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Lake Michigan, the immense body of fresh water whose shimmering beauty convinced Northwestern’s founders that this was the place to build the University, has been under threat since the early 20th century. Northwestern researchers, students and alumni are discovering solutions for water quality issues and climate change challenges in the Great Lakes region.

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lake michigan sunrise opener
In its 50th season, the colorful world of Sesame Street is still teaching and entertaining children, thanks in part to a purple pipeline of talent. Many Northwestern alumni have been involved in the show and in the larger Sesame universe, from writing and puppet creation to social impact and fundraising.

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sesame street characters feature recrop
Last summer international aid workers began descending from Soviet-era helicopters into the forests, mountains and villages in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s North Kivu region, setting up treatment centers and laboratories, and donning hazmat suits as they treated people sick with the Ebola virus. The workers brought computers, lab equipment, vaccine doses and anything else that supported epidemiology, data and patient management, and infection prevention and control.

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ebola clinic
Meet the three accomplished alumnae who will receive the Northwestern Alumni Association’s highest honor, the Northwestern Alumni Medal, in October. They will join a select group of 103 alumni — from innovative entrepreneurs and Supreme Court justices to award-winning writers and a Nobel Prize recipient — who have received this award since 1932.

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alumni medalist lisa franchetti
The Shakespeare Garden, one of Northwestern’s cherished hidden gems, is home to various trees, shrubs, flowers and herbs that were mentioned in Shakespeare’s writings, were common during his lifetime or are modern cultivars of those older plants.

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moment shakespeare garden
The fantastical set and projection design stole the show in the Northwestern University Opera Theater adaptation of Igor Stravinsky’s opera The Rake’s Progress. The work was inspired by a series of William Hogarth paintings and engravings that Stravinsky viewed at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1947.

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moment rakes progress
One of the greatest caravans to ever cross the Sahara was led by Mansa Musa, the legendary ruler of the vast West African empire of Mali. In 1324 Musa embarked on a hajj, a religious pilgrimage to Mecca, traveling with an entourage that included 8,000 courtiers, 12,000 servants and 100 camel loads of pure gold.

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mansa musa
Crossing the Sahara Desert from the 8th to the 16th centuries, caravans with hundreds of camels carried gold, textiles, jewelry and other goods across the desert. To share this little-known story, the Block Museum of Art has put together Caravans of Gold, Fragments in Time — a first-of-its-kind show that celebrates West Africa’s historic and under-recognized global significance and showcases the objects and ideas that were exchanged at the crossroads of Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

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caravans opener recrop
Five floors up from the cacophony that is Chicago’s West Loop, inside a stone-still hearing room at the U.S. Department of Justice’s Chicago Immigration Court, where the ratcheted-up nerves and quickened breaths make for the sort of place you do not want to be, Uzoamaka Emeka Nzelibe ’96 is there to get the job done.

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uzoamaka opener col
Stylish students fashion their unique looks with everything from thrift store treasures to mom and dad hand-me-downs. For some, getting dressed is like painting a picture.

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saul osorio