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2012 In Review


Posted by Carolyn Pippen on Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Chancellor Zeppos speaks at the 2012 commencement ceremony (Vanderbilt Flickr)

As a resident of Music City, USA, one of my favorite parts of New Year’s Day is listening to all of the “Best of 2012” music countdowns.  Certain songs have a way of bringing up memories and helping us to mentally recap the year behind us – like having “We Are Young” dance breaks after a long day of reading applications, or singing along to Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake,” even after the 423rd time it played on the radio while driving through Texas for Road Show.

In this spirit of celebrating memories, and doing our best to model ourselves after Ryan Seacrest as often as possible, Vanderbilt has compiled its own 2012 hit list: a collection of the biggest stories and events that took place throughout last year. Among the highlights …

  • Chancellor Nick Zeppos announces that Vanderbilt will begin offering free online classes through Coursera.
  • The Peabody College of Education and Human Development is named the #1 Ph.D. education program in the nation once again by US News and World Report, while the university’s medical center moves up to #14 among research medical centers, the Owen School of Management jumped 3 spots to #25, and the university as a whole maintains its rank at #17.
  • Construction begins on the College Halls at Kissam, a new living/learning community that will house Vanderbilt upperclassmen beginning in the fall of 2014.
  • The first class to move into The Martha Rivers Ingram Commons in 2008 graduates from Vanderbilt, and newsman Tom Brokaw speaks at the annual Senior Day event.  (This year’s speaker will be Pulitzer- and Nobel-winning author Toni Morrison.)
  • The Vanderbilt Medical Center plays an integral role in the investigation of our nation’s deadliest meningitis outbreak.
  • The men’s basketball team defeats #1 ranked Kentucky to claim the 2012 SEC Championship and sends three of our starters to the NBA draft.
  • Former Vanderbilt pitcher David Price earns the American League Cy Young Award.
  • The football Commodores cap off their record-breaking season with a decisive victory in the Music City Bowl and finish the year ranked in the top 25 for the first time since 1948.
  • ABC premiers its new hit show Nashville, which highlights much of the entertainment industry that fuels Music City (and of course provides some juicy drama!).
  • Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena was the setting for the 2012 Country Music Awards, as well as the first annual Grammy Nomination Concert, hosted by Taylor Swift and LL Cool J.
  • The brand spanking new version of the Undergraduate Admissions website is launched, and our officers begin reading all applications in digital form.
  • Dean of Admissions Douglas Christiansen appears on The Today Show to discuss the college admissions process.
  • The Office of Undergraduate Admissions mails decision letters to the most academically competitive group of applicants in the history of the university.  A few months later, 1608 new Commodores move into their homes on The Ingram Commons.

For more 2012 highlights, check out the Vanderbilt News’ Year in Review, and follow VanderbiltU on Storify.  Once you’ve spent some time reflecting on the year that has just passed, go out and start making some new memories – 2013, here we come!


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