Jen Aprahamian ’06 believes that “every woman deserves a great #girlsquad.” However, she and a friend found that making new girl friends was a challenge once they left college. After using dating apps to try to reach out to other women to become friends, they realized it was time to make an app for that specific purpose. Hey! VINA is the result. On the app, women create profiles and can match with other women in the area who have similar interests. After that, they are encouraged to meet up and let the friendship grow. As the co-founder and CTO, Aprahamian has seen the app go viral and continue to grow. At the time of the launch, the app was available in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York City, and Aprahamian said they are adding new cities as more women sign up on the free app.
A book by Shary Hauer ’79.
In her professional life, Shary Hauer was a confident, successful, high-caliber executive coach who advised big-time corporate leaders around the globe — but her personal life was in shambles. “I
was insecure, clingy, desperate and willing to do anything and everything to win and keep a man,” she admits. In Insatiable, Hauer chronicles her emotional journey from self-hate to self-love. “At my book signings and talks, there is always an engaging conversation about love, relationships, what worked, what didn’t and lessons learned. When I was writing this book, I had no idea that my story would resonate with every woman who reads it, but it has,” Hauer said.
A film by Matthew Arnold ’99.
Much of Matthew Arnold’s film career originated at UD. He programmed monthly movies that aired via the campus cable network as inaugural chair of Flyer Movie Channel and produced and directed live campus television broadcasts, which featured Student Government Association debates. Arnold’s first documentary feature, The Long Green Line, was released in 2014 and follows the record-setting career of Chicago cross-country coach Joe Newton. He’s followed it up with two Web series and several independent feature films he’s helped produce. “I love telling stories and working with actors to convey real people and real human emotions,” he said. View Arnold’s work at longgreenlinemovie.com.
An album by Libby Gill ’15
For singer/songwriter Libby Gill, music is therapy. So, she decided to study both. “Music has always been a big part of my life, and I also had a desire to help people,” said the recent music therapy graduate. As a teenager, Gill found her mother’s 1970s guitar in the basement, looked up some chords on the Internet and never looked back. With a sound that ranges from pop to blues to folk, Gill enjoys pushing her own genre boundaries, gets inspiration from artists like Sara Bareilles and Imagine Dragons, and is, she says, “a Swifty for life.” Gill’s threesong EP, Soldier, was released in February 2015 and is available on iTunes, Bandcamp and Spotify. Her first full-length album is nearing completion; follow along at libbygill.bandcamp.com.
An album by Chris Yakopcic ’09.
A musician’s life vacillates from hours of solitary work to roars of au-dience appreciation. Blues writer and guitarist Chris Yakopcic heard quite a roar earlier this year at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee. He was one of 10 finalists in the solo competition, performing four tunes, including “Sweet Time Blues.” Yakopcic plays fingerstyle acoustic guitar, drawing from both Delta and Piedmont blues. His first CD, Done Found My Freedom ’fore My Technique, will be followed this fall by a new release. Yakopcic plays several venues in the Dayton region; he can most often be found at Dayton’s Tumbleweed Connection and always at chrisyakopcicmusic.com.
A film by Glenn Gebhard ’72.
The United States has just restored relations with Cuba, but Glenn Gebhard has visited and filmed documentaries there for nearly two decades. Gebhard studied Spanish at UD. “I was interested in what a socialist country looked like,” he said. This year’s Cuba: The Forgotten Revolution is the fourth Cuba film by Gebhard, professor of film production at Loyola Marymount University. He worked with UD history professor Juan Santamarina on 2006’s Lifetime of Passion, which looks at people in Cuba and in the exile community in Miami. The other titles are Dreaming a New Cuba and Crossing Borders: A Cuban Returns.
A book by Patricia Skalka ’68.
When Patricia Skalka stepped through the Flyer News doorway, she knew she was walking into life as a writer. Now she’s stepped away from nonfiction to create mysteries set in Door County, Wisconsin. Her protagonist, Dave Cubiak, is a displaced former Chicago homicide detective. Critics have praised Skalka for details that convey a sharp sense of place. They also admire the puzzles of her mysteries and her treatment of characters. Her first mystery, Death Stalks Door County, was published in 2014. Her second book, Death at Gills Rock, was published earlier this year, and the third is in the works.
A blog by Christine Smith Grote ’79.
Christine Smith Grote writes to connect with people. Her blog, “Random Thoughts from Midlife,” started in January 2011 as she was publishing a memoir about her beloved sister Annie, born with severe brain damage. She also has shared her father’s experience with Alzheimer’s and her mother’s death from cancer. Readers respond, and Grote loves the connections. “You really can establish a support community online,” she said. Grote tackles more than 30 categories, ranging from publishing to gardening. Posts about her husband’s bilateral knee surgery are particularly popular with readers hungry for such information.
A Workbook for Parents of Offenders
BOOK BY CAY SHEA HELLERVIK ’64/
Cay Shea Hellervik ’64 has written the book on how parents and professionals can help juvenile offenders. It details a successful cognitive behavioral therapy program. After a five-year stint as director of a correctional institution program for juvenile offenders in Hennepin County, Minnesota, Hellervik discovered techniques to “help kids turn their lives around.” One study showed that 74 percent of offenders who stayed in Hellervik’s program for six months were not arrested in the year following their release. “Everyone automatically blames the parents,” Hellervik said. “The parents I worked with did so much to help their kids.” lives.”
Learning and Living with an Exceptional Boy
Book by John Durkin ’82
“If you are looking to become an intervention specialist, this is a great book to read,” said John Durkin ’82, who serves as intervention specialist at Massillon Jackson High School in Ohio. His book, Lessons from Ty, is a collection of inspirational stories he found while working with students and their parents. “The book is of basic reading level, but the message is universal,” Durkin said, noting that fellow Flyers are welcome to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.