Recent News from Campuses
Acclaimed piano soloist Jonathan Biss will appear along with the SPCO.
This entry was curated by George Woytanowitz, an adjunct faculty member in the St. Thomas History Department since 1985. He specializes in U.S. political and intellectual history, as well as the history of education.
What makes a speech important? Rhetorical brilliance? Logical argumentation? Timing? Location? Short-term impact? Long-term impact? Are the greatest speeches those that reflect the tenor of the age? Or those that offer opposition to it? A combination of some or all of the above?
In selecting these 10 speeches I have tried to avoid obvious choices such as the “Gettysburg Address” and the “I Have a Dream” speech, and chosen lesser-known but important speeches by the same speaker.
At a time when women were discouraged or even prohibited from speaking in public meetings, Truth spoke to the causes of both gender and racial equality. Throughout American history, from the abolitionists to the 1960s feminists, there has been considerable cross fertilization between the gender and racial equality movements.
Since its construction in 1961, the Berlin Wall was the symbol of the Cold War. In the early 1960s, President John F. Kennedy had rallied Berliners and assured them of America’s support. A quarter century later Reagan challenged Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to remove this wall because “the wall cannot withstand freedom.” Two years later the wall’s destruction marked the beginning of the end of communism in eastern Europe and the end of the Cold War.
Delivered at the Republican State Convention, which selected him as its senatorial candidate, Lincoln reviewed recent history and created a conspiracy theory of how all three branches of the Federal government appeared to be plotting to impose slavery on the entire nation. From the Bavarian Illuminati to the Masons to international bankers to the Trilateral Commission, Americans have regularly been inclined to give credence to conspiracy theories. Although Lincoln lost his senate bid to Stephen A. Douglas, his campaign oratory, especially the debates with Douglas, read widely throughout the North, made him a viable presidential candidate two years later.
Faced with powerful public opposition to direct American involvement in the European war, FDR had engaged in delaying a clear statement of his commitment to using all American resources except troops for the defeat of Nazi Germany. Now, newly elected to an unprecedented third term, he clearly and forcefully stated his determination that there would be no obstacles in American aid to the Allies. His description of the Tripartite Agreement among Germany, Japan and Italy as an “unholy alliance” was echoed in Reagan’s later description of the Soviet Union as an “evil empire.” Letters and telegrams denounced FDR after the radio address, accusing him of seeking to take us to war.
Douglass, the former slave, brilliantly contrasts the meaning of freedom and independence for white and black Americans at a time when the Fourth of July was observed more seriously than at present when it is observed with a hot dog-eating contest.
This very brief, melancholy speech sums up the unjust treatment of Native Americans by the U.S. government.
Edwards is among the earliest of a lengthy list of religious revivalist preachers. His descendants include Charles Finney, Dwight Moody, Billy Sunday, Billy Graham, Fulton Sheen and Jerry Falwell. The jeremiad, followed by the call to repentance, is one of the major tropes of American religious oratory.
The nations’ greatest secretary of state (yes, even greater than Hillary Clinton) warned about the temptation of American involvement in “good causes” around the world. America “goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own.” Americans generally followed this advice until 1898 when they succumbed to the intervention temptation to aid the cause of Cuban independence from Spain. Since then we have repeatedly ignored Adams, often to our chagrin. Someone should place a large-print framed copy of this speech in the Oval Office.
Political convention oratory is usually merely partisan boilerplate. But Bryan’s populist defense of the farmers and ranchers of the West and the South led to his nomination by the Democratic Party. The speech reflected the late 19th century divide between urban and rural America, a division that appears to be relevant in the current campaign. Although he was defeated in three tries at the presidency, Bryan’s over-the-top oratorical style is representative of American political oratory of that era – what one historian calls “hoop-la politics,” until it was killed off by radio, television and Twitter.
