Monday, November 29, 2010

C-SPAN Captures First in Gordon-Sponsored Old Town Hall Lecture Series


Celebrating the North Shore’s rich history, and under the leadership of Dr. Cliff Hersey and Professor David Goss, Gordon’s Institute for Public History launched a series of high-profile Thursday night lectures in Salem. A film crew (pictured here) from C-SPAN captured the first. The Old Town Hall Lectures (located at 32 Derby Square in Salem) began Thursday, November 18, with Richard Francis, author of The Salem Witch Trials and the Forming of a Conscience, discussing Judge Sewall’s public apology for his role in the trials. Francis taught American Studies at Manchester (England) University.

Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll
Around 40 people attended Francis’ lecture and book signing, including Salem’s Mayor Kim Driscoll, who welcomed the crowd on behalf of “the great partnership the City of Salem has with Gordon College.” Provost Mark Sargent also was on hand to introduce the event and noted that in the same space so many performances of Cry Innocent had been held that it’s now the longest running show on the North Shore.


Provost Mark Sargent
“The Salem witch hunt has entered our vocabulary as the very essence of injustice,” said David Goss, codirector of Gordon’s Institute for Public History. “Judge Sewall’s extraordinary act of apology was a turning point not only for Sewall but also for America’s values. This is a national story, and it affected every town on the North Shore, not just Salem. We are honored to have Richard Francis journey from his home in England to kick off our lecture series.”
Richard Francis (author)
Francis lectured in front of photos of Cotton Mathers, whose writing about the witch trials was influential in his research, and Louisa May Alcott, whose life he explores in his new book, Fruitlands: The Alcott Family and Their Search for Utopia.

The next lecture will be Thursday, December 16, at 7:30 p.m., and features Emerson (Tad) Baker of Salem State University. Baker will offer an illustrated lecture and book signing on the topic “Witchcraft and Conflict in Early New England.”

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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Social Work Professor Featured on CBS Sunday Morning Show

James Trent, professor of social work, offered his expertise on camera in a story for CBS Sunday Morning on Sunday, November 28, at 9 a.m. The interview was shot last spring in Frost Hall after the producer sought out Professor Trent because of his expertise on the history of institutional care for those with mental disabilities. (She literally Googled the topic, found one of Professor Trent’s publications and called him.) The story is called “Where’s Molly?” and is about an Oregon man who “seeks answers about his mentally disabled sister, sent to an institution nearly five decades earlier.”
Hope you can tune in!

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving, Mediterranean Style

Mark Sargent, Provost for Gordon College, on Thanksgiving—Mediterranean Style.

Last month, in a hectic season, my wife, Arlyne, and I stole away to celebrate an anniversary—our 25th. There wasn't time for a Mediterranean cruise, so we settled for one night in Concord and a walk around Walden Pond.

Henry David Thoreau, always a prankster with words, once described Walden as “mediterranean”—literally “in the middle of the land.” As our evening waned, the winds stilled and the unbroken surface of the pond absorbed the surrounding terrain, the hardwood reds and yellows vibrant enough to survive the dusk. A few egrets surveyed the silent water, now gray and melded with the granite stones along the shore.

Read more of this Faith + Ideas e-column here.

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving break begins at the end of classes today, and excited talk of turkey and stuffing, family and friends, is quickly filling the campus. As many students prepare to leave Gordon for the rest of the week, we wish them safe travels, rest and joy in this much-needed time to think on all we have to be thankful for.


See you next week!


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Together in Song

Recently audiences from the North Shore were treated to a different kind of choir concert experience. The Gordon College Women’s Choir, under the direction of Faith Lueth, and the Gordon College Children’s Choir, under the direction of Sandy Doneski, came together for a unique collaborative performance of traditional folk songs. But unlike most traditional concerts, where audiences passively listen, Dr. Doneski inspired guests to actively engage in the performance. Audience members young and old learned how to sing special sections of selected folk songs and enthusiastically joined in singing with the choirs, creating a wonderful sense of community. The collaboration of Gordon’s community music programs for children with undergraduate ensemble groups provides a special opportunity for Gordon’s music students to explore a greater sense of community. This mentor program teaches our students how music can transform lives by bringing all ages and cultures together for a common purpose. Our alumni come back and continue to contribute to the collaboration. Serving as assistant instructors, alumni stay actively engaged with this community outreach at Gordon as they grow in their professional lives as public school music teachers.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Fezziwig's Christmas Ball!

