduate from there?” Sometimes I ask the same question. At the end of the day, at 18 years of age, I needed to learn how to wrangle my energy and use it to the best of my ability. I needed to learn when to listen and when to talk. The greatest thing The Citadel taught me was how to handle all the different things that get thrown your way and solve the problems that really matter. I always look back on my four years at The Citadel with admiration and respect, and I cherish the lasting relationships that were built there.”

Hamilton Baiden, The Citadel Class of 1991, President, Heritage Health Solutions

As seen on PR Newswire

COPPELL, Texas, Feb. 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Heritage Health Solutions, Inc. (Heritage) has promoted Hamilton Baiden to President effective immediately. In his elevated role, Baiden continues to lead the strategy and execution of Heritage’s business development and growth while providing transparent leadership and expanding upon Heritage’s vast portfolio of services and solutions. His strategic direction and initiatives will cement Heritage’s status as one of the industry’s top Integrated Health Care Managers. Hamilton’s extensive knowledge of the industry will also lend itself to developing new healthcare solutions and services within the Heritage Health Solutions brand.

Baiden first joined Heritage in 2018 as the Executive Vice President and General Manager, where he oversaw business development and strategic planning. He is credited with adding new innovative solutions to Heritage’s already impressive suite, including Heritage CARES, a virtual substance use, suicide prevention, and mental health program, and launching a new corrections division focused on the health and wellbeing of those in confinement.

“I am honored to be asked by the Board to help lead Heritage Health Solutions forward in our mission to improve people’s lives by offering innovative solutions to the health care journey,” said Baiden. “Over the year’s we have created an organization with incredible employees that dedicate their time to the cause and who work tirelessly to make a difference.” 

Prior to joining Heritage, Baiden was Executive Vice President of Sales, Marketing, and Business Development at Avella Specialty Pharmacy (Avella), where he grew annual revenues over 1000 percent. During Baiden’s 13 years at Avella, he implemented successful sales strategies at all levels of engagement. He also served in various roles for prominent pharmaceutical sales companies, including MedImmune, Serono, and Daiichi and Sanofi. Baiden received his undergraduate degree from The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina.

About Heritage Health Solutions, Inc.

Headquartered in Coppell, Texas, Heritage Health Solutions, Inc. is a premier provider of integrated health care management to correctional, public sector, and commercial entities. Heritage meets the demands of an ever-changing health care landscape by providing our clients with comprehensive, customized solutions. We manage costs, utilization, and quality, which leads to optimal health care outcomes. For more information about Heritage, please visit us at

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