King was a relatively unknown young pastor, a recent arrival in Montgomery. Chosen to speak at a meeting in the Holt Street Baptist Church to rally support for a bus boycott in protest of the arrest of Rosa Parks, with barely an hour to prepare to his remarks, King’s speech brilliantly foreshadowed his major arguments and those of the civil right movements more generally over the next decade: nonviolence, Christianity and full participation in the rights of all Americans within an overlay of Biblically tinged rhetoric.
Feel free to post in the comments section which speeches you agree with, which you think are missing and what your top 10 would be.
The series will focus on issues related to immigration and civil rights, healthcare, climate change, and foreign policy.
Contractors working on the Scoville renovation project made a cool discovery, revealing the signatures of some of the original builders of the iconic Carleton landmark.
Dr. Jonathan Walton, social ethicist and scholar of American religions at Harvard University, will give the annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Lecture at Gustavus Adolphus College on Monday, January 16 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in Christ Chapel. The lecture is free and open to the public.
“We are incredibly honored and excited to welcome Jonathan Walton to Gustavus. Not only is he one of the foremost scholars of African-American religion, but he is also a dynamic communicator, a compassionate presence, and a genuine human being,” Gustavus Chaplain Rev. Dr. Brian Konkol said. “As both a pastor and professor at Harvard, Dr. Walton knows how to integrate faith and learning among some of our country’s most prominent leaders, and he is deeply committed to ethically engaging in the diversity of the world as both an intellectual quest and a lived experience.”
Walton, who serves as the Plummer Professor of Christian Morals at Harvard University and Pusey Minister in Harvard’s Memorial Church, will examine the role of faith and moral imagination in the ethical thought and public protests of Martin Luther King Jr. His lecture is titled, “It Was All A Dream…”
In addition to Walton’s role as the Plummer Professor and Pusey Minister, he teaches classes in religion and society as a member of Harvard’s divinity faculty. His research focuses on the intersections of religion, politics, and media culture. His book, Watch This! The Ethics and Aesthetics of Black Televangelism, illuminates the ways televangelists’ goals are often frustrated by their hyper-mediated methods.
The lecture is sponsored by the Gustavus Chaplains’ Office, the Diversity Center, the Peace Studies Program, the Office of the President, and Target Corporation.
To learn more about the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Lecture at Gustavus or watch the event streamed live, visit the event website.
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin
WINONA, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota student-athlete Jase Pater will be the first to admit … he never expected this.
What started out as a class project—a senior thesis in his Case Studies in Public Relations course—Pater’s efforts to organize and coordinate the “Jogging For Jack Superhero 5K” earned national attention on Monday, when Saint Mary’s was selected as an honorable-mention award-winner of the NADIIIAA/Jostens Community Service Awards for the “One Time Project” category.
The awards program is co-sponsored by the NADIIIAA and Jostens and is intended to recognize the many contributions Division III student-athletes regularly make to their campuses and local communities. Recognition is given for projects in three categories: One-Time Projects, An Array of Projects, and Ongoing Projects.
The “Jogging For Jack Superhero 5K,” which was held on April 10, 2016, was a fundraiser for Jack Cassidy, the 2-year-old son of Cardinal head women’s soccer coach, Neil Cassidy. Jack was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer—Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH)—and required chemotherapy, steroids, and steroid injections. Since Jack was a huge fan of super heroes—especially Superman—Pater and other members of the Saint Mary’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) came up with the Superhero 5K theme.
Representatives from each of the institution’s 21 varsity athletic teams were among the 50-plus student-athletes who were involved in the logistics of the event. And over 100 student-athletes were among the more than 300 people from the Saint Mary’s community, members of the Winona community, and friends of the Cassidy family, who turned out to show their support.
The event raised more than $9,500 to help assist the Cassidy family with Jack’s medical expenses.
“I am really honored to have helped Saint Mary’s receive this award—and grateful to everyone who was involved in making it a success,” said Pater, a four-year member of the Cardinal cross country and track/field team, who graduated in May. “This award is just the icing on the cake—since I know how appreciative the Cassidy family was for all our efforts putting this event together.”
