Recent News from Campuses
Gustavus Campus News - Thu, 12/12/2013 - 11:00am
Sophomore Christina Swenson of Marion, Iowa, was crowned St. Lucia on Thursday morning in Christ Chapel at Gustavus Adolphus College’s 73rd annual Festival of St. Lucia.
Swenson is a health fitness major who serves as a Collegiate Fellow and sings in the Choir of Christ Chapel. She is also involved as a Gustie Guide, in the Running Club, Prepare Ministries, and Swing Club. She says her favorite Gustavus memory to date is traveling to Guatemala for a mission trip with Prepare Ministries.
“Not only was it incredible to experience the culture, but I grew in faith, learned so much about trust and service, and developed lifelong friendships with incredible Gustavus students,” Swenson said.
Every year five or six sophomore women are chosen to serve on the College’s St. Lucia Court based on courageous leadership, strength of character, service to others, and compassion. This year’s court included Swenson, Emily Albrecht of Wimbledon, N.D., Haley Coller of Bloomington, Minn., Casey Lindquist of Chanhassen, Minn., Hayley Nemmers of Des Moines, Iowa, and Mikaela Warner of Roseville, Minn.
The Festival of St. Lucia begins the Christmas season in Swedish custom and is traditionally held on Dec. 13. On this day in Sweden, the eldest daughter plays the role of St. Lucia by preparing and serving baked goods and coffee to her family during the early morning hours. Wearing a crown of lighted candles, Lucia represents the return of light that will end the long winter nights and serves as a symbol of hope and peace for the Christmas season.
At Gustavus, the St. Lucia Court traditionally sings carols through the College’s residence halls during the early morning hours on the day of the crowning and a traditional Scandinavian smorgasbord luncheon typically follows the ceremony. St. Lucia is chosen through a campus community vote.
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
Concordia University Campus News - Thu, 12/12/2013 - 6:07am
The third-ranked Concordia University volleyball team (32-3) continues their pursuit for an unprecedented seventh consecutive national title this week as they head to Cedar Rapids, Iowa for the NCAA Elite Eight at U.S. Cellular Center. The Golden Bears open up with a rematch of the 2012 national championship game against the top-ranked Tampa Spartans (32-1) on Thursday, Dec. 12 at 5 p.m.
Concordia College Campus News - Wed, 12/11/2013 - 11:00pm
For students who study away, a photograph is more than a picture - it's a symbol of how they engaged in the world.
Gustavus Campus News - Wed, 12/11/2013 - 1:58pm
Diane Nash, a key figure during the nonviolent and civil rights movements of the 1960s, will give the 2014 Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Lecture at Gustavus Adolphus College at 10 a.m. Monday, Jan. 20 in Christ Chapel. Nash’s lecture is titled “Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement” and is free and open to the public.
The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Lecture is an annual event on the Gustavus campus that has previously drawn prominent speakers such as Taylor Branch, the Rev. C.T. Vivian, and Bernard Lafayette Jr.
Nash’s involvement in the nonviolent movement began in 1959 while she was a student at Fisk University. In 1960 she became the chairperson of the student sit-in movement in Nashville as well as one of the founding students of the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee. During the spring of 1961, Nash played a crucial role in sustaining Freedom Rides initiated by the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). From her base in Nashville, she coordinated student efforts to continue the rides into Mississippi and served as a liaison between the press and the United States Department of Justice.
Her many arrests for her civil rights activities culminated in Nash being imprisoned for 30 days in 1961, while she was pregnant with her first child. Undeterred, she was appointed by President John F. Kennedy to a national committee that promoted passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Nash later became active in the peace movement that worked to end the Vietnam War, and became an instructor in the philosophy and strategy of non-violence as developed by Mohandas Gandhi.
Nash is the recipient of numerous awards, including the War Resisters’ League Peace Award; the Distinguished American Award presented by the John F. Kennedy Library; the LBJ Award for Leadership in Civil Rights from the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum; and an honorary doctorate of human letters from Fisk University.
For more information or questions about Martin Luther King Day events at Gustavus on Jan. 20, contact Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the Peace Studies Program Mimi Gerstbauer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
University of St. Thomas Campus News - Wed, 12/11/2013 - 11:30am
Over the din of Christmas carols and complaints of looming finals, it’s not uncommon to hear an, “Oh yeah! He’s that Summit Singers guy!” around campus, said bass Ben Waterfield, a member of St. Thomas’ men’s a cappella group, the Summit Singers.
