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Fall 2018 Edition
Alumni & Friends Magazine

In her footsteps

Over the past 15 years, two OHIO women have learned from and supported one another and, in recent years, have nurtured their shared Bobcat connection.

Angela Woodward, BSJ '98 | October 29, 2018


“Did you tell your special teacher?”

Anna Bekavac’s father has asked her that question countless times. The answer? Always “yes.” That special teacher? Kay Dauphin-Falkenhan, BSJ ’74, whose role in Bekavac’s life extends far beyond that of her grade school teacher.

Over the past 15 years, these two OHIO women have learned from and supported one another and, in recent years, have nurtured their shared Bobcat connection.

When Bekavac, BMUS ’18, was researching colleges, she reached out to her special teacher turned friend and mentor to ask about a place she had just learned of: Ohio University. Before long, Dauphin-Falkenhan was taking Bekavac on her first college visit and herself on a walk down memory lane.

“I showed her the OHIO campus through my eyes,” Dauphin- Falkenhan says.

Everywhere we went, Kay was talking about how much she loved OHIO,” Bekavac recalls. “I wanted to love my college as much as Kay loves OHIO.

Bekavac chose OHIO, following—at times quite literally—in Dauphin-Falkenhan’s footsteps.

When applying for OHIO’s inaugural class of Margaret Boyd Scholars, Bekavac wrote of Dauphin-Falkenhan in her essay about a woman she looked up to. When she was assigned a room in Bryan Hall, which houses second-year Margaret Boyd Scholars, Bekavac was placed in the same room Dauphin- Falkenhan had occupied.

“We were the closest we’ve ever been when I went to OHIO,” Bekavac says.

Anna and Kay Bekavac sit on College Green at Ohio University

Photo courtesy of Anna Bekavac, BMUS ’18

Dauphin-Falkenhan’s son Justin, BSC ’04, graduated from OHIO, but her relationship with Bekavac provided her an opportunity to reconnect more fully with her own experience as an OHIO woman.

“It was fun to go through it again with Anna, although Anna’s experience at OU and mine were very different,” Dauphin-Falkenhan says, adding that while she didn’t feel held back as a woman at OHIO, her professional life was a different story.

“There were definitely glass ceilings. There were definitely some of the things that the Me Too movement is now addressing,” she says. “That’s why I was so proud of Anna for being chosen for that inaugural group of Margaret Boyd Scholars. I felt very strongly that we had made progress when Anna told me about that.”

Now both OHIO graduates, Dauphin-Falkenhan and Bekavac’s special relationship continues. When Bekavac recently passed her music therapy certification exam, she immediately reached out to her special teacher who, more than 1,000 miles away, was waiting anxiously by the phone.

Read about where other members of the inaugural class of Margaret Boyd Scholars have gone since graduation—and how the program helped them get there—elsewhere in this issue.

Feature photo by Richard Wilson, BSVC ’90