SMU alumnus Junchang Lü ’04, one of China’s leading dinosaur experts, has helped identify a new dinosaur species – Zhenyuanlong suni – a cousin to the Velociraptor of Jurassic World fame and the newest clue as to how birds descended from dinosaurs.
The well-preserved fossil of a dinosaur with bird-like wings was unearthed by a farmer in northeastern China and eventually found its way to Lü, a top dinosaur researcher with the Institute of Geology at the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences in Beijing. Lü called in Stephen Brusatte of the University of Edinburgh to aid in the identification process. The two scientists had teamed up previously in the discovery of Qianzhousaurus sinensis, a cousin of Tyrannosaur rex whose whose long snout earned it the nickname “Pinocchio rex.” READ MORE
Virgin America CEO David Cush tells host Lee Cullum why there is such a fight for access to gates at Love Field and how fierce competition in the Dallas market is driving fare wars. Cush warns of potential dangers to the industry due to sweeping consolidation. Learn how Virgin survived a turbulent start after launching the airline in 2007 and how the company built a niche business enticing passengers with creature comforts and competitive prices. READ MORE
David was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Broadcast/Film and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, in 1982. A year later (1983), he received a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from SMU.
QUEEN BEE WITH BUMBLE, WHITNEY WOLFE HAS THE ONLINE DATING INDUSTRY BUZZING
If you’re familiar with “swiping right” and “swiping left,” you have Whitney Wolfe to thank. The 26-year-old is one of the co-founders of Tinder and led the marketing team that made it such a success. READ MORE
Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe has always called the shots. An entrepreneur since she was quite young (she had three companies before she graduated from Southern Methodist University), she was always “eager to start, to create, to do” and definitely be her own boss.
And that she has certainly done. One of the original founders of Tinder, Wolfe ventured out on her own last year to create a more intuitive dating app that put women’s needs (and steamy wants) first. And, no, for all the skeptics out there, she didn’t simply try to recreate Tinder for the ladies. In fact, the 26-year-old originally wanted to create a positive social platform for adolescent girls, but the idea of a women-centric dating app kept nagging at her. READ MORE
DALLAS — Noted archaeologist Fred Wendorf — who excavated the so-called “Midland Man” site and who is credited with discoveries in Africa and the American Southwest — died in Dallas Wednesday following a long illness. He was 90.
Wendorf’s career as a field archaeologist spanned six decades and he spent four decades on the faculty of Southern Methodist University. He retired in 2003 as the Henderson-Morrison Professor of Prehistory Emeritus, according to a press release from SMU.
Wendorf was born July 31, 1924, in Terrell, and as a teenager developed an interest in archaeology while roaming the fields of Kaufman County in search of Native American artifacts. He earned a bachelor of arts in anthropology in 1948 from the University of Arizona and a doctorate from Harvard University in 1953. READ MORE
Made in Dallas Fifty years ago, we were the nation’s third-largest garment center. Today, a new generation of entrepreneurs is putting those old sewing machines back to work.
BY DICK REAVIS
Stubble-bearded, self-confident Matt Alexander, a 27-year-old Brit born of a Galveston mother, is on his way to becoming a titan of industry—or else he’s gathering material for a novel about failures in the start-up economy. After graduating with an English degree from SMU in 2010, he for a while held a communications job at Southwest Airlines. Then he founded a business consultancy before he took up daydreaming in the WELD co-op work space. Today he operates a company whose material assets consist of a few Apple laptops. The firm does, however, operate two websites that claim more than 250,000 registered users, and in May it attracted a $300,000 investment from several founders of CIC Partners, the private equity firm co-founded by Mayor Mike Rawlings. READ MORE
Kelvin Beachum shared his secrets for success as a college student with a group of SMU alumni, staff, faculty and community members last Friday evening at a reception hosted by Lori and Jon Altschuler. The new father returned to campus to kick off Father’s Day weekend and share his journey from Dedman College student to the NFL. He advised all students, and student athletes in particular to stretch and go beyond their comfort zones by getting involved with leadership opportunities on campus. Prayer, planning, position and “paying it forward” all hold special importance to this dynamic offensive tackle for the Pittsburgh Steelers. The crowd of Beachum fans enjoyed the one-on-one time with Kelvin and the chance to ask about his experiences both at SMU and in the NFL. Click here for recent media coverage on Kelvin Beachum.
For some North Texas Muslims, Sunday’s attack on Garland’s Curtis Culwell Center was yet another moment to brace against anti-Muslim sentiment expressed either online or in hateful personal encounters.
“My first reaction was ‘Crap. Here we go again,’” said Carole Sturm, 50, of Arlington, who converted to Islam in college.
But among the more than 150,000 Muslims who live in the area, many say such encounters are not a part of daily life.
“My experience has been that in Texas, we are incredibly diverse and that diversity is for the most part either celebrated or just very much accepted,” said Amir Omar, 43, a former Richardson City Council member who may have been the state’s first Muslim elected official in 2009. READ MORE
Originally Posted: May 4, 2015 A passion for innovation drives Leandre Johns ’02, general manager of Uber Technologies for North and West Texas. Johns returned to the Hilltop to discuss his trajectory from SMU student to tech executive in a conversation with Thomas DiPiero, dean of Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, April 28.
Johns, a native of Garland, Texas, was a Hunt Leadership Scholar and active in the campus community while earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology from SMU. He encouraged students in the audience at Dallas Hall’s McCord Auditorium to take advantage of as many opportunities as possible while they are undergraduates.
“Test yourself. Make the most of it. Get involved,” he said. Learning to deal with so many different personalities in a variety of situations as a student “made me a more dynamic person.”
While at SMU, he thought he had his future mapped out. During an SMU Abroad semester in Copenhagen, he was involved in children’s cancer research, which shaped the next phase of his education. He graduated from SMU determined to help cure cancer and pursued a master’s degree in public health at the University of Chicago. As a graduate student, he interned for UnitedHealthcare, then spent three years with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Chicago as a healthcare and financial consultant. READ MORE
When: Tuesday, March 3rd, 5:00-6:30
Where: Dallas Hall, Room 115
Markets and Culture and Sociology alumni from various career paths will share their insight and perspectives on the job search and how they have been able to leverage their SMU academic and extracurricular experience in their careers. Come as you are and connect with people who were once in your shoes and are eager to be a resource and support to you.