8C YBERSECURITY LAB TO OPEN
MESSIAH UNIVERSITY ALUMNI MAGAZINE VOLUME 1 2022
Scheduled for the fall 2022 semester
12 G ETTING LOST IN A BOOK What did you read during the pandemic?
Cool job: Working at National Aquarium
Messiah students toured the Kennedy Center during the Into the City trip to Washington, D.C., in March.
FREDERICK SCHMITT ’88 PHOTOGRAPHY
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MESSIAH UNIVERSIT Y A LU M N I M AG A Z I N E
TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Office of Marketing and Communications One University Avenue, Suite 3020 Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 717.691.6027 | www.messiah.edu PRESIDENT
Kim S. Phipps V I C E P R E S I D E N T F O R A DVA N C E M E N T
Barry Goodling ’79 A S S O C I AT E V I C E P R E S I D E N T O F M A R K E T I N G & C O M M U N I C AT I O N S
Carla E. Gross EDITOR
Anna Seip C R E AT I V E D I R E C T O R
Nancy Soulliard GRAPHIC DESIGNERS
Matt Logan M.A. ’17 DIRECTOR OF A L U M N I & PA R E N T R E L AT I O N S
Jay McClymont ’92 CONTRIBUTOR
Molly McKim ’23
The Bridge (ISSN-0279-3938) is published three times a year by the Messiah University Office of Marketing and Communications for alumni and friends of the University, free of charge. Please contact us at aseip@messiah. edu or 717-691-6027. Items for the alumni news section should be identified by class year and sent to the Messiah University Office of Alumni and Parent Relations, One University Avenue Suite 3023, Mechanicsburg PA 17055. You may email them to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax them to 717-796-5371. As its name suggests, The Bridge connects alumni, parents and donors with Messiah University. It also serves to build the University’s image with these audiences. It does this by publishing accurate news about the University and about alumni and by offering interesting feature articles that are issue- or University-related for readers’ continued education. Messiah University accepts news submissions from alumni and the broader community but reserves the right to edit or decline to print materials at its discretion. Messiah University is a Christian college of the liberal and applied arts and sciences. The University is committed to an embracing evangelical spirit rooted in the Anabaptist, Pietist and Wesleyan traditions of the Christian Church. Our mission is to educate men and women toward maturity of intellect, character and Christian faith in preparation for lives of service, leadership, and reconciliation in church and society. Messiah University does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, disability and national or ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic or other Universityadministered programs. © 2022 Messiah University
F E AT U R E S
24 26 GONE FISHING
A LIFE’S WORK
What did we read during the pandemic? A little bit of everything
Kristin Coury ’14, a biology alumna, works as an aquarist at the National Aquarium in Baltimore.
Jeanelle Austin ’07 founded the Racial Agency Initiative in Minneapolis to provide people the tools to pursue racial justice.
GETTING LOST IN A BOOK
Biology alumna Kristin Coury ’14 works at the National Aquarium. The Bridge is printed on recyclable paper: 50/25 PCW EFC
PHOTOGRAPHY: THERESA KEIL/ NATIONAL AQUARIUM
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F R O M T H E E D I TO R IN 2020, I READ 105 BOOKS, DOUBLING MY USUAL YEARLY AMOUNT. WHAT ELSE WAS THERE TO DO DURING A PANDEMIC? I’D BEEN MEANING TO READ “ANNE FRANK’S DIARY” FOR DECADES. DONE. “OF MICE AND MEN,” TOO. AFTER THAT, I LOOKED FOR NEW BOOKS AND FOUND “DEACON KING KONG” AND “THE ISLAND OF SEA WOMEN.” AND APPARENTLY 101 OTHERS. I DIDN’T SPEND ALL MY TIME READING, THOUGH. I LISTENED TO DOZENS OF EPISODES OF THE PODCAST “WHAT SHOULD I READ NEXT?” THEN I PUT MORE BOOKS ON MY TO-BE-READ LIST IN MY GOODREADS APP.
Two years later, I’m back down to about 50 books annually, and that’s plenty. As I put together this reading issue of The Bridge, I wondered what books Bridge readers enjoyed during the ongoing pandemic. You can find out on p. 12.
D E PAR TM E NT S
FROM THE PRESIDENT
Heard Around Campus
Faces and Places
Capital campaign update
From the Archives
MESSIAH.EDU/THE_BRIDGE Apply to Soccer Shots’ applied health sciences scholarship: messiah.edu/gradscholarships Learn more about the new Cyber Center and the cybersecurity major: messiah.edu/cybersecurity Watch our biology major video: messiah.edu/biology
In keeping with the reading theme, Murray Library debuted a new children’s collection, The Bridge to Freedom collection, courtesy of the Allen family. Learn all about these children’s books — and the top 5 that would make great baby shower gifts—on p. 19. Do you like to read about monsters? I do. Messiah film professor Tara Stillions Whitehead discusses the darker side of human behavior and media consumption in her new book “The Year of the Monster” on p. 22. Shifting gears, the Learning for Life, Transforming the World capital campaign will encompass an expansion of the Engle Center, a facility in great need of more space even before the pandemic (p. 10). Learn how you can give to this critical need. We hope you enjoy this issue of The Bridge.
Give to the Engle Center expansion: email@example.com Check out the Bridge to Freedom collection: messiah.edu/bridgetofreedom
A N N A S E I P, E D I T O R
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FROM THE PRESIDENT
The act of reading shapes us in profound ways Books have always been a source of escape, adventure, joy and learning for me since I was a young girl. Although I am an extrovert who thrives on the company and conversation of friends and family, I also treasure quiet moments alone with a book. My husband Kelly is also an avid reader, so it’s not uncommon to find us late in the evening, sitting side by side deeply engrossed in our individual volumes. When our daughter Brooke was young, we would “allow” her to break the rules of “lights out at bedtime.” She would smuggle a book (or maybe two or three) under her bedcovers with a flashlight and read until she fell asleep. Kelly and I were delighted to nurture another reader in the family, and one of our favorite family activities continues to be visiting a bookstore for good coffee, engaging conversation and plentiful books to peruse. When my daily rhythms and routines were drastically changed by the pandemic in March 2020, I—perhaps like many of you—turned even more to books as a welcome distraction from heaviness and uncertainty. I read mysteries with masterful plot twists, fiction set in faraway regions that gave me a glimpse of cultures and contexts vastly different from my own (and made me long to travel!) and hopeful tomes by faithful believers who reminded me of God’s unwavering faithfulness. I was reminded that reading books is essential to not only increasing knowledge and understanding but to navigating uncertain times. A few months ago, as I was walking to an event on the ground floor of Murray Library, I was struck anew at the impressive sight of stacks upon stacks of meticulously curated and organized books. I am grateful to think of how those books, for decades, have expanded students’ and educators’ disciplinary knowledge and awakened
them to new ideas in their areas of study. Think of all the papers, projects and presentations that have been brilliantly developed using the resources of Murray Library. In January, Murray Library dedicated a new space and children’s book collection. Called “The Bridge to Freedom,” the colorful reading room features more than 130 titles focused on the Civil Rights Movement and other historical experiences. With themes of equality, freedom, justice and reconciliation, the books and resources were a generous gift from Vice President for Diversity Affairs Todd Allen, his wife Lonette and their son Bryce. The availability of such books in our campus library reminds patrons of all ages
“I was reminded that reading books is essential to not only increasing knowledge and understanding but to navigating uncertain times.” — President Kim S. Phipps
that reading is an essential act for increasing knowledge, understanding and compassion. In “On Reading Well,” professor Karen Swallow Prior wrote, “By reading widely, voraciously and indiscriminately, I learned spiritual lessons I never learned in church or Sunday school, as well as emotional and intellectual lessons that I would never have encountered within the realms of my lived experience.” Reading has shaped my intellectual and spiritual development and personal growth in profound ways. I hope as you read this issue of The Bridge, you are inspired to dive into a book!
