Recent News from Campuses

Emmy-winning composer shares skills with students

St. Kate's Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 2:14pm
Silas Hite, who has written music for commercials, films and video games, is artist-in-residence through Oct. 10. More »

Catholic theologian to speak at SJU about interfaith encounters in India

Bradley Malkovsky, associate professor of comparative religion at the University of Notre Dame, will present "God's Other Children: Personal Encounters with Faith, Love, and Holiness in Sacred India" at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28 at SJU.

Acclaimed poet Brian Turner to appear in conjunction with Weitz Center Exhibit, “Always Lost: A Meditation on War"

Carleton College Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 11:49am

In conjunction with the national touring humanities exhibit, "Always Lost: A Meditation on War," on display through October 24 in the Carleton College Weitz Center for Creativity, renowned war poet Brian Turner will appear on Tuesday, Oct. 21 at 7:30 p.m. in the Weitz Center Room 236. The recipient of numerous literary honors, Turner's poetry appears in the award-winning volumes "Here, Bullet" (2005) and "Phantom Noise" (2010), and his memoir "My Life as a Foreign Country" (2014) has just been published by W.W. Norton. His work has been featured on National Public Radio, The New York Times and in The New Yorker.

Carleton Hosts Screening of Acclaimed Conservation Film Chronicling the Extinction of the Passenger Pigeon

Carleton College Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 11:44am

In commemoration of the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon over a century ago, Carleton College will present a special screening of the acclaimed film, “From Billions to None: Passenger Pigeon’s Flight to Extinction,” on Monday, Oct. 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the Boliou Hall Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public.

Carleton presents Jazz All-Stars, “JazzAx”

Carleton College Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 11:42am

Jazz all-stars “JazzAx” will appear Sunday, Oct. 12 at 3 p.m. in the Carleton College Concert Hall. Featuring Dr. David Milne (Alto Sax), Mike Walk (Alto Sax), Pete Whitman (Tenor Sax) and Greg Keel (Bari Sax)—along with jazz pianist Laura Caviani—the group will perform works by such jazz pianists as Ellington, Monk, Williams, and Brubeck, along with a Caviani original inspired by Basie.

Visual artist and alumna Christina Seely presents “Changing Time: an Artistic Inquiry into Climate Change”

Carleton College Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 11:35am

In conjunction with the Carleton College art exhibit “Marking Time,” which addresses the impact of climate change through photography and other new media, featured artist Christina Seely ’98 will make a campus appearance to discuss her work and muse upon climate change from her perspective as an expeditionary artist. Seely will present “Changing Time: an Artistic Inquiry into Climate Change” on Tuesday, Oct. 14 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Weitz Center for Creativity Cinema. This event is free and open to the public.

Adult learners to commence on October 12

Saint Mary's University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 10:39am
MINNEAPOLIS — More than 270 students will graduate from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota and its Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs on Sunday, Oct. 12 during Commencement Convocation. Three separate ceremonies will be held, at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 3:30 p.m., on the university’s Twin Cities Campus. The ceremonies, in the Saint Mary’s [&hellip

Saint Mary’s to host first career fair, prep workshops

Saint Mary's University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 9:43am
The first Saint Mary’s University career fair will be held 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 30, in the Toner Student Center on the Winona campus. All students and alumni of Saint Mary’s are invited to check out local and regional businesses and organizations, network with potential employers and find out what they are looking [&hellip

Rouault’s ‘Seeing Christ in the Darkness’ is next Saint Mary’s show Oct. 16-Nov. 16

Saint Mary's University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 9:37am
WINONA, Minn. — “Seeing Christ in the Darkness,” a collection of the world-class prints of one of the most important printmakers of the 20th century, Georges Rouault, will be on display Oct. 16 through Nov. 16 at Saint Mary’s University. Rouault (1871-1958) was a lifelong Roman Catholic, but the Church resisted the darkness of his [&hellip

