Autumn '21 - The Parent Guide

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CLASSY COMPETITION Since the 1970s, Ollies Follies has been a wellloved and highly anticipated start to each new school year. Through a three-part competition involving athletic games, wacky games and a variety show, each class brings its A-game to attempt to clinch the championship. PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN

Dear Friends, Welcome to The Parent Guide, a special issue of Olivet The Magazine published by Olivet Nazarene University. This issue is designed specifically to assist you in navigating the college search process alongside your child and to provide information that will help you evaluate all aspects of university life. In his book Making the Most of College Richard Light writes about the impact of the college years and frames the pathway for this issue:


FROM THE PRESIDENT Three Steps to Finding God’s Calling


THE PARENT GUIDE Four Authors Offer Advice


MAKING THE MOST OF COLLEGE Opportunities To Get Involved


WHAT TO DO SENIOR YEAR Majors, Minors and the Numbers

Why do some undergraduates feel they are making the most of their college years, while others are far less positive? What choices and attitudes distinguish between the two groups? What can an individual student do, and what can any college do, to improve the chances that on graduation day that student will say ‘I really got what I came for’? Choosing the right college or university is a very important decision. The college search process can be vast, complicated, time-consuming and even stressful at times, so we hope you find this issue informative, useful, inspiring and reassuring. We hope you embark on this journey with a sense of excitement and that you are startled by the grace and goodness of God at many stops along the way. No matter where you are in the process, the entire Olivet community is with you in spirit and available to you should you have questions at any point. May God be with you and bless you! The Editorial Board


AUTUMN 2021 OLIVET THE MAGAZINE is published quarterly by the Office of Marketing and Engagement under the direction of the Vice President for Institutional Advancement. VOLUME 89 ISSUE 4 (USPS 407-880) (ISSN 2325-7334) Copyright ©2021 Olivet Nazarene University One University Avenue Bourbonnais, IL 60914-2345 800-648-1463 PRESIDENT Dr. Gregg Chenoweth ‘90/M.A., Ph.D. EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Dr. David J. Pickering ’89/’94 MBA, D.B.A. VICE PRESIDENT FOR STUDENT DEVELOPMENT Dr. Walter “Woody” Webb ’86/’89 M.A.R./’08 D.Div. VICE PRESIDENT FOR INSTITUTIONAL ADVANCEMENT Dr. Brian Allen ’82/’05 Litt.D. VICE PRESIDENT FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIRS Dr. Stephen Lowe ’88/M.A., Ph.D. VICE PRESIDENT FOR ONU GLOBAL Dr. Ryan Spittal ’99/’04 MBA, D.B.A. EDITORIAL BOARD Dr. Brian Allen ’82/’05 Litt.D. Dr. Brian W. Parker ’93/’11 Ed.D. for 989 Group George Wolff ’93 for 989 Group Lauren Beatty ’13 Erinn Proehl ’13/’19 MBA ART DIRECTION George Wolff ’93 for 989 Group DESIGN Matt Moore ’96 for 989 Group Donnie Johnson ADDITIONAL ILLUSTRATION AND PHOTO EDITING Thomas Dinkleman ’18 PHOTOGRAPHY Jones Foto, Image Group, Mark Ballogg, Joe Mantarian ’16, Austin Siscoe ’17, Natalie Cook ’22, Elizabeth Kijowski ’21, Additional photography submitted EDITORIAL SUPPORT AND DESIGN Adam Asher ’01/’07 M.O.L. for 989 Group, Alicia (Gallagher) Guertin ’14, Rebecca Huber, Andrew Perabeau ’20 , Austin Siscoe ’17, Heather (Kinzinger) Shaner ’98 STUDENT SUPPORT Natalie Cook ’22, Jamie Kuiken ’21, Joe (Josiah) Mayo ’23, Kelli Neal ’22, Raegan Pedersen ’22, Madison Thompson ’23 Periodicals postage paid at the Bourbonnais, Illinois, Post Office and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster, send address changes to: Editor, Olivet The Magazine Olivet Nazarene University One University Avenue Bourbonnais, IL 60914-2345 Reproduction of material without written permission is prohibited. News, events and announcements are printed at the discretion of the editorial board. Opinions expressed in this magazine do not necessarily represent Olivet Nazarene University policy.


FROM THE PRESIDENT Three Steps to Finding God’s Calling

Your student’s calling is God’s dream — not a dream in terms of images or sensations during sleep but an anticipation of possibilities for His great cause. I am not just a president but a parent. All three of our adult kids and their mates navigated the complexities and risks of researching, choosing and completing college. Fortunately, they all flourish now with meaningful careers, healthy marriages, financial stability and an inspiring commitment to their communities and churches! But, I’m with you in solidarity as a parent. Only a few years ago, I experienced uneasiness in releasing my teens into adulthood and faced surprises in facilitating that launch. Let’s see if I can help you navigate this season. My advice is to get clear on three topics when preparing your college-seeking teen. First: Finances The cost of college is emotionally fantastic but the smartest return on your money. After average discounts, $1 in Olivet tuition gets you $35 over the working years. You can’t get that return in Vegas, by flipping houses or in the stock market. Also, every Olivet degree is designed for completion in four years, and more of our students finish on time than averages at government schools. So, think about it like this: A cheaper school on an annual basis will cost you far more over five years than a more expensive one where a student can finish in four years for two reasons: not just total tuition for the extra year but also lost wages in the fifth year when still in school. It’s a double whammy! Finally, don’t let school debt stick around. Agree with your student, in advance of accumulating college debt, that he


or she can live in your house rent-free for the first year after graduation, and/or that it’s OK to work three part-time jobs digging ditches or scooping ice cream. Those actions have no bearing on his or her professional trajectory. Oftentimes, throwing every buck at debt can eliminate quite a bit of it in one year. He or she will be age 23, on the way to being debt-free and ready to start a fantastic career. Second: Academic Progress Once your student begins college, it would be foolish for him or her to lack loving accountability from a parent — a parent who understands the significance of time and money invested. Strangely, many parents never ask about their student’s academic progress; if they do, the conversation is often about the wrong thing. One parent wants to ask the student about results, like the grade received, but a better conversation is to ask about behaviors that produce that result. You can either talk “leads” (behaviors leading to a result) or “lags” (the lagging result). For example, the best-performing students maintain a 1:2 ratio of time in class versus time spent on academics outside the classroom. If your student takes 15 credit hours in a semester, that amounts to 15 clock hours per week in a lecture hall or lab. The 1:2 ratio means your student should spend upwards of 30 clock hours per week on school outside class: time for reading what is assigned and some extra material out of curiosity; talking with friends about what he or she is learning; chatting with a professor about what is confusing; preparing for tests;




researching and writing papers; and so on. This is what we mean by a “full-time student”: 15 clock hours in class, 30 hours outside. That’s a 45-hour week. So, don’t ask, “How are your grades?” Ask, “How much time do you spend on coursework outside class?” If your student says, “I don’t know,” then press him or her to figure it out. If the response is “I’m doing well — maybe 15 hours,” you need to calibrate your student back to reality. Research shows that persistence often matters more than intellectual talent (assuming there is a basic level to begin with). Or, look at it by analogy in sports. Michael Jordan was the greatest NBA player of all time at a height of 6-foot-6. It would have been no more advantage for him to be 6-10. He was “tall enough” to become great, just like one may become “smart enough” for success in college. The magic is in the persistent commitment to learning. Third: Developing Dreams Everybody needs at least one person in their life who champions high hopes for their future. Our faculty, staff and administrators enter this community under a worldview to supply that. We believe in God’s purpose for all people, that He loves to redeem every life story run amok and that He has a calling which runs deeper than career for seekers of it.

But you should be hopeful for your student, too! Your student wants it. Your student needs it. This is how you can love your student well all the way from home. In this way, we partner with you. I like to think of our combined work as being engaged in a “conspiracy of good” for students — bringing to fruition a dream God placed in them. Let’s spend less time asking, “What is YOUR dream?” and more time asking, “What might be GOD’S dream for you?” Ephesians 4:1 challenges every believer in God this way: “Live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” Your student’s calling is God’s dream — not a dream in terms of images or sensations during sleep but an anticipation of possibilities for His great cause. You know that calling is near your student when he or she: • Seeks God but also feels sought by Him. • Views it as an aspiration more than obligation. • Aims his or her dream at public good not private gain. • Views the work as a cause for which to be personally responsible even while others don’t care about it as deeply. This calling eventually becomes a project that God entrusts to your student, who will have the sense it is a timely, strategic, necessary role in His plans and will probably stamp the entire community. What a privilege to bear witness to this! Isn’t that monumental kind of potential worth the investment? It is. We’ll work with you toward it, president-to-parent — in fact, parent-to-parent.

GREGG CHENOWETH ’90, Ph.D., is in his first year as president of Olivet Nazarene University,

following eight years as president of Bethel University. As an Olivet alumnus, former faculty member,

dean, vice president for academic affairs and parent of an alumnus, Dr. Chenoweth implicitly

understands the value of Christian higher education. He has published works in more than 30 media

outlets and recently released his first book, Everyday Discernment: The Art of Cultivating Spirit-Led Leadership, through The Foundry Press.


MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE More than 500 students participate in vocal and instrumental ensembles at Olivet, including many non-music majors. These groups, ranging from a string quartet to the 200-person Tiger Marching Band, have many opportunities each year to perform on campus and throughout the country. PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN




OLIVET WELCOMES STUDENTS BACK FOR 114TH SCHOOL YEAR The 2021–22 academic year had a strong start when classes began for Olivet’s undergraduate students on Sept. 1. The first day also included the school year’s first chapel service, featuring a message from Dr. Gregg Chenoweth ’90, University president, and worship led by City on a Hill, a campus ministry team. During the first weeks of school, students are encouraged to enjoy a robust social environment with opportunities to get involved on campus ranging from the annual Ollies Follies class competitions to outdoor movies to intramural athletic contests to spiritual life to student council and so much more. See page 38 in this issue for a full spectrum of student engagement opportunities.


