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Masters in Mentoring

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On the cover: Svetlana “Lana” Janssen C’07 (at left) is a nurse manager—and a mentor—for Sarah Northfell C’11, floor nurse. The two work in the orthopedic rehabilitation unit at the renowned Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Read more about North Park alumni-mentors, starting on page 8.

When You Cross the Street Three of my grandchildren—Cate, Carter, and Ella— are just two years old. They’re growing quickly, now walking and running on their own, learning to talk, discovering that sharing isn’t always fun, and figuring out how to get their own way. These three kids are growing up so well because in all their walking and running, someone is always near to say, “Hold my hand when you cross the street.” When students enroll in college—whether as undergraduates, graduate students, or seminarians—it’s as though they’re “crossing the street.” And someone needs to be there to “hold their hand.” Students walk in their learning, sometimes they run. But they always need a companion. Walking alongside students has many dimensions. It includes introducing ideas that are entirely new, demonstrating a technique, holding a hand when the student is unsteady, and even picking them up when students trip or fall. Eventually our students “grow up” and are ready to cross the street on their own—to leave college and enter the workplace. But entering the workplace takes practice, as well. Those early steps into a new career are shaky. Our leg muscles are not yet fully formed, our balance is rocky, and we look down when we should be looking up. How do you learn to walk in the workplace? The answer: by following a mentor. North Park’s commitment to walking alongside our students transcends the classroom and reaches even into the workplace. It happens because our graduates, who learned from their mentors while students at North Park, now choose to be mentors themselves, in the workplace, with students who are almost ready to cross the street from college to work. And our alumni-mentors also gladly share their knowledge with other alumni-colleagues. In this issue of the North Parker you’ll meet Viking graduates who mentor North Park students and other alumni. You’ll discover how teaching and learning transcend the classroom and extend to the workplace—to financial institutions, hospitals, schools, community and arts organizations, government centers, courtrooms, businesses, and churches across the city. North Park graduates are great mentors to our students and to one another.

David L. Parkyn President, North Park University

North Parker Editorial Board David L. Parkyn President Nate Mouttet Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing Mary K. Surridge Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations Marcia Mawe Director of Marketing Melissa Vélez-Luce C’04 G’12 Director of Alumni Relations

Editorial Staff Mary Nowesnick Editor John Potter C’05 News and Copy Editor Megan Gilmore C’05 S’13 G’13 Web Editor Tatjana Jovancevic Lead Designer Dottie Ward Patty O’Friel Designers Chris Padgett Anthony Barlich Bradley Siefert Photographers

2 Campus News

by John Potter C’05

8 Masters in Mentoring

by Mary Nowesnick

9 10 12 14 16

Pay It Forward Creative & Confident Inspire Direction Challenge & Encourage Make It Amazing

18 History is Being Made

The Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life

20 Celebrating Commencement

Ceremonies, Golden Circle, and Senior and Fulbright Honorees


4 in 2014

Meet our Graduates

26 North Park Salutes Campaign Supporters 29


Rev. Dr. Robert Owens S’94 2014 North Park Theological Seminary Award for Distinguished Service

Alumni Notes

by Melissa Vélez-Luce C’04 G’12

The North Parker is published twice a year for alumni and friends of North Park University, 3225 West Foster Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625-4895. For mailing list adjustments, address changes, questions, or suggestions, please contact the Office of Alumni Relations at (773) 244-5273.

Enjoy the North Parker online, too, with back issues for reading or download at

Campus News

University Caps Year of Athletic Achievements Conway named CCIW Coach of the Year

Switzer earns NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship

The past academic year saw the University’s athletics program earn a number of substantial achievements and honors.

Shelby Switzer C’14 graduated this year as one of the most-decorated student athletes ever to don a North Park Viking uniform. A four-time CCIW Academic All-Conference selection and four-time CCIW Jack Swartz Academic Award winner—the first North Park student athlete to achieve that status—Switzer is also an Academic All-District and All-America selection by the College Sports Information Directors of America. In March, Switzer earned another impressive honor when she received an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship, an award given to a small number of elite student athletes to go on to graduate school.

In his first year as head football coach, Michael Conway and the Vikings produced an outstanding season. Under Conway, North Park ended a 13-year, 89-game conference losing streak and won two additional games in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW). For his efforts, Conway became the first North Park football coach to ever be named CCIW coach of the year. Conway received the Bob Reade Coach of the Year award in November.

North Parker | Summer 2014

“I consider it a privilege to be the football coach at North Park University. Just to coach in the CCIW is an honor itself,” said Conway, who also turned in the best record for a first-year head football coach at North Park. “We feel very honored to receive this, but this is a team award and it’s an award that our players, coaches, and administration should take pride in.”


In one season, Conway and his coaching staff set numerous records and made history in one of the most challenging conferences in NCAA Division III. The Vikings won 22-20 over Carthage College during Homecoming weekend; defeated Augustana College 45-35 for their first victory ever on the Augustana campus; and broke a 42-year losing streak with a 35-32 win over Millikin University, earning the team three conference wins for the first time since the 1979 season. Their finish at 3-4 in the CCIW was also the highest finish for a North Park squad since the 1968 season. “This was a character-building year for everyone involved,” Conway said. “We overcame some dramatic odds, records, and streaks this year, which very few people thought was possible. A lot of people questioned our chances of winning in this conference, and our success this season has given us a foundation to build on for the future.”

“Shelby is an incredible student, an exceptional athlete, and, most of all, an extraordinary person,” head volleyball coach Tim Walenga said. “She is very deserving of this award and has put in a great deal of hard work to receive it.” A total of 174 NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships, 87 for men and 87 for women, are given to top student athletes annually. The $7,500 grant is awarded to those who excel both academically and athletically and who are in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. “Shelby is the first student athlete to receive the NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship at North Park and she will not be the last,” Walenga said. “She accomplished some amazing things both as a student and as an athlete, and she truly epitomizes what it means to be a student athlete.” (More on Switzer on page 22.)

Pettersson named 2013 CCIW Player of the Year Jonas Pettersson C’15 became the third player in North Park men’s soccer history— and the second in the last five years—to earn CCIW Player of the Year honors. The award, given in November, marked a third straight First Team All-CCIW selection for Pettersson, a native of Oskarshamn, Sweden. “Over the course of his three years here at North Park, Jonas has always been a dynamic goal scorer,” head men’s soccer coach John Born said. “The difference between this year and the previous two is that he’s elevated his total overall game. He has become more consistent and has developed into a team leader. It is a well-deserved honor.” In the 2012 season, Pettersson broke an eight-year school record for the most goals scored in a single season with 15. In 2013 he put up 13 goals for the Vikings. In the last 10 games of the season, Pettersson scored four game-winning goals, including CCIW matches against Millikin University and North Central College, which kept the Vikings in contention for the regular season conference championship until the final day of the season.

After seven years of service to North Park, Provost Joseph Jones (at left) stepped down from his position at the University this spring, effective at the end of the semester. Provost Jones is relocating to Virginia to be closer to his family and to continue his vocation as an educator. “We will miss Provost Jones’s commitment to our institutional mission, his support for our faculty, and his guidance of our academic programs,” said President Parkyn. Under the leadership of Provost Jones, the University experienced significant program expansion and administrative advances. Provost Jones oversaw the development of the Office of Diversity and Intercultural Programs and the Collaboratory for Urban and Intercultural Learning; the process of accreditation renewal by the Higher Learning Commission; the creation of the faculty senate; and the implementation of a University-wide assessment structure. The duties of the provost will be shared by Dr. Craig Johnson, dean of the School of Music (above, right), and Neale Murray, professor emeritus of art and former interim dean of the School of Music, on an interim basis in the 2014–2015 academic year until a new provost is hired. Dean Johnson will oversee the provost’s general responsibilities while Dean Murray will handle the personnel duties of the position.

News Highlights

Campus News

University Announces Interim Provost Plan Future Students, University Supporters Tour Interior of Johnson Center

Incoming students and dedicated University supporters got a sneak peek inside the Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life on February 7. Twenty-four select future University students and their families, on campus to attend a scholarship event, toured the building’s interior in the afternoon. More than 60 President’s Club members were given a tour in the evening as part of the President’s Club Member Appreciation Series. At the time of the tours, crews working to complete the Johnson Center’s interior structure had progressed from installing and insulating miles of conduit and plumbing piping to placing drywall and painting classroom and office spaces. With the arrival of lab equipment in late February and the completion of flooring in March, the building is on pace for a July move-in and to open for classes in August. Formal dedication is set for September 12–13, 2014.

