ASU Art Museum holiday sale through Dec. 21

December 6, 2013

This holiday season, find a unique and affordable gift for a loved one  – or yourself – at the ASU Art Museum store, and take advantage of a great holiday sale discount.

All regularly priced merchandise – including exhibition catalogs, gifts, toys and jewelry – is 20 percent off, now through Dec. 21. ASU Art Museum members receive an additional 10 percent off. Download Full Image

The ASU Art Museum store features a number of handmade items by local artists, ASU alumni and faculty, as well as jewelry and other accessories, works from artists around the world, hand-made greeting cards, imaginative and challenging toys for children and other unusual items, all eligible for the holiday sale discount.

When you shop at the museum store, you’re supporting ASU Art Museum programs – and shopping local. According to Local First Arizona, of which the museum is a member, when shoppers choose to spend their money locally, 73 percent remains in the local economy, compared to just 43 percent from non-local stores.

The ASU Art Museum is part of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University and is located on the southeast corner of Mill Avenue and 10th Street in Tempe. Metered parking is available in the lot directly west of the museum entrance; museum admission is always free.

The store is open during regular museum hours, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. on Tuesdays (during the academic year) and 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday. The museum is closed on Sundays and Mondays. To speak with a member of the museum store staff, call 480.965.9076. 

Juno Schaser

Event coordinator, Biodesign Institute


Winter ArtFest set for Dec. 4

September 19, 2013

Attention, artists and craftsmen: the seventh annual Winter ArtFest is set to take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Dec. 4, on Hayden Lawn at ASU's Tempe campus.

All ASU faculty, staff, students, alumni and retirees are invited to sell their arts and crafts during the event. Download Full Image

Participants are expected to donate an item to the silent auction, which raises funds for a scholarship for a participating artist, selected by drawing.

There is no entry fee for artists. The event is sponsored by The Devils’ Workshop.

For more information, contact Judith Smith,; Mary-Beth Buesgen,; or Cynthia Milberger,

ASU In the News

ASU's efforts to employ law grads applauded

This summer, ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law is launching a new venture: the ASU Alumni Law Group, a teaching law firm that will hire and mentor recent graduates of the school. While some have criticized the university’s plan as a ploy to improve the law school’s rankings by boosting its graduates’ employment rates, a July 7 op-ed by Mark Briggs, founder of the Briggs Law Group, praised the idea as “simply the right thing to do.”

The Alumni Law Group – a stand-alone, nonprofit firm – is a full-service, fee-based institution that will prepare new and recent graduates to move from the classroom to practice. It will provide legal services to a wide variety of clients, focusing on those who cannot afford to pay current market rates and using graduates supervised by experienced attorneys to deliver those services. Download Full Image

The op-ed mentions a few reasons why the Alumni Law Group is a good idea: first, ASU has a good track record of supervising inexperienced law students who are representing actual clients; second, this new venture fills a gap in legal education for students who want to practice law outside a courtroom; and third, hiring unemployed recent law graduates is a creative solution to providing them with a place to begin their careers.

Law school dean Douglas Sylvester commented, “In a market where many are calling for systemic legal reform, we at ASU are not waiting for others to change – we are changing how we educate and mentor lawyers right now, and are doing so in a way that makes sense for our graduates and for Arizona.”

Article Source: AZCentral
Emma Greguska

Reporter, ASU Now

(480) 965-9657

ASU announces 2013-2014 Young Alumni Council members

July 1, 2013

The Arizona State University Alumni Association recently elected its officers and newest members for the 2013-2014 Young Alumni Council. The council was formed in 2009 to direct the development of the association’s Arizona State Young Alumni program for ASU graduates ages 35 and younger.

The following ASU alumni will be part of this year’s Young Alumni Council. Download Full Image



Sean J. O'Hara ‘03 B.A. is a lawyer with Kercsmar & Feltus, PLLC. His practice focuses on commercial and intellectual property litigation. O’Hara, his wife Amy, and their children, Ellen and Patrick, are all avid Sun Devil fans who rarely miss an ASU football game.

