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Igniting the Mind . . . Inspiring the Spirit

Up Front

Difference-Makers As I stood in line waiting for my flight out of Boston, a young woman who seemed familiar approached me and introduced herself as Rebekah Fisher, a Gordon graduate of the Class of 2005. Bekah had majored in physics and wanted to be a teacher, but she was embarking on a much longer journey than most new teachers take. “How does teaching fit in with being a physics major?” I asked. “Don’t most physics majors get Ph.D.s and work in research or large corporations?” Bekah confirmed that many do, but she felt called to teach physics in Africa through the Peace Corps for a few years because she wanted to make a difference for children there. After spending a few days in orientation in Washington, Bekah was to join her volunteer group for the long trip to Tanzania, where she would teach in a secondary school for girls. She would be introduced to East African culture and learn basic Swahili even while she began to mentor minds and spirits—much like faculty and staff at Gordon did for her. Indeed, Gordon’s mission is precisely to graduate difference-makers like Bekah through igniting their minds and inspiring their spirits. Several times since that chance meeting I’ve wondered how Bekah was adjusting to her new life. Recently she sent me an update from Tanzania. I have a quaint three-room apartment . . . no electricity or indoor plumbing, but water runs from a faucet about 20 yards away from my house, and candles are in abundance. It is very peaceful . . . and I am enjoying it. . . . In January I will begin teaching physics to the students of Itengule Secondary School. In the village of Itengule there are two shops, a school, an Italian Catholic mission, a handful of houses and little else. There Bekah is attempting to have an impact on young girls whose lives and opportunities are very different from her own. I admire and celebrate her choice. I hope you will enjoy reading in this issue about faculty who continue to help students find a clear sense of purpose, and alumni who are making a difference in a myriad of ways—alumni such as Paul Van Ness ’73, filmmaker and artist; and Anna Deblois, ’02, who is director of immunization policy for the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials in Washington, D.C. Read also about invaluable friends of the College like computer pioneer Ken Olsen, who has made a most significant impact at Gordon and in the larger world.


T.S. Eliot, in his poem Four Quartets, refers to God as the “still point of the turning world.” Editor Patricia C. McKay ’65 Director of College Communications and Marketing Patricia A. Jones Creative Director Tim Ferguson Sauder Publication Design Kirsten E. Keister ’04 Photography Director Cyndi McMahon Printer AM Lithography Corporation Chicopee, Massachusetts Stillpoint, the magazine for alumni and friends of the united college of Gordon and Barrington, is published three times a year and has a circulation of over 22,000. Send address changes to: Development Office Send other correspondence to: Editor, Stillpoint Gordon College 255 Grapevine Road Wenham, Massachusetts 01984 Visit our website at: Reproduction of Stillpoint in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Gordon College is an equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, sex, or national or ethnic origin.

Volume 21, Number 2

Spring 2006

Igniting the Mind . . . Inspiring the Spirit IFC

Up Front by R. Judson Carlberg Difference-Makers


On & Off by Pat McKay ’65


Ken Olsen Brings Entrepreneurial Leadership to Science by Daniel Tymann






Ken Olsen and Digital Equipment Corporation ushered in a monumental era in technology. His 50 years of service to Gordon is culminated in the Ken Olsen Science Center.

Dr. Chuck Blend and students Jennifer Kerry ’06 and Udayan Joseph ’07 hand-feed shrimp to fish during a lab class at the New England Aquarium (see story on page 6).

New Terms for Worms: Gordon Professor Brings Opportunities for Discovery to Marine Biology Students by Pat Jones and Cyndi McMahon

Dr. Chuck Blend, biology professor, is building bridges as a visiting scientist at the New England Aquarium.

Seventy for Seventy for Seventy by Paul Van Ness ’73

Alumnus Paul Van Ness traveled to the Philippines to do a video documentary on an orphanage, but he came away with a mission of his own.

Leading the Way in Reading Instruction by Janet Arndt ’68 and Priscilla Nelson ’74


Gordon’s education program offers students state-ofthe-art information about teaching reading—with top test scores to prove it.

An Unexpected Pathway by Anna DeBlois ’02

Alumna Anna DeBlois didn’t expect a career that would combine science, politics and social justice, but there have been surprises around every corner.

Igniting the Mind: Introducing High School Students to Neuroscience by Bryan Auday

Professor Bryan Auday takes his neuroscience lab to the inner city to supplement science curricula for disadvantaged students.

Cover photograph of Dr. Chuck Blend at the New England Aquarium, by Kindra Clineff. Photos by Kindra Clineff: TOC, 8, (center); F. Gaylor Photography: IFC, 13 (upper), 16, 17 (lower), 19 (left); Michael Hevesy: 14; Cyndi McMahon: 6, 7, 8 (left), 9 (right).


Changing the World While Changing Diapers by Debra Rienstra

Guest lecturer Debra Rienstra believes women and men have equal responsibilities in parenting, community care and using God-given gifts, and must rethink traditional roles and restructure the work world.

Fall 2005 Athletics a Record-Breaker by Bess Watson ’04

Gordon made six separate appearances in Commonwealth Coast Conference championship events—a first—and celebrated 18 All-Conference student-athletes.


Raves & Rebuffs


Events Calendar

A Salute to Ken Olsen


On & Off Campus by

Pat McKay ’65

New Dean for Academic Programs Dr. Kina Mallard, dean for academic programs, brings to Gordon an excellent reputation for both management and leadership in Christian and private higher education. Previously she was associate provost and professor of communications at Union University in Tennessee, where she earned her doctorate. Mallard has served the past few years as senior fellow for faculty development for the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, organizing the CCCU’s virtual center of online resources for teaching. She is the author of several scholarly articles and professional presentations, many on issues related to institutional management and departmental leadership. She has won teaching awards from both Union University and the Tennessee Communication Association. Kina, her husband, Michael, and their daughter, Amelia, joined daughter Kaylen, a sophomore at Gordon.

Trustee Wins Lifetime Achievement Award Gordon trustee Peter Herschend and his brother, Jack, have been honored with the Ernst & Young International Lifetime Achievement Award for Activism, Entrepreneurship and Leadership. Cofounders of the Herschend Family Entertainment Corporation, the brothers own, operate or are partners in 20 entertainment properties in eight states, including theme parks and attractions like Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, Stone Mountain Park in Atlanta, Hawaiian Falls water park in Dallas and Dollywood in Tennessee. James S. Turley, chairman and CEO, Ernst & Young LLP, said, “We are pleased to honor Jack and Peter Herschend for their values-based leadership . . . providing wholesome family entertainment for generations.”

Association for Moral Education Gordon College, Harvard University and Saint Michael’s College cosponsored the national conference of the Association for Moral Education in November at Harvard. Gordon psychology professor Kaye Cook was one of the principal coordinators. Entitled “Challenging What’s ‘Right’: How Children and Adolescents Come to Critique Culture from an Ethical Standpoint,” the conference assessed how young people gain the intellectual ability and courage to confront ethical questions in 

Gordon College Stillpoint  SUMMER 2005

their experiences. The conference featured a wide range of prominent scholars with diverse viewpoints and provided an excellent opportunity for Christian scholars to be engaged in the public square in the discussion of morality in education and personal development. There were several evangelical viewpoints at the conference, including Gordon faculty and students.

Gordon Ad Design Takes Gold The “Own It” athletic ad campaign created by Tim Ferguson Sauder, art director in the College Design Center, took Gold in the Magazine Advertising/Series category of the Twenty-First Annual Admission’s Advertising Awards—the oldest, largest and most prestigious educational advertising awards competition in the country. In addition to his artistic contributions in the Design Center, Sauder also serves on the faculty in graphic arts. See his winning ads on page 23 of this issue.

Academic Report The Academic Report 2004–05 was released in December, with Gordon statistics compiled by Registrar Carol Herrick. English continues to be the largest major, followed by psychology, business administration, communication and biblical studies. Biblical studies and theatre gained the most ground in enrollment. Fifty-five percent of Gordon students are from New England; North Atlantic states account for 21 percent; Midwest, 8 percent; Far West, 7 percent; and the South, 6 percent. International students from 31 countries comprise 3 percent. The six-year graduation rate rose to 71 percent (the national average hovers around 40 percent).

New Off-Campus Program in Belize The Office of Global Education will oversee a new venture in Belize on the Caribbean Coast. The program will be associated with Jaguar Creek, a Christian center for ecological and peace studies in the foothills of the Maya Mountains. The program will accommodate six to 10 students during the fall semester and will include courses in ecology and creation care, case studies in social justice and the developing world, and an internship. Jaguar Creek will be used for short research and retreat opportunities such as birding, soil or water research, marine studies and conferences. Research facilities at the University of Belize are approximately 30 minutes away.