ANTONIO MARSHALL NAMED ASSOCIATE CHAPLAIN Antonio Marshall ’13/’17 M.A./’20 M.Div. was recently announced as the University’s associate chaplain, a new position at Olivet. Serving alongside chaplain Mark Holcomb ’81/’18 D.D., he will mentor students and provide leadership for student ministries, including the development of a small-group network for students on campus. He will also be a featured speaker in chapel each semester. “I’m excited about what God has done in my life to bring me back here,” he said. “But I’m most excited to see God light a fire in the lives of the students. I’m looking forward to being a part of what’s happening here at Olivet.” SUBMITTED

ONU THEATRE’S STILL RECEIVES DOVE AWARD NOMINATION Professor and theatre program director Ashley Elizabeth Sarver '15/'18 MBA, videographer Joe Mantarian ’16 and the production team behind ONU Theatre’s original musical, Still: The Artistry & Life of Fanny J. Crosby Reimagined, have been nominated for a Dove Award in the category of Long Form Video of the Year. In that category, Still is nominated among industry giants including for KING & COUNTRY, Brandon Lake, Natalie Grant and Hillsong UNITED. The musical premiered in spring 2021 and is available to stream at through the end of the year. JOE MANTARIAN

YOUNG ALUMNI FIND EMPLOYMENT, SERVICE AND HIGHEREDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES The traditional undergraduate class of 2020 again exceeded the national average of career outcomes reported by other universities and colleges. Based on information for 97% of Olivet graduates in the annual National Association of Colleges and Employers FirstDestination Survey, 94.4% of Olivet graduates were employed (full time or part time), serving in the military or missions, or in graduate school within six months of crossing the stage. Several of the University’s most popular majors, including mathematics, computer science, exercise and sports science, and music, reported 100% career outcome rates. IMAGE GROUP




MACKENZIE BROWN NAMED NEW WOMEN’S GOLF COACH Mike Conway ’83, Olivet’s director of athletics, announced on Aug. 27 the hiring of Mackenzie (Mehaffey) Brown ’19 as the new women’s golf head coach. Coach Brown took the helm of the women’s golf team following the unexpected passing of former coach Bill Johnson. Coach Brown had a stellar playing career at Olivet. In 2016, she led the Tigers to an impressive national conference championship, and she also holds the Olivet record for the lowest 18-hole score at an event, posting a 69 at the Swan Lake Resort on Oct. 14, 2017. JOE MANTARIAN

“I am beyond excited to serve Olivet as the head women’s golf coach this year,” Brown said. “Playing for coach Johnson was one of the best decisions and experiences of my life, and I'll forever be grateful for the impact he had on me. I hope to continue the traditions he started and honor the legacy he left behind. We have a fantastic group of student-athletes in the golf program this year, and I feel blessed to be able to have a front-row seat to all the great things they will accomplish.”

LA FILM STUDIES CENTER TO RELAUNCH IN SPRING 2022 Thanks to a creative partnership between Olivet and the Council for Christian College and Universities, the Los Angeles Film Studies Center (LAFSC) will relaunch in spring 2022 after being discontinued due to the pandemic. The program will return with in-person classes in Los Angeles. The curriculum, taught by industry professionals, will resume in order to accommodate sending institutions that have built LAFSC into their degree tracks. Throughout the semester-long program, 14 Olivet students will take part in in-person, three-day-a-week internships in addition to completing core and elective courses. ADOBE STOCK

“This is a creative way for Olivet to continue building on this incredible program,” said Dr. Heather McLaughlin, chair of the Department of Communication. “The LAFSC experience is such an integral part of our multimedia film studies program that we were very interested in reviving the program and making something work. We are thrilled to partner with the CCCU to continue this one-of-a-kind, careerlaunching experience.”



DR. CHENOWETH SETS VISION DURING ANNUAL PRESIDENT’S DINNER On Aug. 26, Dr. Gregg Chenoweth '90 and his wife, Tammy (Salyer) Chenoweth '89, hosted the annual President’s Dinner for Faculty and Staff in Chalfant Hall. Dr. Jay Martinson '86, dean of online learning for undergraduate students, served as the master of ceremonies throughout the evening. The event featured faculty musicians Dr. Paul Kenyon, Robert Evans and Stephanie Lupo as well as student ministry team City on a Hill. Special alumni guests included Dr. Tayler (St. Aubin) Peachey '11, a local optometrist, and Connie Panagakis, an online School of Graduate and Continuing Studies student who provided the benediction for the evening. Tom Ascher '08/'17 MBA, director of human resources, acknowledged milestone accomplishments of faculty and staff during the event, and Dr. Dan Sharda and Kyle Olney were honored as the 2021 Faculty Member of the Year and 2021 Staff Member of the Year, respectively.




OLIVET RECEIVES RANKINGS IN U.S. NEWS 2022 BEST COLLEGES REPORT Olivet has received rankings and recognition in five unique categories of U.S. News & World Report’s 2022 Best Colleges report — including a top 10 ranking as a Best Value School for Regional Universities Midwest. Olivet has also been recognized among the top Regional Universities in the Midwest; as a Top Performer on Social Mobility for Regional Universities Midwest; as a Best Undergraduate Nursing Program; and as a Best Undergraduate Engineering Program for national non-doctoral engineering programs. These rankings took into consideration various factors, including retention and graduation rates; faculty and financial resources; student excellence; and alumni engagement. For more than 30 years, the U.S. News rankings and advice have served as a valuable consumer reference. The U.S. News Best Colleges annual report provides nearly 50 different types of numerical rankings and lists to help students narrow their college search. This type of third-party endorsement provides clarity for prospective students as they go through the college search process.

WEEKLY COVID TESTING FOR OLIVET STUDENTS Launched in spring 2021, the noninvasive COVID-19 saliva testing program is continuing for the 2021–22 academic year. The pooled testing model has a high level of accuracy in identifying SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and has been proven not only to be extremely cost-effective but also successful in mitigating campus outbreaks. Last spring, the University ran more than 43,000 samples from residential students, faculty and staff who opted in to the program. Olivet’s testing system blended elements of the FDA-approved Yale SalivaDirect protocol and research developed at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This fall, the success of Olivet’s unique program is being nationally recognized through a peer-reviewed publishing process. “This was a collaborative effort that extended much further than just biology,” said Dr. Dan Sharda, associate professor and chair of the Department of Biological Sciences. “We’re on the front line of cutting-edge approaches and doing it with a great deal of success. This is a great example of why research and scholarship are so important.”


S T AY S O C I A L Check out the latest from Instagram by following @olivetnazarene and @lifeatolivet



GRIDIRON GREATNESS The mission of athletics at Olivet is to “Win Championships and Develop Champions.” This is accomplished through nationally recognized coaching staff, state-of-the-art training facilities and a consistent goal of glorifying God through trials and success both on and off the field. PHOTO BY IMAGE GROUP

THE PARENT GUIDE There is no shortage of options when you’re trying to help your child choose a place to pursue higher education. The real challenge is finding the right place — the college or university where your student will thrive. Our Parent Guide serves as a handy guidebook, providing some niceto-know specifics about Olivet Nazarene University.






D E E P FA I T H AND THE F I N E ST S C H O LA R S H I P DR. DAVID VAN HEEMST ’96 M.P.C./’98 M.A. is a leading political scientist, historian, author, researcher and professor. In a 10-year

period, he has authored five books, including Empowering the Poor: Why Justice Requires School Choice; Herman Dooyeweerd and Eric Voegelin: A Comparative Study; Hope in Troubled Times: A New Vision for Confronting Global Crises; Splashing in Puddles: How to

Be a Father to Your Daughter; and College: What's the Point? Embracing the Mystery of the Kingdom in a Postmodern World. In 2013, he received Olivetʼs Samuel L. Mayhugh Award for Scholarly Excellence. His other Olivet awards include the Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence and the Second Mile Award.


Politics can be brutal. Battles between Democrats and Republicans can be every bit as contentious as the Packers’ defensive line going up against the Bears’ offensive line or as intense as Ariarne Titmus competing against Katie Ledecky in the 2020 Olympics. And yet, Olivet is consistently sending young women and men into politics dedicated to advancing God’s Kingdom and bringing a little Biblical justice to the battlefield of Washington, D.C., and beyond. Consider these four examples. Daryl went to Mexico to work with a large human rights organization that frees young women and girls from human trafficking. Scott started a nonprofit that created a local currency (a food token) to feed the hungry in D.C. and Baltimore. Natalie works for a nonprofit that advances democracy and good governance throughout Africa and Asia. Amanda is studying law at Wake Forest, where she has a goal of using her law degree to serve communities facing socioeconomic barriers. How did these four young adults begin to make a difference in politics? They got it. Each of these young women and men immersed themselves in Christian higher education and caught wind of a different way — the way of Jesus. Christian higher education captured their hearts, transformed their minds and captivated their imaginations. Each wanted to make a difference for Christ in the world and each asked how to be used by God for His purposes. Why Christian higher education? Allow me to answer that question with a question: What if you could get a degree plus? What if you could not only get the finest scholarship, but you could also have the space to determine God’s direction for your life? What if you could discover how God might use you to transform the world for Christ? This is what Olivet offers you: the opportunity to discover and lean into the path God has for you. What if faith and scholarship could shape an entire university’s curriculum? One crucial question about higher education in today’s postmodern world: Which worldview is shaping higher education? Education is not neutral, according to many educational theorists. Some type of perspective or ideology shapes all educational inquiry. In Christian higher education, Jesus Christ and His Kingdom are preeminent. Christian faith shapes higher education at Olivet. Classes begin with prayer, and the Christian faith is integrated into each discipline — from accounting to zoology. Who you become is closely connected to the paradigm that shapes your education. A Biblical or some other perspective will shape the person you will be and the way you will live for decades to come. At Olivet, you’ll have the opportunity to deepen your faith, build your perspective and develop a servant’s heart. What type of person would you like to be when you graduate? So much of the answer to that question falls upon the 18-to-22-year-

olds’ shoulders. In Christian higher education, you are nurtured — in community and with Godly mentors — into becoming a disciple of Jesus who follows His Spirit into a broken and dying world. At Olivet, you can catch a glimpse of the way of Jesus — or what Duke University ethicist Dr. Stanley Hauerwas calls the “in-breaking Kingdom of God.” You will be challenged to become a part of His reconciling work. You will join other late teens and 20-somethings being shaped into young women and men who will not only see things differently in their future vocations, but who will also become passionate about Biblical justice where there is no justice and healing where there is great suffering. Christian higher education nurtures students into becoming Kingdom people — reconciling agents — who ask, “How can I live with open palms, seeking to share the blessings that God has given me with those who are hurting?” At its finest, Christian higher education deepens students’ insights and equips them with the skills to engage the culture for Christ. Students are challenged to be countercultural in so many ways and then inspired to transform the culture for Christ. In so doing, students begin to live out God’s will for their lives. At a Christian college, you can not only discover your purpose, but you can also wrestle with connecting that purpose to the world’s needs. Frederick Buechner, writer and theologian, eloquently stated, “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” Christian higher education prepares students to be agents of reconciliation by nurturing their hearts and minds to become salt and light in a broken and dying world. Dr. John Bernbaum, founding president of the Russian-American Christian University, captured this insight: “Christian higher education ought not be an effort in cocoonbuilding, seeking to hide us from the harsh realities of the present world. Rather, Christian higher education should be an effort in raising up peacemakers, those whose task is a harvest of righteousness.” The letters B.A. or B.S. will be attached to your name for decades to come. The experience of being saturated in a Christian environment for four years can deepen you into becoming a transforming influence in your job, a listening ear to those who are suffering and a willing servant committed to bringing God’s Kingdom to this world. Much of higher education today is dedicated to self-interest, having a good time or strategizing to monetize your skill sets. What if your education could transform you so that you could become the person God knit you together to be when you were in your mother’s womb? Daryl, Scott, Natalie and Amanda found their callings at Olivet. Now, it’s your turn. Are you open to the transformative possibilities of a Christian higher education?



