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Do What You Love – Conversations on Leadership
Trinity’s business department continued its “Conversations on Leadership” series with an interview with John Venhuizen ’92, CEO of ACE Hardware. The Trinity graduate shared his secrets of post-graduation success in the workplace, and what it means to be a leader who motivates and inspires others.
New Videos! Meet Some of our Students!
Trinity Christian College is happy to announce the roll-out of a student video page!
Through these fun video profiles, Trinity students share their thoughts, dreams, and aspirations as Christian scholars living in community.
A new video will be posted each week, so please visit again soon. You can also follow Trinity on Facebook and Twitter to receive updates on these postings and to catch glimpses into other aspects of life at the College.
Dr. Elizabeth Rudenga Appointed Interim President
Trinity’s Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Liz Rudenga to the role of interim president, effective June 1, 2014. An interim provost will be named soon.
Christian Bands Unite to Lead Meaningful Worship Experience: Photogallery
Two iconic bands, Audio Adrenaline and Kutless, came together for a concert at Trinity on April 12. The performance was one of the bands’ many stops on their Change a Life Tour through 33 different cities across the United States. More than 500 people attended the show, which also included performances by Finding Favour and Shine Bright Baby.
The featured bands played a mix of newly-released singles and crowd favorites, putting on a show filled with energy and passionate worship. After the show, band members stuck around to greet fans, sign autographs, and take pictures.
Student Krista Fopma ’15 from Sully, Iowa, volunteered to sell merchandise for the show. It was her first time seeing the bands perform live. “As volunteers we got free t-shirts and got to hang out with a few of the Kutless band members for a while after we helped them pack up,” she said. “It was neat to hear about their experiences and the band as well as be able to relate to them, chill, and have a good time.”
Callie Bunker ’16 of Delevan, Wisconsin, also volunteered to help. “The concert was more of a time of worship to the Lord than it was a concert, which is something I greatly appreciated,” she said. “I was inspired by the friendliness and the genuine attitudes that the bands showed to me and to all of their fans.”
“This event served as a way to refresh myself in God’s worship,” said Eva Miller ’17 of Nappanee, Indiana. “I walked out of the chapel that night feeling refreshed, blessed, and purely happy.”
Professor Mattson Selected as 2014-15 ARCU Lecturer
Dr. Craig Mattson, professor of communication arts, has been selected as the Association of Reformed Colleges and Universities (ARCU) Lecturer for 2014-2015.
His proposed lectures stem from his recently published essay in Quarterly Journal of Speech. “From Wimsey to The Wire: Distracting Discourse and Attentional Practice” explores the relationship between speech and attention.
Mattson explained that anxiety about distractedness exists in society and that certain books treat discourse as if it is “an enemy of attention.” The essay uses two detectives as case studies to explore the ways that an “irresponsible” discourse can trigger an indirect attention that looks like distractedness to assist problem-solving.
Mattson said that Trinity’s communication arts department often works with students on issues related to speech and attention in the digital age and believes his ARCU experience will also benefit his students and colleagues. “I am hoping that some of what I learn from other communities in the course of offering these lectures will circle back and animate and extend on-campus work as well.”
Dr. Liz Rudenga said, “This is indeed an honor, reflective of Craig’s conscientious and thoughtful approach to research and indicative of excellent scholarship by Trinity faculty.”
From Bach to U2, a Study of Music
For a professor who specializes in 18th century music, a lecture featuring the Irish rock band U2 might seem a little unusual. Yet for Professor of Music Mark Peters, Ph.D., the lecture was simply a way to expand his understanding of music and scholarship.
Honoring What You Come From—Conversations on Leadership: Photogallery
Business students heard a refreshingly honest and insightful viewpoint during the Conversations on Leadership session with Karen Bushy, former village president of Oak Brook, Illinois, and current CEO of Memories & Beyond, the largest scrapbook store in Chicagoland.
The Conversations on Leadership sessions, hosted by Trinity’s business department and the Trinity Business Network, provide a place for students and the community to come together to learn from local business leaders.
First introducing herself as a “daughter of the church,” Bushy told a story of growing up in poverty “when dinner was mayo on a piece of bread”; applying for a work permit the day of her 14th birthday; and reading a set of encyclopedias to help educate herself because she was unable to attend college.
Inspired as a child by Dwight D. Eisenhower’s televised acceptance of the nomination of the Republican National Convention, Bushy was “always interested in the role of government but not ‘politics’, and she eventually went on to dedicate many years of her life to serving in government.
In the ’70s, Bushy worked on the Oak Brook village president campaign for George Howell, and she served on the Oak Brook planning commission. When Howell inquired about her aspirations, Bushy told him she wanted his job. He encouraged her goal, and years later Bushy ran and was elected. She served as the village president for 12 years before choosing to take a different path.
Bushy explained that during her first month in office, she was “taken aback by the enormity of the responsibility” she had accepted. “No matter how prepared you think you are, when you put your backside in the chair, you ask ‘What have I done?’”
But Bushy didn’t waste time getting down to business on her first day in office.
“Leaders have to decide what persona they will project,” she told students. “For me, it was to live the faith I proclaim. If you mean it, you have to live it.”
Bushy said her first step in living out her faith as an elected official was to communicate clearly to her staff, telling them, “I will never lie to you or for you. I will never ask you to lie for me and don’t lie to me.”
Reflecting on her years in office, she spoke fondly of the team she had built and the camaraderie they came to cherish. Bushy said she and her staff strived to interact with each other “from a base of honesty” and to “run an honest government.”
“A phrase that describes Karen Bushy would be contagious passion,” said Courtney Samudio ’15 of Surprise, Arizona, an entrepreneurial management major. “She is so passionate about being an ethical leader and motivating others to do so as well. As a leader, showing that you care about those who work for you, believing in them, and treating them well allows you to gain the support that you need.”
Now the owner of the largest scrapbook store in Chicagoland, Bushy’s passion for integrity, connectedness, and authenticity carries over into Memories & Beyond, which she sees as a facilitator of “telling the family story.”
“I think God wants us to remember our heritage,” Bushy said. “You are the sum total today of a lot of people. You miss a great part of yourself that God made if you don’t recognize what you come from.”
Answer the Question “What Is Christian Philosophy?” Photogallery
In March, Trinity hosted the “What Is Christian Philosophy?” 2014 conference. The Society of Christian Philosophers and the Society for Continental Philosophy and Theology joined the College’s philosophy department for a weekend of fellowship and scholarship centered on Christian philosophy.
The three-day conference included a series of lectures delivered by Trinity professors and scholars from other institutions. Students, faculty, and alumni attended, and many had good things to say about the event.
“I was encouraged that the Christian community continues to raise up philosophers who can participate in the project of understanding our world from a Christian perspective,” said Dr. Michael DeVries ’74, professor of psychology.
“I really liked the mix of graduate students and esteemed professor emerita of national reputation,” said Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English. “And I loved seeing my philosophy colleagues do such a good job organizing a major conference like this.”
Conference organizers and hosts Drs. Stephen Lake, Aron Reppmann ’92, and George Pierson, professors of philosophy, welcomed many of their former classmates, colleagues, and professors to the conference.
Speakers included Bruce Ellis Benson (Wheaton), Greg Clark (North Park), Kyla Ebels-Duggan (Northwestern), Adriaan Peperzak (Loyola), Alvin Plantinga (Notre Dame/Calvin), J. Aaron Simmons (Furman), Charles Taliaferro (St. Olaf), and Jay Wood (Wheaton).
Alvin Plantinga, John A. O’Brien professor of philosophy emeritus at the University of Notre Dame, presented “Augustinian Christian Philosophy.” 2014 marks the 30th anniversary of the publication of Alvin Plantinga’s “Advice to Christian Philosophers.”
Speaker Bruce Ellis Benson, Ph.D., of Wheaton College, discussed the significance of Christian philosophy and how best to articulate its practicality. His lecture showed how the art can be used as a means of spiritual training, and how it can address the topic of human suffering.
“Bruce Benson did a nice job, I thought, helping us understand how two different approaches to philosophy might understand each other better, and work together, in the philosophy of religion,” Vander Weele said.
The conference provided a place for scholars to share ideas, discuss their beliefs, and explore further the topic of Christian philosophy. It also connected current students with alumni and professors of potential graduate schools, building and nurturing relationships within the academic community.
Finally, the event gave attendees a new perspective on philosophy, and inspiration for their own lines of work. “We hope that our colleagues from other departments on campus who attended will be able to draw on their participation for strengthening our interdisciplinary connections across campus,” Aron Reppmann ’92 said.
Professor Named Chair of ISTA Membership Committee
Dr. Thomas R. Roose, associate professor of physics and science education, was recently named chair of the membership committee for the Illinois Science Teachers Association (ISTA). Selected for his extensive science education experience, Roose will direct a team through promotion and collaboration projects for the ISTA.
According to the organization’s website, “the Illinois Science Teachers Association is committed to promoting excellence in science teaching and learning throughout Illinois.” The association has more than 1,000 members dedicated to the science education industry and supports members by holding conferences and workshops on science education.
Paul Ritter, president of ISTA, selected Roose for the position because of his dedication to and experience in the field of education. In addition to his role as professor at Trinity, Roose has taught science courses at Chicago Christian High School, summer programs at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, and a Saturday science enrichment program sponsored by the Associated Colleges of Illinois for underserved Chicago high school students.
Roose’s new position will require him to perform a variety of new tasks. He will help the organization retain and recruit members, plan a yearly membership drive, research other programs in other states, and attend board meetings held by the ISTA.
The new role will give Roose a chance to discover new trends in science education and share his abilities with colleagues in his field.
Accepting the Call to Lead--Conversations on Leadership: Photogallery
“All of us have potential. It’s not about being a good female leader or a good male leader, but just being a good leader,” said Dr. Laura Zumdahl ’02, CEO at New Moms, during a March 3 interview for the business department’s Conversations on Leadership.
New Moms is an organization that serves at-risk adolescent parents and their children. Zumdahl spoke about her role as president and CEO and talked about not only discerning God’s call but answering the call.
“At Trinity, I knew what I was good at, what I was interested in, and where the greatest need existed,” said Zumdahl. “Finding the nexus is the career plan.”
Once discerned, answering a call to lead, she said, puts one in a place of vulnerability. “Leadership is ‘I see a need for change, and I’ll make it.’ Or ‘I see a problem, and I have a solution. I’ll step up.’”
Zumdahl has “stepped up” to answer that call. Before joining New Moms in 2013, she served as the vice president of nonprofit services at Donors Forum and in a variety of leadership roles in the nonprofit sector in legal aid, higher education, and child welfare. In 2010, she was named a 2010 Emerging Nonprofit Leadership Fellow by the Chicago Community Trust and received a 40 Under 40 Award from the Association Forum of Chicagoland in 2013.
“We ask God to ‘Send me!’, but we have to then be willing to say okay,” Zumdahl said, emphasizing to students the need to keep faith at the core and pray for wisdom, especially in ministry when the work that needs to be accomplished can feel “bigger than you.”
“I walk into my calling each day, and trust God to give me what I need,” she said.
Zumdahl earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from Trinity; her master’s degree in social work from the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration; and her doctoral degree in leadership from Cardinal Stritch University.
Students Making Lasting Friendships on Service Trip: Photogallery
Rather than spending their spring break sunning on the beach or vacationing at home, 28 students and other members of the Trinity community spent a week on the Spring Break service trip, working on homes and caring for the people of Frakes, Kentucky.
Staff Give of Their Time to Serve Others: Photogallery
Dennis Harms ’87, director of business and corporate giving, traveled with his church Orland Park CRC to Balstrop, Texas, where he worked alongside 10 carpenters and plumbers to build a home for a victim of a recent wildfire. The trip was sponsored by World Renew, and 35 church members pitched in to help.
Prior building experience isn’t a requirement for volunteering on these types of projects, which Harms appreciated. “I have ten thumbs,” he said. “However, it was great to work in this manner, and the guys I worked with taught me a lot.”
A second faculty member, Assistant Controller Ryan Heath served in Panama City, Panama, attending a conference called “For the Love of the Americas, I Will Not Stay Quiet.” Heath translated for his pastor, and acted as a link between his church and other Latin American churches in attendance. During his time in Panama, he also gathered information and established contacts for a future short-term mission trip. His church hopes to send a team to Bolivia in 2015.
Heath was challenged to grow in his language abilities and his prayer life. He took on the challenge of speaking in a foreign language around the clock and was able to converse with men and women from 18 different countries. “I was challenged by the leaders from various countries how powerful and important intercession can be,” he said. “We spent hours on specific prayers for the churches, the political leaders, and the authorities of the nations represented at the conference. I learned that I, too, must regularly be in prayer for growth and change for those people who are my brothers and sisters in Christ.”
Also traveling overseas was Alex Hansum, a maintenance worker on Trinity’s campus. He traveled to Haiti with a group from Iowa and Indiana and built homes and shelters for the local residents. Once the structures were built, members of the group taught Haitians how to construct similar structures for themselves.
Hansum was impressed by the power of prayer in the Third World country. “Many families we came in contact with had family members who practice voodoo,” he wrote. “Some asked us to pray that their families would devote themselves to the service of Jesus and flee the practice.”
All three staff members found their service to be a valuable experience. Each year, the College grants up to 40 hours of volunteer time to staff, encouraging them to step outside their traditional roles and give back using their personal gifts and abilities.
U.S. Ambassador to South Sudan Visits Trinity - Photogallery
Trinity was honored Tuesday to welcome the U.S. Ambassador for South Sudan Susan D. Page.
Page, a Harvard-trained lawyer, spoke to students, faculty, staff, and community leaders about the recent conflicts in the young country of South Sudan, its original secession from Sudan in 2011, and her personal and professional experiences as an ambassador.
The country gained its independence from Sudan in July of 2011 but has suffered civil strife since fighting broke out in December of last year between government troops and rebels. The conflict has cost the lives of thousands and displaced nearly a million people.
Page, a graduate of Homewood-Flossmoor High School, shared her experiences serving in South Sudan, playing a part in negotiations, and telling stories of the country’s people.
“There are still good stories that aren’t being heard,” said Page, “stories of the youth going out and preaching messages of peace.”
“We were privileged to host Ambassador Page at Trinity, for her visit provided us insight into the internal violence confronting the new nation of South Sudan and the hope that she and others bring to the region,” said President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D.
Seeing the Big Picture in the Big Apple—Art and Design Interim
One of the stellar aspects of Trinity’s art and design program is the access students have to the Chicago art scene. But professors opened another door to the world of art and design for their students during the winter interim.
Art and Design Professors John Bakker and Ryan Thompson accompanied 14 students to New York City. This experience in the Big Apple took art and design majors, and other students who love art, to eight museums, the Chelsea Gallery District, and professional artists’ studios, including that of Tim Rollins.
Rollins’ work has been exhibited at Trinity’s Seerveld Gallery. A highlight of that studio visit for Bakker came when one of the students recognized a piece of Rollins’ work from his Seerveld Gallery exhibit.
Bakker said this recognition helped students connect the importance of the campus exhibits to an art world context.
“The trip expanded my understanding and appreciation of art,” said senior Liz Muhammad of Palos Heights, president of the art club and art department communications manager.
Learn more about Trinity’s Art and Design programs.
Black History Celebration – Preserving a Culture
More than 100 students and faculty attended the 2nd Annual Black History Celebration on February 28 for a night of food, fellowship, entertainment, and education. The event is hosted by Trinity’s Organization of African American Unity (OAAU).
Guests enjoyed a meal in the Grand Lobby during musical and acting performances and also learned about the history and preservation of African American culture.
Jason Perry, pastor of Living Springs Community Church, was the guest speaker for the evening and focused on the idea of a “post racial society.”
“He successfully reached every member of the audience when he described his ideas on how each person can strive to eliminate prejudice,” said OAAU President Noel Huddleston ’17. “His story was a powerful example of prayer in determination through struggle.”
The OAAU was founded in 1992 and currently operates under the leadership of Huddleston and Vice President Kylla Pate ’17.
“We seize the opportunity to reinvent the group in the eyes of the Trinity community, as one that is ascending to bigger and better things in the future,” Huddleston said.
Huddleston was hopeful that the Black History Celebration inspired all attendees. “All of the participants in the program did an amazing job,” she said. “God really brought it all together.”
Gospel Fest Shares the “Good News”: Photogallery
“Gospel Fest 2014 truly was a communal time of worship where we, as a body, experienced the Good News of our Lord and Savior through song and spoken word,” said Director Nicole Saint-Victor ’12.
Featured groups included Trinity’s Gospel Ensemble as well as outside artists. The program incorporated songs sung by Youthful Praise, Kurt Carr, Stacy and Ryan Blackburn, 2GTG, Homewood Flossmoor High School choir, and others.
“The Gospel Ensemble had a desire to see diversity in those that gathered and also in the music that would be presented. I pray that the community departed with a deeper understanding that Gospel music is good news for all,” Saint-Victor said.
Members of the Gospel Ensemble felt the presence of God amongst the community of worshippers. Sierra Hernandez ’17 of Phoenix, Arizona, sings soprano for the ensemble. She was inspired by the witnessing opportunity Gospel Fest proved to be.
“Before Trinity, I didn't really have a relationship with God, and I am still learning how to have one,” she said. “Singing is the best way I know how to talk to God. I can share my relationship with God with other people who might have been as lost as I was about a year ago.”
Faith, Scholarship, and Music Blend at Local Conference
The Society of Christian Scholarship in Music (SCSM) convened at Trinity Christian College on February 20-21 for its annual meeting. The conference, hosted by Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology, and Dr. Mark Peters,professor of music, drew nearly 50 music scholars from around the world and featured several key events that celebrated music and scholarship in the context of Christianity.
The first event, a panel discussion, welcomed Columbia College Professor James Falzone and Northeastern University Professor/Consultant Emmett Price, Ph.D., focusing on John Coltrane’s album A Love Supreme (1964).
The February 20 lecture was hosted by both the music and English departments. “The Cave and the Cathedral: Meaning-Making in the Dark” was delivered by Gregory Wolfe, editor of Image journal. Using examples from the film “Cave of Forgotten Dreams,” Wolfe highlighted the “oneness” with the Creator depicted in ancient cave drawings, contrasted with a sense of “egoism” expressed through modern works of art. In a post-lecture summary, students said they gained a deeper realization that art is not separate from God, but entwined, because “art, at its core, is worship.”
Other presenters included Trinity alumnus Adam Perez ’13 and Dr. Aron Reppmann ’92, professor of philosophy, who submitted papers to the association for the meeting.
A third feature event of the conference was a free concert performed by Falzone’s ALLOS MUSICA. The quartet played a variety of pieces, including a few of Falzone’s originals. Playing wind, string, and percussion instruments, the group took listeners through a musical journey of different cultures from around the world.
The SCSM had its first conference in March of 2002 with a focus on bringing faith and academic research together. The 2014 meeting at Trinity was a wonderful example of melding Christian music and scholarship.
Peters has served on the executive committee of the SCSM and as chair of the publication committee. He now acts as publisher of the SCSM newsletter. “I’ve been involved with the SCSM for nearly 10 years, and it was exciting to host this year’s meeting of the society at Trinity,” he said. “Both Trinity and the SCSM place a high value on Christian approaches to scholarship and on interdisciplinary dialogue, so it was a natural fit. Those attending the conference were impressed with Trinity’s commitment to Christian scholarship and by the welcoming spirit they found here.”
Students Place in Computer Programming Competition
On February 22, Trinity sent two teams of tech savvy students to the 27th Annual Computer Programming Competition sponsored by the Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area (ACCA). One of those teams, comprising Michael Lautermilch ’15 of Lockport, Illinois; Brian Haak ’14 of Zeeland, Michigan; Spencer Ten Haken ’15, and Lucas Vanderwal ’15, finished 2nd place in the competition. Team 2--Ben Pausma ’15 of Melvin, Iowa; and Asma Abdelqader ’14 of Chicago--finished in 7th place.
Meet the 2014 Founders' Scholars
Trinity Christian College is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2014 Founders’ Scholarship.
Congratulations to Morgan De Ruiter of Pella, Iowa, and Katie Oomkes of Grand Rapids, Michigan!
President's Blog: Anticipating Summer Changes
Like many, I’m looking ahead to the summer with a variety of emotions. Our soon-to-be graduates are finishing the work required for the semester while eagerly anticipating Commencement. They also anxiously await news about jobs or graduate school placement.
Graduation signals a time of exciting new challenges, while realizing that it is also a time of goodbyes to people who have come to mean so much over the years. Our faculty are thinking ahead to writing projects and research activities that they will step more fully into during the summer months, yet they are focused on a strong finish to all of the tasks they need to complete this semester—and particularly making the best use of the remaining classroom time and the grading process that stretches on ahead.
I, too, am anticipating many changes this summer, for the Christian Reformed Church in North America (CRCNA) has nominated me to be their next Executive Director. This nomination awaits final approval at action at CRCNA’s annual Synod gathering in June. Anticipating approval, this means that I’ll be stepping into a challenging and significant role for a denomination of a quarter of a million members with churches across the U.S. and Canada and with ministries of word and deed around the globe. Stepping into that role means that I’ll conclude my 11 years as Trinity’s president in July. I am fully confident that Trinity’s Board of Trustees, campus leaders, faculty, staff, and students will continue to flourish in the weeks, months, and years ahead, for God has and will continue to bless Trinity!
But it’s not summer yet! It’s not even spring here in Chicago. So please stay tuned; I will continue to offer glimpses of Trinity by means of this blog and, in a few weeks, I will also be able to provide updates about the search the Board will undertake for Trinity’s next president.
A Call to Excellence for English Majors: Photogallery
English major Anna DeBoer ’16 recently attended the annual English Department Graduate Student Conference held in honor of Professor Emeritus Dr. Daniel Diephouse. She shares her experience of the event in the story below.
This Valentine’s Day, Trinity’s English Department celebrated higher education with its fourth English Graduate Student Conference. The two-day event began Friday, February 14, and featured presentations by alumni, a conference writing workshop, and dinner. Saturday’s events included a brunch and discussion centered around current Trinity students considering graduate school.
As a whole, the conference acts as an encouragement to students, demonstrating ways in which we can use a degree in English. On an individual level, it encourages us to be advocates of our own thinking and writing, to go beyond what we think we can do. It is a call to excellence.
It encourages us to be advocates of our own thinking and writing, to go beyond what we think we can do. It is a call to excellence.
- Anna DeBoer ’16
Friday afternoon, I walked into the conference room. I saw many familiar faces—classmates and professors. There were a few others who were not so familiar—the graduates who had come back to demonstrate to us the benefits of continued education.
Professor VanderWeele acted as host of the conference, which he said got its start as a “gift” from faculty in honor of Dr. Dan Diephouse, professor emeritus of English, at his retirement. He said he hopes other events will follow this event, the fourth Diephouse conference. He introduced Diephouse to the students and also noted Professor Jones’ involvement in planning the event.
Next, he introduced the graduates for the first round of presentations. Natalia Wegrzyniak ’11, in the midst of her master’s degree work at Governor State University, read her paper on Tony Harrison’s poem “V.”
Listening to Wegrzyniak’s in-depth analysis of a poem she is passionate about reminded me of all the writings that have inspired me. Her presentation spoke to us undergraduates about more than the paper’s thesis; it also served as a reminder to take the material we have been inspired by and to simply write.
Next, alumnus and Trinity adjunct professor Tim Hendrickson ’96, began with a challenge: “Come up with big ideas. Write outside of class, outside of what your teacher tells you to write.” Hendrickson recently earned his Ph.D. at Northern Illinois University.
Other alumni presenters included Elyse Lamszus ’08 and Allison Backous-Troy ’07. The weekend included a time of reading, writing, critique, and discussion.
Student Photos Selected for Best College Photography 2014
For five consecutive years, students from Associate Professor Ellen Browning’s photography class have been selected by Photography Forum Magazine to be published in The Best College Photography of 2014.
This year, Trinity recognizes the accomplishments of Kaleb Dean ’14 of Caldwell, Idaho, and Rebecca Vanderzee ’14 of Dyer, Indiana, whose work was reviewed and selected by professional photographers in the field.
Photo credit: Kaleb Dean
Photo credit: Rebecca Vanderzee
The Best College Photography 2014 contest is co-sponsored by Nikon and Sony and had over 16,000 entries from the United States and Canada. This hardcover publication will include these students’ work and will be distributed to college libraries, instructors of photography, and artist and designers worldwide.
Alumnus and CEO First Speaker in Inaugural Business Event
Cal Tameling ’72, CEO of SET Environmental, answered questions about his faith and career journey at the first “Conversations on Leadership” event at Trinity on February 17. This was the first in a series of discussions sponsored by the College’s business department.
Tameling, interviewed by Professor of Business Lynn White, discussed preparing for leadership, founding a business, and giving back to the community.
Tameling graduated from Trinity in 1972 with a degree in Sociology. Although unsure of his path, his relationship with Christ remained strong throughout his studies. “My desire was to serve God in whatever way I could,” he said when asked his initial career goals. “The title of your degree doesn’t define your work for Christ.”
Through his time at Trinity, Tameling learned how to develop a well-rounded, Christ-centered way of thinking. His professors prepared him for understanding “Kingdom building” in different vocations and helped him discover his gifts and abilities. He accepted a partnership at his family business after graduating and worked there for five years before starting SET Environmental in 1979.
SET Environmental is a chemical waste disposal service, operating under a motto of “integrity, innovation, and excellence.”
What sets this company apart from others are the principles which guide all employees and activities, said Tameling. He aims to hire men and women of character and ensures the ethics of the business are clearly communicated to prospective hires. “I provide the framework for my company. We have a code of conduct which reflects my values,” said Tameling.
Tameling also experienced times of hardship throughout his career. But he explained that his failures taught him more than his successes, and he encouraged students to surround themselves with supportive Christian communities for such difficult times.
Continuing the conversations with students
The “Conversations on Leadership” series, sponsored by the Leadership Committee, is designed to inspire current students to succeed by using their gifts and implementing faith in the workplace. Many students and faculty alike walked away from the seminar with fresh ideas about Kingdom building in the fields of business and entrepreneurship.
Catherine White ’15 of Orland Park, Illinois, an accounting major with an entrepreneurship minor, aspires to become a CPA and work for an international business after graduation.
She said, “At an event like this, you have the opportunity to ask someone who is extremely successful in their career about tactics, advice, or even assistance for the future. It is a great way to network and also to gain knowledge.”
Assistant Professor of Business Kyle Harkema also attended the discussion. As a former entrepreneur, Harkema was very appreciative of Tameling’s story.
“The temptation to sacrifice your Christian standards of business conduct are tested when faced with difficult financial times in your business,” said Harkema, “that is why it is so important for the students to hear from accomplished professionals regarding how they were able to navigate these tough times without sacrificing their integrity as Christian business people.”
Jacob Tiemersma ’14 of South Holland, Illinois, helped organize Monday’s event. As part of the Leadership Committee, Tiemersma recognizes the importance of Christian leadership in business. “Work is fulfilling our call to be workers for the Kingdom of God,” he said. “We must perform our work knowing that God’s eye is always on us. We work for him, not for ourselves.”
Tameling’s interview was the first of five conversations in the “Conversations on Leadership” series.
Upcoming Conversations on Leadership
- Monday, March 31, 10 a.m., Fireside Room – Karen Bushy, former trustee and president of the Village of Oak Brook and CEO, Memories & Beyond, will be interviewed by Professor Todd Barre
- Monday, April 14, 10 a.m., Fireside Room – John Venhuizen, CEO, ACE Hardware, will be interviewed by President Steve Timmermans
- Monday, May 5, 10 a.m., CL215 – Jack Van Namen, Director of Sales, KBC Direct Floral Programs, will be interviewed by Professor Rick Hamilton
Trinity Launches Accelerated Bachelor’s in Psychology Program – Info Session
Building on the success of its strong traditional undergraduate and graduate studies psychology programs, Trinity is launching a psychology degree-completion program through the Adult Studies department.
In Trinity’s accelerated program, adult students:
- apply their previous college credit
- attend classes once a week
- finish a bachelor’s degree in psychology in two years
Through the accelerated Adult Studies psychology program, students develop the theoretical insight and professional skills needed to serve in a variety of psychology-related careers and professions or to enter graduate study. Students who wish to work as Licensed Professional Counselors can continue on to earn a master’s degree through Trinity’s Graduate Studies Counseling Psychology program.
Learn more on March 26
Prospective students interested in learning more about Trinity’s Adult Studies psychology program are invited to attend an information session on Wednesday, March 26, at 6 p.m. Register online at adultstudies.trnty.edu or by calling Trinity Christian College at 708.239.4768.
A community of learners
The program, structured around a cohort model, brings students into a dynamic and exciting community focused on the science of psychology and its many applications to professional experiences.
“Adult learners at Trinity develop strong, supportive relationships with instructors who are caring, competent, and committed to student success,” said Dr. Michael DeVries, professor of psychology. “As a professor and clinician, I am careful to integrate Christian perspective with established psychological science.”
New Master’s Program--Special Education LBS II –Info Session
Trinity Christian College has announced the launch of a new Graduate Studies program, scheduled to begin in fall 2014 at the Palos Heights campus.
Licensed teachers with an LBS I endorsement can enroll in the Master of Arts in Special Education LBS II program. Students can earn a master’s degree, an LBS II Behavior Intervention Specialist endorsement on their teaching license, and Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) certification in less than two years.
The professional benefits
Students completing the program will be qualified to teach in a variety of educational settings, serving students with low incidence disabilities and students on the Autism Spectrum ages 3-22. In addition, they will be prepared to serve as Behavior Intervention Specialists in a variety of special education or general education settings.
Trinity’s unique program prepares students to test to earn their BCBA certification. Teachers with BCBA certificates can conduct descriptive and systematic behavioral assessments, including functional analyses, and design and supervise behavior analytic interventions.
Ready to learn more?
A Graduate Studies information session on Wednesday, March 19, at 6 p.m. will provide more information on this new program. Prospective students may register online at graduatestudies.trnty.edu or call Trinity’s Graduate Studies office at 708.239.3900.
Interim Offers New Trip to Holy Land: Photogallery
“The Bible in Its World”, a new overseas trip to the Holy Land, took 19 students to Israel where they explored ancient sites and hiked over Israel’s rugged terrain. Led by Instructor of Theology Emily Thomassen ’09, the course focused on biblical geography and a deeper understanding of Jesus as the fulfillment of the Old Testament.
View the New President’s Report and Photogallery for 2013
Thank you for your interest in and support of Trinity Christian College! We are happy to share with you the 2013 President’s Report, which provides four perspectives on the previous year:
A letter from the president—President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D., reflects on highlights from the past year, including the completion of the DeVos Athletics and Recreation Center and excellent College rankings.
A financial review—The College offers an overview of the 2012-13 Financial Report’s Sources of Funds and Uses of Funds.
The Year in Review in photographs—The College looks back on 2013 to remember and give thanks for the countless blessings on students, professors, staff, and alumni.
A list of donor friends—The College thanks and acknowledges donors.
Ways to Serve: Local Organizations Tell Students How
Representatives from local ministries and organizations visited the psychology classes of Dr. Mary Lynn Colosimo on January 30 to share the many service opportunities available to students.
Completing service hours is required in some classes, such as those taught by Colosimo. Each year hundreds of Trinity students log thousands of volunteer hours locally and abroad through classes and clubs and during the two-week January Interim and spring break.
Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day: Photogallery
Dr.Brad Breems, professor of sociology, delivered the address “Martin Luther King Jr., Beyond the Man, the Dream, the Day.”
Breems emphasized that Christians, believing the understanding of love as defined in Scripture, can never claim ignorance to another person’s struggle.
“We are all related,” said Breems, “and we neglect others at our peril. If we love God, we must love others.”
As part of the celebration, remarks on King’s stance on non-violence were offered by Tabitha Matthews, coordinator of community services and pre-college programs.
Inspirational dance and song provided a worshipful tone to the event. A praise dance was performed by Noel Huddleston ’16 of Homewood, Illinois, and the celebration closed with “Amazing Grace,” sung by junior Ciara Deal of Bolingbrook, Illinois.
The annual celebration is sponsored by the Office of Ethnic Diversity and the Ethnic Diversity Committee.
Expanding Worldview through Interim: Photogalleries
The two-week Interim program Trinity offers each year between semesters has proven to be a successful extension of the learning environment. Locally and abroad, students choose from more than 25 options of special interest classes, trips, and service opportunities.
Far and away
A new overseas course was introduced this year as 19 students, led by Emily Thomassen ’09, instructor of theology, traveled to Israel where they toured the Holy Land, exploring ancient sites and hiking over Israel’s rugged terrain.
Read the blog posts for details on some of these day-to-day experiences.
Cool classes on campus, too!
A wide variety of on-campus classes was offered, including Chicago’s Role in Contemporary Theatre, Conspiracy Theories, and Rock Climbing, which was available for the first time and employed the new climbing wall in the DeVos Center for initial lessons in technique.
Check out the photo galleries for these other Interim courses:
Origami, the art of Japanese paper folding
Volunteer service at Restoration Ministries
Music Alumna Serves in New Leadership Role
The day before Lori (Smits) Evenhouse ’05 graduated with her music degree from Trinity, she signed a contract to teach at Parker Junior High School in Flossmoor, Illinois.
Nine years later, she continues to teach music to her junior high students and takes on an additional role in the world of music as Junior/Senior General Music Division Vice President of the Illinois Music Education Association. The mission of the association is to promote lifelong music learning and to provide leadership for music education.
In this role, Evenhouse will focus on growing the field of music for teachers, including opportunities for professional development and dissemination of information on trends in music education. She leads a council of nine teachers from various districts in Illinois who meet throughout the year to plan ways to support schools in developing music programs.
In addition, Evenhouse oversees planning of the Illinois Music Education Conference in Peoria, held this year in January. The conference features keynote speakers, various sessions, concerts, and a recital performed by the winners of the student composition contest that saw 150 entries in 15 categories.
It’s all one experience.
Evenhouse said the early opportunities to be involved as a Trinity freshman in leadership roles prepared her for future leadership. She said that preparation, as well as the mentoring from professors, are unique to Trinity.
“After graduation, I had the confidence to take on leadership roles in education,” said Evenhouse, also noting the holistic approach to education at Trinity.
“A Trinity, education is interconnected. There are not different spheres of learning; the academic, spiritual, and social are all one experience.”
New Webpage Features Alumni Success Stories
One way for current and prospective students to get a glimpse into the future is through the stories of Trinity graduates.
The College’s new webpage features many alumni success stories with more being added each semester. The stories showcase a variety of majors and career paths that alumni have pursued as they also discovered God’s calling for their lives.
If you are a current or prospective student, be inspired by these great stories and visit again as new ones will be added soon!
Integrating Art: Students Collaborate in Curriculum Creation
Many opportunities exist for Trinity students to gain hands on experience through internships. In addition, professors plan projects that offer students ways to collaborate with companies and organizations, enhancing classroom learning and providing a service to the partnering organizations.
5 Ways for High School Seniors to Make the Most of Winter Break
Hanging out with friends, earning extra money during seasonal jobs, and sleeping in may be on the list for most high school seniors during winter break.
But here are a few ways they can use some of that time off to prepare for the important months ahead.
Look for a summer job—Many students look for a summer job during spring break, but why not get a head start? You can even collect job applications from local stores while you do your holiday shopping. Fill out the applications and file them in manila envelopes until you’re ready to submit them.
Schedule a college visit—Check the websites of colleges you’re interested in and schedule a time to visit in the near future. Trinity’s next Destination Trinity visit is February 27-28, 2014. Signing up is easy!
Apply for scholarships—Trinity offers lots of scholarships to help students fund their education. If you have already been admitted to Trinity and plan to apply for scholarships, the priority deadline is January 15! Required materials should be received by this date.
File the FAFSA!—After January 1, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) becomes available at www.fafsa.gov. The FAFSA is required if you want to be considered for any need-based grants, work-study, or loans. The priority deadline is February 15, but it’s best to file as early.
Make it special—This is the last winter break before college begins and life changes dramatically. Back to that first list… Yes, hang out with friends, rest, earn extra money for college. And make the most of your time with family over the holidays!
Computer Science Students Get Creative: Photogallery
Computer science students in the Visual Programming course spent several weeks working in teams to create original projects that made use of the Microsoft Xbox 360 Kinect camera, which tracks the user’s body movements.
The projects, which involved complex coding and programming, included new kinds of interface experiences, games, and digital art. One team developed a way for a person’s hand gestures to replace the functions of the computer “mouse.” Another group created a tribute to the 1970s “PONG” video game, using their arm movements to control the game’s paddles.
The students invited various faculty and staff members to view a demonstration of their creations on December 10 in the Heritage Science Center.
Trinity Graduates First Master’s Degree Students - Photogallery
On December 14, Trinity Christian College graduated the first class of master’s degree students. A number of the students are alumni of Trinity’s undergraduate and Adult Studies programs and were pleased to have the opportunity to continue their education here.
A Christmas Message from the President
At this time of year we pause to celebrate the gift of God’s Son—a gift so radical and amazing that shepherds trembled and Herod was seized with fear. Yet, it is because of Christ’s coming that we can experience true peace and know deep and abiding joy.
From all of us at Trinity, we wish for you the peace and joy of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit this Christmas season and throughout the coming year.
Dr. Steven R. Timmermans, President
Trinity Christian College
From a simple ox’s stall came the greatest gift of all.
Children sing of peace and joy at the birth of one small boy.
Let the bells ring loud and clear, ring out now for all to hear.
Trumpets sound and voices raise in an endless stream of praise.
--from This Christmastide
Award-winning Alumnus Returns to Teach at Trinity
Philosophy and political science graduate Andrew Van’t Land ’10 enjoyed several professional achievements this fall in the form of winning a writing award and accepting a position at Trinity. As an adjunct professor, Van’t Land teaches both philosophy and political science courses.
Trinity Ranks Well in Areas of Collaborative Learning, Internships
Colleges pay close attention to the results of various national surveys that assess and rank institutions of higher education.
The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) asks first-year and senior students about a wide range of educationally purposeful activities. The recent 2013 NSSE report highlighted two specific engagement indicators of Trinity in regard to “campus environment” and “learning with peers.”
The areas noted for “significantly higher” averages when compared to other Great Lakes private schools were “Quality of Interactions” and “Collaborative Learning.” The College also considers these areas to be strengths that reflect the kind of community Trinity strives to nurture. Students continuously comment on the mentorship relationships they have with professors who deeply care not only about students’ academic success but also their social and spiritual development.
Among Trinity’s freshmen and seniors, scores showed the College ahead of comparison groups in “courses that included a community-based projects”, a High-Impact Practice (HIP). Every year, students log thousands of hours volunteering in the community and even overseas as part of on-campus courses, Interim courses, and study abroad semesters.
Additionally, Trinity seniors scored participation in field experience as the second highest performing area. 100% of Trinity students gain professional work experience through internships locally and in the global city of Chicago or deepen their understanding of their major through intense research in field education opportunities.
Taste of Asia: Photogallery
The smell of homemade Asian cuisine filled Tibstra Hall on Wednesday, November 20, at the Taste of Asia event hosted by the Asian American Alliance (AAA) and Hall Council. AAA relied on students from international backgrounds to help bring authentic dishes to the multicultural celebration.
Demographic Trends in Higher Education, Diversity Lecture
Trinity’s Diversity Lecture Series is one of the ways the College helps to develop cultural awareness and understanding within this Christian community.
The final lecture in November was presented by Dr. Terry Lindsay, associate professor and dean of diversity and intercultural programs at North Park University. Lindsay’s address, “Demographic Trends: Implication for Christian Higher Education,” focused on how Christian institutions need to be aware of and respond to swiftly changing demographics.
Sharing various graphs and statistics, Lindsay covered several topics, including immigration trends, gaps in education, high school drop-out rates, college readiness of underrepresented students, and serving the needs of diverse students.
The Diversity Lecture Series is sponsored by the Office of Ethnic Diversity and Multicultural Programs.
Education – Keeping Ahead of the Curve: Photogallery
On November 21, the Education Department hosted Keeping Ahead of the Curve in the Ozinga Chapel as part of the effort to supports students and graduates in staying updated with the many issues and reforms happening in K-12 schools.
Education students from the novice teaching General Methods Education Course were able to share their technology-focused projects with Trinity professors, alumni, and teachers from area schools. The reception allowed teacher candidates to be the experts on the technology platform they use for the project.
Nate Hendrikse ’14, of Oostburg, Wisconsin, found the event valuable for many reasons.
“As future teachers we need to be always improving in our professions and learning new things,” Hendrikse said. “It seems that there is always a new and exciting activity to use in the classroom. This event help showcase these to us.”
Attendees learned from student projects and were able to spend time with former classmates and professors before heading to the five sessions of presentations by Trinity professors, Trinity alumni, and guest speakers from the community.
In these Education events, held once a semester, the audience has typically been alumni and education students. The November 21 event included cooperating teacher and P-12 partners, and the Center for Christian Urban Education.
Rhoda Mattson, Assistant Professor of Education, was pleased to see this event grow to include more of the educational community surrounding Trinity.
“It has been exciting to work together across different parts of campus to produce great events for our community,” Mattson said.
Hendrikse noted that this event is just one of the many ways the Education Department prepares its students for their teaching careers.
“We are in the classroom starting sophomore year, so we bank a lot of hours in a wide variety of placements by the time we graduate” Hendrikse said. “Our professors also really give us good insight and examples on how to be great teachers since they are teachers themselves.”
The next Education Department event Social Thinking, will occur in February 2014, and will include collaboration between the Education Unit and Alumni office with the Center for Special Education.
Trolls Advance to National Championships
In an exciting five-set match, the volleyball team upset No. 17 Bellevue University (Nebraska) in the NAIA National Championship Opening Round on November 23. Playing on the Bruins’ home court the Trolls, who qualified for the national tournament as the conference champions, got off to a shaky start, but rallied back for the victory. After trading wins at 9-25, 26-24, 21-25, and 25-20 in the first four sets, the Trolls took the match with a 15-13 win in the deciding set.
Trinity advances, for the first-time in the program’s history, in a field of 24 teams to the 34th Annual NAIA National Championship final site in Sioux City, Iowa on December 3-7. The team will compete against No. 2 Concordia University (CA), Georgetown College (KY), and Park University (MO) in pool play on December 3-5. The top two teams from the six pools will move on to a single-elimination tournament to determine the national champion. Complete tournament information can be found at www.naia.org.
The women’s soccer team will be competing in the NCCAA National Championship at Austin-Tindall Athletic Complex in Kissimmee, Florida on December 2-7. The Trolls earned their right to advance to the national tournament with a 2-0 victory over Judson University in the North Central Region Championship game on November 20.
The No. 2 Trolls will start their national championship title quest on December 2 against No. 8 Houghton College (NY) and will continue their pool play games on December 4 against No. 5 Azusa Pacific University (CA). The pool results will determine the top four teams that advance to the championship rounds on December 5-6. Complete tournament information can be found at www.thenccaa.org.
One week after senior cross country runner Andy Reidsma claimed the individual title at the NCCAA National Championship, he took fourth place overall at the 58th Annual NAIA Men’s Cross Country Championships in Lawrence, Kansas, to become Trinity’s highest-ever individual place finisher at this national meet. Reidsma finished the 8K course in a school record time of 24:35.69 and outdistanced all but three other competitors in a field of 313 runners from 96 schools.
Also representing Trinity, Anna Bos and Jessica Disselkoen competed in the 34th Annual NAIA Women’s Cross Country Championships. Bos, who is making her third NAIA appearance, finished in 75th place of the 319 runners and Disselkoen, in her first NAIA national race, took 122th place.
Read the full stories and follow the trolls on the Athletics Homepage
Conference Brings Student Writing out of the Classroom
English major Ethan Holmes ’16 was chosen to represent Trinity at the competitive Streamlines Conference on November 9 at University of Dubuque in Dubuque, Iowa. The Streamlines Conference provides a place for undergrads to gather and share recent, high-quality academic or creative writing.
Holmes valued the exchange of ideas and growing experience that Streamlines provided.
“Having the opportunity to talk to professors about subjects both they and I were interested in and studied was a real blessing, a privilege,” Holmes said. “The students’ papers also set my mind in some directions that will end up being useful for me somewhere down the road.”
Holmes presented two papers, both originally submitted for Trinity English courses. The first argued that Hemingway wrote The Sun Also Rises paralleling the character relationships in the biblical story of Jacob and Esau. The second looks at Ralph Ellison’s use of color in Invisible Man and how he uses it as a rhetorical device for communicating his views on issues of race and color in the United States.
Holmes has also been involved with many Trinity-related writing opportunities, including presentations of poetry and academic projects at OPUS; publication in Openings, Trinity’s literary arts magazine; articles for Trinity’s student-led newspaper, The Courier; and presentations at the St. Francis Undergraduate Conference on English Language and Literature.
Art Visit Days Welcomes High School Art Students: Photogallery
On November 14-15, 25 high school art students traveled from down the street and as far as Colorado to take part in Trinity’s annual Art Visit Days.
The event gave students the opportunity to learn more about Trinity’s art and design program and visit the campus and art facilities. Students also got a taste of college life and the Chicago art scene. They were hosted overnight by Trinity art students then headed downtown to visit the Chicago’s West Loop Gallery District and the Chicago design firm Cultivate Studios.
On Thursday evening, visitors attended the Trinity art faculty exhibition and presentation, a wonderful opportunity to meet Trinity art professors who are also immersed in the art world. Visitors also viewed the work of Trinity art majors as they presented their favorite pieces during the Student Annual Review Show (SARS).
This year, high school students were encouraged to bring their own art portfolios to be considered for scholarships of up to $5,000 per year. This was an exciting opportunity for many students to have their art work critically reviewed for the first time.
As a prospective student, Trinity freshman art studio major Alivia DeHaan ’17 of Elgin, Illinois, said she wanted to see the work college students were creating when she visited campus. Not only did she have a chance to share her art with the visiting high school juniors and seniors as part of SARS, she also hosted two of the students overnight and shared more about her college experience.
“I thought about what I wanted to know as a prospective student,” she said, “and it was nice to relate to high school visitors who had an interest in art.”
Students came from Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, and Wisconsin, as well as from local high schools such as Shepard, Evergreen Park, and Glenbard North, Morton East and Illiana Christian. Illiana students were accompanied by fine art teacher Jim Kamphuis ’96, a graduate of Trinity’s art education program.
Trinity Christian College’s Art Visit Days has been a tradition that affords high school rising artists an opportunity to see the many aspects of art at the college level. For more information or to visit, contact the admissions department at 708.239.4833.
Troll Volleyball Conference Champions: Photogallery
“I love all sixteen of my teammates like I would my own sisters.”
Kaitlin Feddema ’14 of Kalamazoo, Michigan, an outside-hitter in her fourth year on the volleyball team, regards the relationships she has built with teammates as a highlight in a very successful 2013 season.
New Simulation Tool Enhances Nursing Curriculum
Nursing students at Trinity have a new learning tool that enhances the current simulation lab experience and the College’s well-respected and accredited nursing program.
T.I.G.G.E.R., the technology informatics generating and guiding education room, provides a remote space where students can observe the simulation in the lab via video and offer real-time critiques of fellow students participating in the simulation. They may also calculate drug doses to be administered, discuss other interventions that may be helpful to the “patient’s” condition, write up a caremap, and check lab values.
For example, students in the class taught by Assistant Professor of Nursing Sue Buechele may work on a pediatric simulation of an adolescent suffering appendicitis. While half of the students participate in the simulation, their classmates observe and evaluate the scenario from the TIGGER room. The groups then change places.
The TIGGER room allows more students to be actively engaged during the simulation and use critical thinking skills to evaluate the nursing interventions/care being provided by their classmates. At the end of the simulation, students and professors debrief and discuss the exercise from the points of view of active participant and observer.
Nursing students said they feel more prepared for clinicals after participating in the simulations.
Members of the Trinity Community Celebrate Special Anniversaries
Each fall, the College recognizes special milestone anniversaries of staff and faculty over that past year. Blessings on all of the members of the Trinity community!
Nancy L. Bolhuis, Admissions/Advancement, 25 years
Dr. Brad Breems, Professor of Sociology, 25 years
Dr. Sharon Robbert, Dean for Academic Planning and Effectiveness/Professor of Mathematics, 25 years
Larry Birks, Maintenance, 15 years
Nancy Kwasteniet, Director of the Office of Learning Services, 15 years
Joshua Lenarz, Women’s Soccer Coach, 15 years
Dr. Aron Reppmann, Director of New Faculty Formation/Associate Professor of Philosophy, 15 years
Dr. Lori Scrementi, Dean for Adult Studies/Director of Adult Studies Programs, 15 years
John Amis, Custodian, 10 years
Larry Boer, Director of Human Resources, 10 years
Bob Brickman, Track and Cross Country Coach, 10 years
Dr. John J. Fry, Chair/Professor of History, 10 years
Mark Hanna, Dean of Students, 10 years
Dr. Derrick L. Hassert, Chair/Professor of Psychology, 10 years
Shari Jurgens, Chair/Professor of Physical Education and Exercise Science, 10 years
Dolores Juris, Administrative Assistant to the Provost, 10 years
Kathy Laning, Graduation Auditor/Office Manager, 10 years
Karen Slager, Administrative Assistant for Development, 10 years
Dr. Barbara Timmermans, Associate Professor of Nursing, 10 years
Jim Van Schepen, Director of Security, 10 years
Andrew Voss, Lab Manager, 10 years
George Wachholz, Custodian, 10 years
Debra Wiltjer, Bookstore Assistant, 10 years
Tippi Price, Access Librarian, 10 years (not pictured)
In the spring 2013 issue of TRINITY, we featured Dr. Steve Timmermans, who celebrated his 10th anniversary as Trinity’s president. Read more about this milestone in the College’s history.
Trinity Class Benefits from Close Proximity to Chicago
Having Chicago’s resources nearby helps Trinity professors incorporate experiential learning into their course work. Darren Zancan, assistant professor of communication arts, uses Trinity’s proximity to Chicago to give students in his public relations course the opportunity to connect with professionals in the area.
Zancan often asks himself, “What do my students really need to be prepared for the next step in their lives?”
In his attempt to answer that question, Zancan has made good use of Chicago’s resources this fall, his first semester of teaching at Trinity. Throughout the semester, Zancan brought in four experts from various positions in the public relations field, and held two field trips to public relations firms in downtown Chicago: Green Target and Alpaytac.
Along with providing networking and learning opportunities, Zancan hopes to inspire his students.
“Having speakers, going on field trips, and doing class projects are just a few ways to give students more of the hands-on learning,” Zancan said. “Stories from professionals and the work they do resonates with students and encourages them in regard to their future.”
Students in the course agree that they benefit greatly from these outside-the-classroom experiences. The stories from one person’s time in the field become available to all as a resource.
Vicki Drenth, a junior business communications major Palos Heights commented on the value of using Chicago’s resources.
“You get to see hands-on what PR actually looks like,” Drenth said. “It’s not just sitting in a classroom listening to what PR could be, it’s going to a firm and seeing with your own eyes what it is like.”
Students learn from hearing the highlights and challenges that come with the field and gain more insight into what type of work they might do in a public relations career.
Internships Lead to Jobs for Trinity Grads—New Issue of TRINITY
That means every single student gains professional on-the-job experience or delves deeper into a chosen major through a special research project. Many students find that these opportunities not only add to a resume but lead directly to employment after graduation.
More than 80% of employers want new grads they hire to have completed a formal internship.
A recent article at TIME reported the results of a Harris Interactive survey of college students and hiring managers. According to the article, “more than 80% of employers want new grads they hire to have completed a formal internship.”
In addition, while 44% of students who don’t complete internships feel ready for the job market, 58% of students with unpaid internships and 70% of students with paid internships feel prepared for the workplace.
The fall edition of TRINITY magazine highlights stories about the internship and research experiences of current students as well as alumni.
Read Career Ready, Life Ready, the fall 2013 edition of TRINITY magazine!
Future Teachers Gain Valuable Experience
Trinity education majors develop their knowledge of teaching both inside and outside of the college classroom. For them, the “outside the classroom” experience often places them in an elementary or high school classroom with internship opportunities for student observation, teacher aiding, and student teaching.
Education majors are required to spend 200 hours in the classroom even before student teaching. They begin observing in classrooms as early as sophomore year, a process that helps them decide early if they are on the right career path.
For elementary and special education double-major Kari LeGrand ’15 of Glen Ellyn, Illinois, her placement at Elim Christian School helped fulfill the required hours of teacher aiding. To LeGrand, the high school placement has been much more than just achieving the 50 hours before semester’s end.
“Being placed at Elim has opened my eyes to a new approach to teaching,” said LeGrand. “I enjoy being at Elim so much, because the main focus is to be positive and encourage their students. The staff has this common understanding that makes teaching more cohesive and the environment very friendly.”
One goal of this Trinity-Elim partnership is to provide students with a variety of classroom experiences. LeGrand spent two semesters at local public schools, one in 2nd grade general classroom and another in an 8th grade resource room.
“I think it’s extremely important to get a wide range of experiences, including multiple classroom settings,” LeGrand said. “My time spent at Elim has taught me how to manage a classroom, what strategies work best, how to touch on every student’s goals, and how to build relationships within a staff.
A second goal of partnering with Elim is to provide the school with volunteers who are eager to serve and learn in the classroom and apply what they’ve been learning in their course work.
LeGrand is grateful for the supportive Trinity education professors who have prepared her for classroom experience with advice and encouragement beyond the required course work.
“Since the very first education course I took, I have been educated on how to act professionally, how to get involved, and how to make the most of the content that I learn in my classes,” LeGrand said. “The part that I love most about teacher aiding at Elim is working one on one with students or in groups. I find it extremely rewarding to be able to encourage them throughout the day, and in turn, witness these students learning new skills and concepts.”