Fifth Annual Student Diversity Leadership Conference Draws 600

Nearly 600 students, faculty, staff, and organizational leaders from across the country gathered at the University November 2 for the fifth annual Student Diversity Leadership Conference. The University’s Office of Diversity hosts this event to equip college students to be effective leaders and agents of change on their campuses. The conference goal is for students to be prepared to engage their peers in conversations and activities that create multiethnic cooperation and increase intercultural competency. Rev. Kanyere Eaton, pastor of Fellowship Covenant Church in the Bronx, New York, gave the keynote address. Speaking on the conference theme, “Achieving Peace by Embracing Diversity,” Eaton challenged the students in attendance to recognize themselves as leaders shaping their legacy for future generations. “You could have been someone very different,” she said, “but you are who you’re supposed to be. And you’re supposed to lead.”

New Leadership for Career Development and Internships

North Parker | Summer 2014

For more about North Parkers who strengthen career paths, see Masters in Mentoring, pages 8-17.

Pamela Bozeman-Evans joined the University this spring as the new senior director for the Office of Career Development and Internships. With a strong background in nonprofits, community organizing, and higher education, she is ready to better position North Park students in a highly competitive workplace. “Families make a tremendous investment in their children’s education, and our office will invest our best resources in connecting graduates to employment opportunities,” she said. Most recently, Bozeman-Evans spent nearly five years as chief operating officer and chief of strategic initiatives for YWCA Metropolitan Chicago. Bozeman-Evans seeks to encourage students to dream big about how their career paths can reflect their passions and values. She wants the Office of Career Development and Internships, a department of the University’s Division of Student Engagement, to be a place that “challenges young adult scholars to solve tough social problems,” she said.


Campus News

University Announces New Academic Programs North Park University is introducing three new undergraduate options that will take full advantage of the classroom, laboratory, and research facilities in the Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life, opening in Fall 2014.

Engineering options continue to expand Students in the Physics and Engineering Department will now have the option of completing a full bachelor of arts in engineering degree at North Park. Either on its own, or as a complement to another undergraduate major, the new degree will enable students to explore how the interaction of science and technology engage and shape different disciplines and professions. This full degree option bolsters students’ engineering choices, which include a unique dual-degree engineering partnership with the University of Illinois at Chicago and a 3/2 physics/engineering program that allows students to attend any accredited engineering school after completing three years as a physics major at North Park. “Recently I asked some of my students what they want to be doing five years from now,” said Linda McDonald, assistant professor of physics. “I asked them, ‘What is your dream job?’ With three engineering programs to go with our two physics options, no matter the student’s dream, we have a way to get them there. That’s what a school like North Park can do.” “We are proud to provide a range of options in engineering for students who have an interest and ability,” said Provost Dr. Joseph Jones. “This has long been an area of demand and with our new science facilities we can now serve these students with great resources and wonderful faculty.”

North Parker | Summer 2014

Health sciences degree focuses on management and allied health careers


Also launching in Fall 2014 is a bachelor of science program in health sciences, responding to a growing market demand for healthcare practitioners who possess management and leadership skills. This degree will offer a foundation in the life and health sciences combined with business courses to prepare students for positions such as clinical services managers, hospital administrators, and community health liaisons. A required practicum will give students the opportunity to work with a local organization on a project that matches their career aspirations. “This responds to a rapidly growing need on several levels,” said Dr. Linda Duncan, dean of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences, who developed the program. “There are multiple opportunities for specialized careers in the healthcare industry.”

The first health sciences track, available to students in the program in the fall 2014 semester, will focus on healthcare leadership. Offered in partnership with the School of Business and Nonprofit Management, the program will incorporate courses in leadership and management that will prepare graduates for increased responsibility and career mobility in their jobs. After this initial track gets underway, a second track—in healthcare education— will be introduced.

Medical studies designed as second bachelor’s degree opportunity North Park’s new bachelor of science in medical studies is designed for students who have already completed one bachelor’s degree but are looking for additional preparation before applying to professional schools in the health field. These individuals may be career-changers or recent graduates who decide to apply to medical, dental, or veterinary school, or to an allied health profession program, and need to fulfill their science prerequisites. While North Park undergraduates can currently choose a pre-professional track (for medical, dental, veterinary science, pharmacy, optometry, occupational therapy, or physical therapy programs), this is the first time the curriculum has been realigned as a post-baccalaureate degree program. The degree is a 56-credit major, allowing students to transfer credits from other bachelor’s programs and take only courses needed to complete the requirements for professional school applications. It is expected that students, who must take at least 30 semester hours at North Park, will complete the program in one to two years. “To our knowledge, there is only one other post-baccalaureate program of this kind in the Chicago area,” said Nate Mouttet, vice president for enrollment and marketing. North Park’s new program is designed to address the unmet demand to fully prepare college graduates who apply to medical school. The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is expected to change in 2015 in order to place a greater emphasis on the behavioral sciences. In preparation for this, the North Park program will offer students coursework and preparation in these disciplines as well as in the traditional science and mathematics areas. Faculty advisors will work with students to ensure they stay on track toward their career goals, address any concerns as they arise and, in the case of medical studies students, prepare adequately for healthcare profession admission exams.

Campus News

More News Highlights Students Embark on Service and Learning Trips Across the Globe

Over spring and summer breaks, University students travel far and wide to get a closer look at learning and serving in new contexts. These Global Partnerships trips, offered by University Ministries, ask individuals to step outside their comfort zones and preconceived notions of faith, service, and justice, and seek to build lasting relationships between the University and organizations that represent the global church. Not typical “service” trips, some Global Partnerships experiences allow students to participate in ministry programming projects or manual labor, while others focus on engaging policy and education to effect change. Over spring break in March, Global Partnerships groups traveled abroad to India, Mexico, and Israel-Palestine, and domestically to Appalachia, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC. This summer they are visiting Alaska, Ecuador, Mexico, and Zambia.

University Honors Black History Month

The University campus community kicked off Black History Month celebrations with its annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. worship and service day January 21. Duke Divinity School’s Rev. Dr. Willie Jennings commemorated Dr. King at a chapel service honoring the life and legacy of Dr. King. “Our goal is to change the world because we serve a God who has changed it,” Jennings said in his message. On February 13, internationally acclaimed baritone and peace advocate Anthony Brown brought his rousing concert, “I Go On Singing: Paul Robeson’s Life in His Words and Songs,” to Anderson Chapel. Brown’s celebration of African American entertainer and civil rights leader Robeson incorporated live musical numbers with documentary footage. Brown also participated in a campus chapel service, gave a lecture for undergraduate students, and led a workshop with the University Gospel Choir.

Reload Urban Youth Worker Conference Celebrates 10th Anniversary

North Parker | Summer 2014

On April 5, the Chicago Reload Urban Youth Worker Conference celebrated its 10th year of providing valuable resources and networking opportunities to youth advocates throughout Chicago and the Midwest. The daylong conference, held annually at North Park, serves hundreds of urban pastors, youth leaders, volunteers, social workers, teachers, and parents. More than 20 workshops with a variety of speakers were held throughout the day. This year’s conference saw the addition of an optional pre-conference intensive workshop on the effectiveness of current models of urban youth evangelism led by author Romal Tune, as well as the presentation of the inaugural Reload Urban Youth Worker Awards. Reload 2014’s theme of celebrating and honoring the achievements of youth workers was especially reflected in the conference’s keynote speakers, life coach Justine Conley, who has served on the Reload planning team since its first year, and House Covenant Church Pastor Phil Jackson, who helped bring Reload to North Park.


Campus News

More News Highlights University Choir and Chamber Singers Tour Minnesota

The University’s Chamber Singers and University Choir toured Minnesota over spring break in March, performing at six churches, the Covenant Village retirement community, and Minnehaha Academy. The tour’s theme, Sing a New Song, featured both classical and contemporary sacred and secular music, including works by René Clausen, Baldassare Galuppi, and Claude Debussy, as well as arrangements by Moses Hogan and Randall Thompson. More than 50 students participated in the tour, representing the University’s undergraduate and graduate music programs, conducted by Dr. Julia Davids, director of choral activities and Stephen J. Hendrickson Assistant Professor of Music. For student musicians, tours provide important performance experience and an opportunity to build close relationships with fellow vocalists and faculty members. The theme of Sing a New Song comes from Srul Irving Glick’s piece “Sing Unto the Lord a New Song,” which the choirs performed on tour.

