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Michael and Mary Bassis Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012 Spring 2012

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE presided over its grand opening, even though she was the one who got it started. I want my successor to have the same opportunity I did to shamelessly claim credit for what my predecessor had accomplished.

This is the last piece I will write for the Review. I find myself saying things like that more and more frequently as I approach my retirement in July. There is, of course, a sense of sadness associated with those words. I have really enjoyed my work at Westminster, so I know I will miss the things I am now doing for “the last time.” There is also a sense of disappointment because there are some things I will never get to see completed. So while I’ll keep working on them, I won’t be here when they are finished.

But while sadness and disappointment are part of saying “goodbye,” the dominant emotion I feel as I do things for “the last time” is one of satisfaction. I recognize that presidents—and students and faculty and staff—come and go; only the institution remains. It is the job of a president to serve the institution, to do his work in a way that leaves it stronger than it was, to help it adapt to changing needs while remaining true to its historic character.

As I look back on my 10 years here, there are some things I wish I had done differently. But I believe that the fundamental components of the course I tried to steer were sound.

I remain convinced of the wisdom of ensuring that all stakeholders had the opportunity to participate in I won’t be here when the “Westminster creating our strategic plan. I believe that plan was a necessary response Center for the Arts” opens in the to the changing landscape of higher Garfield School; I won’t be part of the education. And I am confident celebration when “Westminster on that the college’s commitment to the Draw” is completed and becomes following that plan has strengthened an anchor for our efforts to become it and leaves it well positioned to deal an increasingly active presence in with the challenges and demands of Sugar House; nor will I be around to the future. see Nightingale Hall transformed into an indoor Student Commons that will But even more important to the house, among other things, a state-of- college’s long-term success is the the-art electronic portfolio laboratory, a support of people like you—people key resource in our efforts to prepare all who have an appreciation for what Westminster graduates with the skills Westminster is and a belief in and attributes critical for success. My what Westminster can become. successor will make the final decisions In my tenure here, I have been about those and other projects and cut struck time and time again by how the ribbon to open them. much Westminster means to so many people, how the educational That is as it should be. My predecessor, Peggy Stock, left with the expansion of experience we provide has shaped both their personal and professional the Emma Eccles Jones Conservatory lives. In that context, I could not still in progress; I was the one who

be more pleased with the progress we have made in translating that emotion into a more meaningful relationship with our alumni. They have become a vital part of our community, mentoring students, participating in events, and increasing their support of the college. But even people who never attended the college appreciate how important it is to have a private non-sectarian institution in Utah. Their expression of caring, pride, and encouragement has meant the world to me and to the college. It gives us the confidence to continue doing the hard work of creating a unique environment for learning that responds to the needs of the twenty-first century. I spend a lot of time evaluating the college’s needs and trying to respond to them: balancing budgets, reviewing plans for new programs, and supporting efforts to use technology to reduce costs and increase quality. This issue of the Review, however, speaks to the reason I have done that kind of work for almost 40 years—the students. They are, after all, the reason we work so hard: finding new ways to help them learn, focusing on helping them develop the skills they need to succeed, and striving to help them reach their full potential both professionally and personally.

While this is “the last time” I will write a piece for the Review, this is not the last time I will express my affection for, and commitment to, Westminster. After I retire, I look forward to becoming one of those people who supports this institution because it means so much to me and has done so much for me.


TABLE OF CONTENTS GIVE US YOUR FEEDBACK The editors of the Review would like your feedback. Let us know what you like or what misses the mark. Please send your comments to Robin Boon Office of Communications Westminster College 1840 South 1300 East Salt Lake City, UT 84105 Or email us at Contributors Corbin Archer (’02) Michelle Barber Lyhnakis (MPC ’06) Michael Bassis Robin Boon Kerry Case Mary Jo Hinsdale Annalisa Holcombe (’92) Bob Seltzer Johanna Snow Kaye Stackpole Julie Tille Dana Tumpowsky Editors Robin Boon Helen Hodgson Laura Murphy Bob Seltzer

Westminster College Review Spring 2012 The President’s Message


A Message from Colleagues


Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012 McNair Scholars Center for Civic Engagement Environmental Center Winter at Westminster


Design Volsic Creative Photography Andrew McQuin (MPC ’07) Thomas Cronin Michael Schoenfeld Westminster College Board of Trustees Kim T. Adamson* Hamid Adib** Jeanne Ambruster** Gretchen Anderson, Vice Chair Martha Felt Barton* Judith Billings Michael Bills* Preston Chiaro James R. Clark Curt P. Crowther** Thomas A. Ellison Bing L. Fang* Thomas Fey Robert J. Frankenberg, Chair Robert A. Garda Clark P. Giles Susan Glasmann Hank Hemingway Colleen Kearns McCann* Peter D. Meldrum Dale E. Miller O. Wood Moyle IV* Jeffrey R. Nelson* William Orchow Robert Rendon Patricia Richards Alvin Richer* Noreen Rouillard* David E. Simmons R. Anthony Sweet Greg Winegardner *Alumni, **Parent


Bob Frankenberg


Mary Wilson Bassis


Thanks Michael


An Institution Transformed 2002–2012

36 40

Alumni News Letter from the Board Chair

Alumni Remember

Tap into the Network

Class Notes

Help Save the Plate

Alumni News

Two Alumni Join Athletic Hall of Fame

With Remembrance

Celebrating 100 Years

Faculty News


Athletic News


Campus News


Converse Society


A MESSAGE FROM COLLEAGUES Since this is the last issue of the Review that will appear during Michael’s tenure, we wanted to try to tell you a little about what Michael has done for and meant to Westminster. As members of Michael’s Senior Administrative Team, each of us has worked closely with him on individual projects and met collectively with him every week to discuss the challenges we have faced. Over the years, we have gotten to know him as a president and a person, and we want to tell you a few things about him. He is a man who thinks creatively— and continually—about ways to improve our college. He is a leader whose goal is to devise ways to make higher education more affordable for students and better able to meet the needs of our society. And he is a person we have come to admire. His tenure at Westminster has produced fundamental and transformational changes. He is too modest to claim credit for them. But we want to give you three examples of the kind of changes he has made and assure you that they are “the kind of change we believe in.”


Michael changed the way Westminster students learn.

The college has always been committed to our students and their learning. But Michael believed that how they learned was as important as what they learned. He wasn’t satisfied with the lectures-tests-papersgrade model that has defined higher education for centuries. He talked about a new model, one in which

Michael changed the way Westminster students learn... how they learned was as important as what they learned. He wasn’t satisfied with the lectures-tests-papers...

learning was active, experiential, 4

cross-disciplinary, and collaborative. He persuaded the faculty to think about their jobs in new ways.


Michael changed this campus.

Not only were a number of new

He made it a goal to be “nationally recognized,” not as a way to satisfy our collective egos, but rather as part of a strategy to make talented

Rather than being “the sage on the

facilities constructed during his

stage,” who delivered lectures and

presidency, he also demolished the

required students to memorize a set of

conceptual boundaries that restricted

community. The results speak for

facts, faculty were encouraged to see

our thinking about Westminster’s

themselves: more freshmen from out-

themselves as “guides on the side.”

27-acre campus. He created Winter

of-state than from within Utah, the

at Westminster and pushed for an

number of annual applications rising

Outdoor Recreation program; as a

from 753 to 3,345 over his tenure, and

result, the mountains became a part

an international presence, reflected

of our campus. He came up with the

in the 61 new foreign students who

notion of “Sugar House as a College

have come to our campus within the

Town,” which led to the acquisition of

last year alone.

the Garfield School and an innovative

We could go on; there are more

He urged students to use what they

lease agreement for “Westminster

accomplishments that should be

learned to improve the college…and

on the Draw.” He worked with Sugar

In that role, their job was to help students discover and test ideas, explore multiple concepts, see relationships between different disciplines, and develop the ability to be independent thinkers and lifelong learners.

they did. They became advocates for wind and solar power, along with other renewable resources

acknowledged, more achievements House merchants and political leaders that should be mentioned. But to help our students make Sugar throughout the feature stories in this House part of their college experience. issue of the Review, we believe you

(which now account for 10 percent of our energy consumption); they volunteered as tutors and worked

students want to be part of our


Michael changed this college.

with schools in the community to

For years, Westminster was content

give other kids the help they needed

just to be what it was; Michael

to learn; last year they spent 67,000

demanded that we make sure other

hours doing community service.

people knew what we were as well.

will get a sense of the most important accolade Michael has earned: his work has changed the lives of students. So, as his colleagues, we say “thank you” and “well done.” And as his friends we say “we will miss you.”