RYAN SMITH PHOTOGRAPHY
K I M S. PH I PPS, PRESIDENT
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HEARD AROUND CAMPUS
WHAT IS A LIFE LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNED AT MESSIAH THAT YOU HOPE TO REMEMBER FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE?
“ How to love and serve my community well, whether it be my friends, peers, coworkers or the larger community of Harrisburg.” – Celeste Reed ’24, social work
“ Something I’ve learned through my experience at Messiah, first as a student and now as an employee/alum, is the beauty and benefit of a community of Christians celebrating their shared commitment to Christ while allowing for differences of perspective on a variety of issues and indeed inviting and encouraging gracious, hospitable dialogue about these differences.” — Matthew Reitnour ’96, associate director of admissions
“ I have learned what real friendship and mentorship look like.” – Kerry Hasler-Brooks ’05, associate professor of English
“ No matter how busy you get in life – always prioritize time with the people you love. Fifty years from now, you may have some regrets from college. But you won’t regret all the memories you made.” – Virgil Angeles ’18, admissions counselor
“ At Messiah, I learned that going out of your way to do something kind, no matter how small it seems, really sticks with people. I met some of the most empathetic and compassionate people I know during my time as a student, and I’ll always remember how their intentional actions made me feel extremely cared for.”
“ I would say that everyone has value. I saw this modeled to me by my professors who wanted to come alongside me and were concerned with me as a person, as well as my learning. They did not have an air about them that I was beneath them because they were teaching me but that I had value to contribute as well. In addition to all of the technical information I learned, this universal truth made a big impact and is something that I strive to emulate in all areas of my life.” — Jeremy Kauffman ’03 senior lecturer of applied health science
“ God’s resources are not scarce, but abundant. As we receive from God, there is always more than enough to share, and we have the responsibility to steward this grace freely. The awareness and practice of this exchange from my time as a student and now as an employee at Messiah shapes how I serve, lead and neighbor.” – Aubrey Kleinfeld ’01, director of counseling services
– Deanna Preziosi ’19, content writer at 340Basics M E S S I A H U N I V E R S I T Y • T H E B R I D G E • VO L U M E 1 2 0 2 2 | 5
SARAH NAGENGAST ’23
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, GETTY IMAGES
From left: Lisa McNair, sister of Denise McNair who was one of the four girls killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963, addresses the Messiah chapel audience Jan. 18. The country of Wales donated a stained glass window, later known as the Wales Window of Alabama, to the church after the bombing. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. gave the eulogy for the four girls: Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Morris Wesley, Carole Robertson and Densie McNair.
SPEAKER’S LIFE ALTERED BY 1963 BOMBING MESSIAH HOSTS LISA MCNAIR, SISTER OF 1 OF 4 GIRLS KILLED IN BIRMINGHAM CHURCH Meet Lisa McNair, the younger sister of Denise McNair—one of the four girls killed in the 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. She was born almost a year to the day after the bombing. As part of the 2022 Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Events Series at Messiah, McNair served as the guest speaker at Common Chapel and Evening Chapel Jan. 18. As she showed the slides of her PowerPoint presentation, she paused as she showed a photo of the devastation of that infamous day. “In this picture, you see history,” she said, “but I see family members.”
She says her late parents, devastated by the loss, chose to love instead of hate. Her father was an elder in the Lutheran church across town, another church that proved pivotal in the McNairs’ lives. “He went to his own church. He was a Lutheran. The membership of that church was … about 200-300 people, and everybody was African-American except for 5 people: the pastor [Joseph Ellwanger], his wife and three kids,” she said. “They gave us the opportunity to learn that all whites didn’t hate us. All white people didn’t want to kill us, and some of them wanted to be our friend. Daddy was an elder in his church, and the Ellwangers were at our house all the time, and we were at their house all the time. So it was a wonderful gift from God to have that.” JUSTICE DELAYED Although one of the bombers was brought to justice in 1977, there were 4-5 men who had been implicated. In 1997, director Spike
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Lee made the documentary “Four Little Girls,” which brought new attention to the tragedy. “This documentary started a dialogue of people saying, ‘Well, what about the other people? What happened to them? Why in 1997 have they not been arrested?’ So the FBI reopened the case, and in 2001 and 2002 the last two people living were convicted of having murdered the four girls. That’s 2001 and 2002, and they were killed in 1963. Think about that,” said McNair. As she closed her address, McNair asked the audience to remember the four girls’ names:
Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Morris Wesley, Carole Robertson and Denise McNair. “They were people that really existed, that made the ultimate sacrifice, whose family lost a child that they’d never get back,” said McNair. “Many of our civil rights stories are not mentioned in our history books. They’re footnotes. They might be a sentence or two or a short paragraph, but these were people who suffered and stories we need to know. They’re our shared American history.” — Anna Seip
“THEY MIGHT BE A SENTENCE OR TWO OR A SHORT PARAGRAPH, BUT THESE WERE PEOPLE WHO SUFFERED AND STORIES WE NEED TO KNOW. THEY’RE OUR SHARED AMERICAN HISTORY.” — Lisa McNair
Soccer Shots establishes scholarship for Messiah University OT and PT graduate students
Soccer Shots (Harrisburg/York) has established an applied health sciences scholarship for Messiah University graduate or graduate-bound students in the occupational therapy (OT) and physical therapy (PT) programs. Jason ’98 and Mandy Webb ’98, owners of Soccer Shots, established the scholarship to support their coaches who are also full-time students in OT and PT programs at Messiah. “We’ve found that PT and OT students can be a great fit with their passion for helping and caring for children and their families,” said Mandy Webb. “The experiences and opportunities that they will have working at Soccer Shots complements what they are learning and growing in professionally during graduate school.” The scholarship will provide financial assistance to Soccer Shots employees who have coached at least one season and who are Messiah University graduate students in the Master of Occupational Therapy or Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. The scholarship is also open to graduate-bound juniors
and seniors in Messiah’s early assurance or accelerated PT or OT program. The award is granted three times per year and up to five recipients may be awarded for each of the three awards. “This scholarship is a great example of how the Messiah community supports one another,” said Jennifer Fisler, dean of the School of Graduate and Professional Studies at Messiah University. “It provides our students with scholarship money and the opportunity to work with a nationally recognized company and allows the Webbs to give back to their alma mater while employing coaches that support their mission.” Soccer Shots is a children’s soccer program with a focus on character development. The company seeks to provide caring coaches who positively impact children’s lives on and off the field through best-in-class coaching, communication and curriculum. — Staff report TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE SOCCER SHOTS APPLIED HEALTH SCIENCES SCHOLARSHIP, GO TO MESSIAH.EDU/GRADSCHOLARSHIPS.
ANDRE FRUEH ’21
PROVIDES ASSISTANCE TO THOSE WHO COACH
At the Alumni Awards Dinner March 28, the following guests received honors. They are (from left): George and Barbara Parmer, Alumni Appreciation Award; Wendell Gehman ’89, Alumni Christian Service Award; Glenn Focht ’86, Distinguished Alumnus Achievement Award; and Shauna Nefos-Webb ’04, Young Alumna Achievement Award.