“I am very proud of our student-athletes for earning yet another national community service award—the department’s fifth in the last seven years,” said athletic director Nikki Fennern, who will accept the award at the NCAA national convention in Nashville, Tenn. “Our student-athletes’ commitment to service and leadership continues to be among the best in the nation, and is a testament to the university’s Lasallian mission.
“I am extremely grateful for the leadership of Jase Pater and our SAAC in leading this event—as well as all of the student-athletes who volunteered and participated in the event.”
As a child in Kenya, Gideon Nyakundi learned his ABCs by scrawling the letters in the sand using sticks.
Pencils and books, he said, were luxuries only available to teachers.
Never stifled by this humble beginning, Nyakundi will graduate Saturday, Jan. 14 with a B.S. in Healthcare and Human Services and Management from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. Simultaneously, he is employed full time as a certified biomedical technician, is working toward his master’s degree, has developed a program for optimizing hospital staff and workloads, and is being published nationally (in the Online Journal of Ethics in Nursing) for his findings.
Nyakundi will cross the Saint Mary’s commencement stage along with 250 other adult learners this winter. He is one of three students who will share a reflection story during two commencement ceremonies Saturday at Saint Mary’s Twin Cities Campus in Minneapolis.
Yet, even as he obtains his bachelor’s degree, Nyakundi is already working toward his master’s. He credits Saint Mary’s for supporting and molding him on his path to becoming a healthcare leader.
The first step in his journey included earning a two-year biomedical technician degree from a local technical college, which led to a position at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) in Minneapolis. As a certified biomedical technician, he spends his workday repairing and maintaining simple to complex equipment and machines, such as ultrasound and anesthesia machines and neonatal incubators, and offering support to the modern patient monitoring telemetry system. His ability to work on complex equipment, because of his extensive continued training, made Nyakundi a sought-after employee. But he lacked one thing—a bachelor’s degree.
“My experience and education laid the groundwork for my career here, but I needed a bachelor’s degree to move up in the organization,” Nyakundi said.
When researching graduate schools, Nyakundi said he examined cost, time commitment, convenience, and graduation rate, as well as the school’s learning atmosphere. “Saint Mary’s stood out,” he said. “When I looked at the degree courses to suit my healthcare profession and steer me toward leadership, the bachelor’s in Healthcare and Human Services Management program fit perfectly.”
Nyakundi said he is fortunate to work for an organization that values education. As an added bonus, Nyakundi receives a 10 percent discount because HCMC and Saint Mary’s have a corporate partnership, he explained.
For his capstone workplace internship project, HCMC asked Nyakundi to develop a program for optimizing hospital staff and workloads. Using two software programs, Nyakundi is tracking the hours worked by individuals in different departments and evaluating how much was completed during that time. He is using the data to determine where the hospital is understaffed and overworked.
The hospital will be able to use his results to make decisions about hiring extra staff, redistributing resources, or offering work-life balance opportunities. This pilot project, titled “Capacity and Demand,” will eventually be implemented throughout the hospital.
“I will use the project management and communication skills I’ve learned in class to train the department managers to use the new program,” he said.
Nyakundi began working on his master’s degree during the last semester of his bachelor’s completion program. The M.A. in Health and Human Services Administration program is further developing his project management and communication skills, among other things.
“The evening courses have worked well with all my work and family obligations and I’m learning new things that will help me be a leader,” Nyakundi said.
“Our degree programs are designed for busy working adults—and our professors are working professionals in the field of healthcare who bring real-world perspectives into the classroom,” said Susan Jarosak, program director and assistant dean of the Graduate School of Health and Human Services. “And so do the students—just ask Gideon Nyakundi.”
Caroline Duke '17 wanted to be challenged academically, but she also couldn't give up sports. Striking that balance keeps her fulfilled at Carleton.
On the eve of the presidential inauguration, political scientist and ethnographer Justin Gest will visit St. Olaf College to offer a fresh look at the white working class constituency that helped propel Donald Trump to victory.
His January 18 lecture, sponsored by the college’s Institute for Freedom and Community, is titled Trump and the White Working Class: The Politics of a New Minority?