That’s been the case since the singers began making a name for themselves by appearing in unlikely places to sing, including President Julie Sullivan’s office during her first week at St. Thomas, several area elementary schools in October, and in the freshmen dorms for Christmas carols last year. They even serenaded the entire student center from the third floor balcony last March.
Their performances have become coveted by organizations and clubs both on and off campus, said Summit Singers president Chad Berg.
A junior finance and economics double major, Berg founded the group as a freshman. Two years later, he says he couldn’t be happier with the growth the club has experienced. The group of 10 students, established in the spring of 2012, has grown to 14 members.
Along with the other singers, Berg will welcome students to the group’s first winter concert at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 12, in O’Shaughnessy Educational Center, handing out free hats and scarves to the first 400 undergraduate students. They’ve come a long way, Berg said, considering he came to St. Thomas looking to join an a cappella group. “There really wasn’t one,” he said. “I asked some seniors and they said that I should just go for it, make it myself.”
Listen to the Summit Singers perform Ave Maria.
Tucked away on south campus in Brady Educational Center, the men started with one rehearsal a week. Soon, they were performing at a variety of venues in the Twin Cities, even being featured on local television and interviewed by KARE 11’s Belinda Jensen last Christmas. Berg said that one of the group’s first chances at schoolwide recognition was being on stage with singer-songwriter Mat Kearney, who performed at St. Thomas last year.
“We were practicing for a performance over by the bathrooms, for a performance for Father Dease here in the Hearth Room,” Berg explained. “[Kearney] heard us singing as he was walking by and he asked us to sing onstage with him. That was some really great exposure for us.”
Since its inception, the group has gained exclusive club status, receiving $4,300 in grants from Undergraduate Student Government and St. Thomas Activities and Recreation (STAR) in November. Berg noted that because of the exclusive status, the Summit Singers did not have the traditional avenues of receiving funding; rather, they had to apply for it. The money will be used for the production of the winter concert, primarily for sound and lighting. A small portion will be put toward advertising, and the free hats and scarves.
Yet amidst the attention and flurry of activity, the Summit Singers have managed to remain just a group of guys who love music. With rehearsals now twice a week, the men have time to socialize and get serious about their performances. The group stands in a circle while rehearsing so everyone can see each other, Waterfield said. “There are a lot of laughs,” he added, “but when we’re coming up to a concert, we’ll say, ‘Hey, we really need to polish up this music.’”
The Summit Singers are a unique conglomeration of students, with a range of majors and interests. The common denominator is involvement in St. Thomas concert or chamber choir. To be a Summit Singer, Berg said, one doesn’t have to be the best choral or opera singer, but someone who loves music and wants to improve. Surprisingly, there are many members of the club who are not vocalists. These include finance, logistics, planning and advertising personnel, who make sure the events run smoothly and that the performers can simply … sing.
The group performed in October when it opened for Tonic Sol-Fa, a nationally renowned a cappella group, at a concert in Woodbury, Minn. The Summit Singers have reached a lot of landmarks and have begun to reach out into the community beyond St. Thomas.
One moment stands out for both the club president and Waterfield – performing at the 2012 Relay for Life.
“There was a moment in last year’s Relay for Life where we sang at the luminaria, which was to remember those who have lost their battle to cancer,” Berg said. “We sang a song called ‘Be Still’ by the Fray, and in the middle of the song there’s a great build … and then there’s silence. I was lucky enough to be the soloist for the song.”
He recalled the way he could feel the weight of the room and the way the lyrics, which say “Be still and know that I am here,” carried a lot of emotion for the audience. “It was a message that really touched them. It was special for all of us in the Summit Singers to be able to bring that to them,” he said.
The group hopes to continue to touch people with its music, Berg said. The men plan to continue giving concerts each semester, and to stay focused on performing for other students. He said that with so many invitations to perform for faculty and outside organizations, it’s tempting to forget that the vocalists’ main function is entertaining their peers.
The singing always comes back to the students at St. Thomas and the men who bring it to them. “Each of us has had a solo,” Waterfield said. “When you hear someone with their solo voice, you can just tell how many hours they’ve put behind it … probably spent singing in the shower. You can tell that everyone is passionate about music.”
Berg agreed, saying that the men of Summit Singers are guys who work hard, have fun and know that they are a part of something bigger than themselves.
“It’s not just a group of singers, it’s a group of friends,” Berg said. “We bring in new guys every year, and they just join the family.”
University of St. Thomas Campus News - Wed, 12/11/2013 - 11:02am
In the history of Santa Claus, the jolly old man and his reindeer have never missed a year, never skipped a beat, and always brought joy year after year. As business-minded professionals, we were curious as to how Santa Claus’ operations work during the 364 days of preparation for the big night!