Senior Biology Major Wins First-Ever Au Sable Institute Fellowship

A passion for science has opened many doors for Katherine Patterson C’14 since she began her studies at the University. This summer, the biology major will have the opportunity to dig even deeper into her chosen field thanks to the Harold Snyder Fellowship from the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies. Patterson is the first-ever recipient of this award, which was established in 2013 to honor the legacy of the institute’s founder. “Dr. Snyder’s mission was ultimately what I want to do as well,” Patterson said. “To teach and inspire students through being in the field amidst the wonder of nature.” She will use the award to take courses in limnology (the study of inland waters) as well as watershed and global development at the institute’s Great Lakes campus in Michigan.

North Parker | Summer 2014

Athletes Fundraise for Leukemia Research


Throughout the course of the 2013–2014 academic year, a meaningful partnership developed between Viking athletes and the family of a North Park Theological Seminary student. Zeke, the two-year-old son of Seminarian Eric Dixon, is suffering from leukemia and served as inspiration for the teams to raise funds for research and awareness about the disease. Student Athlete Advisory Council President Kristin Gibbs was instrumental in developing this partnership, in part due to her own family’s experience with the disease, along with head women’s basketball coach Amanda Crockett. The men’s and women’s soccer teams hosted an evening of games in the fall with Zeke as their honorary captain, as did the men’s and women’s basketball teams in January, and the softball team at their April Battle at the Ballpark doubleheader. “Having Zeke’s family and Zeke himself involved in the process made the games that much more special,” Gibbs said. “It was great to see us all come together for a worthy cause.”

Campus News

More News Highlights Seminary Students Explore Early Christianity in Greece

From January 3–11, a group of 16 North Park Theological Seminary students and three Seminary faculty members journeyed to Greece for a course on Greece and Early Christianity. Joining North Park were 16 participants from International Federation of Free Evangelical Churches schools in Sweden, Norway, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany, China, and Brazil. Students prepared for the trip with a series of readings on Greco-Roman history, religion, and culture, as well as study of the book of Acts and Paul’s letters to the Corinthians. The Greek Bible Institute in Athens hosted the group, which traveled to significant sites in early Christianity, including the Roman Forum in Athens, the Parthenon and the Acropolis, Areopagus, Epidaurus, Nafplio, Delphi, and Corinth. “Now when I approach the Bible, I have this culture and these sites in mind,” said Nilwona Nowlin S’14 G’14.

Professor Daniel White Hodge Launches Journal of Hip Hop Studies

The Journal of Hip Hop Studies began as an idea to provide an innovative and unifying force in the field of hip hop studies. Dr. Daniel White Hodge, assistant professor of youth ministry and director of the Center for Youth Ministry Studies at North Park University, organized a national editorial team in 2012 “committed to publishing critically engaged, culturally relevant, and astute analyses of hip hop.” After developing a partnership with Save the Kids, a grassroots organization devoted to eliminating the school-to-prison pipeline, White Hodge and the journal’s editorial team began accepting submissions and launched the first issue in January 2014. The journal is currently preparing its second issue for release this year, and the team is also working on a special issue on the rise of African hip hop. Read the Journal of Hip Hop Studies online at

University Students Spearhead “People Are Not Illegal” Events

North Parker | Summer 2014

In April, North Park students, staff, and faculty joined community partners for a series of “People Are Not Illegal” campaign events around the issues of mass incarceration and immigration in the United States. “This grew out of students’ desire to mobilize the faith community around our value of the image of God—that each life must be treated with dignity,” according to Richard Kohng, the University’s Urban Outreach coordinator. “This isn’t a political issue to us, this is a spiritual issue.” Events began April 13 at a University worship service with speaker Joshua DuBois, former head of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. On April 14, a public meeting was held at Anderson Chapel, featuring U.S. Representative Mike Quigley and Illinois State Senator Daniel Biss. Following the meeting, participants marched from campus to Cook County Jail, rallying for immigration and incarceration reform.




North Parker | Summer 2014



They leave here with degrees, dreams, and knowledge. They come back with experience, access, and know-how. Meet five of North Park’s alumni-mentors who generously offer our students and graduates world-class lessons for real-world careers. By Mary Nowesnick

Campus News

Pay It Forward Lawrence Anderson C’71 Joanna (Ericson) Kanakis C’06 Jacob Gustafsson C’13

The Legacy. Ask around and plenty of North Parkers immediately say that Larry Anderson is the one to know. Throughout his more than 40-year career in banking and finance, Anderson estimates he’s offered career mentoring, paid internships, and first jobs to more than 75 North Parkers. His inspiration? William A. “Bill” Matson A’52 C’54, his first boss at his first job at former Continental Bank. “Bill said something that’s stayed with me ever since: ‘We come from a small school. We need to stick together.’” Anderson credits his three sons Eric C’98, Kurt C’00, and Ryan C’05 for introducing him to “so many good students I’ve wanted to help.” In the end, says Anderson, executive vice president for finance for Covenant Ministries of Benevolence (CMB), “I’m just paying it forward.” His Philosophy. The best way to develop skills to work anywhere, says Anderson, is to “experience the office environment. My interns work right alongside me. They listen in to my calls. They ask questions, and they interact with others in the office.” Most important: “When you show you can do whatever you’re asked, you’ll get more to do—and more ways to learn.” Anderson’s best mentoring advice, says former Portland Trailblazer, now State Farm executive Michael Harper C’80: “Everyone has an opportunity to be successful. Oh, and a blue suit, white shirt, and black shoes is the best look when you work downtown.” Harper was Anderson’s first intern at Continental Bank.

Front Row. Joanna Kanakis was at the Andersons’ kitchen table where “Larry’s son Ryan and I were discussing a movie when Larry joined in the conversation.” Anderson later invited Kanakis to apply for an internship at his former company, Calyon Financial. “More than anything, my internship provided me a front-row seat to how global markets function and who the major players were. And I learned fairly quickly that if I could be trusted with the little things, more responsibility was given to me,” Kanakis says. Today, Kanakis sits at the same desk where she interned 10 years ago—now as assistant vice president, Advisory Desk, at Newedge USA, LLC. “Entering the world of trading was pretty scary as a 19 year old and a female, but it meant a lot to me (and even more to my mom) that Larry saw something in me and thought I could do well.” The Gateway. After talking with Anderson at various North Park events about his career prospects, Jacob Gustafsson was offered an internship at CMB right after graduation. “Larry took a great interest in me and made sure I learned as much as possible about corporate finance, institutional investing, financial markets, and much more.” The internship served as his “gateway to the professional world” and to his current position as a financial analyst at CMB, he says. About his mentor: “Larry has a vast professional network, bigger than any other I have ever seen— and he does not even use Facebook.” Read more about the mentors and those they’ve inspired at

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North Parker | Summer 2014

Creative & Confident Hilary Marshall C’05 Lyndsey Thompson C’11

The Arts of Life | North Shore Studio | Glenview, Ill. Established in Chicago in 2000, the Arts of Life provides high-quality, innovative services in the visual arts, music, and performance for adults with developmental disabilities. Visit The Start. Hilary Marshall (at right) joined the Arts of Life in 2010 to open the North Shore studio, the organization’s second location. As studio manager, Marshall works with her staff on a range of programs that support participating artists. The Connection. Assistant Professor of Art Tim Lowly introduced Marshall to Lyndsey Thompson, who began in 2011 as a volunteer, then was offered the first internship at the North Shore studio. Marshall says it was immediately clear that Thompson would be a good fit. “Growing up around a family member with a disability influenced her values deeply and she is also a very creative person.” Thompson became “so critical to our day-to-day functioning” that a full-time position was created for her. “We couldn’t do without her,” says Marshall. The Benefits. Thompson believes she has “become more confident under Hilary’s guidance. By forcing me to find solutions to my own questions, she has taught me to be more resourceful, to act independently, and the list goes on. Her best career advice: To find a balance between my work and life outside the studio.” Marshall says the studio is “a powerful force, very much like a community of faith. All of us support, nurture, and mentor each other. I learn as much from Lyndsey as she does from me.”

North Parker | Summer 2014 11


North Parker | Summer 2014

Inspire Direction Don Thomas C’08 (at left) Monica Thomas C’09 Joe Hemphill C’06, G’11 Jerwane Ford C’08 (at far right)

Community Human Services, Inc. | Chicago CHSi provides community-based programs and services to disenfranchised Chicagoans. Founded in 1979 by North Park’s Professor of Nonprofit Management Gianfranco Farruggia, this not-for-profit serves adolescents and adults with advocacy, counseling, tutoring, and job placement services. Visit The Moment. Joe Hemphill joined CHSi in 2005 for a year-long internship to “learn the ropes” of being an advocate for at-risk youth. Among his early lessons: build relationships with other community organizations and be dependable to the youth and the community. He became a youth and family counselor and six years later was named general manager, now responsible for a range of duties from supervising counselors to securing funding sources. He credits Professor Farruggia for his start at CHSi. His best career advice: “Seize the moment. Opportunities open up and you can’t be afraid to take the leap.” The Kickoff. North Park football connected Hemphill, Don Thomas, and Jerwane Ford in 2004. After graduating in 2008, says Ford, “Joe explained his work and how much he loved doing it. I said I wanted to start in the same field­­—­­­­­­­and it was clear from there.” After various jobs after graduation, Thomas eagerly took the opportunity to work with Hemphill at CHSi and “it’s been a joy since.” In 2011 his wife, Monica Thomas, joined CHSi because “the mission was more geared towards my career goals.”