Vice President/President-Elect:

Maja Aurora '03 B.A. has a degree from ASU in studio art with an emphasis in ceramics. She manages public art, art in private development and arts grants for the city of Tempe. During her time at ASU, she served as the president of Muralcles ASU, a student organization dedicated to brightening the lives of children through arts and music. Aurora currently serves the community by volunteering with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona, Emerging Arts Leaders Phoenix and serving on the board of directors for Tempe Leadership.


Jessica Aguilar '10 B.A. works as an enrollment advisor for the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Walden University. She also is a volunteer with the Center for Civic Education and works with East Valley high school students to better prepare them for competitive government competitions. At ASU, she was the vice president of the Devils’ Advocates organization and a member of the Student Admissions and Relations Team (START). She has interned for several congressional campaigns and participated in several "get out the vote" efforts.

Past President:

Jayson Matthews '03 M.P.A. is the chief development officer for United Food Bank. He worked for the city of Tempe as a management intern for former Tempe City Manager Will Manley, and as an executive assistant for former Tempe Mayor Neil Giuliano. Matthews currently serves on the Desert Botanical Garden's Monarch Council, Phoenix Suns Charities 88, and Chicanos Pro La Causa's Health and Human Services Advisory Committee. He is a past chair of the Tempe Transportation Commission and past president of Tempe Leadership. Matthews also has served on the City of Phoenix Commission on Housing and Neighborhoods, the City of Phoenix License Appeals Board and is a proud member of the Kiwanis Club of Tempe.

New Members

Sarah Hipolito '03 B.A.

Hipolito serves as a senior program coordinator for the Nonprofit Management Institute at ASU's Lodestar Center for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Innovation. She is responsible for the management of day-to-day operations of the institute, as well as the coordination of the center’s annual conference and forum. 

Prior to her work with the Lodestar Center, Hipolito coordinated youth programs within the Catholic Diocese of Phoenix for six years. She served as the coordinator of youth and young adult ministries at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Phoenix and prior to that served in the same capacity at Blessed Sacrament Church in Tolleson.

During her student days at ASU, Hipolito was a recipient of the Doran Community Scholars Program Scholarship and remains active with the program as an alumna. She volunteers at St. Vincent de Paul Church as a high school religious education instructor, and is a choir member at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Glendale.

Jessica Mahony '08 B.S., '09 M.Ed.

Mahony works as a coordinator for the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at ASU. While earning her bachelor's degree in tourism management and her master's degree in higher and post-secondary education, Mahony was a scholarship recipient of the Phoenix Convention and Visitors Bureau's Excellence in Student Training Program.

Currently, Mahony serves as a mentor with the ASU Obama Scholar Program and volunteers with service projects through ASU’s Community Service program and The Valley Tourism Ambassador Program. She is a member of the Meeting Planners International professional association.

The new council members and officers join current council members Sara Agne ’04 B.A.; Tim Agne ’04 B.A.; Nicole Almond ’04 B.A., ’09 M.Np.S.; Saif Al-Alawi ’05 B.A.; Alexander Benezra ’03 B.S.; Alexander Clark ’10 B.A.; Alexandra De La Paz ’03 B.S.; Meghan Dorn ’02 B.I.S.; Matt Gervin ’01 B.S.; Ashley Irvin ’07 B.A., ’09 M.Ed.; Sharvil Kapadia ’10 B.S.E.; Dan Kiloren ’06 B.A., ’11 Ph.D.; Christopher Lee ’10 B.A.; Oquendo Perez ’06 B.I.S.; Billy Watson ’11 B.S., ’11 B.A.

For additional information on the Arizona State Young Alumni program, visit

Alumni Association welcomes new students with Sun Devil Send-Offs

June 21, 2013

The ASU Alumni Association will partner with Sun Devil alumni and families this summer to welcome Arizona State University’s incoming freshmen and transfer students at a series of Sun Devil Send-Offs to be held at locations across the United States.