Faculty Focus David Aiken, philosophy: Presented “Tending Intending: Lonergan and Virtue Epistemology” at the Lonergan Forum, an annual conference of scholars held at Boston College. Dorothy Boorse, biology: Spoke on “Using Case Studies of NonIndigenous Invasive Species to Teach Environmental Ethics” at the Association for Moral Education conference at Harvard. C. Thomas Brooks, music: Conducted the Commonwealth Opera of Western Massachusetts performing Il Barbiere di Siviglia. Tanja Butler, art: “Painting by Faith: An Artist Residency at Christ Church, Hamilton/Wenham” published on the Episcopal Church Visual Arts website. Illustrated section on the Psalms for the Next Book of Worship, a hymnal published by Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Kaye Cook, psychology: Presented along with three students at the Association for Moral Education conference at Harvard, “Khmer Buddhist and Christian: Qualitative Descriptions of Their Moral Landscapes.” Sabbatical appointment as visiting scholar in education at Dartmouth University. Damon DiMauro, French: Published essay “Le Personnage de David comme figure du Christ dans ‘Les Tragedies Sainctes’ de Louis Des Masures” in La Nouvelle Revue du Seizeième Siècle. Published review of The Tragic History of La Pucelle of Domrémy, Otherwise Known as the Maid of Orléans in the Sixteenth-Century Journal. Nancy Feng, economics and business: Paper proposal on “The Empirical Study of Effective Teaching Models for an Accounting Information Systems Course” at the New Scholars Research Workshop of the Journal of Information System of the American Accounting Association. Janis Flint-Ferguson, English, and Donna Robinson, education: Presented “The Moral Debate: Engaging Students in the Paideia Seminar” at the Association for Moral Education conference at Harvard.

A sampling of faculty accomplishments and activities outside the classroom “A Hedgehog and a Fox,” a study on the historical thought of John Lukacs, published in The Collegiate Review. Irvin Levy, chemistry: Selected to serve on the Program Committee for the Division of Chemical Education of the American Chemical Society. His organic chemistry class worked as partners with the Greener Educational Materials project at the University of Oregon. Lynn Marcotte, English: Essay “Being Feminist and Pro-Family” published in E-Quality, an online journal sponsored by the Center for Biblical Equality. David Mathewson, biblical studies: Published the chapter “Isaiah in Revelation” in Isaiah in the New Testament, edited by Steve Moyise and Maarten J.J. Menken. Malcolm Patterson, education: Commencement speaker at Cornerstone College in South Africa—“The Power of Education: God Alive and at Work within Us.” Kenneth Phillips, music: Keynote address at the Kodaly of New York Annual Conference. Article “Planning a Successful Choral Rehearsal, Part I” published in Choral Journal. Richard Pierard, history: Speaker at the symposium on world Christianity at Andover Newton Theological School. Presented “Baptist Missions: A Globalizing or Westernizing Force?” at the Pruit Memorial Symposium on global Christianity at Baylor University. Review of Paul Kengor’s God and Ronald Reagan: A Spiritual Life published in the Christian Scholar’s Review. Richard Stout and Karl-Dieter Crisman, mathematics: Presentations at the Mathematical Society of America. Stout on “Using Sudoku Number Puzzles to Practice Reasoning Skills in a Basic Mathematics Course”; Crisman on “Writing about Mathematics in General Education Courses.” Gregor Thuswaldner, German: Reviewed Party in the Blitz for Choice and a collection of essays on modern Austrian literature for German Studies Review.

Mark Gedney, philosophy: Published chapter “The Saving or Sanitizing of Prayer: The Problem of the ‘Sans’ in Derrida’s Account of Prayer” in the book The Phenomenology of Prayer, edited by Bruce Benson and Norman Wirzba.

Dwight Tshudy, chemistry: Honored for 13 years of service and serving on the board of the Northeast Regional Chromatography Discussion Group. Presented “From French Fries to Rabbits” on the biodiesel project at Gordon.

Valerie Gin, recreation and leisure studies: Paper “Innovations in Moral Reasoning Curricula for College Athletics” at the International Conference on Sport and Religion. Spoke on a similar topic at the Association for Moral Education conference at Harvard.

Dong Wang, history: On editorial staff of the Journal of American-East Asian Relations, featuring high-caliber scholarship on trans-Pacific international relations. Article “The Dissemination of International Law and the Study of Unequal Treaties in China” in As China Meets the World, a collection of scholarly articles published by the Austrian Academy of Science.

Roger Green, biblical studies: Published The Life and Ministry of William Booth, the Founder of The Salvation Army. Recipient of an honorary doctorate from The Salvation Army’s William and Catherine Booth College. Jennifer Hevelone-Harper, history: Lectured on “Islam: Historical Origins, Contemporary Concerns” at Endicott College as part of the North Shore Seminars. Was interviewed for a documentary on the DaVinci Code produced by the Institute for Religious Research. Bert Hodges, psychology: Address on “Dissenting from Norms by Realizing Values: Surprising Truths” at the Association for Moral Education conference at Harvard. Paper “Good Prospects: Ecological and Social Perspectives on Talking Together” at the Conference on Cognitive Dynamics and Language Sciences at Sidney Sussex College of Cambridge University in England. Peggy Hothem, recreation and leisure studies: Presented “Take Back Your Time” at both the Massachusetts and Northern New England Recreation and Parks Association conferences. Tal Howard, history: Lectured on “American Religion in the European Mind: from George W. Hegel to George W. Bush” at Boston College’s Boisi Center for Religion and American Public life. Essay

Bruce Webb, economics: Received the Peggy McCormick Award from the Massachusetts Citizens for Life (MCFL), the largest statewide pro-life organization, “for outstanding contributions to the deliberation, decision-making and effective performance of the MCFL Board,” of which he has been chair for two years. Robert Whittet, youth ministries: Hosted symposium for local youth pastors and parachurch workers, sponsored by Gordon’s Center for Student Leadership. Presented “How Does Exposure to Poverty Impact Adolescent Attitudes toward the Poor?” at the annual meeting of the Association of Youth Ministry Educators. Marvin Wilson, biblical studies: Wrote study guide for documentary by Gerald Krell and Meyer Odze, Three Faiths, One God: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, comparing the similarities and differences of the three faiths, running on PBS. Correction, Summer 2005 issue: Stephen Alter, history, published William Dwight Whitney and the Science of Language (2005), his second, not his third, book.

Ken Olsen Brings Entrepreneurial Leadership to Science by

Daniel Tymann

Ken Olsen and Digital Equipment Corporation ushered in a monumental era of technology that established industry standards and created a new model for corporate culture and practices. And with over 50 years of service to Gordon, he lends his support and name to the new science facility at the College. Bill Gates, Thomas Edison, and Jack Welch are names we all recognize. We use descriptors like inventor, philanthropist, entrepreneur, leader, CEO, technologist, scientist, visionary and pioneer. Ken Olsen, founder of the revolutionary Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), earned a place alongside these innovative giants but also brought a heart for Christ to his business endeavors and, fortunately for the College, a commitment to Gordon’s mission. Ken Olsen has served the College for more than 50 years with leadership and vision. His association began because he saw in Gordon a place committed to Christ but also open to inquiry. His life had demonstrated the compatibility—in fact the inseparability—of the mind and the soul. He found that Gordon instilled those values in generations of young Christians: “Gordon strives to graduate students who feel at ease with science, economics and the humanities while holding on to their faith.” As a Gordon trustee 1961–93, Olsen provided both spiritual and business insight. Working with fellow trustees such as Tom Phillips, former chairman of Raytheon, and evangelist Billy Graham, he negotiated the successful allocation of board seats and College resources when the College and Gordon-Conwell Seminary became separate entities in 1970. Through his Stratford Foundation he has contributed to numerous capital and building projects in support of all areas of academics, athletics, music and the arts. A critical part of his legacy was bringing the College into the new era of technology with donations and guidance to 