When we see these same professionals looking to one Savior, Jesus Christ, for wisdom and direction, we realize that our mission is the same. A group of theatre professionals from around the world sat in a small theatre with an emerging playwright from New York City. Our task was to help workshop a new script. The facilitator guided the group with wisdom — ensuring that our focus was on the story that was being told rather than on the storytellers in the room who wanted to be heard. It was this same group that was asked the question, “Are you familiar with Aristotle’s Poetics and how it applies to theatre arts?” I looked around the room assuming everyone could also recite Aristotle’s definition of a tragedy. The question was asked again: “What are the elements of a story on stage according to Aristotle?” In my mind, I repeated what professor Jerry Cohagan taught me years before at Olivet: “A tragedy is the imitation of an action. …” And then I continued with the chanting from class, replaying over and over again in my mind: “plot, character, theme, diction, music, spectacle.” I looked around the room, and everyone was shaking their heads, unaware of these foundational elements. I raised my hand and answered what had been embedded in my mind. My colleagues were knowledgeable and had professional training I didn’t at that point. But I gained confidence realizing that, at Olivet, I had been given everything I needed. The difference was my liberal arts education had prioritized faith and viewed theatre as more than an extracurricular but as a rigorous academic venture. Olivet’s theatre program equips students by giving them well-rounded curriculum. And with faith as our priority, students have what they need to be set apart, both personally and professionally, in the world. It’s because of my Western civilization class I was able to write a play about women pilots in World War II. It’s because of my music appreciation, jazz combo and literature courses I was able to compose a jazz adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. It’s because of my scriptwriting class I was able to hone my writing skills as a playwright. It was because of my education at Olivet I was able to make connections with fellow students that would later, as alumni, help me bring to life Olivet’s first original musical. And it’s because of my biology courses 20 OLIVET.EDU

and the standard of professionalism that was enhanced in me at Olivet I would be invited to meet Alan Alda and introduce him at a colloquium where he spoke on the art of communicating science at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. At the colloquium, Alan discussed the content of his book, If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face? My Adventures in the Art and Science of Relating and Communicating. In an interview with The Atlantic, he summed it up: “I could see that when scientists were in conversation, they could make science in a personal way. ... But if they did not have someone like me pulling it out of them in a personal way, there was a tendency to slip into lecture mode. I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be an interesting idea to train scientists to be good communicators while we train them to be scientists?’” This inspired an idea for ONU Theatre. This fall, ONU Theatre and the ONU School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics will bring the idea to life. With Dr. José Manjarrés, a robotics professor, and Dr. Nicole Vander Schaaf, a biology professor, we dreamed up an experience for children to be inspired to learn more about science and technology. Our original play, Detective Holmes, is the collaboration of the three academic areas. Our lead character must solve a crime and, while doing so, she will learn about DNA, fingerprinting and basic coding for robots. As a part of ONU Theatre’s New Works Program, Detective Holmes is a movement for cross-departmental projects that emphasize our strengths as a liberal arts institution and our priority to be mission-focused. When we realize that mathematicians, scientists, philosophers, artists and theatre professionals look to the same scholar, Aristotle, for knowledge and insight, we may see how our different departments can complement one another. And when we see these same professionals looking to one Savior, Jesus Christ, for wisdom and direction, we realize that our mission is the same.


KNOWLEDGE A N D I N S I G H T. WISDOM AND D I R E CT I O N . ASHLEY ELIZABETH SARVER ’15/’18 MBA is a Dove Award-nominated director and playwright. She earned the terminal Master of Fine

Arts (M.F.A.) degree in directing at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she was the recipient of the 2020 Graduate Faculty

Performance Award. Her thesis production explored the Aristotelian element of music to help a 21st-century audience better understand Shakespeareʼs The Tempest. She composed all the jazz music for the production in addition to directing the production. She was assistant

director for an industry reading of a new musical for Broadway producers at Playwrights Horizons in New York City. In 2018, professor Sarver

wrote two full-length plays and one full-length musical, which originated from an Atlantic World Research Network grant that funded travel and

research for writing and producing. The musical will be fully mounted as a local production in spring 2022 with her new production company, ThirtyTwo 7 Studios.






DR. CYNTHIA V. TAYLOR �06 M.A. is a licensed professional counselor. She specializes in mood disorders, anxiety, self-esteem, grief and

adjustment issues. In 2013, Dr. Taylor was asked to lead the Multiethnic Student Services group for Olivet. In this role, she gives leadership to events and activities that highlight cultural uniqueness while encouraging unity in the body of Christ. Dr. Taylor is married to Dr. Joel D.

Taylor, who pastors two churches in the Chicagoland area. She takes pride in being a mother of two adult children, a mother-in-love and a grandmother of one.


Developing academic, emotional, spiritual and social students is the goal of Olivet as a higher-learning institution. This complete educational experience or success happens not in one area of the classroom but throughout the campus and in the community. To achieve this type of success, students must become involved and engaged. They must lean and jump in as well as take risks and seek opportunities. These actions enhance education, develop competence, define character and create leadership opportunities for a diverse and ever-changing world. As your student dreams beyond the high school graduation stage, imagine for a moment what a successful transition to higher education looks like. Dreams can become a reality with intentionality, hard work and seizing opportunities. Let’s intellectually and constructively imagine life for your student. IMAGINE having effective organization skills. What works for one student may not work for another, so trial and error is OK. Once an organizational system is found, stay organized and balance responsibilities. Get in a routine of keeping close tabs on due dates for assignments and projects to make sure nothing falls through the cracks. Having a planner system dedicated to schoolwork can be useful and assist in planning ahead so that you have enough time to study for quizzes and exams and complete larger projects. IMAGINE success with time-management skills that can help you stay on top of your workload without feeling overwhelmed or defeated. Time management will allow you the ability to complete as many assignments as possible with the least amount of stress. You don’t have to study all day, but chip away at assignments — even if it’s only 20 minutes. Remember to organize your thoughts, make an outline and review vocabulary terms to help your writing sessions go a little smoother. IMAGINE the ability to work with others by collaborating with classmates and peers. This actually prepares you for the realities of the real world and the workplace. It’s not always easy working in groups, but working on your collaboration skills can make the process go more smoothly. Adversity is inevitable, but figuring out ways to effectively work against it helps to get the job completed. IMAGINE making friends within your degree program so that you will have support and accountability — whether it’s studying for tests or swapping stories about the highs and lows of college life. You’ll have someone to rely on for help when needed and possibly make

coursework more enjoyable when you have someone you can relate to — and maybe, just maybe, you will find someone that will be a friend for life. IMAGINE a curiosity to learn more, gaining more knowledge and skills. Be thirsty and curious to learn as much as possible. Try new things and ask questions whenever you can. Take risks and step outside your comfort zone to do as much as possible to grow and learn. IMAGINE being intentional in having a positive mindset. It’s OK to feel a bit nervous before starting school and even during the school year, but if you give too much attention to those negative thoughts, they can overwhelm you, preventing you from reaching your potential. Negative thought patterns can increase stress, anxiety, depression and other mental health problems. Re-framing your worries and negative thoughts and embracing a more positive mindset can increase resilience and help you bring your best effort to your education. IMAGINE confidence in yourself. Believe in yourself and say to yourself, “I’ve got this!” and “I can do this!” You don’t have to be perfect to have a successful college experience. You have to believe that you can persevere with determination and confidence that you have what it takes to earn your degree. You do belong here, and be sure to convince yourself of that. IMAGINE a community that is diverse and rich with fascinating classmates, where differences are honored as well as embraced, and our humanity is celebrated in unity. Being open to getting to know people as individuals, you break down your barriers and debunk your misconceptions. This can help our students become better global Kingdom citizens, where we all experience a little bit of Heaven here on Earth. Finally, IMAGINE praying for the success of your college experience as you face obstacles and work to overcome them. When you embrace the importance of prayer in your life, you can overcome anything and be successful. Proverbs 3:5–6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Booker T. Washington once said, “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.” Unlock the key to successful college living by praying, planning and participating at Olivet. Can you IMAGINE that?



In the early 1880s, evangelist and professor Henry Drummond began his famous sermon “The Greatest Thing in The World” by asking a disarmingly simple question: “You have life before you. Once only you can live it. What is the noblest object of desire, the supreme gift to covet?” The rhetorical question required no reply. Everyone knew the answer: Love. Self-giving love is the ultimate good. It lifts us outside ourselves. It helps us see beyond the normal range of human vision — and over walls of resentment and barriers of betrayal. Love rises above the petty demands and conflicts of life and inspires our spirit to give without getting. As the famous “love chapter” of the Bible says, “It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. ...” When you set out on a consciously chosen course of action that accents the good of others, a deep change occurs in your soul. Pretentious egoism fades and your days are punctuated with spontaneous breathings of compassion and generosity. Your life is given to the summum bonum — the supreme good. The noblest of human qualities becomes your new compass on this “most excellent way” (I Corinthians 12:31b). Sound sappy? Science doesn’t think so. Recent studies find that the ability to practice appreciation and love is the defining mark of the happiest of humans. When people engage in self-giving love by doing something for others, they use higher-level brain functions and set off a series of neurochemical reactions that shower their system in positive emotions. Perhaps you’re wondering if this kind of happiness is triggered just as readily by having fun as it is by an act of love. Dr. Martin Seligman, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, wondered the same thing.