The send-offs offer a casual, relaxed setting for new and returning members of the ASU community to meet each other. They provide a personal welcome to ASU for students and their families, as well as opportunities to connect with ASU alumni and continuing students. New students are encouraged to ask questions about life at ASU, share their concerns and excitement, and socialize with other students from their home area. Colorado Send Off 2012 Download Full Image

The gatherings are hosted by local alumni, many of whom belong to the Alumni Association’s nationwide network of chapters and clubs. The university’s Undergraduate Admissions unit provides outreach to incoming ASU students and encourages all new students to attend before arriving on campus.

ASU students who have attended previous send-offs give them high marks for helping them prepare for their time at the university.

"I enjoyed meeting both other incoming freshmen as well as their parents,” said Natalie Fleming, an ASU sustainability major who attended a send-off in Madison, Wisc. “It was nice to talk about our individual preparations for ASU, such as purchasing season passes for games and our mode of transportation to Arizona."

Jordan Frakes, a journalism major who attended a send-off in Westlake Village, Calif., said, "I really enjoyed the introductions. Everyone comes from different backgrounds and attends ASU for different reasons. Hearing what other students were majoring in was interesting, too."

Eddie Devall, president of the Los Angeles alumni chapter, said his support of the send-offs stemmed from his positive experiences at a similar gathering when he was a student.

“I went to a send-off in San Diego before heading to ASU,” he said. “I met other students I am still friends with today; another attendee became a future roommate of mine. It was a great event. That's why I still value the send-offs as an alum – they make ASU feel like a comfortable and friendly community as students and their families get ready to join the Sun Devil family for life.”

Nearly 40 Sun Devil Send-Offs are planned for 2013.

2013 Sun Devil Send-Offs dates and locations:

• June 29 – Spokane, Wash.
• June 29 – Indianapolis
• June 30 – Boise, Idaho
• July 13 – Denver
• July 13 – Dallas/Ft. Worth
• July 13 – Seattle
• July 13 – Honolulu, Hawaii
• July 13 – Las Vegas
• July 13 – San Antonio, Texas
• July 14 – San Francisco
• July 14 – Flagstaff, Ariz.
• July 16 – Yuma, Ariz.
• July 20 – Portland, Ore.
• July 20 – Detroit
• July 20 – New York
• July 20 – Houston
• July 20 – Austin, Texas
• July 20 – Salt Lake City/Draper, Utah
• July 20 – Orange County/Ladera Ranch, Calif.
• July 20 – Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.
• July 21 – Washington, D.C.
• July 21 – Los Angeles/Arcadia
• July 23 – Philadelphia
• July 27 – Albuquerque, N.M.
• July 27 – Columbus/New Albany, Ohio
• July 27 – Orange County/Anaheim Hills
• July 27 – San Diego
• July 28 – Pittsburgh
• July 28 – Chicago
• July 28 – Madison, Wisc.
• July 29 – Los Angeles/Westlake Village
• July 30 – Los Angeles/El Segundo
• Aug. 3 – Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
• Aug. 4 – Charlotte, N.C.
• Aug. 4 – Tucson, Ariz.
• Aug. 4 – New England/Cambridge, Mass.

To learn more or to register for a Sun Devil Send-Off, visit

Texas Sun Devils celebrate release of ASU collegiate license plates

June 17, 2013

Arizona State University’s official collegiate license plate, sponsored by the ASU Alumni Association, has broken first-day sales records in the Lone Star State for Texas plates featuring an Arizona theme. The state’s new ASU “Sparky” license plate features the university’s mascot, Sparky the Sun Devil, on an all-gold background with a white strip at the bottom bearing the words “ASU Sun Devils.”

Since the launch of the Sparky plate, 140 have been sold, with 98 plates sold on the first day alone. Alumna Andrea Cunningham, who purchased a plate on March 5, won a pair of tickets to ASU’s Oct. 5 football game against Notre Dame in Dallas Cowboys Stadium. Her name was drawn at random to receive the prize from all those who purchased a Sparky license plate on the first day. David Offutt '08 B.S.E. of Austin Download Full Image

Five Sun Devil fans who registered their interest in the plates prior to the them going on sale were selected at random and received a complimentary Sparky license plate through the third-party vendor David Minor, Judas Mireles, Catherine Place, Sierra Roddey and John Timm.

