At a dinner recognizing Arizona Assurance Scholars a few years back, the room got quiet when a young student stood up to speak. 

Amer Taleb ’15 had thought he wouldn’t be able to go to the University of Arizona, he told the gathering. His family couldn’t afford it. Yet the aspiring journalist did attend — with the help of the Arizona Assurance Scholarship. 

It’s nearly impossible to imagine the University of Arizona without Wilbur and Wilma Wildcat, “A” Mountain and the “Bear Down” rallying cry. If not for the 101 years of Greek life that have helped to shape the University and its traditions and symbols, the UA might be a different place altogether. 

The new Geraldo Rivera Greek Heritage Park recognizes the contributions of 50,000 alumni from 90 Greek organizations and provides a dedicated venue for fraternity and sorority activities as well as outdoor space for everyone to enjoy.

As Arizona Football fans drive toward the stadium on Enke Drive for home games this fall, they will notice a new 15,000-square-foot building south of McKale Center, near completion in October.  

The new C.A.T.S. Academic Center, dedicated to providing academic and life skills for student-athletes, was made possible by several donations, including a $2.5 million leadership gift from University of Arizona alumni Andrew and Kirsten Braccia and a $1 million gift from David Lapan and his family. 

It is a promise for the future — a hub for finding dream jobs — the Karl and Stevie Eller Professional Development Center. 

Students will meet there with recruiters from companies like Microsoft, Macy’s and Goldman Sachs. Alumni will mentor students on how to succeed in a highly competitive job market. Career coaches will help students discover their strengths and align with career goals.   

Physics student Alexander Knowles, now a senior, started his job as a planetarium operator at the most eventful time in Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium history. It was 2014, and Hector Vector the Star Projector was going into retirement. 

Hector had illuminated the theater dome unfailingly since the planetarium’s opening in 1975. But changes in technology had created an ever-widening gap between the University of Arizona’s achievement in space sciences and its ability to share the wonders of exploration.

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