Dr. Seligman gave his students an assignment: to engage in one pleasurable activity and one philanthropic activity and then write about both. Turns out, the “pleasurable” activity of talking with friends, watching a movie or eating a delicious dessert paled in comparison with the effects of a loving action. Time stops when we lend a helping hand, nurture a hurting soul or offer a listening ear. We love the story Mary Ann Bird tells in her article for Guideposts titled “The Whisper Test.” It’s about a little girl who was different ... and hated it. She was born with a cleft palate and, when she started school, her classmates made it clear to her how she looked: “a little girl with a misshapen lip, crooked nose, lopsided teeth, and garbled speech.” She was convinced that no one outside her family could love her. When her classmates asked, “What happened to your lip?” she would tell them she had fallen and cut it on a piece of glass. “Somehow,” she writes, “it seemed more acceptable to have suffered an accident than to have been born different.” Mrs. Leonard, a second grade teacher, administered a hearing test to everyone in the class each year. Here’s what happened when it was Mary Ann’s turn: I knew from past years that as we stood against the door and covered one ear, the teacher sitting at her desk would whisper something, and we would have to repeat it back — things like, “The sky is blue” or “Do you have new shoes?” I waited there for those words that God must have put into her mouth — those seven words that changed my life. Mrs. Leonard said, in her whisper, “I wish you were my little girl.” Mrs. Leonard had a lock on love. You can be confident that she enjoyed the deepest levels of emotional satisfaction and connection in her life. Her tender care clearly embodied the summum bonum, the supreme good, the most excellent way.

DR. LES PARROTT ’84, is a psychologist and No. 1 New York Times bestselling author of numerous books, including his latest book with his wife, Dr. Leslie Parrott ’84, Healthy Me, Healthy Us. For more information, visit






WORSHIP & WONDER Twice-weekly chapel gatherings add significant meaning to campus life and spiritual development. Student musicians lead a focused time of worship, and prominent Christian speakers present challenging and inspiring messages. In this setting, many have accepted Christ and committed to serving Him. PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN


UNDERSTANDING FINANCIAL AID The college choice will be heavily influenced by how you and your student perceive cost and the financial aid process. Be sure to make decisions based on accurate information. You don’t want to rule out schools based on sticker shock when financial aid could bring those schools within reach.



File your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA),

The FAFSA allows your student to select up to 10 schools to

and file it as early as possible. The FAFSA is the gateway

automatically receive your family’s FAFSA information. Each

to state and federal financial aid, and universities use this

school that has accepted your student for admission will

information to determine your student’s awards. The FAFSA

then send a financial award letter outlining the federal, state

can give access to grants as well as loans that tend to have

and institutional aid for which your student is eligible.

lower interest rates with the most advantageous payback schedules. Some state grants have limited resources. It’s important to file as soon as possible

WHEN CAN WE FILE THE FAFSA? You can now file the FAFSA at beginning Oct. 1 for the following school year. You previously had to wait until Jan. 1, but the government moved up the filing date so you can have your financial aid picture sooner and longer to best prepare for the start of school. Another improvement: You’re able to pull financial information directly from electronic tax documents into your FAFSA form. 28 OLIVET.EDU

WHAT ROLE DO STANDARDIZED TEST SCORES PLAY? It’s important to find out how each admissions office handles test scores, as each school is different. If your student takes the ACT or SAT more than once (not required but permitted by both testing organizations), some universities take the highest score, while others take an average. A higher test score could improve an academic scholarship by thousands of dollars per year.

ASK THE EXPERTS At Olivet, the Office of Admissions is a great resource for families in every stage of the


financial aid process.

Some schools offer only academic scholarships. Most have additional opportunities. Like academic scholarships, most others are provided on the basis of merit and/or participation. At Olivet, there are scholarships for athletics, music (including Tiger Marching Band and University Orchestra), art, ministry and ROTC.


KIMBERLY STRICKLAND “It’s my pleasure each day to assist students and their families with their award packages. The options are almost limitless.”

YES! Students should seek out local and national scholarships.


Consider organizations your student has been a part of,

“One of my favorite moments is

businesses you frequent and your employer. Many offer

when families see their students

scholarships. For national scholarships, register at reputable

awarded for their diverse,

websites such as, or

outstanding achievements.” and begin applying as soon as possible. Never pay for scholarship searches. The reputable sources are always free.



“From afar, it seems like a puzzle.

The reality for most college students is that scholarships and government assistance alone do not fully cover tuition expenses. The remaining portion can be covered by parent loans, student loans or payment plans. There are many federal and private loan options. You should know that student loans require a cosigner. Payment plan options are unique to each institution. Financial aid isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” process, so work with your financial aid adviser to explore your best options.


But when we get into it, the facts come alive and paint a pretty clear, affordable picture.”

DEBBIE RATTIN “My goal is to connect the dots for students and their parents, and to use every available resource to make Olivet affordable.”

This process can be overwhelming, so don’t be afraid to lean on

Our amazing team is available to answer your

financial aid advisers. They will work with you to find financial aid

questions. Call 800-648-1463 and ask for

solutions based on your needs. Ask the tough questions and

them by name, or reach out via email.

stay informed. The more involved you are, the easier it will be.





Each year, more than 175 students transfer to Olivet to complete their college education. This fall, the diverse group of incoming transfer students represented 17 states and seven countries. The Office of Admissions has a dedicated team of professionals who work exclusively with prospective transfer students to provide a smooth transition from one college experience to the next. Olivet offers competitive transfer scholarships and, on average, 92% of students’ credits transfer to the University. For more information, visit


Garron Banas

Grace Rose

Gabriela Maghsoudi

Hometown: Chatham, Illinois Major: Criminal Justice; Minor: History

Hometown: Flint, Michigan Major: Psychology; Minor: Music

Hometown: Plainfield, Illinois Major: Music Ministry

“I previously attended a state school for 2 ½ years. I loved my friends and most of my classes there, but I felt that God was pushing me in a different direction from where I was going. After the lockdown, I considered looking at other schools to transfer. My friend Josh went to Olivet, and when I visited him before, I was a big fan of the campus. Seeing other students around and getting to know the staff and others were super crucial for my choice of coming to Olivet.

“I had made my college decision by the time I was a sophomore in high school. I was set on a college in Ohio and was very interested in some of their music ministry opportunities. After I graduated from high school and two weeks before I was supposed to move into that school, God told me ‘no.’ I didn’t know why, but I didn’t have peace about attending that college.

“Before I started my journey at Olivet, I attended two other colleges. Both of these schools had great educational programs and professors, but, for some reason, I did not feel like I belonged. When I came to Olivet for a visit, I just felt at home.

“Enrolling at Olivet was a pretty simple process. The application was super-fast and easy. The JumpStart program was extremely easy and helpful for getting me to become a Tiger. And, once on campus, the best way I was able to stay connected at Olivet was to immediately get involved in extracurricular activities. “Transferring to Olivet was one of the best decisions I have made in my early adulthood. I have made so many lifelong friends, learned so many things and have really enjoyed my time at Olivet so far. I know that everyone has a different challenge when they think about transferring, but if you feel it pressing into you, you should at least consider your options. When you find that right school, thereʼs no better feeling — trust me! I am extremely grateful for everyone that has stood by my side through the process of transferring.”

“I enrolled at a community college near my hometown for the first semester of my freshman year. During that semester, I decided to visit Olivet. As soon as I was on campus, things clicked. I immediately felt at home, and I knew that I needed to transfer as soon as possible. The admissions staff made my experience and enrollment process so easy. My admissions counselor was so accommodating and always let me know that he was excited to have me at Olivet. “In my first semester at Olivet, I had the opportunity to get involved with and audition for ministry teams. This summer, I had the opportunity to represent Olivet in a ministry team, leading worship at summer camps — and it has been the highlight of my Olivet experience thus far. “To anyone who is considering a transfer to Olivet, I would recommend scheduling a visit. Upon arrival, you will immediately understand the kind of school Olivet is and why everyone speaks so highly of it. Olivet has become home to me, and I am so thankful for all of the staff and fellow students that have invested into my life spiritually and academically. Transferring to Olivet is the best decision I have ever made.”

“Olivet has such a great community, and the professors that I talked to were so passionate about what they were teaching and it inspired me. Transferring to Olivet was such a smooth and easy process. Everyone helped me feel comfortable and ease into living away from home for the first time. Since I’ve been at Olivet, I have joined the Proclamation Gospel Choir, which was super fun! You make a great connection with everyone and you get to share that passion of music with others. “Something to consider when transferring colleges is to definitely visit the college before you decide to commit. Being able to get a feel for the campus before committing to a school is something I wish I did with Olivet sooner. The one thing I loved about Olivet is that I was able to see everything and get to know some of the professors before I even got to transfer here. I absolutely love the community and the way it makes me feel at home. I love the way Olivet has the motto ‘Education With a Christian Purpose.’ That saying is displayed as soon as you enter the campus, and it couldn’t be truer.”




CHOOSING A MAJOR Not every student has a simple answer when asked the unavoidable question “What’s your major?” Welcome to the perfect place to explore all the possibilities that question presents.



Each year, about 17% of students entering college haven’t

Get free access to four assessments that help you learn

declared or decided on a major. Around 15% of Olivet’s

more about your values, workplace preferences, interests

incoming students are unsure of their exact field of study.

and personality.

Considering that nearly 50% of all college students change


their major (at least once), why worry?


Olivet Nazarene University is higher education focused on the

majors and requirements for each.

liberal arts — where you get to explore all areas of knowledge

Consult Olivet’s online course catalog for a list of available

and understanding: literature, science, religion, mathematics,

Imagine the Future

health and the arts.

Review Olivetʼs 140 areas of study. List careers you might want

The Center for Academic Excellence, located on Olivet’s

to pursue. Consider the majors that will help you get there.

campus, strives to create a culture and climate that


encourage students to explore all their educational and

This assessment helps you discover the one true you. Find

academic interests and assists students in identifying their

out more about what you naturally do best. Use the results to

specific career or calling.

live your best life.


ASK THESE QUESTIONS: What is most important to me in a career? In which areas do I naturally excel? What do I most enjoy doing?

JumpStart Program

Which majors fit best with my personality?

This course is a series of modules designed to be completed

What do I most think about regarding the future?

before classes begin and through the first few weeks of the

For which issue or cause am I most passionate?

semester. The modules will cover many of the resources and

If I could do anything I wanted and knew I would be successful, what would I do?

tools needed to survive at Olivet.

JumpStart Conference This two-day conference brings new students together before the beginning of classes to introduce you to college life and “jumpstart” your Olivet experience. The conference begins on Sunday night with a worship service and continues on Monday morning.

JumpStart Mentors Upper-class students will serve as mentors for you as you arrive on campus. The mentors will help you move in, attend the JumpStart Conference with you and your freshman or transfer group, and support you throughout your first semester at Olivet.

Career Coaching Meet with a career coach or faculty adviser to work through the rewarding process of choosing your major.

THEN, FIND THE ANSWERS HERE: Academic Coaching Center

Peer coaches

help students develop independent learning skills in a relaxed, comfortable setting. Students’ unique learning preferences and education goals are primary in all sessions. Coaches help with enhancing academic skills, improving critical-thinking skills and fostering independent scholarship.

