Concordia College Campus News
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
Concordia alumni, students, faculty, and staff are not strangers to the “Hymn to Concordia.” New students are welcomed to Concordia with this song at convocation and graduating seniors are sent off with it at commencement. Written in 1931 for Concordia’s 40th anniversary, the song was a collaborative effort. Herman W. Monson, choir director from 1923 to 1937 and director of the School of Music from 1923 to 1939, composed the music. Borghild Torvick, a 1931 Concordia graduate, wrote some of the lyrics as part of an assignment and later submitted them for a poetry contest. Mrs. Paul A. Rasmussen, wife of a history and political science faculty member, completed the lyrics for the second stanza. The hymn was dedicated to Helga Fjelstad, longtime matron of the school and second mother to many Cobbers.
While “Hymn to Concordia” is one of the most recognized songs of Concordia, many others have been written during the school’s history. In 1931, Monson also authored and composed “Concordia Forever,” the college’s field song, which was dedicated to Cobber athletics. “Stand Up and Cheer” and “Wherever in the World You Go” have also been staple songs for Cobber coeds. The latter song, which appeared prior to 1940, was written for alumni to honor the school. The lyrics are as follows:
Wherever in the world you go
You’ll hear just the same old song.
It’s borne on all the winds that blow,
From hearts that are brave and strong.
Oh we’ll not forget our Alma Mater
Though our college days are o’er.
We will always love our dear C. C.
As we did in days of yore.
Maroon and Gold will be the colors,
That will make our pulses throb;
Concordia to you, we will e’er be true:
Here’s hurrah to you C. C.
Songs were not the only way to show Cobber pride. The college also had a number of “college yells” for athletic competitions, the “official” one being “C-o-n, c-o-r, d-i-a, rah, rah, rah rah rah, urah, urah, Concordia.” From songs to yells to cheers, Cobber pride has been a part of the Concordia family throughout its history.
– Contributed by Lisa Sjoberg, former college archivistcobber-pride-concordia-songs-and-cheers
Rural broadband is a hot topic these days with many in rural areas not having access to high speed internet services, but Erich Hennig ’97 and his wife, Erica, have been working to change that. Together they started Zumacom, high speed wireless internet for Montezuma County and southwest Colorado.
After graduating from Concordia, Hennig moved to Boulder where he met his wife. They lived in Alaska, Northern California, Phoenix and Durango before moving to Dolores, Colo., located in Montezuma County. They discovered how poor the internet service was there and decided instead of just complaining about it, they’d do something to change it.
Hennig had 20 years of experience working in the IT field and he built their first radio tower in their backyard. They sold the extra bandwidth to their neighbors and Zumacom was born. Sites are connected to fiber or via licensed microwave backhaul and the facilities transmit signals picked up by a radio mounted on the outside of the client’s house.
“Zumacom was created to help bridge the ‘digital divide’ or the lack of modern internet service availability that is prevalent in the rural area of southwest Colorado that we call home,” he said.
Zumacom provided wireless internet to its first customer in February 2017. Since then they’ve slowly expanded the coverage area, using existing fiber-optic lines and cellphone towers. The Zumacom network currently provides service to three counties in Colorado and one resident just across the state line in Utah.
“Since its inception, we have seen massive growth and are currently helping families continue to prosper in a rural setting by providing internet service to their homes and farms that allows for telecommuting, home schooling, online college study, online livestock auctions and, of course, Netflix,” he said.
Zumacom has made a strong effort not to “oversell” its network so the Hennigs can maintain an adequate performance level for their current customers. They limit the customer count where necessary to maintain a good service level for all clients and, in some cases, have had to turn away business.
“This completely slays the business lobe of my brain, but it is a key differentiator between Zumacom and everyone else,” Hennig said. “We seek to be the provider of choice in our service area, and thus far we seem to have been successful in that effort based on feedback from our customers.”
The Hennigs work out of their home west of Dolores, where Erica runs the business and marketing side and Erich is in the field. They plan to expand Zumacom’s wireless infrastructure and the network to support as many customers as they can while they grow.
Image: The green shows Zumacom’s initial coverage area and the blue denotes where the company has expanded.bridging-the-digital-divide
As family and friends entered Memorial Auditorium for the graduation ceremony, spirits were high. The weather delivered a near-perfect day with sunshine and moderate temperatures. Those who had attended baccalaureate that morning may have been pondering the Rev. Elly McHan’s sermon on transitions and how their graduate would soon be living in liminal space – the time between what was and what is to come.
But there was still one event left for these graduates, and The Concordia Band didn’t want anyone to forget this was a festive day. Dr. Peter Haberman nearly brought the audience to its feet during the prelude as he enthusiastically conducted the band in two vibrant marches. Then they reverently played the traditional “Crown Imperial” for the graduates, faculty and staff to process.