Get out your fancy dress and dancing spirit and celebrate Christmas at Gordon . . . on campus and in Salem! Sponsored in part by Gordon’s Institute for Public History and held at Salem’s Old Town Hall, Fezziwig’s Christmas Ball will be an unforgettable evening of dance and merriment from the era of Dickens.

Much of the program will consist of set dances taught during the evening. These will include Victorian favorites, easy contradances and simple quadrilles, as well as Sir Roger de Coverly, an English version of the Virginia Reel. Interspersed with these will be elegant couple dances such as the waltz and polka.

So dust off that modern evening dress or costume from Dickens’ times and bring your merriment to Old Town Hall, 32 Derby Square, Salem, Massachusetts, Saturday, December 11, 7 p.m. Be sure to make your reservation!


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Writing for Compassionation

Student Danielle Mills is taking two passionate interests, animals and writing, to create a senior thesis with a national message.

The communication arts student, of Wells, Maine, has created a communications channel about farming and food. The blog is called Compassionation, and its aim is to raise awareness about the business of America’s meat practices--starting with the Gordon community. “I want to engage our campus in a conversation about the food industry,” said Mills, who is in her senior year at Gordon.

Compassionation is an information source for current events, fundraisers, even local vegetarian restaurants. Mills, who is also a vegetarian, uses the site to share her experiences and promote the benefits of a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle.

Mills created Compassionation as her senior thesis project and hopes the channel will continue to engage students further in this important conversation.

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Volunteer Journal helps Students Share Opinions

The Vox Populi, a Gordon student publication, hit campus this month and features stories such as "Manhood vs Personhood"; "Reflections on Love and India"; "Running from Comfort"; "Becoming Compassionate Rulers"; and others.

The Vox Populi, Latin for "the voice of the people," is a regular journal that prioritizes helping students craft opinion pieces into publishable articles. John Mirisola, a senior English major, serves as editor-in-chief of the all-volunteer student publication. "The writing team tries to give personalized, concrete editorial help to every student who submits," said Mirisola. "We do this so every student--not just English and communication arts majors, or people who already view writing as a strength--will be able to use The Vox as a tool to share their thoughts and opinions and open up a dialogue with the Gordon community." The Vox was founded by students in the English major and is a Gordon College Student Association (GCSA) publication.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Next stop, Gordon!


For the first time in four years, the Gordon College Admissions Caravan is up and running. On Saturday, November 13, it picked up 37 prospective students from Wayne, Pennsylvania, Hawthorne, New Jersey, and Trumbull, Connecticut, before heading to campus for the weekend with high school juniors and seniors.

Between a day exploring Boston, duck tours, Catacombs, chapel, class visits, student panels and dorm overnights, prospective students experienced as much Gordon as possible in their three-day stay.

“Because of the caravan, I got to experience student life at Gordon first-hand,” said Sydney Tanner, a senior from Landisville, Pennsylvania. “I thought I wanted to attend another school, but after witnessing the integration of faith and learning at Gordon and meeting people who cared about me as an individual, I have some big decisions to make.”

Not only does the Caravan give prospective students the opportunity to engage with everyday life as a Gordon student, it also gives them time to meet other prospective Gordon students and connect with the Caravan admissions counselors, Justin Ellis and Robert Mansfield.

“Being on a bus for 22 hours with prospective students was a great way to share about Gordon, but in that time we also developed friendships with one another,” said Mansfield. “I’ve gotten numerous emails this week from students on the Caravan thanking me for the opportunity to visit Gordon and spend the weekend with a fun group of people.”

According to Kristy Walker, director of admissions, the Caravan has yielded very positive results in the past in terms of students accepting admission to Gordon.

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Haitian Student at Gordon in the CCCU Spotlight

This week the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU) is celebrating the presence and impact of international students on our campuses. Today Gordon’s only Haitian student, Niltzer Fils, is featured on its site in an article written by Paul Wright, a senior history major at Gordon:

WENHAM, MA—Niltzer Fils, a 23-year-old second-year business major at Gordon College, is keenly aware of the importance of not being wasteful. When he can’t bring himself to finish a slice of pizza he doesn’t like, he is disappointed with himself. After all, in Haiti, where he grew up, you’re supposed to eat everything.

Fils transferred to Gordon from North Shore Community College in the fall of 2009. On January 12, 2010, his home country was struck by one of the worst earthquakes in its history, killing over 200,000 and leaving more than one million Haitians homeless. “When I heard about the earthquake, I was falling apart,” said Fils. “All I had was the news on TV, and I didn’t know if my family was alive or if my friends were okay. A part of me was gone after the earthquake.”

