Sights & Sounds

Some stories are best told through photos and videos. Sights & Sounds puts you in the front row, allowing you to meet Thunderbird newsmakers and to hear their messages in their own words.

Jack Rokahr ‘47 - Original Thunderbird

Watch the trailer of an interview with one of Thunderbird’s original graduates — Jack Rokahr, ’47. And look for the full 5-minute video of our interview with Jack — coming to your email box soon in celebration of Thunderbird's 70th Anniversary.

NEW Program Updates! Space is still available for most of the activities during the April 7 – 10 Celebrations and All-Class Reunion so register as soon as possible.

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Who are Berger and Mabel Erickson?

You may have sat under the Erickson Alumni Pavilion. Perhaps you have seen the photo of Berger in the Tower gallery, right outside the restrooms. But who, really, are Berger and Mabel Erickson?

In the summer of 1946, Mabel and her husband Berger drove to Phoenix, Arizona from Texas. When they arrived at the Thunderbird Field No. 1, they found a desolate campus, overgrown with weeds and wildlife. The buildings were barren, beaten-up and lacking furniture. What could possibly bring this young married couple thousands of miles to such a bleak desert landscape?

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Thunderbird India Reunion 2015

It was a historic event for the Thunderbird Alumni in India. A pan India reunion was planned & organized in the picturesque and world famous exotic destination, Goa, India, recently, from July 31 to August 3, 2015. The not so active Indian chapters, for most part, showed great enthusiasm and for the first time, T-birds from all over the country and even from countries like Dubai & England, attended the reunion. The total turnaround was 25 with 22 T-birds and three guests / family members.

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The Thunderbird

Thunderbird’s first student newspaper, the predecessor to Das Tor, was called The Thunderbird, published from 1948-1950. One of the early newspaper’s editors was Lloyd Clark, class of ‘49. After graduating, Lloyd went on to become a reporter for the Dallas Morning News and for several Phoenix-area newspapers. He also maintained an active relationship with the School and alumni. Over the years he continually donated materials to the Thunderbird Archives, helping us document the early years of the School. We were sorry to hear of Mr. Clark’s passing last fall (2014).

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Thunderbird's yearbooks are available online

Did you know that the many of Thunderbird’s yearbooks are currently available online? We have scanned yearbooks for the years 1951-1976 and they are available for viewing at the Arizona Memory Project site. The very first yearbook was published in 1951 and encompassed the first five graduating classes of the school (1946-1951). Browse the yearbooks and find yourself as well as former staff, students and faculty. There are also great photos of the campus as it has evolved over the years.

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T-birds reconnect at 41st European reunion

Historic Dubrovnik, Croatia, often called the pearl of the Adriatic, was the site for Thunderbird’s 41st European Reunion — a four-day extravaganza that brought more than 170 alumni together to network, learn and have fun. Old friends and classmates reconnected during a welcome BBQ at the beautiful Hotel Grand Villa Argentina and afterwards attended a World Cup Soccer viewing with Croatia vs. Brazil in the first game of the tournament.

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Congratulations Amway Case Competition Winners

Thunderbird would like to give a huge round of applause to the student winners of the first-ever Amway Case Competition hosted on campus. Student participants engaged in a full day of competition activities, starting with an Amway company presentation and case introduction, followed by a four-hour work session and presentation development with their team. The student teams gave outstanding presentations which were then deliberated on by a panel of judges that included Amway representatives, T-birds who work at Amway and Thunderbird professors.

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Alumni reception in Tokyo largest ever in Japan

On April 3, 2014, 90 T-birds (with graduating years spanning from 1969-2013) came together for a special alumni reception hosted by the Tokyo alumni chapter.

“About 100 people joined the event,” said Chapter Leader Yohei Matsumura ’13, who is also a member of the inaugural Alumni Council of Thunderbird (ACT). “This was the biggest Thunderbird event ever in Japan.” 

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Sunshine appears for Rugby Alumni Weekend

A rare Arizona rainstorm threatened to dampen Thunderbird’s Rugby Alumni Weekend on Feb. 28 and March 1, 2014, but the sun appeared minutes before kickoff for the annual game between the students and “Old Boys.” Thunderbird Alumni Rugby Association President Chuck Hamilton ’91 said neither side worried about the weather anyway. “Rain is not an issue,” he said. “It slows everybody down the same.”

Student and her mentor to graduate together

MBA student Kelly Tiller ’14 had an ally during her summer 2013 internship at Johnson & Johnson in Pennsylvania. When she needed guidance during the first week, she sent an emergency text to Executive MBA student Jacquelyn Tallarico ’14, a neurosurgical specialist at Johnson & Johnson in Arizona. “She called me back immediately, and we talked for an hour,” Tiller said. “It changed the whole trajectory of my summer, which ended with a full-time job offer.”

Tallarico is one of 27 volunteers matched with Thunderbird students through a mentorship program that Tiller manages for campus club Women International. Unlike other mentors in the program, Tallarico is a Thunderbird student herself — although farther along in her career. Participants in the Executive MBA program, which caters to working professionals, come to Thunderbird with an average of 14 years of work experience. Tallarico and Tiller will graduate together on May 9, 2014, and then continue working for Johnson & Johnson.

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