Children and Trinity's Future Teachers Learn From Each Other
On a recent visit for grade school students from Steger, Illinois, the pre-K through fourth graders from Foundations for Advancement enjoyed a special tour and lunch and engaged in learning activities with Trinity students from the education program.
While the future teachers gain experience in putting the classroom methods into action, both Trinity students and elementary students benefit from the interaction. Another benefit for the Steger students was the chance to see college attendance as an accessible goal.
The emphasis on collaboration in education today cannot be emphasized enough.
- Rebecca Harkema
Rebecca Harkema ’05, assistant professor of special education, was happy for the opportunity to have her students spend valuable time with the young visitors from Steger, the town where she taught previously.
“The emphasis on collaboration in education today cannot be emphasized enough,” said Harkema. “Teacher candidates need to be able to go out into the field with experience for the benefit of students they are working with.”
Harkema believes her students sharpened in the following skills through their interactions:
- differentiating instruction for a variety of age levels
- making instructional decisions in the moment
- co-teaching and collaborating with peers for the benefit of student learning
As a Trinity alumna, Harkema recalls her past to help her prepare students today.
“I am passionate about special education, and the fact that I get to prepare future teachers to work with students with disabilities is amazing,” Harkema said. “Trinity’s education program prepared me so well that I want to make sure the students that I am teaching leave our program just as prepared as I was.”
Sunday Snacks Provides More than Food
Every week, Trinity’s Sunday Snacks volunteers come together on Sunday afternoons to stuff their backpacks full of homemade sack lunches. They pile into 12-passenger vans and head into Chicago, seeking out the homeless.
Sunday Snacks partners with Restoration Ministries to be the hands and feet of Christ. Student leader Alyssa Prasse ’16 of Algonquin, Illinois, explained that in their ventures downtown, she and her fellow students pack around 80 lunches and often come back with nothing left over.
Sunday Snacks seeks to go beyond providing physical comfort and also offers prayer for those who request it.
“I come back blessed every week,” Prasse said. “The men and women we help are often overlooked, and sometimes the simple act of remembering them, calling them by name, and knowing what they asked for in prayer last week can make them feel valued as humans.”
In upcoming weeks, Sunday Snacks will be supplying people with winter coats collected from the recent coat drive.
Sunday Snacks welcomes any Trinity student who feels called to serve on Sunday trips downtown.
WorldView Series Concludes with “Sex and the Soul”
The fourth and final 2013 WorldView event, “Sex and the Soul” by author Donna Freitas, drew an intergenerational audience, including many college students, professors, and community members.
Freitas shared the results of her extensive research project, which included conducting hundreds of interviews and polling thousands of students in four college categories: evangelical, Catholic, public, and nonreligious private. Her research found that evangelical Christian college students differ from the other colleges on the connection between sexuality and spirituality.
Freitas explained the “hook-up” culture that dominates many college campuses, mainly those outside of the evangelical category. While students in the other categories appear to be “training themselves” to be ambivalent about sex, said Freitas, students in evangelical colleges consistently consider sexuality within the framework of their faith and religion.
Findings from Freitas’ research are based on 2600 online surveys, 112 in-person interviews, and 108 journals.
- 37% of evangelical college students said that chastity is valued on campus, compared with 0% of all other college types.
- 36% of non-evangelical college students said they were “fine” with hook-ups, though few said hooking up made them happy.
- 45% of students at Catholic and 36% at nonreligious private and public schools say their peers are too casual about sex.
- Of participants from Catholic, public, and nonreligious private schools, 41% of the students hooking up felt profoundly upset about their behavior.
About Donna Freitas
Donna Freitas is the author of Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance and Religion on America's College Campuses, published by Oxford University Press in 2008. Her follow-up title is The End of Sex (Basic Books).
Freitas has written for The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and Newsweek, and she has appeared on NPR, “The Today Show,” and other news media outlets.
Freitas has been a professor at Boston University in the department of religion and also at Hofstra University in their Honors College. She also writes children’s novels for Scholastic, Harper Collins, and FSG. She lives in Brooklyn.
Lincoln Laureate Recipient Announced: Megan Anderson '14
Megan Anderson ’14 of Elgin, Illinois, has been named Trinity’s 28th Lincoln Laureate by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. She was honored at the annual Student Laureate Convocation in Springfield on November 2 and accompanied by her parents Roger and Kim Anderson and Dr. Craig Mattson, professor of communication arts and director of the Honors Program.
Colloquium Celebrates Interdisciplinary Research
The Fireside Room overflowed with a scholarly audience on October 31 for Trinity’s first-ever Spenser Colloquium. Through the reading of research papers and light-hearted improvisation, students from five Trinity classes and three disciplines celebrated their recent study of The Faerie Queene, the epic poem by Edmund Spenser.
Dr. Bob Rice, professor emeritus of history, served as a spirited moderator. Rice explained the faculty’s goals for the colloquium: educational richness grown by student-faculty combined research, the taking up of texts with Christian hopefulness, interdisciplinary study leading to deeper understanding, and a faithful religious response to the world. Laughter and refreshments were added benefits.
Drs. Mark Jones, professor of English; Dr. Aron Reppmann, associate professor of philosophy; and Dr. Keith Starkenburg, associate professor of theology, worked throughout the summer to prepare their discipline-specific research papers in response to The Faerie Queene.
Their research challenged students to see the same work through three different lenses as they presented:
- “Arthur and Socrates in Faerieland,” by Professor Reppmann
- “Guyon, Knight of Temperance; or, Sir Not Appearing in This Poem,” by Professor Jones
- “Calvinists Who Might Best Be: Edmund Spenser and a Reformed Habit of Being,” by Professor Starkenburg
“The colloquium was the sort of rich, interdisciplinary collaboration that I think could happen only at a place like Trinity,” said Dr. Jones said. “I was pleased to be part of a scholarly conversation involving faculty and students from three different disciplines—not to mention staff members who attended and participants from the Honors Program.”
The event was funded through a collaborative initiative grant from the professional development committee, which hopes the event fostered deeper understanding through inter-disciplinary studies.
Moving into the World House, Campus Diversity
In her October 28 Diversity Lecture Series address, guest speaker Dr. Rebecca Hernandez of Goshen College said that in order for colleges to truly become more diverse, they need to push beyond hospitality and the “host-guest” relationship with students and embrace a new metaphor, that of an intercultural “world house.”
Hernandez, the associate dean for intercultural development and educational partnerships at Goshen, emphasized the diversity of God’s family and the “many rooms” that exist in the Father’s house.
She said that if colleges invite diversity but students don’t accept the invitation then institutional change needs to happen. Such changes may include tying a vision of diversity to the college’s mission, focusing on hiring, and recognizing the critical roles of leaders who can serve as change agents, although encouraging diversity is the ongoing work of the entire community.
The next lecture
The final lecture this year will be held on Monday, November 18, at 10 a.m. in the Grand Lobby. The College will welcome Dr. Terry Lindsay as he speaks about Diversity on Campus.
The Diversity Lecture Series is open to the public and sponsored by Trinity’s Office of Ethnic Diversity and Multicultural Programs.
WorldView Series Educates and Inspires
Another year and another successful WorldView series educates, entertains, and inspires hundreds at Trinity Christian College.
Screwtape in Person
Actor Tom Key starred in a unique one-man play, “Screwtape in Person,” in the Marg Kallemeyn Theatre on October 7. Key’s performance brought C.S. Lewis’s book, The Screwtape Letters, to life, giving audience members a look at humanity from the perspective of hell. This was Key’s second performance at Trinity. As part of the 2010 WorldView Series, Key performed “C.S. Lewis on Stage.”
115 Voices Raised
The Apollo Chorus, the premier volunteer chorus of the Chicagoland area, performed October 14. The group of more than 115 members entertained and inspired a full house of Trinity students, faculty, staff, and community members. The audience enjoyed several pieces based on poetry and selections from the Messiah.
“Trinity is like a tree trunk.”
Reverend Brenda Girton-Mitchell, J.D., director of the Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the U.S. Department of Education, discussed the importance of service, at her WorldView presentation on October 21.
“Trinity is like a tree trunk, and others are like branches helping to serve the community,” said Girton-Mitchell, in reference to the College’s participation in the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge. For more than two years, Trinity students and students from local Muslim faith communities have worked side by side on improvements to the Cal Sag Trail.
Sex and the Soul
Donna Freitas, author of Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance and Religion on America's College Campuses, shared the results of her extensive research project, which included conducting hundreds of interviews and polling thousands of students in evangelical, Catholic, public, and nonreligious private colleges.
While students in the other categories appear to be “training themselves” to be ambivalent about sex, said Freitas, students in evangelical colleges consistently consider sexuality within the framework of their faith and religion.
Service Is Key for Rev. Brenda Girton-Mitchell and Trinity
Reverend Brenda Girton-Mitchell, J.D., director of the Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the U.S. Department of Education, discussed the importance of service, at her WorldView presentation on October 21.
Girton-Mitchell provides leadership to help meet the goal of engaging community-based organizations, both faith-based and secular in building a culture of high expectations and support for education. She also works as part of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships to implement its mission in cooperation with the Centers for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships at 12 other federal agencies.
Trinity’s participation in the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge is part of that collaborative initiative. For more than two years, Trinity students and students from local Muslim faith communities have worked side by side on improvements to the Cal Sag Trail.
“In the act of working together, you build relationships you may never have built because you find a common denominator,” said Girton-Mitchell.
She explained that in the first two years of the challenge, campuses reported that over 100,000 students and 250,000 staff, faculty, and community members participated in interfaith service initiatives. The work of Trinity students was part of the more than 152 million hours reported.
“Trinity is like a tree trunk,” said Girton-Mitchell, “and others are like branches helping to serve the community.”
New Degree Agreement to Benefit Transfer Students
A new agreement between Trinity and Moraine Valley Community College provides a seamless path for students planning to transfer to Trinity.
The Trinity-Moraine Admissions Collaboration (T-MAC) Agreement, signed by Trinity’s President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D., and Moraine’s President Sylvia Jenkins, Ph.D. on October 23, offers transfer students a choice of collaborative program options in addition to other benefits, including:
Nursing Students Prepare for Clinicals
Before sending junior nursing students into their first professional clinicals, the nursing department held its annual Commitment to Caring Ceremony on October 14 in the Grand Lobby.
The chairperson of the department, Dr. Joyce Azzaline, opened the ceremony with a welcome in which she challenged the students to see their careers from the perspective of their service to Christ and to “use their hands and hearts for his work.”
Alumna Natalie Buikema ’09 shared her nursing experience over the past four years. She acknowledged that each student would be called to serve in a unique way, and that the ability to fulfill that call comes from God. “Each one of you has something special—and different—to give. God will be your strength, your knowledge, and your comfort in times when you need it.”
Joanna Wigboldy, a representative of the Chaplain’s office, explained the importance of touch as a way to connect and communicate with others. Wigboldy emphasized Jesus’ ministry and the way it modeled how touch can be a source of healing.
After the addresses, students and professors gathered in small circles around the room and joined hands as a blessing was given over the students and the work of their hands.
SALT Breakfast Club Supports Charities: Photogallery
Participants in Trinity’s Seasoned Adult Learning at Trinity (SALT) spent the morning of October 8 learning about a growing local charity. The event was held in the Van Namen Recital Hall and was part of the new SALT Breakfast Club.
SALT program development coordinator, Ruth De Bruyn, designed the SALT Breakfast Club to help introduce members to the many organizations that need support and give members an opportunity to serve in their communities.
“Senior citizens tend to be the forgotten generation, yet they have a deep desire to be purposeful and to continue to remain active in society,” De Bruyn said. “There are many wonderful organizations and missions that are looking for people with time to volunteer, and seniors can fill this need.”
Guest speaker Doreen DeBoer, of Tinley Park, Illinois, founded All God’s People after seeing the needs of the homeless in downtown Chicago. The charity provides more than 200 homeless people with a meal once a month, clothing, haircuts, and basic hygienic supplies, and seeks to let the love of Christ be evident to those they serve. Through these actions, DeBoer hopes that All God’s People will enrich lives, build relationships, and create opportunity.
DeBoer received so many clothing donations that her basement storage area was no longer sufficient. Her daughter nominated her for “Kevin Grace Save My Space,” a special segment on Chicago’s ABC 7 daytime show “Windy City Live.” DeBoer won, and received an updated storage and preparation area to help her continue the work she does with All God’s People.
Professor Susan Buechele, assistant professor of nursing, volunteers with All God’s People and feels blessed through her time serving the homeless. “We pray with those that are going through an especially rough time and try to encourage them,” said Buechele. “I deeply value the work Doreen started because through this ministry Christ’s love has been shown to so many people in need.”
In the time since the breakfast, many SALT members have spent time sorting donations for All God’s People.
Visit http://allgodspeoplechicago.org/ for more information on how to volunteer.
Visit http://www.trnty.edu/au-salt.html to learn about upcoming SALT events.
English Students Learn from Alumni Mondays at 10
In the English department’s new “Mondays at 10” sessions, students in English 103 with Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English, are learning from the experiences of Trinity alumni who have brought writing from the classroom into their various careers. English faculty hope to reinforce that good writing skills benefit students as they enter any career field and can open up opportunity for job advancement.
In planning Mondays at 10, Vander Weele sought to bring other voices into perspective for students, while deepening the thinking on how writing has an impact on a career path. By inviting alumni to share their post-graduation experiences, the department gives current students a glance into how the skills fostered at Trinity will serve them in their vocations.
The final session on October 21 in the Marg Kallemeyn Theatre welcomed alumna Bethany Eizenga ’11 who spoke on “Writing for Others.” She discussed the senior project “Voices of Redemption,” a book she co-authored with Monica Brands ’11.
The three previous sessions included the following speakers and topics:
- Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’98, professor of social work, and Dr. Abby Schrotenboer, assistant professor of biology, spoke on “The Importance of Place.”
- Assistant Professor of Business Rick Riddering and alumnus Russ Hollander ’71 discussed “Writing in the Professions.”
- Attorney David De Jong ’73 lectured on “What do we learn from story?” and discussed how his skill in writing helped advance his career in the law profession.
Apollo Chorus Performs in WorldView Series: Photogallery
The Apollo Chorus, the premier volunteer chorus of the Chicagoland area, performed at Trinity’s Ozinga Chapel on Monday, October 14, as part of Trinity’s 2013 WorldView Series. The group of more than 115 members performed for an audience of nearly 700 Trinity students, faculty, staff, and community members.
The audience enjoyed several pieces based on poetry and selections from the Messiah. In a look forward to its spring concert, the chorus sang an all-voice version of “Eleanor Ribgy” by the Beatles.
About the choir
The Apollo Chorus is rooted in bringing people together. In the Great Chicago Fire, many ethno-specific choruses lost their practice halls. The Apollo Chorus welcomed singers from a variety of religions, creeds, and occupations, and they still value that diversity today.
The Apollo Chorus has sung Handel’s Messiah every year at Christmas time since 1879. Their dedication to producing high-quality performances has earned them the honor of being featured in several television recordings and live performance collaborations.
Live WYLL Broadcast on Campus Features Students
As part of its fall tour, Chicago’s Christian talk radio station WYLL 1160 AM visited campus on October 10 in the Art and Communication Center. On air personality Karl Clauson interviewed students and professors during the two-hour program about their Trinity experiences and the benefits of a Trinity education.
Let Them Eat Cake!
Is someone at Trinity having a birthday? Do you want to say “I love you” or “I’m thinking of you”? Say it with cake!
The Trinity Women’s Organization (formerly Trinity Women’s Guild) offers a unique service to friends and families wanting to provide a special treat to students or other members of the Trinity community.
The Trinity Women’s Organization will deliver special occasion cakes or cookie cakes on campus. The $25 price includes delivery and a card in which the giver will be acknowledged or may remain anonymous. Proceeds from the sales help support Trinity’s scholarship fund.
Join the Trinity Women’s Organization (TWO)
All women—from recent graduates to moms and grandmothers of students to staff members—are welcome to join the Trinity Women’s Organization. Meetings are held at 7:30 p.m. on the first Tuesday of the month in the 2nd floor lounge of Alumni Hall. Thank you!
Jubilation! and Dedication of the DeVos Center: Photogallery
On October 4, Trinity Christian College’s annual Jubilation! fundraiser also served as a dedication service for the newly completed and recently renamed DeVos Athletics and Recreation Center (previously the Trinity Athletics and Recreation Complex). A special chapel service during the afternoon began the day of dedication celebration that was followed by Homecoming on Saturday.
The name of the center honors the generous support provided by Richard and Helen DeVos. Through their Foundation, Richard and Helen seek to donate based on their Christian faith and their responsibility as stewards of the financial resources God has given them.
Phase I began in June 2010 and included the construction of a spectacular new competition gymnasium, a human performance lab, a training room, locker rooms, classrooms, and offices for the athletics department. Phase II, completed in May 2013, involved remodeling of the original Mitchell Memorial Gymnasium into a sleek and beautiful new space for practice, fitness, and learning.
In addition to serving as a facility for educating students in the majors and pre-professional programs offered in physical education, exercise science, sport and exercise studies, and pre-physical therapy, the center also provides vital space for the intramural and intercollegiate programs.
Recognizing project planning and work
Many have given generously of their time and financial resources to take Phase 1 and 2 of the DeVos Athletics and Recreation Center from vision to reality over the course of the past three years. At the event, the College specifically recognized Dr. George Vander Velde ’63, now retired vice president for campus development, for his guiding involvement in the visioning, planning, and construction of the center.
Also recognized were A.M.D.G. and Rockford Construction, both based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. A.M.D.G., an architectural design firm, worked with the College to create a space that integrated sports, fitness, and health with Christian education and community. Trinity selected Rockford as construction manager for both phases of the project.
Recognizing service here and abroad
The event also serves to highlight the work of alumni and friends of the College who are making a difference in their communities. The Global Service Award and the Community Service Award were presented as well. The recipients of the Global Service Award were Drs. Steve and Barbara Timmermans. Peter and Heidi Huizenga were honored with the Community Service Award.
Global Service Award
While rooted in their campus responsibilities as president and nursing professor, respectively, Steve and Barbara’s service has extended far beyond the campus. They have represented Trinity by developing partnerships with and hosting partners from faith-based universities and ministries in Africa, Asia, Central America and Europe, which has brought international students to Trinity and has given Trinity students opportunities to study in those countries. The very make-up of their family, with the adoption of Ethiopian brothers Fekadu and Getenet, stands as a personal testimony to their love for God’s greater world and its people.
Community Service Award
Peter and Heidi Huizenga’s vision for Trinity’s campus community has led to their support of improved athletic facilities at Trinity, most notably the Huizenga Fitness Center. Heidi served two terms as an active member of Trinity’s Board of Trustees, including her faithful service on the Executive Committee as vice-chair of the Board and chair of the Marketing, Admissions, and Student Development Committee. The Huizengas have also held various leadership positions with Christian educational institutions, ministries, and foundations such as Elim Christian Services and Timothy Christian Schools.
During the evening, Jubilation! guests also enjoyed the second year of a successful silent auction, which generated much interest and fundraising activity.
Homecoming Events Bring Current and Past Students Together: Photogallery
The Trinity community spent October 4-5 in celebration of Homecoming Weekend with events planned to include not only alumni but current students and the local community.
New Admissions Counselors Serve Special Demographics
This fall Trinity gains two new admissions counselors to help overseas students and students who are transferring from other in-state colleges.
A Pattern of Learning, Teaching, and Love of God and Creation
It is the same nearly every day.
Dr. Brad Breems, professor of sociology, walks along the Trinity Trail that winds through trees and brush and along the creek. The walk is no mere respite from classes or sociological research, but something more intentional.
At different points, he faces each cardinal direction, beginning with the East—where the sun rises—and his Adoration of God. This ritual prayer continues with Confession (North), Thanks (West), and Supplication (South). Although the thoughts, words, and even the setting are fluid, the pattern never changes.
Patterns, especially in societal structures, are an aspect of culture that Breems, who will retire at the close of the academic year, has studied for many years and in many places. Teaching at Trinity since 1988, he emphasizes a Christian perspective on sociology and asserts that the discipline provides people with a deeper understanding of humanity’s relationship with God—a God of order and structure who desires harmony with a disharmonious people.
As a professor, Breems notes that students function differently within the classroom structure. He explains to his students the importance of structures, such as those in government or in a campus community, and how they relate to freedom and personal choices.
In that classroom setting, he also shares with his students what he has learned through his research and travels. That research has focused on the relations among God, God’s Law-Word, normative principles, and human structural responses; the nature of ethnicity; urban development patterns, particularly the relation between industrial manufacturing and regional and neighborhood prosperity and stability; and the formation and effects of social structure. The latter was conducted primarily in South Africa, a place where Breems said “a highly industrially developed culture and more traditional cultures mingle.”
In his personal life, Breems said patterns, such as “keeping Sunday as a day for worship and family dinners,” must be carved out in the context of contemporary culture. He intentionally practices meditation and prayer, disciplines he says are crucial to his personal well-being. Trinity has been a blessing in that respect, providing a special place along the creek on the Trinity Trail for regular meditation and close contact with elements of creation.
“I do it to find solitude and traces of a less constructed creation. I also do it for privacy and for contact with weather, ecology, and beauty of the area,” said Breems. “It allows me to do a structured-yet-flexible combination of analytic thought, mediation, renewal, and affirmation of belief and knowledge, and openness to God, prayer, confession, thanksgiving, praise, and personal centering.”
This year, Breems was the recipient of the Professor of the Year award. The award recognizes the achievements of a distinguished professor who has shown excellence in teaching or scholarship. The faculty development committee chooses from nominations submitted by students, faculty, and staff. The inaugural award was presented in 2012 to Dr. Robert Rice, professor of history.
In the spring semester, Breems will be on a final sabbatical and retire at the end of the 2013-14 academic year to spend more time with his wife Helen, his children, and grandchildren, and to continue his research and writing.
In His Own Words
You are often seen cycling to campus. Is it simply a form of exercise or do you use it as an exercise in meditation, preparation for class, etc.?
“[Cycling] remains my most common way and preferred way to commute. I have a relatively short ride. It’s 6 miles to Blue Island but, with a few avoidances of busiest thoroughfare stretches, my route is almost 7 miles. I do it for all the reasons most people do: exercise, saving fuel and reducing pollution, directly experiencing the weather, trying to encourage others to enjoy this way of living.
Do you have items that you would call symbols of your profession or yourself as a person?
“I like to sometimes effect the dress of the professoriate, although there is no standard for such. I try to buy the woolen coats with patched arms that hark back to a late stage of the … dark university buildings and a time that kept profs–so poor that they had to keep them until the elbows wore out and needed a leather patch–warm in still-unheated and drafty halls. I firmly believe that also today everyone should wear warm enough clothes in winter to allow us to turn down the building heat 20 degrees. The hand-rubbing would also keep some of us awake and our laptops cooler.
“As a nod to noble tradition, I also cherish my dear leather bag, for which some steer lent me his hide, on which I have sat and slept and in which the most precious tools of my trade–paper, books, pens, and toothbrush—dangle across my back and under my arm. If I don’t lose it–as I once did, only to be returned by an angel–it will likely outlast my own skin.”
Do you like the idea of retirement?
“Yes, I spend so much time at my office that it limits time with Helen and the rest of my family. I hope to make up lost time and to enrich my relations with family, fellow worshippers at church, and community events. In addition, I will continue my research and writing. Since my formal academic connection ends with a sabbatical, I will enter retirement with the completion of analysis and publishing of my research from South Africa and my interest in the effects of globalization in general.”
Tom Key Performance Packs Kallemeyn Theatre
Actor Tom Key starred in a unique one-man play, “Screwtape in Person,” in the Marg Kallemeyn Theatre on Monday, October 7, as a part of Trinity’s WorldView Series. Key’s performance brought C.S. Lewis’s book, The Screwtape Letters, to life, giving audience members a look at humanity from the perspective of hell.
In covering Lewis’ work, Key used various dialects and mannerisms to portray the characters, bringing each to life for the audience whether or not they were familiar with the famous story. This was Key’s second performance at Trinity. As part of the 2010 WorldView Series, Key performed “C.S. Lewis on Stage.”
WorldView is an annual community and college series for film, word, and music, held on Mondays in October at 7 p.m. All events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Beth Decker at 708.293.4908.
About Tom Key
Key began serving as executive artistic director of Theatrical Outfit in 1995. He may be best known for conceiving and co-authoring the off-Broadway hit, “Cotton Patch Gospel” with the late singer-songwriter, Harry Chapin.
His performances take him across the United States and around the world. His appearances include “C.S. Lewis On Stage” and “The Revelation of John” at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Lambs Theater off Broadway, The Westwood Playhouse of Los Angeles, Dallas Theater Center, Oxford University, England, Harvard and Yale Universities.
Key has also had featured appearances on numerous television films including the award winning television series “In the Heat of the Night” and “I'll Fly Away” and the feature films “Gordy” and “The Adventures of Ociee Nash.”
Chicago Fire, Faith, and Family Event: Photogallery
The Chicago Fire’s Faith and Family Night is an annual event that draws members of the Trinity community up from Palos Heights to Toyota Park, the Chicago Fire stadium. This year students got a sneak peek at the testimony that would be shared after the game on September 14 when midfielder Wells Thompson visited campus during dinner hours to mingle with students.
Trinity’s group of tailgaters began the main event with pizza and soda, then enjoyed an exciting 3 to 2 win by Chicago over the New England Revolution, and listened to Thompson and Fire Captain Logan Pause share their testimonies.
Sophomore Brendon De Boer of Sanborn, Iowa, said, “It was great to hear the testimonies of people who don’t work in a Christian environment, but still show their faith in everyday life.”
Campus Development & Web-based Marketing Manager Nathan Laning ’06 helped plan this third year of the Trinity tailgate and is happy with the way the event fosters community.
“This event allows for many different ‘Trinity groups’ to interact – students, parents, alumni, staff, and faculty – in an event off campus,” said Laning. “In the stadium, everyone sits in the same section, so they can talk and cheer on the Fire together.”
Sophomore Krista Fopma of Sully, Iowa, appreciated the College offering the event to students. “Trinity does a good job of taking full advantage of the opportunities around us in the city and suburbs, and provides them for a reasonable price for college kids.”
Much to Celebrate with 2013-14 Enrollment
New Freshmen on Campus and in Chicago
The first blessing was an increase in the number of incoming freshmen at 202, an eight percent increase over last year.
Find out what other Trinity students already know.
That increase included 11 students from Chicago neighborhoods who are taking courses at the College’s new Austin site. Another reason for celebration! Through a partnership with By The Hand Club for Kids, which provides faith-based, after-school programs for children in under-resourced neighborhoods, Trinity launched the cohort style, two-year program that enrolls students who were once served through the By The Hand program and similar programs.
Growing Grad Studies
In addition, the graduate studies program in counseling psychology is experiencing excellent growth. To accommodate the increasing number of students, cohorts have been added for spring 2013 and fall 2014.
We are grateful for the rapid expansion of the counseling psychology program and the opportunity to extend Trinity’s educational mission into the area of graduate education,” said program director Dr. Michael DeVries ’74.
Interested in Trinity graduate studies programs in counseling psychology and special education? Find out more!
Black and White Dress-up Night of Jazz: Photogallery
On Friday, September 27, the Grand Lobby hummed with the sound of happy students and Trinity community members mingling over lemonade at Trinity’s annual Black and White Dress-up Night of Jazz. The two-toned crowd of students and neighbors took pictures, reveling in the chance to dress up. By 7:30 everyone settled into the auditorium seats, prepared for two great jazz music performances.
Trinity’s Jazz Band took the stage first, filling the air with a variety of jazz music from their repertoire. Freshman emcee Karyn Jones of Florissant, Missouri, said, “I’m usually a soul fan, but I really enjoyed branching out and experiencing a new genre.”
Freshmen Ben Hoekstra of Coon Rapids, Minnesota, also joined Jones as an emcee for the evening.
Following the Jazz Band’s performance, award-winning performer Dee Alexander took the stage, accompanied by her cellist, pianist, and drummer. Her vocal skills were impeccable, and she never stopped having fun with her music or with the audience. After one outstanding number, she announced that she had improvised the entire song, demonstrating the flexible nature of the jazz genre.
Alexander, who invited student vocalists to talk with her after the show, inspired many students.
Jones said, “I heard Dee’s warm-ups before the concert, and it was very different from the actual performance. She comes alive in front of an audience, improvising and creating as she goes. I bought her album after the concert because she opened my eyes to a new form of music.”
In 2008 and 2010, Alexander was awarded Jazz Entertainer of the Year from the Chicago Music Awards. In 2011, she was celebrated by the NAACP for her achievements in the arts. This year was Alexander’s second performance at Trinity’s jazz event; she performed here for the first time in 2011.
Trinity Celebrates U.S. News and Other Rankings
U.S.News & World Report’s 2014 “Best Colleges” list ranked Trinity 28th among the 367 Regional Colleges—Midwest. The U.S. News list considers several criteria, including peer assessment, graduation and freshmen retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving.
Trinity also ranked 8th in Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest. This ranking speaks to the College’s continued commitment to develop a multi-racial, multi-national, and multi-denominational student body.
Trinity stands among other institutions in the Regional Colleges category that offer a wide range of degree programs in the liberal arts and in fields such as business, education, and nursing.
Other recent rankings include:
- A rank of 48 among the nation’s top colleges in the 2013 Baccalaureate College Ranking from Washington Monthly.
- 2013 Best Bang for the Buck Ranking from Washington Monthly’s list of 48 baccalaureate colleges in America that do the best job of helping students of modest means attain marketable degrees at affordable prices.
- No. 2 rank in value among Illinois colleges and No. 103 (out of 1,288) in Best Nationwide Colleges for the Money, according to CollegeFactual.com.
- A place on the Victory Media 2014 Military Friendly Schools list.
Professors Selected as Fulbright Specialists
Dr. Patti Powell, director of the graduate program in special education, and Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’97, dean for faculty development and academic programs, have been accepted to the roster of Fulbright Specialists.
Almost Pioneers—Celebration of Professor’s Book Release
Fry discovered Smith’s manuscript at the Iowa Women’s Archives in Iowa City while writing his book, The Farm Press, Reform, and Rural Change, 1895-1920. The manuscript tells the story of Smith and her husband Earle’s experiences homesteading near Chugwater, Wyoming.
At a reception and book signing held on September 10, Fry read from the memoir and from the afterword he wrote for the book.
“Were the Smiths quintessential Americans, launching out into the unknown to better their position financially, willing to go backwards…in order to make a better future...and helping to build the prosperous and free nation that we enjoy today?
“Or were the Smith quintessential Americans, only looking out for their own interests without regard for those who had come before them, or the needs of their local community?”
Readers can draw their own conclusions as well as enjoy a real-life adventure of the American West and the thoughts of a true “professor” of history.
More about Fry’s work on Almost Pioneers
See All the Great Updates on Campus: Photogallery
Students came back to some changes on campus when they returned for the fall 2013 semester.
The College was hard at work over the summer to make improvements to the grounds, common buildings, and residence halls in addition to finishing and equipping the gymnasium expansion and renovation.
So what’s new on campus?
Phase 2 Gymnasium Expansion—The DeVos Athletics and Recreation Center has been completed! Final construction and renovation included refinishing the Mitchell Memorial gym floor and adding new equipment; furnishing classrooms; installing flooring, exercise equipment, and a bouldering wall in the fitness center; and adding exterior landscaping.
“The new facility is gorgeous,” said Student Association President Nate Tameling ’14 of Burr Ridge, Illinois. “You feel like you’re working out in a facility that you would have to pay hundreds of dollars a year for to have a similar experience. I think it is also encouraging students who typically don’t work out. This will be a huge bonus to athletics.”
Entrance Road—Now that construction is finished on the athletics and recreation facility, the road from Rt. 83 has been widened and repaved, providing a welcoming entrance onto campus.
George and June Schaaf Athletics Complex—Development continues on the Rt. 83 athletics fields progress made over the summer on the baseball and softball fields.
Tibstra Hall–This residence hall saw major improvements! To accommodate upper class students, all suites on the 2nd and 3rd floors have been remodeled and full-sized kitchens installed. Each kitchen is equipped with cabinets, a full-sized oven and refrigerator, a new kitchen sink, and a new microwave. Kitchens were also updated with paint, lighting, and flooring. Bathtubs were removed in all the suites, and new showers, valves, plumbing, and enclosures were installed. The suites were also furnished with new living room and bedroom furniture. The main lobby area has a new front desk with display cases, new furniture, and a new television. The east end floor lounges were equipped with computer work stations and new furniture. The west end floor lounges have new furniture and televisions. All of the lounge areas were updated with paint, carpet, and lighting. A new Life Safety Fire Alarm system was installed in the dorm.
West Hall–Students looking for a place to relax will enjoy the new furniture and television in the basement lounge, which was also updated with carpet, paint, and lighting. Additionally, a private computer room and an office for the Residence Director were constructed. The second floor lobby has new furniture and a new television.
South Hall–The former Student Association room in the lower level has been remodeled with air conditioning, lighting, carpet, paint, kitchen cabinets and sink, tile, and a new television and furniture. All four lounges in the dorm were remodeled.
Jennie Huizenga Memorial Library—Students heading into the library to study will find freshly painted walls and new carpeting in the common areas of the first and second floors (including the Board Room).
Dining Hall–Students in line for their meals in the Dining Hall will notice new lighting and beautiful tile work in the serving area.
Molenhouse Student Center–Looking for Student Programs? You can find them in their new office where the previous cubicles were located outside the Cooper Center.
Art and Communication Center—The temporary lot south of the ARCC now provides a fenced grassy area for students to construct and display their work.
Campus grounds—New flowers and shrubs brightened up the landscaping, adding to Trinity’s already beautiful campus.
Bootsma Bookstore Café—Thanks to the efforts of Student Association, students will now enjoy evenings around the permanent fire pit.
Administration Building–New carpeting and lighting spruced up the staircases as well as the hallway leading to the Dining Hall.
The College hopes that students are enjoying these many changes, and the updates to the campus enrich their Trinity experience!
Trinity Ranked as Top Tier College by U.S.News & World Report
Trinity Christian College has been ranked 28th among Regional Colleges—Midwest by U.S.News & World Report in “Best Colleges” for 2014. A total of 367 colleges are ranked in the entire Regional category.
Trinity also ranked 8th in the area of Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest. This ranking speaks to the College’s continued commitment to develop a multi-racial, multi-national, and multi-denominational student body.
The College stands among other institutions in the Regional Colleges category that offer a wide range of degree programs in the liberal arts and in fields such as business, education, and nursing. The U.S. News rankings are based on several criteria, including peer assessment, graduation and freshmen retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving.
From the first day of class to commencement to participating in God’s kingdom, the living and breathing qualities of a Trinity education are evident,” said Provost Liz Rudenga, Ph.D. “We are pleased to be recognized by U.S. News but know that qualities which can’t necessarily be ‘ranked’ permeate our campus.
“It is evident when students and professors engage in conversation during First Year Forum, as athletic contests are held, as students participate in internships, and as professors serve as mentors to students.”
The College has been listed by Washington Monthly among hundreds of the nation’s top colleges in the 2013 Baccalaureate College Rankings.
Trinity has also been named to the 2014 Military Friendly Schools list by Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life.
Trinity Named as a Military Friendly School for 2014
Trinity Christian College has been named to the 2014 Military Friendly Schools list by Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life.
College Celebrates President’s 10th Anniversary: Photogallery
The College celebrated the 10th anniversary of President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D. on Saturday, September 7, with an open house. Faculty, staff, and friends of the College enjoyed a time to personally thank the president and fellowship with each other.
During a brief ceremony in the afternoon, the College presented Timmermans with a beautiful photograph of his family and the news that the Trinity Board of Trustees has established, and funded via personal gifts, an endowed scholarship in honor of the president’s anniversary.
10 Years of Expanding and Extending
Timmermans began his presidency in 2003 with an idea, a vision to expand Trinity’s influence and extend its reach. Today he sees not only how that vision has been realized but also how it still applies to the future of the College.
A psychologist and educator, Timmermans came to Trinity with a deep commitment to Christ; an unwavering embrace of Reformed perspectives on faith, learning, and living; and extensive experience in rehabilitation, teaching, and administration.
Over the past 10 years, those qualities have helped Timmermans lead the College through times of abundance and times of economic downturn while his vision to expand and extend has come to fruition in several ways:
- Traditional enrollment has increased significantly, as has the percentage of diverse students
- The addition of master’s degree programs
- The addition of semesters in Ecuador and Kenya
- The number of endowed and outside-funded scholarships has nearly doubled
- Adult Studies enrollment has nearly doubled
- The expansion of the Adult Studies program into Chicago and Addison
- New facilities have been started or completed, including:
- Alumni Hall
- Bootsma Bookstore Café
- Art and Communication Center
- Elizabeth Meyer Memorial Student Health Center
- DeVos Athletics and Recreation Center
- George and June Schaaf Athletics Complex (Rt. 83 fields), which brings the total campus acreage to 130 acres
Of his service as the president, Timmermans said in a recent interview: “I am grateful that I have been able to help lead Trinity these past 10 years, and I trust God’s continued blessing on us—Trinity students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends.”
Trinity Ranks among Top Colleges in Nation for Value and Service
Trinity is pleased to announce some recent rankings that speak to the quality and value of a Trinity education.
Getting Involved—Students Consider the Opportunities: Photogallery
Amidst volunteers giving out free popcorn, snow cones, and treats, students wandered through rows of tables covered in posters, fliers, and candy at the Involvement Fair on August 30. The annual event helps new and returning students relax after the first few days of classes and find like-minded people at Trinity.
Each fall student-led groups set up tables to spread the word about the work they do and the fun they have throughout the year, answer questions, and invite sign-ups of new members. Local businesses joined the Fair offering coupons and discounts for students. Over 40 groups were represented this year, over half of those being student clubs and organizations.
Our goal is to have somewhere for each student to feel welcome.
Andy Reidsma ’14
The Student Association hosts the Involvement Fair with the hope of giving students the opportunity to interact with campus groups and the City of Palos Heights.
Student Association Vice President Andy Reidsma ’14 of Wyoming, Michigan, said, “We want to show students what aspects of the community are available to them. There are so many different options and groups. Our goal is to have somewhere for each student to feel welcome.”
College Celebrates 55th Convocation: Photogallery
Convocation is a special time of fellowship and worship as the campus community gathers to celebrate the beginning of the academic year.
Wednesday, August 28, marked not only the start of the fall semester, but also the 50th anniversary of one of the nation’s most significant events: the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
Provost Liz Rudenga, Ph.D. welcomed the Trinity community back to campus.
Student Worship Scholar Loretta Findysz ’16 of Worth, Illinois, gave the invocation.
Professor of the Year Dr. Brad Breems, professor of sociology, noted the coinciding events of Convocation and the special anniversary of the day Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his historic “I Have a Dream” speech.
In his address, “Foundation, Vision, and Preparation: the Liberality of a Trinity Education in the Real World”, Breems chose three features of a Christian liberal arts education to discuss, including solid foundation: God as God and God revealed; vision based on a long tradition yet always re-forming; and preparation: gaining knowledge and wisdom; contextualizing; critiquing.
Dr. Craig Mattson, professor of communication arts, and Javairia Taylor ’14 of Bolingbrook, Illinois, led the audience through the litany reading based on Psalm 50.
Prior to the benediction by Chaplain Willis Van Groningen, Ph.D., Provost Rudenga, Dean of Students Mark Hanna, and Student Association President Nate Tameling ’14 of Burr Ridge, Illinois, offered prayers of thanksgiving for faculty, staff, and students.
Foundation, Vision, and Preparation: the Liberality of a Trinity Education in the Real World
Convocation Address by Brad Breems
Sociology Department, Trinity Christian College
August 28 2013
President Timmermans, Provost Rudenga. Students, former and new. Colleagues fresh and ready. Today we convoke –called together to begin our renewed work together. Though dressed differently, faculty, students, and staff have a common vocation to begin this year before God and with our collegiate purpose defined. In this title, I chose three features of a Christian liberal arts education” Solid foundation: God as God and God revealed. Vision based on a long tradition yet always re-forming. Preparation: gaining knowledge and wisdom; contextualizing; critiquing. Preparation, not regimentation. Done well; not forever. Some think preparation is wasteful, even harmful. Late 19th-Early 20th Century social reformer Jane Addams called preparation a snare. Can we sit and prepare when, in spite of dreams, inequality still flourishes in the United States and certainly in the world? 5,000 shooting deaths in Chicago since 2001; Syria and Egypt in turmoil, with deliberation about U.S. and British involvement occurring today. Ongoing genocide in Darfur. And the globe warms as we continue to use vast amounts of fossil-fuel-power to keep our privileged life. We must be careful to not be seduced and snared by comfortable mere preparation.
Don’t come here, students, to escape the “real world” for a few years, or to merely get ready for reality. We are the real world, too. True, there are different slants of and on reality, but its basis is singular. Our curriculum is designed to authentically integrate us with the Author, the omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent Origin and Upholder of the web of reality.
A liberal arts institution is different from a professional school, vocational school, technical institute in which specific knowledge is taught more or less by itself. A BA institution embeds such knowledge in the full context of: the visual, written and performing arts; knowledge of mathematics and science; social and psychic awareness; theology and philosophy.
We seek not only to know and do; but to compare, analyze, and critique. Liberality of thought emerges in two ways: first it urges the freedom to think independently. Second, it professes to free all people from the imposition of power, wealth, or tradition by exposure to liberating ideas and options.
Liberation of any sort is ripe for misuse and elitism. After all knowledge is power.
Without a foundation outside the liberal arts themselves, nothing prevents knowledge and cleverness to bypass those people who are burdened and chained to provide the products demanded by the liberal elite.
So who provides a way out of the liberal dilemma of free thought in an unequal world? What can give another model that pursues free thought while wary of creating vastly unequal worlds? It has to be one with a foundation outside of human invention and with a vision for serviceable preparation.
Sounds like a job for the religion of Jesus Christ, Son of God.
This August 28th convocation falls auspiciously on the 50th anniversary of one of this nation’s most significant events: the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
And this is where we turn for today’s featured mode of liberating foundation, vision, and preparation.
Today, I can only focus on the iconic one that bears directly on the theme of the liberality of foundation, vision, and preparation for service.
To show inequality as the distorted, apathetic banality it really is, we turn to the most-known portion of the speech (from among other good ones) associated with that March on Washington.
[Video clip:] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smEqnnklfYs 12:22-15:05
[“I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed. We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.
I have a dream that one day out in the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by their character.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; that one day right down in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be engulfed, every hill shall be exalted and every mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plains and the crooked places will be made straight and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.
This is our hope. This is the faith that I will go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope.” Martin Luther King Jr.]
Lest this be a distortion, I quote three contextualizing points from the speech:
When the architects of our Republic wrote the magnificent works of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.
Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.
No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.
Was Martin Luther King’s dream unreal because it was a visionary, founded on the Word of God and teachings of Jesus Christ? Was the racism, segregation, political and economic exclusion of the United States of America the real world? And was the counter vision unreal?
This visionary “dream”, built on a foundation of faith, hope, and love, through years of careful preparation – the liberal arts education of people like W.E.B. DuBois, Roy Wilkins, Thurgood Marshall, Whitney Young, John Lewis, Bayard Rustin, and Martin Luther King -- bore fruit. But it was not merely the well-rounded formal education – it was a disclosive, critical, experiential, and reasonable view, even without formal education – as in the eloquence of Frederick Douglass, the guts of John Brown, tenacity of Harriet Tubman, or the toughness of Fannie Lou Hamer.
But sometimes more knowledge of wider contexts and more strategic preparation would have driven the point even further if poorly or mis-educated people had not been kept out of political and economic positions. And we applaud the educational achievements of many non-European Americans that led to the assumption of many positions otherwise unattainable, including the U.S. Presidency and many members of state and federal congresses.
Essential to the success of the March on Washington was a firm faith in God and the biblically derived principles of justice propelled and supported many civil rights people and activists. Indeed at the March on Washington, of the 10 people who spoke, six were outspoken Christians, including Patrick O’Boyle, John Lewis, James Farmer, Martin Luther King, Benjamin Mays, and Mathew Ahmann, with two Jewish rabbis, Marian Anderson and Mahalia Jackson who sang and Eva Jessye, who led a Christian choir.
When Martin Luther King uttered his phrase “I have a dream” and echoed it 10 times, was he mouthing what he believed to be a vain illusion? No, he preceded it by heavy references to the Constitution and Declaration of Independence and followed it with a nearly identical repletion of the redolent phrase from the hymn; “My Country ’Tis of Thee:” “Let freedom ring!”
And when he said that, he specified the exact places where it rang: New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and California, followed with coy unequivocality by a short list of hot beds of segregation where it did not: Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi …
As the crowd roared and amenned to his “free at last!” he turned and strode off the podium. The very next day, he and others met President Kennedy to lay out their demands. A year later, the Civil Rights Act, two years later, the Voting Rights Act, and three years after that the Fair Housing Act were signed. The real world of yesterday still lived in the minds and actions of opponents, but a new reality, was built on the foundations of vision and preparation.
Trinity Christian College, 2013. Not the drama and significance of a pivotal moment in American history, but we have the urgent mandate of God and the power of the Holy Spirit to make our work count.
The books we read, the ideas we toss about, develop, support, or refute. Those are real. Yes, it is true that when you make a business plan – or a lesson-, treatment-, concert-, or urban plan in a classroom, it does not have the same immediate result as when you employ it in an investment firm, city planning department, hospital, concert hall, police force or school, but it is of the same piece with work that will rise or fall with the market, neighborhood, heart rate, crime rate, or classroom learning. This time of foundational, envisioning preparation is reality too.
Do we believe that the only real world is outside of academic reach? No! We do not!
We do not because so much of what passes for reality is pseudo-real, hyperreal, surreal, unreal and it takes true vision – not merely liberal thought – to critically expose those illusions.
Let me give a brief explanation, as a Christian of a Christian view of humanity. With our larger brains we humans developed symbol systems and language and to have enough intelligence to be able to actually apprehend the Creator as divine, as Logos/The Word and the giver of symbol and word by which to reveal a divine existence beyond this creation and who is its Origin. The empirics by which we know this Logos, revealed as Yahweh, are of another order and we know it primarily by faith.
Deep Christian study of God’s Word in the Bible and creation – with the occasional direct revelations of the Creator – is rewarded by coming to know something of the laws of the universe.
We note that God did not reveal in the form of merely physical or biotic creatures but as a transcendent being who, in the fullness of time, incarnated and dwelled among us, changing the way we act. But also the way we think, feel, and relate to God – no longer as children of Israel, but sons and daughters of the Most High. This God, in Christ and by the ongoing reality of the very Spirit of God – calls us to walk in the divine way. In the Spirit, God calls us to know the laws of the universe as directly, empirically as we can.
As culture, itself, evolves, we participate with God in forming human-based structures such as relationships, alliances, and eventually religion, society and all their institutions, norms, laws, and obligations.
Here, our relation to God becomes especially important because God has revealed words and principles by which we are to norm our relation to the creation, each other, and to God.
Christian sociologist David Lyon gives us the term here: critical integration – integrating a believing faith in God and divine power with the ideas and methods of science to empirically learn about the world – about reality. The academy – Trinity, for example – and researching professors, like those honorably dressed folks here, have an eminent role. Through place and time, benevolent and repressive regimes, capitalist and collectivist economies, the academy has been a thread of human intelligence that has stayed the course – a source and repository of human knowledge. (To acknowledge that, we dress like this, lest we forget.)
Such critical integration it is vital to the kind of perspective Trinity offers. Here we urge you to be moral, but more: We take our faith in God as Origin, Saviour, and Spirit-Power and Presence into the world. From that perspective, we study number and order; energy and force; physics and materiality, life and biotic components; sensitivity, feeling, and mentality; logical order and knowledge; creativity and making; symbol, nuance, and meaning-cognition; sociality, mutual regard and patterns of association; knowledge and stewardship of resources; allusiveness and imaginativity; justice, fairness, and authoritative law; morality, respect, and trustfulness; faith, worship, spirituality, openness to divinity, and confession.
From the simplest evidence of reality – number and space,
through the existence of things and life,
and through our human abilities to form culture and product,
to the most complex of all reality – the belief in God, in divine power, and that which we cannot fully comprehend but can only believe,
– this college teaches us that all things hold together under the mighty power of God, whom we must always seek to know intellectually and with our whole beings, with whom we work cooperatively, stewardly, and faithfully, and who both has made and continues to eternally and progressively make this world. Here, in these halls, you learn the depth and abstraction of facts – facts that you perhaps will never learn as deeply, comprehensively, and integrally as you learn them in the reality of this world.
And you learn to integrate your knowledge and action into a perspective, as I alluded above.
Because God is;
because God creates, upholds, and continues to create;
because God posits laws by which this universe operates;
because we humans live in this universe
and because we apprehend, interpret, and work inventively with or against it;
because we have the power of rationality and live creatively to form culture, its products and societies
– because of all that, we do well to remain in intimate and willing touch with God, so that we may live long in the land the Lord our God gives us.
Before I conclude, let me say that both the vision-dream of Martin Luther King and of Trinity Christian College do not always come to fruition. Large swaths of inequality linger long after King gave his speech. They linger today!
Therefore, in order that these two narratives that I have compared today on the basis of their common use of Foundation-Vision-Preparation do not remain separate, let me say this. We at Trinity, living as we do in the real world --must continue to struggle for greater acceptance and development of ethnic diversity here on this campus, finding ways to bridge gaps and open friendships, partnerships, and scholarships by which our Christian vision can continue to coalesce with a legacy like Dr. King’s. Beyond our walls and our times as students here, let our minds and action be bent toward a nation in which not only technical legal freedom rings, but our hearts also ring with common opportunities, the love of Jesus Christ in our hearts and the love of our neighbors in our actions.
This real world is God’s world and we are at our best in its service when we take up a vocation – a calling within that world, always seeking to resonate with the divinely given laws of reality, sensitive to the creation particularly because we are open to the Creator, whose very Spirit we know, feel, and with whom we commune.
May we the students, faculty, staff, and administers of Trinity Christian College, always be authentic to our Author and authority. And may we, be “full of all joy and peace as we trust in God so that we may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit of God.” (Romans 15:13)
TAC Raises $40K for Student-Athlete Scholarships: Photogallery
A beautiful late summer day, a manicured country club, and 108 golfers combined to make the 27th annual Trinity Athletics Club Golf Classic a success. The event raised over $40,000 in scholarships for Trinity student athletes.
At the outing on August 19, at Calumet Country Club in Homewood, Illinois, many of the scholarship recipients were on hand to personally thank the golfers for their support.
“This event has been blessed over the years with the tremendous support of the greater Trinity community, and this year was no different,” said Dennis Harms ’89, coach of the Trinity golf team.
Golfers had many opportunities to win prizes throughout the day, including a 2014 Toyota Camry courtesy of Oak Lawn Toyota, as well as a chance for a $10,000 hole in one, courtesy of Legacy Insurance.
The low foursome for the day represented Schaaf Window Co. and consisted of Bob Schaaf ’93, John Dieck ’92, Barb Schaaf ’87, and Rich Deckinga, with a winning score of 59.
The Athletics Department would like to thank Ozinga Bros. and Providence Bank for their generous sponsorship of the event.
Faculty Prepare for the New Semester
On August 22, professors came together for a time of conversation, reflection, and worship, participating in presentations and breakout sessions under the retreat’s theme “Formed and Being Formed: Responding to God’s Call as Christian Scholars and Teachers.”
“The day provided a wonderful time to think about how we as faculty are engaged in the process of formation as we respond to God’s call on our lives as Christian teachers and scholars,” said Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’97, dean for faculty development and academic programs. “The opportunity to reflectively think and share how we approach this work was a true joy.”
Huyser also expressed her gratitude to the faculty development committee for casting a vision for the retreat and for each colleague who contributed.
Long-time Trinity colleagues welcomed new faculty members Janet Chaney, nursing; Dr. Eric Goddard, history; Dr. Jeff Nyhoff, computer science; Dr. Ben Ribbens, theology; Marianne Schallmo, nursing; and Darren Zancan, communication arts.
A special time was devoted to recognizing and celebrating the scholarly activity professors engaged in through conference participation, exhibitions, performances, presentations, publications, and awards.
Breakout sessions led by professors covered a wide array of topics and disciplines:
Mindfulness, Dr. Mary Lynn Colosimo, Psychology
Where do we begin? Preparing for a Hospitable Welcome, Tina Decker ’06, Nursing
The Cycle of Academic Life: How having a good summer makes for a good year and vice versa, Dr. Michael DeVries ’74, Psychology
My syllabi are done, but my students are not; oh, and neither am I, Dr. Karen Dieleman, English
Renewing the Mind and Spirit for the Academic Year, Dr. Derrick Hassert, Psychology
A Contemplative Framework for Our Work as Worship, Dr. Mary Webster Moore, Education
Generation or regeneration? John Bakker, Art & Design
What’s So Great about Interim: Using Interim to Collaborate, Envision, Innovate, and Rest, Dr. Bill Boerman-Cornell, Education
Strategies to Promote Student-Faculty Research, Dr. Bob Boomsma ’77 Biology
Catch You on the Flippity Flip! Rebecca Harkema, Education
Welcome Back, Trinity Students! Photogallery
Freshmen were welcomed to campus on August 23 by an energetic and helpful Move-in Crew, wheeling shopping carts back and forth from family vans to residence hall rooms.
This year, students were also greeted upon their arrival into town by welcome signs posted by local businesses. In addition, the city of Palos Heights set up a hospitality tent on campus, offering free samples and services from Tastee Freez, Aurelio’s Pizza, Lucano’s Pizza, Great American Bagel, Jimmy John’s, Multicare Health Center, and Archer Bank.