WELCOME CENTER WINS AWARD FOR CONSTRUCTION PROJECT GARNERS NATIONAL HONOR The Kim S. Phipps Admissions and Welcome Center, built by Pyramid Construction Services, LLC, earned a national Excellence in Construction (EIC) Pyramid Award March 16. The EIC awards are the construction industry’s leading national competition that honors general and specialty contractors for world-class, safe and innovative construction projects from across the nation. “The Pyramid team was excellent to work with – from planning to completion. They worked side by side with us, and
you could easily see the pride they take in their work. The project had numerous challenges: a COVID shutdown, constructing a building with curved walls in the center of campus with everyone passing by on an hourly basis, utilities running all through the site and the need to save mature trees. This award is deserving of a company that works hard to be sure their client gets the best building,” said Kathie Shafer, Messiah’s vice president for operations. The project involved the construction of a 28,000-squarefoot, 3-story admissions building positioned among existing structures. The result was the first new standalone building on campus in more 20 years combined with green space now known as the Campus Commons. The EIC award honors the construction team, including the contractor, owner, architect and engineer. The winning projects are judged on complexity, attractiveness, unique challenges overcome, completion time, workmanship, innovation and safety. — Staff report
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FAC E S A N D P L AC E S
MESSIAH UNIVERSITY ANNOUNCES THE CREATION OF THE MESSIAH UNIVERSITY CYBER CENTER REAL-WORLD, HANDS-ON TRAINING OPPORTUNITY “It will enhance the capabilities of educational, private and governmental sectors through training, education, services and outreach.” Experiential learning is one of the pillars of a Messiah University education. During a student’s final two years at Messiah through the Cyber Center, they will gain valuable hands-on job experience as cybersecurity analysts by providing security monitoring, digital forensics and other services to local and regional businesses. Those businesses will have the opportunity to receive affordable and reliable security services while helping to build future cybersecurity professionals. — Staff report
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CYBERSECURITY MAJOR AT MESSIAH AND THE NEW CYBER CENTER, GO TO MESSIAH.EDU/CYBERSECURITY.
COURTESY OF CRABTREE, ROHRBAUGH & ASSOCIATES ARCHITECTS
Messiah University is excited to announce the creation of the Messiah University Cyber Center, slated to open fall 2022. A complement to the cybersecurity major at Messiah, the new Cyber Center will be a hub for cybersecurity students, regional professionals and local industries to meet for education and consulting services. The creation of the Cyber Center is a key piece of Messiah’s pursuit in becoming designated as an NSA Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CD), a distinctive hallmark of excellence for cybersecurity education. Messiah is currently in the program management phase of the program. “The Cyber Center at Messiah University will focus on improving the education and training of future cyber defense professionals,” said Vinny Sakore, director of cybersecurity education at Messiah.
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The new Cyber Center will allow students to provide security monitoring, digital forensics and data recovery services to local businesses.
N YOU DO CA
B R A I N WAV E S
“I saw there was a need in healthcare for O R LO missionary trips,” she GY D E G said. “That’s really my end goal: to try to go out and do missionary work with the information I learn through school.” — Isela Rodriguez ’22
With a heart for medical missions, biology major looks to serve ISELA RODRIGUEZ ’22 PLANS A CAREER IN DENTISTRY TO HELP FILL NEED stressor. Our research determines whether morphine will block reconsolidation of fear memories,” she said. In addition to her studies, she served as an R.A. and as a secretary for La Alianza Latina (LAL). She says LAL was one of the first clubs to reach out to her and make her feel welcome. “Messiah puts intentional effort toward trying to increase diversity and help those with different cultures, backgrounds, ethnicities or races find a safe space that they can talk and be comfortable,” she said. After graduating early in December, Rodriguez began working at WIS Dental Services in Schenectady, New York—where she had interned the previous summer—while also studying for the Dental Admission Test. This month, she plans to travel to Honduras for a medical mission trip with doctors from her church to get a hands-on experience in the medical field. In the future, she hopes to go on
mission trips with her brother, who is a pastor. “I saw there was a need in healthcare for missionary trips,” she said. “That’s really my end goal: to try to go out and do
missionary work with the information I learn through school.” — Molly McKim ’23 TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BIOLOGY MAJOR AT MESSIAH, GO TO MESSIAH.EDU/BIOLOGY.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF ISELA RODRIGUEZ ’22
Combining a passion for medicine with a heart for service, Isela Rodriguez ’22 is making strides toward her future career in dentistry. A biology major, she pursued Messiah’s concentration in biomedical biology after shadowing in hospitals, volunteering at homeless shelters and watching her mom work as a certified nursing assistant. “I liked the balance that Messiah presented and how they embrace both faith and science, taking the context of God’s word and his creation and his love and embodying that in what you can do in science,” she said. For her senior research project, she studied post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Using a Stress-Enhanced Fear Learning (SEFL) model to mimic the symptoms of PTSD in humans, she and her group observed the effects of animals exposed to prolonged stresses. “SEFL measures the increased subsequent learning of fearful stimuli that occurs after a severe
Biology alumna Isela Rodriguez ’22 works at WIS Dental Services while studying for the Dental Admission Test. Her goal is to go on medical mission trips. M E S S I A H U N I V E R S I T Y • T H E B R I D G E • VO L U M E 1 2 0 2 2 | 9
C A M PA I G N U P D AT E
A critical need: Addition planned for Engle Center HOW YOU CAN HELP THE CAUSE While the world continues to navigate a global pandemic, healthcare workers and hospitals have been stretched beyond their limits. As a microcosm of this pandemic, the Engle Center for Counseling and Health Services has been stretched beyond capacity. In March of 2020, an independent reviewer recommended the center should be renovated, relocated or reconstructed to be brought up to acceptable standards for a health care and counseling facility. Meanwhile, the center’s staff has been providing high-quality
medical care in a space too small to meet all of the needs of Messiah’s students efficiently. For example, there is only one exam room in which a provider can maneuver on both sides of the exam table or adjust the table to the proper height. Because of this, the nurses are often shifting patients around, using the smaller exam rooms as “holding rooms” for patients while waiting for the only adequate exam room to open up. Because the center also provides mental health services in addition to physical health services, the pandemic impacted an already taxed counseling center. In order to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, staffers had to separate the sick from the well. That effort required using the entire building, which resulted in turning counseling offices into exam rooms. Because of a lack of space, the counselors moved to Climenhaga
Homestead. The pandemic isn’t fully to blame, though. “Before that, there wasn’t enough space “The professional staff at the for all of the Engle Center have supported me counselors to work for years,” with information, tissues and said Aubrey encouragement throughout my Kleinfeld, director journey at Messiah University.” of counseling —Student’s name withheld for privacy services. “For almost 10 years, the overflow offices were located in Hoffman.” With the added pressures of the physical and mental health demands brought about by highest ethical standards and COVID-19, the facility is in need provides high-quality physical of a significant expansion. and mental health care to the campus community. “Access to appropriate medOUR HISTORY ical and psychological care is Named for longtime Messiah extremely important to the University Trustee and his wife, academic and personal devel“Doc” Harold and Mary Elizabeth opment of our students, and it Engle, the center adheres to the cannot be assumed that it will be TO COME
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available elsewhere,” said Nancy Huerter. “Timely intervention can make all the difference in the success of a semester, a school year and, ultimately, a life.” RESOURCES AND STAFFING
Many students are “shared” patients between counseling and health, with the nurse practitioner being the prescriber and the counselor seeing the student weekly for behavioral health. Through a weekly case
“Throughout my time at Messiah I had to get allergy shots, about once a month. The staff at the Engle Center were always proficient, comprehensive and communicative. They handled all of my allergy shot needs in a smooth and joyful way.” —Aaron Weber ’21
conference, providers discuss concerns about shared patients. Working in separate buildings currently makes consulting on shared patients difficult. “It will be beneficial for students to come to one place to promote their well-being through either meeting their mental or
“Being able to have the help I need to try to be the best version of myself is something I am forever grateful for. I wouldn’t be who I am today [without the care] and can’t put a price tag on its value. Everyone I worked with is there to truly help you physically, emotionally and spiritually. They truly care and it shows.” —Brian Gilroy ’19
physical health needs,” said Kleinfeld. The center’s staff has grown to approximately 20 full-time and part-time employees with a significant increase in nursing staff needs in the past two years (a 30% total increase in staff since 2018). This includes a certified nurse practitioner (CRNP), a nurse coordinator, two front office staff members, eight RNs, one COVID-19 triage nurse, Kleinfeld, 6 additional counselors and 2-3 graduate interns. While staffers are on call, TimelyCare (branded FalconCare for Messiah) a 24/7 telehealth service, provides an additional safety net of care. SERVICES PROVIDED
The health side functions much like an urgent care, so students should rarely have to leave campus to get medical care. Employing a full-time CRNP on campus affords Messiah students access to a provider who can assess; diagnose; treat; prescribe; order diagnostic testing, bloodwork and immunizations; and provide a referral, among other things. Also, the CRNP can work with the student’s home provider or specialist to create a plan or can function as the student’s primary care physician for the four years the student is on campus. WHAT IS NEEDED?