PR/Business Club visits alumni at MPR, Shop HQ

Saint Mary's University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 8:00am
Saint Mary’s alumni hosted members of the Public Relations/Business Club Sept. 25 at ShopHQ and Minnesota Public Radio. Katelyn Branstrom ’09, Erin Donnelly ’05, and Adam Beck ’07 gave a tour of ShopHQ’s studios ​and offices, and offered students insights to their jobs and career advice. Lindsay Dickson ’08 and Matt Perkins ’06 gave students [&hellip

Concordia Expands Graduate Offerings with Addition of MS in Orthotics & Prosthetics

Concordia University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 7:47am

Concordia University, St. Paul, through a collaborative partnership with Century College, is offering a new Master of Science in Orthotics and Prosthetics (MSOP) with an initial start date of Oct. 27, 2014.

Changes in requirements for orthotics and prosthetics professionals by the National Commission on Orthotic and Prosthetic Education (NCOPE) prompted Concordia and Century to develop this new program. The MSOP degree is now the standard educational requirement for students seeking careers as orthotists and prosthetists.

This program involves the study of the evaluation, fabrication, and custom fitting of artificial limbs and orthopedic braces. Students will be trained on the assessment, treatment plan development, implementation, follow-up, and practice management of orthoses and prostheses.

Concordia also partners with Century College to offer a Bachelor of Science in Orthotics and Prosthetics (BSOP), with the coursework serving as a prerequisite for the MSOP.

“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Century College and their orthotics and prosthetics program for the delivery of this degree,” said Kinesiology and Health Sciences Assistant Professor Katie Fischer. “The graduates of this degree will receive the educational preparation to become leaders within the orthotics and prosthetics field especially as healthcare needs continue to change.”

The 33-credit MSOP program is offered primarily online with several required on-campus intensives for students on Century College’s campus.

Students Receive Animated Opportunities in Digital Media Arts

Hamline University Campus News - Tue, 10/07/2014 - 12:00am
Hollywood animator teaches Digital Media Arts students the art of animation, from traditional hand-drawn and stop motion to pixilation techniques.

Alumni and Students Reflect on The Nobel Conference

Gustavus Campus News - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 3:58pm

The Nobel Conference gives Gustavus Adolphus College students unique access to some of the most renowned scientists in the world. While all Gustavus students have the luxury of attending the Conference during their four years, a select handful of students get the opportunity to serve as student hosts for one of the speakers while they are on campus. We recently asked several current students and alumni their impressions of The Nobel Conference and how it has impacted their lives. Here are their responses:

Leah Rodmyre ’14

“The Nobel Conference is an important time of year for students, faculty, and the entire Gustavus community. It proposes questions about our universe that address science and society in ways that multiple disciplines can appreciate. As a student, this is the ultimate liberal arts experience! We are lucky enough to have the opportunity to bask in the knowledge of some of the greatest researchers of our time. In 2011, I hosted Aniruddh Patel at Nobel 47, The Brain and Being Human. He spoke about how the brain processes music and language and how these interactions affect the brain. As a psychological science major and music minor, it was such an honor to host such an esteemed guest of the college, especially one that was so educated in my two fields of study. Being a student host allowed me to make my own contributions to the Nobel Conference and truly feel connected to one of the most notable yearly events on campus.”
-Leah Rodmyre ’14

Jean-Paul Noel ‘12

“The great thing about the Nobel Conference, is that it really is one of the very few avenues where scientists and lay people can talk to one another. I believe this is incredibly valuable for both the lay-person (as they get to hear from experts), but also for the scientist (as the lay person does not share the mountains and mountains of assumptions that build up over the course of your scientific training). For me in particular, the Nobel Conference was a great way of getting to know big names in your field of study. It is a good way for students to develop skills that will be useful in future encounters outside of Gustavus in either the academic or professional world.”
-Jean-Paul Noel ’12