While waiting to hear about the condition of his friends and family, Fils found a great source of comfort from the students on Gordon’s campus. “People supported me through prayer and just asking me how I was doing,” said Fils. He was relieved to find out that all of his family survived, and support from the student population did not stop over time. “Even right now they ask me how I’m doing and how my family is doing,” said Fils. “They are supporting me still, even though it was eight months ago.”

Fils’ family along with all of Haiti is still in need of help. His family is located far enough outside of the epicenter of the earthquake that they avoided serious damages, but life is still tough. “Life in Haiti has gotten more expensive and more dangerous,” said Fils. “Life has totally changed.” For a country as unstable as Haiti, a natural disaster like the 2010 earthquake can leave devastating effects for years.

Being the only Haitian at Gordon College, Fils feels he is somewhat of a spokesperson for Haiti and the issues there now. His presence allows the students of Gordon to have a closer connection to events in Haiti. “By helping out Haiti they can see it as helping me,” said Fils. “It’s a way of saying they are with me and supporting me.”

Fils wants to show Gordon students aspects of Haiti other than its recent tragedies. He enjoys sharing the culture and customs of Haiti in any way he can. “Cooking a meal is a way to tell people about Haiti,” said Fils. “That’s like bringing Haiti to America.”

Fils urges Gordon students to help out Haiti by taking an opportunity to go on mission trips. He also encourages donations through child sponsorships and charity programs but warns of choosing carefully whom to give to.

Fils is hoping to do more than raise awareness about Haiti. Originally a computer science major, he switched to business after the earthquake so he could give back to Haiti on his own. He believes the business world is going to help build up Haiti after its numerous calamities. Fils hopes to be able to serve the people of Haiti through business by treating them as human beings and trying to help them rather than exploiting them for the sake of profits.

“In Haiti [business] is not really up to date and is full of corruption,” said Fils. “But Gordon has taught me that being a Christian in business is about being a servant.”

Written by Paul Wright, Gordon College senior history major and communication arts minor

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Education for Vocation

Provost Mark Sargent spoke recently on the topic "Education for Vocation" at the national meeting of the Council of Independent Colleges in Williamsburg, Virginia. The conference brought together over 500 chief academic officers and chief financial officers. Sargent’s comments surveyed some of the distinguishing features of Gordon’s Critical Loyalty project. In reflecting on the relationship of vocation to the liberal arts, he took cues from Jonathan Edwards’ comment that education explores the “beauties that delight us daily though we cannot tell why.”

Following the conference Sargent joined his son Bradford (a grad student at American University) and the Gordon staff and students at the Newseum in Washington, DC. They visited a remnant of the Berlin Wall, not far from a display of over 70 years of Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs. “It was an interesting juxtaposition,” Mark noted. “The scene reminded me of those vibrant images of the graffiti on the wall in the German film Wings of Desire. This is a film where the angels see things in black and white while humans view the Berlin Wall and the world around it in full color. Certainly the rich graffiti on the wall at the museum conveys something wondrous about human resistance and freedom. Yet just around the corner there were those stark, evocative, black-and-white Pulitzer photos to remind us that the exercise of freedom still needs the eyes of conscience that art and journalism so often provide.”
Photo: Mark Sargent’s son Bradford stands in front of a piece of the Berlin Wall. The pair recently join Gordon students, faculty and staff at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fashion of the Socially Conscious

When Jason Revilla 01’ studied the health sciences at Gordon College, a vision for a life of service to others was on the brink. “Gordon impressed upon me to consider how I represent Christ in the workplace,” said Revilla. “It’s not always having a verbal testimony all of the time, but it’s also about putting your faith into action.”
After graduating from Gordon with a major in kinesiology, he and cofounder James Grumbine ’01 set out to create a socially conscious lifestyle brand in a secular industry.
Faith & Fortunehas been featured on VH1 and Seventeen magazine. Revilla and Grumbine believe their company should also help clothe the needy and feed the hungry. “We’re living out our faith in an industry that tends to be superficial,” said Revilla. “Our label puts others’ needs over our own.”
Watch his brief 20-second video interview online.

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Monographs: Languages and Linguistics

The newest book by assistant professor of French Emmanuelle Vanborre, Lectures blanchotiennes de Malraux et Camus (Peter Lang, 2010), offers a completely new reading of two of the most influential 20th-century French authors. Read more about her new book, and check out all the great things happening in this department in the Fall 2010 Languages and Linguistics newsletter here.