The ceremony began with conferring an honorary degree on guest commencement speaker Colum McCann. An author, artist, educator, and social activist, McCann first came to Concordia to speak at the National Book Awards event on his book, “Let the Great World Spin.” He has since been working with Concordia as it created its collegial chapter of Narrative 4, an exchange program McCann co-founded that brings awareness and empathy to the other through storytelling. McCann’s message to students was the hope they would raise their voices to make “one small crack in the wall” that is keeping people apart.
“If we want to be listened to, we have to be listeners as well,” McCann said.
He commended Concordia for its works toward greater understanding of differences in story exchanges. “This is a campus that believes we can forge a path through the great grace of storytelling.”
After the degrees were conferred, Concordia graduate Mikaela Herberg ’19 delivered the student response. Herberg, a biology major who is planning to go to med school in the fall, said she has many things she will personally miss about Concordia then went straight to the commonality for her and her fellow graduates.
“We share the strong foundation of a liberal arts education,” she said, noting the power and potential each graduate holds.
Herberg noted how faculty had taught the graduates to question the world around them and think critically. Now as the newest alumni of the college, they will leave with the confidence that this college can still be a home.
“Concordia will always still be here and this place will always be ready to welcome you home,” she said.
Out of six applicants, Concordia had four students receive scholarships. Seniors Toby Kindem, Alexandra Rankin, Hannah Allen and McKayle Carter have received Fulbright awards.
Fulbright coordinator and professor of English Dr. Jonathan Steinwand says nationally about 20% of applicants are funded and Concordia had 66% of applicants funded.
“I’m pleased with the results and I’m proud of these Fulbrighters,” Steinwand says. “Our World Language programs in particular deserve a lot of credit.”
Kindem, a K-12 German education major, was awarded an English Teaching Award to Germany and will be going to Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony). He has studied in Germany in the region in which he will be working. He’s excited about having a head start knowing the dialect of the area.
Rankin’s English Teaching Award to Taiwan will take her to either Kaohsiung or Taipei – her city will be selected later this summer.
“I am so grateful for this opportunity,” Rankin says. “I am excited to continue to improve my Chinese and also learn more about Taiwanese culture. I am also looking forward to learning more about the Taiwanese school system by working alongside Taiwanese teachers.”
Allen was awarded a Study/Research Award in Music Therapy and is going to be studying at SRH University in Heidelberg, Germany, pursuing a master’s degree in music therapy. She first went to Germany in 2017 for a year abroad and enjoyed the German culture and lifestyle.
Carter has been awarded an English Teaching Assistant Award to Bavaria, Germany. She spent a year in Germany during her sophomore year.
“I’m excited to have another opportunity to work on my German language skills, as well as to educate students on the importance of cultural awareness and diversity,” she says.
Every year, approximately 10,000 students apply for 2,000 awards worldwide in all fields of study and in over 140 countries. More than 380,000 Fulbrighters from the U.S. and other countries have participated in the program since it was established in 1946.
Photo (from left): Hannah Allen, McKayle Carter, Toby Kindem, Alexandra Rankinrecord-setting-fulbright-year
Andre Schaum ’20 has been awarded the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship. Schaum, an ACS chemistry and biology major from Osage, Minn., is one of only 496 students from across the country to receive the award. He was selected from an initial pool of more than 5,000 students from 443 academic institutions. The scholarship is awarded to undergraduate sophomores or juniors who are intending to pursue research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering.
“It is extremely humbling and rewarding to be selected as a 2019 Goldwater Scholar out of the large group of applicants across the nation,” Schaum says. “However, I could not have completed the four-month application process if it was not for the tremendous support and patience of my fellow applicants, friends and faculty mentors.”
Among those who Schaum says helped him through the process were Concordia’s Goldwater representative Dr. Althea ArchMiller, assistant professor of biology, and 2018 Goldwater Honorable mention Alexandra Ward ’19. Both provided assistance and advice.
“I would also like to thank my recommendation letter writers – Dr. Donald Krogstad, professor of chemistry, and Dr. Graeme Wyllie, assistant professor of chemistry, both of Concordia College, and Dr. Stanley May of the University of South Dakota,” Schaum says. “I am excited to join the community of past and future Goldwater Scholars and to see how this award will influence and propel my life beyond Concordia.”
And faculty members who have worked with Schaum know his abilities will take him far.
"Andre Schaum has a natural love for nature and curiosity about science,” Krogstad says. “He does things the right way and for the right reasons. Andre has the drive, ambition, intelligence, and creativity to make a real impact as a researcher and world leader."
Schaum has already been immersing himself in research. He spent last summer at the University of South Dakota where he studied the luminescence of nanoparticles on patterned metal surfaces as part of a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates.
