Posted on Apr 28, 2000

How do you get 53 students and faculty to Missoula,
Mont., for NCUR 2000?

Well, for starters, you get them up really early. As in
4. As in a.m.

“I'm not used to being up at that hour,”
said Brad Lewis, associate dean for undergraduate education, who gave a
pep talk to the first of three groups as they boarded the College's
trolley near Old Chapel for their 6 a.m. flight.

Professors Jim Adrian and Megan Ferry, who accompanied
the first group, wisely showed up with coffee and doughnuts.

Lewis, up late the night before at the “Forum for
Change” with Schenectady economic development leaders, noted that
students arrived with the “usual assortment of stories:” the
student who was making slide copies at Kinko's an hour before departure,
another up all night with a roommate, and the one who offered $200 to
anyone who would switch with him for a later flight. (No takers, Lewis

Indeed, Lewis said he suspects a number of students hadn't
even gone to bed yet. “A lot of them get to bed at that time anyway.
For some we were just postponing their sleep with the flight.”

It seems that the Union group is so large that travel
agents had to book their flights in three blocks. Lewis also saw off the
other two Union groups, one at 6:55 a.m., the other at the coveted 1:10

“I really enjoyed seeing them off,” Lewis
said, adding that the early departure hour provided an “esprit de
corps … in an odd sort of way.”

For details on NCUR 2000, check the Web at