Dedman College alumnus and photographer Stuart Palley shares his tips on how to create beautiful images once darkness falls.

Time

Originally Posted: August 10, 2016

SMU alumnus and photographer Stuart Palley shares his tips on how to create beautiful images once darkness falls. Palley graduated in 2011 with a double major in History and Finance and minors in Human Rights and Photography. Read more

~In our latest How to Photograph series, TIME asked award-winning photographer Stuart Palley to share his tips and tricks to create beautiful night-time imagery.

Palley has mastered the art and technical skills of photographing at night and is known for his compelling and breathtaking photos of wildfires and his magical images of the the night sky. “Ninety percent of it is preparation and 10% of it is the actual execution,” he says.

Watch this TIME video to see which apps Palley uses to plan his shoots, tips on how to work in darkness, what equipment to invest in and how you can play with different light sources to achieve the best results. READ MORE

SMU Alumna: Hope Hicks Is Everything Her Boss Donald Trump Is Not

Town and Country

Originally Posted: August 8, 2016

She’s a spokeswoman who rarely speaks. A political novice helping run one of the most rambunctious, unpredictable presidential campaigns in history. A former model who is almost never 
in front of a camera. In any other election year a 27­-year­-old who hadn’t so much as volunteered on a political campaign would not be controlling communications in a presidential contest. But this isn’t any other year.

Meet Hope Hicks, one of the unlikeliest breakout stars of the 2016 campaign. If proximity is power—and in presidential politics it is—Hicks is one of the most powerful people in America. When Donald Trump is on his luxury airplane, she’s the one sitting next to him.

Although Hicks’s parents met while working on Capitol Hill—her mother for a Tennessee Democrat, her father for a Connecticut Republican—politics was not at the forefront of her childhood. She grew up in Greenwich in a tight-­knit family. She was a swimmer
 at Greenwich Country Club and co­-captained the lacrosse team at Greenwich High. At age 11 she and her older sister were hired to model for Ralph Lauren. Soon she was in the pages of national magazines and had a cameo on the soap opera Guiding Light. She became the face of the Hourglass Adventures, a series of novels for preteen girls featuring a 10­-year-­old who travels back in time. (The books have online activities that still feature Hicks; they allow users to dress her up in period costumes from 1889 Paris and 1870 Berlin.)

After graduating from Southern Methodist University in 2010, Hicks moved to New York and started working at the public relations firm Hilzik Strategies. Her clients included the Trump Organization and Ivanka Trump. Last year, as Donald considered a presidential bid, he plucked Hicks to be one of his first aides. READ MORE

Acker The American Nominee For NCAA Woman Of The Year

SMU Athletics

Originally Posted: July 27, 2016

Avery Acker graduated in December with a degree in accounting and minors in chemistry and biological sciences. She will begin medical school this month. Congratulations!

INDIANAPOLIS (SMU/NCAA) – SMU setter Avery Acker has been named the American Athletic Conference nominee for the Woman of the Year award, NCAA officials announced Wednesday. Acker, who graduated in December and begins medical school in August, led the NCAA in assists per set while directing the Mustangs to the conference championship and an appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

The Poth, Texas, native, a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-America selection and 2015 Academic All-American of the Year, led the Mustangs to a program-best 27 wins and the school’s first conference championship in 2015. SMU finished with a 27-6 mark overall and 17-3 record in conference play to earn The American’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. Acker led the NCAA with 12.45 assists per set, while also setting an SMU and American single-season record with 1,482 assists.
A three-year starter and three-time captain, Acker was named The American Player of the Year and earned Setter of the Year honors for the second time in her career last fall. She also earned AVCA honorable mention All-America honors and AVCA All-Southeast Region accolades for the third straight year.

Acker finished with a 3.941 grade-point average as an accounting major with a minor in chemistry and biological sciences and graduated in December summa cum laude. She is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Leadership and participates in community service projects at the Highland Park United Methodist Church in Dallas.

There are 141 conference nominees across all three NCAA divisions. The NCAA Woman of the Year program honors the academic achievements, athletics excellence, community service and leadership of graduating female college athletes from all three divisions. To be eligible, nominees must have competed and earned a varsity letter in an NCAA-sponsored sport and must have completed eligibility in her primary sport.

Eligible female student-athletes are nominated by their member school. Each conference office then reviews the nominations from its member schools and submits its conference nominee to the NCAA. The NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee selects the Top 30 – 10 from each division and then three finalists from each division. The Committee on Women’s Athletics selects the winner from the Top 9.  All 30 Woman of the Year honorees will be recognized, and the 2016 Woman of the Year announced, at an awards dinner at the Westin Indianapolis on Sunday, October 16, 2016.

Meet the Scientist: Eveline Kuchmak, an SMU alumna and current Manager of Temporary Exhibitions at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science

The Rock Report

Originally Posted: July 18, 2016

Meet: Eveline Kuchmak

Another Southern Methodist University alumna (Pony Up!), Eveline graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Economic Sociology. Growing up she “lived for trips to art and science museums, space camp, Pony Club veterinary workshops, and the latest issue of National Geographic.” She was homeschooled for much of her childhood and her parents always made sure she had a healthy dose of curiosity. After graduation, she attended archaeological field school in New Mexico which only reinforced her desire to discover new things and share these experiences. This path has led her to a career inspiring others through science museums.