The center needs a 1,800-squarefoot addition to its 4,400 existing
space with new equipment. While the majority of the project is coming from COVID-relief dollars and institutional capital funding, $750,000 is needed to complete the project. Co-chairs for this important endeavor include Drs. Joe and Nancy Huerter along with Drs. Emerson ’74 and Ruth Lesher. Joe Huerter and Emerson Lesher also serve as Trustees of Messiah University. “In the last 3 years, there has been a 200300% increase in clinic visits and utilization of the health center by our students necessitating expansion of the physical plant,” said Joe Huerter. “Nancy and I are glad to lend our support to this worthwhile endeavor.” The Leshers echo that sentiment. “We are pleased to serve as co-chairs and to give to this campaign,” they said. “The time has come to ensure that the Engle Health Center has facilities that are of the same high standard for which Messiah University is known.”
“In all honesty, I am still alive today because of the Engle Center and some close friends on campus. Although the journey was, and still is, difficult, it was both life-changing and life-saving.” —Lizzy Beach ’18
HOW TO GIVE TO LEARN MORE OR TO MAKE A GIFT, CONTACT ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT OF DEVELOPMENT JON STUCKEY AT JSTUCKEY@MESSIAH.EDU. M E S S I A H U N I V E R S I T Y • T H E B R I D G E • VO L U M E 1 2 0 2 2 | 1 1
ELLEN BYRNE ILLUSTRATION
F E AT U R E S T O R Y
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GETTING LOST IN A
BOOK As we emerge from a global pandemic, here’s what we read/are reading as we navigated an uncertain (but hopeful) time in history.
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GETTING LOST IN A BOOK
AS THE PANDEMIC BROKE, WE TRIED TO MAKE SENSE OF OUR PLACE IN THE WORLD.
Salt to the Sea
The greatest maritime disaster you’ve never heard of My dad told me about “Salt to the Sea,” an historical fiction novel, so we both decided to read it over the pandemic. It took us back to our Eastern European roots and described what we imagine my mom went through during her days as a Lithuanian refugee who was on a ship from Germany for 45 days to escape the Nazis and come to America in 1951. It was a great conversation piece for my dad, who lives in Florida, during our daily 9:17 a.m. Facetime chats. The story involves six key characters, each with their own story of desperation to leave the country they loved for a better life. The book provided me a better appreciation for what those refugees experienced, so much suffering, struggle, hunger and torment. The refugees boarded the ill-fated Wilhelm Gusloff, a luxury cruise liner turned into supply and medical ship. Over 9,000 people died in the ship wreck caused by a Russian submarine torpedo in the greatest maritime disaster that no one has heard of. — Ramona Fritschi, web services manager
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IN UNCERTAIN TIMES Quicksand
A woman trapped in the 1920s social order One book that helped me cope through the pandemic was Nella Larsen’s “Quicksand.” I often struggled to stay motivated to read for pleasure in the past few semesters, but Larsen’s excellent style, engaging characters and fast-moving plot kept me flipping page after page. I was done the book after a few days, reading between doing homework and sleeping. I related a lot to the heroine—Helga Crane—who battles with herself to make sense of her life, passions, interests and career. Just like many of Larsen’s other works, “Quicksand” portrays the hardship of African American women and general obstacles women faced in the ’20s. Crane doesn’t feel like she belongs anywhere, but is stuck mentally and physically. Crane surely makes “Quicksand” a picaresque novel: a story about a woman who cannot escape herself. Yet, she frequently changes her wants and needs even when many of her desires are socially unattainable for someone of her race/gender/class: a 23-year-old mixedrace woman living in the South. A lot of people, including myself, have felt trapped inside and felt a loss of identity due to the pandemic. Crane’s motivation to flee to the next city, the next career or the next love, feels a lot like how the world continues to be uncertain, indecisive. People are quitting jobs they’ve worked at for decades, new variants of COVID continue to arise and climate change continues to affect the globe. The future is full of uncertainty. — Molly McKim ’23
“ Quicksand” taught me to not fear uncertainty, but to embrace it. Take what you can, accept change and keep moving.” — Molly McKim ’23
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GETTING LOST IN A BOOK
Barchester Towers A much-loved bishop has died. Who will succeed him? During the pandemic, one book I pulled off of the library shelf was Anthony Trollope’s “Barchester Towers.” I must confess that I usually find myself reading more nonfiction, but I was really in the mood for a good story that I could just read with pleasure without the concentration needed for more lofty works. My interest in Trollope began when [Professor Emeritus] Morris Sider suggested some years back that I read the first book of the two-part series, “The Warden.” Set in a fictitious 19th-century English town, “Barchester Towers” picks up where “The Warden” ends and centers on the resident minister Rev. Septimus Harding, and the investigation of his longtime administration of Hiram Hospital. Numerous character intrigues involving clergy and their families create a plot that was, though uncomplicated, intriguing enough to have kept me reading on. Interestingly, in the film version of the story, Alan Rickman, whom Harry Potter fans will recognize as Severus Snape, plays the Rev. Obadiah Slope, one of literature’s most cunningly manipulative characters. All in all, it was a fun read and a good introduction to Trollope. — Michael Rice, digital resources librarian
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OF EVENTS WITH NOWHERE TO GO, WHAT BETTER TIME TO READ A SERIES? OR TWO.
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Travel to the land of Narnia One of the first books that I picked up during the beginning of the pandemic was “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” by C.S. Lewis. When things were shutting down and the number of COVID-19 cases was going up, this book was an escape through a wardrobe into a realm of fauns, talking lions, Turkish delight and snow. What drew me to this book was not just nostalgia and the desire to forget everything that showed up on my Instagram feed, but a longing for hope. In Narnia, there is always a bit of hope beyond all the bad. Aslan has not really died; he will come back again. The children will not be without Aslan in their own world; they will simply come to know him by another name. The battle has not been lost; victory is just around the corner. These bits of hope may be fictional, but they serve as powerful reminders of the real bits of hope present in our world. Even when all hope seems lost, both in the midst of the pandemic and in Lewis’s magical world, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” continues to encourage me to seek the threads of hope woven into my everyday life. — Micaiah Saldaña ’24, English major
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GETTING LOST IN A BOOK
Be the Bridge:
Pursuing God’s Heart for Reconciliation Having tough conversations in the spirit of the gospel
SARAH NAGENGAST ’23
During the early days of the pandemic in 2020, my husband Mike and I began virtually attending Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massachusetts, right outside of Boston. We joined a small group, via Zoom, which focused on racial reconciliation in the church and beyond. The book that we initially read was Latasha Morrison’s “Be the Bridge: Pursuing God’s Heart for Racial Reconciliation.” Morrison’s honest unpacking of her own experiences of being an African American woman, her experiences in the white church, civil rights history, scripture focused on forgiveness, lament and reconciliation made this a perfect text for our group. At the conclusion of each chapter were discussion/reflection questions, which promoted important conversations including taking steps to be a bridge builder for racial reconciliation. I found this book to be both deeply convicting and encouraging as Morrison prompts the reader to not simply sit back but instead to take action toward restorative reconciliation. Morrison is the founder of Be the Bridge, an organization committed to equipping people across five countries to be racial reconcilers in the spirit of the gospel. — Inger Lindquist Blount, director of human resources
Bryce, Lonette and Todd Allen created the Bridge to Freedom children’s book collection. 1 8 | VO L U M E 1 2 0 2 2 • T H E B R I D G E • M E S S I A H U N I V E R S I T Y
BRIDGE TO FREEDOM CONNECTING OUR BELIEFS TO ACTIONS CAN BE A JOURNEY OF DEEP CONVICTION AND ADVOCACY.