Maja Johnson ‘13

“Nobel is one of my favorite events at Gustavus. I found it so motivating to see a community come together to celebrate knowledge and its pursuit. As a science major, I spent so much time learning formulas, processes, and mechanisms and it was very gratifying to see my studies come to life and captivate me in a new and exciting way. I also loved that although we learned about a discipline in itself we also were engaged to think deeper and examine why these topics are important and how they may affect us as a society. Nobel continually reminded me of how far we have come in scientific advancement, but more importantly what is left to be explored and the questions that still remain. These possibilities affirmed why I chose to pursue a degree and career in science. I had the opportunity to be a host my junior year for the conference titled “The Brain and Being Human”. This was my favorite conference in my four years at Gustavus because of the variety of expertise that was invited and the intersections that were made in the disciplines of biology, philosophy, and ethics. It was wonderful to hear all the speakers during their presentations but even more impactful to discuss research through one-on-one conversation. I was able to learn about these individuals own journeys into their respective fields and why they were so passionate about their work.  It was also an honor to represent Gustavus and share the history of a place that means so much me and many others.”
-Maja Johnson ’13

Helen Wauck ‘14

“I was a student host at the Fall 2013 Nobel Conference, The Universe at its Limits. This was one of the coolest opportunities I had in college; I wasn’t a Physics major, and yet I got to meet a bunch of famous, very talented physicists and get to know them as people. I also thought it was a great chance to meet other students and professors from physics, with whom I ordinarily have limited contact even though they work in the same building as me. This particular Nobel Conference was my favorite thus far because despite the seeming inaccessibility of the topics being discussed (the shape of the universe, how the universe began, etc), the invited speakers did a fantastic job of making everything they talked about accessible to a lay audience. In fact, it was the most accessible conference I’ve been to. Not only was it accessible, but they got the audience excited about what they were talking about and delved into the philosophical aspects of their work quite a bit, especially at the Q and A sessions. It was fascinating to see these brilliant people having heated debates about philosophy and religion in the context of a physics conference, and it was a really great example of how different fields of study intersect with each other and are hard to separate. It brought home the importance of interdisciplinary work that Gustavus, as a liberal arts institution, always tries to emphasize, and for that alone I think it was an incredibly valuable experience.”
-Helen Wauck ’14

Jenna Chapman ’12

“The Nobel Conference my senior year was about Neuroscience, and having the opportunity to interact with academic professionals in my field of study was not only fascinating on a personal interest level, but was extremely informative about the current state of academia and the requirements and challenges I would potentially face in graduate school. Participating in the Conference as a student host certainly had an impact on my decision to go to grad school, and to pursue a Master’s degree before going into further study.”
-Jenna Chapman ’12

 

Emilie Benson ’16

The Nobel Conference is a great way to learn more about the emerging science all around us. Science is always evolving and we are always finding more valuable information to help us expand our viewpoint as well as connect all of the different aspects together. The Nobel Conference, specifically being a student host, has allowed me to become more involved and interested in the science community that I am a small part of. It has increased my enthusiasm for new research and expanded my knowledge of what is possible. The conference makes the cutting edge science accessible to all audiences and I was grateful to find out how easy it was to interact with the speakers.
-Emilie Benson ’16

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Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
mthomas@gustavus.edu
507-933-7510

MAOL event: Nelson Mandela and the Art of Ethical Leading

St. Kate's Campus News - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 12:38pm
On November 17, theologian and author Charles Villa-Vicencio will address the role of leadership in rebuilding fragmented societies. More »

September at Gustavus In Pictures

Gustavus Campus News - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 11:19am

September was a busy month at Gustavus Adolphus College as events included Freshmen Move-in Day, Fair Trade Fashion Show, Involvement Fair, Reading in Common Lecture, Nobel Conference Preview Event, Special Olympics Flag Football, Homecoming Window Painting, and a new exhibit in the Hillstrom Museum of Art. You can relive all of these September moments by watching the following video slideshow, produced by sophomore Caroline Moynihan ’17.

 

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Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
mthomas@gustavus.edu
507-933-7510

Convocation proposes using the power of data analysis to bring about positive change in the world

Carleton College Campus News - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 9:10am

Carleton College’s weekly convocation, entitled “Using Data for the Greater Good,” will be presented by data scientist Jake Porway on Friday, Oct. 10 at 10:50 a.m. in the Skinner Memorial Chapel. Porway’s presentation proposes using the power of data analysis to bring about positive change in the world. This event is free and open to the public. Convocations are also recorded and archived online at go.carleton.edu/convo/.

