Recent News from Campuses
Ole and Lucy Flaat Awards were presented to faculty and staff at the State of the College event Aug. 20.
The Ole and Lucy Flaat Distinguished Teaching Award was presented to Dr. Jennifer DeJong, a 1994 graduate. DeJong returned to her alma mater in 2002 and is associate professor of nursing. Her award stated she has a unique ability to organize and synthesize difficult course material in a concise and meaningful way. She includes a variety of effective teaching tools that facilitate integrative learning such as drawing, performing, and role playing, using humor and dancing. Her students praise her passion and ability to make learning fun and meaningful.
The Ole and Lucy Flaat Distinguished Scholarship Award was presented to Dr. Richard Gilmore, chair and professor of philosophy. He joined the faculty in 1993. Gilmore has maintained a consistent record of scholarship resulting in four published books, more than 20 published articles and book chapters, and many conference presentations. His books and essays are used as central content for courses and his oft-cited, widely read book “Doing Philosophy at the Movies,” have influenced the field of philosophy. Students describe him as a “mentor and an inspiration.”
The Ole and Lucy Flaat Distinguished Service Award was presented to Rachel Bergeson. A 2005 graduate, Bergeson joined the athletic department in 2006. She has been a student, coach, administrator and now director of athletics. She has lived her entire life in the Concordia community because of her family ties and is a Cobber to the core. Bergeson is described as thoughtful, articulate and collaborative. She is steadfast in her dedication to the college, the coaching staff, Cobber student-athletes and the community.
The Ole and Lucy Flaat Inclusive Excellence Award was presented to Heidi Rogers. Rogers, a 2006 graduate, joined the Residence Life staff in 2008 and later served as an academic counselor. Her role working directly with students from a wide variety of backgrounds, has equipped her with firsthand accounts of the challenges and successes of Concordia’s most diverse students. She has been a part of three initiatives that have helped strengthen Concordia and advance diversity and inclusion on campus. Rogers is a consultant, cheerleader, advocate and campus partner to students and colleagues.
The Flaat awards, conferred by Concordia’s Board of Regents, were endowed by Ole and Lucy Flaat, lifelong farmers in the Red River Valley.
For many adults, retirement planning means making sure there’s enough money saved to stop working.
In reality, retirement is a stage of life that requires planning beyond financial concerns. A series of workshops through Concordia Continuing Studies is focused on this aspect of retirement.
The Transitions Retirement Series is designed for the soon-to-be and newly retired, whether you’re in your 50s, 60s or 70s. The purpose is to encourage conversations about how to make the most of those retirement years.
“Too many people make plans to end working but don’t spend enough time talking about how they’re going to live when they’re done,” says Dr. Laurie Dahley, a Concordia faculty member who is coordinating the series. “We want people to be intentional about how they’re going to spend those years.”
Indeed, the average U.S. life expectancy increased from 68 years in 1950 to 78.6 years in 2017, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Roughly 44 million people in the U.S. are now 65 years or older. By 2050, the Census Bureau expects that figure to double as the largest generation in American history lives longer than any before it.
The Transitions series starts in September and is held monthly. Participants can attend a session separately or all of them as a series. Discussion topics include:
· Intro: “Finding Joy, Purpose and Meaning in Retirement” (September)
· “Redefining Our Purpose” (October)
· “Conversations That Matter” (November)
· “The Spirituality of Aging: Honoring the Wonder and Fragility of Life” (December)
· “Food for Thought: Nourishing Your Body Through a New Life Stage” (January)
· “Finding or Reigniting Our Passions” (February)
· “Putting Our Wisdom Into Service: Community Service and Engagement” (March)
· “Decluttering: Who Am I Saving This For?” (April)
The Transitions series will emphasize that retirement is a time of adjustment and change, Dahley says. Participants will discuss, explore, learn, and plan. They’ll also be encouraged to have intentional conversations with their partners, family members, and friends, which can help soon-to-be-retirees “transition” into a new reality.