Another contest hosted to celebrate the new Sparky plates in Texas automatically entered all purchasers of personalized ASU plates in Texas between March 5 and April 30 into a contest for “most creative plate,” as judged by the Alumni Association. Austin resident David Offutt had the winning entry with the personalized plate "AZ ST8," and received a check reimbursing him for the purchase price of the plate. Additional contests for Sun Devils who purchase plates will be announced throughout 2013.

The introduction of the plates in Texas provide alumni and other ASU enthusiasts with another visible way to show their support for ASU, according to Christine K. Wilkinson, president of the ASU Alumni Association.

"We have more than 10,000 alumni living in Texas, and many more Sun Devil fans, so this newest collegiate license plate allows them to reconnect with their alma mater and proudly display to others that they are supporters of Arizona State University," said Wilkinson.

The ASU license plate in Texas is officially licensed by the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles and is available by visiting

Breaking down barriers to educate youth one verse at a time

May 29, 2013

“Music is something that can inform other people’s voices,” said Arizona State University alumnus Myrlin Hepworth, while sitting at a coffee shop in downtown Phoenix.

The idea is not something that he takes lightly, either. As a spoken-word artist, Hepworth dedicates his time to breaking down the barriers that misinform youth, one verse at a time. Now, the community is taking notice of the rising star. Myrlin Hepworth Download Full Image

Growing up in Idaho, Hepworth became enamored with artists such as Mos Def, The Roots, Common and Erykah Badu. His mother would also play a variety of music in his home. The result was a lasting impression from which Hepworth still draws from today.

For his latest project titled “The Funky Mixtape,” Hepworth reflects on music culture and artists like “Jelly Roll” Mortin and Frank Sinatra. He also talks about issues of race, class, gender and, of course, love.

In “A letter to Dave Chappelle,” a song he describes as the most interesting on the album, Hepworth speaks about the ignorance he witnessed in school of kids who missed the mark on Chappelle’s famous skit about a blind African American KKK member.

“Dave Chappelle’s black, white supremacist hit, kids in my class memorize the skit. Couldn’t interpret what Dave was trying to say. Ignorance is blind and so is hate. So they acting all KKK, running through the hallway all day yelling, 'Go back to your country, white power!' Stupid kids thinking racism was cool. Unaware that this Chappelle joke was aimed at you,” he says in a verse.  

As the co-founder of the slam poetry group Phonetic Spit, he works closely with youth both in the local community and throughout the nation. Hepworth’s goal is to teach them about the importance of being educated, having an outlet for their creative expression and overcoming fear.

“If a kid can break it down on the mic, they can break it down in the boardroom or in a classroom,” he said. “It’s important to inspire them to assess the world around them. If you can inspire a young person to use their voice to acknowledge their own pain and struggle, then you are giving them a tool to survive.”

Project Humanities at ASU has joined forces with Hepworth and is fundamental in efforts to send Phonetic Spit students to the Brave New Voices poetry competition and many local poetry slam events.

“Over the past two years, Project Humanities has enthusiastically partnered with Phonetic Spit during several campus and off-campus events where young high school word masters and apprentices demonstrated the power of language, of stories, of finding and sharing their vital voices on the notion of place, locally and globally – in Arizona, in the southwest, in this USA and on this planet,” said Neal Lester, associate vice president for humanities and arts in the Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development, and director of Project Humanities.

In 2013 the Arizona Commission on the Arts awarded Hepworth with the Arizona Humanities Rising Star award for his community engagement.  The recognition has allowed him to connect with a broad range of activists and students looking to participate in the music scene.

“It is inspiring to work with people who care about social justice, education and improving the world at large,” he said. 

To learn more about Hepworth, visit

ASU In the News

ASU grad wins Pulitzer for fiction

Editor's Note: Excerpts of this story were taken from Tracy Mueller's article that appeared in the March 2011 edition of ASU Magazine.

For his story of a North Korean man with a rough past, ASU alumnus Adam Johnson has won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. The award for his novel, "The Orphan Master's Son," was announced April 15.