We know Santa has many elves helping him globally such as the elves at Operation Santa Claus, expert IT elves keeping up with the Norad Santa Claus Tracker, and the newest elves to appear, the WestJet Elf Crew bringing joy to travelers. But before Santa Claus and his reindeer set out for their Christmas Eve adventures, what are the Santa Claus workshop operations like in the North Pole the rest of the year? How many elves does he need to hire year round to make toys? How long does it take one elf to complete one toy? Do they need the full 364 days to get ready for Christmas?
We were unable to chat with Santa Claus himself – he’s a tad busy this time of the year reporting daily with his Elf On the Shelf helpers finalizing the naughty or nice list – so we turned to University of St. Thomas operations experts, Heather Massie of Executive Education and Professor John Olson, Operations and Supply Chain Management Department Chair. They created a plausible, but theoretical year to year Santa Claus scenario to compile their data and crunch the estimated Santa Claus operational numbers.
- Roughly 526 million kids under the age of 14 who celebrate Christmas.
- Each toy takes a “Toy Maker” elf 3 days to make and elves work 7 days a week.
- Every kid will get a toy as kids can move from the naughty list to the nice list throughout the year.
- Additional “Stuffer” elves stuff all the toys in Santa’s bag on his sleigh so he is ready on Christmas Eve.
- Each “Stuffer” elf loads up 100 toys per day, starting 361 days out from Christmas Eve when the first batch of completed toys is ready.
Roughly 4.3 million elves needed to make toys if they have no days off, one elf hired per 121 kids celebrating Christmas worldwide, and another 14,571 elves to stuff Santa’s bag. We also assume Santa hires more elves at the North Pole for administration, hospitals, custodians, cooks, etc. That is a lot of elves at the Santa Claus workshop, around the North Pole, and globally. Hopefully after this Christmas season we are able to chat with Santa Claus to find out how close John and Heather were at estimating his operational process at the Santa Claus workshop.
The holidays tend to sneak up on us every year so don’t forget, here comes Santa Claus, sooner rather than later, have his cookies and reindeer treats ready to help keep their energy up for one very long night. Find time to relax, spend extra time with your family, and reflect on your blessings.
To learn more about business operations processes, University of St. Thomas Executive Education has an array of programs, taught by John Olson and other faculty members. Visit our Operations Programs website or one of the following programs websites:
- Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certificate
- Six Sigma Green Belt Certificate
- Lean Six Sigma Black Belt
- Mini Master of Lean Enterprise
- Business Analytics Using Microsoft® Excel 2013
- Business Intelligence Using Microsoft® Excel 2013
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from University of St. Thomas Executive Education.
Read more from Opus Magnum blog.
Hamline University Campus News - Wed, 12/11/2013 - 12:00am
The legacy of Nelson Mandela will live on in countless ways, including through an academic scholarship at the Hamline School of Law.
St. Kate's Campus News - Tue, 12/10/2013 - 4:06pm
The University's annual Doctor of Physical Therapy Program Research Day showcases research projects and contributions. More »
Saint Mary's University Campus News - Tue, 12/10/2013 - 3:13pm
St. Kate's Campus News - Tue, 12/10/2013 - 12:05pm
Mary Dee Hacker ’74 and her husband were honored for their commitment and service to an agency serving children, youth and families. More »
College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 12:00pm
Gary Eichten to moderate panel with economists Louis Johnston and Chris Farrell at noon Thursday, Dec. 19, at Lecture Hall (room 102), SJU Art Center.
University of St. Thomas Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 10:49am
Historic steel being lowered to the ground. Lightning as it arcs above campus. St. Thomas presidents, past and present, walking together. We’ve picked these moments, and the others you see here, from the more than 5,000 we collected in 2013 as our best of the year. Some images are here because they are as-yet-unseen favorites of our staff. Many are here because we believe them to be outstanding images. Still others were picked because of the important event or person they represent from this year.
Make no mistake – this collection of images is not comprehensive. The life of the St. Thomas community is far too complex to be fully captured by staff photographers who eventually have to stop shooting to eat and sleep. But what I hope comes through in these photos is the pride and care we take with the small slices of St. Thomas we’ve encountered in 2013.
Read more from Depth of Field.
Gustavus Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 9:28am
Gustavus Adolphus College President Jack Ohle recently announced that Raymond ’51 and Lorraine Lundquist of Golden Valley, Minn., have established a new endowed professorship for the Gustavus Wind Orchestra in honor of Dr. Douglas Nimmo – the ensemble’s longtime conductor.