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

centralize data and lay the groundwork for a fully networked campus. Olsen’s vision for technology and his support of our mission have positioned Gordon for what lies ahead. The College is close to fulfilling the vision of students and alumni with a global reach—anywhere-, anytime-access to information resources. The “Neighborhood Edison” A native of Stratford, Connecticut, Ken Olsen began his career working summers in a machine shop. Fixing radios in his basement gave him the reputation of a “neighborhood Edison.” After serving in the Navy 1944–46, he earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He was on the staff of MIT’s Digital Computer Laboratory for seven years, including as leader of the section of MIT Lincoln Laboratory which designed and built the critical, high performance computers used for air defense applications, setting performance standards in that industry. In 1957 Olsen, along with Harlan Anderson, an MIT colleague, formed DEC with an initial investment of $70,000. Ken, Harlan and Ken’s brother, Stan, were the first three employees, producing printed circuit logic modules used by engineers to test electronic equipment. During this time he received patents for key electronic components like a saturable switch, a diode transformer gate circuit, magnetic core memory, and the line printer buffer—cornerstones of much of the hardware innovation that was soon to occur. In the 30 years that followed, DEC

became the second largest computer company in the world and is credited with the invention of the minicomputer. Olsen led DEC as president and CEO through the design, manufacture and service of multiple generations of computer software and hardware products, with peak employment of over 110,000 employees in 97 countries. DEC Ushers in Technology Era Olsen and his company pioneered and set standards for program languages, operating systems, networking architectures, computer peripherals, application software, component and circuit technology, manufacturing processes and business practices which became the foundation for today’s information and computer networking industry. As a former colleague relates, “When it came to technology, Ken had the uncanny ability to see into the future.” The corporate culture he established was informed by his Christian faith and belief, bringing servant leadership to his industry. The culture he created at DEC was one of employee recognition and empowerment, innovation, customer focus, total quality management, employee and company loyalty, frugality, family and work balance, and integrity. Moreover, Olsen regularly had coffee with his production-line employees, drove an older model car and provided no privileged parking for executives. When it was time for his retirement, he rejected plans for a major celebration and chose to have cake in the cafeteria with his employees (high-level management were not invited). Ken had great loyalty and affection for his employees; one former DEC leader remembers Ken’s response when asked for words to share at a DEC retirement dinner: “Tell them I’m so proud of their contributions to DEC and the part they played in the great culture of the company.” Companies such as Cisco Systems, Microsoft and Hewlett Packard have all benefited and grown out of the leadership, principles and success of Ken Olsen and DEC. Olsen did not seek or welcome personal acclaim, but recognition sought him out. In 1986 Fortune Magazine named him the “most successful entrepreneur in the history of American business,” followed by inductions into multiple halls of fame including the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame (1990) and the Computer History Museum (1996). Many organizations have benefited from Olsen’s service and philanthropy. He has served on the boards of several prestigious organizations including the Computer Science and Engineering Board of the National Academy

The Heart of Discovery campaign was launched by leadership gifts from the Olsen family, trustees, members of the Executive Campaign Committee and major donors. Fundraising for the campaign will now focus on alumni working in science and technology. From personal experience they know Gordon’s need for first-rate science facilities. Faculty mentoring and personal relationships continue to be at the heart of the student experience; however,

of Sciences, Washington, D.C.; and as a member of the President’s Science Advisory Committee. Inspired by the passion for inquiry that is Gordon’s hallmark, in 2003 Ken and wife Aulikki Olsen made a generous gift commitment to initiate a center for the sciences in the heart of the College’s campus. “Even though I have been an entrepreneur, I have always been a scientist first and foremost,” Olsen says. “Science is more than a study of molecules and calculations; it is the love of knowledge and the continued search for truth. The study of the sciences promotes humility, leaving us with a clear sense that we will never understand all there is to know. At the same time, science provides a defense for truth, authenticates Christianity and stems from the nature of God.” This building will be named the Ken Olsen Science Center—the first time Olsen has agreed to have his name associated with a building. The Ken Olsen Science Center will continue the quest for the knowledge and truth of science, with an openness to explore new ideas and debate multiple viewpoints in the context of Christian faith and principles. It will be a place where our expert faculty, fine students, challenging curriculum, state-of-the-art facilities and educationenhancing technology will enable the College to achieve its mission. It is a privilege and honor that Gordon’s new science center bears the name of Ken Olsen the inventor, philanthropist, entrepreneur, leader, CEO, technologist, scientist, visionary, pioneer and Christian. Magazine Cover: FORTUNE, October 27, 1986. FORTUNE is a registered trademark of Time Inc. All rights reserved.

Dan Tymann is vice president for advancement of science and technology. Previously he led manufacturing and engineering organizations for AT&T, Lucent Technologies and Cisco Systems. At Gordon he is responsible for fundraising efforts with a focus on science—particularly for the Heart of Discovery campaign—and provides leadership for technology operations and strategy. He and his wife, Andrea, have served for several years on the President’s Advisory Council, and their daughter, Sarah, is a second-year music and sociology major at Gordon.

more teaching and learning can be accomplished through hands-on research. Collaborative research and scholarships can play a pivotal role in shaping the hearts and minds of students. Our aim is to prepare students for what God has called them to do. Now is the time for you to help make the Ken Olsen Science Center a reality! For more information contact Bob Grinnell, 978.867.4005 or

Gordon College Stillpoint î Ž Spring 2006

Gordon faculty members bring expertise not only to the College but also to the community. Dr. Charles “Chuck” Blend, assistant professor of biology, is building bridges to both the New England Aquarium as a consultant and to the National Marine Fishery Service’s Ecosystems Surveys Branch in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, as a visiting scientist.


Patricia Jones and Cyndi McMahon 

Among the aquarium’s many fish on display is the Banggai cardinalfish.

In the aquarium’s Diagnostic Lab, Dr. Blend checks out the Surinam toad with Nilda Ramos ’08 and John Stoeckle ’06, both from his parasitology class at Gordon.

Dr. Chuck Blend is providing exciting opportunities for real-life problem solving as well as discovery for biology students in laboratory and field work. That’s because of professional relationships he has built based on his highly specialized field of the study of taxonomy—scientific classification—of parasitic worms known as helminths, found in deepwater fish. Blend has described and named almost 20 new species. His collaborations include Texas A&M University, the Field Museum in Chicago, the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory among many others. His relationship with the New England Aquarium is having a positive impact on some of the residents there— better healthcare. Blend first collaborated with the New England Aquarium in August 2005 when he was asked to identify a parasitic nematode species discovered in their striped sea bass. In his lab on campus Blend was able to identify the roundworm species as Philometra rubra so veterinarians at the aquarium could treat the infection. As a follow-up he was asked if barndoor skates that had eaten the sea bass would become infected with the roundworms. Blend definitively determined that the skates were at little risk for infection, sparing the aquarium the expense and the skates the ordeal of treatment. “It is extremely helpful for us to have access to a parasite specialist like Dr. Blend,” says Charles J. Innis, D.V.M., associate veterinarian at the New England Aquarium. “Parasites are relatively common in aquatic animals, and identifying specific parasites and their life cycles helps us make decisions about animal health, medical treatments, exhibit design, etc. In addition, it is quite possible that with his research and assistance we may be lucky enough to identify previously unknown species of parasites and document new scientific information.” Blend also investigated parasites infesting a leatherback turtle from the wild that had been treated at the aquarium as well as two roundworm species infecting a giant green

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

anaconda in the Brazilian Rain Forest exhibit. “I was glad I didn’t have to tell the anaconda what it’s got. That’s one big snake,” Blend says. While Blend is trained to use DNA-based techniques such as gene sequencing for identification, he believes there is an important role for the use of microscope and reference literature. He was able to identify the anaconda’s parasites strictly by accessing his extensive library. Blend is excited about the opportunities this relationship with the aquarium will bring to the Gordon classroom. “I’m fascinated by this kind of research, so these projects are professionally satisfying,” he says. “More importantly, I can provide exciting real-life research opportunities for my biology students while helping the aquarium to have healthier animals for public viewing and educational purposes.” These rigorous research experiences help students prepare for graduate or professional studies. They have hands-on experience with dissecting, mounting of specimens and helminth classification through the work done in his laboratory. Students who are able to commit a full year to supervised laboratory study can learn biological illustration, report the results of their research at local and regional scientific meetings, and submit manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.

—T. S. Eliot

The primary focus of Blend’s work has been the deep sea, an interest and expertise cultivated in part through a longtime relationship with Dr. Norman Dronen, professor of wildlife and fisheries sciences, and Blend’s master’s and

The aquarium rescues 25–150 sea turtles each fall. The Kemp’s ridley sea turtle above is the most endangered sea turtle in the world, with only about 10,000 adults surviving in the wild.

The Mystery of the Striped Bass postdoctoral advisor at Texas A&M University. “I have tremendous respect for Dr. Dronen. He gave me my shot when I was a young student and taught me everything I know. Having him as a mentor made a very positive impact on my career and my thinking, and he remains my trusted and close friend. I know firsthand how important it is to develop that same kind of relationship with my students.” Blend’s next New England project kicks off in October 2006. For five days he will be aboard the Albatross IV, a 187-foot stern trawler with a team from the National Marine Fishery Service’s Ecosystems Surveys Branch, to conduct a census of marine fish and ichthyoplankton populations offshore in the Gulf of Maine. As a volunteer scientist on the team, he’ll help collect species off the East Coast with some opportunities for deepwater collection. In exchange, he will be able to examine the fish for parasitic infections. He also looks forward to opportunities the new Ken Olsen Science Center will bring. “Among many other programs we will be able to offer education in museum science—giving students experience in curation and upkeep of zoological, botanical and microbiological materials.” Blend brings an important perspective to the Gordon community through his faith as well. Jewish from birth, he describes himself as a “completed” or Messianic Jew. “I stand with my brothers and sisters in Christ here at Gordon when I say the value of a strong faith-based education is more important today than ever. If we are to teach students to be good stewards of this world, we must train them to use their minds to sustain what God has given us. Science nurtures and strengthens that awesome sense of wonder that brings us closer to Him. I am reminded of T.S. Eliot’s poignant observation: ‘We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.’”