She began working at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in education and public programs; however, at the beginning of this year she transitioned into her new role as Manager of Temporary Exhibits. READ MORE

 

SMU alumnus John Culberson, saving NASA is the new space rescue mission

Houston Chronicle

Originally Posted: July 6, 2016

Adrift- Part 7
The new space rescue mission: Saving NASA

The legendary Christopher Columbus Kraft, who lived up to his namesake by leading NASA to the moon, has grown old.

Severe lines crease his face, and Kraft’s fingers have gnarled. Earlier this year, just before his 90th birthday, sciatica forced him to adopt a cane and, more gallingly, to give up golf.

Still, he can accept what time has done to him. It’s harder to make peace with what’s become of NASA.

In the 1960s, President Kennedy gave Kraft, the agency’s first flight director, and NASA’s other leaders a blank check and told them to boldly go. They did. The Apollo guys chomped cigars and called the shots.

Those in charge today no longer sit behind flight control consoles, conquering space. They’re at desks in Washington, D.C., politicians and bureaucrats who micromanage the agency’s budget and repeatedly move the goalposts.

Kraft feels his modern-day counterparts at Johnson Space Center have been “victimized.”

“They’ve been forced to accept a lot of things they know damn well won’t work.” READ MORE

SMU alumna Monica Lira Bravo delivered the keynote address at the recent naturalization ceremony where 50 immigrants became U.S. citizens

Dallas Morning News

Originally Posted: July 2, 2016

It’s a special Fourth of July weekend for 50 people.

On Saturday, they took the Oath of Allegiance during a naturalization ceremony at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden.

East Dallas resident and immigration lawyer Monica Lira Bravo gave the keynote address. Bravo, the daughter of Mexican immigrants and the most recent former president of the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association, graduated from Hockaday and SMU. She was recently elected Dallas County Community College District trustee for District 4 in a runoff election. WATCH VIDEO

What we know about Hope Hicks, SMU grad and Donald Trump’s secretive press secretary

Dallas Morning News

Originally Posted: June 21, 2016

Donald Trump’s press secretary hasn’t shared much information about herself, and she’s rarely, if ever, available for comment.

But this week,  the public learned  more about Hope Hicks when GQ and Marie Claire magazines published pieces about the Southern Methodist University alum.

Since her graduation from SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences in 2010, Hicks, 27, has skyrocketed to the top of the Trump universe. The Connecticut native comes from a family of well-connected public relations experts.

Hicks routinely declines interview requests, unlike Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson, whose social media presence rivals that of Trump himself. READ MORE

Meet Hope Hicks, Dedman College Alumna and Donald Trump Communications Director

Marie Claire

Originally Posted: June 7, 2016

In Donald Trump’s inner circle on the campaign trail, there’s just one woman: Hope Hicks, 27, his communications director and the only woman who travels full-time with the Republican front-runner.

Hicks has played an integral role in Trump’s unprecedented rise in the 2016 election. As Trump tweets about the controversies du jour with abandon, delivers unscripted soliloquies at campaign stops, and is a near-constant presence on cable news, Hicks is behind the scenes, juggling the moving parts of the rapid news cycle.

In 2012, after a successful teen modeling career and graduating from Southern Methodist University, the Connecticut native got her first taste of the Trump life working on the hotel and golf divisions of his company for New York public relations firm Hiltzik Strategies. The Trump Organization brought her in-house as the director of communications in 2014, and the following year, she got the surprise of a lifetime when The Donald asked her to join his budding campaign. Here, in her first-ever interview in her current role, she shares what it’s like to work for the unconventional candidate.  READ MORE

Bryson DeChambeau, former SMU golfer, applies physics to his sport

WFAA

Originally Posted: May 18, 2016

SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 21:  Bryson DeChambeau tees off on the 12th hole during the first round of the Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio AT&T Oaks Course on April 21, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.  (Photo by Marianna Massey/Getty Images)
SAN ANTONIO, TX – APRIL 21: Bryson DeChambeau tees off on the 12th hole during the first round of the Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio AT&T Oaks Course on April 21, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Marianna Massey/Getty Images)

IRVING, Texas — During Bryson During Bryson DeChambeau’s press conference before the AT&T Byron Nelson, the subject of physics came up, and how it applies to golf.

Here’s part of his answer: “[…] especially Newtonian mechanics. See, quantum mechanics doesn’t really correlate — I mean, it does, on a really, really minute scale. But doesn’t affect how you’re striking the ball necessarily,” he said. “It’s more Newtonian mechanics.”

DeChambeau majored in physics at SMU and is trying to use what he learned to get better.

“I lean more to the technical side, just because I like numbers,” DeChambeau said. “I like understanding and seeing results. That gives me confidence.” READ MORE

Acker Honored With Presidential Award of Excellence

SMU Athletics

Originally Posted: April 29, 2016

DALLAS (SMU) – Avery Acker was honored with the SMU Presidential Award of Excellence, which is awarded to three graduating seniors each year. A three-year captain for the volleyball program, Acker graduated in December with a degree in accounting and minors in chemistry and biological sciences, and will begin medical school in the fall.

11254604The setter was named CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year, as well as American Athletic Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, earning a $4,000 postgraduate scholarship. She finished her career with a 3.941 GPA, graduating summa cum laude. Acker was also a CoSIDA Academic All-American as a junior.

On the court, Acker was named an All-American Honorable Mention award winner three times, and conference Setter of the Year twice. During her senior season, Acker led the Mustangs to a program-best 27 wins and the school’s first conference championship in 2015. SMU finished with a 27-6 mark overall and 17-3 record in conference play to earn The American’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. The Poth, Texas, native led the NCAA with 12.45 assists per set, while also setting an SMU and American single-season record with 1,482 assists. READ MORE