“The establishment of the Douglas Nimmo Endowed Professor for the Gustavus Wind Orchestra is the perfect way to kick off the Christmas season at Gustavus and also honor a beloved member of our faculty who has dedicated his career to shaping the lives of many student musicians,” said President Ohle as he announced the gift to an audience of more than 200 donors and friends of the College at the special annual Christmas in Christ Chapel President’s Dinner.
This is the seventh endowed faculty position established at Gustavus since the College’s strategic planning process, Commission Gustavus 150, was approved by the Board of Trustees in 2010 with a goal of establishing ten new endowed professorships by the fall of 2015. Endowed professors provide a perpetual base of support to enable the College to attract and retain faculty of excellent quality. This latest endowed position joins the Jon and Anita Thomsen Young Distinguished Chair in Music in providing direct support to the College’s music program.
The Lundquists are two of the College’s most dedicated community members. Ray was recently profiled as one of Campaign Gustavus’s “faces of opportunity” for his long-term engagement in the life of the College and commitments to the campaign. This investment celebrates their love of music, which has grown through their involvement in the Gustavus Friends of Music, and also underscores their belief in the impact of teaching and learning.
“World-class faculty and music excellence are two important pillars of the Gustavus experience. Lorraine and I are honored that our legacy allows us to support both of these elements at a place that means so much to us,” said Ray. “It’s my hope that this gift inspires others to give what they can to keep Gustavus great.”
Dr. Nimmo has served as conductor of the Gustavus Wind Orchestra since 1987. In addition, he teaches instrumental conducting and instrumental methods, and supervises student teachers. Under his leadership, the Gustavus Wind Orchestra has toured throughout much of the United States and has completed six international tours. Dr. Nimmo is a recipient of the Edgar M. Carlson Award for Distinguished Teaching, and was recently honored by his alma mater, the University of Minnesota-Duluth, when he was inducted into the Society of Prometheans.
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
Concordia University Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 9:02am
ST. PAUL, Minn. – Six straight NCAA Volleyball Championships and 39-match national tournament win streak on the line. Whether or not Concordia has a seventh trophy in tow when they return to campus next weekend, one thing’s certain for these student-athletes… finals start on Monday.
“It takes effort on their part, a lot of effort,” says Concordia University, St. Paul head coach Brady Starkey of the team’s balance with academics. The program has earned it’s laurels as a volleyball dynasty, but that’s only half of the picture for these student-athletes and their combined 3.37 GPA.
“They’re goal-driven people who work hard in the classroom. They understand that first and foremost, they’re here to get an education.”
“We work with our professors to get as much done as we can ahead of time. Communication with them is key, and we fit in studying whenever we can,” says the team’s setter, Amanda Konetchy, surrounded by her teammates and a table filled with computers, books and papers on Monday morning.
The senior is already a three-time All-American and recently received another round of NSIC academic honors, as did seven of her eight eligible teammates.
Golden Bear fans only get to see the results of the hours in the gym, when the team takes the court and plays at a championship caliber. But what does the daily grind look like for a student-athlete? Here’s a peek:The team headed up to Duluth last Wednesday for the Central Region Tournament. They stayed in St. Paul long enough for players to attend most of their morning classes, but had to leave earlier than planned due to the weather. It wasn’t the 24 inches of Duluth snow that made the squad nearly miss an evening practice session, however - it was the bus’s troublesome transmission along Interstate 94. The next three days, players camped out in lobbies of the hotel and gym in the mornings and during breaks between matches, nabbing internet access where they could. They put their books away at game time and went 3-0 to remain one of just eight teams in the nation still standing. (For fans who missed the action, they overcame top-ranked Minnesota Duluth on UMD’s home court in the Championship match.) weekend’s Championship finale? They’re studying. This is the week before finals, after all, and the bus leaves again on Tuesday.
Concordia Volleyball Quick Facts
- 6 straight NCAA Division II trophies (2007-2012) and 39 straight NCAA tournament wins
- 11 straight NSIC conference titles
- Player names throughout the NCAA record book
- 10 AVCA Academic Team Awards in the past 10 years (3.3 team GPA or higher).
- 9 Academic All-Americans
- 2 nominees making top 9 for NCAA Woman of the Year (Mary Slinger ’09 & Ellie Duffy ‘ 13)
- Head coach Brady Starkey named Region Coach of the Year 8 times, NCAA Division II Coach of the Year in 2010 & 2011
No. 3-ranked Concordia will take on top-ranked Tampa in the NCAA Championship quarterfinals, this Thursday at 5 p.m. (CT). Watch the match FREE, visit www.cugoldenbears.com for all tournament information and viewing links.
