Monthly Archives: November 2015

“Call Me Honey Bear”: Summer with UB alum Jess Moore

Written by Jess Moore, M.F.A. ’13


Jess Moore at Pike’s Peak National Forest.

I spent my sum­mer with a pseu­do­nym; you can call me HoneyBear.

For the past 15 years I’ve sat at a desk dili­gently gain­ing expe­ri­ence and cre­at­ing solid design solu­tions for a vari­ety of posi­tions I’ve had in the pro­fes­sional ser­vices indus­try. I’m work­ing on my 10,000 hours, a la Malcolm Gladwell.

I was laid off, and as these things hap­pen, you start to con­sider how you want to refo­cus your career and what you’re will­ing to do to spend your 40 hours. And some­times hair-brained oppor­tu­ni­ties come across your desk. Mine was the oppor­tu­nity to be out­side every­day for 8 weeks nes­tled in the Pike’s Peak National Forest. I was hired on as the pho­tog­ra­pher at a Girl Scout camp.

Camp coun­selor was the posi­tion I should have had 20 years ago. I knew that there were going to be inter­est­ing chal­lenges (co-workers 2 decades younger, a whop­ping two hours off each day, not to men­tion the pay rate). But those chal­lenges don’t hold a flame (or head­lamp) to the experience.

The first week of camp was just for coun­selors: work­shops on man­ag­ing the girls (home­sick­ness spreads quickly), get­ting to know camp, learn­ing names (camp names to be spe­cific), and CPR and First Aid train­ing — I called it badge work. Then the girls descended.

Schedules take on a dif­fer­ent light when you immerse into a new rou­tine, new land­scape, and new peo­ple. You get to know your­self again. Time slowed down.

One hundred-or-so girls ages 8 – 17 showed up each week for activ­i­ties rang­ing from canoe­ing, barn­yard fun, zip lin­ing, rock climb­ing, and arts & crafts. It was my job to show up and cap­ture their excite­ment. After years of man­ag­ing design solu­tions and inter­act­ing with C-level execs and mit­i­gat­ing their thoughts on design, to sim­ply engage in the joy of camp was refreshing.

Between going from activ­ity to activ­ity, I hiked. Camp was 880 acres at an ele­va­tion of 8300 feet. I woke up to bright blue skies, pon­derosa pines and moun­tains inter­rupt­ing the hori­zon line. The col­ors were amaz­ing. The sun would set, and the moun­tains turned into lay­ers of aubergine with an orange-pink sky. Dusk would come and the stars would come out, span­ning a sap­phire col­ored sky.

That was my office.

Beyond tak­ing pic­tures, I did get to know my cowork­ers; young ladies who are learn­ing who they are and fig­ur­ing out their place in the world. I’ve spent time with this age group as a fac­ulty mem­ber, but with this group I learned in myself that men­tor­ing is a part of my purpose.

Once a Girl Scout, always a Girl Scout. I spent time in my troop and at GS sum­mer camps grow­ing up; it was a time to be myself, enjoy friends and try some­thing new. JuneBug was a par­ent vol­un­teer that came one week called it “the magic of camp.” Sometimes you need to be reminded that it’s OK to sit through din­ner with a nap­kin hat on your head, or revel in watch­ing a room full of girls utterly lose it by play­ing “Let It Go,” enjoy tales told around a camp­fire, and sleep­ing under the stars. Going to camp as an adult holds the same truths, same self-learning and aware­ness as a child, and it’s a cat­a­lyst for change.

What I chal­lenge you to do is take the odd oppor­tu­nity, do some­thing dif­fer­ent and immerse your­self in a dif­fer­ent life for a while. Perhaps my jour­ney wasn’t as epic as Eat, Pray, Love, but it did help to rein­vig­o­rate, refine and above all inspire me for my next steps in my career and life.

View Jess’s “Best of Camp” photos.

Jess Moore is a graphic designer, educator and the current president of AIGA Colorado.

M.F.A. alum D. Watkins returns to UB to discuss his new book, The Beast Side

Written by Christy McCurdy


UB’s M.F.A Reading Series recently welcomed award-winning author D. Watkins for a conversation and book signing for his debut essay collection, The Beast Side: Living and Dying While Black in America. Watkins read excerpts from his book to a packed audience, highlighting some of his experiences growing up as a black male in East Baltimore. His drug-dealing past has given the now famous writer, speaker and educator a sought-after perspective about the black struggle.

Watkins signing a copy of The Beast Side following his reading

Watkins signing a copy of The Beast Side following his reading

Watkins hopes that his stories, interspersed with lessons he’s learned and wants to pass on to others, will inspire people to boldly share their voice and make a difference. “The America I want to see won’t exist in my lifetime,” Watkins said. “But that doesn’t stop me from doing my part.” Watkins responded to audience questions, addressing racial inequality, the writing process, and his experience at UB, where he earned an M.F.A. in Creative Writing and Publishing Arts.

Learn more about D. Watkins.

Freshman’s socially conscious magazine for teens featured in The Baltimore Sun

Evelyn AtienoUniversity of Baltimore freshman Evelyn Atieno was recently profiled in The Baltimore Sun for her startup magazine, Affinity, designed for the socially conscious teen.

Affinity, published online and in print (through a printed-on-demand service), presents itself as a magazine ‘for the social teen,'” the Sun writes. “Articles from young contributors cover issues such as intersectional feminism, white privilege, LGBT rights, school shootings and mental illness.”

“I don’t want it to be a Time magazine. I don’t want it to be a Seventeen magazine. I just want it to be authentic,” Atieno, an international studies major, tells the Sun. “I want teenagers to be able to say what they’re thinking about the world.”

Read the Baltimore Sun article.

Learn more about Affinity Magazine.


UB Ethics Bowl team qualifies for National Ethics Bowl

Congratulations to the University of Baltimore’s Ethics Bowl team for qualifying for the National Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl after finishing in the top five at the Southeast Regional Ethics Bowl last weekend in St. Petersburg, FL. “This is the first time a UB team has qualified,” said Fred Guy, director of UB’s Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics and the team’s faculty coach. “We beat out such schools as Wake Forest, University of Florida, Auburn University, University of Miami, and 15 other larger universities.” The team will go on to compete at the Twentieth Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl on February 21, which is part of the 2016 Association for Practical and Professional Ethics 25th Annual Conference in Reston, VA (just outside of Washington, DC).

The Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl is an undergraduate team competition that combines the excitement and fun of a competitive tournament with an innovative approach to education in practical and professional ethics. The UB team will compete against teams from colleges and universities across the United States and throughout the world who also qualified for the national competition by winning a regional ethics bowl.

Ethics bowl team 2015

Pictured l to r: Therman Morris, Anna Alrub, Raquel Bowing, Abby Salazar (team captain), Fred Guy (faculty coach), Keannu Smith-Brown and Moses Wamalwa

*This Saturday, November 21, the University of Baltimore will host the 2015 Two-Year College Ethics Bowl. This newly-launched competition is open to all two-year colleges. Teams from as far away as New Mexico, Utah and Illinois will be attending, and the top finishers will also qualify to compete at the National Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl in February,

Division of Legal, Ethical and Historical Studies launches new e-newsletter


The Division of Legal, Ethical and Historical Studies has launched a new e-newsletter. The new publication, which is slated to be published once or twice per semester, will feature information about new courses, student awards, faculty achievements, upcoming events and more. To subscribe, email or

Read the October 2015 issue.