Left to right, top row: Bob Seltzer, Special Assistant to the President; Gary Daynes, Interim Vice President for Enrollment Services; Dr. Cid Seidelman, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs; Curtis Ryan, Vice President for Finance and Administration. Left to right, bottom row: Annalisa S. Holcombe, Director of Alumni, Community, and Board Relations; Steve Morgan, Vice President for Advancement and Alumni Relations; Dr. Susan Heath, Associate Provost for Student Development


Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012

by Mary Jo Hinsdale, PhD Director of the McNair Scholars Program

MCNAIR SCHOLARS— Part of our commitment to diversity and global learning

In 2003

No educational experience that fails to include exposure to different peoples and perspectives can be considered adequate in the twenty-first century. For students to lead

with Michael Bassis’ blessing, Westminster College competed for a Ronald E. McNair

full and successful lives in our increasingly diverse society, they need to develop skills to understand and interact comfortably and effectively with people of different races, nationalities, socioeconomic backgrounds, religions, ages, and cultural, political, and sexual orientations. We have made enormous progress regarding our diversity

Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program grant from the US Department of Education: we received a five-year award to begin the first McNair Scholars program in Utah, one of only seven in our western

and global learning agenda over the last 10 years. We have made deliberate efforts to recruit many more students from out of state, many more members of underserved populations (students with few resources, first-generation college students, students of color), and

region and 200 in the country. McNair is an effort to increase the number of low-income, firstgeneration, and underrepresented students who

many more students from other countries. We expanded the opportunities for our students to study abroad through our May Term experiences, as well as formal exchange programs with universities in China (2), Thailand, Argentina, Peru, Germany, and the Netherlands. Our

earn PhDs and, ultimately, become professors and researchers. Graduate schools across the US recognize McNair as an elite preparation

Bastian Diversity Lecture Series brings important speakers to Westminster, and many of their ideas continue to be explored in our classrooms. Our recently revised liberal

program and actively recruit McNair Scholars. This prestigious program would not exist at

education curriculum requires every student to take at least one course focused on some aspect of cultural diversity before he or she can graduate. And we created a Diversity and International Center on campus to expand opportunities for students to learn about diversity and

Westminster College without Michael’s support. The McNair program attracts students who must often work to support themselves and their families

to address the special needs of underrepresented and international students.

while they go to college. We asked Michael for

Our McNair program, described in this essay, is an

additional scholarship funding for McNair Scholars

important piece of our diversity initiatives. Specifically, McNair is devoted to taking talented and ambitious students from underrepresented groups and setting them

with unmet financial need. Michael listened, and he approved this vital institutional support.

on a path to earn a PhD and become college professors. We are enormously proud of its contributions to our campus and of the record of success of its graduates.

Raquel Gabbitas (’08), doctoral student in child psychology at the University of Minnesota, presented her research at the Human Brain Mapping Conference in Barcelona, Spain. 7

McNair Scholars program I feel fortunate to have attended Westminster during President Bassis’ time. As a student in the McNair program, I graduated in 2009 and then enrolled at Oklahoma State University, where I am currently pursuing a PhD. The McNair program at Westminster taught me the skills I need to be successful in graduate school. Without the training and research experiences I gained there, I know I would not be where I am.

2011 graduates Erika Rodriguez, now at the University of Oregon; Benson Stevens, now at Georgetown University; and Jeremy Reynoso, now at Washington State University

His decision allowed students to focus more intently on their studies and research projects, helping them to

It was clear that President Bassis’ goals closely aligned with those of McNair. Bassis recognized the struggles many people face while pursuing a meaningful college education. As an advocate for those who are underrepresented in higher education, he has made a world of difference to people like me.

that take place within them, and the social interaction

He provided the support necessary to help the McNair program succeed. I have seen Westminster change and become more diverse each year. I am happy to see these changes, and I thank President Bassis for his contributions.

between people of different backgrounds and

—Angela M. Andrade


MS, Graduate Research Assistant, Social Psychology

become more competitive graduate school applicants. In turn, these students contributed to the diversity of Westminster’s classrooms, the academic conversations

Front to back, left to right: Guadalupe Aguilera (UU ’13), Faith Martinez (’13), Courtney Hammond (’13), Carolina Silva (’14), Halimat Ipaye (’13), Ethel Tackie-Yarboi (’14), Jasmin Alves (’14), Katrina England (’14), Merima Beganovic (’14)


Leslie Arellano Brown (’13) with her faculty mentor, Dr. Christopher LeCluyse, at the Westminster McNair Scholars Summer Research Symposium

But the institutional commitment did not stop there. To earn the original grant, the college had to provide substantial institutional support: faculty, administration, and student services offices were all involved in supporting the McNair program from the outset. Over the years, the college has also offset some of the costs of preparing for and taking the Graduate Record Exam, as well as helped fund travel to academic conferences. Now in our ninth year, we have served over 100 students who have had numerous accomplishments: Over the past eight summers, 84 scholars have

engaged in faculty-mentored research projects and received stipends of up to $2,800. In our new grant cycle, we have increased the number of students served each summer from 14 to 16.

I came to Westminster College with the hope of receiving a bachelor’s degree and left with the goal of attaining a PhD. As a sophomore in college, I quickly found my sense of self shifting. My upbringing was different from that of my peers, and adjusting to the new cultural norms of college life left me emotionally exhausted. Several faculty members recommended that I apply to the McNair program and, while I knew little about the program at the time, I trusted their input and gave it a shot. I will forever be grateful to them and to the McNair program. Being a McNair Scholar provided me with a stipend, along with room and board, and for the first time since I was 15, I did not have to work nights and weekends. Rather, I could wholeheartedly focus on my academic goals. My fellow McNair Scholars provided me with a community, and amongst them, I could just be. With the support of McNair, I applied to the number-one program in the nation for developmental psychology and gained admittance. I am one year away from receiving my doctorate, due in large part to the support of the McNair program. —Raquel Gabbitas MA, Child Psychology


A total of 82 scholars have presented research

A full 75 percent (54/72) of our graduates have

at conferences including the McNair Scholars

attained a master’s degree and/or are currently in

Symposium at UC–Berkeley, the University

graduate programs. Those who entered doctoral

of Maryland McNair Scholars Conference,

programs as full-time students received funding,

the University of Delaware McNair Scholars

including outstanding fellowships, or assistantships

Conference, the Penn State McNair Conference,

and tuition waivers. Westminster graduates attend

the American Chemical Society, the National

schools such as UC–San Diego, UC–Berkeley, the

Conference on Undergraduate Research, and the

University of Arizona, Clemson University, the

National Undergraduate Literature Conference.

University of Minnesota, and the University of

Benson Stevens (’11) is a research assistant at Georgetown University and will begin its interdisciplinary PhD program in neuroscience in summer 2012.

Washington. And our program has already borne the ultimate fruit: our first two cohorts have produced two new PhDs—one, a research scientist, and one, a postdoctoral teaching fellow. Westminster’s McNair Scholars have earned admission to prestigious graduate programs across the country, bringing their diverse backgrounds and experiences to research institutions that need their new perspectives. Given time, they will begin to change the face—and the heart—of higher education, a change that would not have been possible without Michael’s understanding of what McNair might mean to individual lives and to our broader community. If you would like more information about McNair Scholars, visit www. or call 801.832.3250.

Brett Archuleta (’12) at the Westminster McNair Scholars Summer Research Symposium

I spent a good deal of the summer before I began my

lifelong Westminster student. The McNair Scholars

studies at Westminster worrying. As a hyper-planner,

program helped me identify and achieve this goal.