The event, which will be streamed and archived online, begins at 3:30 p.m. in the Sun and Gold Ballrooms in Buntrock Commons. Immediately following the lecture, leaders with the Institute-supported Sustained Dialogue Program at St. Olaf will facilitate small-group discussions. The event will conclude with a Q&A session motivated by the discussions in these small groups.
Gest’s lecture will draw from his recent book, The New Minority: White Working Class Politics in an Age of Immigration and Inequality, in which he examines once-thriving white working class communities that have fallen on hard times.
Gest offers a new and potentially controversial perspective on the driving forces shaping the political activity of white working class people, and his work bears directly on questions of race, racism, and marginality in the context of Trump’s victory.
Gest is an assistant professor of public policy at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government. His teaching and research interests include comparative politics, minority political behavior, and immigration policy, and he has also published Apart: Alienated and Engaged Muslims in the West.
He earned his bachelor’s degree in government at Harvard University and his Ph.D. in government from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
By Susan Jarosak
The landscape of colleges is changing by the student population. 61 percent of all undergraduate college students will be over the age of 24 or above by 2019. The Council on Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL.org) reports that “non traditional” students (those aged 24 years and older, who are employees and caregivers with multiple responsibilities), are the fastest growing population in higher education. This number is significant for corporations and organizations because their employees are likely in college or planning to pursue a degree in the near future. These employees are seeking advancement in their career and know a degree is necessary. It’s a win-win for employees and employers because education is essential for the economic development of the workforce.
But are colleges ready for them? Adult learners who are juggling work, family, and college have needs that traditional age students do not, namely: flexible course schedules, class locations that are convenient, advisers who can support them in their career pathways, maximum transfer credit policies, options for earning college credit for knowledge gained in the workplace, and accelerated course formats to complete the degrees in a timely manner. A limited number of colleges and universities fulfill these needs. Adult learners completing either their bachelor’s or master’s programs are succeeding due to getting their needs met at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.
Saidiyo Yusuf is a student successfully balancing her busy life with family and career while attending college. Saidiyo started the BS in Healthcare and Human Services Management program at Saint Mary’s University while working full time because she sought career advancement opportunities. She chose the program because of the flexible, accelerated course format and the convenient location near downtown Minneapolis. At Saint Mary’s, courses in the program are offered one night a week for eight weeks. Two of the eight class sessions are online which is an added bonus for students. “I was able to complete courses in 8 weeks and since the program was only 36 credits, I finished it in four semesters.” Saidiyo worked closely with a Saint Mary’s adviser prior to enrolling while attending a community college for maximizing her transfer credits. “I was concerned about time and money, said Saidiyo, but it worked so well because Saint Mary’s is geared for adult learners and understands our needs. I received personal advising throughout the program which was key to my progress.” Saidiyo completed her bachelor’s degree in December 2016 and is now a graduate student in the MA Health and Human Services Administration program with the goal of getting a promotion as an administrator in social services.
The realities of who goes to college today is changing – but so is higher education…and it’s paying off for Saidiyo Yusuf at Saint Mary’s University.
There are plenty of expected differences between high school and college for students: time management, increased independence and a heavier workload. When junior Divine Zheng embarked on her college career at St. Thomas, she noticed a difference that was less expected: the way she was being taught the civil rights movement.
“I started learning in class about how my understanding of the civil rights movement wasn’t necessarily reflective of what really happened,” Zheng said. “So, I wanted to know why all those things about Rosa Parks’ activism and [Martin Luther King Jr.’s] advocacy against the war in Vietnam weren’t things that I had learned in school.”
To answer that question, she considered how textbooks are selected and arrive in classrooms across the country. While that’s a broad and commonly discussed topic, Zheng picked at one thread with the help of an Excel! Research Scholars grant: She examined whether states that are rated as having robust and comprehensive content standards in regard to the civil rights movement actually wind up with more comprehensive textbooks.
“[She] turned a desire to change the world, which we hope all of students have, into a plan for how to do that,” said assistant professor of history David Williard, who served as Zheng’s mentor.
