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Steve Sartori


As risky as it may be to predict the future—especially in an election year—I don’t think it’s going out on a limb to project that this fall will be one for the history books for SU. After many months of preparation and anticipation, we have brought the unprecedented exhibition Michelangelo: The Man and the Myth to the United States. This expansive collection of introspective and exploratory works centered on Michelangelo’s genius includes eight pieces never before seen in the U.S.

SU fine arts professor Gary Radke ’73 catalyzed this landmark event with his longtime colleague Dottoressa Pina Ragionieri, curator and director of Casa Buonarroti in Florence. The exhibition brings us the unique opportunity to marvel up close at works by and about the quintessential Renaissance man, whose creativity spanned from painting to poetry and from architecture to engineering. After completing its run on campus at the SUArt Galleries on October 19, the exhibition moves to the Louise and Bernard Palitz Gallery at SU’s Lubin House in New York from November 4, 2008, to January 4, 2009. I can’t imagine a better inspiration for Scholarship in Action than Michelangelo’s work, which epitomizes interdisciplinary scholarship and resonates across centuries, breaking barriers of time and space.

And at SU, we know barrier breakers. The story of one of the greatest of them all, our own Ernie Davis ’62, finally is being told to the world this fall with the release of a major motion picture from Universal Pictures, The Express. This eagerly anticipated film chronicles not only Ernie’s extraordinary athleticism, but his transcendent spirit in the face of discrimination. Opening nationwide in October, the movie premiered at Syracuse’s Landmark Theatre—complete with a walk up Salina Street by the film’s stars and special guests along an orange carpet. It’s a moving and inspiring account of Ernie’s journey from Elmira, New York, to SU to college football immortality when he became the first African American to win the coveted Heisman Trophy, before leukemia robbed us of the privilege of seeing him realize his full potential.

Succeeding generations of SU’s exemplary achievers in the world of athletics continue to carry Ernie’s torch—as some of them recently did all the way to the Beijing Olympics. Rower Anna Goodale ’05 carried it from SU walk-on to varsity eight to a 2008 gold medal with the U.S. women’s eight crew. She and her teammates finished just ahead of the Netherlands, whose crew was powered partially by Helen Tanger ’01. SU basketball coach Jim Boeheim ’66, G’73 found himself in a familiar seat courtside with former SU superstar Carmelo Anthony, both playing integral roles with the “Redeem Team” that brought men’s basketball gold back to the U.S. in convincing fashion. And we watched breathlessly as Phil Wheddon, SU’s new women’s soccer coach, helped guide the U.S. women to a repeat of their 2004 victory over heavily favored Brazil in the finals to net another gold medal.

Closer to home, we’ll be watching this November as Joe Biden L’68 pursues a different kind of goal: the vice presidency of the United States.



Nancy Cantor
Chancellor and President

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