The crime scene: A Striped bass at the New England Aquarium turns up dead. The evidence: Autopsy reveals roundworms in its body. The detective: The aquarium veterinarian hears about Chuck Blend, a parasitologist and professor at Gordon College, through a mutual acquaintance. Blend takes the case. The perpetrator: The worms arrive in the mail and Blend takes a look. He then sifts through his parasite books and computer databases of the Tisch Library at Tufts University for known striped bass parasites. This turns out to be a fairly easy crime to crack. The worms, it appears, are a species called Philometra rubra. Blend notifies the aquarium. The plot thickens: The aquarium now realizes the infected striped bass had been fed to some barndoor skates. They need to know more about the worms. What was the worm life cycle and could they spread to the skates? More shoe leather: Blend goes back to the literature and finds the answer. The bony fish, in this case the striped bass, was the final host for this particular worm: “The skates would not be infected and they’re OK.” The reward: The final report makes an impression at the aquarium and leads to future assignments for the detective. “It was much more thorough than we’d ever seen,” said Associate Veterinarian Charles J. Innis. “He’s just been very enthusiastic.” Case closed. Reprinted by permission from The Salem News, January 23, 2006; Julie Kirkwood. 

Seventy for Seventy for Seventy by


Paul Van Ness ’73

Alumnus Paul Van Ness traveled to the Philippines to shoot a video documentary of an orphanage. But he ended up with a mission of his own.


after driving all night ,

my first two visual impressions of dawn in the Philippine seaside town of Badian were indelible: the children and the light. At 5:45 a.m. hundreds of children are walking on dirt roads to Grace Christian Mission Technical High School. Dressed in long dresses or crisp, white shirts and slacks suggesting a semiformal dance to American eyes, the Filipino youth walk through sunlight that bounces off water a mile east before landing at a steep angle on the lush green mountains behind the school. Shafts of sun illuminate the air they pass through, making the distances misty and blue. I’m noticing the light because we’re shooting a video documentary about Grace Christian Mission, a 35-year old orphanage and school system that cares for some of the most needy children in the Philippines; I’m looking for good exposure on the white school uniforms and the students’ dark complexions. I’m also noticing the light with an eye toward a project in my second career—oil painting; conceiving another way to capture this beautiful morning and to engage Americans with this important work. in 1970, when i was a sophomore at gordon,

my dorm director, Craig Hammon, suggested I attend Union Congregational Church in Magnolia. At this congregation, which quickly became my permanent church home, I kept hearing people talk and pray about a woman named Arsenia Banaga and her new orphanage in the Philippines. Arsenia, a Filipino whose parents were orphans, developed a heart for the plight of abandoned or orphaned children in the Philippines, where the lack of a social service system consigns them to lives of substance abuse, crime or exploitation on the streets. Arsenia traveled to GordonConwell Theological Seminary in the late 1960s to earn degrees necessary to operate an orphanage and school, and upon her return she founded Grace Christian Mission. Over the years an average of 70 children have been under her care at all times, supported by a handful of American churches including ours in Magnolia. Knowing her children would need a good education to become contributing members of society, Arsenia founded two schools—which now educate an additional 600 students. By all criteria except financial, the work of Grace Christian Mission has been 12

“Just when we were approaching a time of trouble, God provided friends from America to encourage us.”

extraordinarily successful: orphanage alumni include doctors, lawyers, pastors and engineers, and virtually all the talented and dedicated staff of the schools and mission grew up in the orphanage. But more recently Grace Christian Mission faced a worse crisis than usual. As Arsenia articulated it, “Most of the original American sponsors of our work are in Heaven, and we need to develop a new generation of supporters.” Mindful of this crisis, my friend Don Byker (husband of former Gordon faculty member Win Byker) invited me to the Philippines in January 2004 to produce a documentary about Arsenia and the mission. In the months before the trip I explored the idea of creating a series of oil paintings to accompany the documentary. Art engages the public in a different way than film and video, capturing the heart and imagination on an intimate level. The concept evolved into an exhibition called Seventy for Seventy for Seventy, representing 70 oil paintings for $70 each for 70 orphans. Each purchaser was also asked to commit to making an annual gift of $70 as long as they own the painting. Between February 1 and June 1, 2004, I created 70 paintings using high definition still frames from our video footage as references, concentrating on scenes that had the most emotional impact for me: portraits of children, landscapes, details of orphanage life. Creating the paintings was meditative and provided me opportunity to work on resolving questions a visit to the Third World evokes. Because I needed to produce such a quantity of work, I eliminated as much of the artistic soul searching as possible

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

—Arsenia Banaga

from the process; I basically prepared a list of reference ideas and committed to painting each one without contemplating whether or not I was in the mood for that subject. This allowed me to be disciplined artistically and spiritually, and enhanced my sense of connection to Grace Christian Mission. The two to five hours I spent on each painting felt like prayer; creating a likeness felt like intercession on behalf of the subject—like loving them intensely from a distance. At the two-day show scheduled for early June 2004, all 70 paintings were sold. Several people expressed disappointment when the paintings were gone, so I decided to create a second set of 70 paintings that were shown at a traveling exhibit in December 2004. Over a threeweek period all but a handful sold. The whole project raised more than $9,000 for Grace Christian Mission with the potential to raise an equal amount each year as purchasers send their yearly gifts of $70. Just as importantly, there are more than 100 new friends of the mission, supporting it with prayer and advocating on its behalf. The painting exhibitions, the documentary, and generous gifts from individuals and foundations have brought a year of major improvements at Grace Christian Mission. Existing buildings have been upgraded and a new academic building constructed at the high school in Badian. The needs of children in a country like the Philippines are extraordinary; the increased financial support only raised the budget to minimum levels to sustain the staff. More work lies ahead, but there is a new infusion of support in both finances and prayer at a time when Grace Christian

Mission was at a crossroads. As Arsenia— who received an honorary doctorate from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary last year—notes, “Just when we were approaching a time of trouble, God provided friends from America to encourage us.” i believe painting is kingdom work,

even when the subject matter seems unrelated to the sacred. The color, composition, brushwork, and emotional evocativeness of a work of art can disseminate the good news. This art project made the connection between art and Christ’s Kingdom apparent, allowing the artist and the viewers to engage our imaginations with miraculous work God is accomplishing in the Philippines, and allowing us to partner in it. Now each of the almost 140 paintings has begun its own journey, linking someone in America with a child in the Philippines, and working quietly to promote God’s permanent and irrevocable renewal of creation.

Paul Van Ness graduated from Gordon with a major in English. For the past 22 years he has operated Van Ness Creative, a film and video production company. As an oil painter Van Ness has been awarded several First Place and Best of Show awards. He lives in Beverly, Massachusetts, with his wife and daughter. For more information on this project, email

A world of possibility Katherine Gibson, senior music education major, did an internship at Grace Christian Mission last summer. Here are some of her reflections on that experience. twelve time zones from home;

no real access to communication; some running water but often no electricity; the most oppressively hot climate; no fluent English speakers, other Americans or white people in sight. My home for six weeks was an orphanage with over 70 children in Antipolo City, less than an hour outside Manila. I had two goals: to teach music in Grace Christian Mission’s school, and to determine if that was my calling. Gordon’s Elijah Project, a year-long program exploring vocation and how we interpret the call of God, allowed my two greatest passions to converge in an internship that combined music and missions. Music has always been my passion; missions was a passion that developed after several trips to Haiti, where I found myself deeply concerned

Nica is sitting on Katie’s lap after the girls have been playing “hairdresser” with Katie’s hair.

about the plight of the poor and the spiritual state of the world’s peoples. My internship in the Philippines allowed me to discover that I can survive by myself in foreign surroundings; that I delight in developing relationships; that teaching music is an incredible God-given gift and my passion. I also learned the power and significance of relationship, particularly through one