Career Development

Students explore careers

and employment opportunities using a variety of resources. Assistance with résumés, cover letters, the job search process and interviewing

Introductory Courses

skills sets students apart in the professional

Take the first course in one or two areas that interest you. Sample

world. Job fairs give potential employers

before committing.

opportunities to meet students. The Handshake

Shadowing Experience Learn more about the careers that interest you. Reach out to

platform connects employers with jobseekers and employees with jobs.

professionals in those fields. Arrange to interview them or

Counseling Services

shadow them on the job.

professional counselors are available to help

Prayer Ask God to direct you in your decisions. Listen for His answers.

When stresses build,

students grow and succeed. Students’ well-being is the top priority at Olivet.

Health and Wellness Services

Being healthy

physically benefits students as they pursue their For more information about how you can begin your

education and prepare for their future careers.

exploration with Olivet Nazarene University, visit

Complete, personalized, quality health care is

or call us at 800-648-1463.

available for all students.



RELATIONAL LIVING Olivet’s residential campus encourages community through relational living. During their first year, freshmen and transfer students live in residence halls at the heart of campus, building friendships as they establish independence and a home away from home.. PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN



Believing and belonging are critical in the formation of young adults as they prepare for lives of service to God and humanity, and while the University seeks to shape its community, that community continually shapes the culture of the University. After all, a campus community is only as strong as the individuals who comprise the group.


In 1999, Olivet’s marketing office added an unofficial tagline to traditional undergraduate recruiting materials: “We believe. You belong here.” The phrase simply re-framed Olivet’s mission of providing an “Education With a Christian Purpose” by connecting the University’s purpose and vision with its community. The tagline is more than just a catchy phrase. Olivet is a place where students can establish a sense of belonging through the blending of shared experiences and celebrated diversity. In seeking to create a vibrant campus environment, Olivet offers a wide variety of opportunities for students to grow personally, spiritually and professionally as they make the most of their college experience. Exploring Personal Faith At the core of the Olivet experience is a Christian emphasis. The student body represents more than 40 denominations and world religions and an array of faith backgrounds, but the foundation of the University remains “Education With a Christian Purpose.” Twice a week the campus community gathers in the 3,000-seat Betty and Kenneth Hawkins Centennial Chapel to participate in corporate worship and learn from renowned pastors, authors, business leaders, professional athletes, artists and other skilled guest speakers. Students enroll in courses that unpack Scripture and Christian traditions, and they are encouraged to explore how faith relates to their lives. Faculty incorporate devotionals into their curriculum, and they become mentors as they create an environment for asking questions and seeking answers. Outside the classroom, the Office of Spiritual Development oversees a variety of spiritual life activities in which students can participate. Outreach opportunities include groups like Mission Possible, which leads weekly prayer services at the Kankakee County jail; a Best Buddies chapter that partners students with local individuals who are physically or mentally disabled to build meaningful relationships; and S.O.S. (Save Our Streets), which serves the local homeless population. Inreach opportunities include Upper Room student-led weekly worship gatherings; HeArt Ministry, which allows students to explore their creativity through intentional connection to Scripture; Prayer Warriors, a group that empowers and encourages community through prayer on campus; and Heart for Missions, which provides a space for students to explore mission opportunities. Students also benefit from exposure to faith in action in different parts of the country and the world on yearly volunteer trips through the Shalom Project. These cross-cultural experiences help to expand worldviews and broaden perspectives on how other people live around the world. In the past, students have traveled to the Gulf Coast, New York, Chicago, Denver, Hawaii, Indianapolis, Los Angeles and El Paso, and around the world to countries including Argentina, Peru, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, Dominican Republic, Haiti, France, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, India, Papua New Guinea, South Korea, China, Mexico, Thailand, Cambodia, Australia and Taiwan. For more information, visit

Getting Involved on Campus In addition to wanting students to develop spiritually, the on-campus, residential nature of Olivet facilitates many opportunities for students to connect socially. Each semester, the Office of Student Development plans a full program of social activities across campus with the goal of students having fun and building inclusive relationships. Olivet offers more than 90 clubs, organizations, associations and honor societies to cater to the wide range of interests and passions represented in the student body. A sampling of these include Capitol Hill Gang (political science); Enactus (business); Equestrian Club; Green Room (theatre); Student Investment Club; MuKappa (for students from international and military homes); Outdoor Adventure Club; Multiethnic Student Services (promoting diversity and inclusion through three affinity groups); Spoons 4 Forks improv comedy team; Tabletop Games Club; Society of Women Engineers; Animal Cares; and Diakonia (social work). The Associated Student Council, which is comprised of elected presidents and representatives from each class and overseen by the student body president, works with Student Development to create engaging campus-wide events like Ollies Follies class competitions, the Candy Costume Party and Mr. ONU as well as class-specific gatherings that encourage students to connect with their peers. The student council also oversees production of the Aurora yearbook and The Olivet Gazette, the student newspaper. There are a multitude of additional recreational options for students to enjoy on campus. The Perry Student Life and Recreation Center houses a swimming pool, a four-story climbing wall, a fieldhouse, fitness facilities, study spaces and gaming areas — all of which are available for students to use for free. Olivet also boasts a robust intramural program with 20 sports offered at a variety of levels. More than 1,400 students participate in at least one intramural sport each year. Winning Championships and Developing Champions Students who want to play sports at an intercollegiate competitive level can go through the recruitment process for any of the 21 varsity athletic teams. Coed sports include cheerleading and varsity and junior varsity esports. Olivet athletic teams compete nationally through affiliation in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and through conference play in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC), Mid-States Football Association and Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (for swimming only). Multiple alumni have built on their college training to compete professionally with organizations and teams including the Chicago Cubs, the New York Yankees, Chicago Fire and USA Track and Field. The University’s athletic teams perform at high levels athletically and in the classroom. For 12 consecutive years, Olivet’s athletic program has won the CCAC All-Sports Cup, which is based on season championships and rankings across CCAC-affiliated sports. When it comes to academics, hundreds of Olivet athletes are consistently named to the CCAC AllAcademic Team for their success in the classroom. Scholarships are available for many student-athletes. For more information about the athletic recruitment process, visit




The on-campus, residential nature of Olivet facilitates many opportunities for students to connect socially. Each semester the Office of Student Development plans a full program of social activities across campus with the goal of students having fun and building inclusive relationships.





A strong educational foundation sets students up for success beyond the classroom. Whether studying on or off campus, Olivet students are encouraged to pursue research projects through faculty mentorship and class activities.


Engaging in the Arts From its inception as a liberal arts higher-education institution, Olivet has supported creative growth through performances and exhibitions that feature student accomplishments in the areas of drama, art and music. ONU’s Department of Theatre produces a full season of musicals and plays ranging from Broadway favorites to Pulitzer Prize winners to original productions. Many shows are student-directed, and all productions allow for student involvement beyond the stage, including costuming, set design, set construction, sound design, lighting design and production assistant roles. Students who are interested in artistic exploration are encouraged to take elective courses within the Department of Art and Digital Media. Rotating exhibitions are displayed in gallery areas around campus throughout the year to showcase the talent of students. There are also a variety of on-campus student photography, videography and graphic designer roles that allow students to gain work experience as they hone their craft. In an average year, more than 500 students are involved in the 20 vocal and instrumental ensembles offered at Olivet. All students who are musically inclined are encouraged to get involved, regardless of their major. Ensembles include the Tiger Marching Band, Orpheus Choir, the Jazz Band, University Orchestra, Proclamation Gospel Choir, Concert Band, Concert Singers and Sound Foundation, Olivet’s show choir. These and many other ensembles offer some merit-based scholarships. The School of Music offers a variety of performance opportunities, including annual performances of Handel’s Messiah and the holiday favorite Sounds of the Season concert. Additionally, many music ensembles travel throughout the United States and around the world to minister through music. The Tiger Marching Band has performed in London, Rome and at the U.S. Presidential Inauguration; the Concert Singers ensemble has traveled to Paraguay and Bulgaria; and Orpheus Choir has taken trips to Brazil. Expanding Horizons Through Academic Investment Almost all of the more than 140 areas of study at Olivet require a practical learning experience, such as clinical rotations, student teaching, job shadowing or internship hours. These opportunities allow students to apply what they have learned in the classroom directly into the industry in which they are pursuing a career. Students have completed internships with employers including NASA, the Grand Rapids Museum of Art, the Mississippi Aquarium, the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Nucor Steel and Caterpillar Inc. as well as local churches, hospitals, school districts, political campaigns, nonprofit organizations and more. A strong educational foundation sets students up for success beyond the classroom. Whether studying on or off campus, Olivet students are encouraged to pursue research projects through faculty mentorship and class activities or in a more formal capacity through the University Honors Program or industry-related internships. Professors also frequently employ outstanding students as teaching assistants, notetakers and tutors. Students who are interested in exploring internationally for an extended time are encouraged to spend a semester or summer studying off campus. The University has more than 15 established partnerships with higher-education institutions that promote interactive scholarship experiences in different locations. These experiences offer opportunities for students to gain insight into and appreciation for the varied cultures, languages and traditions that exist elsewhere in the world. Regardless of what students choose to study, there are endless opportunities for growth while experiencing life at Olivet. The mission of the University strategically sets the vision for a higher-education institution that is full of community, culture and ways to connect. We believe. You belong here.



PULLING TOGETHER The Office of Student Development plans a full program of student-focused activities each semester including class competitions, outdoor movies, food truck pop-ups, tailgate parties and more! PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN



Olivet The Magazine (OTM): How important is it for students to know what they want to study before enrolling in college? Amber Residori (AR): I wish I had a megaphone and permission to walk the hallways of high schools everywhere so I could tell students, “You do NOT need to have a major picked before coming to college.” Students put a lot of pressure on themselves to have huge life decisions made before they come to college. I get it. College is expensive and they don’t want to waste time and money. However, not having a major does not mean you won’t finish college on time. We want to reassure them that there is no need to panic, and we are here to guide them through the process of matching their beautiful distinctiveness to a meaningful profession. Let’s be honest: Choosing a career is important, and not many of us were ready to make that decision at 17 or 18 years old. However, each of us are blessed with unique gifts and talents, and there are careers that match our specific strengths. It is far more important for high school students (especially as they make college visits) to ask questions and understand how a university will walk beside them, guide them and help lead them through a process of finding their calling than to immediately commit to a major. Enroll in a college where you trust the adults to listen and guide you in finding your life’s calling.

OTM: What advice do you have for high school students who are considering college as a postgraduation option? AR: Come visit our campus! The leap from high school to college can feel huge. We understand, and we want you to know you’re not alone. You don’t need to have everything figured out; you just need to take the next step. Trust your gut. Pay attention to how you feel when you’re on a campus, and imagine yourself growing, learning and developing beside the students, professors and staff you meet during your visit.