Carleton presents the Lake Wobegon Brass Band in concert

Carleton College Campus News - Mon, 10/06/2014 - 9:07am

Carleton College is pleased to present a public performance by the popular Lake Wobegon Brass Band on Friday, Oct. 10 at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall. The Lake Wobegon Brass Band opens its 23rd season at Carleton, with an impressive performance of brass and organ music. This event is free and open to the public.

Gustavus Inaugurates Rebecca M. Bergman as its 17th President

Gustavus Campus News - Fri, 10/03/2014 - 5:29pm

President Bergman after being officially introduced as the 17th President of Gustavus Adolphus College (Photo by Nate Long ’16).

Gustavus faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends, the Board of Trustees, delegates from peer institutions of higher education, and several special guests, including Governor Mark Dayton and U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, filled Christ Chapel on Friday afternoon as Gustavus officially inaugurated Rebecca M. Bergman as the College’s 17th President.

Governor Dayton spoke highly about the education that Gustavus students receive and then proclaimed Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, as “Rebecca M. Bergman Day” in the State of Minnesota. Senator Klobuchar also praised Gustavus for its academic excellence, shared with the audience that seven Gustavus graduates have worked in her office, and spoke about what it means to be the first woman to hold a certain job.

President Bergman’s Inaugural Address was titled “Celebrating the Value of Community”.

“And so, with great fanfare, we start a new chapter of Gustavus history,” Bergman stated near the beginning of her address. “We stand on a strong foundation and a history of great achievements, and, at the same time, we look forward with determination and renewed commitment to our mission and our purpose as an institution of higher learning.”

President Bergman then went on to share her vision of what a healthy community looks like and why community is so important at Gustavus.

“A healthy community is a group of people who have a deep and abiding commitment to each other, who communicate with authenticity, who celebrate together, who mourn together, who support and care for each other, who labor together, and who commit to a shared purpose,” she said. “So here is the bottom line – organizations with a strong sense of community are high energy organizations, and that energy is channeled toward greatness. They drive for achievement of organizational goals. They are innovative and are always trying something new. They set high standards of excellence in performance. They have a can-do attitude. They are willing to enter into constructive debate and are always looking to stay on the leading edge. They exude optimism and are resilient when things go wrong. They embrace change and boldly go where no one has ever gone before.”

After addressing several challenges facing higher education today, Bergman closed by saying, “I commit to tackling these challenges with you, to encourage and support innovation in every aspect of our work and every corner of our organization, to honor our past and push us toward an even better future, to listen to your ideas and look for creative solutions, to find ways to open up new possibilities, to foster a dynamic unity here that embraces diversity and encourages constructive debate, to inspire new levels of excellence in everything we do. But most of all, I promise that every day I will strive to commit my gifts to the collective work of this great learning community, to engage with all those who care about the Gustavus mission to make this organization a model for the future of the liberal arts.”

You can read the entire text of President Bergman’s Inaugural Address here.

You can watch an archived video of the entire Inauguration Ceremony by accessing the Gustavus Live Streaming Portal.

You can view pictures from the Inauguration Ceremony by accessing the Gustavus Flickr page.

Read the Mankato Free Press article about Inauguration day.

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Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
mthomas@gustavus.edu
507-933-7510

Read President Bergman’s Inaugural Address

Gustavus Campus News - Fri, 10/03/2014 - 4:00pm

President Rebecca M. Bergman

Gustavus Adolphus College inaugurated Rebecca M. Bergman as its 17th President on Friday, Oct. 3 in Christ Chapel. The ceremony included remarks by Governor Mark Dayton, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, and President Bergman’s father, the Rev. Dr. Harold Weiss, among others.