6-year-old girl named Nica, who was always running to hug me with open arms and a beaming face. Though I didn’t eat with the children, I regularly visited them during meals. On one such occasion the orphanage’s social worker came and sat next to me, remarking that Nica had seemed happier lately and had been eating better. Though the social worker wasn’t sure why this transformation had occurred, as I watched Nica smiling and hurrying to finish her rice, I was pretty sure I had had an impact on this once sad little girl. While my experience in the Philippines didn’t lead to the miraculous discovery of my personal calling, it opened my eyes to a world of possibility I never knew existed and provided greater clarity toward fulfilling God’s purpose for me in the coming of His Kingdom. 13

L ead i ng the W a y i n

Instruction Nationally known reading specialist Sally Grimes says Gordon’s education program is one of a very small handful in the country that offer future teachers an array of courses that reflect state-of-the-art information about reading. Gordon students have proved the program to be effective with a 100 percent pass rate on the Foundations of Reading test for teaching licenses in Massachusetts. Did Dr. Winifred Currie, Gordon education professor 1962–82, have insight into the reading brain that is now substantiated by scientifically based research? Those of us who learned to teach reading under Dr. Currie knew she was a woman ahead of her time. As soon-to-be teachers, we tried to catch a snippet of all she knew. Dr. Currie, a 1945 Gordon graduate, held that learning to read does not happen naturally; reading must be “taught, not caught,” she instructed. She emphasized the need to teach decoding, which, in its simplest terms, is making sense of print in order to comprehend. Dr. Currie was deeply influenced by the research of Dr. Jeanne Chall of Harvard University, author of the landmark publication The Great Debate (1967). In the mid-1970s the country moved from teaching reading as the process of systematically decoding print, to a philosophy of wholistic reading instruction. During that time meaning in reading became more important than decoding. The publication of the presidential report A Nation at Risk (1983) raised concern. Scores on reading tests noted there was a growing gap between proficient readers and struggling readers. In 1997 Congress, in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Education, convened the National Reading Panel (NRP) “to assess the status of research-based knowledge including the 14

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

by Janet

effectiveness of various approaches of teaching children to read” (NRP, 2000, section 1, page 1). Reading research based on brain studies provided new information on how reading should be taught. While the teaching of reading had been largely based on intuition and past practice, the research took away the mystery of how students learn to read; it is no longer required guesswork. Little did we know that Dr. Currie’s reading methods— laid for us in the ’60s and ’70s—provided a firm foundation for the reading era in which we now find ourselves. Keeping Current with Reading Instruction Gordon education professors, committed to keeping current with research, answered the challenge to rethink preservice teacher preparation. Sally Grimes, founding director of the nationally known Grimes Reading Institute says: “Most institutions of higher education that have teacher education programs have just recently begun to address the need to hire professors and offer courses of study that truly reflect the information we now have about how to teach reading. The information from brain and eye movement studies as well as from 35 years of longitudinal studies through NIH (the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) is gradually seeping into programs. However, Gordon College has been way ahead of the curve since it was one of the very first to be certain that its reading preparation program truly reflected the tenets of the National Reading Panel and Reading First. Its program is one of a very small handful of programs in the country that offer future teachers an array of courses that reflect state-of-the-art information about reading.” Gordon students have consistently scored high on the Massachusetts Test for Educator Licensure in the Foundations of Reading test. Statewide pass rates have

Arndt ’68 and Priscilla Nelson ’74

ranged from 54.7 percent in 2003 to 60.7 percent in 2005. Gordon’s pass rate has continuously been 100 percent. Gordon student teachers are trained to base instruction on scientific research. They learn to teach reading systematically and explicitly addressing the five components of reading identified by the NRP: phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency and comprehension. Preservice teachers learn how to help their students develop proficiency in each of these components. They quickly and efficiently assess students to understand which reading skills are developed and which reading skills need more practice. This assessment data is used by student teachers in their field experiences at local public schools to plan instruction that targets each student’s needs. It is powerful to combine well-equipped, enthusiastic preservice teachers with experienced classroom teachers, who together embrace the new research and student data to drive their instruction. The Voice of a Recent Student Teacher Sara Lamb ’04 reflects on her student teaching: At Gordon I learned that successful reading requires children to master the five components. For example, when a child does not have underlying phonological awareness and phonics skills, the child will struggle to read and comprehend text. To help a struggling reader I learned to administer the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (Good and Kaminski, 2002). This measure, known as DIBELS, is taught at Gordon and directly targets each student’s skill base. After administering DIBELS and analyzing the data, I know my students’ areas of need and can move them forward without skipping any steps. This consecutive skill approach prevents a child from becoming too reliant on picture clues without learning how to efficiently decode. Last fall I started my professional teaching career in first grade. I began the year developing my students’ 15

phonological awareness with activities such as rhyming, clapping, singing and learning to compare and contrast sounds. This progressed into developing my students’ phonemic awareness, which is more sophisticated than phonological awareness. Research shows that a child’s phonemic awareness is one of the top three predictors for success in learning to read (NRP, 2000, section 2, page 11). One student in particular, Jillee, stands out as one who has advanced significantly because I am able to target her specific reading need. Jillee is a shy student who hesitates before speaking each word. After developing her phonemic awareness, she has become much more confident in her ability to manipulate sounds. This ability is transferred to text when print is introduced. She attacks new words using her growing knowledge base of letter-sound relationships, and she is starting to read and comprehend. The proof is clear that the foundation and confidence Gordon gave me for reading instruction is the very foundation and confidence that will give Jillee the opportunity to participate in the written world and open her future to endless possibilities. The Voice of a Cooperating Teacher Donna Rosso is a cooperating teacher at the Perley School in Georgetown, Massachusetts, whose experience with a Gordon student teacher began to change the way she thought about reading instruction; it was different from what she had learned in graduate studies. Her student teacher, Katie Lescarbeau ’04, demonstrated various strategies in her teaching that sparked conversations about beginning reading instruction. These conversations expanded to include Gordon College professors. Mrs. Rosso writes: In my 20-plus years as an early childhood educator, I, like most educators, have been driven by changes and challenges in the field of education. In the past when

one of my kindergarten students struggled to read, I gave that student individual or small-group instruction during school, after school, and even over summer break. I gave parents remediation activities to do at home. I tried anything I could think of to reinforce skills and still make kindergarten fun. But too often these struggling kindergartners, even with the increased attention, went on to need extra support in the future. Now, based on current research, I have the critical information and strategies to more effectively implement a reading program. Current research helps teachers reach even those students who in the past were believed to be “not developmentally ready” to read. Based on standardized ongoing assessment, all my current kindergarten students are making significant progress gaining the solid literacy skills needed to become successful readers. The students’ smiles demonstrate how excited they are about their ability to read! Looking to the Future Preservice teachers at Gordon have an advantage because their professors are critical consumers of research and are willing to make changes in the content and methods of their teaching. Although current professors have always blended phonics and meaning, new scientifically based research provides evidence for professors to confidently teach effective reading instruction. That’s why Gordon students will be leaders in the teaching of reading and will help to solve the reading dilemma. Just like a pebble thrown into the water creates ripples, Gordon’s reading instruction program and its students are the catalysts for ripples of positive change cascading beyond Gordon’s campus into schools and the lives of today’s children.

Janet Arndt and Priscilla Nelson are assistant professors in both the undergraduate and graduate education programs at Gordon. Janet Arndt holds an Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She is director of teacher education and licensure at Gordon and principal of the Perley School in Georgetown. Janet, her husband, Ken, and three of their children (Elissa, Emily and Ethan) are Gordon grads. Daughter Erica is a sophomore. Priscilla Nelson is completing her Ed.D. at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. She is a master trainer for the Massachusetts Department of Education Summer Teacher Reading Academies. Priscilla’s son, Sam, will be a freshman at Gordon in the fall. In the photo, Janet (left) and Priscilla hold visuals for teaching reading—the smaller umbrella representing phonemic awareness, which comes under the larger umbrella, phonological awareness. 16

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006


Anna DeBlois ’02

An Unexpected Pathway Alumna Anna DeBlois never expected a career that would combine her interests in science, politics and social justice. But there have been surprises around every corner. I remember saying to a friend while I was a student at Gordon, “I really like politics, but I’m a science major. It’s too bad I’ll never be able to work in politics.” I graduated from Gordon with a degree in biology (premedical concentration) and never imagined that four years later I would be working in health policy in Washington, D.C. As director of immunization policy for the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), a nonprofit public health organization that serves as a liaison between the state health departments and the federal government, I monitor legislation. I meet with federal officials, brief Congressional staffers and compose written materials representing the states’ perspectives on immunization issues. The issues I work on include avian and pandemic flu, smallpox and other bioterrorism preparedness, and funding for vaccinating uninsured children and adults. Public health policy is a challenging way to apply my love of biology to other areas such as politics and social justice.