I was feeling anxious because I did not know what I

Thanks to the McNair Scholars program and my

was going to major in or pursue as a career. Despite

mentors there, I now work as a scholar—a career that

the attempts of friends and family to allay my worries,

fits me perfectly, provides some benefit to the world,

I couldn’t shake my nervousness. In hindsight, I see

and gives me a sense of fulfillment.

that part of this anxiety existed because I had so little

—Asia Ferrin (’07)

understanding of what college, and life after college,

Doctoral student in philosophy, University of Washington

could be like. My parents had never finished high school, so the world of academics was completely new to me. And while I loved everything about Westminster—the classes, my professors, the campus community—the McNair Scholars program was the place where I really found a home. It turns out that what I wanted to be when I grew up was a scholar. I wanted to pursue difficult puzzles and questions and engage in lively discussions with peers. In a sense, I wanted to be a


by Julie Tille Director, Center for Civic Engagement

CIVIC ENGAGEMENT— One way to promote global consciousness, social responsibility, and ethical awareness Now more than ever before, strengthening our nation’s democracy and our interdependent global community requires a more informed, engaged, and socially responsible citizenry. Citizens across the political spectrum, as well as educators, agree that personal and

Before President Bassis arrived at Westminster, we had a “Volunteer Center” that helped match students who wanted to do volunteer work with organizations that needed help. It was, in retrospect, clearly

social responsibility are core elements of a twenty-first century education.

inadequate to support an institution that was

Our faculty were quick to realize this and took the

making “personal and social responsibility” a

initiative to include global consciousness, social responsibility, and ethical awareness among the collegewide learning goals that all Westminster students are expected to achieve. And to help students develop

core value and identified “social responsibility” as part of its college-wide learning goals.

these critical attributes, they put into place a variety of innovative educational practices. These include thematically linked learning communities, communitybased research, global learning focused on real-world

President Bassis was instrumental in creating a new structure, providing funding from the

challenges, diversity programs that promote learning across differences, and curricular experiences that teach students how systems work and can be changed.

President’s Innovation Network, and giving it a new name: the Center for Civic Engagement.

The Center for Civic Engagement is a key part of this larger effort to help students develop the tools they need

Since then, we have done a lot more than help

to be responsible citizens—at home and abroad. The center does this by helping students become engaged with the people and problems in our community through community service. That service, in turn, shows students that if they act, they can have an impact

“match” students with organizations. We have developed programs, forged partnerships, created opportunities, and made the concept of civic

on society. Too many people look at the scope of our problems, the multiplicity of causes that create them,

engagement a part of the life of Westminster

and conclude that there is nothing they can do. But of course there is something they can do. They may not, for example, be able to eliminate poverty, but they can help a child escape poverty by tutoring him or her, acting as a mentor, and serving as a role model. We don’t tell students what to believe, but we want them to know that they can make a difference and that they should make an effort to use what they know to help others. 13

students. Our curricular and co-curricular offerings are an integral part of individual classes, departmental programs, and college-wide activities. The Center for Civic Engagement sponsors an annual Habitat for Humanity build in various locations around the country. This student group is volunteering in Kauai, Hawaii.


The Center for Civic Engagement What we do helps others, but it also helps our

no doubt that the students involved with the center

students. By engaging in the civic life of our

will be agents of change throughout their lives.

community, they learn more about the needs people have, the politics of providing aid, and the

We have gone beyond “pure� volunteer work and

interactions between people in need and those

now offer service-learning programs for which

who seek to help them. And we hope that they will

students can get academic credit. Working with

conclude that human beings become more truly

members of the faculty, they engage in a structured

human through service to others.

We want students to learn from their work and see value in it. It is clear that President Bassis sees value in the role that civic engagement plays in helping students master our college-wide learning goals, demonstrate that they can use what they have learned, and develop a sense of empathy for those in need. Because of the support he has provided, I have

Because President Bassis is committed to the concept of civic engagement and servicelearning, he routinely inquires about the students and the work they are doing. Equally important, he makes it a point to be present when we recognize their efforts. His commitment to and support of our work symbolize the fact that the college, as a whole, cares about civic engagement and values the sort of service and service-learning work the center promotes.

By engaging in the civic life of our community, students learn more about the needs people have, the politics of providing aid, and the interaction between people in need and those who seek to help them. 14

Hawthorne Elementary expresses its gratitude to Westminster for all of the volunteer help with their students.

series of reflections designed to help them draw

secretly believe that the support for and enrollment

specific conclusions about the value of their work,

in Westminster’s new Master of Arts in Community

the relationship between that work and the classes they have taken, and the college-wide learning goals,

Leadership program is, at least in part, an outgrowth of the experiences we helped provide for our students.

as well as the larger social implications of their

Those of us who work at Westminster College know

activity. While the center takes no credit for it, we

that, at the end of the day, our work comes down

During the entire time I attended Westminster College, I was involved with the Center for Civic Engagement. I was attracted to the center because it had honorable goals and a rigor and passion for service, which are seen less and less in our current materialistic society. My involvement with the center prepared me to enter the workforce upon graduation. The volunteer projects deepened my awareness of the needs of various community members and exposed me to people of different ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Currently, I am working as a paralegal/legal


assistant, and I am better equipped for the job because I was exposed to so much diversity while involved with the center. While I can handle strong and aggressive people, I can also help those who are shy and meek talk about their problems. Westminster prepared me to work with people, whether they are poor or affluent, black, white, or Asian. Finally, my passion for service grew because of the center, and I decided my love of service should continue after college. I plan to go to law school and prepare to be a Guardian ad Litem in order to protect the rights of children in the

welfare system. I would not have dreamed of doing that without the experiences I had at Westminster. The Center for Civic Engagement changed my life, and I am forever grateful. —Kayla Conover Quam (’11)

The Center for Civic Engagement to student learning. If the center were to evaluate

29,000 hours in 2006–2007 to more than 67,000

learning by sheer numbers, we would point out that

hours in 2010–2011. However, we don’t evaluate

the number of hours students engaged in service

learning by numbers; we ask students what they

and service-learning has increased every year: from

have learned and what their service meant to them.

Students help build a walkway along Emigration Creek as it runs through the college property.

After I had success with a volunteer

I would never have been able to

project at Primary Children’s Medical

accomplish any of this without the

Center, I started a project to address

center and the programs offers.

the dental problems faced by our local homeless and underserved communities. Through “Mr. Teeth’s Dental Relief,” I’ve been able to

Mr. Teeth Holdunn Rutkoski (’10, MPH ’13) I Love Teeth!

distribute more than 2,500 dental kits locally and globally. At my graduation, the center awarded me the Service-Learning Scholars award.


For me, a formal education is not enough. I want to use my knowledge to actually make a positive difference in the lives of others. Throughout my college experience the Center for Civic Engagement has provided service-learning opportunities that have empowered me to address issues that I care about, be a leader in my community, and involve other students. The knowledge and experience I have gained could not have been found in the classroom. —Jerika Michel (’12)

With help from the Refugee and Immmigrant Center at the Asian Association of Utah, Westminster student-volunteers, including Joey Cathcart (’12) in white and blue above, enjoyed teaching refugee children to ski at a local resort.

Through my experience at the center, I have gained many skills and positive experiences, including a greater understanding of the problems in our community and experiences in serving, receiving service, and working for a common goal with many diverse people. Once you have become involved in your community, it is difficult to go back to a selfish, closed-off life. My work at the center has helped me solidify my intentions to remain engaged throughout my life. —Lucy Daynes (’15)

Westminster students helped with science classes at Hawthorne Elementary.