This summer, Schaum is headed to Prague for an International Research Experience for Students program. He will be studying the recycling of industrial coolants in the European Union.schaum-earns-goldwater-scholarship
Senior McKayle Carter, originally named an alternate for a Fulbright Scholarship, has now been awarded an English Teaching Assistant Award to Bavaria, Germany.
“We now officially have a record year with four Fulbright Award winners as McKayle Carter has now been offered an award,” exclaimed Dr. Jonathan Steinwand, professor of English. “Nationally, around 20% of applicants are funded. This year at Concordia, 66% of our applicants were funded.”
Concordia had six applicants for the 2019-20 Fulbright Awards.
Carter was named an alternate when Toby Kindem, Alexandra Rankin and Hannah Allen recently received their Fulbright awards. At the time, it was noted that while not currently selected as a principal candidate, Carter’s selection as an alternate offered the chance of promotion to finalist.
Shortly thereafter, Carter was indeed promoted to finalist.
“It’s a huge honor to be selected and I am so humbled to have the privilege to be a part of the Fulbright program,” Carter said. “I’ve wanted to apply for a Fulbright since I found out about the program my freshman year. Having spent a year in Germany my sophomore year, I’ve seen how valuable it is to learn about cultures that are different from our own. It was such an eye-opening experience for me that drastically changed my perception of the world.”
While in Germany, Carter is encouraged to engage in the community through volunteering and various types of involvement, and she plans to do so. She also expects to attend meetings and conferences with other Fulbright recipients and possibly government officials.
“I’m excited to have another opportunity to work on my German language skills, as well as to educate students on the importance of cultural awareness and diversity,” she added.
Every year, there are approximately 10,000 applicants for 2,000 awards worldwide in all fields of study and in over 140 countries. More than 380,000 Fulbrighters from the U.S. and other countries have participated in the program since it was established in 1946.
For information about the other three Fulbright award winners, see Fulbright Selects Concordia Students.concordia-adds-fourth-fulbright-award
Dr. Olin Storvick was born in Chicago in July 1925. He received a public school education in Mason City, Iowa, until 1943 when he enrolled at Luther College. However, his education was put to the side when he enlisted in the Army and was deployed from 1943 to 1945. During his time in the Army, Storvick served in the Pacific Theater and Okinawa. He was awarded the Purple Heart after being injured by shrapnel. Upon his return from service, he finished his undergraduate education at Luther. He continued on to get a master’s degree from the University of Michigan in 1950 and a doctorate in 1968. In 1979, he was awarded an honorary doctorate honoris causa from Luther College, and in 2017 he was awarded the Doctor of Human letters honoris causa from Concordia College.
Storvick joined the faculty of Concordia College in 1955 and actively taught until he retired in 1995. He served as the associate dean of the college from 1979 to 1985 and from 1989 to 1990. During his tenure at the college, he taught Ancient History, Greek, the Greek New Testament, Classic Literature and Translation, and many other classical studies courses. Teaching was chief among his many interests and joys. He said “that even though he enjoys an archaeological dig, he is a teacher first and foremost.”[i] He was known among his students as being very supportive and caring. Former students would recall how he would see them in passing and take time out of his day to help them solve problems outside of the classroom. Storvick’s teaching was not limited to the confines of Concordia’s campus. He led many students to Greece and Israel on a variety of trips including archaeological digs and May Seminars. Even after his retirement, he continued to lead May Seminars to expose students to the ancient world. After his retirement, he served as professor emeritus and classicist-in-residence in order to still have a role on campus while being able to focus on writing. He stated “he feels a responsibility to write about all of his archaeological finds. He would like to publish them so the public can know more about his work.”[ii]
Archaeology was Storvicks’s main area of research outside of his duties as a teacher. In 1970, he was invited to participate in a summer dig at Khirbet Shema in Israel. He would go on to lead two groups of students to Khirbet Shema before becoming involved with the archaeological excavation at Caesarea Maritima. In 1973, Concordia joined a consortium of 20 American and Canadian universities and colleges under the direction of Dr. Robert Bull that was conducting a dig at Caesarea Maritima. Storvick would, ultimately, lead 12 trips to Caesarea Maritima that included Concordia students. While on one of these digs in Caesarea Maritima in 1993, Storvick and his group of students came across a grindstone. Upon opening the grindstone, they found 99 gold Roman coins that dated to the fourth-century B.C.E. This find attracted both national and international attention due to the unique nature of the items. He stated that “most hordes have been discovered accidentally…I think that only one other horde like this has been found on a dig in Israel.”[iii] He served on the executive committee and as the chairperson of the publication committee on the project, which ultimately ended in an exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum.
Storvick passed away on June 16, 2018. However, the influence he had on Concordia and its students will live on. For the college, his influence continues in the endowed chair of classical studies that bears his name and in the toast during the 125th Anniversary celebrations to “the Concordia that is yet to be!” His influence on students’ lives can be seen in the advice he gave while a professor, the care he displayed while teaching, and the passion he had for his field.