The Pulitzer winner discovered his passion for writing as an undergraduate student at Arizona State University.

Originally enrolled as a journalism major, he found he didn't want the facts to interfere with telling a good story; Johnson enrolled in his first creative writing class and began using the skills he'd been cultivating all his life.

"As a young man, I was often told that I was a daydreamer, a rubbernecker, an exaggerator," he said in a 2011 interview with ASU Magazine. "But in a fiction class, all the things I had been criticized about came together to create something meaningful. That was a very powerful feeling for me."

Johnson received the prestigious Whiting Writers' Award in 2009 – an honor given to 10 young writers annually who exhibit "extraordinary talent and promise." He also is the author of the short story collection "Emporium" and the novel "Parasites Like Us."

"Some people say my stories are weird, but they feel perfectly normal to me," Johnson said. "The world is a dark, humorous, strange place.

"The surfaces of my stories can be outlandish or simple. They're just the vessels for the heart that I hope I'm communicating. It doesn't matter if it takes place on another planet or in a zoo. It's what happening between the people inside that matters."

Arizona Republic writer Kerry Lengel reported that Johnson's mother, Scottsdale psychologist Patricia Johnson, said the prize came as a surprise.

"I was doing e-mail when the Google Alert came in," she told Lengel. "I called him and said, 'I had to learn about the Pulitzer from the Internet?' He said, 'Mom, that's how I found out. They don't give you any advance notice.'"

Article Source: The Arizona Republic
Britt Lewis

Communications Specialist, ASU Library

Alum taps InnovationSpace for product development, improvements

March 28, 2013

In 1999, when D.J. Todd graduated from ASU with bachelor's degrees in industrial design and in management, he embarked on a career path that would circle the American West, from design firms in Boise, Idaho and San Diego, Calif., to graduate school to earn an MBA at San Diego State University. Little did he know then that he would double back to his hometown of Phoenix, to take a job as vice president of marketing at Vantage Mobility International (VMI), located just 10 minutes from his alma mater.

In fall 2012, Todd made a second homecoming. He returned to ASU, not as a student, but as a consultant to InnovationSpace, a sustainable product-development program for undergraduate seniors in design, business and engineering. VMI specializes in converting minivans for use by people with mobility impairments. The company, however, is exploring new concepts for wheelchair users on the go that dramatically diverge from the standard product line. Download Full Image

To help VMI probe the possibilities, Todd reached out to InnovationSpace, whose mission is to teach students how to develop products that create market value and serve real societal needs with minimal impact on the environment. Together with volunteers from the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), he has helped guide three student teams to develop product concepts that enhance independence, mobility and access for individuals in wheelchairs.

“I initially contacted InnovationSpace because VMI was looking for potential sources of disruptive thinking,” Todd said. “Because InnovationSpace students are not familiar with the restrictions, limitations and biases of our company and industry, they are able to think more freely about solving key customer problems. Their fresh perspective has the potential to unlock truly disruptive innovation.”

As the InnovationSpace students discovered, the field is flush with opportunity. Take wheelchairs, for example, which are largely considered a medical device rather than a personal means of locomotion. Despite the invention of new, lightweight materials, many wheelchairs still are clunky and institutional looking. And few of them fully serve the needs of their users, whether it’s incorporating new technologies for personal communication or health monitoring, providing handy storage options or expressing something as simple as a customized stylistic flair.

The three VMI-sponsored teams spent fall semester combing the internet for relevant books and journal articles and interviewing wheelchair users. And they conducted their own firsthand research. Some volunteered for the Phoenix-based organization River of Dreams that provides recreational opportunities for people with disabilities. In one activity, they rolled up their sleeves and headed to an ice arena to play a punishing round of sled hockey.

Others like Kim Salem, a visual communication design student and member of Team Link, logged long hours on campus in a wheelchair on loan from the PVA.

“I was in it quite a bit because I liked going on adventures,” Salem says – and on some misadventures. Were it not for a helping hand from her teammate, electrical engineering student Alban Shemsedini, she may not have made it to the top of the steep ramp that separates the Design North and South Buildings on her maiden voyage in the chair.