As part of this Welcome event, businesses are offering discounts to students through September 30.
That same day marked the beginning of First Year Forum (FYF), a program in which first-year students are mentored as they learn more about living in this Christian academic community.
As part of that program, students completed a service project at the nearby Children’s Hunger Fund, wrapping gifts for needy children.
The College also welcomed transfer and returning students a few days later as classes began Wednesday, August 28.
Community Offers Warm Welcome-and Discounts!-for Students - Photogallery
As part of a first-time Welcome initiative led by the City of Palos Heights and community business people, Trinity students enjoyed special greetings and offerings from local businesses when they returned to campus for the fall semester on August 23, the College’s official move-in day.
Alumnus of the Year Announced
This year’s Alumnus of the Year Award recognizes Rich Schutt ’76, CEO of Providence Life Services.
Also being recognized are this year’s honorary alumni award recipients. Congratulations to:
Howard and Verna DeHaan, friends of the College
Marsha Wolterink, office manager for Trinity’s Physical Plant
Dr. Derke Bergsma, former professor of theology and one of Trinity’s first faculty members
Rich Schutt ’76
Rich Schutt remembers discussions around the family dinner table about philosophy and theology that were prompted by his sister Bonnie Heirendt ’72, a then student of Trinity. Although Schutt hadn’t planned to go to college, his mother encouraged him to attend.
During his first two years of college, Schutt worked as a custodian at Rest Haven, eventually working his way up to CEO of Providence Life Services, which provides retirement living, at-home help, rehab, skilled nursing care, hospice, and elder care. Schutt said the word “providence” is a good fit for how his career has played out.
Preparation for his career began in high school and college when he worked at Rest Haven and continued in his study of business at Trinity. While finishing his education, Schutt was approached by then CEO Rich Mulder and offered the opportunity to administer the new Rest Haven South in South Holland, Illinois. Since then, Schutt has helped grow the company, eventually branching out to add ProviNet Solutions, a full-service IT company.
“Trinity prepared me well for the business experience that I’ve had,” said Schutt. “It also helped frame how that business experience related to God’s calling for my life.”
As an alumnus, Schutt doesn’t believe a person’s connection with Trinity should end at graduation. “Alumni can help make sure that educational opportunity exists for future generations,” he said. “And alumni can help find opportunities for graduates.”
Schutt has also served as a member of Trinity’s Board of Trustees. “To have the privilege of the board experience reinforced everything I thought about Trinity as a student, but it was great to see the current leadership and how they’re committed to living out the College’s values,” he said. “At Trinity, we don’t require you to share our worldview, but when you leave you will clearly understand what it is. It’s more than an intellectual endeavor, it’s an endeavor of the soul.”
Schutt holds a master’s degree in health administration from Governors State University and has more than 30 years of leadership experience in serving seniors. He has served as chair of the board of the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging and has chaired the Life Services Network Association and the Health Resources Alliance boards. He has spoken extensively on issues affecting aging services. He currently serves as a member of the owner/operator advisory board of the National Investment Center. He also serves on his local church and school boards.
Schutt and his wife Linda ’98, vice president of education at Providence, have three daughters.
Dr. Derke Bergsma
Dr. Derke Bergsma began his time at Trinity at the prompting of then Professor Calvin Seerveld, professor of philosophy. Bergsma’s Latin class had the honor of being the first class held at Trinity, following the first Trinity Convocation. He continued to teach Latin for three years.
When Trinity expanded to a four-year college, Seerveld once again invited Bergsma to serve as a faculty member in the theology department. He remained active in the College for 14 years, and served as acting president for one year between Dr. Hoekstra and Dr. Van Groningen.
Bergsma refers to Trinity as an “affection” that remains with him. “Trinity has had a significant role to play in Christian higher education,” Bergsma said. “I don’t know of any other similar school with the connection opportunities like Trinity has in Chicago.”
All of Derke and Doris’s children and two of their granddaughters graduated from Trinity, and family members remain involved in their support of the College. “It is very encouraging that their presence in the constituency and program is an affirmation of my shared loyalty to Trinity,” he said.
In 1997, after 32 years, he retired from Westminster Theological Seminary and taught as an adjunct at Trinity in the theology department as well as in the Adult Studies program. He also preached on behalf of the College in area churches seeing this as “Trinity’s service to the church community.”
Howard and Verna DeHaan
Beginning in 1970, Howard and Verna DeHaan worked side by side in the restaurant business in Michigan, expanding the original Russ’s restaurant in Holland to six of their own restaurants throughout the Grand Rapids area, the last of which they recently sold.
The DeHaans became very involved with Trinity when their granddaughter Mackenzi Huyser ’97 enrolled. Huyser now serves as dean for faculty development and academic programs and professor of social work at Trinity.
In honor of Huyser, the DeHaans began the DeHaan Family Social Work Scholarship. The scholarship aids a junior or senior social work student who is committed to leadership and social justice.
Committed to Christian higher education and helping students gain access to that education, the DeHaans live that out through their love and support of the College. “When you really have a heart for something, you go all out for it,” said Howard.
That support has included gifts toward the development of the Ozinga Chapel, the Bootsma Bookstore Cafe, the Art and Communication Center, and Phase 1 and 2 of the gymnasium expansion project.
Their grandson Patrick DeHaan spoke at a Trinity Business Network event this past spring.
Marsha Wolterink began working at Trinity in 1979 in maintenance and continued in that job for nine years until she had to stop for health reasons. She was then offered an administrative position in the physical plant and eventually became the office manager, a role in which she still serves.
Wolterink explained that it is important for her to work in a Christian institution where people are dedicated not just to a paycheck but to honoring and glorifying God through their work.
“Knowing that I’m working at a Christ-centered college where faculty and staff want to praise God and continue his kingdom means everything,” she said. “I see this every day in the physical plant in the work that is done here.”
Receiving the honorary alumni award came to Wolterink as a “total shock,” but she said of her longtime commitment to the College: “Whether reserving vans or processing invoices, all of these things have eternal value if we use them to be the best witness for the Lord that we can be.”
Wolterink and her husband Ron have been married for 52 years, and they have four children and 15 grandchildren. All four of their children graduated from Trinity and two met their spouses while at Trinity. Their grandson Ryan Wolterink, son of Dan and Barb, will be a sophomore this year.
President's Blog: Serving Together Along the Cal-Sag Trail
Our third year of participating in the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge began Saturday, September 21, as Trinity students and students from local Muslim faith communities linked hands to work together on the Cal Sag Trail.
8 Summer-End Tips for Trinity Freshmen
The summer before the first year of college is exciting…and stressful. Trinity offers these tips to help students make the most...
Professor Heads Out on Leg of Sea to Sea Ride
A common sight around campus is Professor Michael Vander Weele on this bike. Next week, he heads out on a ride that will take him much further than his usual route from Trinity to home after classes.
Dr. Vander Weele, professor of English, and his wife Mary McKinstry will begin their three-week leg of the bike ride Sea to Sea, Cycling to End Poverty.
The 3,900-mile ride serves to raise awareness and funds for those living in poverty around the world. Hosted by the Reformed Church in America, Partners Worldwide, and World Renew, the ride enables individuals, groups, and congregations to actively serve the poor in a new and interesting way.
The Vander Weeles will pick up where Financial Aid Coordinator Kyle Wigboldy, who rode the Coralville, Iowa, to Grand Rapids segment, left off. They depart from Grand Rapids on Monday, heading to Hamilton, Ontario (week one), then Montreal (week two), and then New York City (week three).
To follow the Vander Weele’s journey, check out their blog Mike and Mary on a Bike.
For more information on Sea to Sea, visit the website.
Youth Unlimited Serves Hundreds in Chicagoland: Photogallery
After gathering in Trinity’s Ozinga Chapel for prayer and worship each morning, nearly 300 students, leaders, and other participants in Youth Unlimited’s Chicago Project head to various work sites around Chicagoland to volunteer.
Serving others is at the heart of The Chicago Project, Youth Unlimited’s initiative to dedicate three full days of volunteer work to more than 25 partner organizations near Trinity’s campus, the host site for the project, July 27 through August 1.
Youth Unlimited is a non-denominational, non-profit ministry organization that assists the Church and its many local congregations with their ministry. Student teams are assigned to various work sites and tasks, including:
- Painting the entire interior of Ira F. Aldridge Elementary School in Altgeld Gardens
- Leading crafts and activities for older adults at Providence Health and Rehabilitation
- Helping Lake Katherine develop their Spider Maze
- Trimming trees and removing invasive species with the prairie restoration project at Kickapoo Woods
- Helping with lawn care and home repair for elderly neighbors in Worth with the Neighbors in Needs program
- Volunteering at By the Hand, Roseland Christian Ministries, Restoration Ministries, and the South Chicago YMCA summer youth camps
- Helping repaint the By the Hand Cabrini Green site
- Assisting Grace and Peace Community Church clear five acres of land for a new church building and charter school
- And much more!
Director of Admissions at Trinity, Jeremy Klyn ’02, served as the Trinity liaison. “I loved seeing students serve as the hands and feet of Christ,” said Klyn. “Every year I read college applications in which students talk about their faith being influenced by acts of service. I can’t wait to read some in the coming years that talk about The Chicago Project as a point of growth in their faith.”
I loved seeing students serve as the hands and feet of Christ.
- Jeremy Klyn ’02
All of the volunteer site coordination was arranged by Trinity’s AmeriCorps VISTA / Community Partnership Coordinator Carrie Timmermans ’11.
Welcome back Pastor Zan
For keynote speaker and Trinity alumnus Zantesah (Zan) Ingalls, it was the second visit to campus since his graduation from the College in 1988. The senior pastor of Galilee Missionary Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey, has been involved with Youth Unlimited’s projects since 1993, speaking at various events throughout the country and in Canada. He also serves on the organization’s Board of Directors.
Ingalls, who earned a bachelor’s degree in theology at Trinity, delivered encouraging messages to help students understand the importance of the work they did and how God would make flourish the seeds they planted through service.
“This is awesome,” Ingalls said of being back on campus as part of The Chicago Project where he witnessed participants’ lives changed as well as those they served.
Thanks to the great worship team
Morning and evening worship was led by Trinity alumnus Vinnie Adams ’10 and his team. Adams is the director of the special needs ministry and the campus worship leader at Faith Church in Dyer, Indiana. As a student at Trinity, where he majored in special education, he led the student worship team Outcry.
Vinnie Adams ’10 (lead from acoustic and drums)
Richard Bodden (electric and acoustic)
Anthony Bolkema ’07 (keys)
Katie DeGraff (keys)
Pete Meyer ’07 (bass)
Linelle Muse ’08 (drums)
Eric Rosario (electric)
More about Pastor Zan Ingalls ’88
In addition to pastoring his church, Ingalls is the president of the Congress of Christian Education of the New Hope Association, New Jersey General Baptist Convention. He is the former vice principal of United Academy (a K-8 private grammar school) in Newark and is also a former member of the gospel recording ensemble, Special Edition. He has hosted the weekly radio broadcast, There is Hope Ministry out of Yanceyville, North Carolina. Ingalls received his Bachelor of Arts in Theology at Trinity and his Master of Divinity from Lighthouse Bible College. He and his wife Liane have three children, Zantesah II, Jaazaniah, and Leilani.
High School Juniors Get a Taste of College Life
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Trinity Grads to Lead Their Own Classrooms This Fall
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Trinity Alum recognized as Exemplary Teacher
Adult Studies graduate Dave Kush ’05 of Homewood-Flossmoor High School has won the award of “Star in the Classroom” from the Illinois Council for Economic Education.
Kush credits the students he works with in the Econ Challenge at Homewood-Flossmoor. This year a team of four won 4th place in nationals in New York City.
Homewood-Flossmoor had been a perennial winner of the Econ Challenge for years until 2007. When the teacher who worked with the program was promoted, the group disbanded. Kush came across the old state title trophies and rejuvenated the program. Kush is also a sponsor of the school’s National Honor Society and the Model UN club.
Kush had completed an MBA before earning his teaching license from Trinity and has been able to add multiple endorsements. He brought the right combination of credentials and five years in the classroom to the teaching position at Homewood-Flossmoor. After teaching for five years, he transitioned into an administrative role.
“Trinity’s program did a lot to prepare us for the profession,” says Kush. “The school takes the task of training us to be teachers seriously and the whole atmosphere is focused for success.”
In addition to his administrative role at Homewood-Flossmoor, Kush also teaches at Trinity and Saint Xavier University.
About the award
The Exemplary Teacher Recognition program from the Illinois State Board of Education honors those teachers who have been singled out as being the best in the field of expertise by their respective education organizations. Content area experts are chosen by their peers for their dedication to students and their specific area of expertise. Thirty six educators from throughout Illinois were recognized on June 11 during the Exemplary Teacher Recognition Award Luncheon.
Special Offer in Celebration of TAC’s 27th Year
In honor of the TAC Golf Classic’s 27th year, Trinity’s athletics department has set a goal of 27 new golfers participating. To help reach that goal, organizers are offering $50 off the individual registration fee for first-time attendees and for guests who bring a new golfer.
The outing is scheduled for Monday, August 19, at the Calumet Country Club in Homewood, Illinois. Register online by August 5. To take advantage of the special offer, choose the New Attendee Discount or Refer-a-Golfer Discount when registering. Discounts on scholarship sponsorships are also available.
The Trinity Athletic Club Golf Classic plays a vital role in supporting the athletics department. Proceeds from the event are used for student-athlete scholarships. More than 30 student-athletes benefited from TAC scholarships in this past academic year.
“If you have never attended, we say ‘welcome.’ And if you are a faithful supporter, we appreciate your ongoing support and encourage you to invite co-workers, business associates, and friends to this year’s outing,” said Bill Schepel ’85, athletics director.
Providence Bank and Ozinga Bros., Inc. are once again sponsoring the Golf Classic. Their generous support has underwritten the cost of the event and allows TAC to apply more funds directly to the athletics scholarships fund.
Classroom Project Leads to Career Calling
When Dorothy Rosier ’08 of Lemont, Illinois, was choosing her capstone project for the Adult Studies Business Program, she was going to focus on her current job in corporate marketing. But as she prayed about what to do, she felt the Lord was guiding her in a different direction.
Rosier always had a passion for farming, so she decided to focus her capstone research there.
“Farming has been an interest my whole life,” Rosier said. “The thing with farming is that you don’t just go out and till the fields and hope it grows. It takes planning.”
Following that interest—and her graduation from Trinity—Rosier pursued an associate in applied science degree in horticulture from Joliet Junior College (JJC). In 2010, she participated in the installation of a five-acre teaching arboretum for specialty crop production as part of that education.
When JJC decided to launch a farmer’s market, Rosier was encouraged to apply for the manager’s position because of the combination of her business degree from Trinity and her horticulture education from JJC. She was offered the position, and in May, she welcomed more than 600 customers to the JJC Farmer’s Market grand opening.
The farmer’s market was made possible through the Farmer Market Promotional Program grant, and Rosier works to encourage local farmers, producers, and artisans to sell their goods. The market is also part of the governor’s program “Where Fresh Is.” The goal of the program is to stimulate the economy with $2.4 billion by 4.8 million families in Illinois spending $10 a week on local produce and meats.
“I’ve worked hard to fulfill my Trinity capstone project, and I am so blessed to work with farmers and livestock producers,” Rosier said.
Connecting with the University of Mkar
Trinity Christian College hosted representatives from the University of Mkar in Nigeria on Tuesday, June 25, with a goal to establish a partnership with the university as an international sister-school.
Alumni Golfers Raise Funds for Scholarships: Photogallery
More than 50 alumni and friends of the College raised $9,000 for the Alumni Excellence Scholarship at this year’s Alumni Golf Outing on June 8. The renewable scholarship provides $1,500 awards for children of alumni attending Trinity.
The outing, held at George Dunne National Golf Course in Oak Forest, began with lunch, followed by a shotgun start. The event ended with refreshments and the presentation of the trophy, which is engraved each year with the names of the winning foursome.
This year’s winning foursome included 2009 alumni Jamie Prins, Rich Tameling, Eric VandenBerg, and Ryan Wories.
The College is thankful for the faithful support received from the golf outing sponsors who make it possible for the funds raised by the event to go directly to the Alumni Excellence Scholarship.
Corporate Event Sponsors
Evenhouse & Co.
Kramer & Leonard, Inc.
Media Resources, Inc.
Ozinga Brothers, Inc.
Individual Event Sponsors
Trinity Alumni Board
Corporate Hole Sponsors
Bert Kamp, CPA
Clarence Davids & Company
Firebone Brand Consultancy
Interiors for Business, Inc.
LEGACY Insurance Group
Mama Vesuvio's East Restaurant, Inc.
PolyJohn Enterprises Corporation
Schaaf Window Company, Inc.
Schepel Buick GMC Truck
Silva International, Inc.
Stepping Stone Financial
Strack & VanTil Supermarkets
Van Bruggen Signs
Wentworth Tire Service
Individual Hole Sponsors
All God’s Children Orphanage, Pam DeBoer
Ken and Margie Boss
Rick and Sue VanDyken
Kevin and Tammy Walker
Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon on Campus for ACI Summer Institute
Education reform in Illinois was the topic of Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon’s address to more than 100 teachers, teacher educators, and soon-to-be teachers at the Associated Colleges of Illinois (ACI) Summer Institute for Educators held on campus Friday, June 21. The Institute is an extended day of learning that follows year-around Teacher Induction Academies.
Simon was welcomed by and introduced to guests by Trinity Provost Liz Rudenga, Ph.D. “As I read her biography, I realized that she shares many characteristics of educators,” said Rudenga. “Teachers care about the children in the classes. She cares about people, for she was a country prosecutor, fighting crime to create safe communities. Teachers are accountable for the learning environment they establish, for the learning of their students.
“The Lieutenant Governor wants government to be accountable, just as teachers are accountable to set the learning context in the classrooms,” Rudenga said.
The institute also welcomed Dr. Carol Baker, one of the writers for the Next Generation Science Standards. Baker is the director of curriculum for science and music for Community High School District 218 in Oak Lawn, Illinois. For 18 years, she taught all levels of high school physics. She has participated in science competitive professional development experiences such as the Department of Energy Teacher Research Associates and NASA Educational Workshops for Mathematics and Science Teachers.
ACI, of which Trinity is a member, is a network of private, nonprofit, residential colleges and universities that works with business and community leaders to design and implement innovative and collaborative programs.
Earn a Master’s in Special Ed in 1½ Years – Competitive Tuition Rate
Teachers can earn a master’s degree in Special Education with LBS I licensure in 1½ years at Trinity for a competitively-priced tuition cost.
Tuition for the entire 36-credit hour program is $14,940 ($415 per credit hour). Discounts are available for Trinity graduates and friends or colleagues who enroll in the program together. Students attend class one night a week, on the same evening throughout the entire program. Some classes are blended with online instruction. Classes begin this August.
The growing need for special education teachers
According to the National Education Association, over the past 10 years the number of U.S. students enrolled in special education programs has risen 30%.
“Teachers can meet the growing demands of districts and earn the qualifications to work with children with special needs,” said Dr. Patti Powell, director of the Special Education Graduate Program.
Pursuing their master’s degree in special education at Trinity led to full-time teaching positions for two current students even before they completed the program.
Daniel Matt of Chicago was recently hired as a teacher by PRIDE Alternative School in Oak Lawn, Illinois. “After spending a few years in the field with my undergraduate degree, I decided that the Graduate Studies program at Trinity was exactly what I needed to advance in my career,” said Matt.
I know that the experiences and information I learned at Trinity directly led to my employment.
“As I began the interview process, I found that the professors and the classes greatly prepared me for the questions prospective employers had. I know that the experiences and information I learned at Trinity directly led to my employment.”
Register to attend an information session
Teachers interested in learning about Trinity’s M.A. in Special Education Program are invited to attend an information session on Wednesday, June 26, at 6 p.m. in the Grand Lobby of the Ozinga Chapel. To register, visit http://graduatestudies.trnty.edu or call the Graduate Studies office at 708.239.3900.
Blueprints Welcomes Students: Photogalleries
Blueprints is a great way for incoming freshmen to begin their Trinity adventure.
On June 21 and 22, students attended the annual registration weekend, a time when they can also connect with future roommates, classmates, and professors and get acquainted with their new community.
Friday highlights included a barbecue dinner; evening worship; and activities and movies late into the night. Students began Saturday at the faculty-hosted breakfast, followed by one-on-one advising sessions.
The Information Expo supplied students and parents with information about campus organizations, and local churches, banks, and businesses. Students then attended sessions about the First Year Experience and residence life at Trinity.
Students and their families ended the Blueprints weekend Chicago-style…with lots of pizza.
Nursing Department Celebrates Accreditation and Grant
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Korean Pastors Visit Cultivates Cross-Cultural Learning and Partnership
This past week, the College welcomed six Korean pastors for a special weekend of lectures, presentations, and fellowship. The pastors completed academic work in a one-credit course developed by Trinity theology professors on the Book of Philippians.
Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology, said the opportunity was a valuable experience for him as well as for the pastors. “This experience will translate into classroom discussion and enhance my teaching of the cross-cultural missions course.”
Serving as interpreter was Dr. Sinai Chung, adjunct professor and admissions representative for Korea, whose efforts raise awareness of Trinity among students in Korea and encourage international partnerships.
The visit was an initiative of President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., who has worked to form partnerships with churches and Colleges in South Korea and encourage cross-cultural learning and service opportunities closer to home.
“It was a great pleasure meeting these pastors,” said Timmermans. “I trust their week of learning at Trinity will further each of their own preaching ministries and that they see Trinity as their partner in ministry.”
The official start to the weekend began at the home of Ginny Carpenter, dean of student engagement and international services, where the pastors enjoyed dinner and the fellowship of several Trinity administrators and professors.
They ended their time with a trip to Chicago for dinner and an evening of music with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Senior Art Majors Final Exhibit Showcases Talent: Photogallery
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Trinity Now Offering Degrees in Some Majors in Three Years
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Trinity Celebrates Commencement 2013: Photogalleries
Commencement celebrated the graduation of 189 traditional and 45 Adult Studies students on Saturday, May 18, 2013. The speaker for the traditional ceremony was Dr. Justin Cooper ’72, executive director of Christian Higher Education Canada (CHEC).
During the ceremony, Dr. Robert Rice, professor of history was honored with emeritus status. Rice has served the College since 1979 and was honored with the inaugural Professor of the Year award last year.
This year’s Professor of the Year award was presented to Dr. Brad Breems, professor of sociology. The award recognizes the achievements of a distinguished professor who has shown excellence in teaching or scholarship. The faculty development committee chooses from nominations submitted by students, faculty, and staff.
Commencement guests were greeted by Beth Decker ’67, chair of Trinity’s Board of Trustees. Henry Perez, parent of Adam Perez ’13 of Racine, Wisconsin, gave the invocation. The Commencement litany was delivered by Student Association Vice President Megan Kuiper ’14 of McBain, Michigan.
All the graduates were welcomed to their new alumni status by Travis Bandstra ’06, director of alumni relations. The benediction was offered by Ellen Fondrk, parent of Kaitlyn Fondrk ’13 of Belvidere, Illinois.
Dr. Cooper’s address was titled “Living Sacrifices for Christ.”
Processing this year were students from Trinity’s Class of 1963.
President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., greeted Commencement guests. Dr. Mary Webster Moore, assistant professor of education, gave the invocation. The Commencement litany was delivered by Karen A. Rivera ’13 Homer Glen, Illinois.
The graduates were welcomed to their new alumni status by Joyce Schulting ’74, alumni board president. The closing prayer was offered by Chaplain Willis Van Groningen, Ph.D.
About Dr. Justin Cooper ’72
Dr. Justin D. Cooper has had a long career of service in Christian higher education and is now the executive director of Christian Higher Education Canada (CHEC), an organization of 33 Christ-centered universities, colleges, and seminaries. He is also president, emeritus of Redeemer University College in Ancaster, Ontario, where he served for 30 years—16 as president and eight as vice president, academic, in addition to being a faculty member in political science.
In the academic arena, he completed two terms as a board member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, an organization of over 100 Christian liberal arts institutions based in Washington, D.C., served as chair of the Board of CHEC, and formerly was vice chair and then executive director of the Association of Reformed Colleges and Universities. He has also served on institutional visiting committees for the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada and for Ontario’s Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board.
He received his B.A. from Trinity Christian College and his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from the University of Toronto. In May of 2010, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree by McMaster University.
He and his wife, Jessie, live in Dundas, Ontario, have two married sons and eight grandchildren, and attend First Hamilton Christian Reformed Church.
TRINITY CHRISTIAN COLLEGE
May 18, 2013 Commencement
“Living Sacrifices for Christ” (based on Romans 11:36-12:1)
Justin D. Cooper
It is a real privilege for me to be back at Trinity, and I thank Dr. Timmermans for his gracious invitation. It’s exciting to see the new sights on campus, to meet friends and colleagues, and most of all, to be part of this commencement ceremony that I went through myself way back in 1972. We’re here today to celebrate your accomplishments and give thanks to God for his faithfulness. Class of 2013, congratulations to each and every one of you! You are precious and loved by God. In these next few moments, I invite you to join me in reflecting on your Trinity education in a way that I hope will challenge you to go deep with what you’ve learned and also give you a response to that inevitable question which may come up later today or tomorrow: “So what comes next after graduation?”
I would like to do that using three powerful symbols. First, what I will call the three-fold cord described in the doxology that climaxes in Romans 11 verse 36; second, the living sacrifice presented in chapter 12, verse 1, as our personal response; and third the three-fold vision framed in the familiar phrase that concludes the Lord’s Prayer. May God by his Spirit so indwell these words and symbols—a three-fold cord, a living sacrifice and a three-fold vision—that they may give you a lasting source of appreciation for and inspiration from your Trinity education, as you leave this campus and begin the next chapter of your lives.
The Depth of a Trinity Education
I hope you’ve enjoyed your time at Trinity as much as I did. Whether you’ve been here for a year or two, four years, or even five or six, you’re graduating from an excellent educational program. What an amazing opportunity to gain skills and competences, to develop expertise in a field, and most importantly, to grow as a whole person—body, mind and spirit. Along the way I trust you’ve also come to see and value that your education has been framed by a Biblical worldview and intertwined with the overarching story of the Bible that is so wonderfully summarized in Romans 11:36 (and, I might add, portrayed in the four beautiful stained glass windows on each side of this Ozinga Chapel).
In this verse, Paul waxes eloquent as he describes the majestic sweep of the Bible’s cosmic metanarrative—“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things; to Him be glory forever and ever.” In these phrases, Paul reminds his readers that this world belongs to God, fallen as it is right now, for He made it—it is from Him. And God so loved the world that He sent his only Son, Christ, to redeem it—through Him comes the power to break the curse of sin, restore us and reconcile all things to Himself. And finally, in this in-between time, as His people are called to witness to His redeeming work, history is moving to Him, toward that great Day when he will come again to make all things new.
I would like to characterize this grand story as the three-fold cord that is woven through and undergirds your education. From Him, through Him and to Him—this is the foundational reality that gives meaning and direction to our studies and our lives. And as Ecclesiastes reminds us, a three-fold cord is not easily broken; this three-fold cord, think of it as a red cord like that of Rahab, will never be broken. It runs through and binds together all of history. Let this symbol remind you of the strong foundation you have been given in your Trinity education.
Take Hold and Embrace It
Having received and been shaped by this powerful gift, I want to encourage you not to respond to it the way I did as a graduate student. I enjoyed my studies at Trinity, especially in my philosophy major with Dr. Calvin Seerveld. When I graduated and entered the University of Toronto for studies in political science, I wondered how my degree would stand up and soon found that I had been given an excellent preparation—my grades actually went up at the U of T! Not only that, I soon discovered that, given the worldview I had been exposed to, I was also able to discern and articulate foundational issues better than many of my graduate school peers.
For me, however, this was more of an intellectual exercise, a kind of academic strategy for besting secular thinkers. Though I became quite proficient, my intellectual work and Biblical worldview lacked a real personal conviction and commitment. I had a sense of walking with the Lord and He blessed me. But it was seven year later that the Lord by his Spirit led me to a deeper personal relationship with Christ. It was only then that I fully embraced what my education had given me. And this is why I want to say to you today, don’t make the mistake I did. Instead, take hold of the three-fold cord that you have been given in your Trinity education; embrace Him from Whom, through Whom and to Whom are all things.
Offer Yourself as a Living Sacrifice
This is why we need to move with Paul from the glorious doxology of Romans 11:36 to the punch line in chapter 12 verse 1, where he says, “Therefore, in view of God’s mercies I urge you to offer your bodies [yourselves] as living sacrifices…which is your spiritual act of worship.” This is the personal response that takes things to the deeper level of conviction and commitment. This is the reality that grafts you and your story to the larger story of God’s great work of redemption and restoration in Christ and gives you a vocation and direction and purpose in life. That is why being a living sacrifice is our second significant symbol today, for it is the way each servant of Christ takes hold of the three-fold cord.
But note what is at stake—we join God’s great mission on His terms, by offering ourselves—body, mind and spirit—in repentance, commitment and service, by yielding ourselves to the direction and leading of His Word and Spirit. This means letting go of our control and thereby gaining Christ and his power and love. It means moving beyond the “from, through and to Him” of Romans 11:36 to being “in Him,” surrendered and connected to Him in the core of our being, so that we receive all the treasures of Christ, through which we are empowered to live our lives and pursue our vocations with the love, insight, humility, forgiveness and other fruits that only the Spirit of Christ can instill.
Prayer as Central
However, being a living sacrifice is not a one-time event of submission or conversion but rather an ongoing lifestyle, a life of service lived in relationship to God. And central to this way of life is the practice of prayer. In fact, my church’s catechism calls prayer “the most important part of the thankfulness” in the life of the believer. (Heidelberg Catechism, Q&A 116) Through the daily rhythm of prayer we open ourselves to the heavenly realms where Christ is seated at the right of the Father. When we take the time to stop, look (upward) and not only speak but listen, we acknowledge that we belong to Christ and need to hear from Him and seek His blessing and direction. As we become focused and centered in Christ, also through regular worship and periodic fasting I might add, our inner being is connected to the deeper redemptive purpose God has built into life, and we are transformed and our minds renewed. We come to view our lives and our situation in their true and full perspective, fully releasing God’s gifts in us. This is the posture of a living sacrifice seeking to live out of the truth of the three-fold cord.
And this reality is nowhere clearer than in the prayer the Lord Himself taught his disciples and us to pray. It concludes with this powerful doxology and confession: “For Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever. Amen” We’ve said it so many times, and yet, if we stop and reflect, we realize that this doxology echoes the truth of the three-fold cord. Christ’s reconciling work is ushering in the Kingdom of his new creation, and He has chosen to bring it through the witness of his people, empowered by his redeeming work and Spirit. And wherever there is movement toward God’s created fullness and flourishing, He receives the glory and honour. This three-fold vision—the kingdom, the power and the glory—is our third significant symbol, and its sincere confession brings to life the reality of the three-fold cord and three-fold vision in the heart and mind and life of everyone one seeking to be a living sacrifice in service of Jesus Christ.
Solid Preparation for Life
As you embrace your Trinity education and the worldview, commitment and vision on which it is based, you have a solid and unshakable preparation for your life, your future vocation and whatever may come your way after you graduate today. There is an amazing power and presence of God’s Spirit that is released through a living and intentional alignment of worldview, commitment and vision that renews your heart and mind and connects you to our God and His plan and purposes. This is where Kingdom dreams and redemptive visions are born; this is the source of courage and strength for living. As you go out from here, draw on this resource of good news and build on your academic training and worldview with critical thinking and reimagining that give fresh insights. Let the passion of your faith and conviction rise and impact those around you. And share the hope and wisdom that only the inspiration of a prayerful vision can give. As you walk with the Lord in this way, He will give you discernment; He will open doors and use you mightily in His service.
Some of you already have firm plans—for a job, for future study, for marriage, for some kind of service. Others may be uncertain or even somewhat apprehensive about what lies ahead. After all, we are living in somewhat unpredictable and turbulent times, economically as well as politically and morally. But whatever your personal situation, know that you are well equipped with the education you have received and all that it represents. And more importantly, know that as you walk with Him and seek His direction, God loves you and has a calling and purpose for your life, as part of His larger mission of redemption. He will empower, equip and give you courage for all He calls you to do and face. That has certainly been my story, all the way to becoming president of Redeemer and now in my current position. My Trinity education has served me well; but I was able to step out only because each time my God equipped me for the task to which He called me.
And this is also His promise to all of you, whether you are called to serve him in your family, church and community, in the marketplace or public square, in the poorer neighborhoods and back alleys of our cities, or somewhere else across the world. In the Spirit’s power, you will be coworkers with Christ to bring his love, hope, mercy, and justice in the situations you face. You will do great things for the Lord that will serve as signposts of his coming Kingdom.
Class of 2013, congratulations! This is your moment! You have finished the course and are ready to receive your degree and embark on a new part of your life’s journey. Go with confidence, as living sacrifices, holding onto the three-fold cord and prayerfully embracing the three-fold vision embedded in your education, ready to tell all who ask: “I’m going to live a life of redemptive service for Christ wherever He leads.” For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things; His is the kingdom, the power and the glory; and in Him are all the treasures for a life of grace and truth. To Him be glory now and forevermore. Amen
Trinity Professor Named Social Worker of the Year
“Life is an adventure we are meant to be awake for and engaged in.”
Cini Bretzlaff-Holstein, assistant professor of social work, follows her own advice. The Social Worker of the Year award for the Calumet District from the National Association of Social Workers Illinois Chapter (NASW Illinois) reflects the purposeful life she leads.
Every year, the NASW celebrates exceptional social workers who promote social justice and change for the clients they serve. The award goes to an individual who helps improve the social fabric, takes risks, and gains public support for improved human services.
Bretzlaff-Holstein’s award comes after eight active years in various fields of social work including child welfare, residential youth services, community development, and program development. While also teaching courses at Trinity, she has been involved in exploring sustainable food systems and the impact of nutritional food on youth and their communities.
Bretzlaff-Holstein’s interest in sustainable food systems and youth nutrition began with reading about and researching the social impact of the current food system in the United States. After making lifestyle decisions to become a vegan and to support local growers as much as possible, Bretzlaff-Holstein began sharing her passion for a more socially responsible way of feeding America.
Two years ago, Bretzlaff-Holstein and a fellow colleague brought an Interim group to Koinonia Farm in Americus, Georgia. Koinonia practices permaculture growing and is the birth place of Habitat for Humanity. The “demonstration plot for the kingdom of God” inspired Bretzlaff-Holstein to help Trinity become part of the movement that seeks to evaluate and improve stewardship practices.
At Trinity, Bretzlaff-Holstein is part of the Campus Ecological Stewardship Advisory Group (CESAG), which recently supported the development of an aquaponics system in Trinity’s greenhouse. The idea for the system arose from students who attended Bretzlaff-Holstein’s ’13 Interim class called Food Justice.
Several other roles Bretzlaff-Holstein fills at Trinity include serving as faculty advisor to the student-led Social Justice Chapter and the Social Work Student Organization. Both groups seek out volunteer work and complete many projects throughout the year.
This spring, Bretzlaff-Holstein hosted a four part screening of HBO’s “The Weight of the Nation” documentary. Also new this spring was the Troll Fit Club, a weekly group workout session she planned.
“What I try to instill in my students, as was instilled in me, boils down to a well-known quote by Frederick Buechner: ‘The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.’”
Bretzlaff-Holstein’s deep appreciation for locally grown, healthy food, met with Kankakee, Illinois’ deep need for food reform. For the past year she has been a part of the combination community garden and free health clinic that works to improve the health and lives of the people of Kankakee.
The New Life Pentecostal Community Church runs the garden and is committed to growing fruit and vegetables to provide fresh produce to some of the food pantries and soup kitchens that provide food to the hungry in Kankakee. Bretzlaff-Holstein loves the local supply, healthy options, and educational aspects of this community garden.
This fall Bretzlaff-Holstein plans to present her scholarship on the food justice issues at several workshops and conferences including the Christian Community Development Association Conference, the North American Association of Christians in Social Work Convention, and the National Association of Social Workers-Illinois Chapter Conference.
As a professor, Bretzlaff-Holstein hopes to help her students find their place in the world and to realize that their ability to impact the world should be used as undergrads.
“We each have gifts to bring to the table that are meant to be shared no matter how far along they are developed, or what stage in life we find ourselves in,” she said. “Ask questions, think critically, be open minded, participate, make a difference, realize your worth, and believe that even though the vision for your life is not going to be clear cut, dream big and get out there and do what makes your heart come alive.”
Unique Student-Teaching Experience in Kenya
Like most senior education majors, Hannah Schaap ’13 of Mahomet, Illinois, is spending her final semester student teaching. That experience has been unique. While most of her fellow student teachers were gaining their field experience in local schools, Schaap was teaching in Nairobi, Kenya, for the first seven weeks of the semester.
As part of Trinity’s new Semester in Kenya program, Schaap fulfilled half of her student teaching requirement at the Mulandi Primary School while living at the Daystar Academy with other Semester in Kenya students.
On her blog, Schaap describes this transition period between being student and becoming a teacher, and the challenges that came along with teaching a third grade class who “seemed terrified” of her. As the weeks passed, Schaap developed a relationship with those students and wrote, “A lot of them were really sad and kept asking why I had to go home.”
After returning to Illinois recently, Schaap said, “The most meaningful and exciting part of teaching in Africa was getting to see how other children learned. It was incredibly different than how American students learn, but amazing to see how each one of them is a child of God and deserves to be educated.”
Schaap has been completing her student teaching at a 5th grade classroom in Hoover Elementary School in Calumet City as she prepares for graduation and her future as a teacher.
This summer, Schaap, who ran on the track and cross-country teams and continued to run during her time in Kenya, will be participating in Bike the U.S. for MS. The transcontinental route will take Schaap from Yorktown, Virginia, to San Francisco, California: 70 miles per day for 60 days.
Business Alumnus Offers Guidance to Undergrads
Trinity’s business professors see alumni as one of their best teaching resources. Last week, students in the Personal Selling Class, taught by Assistant Professor of Business Kyle Harkema, learned about life after Trinity from alumnus Jeff Weidenaar ’96.
Tracing his career trajectory from Trinity grad to sales manager at Silva International, Weidenaar described his experiences in the business world. Silva International is a company providing dehydrated vegetable, herb, and select fruit ingredients to the food industry.
Weidenaar sees networking as an important step in landing a great job out of college. He encouraged students to network while they are undergrads. In regard to his experience as a sales manager, Weidenaar emphasized that while price is important in sales, having high standards of value will do more to help a company succeed in the long run.
Harkema said this presentation was beneficial to soon-to-be-graduates in several ways.
“First, the presentation helped them get over the ‘salesperson stigma’ that most of them have. Second, Weidenaar showed the students that you can have a successful and fulfilling career as a Christian salesperson. Third, he reinforced a lot of what we cover in class with true to life scenarios and experience, which really resonate with the students.”
Vander Velde Scholarship Winners 2013-14
Throughout the month of March, some of Trinity’s most academically ambitious students prepared their applications for the Maurice Vander Velde Junior Scholarship Awards. The scholarship supports outstanding junior or senior students in collaborative research with a Trinity professor in their chosen disciplines.
Trinity Loves Palos: Photogallery
Every year Trinity students and faculty take time out of their busy spring schedules to take care of Palos Heights. On Saturday, May 4, the 11th annual “Love Palos” event took place, bringing the Trinity community together for a day of volunteer work.
Groups of workers split up to cover many tasks. From cleaning up the Trinity Trail and the Palos Heights pool, to picking up trash across the neighborhood and clearing the Cal-Sag Trail. Teams worked hard the entire morning and enjoyed their time of service and fellowship.
This year, the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge group joined the Love Palos initiative. The group is comprised of Trinity Christian College students and local Arab-American students attending a variety of Chicago colleges and universities. The clean-up day created an opportunity for students to work side by side toward a common goal. On Saturday, their goal was to begin expanding the shoulder along what will soon become the Cal-Sag Trail.
Other groups involved with Love Palos were the Navajo Hills Neighborhood Association, Circle Urban Ministries, and Restoration Ministries.
30-Hour Famine Raises Awareness on Campus
Trinity students recently participated in a 30-hour “famine” planned by Trinity’s Service Committee. Students fasted and let their hunger serve as a reminder to pray for those who are starving around the world.
The Service Committee held this famine to be part of World Vision’s larger “30 Hour Famine” movement. World Vision, a Christian humanitarian group, seeks to help children, families, and communities worldwide by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice.
Trinity’s group hoped to raise awareness on Trinity’s campus of the problem of global hunger and spent time praying for those affected by hunger.
Kimberly Malinowski ’15 of Peoria, Arizona, helped plan the event and described her 30 hours.
“Although 30 hours doesn’t equate to someone truly suffering from starvation, the hunger makes you contemplate the lives of those who are starving all across the world, reminding you to pray for those people. We truly are blessed, and sometimes we take food and other things for granted.”
To learn more about the movement or organization, visit the website.
Trinity Faculty and Staff Bike Sea to Sea
As the Trinity community looks toward summer break, students and professors make plans to make the most of it. This summer, two members of the Trinity community will participate in part of a nine-week cross-country bike ride called the Sea to Sea Bike Tour.
The 3,900-mile bike ride serves to raise awareness and funds for those living in poverty around the world. Hosted by the Reformed Church in America, Partners Worldwide, and World Renew, the ride enables individuals, groups, and congregations to actively serve the poor in a new and interesting way.
The ride begins June 22 in Los Angeles and ends August 24 in New York City. Riders have the option to join for certain weeks.
Each entrant must fundraise from their friends, family and churches, with a goal based on how many weeks they will be riding. Donations help both local initiatives in the areas of business and community development and global attempts to provide people around the world access to clean water, immunizations, and other vital medical services.>
Dr. Michael Vander Weele, professor of English, and Kyle Wigboldy, a Trinity financial officer, both plan to take part in this event for a portion of the race.
Vander Weele and his wife Mary will join the race for the last three weeks; their route begins in Grand Rapids, Michigan, goes through Hamilton, Ontario, and Montreal, Quebec, and ends in New York City. Along with their regular training, they plan to do several smaller rides throughout the summer to prepare for the three-week trek.
“I encouraged Trinity alumnus Aaron Carpenter to participate in this fund-raiser four years ago, when he did the whole ride,” said Vander Weele, “and I wouldn’t be doing the ride this time without his strong encouragement. I also have for a long time loved the work of World Renew.”
Wigboldy will ride for one week, covering ground from Iowa City, Iowa, to Grand Rapids, Michigan.
He said, “Doing this ride is good way for me to be an advocate for change, to educate others on the effects of poverty and its scope, and to help others participate in contributing to the needs of people around the world.”
Wigboldy averages between 5,000-8,000 miles of riding each year and hopes to continue that pattern to be physically prepared for the ride.
“I also need to be financially prepared as there is a fundraising expectation. This has been more difficult for me, but I have been making steady progress,” he said. “Learning how to ask for support, and helping others see my passion for World Renew has been a great experience.”
Both riders appreciate the sense of Christian community that surrounds this event.
Vander Weele said, “I love that the ride includes both Canadian and U.S. parts of the church and both the CRC and the RCA denominations. Even better, one-third of the funds will go to local initiatives in towns we will be visiting, and we will meet many of the people working in these programs and be able to encourage them. This seemed like an obvious way to put our passion for biking toward a good end that we really believe in.”
Trinity Festival Inspires Young Authors from Area Schools: Photogallery
You put artist Ben Hatke in front of them.
Hatke, the creator of Zita the Spacegirl, was the guest speaker at this year’s Trinity event, which welcomed aspiring writers and illustrators from 14 area Christian schools. While sharing his three “secrets” for making great comics, Hatke drew pictures, acted, and involved the children in interactive activities.
The morning opened with a time of worship in the Ozinga Chapel, led by alumnus Vinnie Adams ’10. Afterward, the children, accompanied by Trinity students, were divided into groups and attended three sessions, including the presentation by Hatke, small group discussions, and improv performances by Trinity students.
The annual festival is sponsored by Trinity’s education department. This year, 39 Trinity students led 34 groups of visiting students.
Education majors benefit greatly from the experience of interacting with the children.
Allison Karlock ’14 of Momence, Illinois, was a group leader for six third grade students. “I gained the ability to get to know students quickly and to help them get to know their peers,” said Karlock. “I saw how important it is to give students the opportunity to put their work on display and to be recognized.”
“Ben Hatke did a great job of emphasizing that it takes a lot of time, thought, and practice to write and draw well,” said Rebecca Verhage ’13 of Moses Lake, Washington. “An author doesn't come up with the perfect picture or the perfect drawing the first time, and it was good for students and for me to be reminded to not get discouraged when our own work doesn’t turn out stellar the first time.”
This event made me more excited to have my own classroom in the near future.
- Nate Hendrikse ’14
Special education and elementary education major Nate Hendrikse ’14 of Oostburg, Wisconsin, led a group for the first time. “Young Authors is such a great experience, not only for the visiting students, but also for the Trinity students,” he said. “This event made me more excited to have my own classroom in the near future and to know more awesome kids like the kids I met today.”
While many of the student leaders are education majors, leaders from other majors also used their gifts to contribute to the event.
This is the third year that communication arts major Brooke Wigboldy ’14 of Tinley Park, Illinois, has participated as a member of Trinity’s FTW improv team, which acts out the children’s original stories. “I look forward to this event each year, because there’s just something special about making kids laugh,” said Wigboldy.
Also part of the improv team, graphic design student Jess Timmermans ’14 of Palos Heights, Illinois, said the event is a great time for all involved. “The kids get to see college students looking silly, a few kids get to see their work come to life, and we get to experience a kind of improv that we only do once a year.”
There’s just something special about making kids laugh,
- Brooke Wigboldy ’14
For music and theology major Garret Ohashi ’16 of Minot, North Dakota, it was his first time helping with the festival improv team. “It was so much fun to see all the creativity the kids came up with,” Ohashi said. “I definitely learned about how to make kids laugh and what they love to do. Truly a rewarding experience!”
About the artist
Ben Hatke is an artist, writer, and comics creator. He is the creator of the Zita the Spacegirl graphic novels and a contributor to the Flight Anthologies. Ben learned painting through studying the Italian Masters and by training at the Charles Cecil Studios in Florence. He lives and works in Virginia with his wife and family.
Learn more about Ben Hatke on his blog Let Fly the Cannons.
Thanks to the Young Authors Committee
Calvin Christian School
Highland Christian School
Lansing Christian School
Roseland Christian School
Southwest Christian -Oak Lawn
Southwest Christian -Tinley Park
Timothy Christian School
Trinity Christian College
Trinity Christian College
Trinity Christian College
Vander Velde Scholarship Encourages Student-Professor Collaboration
The Maurice Vander Velde Junior Scholarship Award supports outstanding junior or senior students in collaborative research with a Trinity professor. The scholarship was established in memory of Maurice Vander Velde, one of the founders of the College.
And the Survey Says… Results Are Reason to Celebrate
The quality of a college can be measured in many ways. One of the most important—and telling—is feedback from students.
After reviewing the results of the recent Student Satisfaction Inventory (SSI), Trinity celebrates that, in many key categories, students indicate they are highly satisfied with their experience at Trinity.
The SSI, administered every four years, provides a comparison of Trinity to other four-year private institutions. Students expressed higher satisfaction than students at those institutions and identified specific items as positive attributes of the College.
Here are some examples of the survey statements that received high satisfaction rankings by our students:
Academic Major—The first step in preparing for a career or calling
- There is a commitment to academic excellence on this campus.
- My academic advisor is concerned about my success as an individual.
- There are adequate services to help me decide upon a career.
- My academic advisor is knowledgeable about requirements in my major.
Faculty—Over and over, students note the invaluable mentor relationships with professors
- Faculty care about me as an individual.
- Faculty are usually available after class and during office hours.
Value—A popular topic today, especially among families considering investing in a college education
- Tuition paid is a worthwhile investment.
- Adequate financial aid is available for most students.
Community—One of the most important aspects of the college experience
- This institution shows concern for students as individuals.
- Students are made to feel welcome on this campus.
- The campus staff is caring and helpful.
- The intercollegiate athletic programs contribute to a strong sense of school spirit.
- There are a sufficient number of weekend activities for students.
The College celebrates these results and will continue to nurture and support all aspects of its students’ higher education experience.
Students Showcase Work at OPUS 2013: Photogallery
On Tuesday, April 23, faculty became learners and students became teachers as the Trinity community gathered to enjoy OPUS, a campus-wide academic celebration sponsored by Trinity’s Academic Initiative. During this year’s OPUS, over 70 students presented on a variety of topics to audiences of students, faculty, and staff. Throughout the afternoon, attendees also enjoyed performances by the winners of the writing, music, and oral performance competitions.
While many students enjoy OPUS by listening and learning from their peers, some students value the chance to display papers, presentations, long-term research projects, and Interim discussions.
Ethan Holmes ’15, a transfer sophomore student, experienced OPUS for the first time this year.
"During the end of the semester rush, it was nice to relax and enjoy presentations from other students. I especially enjoyed hearing presentations from other departments and seeing professors’ reactions and hearing their questions about the work we had all done."
Holmes performed an original oratory during the closing ceremony, which had earned him first place in the oral interpretation competition. "I valued the opportunity to share my work with my peers and teachers. It's an amazing experience to present something very personal and God-centered to a group of people who share many of my beliefs and support my work."
Click here for the complete list of winners.
2013 Committee Members
Dr. Mark Jones, Chairperson
Dr. John Sebestyen
Dr. Pete Post ’74
Prof. John Bakker
Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’97
Dr. Mary Lynn Colosimo
Prof. Sue Buechele
Dr. Mauricio Nava-Delgado
Prof. Ellen Browning
Fred Walls ’16
Cassandra Martinez ’15
Allison Wier ’13
Matt Wydra ’15
Art and Design
Best of Show
Identity- Justin Coconato
First Place: Harold and the Purple Crayon- Hannah Snow
Second Place: FYF 2012- Kaleb Dean
Third Place: Herba- Danielle Truckenmiller
Print and Photo
First Place: Barrio- Yasmin Fernandez
Second Place: Rags to Riches #1- Heather VanSant
Third Place: Glow- Emily Denning
Painting, Drawing and Mixed Media
First Place: “Selfy”- Jonathan Engbers
Second Place: Feel the Mark- Kaleb Dean
Second Place: Open Nude Figure- Landon Lawrence
Third Place: Structure & Texture, Elements & Complexes, Complexes & Construction - Paul Cook
First Place: Trail Installation- Liz Muhammad
Second Place: Reaction to Public Art -Karl Gesch & Kevin Johnson
Third Place: Vase- Brielle Visser
First Place: Brittany Homan
Second Place: Mekayla Knol
Third Place: Haley Zandstra
First Place: Alexander Salto and Adam Perez
Honorable Mention: Cassandra Nelson
First Place: Kristen Blok
Second Place: Da'Maris King
Third Place: Kristen Folkertsma
Honorable Mention: Adam Perez
First Place: Ethan Holmes
Second Place: Ranesha McGee
First Place: Brooke Wigboldy and Fred Walls
Second Place: Cait Williams and Da'Maris King
Third Place: Esther Sullivan
First Place: Christopher DeWaard
Second Place: Nick Fiala
Third Place: Michael Kunnen
First Place: Michael Kunnen
Poetry and Essay
First Place: "When I Come Back"- Sara Henreckson
Second Place: "Shooting Stars"- Sara Henreckson
Third Place: "The Fall"- Melissa Conrad
First Place: "A Baptism"- Heather Scholten
Second Place: "A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words"- Holli Moote
Third Place: “Gardner, Kohn, Engbers”- Jonathan Engbers
First Place: ‘The Boy and the Dog”- Andrew Blok
Second Place: “Drowned” - Sara Henreckson
Third Place: Untitled - Haley Zandstra
$150 Tuition Remission Winners
Anna Hofman ’14
Eric Los ’16
Lucas Hawley ’16
Jessica Gabrielse ’16
Landon Lawrence ’15
GasBuddy Analyst on Gas Prices at TBN Event: Photos/Video
Most important, how do consumers make informed purchasing decisions?
Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com, answered these questions and others for guests at the Trinity Business Network event on April 11. The event was also viewed via first-time simulcast to guests gathering at the Hyatt Place Grand Rapids South in Michigan.
GasBuddy websites gather prices by a network of volunteer gas price spotters in each area throughout the country. DeHaan said the company estimates that it saves motorists $1.5 billion per year in gas costs.
Listing the many factors that affect differences and fluctuations in gas prices, DeHaan’s forecast for the near future is that consumers will not see record prices as domestic oil production remains healthy and demand weak.
DeHaan also recounted his journey from building Lego gas stations as a child to forecasting gasoline prices at GasBuddy beginning in 2009 as well as appearing on shows such as NBC’s TODAY Show, ABC World News, Fox Business, and CBS Evening News, among others.
Of his “unconventional” work, DeHaan said he is called to do it,” pointing out that although people can’t chart their lives, they can have faith that God will put them to work in a role in which they are needed.
Learn more about GasBuddy.com and download the GasBuddy app for your smartphone. The app is an excellent source for low gas prices in your area, and it is currently available for iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and Windows Phone users.
Click here to view the full one-hour presentation by DeHaan.
Read more about the Trinity Business Network.
Special Day Welcomes Grandparents to Campus: Photogallery
Scores of grandparents from all over the country visit campus for the annual Grandparents’ Day. On April 17, grandparents were welcomed by Larryl Humme, vice president for development, and enjoyed a morning of music and drama, chapel, lunch, and campus tours.
