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Alumni Profiles

Practicing Compassion Every Day: Connor Barton '08 Finds Joy and Purpose as a Firefighter

Last December, after three years on the job, Connor was promoted to firefighter engineer: a specialist rank given to those who drive the fire trucks and oversee all the equipment on them. Station 117 is a Heavy Rescue station, so in addition to responding to fires, they answer specialized calls related to structural collapses, road rescues, or confined spaces. Along with the tactical skills he's gained, Connor believes the job has made him a better person. "I practice compassion every day," he said.

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Six Years After Near-Fatal Rowmark Car Accident, Tenacious Hank Shipman '13 Sets Sights on Med School

Train daily for a month. Focus on even the smallest details to shave milliseconds off your time. Travel across the country to a race. Crash right out of the gate. Your weekend's over.

It's a seemingly discouraging chain of events for ski racers. But it primed Hank Shipman '13 for perseverance after a near-fatal Rowmark Ski Academy car accident April 9, 2011.

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Bonnie Phillips '60 Lives a Vibrant Life Championing Utah Artists—and the Golden Rule

Bonnie Phillips '60 and husband Denis founded the Phillips Gallery in 1965, and now it holds the title of the oldest-running commercial art gallery in the Intermountain West. Mature shade trees form a canopy over their tidy historic storefront that for 50 years has held its own against newer, bigger commercial buildings on the block. Much like its owners, it's comfortably elegant and teeming with fascinating stories.

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Alumna Named One of Most Influential in Pay Equity Fight
The conversation about pay inequality is as heated today as it was in 2003 when Rowland Hall alumna Susan Sparrow '04 inspired 22 other like-minded RH students to champion The Compensation Study Act. The group of organized students spent vacations and weekends collecting research and lobbying the Utah legislature, resulting in an overwhelming thumbs up on House Bill 81 in both the Utah house and senate.
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Alumni, Drones, and Multi-Copters Fuel a New Industry
The answer is found in the fast-moving technology itself and the industry springing up around it. Unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly known as drones, uses an alphabet soup of acronyms to describe the varied and exciting potential for expanded use of the technology in domestic airspace. Nathan Hall-Snyder '08 Rowland Hall class of 2008 grads, Tyson Call and Tristan Buhler launched their full-service video production company Full Collective Media
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Former Utah Poet Laureate Katharine Coles '77 Finds Poetry in Science

Katharine Coles, Utah's Poet Laureate from 2006 to 2012, Guggenheim Fellow, and a University of Utah 2017 Distinguished Professor, returned to Rowland Hall for the first time since graduating in 1977 to share her fifth published collection of poems, "The Earth Is Not Flat," written under the auspices of the U.S. National Science Foundation's Antarctic Artists and Writers Program.

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Ben Smith '89, Pioneer of Computer Science Education at Rowland Hall, Wins Statewide Technology Teacher of the Year Award

After several years of developing and championing computer science (CS) curriculum at Rowland Hall and serving as a regional leader in CS education, alumnus, faculty member, and self-proclaimed lifelong learner Ben Smith '89 in March won the Utah Coalition for Education Technology's (UCET) Outstanding Teacher of the Year award.

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Alumna Claire Wang Looking for a Clean Fight

Rowland Hall alumna Claire Wang '15 says she can't recall a time in her life when she wasn't passionate about our Earth and the environment. Researching air quality, clean energy, and other environmental issues for Middle School debate heightened her interest in climate advocacy. Ms. Wang went on to be a nationally ranked debater in high school, and her involvement in clean energy and politics at the local level continued to grow.

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