North Parker | Summer 2014

The Support. Don Thomas, youth and family counselor, says Hemphill “seamlessly merges his intellect with a social consciousness to provide the highest level of mentorship.” For Ford, who serves as parole agent/counselor, “Joe does more than make a difference in my career, he inspired the direction. His hard work pushes me to excellence in all levels of life.” He’s very compassionate and encouraging, says Monica Thomas, who also is a youth and family counselor: “Joe supports my individual goals by helping me understand nonprofit work.” Hemphill calls mentorship of his team of North Parkers an “invaluable opportunity. I enjoy helping my fellow alums achieve their personal goals.” It’s a passion for working with inner-city youth (Jerwane); a focus on youth empowerment (Don); and building a career in social work (Monica), he says. Working together, Hemphill adds, “we all would like CHSi to not only be known for its good work but also to become a leader in juvenile justice.”



North Parker | Summer 2014

Challenge & Encourage Svetlana “Lana” Janssen C’07 (at right) Sarah Northfell C’11

Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago | Chicago Founded in 1954, RIC is the nation’s top-ranked provider of comprehensive physical medicine and rehabilitation care to patients from around the world. Construction is underway for RIC’s new $550 million research hospital, opening in fall 2016. Lana Janssen and Sarah Northfell are shown in the current flagship hospital’s ninth floor, redesigned to preview the new state-of-the-art facility. Visit The Journey. Lana Janssen started at RIC in 2006 as a nurse-intern and became a rehabilitation nurse in 2007. Four years later, she advanced to nurse manager on the orthopedic rehabilitation unit. “The chief nurse executive took some risks investing in me for the nursing job and again for the nurse manager position when I had no management experience,” says Janssen. While grateful to her RIC mentor for “believing in me and supporting me,” Janssen says her North Park education provided “a solid foundation and made me one of the best candidates.” At RIC, she says, North Park graduates are typically recognized as “very strong candidates because they demonstrate good knowledge, excellent clinical skills, and are self-motivated.” Dual Paths. Sarah Northfell joined RIC as a floor nurse in November 2011 as Janssen was assuming her new management responsibilities. “We both were entering new career experiences,” says Northfell. “Lana started her nurse manager career on a challenging patient unit and has blossomed into a fantastic manager.” Janssen says “Sarah is a fast learner and has a great personality and qualities for educating others.” As the primary preceptor on the unit, “she has been doing a great job.” Northfell also credits North Park’s nursing school as a “special and unique place, and challenging. But I walked into the next chapter of my life feeling very prepared.” North Parker | Summer 2014

The Advantages. Through mentoring, says Janssen, “I seek out and create learning opportunities in order to facilitate personal and professional growth.” She holds high standards for us, says Northfell, but “addresses us with respect. Lana is approachable and caring, and is always encouraging of my abilities. She has taught me that I can continue to challenge and push myself further in my career.”



North Parker | Summer 2014

Make It Amazing Cassie Christensen C’07 (at right) Susanna Park C’14

Amundsen High School | Chicago The AHS mission is to graduate well-rounded students equipped with the academic and social skills necessary to succeed as competent adults in a global society. Visit Immediate Connection. Cassie Christensen student-taught at Amundsen in Fall 2007 and was offered a teaching position the following summer. “I immediately accepted the job so the 2008–2009 school year was my first. I am very lucky because I love it here. There are so many things I love about being a teacher,” she says, listing interacting with many people every day, conversations with students, and helping students achieve their goals. Christensen says she felt “so prepared for teaching. Because of my time at North Park I am here at Amundsen. I am so grateful.” New Ideas. Susanna Park admits she was “nervous and worried” when she arrived at Amundsen to mini-teach. “However, Cassie encouraged me and gave me helpful advice and detailed feedback. She challenged me with new ideas to grow as a teacher.” As Park decides on her plans for the future, she says Christensen’s role as her cooperating teacher “enriched my teaching experience. I was able to step out of my comfort zone and reach out more to students.” Jumping In. Christensen has mentored Park and more than a half-dozen other North Parker student teachers and mini-teachers. Her reason is simple: “So many North Parkers helped me. I was placed with a North Park graduate and learned so much. I want others to have an amazing experience, too.” Her goal, she says, was to “prepare Susanna for the parts of teaching they can’t prepare you for in the classroom. Every day is different. The only way to really understand teaching is to jump into the classroom and experience it for yourself.” North Parker | Summer 2014 17

History is being made. Campaign North Park, the University’s most successful fundraising campaign, raised $63 million to outpace its $57 million goal. The culmination of the Campaign is the new Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life.

Leadership Spring 2010

Approval May 2008

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North Park’s Board of Trustees approves the University’s first comprehensive campaign.


Groundbreaking October 26, 2012

Dr. G. Timothy Johnson and David Helwig are named Co-chairs of the $57 million Campaign North Park with the new 101,000-square-foot Science and Community Life Building as the central capital project.


January–June 2011 Campaign North Park is introduced to donors, alumni, and friends around the country by President David L. Parkyn and Mary K. Surridge, Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations.

April 2013


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July 2013


The Johnson Center will open its doors in Fall 2014—and open the way to advanced learning and discovery. As the newest addition to North Park’s campus, the Johnson Center will fully realize the academic, spiritual, social, and cultural dimensions of the University’s holistic environment. The progress of the Campaign and the Center represents the unparalleled dedication and generosity of North Park’s donors and alumni, friends and supporters, leadership and staff, faculty and students. Together, we look back with gratitude and look ahead with expectation to Dedication Weekend and the decades to come.

The Johnsons The Board of Trustees unanimously approved naming the new building in honor of Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson, who “define a life of exemplary service.”

Campaign Kickoff On the Campus Green June 4, 2011

September 2013

Campaign Success

THANK YOU. For your significant support of Campaign North Park and the new Johnson Center for Science and Community Life, we are profoundly grateful. Because of every generous gift, this historic effort has reached a total of $63 million, exceeding our goal of $57 million.


COMMENCEMENT North Park University presented degrees to a total of 727 graduates during the 2013–2014 academic year. The total includes 269 degrees presented December 13, 2013, at Winter Commencement, and 458 degrees awarded May 10, 2014, at the 121st Spring Commencement ceremonies. The baccalaureate service was held May 9 at the Fourth Presbyterian Church, Chicago. Find more photos of Commencement Day at Golden Circle Members of the North Park Academy, College, and Seminary Classes of 1964 were honored on the 50th anniversary of their graduation (at right). These graduates are inducted into the Golden Circle, which recognizes their very special milestone. Golden Circle graduates march in gold caps and gowns at University and Seminary commencement ceremonies, attend a special luncheon, and receive a memory book.

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4 in 2014 To offer a closer look at some of our newest alumni, we introduce you to four May graduates (see pages 24–25) who share some of what they learned and enjoyed at North Park, and where they hope to go next in life.


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HONOREES The 2014 Distinguished Senior Awards On April 28, Shelby Switzer, Phoenix, Ariz., and Nathan Lawler, Oakley, Ill., were named recipients of the University’s Distinguished Senior Award, recognizing superior leadership, service, and academic performance. Shelby Switzer C’14: Rewrote the Record Book “When I visited North Park, I could see myself succeeding here,” said Switzer. Eager to study biology, she met with biology professors and was impressed. But beyond academics, Switzer said, “I was attracted to the community and excited about the unique opportunities North Park offers.” Switzer also knew that at North Park, she would be able to play volleyball. What she likely didn’t know from the outset, said Head Volleyball Coach Tim Walenga, is that she would graduate as “the best athlete to have ever played volleyball at North Park. She basically rewrote the record book for North Park volleyball,” said Walenga. (Read more about Switzer’s athletic achievements on page 2.) As captain of the volleyball team her senior year, Switzer “learned so much about leadership and endurance, gained lifelong friendships, and had so much fun,” she said. Throughout her athletic success, Switzer maintained academic leadership. “I’ve never coached a player who was as focused on their academics as Shelby,” said Walenga. A member of the TriBeta National Biological Honor Society, Switzer earned a 3.9 grade point average.