While I don’t spend much time in an organic chemistry lab anymore, the foundation I received at Gordon in biology, along with technical understanding in courses from parasitology to biostatistics, is critical to the work I do. It enables me to participate in scientific meetings, discuss political implications and applications of new scientific findings, and argue for or against policy issues based on solid scientific evidence. Gordon’s liberal arts program prepared me beyond training in the natural sciences. Public health addresses issues from a broad population perspective and considers influences of culture, politics and economics on the public’s health and well-being. So courses in sociology, philosophy, biblical studies and other disciplines were invaluable to my preparedness to work in this field. The Lord has led me down a surprising path—I feel blessed beyond measure. And I am grateful for the training I received at Gordon that has helped enable me to continue down this road and experience the goodness of God in new ways each time I turn another corner.

“Somewhere between Emery Hall and Gull Pond, Dr. Boorse became a trusted mentor and advisor. She challenged me to think critically about stewardship and personal responsibility, and pushed me to pursue excellence. Her contagious enthusiasm for biology has had a lasting impact on me and how I view my work.” —Anna DeBlois Dr. Dorothy Boorse is a 1987 Gordon graduate who holds a master’s from Cornell University and a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In 1999 she returned to Gordon to teach biology. Boorse has a passion for interfacing science and the Christian faith, promoting an ethic of love and care for the environment. In June 2005 she gave expert testimony in Washington, D.C., at a House of Representatives subcommittee hearing on behalf of the Noah Alliance, a coalition of faith-based environmental groups. Boorse represented ecologists in discussing the importance of protecting the habitats of endangered species and described a Christian environmental ethic. With major interests in entomology (the study of insects) and aquatic ecology, Boorse leads students in salt marsh research and studies of amphibian breeding practices. Her dream is for an environmental center at Gordon with community outreach. She looks forward to working with the Lynn Initiative to bring 400 elementary school students to Gordon for field trips this spring. “Mentoring students like Anna is one of the most meaningful things I do,” Dr. Boorse says. “I want the research, outreach, teaching and mentoring I do at Gordon to be a ministry that honors God.” 17

In October Dr. Bryan Auday and former student Manuel Jusino presented their Igniting the Mind program at the annual conference of the New England Psychological Association, winning the American Psychological Association’s Teaching of Psychology Poster Award. They hope this exposure will further the goals of their program.

The class roster does not mirror surnames typically found in a course taught on Gordon’s campus—Keo, Thach, Em, Boehm, Chaay, Yen, Soto, Qzual, Sim. The teacher finishes calling the names, then says to this diverse group of students, “Welcome to Igniting the Mind, where exploring the fascinating world of neuroscience is not just a slogan but hands-on reality.” Igniting the Mind was founded two years ago in an effort to supplement science curricula in disadvantaged communities. Four concerns that frequently surface in the educational literature are:

Lynn students in the Igniting the Mind program

Public high schools in inner cities have inadequate budgets to deliver the highest quality science education because instrumentation, materials, supplies and laboratory space are so costly compared to other subjects mandated by state regulations. The National Science Foundation reports that women and minorities are underrepresented in science-oriented college majors as well as in science careers. This trend could have profound implications for the delivery of medical and other scientific services in an ethnically diverse and pluralistic society. A recent study by the National Academy of Sciences reveals that 12th-graders in the United States are performing below the international average on a science and mathematics test in a comparison group of 21 countries. Some have speculated the low scores are partly due to difficulty finding qualified science specialists for underfunded public schools. In some instances natural science courses have been cut to a

The Igniting the Mind program could not have been possible without the active support of dozens of people. We express our deepest gratitude to Associate Provost Herma Williams, who opened up our eyes to unlimited possibilities for a partnership with Lynn; to Valerie Buchanan, director of Gordon’s Lynn Initiative, for possessing extraordinary gifts in leadership and communication; to Dave Lenihan, the able science coordinator for Lynn Public Schools; to Dr. Howard Thorsheim, St. Olaf College, who inspired us with his original Igniting the Mind program; to Raymond and Priscilla Lee and the Oasis Development Corporation, who possessed the incredible vision and provided the funding for the Lynn Initiative.


Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

Bryan C. Auday and Manuel A. Jusino ’05

bare minimum and taught by individuals without the necessary expertise. Evidence also shows there is too much didactic lecturing in high school science classrooms without hands-on (we prefer the term “brains-on”) inquiry-based methods of teaching. An unfortunate outcome is that students in low-income areas are less likely to develop a passion for science or pursue degrees for careers in science. One method of combating these problems is to provide young people stimulating, hands-on, investigative experiences that foster excitement for scientific studies. Our Igniting the Mind program involves a partnership between Gordon College and the Lynn Public School District in which we take our neuroscience laboratory to inner-city high school students. Igniting the Mind involves 10 hours of hands-on, investigative science lessons spread over a four-day period. The program is designed to serve mostly disadvantaged, low-income students who are potential first-generation college graduates. Our program optimally serves 18 high school students selected from the three high schools in Lynn. Students work in triads under the guidance of a Gordon student enrolled in our neuroscience program. This 3:1 studentto-instructor ratio not only gives us the ability to provide more individualized attention but also opens the door for mentoring relationships. Students study neuroanatomy by dissecting sheep brains, examining human brains loaned to the program through Harvard’s Brain Bank, and interacting with highly specialized computer software that teaches the structure and function of various parts of the brain. Experimentation in psychophysiology—using electroencephalograms (EEGs)—provides opportunities for students to record their brain waves, learning first-hand how we gain insight into the cognitive processes of the brain. In addition, students explore the perceptual area of vision to investigate how the outside world is represented in the “mind.” Several visual illusion experiments help students understand how and why vision can be fooled into seeing something that is not present. Qualitative data from the participants indicates they thoroughly enjoy the Igniting the Mind program and that their interest in science increases. It is important to note that our program differs from several other models implemented around the country. It is common for colleges to schedule a “science day” in which students are bussed from an inner city to a college campus. Igniting the Mind, however, takes the laboratory—$35,000 of instrumentation and computers—to the community itself. Our model fosters the development of mentoring

opportunities since participants return to the program four consecutive days. It works more intensively with fewer students, giving us the opportunity to introduce scientific thinking gradually with a developmental progression of inquiry. The objectives of Igniting the Mind are: 1. To introduce inner-city youth to the exciting world of behavioral science. 2. To encourage disadvantaged students and potential first-generation college graduates to attend college and pursue careers in the behavioral and natural sciences. 3. To provide college students opportunities to engage in service learning through teaching and mentoring innercity youths. 4. To help close the digital divide for students in lowincome communities by exposing them to cutting-edge digital instrumentation. Most importantly, the program is a ministry of transformation for a racially diverse and economically challenged community. Through Igniting the Mind, as well as many other initiatives offered under the auspices of Gordon’s Lynn Initiative, Gordon students have an opportunity to exercise their Christ-centered gifts, becoming “salt and light” to the world.

Dr. Auday is completing his 20th year at Gordon. He is chair of the Department of Psychology and codirects the neuroscience program along with biology professor Dr. Russell Camp. Manuel Jusino ’05, right, Dr. Auday’s assistant for Igniting the Mind, graduated through Gordon’s Kenneth L. Pike Honors Program with a concentration in neuroscience. He is currently enrolled in the Postbaccalaureate Research Education Program at Johns Hopkins University. 19

Changing the World While Changing Diapers Guest lecturer Debra Rienstra believes women and men have equal responsibilities in parenting, community care and especially using our God-given gifts. That necessitates rethinking traditional roles as well as restructuring the work world to accommodate a variety of needs.