Hosea Williams: A Lifetime of Defiance and Protest A leader who spent decades fighting for civil and voting rights
BRIDGE TO FREEDOM NEW CHILDREN’S COLLECTION DEBUTS AT MURRAY LIBRARY On Jan. 18, Murray Library dedicated the Bridge to Freedom Collection, an assortment of children’s resources based on themes of equality, freedom, justice and reconciliation. The collection was established through the donation of 133 children’s books from the Allen family — Vice President for Diversity Affairs Todd Allen, Acquisitions Technician Lonette Allen and their son Bryce. The resources will be used by students in the education department for coursework and field experiences, but the space is open to
When you list the names of the architects of Martin Luther King Jr.’s civil rights movement, one man who often gets lost in the shuffle is Hosea Williams. Growing in up in Georgia in the 1980s, I’d often seen Williams on the local news every year as he provided thousands of Thanksgiving dinners to the poor. Curious to learn more about him, I picked up the new book, “Hosea Williams: A Lifetime of Defiance and Protest” by Rolundus R. Rice. My reading levels had surged and plummeted with the pandemic—105 books in 2020, 57 books in 2021. For 2022, I wanted to savor fewer books, really study them. So, in honor of Black History month, I posted facts about Williams on Facebook and Instagram for 28 days in a row.
everyone. The collection will continue to grow every year. “With the establishment of the Collection, it is our hope and prayer that this space will touch those who come here, that not only will they be different, but so too will this world be different because of them and what they’ve learned here,” said Todd Allen. “We want them to know better our shared history, so that they will be inspired to make this world a better place for all of us to live.” —Staff report
What did I learn? Williams—who billed himself as “unbought and unbossed”—was infinitely quotable. Here’s one of my favorites: “I had never met God until I met Martin Luther King Jr.,” he said. “King was not my God, but I saw God within King.” I also learned that, while he’d walked side by side with John Lewis across the Edmund Pettus Bridge on “Bloody Sunday,” that was merely one event in the full life of a complex man. A World War II veteran with a degree in chemistry, he served five terms as a Georgia state representative. He marched for civil rights well into his 60s. Was he flawed? Yes. Did he ever stop working on behalf of the poor? Never. — Anna Seip, editor
5 BOOKS TO START YOUR OWN CHILDREN’S LIBRARY We asked Lonette Allen which five books she’d pick for new parents starting their own library, and she chose the following based on “subjects of affirmation, resilience and hope for children of color.” 1. “ M IS FOR MELANIN: A CELEBRATION OF THE BLACK CHILD” 2. “ THE FIERCE 44: BLACK AMERICANS WHO SHOOK UP THE WORLD” 3. “ ALL BECAUSE YOU MATTER”
4. “ A CHILD’S INTRODUCTION TO AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY: THE EXPERIENCE, PEOPLE AND EVENTS THAT SHAPED OUR COUNTRY” 5. “ WE SHALL OVERCOME”
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GOD’S GUIDANCE Paul Nisly, an English professor at Messiah for 36 years, recently wrote his memoir, “God’s Guidance: A Kansas Amish Boy Reflects on Being Led to Places He Had Not Planned to Go.” He says for years he felt an urge to write “some reflections on my life, both the wonderful, as well as the difficult, the challenging, the almost overwhelming.” The pandemic provided the space and the disciplined focus to write. “At heart, I wanted to reflect on God’s guidance on my life and the life of our family, especially my wife Laura, who faced her serious health challenges with incredible grace and courage,” said Nisly. While he’s not selling the memoir, interested readers need only contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and pay $5 in shipping to receive it.
SHELTERING MERCY Dan Wilt ’87, recently published the book, “Sheltering Mercy,” co-written with his friend Ryan Whitaker Smith. Dedicated to rediscovering the Psalms, the book serves as a guide for personal devotion and meditation through free-verse prayer renderings of Psalms 1-75. “Writing poetry became a way for me to process the challenges of life,” said Wilt, who has served as a pastor and educator. “Those moments of revelation, struggle and delight spilled over into words on a page. I co-wrote this book through one of the most difficult seasons of my life, and it felt very fitting given that we were praying the Psalms.” — Molly McKim ’23
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KEEPING THE Every Good Endeavor:
Connecting Your Work to God’s Work The call to redeem our work for His Kingdom I love to read and welcomed the early days of the pandemic when almost all parts of life slowed down and there was ample free time. I was getting my MBA at the time and enjoyed reading cover to cover all assigned texts compared to just skimming them. (I know we aren’t supposed to admit that.) The book that stands out the most is Tim Keller’s “Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work.” The book focuses on how we can connect our work, regardless of what it is, to God’s Kingdom work. It was both encouraging and convicting to learn more about God’s purpose for work, our culture’s response and the call to redeem our work for His Kingdom. Of course, the pandemic has continued to hang around longer than we would have hoped. My first unassigned pandemic read was Adam Grant’s “Think Again,” a great book, as well. In a world where it is common to “double down” on opinions or beliefs, it was refreshing and challenging to examine where in my own life I need to spend some time rethinking and challenging assumptions. — Kevin Ogden ’14, director of community wellness initiatives and campus recreation
AS WE PERSEVERED, WE SAW GOD’S FAITHFULNESS ALL AROUND.
The importance of gathering
Of the books read during this “season,” my most meaningful read was actually a re-read of a book that’s been around for 80+ years: “Life Together” by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Over the pandemic season, the one area that I’ve watched and experienced (we all have) is the impact on gathering, on being together, on sharing a meal with friends – the disruption of community. The impact varies depending on the level of community we’re accustomed to. Even before the pandemic, trends on isolation and loneliness were up and to the right. The pandemic has served to exacerbate and lay bare the trend. For me, and perhaps you, it has impacted what we’ve taken for granted – Christ-centered community – brothers and
sisters in Christ gathering together, practicing the “one another” admonishments that are so much a part of what it means to follow Jesus … together. The question for me is how do I respond? How do I push back on a cultural trend that increasingly and very subtly promotes lives of independent isolation? Bonhoeffer’s words are as true today as they were nearly a century ago. I’d commend the read (re-read) to you. — Phil Smith ’76, senior development ambassador, Hope International
As we make our way through a new normal, books can help us find renewed faith, learn about moments in history, discover characters (real and imagined) and escape to lands unknown. What book will you get lost in next?