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“The fact that Shelby has maintained this level of academic excellence is all the more impressive when you consider that she achieved this while being a leader on the volleyball team,” said Dr. Matthew Schau, associate professor of biology. “I can think of few students I’ve encountered who have more fully embraced the liberal arts education that North Park offers.”


Switzer was also active as a student leader with University Ministries, serving on the Chapel Planning Team, volunteering as a tutor, and traveling on two “life-changing” Global Partnerships trip to Thailand— first as a team member, then as a trip leader. “I’ve been stretched spiritually, physically, and academically during my time at North Park,” said Switzer. “I’m so very thankful for it. North Park has equipped me for the future by taking me on the journey I’ve had of incredible growth.” Switzer graduated with a BS in biology and a minor in biblical and theological studies, and plans to pursue a graduate degree at North Park, where she will assist the volleyball team staff in the fall.

Nathan Lawler C’14: Proven Team Leader In high school, Lawler’s dream was to play college football. He wasn’t sure where he would choose to achieve that dream—until he saw North Park. “From what I gathered during my visit, North Park would give me the opportunity to better myself academically, athletically, and spiritually,” said Lawler. Four years later, Lawler believes he was right in his assessment. “Although I was able to participate in many activities at North Park, playing football had the biggest impact on my life,” Lawler said. “I love every one of my teammates as if they were my own brothers, and I’m happy that the accomplishments we’ve achieved this past year will set the program’s foundation for years to come.” As a member of the football team, Lawler received CCIW Academic All-Conference honors from 2011 through 2014. In addition to his athletic skills and ability, Lawler proved himself as a team leader and mentor to other players. “I’m not sure if I can remember in my 26 years of coaching a more dedicated, motivated, and respected student athlete than Nathan,” said Head Football Coach Michael Conway. Lawler’s leadership was reflected on and off the field. Graduating with a BA in history and a BA and licensure in secondary education, he earned a 3.9 grade point average while serving in his clinical teaching placement. Lawler received a student teaching position at Lane Technical High School in Chicago, for which the selection process is thorough and rigorous. “I’ve had three unique practicum experiences that have prepared me to teach at any school across the nation,” said Lawler. In 2013, Lawler earned the Peder Hedberg Foundation Scholarship, as well as the 2013–2014 Outstanding History Student Scholarship. He also volunteered for four years with the University’s Service Day and Kids Day. Lawler has been hired to teach history at Okaw Valley High School in Bethany, Ill., where he will begin teaching, and coaching football and basketball, this fall.

fulbright AWARDS 2014 Honorees Continue University’s Fulbright Legacy This spring both a student, Kendra Pearson, and a professor, Dr. Dennis Bricault, from North Park University earned grants from the prestigious U.S. Fulbright Program. Combined with previous awards, 12 University students and three University faculty members in the past six years have earned these grants. The University was among colleges and universities across the country that yielded the most U.S. Fulbright students in 2013–2014, according to a list of top-producing institutions announced by the U.S. Department of State, which sponsors the Fulbright Program. Established in 1946, it is the largest U.S. international exchange program offering opportunities for students, scholars, and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide. Kendra Pearson C’14 Beginning this fall, Pearson of Portland, Maine, will serve as an English Teaching Assistant in Mexico for a placement of nine months to one year. “I think it’s phenomenal that I will be part of a program in which a core idea is that both languages and cultures be exchanged to bring about a cultivation of a deeper appreciation for each,” Pearson said. “I am so grateful for this opportunity to actively participate in this new experience as a teacher, and simultaneously, a learner.” Pearson earned a bachelor of arts in Spanish with a K–12 teaching license in May. After her Fulbright program, Pearson hopes to return to Chicago to teach.

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Dr. Dennis Bricault Dr. Dennis Bricault, professor of Spanish, is one of only three U.S. Fulbright Scholars in the program’s highly competitive Western Hemisphere region to be awarded a position in Guatemala this year. He will spend the fall 2014 semester training English teachers at a university in Guatemala. “During my time there, I want to visit other schools in the area to exchange ideas and see how they’re doing it,” said Dr. Bricault. He has previously lead a teacher-training program with the Centers for Interamerican Studies in Cuenca, Ecuador, where he will return this summer before beginning his placement in Guatemala.


4 IN

In Tune with the World Receiving my degree was like walking to the edge of the unknown. But as I think about my plan after college, I’m excited about where God leads me.


I came to North Park from the Pacific Northwest because I wanted a liberal arts Christian school and I wanted to see a new part of the country. I’m a fourth-generation North Parker on my mom’s side. What’s next? One of my favorite things to do is to exchange cultural experiences with someone. I like explaining how I see the world and learning how they see the world. The mix of cultures I saw when studying abroad was so fascinating that I’d jump at the chance to travel and learn more.

I hope to go on to graduate school in either international politics or international development. Reflection While studying abroad in Jerusalem, I was able to learn more about Christianity, Judaism, and Islam from various points of view. Understanding their interactions throughout history made me really examine what I believe about God and myself as a Christian. Best memories Studying in Ecuador. I can’t describe how much I learned about myself and the world. I loved playing trumpet in the Jazz Ensemble and Concert Band, and my Friday night tradition of making dinner with friends was one of my favorite times of the week.

Michyla “Kyla” Lindberg | BA, Global Studies

All the Right Notes

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This has been a very successful, memorable, and somewhat crazy chapter of my life, filled with hours and hours of practicing classical guitar in Hanson Hall, hours in classes, much stress and laughter, and an incredible amount of support from my family, professors, and friends.


I was born and raised in Hanoi, Vietnam. I visited friends in Chicago when I was still in high school and fell in love with the city right away. I visited North Park, had some conversations with the professors, and knew that I wanted to study music here. What’s next? Yale University, where I’ll study for my master’s in guitar performance, then pursue my doctoral degree. Yale has an amazing guitar

An Tran | BA, Music

program, one of the best in the world. There were 200 applicants from all over the world, and they chose two. I am very lucky and honored to be one of them. Appreciation North Park’s School of Music is absolutely amazing. The professors here are world-class, and so passionate about teaching music that they also inspire us. I wouldn’t be where I am right now without my North Park music teachers. Best memories When I performed the Villa-Lobos guitar concerto with the North Park University Orchestra, it was a dream come true, powerful and beautiful. It was an honor for me to be on stage with talented musicians and a top conductor. Every day at North Park was memorable.

A Vocabulary for Success After graduating from high school in Vietnam, my parents wanted me to go to college in America to build my future. I had heard about North Park, and my aunt was in Chicago, so I felt it would be a good fit—and it was. My degree means a lot to me because it wasn’t always easy to handle college in English, my second language. I had to study for my major—and learn a new vocabulary! But my family was by my side through everything, so this degree is a big gift for my parents and my aunt. What’s next? I’m going to the University of North Texas for graduate study in chemistry to earn my PhD. I want to help improve the environment and people’s health.

Inspiration When I arrived here, everything was strange, and I spoke only a little English. But then, I read about a young Vietnamese man affected by Agent Orange during the Vietnam War who had the willpower, energy, and tenacity to fulfill his dreams. From that moment on, I was determined to stand up and overcome all my difficulties. Best memories After I finished the ESL program, I knew I wanted to continue on for my bachelor’s degree, since I really loved the environment and the people here. I didn’t know anything about the education system in the United States, but Dr. Jon Rienstra-Kirakofe, professor of chemistry, was a great advisor, explaining every class and every detail. I got a lot of help from my friends, too.

Ngan “Kristin” Ngo | BS, Chemistry

On Par with a Passion Graduating is a great milestone. I believe I’ve grown in many ways here. I have many people to thank for creating an environment where intellectual and personal growth is made possible.

What’s next? I’m trying to have as many options as possible and have applied to graduate schools in Sweden and in the United States to study health and exercise. Down the road I envision myself pursuing a PhD.

Best memories On the golf team, I made a lot of friends, and improved my golf game by playing at a competitive level. My greatest memory was receiving all-conference honors my sophomore year. I’ve also enjoyed meeting students from all over the world. Diversity is one of the greatest assets of both North Park and Chicago.

Tobias Nordin | Dual BS, Athletic Training and Exercise Science

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I moved here from Själevad, a small town in northern Sweden, for the adventure and for the experience. Leaving family is never easy, but I stayed because I like North Park and met a lot of great people who made it easy to adapt to new surroundings.

Discovery If you don’t have an interest and passion for what you do, the outcome won’t be as beneficial. I didn’t know what I wanted to study but I found the fields of athletic training and exercise science, and I continue to find them fascinating.