These conversations are important because they remove ambiguity and uncertainty. For example, many people dream of traveling during their retirement years.
“But what does ‘travel’ mean?” Dahley says. “Does that mean spending winters in Florida? Flying to Paris? Visiting the kids? Exploring the Boundary Waters? If you don’t clarify what you mean, there will be disappointments.”
Retirement is a milestone that should be anticipated with joy and excitement – and perhaps even a bit of nervousness. But with good planning and an open spirit, this stage can be full of growth and purpose.
“We want people to explore what life looks like when it’s not controlled by pay or a work schedule,” Dahley says. “We want it to be meaningful.”
For more details about the sessions and to register, visit Concordia Continuing Studies.planning-to-find-purpose-in-retirement
At this year’s Saint Mary’s University Hendrickson Forum, held April 16 during Holy Week, keynote speaker Cokie Roberts appropriately recognized the Blessed Mother for her strength.
A sold out crowd of nearly 300 attended Roberts’ presentation at the annual forum on Saint Mary’s Twin Cities Campus, during which Brad Hewitt, retired CEO of Thrivent Financial, also received the 2019 Hendrickson Medal for Ethical Leadership.
In her keynote, “Weaving the Social Safety Net at Home and Around the World,” Roberts, a New York Times best-selling author and renowned journalist and political commentator, explained that “There has been a strong social responsibility fabric running throughout history, primarily exercised by women.”
“That’s what the women in the foundation of our country did,” she added. “They looked around them. They saw what was happening. They saw the needs and strove to fill them.”
As Roberts has written six New York Times best-sellers, most dealing with the roles of women in U.S. history, she ought to know. “I came to write these books because histories that leave out half of the human race aren’t accurate,” she said.
One lifelong inspiration for Roberts was her mother, who served 18 years in Congress before retiring and serving as ambassador to the Vatican. “She was an enormous influence in my life and remarkable human being in so many ways,” Roberts said, listing another major influence, the nuns from the Society of the Sacred Heart. “They took girls seriously in the 1950s. That was radical,” Roberts said. “They raised us to be anything we wanted to be.”
In the continuum of religious women doing what needed to be done, Roberts mentioned the Ursulines who came to her home town of New Orleans in 1727 to open hospitals for the colonists but looked around at other needs and soon established schools for Native Americans and African Americans.
In 1810, Elizabeth Ann Seton, started what became the highly successful parochial school system in this country — a feat that often gets her one short sentence in history books.
She detailed Sister Francis Xavier Cabrini, Sister Katharine Drexel and others, women canonized for being ahead of their time “to bring those on margins into the mainstream and not take no for an answer.”
And, in examining Minnesota history, she credited the woman who founded Mayo Clinic.
The celebrated hospital, she argued, would not exist were it not for Sister Mary Alfred Moes. “I know, of course, all about the Mayo Brothers and their remarkable father, but had it not been for a pushy nun, who wouldn’t take no for an answer, Saint Mary’s hospital wouldn’t have been built and Mayo Clinic wouldn’t exist,” Roberts said. Sister Mary Alfred Moes refused to accept that Rochester was too small a town to support a hospital and she raised the money herself.
But, Roberts said, strong women aren’t just Catholic religious women. She detailed the stories of Isabella Graham, Elizabeth Hamilton, and Martha Ripley, to name a few.
Amidst all of these notable women who worked, despite tremendous hardship, adversity, and often ridicule, for the betterment of society, Roberts singled out a male: Saint John Baptist de La Salle, the founder of the Brothers of the Christian Schools — of which Saint Mary’s is affiliated.
“He was a man definitely before either his time, or perhaps more accurately, a man who recognized the sign of the time,” Roberts said. “His remarkable vision about education for the poor, for delinquents, is still so incredibly relevant today … everything I’ve learned about Saint Mary’s underlines that.
“It’s clear that the Lasallian principles are still the guiding force behind this very important institution,” she furthered. “Faith and the presence of God, quality education, and respect for all persons, inclusive community, and concern for the poor and social justice. Those principles need influence in our country today.”