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F E AT U R E S T O R Y
P I L F T P I R SC THE
ide of s k r a d k mines a x e w boo e r n o s n s i ure rofe Film p elebrity cult ,c media
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Want to read about how media consumption has corrupted Hollywood? How about failed end-of-time prophecies, black holes or climate change? Then you might enjoy “The Year of the Monster,” a collection of 16 short stories and essays by Tara Stillions Whitehead, Messiah University assistant professor of film, video and digital media. Planned for release in September, the book explores the uglier side of the media and culture surrounding Hollywood and the human condition. For example, one story—“Man With a Knife”—discusses how the film “Chinatown” is taught as a classic and a perfect screenplay while its director, Roman Polanski, who cast himself as the man with a knife who assaults Jack Nicholson’s character, has been a fugitive from the U.S. criminal justice system since the 1970s. “The book calls into question who we allow to entertain us,” she said. After the pandemic hit, Whitehead decided to reorganize some of the work she’d written throughout her career. “It became a book about human monstrosity, but also humanizing the monster in some contexts. There are characters that are morally ambiguous, and there are endings that are not the resolutions that you want,” she said. The collection includes stories about addiction, the fetish of celebrity and victim shaming. “Each story tests the limits of empathy: where your empathy lies and why you would empathize with certain characters,” she said. “Monster” serves as a warning to recognize and prevent “monstrous” behavior in ourselves. “The book looks for the humanity left behind, that persists in all of us after experiencing the wrath and trauma of monstrous people and institutions,” she said. The book is written in script prose
format. “I love the idea of teaching the reader how to read a script. In a self-reflexive way, as they read along the content shifts and it turns into not just reading a script but watching it happen,” she said. WHO IS SHE?
Born and raised in Southern California, Whitehead found her passion for film in high school, leading her to pursue a cinema-television production degree at the University of Southern California. “Once I went to film school, I felt like I was in charge of my identity. I think being exposed to so many great resources there and be able to express myself visually was very foundational,” she said. After graduating in 2006, she worked at Warner Brothers as the assistant to executive producer for the television shows, “Two and a Half Men” and “Big Bang Theory.” She then attended San Diego State University’s Master of Fine Arts writing program and graduated in 2012. Whitehead realized she wanted to be a teacher in graduate school. She taught English composition and creative writing at HACC Gettysburg after moving to Mechanicsburg from California with her husband and daughter in 2013. Two years later, she started working at Messiah. “[While I’m teaching,] I feel like I’m constantly learning, seeking out new films, new books, new technologies, so it feeds that desire to explore and discover new things,” she said. One of her favorite parts about working at Messiah is the impact her teaching can have on her film students. Much like her book explains, she believes the film industry needs an overhaul. “If I can have any effect on the people who go out into the world and make movies and media, this can be a great place to do it,” she said.
“The Year of the Monster” follows Whitehead’s 2021 publication, “Blood Histories,” which focuses what it means to be a woman through heritage, genetics, femininity and more.
—Molly McKim ’23
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Gone ALUMNI PROFILES
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BIOLOGY ALUMNA WORKS AT NATIONAL AQUARIUM IN BALTIMORE
later published, with biology professors Erik Lindquist and Michael Shin. “My education at Messiah undoubtedly prepared me to enter the workforce with a scientific mind and a passion for reconciling the relationship of humans to wild animals and wild places,” she said. After graduation, she volunteered at Maymont Nature Center in Richmond, Virginia. The volunteer work soon turned into a part-time position and eventually a full-time job at the center. After spending three years at Maymont, she and her husband moved to the greater Baltimore area in 2018, when she began working at the National Aquarium. As a full-time biologist, she has cared for American alligators, freshwater and saltwater fish, screech owls, river otters, venomous snakes and amphibians. She says she fell in love with the profession of aquatic husbandry, learning skills such as water quality chemistry, pluming and behavioral management. “While my path into the field was a little serendipitous, I
? GY D E G
Biology alumna Kristin Coury ’14 works as an aquarist at the National Aquarium in Baltimore. In addition to her degree, being a certified scuba diver is a requirement for her job.
Cover and feature photo shot scheduled for week of March 21
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF THERESA KEIL/THE NATIONAL AQUARIUM
oday, she works as a senior aquarist in the Australia and Rain Forest Department at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Md. From preparing the meals for the freshwater fish in her care, to scuba diving, cleaning exhibits and observing animals, she is in charge of a variety of aquatic responsibilities. After the daily diving chores, she moves onto feeding. Fish are fed—everything from mangoes to earthworms—in a particular order to minimize diet competition and to meet behavioral and dietary needs. She says the highlight of her days is training freshwater stingrays. “They have such unique ways of interacting with their environments (and their trainer) that I feel I learn something new from them every day,” she said. Graduating from Messiah with a degree in biology, she did not foresee herself working in aquatics in the years to come. She then attended an education abroad course in Panama and Costa Rica that helped her visualize a career path in conservation biology. “I now work to care for some of the species that I first encountered in that course,” she said. During her junior and senior years, she conducted amphibian disease research, which was
Kristin Coury ’14 has loved animals and nature since she was a child. In the spring and summer, one could find her searching under bushes and flipping logs in the hopes of catching a toad or treefrog.
N YOU DO CA
quickly came to find that aquatic husbandry was an ideal blend of science, creative problem-solving and innovation. There truly is never a dull day, and I feel so privileged to care for animals that help educate the public and promote conservation,” she said. —Molly McKim ’23
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A LIFE’S WORK CHRISTIAN MINISTRIES ALUMNA FOUNDS ADVOCACY ORGANIZATION IN MINNEAPOLIS
Once a Messiah student, Jeanelle Austin ’07, founder of the Racial Agency Initiative (RAI), returned to campus as an alumna to deliver the sermon “And Your Daughters Will Be Well” at chapel in January. She knows what it’s like to sit in Brubaker Auditorium and hear a profound message. “These students are really thirsty for help. Just looking at the eyes of people I was talking to, some were lighting up, some looked like they needed help, some people looked discouraged. I saw a lot of people who were in need for an open door, an open pathway, to lean into a kind of conversation that they’re not privy to at Messiah,” she said after the chapel service. After graduating from Messiah with a degree in Christian ministries, she went on to study and work at Fuller Theological Seminary for nearly 11 years, completing an M.A. in
intercultural studies and later a Master of Divinity in Christian ethics. She worked a variety of positions at Fuller, including an academic advisor, advising service coordinator and director of operations for the Pannell Center for African American Church Studies. “A lot of the work I did at Messiah was deeply rooted around racial justice and race conversations and really facilitating opportunities for people to think critically about the status of race in our society,” she said. “My time at Messiah gave me a platform to begin developing
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Jeanelle Austin ’07 created her own organization after working in academia. what would grow into the work that I do today.” FINDING HER WAY After working in Christian academia, in 2019 she founded RAI, an organization based in Minneapolis that seeks to provide people with the tools to pursue racial justice. “I decided that if I was going to launch a consulting firm, it
had to be around a pursuit of racial justice that wouldn’t lead to burnout quickly and so RAI came about with this idea about pursuing racial justice with joy,” she said. “How do we help people understand that racial justice is not about marching down the streets? Racial justice is a way of life that needs to be practiced.” She uses Clifton Strength Assessments with her clients to
You have faith; I have deeds. Show me your faith without deeds I’ll show you my faith by what I do.