We tend to idolize people who already achieved, made their mark and became something extraordinary. We see them as bigger than life — at least bigger than our own life. We admire their accomplishments and want to capture their unique qualities so that we can emulate their success. Ironically, these role models would likely explain that they have not yet fully become. Instead, their unique quality is that they have never quit becoming. They have been mindful to capture valuable life lessons that were embedded within failure and success and within the mundane and the exciting. You see, individuals who have truly become never settle. They stretch themselves so that they are constantly in the process of developing, improving and transforming. One of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves is ongoing learning, a commitment to stretching and a life filled with intellectual, personal and professional growth.

OTM: What is the importance of a liberal arts education in finding a calling? AR: A liberal arts education is a blessing. It offers a comprehensive way of teaching young adults how to think — not what to think. A liberal arts education helps students be well-rounded individuals who know how to think because the holistic approach exposes them to an array of academic disciplines like the arts, humanities, social sciences, mathematics and natural sciences. It teaches students how to consider and integrate information through a comprehensive, well-rounded and educated lens of the world. We want our alumni to find their calling and gainful employment after graduation. A liberal arts education offers a broad understanding of knowledge, enhances critical thinking skills, builds character, develops communication skills and equips students to solve complex problems. Employers want to hire individuals who have strong character and can think comprehensively, communicate well, consider alternatives when solving problems and work successfully within a team. A liberal arts education provides these skills and prepares students for a lifetime of becoming. OLIVET.EDU


OTM: What makes Olivet stand out as a university? AR: There are so many qualities about Olivet that make us stand out. First of all, we care! Olivet is committed to helping our students in the process of becoming. We offer a relevant, current and cutting-edge educational experience within a connected, family-like atmosphere. We are proud of our strong academic programs and our reputation as a place for spiritual growth and discovery. We want our students to be challenged and stretched educationally, but we also want them to be challenged and stretched personally and spiritually. Our students work beside faculty and staff who model service to Christ. We recognize that our students are relational and see faculty as mentors who lovingly teach them that becoming is not an overnight process. Instead, becoming emerges only after repeating, testing, trying, learning and then owning moments of character development. We know that college years are a key time in students’ lives when they continue to clarify their values, morals and the lens through which they see the world. So, our faculty interactions are intentional and dedicated to helping students develop and transform. Our faculty members also understand that college students are not sustained merely by books. Instead, they are nourished by time spent with people they grow to admire and respect. In fact, becoming involves finishing strong every hour, every project and every opportunity. It means showing up — really showing up — with a commitment to excellence, integrity and service.

OTM: What are some tools you use to help students figure out an area of study to pursue? AR: At Olivet, we start with a strong belief that each student has been blessed by God with gifts and talents that are unique. It is helpful to allow students the opportunity to explore who they are, what they enjoy, environments where they have thrived previously, and what they don’t enjoy. There are also career assessments that students can take that provide insight into various occupations that align with their natural gifts and talents. In that process, they will naturally rule some out while simultaneously creating a short list of potential career choices. The beauty of a school like Olivet is that we offer almost any major a student might consider. Our array of offerings allows students the opportunity to take courses that expose them to various majors. And the great news is that all these courses count toward their graduation requirements, so this is not wasted time but informed decision-making. It is beautiful to watch a student move across the spectrum from feeling overwhelmed and lost to feeling like a partner as we explore possibilities together and then, ultimately, to choosing a major and witnessing their confidence flourish. All of us benefit when we invite students into the process of discovering how God plans to take their gifts and talents into future careers. Becoming is a process, and we are grateful for the privilege of walking beside students as they realize how their unique qualities were designed by God to serve His kingdom in incredible ways.

Our students become doctors, social workers, engineers, accountants, pastors and countless other careers while fulfilling dreams they may have imagined since childhood. But, more importantly, our students become men and women who lead, who are committed to ongoing growth, and who strive to glorify God as they serve professionally and personally.

DR. AMBER RESIDORI ’93/’17 Ed.D. dean of the College of Professional Studies, is a licensed clinical social worker. She has worked

extensively in residential treatment settings with youth and adolescents who struggle with emotional and behavioral disorders. She has a wide range of experience developing new programs, including outpatient therapy, transitional living and acute inpatient psychiatric hospital programs. She previously served at Olivet as a social work professor, as chair of the Department of Social Work and Criminal Justice, and as dean of the School of Life and Health Sciences.


FINDING FRIENDSHIP At Olivet, we really believe that you belong on our campus. There are so many ways for students to connect with each other through academic, social, athletic, spiritual and residential activities. With a strong emphasis on community, these relationships are made to last beyond the graduation stage. PHOTO BY JONES FOTO


S C H O L A R LY P U R S U I T S Students find success In May, the Olivet Nazarene University Honors Program graduated its 11th cohort. The University Honors Program provides the opportunity for academically gifted students to develop their scholarly abilities through intensive interdisciplinary coursework, enrichment activities and a two-year mentored research project. Over the past 11 years, the Honors Program has graduated 130 students, all of whom completed a capstone research project and thesis supervised by a faculty mentor in their respective disciplines. These significant undergraduate research experiences open the door for leadership opportunities in academia and industry. For example, Kathryn Eccles ’11, part of the first cohort, completed her Ph.D. in geology at Boston College and is now teaching as a tenure-track professor at Wheaton College. This year’s graduating cohort included representatives from the fields of theology, art, biology, exercise science, literature, business, education and psychology. Research projects covered such varied topics as a study of methods of injury prevention in athletes, a systematic Biblical analysis of the queen mothers of ancient Judah, and an experiment to gauge the effectiveness of treatments to human kidney cells. Graduates from the 2020–21 cohort are going on to a wide array of graduate studies and industry careers. Some standout examples: Brian Bowen ’21 – Pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at MidAmerica Reformed Seminary in Dyer, Indiana Brooke (Whetstone) DeFries ’20 – Employed as an actuarial student at Milliman, an actuarial firm, and pursuing an Associate of the Society of Actuaries designation Courtney Gearhart ’20 – Hired as a hospital mental health specialist at Rolling Hills Hospital in Franklin, Tennessee, and pursuing graduate work in geriatric psychology

Ashleigh Godby ’20 – Works as a medical assistant at Parkside Pediatrics, a Christian medical practice, as she studies for the Medical College Admission Test (MCATTM) and prepares to apply to medical school Erin (Olson) Fund ’20 – Medical student at University of Illinois College of Medicine Natalie (Bardwell) Learned ’21 – Pursuing a doctorate in physical therapy at Bradley University Zach Monte ’21 – Pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School Jason Tolley ’21 – Medical student at Indiana University School of Medicine, focusing on anesthesia, neurosurgery and obstetrics Bethany Weaver ’21 – Hired as process development chemist at Nitto Avecia in Cincinnati, synthesizing DNA and RNA sequences for clinical trials Alyssa Young ’20 – Serving with Green Iowa AmeriCorps to provide free home energy audits and education related to sustainability, and soon starting a job with Epic, a healthcare software company To be eligible for application to the Honors Program, students must meet at least one of the following qualifications: have an ACT score of 28 or an equivalent SAT score; graduate in the top 10% of their graduating class; or have an unweighted GPA of at least 3.75 on a 4.0 scale.

The culmination of Honors Program students’ research is published in ELAIA: The Olivet Nazarene University Honors Journal, which is released each fall and features the work of the previous year’s

graduating class. For more details about the Honors Program and application information, visit www.


Students in the program participate in a sequence of team-taught, discussion-based classes during their freshman and sophomore years that satisfy four of Olivet’s core general education curriculum requirements. These courses explore what it means to be human and expose students to the Christian liberal arts tradition. Each cohort begins the Olivet experience with an overnight freshman honors retreat and and caps coursework in the sophomore year with a cultural excursion to Chicago. In their junior and senior years, students receive funding for travel and supplies related to their research projects, and they complete their

studies under the supervision of a faculty mentor of their choosing. Cole Doolittle ’19, who completed research on the impact that invasive species have on local forest communities at the University of Minnesota, says of his Honors Program experience: “Though the Honors Program provided the space, resources and funding for my research, the full scope of the program extends beyond academic excellence. The Honors Program continually challenged me to step into the full reality of God’s plan for my life. The material is challenging; the work is difficult. But the reward for persistence is an eye-opening spiritual, relational and academic understanding of what it means to be human.”

Olivet Nazarene University 2021 Honors Program Graduates, Front Row (L to R): Nicole Samuelson, Anna Waldron, Hannah

Lewis; Second Row: Bethany Weaver, Elizabeth Kijowski; Third Row: Kayleigh Kastelein, Natalie Bardwell, Madiera Sherwood; Fourth Row: Anthony Fund, Zachary Monte; Fifth Row: Timothy Steiniger, Jason Tolley, Brian Bowen.





FIRST PERSON Doug Nielsen ’09/’12 MBA

Olivet The Magazine (OTM): How do you help students comprehend the balance between risk and reward as they dive into finance? Doug Nielsen: Risk and reward are very subjective. The problem is that most people want the reward of a return analogous to investing in bitcoin but want the limited risk of a Treasury bill. That type of investment does not exist. Do research on the various types of investments available to you as a consumer and choose those that conform to your risk tolerance level. There are many free tests available — I use one in my investments class every semester — for people to understand how much risk they are willing to take. Students need to understand their comfort with risk before ever investing. OTM: What is your investment advice for how to navigate the chaotic nature of the stock markets? Doug: Just relax, take a deep breath and it will all be OK. In class, I encourage my students to adopt a long-term approach. Historically, the market goes up. Those who kept their money in the market during the 2008–09 recession and this past recession have made more money than those that pulled their money out of the market and kept it in cash. When going through turmoil, research the investments that perform the best during these times.

OTM: Why are hands-on learning opportunities like the Student Investment Club important on a college campus? Doug: First and foremost, students learn how, why and when to invest in various economic conditions. They learn what is the most appropriate asset in which we should invest, given macro- and microeconomic conditions. Further, they get real-world experience investing real money. This puts a different perspective in our students’ minds when we discuss topics like the Federal Reserve raising or lowering interest rates; President Joe Biden pushing an infrastructure bill; the delta variant affecting the global recovery; and Chinese government control over its companies. These topics have a direct impact on our investments, return and performance every quarter. On a professional side, many of our students have been offered internships and jobs because of this work within the club. The past four club presidents have been given an internship or a job because of the work they did leading the club and managing the account. Additionally, the club allows students to better understand investing as they pitch opportunities to the club and vote on how the money should be managed. This past year, we were blessed to offer two $1,000 scholarships to Olivet students based on earnings from investments. The payoffs are huge.