In his address to grandparents, President Steve Timmermans posed the question, “Where do we see God at work?” He offered three examples, including the faithfulness of the generations; the growth of Trinity’s campus and God’s abundant blessings to us; and in the lives of individual students.
“It is in moments like today that we see the faithfulness of generations,” said Timmermans. “Our task is to be used by the Spirit to further God’s work.”
The program opened with student actors performing a scene from the upcoming spring play Only an Orphan Girl. Keeping with the theme of the comedic melodrama, audience members joined in cheering for the hero and booing the villain.
It was a tough act to follow, but senior Craig Kallemeyn of Alsip, Illinois, addressed grandparents, sharing with them how his Trinity experience has affected his life. Although he hadn’t chosen Trinity specifically for its “community,” he said it was one of the aspects that has most influenced him.
“I have come to know so many students over the past couple of years. I talk to my professors outside of class, and they teach things beyond balance sheets and marketing and business,” said Kallemeyn. “They make me feel part of this community. My time at Trinity is a priceless gift.”
My time at Trinity is a priceless gift. Craig Kallemeyn ’13
Students joined their grandparents for chapel and a message by Chaplain Bill Van Groningen titled “Calculating Security.”
Following chapel, the parent of three alumni and current student Kelsey Van Dyken ’14, shared his perspective of his children’s Trinity education. Rick Van Dyken ’83, executive associate to the president for development, said he and his wife Sue ’83 encouraged all four of their children to attend Trinity because of their own experiences.
Event guests also enjoyed the music of the Ozinga Chapel organ as Jane Voss, program manager of the Church Connection Initiative at Trinity, played “Blessed Assurance” and “In Christ Alone.”
Grandparents then gathered for a wonderful lunch and had their picture taken with their grandchildren and the Trinity Troll!
Trinity Scholars’ Dinner Celebrates Student-Faculty Research: Photogallery
Trinity’s Honors Society Committee recently hosted the 3rd annual Trinity Scholars’ Dinner, celebrating the work of both the Vander Velde Scholars and senior students in the Honors Program. Student research projects were showcased in a gallery for fellow students, faculty, and alumni to view.
Dr. Laura Zumdahl ’02, vice president of Nonprofit Services at Donors Forum, delivered the keynote address and was honored with the Outstanding Alumna Research Award. The award recognizes a graduate who has demonstrated faithful service, outstanding scholarship, and successful research, as well as a collaborative partnership with a professor. Dr. Brad Breems, professor of sociology, mentored Zumdahl during her time as an undergraduate, helping her to see the importance of scholarship.
You’ll find ways to be a scholar in your work–whatever that may be.
Dr. Laura Zumdahl ’02
In her address, Zumdahl described her scholarly journey, which included earning her bachelor’s degree in sociology from Trinity. She went on to earn an M.A. in social work from the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration, and a Ph.D. in leadership from Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee.
Zumdahl valued her time at Trinity and said that the strong academic program and the long-lasting friendships she made changed, and still affect, her life. She encouraged students to connect the skills acquired in college to their eventual vocation.
“We live lives of service and gratitude in response to the gift of salvation,” said Zumdahl. “And when you are given those skills and you open your eyes, you’ll find ways to be a scholar in your work–whatever that may be.”
The event was sponsored by the Honors Committee and the Alumni Office.
2012-2013 Student researchers, faculty mentors, and projects include:
Kathryn Andringa ’14 of Sheboygan, Wisconsin
“Someday My Prince Will Come”: A Rhetorical Analysis of the Gender in Disney Princess Films
Mentor--Dr. Bethany Keeley-Jonker, assistant professor of communication arts
Andrew Blok ’14 of Lynden, Washington
Entering the World in Adolescent Fiction: Discovering the Magic in Adolescent Novels
Mentor--Dr. Bill Boerman-Cornell, associate professor of education
Kaitlyn Fondrk ’13 of Belvidere, Illinois
How to Grow a Group: Looking at Leadership within the Lake Katherine Consulting Project
Mentor--Dr. Lynn Spellman White, professor of accounting
Kevin Hahn ’13 of Cedar Lake, Indiana
Organizational Consulting: The Worth Public Library District
Mentor--Dr. Richard Hamilton, assistant professor of business
Adam Perez ’12 of Racine, Wisconsin
Time and Eternity in Brahms’ Requiem
Mentor--Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology
Lindsay Slager ’13 of Oak Forest, Illinois
Special Education: Inclusion versus a Self-Contained Classroom
Mentor--Dr. Pete Post, assistant professor of education
Hannah Van Beek ’13 of Pella, Iowa
The Anti-Proliferative Effects of Vitamin D on Breast Cancer Cells
Mentor--Dr. Clayton Carlson, assistant professor of biology
Alissa Vander Wilt ’13 of Fort Collins, Colorado
What Are We Doing? A Look at the Effects of Short-Term Medical Mission Trips to Latin America
Mentor--Professor Lorinda Lindemulder, assistant professor of nursing
Trinity Trail Clean-up: Photogallery
The Trinity Trail is a hidden gem on campus. Winding through the wooded area along part of Navajo Creek, the trail is a favorite place for reflection, prayer, and a break from the busy-ness of college life.
On April 6, the Social Work Student Organization (SWSO) partnered with the Campus Ecological Stewardship Advisory Group (CESAG) to participate in the Trinity Trail Clean-up Service Day.
Members from both groups prepared the trail for spring by picking up litter and adding new gravel, donated by Ozinga Materials, Inc., to the trail.
I had a good time with friends while taking care of God’s creation.
Rochelle Burks ’14
SWSO member Rochelle Burks ’14 of Downers Grove, Illinois, joined in the work. “I had a good time with friends while taking care of God’s creation. Serving always takes my mind off the stressful school year.”
The Social Work Student Organization supports Trinity and the surrounding community through various volunteer projects. Some of the ways the SWSO has served others this year:
- Welcome back to school dinner
- Volunteered with Habitat for Humanity
- Social work Christmas cookie decorating party
- SWSO tie-dye t-shirt event
- Welcome dinner for social work majors
- SWSO R&R spa hour before finals
Trinity Considers Global Education Partnership
Trinity’s small size and close community are considered great assets. But Trinity also strives to provide global opportunities for its students.
Recently, the College welcomed Professor of English Warwick Wang from Yancheng Teachers University (YTU) in China who presented information about his institution as well as opportunities for Trinity to partner.
Wang is in charge of international projects and placing English teachers at Yancheng and is seeking to develop joint programs with U.S. colleges.
Potential opportunities discussed included:
- Teaching internships for Trinity graduates
- Sabbatical opportunities for faculty
- Visiting teachers from Yancheng at Trinity
- Joint programs for current students
President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., said he is looking forward to further exploring the “amazing opportunities” to partner with Yancheng.
YTU is a comprehensive university whose fields of study cover many branches of learning, namely philosophy, literature, history, education, science, economics, law and engineering. The university offers 37 specialties in undergraduate studies in 15 schools: Liberal Arts, Economics, Jurisprudence & Politics, Social Sciences, Foreign Studies, Music, Physical Education, Fine Arts, Education, Business, Urban Planning & Resource Environment, Mathematics, Physics & Electronics, Chemistry & Chemical Engineering, Life Science & Technology, and Informatics. The university enrolls 17,000 full-time students.
Student Writers Gain New POV of Literature
Gaining writing experience outside of the classroom enhances a student’s learning.
The 22nd Annual Undergraduate Conference on English Language and Literature at the University of St. Francis in Joliet, Illinois, gave seven Trinity students the opportunity to share their work in a professional and scholarly setting. The conference challenged students to extend their audience beyond the classroom and to view their writing as part of a larger conversation.
English education major Brittany Rucin ’14 of Oak Lawn, Illinois, said of her participation: “It was a positive experience not only because I had the opportunity to read my paper, but because I was able to hear papers read by students from across the country. It was a great exchange of ideas."
It was a great exchange of ideas.
Brittany Rucin ’14
While English majors apply most often, students from any major may submit their work. Trinity students invited to participate in the conference included:
Emily Bruinius ’14, Tinley Park, Illinois, “Wilfred Owen: The De-Romanticization of War”
Ethan Holmes ’16, Blue Island, Illinois, “Decapitulation in Hemingway’s Sun Also Rises”
Hannah Huisman ’16, Hudsonville, Michigan, “The Anime Cyborg: A Thing of the Present. A Conversation with Ghost in the Shell”
Ryan Lindemulder ’13, Monee, Illinois, “‘Song of Myself,’ The Anti-Slavery Poem”
Anna Phillips ’15, Tampico, Illinois, “George Herbert’s Vision of Grace”
Brittany Rucin ’14, Oak Lawn, Illinois, “Utopia Found in The Shoemaker’s Holiday”
Samantha Venhuizen ’14, Munster, Indiana, “Jane Eyre: An Unlikely Heroine”
Dr. Mark Jones, professor of English, has helped Trinity students prepare for the conference for the past eight years. He values the professional experience that this conference provides for students, and the fact that students present their work along with successful writers and poets.
Conference guest speakers were Susanna Childress, an award winning poet, and Alicia Erian, a writer known for her novel Towelhead and many short stories. Presenting work in the same venue as successful authors expands the students’ perspective on writing beyond college.
Student Initiative Creates Aquaponics Ecosystem: Photogallery
Calob Lostutter ’13, Caleb Steele ’14, and Kaleb Dean ’14 have begun an aquaponics system with support from Trinity’s biology department, Associate Professor of Physics and Science Education Tom Roose, Assistant Professor of Chemistry Michael Bosscher, and the Campus Ecological Stewardship Advisory Group (CESAG).
In an aquaponics system, fish and plants are raised together with the intent to recycle resources. The fish waste supplies nutrients to plant roots, and the growing plants purify the water. The system cleans and recycles water, keeping fish healthy while promoting plant growth through nutrient-rich water.
Lostutter, a chemistry and psychology double major, initiated the project.
Incorporating aquaponics into Trinity’s curriculum could benefit several departments:
- Biology courses could use it to study the nitrogen cycle, sustainable energy systems, and the plant growth cycle.
- Chemistry classes could test the system’s nitrate levels for proper growing conditions. The system would provide a unique way of learning water chemistry, including running tests for nitrates, ammonium, and pH levels.
- Biology and chemistry majors may utilize the system for independent research projects.
- After the aquaponics lab is fully functioning, it will provide fresh produce and fish to the community. Business students could set up and run a business selling the produce.
“In my romantic mind, I believe the system to potentially be a small wave that causes people to reevaluate their part in furthering the Kingdom,” said Lostutter
The students were inspired to start the aquaponics system after a field trip during the Food Justice Interim. Assistant Professor of Social Work Cini Bretzlaff-Holstein taught the course and supported the students’ efforts.
The aquaponics system will measure 40”x 48”, with a height of 46”, and will be located in the Heritage Science Center greenhouse. Those involved with the project hope to have it built this month—with seeds planted and fish swimming.
Photos by Trinity Students Selected for Best College Photography
Five photos taken by students from Trinity’s art department were some of those recently selected out of 16,000 entries in the Photographer’s Forum annual college photography contest.
Photos by students Chris Colvin, Yasmin Fernandez, Karl Gesch, Kevin Johnson, and Brooke Tobin will be featured in the book, Best College Photography 2013.
“This contest provides students with a real-world comparison of their work to other students at their level as well as recognition by professionals in the field,” said Ellen Browning, associate professor of art, and the students’ professor. “It is a great opportunity for our students.”
Photo by Chris Colvin ’14 of Lansing, Illinois
Photo by Yasmin Fernandez ’12 of Chicago, Illinois
Photo by Karl Gesch ’13 of Cedar Grove, Wisconsin
Photo by Kevin Johnson ’13 of Midlothian, Illinois
Photo by Brooke Tobin ’15 of Lombard, Illinois
Spring Breakers “Raise the Roof”: Photogallery
Hurricane Irene hit the east coast in 2011. The impact from that storm remains visible today in many areas. One of those is Swan Quarter, North Carolina, where 41 Trinity students spent their spring break serving the community, tearing off roofs and installing new ones for families whose houses were damaged.
Of the eight years that Trinity’s student-led service trip has taken place, 2013 marked the second consecutive year spent at Swan Quarter. The week-long trip involved days of physical labor and interaction with community members, and nights gathered in worship through singing, devotions, and testimonies.
Sophomore co-leader Kimberly Malinowski of Peoria, Arizona, said she gained as much as she gave during the trip. “I’ve grown more in love with serving those in need, and I’ve taken a much greater appreciation for the little things in life.”
Students returned spiritually refreshed, according to Megan Spradley ’14 of Aurora, Illinois, who has joined the team the past two years. “This trip created a new meaning of the body of Christ for me. I saw spiritual growth in many people and experienced God in new, beautiful, and majestic ways.”
I saw spiritual growth in many people and experienced God in new, beautiful, and majestic ways. -- Megan Spradley ’14
Students bond over their shared goal of serving others. “Group members create relationships with people who are all seeking the same thing, a deeper relationship with God and an opportunity to serve him and his kingdom,” said Spradley.
The spring break service trip partnered with World Renew (formerly the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee), the relief and development organization of the Christian Reformed Church.
Meet the 2013 Founders Scholars
The College is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2013 Founders’ Scholarship.
Congratulations to Trevor Dalla Santa of Lynden, Washington, and Ben Hoekstra of Brookfield, Wisconsin!
Giving Educators the Edge
Students need access to networking opportunities as well as opportunities to develop as scholars.
Each year, Dr. Trina Vallone ’98, associate professor of education, offers these opportunities to pre-service teachers by inviting students in her reading course to present at the Illinois Reading Conference in Springfield, Illinois.
New Diversity Scholarship Awarded to Seven Students
This year, seven students were chosen to receive Trinity’s new Diversity Scholars Award.
Formerly the Greater Chicago Christian Leadership Scholarship, the purpose of the Diversity Scholars Program is to recognize scholars from under-represented populations in and beyond the Chicago area.
Multiple scholarships, ranging from $2,000 to $18,000, are awarded to first-time freshmen students who have demonstrated involvement in promoting diversity in high school, church, or community programs and who will perpetuate the mission of Trinity.
This year’s scholarship winners:
- Danny Bremmer-Bennett (not pictured), Rehoboth, NM; High school: Rehoboth Christian School; Intended major: Pre-Medicine
- Bianka Curvey, Houston, TX; High school: Westside High; Intended major: Business
- Karyn Jones, Florissant, MO; High school: Hazelwood West Senior High; Intended major: Math Education
- Marc Oda, Naperville, IL; Green Leaf Academy(Homeschool); Intended major: Elementary Education
- Elizabeth Queen, Chicago, IL; High school: Steinmetz High; Intended major: Graphic Design
- Alexandra Robertson, Brownsville, TX; High school: Idea Frontier College Prep; Intended major: Pre-Medicine
- Nicholas Van Ess, Menomonee, WI; High school: Milwaukee Lutheran; Intended major: Math
Danny (Wendemagen) Bremmer-Bennett (not pictured) has been involved in soccer, choir, and praise band during high school. Originally from Ethiopia, Bremmer-Bennett was adopted by a family in New Mexico and writes that his life there has, and in Ethiopia, has taught him respect for a variety of cultures. At Trinity, he hopes to play a part in building the community that “represents diverse faces of Christianity.”
Bianka Curvey has participated in volleyball, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), and the Black Student Union. She writes that Romans 12:2 is the basis for how she lives her life and that her talent and passion for volleyball extends into her daily life. At Trinity, she hopes to introduce the FCA on campus because of its life-changing influence on her.
Karyn Jones has been involved in the Diversity Club, National Honor Society, Future Educators Association, and the student newspaper. Trinity’s commitment to diversity drew her to enroll. She writes that in discussions about diversity, she chooses, above all, to represent herself as “an ambassador of Christ. She feels the best way to promote diversity is to listen to others.
Marc Oda has participated in martial arts, Project Community through the Japanese American Citizens League, and the worship band, and has served as a Sunday school teacher and assistant. He writes that the blending of his parents’ cultures “fosters an appreciation for both Western and Eastern traditions.” At Trinity, he hopes to raise awareness of the spiritual needs of the people in Japan and promote cultural diversity through his music.
Elizabeth Queen has participated in the Christian Club, cross country, and track and field. She has served as captain of her track team and a leader of her youth group and in those roles she writes that she has strived to show love and respect to everyone. As an athlete, she has learned that teamwork and respect is essential and that without them no unity exists, a concept she sees applying to life.
Alexandra Robertson has been involved in track and field, student government, the National Honor Society, and Junior State of America. She describes her town of Brownville, Texas, located on the border of the U.S. and Mexico, as unique in the way its people communicate and accept each other. She writes that the values and mindset she has acquired during her upbringing in that environment are qualities she would use to further Trinity’s Commitment to Diversity.
Nicholas Van Ess has participated in choir, drama, swimming, and leadership opportunities during high school. He writes that he likes to use Paul’s illustration of the church as one body with many parts to describe diversity. He has a deep love for the arts and for service. He serves as treasurer of the National Honor Society Executive Board and has volunteered at church and in the community, including Milwaukee’s Rescue Mission.
Relational Justice Topic of Asian-American Alliance Event
Trinity’s Asian-American Alliance (AAA) hosts events that celebrate diversity at Trinity and raise awareness of injustice across the globe. AAA recently hosted its first event of the semester, which focused on immigration policy and the need for “relational justice.”
Guest speaker Sarah Quezada, who works at Mission Year, a Christian urban ministry program based in Atlanta, Georgia, described how relational justice encourages people to create relationships with the groups they are trying to help. By doing so, volunteers better understand the needs of the group they are helping.
AAA President Nicole Ferreria ’13 of Orland Park, Illinois, said, “I’m grateful for Mrs. Quezada’s willingness to also share her personal story,” said Ferreria. “I hope that our upcoming events continue to encourage Trinity in its efforts to celebrate diversity and become aware of social justice issues.”
The AAA has planned several upcoming events including the annual Celebration of Asia, on Wednesday, April 3. Guests are welcome to enjoy an evening of food, music, and cultural traditions.
Trinity Recognized for Nearly 31,000 Hours of Service
Trinity Christian College has been named to the 2013 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the 30,937 hours students have volunteered to serve others locally and globally. This designation is the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.
Students regularly volunteer with organizations in Chicago and the community as well as travel to other states and countries to aid victims of natural disasters and to teach, rebuild, and provide healthcare. Service hours were completed through service-learning classes, spring break service trips and Interim courses, the service committee, and other student-led projects.
Over the past year:
30,937 total number of all community service hours
978 Trinity students who engaged in community service
224 Students who engaged in at least 20 hours of community service per academic term
Telling the Stories—Community Service highlights from 2012
The Corporation for National and Community Service has administered the award since 2006 and manages the program in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, as well as the American Council on Education and Campus Compact.
Trinity Wins ACCA Computer Programming Competition
Trinity’s Computer Science department recently received recognition at the Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area (ACCA) 2013 Programming Competition. The computer programming team competed against six other Chicago area colleges on Saturday, February 23, and came away with a win.
Arts Conference Provides Advice for Students
At the 13th annual Self Employment in the Arts Conference (SEA), professionals united to give young artists advice on successfully positioning themselves in the marketplace. Two Trinity students took this chance to learn from professionals in the field.
Celebration of African American Culture: Photogallery
Trinity’s Organization of African American Unity (OAAU) welcomed students and faculty to join in the Celebration of African American Culture on Wednesday, February 27. Attendees shared a delicious meal while enjoying performances of dance, music, and poetry.
The Gospel Choir made an appearance singing “I Shall Wear a Crown,” and many students performed solo acts. Rochelle Burks ’14 of Downers Grove, Illinois, played a drum solo on a djembe, a traditional African drum.
Poetry was shared by Dominique Evans ’14 of Glenwood, Illinois, reading Langston Hughes’ “Weary Blues,” and by Ranesha McGee ’15 of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, reading Maya Angelou’s “Still I Rise.”
Evans serves as president of the OAAU and worked hard to make the evening a success. “We want to let the campus know the importance of African American culture and the contributions it makes to American culture,” Evans said. “We want to bring diversity to Trinity’s campus through more events like this.”
The OAAU seeks to promote, understand, and appreciate the history of African Americans within the larger Trinity community, as well as serve as a voice for students of minority backgrounds.
Annual Hawaiian Dance with Elim Students: Photogallery
Start with colorful Hawaiian decorations. Add a great DJ and delicious snacks. Mix in 45 high schoolers from Elim Christian School dressed in their best Hawaiian clothes. Throw in energetic Trinity Christian College special education majors…
English Festival Celebrates Learning, Reading, and Calling: Photogallery
They were in their literary glory on February 18.
English students, professors, and visiting alumni enjoyed a full day of activities at Trinity’s English festival, which welcomed Dr. Deborah Bowen, professor of English at Redeemer University College, poet and alumnus John Terpstra ’74, and Professor Emerita Virginia LaGrand.
Trinity Business Network Proves Valuable Experience
The Trinity Business Network (TBN) hosts events that bring students and local businesses together, allowing students to apply the critical thinking skills they learn in the classroom to actual operational and strategic matters.
Alumni Winter Weekend: Photogallery
Alumni had a great reason to visit campus on February 16. Winter Weekend presented a variety of opportunities to have fun, learn, and reconnect for more than 120 alumni.
The schedule of events included basketball games and team reunions, as well as an education seminar and alumna art exhibit. Visit the photogallery.
The 3-on-3 basketball tournament drew the participation of 13 teams for this annual hoops tradition. The winning teams were:
Michelle Schurman ’09
Matt Buren ’12
Alumni also caught a Trolls basketball doubleheader against Judson. After the women’s game, former alumni teammates enjoyed a reunion in the hospitality suite of the DeVos Gymnasium during the men’s game and had a chance to meet Coach Reggie Chapple.
Other events included an education seminar with renowned speaker Jim Gill, who challenged teachers to reach students of all abilities by combining child development, music, and literacy.
Alumni also enjoyed the work of Lisa (Worpel) Walcott ’05. Walcott was present to discuss her exhibit “A Bit Over the Top” in the Seerveld Gallery.
Students Inspired by Interim
Access to healthful and environmentally-friendly food and the global consequences of consumer actions were the main topics discussed in the recent Interim course Food Justice. Students learned about the food system and the potential for injustices caused to people, animals, and the environment.
Communal Growth through the Lenten Season
The College community observed Ash Wednesday during the weekly communal worship with the message “Formation Matters for Community,” presented by Dr. Aron Reppmann ’92, associate professor of philosophy.
Reppmann offered a reflection on the dynamics of the formation that occurs through practices observed during the season of Lent, often a time for taking on new spiritual disciplines. He suggested ways the Trinity community can take up communal practices based on its common identity.
“Paying attention to how we are formed, being aware of and intentional about formation is a hallmark of our life together, a distinguishing factor, a way of life that makes our community distinctive,” said Reppmann.
To help students, faculty, and staff continue to engage the practices begun in the Wednesday chapel series, Reppmann will offer weekly posts on his blog Formation Matters.
Community Partnerships with Tabitha House
Tabitha House Ministries, a branch of Restoration Ministries in Harvey, Illinois, creates a safe environment where women can get back on a path to a healthy life, both physically and spiritually. Every Friday morning at Trinity’s Bootsma Café, a women’s book club made up of “Tabitha sisters” meets with Professor of Psychology Mary Lynn Colosimo, Ph. D., who began giving her time to the Restoration Ministries family over 20 years ago.
Celebrating the Diverse Scholarly Work of Professors
Summer is often a time when Trinity faculty pursue scholarly work. That work was celebrated at a recent reception honoring the 2012 summer research grant recipients.
2012 President’s Report and Photogallery
Last year, the College chose to go paperless with the President’s Report and received a very positive response from readers. We continue that practice and now present the 2012 President’s Report, which provides four perspectives on the previous year:
10th Annual Black History Month Lecture
Trinity recently held its 10th annual public lecture in honor of Black History Month, and welcomed Dr. Emmett Price III, professor of music at Northeastern University in Massachusetts. Tying together the themes of music and history, Price spoke on “The Power of Black Music: From Spirituals to Hip Hop.”
History students enjoyed music-focused lessons earlier in the day when Price visited classrooms to perform selections spanning several cultural eras in Black history. He also discussed how music’s function in society changes over time.
Nicole Ferreria ’13 of Orland Park, Illinois, said, “In my History of Chicago class, Dr. Price talked about how music is now used when we work out or when we study. It becomes background music, but in the past it was conversation…it was used to say things that we normally couldn’t.”
Creating a link between culture and music allows history to be studied in a unique way. During his lecture in the Grand Lobby, Price reminded the audience that music reflects the culture of those who create it. Students gained insight into the history of African American culture discovering how Black music has evolved throughout this country’s history.
Serving Others—Institutional and Personal Mission
As much as she loves to travel for her job, it’s also because of the position that she recently spent time serving in one of her favorite countries, the Dominican Republic. Each year, Trinity faculty and staff receive a service time allowance to carry out God’s call to serve others locally and overseas.
Sanford first travelled to Santiago, Dominican Republic, 10 years ago with her church to work with missionary Darlene Rimer, who has provided supervision and educational support for the country’s school children for over 35 years.
While there, Sanford interacted with students, worked at the local school and church, and assisted with the Bible club Christmas party.
“Every time I visit the Dominican Republic I fall more in love with the people and their joy for life,” said Sanford. “It is a reminder to be thankful for what God has given me.”
Sanford said that she benefits greatly from her travels and is grateful that Trinity encourages and supports staff in their desire to serve since serving others is an important part of the College’s mission.
“I become a better person mentally, emotionally, and physically just by stepping out of my culture and living amongst such amazing people,” she said.
Professor’s Art Reveals Geologic Event
“Every day some 200 tons of extraterrestrial material enter the Earth’s porous atmosphere.”
“The largest of these objects, meteors, become giant fireballs with the ability to light up the daytime sky and can cause local, regional, or global destruction upon impact. Others become shooting stars, neither large enough to survive their fiery trip through the atmosphere, nor small enough to escape their fate. The smallest of these materials, however, make it to the surface of the Earth as micrometeorites without much in the way of fanfare. No fiery explosions in the sky. No damage or destruction. Just a silent fall to Earth.”
Published in Making the Geologic Now, the essay, like the others in the book, highlights what the editors describe as a cultural turn towards a heightened awareness of one’s place relative to geologic events.
Thompson’s essay is accompanied by his photo of a micrometeorite on the tip of his finger.
“In my recent studio art practice, I’ve been exploring a range of complex and often strange relationships humans produce in collaboration with natural phenomena,” said Thompson. “Looking at the field of meteoritics (the study of meteorites) has been one interesting way to do this.”
For Thompson, the connection between science and art is that being a professional artist allows him to also be an “amateur geologist.”
“Because art’s main function is not scientific, it gives one the freedom to look at other discursive fields [such as geology] from a different perspective—as an amateur with a different set of goals and possible outcomes,” said Thompson.
2012 December Commencement—Photogallery
Trinity Christian College celebrated the graduation of traditional and Adult Studies students during the Commencement ceremony on Saturday, December 15, 2012.
Honors Program Honors Graduates at Inaugural Ceremony
The Honors Program challenges and supports academically gifted students through collaborative research with publishing scholars in the field and participation in co-curricular activities.
During the ceremony, seniors Brian Hofman of Waupun, Wisconsin; Megan Regalado of Glendora, California; Trevor Schaap of Lansing, Illinois; Kimberly Van Spronsen of Escalon, California; and Daniel Thayer of Buchanan, Michigan, were honored by fellow students and professors, who offered personal thoughts and words of congratulations and blessing.
To read some of the comments offered, visit the Honors Program blog.
“I thought the pinning ceremony was extremely thoughtful in that each senior graduating from the program was given 'tribute' by another member of the Honors Program,” said Regalado.
Said Thayer, “It meant a lot to have current students talk about the graduates and to enjoy a time that was in honor of the hard work we put in over the years.”
In my four years in the program, I have built many friendships that will last beyond college,” said Schaap.
At the closing of the ceremony, Dr. Mattson recited verses from the Book of Isaiah. “Isaiah 61 concludes with words that aptly describe Brian, Kimberly, Trevor, Megan, and Daniel.
“’They will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, to display his glory. They shall build up the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations.’”
Mattson plans to hold pinning ceremony every semester prior to graduation.
“The ceremony was a wonderful conclusion to the work that I had done,” said Hofman, “and I appreciated the chance to celebrate with many of the students and professors who played significant roles in my honors experience at Trinity.”
Student’s Project Becomes Means for Educating Others
The service learning project combined student Vicky Ranftl’s Adult Studies education with her passion to raise awareness of pulmonary hypertension (PH), a rare disorder causing intolerable blood pressure levels in the arteries between the lungs and heart.
“We were instructed to choose a subject for our project that we are passionate about,” said Ranftl at a recent presentation to fellow Adult Studies students. On the screen behind her was a picture of her granddaughter Tatiana, 6, who was recently diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension.
We were instructed to choose a subject for our project that we are passionate about.” Vicky Ranftl
Trinity’s service learning practicum is the capstone course to a new major, Elementary Education Studies. The practicum requires that students engage in 80 hours of field work to create and implement a service learning project in an educational setting.
For the project, Ranftl enlisted the students in Shepard High School’s Leo Club to collaborate with her. She integrated the project into the 9-12 grade curriculum, educating the students about PH, introducing them to Tatiana--which Ranftl said “made it real” for the students--and leading them in efforts to educate the public.
That education involved an exhibit about PH that Ranftl and the students presented at the high school. They also collected 800 signatures to send to state representatives with a request that they co-sponsor the Tom Lantos Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Education Act. The bill calls for more research and increased efforts to raise public and professional awareness. Their efforts also prompted local mayors to declare November Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Month.
“Although Vicky faced substantial challenges in implementing her service-learning project, she had a goal in mind and refused to give up or settle for an easy project,” said Dr. Rhoda Mattson, associate professor of education. “She went above and beyond to implement a multi-faceted and creative project and showed evidence that she really understood what service learning is about.”
Women’s Soccer Team Serves in Florida: Photogallery
Members of the women’s soccer team were told they would not be sleeping in for one of the mornings during their time in Kissimmee, Florida, at the NCCAA national tournament. Instead, they would be making an impact on the lives of more than 30,000 people.
Professor Brings to Light Story of an “Almost” Pioneer
They were almost pioneers.
Now the memoir of Laura Smith, written decades ago as a record of her brief Wyoming homesteading adventure from 1913 to 1916, is being shared with others through the efforts of Dr. John Fry, professor of history.
Business Students Gain Global Perspective at Marketplace Revolution
Business. Dignity. Ending poverty.
This was the focus of the Partners Worldwide Marketplace Revolution conference in November. Over the course of two days, eight junior and senior business students attended several group sessions and workshops to learn about the work of Christian business people around the world.
Business Department Receives Grant to Strengthen Vocational Formation
The business department has received a $50,000 2012 NetVUE Program Development Grant, which will be used to strengthen the focus on vocational calling and to develop a more integrated approach to the study and realization of vocational opportunities for students.
PE Students Learn Through Experience and Service: Photogallery
Students in Trinity’s physical education department recently participated in some out-of-class learning experiences during field trips to a health convention and to Restoration Ministries.
Two Trolls Teams Advance to NCCAA National Championships
It was a big sports weekend for the Trolls with both the women’s soccer team and the volleyball team claiming region championships. With their wins, the teams advance to the NCCAA National Championships in Kissimmee, Florida, November 28-December 1.
On Friday night, the volleyball team claimed the North Central Region title with a win over Bethel College. Trinity won the match in three straight sets at 25-18, 25-13, and 25-23.
Read more about the volleyball game.
The tournament schedule has been set for the 2012 NCCAA Division I Volleyball Championship held at the Kissimmee Civic Center in Kissimmee, Florida on November 29 – December 1.
On Saturday afternoon, the women’s soccer team won its region title with a 2-1 upset victory over Judson University. The Trolls took control of the game in the first half with two goals in the first 12 minutes of the game.
Read more about the soccer game.
The seeding and bracket have been set for the 2012 NCCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Championship held at Austin-Tindall Soccer Complex in Kissimmee, Florida on November 28 - December 1.
Perez Named College’s 27th Lincoln Laureate
Adam Perez ’13 of Racine, Wisconsin, has been named Trinity’s 27th Lincoln Laureate by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. He was recently honored at the annual Student Laureate Convocation in Springfield.
The Student Laureate Award recognizes excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities and honors senior students from each of Illinois’ four-year, degree granting colleges and universities.
Perez, a music education major with minors in theology and church music, has shown his commitment to the College’s community throughout his time here. He served as a Resident Assistant (RA) in Tibstra Hall and is currently an RA at Trinity’s off-campus apartments, where he has also served as a summer RA.
Along with this, Perez worked as a tutor in the College’s music department and a student mentor to first year students for two years. Perez’s years as a mentor have included some of his favorite experiences at Trinity.
“Getting to be sort of a mother goose for a few intense days and then helping guide students through their first year experience is a huge strength of the College,” Perez said. “It is so important that we have student leaders who introduce new students to the postures and peculiarities of our wonderful Troll-culture.”
Perez also participates in a large number of extra and co-curricular activities including concert choir, honors ensemble, jazz band, wind ensemble, and brass quintet. He is one of three leaders of Outcry, the student-led worship. His work as a member of the Honor’s Program has also given Perez the opportunity to grow.
Outside of Trinity, Perez has done teacher aiding in various schools as part of his music education curriculum and has led worship at several local churches.
Overall, Perez has tried to get the most out of his Trinity experience. He plans to graduate in May with 184 credits after five years at the College. Part of his work includes voluntary independent studies with Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music.
“[Peters] has encouraged me to pursue the things I am interested in educationally, even if they are not part of the core curriculum,” Perez said. “Liberal arts doesn’t necessarily mean just a broad range of subjects, but as Ginny Carpenter, vice president for student development, says, also a liberal, hefty serving of them; a full plate, if you will.”
One project Perez collaborated on with Peters, “Music, Theology, and Christian Worship: A Study of Hillsong” made him the first music education major to receive Trinity’s VanderVelde Junior Scholar Award. Perez also received the Don Sinnema Research Scholarship Award from the theology department for his project, “Time and Eternity in Brahms’s Requiem,” with Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology, as his faculty mentor.
Perez plans to apply for graduate schools in liturgical studies or music. He is also considering teaching as he will soon be a certified music teacher in Illinois.
“I would more than love to spend the next few years with middle or high school music students,” Perez said. “It isn’t really a question of which I’d rather do because both sound great.”
At the convocation, Perez received a Student Laureate Medallion, accompanied by an honorarium check and certificate of achievement.
Trinity Christian College Lincoln Laureates
2012 – Adam Perez
2011 – Alberto LaRosa
2010 – Joseph R. Wydra
2009 – Jonathan VanderWoude
2008 – Caitlin Fillmore
2007 – Elizabeth VanderSpek
2006 – Allison Backous
2005 – Erin Marshalek
2004 – Rachel Van Oort
2003 – Yvana Hansen
2002 – Evan VanderZee
2001 – Nate Bosch
2000 – Laurie Johnson
1999 – Hanna Vancer Zee
1998 – Kristen Devine
1997 – Heidi Boeck
1996 – Julie Tinklenberg
1995 – Keri Dyksterhouse
1994 – Mark Mulder
1993 – Kristen Hart
1992 – Sarah Ver Velde
1991 – Aron Reppmann
1990 – Nathan Van Der Male
1989 – Drew Sweetman
1988 – Erik Hoekstra
1987 – Kimberly Dykema
1986 – Edward Wiener, Jr.
New Issue of TRINITY Magazine Online: Real-world Success
The fall issue of TRINITY magazine is now online!
This “Real-World Success” issue features profiles of recent alumni from a variety of majors who are enjoying careers in their areas of study, including accounting, art, biology, education, and many others. Some alumni are pursuing graduate school.
Nursing Students Share Health Lessons with Kids in Chicago: Photogallery
Students in Trinity’s nursing program recently shared their knowledge with children in the afterschool program at By the Hand Club for Kids in Chicago.
Alumni Share Experiences at Meet the Majors Event: Photogallery
Trinity students had a chance to find out firsthand what the “real world” is like for graduates who share their area of study. At the annual “Meet the Majors” event on Thursday, November 8, students spoke with alumni who earned the same degree the students are currently pursuing or are thinking of pursuing.
Business Students Work with SCORE Program, Local Businesses- Photogallery
As part of their experiential learning this semester, upper-level business students have been presenting to a panel composed of members of SCORE, the Trinity Business Network, and other professionals in the areas of marketing, training, consulting, higher education leadership, business ownership, and web marketing. The panel is helping the students as they make hands-on decisions for various local businesses that are partnering with the class for this project.
Women’s Soccer Team Upsets No.1 Tigers in CCAC Tournament
The women’s soccer team at Trinity is proving that regular season results do not matter when it comes to tournament time in its post-season run.
After defeating No. 4 Trinity International University in the quarterfinal round of the CCAC conference tournament, the No. 5 Trolls continued to be the spoiler as they upset No. 1 Olivet Nazarene University with a 1-0 shutout victory in the semifinal game.
The game ended a 12-game winning streak for the No. 8 nationally-ranked Tigers and was the first goal ONU has allowed since September 15. The Tigers finished the conference regular season with a perfect 11-0 record and out-scored their opponent 41-0.
In the game, the stats favored the Tigers as they had 19 shots while Trinity took just three. However, the score favored the Trolls who made one of their two first half shots count on the scoreboard. The game-changer came at 27:30 on an unassisted goal by Rachael Webb ’15 of Riverside, California.
For the rest of the game, the Trolls stayed on top and held off the Tiger’s attack. Trinity goalkeeper Becky Gold ’13 of Virginia Beach, Virginia ended the game with nine saves. It was only the second time this season that Olivet was held without a goal.
The victory moves Trinity into the championship game against No. 3 Robert Morris University on Saturday, November 10. If the Trolls win, they will advance to the NAIA National Championship tournament.
The game against Robert Morris will take place at Redmond Athletic Complex in Bensenville, Illinois at 2 p.m.
Trollstock--a Campus-wide Talent Show: Photogallery
More than 700 Trinity students, parents, and friends watched as students shared their talents on Saturday, November 3 at the annual Trollstock competition in the Ozinga Chapel. The event included traditional singing performances along with some unique acts.
Professor Shares Math Expertise in Malaysia: Photogallery
Dr. Mary Webster Moore, associate professor of mathematics education, has seen God’s provision in many ways during her overseas travels.
Theology Professors Publish Papers on Philosophers and the Godhead
The scholarly work of two professors at Trinity has recently been published.
Dr. Keith Starkenburg published “What the Apostles Will Let Us Get Away with Saying” in Rorty and the Religious, Christian Engagements with a Secular Philosopher. The other essays in this volume enter into meaningful conversation with this secular thinker who died in 2007.
Starkenburg’s essay focuses on Alvin Plantinga, Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Notre Dame, and his criticism of Rorty. But “Rorty has more to say than Plantinga recognized,” said Starkenburg, who outlines Plantinga’s views and what role Rorty plays in that dialogue.
Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology, published “The Formula of Baptism and the Equality of the Godhead: Joseph Bingham (1668-1723) and the Trinitarian Controversy in Late-Stuart England” in The New Evangelical Subordinationism?: Perspectives on the Equality of God the Father and God the Son in August 2012.
The volume is a collection of 16 essays that speak to both sides of the discussion about equality and subordination in the Holy Trinity. The main issue highlighted in this collection of essays is whether and in what sense the Son of God might eternally submit to the Father’s will.
Thianto explores history rather than taking a position in his essay by discussing the Trinitarian theology of 18th century Anglican minister and church historian Joseph Bingham. In his study of Bingham, Thianto provides some insights that in Bingham one can find both sides of the argument over the Son’s eternal status vis-a-vis the Father.
Students, Faculty Celebrate Launch of Literary Arts Magazine: Photogallery
Hartrick Vander Ploeg ’15 of Frankfort, Illinois, stood in front of students and faculty of the English and art departments as he shared his recently published short fiction piece, “Permanence of the Supernova.” His work was one of many featured in this year’s Openings, Trinity’s visual and literary arts magazine.
Teaching the Integration of Faith to Teachers in Haiti: Photogallery
Traveling overseas is not only a learning experience for students but for faculty as well. Every year, Trinity professors study abroad during sabbaticals or serve as trainers and educators and in volunteer roles in countries all over the world.
Pre-Engineering Program Offered for Fall 2013
The College will begin offering its new pre-engineering program in the Fall 2013 semester.
The program provides a Christian liberal arts foundation and the necessary engineering prerequisites during the first two years. Students can then transfer to another college to complete a degree in aerospace, chemical, civil, energy, environmental, materials science, or mechanical engineering.
Trinity has transfer guides for mechanical and civil engineering programs. Trinity will work with students who wish to transfer to a different institution to ensure that the necessary prerequisites are completed prior to transfer.
Volleyball Team at Top of CCAC Conference
With a 16-match win streak earlier this season, an undefeated September, and a 21-5 overall record, the women’s volleyball team is looking forward to the rest of its season.
The team, coached by Athletics Director Bill Schepel, is in the middle of conference play and is currently in first place with a 13-1 conference record.
The team’s most recent victory came in a game at Indiana University-South Bend, where the Trolls won in three sets.
For the match, Trinity had 31 kills. Kaitlin Feddema ’14 of Kalamazoo, Michigan, led the team with eight and Betsy Holman ’13 of Streamwood, Illinois, had seven. Feddema also added six digs for the match and Holman had four blocks. Ellie Raebel ’14 of Waterford, Wisconsin, grabbed 17 digs and Erynn Schuh ’15 of Frankfort, Illinois, had nine digs along with 25 assists.
The Trolls will play their next home game on Thursday, November 11 at 7 p.m. against Purdue University- North Central. Click here for a full schedule.
Homecoming 2012: Photogallery
New events helped make this year’s Homecoming an even greater event and offered more opportunities for hundreds of alumni to reconnect.
Trinity Introduces New Debate Club
Trinity students will participate in a new kind of competition soon: intercollegiate debates. The College recently formed a debate club with six students led by Diana Wolfson.
Wolfson, who has taught in the communication arts department, initiated the club after gathering student feedback. Wolfson’s debate experience began in 1999 when she taught competitive debate to high school students. She especially enjoys being able to teach debate from a Christian perspective.
“My passion and my mission are to teach Christian students to think critically and communicate confidently in a manner that others will receive,” said Wolfson.
Michael Lautermilch ’15 of Lockport, Illinois, expressed interest in the club right away. As one of Wolfson’s students, he agreed to help finding other interested students.
Lautermilch said he has wanted to join debate competitions since watching his siblings compete a few years ago.
“Some of the skills they learned amazed me,” he said. “I am looking forward to being able to learn those skills and use them later in life.”
The debate club meets each week and plans to participate in one-day tournaments each month with the goal of entering the state championship at the end of the season.
Trinity Student Exhibits at ArtPrize in Grand Rapids
With only a little time left before the acceptance deadline, Chelsea Konyndyk ’13 of Zeeland, Michigan, had still not been selected into a venue at ArtPrize, a large art competition in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Then, with only five hours left, she was in.
This year’s competition featured over 1,500 works in 162 venues across Grand Rapids from September 19 to October 4. Konyndyk’s oil painting, “Abstract Space” was originally done for her final project in her intermediate painting class at Trinity.
The art education major’s work was featured in a gallery along with 21 other artists. She enjoyed being able to talk with them as well as exhibiting her own work.
“I felt so honored, blessed, and thankful to be a part of ArtPrize,” said Konyndyk. “It was like I was on cloud nine the whole time I was there.”
Konyndyk was the second Trinity student to have work selected for the event. Brady Davidson ’11 took part in last year’s competition.
“It was worth having my art out there,” said Konyndyk. “I actually have an opportunity to sell my painting now, and even if it doesn't sell, I am still thankful for having the experience of showing so many people what I can do.”
See more of Konyndyk’s work and a description of “Abstract Space.”
Prayers Said Over Nursing Students Before Next Step
Every year, Trinity’s nursing faculty and senior nursing students encircle the newest members of the College’s nursing program. They place their hands on them as they are blessed and welcomed into the next step of their education—their first professional clinical.
Partnering with Bright Promise to Expand Trinity’s Urban Embrace
Trinity enjoys partnerships with a variety of organizations in the suburbs and in Chicago. Many alumni work in local schools, non-profits, and businesses, having gained some of their first work and service experience in these places through Trinity internships or volunteer opportunities.
The Bright Promise Fund (BPF) is one of the organizations with several ties to Trinity, including alumni who work as teachers in BPF’s partner schools; alumni and a Trinity faculty member who serve on the board; and director Dr. Dave Larsen, a 1967 graduate of the College and former vice president for student development.
BPF provides financial resources for urban Christian schools and was started by Larsen when he was approached in 2009 by representatives from seven Christian schools in Chicago. Their vision involved developing a fund to parallel Chicago organizations such as the Big Shoulders Fund for urban Catholic schools and the Good News Fund for urban Lutheran schools.
“I’ve been blessed by Christian education my whole life and have seen its positive impact on our own children and grandchildren. But it has always bothered me that those in poverty-stricken communities most often found it out of their financial reach,” said Larsen. “I began to see this as a justice issue for Christians.”
BPF brings new and sustaining financial resources to the schools, which in turn provide financial assistance to families. At the same time, BPF promotes school vouchers as a vehicle for educational justice. “When parents are able to exercise their freedom to choose a school for their children, studies show that students succeed,” said Larsen. “All students should have access to good schools, and good schools make for good neighborhoods.”
Trinity Provides New Options for Commuters
With nearly half of Trinity’s undergraduate students living off campus, the College found new ways to help commuting students feel welcome on campus this year.
For the first time, commuting students stayed in the dorms overnight during First Year Forum (FYF), a five-day course designed to introduce students to Trinity. In the past, these students returned home each day after attending required FYF events but often missed out on the evening activities.
Becky Starkenberg, coordinator of First Year Experience, believes the new system helps with the transition process.
“First Year Forum is best experienced as a 24-hour, five-day retreat where students have structured and informal time to engage with one another,” said Starkenberg. “This enabled our first-time freshmen to connect and form community at a critical time in their experience. Freshmen are being mentored in small groups by faculty and student mentors, but also need to make peer connections.”
After staying on campus for the five days, two students decided to live on campus for the school year.
Commuter Meal Plan
Another new offering for commuters is the commuter meal plan. The plan provides flexibility for commuters who wish to enjoy regular meals at the cafeteria or Bootsma Bookstore Café.
“I like the meal plan because I can eat at school on a somewhat regular basis and not have to worry about buying food or cooking at home,” said Kevin Hahn ’13 of Cedar Lake, Indiana.
Forty-two students signed up for this new option for the fall semester.
Social Work Graduate Finds Opportunities Abroad
Jennifer Brink ’12 of Grand Rapids, Michigan knew that when she graduated she wanted to work with diverse populations. With a summer position in Hong Kong and a new year-long position in Africa, she is doing just that.
In November, Brink, a graduate of the College’s social work program, will be living in Liberia, Africa, for one year, where she will be working with several organizations including the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare.
Brink said her classes and experiences at Trinity pushed her to travel out of her comfort zone.
“I was reminded time and time again that God created all people, and regardless of their diverse background, he calls us to be servants in this world,” said Brink. “I have made the decision to spend the next year in Liberia because God has blessed me with so much, and I am now given an opportunity to share those blessings with others around the world.”
While serving with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Brink will work with orphans. In addition, she will help with a hot meal ministry for war-affected people in the area, teach at a college, and work at a clinic and hospital.
“It is amazing and a bit scary to think of the opportunities and learning that I will do,” said Brink. “I am confident that God will provide the strength and words that I need to walk alongside people while I’m there, helping in whatever ways are possible.”
The trip will not be her first overseas. After graduating in May, Brink traveled to Hong Kong, where she worked for a few months with Play Infinity, an organization that helps children learn through its Science Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics program (STEM).
Dr. Rose Malinowski, professor of social work at Trinity, believes Brink’s Trinity field placement at Westside Christian School in Chicago in spring 2012 helped prepare her for her journey.
“Jen’s experience provided her with many opportunities to serve in a culturally rich environment with the support of helping professionals from various backgrounds,” said Malinowski.
Trinity Named as a Military Friendly School for 2013
Trinity Christian College has been named by G.I. Jobs magazine as a Military Friendly School for 2013.
This ranks Trinity in the top 15 percent of all colleges, universities, and trade schools that make efforts to embrace America’s military students and ensure their success on campus. An annual list is compiled through extensive research and a data-driven survey of more than 12,000 VA-approved schools nationwide.
“I am pleased we have been identified in this way,” said President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., “for we honor those who have served our country when we make higher education accessible to them.”
Some of Trinity's benefits noted by the magazine include an advisor on staff to assist veterans with career placement, in-state tuition without residency requirements for active-duty military students, and participation in the Yellow Ribbon Program.
Professors Share Musical Gifts at Faculty Recital
Although many of the musical events at Trinity feature student ensembles and choirs, faculty and professors of the College’s music department had the opportunity to showcase their talents at the Music Faculty Recital on September 11 in the Van Namen Recital Hall.
“The recital provides a great night of music and also lets students hear their professors perform,” said Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music. “We hope it will also encourage some students to join a music ensemble or take private lessons if they’re not already.”
Peters opened the event with prayer and the concert began with an African-American spiritual, “Give Me Jesus” performed by Dr. Helen Van Wyck, professor of music. The evening took the audience through a variety of performances including a cornet duet by Peters and Dr. Ken Austin, professor of music, and a guitar solo by Jonathan Roth, the College’s new lesson instructor.
“As a music student, the recital helped me to realize and appreciate the wonderful, talented faculty that I have the pleasure of studying under,” said Leah Laky ’13 of Grand Marais, Minnesota. “What other students can say that they learn from people capable of mastering Bach, Mendelssohn, and Villa-Lobos?”
About Jonathan Roth
Jonathan Roth, a Chicagoland native, composes classical guitar music. Roth attended Pepperdine University, where he studied with Christopher Parkening for his undergraduate work.
Roth began graduate studies at the University of Southern California Thornton School Of Music where he completed degrees under the instruction of Scott Tennant.
Roth taught as an instructor of guitar at Pepperdine from 2008 until 2011, when he moved back to the Midwest and taught at Indiana University South Bend. This year, Roth agreed to take on the role as Trinity’s guitar instructor. Roth has recorded two solo albums, “Meditations” and “Nostalgia.”
Upcoming Music Events at Trinity
September 23: Southwest Symphony Orchestra, 4 p.m., Ozinga Chapel Auditorium
September 28: Black and White Dress-up Night of Jazz, 7:30 p.m., Ozinga Chapel Auditorium, free admission
October 26: Fall Instrumental Concert--Wind Ensemble, 7 p.m., Ozinga Chapel Auditorium, free admission
Involvement Fair Showcases Opportunities
Students looking to get involved and members of different campus and community organizations recently had an opportunity to meet at the annual Student Involvement Fair.
The event featured representatives from campus organizations and local businesses. They presented the various ways student can participate in activities and services both on and off campus. Students were also able to ask questions and discover more about groups that interested them.
“Every student could find something that they enjoy, because there are so many groups out there,” said Student Association Vice President Megan Kuiper ’14 of McBain, Michigan. “The wonderful weather and picnic dinner brought not only new students, but returning ones as well.”
Acting on Aids
First Midwest Bank
Grace Community Church
Harvest Bible Chapel
Office of Service Learning
Orland Park CRC
Palos Heights CRC
Palos Heights Library
Pui Tak Center
Random Acts of Kindness
Read With Me
Social Justice Chapter
Sunday Night Worship
Trinity Ranked as Top Tier College by U.S.News & World Report
Trinity Christian College has been ranked 21st among Regional Colleges—Midwest by U.S.News & World Report in “America’s Best Colleges” for 2013. A total of 370 colleges are ranked in the entire Regional category.
The College stands among other institutions in the Regional Colleges category that offer a wide range of degree programs in the liberal arts and in fields such as business, education, graphic design, and nursing.
The U.S. News rankings are based on several criteria, including peer assessment, graduation and freshmen retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving.
“As we welcomed students to campus a few weeks ago, qualities that can’t necessarily be ‘ranked’ but are an integral part of our standing were evident,” said Provost Liz Rudenga, Ph.D., “as professors warmly greeted students; upper-class students helped new students move into the residence halls; students, mentors, and professors engaged in conversation during First Year Forum; athletes eagerly began practices and games; and students were excited to be in labs and classrooms.”
Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest ranking
Trinity also ranked 11th in the area of Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest. This ranking speaks to the College’s continued commitment to develop a multi-racial, multi-national, and multi-denominational student body. To determine this ranking, U.S. News factors in the total proportion of minority students (leaving out international students) and the overall mix of groups.
First Year Forum: Students Get First Taste of Trinity
Over 200 new Trinity students spent a morning working together in their matching “Troll Nation” t-shirts to wrap presents for children in need.
Professor’s Book Explores Religion’s Influence on Poets’ Formation
Sitting in the same church where Christina Rossetti once worshipped, Dr. Karen Dieleman, then a Ph.D. candidate, contemplated how this Victorian woman’s worship experiences may have affected her development as a poet.
Dieleman, associate professor of English at Trinity, spent a total of six years researching Rossetti, as well as poets Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Adelaide Procter. Her research of these participants in their respective Anglican, Nonconformist, and Catholic strands of Christianity culminated in the recent publication of her book Religious Imaginaries by Ohio University Press (2012).
In the book, Dieleman explores the relationships between each woman’s commitment to a particular liturgical practice and the development of poetic voice.
Dieleman’s visits to England relate directly to her current method of teaching and scholarship, namely her love of context. In addition to visiting two of the poets’ places of worship during the first three years of research, she traveled to Cambridge’s Girton College, the first college for women, to further study Procter.