If you would like more information about the Center for Civic Engagement, visit or call 801.832.2840. 17

Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012

the environmental center

by Kerry Case Director, Environmental Center

ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER— A model to help students explore their interests and pursue their passions outside the classroom. We want our students to care about what they learn. But for many, learning isn’t enough. So we have created centers and institutes to provide students with a structure that helps them take their learning and caring and turn it into action. The Environmental Center is an example of this approach. It has helped students who are passionate about the environment change our campus and touch the lives of every individual in our community. Using the structure of the Environmental Center, our students contributed ideas that made it possible for the Meldrum Science Center to secure a Platinum LEED Certification. The center supported students who wanted to create an organic garden, which now supplies produce to the campus community; the center coordinated efforts by students to establish the U Car Share program and Westminster Wheels, which provide transportation options to students; students used the center to create a “reduce energy use” competition between residence halls; and the center was a powerful advocate for the increase in recycled materials on campus. But we have developed additional centers and institutes focused on other critical issues that do just as much: The Center for China-America Business Studies, the Center for Financial Analysis, the Diversity and International Center, the Great Salt Lake Institute, the Institute for New Enterprise, and the Writing Center. These centers and institutes allow us to focus on critical issues and support activities related to undergraduate research, business development, international relations, community outreach, and many more issues of concern. And as is the case with the Environmental Center, each of these entities has a spillover impact on our campus and on the learning we provide our students. The Center for China-America Business Studies, for example, helped us develop partnership with two institutions in China and led to a significant increase in the number of Chinese students studying on our campus. The Great Salt Lake Institute brings leading scientists to our campus, explores the relationships between economic development and ecological diversity, and exposes students throughout the region to the scientific method and the rigors of research. While the centers and institutes cater to specific interests, they enrich the entire campus community by sparking conversations between disparate groups about issues that matter and by expanding the kind of students we attract. 19

In the fall of 2006, Westminster launched both an undergraduate major in environmental studies and a cocurricular Environmental Center. Together, they have ushered in a new era of environmental inquiry and action on campus. The environmental studies program has now grown to over 90 majors, and the Environmental Center (originally launched with funding from the President’s Innovation Network) has reached thousands of students through its programs and events. But concern about the environment is not isolated within those two programs. A recent survey revealed that 85 percent of our academic departments include sustainability in at least one course, and more than 100 undergraduate research projects have focused on the issue to date. Over the past five-plus years, the campus itself has been transformed into a laboratory for learning about sustainability. Students have been involved in issues associated with the completion of our first LEED-certified building (the platinum Meldrum Science Center). They helped create six demonstration gardens, they run a do-it-yourself bike shop, and they sell food to members of our community, food that was grown in an organic garden located on campus and managed by students. Students have played an enormous role in shaping the college’s environmental policies and improving its daily workings. Environmental economics students researched the external impact of nonrenewable energy sources and prompted Morgane Lauf (’08), BS, biology, examines some of the macro invertebrates from Emigration Creek. Morgane spent the summer researching whales in Argentina and is now applying to veterinary schools.


THE ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER the college to switch 10 percent of its energy to renewable sources. Teams of Campus Sustainability Fellows worked with the Environmental Center to improve recycling, reduce paper consumption, increase local and organic food offerings in the cafeteria, and launch an annual energy-saving challenge in our residence halls.

attributed to having an Environmental Center. Students were deeply involved in crafting our new parking policy that has, in its first year of operation, reduced the number of single-occupant vehicles that park on campus and increased student use of buses and TRAX. And—in the near future—we expect the Sugar House trolley to help us further

Last year, the Environmental Center’s Fellows led

reduce the college’s carbon footprint. The point is

teams of students in conducting a comprehensive

simply this: students, faculty, and staff have rallied

audit of Westminster’s overall sustainability efforts, using the nationally recognized Sustainability

together and made sustainability part of who we are as an institution.

Tracking Assessment and Rating System (STARS) standards. With guidance from the center, they

Along this path toward a more sustainable

measured everything from campus energy use to

Westminster, President Bassis has provided

endowment investments to commuting habits.

both support and vision. Not only did

Westminster’s ongoing dedication to sustainability

he use presidential funds to launch the

was recognized with an impressive Silver STARS

Environmental Center, but he also made

rating. Many of the programs and infrastructure

environmental learning one of the institution’s

changes that earned points can be directly

top fundraising priorities.

Clockwise from front kneeling center: Derek Gallegos (’13); Hannah Oblock (’14) public health major and Bike Program Coordinator; Alizabeth Potucek (’13) environmental studies major and Garden Coordinator; Dallin Hall (’12) marketing major and Bike Technician, Morgan Anderson (’13) environmental studies major and Sustainability Fellow; Kyle Knutson (’12) environmental studies major and Campus Energy Analyst; Jared Stapp, USU Aggie Blue Bikes employee

President Bassis was a charter signatory of the

sustainability understanding and action far beyond

American College & University Presidents’ Climate

where it would have been otherwise.

Commitment—a challenge to higher education

Along the way, President Bassis has afforded our

institutions to eliminate or offset greenhouse gas

students an uncommonly high level of input into

emissions. He created a Sustainability Task Force

environmental decisions for the college, taking their

and, in 2010, signed the college’s first Climate

ideas and desires seriously. Least glamorous but most

Action Plan. His decision to take Westminster’s

critical, he made dozens of small, daily decisions that

climate impact seriously has propelled our

moved the college and its operations more in line

Kerry Case, Director of the Environmental Center, and Adrien Askmo (’08), history major, examine the variety of marine life along Emigration Creek.

Like many college freshmen, I came to Westminster without really knowing what I wanted to study. When required to select a major, I tentatively declared environmental studies, but it wasn’t until I joined the Environmental Center that I became truly passionate about my classes and future career goals. Having never lived on campus, I found in the Environmental Center a sense of community that I might not have had otherwise. I was privileged to attend meetings with faculty, staff, and President Bassis, where I felt they genuinely listened to what I had to say. I was able to integrate my projects


at work into my studies and found myself more prepared for classroom discussion and assignments than I had been previously. As a graduate, I find myself more prepared than many of my fellow college graduates in the environmental field, as I was fortunate to already have almost two years of professional experience. The Environmental Center gave me a purpose and has opened a world of possibilities for me after graduation. Attending Westminster is an experience I will always be grateful for, but it would not have been what it was without my participation in the Environmental Center.

—Kelsie DeFrancia (’10) Biological Science Technician for the US Geological Survey, Canyonlands Research Station


The state-of-the-art Meldrum Science Center earned the highest LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification rating of “platinum.”

with the principles of environmental responsibility

to complex environmental challenges as both

that our students learn in the classroom.

advocates and analysts. As a result, Westminster

As director of the Environmental Center, I certainly appreciate his support. But more than that, I appreciate the ways he has encouraged students to use the college as a living laboratory, to test their ideas in a real-world setting, and to gain experience balancing environmental goals

has established a strong reputation as an environmental leader in our community. That is, in part, due to President Bassis and is one piece of the legacy he leaves the college. If you would like more information about the Environmental Center, visit or call 801.832.2810.

against fiscal realities. Westminster helps students learn how to integrate environmental concerns into their daily lives and prepares them to respond

The Environmental Center has provided me with so many opportunities that have augmented my environmental studies coursework and improved my understanding of sustainability. President Bassis’ support for, and the implementation of, the STARS program allowed me to gain not only a more holistic view of

Westminster’s sustainability, but all the factors that affect it. The skills I have acquired through the Environmental Center are invaluable and will continue to benefit me as I continue on my professional career path. —Morgan Anderson (’13) Sustainability Fellow in the Environmental Center, BS in Environmental Studies


On Earth Day 2010, environmental studies graduating seniors collected electronic waste for appropriate recycling. The project was the first environmental studies’ seniors’ capstone course.


This semester, I am experiencing outreach at a community level. The Roots and Shoots Foundation strives to improve students’ environmental education, and I love being a part of it. I have the unique opportunity to reach out to kids across the valley to encourage environmental science, hard work, and ecological thinking. Without Dr. Bassis, such a wonderful and encouraging program would not exist at Westminster.

world of potential jobs and given me an upper hand against my fellow applicants. Being involved in the Environmental Center has provided an incredible community of supportive individuals; it has given me a home to fuel my passion. My experience at Westminster would not be as rewarding, educational, or passionate without my involvement in this Environmental Center.