Zheng, a justice and peace studies major, as well as a history major after completing this research, began her project with the broad question of why high school students across the United States can receive a vastly different interpretation of the civil rights movement. She chose to work through the Excel! Research Scholars grant because the program prepares undergraduates who are first-generation college students, military veterans or are of an underrepresented race for graduate school, while also putting them in charge of a meaningful research project.
“She had really big ambitions – and still does – to do a deep investigation of how what people get in those textbooks affects how they see folks, specifically civic engagement,” Williard said. “In other words, how do they view society based on their education about moments of social change like the civil rights movement?”
Zheng read about how textbooks are written and selected across the country, which can often be a contentious topic, and considered what role those textbooks play in the classroom. She discovered a study done in 2014 by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching the Movement project: The study did an in-depth review of state standards in regard to the civil rights movement and assigned them a grade based on how comprehensive the standards were.
Zheng took that research and looked at whether states deemed as having high-content standards actually wound up with more comprehensive textbooks than states with low-content standards. She compared the textbooks from six states that provided a list of textbooks that had been approved or recommended at the state level: Three of the states had been evaluated by the SPLC as having comprehensive content standards, and three evaluated as having poor or even nonexistent content standards.
Zheng designed a rubric to discern how comprehensive the textbooks were.
“I encouraged her to think about … a nuanced, robust coverage of King vs. generic coverage of King, and what ‘generic’ means,” Williard said. “I said … find something concrete in a historical record that you think captures the essence of what you mean by ‘generic’ and something that you think captures the essence of something that’s really nuanced and robust.”
Some categories Zheng considered were how major figures such as King and Parks are depicted, if civic agency is portrayed as a major part of the movement, and, if included, how institutional and social resistance is described.
“Her rubric let her say, ‘What textbooks leave students with a complex movement that was driven from both the government and from people on the ground, and that is dynamic and requires a lot of mobilization?’” Williard said.
Zheng said she expected the state standards to correlate with the kind of textbooks that were adopted. But that wasn’t the case.
“My results demonstrated that no direct correlation could be confirmed between comprehensive content standards and the comprehensiveness of textbooks that are subsequently adopted,” Zheng said. “Textbooks that presented limited narratives of the civil rights movement have been adopted in states that had good content standards, as well in states that had bad content standards; the same could be said about textbooks that presented comprehensive narratives.”
Zheng theorized that while the states set the standards, choosing a range of textbooks might be an effort to appease the local districts.
Williard said he was highly impressed with Zheng’s work, particularly her “tenacity” to get information that fueled her research. He said her results also “complicated” what we assume about how and where the civil rights movement is taught.
“[She was able spend time on] why it might be that a student in Alabama or Mississippi, a state that we think of as educationally not at the top of the heap, is getting a better, more thorough, more rigorous education than a student in New York or New Jersey, which we think of as a more high-achieving state educational system,” Williard said.
Williard and Zheng look forward to continuing to work with this topic, potentially studying the ways a selected textbook might actually be used in a classroom.
“I could have the greatest textbook in the world, but if I don’t do anything with it, if my students don’t read it, it’s not teaching anybody anything,” Williard said.
Zheng presented her research at the end of the summer as part of the Excel! program, as well as at the National Ronald E. McNair Research Conference. She will continue her work with the program to look for other presentation opportunities and preparation for graduate school. Both Zheng and Williard spoke highly of their experience with the Excel! program, and Zheng said she hopes to “see more students benefit from the invaluable training, experience and opportunities it offers.” Zheng said she plans to attend law school, and that she liked how her research prepared her for that future.
“I wanted to find concrete ways that would prepare me for a career in which I’d have to constantly defend my arguments and claims – and the Excel! program was immensely helpful in that,” Zheng said. “As a student of a social justice discipline, it’s very important to me that when I continue my education, it is at an institution that allows me to develop my current knowledge and passions with professors who work to advance equity, especially in law and policy.”
Performers include pianist Matthew McCright and violinist Francesca Anderegg.