North Park HOSTS CELEBRATIONS Coast to coast, North Park University personally recognized hundreds of donors who generously supported Campaign North Park. At a series of special regional events from February to June this year, President Parkyn announced that the historic five-year fundraising effort, the University’s first comprehensive campaign, had concluded with a total of $63 million, exceeding the original goal of $57 million. The most visible impact of the Campaign is the new Johnson Center for Science and Community Life, which will open in Fall 2014 (also see page 18).

Vern and Mary Wickstrom with President David L. Parkyn

Tom and Pat Trautman, President Parkyn and, to his left, Jerry Johnson and Bev Johnson

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Barb Johnson

Chris Peterson, at left, President Parkyn, and Paul Johnson

John and Emily Douglass examined Johnson Center renderings

Mark Lindberg, at left, with his father Bob Lindberg

TO SALUTE CAMPAIGN SUPPORTERS The six regional events were held in Seattle and Mercer Island, Wash.; Turlock, Calif.; Naples, Fla.; St. Paul, Minn.; and Boston. These locations were also the settings for the Campaign North Park kickoff events the University hosted in 2011. Entitled A Celebration of Your Support, each event featured food, fellowship, and a brief program to update supporters and guests about Campaign results and the state of the University. A special video highlighting the journey of Campaign North Park was also presented.

Dr. Jonathan Rienstra-Kiracofe, professor of chemistry, explained how the Johnson Center will further enhance North Park’s leadership in science education. Mary K. Surridge, vice president for development and alumni relations, said: “The journey that began five years ago has led us to the steps of the Johnson Center. Every gift of support was greatly needed, and Campaign North Park succeeded because we could depend on your partnership in championing this important effort.”

Evie and Stan Helwig

Armour Swanson joins President Parkyn

Chuck Gustafson

Professor of Chemistry Jon Rienstra-Kiracofe (at right) joins Dr. Tim Johnson to greet Bob Jackson (at left).

John and Polly Lindberg with Mary K. Surridge, vice president for development and alumni relations

Bob Ash talking with Virginnia Swanson, at left, and Marjorie Gores

Louise Wilson, at left; Craig Nelson and Deb Shold, in back; and Emily Douglass and Nancy Gustafson, at right.

Every Student. Every Day. Giving to the North Park Fund means you will: • Meet students’ highest need by helping to fund scholarships and financial aid • Enable students to gain a superior, affordable education at North Park University and at North Park Theological Seminary

Make a difference.  Make your gift today.

To support the North Park Fund: Make a gift at

North Parker | Summer 2014

Development and Alumni Relations Office (773) 244-5790 or (866) 366-8096


Alumni Awards

North Park’s Inaugural Seminary Alumni Award Rev. Dr. Robert L. Owens S’94 North Park Theological Seminary Award for Distinguished Service “I’ve made four good decisions in my life: one, to follow Jesus Christ; two, to marry my wife; three, to join the Evangelical Covenant Church; and four, to attend North Park Theological Seminary.” In 2014 North Park University presented a new honor to recognize Seminary alumni who have made significant contributions in their field while living a life reflective of the core values and mission of North Park Theological Seminary.

The inaugural honoree is Rev. Dr. Robert L. Owens, superintendent of the Southeast Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church, which oversees 45 churches in six southern states. The award was presented on January 28 at an evening reception hosted by North Park during the ECC’s Midwinter Conference in Chicago. Both honored and “very humbled” by the award, Dr. Owens said the Seminary was responsible for “academically shaping me and allowing me to go deeper in my pursuit of theological truth and become more of a critical thinker. The Seminary also helped me to learn about others who have given their lives for Christ, which was humbling and motivating. I realized that if they could do what they did, the spirit of God can do the same for me.” Seminary leaders and professors were excellent academics, he said, but they also reflected a “priestly caring spirit that created a different kind of learning environment in the Seminary. It helped us all to live out the call of Jesus—to be inclusive, Kingdom-minded, caring, and shepherding.” Dr. Owens said that the Seminary is valuable to train and prepare students for the ministry. “But it cannot affirm your calling. It is the Holy Spirit who affirms your calling, and the people you serve who provide the confirmation.”

Dr. Owens said he is “extremely grateful for how God has shaped and orchestrated my journey through the Seminary and with the ECC. It is always God at work, and he will direct us to the future that he wants for our church.”

Rev. Dr. Robert L. Owens and his wife, Mary Ann (at far left), and Mary K. Surridge, vice president for development and alumni relations.

His best memories of his Seminary years, he said, begin with the “fellowship of being with others and sharing different perspectives about Scripture. Going to the library was always a precious time for me, as well as being in chapel for worship.” He also enjoyed “the richness of North Park and the neighborhood which caters to such a diverse population. I loved the food!” Dr. Owens’ previous work in ministry included serving as the founding pastor of New Life Covenant Church, Atlanta, and pastoring an inner-city church in Compton, Calif. He has served as chair of the Executive Board of the Southeast Conference, and as a member of the board of trustees for North Park University. He holds a master of divinity from the Seminary, a master in public administration from Pepperdine University, and a doctor of ministry from Columbia Theological Seminary. Dr. Owens and his wife, Mary Ann, have three children: Eric, Ian, and Marc.

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In his work today, said Dr. Owens, “We are in challenging times and need to prepare for a new future. But what remains constant is our commitment to our core values: reaching the lost; nurturing the faithful; transforming lives; and reflecting the Kingdom. And it’s the latter that really gets me jazzed, as we are a very diverse Conference—and we have a lot of fun.”

© Mike Nyman Photography


Alumni Notes





North Parker | Summer 2014


1950s Robert Burgan and his wife, Betty, celebrated 50 years of marriage in 2013. They are pictured on a cruise in the Baltic. Bob and Betty met in 1953 at Tahquitz Pines, a church camp in Idyllwild, Calif. Bob writes, “I loved my years at North Park: touring choir, Phi Theta Kappa, Gospel Quartet Outreach group, working as an orderly at Swedish Covenant Hospital, and serving as class president.” The Burgans live in Sun Lakes, Calif. [1]




Marilyn (Sandberg) Grenat C’60 and her son Jeff Fleeger C’89 had the opportunity to go on a memorable tour of Sweden in 2013. Their trip included a large family reunion; visits to a historic family homestead in Haurida, the Stockholm Cathedral, and the Royal Palace in Gamla Stan; and sailing with relatives south of Göteborg. They stayed at a “Svenska stuga” (Swedish cottage) in Gränna, overlooking Lake Vättern. [2]

A group of North Park Academy alumni gathered at North Park on September 21, 2013, in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the football team’s win against rival Luther North that guaranteed them the 1963 Private School Red Division League Championship. Coach Dan McCarrell joined the group for this celebration, which was organized by PSL All-Conference fullback John Douglass A’64. [3]

Robert “Bud” Phillips C’68 and Carol “Kelli” (Fuller) Phillips C’68 are delighted to announce the birth of granddaughter

Sadie Eleanor Hill on December 8, 2013. Bud sells real estate for Coldwell Banker and is a clinical supervisor at Western Governors University.


Debra (Groh) Pierce C’71 is currently working as professor of early childhood education at Ivy Tech Community College in Indianapolis. She is the author of The CDA Prep Guide (3rd edition), a training guide for early care and education providers who are working on a Child Development Associate Credential. Debra conducts train-the-trainer events nationwide. [4] Robert Miller C’78 recently launched a new business called Performance Focused Consulting and Coaching, with a mission of helping business leaders and their teams. Learn more at


Paul Hawkinson C’92 was honored with the Spirit of Compassion Award at the Swedish Covenant Hospital Foundation’s 58th annual gala in October 2013. The award, presented by Swedish Covenant Hospital President and CEO Mark Newton C’72,

Alumni Notes


recognizes outstanding individuals “who have given selflessly of themselves to improve the human condition of others, not only at Swedish Covenant Hospital but also throughout the world.” Most recently Paul has worked as a partner with American Homeowner Preservation Fund LP, a startup hedge fund that buys distressed mortgages nationwide and works with homeowners to create consensual resolutions in distressed housing, benefitting both investors and homeowners. He recently accepted the role of treasurer and executive director of finance for the Evangelical Covenant Church, and will begin his work there this summer.