Contributed by Allison Bundy, archives associate, Concordia College Archives
[i] Deines, Ben. “Dr. Olin Storvick: A Faculty Profile, Truly a Classic.” The Concordian vol. 90 nu. 17, 10.15.1993.
[ii] Brislin, Jonathan. “Professor Storvick Tells All.” The Concordian vol. 91 nu. 15, 9.23.1994.
[iii] Deines, Ben. “Dr. Olin Storvick: A Faculty Profile, Truly a Classic.” The Concordian vol. 90 nu. 17, 10.15.1993.concordia-great-olin-storvick
Len Jepson’s new book, “Cosmically Curious: Perceptions from a Speck Called Earth,” is a perfect read for Cobbers.
Jepson ’66 says though the subject matter may seem deep – philosophy, theology (even quantum theology), and physics – the book is full of true “corny” stories including some from his days on Concordia’s campus. They are conversation starters, prompting readers to explore topics they may not have contemplated in depth before.
“The foundation of the book is ‘epistemic curiosity,’ an ongoing imaginative intellectual openness that leads to an enriched general knowledge,” Jepson says.
Curiosity tends to increase early in life and decrease as life goes on, but some people retain this curiosity and Jepson is one of those. He embraces curiosity with passion.
A lifelong pastor and philosopher, Jepson has had various leadership roles over the years including parishes, synods, and regional, state and national settings. Personal and professional development and studies have also taken place globally in Helsinki, Hong Kong, Germany, South Africa, and Japan.
Jepson believes that curiosity can be compared to the way an artist looks at the world, preparing to put it on canvas. He encourages the reader to continually question, explore unknowns, and by all means always remain curious.
The book can be ordered online from either Amazon or Barnes & Noble.new-book-sees-value-in-curiosity
Colum McCann, artist, author, educator and social activist, will speak at the commencement ceremony at Concordia College on Sunday, May 5. McCann will also receive an honorary degree during the ceremony.
McCann holds a degree in journalism from the Dublin Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Arts in history and English from the University of Texas at Austin. He teaches in the Master of Fine Arts program at Hunter College in New York City and works with educators and artists around the world through the global organization Narrative 4, which he co-founded and for which he serves as president.
His novels, short stories, screenplays, and song lyrics have been published in more than 40 languages and have received highest honors internationally. His sustained association with Concordia College began in 2009 when his book, “Let the Great World Spin,” won the National Book Award for fiction and he subsequently headlined the National Book Awards at Concordia. He returned to campus for the 2011 Faith, Reason and World Affairs Symposium, “The Role of the Artist in Society.”
Concordia College will present approximately 437 Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Music degrees, seven Master of Education in world language degrees, and eight Master of Science in nutrition degrees during commencement.
Commencement is a ticketed event to ensure families of graduates are able to attend. There is overflow seating available without a ticket in Birkeland Alumni Lounge.
Schaum, an ACS chemistry and biology double major, studied the luminescence of nanoparticles on patterned metal surfaces as part of a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates. The research was done through the Center for Security Printing and Anti-Counterfeiting Technology at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion. Schaum looked at how luminescent inks, when placed on patterned metal produce more light when excited with another light than those same inks on a non-patterned surface.
“What we were finding is the surface enhances the luminescent properties so they can be more viable in commercial use,” Schaum says.
Schaum recently presented the research at the American Chemical Society National Meeting in Florida. Schaum worked on this research with a team in Dr. P. Stanley May’s lab. The goal of the project was to find a way to amplify the luminescent ink so when used for security purposes such as for computer components or military objects they could be detected without shining as much light on them. Currently, the level of light needed with these particular particles is too intense to replicate inexpensively for business purposes. Schaum says the process was good to gain an understanding of how sporadic research can be.
“It was a really good mock graduate school experience,” Schaum says. “The first five weeks were hard. Nothing was working. And then it clicked.”
While the research was fruitful, Schaum says it also served another goal he had in mind.
“I wanted the opportunity to present on a national scale,” Schaum says.
Schaum did just that when he joined hundreds of chemistry professionals at the ACS National Meeting. In addition to his own presentation, he had the chance to learn from other experts in the chemistry field. Schaum is excited about his next summer research opportunity that will take him to Prague for an International Research Experience for Students program. There he’ll be studying the recycling of industrial coolants in the European Union.
“We plan to develop a procedure for the determination of silicate in coolants and the quality control for the recycling process,” he says.research-for-brighter-security
Seniors Toby Kindem, Alexandra Rankin and Hannah Allen have received Fulbright awards, and McKayle Carter was named an alternate.
Kindem was awarded an English Teaching Award to Germany and will be going to Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony). He chose Germany because he’s graduating with a K-12 license in German. He was studying in Germany at the time of the application process.