Concordia University Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 7:05am
Six-time defending national champion third-ranked Concordia University, St. Paul (32-3) defeated second-ranked Minnesota Duluth (33-3) to advance to their seventh-consecutive Elite Eight last Saturday evening in Duluth. The Golden Bears knocked off the Bulldogs in four sets with scores of 25-17, 20-25, 25-21 and 25-20, ending the host school UMD's season. Concordia has won 39 straight NCAA Tournament matches.
The Golden Bears' Cental Region title was their seventh in a row and ninth in 11 trips to the region final. Concordia will take on the top-ranked Tampa Spartans on Thursday in a rematch of the 2012 national title match. Concordia also played Tampa back on September 14 in Denver and won in four sets, handing the Spartans their only loss of the season.
Concordia has now won 39-consecutive matches in NCAA Tournament play, last losing in the regional title match in 2006 to Minnesota Duluth. Concordia holds a 49-4 all-time record in the NCAA Tournament and is 9-2 in regional final matches. Concordia is 29-2 in regional tournament play.
Read more at cugoldenbears.com.
University of St. Thomas Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 12:01am
One of my priorities since becoming president of St. Thomas has been to launch a strategic planning process that engages the community in envisioning and creating the future of our outstanding university, and I am excited to let you know today that we are under way!
I am delighted that a 16-person steering committee has committed to oversee our strategic planning. I expect the committee will have its first meeting this month and will continue its work and engagement of the broader community after the holidays and throughout 2014.
Strategic planning is critical to the life of any university. St. Thomas went through three rounds of strategic planning during the presidency of Father Dennis Dease, including a final effort that led to the establishment of priorities for the successful Opening Doors capital campaign.
Dr. Corrine Carvalho, a professor of theology and director of the Luann Dummer Center for Women, and Dr. Michael Cogan, associate vice president for institutional effectiveness, have agreed to chair the steering committee. Other committee members are listed below.
An updated St. Thomas vision statement, in conjunction with our existing mission and convictions statements, will provide the foundation for strategic planning. We are in the final stages of reviewing alternatives for a vision statement, and I hope you can attend the brown bag discussion at noon Monday, Dec. 9, in the O’Shaughnessy Educational Center auditorium (with live stream to 201-202 Opus Hall on the Minneapolis campus).
The steering committee will review numerous documents and sources of material, including previous strategic plans, the Higher Learning Commission self-study, the 2012-13 climate survey, last spring’s planning survey, and notes from brown bag and Faculty Senate discussions.
The committee also will establish subcommittees to address specific focus areas, such as academic excellence and Catholic identity, and will set goals, objectives and measurable outcomes. Subcommittee members will include faculty, staff, students and alumni.
I know the spring semester and summer will be a busy time for the steering committee and the subcommittees. Our goal is to take our new strategic plan to the Board of Trustees for approval in October 2014.
Members of the steering committee are:
- Jose Andrade-Vera, graduate student
- Dr. Bernard Brady, Theology Department
- Dr. Corrine Carvalho, Theology Department (co-chair)
- Dr. Michael Cogan, Institutional Effectiveness (co-chair)
- Lisa Keiser, Non-Exempt Staff Council
- Mariann Kukielka, undergraduate student
- Dr. Paul Lorah, Geography Department
- Dr. Aaron Macke, Student Affairs
- Dr. Jill Manske, Biology Department
- Dr. John Olson, Operations and Supply Chain Management Department
- Kathy O’Neil, Exempt Staff Council
- Dr. Lalith Samarakoon, Finance Department
- Dr. AnnMarie Thomas, School of Engineering
- Robert Vischer, School of Law
- Dr. Christopher Vye, Graduate School of Professional Psychology
- Dr. Wendy Wyatt, Communication and Journalism Department
I want to thank everyone in the St. Thomas community for agreeing to participate in our strategic planning process. I appreciate your enthusiasm and look forward to working closely with you in the months ahead.
Hamline University Campus News - Mon, 12/09/2013 - 12:00am
The new Purple Onion Bookclub was named after the pizza parlour where singer and songwriter Bob Dylan performed very early in his career.
Hamline University Campus News - Sat, 12/07/2013 - 12:00am
Hamline University has once again emerged as a leader in its category in Minnesota for study abroad opportunities according to the Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.
St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 12/06/2013 - 6:26pm
Laurie Hamen ’82, a higher education veteran, will be Mount Mercy University’s ninth president. More »
St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 12/06/2013 - 12:51pm
Theater grad Brett Blonigen Dorrian ’07, MAOL Cert’09, was selected as the WomenVenture Entrepreneur of the Month for December. More »