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Fruit Flies, Robots and Orange Peels

Last week our campus hosted a Science Experience Day for high school students and their parents. Gordon’s traditional visit model shook things up by incorporating labs and lectures focused on a spectrum of the sciences, including biology, green chemistry, robotics, kinesiology, mathematics, physics and engineering. Lab exercises included analyzing fruit flies, tree bark and celery, building robots, extracting oranges, metal melting, and a close up look at Dr. Keller’s specimens usually displayed through the Musuem of Natural History. View photos here.

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Cross-Pollination of Academic Outreach

Jennifer Brink, coordinator of academically based programs for Gordon in Lynn, worked across a series of academic disciplines to arrange a day of poetry, music and activities for 80 elementary school children from an inner-city school in Lynn. She shares their story...
According to professor of psychology Kaye Cook, learning is deepened as it is applied. In her Developmental Psychology class, Cook looks for ways to promote that application of knowledge by helping students experience the complexities of child development in diverse populations. Working in a completely different field but pursuing a similar goal, Mark Stevick, professor of English, enables his creative writing students to take poetry out of the classroom and place it into the hands of children. Meanwhile, the joy of teaching music is something Sandy Doneski wants her music education students to not only learn about but also to engage with as they work with children to perform a piece of music together.
En Camino (on the path), a morning campus visit coordinated by Gordon in Lynn, allows Gordon students to engage their learning in a new context--with 80 fifth-graders from Harrington Public School. By partnering with Harrington, a large diverse school located in the heart of Lynn, many students also engage with children with backgrounds strikingly different from their own. This event provides urban children exposure to college and to the path they might take one day.
Gordon students welcomed these children this past Friday for a morning of games, skits, music and poetry. As fourth-graders, these children had already visited Gordon College last spring for a morning of college exposure. For this second visit the kids were challenged to think deeply about their own character and what kind of people they want to be. They all role-played the various dimensions of trustworthiness, after which half the group performed a folksong from Ghana that expresses the importance of sacrifice and care. The other half of the group created their own poetry based on the six pillars of character. Children and students alike declared the morning a success as learning came to life and both groups found creative expression for their ideas. Clearly students from both schools are on the path to learning in meaningful and creative ways.
Photo: Gordon students from Dr. Cook’s Developmental Psychology class.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Former Consortium Student Credits Gordon with Composing Great Things


Only one semester separates Elisabeth Greene from graduating with a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Maryland, and she credits Gordon for inspiring her pursuits.

As a consortium student from George Fox University in Newburg, Oregon, studying at Gordon during the fall of 2003, Greene was able to pursue music opportunities at Gordon that weren’t available at her home university, even though she was a music performance, theory and composition major.

“Gordon had a well-developed community of composers,” said Greene. “We helped one another by performing each other’s music under the instruction of professors who really helped guide me towards bigger projects.”

Through the Consortium Visitors Program, students from the 13 Christian College Consortium (CCC) schools are able to spend a semester at another CCC school. According to the Gordon College Registrar’s Office, an average of three Gordon students study at other CCC schools each semester while Gordon hosts around a dozen.

Greene said one of her greatest accomplishments as a consortium student was having the Gordon choir perform a piece she’d written to the lyrics of the Sh’ma, which was inspired by Professor Marv Wilson’s Modern Jewish Culture class.

“Seeing the spark of an idea turn into something performed for everyone to hear, that’s what spurs me on to want to compose more,” said Greene.

Greene’s latest work is an opera called and based on the best-selling book Reading Lolita in Tehran. It will be performed at the University of Maryland in February, and is the first opera she’s written both the lyrics and music for.

“I always felt torn between studying music and writing,” said Greene. “I love that I get to use both skills (in operas) and be so creative in the process.”

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Artist Talk with Bruce Herman

On Saturday, November 13, 3 p.m., artist Bruce Herman, professor and Lothorian Distinguished Chair of visual arts, will be discussing his special exhibition Presence/Absence: New Work by Bruce Herman at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester. Bruce’s exhibit will be on display until December 12, 2010, at the museum. The lecture is free for members or with museum admission.

The Cape Ann Museum is located at 27 Pleasant Street, Gloucester, To make a reservation or for information, call Jeanette Smith at 978.283.0455, x11.