Later, she was nearly trapped in one of the buildings’ bathrooms while trying to execute a tricky three-point turn to escape. And she got a painful lesson about inadequate storage in wheelchairs after her mobile phone slipped from her lap and fell to the ground. While trying to retrieve it, she rode over the device with one of the chair’s wheels. The phone survived but “it opened my eyes to what people in wheelchairs have to go through every day,” she observes with undisguised admiration.

After intensive research and ideation, each team exhibited three preliminary design concepts in an exhibition at the end of the fall 2012 semester. The students came up with a wide range of ideas from a sensor ring on shower heads that deflects water when temperatures become dangerously hot and smart cushions that incorporate programmed flexing throughout the day to prevent pressure sores to wheelchairs that “stand up” when users need to retrieve items out of easy reach.

Team PACR even designed a concept for a chair that’s made out of recycled cardboard fibers. Strong, lightweight and ultra affordable, the chair folds to the size of a small suitcase when not in use, minimizing precious storage space in cars and vans. This spring semester each team is tasked with developing one of these product concepts in depth complete with a detailed product design, engineering prototype, business model and brand strategy.

If they’re successful, some designs won’t be visible at all. Team Link, for example, focused on the challenge of empowering the independence of wheelchair users. In the process, they entertained hundreds of ideas, most of them related to physical rehabilitation, wheelchair storage solutions and personal care. They finally settled on designing a healthier, more discreet and user-friendly catheter system.

“One of the things associated with independence is having a job,” says engineering student Shemsedini. “If you need help going to the bathroom, it’s highly unlikely that you’re going to be able to find a job. So we thought that the catheter system would have the biggest impact on increasing independence.”

And as the team discovered, it’s also an area with tremendous room for improvement. As undergraduate business student Jen Zielinski points out, people who use intermittent catheters empty their bladders about six times each day. The one-time-use devices – and their packaging – are bulky and create lots of waste.

For Eddie Urcadez, an industrial design student, the project poses an interesting design challenge. “Most things are made to be seen,” he points out. “But we’re designing an object that needs to be discreet.”

Team Link has passed many long nights in the InnovationSpace studio combing the medical literature, studying human anatomy and discussing the pros and cons of hundreds of potential solutions. But for Urcadez, who wants to work in health care design after graduation, the late nights working with his team on the thorny problems have been worth it.

“I see a lot of students nowadays who want to design electronic products that are meant to be mass consumed, like really hip, hot cellphones and TVs, things that get used and thrown away eventually," he says. "I’ve always thought that it would be really interesting to use industrial design for things that are usually glossed over.”

Shemsedini agrees: “Ever since I can remember, I’ve always wanted my input in the world to be about making products that help people. The good thing about this group is that we all have, if not the same, then very similar goals. At the beginning of the year, we all said, ‘This is not just a class. We want to learn the process of making something that will help people.’”

Todd praises not only the students’ creative ideas but also the tenacity and thoroughness with which they approached the task of understanding the needs of people with physical disabilities. He first learned the importance of design research as an industrial design student at ASU and continues to devote long hours at his job to conducting surveys, focus groups and ethnographic research with customers and VMI dealers.

“Wheelchair users have unique challenges and problems that 98 percent of the population cannot even fathom,” Todd observes. “I applaud the InnovationSpace students for identifying and tackling their critical issues.”

InnovationSpace, in turn, welcomes the invaluable contributions of boomerang alums like Todd. “It was a pleasure to welcome D.J. back to ASU,” says InnovationSpace Director Prasad Boradkar. “InnovationSpace students take on tough, complicated problems, and returning professionals like D.J. help them to navigate the complexity by generously sharing their years of knowledge and expertise. At the same time, they help us to field test our program to make sure it’s as close to a real-world experience as possible for our students.”

InnovationSapce is a joint venture by the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, the W. P. Carey School of Business and the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering.

Media Contact:
Adelheid Fisher,
Manager, InnovationSpace