Kindem applied to Fulbright for another opportunity to spend more time in Germany to enhance his teaching abilities and knowledge about Germany, the German language, and the German culture. He had already learned the dialect spoken in that region and knew it would help him.
“I will be placed in the same state that I was in during my semester abroad and chose it because of the connections that I had already made in that state,” Kindem said. “The road ahead is intimidating, but it will be a great experience and leave a lifelong lasting impression.”
It’ll be sometime this summer before Rankin finds out exactly where she’s going, but her English Teaching Award to Taiwan will take her to either Kaohsiung or Taipei. She chose Kaohsiung, a coastal city in southern Taiwan, as her first choice but said she will be happy anywhere.
“Taiwan is a relatively small island with high speed trains, so travel is convenient,” Rankin said. “I am so grateful for this opportunity. I am excited to continue to improve my Chinese and also learn more about Taiwanese culture. I am also looking forward to learning more about the Taiwanese school system by working alongside Taiwanese teachers.”
This will not be Rankin’s first time abroad. She’s been to Ecuador on a mission trip, Tanzania to teach English as part of a partnership between Concordia Language Villages and the Singita Grumeti Fund, and to China on a class trip in high school and a semester abroad last fall.
Allen was awarded a study/research grant in music therapy and will study at SRH University in Heidelberg, Germany, pursuing a master’s degree in music therapy. She first went to Germany in 2017 for a year abroad and loved the German culture and lifestyle.
“I applied for the Fulbright because during my year in Mainz, Germany, I found an intense passion and specific purpose to help others who suffer from mental illness using music as an alternate form of therapy,” Allen said. “When I discovered there is still a lack of research in the treatment of anxiety disorders – specifically obsessive-compulsive disorder – using music, I realized that I wanted to pursue further research in this area.”
Allen hopes to get involved in the Heidelberg community and possibly find a part-time job to help pay for extra expenses.
“I am graduating with a Bachelor of Music degree in voice performance and am currently looking to join an opera chorus in this region of Germany and teach voice lessons to youth in the area,” she added.
Allen plans to stay beyond her year funded by the Fulbright scholarship and continue her second year of the master’s program to earn her degree from SRH.
Carter is an alternate for an English Teaching Award to Germany. While not currently selected as a principal candidate, her selection as an alternate offers the chance of promotion to finalist.
Concordia had six applicants for the 2019-20 Fulbright Awards. Every year, there are approximately 10,000 applicants for 2,000 awards worldwide in all fields of study and in over 140 countries. More than 380,000 Fulbrighters from the U.S. and other countries have participated in the program since it was established in 1946.
“This year, we beat the odds with three awards and one alternate from our six applicants. This is the third time (along with 2011 and 2017), according to my records, that we have had three award winners. If McKayle is called upon as a replacement, it will be a record year for us,” said Dr. Jonathan Steinwand, professor of English. “Elite schools often have several award winners but, for a school of our size and stature, I am pleased with the result and proud of these Fulbrighters! Our world language programs, in particular, deserve a lot of credit.”
Photo (from left): Hannah Allen, Toby Kindem, Alexandra Rankinfulbright-selects-concordia-students
A dinner was held April 4 to celebrate the naming of Dr. Dan Biebighauser as holder of The Sigurd and Pauline Prestegaard Mundhjeld Endowed Chair of Mathematics. Biebighauser is a 2002 graduate of Concordia and joined the faculty in 2006.
All of the past holders of the Mundhjeld Endowed Chair were present. Past holders include (from l-r) Dr. Bill Tomhave, Dr. James L. Forde, Biebighauser, Dr. Alexander Sze and Dr. Gerald A. Heuer ’51.
Biebighauser blazed through graduate school at Vanderbilt in four years while winning a teaching award, and returned to become an admired professor on Concordia’s campus.
He is well-known for incorporating his love of the number 51 into all of his classes, an element of playful pedagogy that students remember long after the end of the course. Biebighauser is the faculty advisor for Concordia's thriving Habitat for Humanity chapter, arranging both domestic and international trips during Fall Interim and Spring Break. He has been on a trip every year since 2009, except for his sabbatical year of 2012.
Biebighauser is best known for his engaging teaching style for all mathematics levels. He teaches widely in mathematics, always willing to take on new course preparation. In his research area, graph theory, he has published (2018) in the leading journal in his area, Journal of Graph Theory. Through the years, Biebighauser has also supervised several highly successful student projects, often during busy semesters rather than over the more sedate summer term. These projects with students led to memorable student presentations at regional mathematics conferences, on campus, and to distinctive posters.
About the Endowed Chair
Sigurd Mundhjeld was born Jan. 19, 1899, in Norway. At age 15, he immigrated to North Dakota and graduated from Concordia College in 1925. He was a professor at Concordia from 1938-69 and was the first faculty member to hold the Alma and Reuel Wije Distinguished Professorship.