An alumna, she returned to campus as the chapel speaker in January. She says her time at Messiah as a student gave her a platform for the work she does today.
help them think about how their environment can influence their advocacy. “I am a firm believer that everything we experience in our life shapes our worldview. Our worldview begins to shape the moment we are born and how we’re shaped in the context of
our family and schools you go to, kindergarten on up,” she said. She says there is no one-sizefits-all book that people can follow to achieve racial justice. “It’s creating an imagination as to how to approach things differently than how they have been
“ PURSUING RACIAL JUSTICE WITH JOY IS THE VISION AND HELPING PEOPLE HAVE AN AGENCY FOR RACIAL JUSTICE IS THE WORK.” — Jeanelle Austin ’07
approached before. Sometimes, it takes creativity and giving people access to resources to expand their imagination and their capacity for what this work of racial justice can look like and be for them. Plus, it’s different for everybody depending on where they come from, what their background is, what their experience is and what they need” she said. ADVANCING THE WORK What does racial justice look like for Austin? “Racial justice is about making right the wrong—the harm done on black, brown, indigenous bodies, the land that was stolen, the people
that were lynched and murdered and massacred, the children that were abducted, the narratives that were erased, the animals that were killed and destroyed for no reason,” she said. In addition running RAI, Austin also works as the executive director for the George Floyd Global Memorial, helping to preserve the stories of that event. She also visits classrooms as a guest speaker. “Racial justice is a way of life,” she said. “Pursuing racial justice with joy is the vision and helping people have an agency for racial justice is the work,” she said. — Molly McKim ’23
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Messiah remembers Kathryn (Kay) Boyer ’48 MESSIAH UNIVERSITY IS SADDENED BY NEWS OF THE PASSING OF KATHRYN (KAY) TYSON BOYER ’48, WHO DIED AT AGE 93 MARCH 13, 2022 and caring collaboration significantly influenced his life and work. Her leadership in women’s health has also inspired many. She was a pioneering leader in natural childbirth. During her husband’s early years at Upland College, her work as a part-time nurse at the Upland San Antonio Hospital sparked a love for labor and delivery. When her husband served as U.S. Commissioner of Education, she fulfilled a lifelong dream by completing a nurse-midwifery program at Georgetown University. She went on to serve as president of the American College of Nurse Midwives Foundation. In recognition of her leadership, she received an honorary degree from Hood College. At the age of 82, she published her memoir, “Many Mansions: Lessons of Faith, Family and Public Service” (Abilene
HARVEY SIDER 1930-2021
— Cynthia A. Wells, professor of higher education, director of faculty development and director of the Ernest L. Boyer Center
KATEY DAY MEROLA ’15
She attended Messiah Academy, where she met her beloved husband, Ernest L. Boyer Sr. ’48. His influential educational leadership began at Messiah’s sister Brethren in Christ school, Upland College, and extended to positions as chancellor of the State University of New York, U.S. Commissioner of Education and president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The Boyers held a deep love and appreciation for Messiah. He served for 26 years on Messiah’s Board of Trustees, including five years as chair. She served on Messiah’s Board of Trustees from 1996-2004. President Kim S. Phipps said, “Kay was a passionate voice for shaping an educational community that reflected academic excellence and Christian values. In particular, she was a strong advocate for increasing the number of students from underrepresented racial and ethnic populations at Messiah and for nurturing a strong sense of community on our campus. We are also incredibly grateful for Kay’s gracious gift of the Boyer archives and the treasured opportunity to infuse Boyer ideals into educational and public policy conversation through the work of the Ernest L. Boyer Center. She was an inspiration to me and to so many.” Ernest L. Boyer’s philosophy that education serves to shape convictions and build bridges of understanding has inspired generations of educational leaders. Kathryn’s gracious hospitality
Christian University Press, 2014) in which she recounts the extensive travel and frequent moves that characterized her and her family’s life as Ernie pursued his calling. Kathryn’s love for her husband and family as well as her deep and abiding Christian faith are evident on every page. Her life was marked by a profound sense of Christian calling. Her caring spirit was evident in her ongoing efforts to support her family and help those in need. She was active in her church; led a class in English language practice and Bible study for Chinese women; and founded a program to educate teenage mothers. In recent years, Messiah has been fortunate to add her papers to our Boyer archival collection. This semester, Sarah Myers, assistant professor of history, and students in her Introduction to Public History course partnered with archives staff to organize Kay’s personal papers and make them accessible to researchers. Messiah joins a wide community of family and friends in honoring her life and legacy.
Kay Boyer ’48, left, signs her book ‘Many Mansions.’
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“Work and people are what my life is all about.” This was the opening line of Harvey Sider’s obituary; it was a quote he often used to describe himself. The Messiah University community mourns the passing of this humble and gracious leader who died last November. Sider had spent a lifetime in ministry, preaching first in the Brethren in Christ (BIC) church in Canada and then in Bihar, India. Upon moving back to Canada, he returned to the pastorate and later was president of Niagara Christian Collegiate. After serving as the Bishop of the Canadian Conference of the BIC church for 12 years, he and his wife, Erma, moved to Pennsylvania where he served as the moderator of the BIC denomination in North America. It was during this time he served on the Board of then-Messiah College as one of the denominational representatives. Sider was known throughout the world as a man of integrity, kindness and deep Christian faith. As noted by Associate Vice President for Development Jon Stuckey, “Harvey was not only an insightful Messiah Board member, a helpful advisor and a wonderful encourager, but he also became a friend.” Though not a graduate himself, Sider had many family members who are Messiah alumni, including his parents, Earl ’23 and Elsie ’23, and his sister, Rhoda Sider Heise ’48. In addition, his brothers, Morris and Robert, were both on faculty here. We are grateful for his service on the Board of Trustees and his family’s remarkable legacy at Messiah University.
Sam Lenhert 1940-2022 When I first saw Sam in the fall of ’79, he was running the clock for one of Messiah’s sporting events. If you attended a game, you would have likely spotted him sitting quietly behind the scorer’s table. He was so everpresent that he was labeled the #1 FAN at Messiah. He was also affectionately known as “Sam
the Mailman,” a role as mail courier he began at Messiah in 1963. So, for many years, his was a familiar face on our campus. At the time, I knew nothing of Sam’s historical connection to Messiah. Later I would learn that Sam grew up in Arcanum, Ohio, the youngest of four children – all of whom attended Messiah. Sam was a member of the Academy class of 1958. His father, Dr. Paul Lenhert, was an alum who became a medical doctor and served as a trustee from 1941-1973. The Lenhert maintenance building on campus was named for his uncle. Many of Sam’s relatives
COURTESY OF THE LENHART FAMILY
With Ernest L. Boyer Sr.
attended Messiah. He was active in the Grantham BIC. Sang in the choir. You get the picture! Sam well was well connected to the Brethren in Christ Church and Messiah.
When I returned to Messiah as an employee in 1992, I reconnected with Sam. At first, we just had occasional conversations on campus. But as time evolved, I became
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more involved in Sam’s life. We traveled together on many Messiah-related trips and later on I would accompany him to the grocery store, take him to doctor appointments, and frequent Wendy’s. As he began to lose his independence, I gained a closer friend. As Messiah’s #1 FAN, a special moment for Sam occurred in 2010. As many know, Sam was also an avid Cincinnati Reds fan. So, what were the chances that a Messiah baseball player would end up playing for the Reds? Zero? You can imagine how excited Sam was when Messiah’s Chris Heisey was called up to play for the Reds. Later that year, Chris signed a baseball cap for him which, instead of displaying,
he wore proudly and often. So much so, I have no idea where that hat ended up. Another memorable moment occurred in 2014 when he was officially inducted into Messiah’s Hall of Honor as the #1 FAN. He is the only person to be inducted that is not an athlete or a coach at Messiah. It was a special evening to recognize his lifelong love of Messiah sports and his contributions to our sports programs. While living at Messiah Lifeways, it became more difficult for him to attend Messiah sporting events. Nonetheless, he stayed well-informed. Then, Messiah introduced live stream. What a wonderful tool for Sam to watch Messiah sports! However, trying to explain
MASON LEAVER ’22
Film and media arts and philosophy majors
how to live stream the women’s basketball game on his iPhone when I wasn’t in his room was the most challenging thing I ever tried to do for Sam. But it was well worth the effort. Two weeks before Sam passed away, I had the opportunity to drive him around campus to see the new Kim S. Phipps Admissions and Welcome Center and take in the campus views. Little did I know that this would be my last visit with Sam or his last time on campus. Sam passed away quickly and peacefully on January 3, 2022. He will be missed, but his impact and legacy will continue at Messiah. Sam’s estate established a significant endowed scholarship fund that will provide
BE GENEROUS BE SAVVY BEQUEST
With Jack Cole
financial aid to Brethren in Christ students who wish to attend Messiah and will provide awards to help student athletes and others participate in Messiah-related mission trips. For me, it was a privilege to be part of his life. — Robert Brown ’82, senior director of charitable services
AT MESSIAH UNIVERSITY
A bequest, a gift made to the University through your will, is a tangible and meaningful way to help you ensure that your legacy and the work of Messiah University and its students live on. By making a bequest gift to Messiah University, you will: • Create a meaningful, personal legacy • Ensure a Christ-centered education for future generations • Receive charitable deductions on your estate
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1940s Wilmer Haas ’43 and wife Beulah celebrated their 77th wedding anniversary Nov 4.