Brian Mazzone Palmberg C’96 and Christa Mazzone Palmberg C’02 welcomed their second son, Leo Joseph, on February 26,

2014. Leo is the baby brother of Lucca Frederick, who will turn three in May. Both boys are happy and healthy, and both parents feel grateful and blessed, and look forward to enjoying summer in Seattle, where they reside. [6]

Doresa (Murry) Foots C’97 serves as president of the CERVE (Community, Education, Responsibility, Values, and Excellence) Foundation, a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to provide scholarships, mentoring, and financial education to minority students and their families. [7] Chris Zoephel C’97 spent many years as an Anglican priest,

working within the United States and internationally. He and his family have now settled in the Boise, Idaho, area, where they have established a flourishing, family-friendly live entertainment business. They hope to expand into the Chicago market soon and look forward to visiting campus to see all the wonderful changes that have taken place.

Jen (Johnson) Daly C’98 and her husband, John, welcomed Natalie

Grace Daly into the world on December 12, 2012. Natalie joins Breanna, age 10, and Josh, age four.


Help us learn more. Prospective North Park students and parents are eager to know what our alumni do with North Park degrees. To help us gather this information we need about job placements and graduate school plans, we’ll be sending a survey to alumni who’ve graduated between 2000–2014. We’ll be in touch soon—and we’ll appreciate your participation.

North Parker | Summer 2014

Paul has served on the Swedish Covenant Hospital’s Board of Directors from 2003 to 2012 and was the chair for six years, and currently serves as Vice Chair on the North Park University Board of Trustees. Currently, he is the vice-chair of the SCH Foundation and co-chair of the Women’s Health Initiative Campaign. Paul and his wife, Kristin (Anderson) Hawkinson C’91 G’93, have four children and reside in Libertyville, Ill. [5]




Alumni Notes






Meredith (Berg) Hancks C’00 G’05 recently received her EdD in educational policy and administration from the University of Minnesota. Katherine Pakieser-Reed G’00 is the author of Night Shift Nursing: Savvy Solutions for a Healthy Lifestyle, published by Sigma Theta Tau International. Although written for nurses, Katherine says, the book is equally useful for anyone who works nights. Courtney (Mecher) Strom C’00 and Erik Strom C’01 G’07 S’07

welcomed Joy Merritt Strom to their family on November 6, 2013. Joy was 7 lb. 3 oz. and 18.5 inches long. Proud big brothers include: Caleb, age eight; Jackson, age six; and Emmett, age four. [8]

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Michael Jennings C’01 and Kjersten (Anderson) Jennings C’04 joyfully announce the birth of their son, Zachary Michael Jennings, on February 25, 2013. He weighed 7 lb. 4 oz. and was 19.25 inches long. The Jennings family lives in Chicago. [9]


Julia Grace Hakanson was born to Tim Hakanson C’02 and Krissy (Persson) Hakanson C’06 on October 18, 2012, weighing 7 lb. 12 oz. [10] Christine Terry C’02 graduated with a JD from Thomas M. Cooley

Law School in 2010, and recently combined her love of education and passion for advocacy with Terry Tutors, a successful private tutoring, family coaching, and education advocacy service dedicated to serving the whole student. Christine loves helping students and families navigate the education world, and credits North Park for getting her started down the right path. Learn more at [11]




Kris (Duncan) Thulson C’02 and Matt Thulson C’04 are excited to welcome baby girl Isla to their family of three. Big brother Liam, 20 months, is adjusting like any normal toddler, taking advantage of “off-limits” toys when mom and dad aren’t looking and trying his hardest to poke Isla in the eyes and ears. [12]

Axel Awes joined Marit Johnson Awes C’03 and Seth Awes C’04 G’10 G’12 and big brother Gus on December 5, 2013. Axel is a sweet and happy baby who loves to coo and smile. The family resides in Chicago. [13] Amy (Wenell) Bingham C’04 and her husband Caleb welcomed

twins Claire and Emelia on August 11, 2013. The Bingham family resides in Iowa. Amy and her daughters are pictured with Amy’s sister, April (Wenell) Freed C’04. [14]

Eric and Alicen (Prikkel) Manus C’04 welcomed baby boy Ethan into the world on May 28, 2013. This future pianist (or tight end!) weighed in at 9 lb. 14 oz. and measured 23 inches long. Grandparents are Dennis Prikkel C’69 and Christy (Larson) Prikkel C’79, and proud godparents are Andrea and Timothy Prikkel C’11. [15]

Julia Olson C’06 recently accepted a position at the Gallatin School

of Individualized Study at New York University. Julia moved to New York City in May 2013 and is currently in the process of completing her master of science in public relations and corporate communication at NYU. She has enjoyed reconnecting with North Park friends in New York City.

Alumni Notes








Courtney (Williams) Shelton G’06 was married to David Shelton

on September 28, 2013, in Wilmette, Ill. [16]

Ian Barbo C’07 and Laura (Daleiden) Barbo C’08 welcomed Maggie Jean on January 11, 2014. [17]

A group of friends from the Class of 2008 were reunited recently, along with the newest additions to their families. In 2013, Peter Anderson C’08 S’09 S’13 and Anne (Clausen) Anderson C’08 welcomed Sommar Kristina on September 28, Sten Carlson C’08 S’13 and Erica (Print) Carlson C’08 welcomed Lucy Jane on September 20, and Peter Johnson C’08 and Katie (Anderson) Johnson C’08 G’09 welcomed Luke Anders on November 3. [18]

Stina (Peterson) Dufour C’08, program manager of Academic Initiatives and Global Programs at New York University, has been selected as a member of the Academy for International Education, sponsored by NAFSA: Association of International Educators, the leading professional association dedicated to international education. In the next year, she will receive training and coaching, and complete an individualized learning plan to develop competencies in the globalization of curricula and education abroad. [20]

the birth of their daughter, Aimee Jean Landin, born on August 8, 2013, in Bellevue, Wash. She weighed 7 lb. 3.5 oz. and measured 20 inches long. [21] Brent Strobel C’09 S’13 and Eva Larson C’12 were married at First Covenant Church in Seattle on August 17, 2013. North Parkers in the wedding party included Chris Welander C’10, Kaj Peterson C’11, Hannah Williams C’12, and Tim Johnson C’13. Erik Strom C’01 G’07 S’07 and Carolyn Poterek C’99 S’05 officiated. Many North Parkers also attended, including Vivian (Strom) Nordeen C’41. Brent is the youth pastor intern at Evergreen Covenant Church on Mercer Island, Wash., and Eva works as an event manager for the Swedish Club in downtown Seattle. Brent and Eva live on Mercer Island. [22] Nghia (Nguyen) Karoll G’10 accepted a job with Hewlett-Packard the week of her graduation and moved to Northern California. She was married in 2012, and now serves in a new role with a tech company as senior marketing manager. Nghia would like to thank North Park for preparing her for her professional career. [23] Jamie Bacon C’11 serves as the events specialist for Swedish

Covenant Hospital Foundation, where she plans and executes events that recognize and support the foundation’s mission. Jamie is in charge of coordinating and executing the Swedish Covenant

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Bethany Conrad C’08 and Kevin Hart C’10 were married December 21, 2012, in St. Charles, Ill., and now live in Chandler, Ariz. Many North Park friends were part of the wedding, from guests to three groomsmen who played on the North Park football team with Kevin: Tim Jay C’09, Sam Lialios C’11, and Shelby Wood C’11. [19]

Alanna (Hall) Landin C’08 and Eric Landin C’09 joyfully announce



Alumni Notes






Hospital Foundation Annual Benefit Gala as well as other highlevel donor events, and acts as a liaison to the SCH Associates’ Board. Jamie also oversees donor and gift management, maintains the foundation database and website, and assists the development staff with administrative duties. [24]

North Parker | Summer 2014

Roxana Dumbrava G’12 began working at the Majestic Hotel as a housekeeper shortly after moving to Chicago from Romania in the summer of 2003. After two years, she was promoted to front desk host, and within another two years was promoted to front desk manager. Roxana now serves as assistant general manager at the Majestic Hotel. Roxana’s passions are biking, traveling, and real estate, which she practices in her free time. [25]


Timothy Prikkel C’11 married Andrea Burris on December 28, 2013, in Valparaiso, Ind. Timothy is the son of Dennis Prikkel C’69 and Christy (Larson) Prikkel C’79. North Parkers in the wedding party included Alicen (Prikkel) Manus C’04, Matt Dwight C’10, and Ryan Snyder C’11. [26] For more information on how to stay in touch with alumni, visit