Rob Morris, president and co-founder of Love146, will present “The Modern-Day Abolitionist: What it Takes for Everyday People to Fight Injustice.”
ON THE FAR SIDE OF ADULTHOOD, your years in college can feel like a short (and distant) memory. But when you’re living it, college can feel like an eternity—a wonderful one and, at times, a scary one. Personal transformation is like that. You aren’t the same coming out that you are going in. You take some big leaps.
Gustavus too will take some big leaps the next four years as the Gustavus Acts strategic plan becomes action. What these five students will experience here will be different than those who have come before. They will grow as the College grows. And yet they will be Gusties: caring, daring, and smart.
These are five new Gusties we’re excited to know. Here’s to their four years of seismic change—and ours too.
Both her brothers attended, and they prepped Felton on the important things: “The best place to study, the best late night snack at the Caf,” she says. (It’s chocolate ice cream with chocolate sauce and a banana.) But there have been surprises. For one, she earned a spot in the Gustavus Choir. Coming from an all-girls high school, the sound has blown her mind. “It’s a different sound than I’ve ever heard, from people who actually like to sing, want to sing, and are good at singing. I’ve never been in a choir that sounded so good unrehearsed.” Another surprise? Finding the courage to audition for the musical, Sweeney Todd. “That was scary. I got flustered, but I got a call back.” (And a featured role, too.)
Where will this early performance take her? “I’m still exploring my options,” says this grounded woman. She is interested in education. She loves her sociology class. She sees how her acting class can apply to any profession. She’s exploring new friendships too, especially in her First-Term Seminar. “A lot of the students are from homes who have immigrated to the States, and it’s cool to see what type of cultures people are living.”
No rush to make any hard choices, she says. “I don’t know what it is about turning 18, but suddenly people are very serious about asking you, ‘What do you want to do with your life?’ I’m just excited to be on the journey.”
He follows a long line of Gusties—his parents, two of his siblings—and from there grew a love of Gustavus football. Bachman plays on the team he has followed for years, “I love competing. I love going to football practice and going to meetings.” And he loves being busy. “Some days I have classes from 8 to 2 and football from 3 to 7,” he says, but it keeps him productive. Speaking of class, “It’s tough but it’s going really well. I’m studying physics. I’d like to be an engineer,” he says. But he adds, “Who knows what will happen in the next two or three years.”
Certainly he’ll grow with teammates. “This year we have one of the most diverse football teams Gustavus has had—they’re from all over the country. But as you practice together and spend time together, you forget differences.”
He won’t forget his first-year exhaustion. “Some days I’m just really happy when I get to lay in my bed and go to sleep.” Once football’s over, “I’ll have to find something more to do,” he says. “I’ll look into FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes). Faith and athletics have had an impact on my life, and it’s a way to keep the faith strong through what I do in sports.”
This international student is delighted with the teaching. “I was completely lost in a class and now my professor works to see if I am understanding the lectures. She knows me.” The writing is hard, but tutors help with ideas and editing. Other students are great role models. “They talk a lot and participate in class. I’m learning from them.”
Her learning has a cultural breadth. “I have friends from Vietnam, Bangladesh, China, Japan. My roommate is Lao and Vietnamese, and she is from the Twin Cities. I have American friends, friends from Sweden, from Pakistan.” Their great joy is sharing their traditional food with each other, almost every night. “It is so fun, it takes us at least an hour to eat,” she says.
There will be no wait-and-see exploration for Nguyen regarding a major. It’s economics. Her campus job with event services is a perfect pairing for her plans to work in the hospitality industry: she helps set up events, sound systems, and microphones. Sometime during her four years, she hopes to take a course she’s heard about on landing a dream job. She is convinced that job will be hotel manager. In the meantime, she is relishing Minnesota’s beauty. “In Vietnam the trees do not change their colors that much. Here, I just want to kick the leaves and see them fly. And soon there will be snow.”
He speaks five languages. His goal is to become a cardiologist. He has a full academic scholarship. “I always push myself,” he says. “That’s the result of that.”