1970s Andrew Davidson ’75 recently published a book titled “All That Matters” with Elk Lake Publishing.
1980s Margaret (Gorman) Frisk ’80 is a deputy director at the Washington Vocational Services and a chair of the Washington State Rehabilitation Council. Lori Garrett ’83 works as the president of Glavé & Holmes Architecture.
Cindy (Robinson) Grant ’85 was promoted to principal scientist at Johnson & Johnson in Malvern, Pa. Karen (Steeves) Dainty ’87 works as the SSRS report developer/writer for Morton Buildings in Morton, Ill.
1990s David Eby ’91 recently published a book, “A Different Life,” describing his experiences growing up as a legally blind individual and his years of teaching English in China. Marie (Van der Groef) Haney ’92 works as the director and owner of Hope Learning Center Perkasie.
Anne Caroline Nderitu ’92 works as the CIPR lead at the University of Nairobi. Gretchen (Andrews) Morris ’93 works as the OCM training specialist at Yale University. Laura S. Meitzner Yoder ’93 won the Christianity Today 2022 Book of the Year award in the “Christian Living and Discipleship” category for her book “Living Radical Discipleship.” Kandie Keiner ’95 works as an aging care manager at Luzerne/Wyoming Counties Agency on Aging. Melanie Ross ’95 published the book “Evangelical Worship: An American Mosaic” with
Oxford University Press 2021.
“Believed,” a novel aimed at raising awareness about sexual assault.
Lucas Hunt ’99 and wife Tirtsah announce the birth of Nogah, Oct. 27, 2021. Beth (Eitel) Steinbach ’99 graduated with a master’s in library and information science from University of Missouri in 2021. She works at Kitsap Regional Library in Bremerton, Wash.
2000s Trevor Brunsink ’00 works as a ramp service employee for United Airlines. He and his wife Nicole also announce the birth of Serenity, March 31, 2020.
Ryan Stockton ’03 serves as the lead pastor for Marsh Creek Community Church in Exton, Pa. Nicholas Zoller ’03 works as a professor of mathematics at Southern Nazarene University. Shalane (Heisey) Cohen ’05 and husband Timothy announce the birth of Hadley, Oct. 6, 2021. Kelly (Miller) Johnstone ’05 works as a house parent at Lifehouse in Houston, Texas.
Michael Emberger ’03 published a book titled,
The Master of Arts in counseling at Messiah University will help you become a skilled counselor, capable of working in a variety of settings. • We offer degree tracks in clinical mental health counseling; marriage, couple and family counseling; and school counseling. • Our Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies (CAGS) in
counseling equips those who need to meet state licensing requirements. • Designed for busy professionals—the majority of courses are completed online.
Experience the academic distinction of a nationally ranked Christian university.
All program tracks nationally accredited by CACREP since 2012
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FROM THE ARCHIVES
IT’S COMPLICATED Who was the first non-white professor at Messiah? The answer is more complex than you think. In the 1960s-1980s, Messiah employed full-time faculty along with assistant, associate and full professor ranks along part-time faculty, typically with the title “instructor.” “Messiah had part-time or visiting faculty of color as early as the late 1960s,” said Director of Archives Devin ManzulloThomas. “Henry K. H. Huang is listed as visiting professor of biology in the 1968-69 Clarion yearbook. That same yearbook
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proposed ‘Logos Afro-American Academy of Research and Rhetoric,’ which was to be headquartered at the Philly campus,” said Manzullo-Thomas. However, the program did not seem to stick. Manzullo-Thomas says he was unable to find anything else about the program within the archives. “My guess is that this program was envisioned, but never became
a reality. I couldn’t find any material about it in the college’s handbooks or in our larger archival container list,” he said. Following Davis’ footsteps, Robert Suggs joined Messiah as an associate professor of psycholgoy in 1980, making him the second full-time faculty member of color. — Molly McKim ’23
MESSIAH UNIVERSITY ARCHIVES
Who was Messiah’s first professor of color?
lists William L. Smith-Hinds as part-time instructor in sociology.” When it comes to the first fulltime faculty of color, however, that would be Abraham Davis. For roughly two years starting in 1973, Davis served as the dean of the Philadelphia campus. From 1977-1983, he worked as a professor of speech communication. Paul Nisly, a longtime English professor at Messiah, writes in his book, “Shared Faith, Bold Vision, Enduring Promise: The Maturing Years of Messiah College,” about the story behind Davis’ hiring process. The Committee on Discrimination in the Area of Race had been putting pressure on administration to hire a Black faculty member. They wrote in a report to faculty, “Black students feel mistrusted, misunderstood and separated from the life of the community… the final straw for many minority students is the apathy of many white students to even recognize the problem.” The same report brought recommendations for change within the College, including more recruitment of minority faculty and students, cross-cultural experiences and the integration of Black studies. “Furthermore—and intriguingly!—according to an article in the August 1974 issue of the Messiah College Bulletin, part of Davis’ load while at the Philly campus involved leadership of a
Abraham Davis became the dean of Messiah’s Philadelphia campus in 1973. A professor of communication, he was the first full-time faculty of color hired.
IN CONCERT MICHAEL W. SMITH O C T OB E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 2 • 8 : 3 0 p. m . O C T OB E R 1 6 , 2 0 2 2 • 7 p. m .
Calvin and Janet High Center for Worship and Performing Arts Parmer Hall
Michael W. Smith has been releasing new music regularly and performing around the world to soldout crowds for the last 35+ years. During his storied career, he has written and recorded over 36 No. 1 songs; has received three GRAMMY Awards, 45 Dove Awards and one American Music Award; was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame; and has sold more than 15 million albums.
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We continue in our capital campaign – The Campaign for Messiah University: Learning for Life, Transforming the World – which supports our vision to educate students for a lifetime of learning opportunities as they prepare to become Christcentered, servant leaders across the globe. We are so grateful for all our friends, family and alumni who have already invested in this campaign, showing their financial support of
“I am deeply humbled by the many alums who choose to donate to Messiah. I wouldn’t have the range of opportunities if it weren’t for them. Donors have enabled me to come to Messiah and receive the education that I have loved.” — Matt Jenkins ’22, student body president
our students. To date, we are $74.3 million toward our $75 million goal, which, with generous donations, we plan to achieve by December 2022. If you have not yet made a gift, consider joining the Messiah community by investing in the opportunity to ensure that the next generation of Messiah students engage the big questions of life and faith as they prepare to lead and serve their communities with competence, compassion and a commitment to reconciliation.
Learn more and give at messiah.edu/SupportStudents.