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Day at the Newseum

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning photo gallery and a special exhibit on Elvis Presley to interactive kiosks, historic newspapers and artifacts like reporters’ notebooks and the infamous Watergate door, the Newseum in Washington, D.C., became a source of journalism inspiration for Gordon students recently. Two classes—Journalism 1 and Political Communication—flew together, along with professors Tim Sherratt, Jeff Miller and Jo Kadlecek, on Tuesday, November 9, for a one-day exploration of the museum, only blocks from the capitol building.

The students also met with area alumni for a special lunch at the Newseum, hosted by Sandy Butters, vice president of development (pictured here second from right back row). First Lady Jan Carlberg and Provost Mark Sargent joined them along with Gordon board member Suzy Young (second from left). Mrs. Young even arranged for a private discussion with Shelby Coffey, former LA Times editor and current trustee of the Newseum, and her husband, Dr. David Young (far left), former aid to Henry Kissinger and founder of Oxford Analytica.

Many of the students had never been to Washington, D.C., so the exposure to the city and the six-floor museum—which highlights the First Amendment and daily posts of front pages from newspapers around the world—provided insights about the industry that built on what they’d been learning in the classroom.

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Rejuvenating the Christian Walk

Yesterday students and faculty took a break from classes and their studies to celebrate Gordon’s traditional Day of Prayer.

There were many services and opportunities for prayerful worship and communion offered throughout the day, followed by a special all-campus service that filled the 1,500 seat A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel.

In addition to services, the day was celebrated with technology fasts and dedicated prayer times. Groups of students, faculty and staff gathered to pray for residence halls, the persecuted church, academic departments and the Gordon community.

This special day set aside each November is meant to be a time for the Gordon community to be encouraged and rejuvenated by spending time in prayer with one another.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cultural Immersion Experiences—Gordon in Orvieto

Gordon in Orvieto is a flagship study abroad program for students at Christian colleges and universities across the country. It offers a rich experience in the arts and culture of premodern Europe. John Skillen, director of the program, recently contributed to a new book that explores programs “from globally engaged Christians through cultural immersion experiences.” The book is called Transformations at the Edge of the World: Forming Global Christians through the Study Abroad Experience. “I have so appreciated John’s careful and philosophical approach to crafting the Orvieto program so that every experience there—from classroom to living situation to sharing meal-points—works toward an important cultural learning experience,” said Cliff Hersey, dean for global education. “Students in Orvieto are never allowed to be merely ‘tourists’ looking in from the outside of community, but are invited (maybe forced at times) to become part of the Italian community itself, representing the best of what we mean by global understanding. Gordon in Orvieto’s enrollment averages 15–18 students each semester. The spring 2010 semester was full—with 24 students applied, seven from schools at other Christian colleges and universities.

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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Called to Protect

There is a major study happening in the landscape of higher education this year. Throw in the words “sustainability,” “recycling” and “research,” and you can guarantee our own Mark Stowell of Physical Plant is there. The winner of a Green Binny Award for recycling, Stowell has been faithfully working to make our campus community more sustainable since 1989—placing Gordon as a leader in the recycling movement. Last summer Gordon joined the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education and became a charter member of their new STARS (Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System) program. Stowell, Paul Helegesen, director of physical plant and sustainability, and faculty member Dr. Dorothy Boorse, biology, are leading the largest sustainability assessment we’ve undergone as an institution.

“We are doing a year-long assessment of sustainability across the institution,” said Boorse. “While it gives us a needed snapshot of where we are now, the assessment will help move us forward and focus our efforts.” Stowell agrees, “It’s very comprehensive. This study will challenge us to look at the entire campus and see areas we aren’t doing well or programs we could possibly begin.”

As a biologist Boorse knows about the outcomes of unsustainable practices and teaches Gordon students the importance of protecting the natural world. “I feel especially called to protect species just as much as I am called to care for the poor and the oppressed. Environmental degradation is leading to loss of species,” said Boorse. “That loss creates further injustice for people and countries most vulnerable.”

Gordon’s current sustainable practices are making improvements to our world every day, and there are many things we should be proud of. The cleaning supplies are greener, the Physical Plant fleet is low-energy, hazardous waste is low, water is protected, energy-efficient lights line our ceilings, and current students, through Advocates for a Sustainable Future, demonstrate our Restore Creation philosophy through leadership and education. Physical Plant personnel, under the leadership of Helgesen, have been a big part of making the institution so sustainable. Stowell is particularly pleased about a current project. “Our next project is one of the cooler ones,” said Stowell. “We will finally be composting in Lane.” Gordon began its first composting test three years ago behind a residence hall. “The dining hall is where we should really get some results, and the best part of it is that our product will be going to help a local farm.”