The next three years of research required expanded reading and writing to fit the work into the larger field of Victorian poetry studies and within current thinking on human formation. Dieleman earned her Ph.D. from McMaster University in Ontario in 2006 and joined the Trinity faculty in 2008.
Religious Imaginaries will especially appeal to scholars and upper level college students, and for Dieleman, has been an intellectual project that has overlapped with her own Reformed tradition.
“I prayed a lot over the work,” said Dieleman. “I don’t need to make a splash in the world but have strived to be faithful and to honor these women.”
54th Convocation Celebrates Community: Photogallery
Convocation is “a calling together” of the entire campus community to celebrate the beginning of the academic year.
2011 Grad Wins First Year Teacher of the Year Award
Tania Anzaldi ’11 teaches 4th grade at Steele Creek Elementary in Charlotte, North Carolina. Although she is just starting out, her commitment to her vocation and especially to her students was recently recognized with the First Year Teacher of the Year award presented by the school.
Students Move-in for the New Academic Year
Trinity’s move-in crew welcomed incoming resident students during the College’s official Move-in Day for freshmen on Friday, August 24.
Anime and Worldview - a Timely and Thought-provoking Course
“To watch an anime film is to travel to a foreign country—to a place where people think in unfamiliar ways about nature, history, technology, and spirituality; and where the animated film itself presupposes an audience quite different from that of the latest Disney feature.”
So states the proposal for an inaugural honors composition course titled Anime and Worldview that explores the world of Japanese animation and challenges students to engage contemporary culture as Christian thinkers.
Japanese “anime” differs from American animation in everything from characterization to landscapes. Dr. Mark Jones, professor of English, compares the experience to “walking through an art gallery.”
Jones said anime makes an ideal subject for the study of world view. While some anime films are informed by a set of religious and cultural values that are distinctly non Western, others display biblical story and Christian theology in ways that are de-familiarizing and thought provoking.
Trinity’s English department has incorporated more visual literacy into its first-year curriculum, including the work of photojournalists and graphic novels such as Maus, an illustrated narrative of Holocaust survival.
Japanese anime was recently introduced to Trinity students as part of another writing course. After viewing “My Neighbor Totoro,” a pastoral children’s fantasy, and “Grave of the Fireflies,” a film about war, students noted interesting parallels in the two films, such as relationships between parents and children and the way children find beauty in desperate circumstances.
“A single film may offer insight not only into the worldviews of others, but also into the ways in which those others think about Western, and specifically Christian, ways of seeing,” said Jones.
Jones takes the teaching of this course beyond the purely academic, having participated over the years in viewing the films with his children and attending yearly conventions with hordes of anime fans, a group he calls an “accepting” and “cross-generational” sub-culture. For the past several years, he and his neighbors have brought several children from their Blue Island community to ACen (Anime Central), a local convention. This year, interest was so high that a school board member worked with the city’s park district to provide a bus trip to bring even more children to the convention.
In the Anime and Worldview course, anime films will form the main body of “text” for study, with supplemental reading and weekly writing assignments. This course will be offered as part of the Honors Program.
Two Grads Commissioned into Marine Corps
Two recent Trinity Christian College graduates were commissioned into the Marine Corps on July 17. The ceremony, attended by family and friends, was held in the Ozinga Chapel Grand Lobby.
Home and Back Again—A Student’s Journey to Liberia
Noble High School Students Set Off on College Quest
Eleven students from Noble charter schools in Chicago participated in Trinity’s inaugural College Quest program July 15 through August 3. During the three-week residential learning experience, the soon-to-be high school juniors earned three college credits in political science and got a taste of life on campus.
Trinity Alumni Power Business
After missing each other by a few years as students at Trinity, Matt Steigenga ’92 and Steve Cooper ex ’86 eventually ended up being not only fellow alumni but brothers-in-law and business partners.
Adult Studies Inspires Student to Finish Educational Journey
As names were called during the 2012 May Commencement ceremony, Lorna Sobilo ’12 crossed the stage to receive her long sought after bachelor’s degree in music. A few hours later, her name was again called as she accepted a degree earned through the Adult Studies program.
Sobilo started her education in Trinity’s music program on a part-time basis in 1983. After presenting her sophomore recital, she decided to put her education on hold to start a family. For the next two decades, Sobilo stayed home with her children, Lisa, Jonathan, and Catherine. She also worked as an administrative assistant for her husband Larry’s computer consulting business.
But in 2003, Larry was diagnosed with cancer, and Sobilo said the next five years were full of challenges for their family. Five years later, his treatments not enough to turn the tide, Larry passed away. Sobilo spent a year trying to determine her next step, and in September 2009, she returned to Trinity, enrolling in the Adult Studies Business program.
“It’s challenging to do a three-credit course in six sessions,” Sobilo said. “Our job was to learn the information and then begin to apply it rather than just to spit back facts. That was good training for the business environment. It built confidence that I could learn something quickly, understand it deeply, and apply it effectively.”
On January 20, 2011, walking across campus on the first day of the spring semester, Sobilo said she had an “ah-ha” moment. “‘Why didn’t I finish my music degree?’ I had been putting off the gen ed courses, but now I had those completed.”
With help from the registrar’s office and Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music, Sobilo was a registered student in both the Adult Studies and traditional programs within the week. “I had this in my heart for so long, and I didn’t give up even when it looked like it wasn’t going to happen,” she said.
As she finished her journey with her adult studies cohort, she resumed her journey toward a music degree. For her senior recital, Sobilo was required to sing for 45 minutes in four languages. “It was like doing the classes in adult studies—it was very fast-forward. I ended up doing 17 songs in five languages plus English,” she said.
Years prior, after she had performed her sophomore recital, she and Larry bought music in anticipation of her senior recital—a book by Chopin in Polish to honor Larry’s heritage and one by Bach. She was able to use both in her 2012 recital.
“My program was really connected with my own love of singing and my own purpose for singing and that is to glorify God,” said Sobilo.
Mission Trip Becomes Personal Journey
Each year, Trinity employees receive a service time allowance to carry out God’s call to serve others. Faculty and staff often take this time to serve locally and overseas.
Ryan Heath, assistant controller, traveled to Nicaragua in June to serve with New Hope Children’s Foundation. New Hope provides education, food, clothing, and medical assistance, and most important, the love of Christ, to orphaned or abused children in Nicaragua. The organization works in partnership with the government agency Mi Familia to rescue many children from homelessness and abuse.
Ryan’s efforts there involved spending time with the children, helping with the organization’s accounting, and translating for the head of construction at the building site of New Hope’s children’s home in the rainforest along the Coco River, a rugged frontier between Nicaragua and Honduras.
Traveling with Ryan was his 17-year-old son Melios. This was the young man’s first trip back to Nicaragua since Ryan and his wife Joslynn adopted their son and his brothers Rosendo (15) and Beto (12) from New Hope Children’s Home in 2010. They had met the boys during their first mission trip to the home in 2008. The brothers, like most of the children at the home, are Miskito Indians, indigenous to the remote eastern forest lands of Nicaragua.
Ryan said that the children at New Hope are orphans or have been brought to the home by family members who aren’t able to care for them. Some of the children have also been rescued from abuse. Melios, who speaks the native language of the indigenous people, had the opportunity to help families in the same situation Melios’s grandparents once found themselves in when they brought their grandsons to the home in 2005.
“It was awesome to see Melios step up and help these families, communicating with them in their native language and comforting them during the process of seeking help from the home,” said Ryan.
Witnessing God work through his son’s experience added to Ryan’s own experience. “I learned that we are called to have a broader world view than just our neighborhood or family or town, and that a global perspective can inform my personal walk with the Lord.”
Ryan and his son also had the opportunity to visit Melios’s grandparents, who had not seen him since 2010, and to deliver gifts to them. Because of the remote location of the Miskito villages, Ryan had to buy air time on the radio station to advertise that Melios was in the area in hopes the message would reach his grandparents, and it did.
Ryan said it was a wonderful reunion, and although the Miskito people aren’t known for outwardly exhibiting affection or deep emotion, tears poured down the face of Melios’s grandmother at the sight of her grandson.
God also opened the door for the new director of Mi Familia—who knows Melios’s grandparents—to see first-hand the fruits of New Hope’s work after hearing Ryan and his son’s story.
Earn a Counseling Psychology Bachelor’s and Master’s in Five Years
Trinity Christian College is offering the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in counseling psychology in only five years. The 3+2 track combines an academically intensive three years of undergraduate work with Trinity’s master’s degree program.
The “3” includes 18 credit hours per semester for six semesters at Trinity and two summer sessions at a local community college.
The “2” includes 48 credit hours completed over two years. Six credits are taken per term—Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer.
Applying what they’ve learned in the classroom, undergraduates will complete a field education requirement, and graduates will complete a practicum and internship experience.
Click here to download a 3+2 brochure with the list of required courses.
Students who enroll as freshmen psychology majors will:
- Complete the three-year bachelor’s program in psychology
- Gain guaranteed admission to the two-year master’s degree program in counseling psychology (with 3.0 GPA). There is no requirement to take the GRE.
- Experience study in the helping professions from a Christian perspective
- Enjoy a special community throughout their education with the same caring professors and fellow classmates
Dr. Michael DeVries ’74, director of the counseling psychology graduate program and professor of psychology, pursues a clinical practice at Olive Branch Counseling Associates, Inc., in Oak Forest, Illinois, an agency founded by his wife, Louella ’93.
“The 3+2 option at Trinity gives students with a clear sense of calling from God and a passion for helping others an opportunity to complete a liberal arts degree in psychology and a graduate degree in counseling psychology through an efficient and economical course of study without sacrificing educational quality or rigor,” said Dr. DeVries.
Professors in the program bring a variety of research focuses to their teaching, including integration of Christianity and psychology, counseling outcomes, yoga therapy, clinical and research ethics. Meet the faculty here.
Chicago Fire Soccer Club Trains Young Players on Campus
During the 5-day intensive training, known as the National Talent Center (NTC), 57 advanced soccer players, ages 10-18, received world-class instruction in all areas of the game under the supervision of Chicago Fire staff and guest coaches from Fire 1st Team and Academy.
Trinity and the Chicago Fire Soccer Club have partnered in recent years on the Faith and Family Event and programs that help Trinity students purchase discounted tickets to Chicago Fire soccer games, said Pete Hamstra, dean of admissions. “When the idea was proposed to partner with the club to put on a soccer camp, we started working to make it a reality.”
“Trinity has a wonderful facility, and it was truly a pleasure working with Sam Mahtani, marketing and media associate and assistant women’s soccer coach, and other Trinity staff members who made our coaches and players feel completely at home on this beautiful campus,” said Chris Andrew, Chicago Fire camps and training coordinator. “We hope to expand the program in future summers and look forward to continuing to partner with Trinity.”
Said Hamstra, “I am hoping some of these great young soccer players will be playing for the Trolls someday.”
Alumna and Honorary Alumni of the Year Announced
This year’s Alumna of the Year Award recognized Louella DeVries ’93, president and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor at Olive Branch Counseling Associates in Oak Forest, Illinois.
Blueprints for the Future: Photogalleries
Clutching pillows and approaching the Blueprints welcome table surrounded by family members, new Trinity students began their college adventure at the annual registration weekend on June 29 and 30.
Blueprints gives students an opportunity to connect with future roommates, classmates, and professors; register for classes; and get acquainted with their new community.
Friday highlights included the president’s barbecue dinner; evening worship; gaming and sports activities; and movies late into the night. Students began Saturday at the faculty-hosted breakfast, followed by one-on-one advising sessions.
The Professor Open House provided more time for questions and answers, and the Information Expo supplied students and parents with information about campus organizations, and local churches, banks, and businesses. Students then attended sessions about the First Year Experience and life at Trinity.
Professor of the Year Honored for ‘History’ of Exceptional Teaching
The professor effortlessly navigates the sidewalks crisscrossing campus, his guide cane tapping along the paths he has walked for the past 33 years.
The Transformative Study Abroad Experience—Photogallery
Victoria Van Hofwegen ’14 of Tolleson, Arizona, said that from a young age she knew Trinity was “the place” for her. “Overall, what drew me in was the sense of community when I was on campus even though it was far away from home.”
Alumni Golf Outing Raises Over $9,000 for Scholarships—Photogallery
More than 50 alumni and friends of the College raised over $9,000 for the Alumni Excellence Scholarship at this year’s Alumni Golf Outing on June 9. The renewable scholarship provides $1,500 awards for children of alumni attending Trinity.
The outing, held for the first time at Big Run Golf Club in Lockport, Illinois, began with lunch, followed by a shotgun start. The event ended with refreshments and the presentation of the trophy, which is engraved each year with the names of the winning foursome.
This year’s winning foursome included Paul Jansma ’08, Jamie Prins ’09, Eric VandenBerg ’09, and Ryan Wories ’09.
“This is always a great event, and we were blessed with beautiful weather this year. On behalf of the alumni office, we want to thank all of those who came out for the outing,” said Alumni Director Travis Bandstra ’06. “Continuing to build an alumni legacy at Trinity is vitally important, and we are incredibly grateful to all of our sponsors who continue to support scholarships for children of alumni through this outing.”
The College is thankful for the faithful support received from the golf outing sponsors who make it possible for the funds raised by the event to go directly to the Alumni Excellence Scholarship.
Evenhouse & Co.
Kramer & Leonard
Trinity Alumni Board
All God’s Children Orphanage
Bert Kamp CPA
Ken and Margie Boss
Clarence Davids & Co.
Firebone Brand Consultancy
Interiors for Business
Mama Vesuvio East
PolyJohn Enterprises Corp.
Schepel Buick GMC Truck
Silva International, Inc.
Stepping Stone Financial, Inc.
Strack & Van Til Supermarkets
Van Bruggen Signs
Vant Hoff Financial Services Ltd.
Rick and Sue VanDyken
CESAG Goes Wild with Green Initiative—Photogallery
In October 2011, students, led by Professors Thomas Roose and Abbie Schrotenboer, collected wildflower seed to later sow in the new basin by the Trinity Athletics and Recreation Complex and at the site of the Rt. 83 athletic fields.
Schrotenboer’s students then planted the seeds, which were germinated in the Heritage Science Center’s greenhouse. This month, a group of professors and other participants, transplanted the wildflowers into the campus basins.
Prairie plants for the drier edges of the basin included wild bergamot, New England aster, and black-eyed susan. Wetland plants for the bottom of the basin where the soil stays moist included swamp milkweed, blue vervain, and swamp rose mallow, said Schrotenboer.
“As part of our stewardship of God’s creation, the basins help us deal with the impact our campus has on the environment and also provide a small space for restoration by bringing native plants and other species back in,” said Schrotenboer.
The wildflower basins were created to deal with storm water runoff, which is filtered by the plants and soil before entering the waterways or groundwater. Native plants increase the diversity of native plant species on campus, which in turn support native insects and birds. Established plants are a relatively low maintenance way of keeping the area vegetated.
Project participants included Dr. Abbie Schrotenboer, assistant professor of biology, and her husband Brad; Dr. Thomas Roose, associate professor of physics and science education; Dr. Lou Sytsma ’65, professor of chemistry; Dr. Laurel Quinn, professor of nursing; and Marci Frederick, director of library, and her husband Paul and daughter Jocelyn.
Such initiatives integrate ecological stewardship into the biology curriculum and also reflect the stewardship efforts of the Campus Ecological Stewardship Advisory Group (CESAG). CESAG’s guiding principles include environmental restoration, sustainability, and education, while their standard practices involve restoring habitats, such as native plants, and sustaining the campus forest.
Teacher’s Experiment Heads to Space
In April, Sara Timmer ’86 began conducting a unique experiment. She and her students at Highland Christian School, Highland, Indiana, began germinating soybean seeds in the classroom while also preparing another “crop” to germinate way outside of the classroom…namely outer space.
Timmer graduated from Trinity with a degree in biology and chemistry and returned to earn her teaching certification in 2009 through the Adult Studies Accelerated Program.
With her guidance and help from Dr. Lou Sytsma ’65, professor of chemistry at Trinity, Timmer’s students wrote a proposal for the experiment to be conducted in space on the International Space Station (ISS).
The proposed experiment, “The Effect of Microgravity on the Quality and Nutritional Value of the Seed Sprout of a Germinated 92M72 Genetically-Modified Soybean,” was selected as part of Mission 1 to the ISS, the third flight opportunity provided by America’s Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP).
Through a grant from Pioneer-Hybrid International, Timmers, the student writers of the proposal, and some of their parents traveled to Florida to watch the launch.
The soybean seeds are flying in a microgravity research mini-laboratory in low Earth orbit to see if food can be grown in other environments. When the seeds return to Earth from space, the students will come to Trinity and work with Dr. Bob Boomsma, professor of biology at Trinity, to compare the seed from space and the one germinating on earth.
“This was an exciting opportunity to work with the students on current experimentation going on in the science community,” said Timmer. She said that through the project, students celebrated the joy of learning and the excitement of this unusual scientific opportunity.
Participation in these experiments shows a broader commitment to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education. SSEP typically gives 300 to 1,000 students across a community the ability to design and propose real experiments to fly in low Earth orbit, first aboard the final flights of the space shuttle, and then on the ISS.
The SSEP (http://ssep.ncesse.org) is undertaken by the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE; http://ncesse.org) in partnership with NanoRacks, LLC. This on-orbit educational research opportunity is enabled through NanoRacks, LLC, which is working in partnership with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory.
Congratulations to Dean’s List Honorees
Each semester, Trinity students in the College’s traditional program who meet high academic standards are included in the Dean’s List. Students must complete the semester at full-time status to be eligible.
Congratulations to the spring semester’s Dean’s List honorees:
P. Caleb Hamstra
Mary Margaret McNicholas
Professors Reach Milestones in Their Academic Careers
Trinity professors are known for their dedication to integrating a Christian world view into the curriculum and for the caring and commitment they demonstrate to students inside—and outside—the classroom. Many also share their expertise in their disciplines through conference presentations and publications.
Trinity Celebrates May Commencement 2012: Photogalleries
Commencement celebrated the graduation of 205 traditional and 77 Adult Studies students on Saturday, May 12, 2012. The speaker for the traditional ceremony was Donnita Travis, founder and executive director of By the Hand Club for Kids; and Dr. Lori Scrementi ’00, dean for Adult Studies.
Athletics Department Presents Special Awards
Three Trinity athletes were recognized at the Athletics Award Night for their achievements over the past year. The event on May 1 included reflections on the year’s sports season, a celebration of accomplishments, and the presentation of the athletics department’s special awards.
Alumni Host Fundraiser for Rusticus Family
In honor of their former classmate Andrew Rusticus ’05 and in an effort to help the family left behind after his death, more than 150 alumni, friends, and family members held a fundraiser on campus April 28. Rusticus, 29, died of an apparent heart attack on Saturday, February 25.
Young Authors Welcomes Children’s Book Illustrator: Photogallery
Illustrator Michael Hays was the guest speaker for this year’s Young Authors Festival at Trinity.
In addition to explaining his process for illustrating picture books, Hays treated local elementary students to a very animated reading of Abiyoyo, a storysong by folk artist Pete Seeger and Hays’ first picture book.
Students “Love Palos”: Photogallery
Bright orange t-shirts could be seen all over the Palos Heights area on Saturday, April 28. The shirts were worn by 85 Trinity students, faculty, and other members of the Palos community serving at the 10th annual Love Palos, a community service event.
Trinity Recognizes Recipients of Catherine Yonker Award for Diversity
The Ethnic Diversity Committee recently named Cynthia Coffey ’13 of Robbins, Illinois; Alejandra Romo ’15 of Chicago; and Dr. Robert Rice, professor of history, as the recipients of the Catherine Yonker Award for Diversity during the College’s Celebration of Asia in April.
2nd Annual Scholars Dinner Celebrates Student-Faculty Research
The 2nd Annual Scholars Dinner on April 20 celebrated student and faculty research among former Vander Velde Scholars, Honors students, Founders Scholars, and faculty mentors. The keynote address “Blessed to Be a Blessing” was delivered by Dr. Nathan Bosch ’02, assistant professor of environmental science at Grace College.
Professor Serves as American Editor for International Project
In 1618-19, delegates from the Netherlands and eight other countries met over a period of several months in the great Synod of Dort and produced the Canons of Dort. These statements of doctrine adopted by the synod addressed the Arminian controversy in the Dutch churches.
Trinity Recognizes Dr. Sherry Barnes
“Communication arts is a practical discipline. Our ability to communicate well is a key factor to success in any aspect of life, whether personal, professional, or social. It is a skill that everyone can learn to use proficiently.” This is the philosophy on which Dr. Sherry Barnes, professor of communication arts, has based her teaching as a Trinity faculty member since 2001.
Memorial Bench Donated in Student’s Name
Just three days after Christmas Day 2010, the campus community was mourning the loss of student Giselle Charissah McComb ’11 of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, who passed away on December 28 from injuries sustained in a car accident. On April 26, students, faculty, and staff gathered outside of the library with Giselle’s parents, Michael and Janice, to once again celebrate her life and mark the dedication of a bench donated in her memory.
Giselle was a double major in psychology and criminal justice and had a passion for restorative justice. As a student, she was working with the Cook County Sheriff’s office to develop a program in which young offenders were given information about turning their lives around through education.
The Criminal Justice Club, under the advice of Dr. Dennis Connelly, assistant professor of criminal justice, collected donations from generous faculty members and fellow students and raised the funds to purchase the bench and brass plaque in honor of their beloved classmate.
President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., welcomed friends and family, and Dr.Connelly, Giselle’s former professor, offered words of remembrance.
Reading from Psalm 15, Chaplain Bill Van Groningen said, “In this poem, David reflects on the characteristics and behaviour common to people who love the Lord. Giselle’s life bore witness to this word of God.”
The McCombs closed the dedication with a few words about their daughter and thanked the Trinity community for its support over the years.
“We are so blessed as parents to be a part of this family,” said Janice McComb. “It takes my breath away that people care so much.”
French Students Experience Life at Trinity
While stories of Trinity students learning and serving overseas abound, this month the campus welcomed 18 visitors from Notre Dame de la Paix, a college in Lorient, France.
The visit was arranged by Dr. Mauricio Nava Delgado, assistant professor of Spanish. He, along with Professor of English Yann Cargoet from Notre Dame, envisioned the cross-cultural learning experience based on a similar program they established at Bethel College in Minneapolis in 2004.
“The French students are very French, and the American students are very American. This cross-cultural exchange opens people’s minds,” said Cargoet. “The experience doesn’t last two weeks. It goes far beyond.”
For Cargoet, his colleague, and the 16 students from Notre Dame they accompanied, the two-week schedule was packed with activities on and off-campus. Students visited the communication arts, education psychology, and Spanish classes; local and Chicago area businesses, such as Sofitel; and popular Chicago sites including Navy Pier and Willis Tower.
Many of the Notre Dame students study business and speak some English and Spanish. Families from Calvary Church of Naperville and as well as Trinity faculty and staff hosted the students during their stay. Drs. Craig and Rhoda Mattson, professors at Trinity, included their hosted students in the Family’s Easter celebration and took them to a Sox game.
“Their desire to know life in the United States was nothing less than avid,” said Craig Mattson, professor of communication arts. “Whatever the schedule, wherever our busy lives took them, they were up for it.”
The students also had the opportunity to interact with Trinity students during classes, Outcry worship service, and a joint soccer practice with Notre Dame players and Trolls.
Nava looks at the program as a “port of entry” for various opportunities for Trinity students, including the possibility of including a brief visit to Brittany as part of the College’s existing Semester in Spain.
Students Showcase Work at OPUS: Photogallery
The event, which celebrates academic gifts in all fields of study, featured several afternoon sessions during which students showcased class projects, Interim experiences, choir performances, and more.
“For me, OPUS was amazing,” said Christina Clair ’14 of Chicago, who performed her first-prize winning poetry interpretation with a poem she wrote herself. “It was truly a blessing to share with the campus and to let them know how God changed me.”
In addition to the oral interpretation contest, awards were given for music, art, and writing submissions.
New to this year’s OPUS celebration was an ice sculptor. The sculptor spent the day carving a Trinity Troll along with an OPUS sculpture, which both served as decorations for the evening’s picnic dinner.
The event also featured a beanbag tournament, improv group, and a praise and worship time in the event tent.
“OPUS was spectacular this year,” said Joshua Knol ’14 of Crown Point, Indiana, chair of Academic Initiative. “The committee put a ton of work into pulling it all together, and it definitely showed.”
OPUS award winners—Click here for the complete list.
Tuition Remission Winners
$100 Winners—Jessica Burns ’13, Christina Clair ’14
$150 Winners—Vivienne Handumon ’12, Shannon Smith ’12
$250 Winners—Bill Kamp ’12, Kelsey Mattson ’12
$400 Winner—Amber VanderLey ’12
$500 Winner—Benjamin DeYoung ’14
OPUS 2012 Committee Members
Dr. Dick Cole, Chairperson
Dr. Clay Carlson
Dr. Mauricio Nava D.
Professor Rebecca Harkema ’05
Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’97
Dr. Mark Jones, Chairperson
Professor Pete Post ’74
Dr. Patti Powell
Dr. Laurel Quinn
Dr. John Sebestyen
Professor Maureen Sweeney
Joshua Knol ’14, Chair of Academic Initiative
Jonathan Engbers ’14
Cassandra Martinez ’15
Keli Ooms ’13
Allison Wier ’13
Art and Design
First Place: Jessica Timmermans, "Late Afternoon"
Second Place: Amanda Evers, "Trade Your Fears"
Third Place: Yasmin Fernandez, "Set Your Eyes"
First Place: Chris Colvin, "Look Up" and "To Mankind Which Are Delivered"
Second Place: Leigh Twaragowski, "Purple", "Multiple", and "Flower"
Third Place: Heather VanSant, "Through the Looking Glass 1 & 2" and "Cityscape"
First Place: Kaleb Dean, "FYF Mentorship"
Second Place: Bridget Earnshaw and Karl Gesch, "Studio Rat"
Third Place: Hannah Snow, "Spoon Letters" and "Gourmet Dish"
First Place: Karl Gesch, "Drawing in Space: Mondrian's Pier & Mountain"
Second Place: Lauren Sandberg, "Junkyard Talisman"
Third Place: Jonathan Engbers, "Try and Open a Book (But Not Really)"
Best of Show:
Karl Gesch, "Real Animal Cookies"
First Place: Brittany Homan
Second Place: Leah Laky
Third Place: Haley Zandstra
First Place: William Gesch, Shannon Smith, Daniel Thayer
Second Place: William Gesch, Daniel Thayer
Third Place: Dwante Jones, Da’Maris King
First Place: William Gesch
Second Place: Kristen Blok
Third Place: Adam Perez
First Place: Cassandra Nelson, Patrick Page, Adam Perez, Christina Pacholik, Daniel Thayer
Second Place: Adam Perez, Alexander Salto
First Place: Adam Perez
Second Place: Matthew Mulder
Third Place: Alexander Salto
First Place (tie): Graeme Scott and Brooke Wigboldy
Third Place: Gina Ciametti
First Place: Christina Clair
Second Place: Jennifer Hill
Third Place: Dominique Evans
First Place: Daniel Thayer
Second Place: Stephanie Avila
Third Place: Da’Maris King
First Place: Christina Clair
Second Place: Gina Ciametti
Third Place: Graeme Scott
Poetry and Essay
First Place: Brian Haak, “The Water in the Piazza”
Honorable Mention: Kim Malinowski, “The Death”
First Place: Kyle VanEerden, “Bear, My Burden”
Second Place: Vanessa Noonan, “Third Chances”
Third Place: Holli Moote, “Moment”
First Place: Teryn Leaper, “Preserved and Charitable”
Second Place: Teryn Leaper, “Unrequited Mistake”
Honorable Mentions: Hannah Wasco, “If I Had to Tell You” and “Rhyming” and Jenna Rae Reidenga, “The 5-Paragraph Essay”
Celebrating the Cultures of Asia: Photogallery
Trinity students celebrated cultures from the Philippines, India, and Korea during the Celebration of Asia held on April 19. The event, sponsored by the Asian American Alliance (AAA), allows students to experience different Asian cultures through food and entertainment.
Students and faculty first enjoyed a shared meal including sushi, Korean bulgogi, Indian butter chicken, and Singaporean shrimp noodles.
“The Celebration of Asia was a great chance to experience different cultures,” said Brian Hofman ’13 of Waupun, Wisconsin. “I was blessed by the evening and am very glad I attended.”
After the dinner, students enjoyed entertainment through songs, readings, and a performance with bamboo instruments called angklungs led by Dr. Yudha Thianto. Christina Clair ’14 of Chicago read a poem titled “Don’t Lose Hope.”
Members of the Asian American Alliance also spoke about current issues in Asian countries and student involvement with the organization Liberty in North Korea (LiNK).
“Our goal was to raise awareness for the issues that are affecting different Asian cultures but also for the campus to come together and celebrate the diversity that God has given us,” said Nicole Ferreria ’13 of Willowbrook, Illinois, leader of the AAA.
Students Compete for “Mr. Troll” Title in Spoof Pageant: Photogallery
Participants are scored by a panel of judges in categories such as creativity, effort, originality, sportsmanship, and personality.
“We wanted the show to eliminate all the traditionally objectifying and superficial aspects of pageant shows and focus on providing a fun, family-friendly, entertaining show for Trinity students,” said Residence Director Kara VanMarion, who helped organize the event.
This year’s six contestants competed in four different areas beginning with two catwalk competitions. First, contestants displayed their formal attire, then their own unique style in lumberjack, nurse, and Batman apparel.
The contest continued with a “mystery task,” where contestants popped balloons and football hiked toilet paper rolls into a plastic bin. This was followed by the talent portion, which included an interpretive dance, guitar playing, and scarf knitting.
“The Mr. Troll pageant was such an amazing experience,” said Tyler DeKoekKoek ’14 of Martin, Michigan, who won first place and credited this to shaving his long beard between portions of the competition. “There is no doubt that if I would not have shaved my beard I would not have been the winner.”
The pageant also included spoof “commercials” by Trinity’s improv team and Tibstra Hall Council.
This year’s competitors:
Tyler DeKoekKoek ’14 of Martin, Michigan—First Place
Luke Monsma ’14 of Denver, Colorado—Second Place
Caleb Copeland ’14 of Arlington Heights, Illinois—Crowd Favorite
Mark Davis ’14 of Palos Heights, Illinois
Steven Martinez ’13 of Chicago, Illinois
Christopher Steinke ’14 of Glendale Heights, Illinois
More Grandparents Than Ever at Annual Event: Photogallery
A record-breaking number of grandparents visited campus on Wednesday, April 18, for Grandparents’ Day.
Trinity welcomed 224 grandparents to the annual event, which included a morning of music, student addresses, worship, lunch, and campus tours.
Social Work Students Spend Advocacy Day in Springfield
A group of seven social work students at Trinity recently had a chance to practice political lobbying in Springfield, Illinois, as part of Advocacy Day, sponsored by the National Association of Social Workers.
World Is Classroom for Many Students This Semester
Seven Trinity students wake up in their apartments in downtown Chicago. They will soon leave for internships in their respective disciplines where they will get hands-on experience working with Chicago companies and organizations. The students are part of the College’s Chicago Semester program.
In Nashville, Tennessee, Heather Murray ’13 of Downers Grove, Illinois, applies her love of music to her academics while studying at the Contemporary Music Center.
Nearly 3,000 miles south, five other students are beginning their day in a very different culture in Quito, Ecuador. Here, the students are learning through internships, homestays, and courses that apply to their majors.
Meanwhile, almost halfway across the world, three students are nearly done with their day in Oxford, along with eight students studying Spanish in Seville, Spain.
All of these locations provide unique experiences for students who wish to live in a different culture and earn college credit as part of Trinity’s various study abroad programs.
One of the many opportunities in Oxford for Andrew Blok ’13 of Lynden, Washington, is visiting historic architecture, such as the local cathedrals.
“Cathedrals are one thing that America hasn’t picked up on yet,” quipped Blok in his Trinity student blog. “I don’t think it matters where you stand in terms of religious beliefs. When you enter a big, beautiful cathedral, you feel something. Awe, wonder, respect, history all at once.”
Victoria Van Hofwegen ’14 of Tolleson, Arizona, is also benefiting from new experiences while studying in Ecuador. As part of the program, she is working at a daycare facility, as well as enjoying God’s creation at a rural retreat center. “God did some serious work while creating this place. It is set on a beautiful piece of land that reminds me a lot of home,” said Van Hofwegen in her blog.
In a recent article for the student newspaper the Courier, she also wrote about her exposure to the culture. “During the past month, I have learned more about the Ecuadorian culture due to living with a family (I think that was the point of the past month, so good job study abroad, goal accomplished).”
This semester, there are a total of 24 students studying abroad. To see all of the off-campus locations available for studying abroad, visit Trinity’s academic programs page.
New Student Association Executive Committee Elected
Elections for the 2012-2013 Student Association Executive Committee were recently held, and four new students will represent their peers next year in the executive positions. Elections for the 2012-2013 class representatives were held April 18-19.
Trinity Students Spend Spring Break Serving—Photogallery
A group of Trinity students prepared for a surprise birthday party they were holding for Annette. They felt it was the least they could do after she had invited all 12 of them over for dinner--multiple times. It was impossible to believe they had only met this woman a few days ago.
Heather Murray ’13 blogs about her Contemporary Music Center semester in Nashville
CMC sure has its share of surprises throughout the semester! With just six total staff members the number of connections each one has in this town alone truly amazes me. Each one speaks with ease about their friends, generally settling for first names. They often mention “Kelly” (Clarkson, of course) and “the Jars boys” (aka Jars of Clay). Clarkson’s back-up singers are CMC alums and the director of our program taught the guys of Jars of Clay when they attended Greenville College.
Nursing Class of ’92 Celebrates 20th Year Reunion
This March, Trinity’s Nursing Class of 1992 gathered on campus to commemorate 20 years since graduating from the College.
Nearly half of the original class of 20 attended, traveling from Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan. They were joined by former nursing faculty members Lois Roelofs and Betty Klaassens. The group had gathered on its own for a 10-year reunion but enjoyed the chance to return to campus and to see the newly expanded Cynthia Sander Nursing Lab.
Chicago Area Students Awarded Christian Leadership Scholarship
Two high school senior students have been awarded Trinity’s Greater Chicago Christian Leadership Scholarship: Jose Gonzalez of Chicago and Nathan Smith of Lake in the Hills.
Thousands of Volunteer Hours Earns Trinity President’s Honor Roll Recognition
With 21,436 hours of community service logged during the 2010-2011 academic year and 933 Trinity students involved in community service, the College has once again been named to the President’s Honor Roll for Community Service.
Trinity has been named to the list every year since the inception of the Honor Roll, which recognizes colleges and universities nationwide that support innovative community service and service-learning programs.
As a student, Melissa Peterson ’11 volunteered at Hearts in Motion in Highland, Indiana, a medical mission that works in the community and in Central America. Peterson has worked with the organization since 2004 and volunteered almost every day from January through April last year sorting and inventorying medical supplies and sending letters in response to donations.
As a sociology major, Peterson used the experience to learn more for a future career.
“The director was nice enough to teach me a bit about running a non-profit,” said Peterson. “She is someone who I admire for not only trying to help with all that she has, but also working with a team to examine the effects of her ministry and trying to improve it.”
Volunteer hours also included time spent at afterschool programs. Students worked with children at Restoration Ministries in Harvey, Illinois, and Roseland Christian Ministries in Chicago.
Another afterschool program is offered at the local Bridge Teen Center in Orland Park, Illinois. Katie Alberda ’12 of Manhattan, Montana, volunteers there, spending time with the teens and planning programs. Alberda has also taught a furniture refurbishing class for teens.
“I get to hang out, talk and play games while serving,” said Alberda. “Can you ask for a better service opportunity?”
According to Trinity’s Office of Community Partnerships and Service Learning, the service hours were completed through service-learning classes, service spring break trips and Interim courses, service committee and other student-led projects, and the Midwest Campus Compact Citizen-Scholars (M3C) Fellowship program, in which students complete 300 hours of community service and receive an education award.
Four Brothers Attend Trinity in Same Semester
The odds that the Copeland brothers will run into each other on campus this year are good, considering the four siblings are all attending Trinity. Ben ’14, Joshua ’12, Jacob ’13, and Caleb ’14 of Arlington Heights, Illinois, are sharing the Trinity experience together.
Track & Field team train and compete over Spring Break
Members of the Trinity track and field team traveled south during spring break for competition and training. Twenty-five of the team’s members traveled to Panama City Beach, Florida, and then to Memphis, Tennessee, for a track meet at Rhodes College.
Trinity at Top for CPA Exam Results
Accounting graduates from Trinity topped the list for the highest average score on CPA exams for the second year in a row. The results for the 2011 CPA exam show that Trinity graduates scored an average of 78.08 while the state average was 71.56, according to the Illinois Board of Examiners.
U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters Chorus Performs for Over 1,100: Photogallery
More than 1,100 packed Trinity’s Ozinga Chapel Auditorium to see the United States Navy Band Sea Chanters Chorus perform on March 12.
Student Gives More than Donations in St. Baldrick’s Cancer Fundraiser
When Amanda Carr ’12 of Terre Haute, Indiana, began her internship at the University of Illinois Medical Center she did not expect to lose all of her hair, but after a few weeks there she knew it was something she had to do.
Conference Links Students with Graphic Arts Professionals
In February, graphic design student Heather Van Sant ’14 of Sully, Iowa, accompanied by Ellen Browning, assistant professor of art and design, attended the 12th Annual Self Employment in the Arts Conference sponsored by the Coleman Foundation.
The conference brings together professionals across the arts for everything from portfolio review to negotiating contracts.
Students Support Efforts to Aid North Korean Refugees
Trinity students have a heart for service whether that service involves tutoring children at a local after-school program or traveling to Haiti to build homes for earthquake victims.
Recycling Initiatives on Campus
Story written by Kelsey Barnett ‘12
Members of the Trinity Campus Ecological Stewardship Advisory Group (CESAG) recently met in the Heritage Science Center to see how well students were recycling. The demonstration was an effort to improve the College’s recycling habits.
Mark Schultz Performs at Trinity: Photogallery
Mark Schultz, the Dove Award winning Christian recording artist, performed in concert at Trinity on Friday, March 2, for an audience of nearly 900, including friends of the College, neighbors, alumni, and the Trinity community of students, faculty, and staff.
Students Hear Stories of Homelessness
On Monday, February 27, students and faculty heard the real-life stories of three guest speakers who shared their experiences about being homeless.
The guests were part of a speaker’s bureau from the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, a nonprofit organization that works against homelessness in Chicago.
Lent—a time of spiritual preparation at Trinity
All 1,189 chapters of the Bible will be read out loud during the week before Easter, which is expected to take about 80 hours. It is just one of several ways that students and groups at Trinity are spiritually preparing during the time of Lent.
Trinity Now Offers Master’s Degrees
Trinity Christian College has announced the launch of its new Graduate Studies programs, scheduled to begin in fall 2012. Trinity’s Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology and Master of Arts in Special Education will be offered at the College’s main campus in Palos Heights.
“Our presence in the Chicago metropolitan area, coupled with the applied nature of both of these programs, answers the growing need for graduate study from a Christian perspective in the helping professions,” said President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D.
Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology
Those seeking an advanced degree in psychology can earn their M.A. in Counseling Psychology through either a two-year or three-year program option. Courses are blended with online instruction and evening face-to-face classes. Graduates of the program will meet the educational requirements for Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs) in the state of Illinois.
“I am grateful to our Lord Jesus Christ that Trinity is able to offer a quality graduate program in Counseling Psychology based on a Christian worldview and designed to educate and train professional counselors in the latest counseling methods and scientific research,” said Dr. Michael DeVries, director of the Counseling Psychology Graduate Studies Program.
Master of Arts in Special Education
Certified regular education teachers looking to add expertise and credentials necessary for teaching a wide range of students—from those with learning disabilities to those with severe multiple impairments—can join the M.A. in Special Education program. This program is designed for State of Illinois Learning Behavior Specialist 1 (LBS1) certification. Students earn their master’s in 1½ years by means of online and face-to-face evening classes. Other options are available for obtaining an LBS1 endorsement or certification without the master’s degree.
“We are excited that we will be offering a Christ-centered program,” said Dr. Patti Powell, director of the Special Education Graduate Studies Program. “Our proximity to Elim Christian School offers our program access to quality professionals in the field of special education as guest lecturers and the chance to interact with children with a variety of disabilities.”
For more information, visit graduatestudies.trnty.edu or call the Graduate Studies office at 708.239.3900.
Photography Students Featured in “Best College Photography 2012”
Three Trinity photography students recently had their photos published in “Best College Photography 2012,” a book distributed worldwide to college libraries and to instructors of photography, and art and design.
Andrew Elliott Rusticus - In Memory
The Trinity Christian College community is mourning the loss of alumnus Andrew Elliott Rusticus, age 29. Rusticus died of an apparent heart attack on Saturday, February 25, leaving behind his wife Michelle and his daughters, three-year-old Baylee Noel and three-month-old Libby Grace
Cross-Major Field Trip Provides Unique Learning in the City: Photogallery
Dr. Craig Mattson, professor of communication arts; Ellen Browning, assistant professor of art and design; and Dayton Castleman, assistant professor of art and design, accompanied students to Chicago to examine and discuss public spaces and art, along with the plethora of advertising and rhetoric found in the city.
The cross-disciplinary field trip encouraged all students to reflect on the amount of advertising produced in our culture and what such public messaging does.
“We often don’t give daily attention to the advertising that surrounds us,” said senior business communication major Karlie Monsma ’12 of Pella, Iowa. “On this field trip, my eyes were focused on every piece of text and image that surrounded us downtown, all trying to sell or persuade us in some way.”
“Our communications class works to find symbols and words that arbitrarily connect a symbol to our mind, creating a specific meaning,” added business finance major Zachary Thomas ’14 of Bradenton, Florida. “In downtown Chicago, there are millions of these symbols and words.”
For students, the field trip provided a strong connection between classes at Trinity and the Christian worldview and their application in the professional arena.
“While in Chicago, I recognized that our faith-based opinions and knowledge can allow us to apply our meta-narrative story of creation, fall, redemption, and new creation to messaging around us,” said Monsma. “We can all be redemptive in recognizing issues or problems with the messaging around us and try to redeem messages to be more pleasing to God.”
Alumna Serving as VISTA Volunteer
When alumna Carrie Timmermans ’11 decided to take a break between graduating from Trinity and starting graduate school, she never predicted that break would bring her back to her alma mater.
Timmermans, who graduated with a theology and English double major, is a member of Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA), a branch of AmeriCorps that is devoted to fighting poverty through indirect service. AmeriCorps is a government program of the Corporation of National and Community Service that mobilizes individuals and/or groups to serve their local communities in numerous capacities.
As a VISTA member, Timmermans committed to serving full-time for one year at a nonprofit organization where her efforts would be focused on strengthening community and creating business. VISTA members help fight poverty through developing service-learning opportunities and encouraging involvement in community.
“I wanted to do something constructive during my break from school and began to search for different opportunities working or serving in the area of development,” said Timmermans. “I applied to various AmeriCorps positions, and found myself back at Trinity, working in the Office of Community Partnerships and Service Learning.”
Timmermans works as coordinator of the Students in Service program, connecting students to outreach opportunities. She also works with the office’s director Anna Rosas ’06 to encourage, plan, and incorporate service-learning opportunities into Trinity curriculum.
One particular Trinity experience, Timmermans said, prepared her for working with VISTA.
“My final semester at Trinity, I enrolled in Chicago Semester and had the opportunity to intern at the New Community Warming Center, a daytime homeless shelter,” Timmermans said. “This experience really shaped me personally and gave me the final assurance that I wanted to move toward a career resembling social work.”
The real-life experiences of Chicago Semester, combined with her Trinity education, were extremely influential in forming Timmermans’ love of community and service.
“During Chicago Semester, I put into practice all I heard and learned from my classes at Trinity about the importance of community,” Timmermans reflected. “I like to think that my theology classes laid the foundation for what I experienced when I went to Chicago Semester. I was reminded time and time again as I interned that great things can happen when a community comes together.”
Faculty Scholarship Honored in October: Photogallery
Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music, and Dr. Patti Powell, professor of education and a Fulbright Scholar, shared their experiences of their recent sabbaticals.
Several faculty members received grants in order to further develop their knowledge and expertise in their disciplines through various means of research and scholarship. Each professor briefly presented a summary of their work and experiences.
One project during the sabbatical of Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music, involved travel to Germany on a William H. Scheide Research Grant from the American Bach Society to research the Magnificat cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach and his contemporaries. Peters focused his research on the settings of the Magnificat text in German. The final goal of this research is a monograph titled “The German Magnificat from Martin Luther to J.S. Bach.”
As a Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Patti Powell, professor of education, assisted with the development of the new deaf education program at Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College in Montego Bay, Jamaica from January through May 2011. In addition, she introduced service learning into the education department curriculum and researched how service learning enriches the experience of teacher. Powell documented her journey through her blog: http://pattipowell.wordpress.com/
Summer Research Grant projects
John Bakker, professor of art—Art as a social situation: The role of the viewer in meaning construction
Bakker produced the sixth in a series of large-scale paintings that have explored the role of the viewer in interacting and constructing the meaning of works of art.
Dr. David Brodnax, associate professor of history—Archival Research on the 60th United States Colored Infantry
Brodnax examined the pension files and widow’s pension files of the 60th United States Colored Infantry, an African American army regiment formed in Iowa during the American Civil War. This regiment plays a central role in his book manuscript, Breathing the Freedom’s Air: The African American Struggle for Equal Citizenship in Iowa, 1830-1900 which has an anticipated completion date of 2012.
Dr. Clay Carlson, assistant professor of biology—Investigation of the specificity non-specific DNA binding
Carlson, in collaboration with colleagues, is compiling data into a manuscript for publication that sheds light on the process of non-specific DNA binding.
Dr. Dick Cole ’79, professor of psychology—Case Studies for Introduction to Psychology: A Companion Workbook for Introduction to Psychology Courses
Cole is creating a workbook that will offer various case studies that correspond with chapters and topics often found in Introduction to Psychology textbooks. The workbook will give suggestions on how to use these case studies to help make the material in these chapters more relevant for students.
Dr. Karen Dieleman, assistant professor of English—Elizabeth Barrett and the Greek Christian Poets
Dieleman completed the revisions to her book manuscript that followed from the press readers’ reports earlier in the year. The manuscript (Religious Imaginaries: The Liturgical and Poetic Practices of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Christina Rossetti and Adelaide Procter) was submitted to Ohio University Press for future publication. .
Dr. Aron Reppmann ’92, associate professor of philosophy—A translation of Johan Stellingwerff’s Geschiedenis van de Reformatorische Wijsbegeerte
In the spring 2011 semester, Reppmann used his draft translation of the book (A History of Reformational Philosophy) as one of the major texts in his course Philosophy 310: Reformational Philosophy. His summer work involved reviewing and revising the text to prepare it for submission to Paideia Press.
Dr. Don Sinnema, professor of theology—Synod of Dort Manuscripts
Sinnema’s project consisted of two closely related parts: To take leadership in organizing a decade-long project to publish a critical edition of all extant manuscripts of the Synod of Dort (1618-19) in a multi-volume series; and to continue working on an ongoing collaborative project to prepare a critical edition of the early drafts of the Canons of Dort and related documents.
Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology—Educating the Young: Catechism and Reading Materials as Tools to Transplant Calvinism in the Dutch East Indies in the Early Seventeenth Century
Thianto traveled to the Netherlands to study how basic teachings of Calvinism were taught to young people in the East Indies in the early seventeenth century. He is also writing a book on the subject of the transplantation of Calvinism in the East Indies.
Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English—Homer, Hesiod, and Rhetorical Aesthetics in the Ancient Mediterranean World
Study of this ancient literature, an offshoot of Vander Weele’s work at the Seminar on Hesiod & the Homeric Songs co-sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges and the Center for Hellenic Studies last year, will show a closer connection than is usually considered between ancient rhetoric and ancient poetry.
Dr. Deborah Windes, assistant professor of business—Online Education as a Disruption in Higher Education
“In the research I am doing on why online initiatives succeed or fail under different conditions, I am looking at both institutional factors that influence the success of online initiatives, as well as faculty perceptions of online education,” said Dr. Deborah L. Windes, assistant professor of business. “This is helpful as Trinity explores blended, or hybrid, courses, as well as how technology can assist faculty in the classroom.”
Students, staff, and fellow faculty members can view the library display, designed by Sarah Hoeksema ’10, library administrative assistant, which includes portraits of each professor and synopses of their art, research, and findings.
Dr. Sinnema Presents ARIHE Lecture at Trinity
On Thursday, October 20, Dr. Donald Sinnema, professor of theology, presented his ARIHE lecture “Heaven: Is It Part of Creation?” to students and faculty at Trinity.
Association of Reformed Institutions of Higher Education (ARIHE) lecturers like Sinnema are selected from member institutions and are established scholars whose works model the type of scholarship that is distinctive at these colleges. Other Trinity ARIHE lecturers have included Dr. Brad Breems, professor of sociology, and Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English.
Sinnema’s ARIHE lectures focus on two topics related to misconceptions in popular eschatology.
“Heaven: Is it Part of Creation?” challenges the popular Christian conception that heaven is an eternal spiritual or celestial realm that is outside of creation, a realm that includes God, angels, and the souls of deceased believers.
“Time and Eternity: Will Believers Enter Eternity?” challenges the popular Christian view of time and eternity that time extends from creation to the last judgment (the “end of time”) and that eternity in some way surrounds time since it was there “before” time, extends “over” time, and will continue “after” the end of time.
“In my lecture, I wanted to challenge the common notion that heaven is an eternal spiritual realm outside of creation,” said Sinnema. “There are no grammatical or other good grounds in Scripture to distinguish between the singular heaven and the plural heavens, as if only the heavens or skies were created.
“My main point was that heaven is indeed part of God’s creation and that it has a history—in the beginning it was created, it is part of the fallen creation, and in the end it will also be renewed as the new heaven envisioned by John in the book of Revelation.”
About Dr. Sinnema
Dr. Sinnema is an internationally recognized scholar on the Canons of Dort. His understanding of and support for Reformed Christian higher education permeate his scholarship.
Sinnema has served as professor of theology at Trinity since 1987. He has published many scholarly papers and a book about the founding of Trinity Christian College (1952-1960) titled If We Begin with Christ.
He earned a master’s in philosophy at the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto, Canada.
Nursing Students Present Health Topics at SALT
Trinity nursing students recently talked with senior citizens attending the Behind the Headlines class offered through the Seasoned Adults Learning at Trinity (SALT) program.
The class, taught by retired Cook County Sheriff Tom Panush, covers local, national, and international news topics.
With health care a timely topic and the flu season approaching, nursing students presented information about strokes and about conditions such as flu and shingles that more adversely affect the senior population.
Tina Decker ’06, assistant professor of nursing, introduced the student speakers and was also available to answer questions from class attendees.
Student presenters were:
Peggy Flynn ’13 of Evergreen Park, Illinois
Meghan Lyons ’12 of Oak Lawn, Illinois
Michelle Marcheschi ’13 of Alsip, Illinois
Christina Vrba ’12 of Worth, Illinois
Adult Studies Alumna Honored for Her Teaching
Carita Hall, a teacher at High Point School in Orland Park, Illinois, was recently named 3M Star in the Classroom Award winner by Econ Illinois. Hall completed the Adult Studies English-as-a-Second Language/Bilingual (ESL/BL) program in 2009.
The Illinois Council on Economic Education award is given to teachers who implement economics in their classrooms.
For more than 10 years, Hall has participated in the Economic Poster Contest sponsored by Econ Illinois. “Each year at least one of my students receives regional and/or state recognition in the contest,” she said in a recent interview with TribLocal.
She will be honored at the Econ Illinois Economic Education Day on October 25,2011.
Hall also participated in the Teach Children to Save program, which educates students on the importance of saving money and introduces them to investment management through the “Stock Market Game.” Hall said, “educating students about making good economic choices is essential for becoming economically literate adults.”
Annual Night of Jazz Welcomes Dee Alexander: Photogallery
Trinity students, faculty, and staff, along with local community members, were serenaded by the smooth and vibrant vocals of Chicago jazz performer Dee Alexander on September 23, at the College’s annual Black and White Dress-up Night of Jazz.
Named as the 2010 Chicago Jazz Entertainer of the Year, Alexander has performed on countless domestic and international stages in her years of entertainment.
Approximately 200 people attended the event, sponsored by the Cultural Affairs Committee and music department, with some assistance from Student Development. Trinity’s jazz band, under the direction of Dr. Ken Austin, professor of music, opened up for Alexander and the band.
“Since experiencing my first Black and White Jazz Night as a freshman, this event has become one that I always look forward to once the school year starts,” said computer science major Eric Swanson ’12 of DeMotte, Indiana. “Dee Alexander displayed a uniquely refreshing talent that extended to the beginnings of jazz, and hearing Trinity’s jazz band was a great way to begin the evening.”
Behind the Headlines—Political Expert Speaks at SALT Class
Class attendees were engaged as Feldman presented essential information with energy and humor. Starting with Politics 101, she explained the differences between Republicans and Democrats and moved on to two subjects of special importance to senior citizens, Social Security and Medicare.
Attendees enjoyed the presentation and participated throughout, posing questions and offering feedback.
The six-week SALT course covers local, national, and international news. Class members join in lively conversations led by instructor Tom Panush, a retired Cook County sheriff.
About Laura Feldman
Laura Feldman brings her skills as a teacher to educating senior groups and activists across the country. She is a native Washingtonian where politics is a local sport. Demystifying politics, personalizing it, and making it fun are her goals.