Here is the full text of President Bergman’s Inaugural Address:

I am deeply moved by this moment. I stand here honored by the trust you have placed in me, inspired by the charge of this office, and grateful for your support and confidence. Thank you for the public affirmation of the work we are setting out to do together in support of the mission of Gustavus Adolphus College and for your collective commitment to higher education. I want to thank our trustees and former trustees, students, faculty, administrators, staff, alumni, retirees, parents, and friends of Gustavus who have helped and who will continue to help shape this institution. I particularly want to thank my four predecessors who are here today – I am grateful for the enthusiastic support you have given to me, and, more importantly, for what you have given to Gustavus. I am grateful to the members and leaders of the community of St. Peter, as well as regional and state leaders who are here today. I am touched by the greetings from our Chair of the Board, George Hicks, our honorable Minnesota governor, Mark Dayton, Rev. Heather Wigdahl, Senator Amy Klobuchar, and my father, the Rev. Harold Weiss. To all the delegates, including a friend from my own alma mater, Princeton University, as well as all the other special guests gathered here today, thank you for being here. To my husband, my children, and all the family members here with me today, thank you for the generous love and support you have given me as I have embarked on this new journey.

And so, with great fanfare, we start a new chapter of Gustavus history. We stand on a strong foundation and a history of great achievements, and, at the same time, we look forward with determination and renewed commitment to our mission and our purpose as an institution of higher learning. The words of The Rev. Dr. Edgar Carlson, Gustavus’s 9th President, struck me when I read his introduction to A Centennial History of the College. I believe his words are as appropriate today as they were over 50 years ago. He said, “A College is both what it has been and what it hopes to be. It is fruit and seed. It is the product of the planting and watering of other generations – their faith and dedication, their effort and insight, their hopes and dreams; and it is the potential of greater fruitfulness, larger service, and more fateful assignments.”

Our theme for the inauguration festivities is “Celebrating Community.” This was quite deliberately chosen, as I have a fundamental belief in the wisdom, the joy, and the creative power inherent in a true community. The theme has come to life in a symbol of community that you will see on your program that depicts a circle of people holding hands. In fact, note that their hands are not only connected – their hands are raised in celebration, and they stand, united, on the seal of the College. What a wonderful symbol of community!

So, allow me to expand a bit today on this concept of community. A community is generally defined as a social unit that shares common values. But it is much more than a casual collection of individuals. A healthy community is a group of people who have a deep and abiding commitment to each other, who communicate with authenticity, who celebrate together, who mourn together, who support and care for each other, who labor together, and who commit to a shared purpose. Suzanne Goldsmith, in a book on community service volunteers, says, “[Communities] are built of people who feel they are part of something that is bigger than themselves: a shared goal or enterprise, like righting a wrong, or building a road, or raising children, or living honorably, or worshipping a god. To build community requires only the ability to see value in others: to look at them and see a potential partner in one’s enterprise.”

But what are the factors that help build an effective community? David McMillan is well known for his theory of community psychology in which he emphasizes four pillars that work together to create a sense of community: spirit, trust, trade, and art.

First he emphasizes the importance of spirit – a spirit of belonging together, of being connected. In a community with spirit, members feel safe to speak the truth and to be themselves. People feel accepted by others. It is interesting that McMillan refers to this important factor in building a sense of community as “spirit”. It is well known to everyone associated with Gustavus that this community constantly refers to the “Gustie Spirit”. When asked, though, people have a hard time explaining exactly what is “Gustie Spirit.” While it seems difficult to adequately describe what it really is, everyone agrees that it is a unique part of the Gustavus experience, and it is almost palpable when a group of Gusties get together. Is it possible that this spirit is a manifestation of our sense of community? I would venture to say that it is. It reflects a sense of belonging, of being connected, of a genuine caring attitude toward fellow members of the Gustavus community.

McMillan’s second pillar in building a sense of community is trust. Members of an effective community must know what they can expect from each other. Roles and behavioral norms of the members must be well understood. A sense of order is established in which authority is understood and practiced in a way that reinforces trust because they follow established principles. The members can influence the community, and, in turn, the community can influence the members. Trust is an essential element of a cohesive community.