STARS will give Gordon a rating such as platinum, gold, or bronze. The College can look into improvements based on their assessment, and once changes are made, Gordon may resubmit for new scoring consideration. “It gives us a benchmark to measure by,” said Boorse. In addition to Helegesen, Stowell and Boorse, the sustainability audit team includes students Sarah Bishop and Aaron Nelson.
Photo: Gordon students perform research along the nearby Atlantic coastline.

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Monday, November 8, 2010

LED Light Display


The quad was littered with them. Looking left and right, it was all that was visible in the dreary autumn night. Motion Sensors? Explosive devices? No—LED lights! The Physics Club kept up the tradition, creating nearly 400 tiny, multicolored magnetic lights to decorate the corner of campus between KOSC and Jenks. The lights, which consisted of a small light with a watch battery taped to a magnet, infested metal poles, fire hydrants, drain gratings and even the flag for a couple of days, before the batteries were spent or students lifted them to decorate their own rooms. David Lee, Physics Club advisor, reflects on the tradition: “It is really about community building. The Physics Club meets every other Monday over a homecooked meal and some sort of group activity; the “LED throwies” are a way to share our passion for quirky science with others.” Last year the Physics Club played rock music through a holed pipe connected to a propane tank and marveled as the musical wave fluctuations caused the flames to dance. They also inadvertently called in the Wenham Fire Department when shooting garbage can smoke rings 100-feet down the hallway in MacDonald. Whatever the Physics Club has in store next, it is sure to impress.


For more pictures of the physics club at work: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gcphysicsengineering/sets/72157625214865445/with/5157786565/

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Day of Prayer

Tomorrow is the Day of Prayer at Gordon College. Greg Carmer, dean of the chapel, will lead our all campus service of Exultant prayer.


View Gordon's Day of Prayer schedule online. "Thanks for the gift of being alive! Thanks for Your generosity in making this place for us; these bodies, hearts and minds, with which to know You and love You." --Greg Carmer

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Faith after High School? Professor Monitors Impact of College Choices


For parents who take their children to church, youth group and Bible study week after week, year after year, the idea that they might abandon their faith in college is troubling. But research shows that nearly 50 percent of Christian teens fail to connect with a faith community after high school.

Drawing on six years of research with more than a dozen Christian teenagers from New England, Dr. Cheryl Crawford, a 1977 graduate of Gordon who is now an assistant professor of youth ministry at Azusa Pacific University in California, recently shared her findings on effective ways to develop a young person’s faith. Nearly 180 youth pastors and 40 parents from throughout the greater Boston area came to Gordon College on October 28 to hear Crawford’s lectures entitled, “Will Your Kids Have Faith after High School?”

“People often say that we’re losing kids from the church,” said professor Mark Cannister, cochair of the Christian Ministries Department. “But it’s always been difficult for our youth to get connected, so when they graduate from high school, the challenge is even greater. That’s why we wanted to bring Cheryl back to campus.”

To read the full article on Crawford’s findings click here.

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Jim Belcher ’87: Three Hopes for the Church

Jim Belcher: How Do We Bring Shalom? from ConversationGatherings on Vimeo.

Jim Belcher, 1987 Gordon graduate, author of Deep Church, and participant in the recent Cape Town 2010 Congress on World Evangelization, discusses three hopes for the church in this short video. Deep Church was selected as one of Christianity Today’s top books for 2009.

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Friday, November 5, 2010

An “Ephesians” Moment in Cape Town


“I’d be able to glean more from this conference if I: a) were omnipresent and: b) required no sleep. Conclusion? God is enjoying the Lausanne III Congress more than anyone.” (Paul Borthwick, Christian Ministries faculty)

The Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization in Cape Town (October 17–25) drew 4,000 invited participants from 197 nations, including a contingent from the Gordon College and Gordon-Conwell communities. Possibly one of the most representative gatherings of Christian leaders in history, 90 percent of participants were from the two-thirds world—Africa, Asia, South America—with the remaining 10 percent from North America and Europe.



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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Vocational Communities

Gordon offers a wide variety of majors for students, and each major has its individual academic community. These vocational communities promote ideas, projects and perspectives relevant to their particular majors. Recently students and faculty from across campus met for their annual fall department meetings during a Friday convocation. Here are some highlights:

“Our departmental meeting clarified the philosophy behind the new structure of my major and helped me think through the classes I want to take next semester,” said Mac Gostow, a communication arts major from California.