She has been a grassroots organizer for the National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare for the past 20 years. The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare is a non partisan advocacy organization supported by membership.
Prior to coming to the National Committee, she organized national programming for the National Science Foundation under a special education grant, which propelled her out of the classroom and into the public arena.
Locutorium - a gathering for conversation and fellowship: Photogallery
Students, with mugs in hand, gathered in the theology department on Friday for the first “Locutorium,” hosted by theology professors Drs. Aaron Kuecker, Don Sinnema, Keith Starkenburg, and Yudha Thianto.
What is a locutorium? The word locutorium was the word that medieval monasteries (and some contemporary monasteries) used for the common space where conversation was allowed to take place, especially with visitors.
Students and professors enjoyed coffee, home-baked treats, and fellowship in this informal setting that will be held each Friday at 3:30 p.m. in the Vander Velde building, second floor. The event is open to student in all majors.
“I really enjoyed the chance to interact with theology professors outside of the classroom,” said Liz Fiala ’12 of Minneapolis, Minnesota. “To be able to come together with professors in that way is a very unique experience for a college student. I also enjoyed the opportunity to come together with other students.
“These events are great for promoting community among faculty, staff, and students.”
Trinity Ranked as Top Tier College by U.S. News & World Report
Trinity Christian College has once again been ranked among the top Regional Colleges—Midwest by U.S.News & World Report in “America’s Best Colleges” for 2012.
The College, with a ranking of 30, stands among other institutions in the Regional category that offer a wide range of degree programs in the liberal arts and in fields such as business and nursing. A total of 371 colleges are ranked in the Regional category.
The U.S. News rankings are based on several criteria, including peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving.
Provost Liz Rudenga, Ph.D., on the College’s continued top-tier ranking:
“Signs of Trinity’s quality abound…a parent of a freshman stops to tell me that her daughter feels welcomed and enjoys her classes; a graduate writes to tell of his job, with a ‘thank you’ to professors who played a significant role in his Trinity experience; and as I sit in on one of the classes, I hear three students present a case study that illustrates their research and learning.”
Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest ranking
Trinity also ranked 13 in the area of Campus Ethnic Diversity: Regional Colleges—Midwest. This ranking speaks to the College’s continued commitment to develop a multi-racial, multi-national, and multi-denominational student body. To determine this ranking, U.S. News factors in the total proportion of minority students (leaving out international students) and the overall mix of groups.
Student Works with Professor on Conference Planning
Student Melissa Kwafo ’12 of Naperville, Illinois, has been working alongside Dr. Rose Malinowski, professor of social work, and Nikki Bruna, social work project coordinator, on the planning committee for the To Heal the Heart conference to be held at Moody Church in Chicago, October 6-8.
The conference, To Heal the Heart: Responding to Family Violence in a Community of Faith, will feature keynote speaker Dr. Steven Tracy, author of Mending the Soul: Understanding and Healing Abuse.
“This is a great opportunity for a Trinity student to join with other Christian professionals addressing this issue of family violence,” said Bruna. “Melissa is learning from them and sharing her unique perspective as a college student and social work professional.”
Trinity’s social work department values engaging students in opportunities to work with partners who serve the greater community, helping students gain skills and knowledge that compliment classroom teaching and help them gain confidence and expertise in social work practice.
Kwafo has been working on various collaboration projects with Set Free Ministries at Moody Church for the last two years and has worked on the planning committee over the last year. She was invited to join the planning committee based on her interest in working in the area of family violence and developing strategies to strengthen families. Trinity’s social work department has collaborated with Set Free Ministries for five years in various capacities.
At the conference, Malinowski and Becky Starkenburg, director of Trinity’s First Year Experience, will present “The Heart Hurt of Date Rape.”
Dr. Rose Malinowski
Malinowski graduated from Loyola University in Chicago with a master’s of social work and from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a doctoral degree in public health. Areas of clinical expertise include family violence, medical social work, and child welfare. Malinowski has also worked in various capacities as an administrator and educator. Currently she teaches and coordinates the field education program in Trinity’s social work department.
Starkenburg serves as the director of the First Year Experience at Trinity, where she develops programs to help new students thrive in college. She also volunteers time to coordinate “safe church” efforts at the church she attends with her husband and three young children. She received a Master of Arts in student affairs administration from Michigan State University and has mentored, educated, and served college students for over 15 years.
Involvement Fair Presents Campus and Community Opportunities: Photogallery
Getting involved is one of the best ways for students to enhance their Trinity experience. Each year, the Involvement Fair highlights opportunities--both on and off campus-- students can participate in.
The fair held on Friday, September 2, welcomed many campus clubs and organizations, as well as local businesses and churches, giving students an opportunity to familiarize themselves with essential services and places of worship in the Palos Heights area.
Student Association Vice President DaMaris King ’14 of Detroit, Michigan, organized the fair this year. “It was very fun getting to know all of the different leaders on campus, and in the midst of that learning, knowing that they all have a similar goal—to inform every student about their passions, but all for the glory of God,” said King.
53rd Convocation Begins the Year: Photogallery
The College’s 53rd annual Convocation welcomed students and faculty back to campus on Friday, September 2.
Convocation is a service of celebration and commissioning for the upcoming year. The event celebrates Trinity’s mission, community, and identity.
President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., presented the address titled “Engagement Rules,” his topic based on “beauty and brokenness,” the chapel theme for the academic year. Discussing a history of separateness from the world to which the Dutch once clung and contrasting that with theologian Abraham Kuyper’s challenge to instead engage in the world, Timmermans said, “Silence and separation just doesn’t cut it. Christians must speak-out; they must become engaged in society. For if they remain silent and separate, God’s world is abandoned to Satan’s awful ways. Brokenness wins.”
Timmermans moved from the story of the Dutch people participating in healing a world devastated by World War II to a story from his own life, illustrating why Christians need to engage. He then shared guidelines for that engagement.
The story begins with the millions of children in Africa orphaned because of AIDS and, for him and his wife Dr. Barbara Timmermans, continues with the adoption of two orphaned brothers from Ethiopia. Convocation day at Trinity marked the one-year anniversary of the day the Timmermans brought Getenet and Fekadu home to Palos Heights.
From this experience, Timmermans shared three guidelines for engagement:
- In pursuing God’s call to engage a broken world, make sure you’re listening to Christian friends, for God will speak to you through them.
- Look for signs of God’s presence—and once found, join in his work.
- Expect God’s goodness, which isn’t the same as a good time.
“Whether your past story is one of separateness or involvement, it’s time to turn your story toward engagement as you prepare for a calling,” said Timmermans, “just as the tradition that has shaped Trinity Christian College changed from seeking to be separate from the world to one of engaging the world in and through the power of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”
Prior to the benediction by Chaplain Willis Van Groningen, Ph.D., three students offered prayers for the community:
Brian Hofman ’13 of Waupun, Wisconsin, the leader of Sunday Night Worship—prayer reflecting on the educational mission to which God has called Trinity
Lette Huisman ’14 of Hudsonville, Michigan, a resident assistant—prayer with a focus on our call to be a Christian community of learners
Brenda Romo ’12 of Chicago, a Prayer Ministry leader—offering the Lord’s Prayer in Spanish
Convocation Address: September 2, 2011
President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D.
Welcome to Convocation, 2011. And a particularly warm welcome to the class of 2015 as you begin your journey here.
My theme this morning arises from the chapel theme of this year: Beauty and Brokenness.Throughout this year, on Wednesday and Friday mornings at 10 a.m., you’ll have the opportunity to worship as the messages will take note, in a variety of ways, that beauty and brokenness are all around and in us. God’s gift and call to us in Christ both allows us and compels us to address all of it--with great hope and tension.
This morning I will share with you two stories as a way to help you begin your journey here--as you begin to write your story—in and for a world filled with beauty and brokeness. The first story relates to the tradition in which this College has been founded; the second story is more personal.
The Reformed tradition in which this College was founded is a tradition shaped by Biblical understandings as well as influenced by sociological and cultural factors. It’s a sometimes healthy but at times unhealthy pairing that happens with many traditions: Swedish Covenanters, German Lutherans, African-American Baptists, Scottish Presbyterians, and the like. You see, the Reformed tradition of which this College is a part was originally carried to America by Dutch immigrants. Check out many of our buildings: Tibstra Hall, Molenhouse Center, Huizenga Library, Ozinga Chapel, and even the new DeVos Gymnasium in the TARC…those are Dutch names. (I’m glad we still have the Mitchell gymnasium!)
Many immigrant communities in the United States, in their early histories, clung to the identity of their home country and remained separate by means of geographical clustering while centering around their faith. The Reformed Dutch in America worked at this separateness and clustering with gusto and careful engineering—sort of like they were building a series of fail-proof social (instead of earthen) dikes in the new world. If you come from one of these communities, you probably see some of this “separation” even today; you can identify it almost immediately in the overuse of the word “our,” the possessive case of the pronoun we, as in “our bakery, our school, our people.” There might even be a specific funeral home for “our people” in your community.
Let me quickly point out that Reformed Dutch Americans are not the only ones to engage in such behavior. Often times, groups draw tightly together, identifying “our neighborhood, our stores” because of the fearfulness that accompanies an immigrant. Sometimes, however, this dynamic occurs because of discrimination or persecution groups have felt in their history; think with me of African-Americans, Native Americans, and Jewish-Americans. While they may long for full integration in society, for a variety of reasons, they remain separated due to lack of access or for reasons of self-survival.
But back to Reformed Dutch Americans—a legacy of separateness due to immigrant, sociological factors. And, for a time, this separation was also rooted in Biblical understandings. They read the parts of the Bible that pulled them out of the world. The world was a bad place, so faithfulness required no movies, no card playing, and no dancing. If you couldn’t play cards, it was pretty hard to socialize with your more American neighbors, and if you didn’t see the latest Grace Kelly or John Wayne movie, it was pretty hard to chat about the latest movie with your more American fellow students. So it was easy to remain separate…and justify it on Biblical grounds.
Maybe you come from a home or community where it still feels this way. Or maybe you find this bit of history wild and crazy—and nearly impossible to fully understand since you are fully involved in contemporary life—its music, its dress, its values. Either way, or somewhere in between, stick with me, for there’s more to the story.
After the end of World War II, now two or three generations or more past immigration, the Reformed Dutch American community had some new people arrive on the scene: a new wave of Dutch immigrants who had left the Netherlands after Hitler’s troops had ravaged their country. With them, they carried some new understandings, shaped by a number of factors. I’ll mention just two. First, a handful of decades before World War II, they had a prime minister in their country who was also a theologian. Rather than leading both believers and the country into separatism, he spoke of engagement—engaging the world because the world is God’s. His name is Abraham Kuyper, and you’ll hear his name and ideas around here from time to time. Anyhow, this new wave of Dutch immigrants brought a rallying cry of “participate or engage in the world” and they based it on sound Biblical principles. I think, too, there was a second reason for their differing perspective. They had seen the bad—the very bad—the bad that meant hunger, loss of dignity, and shipment of their Jewish friends to mass extermination in the concentration camps. In the face of such terrible things, one has to be honest with oneself and one’s Biblical interpretation. Silence and separation just doesn’t cut it. Christians must speak-out; they must become engaged in society. For if they remain silent and separate, God’s world is abandoned to Satan’s awful ways. Brokenness wins.
That, in a nutshell, is some of the historical story that gives rise to Trinity—a story that includes a community initially defined by being separate, but in the decade just prior to the College’s actual founding, a community that began to understand that Christians must engage the world. And today, we offer dozens of majors and programs to help you do just that.
Now, my second story, a more personal story, I tell to help illustrate both the extent to which we need to engage the world and the guidelines needed in doing so. I hope, too, in this story, you’ll begin to understand that the title of this talk, Engagement Rules, is not a series of guidelines for buying a diamond and popping the question, but rather it is advice for stepping into the messiness of this broken world—yet a world that is God’s.
I already mentioned Hitler this morning. The destruction and brokenness caused by this one person is nearly unimaginable. But we would be sadly mistaken if we thought large scale brokenness and misery was absent from the contemporary scene. Let me bring our attention to just one corner of the world: the Horn of Africa, with the countries of Ethiopia, Somali, and Eretria. Before startling new reports arrived this summer about a new concern in the Horn of Africa, you maybe didn’t know the earlier concern: For example, that the country of Ethiopia has thousands, and some say more than a million, of children left orphaned by the AIDS epidemic. Just to wrap our heads around that, let’s say they were all going to come to Chicago because new families were waiting for them. It would take 23,000 school buses just to pick them up at O’hare’s international terminal! That’s how many kids are parentless just in one country alone! And now, due to both avoidable factors and unavoidable factors, the country of Somalia is suffering from a terrible drought. The World Food Program estimates that 10 million people already need humanitarian aid. The U.N. Children’s Fund estimates that more than two million children are malnourished and in need of lifesaving action.
We cannot hide our faces from these kinds of problems. Certainly, the reason you’re at Trinity is to prepare to become engaged in addressing the brokenness of God’s world, and, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to help bring about God’s goodness and rule. While there are many ways to do this, my wife—Nursing Professor Barb Timmermans—and I sought the pathway of adoption. And let me quickly add that while the story I’m going to tell is our story, many share in similar stories: Basketball coach Brandon Nichols and his wife adopted a child from Ethiopia a year and a half ago; Registrar Chris Huang and his wife are waiting to go to Ethiopia and adopt into their home an Ethiopian child. But back to our story.
We brought our boys—brothers Getenet and Fekadu—home a year ago TODAY. In the days and months leading up to the adoption, we asked ourselves more than once whether we were crazy. With our four biological kids being between the ages 19 and 26, we were on the verge of being empty nesters—one of two times in life that freedom awaits with joy and anticipation. (The other time, by the way, is going off to college!) But God’s call, in hindsight, was shaped by the Holy Spirit working through the influence of life-long friends and other friends we had met when Barb was in graduate school in New Mexico. Christian friends, friends who knew adoption and knew Ethiopia.
I believe we entered into adoption and have been exceedingly blessed by this adoption because of the way we heard God’s call—through the influence of these Christian friends. The first guideline—or the engagement rule—I offer to you is this: in pursuing God’s call to engage a broken world, make sure you’re listening to Christian friends, for God will speak to you through them. What kind of friends? Friends who know you, your strengths and weaknesses, friends that are in-tune with the Spirit. Where will you find these friends? Here at Trinity; they’ll be with you in your Christian journey for decades ahead. Find them, too, at church. And be a good friend too, a friend that the Holy Spirit uses. If you’re doing this, you’ll avoid the pitfalls: solo decision making, thinking you know God’s will all by yourself. That’s the pathway of self-delusion, a pathway that will pull you away from faithfulness.
A second guideline or rule for engagement is to look for signs of God’s presence—and once found, join in his work. Henry Blackaby, author of Experiencing God, says: Find out where God is at work and join Him there. While the battlefield may be littered with destruction, look for evidence of God’s grace and presence, because no matter what you’re called to do, you will need to do it as part of God’s work, not your own. We saw it initially and now even more clearly that by working with Bethany Christian Services and their Ethiopian partner orphanage, Yezelalem Minch, we were stepping into a setting that God already had in his embrace. It truly was God’s good work—his grace—that has allowed this Christian orphanage and the children it cared for to prosper. For the seven years our boys were without parents, they still had family—both in how they were housed in a small family unit by the orphanage and by the loving care they received. Moreover, they had Christian schooling by being part of the orphanage—education that was not only better than the local government school, but education where Christ was central in all of their learning and development. Yes, as you step into the brokenness of God’s world, look for signs of his presence, and jump on board. Like my previous guideline, avoid the temptation to fly solo. It’s far better to join God’s work already begun by God’s people.
A third guideline relates to expectations. Expect God’s goodness, which isn’t the same as a good time. Let me explain. Stepping into the messiness of a broken world can be difficult and discouraging. It can open doors to new problems and resurrect old problems. So don’t expect everything is going to be easy and comfortable. Instead, if you need expectations, set your eyes on God and his things. You’ll experience his presence and peace. Back to our story. Adopting a pre-teen and a teen hasn’t been without challenge. But we try not to make our expectation set focused just there (ask any parent of pre-teens and teens). Instead, it’s the little signs of God’s blessings—sometimes more at the edges than it at the center-- that fill us with joy. For example, it was a sign of God’s goodness and blessing when, a few weeks back, we traveled to New Mexico where 20 of the kids, mostly teens now, from the Yezelalem Minch orphanage all traveled with their adoptive parents for a reunion. It was important for the kids—they had a great time—but it was also so very good for us parents, as we talked together, shared stories, and supported each other. While there were just a few tears of frustration, most of the tears were tears of joy. Another example, also just a few weeks ago, when our oldest biological daughter said, somewhat out of the blue, “I know this sounds corny Dad, but with this adoption, if feels like our family is now finally complete.” That wasn’t just her testimony, but the testimony of God’s blessing.
That’s just a little bit of our story. But as this academic year begins, I’d like you to focus on your story—your story already written and yet to be written. Whether your past story is one of separateness or involvement, it’s time to turn your story toward engagement as you prepare for a calling, just as the tradition that has shaped Trinity Christian College changed from seeking to be separate from the world to one of engaging the world in and through the power of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Remember my engagement rules: listen as God speaks to you through Christian friends, look for signs of God’s presence and then jump in, and don’t expect a good time; instead, expect God’s goodness.
If you and I continue this journey in faithful ways, using these few insights and all of the other things you’ll learn at Trinity, then faithful and Godly engagement will truly rule!
 Stepick, A. (2005). God is apparently not dead: The obvious, the emergent, and the still unknown in immigration and religion. In Leonard, K., Stepick, A., Vasquez, M. & Holdaway, J (Eds.) Immigrant Faiths: Transforming religious life in America. New York: Altamira Press.
Alumni Theater Presents Comedy “Blithe Spirit”: Photogallery
Alumnus Jordan Scholten ’10 played cantankerous novelist Charles Condomine who is haunted by the ghost of his late wife Elvira (Trinity senior Julie Wiltjer ’12). As worldly (and otherworldly) personalities clash, Charles’ current wife Ruth (Kate Messier ’09) is killed in an “accident” that Elvira had planned for Charles. Together, the two “blithe spirits” haunt the hapless Charles into perpetuity.
The play was the directorial debut of Jake Szafranski ’09. As a Trinity student and alumnus, he was involved onstage and behind-the-scenes with seven mainstage shows, three student directed one-act festivals, and the last two alumni theater productions.
“I learned a lot from Dr. John Sebestyen, who also advised me along the way with this show,” he said. “It was a great experience.”
Of his cast and crew Szafranski said, “Everyone went over and above everything we asked of them and made this show spectacular. I am grateful and thankful for all of them and the fact that I can call them fellow artists and friends.”
Jake Szafranski ’09 (technical director, sound designer/operator, scenic designer, and set construction)
CHARLES CONDOMINE: Jordan Scholten ’10
RUTH CONDOMINE: Kate Messier ’09
ELVIRA CONDOMINE: Julie Wiltjer ’12, current student
MADAME ARCATI: Mary Freeman ’07
DOCTOR GEORGE BRADMAN: Tom Holste ’97
MRS. BRADMAN: Michelle VanderWoude ’09
EDITH: Erika Huizenga ’11
Gina Ciametti ’13 – hair and makeup design
Bridget Earnshaw ’12 – lighting designer, scenic designer, and set construction
Heather Hernandez ’14 – costume designer
Jenn Johnson ’07 – properties mistress
James Kauzlaric ’09 – production photography
Kate McLaurin ’08 – stage crew
Tom Mullen ’14 – stage crew
Anna Poll ’09 – hair and makeup design and crew
Dan Thayer ’12 – stage manager, set construction
Jess Timmermans ’14 – lights operator and costume crew
Rick Schuler ’08 – scenic designer and poster and program designer
Brooke Wigboldy ’14 – hair and makeup crew
Rachel Van Oort ’05 – production supervisor and house manager
Faith and Family Night Is “One-of-a-Kind” Event: Photogallery
Trinity offered a special ticket package that included a Christian concert featuring Stars Go Dim and The Least of These, a tailgate party sponsored by Chick-fil-A, and the Chicago Fire game against the Colorado Rapids.
Prior to the game, the Trinity Troll entertained friends and family members with an original dance number while the bands performed. Everyone enjoyed fellowship and a Chick-fil-A meal as they waited for the game to start. Members of the women’s soccer team staffed information tables and talked with people interested in learning more about the College.
Trinity guests sat near the goal where the Chicago Fire scored the only two goals of the game, defeating Colorado.
“It turned out to be a great night with a full Trinity crowd and was unlike any other Trinity event I’ve been to. Definitely one of a kind,” said Nate Laning ’06, development and web-based marketing manager. “It was cool to see ‘Trinity Christian College’ and the Troll’s face flashing on the electronic banners surrounding the field,” he added.
“We are so pleased to have partnered with the Chicago Fire on this event,” said Pete Hamstra, vice president for admissions and marketing. “With the success of Trinity’s soccer teams, partnering with the Chicago Fire makes sense but particularly on this event with the emphasis on faith and family.”
Freshmen Move-in Day: Photogallery
Shopping carts were stacked high with the essentials and wheeled back and forth between family vehicles and the residence halls as freshmen settled in to their new home away from home.
In the afternoon, resident students joined fellow classmates living off campus for the beginning of First Year Forum (FYF), a program in which first-year students are mentored as they learn more about living in this Christian academic community.
The College also welcomed transfer and returning students moving in on August 29. Classes begin Wednesday, August 31.
Bill Schepel Named New Interim Athletics Director
The athletics department of Trinity Christian College has announced a shift in leadership as Bill Schepel ’85 takes over as the interim athletics director for the 2011-12 school year. Schepel, who has been with the department for the past four years, fills the interim position that Josh Lenarz ’98 held last year. Lenarz, who relinquished the position, will continue to serve the department as assistant athletics director and head women’s soccer coach.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to serve as athletics director this year,” said Schepel. “Sports have always been a passion of mine and I have had the privilege of being involved with athletics my entire professional career. We have a great staff at Trinity and I look forward to working with them and providing leadership for our department.”
For the past four years at Trinity, Schepel has served as the head volleyball coach as well as assistant professor and co-chair of the physical education department. He will continue his coaching responsibilities as he takes on the duties of athletics director. Schepel enters the position with experience and education as he holds a master’s degree in sports administration, served as athletics director at Timothy Christian High School in Elmhurst, Illinois, for two years, and has experience in leading a department.
“I appreciate Bill’s enthusiasm for the position, along with his commitment that has been a part of his work at Trinity,” said Provost Liz Rudenga. “I also thank Josh Lenarz for his excellent leadership and dedication to the athletics program for the past year.”
TAC Golf Classic Raises $35,000 for Scholarships: Photogallery
The 2011 Trinity Athletics Club Golf Classic was blessed with great weather, warm fellowship, and generous contributions as 108 golfers convened at Calumet Country Club in Homewood, Illinois. The annual event brought together friends and alumni of the College and raised more than $35,000 for the TAC scholarship fund.
After a lunch and welcome by the athletics staff, the golfers took to the course. At the conclusion of 18 holes of scramble format, the foursome of Jeff DeBoer ’01, Jeff Ozinga ’02, Matt Postema ’07, and John Sikkenga ’06 won the outing with a 13-under score of 58. The events of the day concluded with hors d’oevres and an awards ceremony.
“The golf outing was a great day, and it was wonderful to see so many familiar faces,” said Dennis Harms ’89, the TAC Golf Classic coordinator and head coach of Trinity’s new men’s golf team. “We appreciate all the sponsors and golfers and are thankful to the Trinity community for their support of the College and the athletics program.”
The College also thanks Ozinga Bros. and Providence Bank, as well as other individual and corporate sponsors, for their sponsorship of the event.
Chicago Provides Unique “Classroom” for Students: Photogallery
ChicagoQuest is a four-week residential experience offered every summer for academically-motivated high school seniors and for incoming Trinity freshmen. Students live and study in the global city of Chicago and explore the many opportunities for learning, serving, and experiencing culture.
Students earn three college credits in either Art and World Religions or American and Western Civilization. Classroom learning is reinforced through visits to area museums and galleries, such as the Illinois Holocaust Museum and the Art Institute of Chicago.
Growing spiritually happened in this community as students shared devotions, prayed, worshipped, and served together. This year’s service project at the Greater Chicago Food Depository built camaraderie among the students as they worked alongside hundreds of others to prepare registration packs for participants in the local Hunger Walk.
Vice President for Student Development Ginny Carpenter serves as the program’s director. She and her husband Jeff, program coordinator, worked with this year’s resident assistant, Jess Timmermans ’14 of Palos Heights, Illinois, to ensure an exceptional residential experience for participants.
“The key to ChicagoQuest is the broad experience students get as individuals while at the same time sharing the experience,” said Carpenter. “Students are most surprised by the relationships they form and the realization of self-sufficiency.”
Students enjoyed the autonomy of choosing how they spent their free time, whether doing homework, hopping a train to Chinatown, hanging out at the beach, or simply gathering together in their common residence to talk.
Carpenter said that even students from Chicago and the surrounding suburbs get to know the city in a way they probably haven’t experienced.
Participant and incoming Trinity freshman Luke Martin of Chicago, said, “ChicagoQuest was a lot of fun. Living and learning in the city was a great way to start my college experience.”
2011 Alumnus of the Year, Honorary Alumni Named
“A deep warmth and a spontaneous smile come to me each time I think about this award,” said Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English at Trinity since 1986 and the 2011 Alumnus of the Year. “It is humbling considering the colleagues and students I have been able to work alongside.”
Vander Weele’s connection with Trinity began when his father Ed became a professor of education and dean of students in 1968. Vander Weele enrolled as a student the next year. His sisters and brother attended Trinity as did his late wife Albertena ’74, who served as director of the College’s Cooper Career Center from 2000-2006. Their daughter, Corenna Roozeboom, graduated in 2007.
Vander Weele, who earned his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, finds great satisfaction as a professor in watching students discover their “deep joy” as they discover their talents and paths.
Teaching is his calling, but learning nurtures it. Vander Weele said he “loves nothing more than to be a student in the summer.” Summer “vacation” normally finds the professor and perpetual student attending education summits or conducting research. On a research grant this summer, Vander Weele studied Homer, Hesiod, and Rhetorical Aesthetics in the Ancient Mediterranean World, an offshoot of his work last summer at the Seminar on Hesiod and the Homeric Songs.
“It is good to be on the other side of the classroom once in awhile,” he said.
Vander Weele was married in July to Mary McKinstry, a nurse practitioner at Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital.
From alumna Allison Backous ’07…
“Dr. Michael Vander Weele is truly one of the best men I have known. Having taken a class with him every semester I was at Trinity, while also serving as his teaching assistant, I came to understand that I was learning from someone whose mind and heart were not only sharp gifts for the kingdom, but true avenues of grace in my life. Dr. Vander Weele talks about Augustine and Marilynne Robinson, Dante and Simone Weil, with an ease that is both brilliant and familiar. He treats writers from across the ages like they are old friends at coffee hour, with a compassionate, endearing curiosity. His love for people, and the ways we read and talk with each other, has shaped me in indescribable ways, and I only hope that my own writing and teaching mirrors his own.”
Honorary alumni award recipients include:
Sandy Carra, former administrative assistant in Trinity’s student development office from 1996-2003, then part time in various departments until 2008. Read more…
Grace Huitsing, assistant, then associate, professor of English and education from 1968-1987. Read more…
Dean and Ruth Koldenhoven, friends of the College. Dean served as the mayor of Palos Heights from 1997-2001. Read more…
Sandy Carra, honorary alumna of the year
Sandy Carra started working for Trinity in 1996 as the administrative assistant for Ginny Carpenter, currently vice president for student development. After retiring in 2003, Carra returned part-time and substituted as an administrative assistant in various departments until 2008.
As a charter member of the College’s Staff Council, Carra served as chair, helping pass official bylaws, researching job positions and salaries of other institutions, and advocating for staff professional development.
“The experience of working at Trinity enriched my life in a spiritual sense,” said Carra. “I appreciated working with fellow Christians and people who live the Gospel, because it is so embedded in their everyday lives.”
Her contact with students through her position was what Carra most enjoyed, and she hopes to be remembered by alumni as a “listener,” someone who knew where students were from and what they hoped to achieve.
Carra has 12 grandchildren, and she and her husband John are members of Saint Elizabeth Seton in Orland Hills, Illinois.
From Ginny Carpenter, vice president for student development
“Sandy Carra became the assistant in the student development office during a time when there was much transition in the department. Besides her excellent organizational skills and attention to process, planning, and perfection, Sandy brought her deep care for others and an infectious sense of humor to an office that was seeking to be student-centered. Sandy was like a magnet—students stopped by just to say hi and in return received a hearty laugh and a heaping dose of encouragement. In looking back, I’m reminded of how instrumental Sandy was in fostering a friendly, caring community for Trinity students, staff, and faculty.”
Grace Huitsing, honorary alumna of the year
Grace Huitsing is called to teach.
She began at Illiana Christian High School soon after it opened and then taught at Grand Rapids Christian High School for 20 years. Sensing God leading her to switch to higher education, Huitsing began teaching at Trinity in 1968 as an assistant professor of English and education and retired as an associate professor in 1987.
One of her greatest joys while at Trinity was the time spent teaching and mentoring six students from Vietnam. One of those students, Hung Nguyen, a scientist at Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems, established the Violet and Hung Nguyen Mathematics Scholarship in 2008.
Of her time at Trinity, Huitsing said, “I give praise to God for the opportunity to help students on their way to serving further in the kingdom.”
After her retirement from Trinity, the consummate teacher spent the next 11 summers in China working with Chinese teachers of English through the English Language Institute/China (ELIC). Today she teaches English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) twice each week through Wheaton CRC and World Relief.
From alumna Yvette (Ho) Madany ’85
“When I think of Professor Huitsing, I think of her big, warm smile. She was never distant, always approachable. She represented Trinity’s friendly learning atmosphere. I am thankful that she was one of my English professors; she taught me well, and I have now written a book and edit scripts in English. Professor Huitsing also stood out because of her commitment to teach English in China. As a Chinese person, I was especially appreciative of her efforts. She exemplified Christian caring.”
From former Professor of Philosophy Dr. Calvin Seerveld
“Grace Huitsing was a gem of a colleague. Her ever-welcoming smile, always pitching in quietly on the committee work behind the scenes, and her gentle teaching style were exemplary for Trinity’s commitment to higher Christian education. And her dedicated work in China was going more than the extra mile of service. Grace lived up to her name: she was a steady blessing to all of us—students, teachers, and administrators at Trinity, a deep source of encouragement through good and through hard times. I think of her as the resourceful woman of Proverbs 31:10-31.”
Dean and Ruth Koldenhoven, honorary alumni of the year
Dean and Ruth Koldenhoven’s connection to Trinity began with Ruth’s uncle Dr. George DeJong, who was one of the original board members, while Dean walked door to door in the neighborhood collecting donations to start the College. Dean recalls one neighbor who retrieved a Koops Mustard jar from her cupboard that contained $8.76 that she had saved for Trinity from her social security checks.
Since those early days, Dean, who was the mayor of Palos Heights from 1997-2001 and worked in the bricklaying industry for 42 years, has maintained close ties with Trinity. Besides gifts to the College, the Koldenhovens attend events on campus, and Dean has spoken to students in communication arts, psychology, and sociology classes.
Dean is a recipient of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award and received a special recognition award from the Arab American League. He will be presenting “Religious Tolerance: The Mosque Controversy” on October 31 at 7 p.m. in the Ozinga Chapel as part of Trinity’s annual WorldView series.
Ruth worked as a job coach at Elim Christian Services for 15 years and has worked at their church library and with a church program for mentally disabled students. The Koldenhovens have been members of Palos Christian Reformed Church for 39 years.
Dean appreciates Trinity’s various levels of involvement with Palos Heights. “Trinity has done a great job of witnessing to the community,” he said.
From President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D.
“Dean and Ruth have been long-time friends of the College. Ruth’s work at Elim was a natural bridge to Trinity and our special education program. Dean’s association with the College has been multifaceted. One of the best memories I have of Dean is the time he was part of a Campus Compact grant award whereby Trinity students worked in partnership with the city of Robbins, Illinois, seeking to strengthen its infrastructure. Dean’s awareness of the political structures and his passion for helping people proved to be indispensible to the project.”
Conducting to Performing, Professor Answers the Call of Music
During the academic year, Dr. Helen Van Wyck serves as professor of music and director of choral activities at Trinity. But for three weeks every summer for the past 26 years, she has performed with the Oregon Bach Festival Chorus and Orchestra in Eugene, Oregon.
The Festival was founded in 1970, and the chorus and orchestra are conducted by German Bach scholar, Helmuth Rilling. For Van Wyck, performing at the Festival provides the opportunity to “wear a different hat and be a professional singer.” A change from her usual position in front of a choir or classroom, Van Wyck also becomes the student, learning from Rilling about conducting, teaching, rehearsal techniques, and music making.
At the Festival, members of the chorus present performances of major works with orchestra and soloists. They also participate in the “Discovery Series” afternoon concerts during which Rilling speaks to the audience about the music while interspersing musical examples. This summer, the chorus sang 11 different performances within an intense 16-day schedule.
“Being part of the Festival has been a treasure in my life, and it feeds my soul musically and personally,” she said. “I bring many ideas I glean from that work into my work with students and my perspective on music.”
Trinity’s music department serves a specific population of student majors and the general student population.
“We see music as a gift of God and the field of music as a calling, whether or not students pursue it as a career,” said Van Wyck. “Music is one of the most wonderful ways to honor God, worship him, and praise him. It is easy to think of that in terms of performing ensembles, but we consciously incorporate a Christian perspective into our classroom courses as well.”
Trinity’s music groups also serve the community through public performances on and off campus and concerts that enhance worship at local churches.
Van Wyck and her husband, Marv, are members of Hope Christian Reformed Church in Oak Forest, Illinois.
Brandon Nicol Named Men's Basketball Head Coach
The athletics department of Trinity Christian College announced the hiring of Brandon Nicol as the new head coach of the men’s basketball program. Nicol comes to Trinity from Colorado Christian University where he served as an assistant coach for the past five seasons.
“Brandon is a tremendous addition to the coaching staff at Trinity Christian College,” said athletics director Josh Lenarz. “He has a wonderful understanding of the game, a genuine desire to coach at a Christian college, and a heart to mentor young men through the avenue of basketball.”
As a part of the coaching staff at Colorado Christian, Nicol helped the Cougars to the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament Final Four in three seasons and to the NCAA DII National Tournament in 2007-08. The team also advanced to the NCCAA National Tournament in the 2008-09 season. Along with assisting in game strategy, he was also involved in recruiting, budget and equipment management, scouting, academic supervising, and strength and conditioning.
As a collegiate athlete Nicol played for Iowa State University, a Big 12 powerhouse, from 1999-2002. At Iowa State he was a part of two Big 12 Championships and an Elite Eight appearance. He earned the Team Hustle Award in his freshman year, the Brian Pearson Inspiration Award in 2001-02, and scholar-athlete honors for three seasons.
Nicol played his final collegiate season (2002-03) at Dakota State University. He was a member of the Kansas City Knights (ABA) in 2004-05, and the Des Moines Heat (IBL) in 2005. He also competed in a fall and overseas tour with Athletes in Action in 2005.
“My family and I feel incredibly blessed for the opportunity to be a part of Trinity Christian College,” said Nicol. “We are ecstatic to be afforded this chance to invest in the lives of young men who will be a part of the basketball program now and in the future. We trust that this is where God wants us to be and we feel blessed by the hope and encouragement that we have received from the people and student-athletes we have met.”
Nicol is a graduate of Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree in exercise and sports science. He earned a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Colorado Christian University. Nicol, along with his wife Jill and son Isaac, will make the transition to Trinity, where he will start his duties in late July.
Students Prepare for Virtuous Public Service at Law, Justice and Culture Institute: Photogallery
Sponsored by the Center for Law and Culture, the Institute prepares students for virtuous public service in law, government, and politics. The Institute awards three academic credits to students who successfully complete the requirements of the two-week session, during which students attend classes, hear guest speakers, and complete assignments and exams.
“The Institute helped to open my eyes to the desperate need for Christians to fill the void of immorality creeping into law, government, and politics,” said J.R. Wydra ’11 of Tinley Park, Illinois.
“I left with a renewed perspective on justice, and a deep passion to stand up for God’s truth in a world that works to silence it. As I head off to law school in the fall, the Institute reminded me of how important it is to be walking with the Lord when tackling the great tasks asked of us as leaders,” he said.
Led by Charlie Emmerich, professor of political science at Trinity and executive director of the Center, and along with various guest lecturers, the sessions explored the themes of law and the administration of justice among ancient Hebrews, the “higher law” foundation of the American constitutional order, as well as Nazism, the Nuremberg trials, and the resurgence of natural law.
At the conclusion of the two-week Institute, the Center hosted a 10th anniversary banquet attended by more than 100 people. Former Rep. Dan Severson (Minn.), who is running for the U.S. Senate, was the keynote speaker. Students also received certificates during the evening program, and Professor Emmerich was honored by the Center’s board, colleagues, and former students for his work over the past decade.
Trinity students included:
Clayton Bailye ’13 of Algonquin, Illinois
Eric Eugene Armand Tucker, Jr. ’11 of South Holland, Illinois
Timothy C. Turner ’12 of South Holland, Illinois
Scott R. Vermeer ’12 of Kentwood, Michigan
Joni Weidenaar ’11 of Manhattan, Montana
Joseph R. Wydra ’11 of Tinley Park, Illinois
Guest lecturers included:
Susan D. Emmerich, Ph.D.
CEO, Emmerich Environmental Consulting
L.B. Graham, M.Div.
Author, “The Binding of the Blade” fantasy series
Teacher at Westminster Christian Academy
George N. Pierson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Philosophy, Trinity Christian College
Bruce D. Strom, J.D.
Executive Director, Administer Justice
Former Rep. Dan Severson (Minn.)
Served as the Republican Minority Whip in the MN House of Representatives from November 2008 to 2010 and is a former Navy fighter pilot.
A special thank you is extended to the following event sponsors who helped to fund Institute scholarships: the Bradshaw-Knight Foundation; the Hoghton Family Charitable Trust; Hoogendoorn & Talbot, LLP; Bruce and Mary Leep; Ozinga Bros.; Providence Bank; and, Ruff, Weidenaar & Reidy, Ltd.
Student and Professor Collaborate to Develop Game for Student Engagement
Student-faculty collaboration presents an excellent learning opportunity for students in any field of study.
One of those collaborative projects recently came out of the psychology department in the form of an exploratory study using Internet game concepts to encourage class participation in an undergraduate college course.
PsychWorld, an interactive game based on the popular Facebook game Farmville, was developed by Dr. Dick Cole, professor of psychology, and psychology student Jamie Parise ’12 of Orland Park, Illinois. The game was used in one section of Cole’s Introduction to Psychology last fall, and Cole and Parise presented the project and their findings at the Midwest Psychological Association’s annual convention in May.
“Faculty-student collaborative research is one of the most rewarding experiences one can have as a teacher,” said Cole. “You get to know your students while you experience working together on interesting ideas that help contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the field of psychology.”
As with Farmville, which simulates the basic business tasks of operating a farm, PsychWorld requires students to perform certain “jobs” that encourage student engagement in the course and earn students “psychodollars.” These can then be “spent” at the virtual Intro Store for extra points toward the final grade.
The purpose of the study was to use simulation game strategies modeled in a classroom situation to explore whether simulation game strategies would encourage increased participation in reading the assignments, attending the class, and contributing to class discussions.
Although no statistically significant difference was found for attendance and class involvement, a statistically significant difference was found for reading assignments.
Students responded that the game helped them overall to be more “attentive” and “involved” in class.
Blueprints 2011: Photogalleries
Hundreds of new students and their family members attended Blueprints, the annual registration event, on June 24 and 25. The weekend was packed with activities to welcome students to the Trinity community.
The festivities began Friday evening with a barbeque supper in the Commons, hosted by President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D. Parents attended a session on academics and student life, while the students enjoyed an opportunity to meet classmates and be officially welcomed as the newest Trolls.
Everyone enjoyed an ice cream social and later gathered in the Commons Amphitheater for a time of praise and worship. Students stayed busy into the night with a variety of options, including sporting events and games.
The faculty-hosted breakfast kicked off day two, giving students and their families a chance to talk with faculty members from their areas of study. While parents attended a session on college finances, students met with faculty members for one-on-one advising and registration.
The Information Expo supplied students and parents with information about campus organizations, and local churches, banks, and businesses. Students were able to visit some model suites in West and South Halls before attending sessions about the First Year Experience and community life at Trinity.
Congratulations to Dean’s List Honorees
Each semester Trinity students in the College’s traditional program who meet high academic standards are included in the Dean’s List. Students must complete the semester at full-time status to be eligible.
Congratulations to the Spring 2011 semester’s Dean’s List honorees:
Theresa Boone Toolan
Geline Vinne Goy
P. Caleb Hamstra
Mary Margaret McNicholas
Wai Ling Yung
Matt Buren Named Recipient of the NAIA Emil S. Liston Award
Matt Buren ’12 of Macomb, Illinois was selected by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) to receive its prestigious Emil S. Liston award. The award is given annually to one male and one female basketball player based on excellence in character, playing ability, and scholarship. The award is named in memory of Emil S. Liston, the first executive director of the NAIA and the founder of the National Association of Intercollegiate Basketball (NAIB).
Buren was nominated for the award, recommended by the conference, and selected by the NAIA Council of Faculty Athletics Representatives. Trinity will receive a $1,000 scholarship award from Daktronics in his name.
In his three years on the basketball team, Buren has made an impact both on and off the court. He is a team captain and two-year starter. This past season he averaged 14.7 points and 5.7 rebounds and led the team and conference in field goal percentage at .583 percent. He also surpassed the 1,000 career point milestone. Buren was named First-Team All-Conference as well as to the NCCAA North Central All-Region team. He helped the team to a conference regular season co-championship, a NCCAA region tournament title, and a NCCAA National Championship appearance. In addition he was the recipient of the Keith Albers Memorial Award, one of Trinity’s athletics department’s highest honors.
“On the court Matt is a talented player and is committed to our team’s success,” said head basketball coach Kevin Lubbers. “He is a young man of unmatched integrity and discipline and pours his heart and soul into everything that he does out of faithful response to the amazing gifts God has blessed him with.”
Buren has also been a positive influence in the classroom, on campus, and in the community. He sets the bar high and actively seeks ways to serve. He has served as a resident assistant in the dorms, been involved in numerous campus activities and community service projects, and is a spiritual leader on the basketball team. As a double major in theology and business, he delves into his academic work and has been recognized as a scholar-athlete at the conference and national level.
“Matt is a huge asset to our basketball program and our campus,” commented Larryl Humme, Vice President of Development. “He cannot separate his role on the court from his role in the classroom from his role in life. His purpose in life is to be the best student, the best athlete, the best person because he believes that is what God deserves and requires of him.”
The NAIA news release on the Emil S. Liston award can be found at http://naia.cstv.com/genrel/060211aae.html
Alumni Golf Outing Raises Over $10,000 for Scholarships: Photogallery
More than 80 alumni and friends of the College contributed a record breaking $10,000 for the Alumni Excellence Scholarship at this year’s Alumni Golf Outing on June 18. The renewable scholarship provides $1,500 awards for children of alumni attending Trinity.
The outing, held for the first year at Ravisloe Country Club in Homewood, Illinois, began with lunch, followed by a shotgun start. The event ended with the presentation of the trophy, which is engraved each year with the names of the winning foursome.
This year’s winning foursome included: Matt Huizinga ’01, Chris VanderNaald ex ’05, Ryan VanderNaald, and Jeff VanderNaald.
“It was another great year at the alumni outing,” said Eric Lindemulder ’05. “The weather was excellent for an afternoon of golfing and reconnecting with college friends and faculty while helping raise money for the alumni scholarship program. The traveling trophy continues to add a nice competitive touch, and we’ll be ready to win it back again next year!”
Alumni Director Travis Bandstra ’06 said the College is thankful for the faithful support received from the golf outing sponsors who make it possible for the funds raised by the event to go directly to the Alumni Excellence Scholarship.
Alan Horticultural Enterprises
All God’s Children Orphanage
Bert Kamp, CPA
Clarence Davids & Co.
Interiors for Business
Ken and Margie Boss
Knudsen Construction, Inc.
Mama Vesuvio’s East
Olive Branch Counseling
PolyJohn Enterprises Corp.
Rick and Sue VanDyken
Schaaf Window Corp.
Schepel Buick GMC Truck
Silva International, Inc.
Stepping Stone Financial, Inc.
Strack & Van Til Supermarkets
Van Bruggen Signs
Vant Hoff Financial Services Ltd.
Recipients of Founders’ Scholarship Anticipate Life at Trinity
Michael Kunnen of Comstock Park, Michigan, and Kathryn Woodside of Kearney, Nebraska, are the recipients of the 2011 Trinity Christian College Founders’ Scholarship.
The Founders’ Scholarship is a renewable, full-tuition award available annually to two incoming freshmen. Applicants must rank in the top five percent of their graduating class or achieve a 3.8 grade-point average; score a minimum of 30 on the ACT or 1320 on the SAT; exhibit leadership in their church, school, or community; and display evidence of personal faith in Jesus Christ.
Kunnen, who attended Calvin Christian High School in Grandville, Michigan, said that when he received the news that he had been chosen as a Founders’ recipient, he was certain that God wanted him to attend Trinity.
“I had constantly been praying, asking God to show me where he wanted me to attend college next fall, and immediately after hearing the good news, I thanked him for revealing his intent for the next big portion of my life,” he said.
Kunnen is considering a career in health and recently took part in an internship program at the Grand Rapids Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital that allows students to experience a variety of healthcare professions. He said he intends to “pray fervently and explore my interests at Trinity, knowing that God will lead me to the path he wishes me to take.”
Kunnen has been involved in a variety of activities, including his church youth group, Bible study, and Calvin Christian’s soccer team. “Soccer has always been a big part of my life,” said Kunnen, a four-year member of his high school team.
As he prepares for Trinity this fall, Kunnen is most looking forward to meeting people. “I am eager to make many new friends and branch out into areas of learning I haven’t studied yet,” said Kunnen. “Trinity provides a close-knit, welcoming community that is friendly and accepting, and I admire the College’s emphasis on Christian learning.”
Woodside, who attended Kearney High School in Kearney, Nebraska, plans to double major in special education and elementary education at Trinity.
She has been active in the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA); the University of Nebraska at Omaha Honor Orchestra; her youth group at Kearney Evangelical Free Church; the high school yearbook; and various leadership opportunities.
Woodside said she believes that Trinity will provide a place of academic excellence but also a place for her to grow in her faith.
“At Trinity, I can be surrounded by like-minded students and staff who will challenge me to seek Christ and his will for my life and career,” said Woodside. “I don’t want to be taught how to do a job. I want to learn and explore the possible impact I can have on the world, how I can make a difference in whatever I do, and the eternal significance of my future career.”
She believes the on-campus, study abroad, and service opportunities the College offers will give her the chance to reach others for Christ.
“Above all, I want a college that will prepare me for the career to which God has called me. Trinity feeds both the mind and the soul for a complete education, and I feel called to be a part of this community of believers.”
Commencement 2011: Photogalleries
New Photogallery added May 23. Special thanks to Dan Jongetjes ’10 for sharing his photography.
Commencement welcomed families of 185 traditional and 58 Adult Studies graduates to campus on Saturday, May 14, 2011. The speaker for the traditional ceremony was Dr. Calvin Seerveld, one of the original faculty members of Trinity Christian College. Dr. John Hoekstra, former director of Trinity’s Adult Studies Education program, addressed the Adult Studies graduates in the afternoon ceremony.
Commencement ceremonies included granting emeriti faculty status to both Dr. John Hoekstra and Dr. Randall Voorn.
Processing this year were Trinity’s first faculty and students from the College’s first class, the Heritage Class of 1961, robed in blue regalia.
Joy Meyer ’78, assistant professor of education and parent of Greg Meyer ’11 of South Holland, Illinois, gave the invocation.
Dr. Calvin Seerveld’s address, “Graduating to ‘Glocal’ Martyrdom,” related the idea of biblically-formed followers of Christ developing “a cosmic global vision and a humbled sense of local responsibility in a united (bifocal) ‘glocal’ perspective and task.”
The Commencement litany was delivered by Student Association President Jason Giddings ’11 of Pella, Iowa.
During the presentation of diplomas, there was a time of remembrance for Giselle Charissah McComb, of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, who passed away on December 28, 2010. Dr. Michael DeVries, professor of psychology, spoke in her honor. : Giselle’s parents Michael and Janice McComb accepted her diploma.
The graduates were welcomed to their new alumni status by Kevin Lubbers ’01, president of the Alumni Board. The closing prayer was offered by Derek Woods, father of senior Velvet Woods of Chicago.
President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D., greeted the Commencement guests in the afternoon ceremony. Jacqueline Moses ’05, coordinator of Adult Studies Education-Chicago, gave the invocation. The Commencement litany was delivered by Jeffrey J. Heimer ’11.
In his address, Dr. John Hoekstra encouraged the Adult Studies education majors to go forth, make a difference in the lives of each and every one of their future students, and to answer the call to “Serve with Excellence.” Read Dr. Hoekstra’s address, “Called to Serve.”
The graduates were welcomed to their new alumni status by Travis Bandstra ’06, director of alumni relations. The closing prayer was offered by Chaplain Willis Van Groningen, Ph.D.
About Calvin Seerveld, Ph.D.
Dr. Calvin Seerveld was among the original faculty members at Trinity Christian College when classes met for the first time in October 1959. Seerveld taught philosophy from 1959-72; his chapel talks, given throughout the years, were collected in Take Hold of God and Pull. He was presented with an Honorary Alumni Award from Trinity in 2005 and was distinguished by having Trinity’s new art gallery bear his name (2009).
About John Hoekstra, Ed.D.
Dr. John Hoekstra has served in the field of education for 46 years, 11 at Trinity and 35 in the public schools in Blue Island, Illinois. During his tenure in Blue Island, he worked as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, and assistant superintendent. After retiring from the district, Hoekstra followed his calling in education to Trinity Christian College where he has served as the director of Adult Studies Education for over 11 years.
Called to Serve
Dr. John Hoekstra
Adult Studies Commencement, May 14, 2011
President Timmermans, Provost Rudenga, Faculty, Family, Friends and most importantly Graduates; I’m honored to have this opportunity to address you.
Graduates, this commencement ceremony officially celebrates your successful completion of the Trinity Christian College Adult Studies-Education Program. Your diligence and hard work have brought you to this point; you are teacher candidates, and soon will be certified as teachers in the State of Illinois. You have earned the right to join a profession to which there is no equal.
You have been called to serve and are now prepared to answer that call. I trust that for many years to come you will experience the deep satisfaction of knowing that you have positively impacted the lives and futures of the students entrusted to you, that you had an impact on your students’ growth as human beings and that you played a significant role in helping your students reach their potential.
Most of you started the Adult Studies-Education Program at the beginning of September 2009. All of you came to Trinity because you had a goal, a dream to become a teacher. Your reasons for selecting Trinity varied. Many of you came because you had heard positive things about the Trinity program, some of you came because Trinity promised to offer a program in a Christian environment, perhaps you came to finally realize your life-long dream of becoming a teacher, some of you indicated that you needed the accelerated program because, and I quote: “at my age I need to complete a program as quickly as possible.” However, the overriding reason you came, and you’ve expressed this in various ways, is that you want to make a difference in the lives of students.
Some of you came not particularly proud of your previous college performance; you voiced concerns about juggling the responsibilities of family and jobs and meeting all the course requirements in the Adult Studies Program. But you came to Trinity with a commitment to successfully meet all the requirements for becoming a certified teacher.
When you first saw the demanding grading scale utilized by the Trinity Education Department, you worried, because after all, your grades would need to be posted on the refrigerator along with the report cards of your children. But you’ve met the challenge, and seeing all your gold cords, you have indeed met the challenge successfully.
For about sixteen months you attended a four-hour class session almost every week. You learned how to juggle family, job and school responsibilities. Some of you rushed here right from work, hoping that the snacks brought by members of your cohort would keep you going until 10 o’clock. Maybe you had to make sure your children had dinner before you came and perhaps you had to make sure the baby sitter was in place. You learned what it means to be in an accelerated program, every five or six weeks you started a new course. You soon discovered that you had to make significant room in your already busy schedule for course assignments and textbook readings. I know that at least some of you at times had little sleep. But you persevered!
You learned about the history and the influences that have shaped American education. You became acquainted with the wonderful technology available to teachers today and you know how to integrate the technology into your teaching for the benefit of your students. You’ve learned how to plan for instruction through preparing seemingly endless lesson and unit plans. You know that without effective classroom management, optimum teaching and learning will not take place. You understand the importance of establishing positive working relationships with the parents of your students, and with other teachers and school administrators. You understand the inclusion of special needs students into regular classrooms; you are ready to do your part in RTI, the response to intervention for students, who are not progressing as necessary. You know how to make accommodations for your students, and you know how to differentiate instruction.
While you were going through the Adult Studies Program you were forced to reflect on most everything you did, and as a result, you have become reflective practitioners.
The Trinity Christian College Mission Statement in part reads:
“All programs are grounded on a core of foundational studies that address the enduring issues of human experience and teach students to explore and apply the implications of a Reformed world-and-life view to all areas of learning, living and working. Students are encouraged to evaluate their lives in relationship to God, to others, and to all creation.”
You’ve learned that it is your personal worldview that influences how you interact and approach your students. It is that worldview, which will directly influence everything you do as a teacher.
Believe that every child entrusted to you deserves your very best…even the student who brings nothing to like.
