Your Turn

We want to hear from you! Please share thoughts, insights, discrepancies, recollections, photos ­— and how’s your Tom’s Trivia win-loss percentage coming? Post to our website at, email me at, or send by regular mail to UConn Magazine Letters, 34 N. Eagleville Rd., Storrs, CT 06268-3144.

Here’s a sampling of comments on our last issue, edited for clarity and length.

illustration of UConn as the basketball center of the world. Inside the illustration are whimsical creatures made of basketballs that you would see in an old school map.

Basketball Capital of the World

I just read Tom Breen’s article on Connecticut being the basketball capital of the world and wanted him to know how much I loved the story. We are Bristol, Connecticut, transplants out here in Henderson, Nevada, and we are diehard UConn Husky basketball fans. We share our passion and follow the men and women with another family of Connecticut transplants here, the Giuntas. We wear our T-shirts around town and to [WNBA Las Vegas] Aces games and fly our banners. A few years back Jan Giunta had someone knock on her door after she hung her banner out, and it was Sue Bird’s stepmother, who lives on the same street — I guess that’s six degrees of separation!

Judy Plourde
Henderson, Nevada, via email

I really enjoyed the article on UConn basketball success. It brought back great memories of UConn’s first trip to the NCAA Elite Eight in 1964. Dom Perno stole the ball from Bill Bradley in the final seconds to assure UConn’s quarterfinal victory over Princeton. I was honored to be the Connecticut Daily Campus sports editor in 1964, with excellent support from Ira Loss, Louie Matsikas, Charlie Lipson, and Bill Rhein.

Guy Caruso ’64 (BUS), ’66 MA
Annandale, Virginia, via email

Excellent article. Some will think that there are some academic programs which should have similar excitement, but that is not how the world is. I remember some critiquing the Hartford parade for the 1995 women’s team, but then-UConn President Harry Hartley said that when there is a parade for the Physics (I think) Department he would join that one also. A happy occasion.

Edward Marth, former exec. dir. AAUP
St. Charles, Illinois, via our website

Well written article without “Brago,” but fact filled. It is always exciting to watch successes build and see Connecticut folks gather around a sport and a university that is successful in sports and academically ranked. It is only sad that the gals had such injuries all year. Surely, both teams would have been champions again.

Allan Anderson ’62 (PHARM)
Cardiff by the Sea, California, via our website

One of five covers of the uconn magazine Summer Issue 2023. This one features a DNA strand off a basketball hoop

My goodness. This, friends, is how you design a magazine cover.
@CASEAdvance, save yourself the trouble and just give @UConn the gold now. #UConnMagazine

@tomdurso via X

Art director Christa Yung ran into Kieran Curley ’86 (CLAS) in his UConn Magazine DNA T-shirt in Greenwich this summer.

Art director Christa Yung ran into Kieran Curley ’86 (CLAS) in his UConn Magazine DNA T-shirt in Greenwich this summer.

For this T and more, visit our shop

Nicole Ortique ’21 MSW, holds up the special cover edition of UConn Magazine

Nicole Ortique ’21 MSW, “Which Cover Did You Get?,” UConn Alumni Facebook post.

This type of article is fascinating as it illustrates the real-life case histories of physicians’ residencies! Most people do not understand what residents go through to continue their medical training, which puts them in pressure situations where quick decision making is critical to saving a person’s life.

M.J. Scanlon ’77 MS, via our website, regarding “First-Years”

I am writing to say thank you for the magazine. I love when it shows up in my mailbox. It’s fun! And a joy to see the ways that UConn’s people beautifully show up in the world. I’ve been thinking about my alma mater and came up with this list:

  1. You get out of your education what you put into it.
  2. Your education is about far more than courses and textbooks.
  3. There are amazing people and friends to be met everywhere.
  4. Choose something you love to learn about — otherwise 8 a.m. classes are really hard.
  5. As your life plays out, your major will show up in ways you could never have imagined. Soooo cool.
  6. Meal trays are a tad small for sledding at the hill near the Wilbur Cross building. But they work in a pinch!

Thank you again for putting such a joyful reflection of UConn into the world.

Kay Lock Kolp ’93 (CLAS)
Bellingham, Massachusetts, via emaill

Art of the Label

As a trademark attorney, I found this bit of labeling history illuminating.

Nancy Kennedy ’04 JD
Hartford, Connecticut, via our website

I think of you every time I see one of these!

Caroline Taylor
Oakland, California, via our website

Aaron Carr Is Holding Landlords Accountable

Good to see an up-and-coming young person willing to pursue a career in the arena of economic justice. My brief research confirms that Aaron Carr is indeed the man your story paints him to be. It is clear that the Housing Rights Initiative has had a powerful impact on landlord-tenant relations by shining a bright light on abusive and predatory landlords, and forcing City Hall to hold them accountable.

Dennis McDermott
Mount Vernon, New York, via Facebook

Voices Rising

While I appreciated the piece on the “Voices of Freedom,” I would like to correct the origins of the choir. The bus reference was not from a civil rights protest. Here is my recollection:

In 1969, every Friday buses would line up at the old Storrs Center going to many cities. I boarded a bus going to Waterbury and Danbury and sat with [choir founder] Lorraine [Williams] who was from Danbury. As freshmen, we talked about UConn and how we as black students should not get away from our home training, which included the church experience. Lorraine spoke of wanting to begin a choir to, in some way, make black students proud and feel included on campus.

My advice was for her to get the word out and see if others shared her vision, and she did. Through her personality, and love for music she enlisted a core cadre that grew — the rest is history.

I did not sing or participate in the choir, but helped bring the little known at the time R&B group, Kool and the Gang, to the old Hawley Armory and raised funds for robes for every member of the choir. I was very proud when my son Jonathan Beamon ’94 (CLAS) joined the choir and sang a solo in 1993, and my daughter Janeen a few years later also joined prior to her transfer (she graduated from Eastern).

Reggie Beamon ’73 (CLAS), former state representative and chair of the Black and Puerto Rican Caucus
Waterbury, Connecticut, via email

He Sells

I am a marine ecologist and have worked most of my career on the impacts of environmental contaminants, but mostly on climate change over the past 25 years. While I love shells for their beauty and was amazed with Dave DeLucia’s collection of 7,000 shells, I wish you had included some mention in your article that either collecting live shells or buying beautiful shells from curio shops is quickly depleting those natural populations, especially from tropical environments, which often have the most beautiful shells on earth.

Tom Suchanek ’69 (CLAS)
Carmichael, California, via email

Kicks (Joe La Puma)


@krisibear778 via Instagram


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