Sergie Barchuk, a senior social work major from Peabody, Massachusetts, was one of 30 students who gathered to hear Professor Sybil Coleman address the value a Gordon perspective brings to the internship environment. “The Social Work Practicum provides students the opportunity to interface their academic knowledge, social work skills and biblical principles to enhance the well-being of people and communities,” said Coleman. Barchuk said he enjoyed seeing the interaction between his professors and the students in his field of study.

English students and faculty spent their meeting listening to Mark Stevick, associate professor of English. “He shared his own journey through the intersection of the written word and the transcendent,” said John Mirisola, a senior from Cape Neddick, Maine. Professor Stevick—who heads up the creative writing program within the English major—also read a few of his own poems, which ranged in topic from natural beauty to baking soda. “He discussed how his personal aesthetics relate to his faith,” said Mirisola. “I really appreciated the experience.”

Photo: Sybil Coleman, professor of social work, speaks to students about the value their Gordon perspective brings to the internship environment.

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Recent Graduate and Salem News Community Editor, Muriel Hoffacker, Visits Journalism Class



Three years ago Muriel Hoffacker sat in journalism class trying to make sense of a lede and nut graf. Today she sat next to her boss, editor of The Salem News, Dave Olson, and talked to journalism students about her journey from their sneakers to her heels.

“I took all of the writing courses I could and then was selected to the Gordon College News Service (GCNS) my senior year,” said Hoffacker, a 2010 graduate and communication arts major. “I had nearly 10 stories published that semester and learned a lot about reporting and pitching to editors.”

It was pitching editors and having stories published that landed Hoffacker a job at The Salem News as the community editor two months after graduation.

“Muriel’s was one of nearly 100 applications we received for the community editor position,” said Olson. “We picked her because we recognized her name from articles she’d submitted, and she showed up to interview with clips from our paper.”

According to Olson, Hoffacker has been a valuable addition to The Salem News team, and she’s been busy doing everything from talking with community activists and attending the Tierney/Hudak debate to delivering election-day ballot results to reporters.

“I love that every day is different and there’s always so much to do,” said Hoffacker. “I really am thankful for my job.”

Photo from left to right: Jo Kadlecek, Dave Olson, Muriel Hoffacker

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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Defensive Player of the Week

Gordon College sophomore goalkeeper Alex Sosler (Willoughby, Ohio) has been named the ECAC Division III New England and The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in net for the Fighting Scots soccer team this past week. This marks the third time this season he has received the honor from the TCCC.
Part of a strong defensive front which shut out one of the most potent offenses in the conference in Salve Regina, Sosler’s work between the pipes helped lead Gordon to a 1-0-1 performance last week and vault the Scots into third place in the conference standings. In Saturday’s TCCC quarterfinal match versus sixth-seeded Wentworth Institute, Sosler prevented the Leopards from scoring in 110 minutes of regulation and overtime and stopped two penalty kicks en route to the Scots’ 4-2 shootout victory.
In his last 750 minutes of play, Sosler has not allowed a single goal, giving him a .28 goals-against average and .926 save percentage.

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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Men’s Soccer

Gordon College student-athletes Matt Horth (Akron, Ohio), Joel Spruance (Ledyard, Connecticut), Micah Linn (Germantown, Tennessee), Andrew Vandervoort (Memphis, Tennessee), Alex Sosler (Willoughby, Ohio) and Kellen Kasiguran (Oakwood Village, Ohio) have been recognized by The Commonwealth Coast Conference as members of the 2010 All-Conference Team. Horth, Spruance and Linn grabbed First Team honors, while Vandervoort and Sosler were named to the Second Team, and Kasiguran was named All-TCCC Honorable Mention.
Horth, senior captain and four-time First Team honoree, has controlled the center midfield for the Fighting Scots to net four goals and hand out six assists for 14 total points on the season. Spruance, a graduate student and captain of the team, has provided steady goal scoring throughout the season, with seven goals and two assists on the year. Linn, a junior back, has been instrumental in preserving the Scots’ eight-game shutout streak.
Vandervoort has led all Gordon scorers in his rookie debut with eight goals and two assists (18 total points) from Gordon’s front line. At the other end of the field, sophomore keeper Alex Sosler was three times named TCCC Defensive Player of the Week for his shutout efforts between the pipes en route to a .28 goals-against average and .926 save percentage.
Kasiguran, a sophomore, earned his first TCCC nod after netting two goals and dishing seven assists from Gordon’s midfield this season.
After advancing on penalty kicks past Wentworth Institute in the TCCC opening round, the third-seeded Scots will travel to Western New England on Wednesday, November 3, to vie for their chance to play in next weekend’s conference championship.