Robert Clarence Johnson A’44 C’47 passed away at home in North Barrington, Ill., on November 25, 2013. He was born September 23, 1926, in Chicago and attended North Park Academy and Junior College before going on to Missouri Valley College. Robert was a Navy veteran and had a successful sales career with Mead Papers. He served as an elder in the Presbyterian Church of Barrington, Ill., and enjoyed golfing, fishing, magic tricks, and model ship-building. A memorial service took place in December. [27] Marion (Swenson) Pihl C’46 passed away on November 20, 2013,

at Shell Point Village in Fort Meyers, Fla. She is survived by her beloved husband, Wayne, and her three children, Susan (Pihl) Green C’75 (Tom), Beth (Pihl) Poor C’77 (Dave Poor C’79), and Greg (Sara (Dahl) Pihl C’84). In addition, she is also survived her brother, Charles; nine grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

Marion was born in Erie, Pa., and obtained her nursing degree from North Park Junior College and Swedish Covenant Hospital. She went on to graduate with a bachelor of science from Edinboro University and worked as a visiting nurse and staff nurse at Hamot Hospital in Erie, Pa., and as a school nurse in the Harbor Creek School District for 17 years. A memorial service honoring Marion’s life took place on December 7, 2013, and interment will be held at Oakmont Cemetery in Ridgway, Pa., this summer. [28]

Alumni Notes


Fredrick J. Schultz A’50 passed away on December 7, 2013. Born

and raised in Chicago, Fred attended North Park Academy and went on to graduate from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, followed by medical school at the University of Illinois. After interning at Los Angeles County Hospital, he proudly served in the U.S. Air Force as a medical doctor. Afterward, he returned to Southern California and was a well-respected, board-certified family practitioner in Los Alamitos for many years. Most recently, he was a physician at Orange Coast College in the student health center and served as the medical director at Fullerton College’s student health center. Fred is survived by his wife of 31 years, Lisa; four children; and two grandchildren. He was predeceased by two children, Jean and Kurt. Art Edstrom C’53 passed away on March 23, 2014, in Chicago. Many family members surrounded him and his wife Ellen “Sandy” (Sandberg) Edstrom C’55. He was 82 years old. Art was born on

Art worked as an educator, coach, and administrator at several organizations, including North Park College. Blessed with a natural athletic ability, Art was instrumental in forming the physical education major at North Park; bringing two communities together to form the Coho Swim Club in Deerfield,


Ill.; and leading community swim classes for young children (Wee Woozles). Art received recognition as Coach of the Year at every level, from his years at North Park as a CCIW Coach of the Year, to his distinguished career at Deerfield High School. He has been inducted into the Illinois Swimming Hall of Fame and the Viking Hall of Fame at North Park University. At his induction to the Viking Hall of Fame in 2012, Art was described by Dr. Jack Surridge, athletic director, as a “Renaissance man,” because of his athletic abilities, his natural instinct to push the envelope, and his amazing tenor voice, all of which he used to glorify God. In addition to his wife, Sandy, Art is survived by his children, Pamela (Edstrom) Carlson C’80 (John Carlson C’80), Timothy Edstrom C’82 (Barbara (Johnson) Edstrom C’82), Matthew Edstrom C’89 (Sheila), and Kimberly Edstrom Schiller C’92 (Doug C’94). Three of his 10 grandchildren are North Parkers as well: Matthew Carlson C’10, Tyler (Carlson) Sandberg C’12, and Drew Edstrom C’16. [29]

Lolita Kareth Bittinger A’54 passed away on December 31, 2013, at the age of 78 in Kailua, Hawaii. She was born in Park Ridge, Ill. She is survived by her husband, John (“Jack”), son John, daughter Lee-Ann Breon, and four grandchildren. [30] Charlotte Suzanne “Sue” Bloomdahl C’55 passed away at home

in Westminster, Colo., on December 23, 2013. Sue was born on September 21, 1935, in Jamestown, N.Y. She met her husband, Dan Bloomdahl C’55, as a student at North Park Junior College. They were married on June 22, 1957, and soon after moved to Aurora,

North Parker | Summer 2014

October 29, 1931, in Jamestown, N.Y. He received an associate degree in liberal arts from North Park Junior College in 1953 and a BS in science and physical education in 1955 from Taylor College. Art later earned a master’s in educational leadership and supervision from Loyola University in the late 1970s.




Alumni Notes

Karen Marie (Van Steenwyk) Hearl C’62 of Lincoln, Calif., passed

away on September 2, 2013. Karen was born in Minneapolis on May 1, 1939. She met her husband, Alan Hearl C’61 S’66, at North Park in a biology lab, where they dissected a fetal pig together. Karen continued in nurse training for three years at Swedish Covenant Hospital and earned her BS in nursing at North Park. Karen and Alan were married in 1962, and in the years that followed served churches in California, Chicago, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Connecticut. Karen continued to work as a pediatric nurse and also became very involved in serving women in ministry, speaking at conferences and gatherings around the country. In 2013, she was honored at the Covenant Women Triennial Conference for her years of service. Karen is survived by husband Alan, sons David (Tamara) and Tim C’90 (Lisa), and four grandchildren.



Colo., eventually relocating to retirement living at Covenant Village of Colorado in Westminster. Throughout her life, she volunteered in church groups and with physically-challenged children. She is survived by her husband, Dan; two daughters; four grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.[31]

North Parker | Summer 2014

Fern Marie (Swanson) Katter C’60 was born on May 15, 1939, in Topeka, Kan., to Rev. Milton Swanson C’35 S’35 and Margaret (Dahlstrom) Swanson.


In 1956, Fern entered North Park College and graduated as part of the first four-year class in 1960. During her senior year, she worked part-time for Karl Olsson C’33 S’36 in the Office of the President. In the spring of 1960, Olsson asked Fern if she could fi­ll in for the summer. That “summer” lasted 11 years. In 1988, Fern returned to Chicago to work as administrative assistant to Dr. James McCormick, CEO of Swedish Covenant Hospital. In the following years, Fern served as administrative assistant to Rolland Carlson C’52, Paul Peterson, and David Dwight C’73. She retired in May 2004. In 2001, Fern married North Park professor Calvin Katter, now retired. They were married for 11-and-a-half years, and Fern was introduced to the joys of grandmothering seven children. She was a member of North Park Covenant Church and sang in the chancel choir for more than 25 years. Her long struggle with cancer ended on April 25, 2013, in Chicago. Fern is survived by her husband, Cal; her three stepchildren and their spouses; and seven grandchildren. Her mother, Margaret, passed away in January 2014. [32]

Sara Magaña C’73 of Los Alamitos, Calif., passed away on December 29, 2012, after battling leukemia. Sara was born in Chicago and married David Magaña in 1962. They lived in California for three years while David served in the U.S. Navy. Upon returning to Chicago, Sara enrolled at North Park and balanced her academic career with life at home as a wife and mother to two young children. She regarded her education at North Park as very valuable preparation for life and her post-graduate career, which included receiving a master’s in education administration, followed by 29 years as a music teacher and administrator. Sara received numerous honors, including Teacher of the Year in her school district. She retired in 2001. Sara is lovingly remembered by students, family, and friends. [33] Robert Theodore Sandin of Minneapolis, and formerly of Chicago, died at the age of 86 April 5, 2014, in St. Charles, Ill., of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. Born June 14, 1927, in Chicago, he graduated from Niles High School. He received his BA from Bethel College, BD from Bethel Theological Seminary, and PhD in philosophy from the University of Minnesota in 1959. Dr. Sandlin’s academic work took him to teaching positions at Bethel, Augsburg College, and the University of Toledo (Ohio), where he also was an administrator. He served as dean of North Park College and Northwestern College (Minn.), provost of Mercer University, and president of Wood College.

The author of innumerable papers and many books, Dr. Sandlin focused his writing on Christian higher education, philosophy of religion, and the Swedish philosopher Axel Hägerström. His academic work was complemented by a love of music. He is survived by Zella Mae Sandin, his loving wife of 63 years; son Karl Sandin and daughter-in-law Laura Montgomery of Wheaton, Ill.; and two granddaughters. A memorial service was held on April 12 at Winnetka Covenant Church. [34]

Join Us!

September 12–13, 2014 Dedication Weekend Johnson Center for Science and Community Life

The Johnson Center Dedication Celebration Friday, September 12, 2014

Festival on the Campus Green Food, music, and celebration 3:30–6:00 pm

Johnson Center Dedication Ribbon-cutting, building tours Meet our students & faculty 4:30 pm Donor Appreciation Dinner & Program President’s Club members 6:30 pm

Johnson Center Community Open House 10:00 am–noon North Parker | Summer 2014

Medicine & Media Symposium 2:00–4:00 pm Ticketed event for President’s Club members Simulcast on campus Online:

Saturday, September 13, 2014



Save the Date H O M ECO M I N G 2014

October 24-26, 2014

North Parker, Summer 2014  

The magazine for alumni and friends of North Park University. Volume 74, Issue 2

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