Pauline Prestegaard Mundhjeld graduated from Midland College where she was the first female president of the student body. She taught English at Concordia in the 1940s and was a community leader and a source of great hospitality.
The Sigurd and Pauline Prestegaard Mundhjeld Endowed Chair of Mathematics was established in 1987. The holder of the Mundhjeld chair is to be a person who has provided exemplary service in teaching and scholarship in the field of mathematics and who is known and respected in the field.
(Photo credit: Mary Zink)biebighauser-named-endowed-chair-in-mathematics
More than 300 students gave poster or concurrent sessions throughout the daylong event April 10, with some students participating in multiple presentations. New at this year’s COSS was an art display with printmaking pieces and two sessions presented in Spanish.
“Our goal is to keep building on the diversity of research,” says Krys Strand, director of Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity and coordinator of the Celebration of Student Scholarship.
From analyzing Alfred Hitchcock’s works to how field burns effect milkweed density, students covered topics across the curriculum. Tate Hovland ’20 researched the marketing of marginalized groups. He says this work gave him an opportunity to analyze societal situations of today and make them understandable to a wide audience.
“Research empowered me to better understand communication phenomena and further develop understandings of communication through personal and relatable examples,” Hovland says.
In addition to the presentations of research and scholarship, three awards were given. Samantha Engrav ’21 was selected as this year’s President Pamela M. Jolicoeur Endowed Memorial Scholarship recipient. The award was presented to Engrav by Jolicoeur’s spouse, Mike Doyle, and her daughter, Jessica Rich.
Alyssa Dalen ’20, received the library’s Exemplary Research Award for her research, “Violence Spreads: The Role of Behavior Learning in Transmission of Violent Acts,” mentored by Dr. Michelle Lelwica. Dr. Susan Lee, associate professor of art, received the mentor of the year award.
Photos: Justin Monroeresearch-reigns-at-coss
Concordia sent 12 members to the American Forensic Association National Individual Events Tournament (AFA-NIET) at the University of Alabama, where 60 colleges and universities from across the United States competed for top honors. Concordia was one of only a few smaller colleges that placed in the top 15, which is dominated by larger research institutions.
“Just qualifying for the national tournament already puts an individual competitor in a top percent of the nation because of how rigorous the process is,” said Zach Oehm, assistant director of speech.
In order to compete in this highly competitive national collegiate tournament, a competitor needs to show consistent success during the regular speech season, which runs throughout the academic year. The qualifying standards are challenging, making the AFA-NIET the premier national collegiate speech tournament.
Concordia has a young team with three juniors, six sophomores and three first-year students. The students took 41 entries to the AFA-NIET.
There are 11 competition categories: Impromptu Speaking, Informative Speaking, Prose Interpretation, Dramatic Duo, Extemporaneous Speaking, Persuasive Speaking, Program Oral Interpretation, After Dinner Speaking, Communication Analysis, Drama Interpretation, and Poetry Interpretation.
Leah Roberts ’21 placed third in Prose Interpretation out of a field of 124 competitors. Roberts broke to quarterfinals in Drama Interpretation, placing her in the top 26 competitors in that category.
“Taking my place on the national stage with the other prose finalists felt so right. I had visualized it for so long and had been coached to believe I could get there, but nothing could have prepared me for the complete joy. It was humbling, it was something I still can’t quite wrap my head around,” Roberts said. “Our team and coaches worked hard and diligently from day one to earn our spot in the top 20.”
Abigayle Reese ’20 and Dominic Meyers ’21 broke to quarterfinals, putting them in the top 26 competitors out of a field of 110.
“Our team has worked hard over the past two years with our new and amazing coaching staff,” Reese said.
Dr. Najla Amundson, assistant professor of communication studies, is in her second year as director of speech and Oehm is in his second year as the assistant director.
Amundson believes the rigorous work students do in competitive speech is the embodiment of a liberal arts education.
“Competitors are tasked with gathering information from a wide variety of sources, carefully analyzing what information is most relevant to their topic, creating something new with the research they’ve gathered, and presenting it to the public and academics for critique and revision,” she said. “Our students do this over and over again in a process that starts in August and ends in April each year.”
“Placing 12th in the nation and advancing to out rounds made all that hard work so affirming,” Reese said.concordia-speech-team-places-12th-in-national-tournament
Concordia Continuing Studies introduces the Specialized Teaching and Research (STAR) Institute of Education with the revitalization of the Literacy Conference.
The STAR Institute of Education will be hosting the 2019 Literacy Conference on June 20 in the Knutson Campus Center at Concordia College. The conference will involve topics such as reading, oral language, instructional technology and more. The daylong conference covers many topics and offers engaging conversation opportunities.
The conference is open to anyone interested in furthering their knowledge on teaching including K-12 teachers, speech pathologists, school tutors and other education professionals. There is an opportunity to earn up to 6 CEU credits or .5 undergraduate college credit.