Working in the Environmental Center, whether as an Eco-Rep, Fellow, or Roots and Shoots intern, has had a huge impact on my life. I have planned, implemented, and successfully accomplished more projects and research in this position than I have in most of my academic classes. Working in the center has prepared me for the real

Sustainability Fellow and Roots and Shoots Intern

—Leslie Kobinsky (’13)

Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012

Winter at Westminster by Johanna Snow Associate Director, Communications

WINTER AT WESTMINSTER— An example of using our surroundings to enrich student learning. We value our proximity to both incredible natural resources and a vibrant and increasingly sophisticated city. Winter at Westminster is just one example of the way we take advantage of our location both to attract students and to create a unique environment for learning. In terms of natural resources, we are just a few hours’ drive from 16 national parks and monuments and less than 30 minutes away from seven world-class resorts that feature skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, and other activities. We have built an outdoor recreation program that gives every student the opportunity to experience rock climbing, kayaking, mountain biking, hiking, and camping, as well as skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing. In addition, we integrate those resources into our academic experiences: students involved with planetology, environmental studies, earth science systems, and religion—among others—make regular trips to learn in and from the spectacularly rich landscape that surrounds us. We also want our students to take advantage of Salt Lake City, one of the country’s most up-and-coming cities. We have developed a network of local institutions that are eager to provide our students with internship opportunities in the arts, government, and businesses of all kinds. Our Campus Concierge connects students with plays, music, sporting events, and other activities taking place in Salt Lake. As the Salt Lake valley becomes more diverse, we encourage all of our students to take

When President Bassis came to Salt Lake, he says that he was like a tourist in New York City except, instead of looking at tall buildings, he was constantly looking up at the mountains and wondering why everyone else wasn’t staring at them. He soon came to understand that we don’t stare because too many Utah residents take them for granted. He didn’t. And one of the first things he decided was that he wanted to find ways to take advantage of the fact that we are just minutes away from world-class ski resorts. That was the genesis of Winter at Westminster.

No other college program in the world is like Winter at Westminster. It offers a perfect balance between the rigors of college and a passion for skiing and snowboarding. College students from all over the country (as well as current Westminster students) can enroll at Westminster as full-time visiting students. They earn 12–16 transferable credits while skiing or snowboarding 70-plus days at seven world-class resorts located within 30 minutes of campus. But President Bassis wanted to make sure that the program did more than let students ski. If, he argued, they cared that much about winter sports, then they ought to learn about them. So the program introduces students to new winter experiences including backcountry touring, avalanche-awareness certification, bobsled, winter yurt camping, snowmobiling, and more. In addition, students network with many outdoorindustry leaders and entrepreneurs as part of the Lecture & Learn series. There are also internship opportunities with leading outdoor companies.

advantage of the opportunity to experience different

As a Winter at Westminster ambassador, I learned how to manage large groups of students and to take charge of many situations. On the basis of the experiences I had in the program and in the classroom, I decided to spend a year working for AmeriCorps in Cape Cod.

cultures and learn more about the ways various people look at issues like immigration and assimilation. Finally, we are part of the Sugar House neighborhood where our students can find thrift stores and high-end retailers, chain restaurants and mom-and-pop operations, used bookstores and a Barnes and Noble. Sugar House contains

—Erin Daniels (’10)

the diversity of an urban center as well as the security of a

2010 Westminster graduate

family-oriented neighborhood. And all of that contributes to the unique environment for learning we offer. 25


President Bassis had to confront faculty fears that a program featuring winter experiences wouldn’t attract serious students or demand that they devote time to their studies as well as to the slopes. Those were reasonable concerns. But they were allayed when the program attracted participants from selective colleges such as Ithaca College, University of Denver, University of Minnesota, University of New York at Albany, University of Pittsburgh, University of Vermont, University of Wisconsin, and Whitman College. In the end, fears about the academic integrity of the program were best answered by the students themselves. Not only did they take their classes seriously, but many of them found that the academic experience was as challenging and rewarding as our mountains. One participant, for example, said, “I’ve always had an interest in photography, but would not be able to take a class at my home school until I was an upperclass student. Here at Westminster, I’ve been able to take the class much sooner. It has given me an entirely new way of looking at things. My understanding is 100 percent better than before.” And another indicated that, “My favorite class has been

environmental biology. I probably know more about Utah than most people who live here… from a biological stance because…well, because the teacher is so good.” The program has also brought national attention to the college. In addition to being featured in ski and snowboard magazines, it has been the subject of stories in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and other national and regional media outlets.

All those benefits—and others—would not have been realized if President Bassis had not demonstrated the stubborn courage to pursue his vision and build a program that took advantage of our location in the face of the doubts of some and the objections of others. President Bassis knew that Winter at Westminster could attract new students, generate additional revenues, provide a valid educational experience to participants, and bring attention to the college. It has done all of that. We have all benefited from President Bassis’ vision and his continued support.


If I had not participated in Winter at Westminster, I never would have had the opportunities I did working at The Canyons. My experience there was nothing short of amazing. Growing up, I always dreamed of working in the ski industry, and without Winter at Westminster, I’m not sure if I would have had that opportunity. —Hannah (Bowling) Hanley (’09) BS in business management

If not for the Winter at Westminster program, I would probably be on the East Coast doing a standard, hohum job. The program was life changing. I spend my winters working ski patrol at Snowbird Ski Resort and my summers working for Alaska Mountain Guides and the International Wilderness Leadership School. —Brian Muller (’10) BS in marketing

I just really wanted to see what is was like to live out west, be outdoors a lot, especially on the mountain. It’s really great to connect with people from all areas. I’ve really engaged with the Westminster community as a whole, not just the program. I never want to leave! —Nicole Alix Junior, State University of New York-Geneseo

If you would like more information about the Winter at Westminster program, visit snow or call 801.832.2200. 27

Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012

by Lisa Actor Associate Vice President of Institutional Advancement

“Family,” says Linda Frankenberg. “I’m always struck by the sense of family I feel at the college.”

invested those dollars to encourage faculty and staff innovation.”

Bob and Linda recently reflected on their nearly two decades of association with the college. “Innovative higher education is usually an oxymoron,” says Bob. “But not at Westminster.”

At the end of June, under the board’s bylaws limiting a chair to two terms, Bob will surrender his gavel but, fortunately, remain on the board. “Ginger Giovale was a tough act to follow,” he says, reflecting on the many years Giovale served as board chair. But Bob takes pride in the accomplishments during his tenure: new buildings on campus, including the Platinum LEED-certified Meldrum Science Center that he both contributed to and persuaded others to support; the purchase of the Garfield School and plans for its transformation; development of an innovative agreement for Westminster on the Draw; the new master plan which will bring the college and the community closer together; and other developments too numerous to mention. He also is pleased that the board tackled some tough issues during his tenure, including assessment of trustee performance and increased trustee engagement, including 100 percent participation in the annual fund. “We’re still wrestling with board diversity,” he says. “The college has made enormous strides in that area. The board needs to make more progress.”

In 1994, as CEO of Orem-based software company Novell, Bob experienced how quickly the college can tackle an idea. “We had brilliant engineers who were not acquainted with business finances,” he says. “I inquired at two local universities about creating a business course for software engineers.” When neither of the region’s big universities accepted the challenge, Bob approached Westminster. Two weeks later his engineers were learning principles of business finance. “This first exposure to Westminster was impressive. I’ve never stopped being amazed,” he says. Bob ticks off examples of Westminster’s ability to innovate. The list is long: the first and second revamps of the MBA program; the project-based bachelor’s degree; centers for civic engagement, new enterprise, and the environment; e-portfolios; the expansion into Sugar House. “I could go on,” says Bob. “These major innovations began with Michael’s strategic planning process. And that process led to both the creation of college-wide learning goals and the transition from teaching to learning.”

While Bob takes pride in helping to catalyze innovation, Linda has enjoyed caring about the college and its people. “I can see the difference our support has made,” she says. “That is very satisfying.”

Bob believes the college is on an upward trajectory that will continue long after Michael retires and he leaves his position as chair of the board. “I can imagine Bob accepted an invitation to join Westminster’s a time when private college tuitions will be reduced board in 1996. He saw incredible progress in the dramatically, thanks to the innovative programs created structure of the campus under Peggy Stock. With at Westminster,” he says. “Innovation is a part of this new facilities in place, Michael Bassis was able to culture, and faculty and staff are encouraged to take take academics to the next level. “He created the risks to advance student President’s Innovation learning. You won’t find “Innovation is a part of this culture, and Network to provide those qualities at schools faculty and staff are encouraged to take risks to extra dollars for new devoted to research.” advance student learning. You won’t find those ideas,” says Bob. “He

qualities at schools devoted to research.” 29

by Annalisa Holcombe (’92) Director of Alumni, Community, and Board Relations

When Mary Wilson was growing up, women who married important men were identified as “the wife of... .” Mary is one of the reasons that very few people use that term or think that way now. Mary had an exciting life before she met Michael,

her parents. Although Mary’s parents grew up at

and she continued to pursue her interests

a time when not many women attended college,

and her career after she married him. People

both her mother and father were clear that all of

who know her only as a gracious hostess, a

their girls were expected to earn a college degree.

brilliant conversationalist, and the person who accompanies Michael to a variety of college events may fail to understand what an accomplished and talented individual she is.