Gordon College Stillpoint î Ž Spring 2006

Debra Rienstra

Last September The New York Times published yet another article about women students at Ivy League colleges planning to have high-powered careers for a few years, then stay home and raise children. Twenty years ago women at elite colleges wouldn’t dream of slowing down their careers for children. Immersed in what we now call second-wave feminism, they were going to get their share of the pie and raise perfect, high-achieving children. They were going to have it all. But a whole generation of educated, gifted women forgot how many hours there are in a day; they had to quit or cut back on their highpowered careers, or they had to farm out the child rearing to nannies or day-care centers. You can’t give 100 percent to a career and 100 percent to children because you don’t have 200 percent to give. I applaud these women for valuing family, but I have serious quarrels with their future plans because they are passively accepting the narrow-minded terms of the debate, especially the idea that this is all about their choices as women. Moreover, they are making at least six flawed assumptions: 1) they will nab a husband in good time; 2) this husband will make enough money to support a family; 3) this husband will stick around; 4) they will get pregnant and give birth on schedule; 5) Mr. Husband does not have his own choices—no, he must be the breadwinner so his wife can enjoy her chosen lifestyle; and finally, 6) the work world as we now know it is the only way to construct it; that everything else important in life—caring for children or relatives, church life, being active in the community, amateur art and music and sports—must be crammed around the margins of the all-important paid job. But why do we construct our work life in this country as we do? Must we force parents into making difficult choices: all or nothing; either/or; find day care or else? Why are men silent when the public discourse about this question persists in talking only about women’s choices? Why are smart women acquiescing to an old status quo? Let’s get the big picture here. We recognize raising children is a large part of our communal life, and a great deal of time is needed to create and run institutions that serve public life; we have to divide up this work somehow. One traditional answer is to make the men do the public work and the women do the child-rearing work. But on what basis have we made that arrangement? The heart of that basis has been essentialism: the idea that women are essentially one way and men are essentially another. Even if irrefutable data could confirm that women as a group tend to present certain qualities—like nurturing attitudes—and men as a group tend to present other qualities—like aggression—so what? We know some men are gentle, quiet and like to putter around the house. Some women are aggressive, competitive and bad at dealing with small, helpless things that require infinite patience. And we also know behaviors are learned. We may be born with tendencies, but we learn how to be men and women based on what our various cultural practices show

us is expected. We can demonstrate men and women tend toward certain qualities on average. But when it comes to shaping a life, we’re not talking about averages; we’re talking about individuals in all their incredible variation, and we’re also talking about learned behaviors that can change. Some groups of Christians are pretty invested in essentialism; some Christian books promote essentialism in the name of biblical principles: men want to conquer and provide and run with the wolves, and women want to be rescued and cared for and nurture babies—and that’s how God made us. If you read this stuff and think, “But . . . I’m not like that!” the subtle implication is that there is something wrong with you. You’re not submitting to God’s will.

The social barriers, the class divisions, and the prejudiced limitations that govern human societies must not enslave us in Christ. We are freed from them so we might become whatever God calls us to become. These theoretical matters become entirely practical when the first baby is born. My husband, Ron, and I thought of ourselves as absolute equals throughout our early marriage. Then we found ourselves gazing adoringly at our beautiful first baby and thought, “OK, now what?” The culture, especially a certain Christian subculture, expected me to stay home and be the good mom and Ron to be the good provider. But we had also learned deeply Christian ways of looking at things that complicated this picture. We had learned to discern our gifts and use them for the Kingdom. If I quit my work to care for our new baby, I would be putting my gifts on hold for a time—maybe a long time if other children came along. But why should it be me? After all, Ron and I are about equally educated and equally gifted, and therefore, we figured, equally called to use our God-given gifts in the world. The fact is that raising children conflicts with using our gifts in the world, at least in terms of time. So we tried to puzzle out why I should bear the greatest burden of that conflict just because I’m female. And why would people be dismayed if Ron were to put his gifts on hold but express no particular regret—and even approval—if I did the same? Weren’t our gifts equally valuable? Caring for children requires gifts too, of course. But men are perfectly capable of doing almost everything that is needful after birth. And they should, because caring for children has deep spiritual benefits if you get the chance to do it well. Why should I get the biggest portion of that good stuff just because I’m female? Why should Ron


receive those benefits only on the margins? The bottom line is that both work and child care involve both hardships and rewards. Why should we not share them both as fathers and mothers? I would argue that essentialism is one of those ideas in human culture that we have to root out. This is the good news from Galatians 3: “All of us who are baptized into Christ are clothed in Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female.” The social barriers, the class divisions, and the prejudiced limitations that govern human societies must not enslave us in Christ. We are freed from them so we might become whatever God calls us to become. And here we turn to I Corinthians 12, the Apostle Paul’s great treatise on the Body of Christ and spiritual gifts. We are free in Christ to use our spiritual gifts—sometimes called charisms—to build up the Kingdom and witness to the world. Every good ability and opportunity comes from the Lord, and it’s what you do with it that makes it spiritual or not. Whether it’s showing mercy, composing music or landscaping, when you use your gifts to bless people and witness to God’s redemptive power, your gifts become spiritual gifts. Moreover, Paul warns us not to value one another’s gifts unequally. Our responsibility is to use our charisms and enable others to do the same—that, above all else, is our vocation in Christ. So as Christians we could say that charism trumps essentialism. This biblical principle opens up all sorts of fresh possibilities. It means that marriage and parenthood are both callings that may or may not come to us, but we are not defined or valued in the Body of Christ by whether or not they come. Our call is to use our gifts, whether

in marriage or singleness, whether as parents or as good citizens to help raise everyone’s children well. We Christians have to make this debate about our whole society and what it values—questioning our culture’s worship of work and the injustices of our labor practices. Because we all have different gifts and circumstances, people need options for work and family. This is a justice issue, no matter what the race, class, troubles or privileges. And it’s about children’s gifts, too—they cannot realize their potential when their parents are working too hard to give them the time and love and attention they need. We Christians should be the ones defending new business practices and laws that allow every level of the workforce to limit work hours with dignity and financial viability so both males and females can do the good work of parenting. The good news is that this is already happening. More and more organizations are offering flexible work hours, parental leave and other options for parents with young children. Both women and men are slowing down their careers or cutting back on work to raise their children well, even when it costs them financially. People who are not parents are finding that these policies also make their lives better when they have elderly parents to care for or other community obligations. People are beginning to reconceive the narratives of our lives as having seasons with varying levels of time commitment to paid work. We are as a society beginning to acknowledge that profits, productivity, and extreme affluence are not the highest goods, and that care for others must be a natural part of our lives in order for us to be healthy individuals and communities. We have to make a place for it and value it.

Debra Rienstra presented at Gordon as part of the lecture series “Faith Seeking Understanding,” sponsored by the Jerusalem and Athens Forum and the Center for Christian Studies under a Lilly Endowment grant. Rienstra is associate professor of English at Calvin College. In addition to her scholarly publications in early modern British literature, she is the author of Great with Child: On Becoming a Mother and So Much More: An Invitation to Christian Spirituality. Under the sponsorship of the Calvin Institute for Christian Worship, Rienstra is writing a book on language in worship while serving as the Brehm Center’s 2005–06 artist-in-residence at Fuller Theological Seminary. During this time she, her husband (who is working on his Ph.D.) and three children are living in Sun Valley, California. 22

Gordon College Stillpoint  Spring 2006

Fall 2005 Athletics a Record-Breaker B W by

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Own It. At Gordon College student athletes own the experience. You’ll get the opportunity to bring together athletic excellence, unsurpassed scholarship and the guiding principles of Christian faith. This balance allows you to serve, lead and excel on the playing field, on campus and in the world. 255 Grapevine Road Wenham, Massachusetts 01984 1.866.464.6736

Freedom within a Framework of Faith

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Own It. At Gordon College student athletes own the experience. You’ll get the opportunity to bring together athletic excellence, unsurpassed scholarship and the guiding principles of Christian faith. This balance allows you to serve, lead and excel on the playing field, on campus and in the world. 255 Grapevine Road Wenham, Massachusetts 01984 1.866.464.6736

Freedom within a Framework of Faith

( '*()5*/

4$054 &



Own It. At Gordon College student athletes own the experience. You’ll get the opportunity to bring together athletic excellence, unsurpassed scholarship and the guiding principles of Christian faith. This balance allows you to serve, lead and excel on the playing field, on campus and in the world.

Freedom within a Framework of Faith

255 Grapevine Road Wenham, Massachusetts 01984 1.866.464.6736

The “Own It” athletics ad campaign by Tim Ferguson Sauder took Gold in the Magazine Advertising/Series category of the TwentyFirst Annual Admission’s Advertising Awards.