The last seventeen weeks have been demanding for you. As a student teacher you learned firsthand that excellent teaching consumes an extraordinary amount of your time, that at times every ounce of energy you could muster was consumed. But you survived; you experienced the thrill of knowing that you did indeed impact your students’ learning.
You now have a much clearer understanding of your strengths and you know the areas that may require some additional work on your part. I trust that all of you have experienced what one of you wrote a few weeks ago:
“Hey, I think I can actually do this,” and “When I left school today, I felt like a teacher.”
Reaching this milestone has to give you a true sense of accomplishment. With your hard work you have earned today’s celebration. Your family and friends are celebrating with you; perhaps they’re hoping that now you’ll have more time for them again.
But while you’re experiencing the joy of completing a demanding portion of your journey, you may also be experiencing some anxiety, some insecurity, and some ambivalence about what the future will bring.
You’re wondering about when and where you will find a teaching position. You’ve heard the news about teacher layoffs in some places, you know about the budget issues some school districts are experiencing. You know that many aspects of public education are under close scrutiny. The influence of teacher unions is certainly being challenged. Teacher pension systems will likely be changed. The disparities in education, which have been a reality for too long, are once again a focus for many, including politicians. And surely, the quality of a child’s education should not be determined by where the child was born.
Public schools in the United States will not remain the same. The reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education School Act promises to include significant changes. School funding is likely to change; parent choice and the charter school movement continue to gain momentum. Merit pay recognition for excellent teachers will likely become a reality during your teaching career. We know that the quality and expertise of the teacher influences the achievement of students to a large degree. While teacher excellence is a growing concern, the reality is that there are ineffective teachers, teachers who are actually hurting students, in too many classrooms. Teacher tenure as we know it will probably not continue to exist.
Knowing all of this, rest assured that God has a plan for you. Know that there are signs of improvement for the economy. Know that new crops of students will continue to come. Know that teachers will continue to leave the profession or retire, and know that there will always be a need for excellent teachers.
Years ago, the American Humorist, Erma Bombeck, wrote a syndicated newspaper column titled Teaching the 3 R’s – plus the rest of alphabet. Perhaps some of you remember her words from your Introduction to Education class, Irma wrote:
“Welcome to teaching, Miss Stevenson. Your mission is to teach 26 first-graders how to read. You will be reinforced by every modern bit of technology, including visuals and computers. You will have the confidence of parents, support of administration and love of the children. Oh, just one thing. You won’t forget to instill good nutrition habits, teach the gifted, the neurologically impaired, the emotionally disturbed, and develop civic responsibility, will you? And check for head lice, make sure they have a hot breakfast, collect milk money and arrange their transportation to and from school. Did I mention eye testing and shots and instruction of first aid procedures? It goes without saying you will provide sex education – in a tasteful way, of course. And you’ll have to make time to build economic awareness, assist in bladder control, stress bilingual development and eliminate sex discrimination.
Just be glad you aren’t in secondary education. They have to teach kids how to drive a car, counsel them in their career, solve alcohol and drug abuse problems and counsel them in pregnancy.
You’re fortunate. All you have is bicycle safety, building self worth and respect, and instilling a sense of patriotism. All we expect from you is to give the public what they want – a back-to-basics education. Good luck, Miss Stevenson.
Miss Stevenson? Miss Stevenson!
No one wants to teach kids how to read anymore.”
Graduates, with all you know about the difficulties teachers face, with all you know about the challenges you will need to meet head on, with knowing the tremendous effort and time it takes to do the job well, with knowing that your efforts will not always be valued and appreciated, go and answer God’s call to serve. Whether you teach in a wealthy suburban school, a high needs or inner-city school, go and love your students, and give each one of them your very best. Go and make a difference.
May your students someday refer to you as the teacher they gratefully remember for truly having impacted their lives in a positive way. Serve with the prayer from Deuteronomy 32:2:
May my teaching drop like the rain, my speech condense like the dew; like gentle rain on grass, like showers on new growth.
Go and answer your call to serve and “Serve with Excellence.”
Graduating to Glocal Martyrdom
Dr. Calvin Seerveld
Tradition Student Commencement, May 14, 2011
The wise person in the Older Testament biblical book of Ecclesiastes answers the question “Is a deathdate better than a birthday?” by saying, “Yes! Entering a home touched by grief is better than walking into a house toasting champagne, because death is the conclusion of every man and woman, and when the living (face it), they have to take it to heart” (7:2).
Is a graduation day from Trinity Christian College better than the day you entered as a freshman or fresh woman?
It depends, let’s say, on whether one faces what is happening to you today.
Georges Rouault’s bittersweet print, “Il serait si doux d’aimer” (1914-48), “It would be so sweet to love,” shows a mother tenderly gesturing with her extended arm outward to where the nestling child needs to go, to places where the protecting love of the older generation is traded in for circumstances less safe, where you cannot, it seems, be your childlike self, love and be loved, without getting trampled to competitive death.
I do not mean to do a variation on the old commencement bromide of “Okay, fellows, now you are going to go out into the real world!”
No, the real world of opportunities and failure, of disappointments and acts of kindness, have been present inside your Trinity education too. You do not escape sin and blessing in daily action by going to a Christian college. However, if you have been an actual student, instead of majoring in extra-curricular affairs, you have enjoyed the wonderful gift at Trinity of an “academic” fix on your activity.
That is, you can err in a biology lab dissection experiment without killing somebody; you can be wrong in a theology class without being declared a heretic; you can do musical, mathematical, basketball exercises before you face the test of execution; you are given time to “practice” teaching and not be fully responsible yet for the lives of young learning children. The college years are a wonderful time to make mistakes, because they can be corrected by teachers in this “academic” training setting of trust.
There is less leeway for bad consequences in botched trial-and-error raising of your children, in a failed medical diagnosis or surgical activity, or in implementing unwise commercial decisions. The protecting cover of an “academic holding position” (like a circling airplane needing to wait to land at O’Hare) goes when you graduate from Trinity. [That’s why anybody who continues on to “graduate” studies must be wary of doing so just to avoid facing direct life responsibilities of landing, because “academics” can dry up and be good for nothing in God’s world, unless they envelop their research and pick priorities with a holy spirit of Wisdom.]
So, you are graduating, prepared by Trinity’s solid educational program in the tradition of the historic Christian Reformation of Martin Luther and Jean Calvin, and you are called by God, I propose, to “glocal martyrdom.”
What does that mean?
“Glocal” is a fairly new English word which combines “global” and “local”--“glocal.” Biblically formed followers of Jesus Christ, from whatever Christian tradition, develop a cosmic global vision and a humbled sense of local responsibility in a united (bifocal) glocal perspective and task. “God did not send God’s Son into the cosmos in order to condemn the cosmos, but in order that the whole cosmos (=environment, plants, animals, society of humans) be saved by God’s Son” (John 3:17). And, said the resurrected Jesus to his prospective disciples, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you all to be witnesses of me, (of my bringing in the Reign of God, both locally) in Jerusalem, all of Judea, Samaria--that is, Chicago, mid-Western USA--to the very ends of the earth--Europe, Ecuador, Asia, Australia” (cf. Acts 1:8,3).
Glocal martyrdom: we do not have to save the world. The triune God fully revealed in the historical Jew Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit will see to that. We who are “Christians” in more than name only have to be faithful, obedient witnesses locally first of all, actually practicing, living the Lord’s merciful just Rule acoming over the earth, be bringing shalom to all creatures on earth under the sun. Μαρτυριον in Newer Testament Greek means “witness.” Martyrdom means “giving a testimony...that could cost you your livelihood, your life.”
Is that my recommendation to you who will be graduates within the hour?
Scottish poet Robbie Burns, you probably know, has that famous poem, “To a louse, on seeing one on a lady’s bonnet at church.” In the last stanza are the lines:
“O wad some Power the giftie gie us, / To see oursels as ithers see us!”
Oh, would some Power give us the gift to see ourselves as others see us!
From his pew sitting behind the lady decked out in her Sunday best, the poet noticed a dirty “ugly, creepin blasted wonner” of a louse crawling over the fancy fine clothes—
“How daur ye set your fit upon her-- / Sae fine a lady?”
But the moral the poet settles for is that if we could see ourselves with others’ eyes, it would free us from many a blunder, foolish notions, fashionable airs in dress, way of life, and “ev’n devotion!”
Do you know how others in the globalized world see us educated, graduated Americans?
In 1967, just before the so-called “Seven Day War” in which Israel swiftly demolished Egyptian military forces and took over the Sinai Peninsula, my wife and I were traveling in Egypt with a German archaeological group, speaking German, passing for Germans, since Americans were not loved during that time of Secretary of State Foster Dulles. Our Egyptian guide, at the Aswan Dam site, which the Russians were now building since America had abruptly pulled out, apparently told a group of young Egyptian men hanging around, “There are a couple of Americans here.” So they came over, faced us: “Why you no like Nasser!?” As we talked, they asked to see our American passport. I showed it to them, even let the leader hold it for a brief moment. I saw from his fixed, fascinated stare what that American passport meant to him, even though we were an enemy: Power! Prosperity! Work and Happiness! practically unimaginable for his stymied generation. And he was holding this pure gold ticket in his hand!
That American Dream of ivory palaces in the sky was brilliantly pictured by Thomas Cole’s four-part series, Voyage of Life. This is the soul of the painting Youth (1842), setting out to reach the holy grail of life, liberty, in the pursuit of happiness guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, blessed by his guardian angel on the shore. The Idealist aspiration colours much of American cultural history, and resonates with peoples throughout the world. Jules Breton’s sentimental The Song of the Lark (1884) was the most popular painting at the Chicago Art Institute during the widespread depression of the 1930’s, probably because it gilds the barefoot working poor with a halo of sunrise light and imagined, inspirational bird song--an utterly unreal escape for the urban unemployed or those “blessed” with menial assembly line drudgery.
An underside to how others see us with an American passport is this mural painted by graduate students on the wall reserved for each graduating class at the Rands Africaans Universiteit in Johannesburg, South Africa, which I photographed in 1992, almost 20 years ago. It depicts student hijinks, but up in the far corner is a sad comment about us and the Viet Nam expedition and subsequent military interventions where the stars in “The stars and stripes forever” march slide down into crosses on graveyards and the Statue of Liberty becomes a stalking Grim Reaper. Without making a political comment about the invasion of Iraq and Superpower America’s embroilment in the killing fields of Afghanistan and Pakistan today, I am just showing you how certain others see the lice on our well-cut and Idealistic clothes.
The Trinity registrar wrote me that you twenty-year-old graduates are “ready to take on the world.” If your eyes are open glocally, you know the world at large is distraught and speckled with violent abuse. Not just God’s earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan, Chile, Haiti, Indonesia--California and British Columbia, Canada are still due--but human wars over clean drinking water and boundaries, life-and-death questions like “Can we dispense generic drugs to the poor who are sick unto death? Who has the right to pack a gun? Can anybody immigrate into `the land of the free and the home of the brave’?” What will your Trinity Christian College graduate glocal witness be in (American) society?
Trinity art professor Dayton Castleman gives a good imaginative example when he witnesses in an old God-forsaken stone penitentiary outside Philadelphia with a very thick steel pipe that threads its way up and down corridors and right through stone walls surfacing out into the prison exercise yard where it finally scales the impassible wall: once over on the other side, the blood red pipe (not a silver lining!) multiplies into a seven-fold set of organ pipes trumpeting a “Hallelujah! Freedom!” chorus.
I find this site specific art piece called “The End of the Tunnel” (2005) to be a fine corrective to the insatiable ambition integral to achieving “the (Idealistic) American Dream,” because the bright red pipe expresses a more humbled search, through obstacles, with a patient hope for finding the Way to become free...to praise, and thank God. The glocal martyrdom the LORD God calls us to, also you graduates as well as your parents and friends here present, is to give hope in service, not rise to success, to heal the world, not bomb it--sometimes I wish I were a Mennonite--to rehabilitate prisoners, not neglect them into incorrigibility, to give priority to the handicapped, not push them aside. The task Scripture clearly posits is: “bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2).
I do not know you students, but I know personally many of your professors in philosophy, sociology, art, theology, literature, psychology, communications, chemistry, and I know they have articulated and embodied, along with their colleagues, the Reformational heritage Trinity stands for--“capturing every notion (and practice) to make them obedient to Christ” (II Corinthians 10:4-5). That is how you students have been trained. And my final point is that that yoke is light! It fits well over your graduating shoulders, even if it makes you feel maladjusted in our Darwinian survival-of-the-fittest society. Glocal martyrdom is not a “downer”: with the worldwide vision of this being God’s world, to which Jesus Christ will return! Joyfully give away your life to enact locally the peace of the Lord.
You see, I have eaten in the Trinity cafeteria; the amazing surplus of good food there is staggering, available for the taking (once you have paid the piper). How can anyone who eats this luxuriously daily ever understand, I asked myself, what “hunger” is? I heard an earlier Trinity graduate, Elvia Rodriguez, say last month in a meeting here, that when she first came onto Trinity’s campus, it seemed like an “Enchanted forest.” Well, I hope you graduates will have the eyes to see that Chicago itself is...a burning bush where God says, “Take off your shoes and make my presence known on the streets here, and to the uttermost parts of the earth.”
When you business graduates walk past this city street, resolve again to open up thrifty commercial deals to the liberating profit of generosity for the neighbour. This mural-decorated building in the Pilsen district downtown (photographs taken by Professor John Bakker) is a hostel for the homeless--no home to go to!--for the unemployed who are hungry, destitute, who are losing their human dignity, while across the street a non-Trinity-graduated real estate developer has built a colourless, pricey condominium building looking like a formidable, unfriendly bunker.
When you education majors become teachers, or even principals, persist in giving the difficult or autistic unruly child in class, the extra mile of love, though it wear you out.
When you nursing graduates become overworked hospital caregivers or serve in an African village without adequate medical supplies, remember the sculpture by Britt Wikstrom called Caritas (2006) (which Professor Michael Vander Weele along with another Trinity graduate, Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang got commissioned by the University of Chicago hospital downtown; it stands in their cancer ward waiting area) where a younger man simply helps a more feeble older person put on his coat, for which the elderly fellow, as if he were Jesus (cf. Matthew 25:31-46), gives a look of quiet, bewondering gratitude.
Your graduation day from Trinity, I dare say, with Ecclesiastes, is better than your matriculating entrance day, because your profs, as a community, have spent endless hours protecting you by faithfully correcting reports and exams, so that you are now more readied to accept the glocal martyrdom of disciplined living and embodying the compassionate holy spirited rule of Jesus Christ which is acoming.
May you joy in this day, graduates, and go in peace.
Vander Velde Scholar Celebration Honors Student-Faculty Scholarship
This spring marked the first formal celebration of Trinity’s Vander Velde Junior Scholars program.
Students and alumni, including current and former scholars, gathered for dinner and conversation with faculty mentors and other professors last month. The event was hosted by the Honors Committee.
Also, attending the event was Dr. George Vander Velde ’63, vice president for campus development, who instituted the Maurice Vander Velde Junior Scholar Award in honor of his father.
In just over the past decade, the Vander Velde scholars program has supported some 28 projects of original scholarly research in the exact sciences and some 31 projects of original scholarly research in the humanities, social sciences, and fine arts.
Dr. Aron Reppmann ’92, professor of philosophy, delivered the keynote address, reflecting on ways in which faith is important to scholarship: receiving the faith; sustaining the faith; and testifying in faith.
After expounding on these three points, Reppmann concluded that emphasizing both overt and not so overt Christian pedigrees in visions of Christian scholarship are “crucial to the life of a Christian intellectual community, in which we stand together with one another’s work, across disciplines, across methodologies, across the years, to affirm that all of our scholarly work is called to be a testimony to our Lord, the God of heaven and earth.”
Congratulations to the 2011-12 Vander Velde Junior Scholars and their faculty mentors:
Brian Hofman ’13 of Waupun, Wisconsin, and Trevor Schaap ’13 of Lansing, Illinois, (mathematics), working with Drs. Mandi Maxwell and Sharon Robbert: “The Black Chamber”
Katrina Hopman ’12 of Orland Park, Illinois, (biology), working with Dr. Clay Carlson: “Histone Modifications in Mesenchymal Stem Cells”
Adam Perez ’12 of Racine, Wisconsin, (music), working with Dr. Mark Peters: “Music, Theology, and Christian Worship: A Study of Hillsong”
Alaina Ver Meer ’13 of Leighton, Iowa, (biology), working with Dr. Bob Boomsma: “Investigating the Effects of Environmental Conditions on MSC Differentiation”
Young Authors Festival Welcomes Gary Schmidt
Capturing kids’ imaginations outside of the pages of his Newbery Honor books, guest author Gary Schmidt told stories to a fascinated audience of first through eighth graders at Trinity’s annual Young Authors Festival.
Students from several area Christian grade schools visited campus this month to celebrate their achievements and expand their passion for writing and reading.
The morning opened with a time of singing in the Ozinga Chapel. Afterward, the children, accompanied by Trinity student volunteers, were divided into groups and participated in three sessions, including small group discussions, Trinity student improv performances, and the chance to hear from the author.
“Stories are about making you and your readers ‘bigger,’” said Schmidt to a group of sixth through eighth grade aspiring authors. “Do it well.”
Schmidt has written many books for young readers, including the Newbery Honor Book The Wednesday Wars, First Boy, and The Wonders of Donal O'Donnell. His novel Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy was both a Newbery Honor Book and a Printz Honor Book. Schmidt shares his expertise and his love for writing with students at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he is a professor of English.
The Young Authors Festival, in its 21st year, is organized by the combined efforts of education professors and other dedicated committee members.
More than 20,000 Volunteer Hours Earn President’s Honor Roll Recognition
When Eric Robbert ’13 of LaGrange, Illinois, spent his spring break helping repair a hurricane damaged home in Mississippi…
And when Victoria Penley ’13 of Bradley, Illinois, provided basic medical care to orphans in Ecuador during Interim…
And when Sharon Chun ’11 of Northbrook, Illinois, tutored children at Harvey’s Restoration Ministries, they weren’t being driven by the hope of recognition or presidential awards but by their Christian call to service.
Hundreds of Trinity students like these logged 21,504 hours of service during the 2009-10 academic year. Because of their work, and the ongoing volunteer service students commit each year to local and overseas organizations, Trinity Christian College has again been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll (2010) by the Corporation for National and Community Service.
“The experience of volunteering at Restoration Ministries helped me to see the positive outcomes that result from consistent figures in the children’s lives,” said Chun. “The children have also taught me a lot by helping me to have more patience and love. Every time their innocence shines past their tough exterior, it reminds me of why I continue to go.”
The Honor Roll recognizes higher education institutions that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities. Trinity’s selection to the Honor Roll is recognition from the federal government of the College’s commitment to service and civic engagement locally and globally.
According to Trinity’s Office of Community Partnerships and Service Learning, the service hours were completed through service-learning classes, service spring break trips and Interim courses, service committee and other student-led projects, and the Midwest Campus Compact Citizen-Scholars (M3C) Fellowship program, in which students complete 300 hours of community service and receive an education award.
Students regularly volunteer at many local organizations that partner with the College, including Restoration Ministries, Roseland Christian Ministries, and Elim Christian Services.
50th Class of 1961 Heritage Reunion: Photogallery
This year’s Commencement festivities had a unique feel as alumni from Trinity’s first graduating class returned to campus for the first-ever Heritage Class Reunion.
In October 1959, 37 students enrolled at Trinity; 30 attended for a year or more and became Trinity’s first alumni and the Class of 1961.
On May 14, the College was delighted to welcome 11 alumni to the reunion. Joining them and their guests were three of the founding faculty members, Drs. Derke Bergsma, Cal Seerveld, and Robert Vander Vennen.
The weekend began with a tour of campus provided by Vice President for Student Development Ginny Carpenter, followed by a dinner in the Vermeer Fireside Room, which served as the campus chapel when the Class of 1961 attended Trinity. The after-dinner program featured a campus update from President Steve Timmermans and stories of Trinity’s history by Dr. Dan Diephouse, professor of English emeritus. Alumni and professors also took time to share their memories of what campus was like 50 years ago, as well as how Trinity has impacted their lives and careers.
Marion Dykstra ’61 enjoyed the opportunity to take part in the festivities. “I came because it was a milestone for my class and the first for Trinity to host,” said Dykstra. “I love Trinity and the people I know who work there. It was a very memorable weekend and I wouldn't have wanted to miss it.”
Reunion attendees also took part in Saturday morning’s Commencement ceremony and led the procession of the Class of 2011 into the auditorium. Dr. Seerveld delivered the Commencement address.
“Just two years after celebrating Trinity’s 50th anniversary in 2009, it was an honor to host these individuals and be a part of another historic moment in Trinity’s life. We look forward to hosting the 50th class in future years as well,” said Travis Bandstra ’06, director of alumni relations.
Carl Klompien ’61 came, most of all, to see his former classmates and professors and was also struck by God’s faithfulness to both his classmates and to Trinity. “To see God's blessings on those of us who could come and to hear Professor Seerveld point us to the source of everything was an inspiration and brought back fond memories,” he said. “I was thankful I was able to come and would do it again. And thanks most to God who has so abundantly blessed Trinity through its brief 50-year history.”
View the photogallery here.
Professors Recognized as Emeriti Faculty
In recognition of their commitment to education and their contributions to Christian community, Dr. John Hoekstra and Dr. Randall Voorn ’71 have been granted emeriti faculty status and were honored during the Commencement ceremonies on May 14.
Hoekstra has been awarded the rank Associate Professor of Education Emeritus, and Voorn has been awarded the rank Professor of Business Emeritus.
Dr. John Hoekstra has dedicated 11 years of his life to enhancing Christian higher education at Trinity.
He served as the College’s first director of Adult Studies Education, taking the program from its infancy and directing its expansion to three satellite campuses, including Prairie State College in Chicago Heights, College of DuPage in Addison, and Daystar School in Chicago.
Before Trinity, Hoekstra served 36 years in the public schools in Blue Island, Illinois. His teaching in Trinity’s traditional and Adult Studies programs includes assisting over 1,400 graduates from 80 cohorts through the program and on to successful careers.
Dr. Randall Voorn, a 1971 Trinity graduate, has taught at Trinity for 23 years and has used his experiences abroad to bring a global perspective to the College’s business and marketing curriculum.
He has fostered the growth of the business department’s marketing program to maturity as a fully integrated program within Trinity’s commitment to Christian liberal arts education.
Voorn has led students to professional excellence and worked diligently to contribute to the broader community through supporting and advancing his students’ careers both during and after their time of study at Trinity.
He will be teaching part-time in Trinity’s Adult Studies business program for the next year.
Success for Trinity Theatre in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”: Photogallery
Six total performances made this classic, comedic fairytale one of Trinity theatre’s most popular productions in recent years.
“Many people think that they won’t understand Shakespeare, but Shakespeare is meant to be performed,” said David Hoekman ’12 of Grand Rapids, Michigan, who played the mischievous fairy Puck. “‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ demands a lot of energy and is a very physical play, and everyone loves physical comedy.”
Besides stellar acting from new and veteran student actors, the show’s success has also been attributed to the excellent direction of Dr. John Sebestyen, assistant professor of communication arts and director of theatre.
“Dr. Sebestyen works so hard to bring us together as a cast and highlight our specific talents,” said Alyssa Guerrin ’12 of Holland, Michigan, who played the role of Titania, Queen of the Fairies. “He picked an amazing show, and gave us the proper tools to make this show a success.”
“Dr. Sebestyen’s directing and vision of the play made it understandable and enjoyable, even to people who generally don’t like Shakespeare,” added Stephanie Avila ’12 of Chicago, Illinois, who played Hermia, one of the four lovers. “It was a great feeling to know that the community enjoyed the play so much.”
Learn more about Dr. Sebestyen.
Psychology of Gender a “Wrestle with Identity”
As the end of the semester drew near, the students in Associate Professor Dr. Mary Lynn Colosimo’s psychology of gender class presented their final projects, some of which delved past traditional research work.
The types of projects students could choose ranged from a poetry anthology to a photographic display of gender-related topics.
Senior Bethany Verhage ’11 of Moses Lake, Washington, and sophomore Calob Lostutter ’13 of Tuscon, Arizona, both chose to exercise their writing abilities by creating an original poem and children’s book, respectively.
Verhage’s poem, titled “Your Strength Will Sustain Me,” was based on her insights from a solitude exercise, focusing on man’s identity in Christ.
Lostutter addressed a psychological quandary by writing a children’s book about a bear who wants to be a lion because of insecurity. In the book, the bear struggles with identity and knowing his role in society. To highlight the theme of forming community through our differences, Lostutter enrolled the help of his peers by asking them each to paint a page of the book.
“The issue of identity is one that presses upon every generation,” said Lostutter. “Although each page of the book has a certain quality that makes it stand out, it all comes together in the end to form one story, just as each unique person helps form one single, functioning body.”
He added, “To study psychology of gender is to wrestle with identity. This class provided an opportunity for self-reflection and a chance to consider if I am aligning my identity based on social standards or the roles set forth by God.”
OPUS - An Intellectual Circus: Photogallery
The celebration of student intellectual and artistic endeavor begins with a procession though campus, led by the Troll, the traditional bagpiper, and professors dressed as Abe Lincoln and Sinter Klaas. Following the parade is a day full of student presentations, musical performances, a gallery exhibit, a picnic, and a special Outcry worship service.
Many academic departments were represented by students from the major presenting original videos, capstone projects, and reports from Interim courses. Students enjoyed entertainment provided by Trinity music, dance, and comedy groups, including Playtimez Ova, In ConTroll, the Gospel Choir, and the Jazz Band.
J.R. Wydra ’11 of Tinley Park, Illinois, this year’s Lincoln Laureate, pronounced the official opening of the day.
OPUS award winners—Click here for the complete list.
Tuition Remission Winners
$100 Winners-- Kaylyn Bossert, Abby Christensen, Brian Clark
$150 Winners--Courtney Jeltema and William “Luke” Monsma
$250 Winners-- Lauren Mayers and Cassie Nelson
$400 Winner--Victoria Bruinsma
$500 Winner--Kylie Bond
OPUS 2010 Committee Members
Dick Cole, Chairperson
Latishia Elliott, Residence Director
Kaitlyn Fondryk, Chair of Academic Initiative
OPUS 2011 Award Winners
Best of Show
Abby Christensen - Bloated Book
1st - Emily Van Hoff - Chuckwagon
2nd - Jenae Van Engen - Dine with Sarah
3rd - Emily Van Hoff - Snowflake Pattern Book
Honorable mention: Emily Van Hoff - Bridgeport Map
Print and Photo
1st - Brady Davidson - Weird Light Stuff (3)
2nd - Emily Van Hoff - Ampersand after Ampersand
3rd - Leigh Twaragowski - Kids at Play
Honorable mention: Amanda Evers - Fall
Katie Milton - Leap
Alyssa Dichraaf - Untitled
Painting, Drawing and Mixed Media
1st - Hannah Snow - Sheltered
2nd - Bridge Earnshaw - French Press
3rd - Amanda Evers - The Happiest Place on Earth
Honorable mention: Abby Christensen - I Know You Like Maps, But Can You Read Them?
1st - Karl Gesch - Untitled
2nd - Karl Gesch - Barn To Go
3rd - Mike Evers - The Physical Impossibility of Life in the Mind of Something Dead
Honorable mention: Abby Christensen - 16 Casts of the Bottom of My Bucket
Communication Arts Winners
1st - Joshua Moore, "The Arnold Project"
2nd - Kenyatta Bivens, "Blindness"
1st - Gina Ciametti, Phantom Rep
2nd - Julie Wiltjer, A Midsummer Night's Dream
3rd - Shannon Smith, A Doll's House
1st - Markey Ambrose, Love's Handsome Warrior
2nd - Joshua Moore, Politically Correct Fairy Tales
1st - Joshua Moore, "Broke"
2nd - Markey Ambrose, "Too Many Daves"
3rd - TIE: Stephanie Avila, "Somebody Should Have Told Him" and Heather Hernandez, "The Highwayman"
1st - “Untitled” by Monica Brands
2nd - “Gino” by Erika Huizenga
3rd - “Nerve” by Teryn Leaper
Honorable Mention: “Airstream” by Erika Huizenga
“Coming from the Zoo” by Bethany Eizenga
“Anorexia” by Libby Dykstra
1st - “Between Here and the Sun” by Kailyn Baum
2nd - “Singing for My Grandfather and the Monks” by Andrew Blok
3rd - Shared by “The Role of Violence in Much Ado About Nothing” by Stephanie DeJong
“Heathcliff, Vampires, and Pop Culture” by Courtney Randle
Honorable Mention: “What Kills” by Jason Gerringer
1st - “The Damsel” by Jez Layman
1st - William Gesch
2nd - Samuel Heunink
3rd - Daniel Thayer
1st - In ConTroll - William Gesch, Dan Thayer, Samuel Huenink, and Adam Perez
2nd - William Gesch and Daniel Thayer
3rd - Samuel Huenink and William Gesch
1st - Lydia Kijowski
2nd - Zachary VerHaar
3rd - Kelly VandenBerg
1st - Flute Ensemble - Melissa Don, Christina Reardon, Victoria Penley, Joohee Kim
1st - Hyo Jin Moon
2nd - Brittany Homan
3rd - Carrie Hofland
“You Be the Judge” Winners
Title: You’ve Never Heard of the Language of the Dwarves? Probably Because It’s So Underground
Presenter: Jennie Hill and Eric Swanson
COMMUNICATION ARTS AND MUSIC
Title: Music and Theology in Christian Worship: Preliminary Considerations
Presenter: Adam Perez
POLITICAL SCIENCE AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE
Title: Operation L.I.N.K. (Liberty in North Korea): Helping to Save a Life
Presenters: Kenyatta Bivens, Kaitlyn Fondrk, Courtney Jeltema, and Ishael J. Tendero
Title: What I Learned from Worship Symposium
Presenters: Alberto La Rosa, Kelsey Nelson, and Kelly Zuiderveen
Title: Educational Reform During the Early Cold War
Presenter: Abby Suarez
Title: Peru 2011
Presenters: Elizabeth and Sarah Jongetjes
CHEMISTRY AND MATH
Title: Markov Processes and Inflation Rate Modeling
Presenter: Peter Keep
ENGLISH AND SPANISH
Title: Oh, ya, you betcha! – The dialects of Fargo
Presenter: Jennie Hill
EDUCATION AND SPEC. ED.
Title: Disney Sign Along
Presenters: Trinity’s Sign Language Club
Trinity Works with After School Programs in Chicago
Trinity’s Office of Ethnic Diversity recently expanded to include a pre-college department that helps high school students from after-school programs get a glimpse of what life is like as a Trinity student.
Tabitha Matthews, the College’s pre-college coordinator, works with two of Trinity’s partner organizations in Chicago: Circle Urban Ministries and By the Hand Club for Kids. Both organizations are community programs for students in grades 1-12 and include college-readiness programs.
The partnership with both the organizations gives Trinity students the opportunity for service learning, as well as encourages the program’s students to attend college, and more specifically Trinity.
On February 10-11, students from By the Hand Club for Kids experienced firsthand what it was like to be at Trinity. Ten students came to campus for a night of games, open gym, and Trinity basketball games.
The students stayed overnight in the dorms with Trinity students and attended financial aid sessions as well as other college-readiness classes taught by Chris Bohle and Caitlin Fillmore ’09, resident directors at the College. The courses focused on choosing a college and campus life.
“The students all appeared to be very engaged and had some really great questions,” said Fillmore. “I hope I challenged them to think carefully about the choices they make.”
Students Participate in Annual Love Palos Service Event
Love Palos takes place each year during the final weeks of the academic year. Students and Trinity staff dedicate one Saturday morning to service projects in the Palos Heights community and on campus. The event is sponsored by the College’s Office of Community Partnerships and Service Learning.
“The goal of Love Palos is to give students an opportunity to give back to their community through service,” said Office of Community Partnerships and Service Learning student worker Paola Dolores ’12 of Villa Park, Illinois. “Through this day of service, we hope students are led to continue volunteering and participating in other projects.
The service projects vary each year, ranging from picking up trash around neighborhoods to spreading mulch in recreation areas. This year, students were able to choose between working with the Navajo Hills Homeowners Association, picking up trash in Navajo Creek, which runs along the east-side of campus, working at the Route 83 athletics fields, or helping with projects at the Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens.
“The value of participating in Love Palos is that students have an appreciation for the town we share and live in,” said Dolores. “Students also receive the opportunity to demonstrate Christ-like service to our neighbors.”
“Love Palos is really fun because it allows us to do work with other people,” said English education student Andrew Blok ’13 of Lynden, Washington. “It’s a nice change for students, since so much of the work we do daily is individual.”
“My favorite part of Love Palos is the fellowship that happens while we serve,” said business major David Schurman ’12 of Demotte, Indiana. “Love Palos is a great way for us to spend time bonding and working alongside the people we already know and getting to know the people we don’t.”
Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy Speaks at Trinity: Photogallery
While attendees of the April 27 Trinity Business Network (TBN) event enjoyed sweet tea and lemonade compliments of international restaurant chain Chick-fil-A, and the famous Eat Mor Chikin cows made friends with the Troll, Chick-fil-A President and COO Dan Cathy prepared to present “Business Leadership Ethics” to hundreds of local business people, friends of the College, and students.
Chick-fil-A, an Atlanta-based, quick-service chicken restaurant chain, was founded by Cathy’s father, S. Truett Cathy, and is one of the nation’s largest family-owned businesses.
Some of the Cathy family values of faith in God and service to others took root in the days when Truett was a child and learned Bible verses from his mother, Cathy told the crowd. Those Bible verses and others have been the foundation of many business decisions, one of the primary being to “go the extra mile” for customers.
This service component started with Matthew 5:41, which speaks to the first mile involving doing what is required but the second mile going beyond what is required—to “do the unexpected,” said Cathy.
The family’s faith is inextricably woven into their lives and into their business, as evidenced in Chick-fil-A’s corporate purpose statement: “To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.”
Joining Cathy for the event was Kevin Bulmann, owner operator of Chick-Fil-A in Orland Park, Illinois. Every visitor received a coupon for a complimentary chicken sandwich.
“This was a wonderful opportunity for Trinity Christian College and the Trinity Business Network to make some incredible connections with our local business people,” said Larryl Humme, vice president for development. “Mr. Cathy’s presentation was inspiring, relevant, challenging, and uplifting all rolled together. I can’t wait to invite him (and the cows) back to campus.”
After the presentation, Cathy answered questions submitted by members of the audience and signed copies of Eat Mor Chikin: Inspire More People, a book written by his father. He also gave this advice to soon-to-be Trinity graduates:
“Find a mentor,” said Cathy. “There is somebody already living your dream. Developing a mentoring relationship can compress the learning curve.”
Following the event, special guests enjoyed a Chick-fil-A dinner with Cathy in the Grand Lobby.
Ashley Veurink ’11 of Corsica, South Dakota, and editor in chief of Trinity’s College newspaper The Courier, attended with her business ethics class and Assistant Professor Deborah Windes.
“Mr. Cathy’s presentation was genuinely inspiring in both the business and religious aspects,” said Veurink. “The way he has woven his faith in Christ with his desires to serve and practice business is a testimony that many Trinity students – not just those studying business – can aspire to.”
The mission of the Trinity Business Network is to provide Christ-centered learning and service opportunities for Trinity alumni and friends.
A special thank you to our TBN partners:
Dreyer, Ooms & Van Drunen, Ltd.
Evenhouse & Co., P.C.
Service Sanitation, Inc.
Accounting Majors Score Well on Illinois CPA Exams
In a struggling economy, soon-to-be college graduates wonder if they will find work. When they do land that job, they may then wonder if their college education has prepared them adequately for a career.
Recently, Dr. Lynn White, professor of accounting in the business department at Trinity, shared some numbers that had nothing to do with balance sheets but did testify to the strength of the accounting program and the preparation of accounting majors who go on to take their CPA exams.
Results tracked by the Illinois Board of Examiners revealed that in 2010 exam candidates from Trinity had the highest average score among candidates from schools of the same size as Trinity or larger. In 2009, Trinity candidates had the second highest average score.
“Accounting at Trinity is a difficult major, but it needs to be,” said White. “We’re doing what we’re doing to prepare our students.”
To learn more about Trinity’s accounting program, visit: http://tcc.trnty.edu/depts/business/
Learn more about Dr. Lynn White.
Student Government Leadership Elected for 2011-12
Four students were recently elected by their peers to represent the student body as members of the 2011-12 Student Association Executive Committee.
Sam Lankah ’13 of Warrenville, Illinois, will lead the Student Association as president. Lankah, who served on the Association this past year as a class representative, is a biology major and member of the men’s soccer team. He also takes part in various clubs on campus, including Academic Initiative, Service Committee, Asian American Alliance (AAA), and Men’s Ministry.
Future vice president DaMaris King ’14 is from Detroit, Michigan, and served as a 2010-11 Association class representative. A psychology major with minors in communication arts and music, King has also been involved as a chapel music leader and member of Psychology Club.
Kaitlyn Fondrk ’13, from Belvidere, Illinois, will apply her accounting major as the Association’s 2011-12 treasurer. Fondrk has served as the chair and treasurer of Academic Initiative, and has been involved in the General Education Committee, Law and Politics Society, the OPUS Committee, and the Overarching Unity Task Force.
Dan Thayer ’12 of Holland, Michigan, a music major and communication arts-theatre minor, will serve the Executive Committee as secretary. Thayer currently serves as president of the Theatre Club, and has also been a part of South Hall Council, Social Justice Chapter, and has served as a 2010-11 Association member.
Lankah is excited about leading the student body’s government.
“I have high hopes for what my peers and I can accomplish, and I am prepared to encourage this new team to cultivate a deeper and broader imagination for what God has planned for our school,” said Lankah. “Being president of Student Association requires service, and I hope that students also find in me a friend.”
The Student Association is Trinity’s student body government. It is composed of 24 representatives, some being elected by the general student body and others chosen by Student Association members.
Each class elects four student representatives and the entire student population elects individuals to serve on the Executive Committee. These elected representatives’ main function is to act as an advocate for students, voicing their concerns and working alongside Trinity’s administration to affect constructive change on campus.
Physics Minor Sees Its First Graduates This May - Photogallery
Jonathan Borr of Holland, Michigan, a chemistry major, and Andrew Boersma of Clive, Iowa, a business major, added the physics minor to their programs of study when it was offered for the Fall 2009 semester.
“The physics minor is a great opportunity for chemistry majors,” said Borr. “Since chemistry is the study of the interactions between atoms, it’s only natural to study the way they move in physics.”
Dr. Thomas R. Roose, associate professor of physics and science education, proposed the minor with the intent to provide opportunities for students to develop reasoning and critical thinking abilities consistent with a strong liberal arts education and to further strengthen the science program.
According to Roose’s initial proposal, the courses comprised within the physics minor will stimulate increased breadth and depth in the sciences, improve analysis and reasoning abilities, connect science to life experiences and observations, and require synthesis of new insights with preconceived ideas.
“Dr. Roose is a great professor,” said Borr. “Because of the small class size, it’s easy to go over more difficult concepts with him more thoroughly.”
Borr said he especially enjoys the Optics course and the lab component of the class in which students use a laser to study how light behaves in various optical situations.
After graduation, Boersma plans to attend the University of Kansas for mechanical engineering. “Without Dr. Roose’s commitment to the program or to helping students, I would not have been able to achieve this dream. As I go on to Kansas, I will take with me the valuable knowledge and experience that Dr. Roose and the physics program have given me,” he said.
The physics minor will require the completion of five courses and a minimum of 19 credit hours.
Learn more about Professor Thomas Roose.
Friends of the College Get an Insiders’ View: Photogallery
Guests, accompanied by President Steve Timmermans and representatives from the College’s development department, enjoyed a walking tour of campus and visited various classrooms for student presentations.
Presentations by faculty and students from the nursing and science departments included demonstrations of the nursing lab simulation manikins and information about current stem cell research projects in biology.
In the Art and Communication Center, guests had the opportunity to visit the graphic design lab, see students setting up a gallery display of senior art, and watch rehearsal for the theatre program’s upcoming spring play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Emily Smith ’04, campaign gifts manager, planned the Insiders’ Tour and anticipates it will be offered every year.
“The purpose of this tour was to have our students give our donors a ‘show and tell’ about what they are learning in their particular field,” said Smith. “It was such an inspiring evening, as our students shared their knowledge in a real and passionate way.”
Grandparents’ Day 2011: Photogallery
The program featured student speakers JaSheena and JaTina Cathey ’14, sisters from Richton Park, Illinois; Kevin Hahn ’13 of Cedar Lake, Indiana; and Ashley Veurink ’11 of Corsica, South Dakota. Each shared thoughts about the influence of their grandparents in their lives and about their Trinity experience.
Guests enjoyed performances from various Trinity groups, including the Concert Choir, Wind and Honors ensembles, and the men’s barbershop quartet, In ConTroll.
The Cathey twins brought some humorous sibling rivalry to the auditorium stage as they welcomed grandparents to campus. They then shared their story of having been raised by their grandparents, a life experience that factored into their decision to choose Trinity.
“The value of an education goes back to our roots, which start with our grandparents,” said JaSheena. “To graduate from college is both a privilege and an honor. But to graduate with a Trinity education is an acknowledgement in the sight of man and a ‘well done’ in the sight of God.”
Business major Kevin Hahn explained that through his courses he has learned how business is tied in with God’s plan. “Living by the biblical requirements of justice, humility, and love, Christians involved in business can have a positive impact on the world. God has uniquely equipped and placed businesspeople to use their skills and experience to be agents of transformation within their own businesses, in their communities, and around the world,” said Hahn. “If it weren’t for Trinity, I may have never learned that.”
Also speaking to the influence of her grandparents and her Trinity education, Ashley Veurink, editor in chief of The Courier said, “My grandparents have been monumental in forming my value of Christian education, and Trinity has played an instrumental role in shaping me as an individual because of my choice to come here for that value.
“But what does my experience mean to my grandparents? For them, Trinity has given me an education I couldn’t receive anywhere else and an opportunity to practice and live out my faith in a welcoming, encouraging community.”
Alumnus Poetry Reading - Video
The national award-winning poet, and Trinity alumnus, John Terpstra ex ’74, was on campus April 8 to share his poetry.
Terpstra read from The Church Not Made with Hands, many of the poems of which began at the request of the music director at St. Cuthbert’s Presbyterian Church in Hamilton, Ontario. The poems were written to help the church celebrate particular days in the church calendar. Click here to watch the full-length video.
The following day, Terpstra led a sectional at Trinity’s Arts and Worship in the New Testament Age Symposium, featuring keynote speaker John Bell of the Iona Community in Scotland.
About John Terpstra
John Terpstra has published several books of poetry, including The Church Not Made With Hands and Naked Trees. The Boys, Or, Waiting For the Electrician's Daughter honors the lives of his wife’s three brothers, each of whom lived with muscular dystrophy until their early 20s. His prose project Falling into Place is a creative investigation of the Iroquois Bar, the geological formation that supports one of Canada’s busiest transportation corridors.
Students Celebrate Asian Culture: Photogallery
Celebration of Asia on April 5 provided nearly 200 students and faculty with an evening of Asian pop music and cuisine. The event also raised awareness of social justice and offered moments of reflection and prayer for Japan and the thousands of people affected by the earthquakes.
The event was sponsored by the Asian American Alliance (AAA) and the Ethnic Diversity Committee at Trinity.
Nicole Ferreria ’13, co-president of the alliance, and Edmond Mensah ’12, resident assistant, served as hosts.
Entertainment included a song by Javairia Taylor ’14 of Bolingbrook, Illinois; a dance by Erica Smith ’12 of Country Club Hills, Illinois; and an Aungklung performance by several students, directed by Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology. Asian cuisine was served, including traditional Chinese and Indian dishes.
Ferreria commented on the decision for the event’s theme to focus on Joy and Justice.
“We know that there is suffering in the world, but what is our place in it? What does it take for justice to become our reality? We want people to know, that, yes, there is deep hurt going on in the world, but we need to find ourselves in the midst of all this muck and mire and not be afraid, because God is behind all things. His love covers us.”
During the event, the organization LiNK (Liberty in North Korea) was also highlighted. LiNK is a non-profit organization aiding and protecting North Korean refugees.
“The AAA is working with other Trinity organizations such as Social Justice Chapter, Law and Politics Society, Academic Initiative, and Historical Association of Students to raise enough funds to save one North Korean refugee,” said Ferreria.
Don Woo, dean for ethnic diversity and multicultural programs and assistant professor of education, offered the closing prayer.
Arts in Society Links Students and Academics to Chicago Art Community: Photogallery
The event welcomed Pilsen artist Elvia Rodriguez ’93, a community organizer and outreach worker, and Dr. Victor Sorell, Chicago State University professor and dean emeritus of arts and humanities. The guest speakers provided insight into relationships between art and community, as exemplified in Pilsen, a south side Chicago neighborhood known both for its culture and art.
Professor of Art John Bakker explained this historical context for the creation of murals such as those in Pilsen. During the Mexican war for independence, 1910-17, muralists created enormous public murals that asserted the rights of the people and became a voice for community issues. When the Mexican community immigrated north to Los Angeles and Chicago, they brought their mural tradition with them. These murals speak to the communities’ hopes and aspirations and propose solutions to problems; they give a voice to the voiceless.
“This lecture made us reconsider the way we see street art and cultures where art is defined differently,” said Courtney Randle ’12 of Zion, Illinois. “The murals in Pilsen make you contemplate what you define as vandalism.”
The event was a creation of the Arts in Society committee, a group that works to develop a relationship between Trinity students and Chicago neighborhoods. Students are able to learn from a collection of different communities and appreciate their cultures, allowing students to collaborate cultural experiences with their academics at Trinity. The art, English, and sociology departments also helped sponsor the event.
Writing Is More than Words for Trinity Alumnus
Alumnus Jeffrey Tigchelaar ’99 never planned to be a writer when he first came to Trinity. Upon graduation, he was under a different mindset.
“I would say that I came to Trinity in 1995 to play baseball but left as a writer,” said Tigchelaar. “My horizons were definitely broadened.”
A recent recipient of the Langston Hughes Poetry Prize and nominee for the Pushcart Prize, Tigchelaar said that Trinity played a part in changing his focus and shaping him as a writer.
“Trinity was the turning point for me,” he said. “I entered the school somewhat directionless, and then one of my English professors freshman year helped me see I was a writer.”
From there, Tigchelaar’s journey progressed as he started writing and editing for the College’s student newspaper and worked as a reporter and editor after graduation. The theme of many of the lessons Tigchelaar has learned is to accept change.
“I’ve learned that life is change,” he said. “It can be agonizing to look back at some of the writing I did in the past. Some of my old papers and editorials would make me cringe today, but the challenge is to see it all as formative and necessary steps.”
Those steps have been rewarding for Tigchelaar, who had a poem selected for Verse Daily. A few years ago, he also received a grant for some of his poetry from the Ohio Arts Council.
“[The grant] came at a point when I was unsure about the direction my writing and career seemed to be going,” he said. “I remember realizing that if there’s someone out there willing to award me for writing, then there must be something to what I’m doing.”
What keeps Tigchelaar passionate is that, to him, writing is more than putting words on a page.
“I see writing as art—as creativity, expression, freedom, and imitation of God as Creator,” he said. “Anytime we’re creative and doing it as best we can, we’re honoring God. If what I’m doing not only makes me feel joyful and alive, but does that for others, too, there’s a purpose to write.”
Tigchelaar lives with his wife Jana ’00 and their daughter Charlotte, 4, and son Sam, 2, in Lawrence, Kansas. He enjoys his days being a stay-at-home dad and writes whenever he can.
Fourth Annual Psychology Alumni Conference
The fourth annual Psychology Alumni Conference held on April 9, featured Dr. A. Yanina Gomez ’95, presenting “Lessons Learned.”
Gomez, a counseling psychologist, shared the story of her journey to Trinity and the lessons she has learned through her move from Puerto Rico, the pursuing of her various degrees, and her work as a Christian in the field of psychology.
Gomez moved from Puerto Rico with her family when her father accepted a position as coordinator of the Spanish Broadcasting Department at The Back to God Hour, now The Back to God Ministries International. As a sophomore at the University of Puerto Rico, Gomez planned to enroll in college in the States after the move but decided to first take a semester of conversational English at a community college. During that semester, she applied to Trinity’s psychology program and began here in January of 1992.
She earned her master’s in school psychology in 2000 from Governor’s State University and her Ph.D. in psychology several years later from Walden University.
In her address to students, faculty, and alumni, Gomez focused on “lessons learned,” including a commitment to accomplishing goals, the demonstration of personal integrity, the importance of face-to-face interactions and healthy relationships, and the opportunity to learn from mentors or to teach as mentors.
Gomez said in her conclusion, “I would like to challenge you to take on the role of an active social change agent. Now, it is your turn to give back to society. Take this responsibility very seriously. Make productive changes in your life so you are prepared to make a positive impact in the lives of others.
“Set goals, prioritize, be committed, show integrity, seek face-to-face networking, learn from the wisdom of others, and for the alumni, take the time to mentor someone in your field.”
The conference also welcomed psychotherapists Angela Cumbo – Cryan ’04 and Scott DuBois ’98.
“Each year the Psychology Alumni Conference offers an opportunity for students to learn about issues in the field of psychology from practicing professionals who have graduated from Trinity,” said Dr. Michael DeVries ’74, professor of psychology. “The psychology department is very proud of the work our alumni are doing, the outstanding role models they have become, and the service they provide to the community and to the furthering of Christ’s Kingdom.”
Psychology faculty members at Trinity
Michael DeVries ’74, Ph.D.
Dick Cole, Ph.D.
Mary Lynn Colosimo, Ph.D.
Derrick Hassert, Ph.D.
Work of Trinity Students Selected for “Best College Photography”
Six students from Professor Ellen Browning’s photography course were selected as finalists in “The Best College Photography of 2011,” Photographer’s Forum30th Annual Photography Contest, sponsored by Nikon and Sony.
This year’s contest had over 3,500 entries from around the world. All of these images will be published in a hardcover book, which will be distributed to college libraries, and instructors of photography, art, and design around the world.
This year’s winners:
Brady Davidson ’11 of Shawnee, Kansas
William Kamp III ’12 of Tinley Park, Illinois
Lindsay Koedyker ex ’12 of Highland, Indiana
Caleb Mulder ’11 of Wheatfield, Indiana
Kristen Tamminga ’11 of Hudsonville, Michigan
Carol Bosma (non-traditional student/audit)
This is the second year in a row that the work of Trinity photography students has been selected for publication and distribution worldwide.
View photogallery here.
Students Serve in Mississippi during Spring Break: Photogallery
With one common goal in mind, on March 12, a group of 16 Trinity students, led by Service Committee President Eric Robbert ’13 of LaGrange, Illinois, traveled to Biloxi, Mississippi, to help repair houses damaged by Hurricane Katrina.
The students were guests of Coalville United Methodist Church and worked with the church and with Hope Agency, a housing resource center, to help provide services for local families in need. Throughout the course of the week, the group repainted a house and cleaned up a family’s yard ravaged by a tornado that had hit days prior.
The students reported having an amazing and encouraging experience on the trip.
“It’s amazing to see how the little help you give can have such a great impact on people,” said nursing student Kylie Bond ’12 of Erie, Illinois. “Besides helping out the community, my favorite part was getting to know the rest of the Trinity volunteers. We’re practically like family now.
Bond added that everyone who participated gained something from the experience. “We really came together, accomplished a lot, and learned from each other.”
Students also had an opportunity to visit New Orleans and see the St. Joseph’s Day parade in the French Quarter.
Chicago Area Students Awarded Christian Leadership Scholarship
Two high school students have been awarded Trinity’s Greater Chicago Christian Leadership Scholarship: Alejandra Romo of Chicago and She’KunnahGlorri Striverson of Crete.
Alumni Stay in the “Loop” - Photogallery
On March 16, Travis Bandstra ’06, director of alumni relations, hosted the 5th annual Loop Luncheon at the Weber Grill in Chicago. The annual luncheon provides a way for Trinity alumni working in Chicago to remain connected with the College and to connect professionally with fellow alumni.
Guest speaker Ryan Wynia ’04, founder of Firebone, a social media strategy firm, spoke on the subject of how to be intentional when using social media for personal use.
“This is another great way for a few of our thousands of alumni in the Chicago area to reconnect with old friends and meet new ones,” said Bandstra. “Many are surprised at how many Trinity alumni work downtown.”
A similar gathering is planned for alumni working in the southwest suburbs. This second annual luncheon is planned for noon on Wednesday, April 20, at the Limestone Grill in Palos Heights, Illinois.
First Annual Student Video Contest Winners and Videos
Nearly 100 students turned out to view the submissions for the College’s first annual Life at Trinity student video contest on March 9 in the Ozinga Chapel. Student filmmakers created original videos that highlighted the Trinity experience, were consistent with the mission of the College, and captured what makes Trinity special to students.
The six entries were judged by a panel of judges from the marketing, student activities, admissions, and communication arts departments on the following criteria:
- Relevance to the theme of the contest
- Clarity and entertainment value
- Overall impact
- Quality of editing
All the video entries were shown for the audience who, by applause, voted for the audience choice award.
Emcees Jeremy Klyn ’02, director of admissions, and Dilaun White ’09, admissions counselor, then announced the winners:
1ST PRIZE—$400 and Audience Choice—$50 for “The school your school could look like,” by Kailyn Baum ’12 of Hudsonville, Michigan; Stephanie DeJong ’11 of Ripon, California; Caleb Hamstra ’12 of Palos Park, Illinois; Jenna VanDyk ’12 of Tinley Park, Illinois; and Jeremy Wetter ’12 of Pella, Iowa
2ND PRIZE—$250 “Momentum for Life,” by Melissa Conrad ’14 of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois
3RD PRIZE—$150 “Diversity,” by Jon Borr ’11 of Holland, Michigan
“My friends and I had fun with the entire process, from writing the short script, to filming and editing,” said Baum. “We were fortunate to have a member of our team who was willing to do each piece. It was fun to have everyone on board and involved.”