The 2019 Literacy Conference features keynote speaker Kari Yates, author of “Simple Starts: Making the Move to a Reader-Centered Classroom” and “To Know and Nurture a Reader: Conferring with Confidence and Joy.” Yates has dedicated her professional life to helping readers and their teachers through planned, effective and meaningful literacy instruction.
Additionally, breakout sessions include panel discussions, presentations and activities that provide practical ideas, skills and strategies. Participants will have the opportunity to get hands-on experience with new technologies in the classroom.
Dr. Kristen Ford, associate professor of education, hopes to see participants leave with new ideas and strategies they can bring back to their own classrooms.
“We hope that they find something new and novel that can positively impact their classrooms, schools, and even districts,” she said. “More importantly, we hope people find a community of familiar and new connections that they can keep in touch with and look forward to seeing year after year at this conference.”
After a few years off, the STAR Institute is excited about bringing back the Literacy Conference and has hopes of rekindling the tradition of bringing the education community together each year.
“We are attempting to make this an engaging, hands-on conference that brings people back next year and the year after that,” Ford said.
Concordia College’s STAR Institute of Education is dedicated to preparing education professionals for the changing needs and dynamics of today’s students and classrooms. The STAR Institute has four primary objectives:
Prepare and develop leaders in a variety of educational settings
Provide dynamic and interactive educational opportunities that engage students in the learning process
Advance scholarship and best practices within the K-16 community
Inspire current and future education leaders to provide the most effective learning tools and environments for their students
With these goals in mind, the STAR Institute of Education looks forward to hosting the Literacy Conference this year and hopefully more to come.continuing-studies-welcomes-back-the-literacy-conference
Junior Courtney Wiese, Henning, Minn., is one of five students awarded a 2019-21 Phillips Scholarship through the Minnesota Private College Council (MPCC).
Colleges in the MPCC were allowed to submit three qualified candidates for the scholarships.
Thirteen applicants from eight campuses submitted proposals with students from St. Catherine University and Augsburg receiving scholarships along with Wiese.
Students receive a total of $12,000 in scholarships, a stipend of $4,000 for work they will do during the summer of 2020, and $500 to support their summer project.
“I was interested when I found out that the scholarship was not only going to help me in my education but would help others that would be involved in my project as well,” Wiese said. “I am grateful to have been chosen as a recipient of this scholarship and I feel honored to be able to share this with my community.”
The Phillips Scholars Program, funded by the Jay & Rose Phillips Family Foundation of Minnesota, supports private Minnesota college students as they design and implement self-directed community service projects. Since the Phillips Scholars Program began in 1994, more than 50 students have received the award that continues Jay and Rose Phillips’ legacy of service to others.
Wiese’s project is “Broadening Their Horizons: Helping Low-Income Students Access Scholarships for College.” She plans to create a three-part program to work with low-income students in her hometown of Henning. She’ll educate, encourage, and equip students to seek out and enact service engagement that will support their resumes and scholarship applications that she will help develop.
Wiese believes the best part of her project is that it won’t just benefit the community once, but will continue to create opportunities for youth to be active and involved in giving back to the community.
“When creating the project, I continually thought about my own narrative and the impact that community service has had on me, and I want other students to experience the benefits of it as well,” Wiese said. “I look forward to how my project will help students and the service groups of my hometown. I know that I have many supporters in Henning that are looking forward to my project taking place.”2019-20-phillips-scholarship-awarded
World War I was considered by many to be the first great global conflict to arise. When the United States entered the war on April 6, 1917, many at Concordia immediately sprang into action. Students and professors enlisted to fight overseas, then-president of Concordia J.A. Aasgaard worked to establish a unit of the Student Army Training Corps (S.A.T.C.) on campus and many Concordia women worked to supply the Red Cross with supplies for the war effort.
On the day that the United States declared war on Germany in 1917, Concordia hosted the first public ceremony in Clay County recognizing the United States’ involvement in the war. It was a flag raising ceremony that involved former Gov. L.B. Hanna, O. Mortinson, M.T. Weum, Mr. Ashelman, and President Aasgaard. At that time, Concordia had a student body population of 470. Over the course of the war, more than 100 students and faculty would enlist. Many would be deployed overseas to fight on the ground. During this time of enlistment, a flag was created. Each time a person associated with Concordia College enlisted to serve in the war, a star was added to the flag. Stateside, however, the college was still working to be active in recruiting and training men for the war. President Aasgaard worked diligently in trying to establish a branch of the S.A.T.C at Concordia. Requirements for establishing a branch of the were to have 50 men inducted by the deadline of Oct. 30, 1918, and only men who had achieved at least 13 credits in a postsecondary education could be inducted. Due to delays in receiving approval to establish a unit from the War Department, Concordia was not able to meet the quota required to establish a unit. Despite this, the War Department’s confidence in an S.A.T.C unit at Concordia was high enough that they sent Lt. A.A. Kramer to oversee the unit’s inductees[i]. The Concordia S.A.T.C was officially disbanded on Dec. 18, 1918, after extended efforts to reach the required quota were exhausted.