McMillan calls his third pillar “trade”, and by this he means that members find ways that they can benefit one another and the community as a whole. While people initially look for similarities when joining a community, an effective community appreciates differences and looks for the mutual benefits that are derived from living in community. Members leverage their individual talents and gifts, and they regularly and freely help each other. Once community members understand what they have in common and feel safe with each other, it is possible to share suggestions, criticisms, and differences of opinion. In this way, community members grow and learn from each other.

In today’s reading from 1 Corinthians, Paul tells us that the Holy Spirit gives us a diversity of gifts for the common good. He reminds us that all gifts – such as wisdom, knowledge, faith, teaching, and discernment – are received from the Holy Spirit. While individuals receive these gifts, they serve the common good. That is, the real purpose of these diverse gifts given to individuals is to serve the community as a whole. Hear again the initial verses of our reading: “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” In this community called Gustavus, we each bring our gifts to the table and share them for the betterment of the institution, for the benefit of all who are associated with this College.

McMillan closes out his model for building a sense of community with a fourth factor that he calls, “art”. Art is the symbolic representation of shared experiences, particularly of dramatic shared experiences, that become part of a community’s story and part of the community’s memory. Through art, our values of excellence, community, justice, service and faith come alive and have meaning. Academic traditions, such as this investiture service or commencement ceremonies, music traditions such as Christmas in Christ Chapel, the various sculptures found around campus, – all these are examples of how this community celebrates its identity, its culture, and its spirit. Spirit, trust, trade, and art – the four pillars that give us a strong sense of community.

I have said often in my first weeks here that Gustavus is a special place. It is a community that has a strong and vibrant spirit; a place that values trust and a sense of belonging. Gustavus encourages its people to offer their diverse gifts for the common good. This is a place where shared experiences are felt deeply and become part of our collective story. We are blessed that “community” is one of our core values and is a part of the Gustavus culture.

But, you might ask, for what purpose do we build a strong and cohesive community? Why is it important that members of a community feel connected and have common values? All this talk about community for the last three days…what is the point, anyway? Should we just spontaneously break into a chorus or two of kum ba yah, and then go on our merry way?

So here is the bottom line – organizations with a strong sense of community are high energy organizations, and that energy is channeled toward greatness. They drive for achievement of organizational goals. They are innovative and are always trying something new. They set high standards of excellence in performance. They have a can-do attitude. They are willing to enter into constructive debate and are always looking to stay on the leading edge. They exude optimism and are resilient when things go wrong. They embrace change and boldly go where no one has ever gone before.

This is what matters.

We are all familiar with the challenges facing higher education today – the high cost of a baccalaureate degree, the mounting debt our students accumulate by the time they finish their education, the rapidly changing demographics of our nation, growing skepticism about the value of a liberal arts education, how to best leverage technology, the challenge of institutionalizing learning outcomes-assessment, and the question of how to measure the return on an education, to name a few.

We need innovative solutions to these challenges. We need bold people and bold approaches and we need the courage to implement changes. I believe Gustavus can be a leader in this effort.

Let us not forget that it is the students who are at the center of our mission. These young men and women are our future. They are our future leaders. They will become teachers, researchers, doctors, nurses, engineers, lawyers, musicians, actors, political leaders, entrepreneurs, or CEO’s. We need to prepare them for the challenges of the world they will enter when they graduate. We need to continually re-shape our curriculum to be relevant and more outcomes-based. We need to continue to emphasize the skills that employers are clamoring for – critical thinking, problem solving, strategic mindset, communication skills, and the ability to lead projects and people. We need to help students stay balanced and develop resilience in a world with increasing demands, growing complexity, and rapid change. We need to figure out how we might change the financial model of higher education to improve affordability and access.