ith nothing beyond the dedication and opening of the Brigham Athletic Complex and the unveiling of the new look of the Fighting Scots, the 2005 fall season should be considered a success. Add in six separate appearances in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) championship events—a feat never before accomplished in Gordon’s history; and 18 All-Conference studentathletes (six of whom went on to garner regional and national recognition from various athletic associations for their respective sports)—and the 2005 fall campaign can be seen not only as recordbreaking but positively outstanding. The men’s soccer team, under the guidance of second-year coach Philippe Berthoud ’92, completed the regular season with just one loss in conference; secured a championship berth with a dazzling semifinal overtime victory over nearby Endicott College; and landed five members on All-Conference teams (Aaron Vogelzang ’06, David McMullen ’08, Peter Hassler ’06, who also was named the Senior-Scholar Athlete, Kyle Caruso ’06, Chris Neffinger ’06)—all the while managing to find time to contribute to local Katrina relief efforts. The women’s soccer team, under the leadership of veteran coach Marc Whitehouse ’70, made its way to the conference finals in arguably its finest season in eight years; placed two members on All-Conference teams (Kelly McCormick ’06, Hannah Hassler ’08); and were honored by their competitors with the CCC Sportsmanship Award. The field hockey team, which appreciatively christened the Brigham Complex, narrowly missed the championship title; placed five members on All-Conference teams (Megan Benevides ’06, Brittany Nanni ’06, Whitney Plaster ’07, Lindsey King ’06, Liz O’Neill ’06); housed the CCC Player of the Year (Megan Benevides)




and Coach of the Year (Cory Ward ’97); and was distinguished with the CCC Sportsmanship Award. The men’s and women’s cross country teams both made runner-up appearances in the conference championship meet; placed three runners on All-Conference teams (Matt Lorton ’09, Lauren Buckel ’06, Emma Warner ’09); housed two Senior-Scholar Athletes of the Year (Dan Thompson ’06 and Lauren Buckel) and the Women’s Coach of the Year (Stephen Leonard ’94); earned the Men’s Sportsmanship Award; and sent several runners to the Division III New England championships. The women’s tennis team shared the privilege of christening the Brigham Complex; added yet another championship appearance to their record books with the help of two AllConference players (Diana Anderson ’07, Erin Davidson ’06); and housed the CCC Player of the Year (Diana Anderson, who, incidentally, earned the award for the second consecutive year). And last, but certainly not least, the women’s volleyball team—whose 2004 squad completed a mission trip to Honduras and whose 2005 team made a respectable run to the conference semifinals—landed one player on an All-Conference team (Chelsea Pettibone ’07) and housed the Rookie of the Year (Blakely Burns ’09). With six of seven fall teams making it to the playoffs, in addition to numerous recognitions for individual performances, the Scots are likely bound for continuing successes in the future.

Elizabeth (Bess) Watson ’04 returned to Gordon as assistant women’s soccer coach, lacrosse coach and assistant sports information director. As a student she was a Barrington Scholar and played both soccer and lacrosse four years. 23

Raves & Rebuffs In this column our readers can respond to articles in Stillpoint or voice thoughts about Gordon in general. Reserving the right to edit for space, we will attempt to publish a balance of positive and negative comments. We hope to hear from you. Write to Editor, Stillpoint, Gordon College, 255 Grapevine Road, Wenham, MA 01984, or email: Anonymous letters will not be published. If you do not wish to have excerpts of your correspondence published, please note that. Letters written to individuals other than the editor are forwarded to those persons whenever possible.

ear Dr. [Tal] Howard: I felt compelled to write to you after learning about the Jerusalem and Athens Forum in the recent issue of Stillpoint. Congratulations on a fantastic concept! I graduated with a major in political studies and minors in history and philosophy. I worked at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and am now a lawyer in private practice. Both my Gordon experience and my work nurtured a real love for learning and a desire to connect education and faith. I’ve tried to fill the gaps by reading some of the “great books” and was pleasantly surprised to find the Great Books Society’s collection at a local book fair. If I were a current Gordon student, I would jump at the chance to participate in the JAF program. Because I doubt I’m the only one excited about this program, I’d encourage you to mention in the next Stillpoint that the JAF’s suggested readings appear on the College’s website [ readings.html] for anyone who wants to follow along. —Derek Mogck ’93

s usual I enjoyed the latest (Fall 2005) issue of Stillpoint. I was disappointed, however, that in an issue devoted to the past 50 years there wasn’t even a passing mention of Dick Gross, who for 25 of those years (as dean and then president) did as much as anyone to put us on the Christian college map and give us respectability in the world of higher education. For an institution


that prides itself on community and continuity, this strikes me as a grave oversight. We can do better. —Russ Bishop, professor emeritus, history

ear Jud: The current [Fall 2005] issue of Stillpoint made my heart rejoice. What an outstanding institution of learning, culture and spirituality you are developing at Gordon College. I especially applaud the balance, the inclusiveness of your program with emphasis not simply on academics but also on art, science, social concern, drama, athletics and whatever else is essential for a wellrounded Christian worldview. I’m grateful for your creative leadership and proud to be an alumnus—if only of the honorary variety. —Vernon Grounds, chancellor, Denver Seminary

t was with a great amount of interest I read John Beauregard’s account of Gordon’s move to Wenham in the recent issue of Stillpoint. I was privileged to be a matriculant during the momentous years when the acquisition of what we then called Princemere and the planning for the move to a new campus was all transpiring. It was also my privilege in 1950 to accompany Dr. E. Joseph Evans (a trustee of the College) and Alice Farnsworth (Boffetti)—then a voice teacher at Gordon—to the Marble House, Mr. Prince’s Newport, Rhode Island, mansion, for lunch with Mr.

Gordon College Stillpoint  SUMMER 2005

Left to right: Dr. Evans, Miss Farnsworth, and Mr. Prince’s employee

Prince, after which I accompanied Miss Farnsworth as she gave a brief vocal recital for Mr. Prince’s benefit. I still have the letter of thanks I received from Mr. Prince following that day (a copy of which is enclosed). I also enclose a snapshot I took that same day of Miss Farnsworth, Dr. Evans and Mr. Prince’s employee who cared for his horses and stables at another Newport location. You may wish to add these to your memorabilia on Princemere. During the summer of 1951 the College sponsored Sunday afternoon vesper services in the newly constructed Prince Chapel. I was invited to play the organ, transporting Dr. Lewis’ wife to the service in the College’s Ford “woody” station wagon. At that same time I was able to tour the mansion house (before any modifications were made) and walk some of the trails on the property. Those were exciting days for all of us who were attending Gordon during this period! —Robert O. Wyllie ’50

Events Calendar June 26– Master of Music Education Program; for info, 8/11, 978.867.4429

July 9–15 Christians in the Visual Arts (CIVA) Summer Workshops and Exhibition; for info,, or 978.867.4124 • Contemporary Textiles: Beyond Banners, by Joanne Alberda • Solarplate and Traditional Copper Etching, by Katherine Brimberry • Large Format 4x5 Photography, by Patricia Dalzell • Expressing the Figure in Its Environment, by Edward Knippers 16–19 Massachusetts ACDA (American Choral Directors Association) Summer Conference; gradprog/mmed 17–19 Music Education Summer Workshops; for info,, 978.867.4429 • Come Alive in General Music! • Music for Preschool Children • Pedagogy from the Podium 19–21 Music Education Summer Workshops Saint Flan, ©Tyrus Clutter 2005, altarpiece construction, mixed media, 35.5" x 20.25"

• Developing Improvisation Skills, Grades 5–12 • Teaching Kids to Sing, Level 3 • The High School Singer: Pedagogy and Repertoire

April April/ Art Exhibit—Student Thesis Exhibitions; BCA May

1 New England Intercollegiate Band Festival; 7 p.m., GC

21 Thompson Chamber Music Series: Atlantic Brass Quintet; 8 p.m., PRH

23 Gordon College Composer’s Guild Recital; 4 p.m., PRH

25–30 Theatre—Short-Play Festival by Directing Class students; BCA

29 Annual Pops Concert: Gordon Women’s Choir, Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band; 7 p.m., GC

30 Haydn’s Creation: Gordon Symphony Orchestra, College Choir and Symphonic Chorale with soloists Susan Brooks, soprano, Wesley Lawrence, tenor, and Craig Hart, bass; 3 p.m., GC


2 Chamber Music Gala; 8 p.m., PRH

4 Jazz Ensemble; 8 p.m., PRH

7 Gordon College Children’s Choir; 3 p.m., GC

12 Baccalaureate Service (by ticket only); 5 p.m., GC

13 Commencement Exercises; 10 a.m., quad (by ticket only in Bennett if rain)

14–23 Wind Ensemble Italy Tour 15–24 College Choir Italy Tour

Feel My Hands (detail), ©Tanja Butler 2005, oil on board with gold leaf, 48" x 15"

For info on Center for Christian Studies (CCS) events, go to For tickets for music and theatre events call 978.867.3400 or go to Music events are held in Phillips Recital Hall (PRH), located in Phillips Music Center (PMC); in A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel (GC). Art exhibits and theatre productions are in the Barrington Center for the Arts (BCA). Gallery hours are Monday– Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. Go to for updated gallery information; to for updated music events; to for updated theatre performances.

A Salute to Ken Olsen – Saturday, June 17, 2006 Journey to the Heart Of Discovery Ken Olsen, founder of Digital Equipment Corporation and the inventor of computer core memory, was so impressed with the openness with which science is taught at Gordon, as well as the critical thinking and empirical approaches of the faculty, that he joined the College’s Board of Trustees in 1961 and is now making possible the building of a new science center.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS 12–2 p.m. Campus Tours 2–3:30 p.m. Ken Olsen: Innovator A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel Come CeleBrate with Us! For more details and registration, go to or call Dan Tymann at 978.867.4260

3:30–5 p.m. Reception on the Lawn 4:30 p.m. Ceremonial Groundbreaking for Ken Olsen Science Center

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