Roberts shared insights into other innovative humanitarian efforts and programs in both the private sector and U.S. government.
An active volunteer and advocate for Save the Children, she detailed her work with this organization, which provides relief to children in times of distress. “War is still stunting the lives of children,” she said, providing the estimation that in 2018, 60.5 million people displaced from their homes by war, half of them under age of 18. She said that one person in this world is displaced every 2 seconds.
She said there are many programs which are making great strides to help global issues. She detailed the PEPFAR program, started by George W. Bush that is the biggest program for global health, providing anti-viral medications to 14.6 million people.
Circling back to education, Roberts said it is the best way to break the cycle of poverty. “It changes not only their lives but it changes the life of a country and we have lot of data to support that,” she said. “That remarkably is what Saint John Baptist de La Salle recognized 300 years ago and is still true today. I am constantly blown away by kids’ ability and desire to learn, even in extremely difficult conditions. We must try as hard as possible to provide education.”
Roberts encouraged attendees to do what they can do, just like the women throughout history. “To say that it’s too big a problem is just a copout,” she said. “I hope the young people coming out of this great institution, no matter what their expertise, emerge awakened, nurtured, and empowered to lead ethical lives of service and leadership.”
Following Cokie’s remarks, Mary Lahammar, anchor, reporter and producer of Almanac, joined her on stage to moderate the question-and-answer portion of the program before Roberts met with 20 students for a private and inspiring Q&A.
Cheaper, more sustainable dorm decor: Twin Cities colleges set up free stores and swaps | Star Tribune | September 17, 2019
Summer Research 2019: Boundaries of Sound, Dystopian Literature, Instagram Anxiety and Dakota Land Before St. Thomas
Fulbright award begins next chapter for former Topeka High football star Alec Beatty | The Hutchinson News | September 16, 2019
In recognition of Constitution Day on Tuesday, September 17, the Gustavus Public Deliberation and Dialogue program will be holding a discussion about the U.S. Census entitled Census 2020: How We Can Shape the Future. This discussion will take place at 7 p.m in the Heritage Room.
Constitution Day was established in 1956 with the hopes of encouraging more Americans to learn about the Constitution. Tomorrow, 13 campuses across Minnesota and Iowa participate in the Constitution Day Dialogue Initiative put on by Campus Compact, a national coalition of colleges and universities whose goal is to educate students to become active citizens.
Census 2020: How We Can Shape the Future is a facilitated conversation put on by students involved in the Public Deliberation and Dialogue program. The event provides an opportunity for students to dig deeper into a topic that is critical to our democracy. This dialogue will allow students to learn more about the Census, ask questions, and listen to others’ perspectives.
“Some of the best learning at a liberal arts institution involves carefully considering perspectives different from our own. Doing so shapes our own understanding of ourselves and what we believe,” said Dr. Pamela Conners, chair of the Department of Communication Studies.
With social justice and ethics in mind, the Public Deliberation and Dialogue program works to engage students in meaningful conversation in a variety of communities. These students research, develop, and facilitate communication regarding pressing issues to serve as a campus and local resource.
Public Deliberation and Dialogue fellow Kyra Bowar said, “As a facilitator, I enjoy providing participants with a space where they are free to explore their own values and leave a discussion feeling more informed about these daunting issues.”
“With the Public Deliberation and Dialogue Program, we’re creating opportunities for students to grow more confident in using their voice for civic purposes and more equipped to talk about, across, and with our differences,” Conners said.
All are welcome to join the discussion of the Census on Tuesday, September 17 in the Heritage Room at 7 p.m.
This event is sponsored by the Gustavus Public Deliberation and Dialogue Program and the Dean of Students Office.
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin
The Carleton College Class of 2023's first moments on campus: moving into the residence halls, being welcomed to the community by Carleton President Steven G. Poskanzer and Carleton Student Association President Anesu Masakura '20, and the traditional Frisbee toss on the Bald Spot.