OTM: What are some key life lessons that you’ve learned in your career as a faculty member? Doug: First, I have learned to never hesitate to say, “I do not know” to students. We do not know everything there is about every topic we cover in class, and that is OK. If you make up an answer, the students will know, especially with their computers in front of them. Second, live your life according to the devotions you give. I encourage and pray for all of my students to follow after God and live holy lives.

Doug Nielsen is a professor in the McGraw School of Business. His area of specialty is finance — specifically, financial markets and related

research — and he serves as the faculty mentor for the Student Investment Club. Founded in 2017, the club oversees a fund of student-

managed investments that, as of August 2021, contained $931,000. Doug is married to Katherine (Benson) ’05, an adjunct faculty member in Olivet’s School of Music and a resident director. They are the parents of two children, Charlotte and Joseph.




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STRIKE UP THE BAND The ONU Tiger Marching Band is one of the most popular groups on campus. The band’s breathtaking field performances range from classic movie and television themes to pop music. Every fall, nearly 200 Marching Tigers take the field, making it one of the largest Christian college marching bands in the nation. PHOTO BY JOE MANTARIAN


RAVING FANS Cassidy (Lancaster) Vera ’13 Born in Chicago, Cassidy (Lancaster) Vera ’13 spent most of her life in Florida. When it came time for her to consider college options, she knew she wanted to return to the Midwest for a fresh start and a new adventure. “I was at a point in my life that I was really starting to develop my faith and deepen my relationship with the Lord, but my senior year in high school had some big changes,” she says. “I knew that if I went to college in Florida with my friends, I wouldn’t be surrounded by the faith community I needed to keep developing my relationship with the Lord. I decided to prioritize attending a Christian school because I knew my faith was the most important thing I needed to work on in my life.” Cassidy was attending a Nazarene church at the time and considered the various denominational options. Olivet ultimately stood out because the University offers majors in both elementary education and Spanish — two areas of study that Cassidy knew she wanted to pursue. In addition to her studies at Olivet, Cassidy kept busy as a student photographer for the yearbook, co-leader for Heart4Missions for two semesters, teaching assistant (TA) and member of the education honor society Kappa Delta Pi. “Each role I had involved being on a team that became a community of friends to spend time with and share in fun and meaningful experiences,” she says. “As a photographer, I was exposed to so many campus life activities, sports and events that I wasn’t involved in. My TA experience was also great, as it gave relevant teaching experience to help me in my career. I taught labs, graded reports and projects, and tutored students.” Cassidy moved to Paraguay after graduation to teach English and science classes at a Christian school. While there, she met her husband, Nolberto, when she assisted with a short-term medical mission team. After two years of dating that included a nine-month separation as the couple waited for Nolberto’s visa, they were married at Kankakee First Church of the Nazarene.


The couple settled in Kankakee County when Cassidy found a job as a teacher in Kankakee School District’s dual language program, which not only fulfilled a Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education grant obligation but also gave her daily opportunities to positively influence the lives of young generations through intentional instruction and language development. “My mission field is my classroom and the hallways of my school,” she says. “I know I can make a difference in the lives of children simply by showing God’s love to them through my words and actions. I’ve seen firsthand how God has used me to change the attitudes of certain students and make them feel comfortable in the classroom and at school simply by loving and encouraging them.” Throughout her six years working in the district, Cassidy has worked alongside several other Olivet alumni. This fall, she is hosting a student teacher from Olivet. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to teach an Olivet student what it’s like to bring Jesus into the classroom,” she says. “My Olivet professors taught me not only how to be a great teacher of content but also how to fulfill the calling God put on my life to make an impact on others.” Reflecting on the academic and spiritual foundation she built as a college student, Cassidy is confident that her choice to attend Olivet was the right one. “The Olivet, experience is unlike anything else,” she explains. “College is for career preparation, but, at Olivet, it’s also a place to surround yourself with a wonderful faith community and find the purpose God has laid out for you. I’m so thankful for my years at Olivet.”

“College is for career preparation, but, at Olivet, it’s also a place to surround yourself with a wonderful faith community and find the purpose God has laid out for you.”

Cassidy and Nolberto live in Kankakee with their 1-year-old daughter, Evelyn.





A F I C I O N A D O S E N T U S I ASTAS Cassidy (Lancaster) Vera ’13 Nacida en Chicago, Cassidy (Lancaster) Vera ’13 pasó la mayor parte de su vida en Florida. Cuando llegó el momento de considerar las opciones universitarias, sabía que quería regresar al Medio Oeste para un nuevo comienzo y una nueva aventura. “Estaba en un momento de mi vida en que realmente estaba comenzando a desarrollar mi fe y profundizar mi relación con el Señor, pero mi último año en la escuela secundaria trajo algunos cambios grandes. Sabía que si hubiera ido a una universidad en Florida con mis amigos, no hubiera estado rodeada de la comunidad de fe que necesitaba para seguir desarrollando mi relación con el Señor. Decidí poner como prioridad asistir a una escuela cristiana porque sabía que mi fe era lo más importante en lo que necesitaba trabajar en mi vida”. Cassidy asistía a una iglesia nazarena en ese momento y consideró las diversas opciones denominacionales. Olivet finalmente se destacó porque la Universidad ofrece especializaciones tanto en educación primaria como en español, dos áreas de estudio que Cassidy sabía que quería proseguir. Además de sus estudios en Olivet, Cassidy se mantuvo ocupada como fotógrafa estudiantil para el anuario; una co-líder de Heart4Missions (Corazones para Misiones) durante dos semestres; una asistente de profesor; y miembro de Kappa Delta Pi, una sociedad de honor educativa. “Cada rol que tenía implicaba estar en un equipo que se convirtió en una comunidad de amigos para pasar tiempo y compartir experiencias divertidas y significativas. Como fotógrafa, estuve expuesta a tantas actividades de la vida en el campus, deportes y eventos en los que no estaba involucrada. Mi experiencia como asistente de profesor también fue excelente, ya que me dio una experiencia docente relevante para ayudarme en mi carrera. Enseñé laboratorios, califiqué informes y proyectos, y di clases de refuerzo a los estudiantes”. Cassidy se mudó a Paraguay después de graduarse, para enseñar clases de inglés y ciencias en una escuela cristiana. Mientras estaba allí, conoció a su esposo, Nolberto, cuando ella ayudó con un equipo médico de misión a corto plazo. Después de dos años de noviazgo, que incluyó una separación de nueve meses mientras la pareja esperaba la visa de Nolberto, se casaron en la iglesia nazarena de Kankakee First.


La pareja se estableció en el condado de Kankakee cuando Cassidy encontró un trabajo como maestra en el programa de lenguaje dual del Distrito Escolar de Kankakee, un papel que cumplió con su obligación de subvención TEACH (ayuda financiera que recibió para ayudarla a asistir a Olivet), pero también le dio oportunidades diarias para influir positivamente en las vidas de las generaciones jóvenes a través de la instrucción intencional y el desarrollo del lenguaje. "Mi campo misionero es mi salón de clase y los pasillos de mi escuela. Sé que puedo hacer una diferencia en la vida de los niños simplemente por mostrarles el amor de Dios a través de mis palabras y acciones. He visto de primera mano cómo Dios me ha usado para cambiar las actitudes de ciertos estudiantes y hacerlos sentirse cómodos en el aula y en la escuela por simplemente amarlos y animarlos". A lo largo de sus seis años trabajando en el distrito, Cassidy ha trabajado junto a varios otros ex-alumnos de Olivet. Este otoño está recibiendo a una maestra practicante de Olivet. “Estoy emocionada por tener la oportunidad de enseñarle a una estudiante de Olivet lo que es reflejar a Jesús en el aula. Mis profesores de Olivet me enseñaron no sólo a ser una gran maestra de contenido, sino también a cumplir con el llamado que Dios puso en mi vida para tener un impacto en los demás”. Al reflexionar sobre la base académica y espiritual que construyó como estudiante universitaria, Cassidy confía en que su elección para asistir a Olivet fue la correcta. “La experiencia en Olivet es diferente a cualquier otra. La universidad es para la preparación profesional, pero Olivet también es un lugar para rodearte de una comunidad de fe maravillosa y encontrar el propósito que Dios ha establecido para ti. Estoy muy agradecida por mis años en Olivet”.

“La universidad es para la preparación profesional, pero Olivet también es un lugar para rodearte de una comunidad de fe maravillosa y encontrar el propósito que Dios ha establecido para ti.”

Cassidy y Nolberto viven en Kankakee con su hija de un año, Evelyn.




Come home to Olivet for a time of celebration, reunion and entertainment! R E G I S T E R T O D AY ! PRESIDENTIAL INAUGURATION Friday, 10 a.m., Centennial Chapel

The presidential inauguration of Dr. Gregg Chenoweth is planned for Friday morning in the Betty and Kenneth Hawkins Centennial Chapel on Olivet’s campus.


Friday, 5:15 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., McHie Arena Saturday, 12 p.m., Ward Field

Enjoy both the women’s and men’s basketball games Friday night and the Homecoming football game at midday Saturday.


Friday, 9:30 p.m., Chalfant Hall

Enjoy this modern take on an old classic! This is the perfect time to gather with friends for food and desserts after the basketball games or fall play.


Saturday, 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Various Locations

We hope you make the trip back home to Olivet for your class reunion. Enjoy food and fellowship with classmates of days gone by.


Saturday, 7 p.m., Centennial Chapel

Join the full Olivet community for an unforgettable concert featuring the University Orchestra, combined choirs and alumni soloists.

PRESIDENT’S PRAYER BREAKFAST Sunday, 8 a.m., Chalfant Hall

Join University President Dr. Gregg Chenoweth for a delightful morning of inspiration and exceptional music from Orpheus Choir.


WORLD-CLASS RESEARCH At Olivet, scholarship and mentorship combine for a complete academic experience. In a challenging academic environment with encouragement to explore personal interests, students do more than simply learn skills; they gain wisdom and knowledge. PHOTO BY JONES FOTO

W H AT TO D O S E N I O R Y E A R The best way for your student to prepare for college is to make the most of senior year. Your daughter or son should dig into classes. Good study habits, focused determination and solid grades are the best preparation. She or he should invest in extracurricular activities that highlight athleticism, musical talent, leadership or public service. It will be a busy year, and graduation will be here before you know it. These steps, written for your student, will help your family navigate the enrollment process and get a head start on the college experience.

ASK THESE QUESTIONS Does the college offer your major?

How important is distance from home?

Are there ample areas of study (in case you change majors)?

Is the school near additional internships, jobs and culture?

Are the professors accessible in and out of the classroom?

Does the college have on- and off-campus guidelines for living?

Are the professors renowned in their fields?

Do you value the school’s policies regarding residential life?

Are the academic programs rigorous?

What arts opportunities are there?

After financial aid is awarded, how affordable is the school?