And, how does this president plan to help in this process? I commit to tackling these challenges with you, to encourage and support innovation in every aspect of our work and every corner of our organization, to honor our past and push us toward a even better future, to listen to your ideas and look for creative solutions, to find ways to open up new possibilities, to foster a dynamic unity here that embraces diversity and encourages constructive debate, to inspire new levels of excellence in everything we do. But most of all, I promise that every day I will strive to commit my gifts to the collective work of this great learning community, to engage with all those who care about the Gustavus mission to make this organization a model for the future of the liberal arts.

 

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Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas
mthomas@gustavus.edu
507-933-7510

Tommie Traditions: School Spirit

University of St. Thomas Campus News - Fri, 10/03/2014 - 3:41pm

With the fall sports seasons underway, there are events for students, family and alumni to enjoy before games all throughout the fall. While teams’ lineups may change every year, certain traditions always return for St. Thomas fans to enjoy. 

Caruso’s Crew

You’ll see them at every home football game at St. Thomas. As the crowd roars, they charge into O’Shaughnessy Stadium chanting and singing, primed and ready for Saturday’s game. No, I’m not talking about St. Thomas football players, but rather the team’s biggest fans, a group of seminarians known as Caruso’s Crew.

After taking over the St. Thomas football program in 2008, coach Glenn Caruso approached the men of St. John Vianney undergraduate seminary and asked if they’d be willing to organize a group to regularly attend home football games and lead the crowd in supporting the Tommies. The men of SJV were happy to oblige. With the construction of the Anderson Student Center and Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex going on around O’Shaughnessy Stadium at the time, the seminarians settled on a construction crew theme for their new pep squad. 

The crew shows up to games wearing white hard hats and painted-on beards, equipped with a 6-foot cardboard hammer, saw and T-square, and clad in denim with muscle shirts and suspenders (or flannel shirts for cold-weather games). While the crew members change from year to year, the costumes are handed down after each season, so as the students come and go, it appears as though the same crew returns each fall to cheer on their St. Thomas football team. 

South Campus Tailgating

Searching for a traditional tailgating atmosphere before St. Thomas football games? Bring your lawn chairs and picnic food to the alumni tailgates on south campus before every home football game.

During the 2009 season, a few parents with sons on the football team would meet and cook out along Summit Avenue before games. It wasn’t long before they approached the university about designating a parking lot on campus for tailgating to facilitate more alumni and family involvement at football games. University administration then allocated Lot M between Loras Hall and O’Shaughnessy Science Hall for alumni and family use, and the tailgates took off. 

What started as just a few families who liked to gather along Summit Avenue before each game has grown into a full-blown tradition among alumni and the families of current players. On football Saturdays you can expect to see dozens – and oftentimes hundreds – of Tommie football fans on south campus preparing to watch their team take the field. 

Purple on the Plaza

After getting a burger and playing a round of beanbags at the alumni tailgate, stop by John P. Monahan Plaza on your way to O’Shaughnessy Stadium for Purple on the Plaza.

Cookouts on the quad before the first home game of the season and before the homecoming game always have been popular among students; however, construction of the Anderson Student Center and the Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex prevented those events from being held during the 2009 and 2010 seasons. Starting in fall 2011, after the construction of the buildings had been completed, pregame events returned to campus in the form of Purple on the Plaza. Held in the area between the two Anderson buildings, and just outside of O’Shaughnessy Stadium, Purple on the Plaza offers students, alumni and St. Thomas fans a place to enjoy the gameday atmosphere. Fans who attend Purple on the Plaza can expect to meet Tommie, the St. Thomas mascot, hear live music, see performances from both the dance team and cheer squad and – of course – get plenty of food. 

Fanamaniac

For the biggest fans of St. Thomas athletics, there’s Fanamaniac. No matter the sport and no matter the season, Fanamaniac raises school spirit before and during games.

The Fanamaniac program helps to raise student enthusiasm for St. Thomas athletics by offering everything from free T-shirts and gear during games to free meals before events. Fanamaniac also helps students attend select hockey games by offering shuttles to Saint Thomas Ice Arena in Mendota Heights.  Fanamaniac is a program of the Student Activities and Recreation board and is supported by the Undergraduate Student Government.

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