Fellow filmmaker VanDyk said, “It was a great way to have fun and to get involved in trying to recruit new students. Everyone’s videos were fantastic, and I can’t wait to see the talent from other students in the coming years.”
Black Studies Minor Added for Fall 2011
This fall, Trinity’s new Black Studies minor will give students the opportunity to explore the global experience of people of African descent through history, literature, music, politics, psychology, and sociology.
By adding this minor to the academic program, Trinity is helping to lead the effort toward diversity in Christian higher education and in the Chicago area. The College is one of five members of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) and one of 18 local colleges to offer such a program.
The idea for the program came to Dr. David Brodnax, associate professor of history, while driving to campus. “Being a person of faith, I would say it was divine inspiration,” said Brodnax.
That moment of inspiration led to discussions with colleagues and a proposal for an interdisciplinary minor that combines classes from five other departments, including one new course, Jazz History.
The Black Studies program will benefit the College by increasing students’ knowledge of black culture, helping them develop their ability to view the world from multiple perspectives, and further enabling Trinity to carry out its commitment to diversity.
Over the last few years, the enrollment in courses such as African American history, African history, and black cinema has included students from various racial backgrounds and academic programs. Brodnax anticipates that the Black Studies minor will see the same level of diversity in its participants.
Trinity Concert Choir Performs with Southwest Symphony Orchestra
Earlier this month, Trinity’s Concert Choir performed for the first time with the Southwest Symphony Orchestra for an “Afternoon of Lerner & Loewe.”
The Southwest Symphony Orchestra (SSO), headquartered in Oak Lawn, Illinois, is a group of approximately 60 active members and is directed by David Crane.
Illinois MAP grant filing deadline EXTENDED to Friday, March 25!
The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) has announced that they are now going to extend the deadline for applications for 2011-12 Monetary Award Program (MAP) grants through the end of business on Friday, March 25, 2011.
ISAC is extending the deadline of March 20, 2011 that was announced last Thursday, March 17.
If you plan to be enrolled next fall as an undergraduate student at Trinity Christian College or any college or university in the state of Illinois, you must complete your FAFSA by 5 p.m. CDT this Friday, March 25, to be considered for up to $4,718 in state aid. Please note that filing your FAFSA before the deadline does not guarantee that you will receive these funds. You are urged to not wait until the final hours before the new March 25 "end of business" deadline to file as this announcement affects a significant number of students in the state of Illinois.
I heard the deadline was March 20. What changed?
ISAC extended the deadline for filing over this past weekend. One of the contributing factors cited in the ISAC announcement was the fact that the FAFSA website was offline for maintenance several hours on Sunday, March 20.
Haven’t filed your 2010 taxes yet?
You can still complete the FAFSA and qualify for the MAP grant. Simply indicate “Will File” on your FAFSA and enter your 2009 tax information. You may update your information when your 2010 taxes are complete.
Is there a separate application for the Illinois MAP grant?
No. When you file the FAFSA, eligibility for the MAP grant will be evaluated without having to file a separate form.
Isn't the March 25 deadline still earlier than it has been in the past?
Yes. The March 25 suspension date is the earliest in MAP history. It is the result of an unprecedented number of early applicants.
Does this affect my Spring 2011 semester Illinois MAP grant?
No. If you have been awarded a MAP grant for the Spring 2011 semester, this is not in jeopardy. Trinity expects to receive payment for the Spring 2011 MAP funds from the state of Illinois in the summer of 2011.
Financial Aid Office
Trinity Christian College
6601 W. College Dr.
Palos Heights, IL 60463
www.trnty.edu | 866.874.6463
Big Daddy Weave Performs at Trinity - Photogallery
The 2010 Dove Award-winning band Big Daddy Weave performed at Trinity on March 25, with Luminate and American Idol Season 6 finalist Chris Sligh helping to create an evening of Christian worship for hundreds.
“Having Big Daddy Weave, Luminate, and Chris Sligh on Trinity’s campus was such a memorable event,” said Emily Smith ’04, campaign gifts manager at Trinity. “The whole night was filled with worship, fellowship, and another story to tell of God’s working through people at Trinity.”
The concert was hosted by Trinity’s Development department with proceeds from the ticket sales benefiting the Trinity Fund. The Trinity Fund supplements funding for academic enrichment, scholarships, and facilities maintenance.
“I saw nothing but smiles on the faces of those who came to the show, as well as the band members who were able to talk about their music ministry with their fans,” said Nate Laning ’06, Trinity Fund coordinator. “I’m extremely excited to do a concert again next year to benefit the students of Trinity.”
The College wishes to thank the following event sponsors: Schepel Auto Group; Amber Mechanical Contractors, Inc.; Dutch Farms, Inc.; Oak Worth Plumbing, Providence Life Services; ProviNET Solutions; and Total Automation Concepts, Inc.
The band’s Love Come to Life Tour is presented by World Vision.
Photographs courtesy of Marketing and Communications Student Photographer Jesse VanMaanen ’12
March 20: FAFSA deadline for 2011-12 Illinois MAP Grants!
Trinity Christian College has just been informed by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) that they will be suspending the 2011-12 Monetary Award Program (MAP) grants for all students whose 2011-2012 FAFSA is received after 11:59 p.m. Sunday, March 20, 2011.
If you plan to be enrolled next fall as an undergraduate student at Trinity Christian College or any college or university in the state of Illinois, you must complete your FAFSA by 11:59 p.m. this Sunday, March 20, to be considered for up to $4,718 in state aid. Please note that filing your FAFSA before the deadline does not guarantee that you will receive these funds.
You should be aware that the FAFSA website will be conducting some scheduled maintenance that may cause intermittent outages from 5 a.m. (CDT) on Saturday until 10 a.m. (CDT) Sunday. If you are not able to access the FAFSA website please keep trying. You should have full access on Sunday after 10 a.m. (CDT).
Haven’t filed your 2010 taxes yet?
You can still complete the FAFSA and qualify for the MAP grant. Simply indicate “Will File” on your FAFSA and enter your 2009 tax information. You may update your information when your 2010 taxes are complete.
Is there a separate application for the Illinois MAP grant?
No. When you file the FAFSA, eligibility for the MAP grant will be evaluated without having to file a separate form.
Why was the deadline moved up?
The March 21 suspension date, which is the earliest in MAP history, is the result of an unprecedented number of early applicants.
Does this affect my Spring 2011 semester Illinois MAP grant?
No. If you have been awarded a MAP grant for the Spring 2011 semester, this is not in jeopardy. Trinity expects to receive payment for the Spring 2011 MAP funds from the state of Illinois in the summer of 2011.
Financial Aid Office
Trinity Christian College
6601 W. College Dr.
Palos Heights, IL 60463
www.trnty.edu | 866.874.6463
Student Takes an Icy Swim for Special Olympics Wisconsin
On a chilly Saturday afternoon on February 26, Melissa Conrad ’12 of Lake Zurich, Illinois, took an icy dip into Lake Andrea near Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, for a fundraiser benefitting the Special Olympics Wisconsin program.
Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with cognitive disabilities, according to the organization’s website.
Conrad and approximately 500 others made the freezing jump as participants in the “Polar Plunge,” an annual event for Special Olympics Wisconsin that happens at various locations throughout the state. She learned of the event through a friend and took the opportunity to fundraise and ‘plunge’ with 17 other college students in her group.
“Being involved with the program has really taught me to be very conscious when it comes to taking life for granted,” said Conrad. “It’s reinforced that every day and every gift I have is precious and has shown me that there are so many ways to get involved with helping others in need.”
Conrad was able to raise $95, adding to her team’s total of $1,165.
“From this experience, I’ve learned two things – one being that jumping into a freezing-cold lake in the middle of winter is in fact as crazy as it sounds,” she said. “The second lesson is this: doing that crazy thing to raise money and awareness and give those who may not otherwise have an opportunity to participate in the Special Olympics was worth every second of not being able to feel my toes.”
Hundreds Attend Watoto Children’s Choir Performance: Photogallery
The choir is made up of more than 20 Ugandan orphans who are among the 2 million children left parentless because of war and disease. The choir has traveled all over the world since its beginning in 1994 to raise awareness and funds for the Watoto organization.
The enthusiastic 90-minute performance included singing, dancing, and testimonies of the children, who shared their stories of tragedy turned to hope through Christ. The audience of students, faculty, staff, and families from surrounding communities were on their feet during one song, clapping and dancing as they worshipped along with the choir.
“It was incredible to hear their testimonies of hope and see the pure joy in their faces and in their performance,” said Becky Vanderzee ’12 of Dyer, Indiana. “It was a powerful reminder to me to find hope in my relationship with God on a daily basis.”
Christine Carter ’12 of Wheaton, Illinois, led the audience in prayer before a free-will offering was taken by the campus organization Acting on Aids. The event was hosted by Student Activities.
The children and their caregivers were welcomed into the homes of professors, staff members, community members, and other friends of the College after the concert to rest for the night. Their Midwest tour began in September and ends this month.
For more information about Watoto, visit www.watoto.com.
Professor of Music to Receive Grant to Research Bach
Dr. Mark Peters, associate professor of music, has received a grant from the American Bach Society for travel to Germany to research the Magnificat cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach and his contemporaries.
The American Bach Society, founded in 1972, is designed to “support the study, performance, and appreciation” of Bach’s music in the United States and Canada, according to the Society’s website. Peters currently serves as the secretary-treasurer for the Society.
The William H. Scheide Research Grant is awarded once every two years to a Society member wanting to research Bach or others in his circle. Peters, and Markus Rathey, an associate professor of music history at Yale University’s School of Music, are the 2011 grant recipients.
Peters will spend three weeks in Berlin, where he plans to focus his current research on the settings of the Magnificat text in German. His submitted abstract states he will be “exploring the textual, liturgical, theological, and musical aspects of the ‘Meine Seele’ from Luther’s liturgical reforms to the cantatas of J.S. Bach and his contemporaries.”
The final goal of this research is a monograph titled “The German Magnificat from Martin Luther to J.S. Bach.”
Learn more about Dr. Peters.
VanSchepen Serves in a Country of Contrasts: Photogallery
Over the past few years, Jim VanSchepen ex ’73, director of security at Trinity, and his wife Debbie have traveled to various countries on mission trips. Three of the most recent have been arranged through Partners in Christ International (PICI).
The VanSchepens’ trip this past January through PICI took them to the southern part of India. There they helped provide basic medical services through the local Christian churches. Having access to services through the nearby churches allows members of the community to not only receive necessities like eyewear and medication, but also introduces them to the pastors.
While Jim fitted hundreds of people for reading glasses during the week, Debbie dispensed basic cough and intestinal medications. Debbie serves as director of the Flossmoor Family Care Center at Ingalls Memorial Hospital and has a background as a pharmacy technician.
The group of volunteers served more than 700 people during five clinics held in various locations.
Jim said he is thankful for the week of service time Trinity allows employees to take each year.
PICI is an international, non-denominational Christian mission organization. VanSchepen’s former classmate Nick Beezhold ex ’74 serves as executive director at PICI. Beezhold is the husband of Board of Trustees member Bonnie Beezhold ex ’77. For more information on Partners in Christ International, visit www.partnersinchrist-intl.org.
Storyteller Shares Stories of Native American Culture: Photogallery
Trinity’s annual storyteller event featured award-winning storyteller, recording artist, and author Dovie Thomason shared stories of the Native American culture on February 8 in the Marg Kallemeyn Theatre.
Thomason has been a featured storyteller with NASA and Indian education programs on reservations; Shakespeare’s “Globe Theatre”; NPR’s “Living on Earth” and the BBC’s “My Century”; cross-community programs in Northern Ireland; and powwows, conferences, schools, and libraries.
As Thomason spoke of the Lakota culture passed down through her ancestors, audience members felt involved in the story through her narrative techniques.
“Her detail and description of the stories allowed you to create your own images in your mind,” said Chelsea Schuen ’12 of Ada, Michigan. “My favorite part about [Ms. Thomason] was the humor and emotions she portrayed through the characters.”
Another benefit of hearing Thomason speak was the cultural feature. “I think that having a storyteller visit campus brings a new cultural aspect to Trinity,” said Melissa Conrad ’14 of Hawthorn, Illinois. “We’re so connected to Internet, movies, and cell phones that we rarely think about storytellers for entertainment anymore.”
“I think that Dovie Thomason was a good choice for sharing her story because she could share about her Native American culture,” said Brian Clark ’12 of Wyoming, Michigan. “I like hearing about other cultures, and she was a great representative for a different point of view.”
The annual storytelling event is sponsored by Trinity’s Cultural Affairs Committee.
Student Activities Hosts Ice Skating in Chicago: Photogallery
The event was sponsored by the Student Activities committee, a group on campus “that works to regularly provide students with events,” said the committee’s Chair of Marketing and Advertising Caleb Mulder ’11 of Wheatfield, Indiana.
The goal of events like the one in Chicago is to provide students with entertainment at a low cost, said Bethany Verhage ’11 of Moses Lake, Washington. Verhage serves as the student chair. For $5, students were provided with all-day CTA passes, two hours of private skating, hot chocolate, and Chicago’s famous Garrett’s popcorn.
“My favorite part of the day was watching everyone having so much fun, especially in the midst of all the slipping, sliding, and falling,” said Jenna Brandsen ’12 of Holland, Michigan.
Students often express gratitude towards the hard work of the Student Activities team in making these popular events fun and exciting. “Student Activities works with a sincere, and appreciated, dedication to creating amusing events that are really fun and affordable for students,” said Brandsen.
Student Activities is advised by Troy Schemper, coordinator of student services and residence director for the College’s Village housing.
Student Testifies to the Power of Faith after Donating Liver
God’s will and calling can be extraordinary and unpredictable.
Just ask Rob Dominguez, and he can tell you why.
A senior pursuing a physical education and health degree, Dominguez underwent a surgery in November 2010 to donate the right lobe of his liver. The donation was for Dominguez’s cousin, Rick, a 40-year-old husband and father who was diagnosed in July 2010 with hepatic epithelioid hemangioendothelioma (EHE).
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health, EHE is a very rare form of cancer with an unknown origin that occurs in the liver and other organs. Dominguez said that in Rick’s case, the tumors were present on both lobes of his liver and required a transplant.
For Dominguez, making the decision to donate part of his liver in hopes of helping his cousin was one where anxiety and hesitation were absent and God’s will was present.
“God spoke in my heart, and I knew I was the one to match,” said Dominguez. “From that moment on, I had no fear about the surgery because God granted me the gift to donate. I knew in my heart that everything would turn out wonderful, and I never doubted my decision at any point.”
The procedure lasted five hours for Dominguez and 10 for his cousin and couldn’t have gone better, said Dominguez, who also noted the positive effects a medical journey like this can have on a family.
“My whole family is much stronger and closer after this experience,” he said. “A few people actually came to know God better after witnessing such a miracle.”
As for Dominguez, the journey has reinforced his belief in the power of faith. “I believe it was a big test for me. I’ve learned faith in God is one of the most powerful tools we can hold onto as Christians.”
Alumni Dinner and Hoops: Photogallery
Alumni met on campus on February 5 for the annual Dinner and Hoops event. Nine alumni teams squared off in the morning’s 3-on-3 basketball tournament, then cheered on the Trolls in an afternoon double header against Calumet College of St. Joseph. In the evening, alumni guests joined students and faculty for a performance by the student improv team.
For the 3-on-3 tournament, alumni played in two divisions—advanced and recreational. Winning teams and their players included:
Advanced Division Winners
Eric Lubbers ’99
Scott Pothoven ’97
Chuck Commeret ’05
Recreational Division Winners
Matt Medema ’04
Chris Decker ’03
Luke Post ’04
Rudi Gesch ’04
John Sikkenga ’06
Trinity games against Calumet College
Students Embrace Intentional Community at Koinonia Farm: Photogallery
Eight students, accompanied by Cini Bretzlaff-Holstein, adjunct professor of social work, and Nikki Bruna, social work project coordinator, spent Janurary 7 – 14 at Koinonia Farm. Their days were filled with chapel, service work, meals, and fellowship with each other and with the residents of the farm.
Founded in 1942 by Clarence Jordan, Koinonia Farm is a community of Christians that pray, work, study, and live together. Many social justice-seeking organizations, like Habitat for Humanity and the Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition, are products of Jordan’s intentional community.
“It was inspiring to see the students embrace the idea of being intentional about community,” said Bruna. “This almost immediately fostered a sense of kindness, peace, and commitment to the entire group. This was seen in our interactions with one another, the way we treated those we encountered, and how we approached our work.”
Something students appreciated while practicing intentional community were the evening conversations that followed each day.
“I thoroughly enjoyed the discussion times we processed as a group,” said Sophia Briseno ’13 of Mason City, Illinois. “We all huddled around a small heater or brought blankets and talked about heavy concepts for several hours.”
Bruna said the intentional community and experience of Koinonia Farm is one that encourages students to take home the intentional mentality.
“This Interim allows students to experience firsthand the impact of living in an intentional community and think about what lessons they can bring back and incorporate in their own community,” said Bruna.
Bruna’s desire for post-Interim thought from participating students is evident.
“One question I kept asking and am still working through is, ‘Should you look for a community that will define you, or will you define the community you are in?’” said Briseno.
Serving with Restoration Ministries in Harvey: Photogallery
Students resided and ministered in Harvey, Illinois, at Harvey House and Tabitha House during the two-week Interim in January. Led by Dr. Mary Lynn Colosimo, associate professor of psychology, students participated in multiple programs providing life-changing opportunities to those in the community.
Restoration Ministries offers a free, residential 18-month Christian training program for men and women who have overcome addictions. Other programs include after-school tutoring for children and a prison outreach.
“The biggest impact of this Interim was seeing how much bigger God is,” said Ishael Jedidah Tendero ’13 of Evanston, Illinois. “Hearing testimonies from the Tabitha House women and Harvey House men made me realize God was very present in their lives even when they didn’t have any clue of who he was. It was truly a blessing to see how God is present in every aspect of our lives, in both the dark and light.”
Students spent much of their time working in the Restoration Ministries Thrift Store and tutoring children after school. Other service opportunities involved volunteering at the Greater Chicago Food Depository, distributing food to the homeless in Chicago through Trinity’s Sunday Snacks ministry, and sharing Scripture, music, and testimonies with youth and the elderly.
The group also attended Bible studies, church services, intercessory prayer meetings, and daily devotions at the Spirit of God Fellowship Hall in South Holland, Illinois.
Washington, D.C. Interim Encourages and Inspires Students
Seven students, accompanied by Charles Emmerich, professor of political science, spent the last portion of the two-week Interim in Washington, D.C., attending the 2011 Christian Student Leadership Conference.
The Christian Student Leadership Conference, sponsored by the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), is designed to give college students the opportunity to meet with leaders in government and learn how those leaders participate in politics while incorporating their faith, according to NAE’s website. The theme for this year’s conferences was “From Generation to Generation” and focused on issues the United States faces today and will continue to face in the future.
While in D.C. from January 17-21, the students spent most of their time attending briefings given by members of Congress, a Supreme Court justice, presidential staff members, and leaders of public policy firms. Sightseeing and a tour of the U.S. Capitol building guaranteed a packed schedule for the group.
Students made note of how hearing political officials talk about their faith in politics has changed their thinking and inspired them as they continue in their endeavors at Trinity.
“I feel like I have a changed view of politics,” said Kim VanSpronsen, ’13 of Escalon, California. “This trip has encouraged me that I am in the right area of study. I am even more willing to strive to bring Christian values to the area of political science.”
For students pursuing careers in politics or law, the trip to Washington, D.C. provided extra motivation.
“The speakers and events encouraged and inspired me to pursue a career in politics, and this Interim made me think deeply about where I would go after I graduate from Trinity,” said Kelsey Barnett ’12 of Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Students who participated in the Washington, D.C. Interim include:
Kelsey Barnett ’12 of Kenosha, Wisconsin
Dan Carter ’12 of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
Jeff Klein ’12 of Homer Glen, Illinois
Allie Leyva ’14 of Chino, California Nate Tameling ’14 of Burr Ridge, Illinois
Kim VanSpronsen ’13 of Escalon, California
Ken Wojnarowski ’13 of Orland Park, Illinois
A Brief Interim, Life-long Lessons
Students traveled the globe, served others, and explored new cultures during Trinity’s Interim 2011. Trinity sets aside a two-week period in January to give students various opportunities to learn “way” outside the classroom, offering a diverse selection of courses overseas, across the U.S., and on campus.
To read journal entries from the overseas trips and to view photos, visit: Interim Blogs
Students on this year’s Costa Rica Interim, led by Dr. Tom Roose, associate professor of physics and science education, had the opportunity to see and study some of the greatest biodiversity in the world.
“The main highlight of my trip, besides being plunged deep into the lush Costa Rican rainforest, was getting to experience the Costa Rican culture,” said Melissa Conrad ’14 of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois.
“You could tell that people had a deep appreciation for everything and a strong respect for nature, as well as each other.”
Other overseas offerings included service learning in Peru, Jamaica, and Ecuador. Closer to home, students experienced an intentional biblical community in Georgia, participated in the 2011 Christian Student Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C., and ministered at Restoration Ministries in Harvey, Illinois. A variety of other special interest courses were available on campus.
OLS Provides Helping Hand to Students
Office of Learning Services – Because Sometimes Students Need a Helping Hand
Trinity’s Office of Learning Services (OLS) sees nearly one-fifth of the student body coming through its office on a yearly basis. With tremendous support from the administration, the OLS has grown and expanded its services under the direction of Nancy Kwasteniet.
“We provide academic resources which enable students to accomplish their goals,” Kwasteniet said.
All services are confidential and free to students. The OLS offers resources such as tutoring and academic coaching to the general student body. Students wondering about a potential learning issue can receive academic counseling and discuss the possibility of a diagnostic evaluation. Students with identified disabilities have the legal right to receive accommodations. The director of the OLS works closely with the student and the student’s professors to devise an individualized accommodation plan which may include things like extended time for testing and utilizing text-to-audio reading systems.
“Trinity’s small size proves beneficial as the OLS facilitates open communication between students and instructors,” Kwasteniet explained. Many of the professors “go above and beyond” in this “highly collaborative process,” she said, noting that Trinity’s faculty understands both the legal and ethical implications of supporting all of their students.
Tutoring and Academic Coaching
The OLS offers tutors, academic coaches, and help through the Writing Center. Students can request tutors for a specific subject or an academic coach to help them prioritize and organize their schedules as well as hold them accountable for their work.
“It’s also for really strong students who want to get the most out of their classes,” Kwasteniet said. The aim is to help students excel in all areas, so they reach their academic goals. She added that it’s not unusual for a student to serve as a tutor in one subject and to seek tutoring in another.
“I think it is also beneficial for the tutors,” said student tutor coordinator Jessica De Young ’13 of Waupun, Wisconsin, “because it gives them a chance to use their strengths in certain subjects to help others learn.”
A new program implemented in fall 2010 is Supplemental Instruction (SI), headed up by Lisa Kuiper, coordinator of student support services. Trained student leaders attend lectures and lead SI group study sessions each week. The leaders act as facilitators to help students process the course material and study more efficiently. SI is currently being offered for Math 151, Biology 205/206, Chemistry 101/102, and Accounting 221/222.
Students who have benefited from the help they received from taking part in the SI program say:
“SI is very helpful, and I would recommend it to anyone – it is nice to get a student perspective from the material. I think I do better in a group session, and it has improved my knowledge of the material.”
“I always came out of SI sessions with a clearer idea and understanding of the material. It was nice to have multiple SI’s a week, as well as [the SI leader] having office hours. I was able to approach my test more relaxed because I had been to SI.”
“[The SI leader] was wonderful! She offered so much help and time to us. She made me feel comfortable and adjusted to everyone’s learning levels and abilities. She definitely was a huge contributing factor to my grades.”
The OLS creates a supportive atmosphere where students can receive free and confidential help. With the number of students taking advantage of the resources steadily increasing each year, the OLS will continue to expand its services.
For a complete list and explanation of all the services provided by the Office of Learning Services, visit http://studentlife.trnty.edu/office-of-learning-services.html.
Director Nancy Kwasteniet explains the help available to students through the Office of Learning Services:
Trek Into the Rainforest of Costa Rica: Photogallery
Led by Dr. Thomas Roose, associate professor of physics and science education, the group of students explored both the rain forest of the lowlands and the cloud forest of the mountains to learn about how the ecology of these regions work and how humans interact with the rainforest.
Although Costa Rica covers only .03 percent of the earth’s surface, this tiny country holds more than 5 percent of all life forms. The Interim team of students, all from varying majors, enjoyed whitewater rafting, zip-lining through the treetops, hiking near an active volcano and in tropical forests, and encountering toucans, sloths, poison dart frogs, iguanas, and other wildlife in their habitats. The students also experienced how global climate change is adversely affecting this unique part of God’s creation.
“My Interim trip to Costa Rica was more amazing than I could have ever imagined,” said Melissa Conrad ’14 of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois.
Conrad said she is passionate about wildlife conservation and sustainability and the trip provided an opportunity for her to experience both firsthand.
“The main highlight of my trip, besides being plunged deep into the lush Costa Rican rainforest, was getting to experience the Costa Rican culture. You could tell that people had a deep appreciation for everything and a very strong respect for nature, as well as each other. Their motto is ‘pura vida’ (pure life), and indeed it is. I would absolutely love to go back.”
Interim is a two-week program in January led by faculty and staff of the College. Special courses and trips are offered on campus, in Chicago, or at destinations in the United States and abroad.
Click here to read Dr. Roose’s Costa Rica Interim blog.
Click here to learn more about Dr. Roose.
Trinity Community Remembers Martin Luther King, Jr.—Photogallery
President Steven Timmermans, Ph.D., opened the evening with an excerpt from a 1962 sermon of King’s, which was followed by a scripture reading from senior Edmond Mensah of Chicago. The celebration continued as Dr. David Brodnax, Sr., assistant professor of history, gave a presentation called “Reflections on Music and the Civil Rights Movement,” and the Trinity Gospel Choir performed a selection of songs.
The evening focused on the roles music and the Bible played in King’s life and activism.
“Music played an important role in the civil rights movement,” said Brodnax. “Although Dr. King has been gone for over 40 years, the songs of his civil rights movement live on.
“The songs of the civil rights movement inspire us to think differently,” added James Palmore, director of the Gospel Choir. “Social justice songs took on a biblical proportion.”
Senior Velvet Woods of Chicago also read from a speech King gave in 1967. Afterwards, attendees viewed a video commemorating King’s life. The video was created by Audio Visual Coordinator Dave Jousma and junior Justin James of Riverside, Illinois.
The evening concluded with closing remarks and prayer offered by Don Woo, dean for ethnic diversity and multicultural programs, who related the passage of 2 Corinthians 5:17–6:2 and the life of King to God’s call of Christians today.
“God did not call us to be comfortable,” Woo said. “He called us to make a difference.”
Origami Interim Nurtures Creative Spirit--Photogallery
Origami has become an increasingly popular tool to use in primary, secondary, and college education. Paper-folding is also enjoyed as a hobby by many, including Mary Webster Moore, assistant professor of education.
Origami is not only a hobby for Moore, it is an instructional strategy she encourages future teachers to use in their classrooms. She also teaches origami to both education and non-education majors during Trinity’s two-week Interim in January.
The Interim class provides an opportunity for students to develop a new and exciting hobby and to gain insight into incorporating paper-folding into classes and other group activities. Students are also required to teach someone else the models that they have learned at three different points during the two week
For nursing major Caroline Klingbeil ’14 of Chesterton, Indiana, the class was her first experience with origami. Klingbeil constructed a swan with 430 strips of paper.
“I’ve never done anything like this before. It was a lot of fun, and it’s definitely something I’ll keep doing for enjoyment in the future,” she said.
Fulbright Scholar Begins Work in Jamaica
Dr. Patti Powell, professor of education, is beginning her work as a Fulbright Scholar at Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College in Montego Bay, Jamaica. From January through May 2011, Powell will assist with the development of the college’s new deaf education program. In addition, she will introduce service learning into the curriculum and research how service learning enriches the experience of teacher.
In Memory of Giselle McComb
The Trinity Christian College community is deeply saddened by the loss of 22-year old student Giselle Charissah McComb of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. Giselle passed away on Tuesday, December 28, 2010, from injuries sustained in a car accident in Wadsworth, Illinois.
She was the daughter of Michael and Janice (Newsted) McComb, of Pleasant Prairie. Giselle grew up in Kenosha, Wisconsin, attending Christian Life High School and was currently a senior at Trinity. She is survived by her parents; her two brothers, Jonathan McComb and Kendrick McComb, both of Pleasant Prairie; and her sister, Kaci McComb of Pleasant Prairie. She is further survived by one grandmother, one grandfather, and other relatives and friends.
Giselle was pursuing a double major in psychology and criminal justice at Trinity. She served as the president of the College’s Criminal Justice Club. She was currently working hand-in-hand with the Cook County Sheriff’s office to develop a program in which young offenders were given information about turning their lives around through education, with an emphasis on helping these young offenders earn a high school diploma and continue in their education at the college level. Giselle had just been accepted into graduate school to study forensic psychology.
Visitation and the funeral service were held on Sunday, January 2, 2011, at the Proko Funeral Home in Kenosha, Wisconsin. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the family would be greatly appreciated. Visit Giselle’s Online Memorial Book at www.prokofuneralhome.com.
The Trinity community will remember Giselle during chapel at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, January 26.
Please uphold the family in your prayers.
Trinity Remembers Founder Rev. Dr. Arthur DeKruyter
The Trinity community mourns the loss of Rev. Dr. Arthur DeKruyter, one of the founders of Trinity Christian College as well as the founding pastor and senior pastor emeritus of Christ Church of Oak Brook. Dr. DeKruyter passed away Friday, January 14, 2011.
DeKruyter was one of the 10 men who served on the Christian Junior College Committee formed in 1953 to study the feasibility of establishing a Christian junior college in the Chicagoland area. Those early meetings paved the way for the formation of Trinity, first as a two-year institution and eventually a four-year, baccalaureate-degree granting college.
DeKruyter served as the committee’s chairman and later as chairman of the Board of Trustees. On many occasions he addressed meetings of classes and other organizations to gain support for the college movement.
“That was our assignment,” DeKruyter reminisced during a 2009 interview for Trinity’s 50th anniversary. “I felt very responsible for getting the Chicagoland people involved in something like this.”
In 2009, DeKruyter began the 50th Jubilee anniversary celebration with a campus chapel message for students, faculty, and staff on October 2. He then offered the invocation at the Jubilee formal dinner and program at Navy Pier.
In another recent demonstration of his ongoing devotion to the College, DeKruyter donated his personal pastoral library, which will be housed in the Dutch Heritage Center of the Jennie Huizenga Memorial Library and will provide access to works of relevance for pastors as well as Trinity faculty and students.
DeKruyter is survived by his daughter Lucette and son-in-law Thomas Bamford; his grandsons Tab (Kristin) and Arthur; and his great-grandchildren Thomas and Robert. He was preceded in death by his wife Gladys.
Arrangements as published on the website of Christ Church of Oak Brook are as follows:
Visitation with the family will be held at Christ Church of Oak Brook on Tuesday, January 18, from 3 to 5 p.m. and from 7 to 9 p.m.
A private burial will be conducted on Wednesday morning, attended by family and invited guests only.
A memorial service will be held in the sanctuary on Wednesday, January 19, at 7 p.m. This service will also be broadcast live on the church’s website at www.cc-ob.tv. A reception will follow the memorial service in the fellowship hall. All are invited.
For more information, visit: http://www.cc-ob.org/dekruyter/
Trinity Receives Reaccreditation from Higher Learning Commission
Trinity Christian College has been reaccredited for 10 years by the North Central Association’s Higher Learning Commission.
The HLC accreditation team, composed of reviewers from various institutions of higher learning, visited the campus September 27-29 as part of the College’s periodic evaluation.
Teaching in South America—An Alumna’s Work in Bogota
“We are just two people of about nine million in this city, and we’ve been called to do a specific job working with certain students, teaching, discipling, and preparing them to do the work that they are called to do in God’s kingdom,” said Rebecca (VanderWilt) McKeever ’10.
Rebecca and her husband Ryan are currently teaching at El Camino Academy in Bogotá, Colombia, where Rebecca did her student teaching while enrolled as a Spanish education major at Trinity. She also minored in English-as-a-Second Language (ESL), and since approximately 85 percent of the students are learning English as a second—or even third or fourth—language, the experience proved to provide excellent experiential learning for the future teacher.
This initial student teaching experience also planted the seed for Rebecca to return to Bogotá with husband Ryan a month after they were married in June 2010.
“We knew we needed to go where we could serve but at the same time receive a lot of support, as this is our first year of marriage, and we are both first-year teachers,” said Rebecca. “Because I had student taught at El Camino, I knew that this would be a school where we could grow together and gain experience in a supportive Christian environment.”
Ryan teaches Bible class for grades 5-8, and he serves as the middle school chaplain. Rebecca teaches language arts and social studies for 6th grade, and she provides ESL support in the middle school.
El Camino Academy
El Camino Academy started as a school solely for missionary children, but has grown so that now mostly Colombian students attend. None of Rebecca’s students speak English as their first language.
“I’m always teaching them new vocabulary and answering questions like, ‘How do you say…?’ I’m so glad that I learned Spanish, not only because I can translate for students when necessary, but also because I know what it’s like to learn a second language, and I can identify with their struggles.”
One of the school’s main focuses is ministry. The goal is for students to take what they’ve learned at the school and use it to serve God and to serve people wherever they go.
“We’ve gone with our classes to after-school programs, orphanages, and other ministries,” said Rebecca. “It’s great to see God working through our students.”
Many opportunities at Trinity prepared Rebecca well for her work abroad.
“My experience at Trinity was very rich and full,” she said.
Rebecca spent a semester in Spain and a semester student teaching off campus. Her involvement in Trinity’s Semester in Spain program reinforced her language skills so that she arrived in Bogotá able to communicate in Spanish. In addition to the two months student teaching at El Camino, Rebecca’s second student teaching experience was in a dual-immersion 3rd grade classroom in Blue Island, Illinois, where she taught in both Spanish and English.
During her capstone project for the College’s Honors Program, Rebecca conducted a study on the experience of students with English as a second language on Trinity’s campus. She discovered how language and cultural differences affect the learning and social lives of multilingual students.
Continuing the work
“We love our friends in Bogotá, most of who are teachers at the school. We like the fresh fruits and vegetables. We like looking out our apartment windows and seeing the mountains. We like walking and taking public transportation everywhere and being amongst Bogotanos. We love our students and their families– they’ve really helped us feel at home,” said Rebecca.
The McKeevers plan to work in Bogotá for the next two years. They work as volunteers in order to subsidize the cost of education for the missionary and ministry families who attend El Camino. Although the school provides a stipend, which covers rent, the couple depends on funds from supporters in the United States.
“We have to trust God to take what he’s begun in our students and what he’s begun in us and carry it on to completion.”
For more information, visit the McKeevers’ blog at http://rrmckvr.weebly.com.
Trinity Announces New VP for Business and Finance
Trinity has announced the appointment of alumnus James Belstra ’91 to the position of vice president for business and finance.
Belstra, a certified public accountant with nearly 20 years of experience in the finance industry, will serve as the chief financial officer of the College. As a member of the president’s administrative council, he represents the division of the College which includes financial and business operations, human resources, and auxiliary operations.
Watoto Children’s Choir Returns to Campus – March 1
The Watoto Children’s Choir will once again be performing at Trinity. The free concert will be held Tuesday, March 1, at 7:30 p.m. in the Ozinga Chapel.
The choir is made up of 22 Ugandan orphans who are among the 2 million children who have lost parents to war and disease.
At its first appearance at Trinity in 2007, the choir attracted nearly 700 visitors to the Ozinga Chapel. Audience members enjoyed the musical and dance gifts of these children and also heard testimonies of how God had rescued them from hopelessness.
What is “Watoto”?
- In Swahili it means “children.”
- It is also an organization that has been rescuing Ugandan children orphaned by AIDS and civil war and meeting their physical, emotional, educational, and spiritual needs.
- It is an event that helps these children while simultaneously sharing God’s message of restoration and renewal with students, faculty, staff, and the community.
For more information about Watoto, visit: http://www.watoto.com/home.
Click here to see a video of the Watoto choir performing in Los Angeles with Chris Tomlin.
Click here to listen to the choir sing “Cast Your Burdens Unto Jesus”
Professor Provides Opportunity to Learn Outside of the Classroom
Adjunct Professor Tricia Paarlberg has learned from her experiences—from living in Asia for several years to traveling to India on a group Fulbright as a student at Columbia College. She knows the importance of learning through experience and gives her Trinity students the same opportunity.
Adult Studies Employee Graduates from Business Program
Sandy Aggen ’10 graduated from the Adult Studies program at Trinity, receiving her diploma during the Commencement ceremony on December 18, 2010. Aggen is also an employee of the Adult Studies department at the College but never planned to pursue her education when she first came to Trinity in August 2005.
With an associate’s degree from Fox College, she had no expectation of furthering her education. Aggen was inspired and began to rethink her educational future as she observed Lori Scrementi ’00, director of the Adult Studies program, balance her career, her family, and her pursuit of her doctoral degree.
“When I saw that Lori could do it, I thought maybe I could as well,” said Aggen. “Once I mentioned it to her, she was very encouraging. I also had lots of support at home,” said Aggen. So in September 2008, Aggen entered the Adult Studies business program.
While going through the program, Aggen, who serves as the student relations coordinator in the department, was able to share her first-hand knowledge of the program with prospective students.
“I can really empathize with their obligations of family and work, because I have the same demands on my time. But when they hear that I am able to work through the program, it encourages them,” she said.
With aspirations of teaching college, Aggen took a week off when the program ended in August 2010 and then began a master’s degree program at Gonzaga University. “I feel very prepared for the program. The high expectations at Trinity in reading and writing have served me well in the next level of my education.”
Aggen walked in the graduation ceremony in December 2010 with the rest of her Adult Studies cohort. Her family and co-workers were present to help her celebrate this milestone.
Alumnus Serves in Mongolia with Peace Corps
Clifton Hurt ’09 followed the voice deeply rooted in his heart as he left home to help others overseas. Now a Peace Corps volunteer, Hurt is using his time to serve others in Mongolia.
“One day it hit me,” he said. “I am a young Christian with time and strength to serve. Why not serve people abroad?” His objective was to be a Christian not by saying it, but by living it. Following months of prayer and conversations with friends from the Trinity community and his family, he signed up.
Hurt arrived in Mongolia in early June 2010 for training and in August was officially sworn in as a volunteer serving the next two years. He currently resides in Muren, Mongolia, where he is a primary teacher at Ereedwee, also known as Future 21 School. Because of his educational background, Hurt is able to teach in a classroom setting as well as train fellow teachers. He is one of nine foreign language teachers serving in the area and works with grades 4-11.
Hurt’s work extends far beyond his teaching as he engages with the community around him. Along with his fellow volunteers, he hosts the “English Corner” for local adults and interested students and offers private music lessons to a few of the local community members.
As Hurt reaches out to his surrounding community, he feels God’s call to Mongolia is confirmed. This incredible journey has led Hurt to a family that has been serving in Mongolia for 16 years. He has been blessed with the opportunity to offer guidance and understanding in worship leadership with two of the eldest children.
“God knows what he is doing all the time,” Hurt said.
While at Trinity, Hurt earned his bachelor’s degree in music education, K-12 choral emphasis, and was involved in numerous extracurricular activities, including the Campus Ministry Leadership Team, Outcry, Gospel Choir, Organization of African American Unity, and Brother 2 Brother.
Despite several opportunities presented to Hurt after graduation, God’s call held firm in his heart. “His plans always supersede our expectations and dreams,” said Hurt.
2010 December Commencement: Photogallery
Families and friends of the graduates gathered in the Ozinga Chapel Auditorium to witness the presentation of the diplomas by Provost Liz Rudenga and to hear the commencement address of Dr. Sharon Robbert, dean for academic planning and effectiveness and professor of mathematics.
In her address “You Must Remember This,” Robbert pointed out that although most people don’t always recall the messages delivered by commencement speakers, Trinity students would always remember their particular Trinity experience.
“Trinity Christian College is a community of Christian scholarship committed to shaping lives and transforming culture.”
Unpacking Trinity’s statement of identity and purpose, Robbert spoke about how each aspect—community, Christian scholarship, and the commitment to shape lives and transform culture—pertained to the student experience.
As she spoke about the shaping of students’ lives during their educational journey, Robbert said, “God’s hand has been actively shaping each of you through experiences at Trinity so that you might be prepared for kingdom work next week, next year, and in the next decades to come.”
The invocation was delivered by Dr. John Hoekstra, director of Adult Studies Education; the song of response and the song of prayer were sung by the Trinity Gospel Choir; and the commencement litany was led by Adult Studies graduate, Sandra Aggen, administrative assistant in the Adult Studies department.
You Must Remember This—
2010 December Commencement Address, Dr. Sharon Robbert
President Timmermans, Provost Rudenga, faculty, staff, graduates, family and friends:
It is an honor to be able to speak to you today, but an honor that I take with a grain of salt. This is because the premise of my words to you today is that no one ever remembers the content of a commencement address. I’ve personally attended at least 30 graduation ceremonies, and I have at best only vague memories of these commencement speeches. An informal poll of a few colleagues who have attended more of these ceremonies than I shows that I am not alone. At best, attendees of graduation ceremonies remember the person who spoke when something out of the ordinary happens—usually these are bad things, like when the speaker trips on the way to the podium or mispronounces the name of the president. So why is it that no one remembers what the address is about? There are several reasons that might be contributing factors, all of which make this address a particularly challenging experience for me. Here are some that might be distracting you from paying attention right now:
- You might be worried about standing, sitting, walking, wearing your mortarboard, or accepting your diploma case at the right time.
- You might be more interested in the concept of a graduation ceremony than the particulars of this one.
- You have never seen me before and don’t anticipate seeing me again, so why listen, much less remember something that is said now 10 minutes after the ceremony is complete?
- You might need a break from brain exercise because you just finished exams or grading the last set of papers from your student teaching internship.
- But maybe the problem is that you have a poor view. Did you know that the typical location for Trinity faculty members is in the front few rows of the auditorium? I usually sit pretty close to the photographer—front and center of the first row. In this location, I get a splendid view of the feet and footwear of the platform party and graduates. At last May’s ceremony, strappy sandals replaced flip-flops for graduate attire, in case you were curious.
Even though there are reasons why you might not remember, you probably have direct experience with tools to aid memory. Remembering facts and issues is particularly important during college years. You may have used a mnemonics device. To spell geography, I learned “George Eliot’s Oldest Grandfather Rode a Pig Home Yesterday” back in elementary school. Maybe you used creative visualization, where you mentally placed important facts in a location in the testing room for recall during testing. Some people rely on muscle memory for learning terminology or shooting a basketball or striking a soccer ball or playing a complicated run on the piano, but this requires long hours of practice. Other memory tricks include using color for note-taking or singing concepts as the lyrics to a familiar tune. “Is-am-are-was-were-be-been are the linking verbs.” I learned that song from my sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Fairbanks, but I’m still not certain why it was important to know which verbs were linking verbs.
The need for memory tools is not new to the 21st century—memory tools are even identified in the Old Testament! Back in the days of the infant Israelite nation, God knew that his people would have trouble with their memory in spite of the dramatic events in their history. God told his people to tie the Shema “Hear O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one” to their hands and foreheads and write this same phrase on their doorposts to help them remember.
So, if you aren’t going to remember this address, what must you remember? Not the specifics of this address and certainly not the speaker. I believe that you must remember what is important about your particular Trinity experience. Here are some things to consider, centered around Trinity’s one-line statement of identity and purpose. “Trinity Christian College is a community of Christian scholarship committed to shaping lives and transforming culture.”
First, Trinity is a community. Who made up the community for your Trinity experience? I imagine that you would include fellow students in your class or cohort, friends in major classes, teammates, roommates, professors, and academic advisors. You may even include the chaplain, RAs, RDs, and other staff members who have made a difference for you—those who serve coffee or prepare meals or clean the buildings or fix computers or take tuition payments—these people all have contributed to your Trinity experience. So this is something I would put on the list of items that you must remember. What memory tools can help you remember these people and the Trinity community as a whole? Unfortunately there is no Trinity school song to bind us together, a song like “As Time Goes By” that we can ask Sam from the film Casablanca to play for us. But Trinity does have one distinctive item that can represent our community well: our school mascot, the Troll. I’ve brought one today as a visual aid to your memory. So try to think of your particular community as a collection of Trolls—friendly blue trolls like this one.
Next, Trinity is a community of Christian scholarship. Two words here need unpacking: Christian and scholarship. At Trinity, these two words are linked together through the particular slant on higher education that is present on this campus. On this campus we are committed to infusing a Christian view into what we learn and the way in which we learn.
One familiar component of the Christian view at Trinity is the creation-fall-redemption-new creation motif. The very building in which this ceremony is occurring is designed to help remember these components. Of the four stained glass windows planned for this building, three are installed: the Creation window is in the recital hall on the north end of the building, the Redemption window is in the Grand Lobby on the south side, and the recently installed Restoration window is located above the doors on the east side of the building. The window to represent the Fall has yet to be installed. The designs of these windows provide a reminder of who is in charge and to help us identify our place and purpose in God’s creation. Did you know that this building is designed in the shape of a cross? In the physical construction of this building, the cross of our redeemer Jesus Christ links these four themes of Christian worldview. After the graduation ceremony is complete, I encourage you to take the time to look at each of these beautiful stained glass windows.
Now for the second part. In each discipline at Trinity, the subject that you have studied has intentional connection to these themes and to other themes important to a Christian worldview. For example, all persons have value because they are created in the image of God, so future teachers are taught that they have a responsibility to teach all students whether they learn concepts easily or need an IEP (an individual educational plan) to facilitate their learning. Or, if you prefer, we know that we are co-creators with Christ as we make and redeem culture, and with this comes the responsibility of the creation mandate to care for the world. So we study the impact the construction of athletic fields has on the population of snakes in the adjoining woods. We also know that God created the world with inherent order and structure, so in mathematics we study the patterns that we see in creation and marvel that following a logical structure in our models accurately predicts patterns in weather and cell development. I could add more, but you get the idea. So what if we put glasses on our Troll and make him look a bit more academic and better represent the Christian scholarship portion of Trinity’s purpose statement?
Third, Trinity is a community of Christian scholarship committed to shaping lives. Experiences at Trinity have molded you into the person God needs you to be for your vocation. What experiences do you remember having the most impact? Did you have a time where you worked on a project for a course and you were particularly proud of the results? What about experiences in a culminating internship like student teaching—was there a particular lesson that you enjoyed teaching and your students enjoyed learning? For some of you, living on your own for the first time has played a huge role in who you are today and who you will be in the future. But even if you didn’t live in campus housing, you have very likely been changed through your experiences with others—both in academic and in co-curricular settings at Trinity. Maybe that was through a course field trip to a city art exhibit or maybe it was at a project team meeting with other students at the BBC or maybe it was at a chapel service or maybe it was through a service-learning project for a course or through volunteer hours at an organization that provides services to the needy. All of these things, both the academic and co-curricular, have prepared you in ways that you might not yet even identify. As God told the Israelites in Jeremiah 29:11 while they were being punished through their captivity and exile in Babylon: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” God’s hand has been actively shaping each of you through experiences at Trinity so that you might be prepared for kingdom work next week, next year, and in the next decades to come. Let’s give our Troll a carabiner and a tiny book so that we can remember that he has and must continue to shape his muscles—biceps and brain—for vocation work.
Finally, Trinity is a community of Christian scholarship committed to shaping lives and transforming culture. Transforming culture is a huge task, one that is not complete in four short years or 22 months of academic experiences. Have you heard the phrase “pay it forward?” The concept of “pay it forward” is parallel but opposite to that of “pay back,” as in slugging your brother when he teases you. To “pay it forward” means that once energy or good will or learning is invested in a person that this person in turn has the responsibility to pass that same thing on to other people. God blesses those he loves with the understanding that through us, all of creation will be blessed. As heirs of Abraham, we are “blessed to be a blessing” (Genesis 12:2). With the help of the Holy Spirit, Trinity has invested knowledge, love, community, and culture in you. And, by the help of the Holy Spirit, you now have the responsibility to pay this investment forward through your engagement with the world outside of Trinity. This part is what you have been preparing to do. Through your career; with your family, friends, and coworkers; and in your community you are called to redeem the world for Christ. My hope is that your experiences at Trinity have opened your eyes to the ways in which you might be an agent to transform culture—whether it is through political action or church service or developing a new business or graduate school study or creating art or teaching children—all of these things can build to the transformation of culture with and for Christ. Our poor little Troll already has too much to carry, but maybe he can stand on a Bible to help us remember that the community of Trolls needs the foundation of the Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—to pay forward the blessings that God has given us.
So, will you remember this commencement address? Probably not. But hopefully, you will remember this little Troll and the things with him—the glasses he wears to represent Christian scholarship, the carabiner and book to represent the ways you’ve been shaped, and a Bible to represent the task God has already laid out for you in the future.
May God bless you and your loved ones as you leave Trinity and go into service in the Kingdom of God!
Christmastide 2010: Photogallery
Nearly 700 students, faculty, staff, families, and friends of the College gathered in the Ozinga Chapel Auditorium on December 4 to celebrate the true reason for Christmas during Trinity’s annual Christmastide concert.
The program provided an evening of worship with Christmas songs, Scripture readings, and performances by the Concert Choir, Honors Ensemble, Gospel Choir, Wind Ensemble, and String Ensemble.
“I believe that our message of hope as sung and played on Saturday made a difference for good in people’s lives,” said Dr. Helen Van Wyck, professor of music and director of choral activities. “For many, this wonderful and growing tradition marks the beginning of their Christmas celebrations, and I’m so glad we have built an audience that keeps coming back.”
Social Work Students Advocate in Springfield
In collaboration with the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, Trinity social work students recently had an opportunity to learn about and practice the process of advocacy and lobbying.
The Coalition had been working to support a bill to raise income taxes in the state of Illinois to help provide educational programs and social service providers to those in need. Social work students stepped in to help and utilize this hands-on learning experience.
After advocating throughout campus, presenting the petition, and gaining support, seniors Erin Nykamp of Holland, Michigan; Gina Smith of Tinley Park, Illinois; and Danielle Swenson of Milaca, Minnesota, arranged a trip for the social work students to lobby the bill in Springfield, Illinois.
On November 18, students traveled to Springfield where they learned the process of lobbying firsthand. Meeting with representatives, the students had the unique opportunity to promote the bill.
“This was a good learning experience for me on advocacy, because I have never had to represent a petition before, and we were required to convince people to sign in support of this bill,” Nykamp said.
While there, students sat in on an assembly meeting for the Illinois House of Representatives, giving them another chance to see and understand the process of advocacy in a government setting.
“The trip to Springfield allowed our class to better understand the state legislative process,” said Alyssa Mulder ’11 of Fox Lake, Wisconsin. “It was interesting to find out how much access we actually have to our representatives. Even though they are busy, they still take time to meet with their constituents to hear about issues that are impacting the people in their district.”
Wydra Named Lincoln Laureate
Senior J.R. Wydra of Tinley Park, Illinois, has been named as a Lincoln Laureate by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. Wydra was one of the outstanding college students from the state honored at the annual Student Laureate Convocation on November 6 in Springfield.
Wydra, a theology and philosophy major who plans to attend law school after graduation, felt blessed to be chosen as this year’s laureate.
The Lincoln Academy’s Student Laureate Awards are presented for excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities to seniors from each of the four-year, degree granting colleges and universities in Illinois.
During his four years at Trinity, Wydra, a Founders Scholar, has served as a freshmen representative— and this year as the vice president—for Student Association; a First Year Forum mentor; and a criterion team member involved with preparation for the College’s recent Higher Learning Commission accreditation visit. He has been active in Trinprov, a student improv group, and currently works as one of the graphic designers for Trinfo, Trinity’s digital signage program. Off-campus, Wydra has served as an intern with Calvary Church’s high school youth group in Orland Park, Illinois.
Of his time at Trinity, Wydra said he has enjoyed forming relationships with his professors. “They all care so deeply about the subjects they teach, and I can never thank them enough for what they have given to me,” he said.
“I have also deeply enjoyed getting to know the other students at Trinity and am blessed to call so many of them my friends,” said Wydra. “This place is truly my home away from home, and I will miss it dearly when I head off to law school next fall.”
At the convocation, Wydra received a Student Laureate Medallion, along with an honorarium check and certificate of achievement.
The Lincoln Academy, unique among the 50 states, was established 46 years ago to honor Illinois’ most distinguished citizens with the state’s highest award, the Order of Lincoln. The 47th Annual Convocation and Investiture of Laureates of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois will take place Saturday, April 16, 2011, at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Illinois in Urbana.
New English Curriculum
A proposal for curriculum changes in Trinity’s English department was recently approved and will be implemented in the fall of 2011. The major changes will be a pedagogical shift to an apprenticeship model at the junior level and an emphasis, at the sophomore level, on writing and reading as social practices.
Currently, English students present several papers at a regional undergraduate English conference each year. The new curriculum is designed to help students become more comfortable making strong claims, supporting them, and fielding questions.
“We want our students to become more comfortable as Christia