A Message from the Editor

There are so many inspirational Hendrix alumni whose lives and careers are closely connected to the arts. We found no shortage of subjects to feature in this issue of Hendrix Magazine, which celebrates the arts. We could just as easily have covered longtime Heights Gallery owner Mitch Jansonius '71 or many other alumni art gallery owners and operators like John Bell '79 (Sweet Home), Jon Mourot '76 (Boswell Mourot Fine Art), Mac Murphy '98 (M2 Gallery), or Cindy Scott-Huisman '88 (Cantrell Gallery). But we ran out of space long before we ran out of talented Hendrix alumni worth writing — and reading — about.

Artistic Creativity is one of the six project categories in Your Hendrix Odyssey: Engaging in Active Learning. Through Odyssey, students and faculty have undertaken amazing hands-on learning experiences in the arts. Hendrix has also strengthened its resources in the arts with new faculty members in creative writing, theatre arts and dance, and studio art, including art professor Melissa Gill, who is featured in this issue.

Hendrix celebrates alumni achievements in the arts by awarding an Odyssey Medal for Artistic Creativity. Among the past recipients of this honor are Mary Steenburgen '75, Susan Dunn '76, James R. Hayes '88, Natalie Canerday '85, Sheri Bylander '85, Randy Goodrum '69, Bill Ragsdale '83, and Robyn Horn '73, who is featured in this issue. We look forward to awarding the 2012 Odyssey Medals at Founders Day 2012 on Oct. 25. We invite you to join us for this special convocation and to consider nominating other outstanding alumni for next year's Odyssey Medals. The nomination deadline is Dec. 31, and you can find the nomination form easily at www.hendrix.edu/odysseymedal.

Last spring, we received more than 650 magazine survey responses. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and story ideas with us. Your feedback helped us plan this issue and will help us identify subjects for future issues. We are so pleased to see that many of you liked the changes we have made after our 2009 survey. In particular, we noticed that the percentage of you who rated the magazine's quality as "excellent" increased from 18% in 2009 to 33% in 2012. We are happy with that increase, but we will continue working to make Hendrix Magazine even better. And, we hope that you will continue responding to our surveys, submitting your news for Alumnotes and sending us suggestions for great Hendrix stories. You are welcome to send your suggestions and comments to me at plotkin@hendrix.edu or to Managing Editor Rob O'Connor '95 at oconnor@hendrix.edu.

One last thing, for those of you who have iPads: expect the iBooks version of the fall edition to be available for download by the middle of October. We are excited to be presenting Hendrix Magazine in this new format and would appreciate hearing your thoughts about it.