Are there athletic teams to cheer on?

How many students are in each class?

What are all the on- and off-campus dining options?

Does the college have strong internship and study-abroad opportunities?

Are there fitness activities for students?

What is the weather like? What defines the classroom experience? Are there added-value opportunities and services?


Does the college offer off-campus living? What are some alumni success stories? Is academic tutoring and career counseling readily offered?

What is the campus city or town like?

What clubs, intramural sports, ministries and volunteer activities exist?

Does the school provide a multicultural experience?

Is the school a good fit for you?

FALL Visit! Fall is a great time to look at the schools on your college list. The perfect time to connect with students and professors is when classes are in session. Even sit in on a class or two. Olivet’s Purple and Gold Days are ideal occasions to experience campus firsthand or virtually. Finalize a short list. Use the information gathered from college visits, interviews and research to determine where to apply. Compare and contrast schools on the short list to determine where they rank in priority. Stay on track with grades and activities. Colleges look at senior year, so stay focused on classes and maintain commitments to extracurricular activities. Take standardized tests. Register for and take the ACT, SAT or SAT Subject Tests as necessary. Add Olivet's school code so test scores are sent automatically. Keep track of deadlines. It’s important to know what is due when. Make a calendar showing the application deadlines for admission, financial aid and scholarships.

WINTER Follow up on applications. Verify with the guidance counselor that all forms are in order and have been sent. Send mid-year grade reports. Ask the guidance counselor to send these reports to colleges on the short list. Remember, schools will continue to keep track of grades, so it’s important to keep working hard throughout senior year. Review college financial aid packages. Award letters should begin arriving at homes in late November for those who filed early. Though finances should never be the only factor in a decision, consider each package carefully, as not all colleges use the same format.


Connect with a guidance counselor. Be sure the counselor knows where to send transcripts, score reports and letters of recommendation. Give counselors any necessary forms much earlier than the actual deadlines so they have time to complete them.

Prepare! Take any last standardized tests and ACT/SAT retakes (statistically, students improve their score on the second or third attempt). Take Advance Placement (APTM) tests or College Level Examination Program (CLEPTM) tests to earn college credit as senior year winds down. Be sure to discuss these options with an enrollment adviser at each school on your short list, as every school awards college credit and academic scholarships differently.

Complete applications for schools on the short list. Make sure the guidance office has sent all necessary materials, including test scores, recommendations, transcripts and application essays. Plan to get all this done before winter break so you won’t be rushed.

Make the final college decision. Notify all schools of your intentions by May 1. If still undecided, schedule campus visits to the schools being considered. Send in the enrollment deposit and have the guidance counselor send a final transcript upon graduation. Submit any other paperwork required by the university.

File the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Filing for the following school year starts on Oct. 1 of the current year. File as soon as possible to ensure access to eligible state and federal aid as well as priority status for college scholarships (Olivet’s school code is 001741). Some state programs have limited resources and are first-come, first-served.

Follow up on financial aid information. Be sure you have received a FAFSA confirmation and award letter. If necessary, explore and apply for loans. Maintain contact with the financial aid adviser to discuss the best options for paying for college.

Continue your scholarship search. Apply for scholarships with approaching deadlines, and keep searching for more scholarship and grant opportunities. Using free online scholarship search tools is a great way to find potential aid. Ask colleges about their scholarship opportunities. Be sure to take this information into account when making a short list. A university’s sticker price can fluctuate greatly after financial aid and scholarships are applied. Talk with a financial aid representative at Olivet to discover how scholarships and financial aid change your bottom line.

Interact with future classmates. Attend college events, check out class Facebook and Instagram pages, and finalize roommate selection.

SUMMER Attend new student summer orientation. Finalize course selections, choose a dorm room, meet freshman classmates, interact with faculty and staff, and begin the exciting experience of the next four years!





Discover ways to keep up with and encourage your Olivet student throughout his or her academic, social and spiritual journey at Olivet. To receive quarterly communication (important dates, upcoming events and resources for parents) during the school year, sign up at

We have created a 31-Day Prayer Guide for parents of college students and those preparing for college. To receive your free copy for parents and families, visit






Intercollegiate athletic teams compete in NAIA and NCCAA


MILLION DOLLARS in financial aid awarded last year to ONU students

Advanced degrees offered through the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies









Intramural sports and tournaments with more than 1,540 participants each school year

Statistics compiled from 2018, 2019 and/or 2020.



AT A G LA N C E STUDENTS More than 3,700 — 2,500 undergraduates — from nearly every U.S. state, 21 countries and more than 40 religious denominations. ALUMNI Olivet Nazarene University has graduated many notable alumni who have given back to the University, the Olivet region, the Church and the world in so many ways. There are more than 40,000 living alumni making a worldwide impact. ACADEMICS More than 140 areas of study offered through the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Professional Studies, School of Theology and Christian Ministry and the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies. Study-abroad opportunities have included Australia, China, Costa Rica, Ecuador, England, Egypt, Romania, Japan, Uganda, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles. ACCREDITATION Includes the Higher Learning Commission, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, the Council on Social Work Education, the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training, the National Association of Schools of Music and the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. In addition, the Teacher Education Program is a recognized education preparation provider by the Illinois State Board of Education. ATHLETICS At Olivet, student-athletes compete on 22 intercollegiate teams. Olivet provides competitive athletic awards and scholarships for qualifying candidates. Varsity teams for men include basketball, baseball, cheerleading, cross country, football, golf, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. Varsity teams for women include basketball, cheerleading, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. In addition to varsity sports, more than half the student body participate in Olivet’s thriving intramural and club sports programs. CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS More than 90 clubs and organizations representing diverse interests, including a campus newspaper, yearbook and literary magazine; Enactus; Student Philanthropy Council; ROTC; radio broadcasting (Shine.FM); numerous choral and instrumental ensembles (including Tiger Marching Band and University Orchestra); drama and musical theatre performances; intramural athletics; and community volunteer and spiritual life organizations.


CAMPUS Beautiful, park-like campus features 35 major buildings on 275 acres. Located in the Village of Bourbonnais, Illinois, just 45 miles south of Chicago’s Loop, with additional School of Graduate and Continuing Studies locations in Illinois. SPIRITUAL LIFE Christian community committed to making worship of God the central focus of our lives. Our faith in Jesus Christ cannot be separated from the educational experience, and we seek to honor God in all we learn, say and do. Through chapel services, each segment of the University community has the opportunity to join with others in worship and receive instruction in the Word and encouragement to serve. Notable and world-renowned speakers regularly address the Olivet community during chapel. SCHOOL OF GRADUATE AND CONTINUING STUDIES Business: Bachelor of Applied Science in Business, Bachelor of Applied Science in Leadership, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Bachelor of Science in Leadership, Master of Organizational Leadership, Master of Business Administration Education: Master of Arts in Education: Curriculum and Instruction, Master of Arts in Education: English Language Learners, Bilingual Endorsement, Safety and Driver’s Education Endorsement, English as a Second Language Endorsement, Learning Behavior Specialist Endorsement, Reading Endorsement, Teacher Leader Endorsement Multidisciplinary Studies: Bachelor of Applied Science in Multidisciplinary Studies and Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Studies Nursing: Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Nursing completion (RN-BSN), Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Nursing (RN- MSN), Master of Science in Nursing: Education, Master of Science in Nursing: Family Nurse Practitioner, Master of Science in Nursing: Transformational Leadership, Postgraduate Certificates in Education, Family Nursing Practitioner, and Transformational Leadership. Master of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics Ministry: Master of Arts: Christian Ministry, Master of Arts: Family Ministry, Master of Arts: Ministerial Studies, Master of Arts: Missional Multiplication, Master of Arts: Pastoral Ministry, Master of Arts in Religion, Master of Arts in Pastoral Leadership, Master of Arts: Urban Ministry, Master of Ministry, Master of Ministry in Spanish, Master of Divinity Doctor of Education: Ethical Leadership

AREAS OF STUDY Accounting Actuarial Science Art Art - Graphic Design Art - Drawing/Painting Art - Media Arts Art - Photography Art Education Biblical Languages Biblical Studies Biology Business Administration Business - Entrepreneurship Business - Healthcare Management Business - Human Resource Management Business - Management Business - Philanthropy/ Not-for-Profit Business - Operations Management Business - Public Administration Chemistry Chemistry - Biochemistry Chemistry - Forensics Child Development Children’s Ministry Christian Education Christian Studies Communication Studies Computer Science – Networking & Data Communications

Computer Science Software Development Computer Science Software Entrepreneurship Corporate Communication Criminal Justice Criminal Justice Law Enforcement Cybersecurity Data Science Dietetics Early Childhood Education Earth & Space Science Economics Economics & Finance Applied Economics Economics & Finance Certified Financial Planning Economics & Finance Corporate Finance Elementary Education Engineering - Architectural Engineering - Chemical Engineering - Civil Engineering - Computer Engineering - Electrical Engineering - Mechanical English English as a Second Language English as a Second Language Education English Education Environmental Science

Family & Consumer Sciences Family & Consumer Sciences Hospitality Finance French Geography Geological Science Greek Health Education Hebrew History Intercultural Studies Interior Design International Business Kinesiology Leadership Studies Legal Studies Literature Management Management Information Systems Marketing Marketing - Commercial Graphics Marketing - Corporate Relations Marketing - International Marketing - Management Mathematics Mathematics Education Military Affairs Military Science Ministerial Missions

Multimedia Communication Multimedia Communication Film Studies Multimedia Communication Journalism Multimedia Communication Live Event Media Mgmt. Multimedia Communication Ministry Media Multimedia Communication Radio/Record Industry Multimedia Communication TV/Video Production Music Music – Composition Music – Performance Music – Jazz Studies Music – Recording Arts Music Education Music Ministry Musical Theatre Nursing Pastoral Ministry Philosophy Philosophy & Religion Photography Physical Education Physical Sciences Political Science Pre-Art Therapy Pre-Athletic Training Pre-Dental Pre-Law

Pre-Medicine Pre-Optometry Pre-Pharmacy Pre-Physical Therapy Pre-Physician’s Assistant Pre-Seminary Pre-Veterinary Psychology Public Policy - Domestic Public Policy - Foreign Public Relations & Strategic Communication Recreation, Sports & Fitness Religious Studies Science Education - Biology Science Education - Chemistry Science Education Earth/Space Science Social Science Social Science Education Social Work Sociology Spanish Spanish Education Special Education Sport Management Theatre Theology Writing Youth Ministry Zoology




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We Believe. You Belong Here. PURPLE & GOLD DAYS: OCTOBER 1 & 15 | NOVEMBER 5, 12 & 19 | DECEMBER 3 Join other high school and transfer students and their families for this exciting campus visit experience.

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