Members of the Concordia community were also heavily involved in supplying the Red Cross with supplies. When the Clay County chapter of the Red Cross met they elected President Aasgaard as chairman. He would go on to be reelected as chairman during the second chapter election held in the late summer of 1917[ii]. Many women on campus, which included female students, staff and faculty, worked to sew, weave and knit bandages and clothing. By the end of 1917, Concordia women had rolled and packed more than 200 bandages for the Red Cross that were sent to soldiers overseas[iii]. In February of 1918, the Moorhead Daily News reported that the Red Cross had received 75 abdominal bandages from Concordia. Less than a few weeks later, the paper reported again that they had received 14 knitted sweaters[iv]. The participation in the Red Cross would not be able to last throughout the war, however. During the influenza epidemic, Concordia was quarantined to prevent the spread of disease. When the quarantine was lifted, the war was almost over and Concordia could no longer participate in donating to the Red Cross. The women at Concordia did not let this stop their efforts to help. They raised significant amounts of money during thrift stamp drives that would help to fund the war effort, and, when they became payable, helped to grow the library fund.
After the war ended, the Concordia Historical Society was founded in an effort to write a record of all the students who served in the war. The results of their efforts can now be seen in the Concordia College Archives.
Contributed by Allison Bundy, archives associate, Concordia College Archives
[i] Record Group 20, Military; Series 1, World War I; Subseries 3. S.A.T.C; File Folder 1 “Student Army Training Corps Correspondence with War Department, 1918-1919.”
[ii] In the World War: Clay County, Minnesota. Saint Paul: Buckbee-Mears Company, 1919.
[iii] Concordia College, Crescent, Dec. 1917, 10.
[iv] “Moorhead Red Cross News,” MDN, Feb. 7, 1918; “Moorhead Red Cross News,” MDN, Mar. 6, 1918.cobbers-during-world-war-i
Most students wouldn’t expect to be singing a song about a Venus fly trap in class, but it’s just another day in Dr. Althea ArchMiller’s plant taxonomy course. Not only does the course employ interactive ways of better understanding plants, but it challenges students to display their knowledge of the material through unique and creative projects.
In plant taxonomy, ArchMiller’s students gain hands-on experience with the identification and classification of plants. The course emphasizes the various medical, culinary and cultural properties of the plants, and their roles in our everyday life.
To gain a more in-depth understanding of these plants and their structures, the students keep a plant-drawing journal to learn the basics of botanical illustration. They identify the plant, photograph it, and conduct background research on the origin, cultural history, medical applications and culinary uses. From there, the students personify them, writing a 200-word description that “captures the essence of their plants.”
“Students in my class partnered with students in Dwight Mickelson’s 3D sculpture class to ‘adopt’ these flowering plants on campus,” says ArchMiller. “The sculpture students worked from the images and descriptions to build reed and tissue sculptures that captured the personalities of the plants as interpreted by the botany students.”
From the combined efforts of both classes, a joint art show was presented in the bridge gallery on campus that showcased the plants, descriptions and photographs.
Students also gain hands-on experience in the field, identifying plants in the Fargo-Moorhead area, and camping in the North Dakota Badlands for three days with entomology students.
“The class, which is cross-listed between biology and environmental studies, qualifies as a field class, so students experience at least 24 hours of time outside,” she says.
ArchMiller’s class features various other unique projects that set plant taxonomy apart from a typical biology course. Among them is the “Botany of Food” project, where students cooked and ate a plant-based, four-course meal. Menu items include Plant Defenses Salsa and Caryophyllales Salad.
At the end of the semester, students gave a final plant family presentation, each adding their own unique features to the project.
“Students all added a special aspect to their presentations, including cooking special food, creating satirical commercials, writing poetry, writing and performing songs, and writing and illustrating a children’s story to present their plant family.”
ArchMiller’s unique class requirements challenge students to think about their coursework from different viewpoints compared to the typical lecture-style class, which is a cornerstone of a quality liberal education.
“This class combines deep understanding of an advanced disciplinary subject, in this case plant taxonomy, with applications to many different disciplines through the lens of liberal learning,” she says. “Rather than just focusing on the technical memorization of plant anatomy and names, we think about the interactions between these plants and other aspects of our lives and campus.”
Her recommendation to current and future students is to welcome the unique learning methods of courses like plant taxonomy.
“My advice is to embrace the many different ways that learning at a liberal arts college can provide,” she says. “Yes, you may be challenged to learn drawing in a biology class, but you may also surprise yourself.”plant-taxonomy-takes-a-unique-approach-to-learning