Mary did just that. She graduated from DePauw University and then, armed with a degree but no idea what she wanted to do with it, she accepted a cousin’s offer to spend the summer in Boston.

She holds bachelor’s degrees from Columbia and

While working as a secretary to pay the bills,

DePauw, as well as a master’s degree from Yale.

Mary began volunteering with a friend at a local

She took classes at Harvard and Northeastern. By

mental health facility. She was fascinated by the

her mid-twenties she had lived in Los Angeles,

work. After deciding that mental health nurses

Connecticut, Indiana, Boston, and New York City.

developed the strongest relationship with patients

She is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse,

and did the most to help them, she decided that

specializing in mental

was what she would be.

health. She owns her

So, after taking a few

own clinical practice.

“bridge” classes at

She raised four children.

Harvard and Northeastern,

She has served on

she enrolled in the

numerous professional

nursing program at

and charitable boards. She

Columbia University in

is a grandmother. “Wife

New York City.

of” doesn’t even begin to describe her.

Her first professional work was in the psychiatric unit

An accurate description

at New York University

would have to start with

Hospital, which allowed


her to experience clinical practice, individual

“commuted” to Rhode Island where he taught

therapy, and group therapy. She got to know

three days a week. The following fall they were in

patients and saw that she could make a difference

New Haven where Mary was in graduate school

in their lives. She was doing the work she loved

and Michael was still commuting, though a

and had a life that was filled with friends and

shorter distance.

adventures. But as her friends married and had children, Mary felt the need to embrace the possibility of a happy life as a single, independent woman. As a way to test her strength and give her time to think about the future, she enrolled in an adult Outward Bound trip.

After Mary’s graduation, Michael became more involved in administration. His career took them from Rhode Island to Wisconsin, Connecticut, Ohio, Michigan, Florida, and finally, Utah. In each state, Mary carved out her own niche. As a clinical therapist, she was able to continue to work

And it was on that trip that she met Michael Bassis.

in the field she loved. No matter where Michael

The Outward Bound trip was on a sailing vessel

worked, Mary’s credentials and her skill allowed

in Penobscot Bay, Maine. One night, Michael and

her to build a thriving practice and maintain her

Mary sat on deck, talked at length, and watched

own identity.

the stars. They have been together ever since.

Mary has loved her professional time in Utah. She

At the start of their relationship, Michael was

explained that the psychotherapy community in

teaching at the University of Rhode Island and

Utah is welcoming, strong, deep, and quite diverse.

Mary was working in New York City and applying

In her Utah practice, she found a remarkable

to graduate schools. Three months later, Michael

home full of rich learning opportunities and a

had moved to New York to be with her and

collegial atmosphere. Moreover, her colleagues in 32

the field have come to know her as Mary Bassis,

guests that she and Michael have entertained at

clinical nurse therapist. She has established her

countless dinners, lunches, seminars, and retreats;

own credentials, reputation, and professional

and she thoroughly enjoyed organizing welcome

community, apart from her role as president’s wife.

back parties and commencement dinners every year.

She admits that while excited for retirement, she will miss her colleagues and patients in her clinical

Mary may miss all that…but not as much as those of us who have come to know and appreciate her

practice dearly.

will miss her. Fortunately, she and Michael have

At the same time, she raised a family. Daughter,

promised to stay involved with the college and

Jessica, was born in Rhode Island and son, Nick,

with us. And the distance between St. George and

was born in Wisconsin. As a stepmom, she also helped raise Michael’s two daughters, Betsy and

Salt Lake isn’t much farther than the distance between Rhode Island and New York City.

Christina, from his first marriage. Mary relished her role as mother. She served on the PTA, attended all of the kids’ sporting events and recitals, chaperoned dances and overnight trips, and arranged play dates. She now has added “grandma” to her list of titles. Betsy has two girls, and Jessica’s first child was born on February 20, 2012. Of course, Mary will miss her role as presidential spouse after Michael’s retirement. After all, she has been an active participant in campus events; she has shared her knowledge with nursing students each year; she has made friends with many of the

What’s it like to work for Mary Bassis? I should start by saying I don’t think Mary wants people to work for her; she wants people to work with her. That is what I have done, and it has been a pleasure. My working relationship with Mary deals primarily with her role as a presidential spouse. Together, we have planned parties, dinners, and events for faculty and staff, members of the board, and friends of the college. And I know that Mary cares about those events. She wants them to reflect the character of the college, she wants her guests to feel comfortable, she wants them to know that she and Michael and the college as a whole value them and want them to have an enjoyable experience. The details she attends to make that happen. And she makes it happen with her own charm, graciousness, and obvious concern about everyone she meets. I know that concern is genuine. In the five years we have worked together, we have developed a friendship as well. I know she cares about me personally; I know she cares about my husband and my children. And when she learned that I would leave my job at the college to move to Pennsylvania, she continued to care—she gave me advice on handling the move, how to make sure my kids made friends, and what I should do to make my own friends and find a job. She didn’t have to do any of those things. But she did because she is that kind of person. Thank you, Mary, for your wisdom, support, and friendship. Cristy Coffey Assistant to the President



n addition to his bold thinking about curriculum, Michael made the Utah outdoors an integral part of the Westminster experience via Winter at Westminster, the relationship with the US Ski and Snowboard Association, and the college’s outdoor recreation program. In addition, his vision for Westminster in Sugar House has created bridges that benefit everyone, from students to merchants, in a truly meaningful way. He masterfully implemented his Sugar House vision through the purchase of the Garfield School and placement of new student housing two blocks from campus. But more important, Westminster faculty and students are becoming an integral part of the Sugar House community. These two components of Michael’s strategic vision have made Westminster College more visible within Utah and beyond. —Zeke Dumke   Board of Trustees, 1999–2011


Under Michael’s leadership, the college has deployed technology in order to provide students with new and creative learning opportunities. Faculty can now bring computer simulations into any classroom. Michael supported the use of rich learning environments with video clips and audio samples, interactive exercises, and simulations.

The faculty’s willingness to make materials available to students online and encourage discussions beyond the physical limitations of the classroom has helped free learning from the constraints of time and space. Michael also supports the use of technology to improve administrative functions. He has asked key departments to generate reports and collect and analyze data, which enhances how we operate, reveals ways to reduce costs, and explores new ways to assess student learning. He has prioritized technology as an integral part of the college’s learning environment. This focus and attention has allowed the college to find new technological solutions to old problems. —Robert Allred   Chief Information Officer


hen we hired Michael, we knew he was going to focus on student learning. And he has. What we did not know—but certainly

appreciate—is how much more he would do: helping us shift from a teaching paradigm to a learning paradigm, exploring how technology can reduce costs, and creating centers and institutes that allow students to explore their passions. He has preserved our culture, has 34

reinforced our values, and leaves the college stronger and better than the institution he inherited ten years ago. It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve with him. —Ginger Gore Giovale (’65)   Board of Trustees, 1977–2006   Chair, Board of Trustees 1988–2006


oing to the principal’s office was rarely an occasion any schoolchild sought. And although Michael has been our college’s principal for a decade, we adored his leadership at Westminster. The times I spent in his office discussing ways we could continue to enhance the thriving community of learners on campus are some of my fondest Westminster memories. On any given day, he could be found in the cafeteria line in the Shaw Center or mingling with students on campus. Upon returning to his office two years after my graduation, I was welcomed into his busy day with open arms. Students’ lives will forever be impacted by his role not only as a leader, but as a role model and friend, helping students to lead and to learn, to listen and to participate, to seek improvement where others see no room for it, and to second guess the ebbs on which a culture’s flow is based. — Brody Leven (’10)   Economics major



arrived at Westminster a year before Michael Bassis was hired. During his tenure, we have evolved from a sleepy little college to a nationally recognized

institution. Indeed, it’s fair to say that the college as a whole has been transformed under Michael’s leadership. His focus on student learning was critical to our growth. Many of us had been experimenting with that approach, but to have a president encourage, support, and celebrate faculty who embraced the learning paradigm was extremely important. I’ve also witnessed the improvement of the college’s academic profile. For example, 10 students in this year’s entering Honors class are National Merit Finalists, individuals who scored in the top 1 percent on college entrance exams nationally. Through Michael’s support of the Honors program and other unique learning initiatives, we are now able to enroll remarkable students who know they will be challenged here and who, in turn, challenge us to provide the “unique environment for learning” which we promise. —Richard Badenhausen, PhD   Professor & Director Honors Program   Kim T. Adamson Chair