Araya is from Ethiopia; he immigrated to the U.S. when he was 14. Though Gustavus is
more ethnically and culturally diverse than it has ever been, it’s not nearly the mix of people who attended Araya’s high school on Chicago’s north side. He found Gustavus through extended family in Minneapolis. “They told me there was a college here that was really awesome.” But life here is definitely a departure from Chicago’s urban core. He knew he was in Minnesota, he says, “when my dad stopped his car to check a map and none of the cars behind us honked their horns.”
His first semester had him taking three writing classes—an intense load. But he was wholly engaged, particularly in “Faith and Religion in Science,” as well as his philosophy class. Beyond class? Just occasional intramural soccer. “My purpose is education. I have a lot of pressure from my family. They don’t want me to slack off.” He wants that pressure to come from his professors too. “They are always behind me. I like to be pushed.”
She saw Gustavus brochures at an ELCA gathering, read the core values, and thought, “This is so me!” Her parents, who raised her in eastern Washington State, were a bit reticent. They’d never set foot in Minnesota. “But when my mom came to visit with me, she could see me on campus,” Coe says.
The weather was actually a selling point. Coe is a competitive figure skater, and ice (particularly an on-campus rink) matters, as does the Gustavus figure skating club. “Having a group of people that all share a passion for something I do has really helped with the transition,” she says. Other things that matter: the ability to study music and science, and science with faith. “Here I get to think in the classroom, how does this relate to being a spiritual person? I can grow in all the areas that are important to me.”
And her family in Washington state? “It’s been hard to be away from them,” she says. But her boyfriend’s cousin is her roommate, and his grandparents are Minnesotan. She met that boyfriend at that same ELCA gathering she met Gustavus. In many ways, family and church surround her here, she says. “Minnesota is the Land of Lutherans.”
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin
WINONA, Minn. — Praise!, A. Eric Heukeshoven’s sixth and final composition for the Faith Partners Composer-in-Residence program, has been selected as a showcase work by Avid/Sibelius at the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) annual exhibition in Anaheim, Calif. The NAMM Show runs from Jan. 19–22 and gathers 100,000 members of the music product industry from around the world to preview new products from every category of music making.
Avid/Sibelius chose Praise! based on its creative use of score layout and formatting. Heukeshoven’s music will be used for demonstration purposes in the Avid/Sibelius exhibit area during the four-day show. Sibelius 8.5 is the latest generation of the world’s best-selling music notation software used by composers, arrangers, publishers, educators, and students worldwide.
Heukeshoven is a faculty member in the Saint Mary’s University Department of Music. More information about the NAMM show is available at: www.namm.org.
Ericka Huggins, a human rights activist, poet, educator, Black Panther leader, and former political prisoner, will deliver a Martin Luther King Jr. Day lecture at St. Olaf College titled The Thread Running Through History.
The lecture, which will be streamed and archived online, will begin at 3:30 p.m. on January 16 in the Sun Ballroom in Buntrock Commons. It is free and open to the public, and refreshments will be served.
In her lecture, Huggins will explore the weaving of the threads of systemic inequity history in the tapestry of U.S. culture, the relevance of these threads in the present, and the impact of this interweaving on future generations.
A professor of sociology and African American studies in the Peralta Community College District, Huggins has lectured throughout the United States and internationally for more than three decades. She has devoted her life to the equality of all — beyond the boundaries of age, culture, class, gender, sexual orientation, or ability.
Huggins spent 14 years as a leader of the Black Panther Party (the longest of any woman in leadership), including eight years as director of the party’s Oakland Community School. During that time, she became both the first black person and the first woman appointed to the Alameda County Board of Education.
A lifelong writer and poet, Huggins published Insights and Poems, a book of poetry she co-authored with Huey P. Newton, in 1974. Her poetry and writings have appeared in numerous magazines and books.
“I believe as a teacher I must be a student; as a student I must be a teacher,” Huggins says on her website. “I write poetry. I read to hone my critical thinking skills. I believe that we learn best by engaging one another as we serve the world.”