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Monday, November 1, 2010

Placebo Effects in Medicine and Psychiatry: Obstacle or Opportunity?

In 2009, science faculty and students at Gordon College, Endicott College and Salem State University came together to establish a North Shore Chapter of Sigma Xi, an international scientific research society.

Now the group has planned its first lecture of the 2010–2011 academic year, entitled “Placebo Effects in Medicine and Psychiatry: Obstacle or Opportunity?” John Kelley, assistant professor of mathematics and psychology at Endicott College, will present the lecture, which will take place Thursday, November 4, at 7:30 P.M. in Gordon College’s Ken Olsen Science Center, Room 104, 255 Grapevine Road, Wenham (Exit 17 from Route 128). The event is free and open to the public.

“This is an important topic for students interested in the field of health professions to think about,” said Greg Keller, associate professor of conservation biology and one of six officers for the North Shore Chapter of Sigma Xi.

For more information on the event click here.

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Scavo, Nedde, Knaus Earn All-TCCC Honors For Women's Soccer

Gordon College sophomore Karina Scavo (Mount Sinai, New York), sophomore Caitlin Nedde (Colchester, Vermont), and senior-captain Katie Knaus (Kensington, Connecticut) have been named to The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) All-Conference team for their play in the 2010 season.
Scavo, named to the First Team, was instrumental in Gordon’s midfield game in her first season with the Scots, netting eight goals and dishing as many assists for a total of 24 points on the season. The honor marks her second TCCC All-Conference distinction, having been named All-Conference Honorable Mention in 2009.
Nedde, a Second Team selection for the second consecutive year, led Gordon’s offensive front with 13 goals and four assists for 30 total points despite being sidelined with an injury for two key conference games.
Knaus, also a Second Team selection, earned her first TCCC recognition for her efforts in helping anchor the Scots' back line in all 19 of their games.


The women finished at 10-8-1 overall after falling 2-0 to the top-seeded Hawks of Roger Williams in the TCCC quarterfinals.


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YouTube Channel features Gordon's Youth Symposium

The Christian Ministries and Admissions Departments recently hosted Gordon’s 2010 Youth Symposium and Christian Ministries Day. Over 180 visitors from the youth ministry community listened to alumna Dr. Cheryl Crawford present her research, “Will Your Kids Have Faith after High School?” With all the New England states represented, this was the first year the symposium also brought folks from outside the region, including the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and Mississippi. Also new this year was an evening event, Gordon’s first Parents’ Symposium. Bob Whittet, associate professor of Christian Ministries and director of church relations, said, “The symposium was a great example of our desire for Gordon College to be a resource to the Church.”

“Dr. Crawford’s presentation is now available on the Gordon YouTube Channel,” said Whittet. “We want to share this valuable resource with others who couldn’t make it or those who want to take the presentation back to their churches and communities.”

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A Walk around Coy Pond


A Walk around Coy Pond with wetlands expert Dr. Dorothy Boorse, professor of biology, at Gordon College.

"The blaze of reds and flashes of yellow in the foliage around Coy declare the coming of fall. Leaves of gold and salmon light the hill on the far side of the pond. Coy is a central attractor, one of five great ponds on the Gordon campus and woods, ponds which serve as stopping points for water as it wends its way to the nearby ocean. The plants in the water are common aquatic species—lilies, cattails, arrowroot, duckweed. Each is adapted for the difficulty of living in water. Around the edges along the trails are species that come rushing in when land is disturbed—the invasive oriental bittersweet with its clinging vines, purple loosestrife, glossy buckthorn. Cattbrier, a native tangle of food and shelter for the animals here, can hold its own with these invaders.

In the nearby woods, the trees are mostly beech and hemlock, with a spare oak or white pine. They change into the fire-leaved red maples and dead birches on their hullocks of moss and sedge as we near the water’s edge. The trail behind the pond, once very wet, lies higher and drier after the placement of a new culvert and other work last year. In the warm, still air, a dragonfly lands on a hand, beating its wings to warm its muscles. A few fall migrants wing by, calling; a mallard rides a tiny ripple on the water; the peace of the world lies centered on the pond.

The glory of God is exalted in His creation. We walk in wonder and joy, enjoying fellowship and a sacred moment in the cathedral of the natural world."

Click here for a virtual photo tour with Dr. Boorse.

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