Dr. Dina Bennett wakes up Washburn at breakfast lecture series

Catching up: Dr. Bennett catching up with a professor from her time at Washburn. Her former communications professor, Meredith Moore, brought an old assignment to reminisce over.

Washburn University strives to not only engage their students but their alumni as well. This is accomplished by the Alumni Association partnering with the School of Business to host the Wake Up With Washburn event throughout the year. The first lecture of the year was Tuesday, Sept. 27 at 7:30 a.m. at the Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center.

Wake Up With Washburn is a breakfast lecture series that the Alumni Association puts on to bring back alumni so they can speak on their career and how Washburn University has impacted their life post graduation. It also gives them the chance to speak to some classes that the Alumni Association believes would benefit from hearing them speak.

There are four of these events each year, two in the fall and two in the spring. The School of Business chooses two of the four alumni from their department to speak, and Susie Hoffmann, the alumni association director, chooses the other two alumni who can be from any major at Washburn.

Hoffmann explains that they give the speaker total control on the topic they chose to talk about, with the expectation that it can in some way relate back to their time at Washburn.

The keynote speaker for Tuesday’s lecture was Dr. Dina Bennett. Bennet is the Director of Collections and Curatorial Affairs at the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City, Missouri. The lecture she provided was titled “From the Crossroads of Mississippi to the Lights of Music City”. She discussed her work as an ethnomusicologist and how that knowledge helps her degree establish historical and cultural context for the interpretation of music in museums.

Dr. Andrew Anglin, assistant professor of mass media, explains how it was great to hear her speak about museums that he has previously been to. “A few of the places she has worked at I have visited, especially the BB King museum in Indianola,” said Anglin. “I remember I had gone out there as a part of a class when I was at Ole Miss, so I thought it was really, really cool.”

“So with Dina Bennett today I mean, she was talking about Dr. Meredith Moore, who at the time was the chair of the communications department, and after taking that class Dr. Moore really intrigued her and really kind of changed her educational path,” said Hoffman.

All students, alumni and community members are welcomed and encouraged to attend these lectures throughout the year. The next Wake Up With Washburn will be Thursday, Nov. 18 at 7:30 a.m. in the Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center. Mike Racy, the Commissioner for the MIAA will be the keynote speaker.

Edited by Ellie Walker