Groundbreaking Changes 2002–2012

An Institution Transformed 2002–2011 Finances


We’ve strengthened our financial position over the last nine years:

We’ve made a commitment to remain affordable:

Our annual operating budget has increased from $32.9 million to $62.7 million. The college’s net assets have grown from $89 million to $134.5 million.

For 2011–2012, our tuition and fees totaled $27,182, which is about $1,500 less than the average of all like colleges and universities. More than 95% of our undergraduates receive

The percentage of our budget spent on administration has decreased from 23% to 14%, while the percentage spent on instruction has remained level at 34%. Each year, we have generated an operating budget surplus and have received unqualified audit opinions.

some form of financial aid. Last year, we awarded more than $23 million in scholarships and grants. The average financial aid award for incoming freshmen totaled $21,967. The average indebtedness of our students at graduation is $22,557, more than 18% lower

We have maintained a Standard & Poors BBB credit rating despite the economic downturn.

than the average for all like colleges and universities.

In 2002–2003, more than 200 members of the Westminster community—faculty, staff, and students—engaged in a strategic planning process that set the college’s agenda for the next 10 years.


Community Service

Total enrollment is up 44% since 2002.

We have a dual impact on our community:


Fall 2002 Fall 2011 Change

Undergraduates 1,915


+  29%

Graduate Students 438




+  44%



Freshman applications have increased Fall 2002 Fall 2011 Change




Our total annual economic impact to Salt Lake County exceeds $182 million.


fourfold since 2002. Applications

Our students performed nearly 67,000 hours of community service last year.


We have added eight new athletic teams for men and women (lacrosse, skiing, snowboarding, track) and now field a total of

Freshman class diversity has dramatically increased. In 2011, out-of-state and international students constituted 60% of the freshman class. Freshman

Fall 2002 Fall 2011

Students of Color

17 intercollegiate teams. Fourteen Westminster students participated in the Vancouver Olympics, the fourth-highest number of





Intn’l Students




Outside Utah




participants of any university in the world. Since 2002, 131 players have been recognized by the NAIA as scholar athletes, and 12 teams have been recognized as scholar teams. At the same time, we have won 19 Frontier Conference Championships, four National

Freshman-to-sophomore retention rate has increased. Freshman 2001–2002 2010–2011

Affiliated Regional Championships, and

National Championships in men’s lacrosse and



women’s skiing.

Students from outside Utah have increased by 463%.


Facilities We’ve added seven new facilities, including the Meldrum Science Center, the Eccles Health, Wellness, and Athletic Center; the newly acquired Garfield School, which will be home to the Westminster Center for the Arts that we envision; and Westminster on the Draw, a six-story combination of student housing, classrooms, and retail space located in Sugar House.

Programs We’ve added 19 new undergraduate programs, including environmental studies, fine arts, neuroscience, and public health. We’ve established many new and highly distinctive learning opportunities, including a problem-based liberal education program called Westminster Scholars, multi-disciplinary Learning Communities for all first-year students, a multi-year career development certificate program we call Career Passages, and a highly popular Alumni Mentoring program.

The Meldrum Science Center reflects Westminster’s commitment to the environment. Its design, construction, and operation were evaluated by the US Green Building Council and awarded the highest LEED rating possible for being designed, built, and operated in ways that achieve high performance in key areas of human and environmental health.

We’ve built nine new graduate programs including the Global MBA, Master of Accountancy, Master of Arts in Teaching, Master of Science in Professional Counseling, and Master of Arts in Community Leadership. We’ve created seven new centers and institutes including the Center for Civic Engagement, the Environmental Center, the Diversity and International Center, the Great Salt Lake Institute, and the Institute for New Enterprise.

The Honors program has been recognized as one of the very best in the country.

Westminster’s Educational Signature A program that will likely become our educational signature has been launched. All undergraduates are now required to build an ePortfolio to track their progress in achieving these college-wide learning goals set by the faculty: Critical, analytical, and integrative thinking Creative and reflective capacities Leadership, collaboration, and teamwork Writing and other communication skills Global consciousness, social responsibility, and ethical awareness 38

Internationalization We’ve established a multi-year service-learning project in Wai, India. We’ve established the Westminster English as a Second Language Institute. We’ve significantly increased the number of international students enrolled. We’ve significantly increased the number and depth of international experiences for students.

We’ve established partnerships with universities in China (2), Peru, Argentina, Germany, and the Netherlands, with additional ones under development in the Czech Republic and India.

We’ve gained national recognition for our work: The Princeton Review

Top 15% of colleges and universities in the US #13 for “Quality of Life” (2011 edition) #15 for “Town-Gown Relations” (2011 edition) Westminster is the first institution in Utah to have achieved a STARS “Silver” rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), which recognizes our sustainability achievements. Westminster has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for five consecutive years (2006–2010). The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching recently


Westminster was featured in The Innovative University: Changing the DNA of Higher Education from the Inside Out, authored by Clayton Christensen and Henry Eyring, for its innovative adaptations to the changing educational landscape. For the last three years, Westminster has been selected by the Chronicle of Higher Education as one of the “Great Colleges to Work For.” We were named to their Honor Roll in 2011, one of only 40 schools across the country that were singled out because faculty and staff rated their institution highly across a number of dimensions. Westminster employees gave the college high marks in eight different categories: job satisfaction, opportunities for career advancement, commitment to innovative teaching, compensation and benefits, the campus

selected Westminster College for the 2010

environment, work/life balance, supervisor

Community Engagement Classification,

relationships, and respect and appreciation

among only 311 institutions.

for all employees.

Alumni News

Letter from Corbin Archer, Alumni Board Chair As Westminster looks back at the

exciting period of growth. Each

past decade under the leadership

month, more and more alumni

of Dr. Michael Bassis, I, too, reflect

reconnect with the college and

on my 10 years as an alumnus of

engage in meaningful ways.

Westminster College.

Between July 1, 2010, and June

After graduating from the Bill and Vieve Gore School of Business in 2002, I quickly became involved in the alumni program by joining the MBA Alumni Committee, then the Alumni Board, then the Alumni Mentoring Program; and now I am honored and humbled to serve as your Alumni Board Chair. During the past decade, I’ve

30, 2011, more than 1,300 alumni participated in an alumni event. At least one event is scheduled every month, including guest lectures, networking opportunities, social events, and family activities. Alumni interaction with current students has also increased dramatically. In a period of just two months last fall, more than 200 alumni met with current students

been very impressed by the

as part of programs that partner

college’s commitment to both

alumni and students for career

current students and alumni and

information and mentoring.

particularly by the leadership of Michael Bassis.

During the past decade, the value of our Westminster degree has

When I first became involved

increased. Enrollment increased.

with the alumni program, the

New academic programs were

alumni office was located in the

added. The college received

basement of a residence hall. Not

national recognition from the

only could our alumni not find the

Chronicle of Higher Education.

office, most faculty and staff who

the Princeton Review, USNews &

worked on campus didn’t even

World Report, and the Wall Street

know where it was. Today alumni

Journal. The college has become

have a proper home on campus.

more prestigious, something

The Kim T. Adamson Alumni House

alumni should be very proud

is a spacious, welcoming place for

of. We already knew that we

alumni to gather. Nearly everyone

had an exceptional educational

on campus knows where the

experience, but now we can

Adamson Alumni House is, thanks

boast that we also have a degree

to programing like Snack of the

from one of the top colleges in

Week, where current students are

the country—and that gives us

welcomed into the house to learn

a competitive advantage in the

about the alumni program, meet


an alumnus or two, and have an

As an alumnus, what’s amazing

afternoon snack. Alumni can also rent the space for personal use. The alumni program is in an

the same. The core values of Westminster are alive and well. The faculty and staff continue to keep students and their learning the number-one focus. Classes are still small, professors still make time to meet with students individually, and no one is just a student ID number. The alumni program is making great strides to bring that same level of individuality, personal attention, and commitment to Westminster graduates. While Michael Bassis has done tremendous work providing direction and support to both students and alumni, I must thank the alumni who spend countless hours volunteering in the alumni program. None of our alumni efforts would be possible without the time and commitment of our Alumni Board and alumni committee members. I ask you to get involved, too. Email the alumni office at alumnirelations@ to find out more about attending an event, meeting with a current student, or just coming back to see the campus. Corbin Archer (MBA ’02) Westminster College Alumni Board Chair

to me is that throughout this metamorphosis, the heart of Westminster has remained 40

Alumni News

Tapping into the Network The Westminster experience goes beyond the classroom and lasts long after graduation. Your Westminster education makes you part of an exclusive network of well over 18,000 alumni who can offer advice, information, and insight from everything to moving overseas to entering into a new career.


apping into your Westminster network requires a little bit of work, but it can be very rewarding. Here are some ways you can start connecting to maximize the strength of being a graduate of Westminster College:

Get involved with the alumni community Attending alumni events and participating in alumni programs are great ways to meet new people and give back to the college. Alumni events are fun and educational, and there’s at least one every month. Engaging with your fellow alumni in a social setting can open doors you never knew existed. Participating in alumni programs like Take a Griffin to Lunch can also lead to new contacts. You never know when you’ll need someone else’s resources. For example, Emily Lewis (’02) volunteered to take Kali Mower (’09), a student at the time, to lunch to talk about her experience as a leadership consultant. The two hit it off and started meeting regularly. Emily even invited Kali to be a fill-in on a Westminster alumni softball team. A year later, Kali graduated and began working in development at Odyssey House of Utah. “I was meeting with my boss at a coffee shop, talking about a project we were working on and how we needed additional help, and Emily walked in. After we all chatted for a while, I told my boss what an amazing resource Emily is, and we ended up hiring her.” 41

Be proactive Don’t wait until you need a job to start working the Westminster alumni network. Networking is about making friends and connections. People are more likely to help you when they know you, not when you’re making a cold call to ask for a favor. Kali says it was really intimidating making the first call to Emily. “I didn’t know if she wanted to talk to me, or if she would make time for me. Later I realized that she (and lots of people in the Westminster alumni community) wanted to help me.” Emily says her Westminster connections have always served her well. “I’m always connecting with people affiliated with Westminster—faculty, staff, alumni, current students—and it’s opened a lot of doors for me and provided me with many learning experiences.”

Use technology Westminster is making it easier than ever for alumni to connect to each other. InCircle is an online network, similar to Facebook and LinkedIn, but exclusive to the Westminster community. “InCircle is a very smart tool; you can target alumni by class year, degree, city, or industry. You can also search posted positions and see alumni who’ve worked for those companies,” explains Annalisa Holcombe, alumni director at Westminster. “People with the best networks reach out to others early on, start making connections based on commonalities, and

remember to keep in touch with their connections.” Log onto inCircle at alumni to start searching and connecting with alumni.

Sign up for the eNewsletter and read the Westminster Review Know what’s happening on campus. The monthly alumni eNewsletter and the Westminster Review magazine are great ways to get a quick update on the life of the campus. Learn what’s happening on campus, with other alumni from your era, and with faculty. This information makes starting conversations with other alumni easy. “Being a graduate of Westminster makes you part of this amazing private club,” says Holcombe. “Our connected alumni know that Dr. Popich hosted a conversation about vampires or that John Watkins hosted a discussion about the Occupy Wall Street Movement. But if alumni don’t know, you have a great opportunity to start a conversation about it, which can lead you in many directions.” You can sign up for the alumni eNewsletter at www. If you’re not taking advantage of the Westminster alumni network, you’re likely missing out on opportunities and insight. Alumni are usually willing to help each other, but it will take a bit of effort on your part to make the most of your connections.

Help Save the Plate Westminster College is among several organizations that stand to lose their Utah DMV group license plate because fewer than 500 drivers have one. In order for the DMV to continue offering the Westminster plate, 300 drivers must register a Westminster plate by January 2013. Not only does a Westminster license plate show your school spirit, but it also supports student scholarships and boosts our alumni participation rate because your donation goes directly to the Westminster Scholarship Fund.

Why get a Westminster plate? More than 90 percent of Westminster students receive scholarship money. A Westminster plate is a fun, easy way to support Westminster student scholarships every year.

How much does a plate Cost? $58 for the first year*: —$40 donation to the scholarship fund —$10 one-time license plate fee —$5 new registration fee —$3 shipping fee Your $40 donation may be tax-deductible. Please check with your tax advisor.

How do I get a Westminster plate? By direct mail (Requires payment by check) Make your donation and purchase your plates with one check, payable to the Utah State Tax Commission. The state will forward your donation to Westminster and mail your plates and state tags to your home. At the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Complete the required forms, make your donation, and get your Westminster plates.

How do I renew my Westminster plate? Your annual donation is added into the total amount shown on your state-vehicle-registration materials. Note: Be sure to review your registration form carefully. A line item specifically showing Westminster College Plates must appear on your form. Westminster will not receive your donation if “collegiate plates” or any other listing appears. Visit to access the Utah DMV Forms. *You can get a Westminster plate anytime; you don’t have to wait until it is time to renew your registration. Your Westminster plate will come with registration decals that match your current vehicle registration. 42

Alumni News

Two Alumni Named to 2012 Athletic Hall of Fame Rex Macey (’74) and John T. Prokopis (’55) were inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at the annual banquet held in early February. These two Parsons join the inaugural inductee, Coach Tom Steinke, as Westminster athletic greats. Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) All-American and was the NAIA All-Time Leader in receiving yards (1977). Westminster was a member of the RMAC (Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) from 1967 to 1979.

four years in a row and was a top scorer as a Westminster Parson. During this period, Westminster was a member of the National Junior College Athletic Conference, competing against institutions such as Boise Junior College, Ricks College, Weber College, Snow College, Carbon College, Dixie Rex Macey, who played football at

Basketball’s John Prokopis (1951–1955)

College, and Brand Agricultural

Westminster from 1973 to 1977,

was named to the Intercollegiate

College, now referred to as

earned First Team NAIA (National

Athletic Conference All-Conference

Southern Utah University.

Fifty graduating seniors from all sports were also honored during this very special weekend celebrating the past and future of athletics. Photos from the event can be found at Nominations for the 2013 Athletic Hall of Fame are being accepted from now until September 15, 2012, by the Review Committee:


Josh Fisher, Director of Sports Information

Dana Tumpowsky, Director of Parent and Campus Relations

Chris “Keeko” Georgelas (’80)

Shay Wyatt, Director of Athletics

Jack Gifford, retired Westminster professor and statistician

For Athletic Hall of Fame nomination criteria for former By Sims, retired sports information student-athletes, coaches, teams, director and professor emeritus of or special contributors, go to physical education Tom Steinke, Inaugural Hall of Famer halloffame. Dick Jutkins (’58)

Alumni News

by Kaye Stackpole Director of Planned Gifts

Westminster alumna, artist, and world traveler Ruth Schwager will celebrate her 100th birthday on April 27, 2012.


orn Ruth Teutsch in Augsburg, Bavaria, she displayed the same artistic skills as her mother and attended art school after completing high school. In 1934, she married Joe Schwager and sold beautiful batiks and designs while Joe operated his family’s leather business. In 1939, Ruth, her husband, and their young son, Pete, along with her two brothers, fled Nazi Germany. After living in England for eight months, the family moved to New York City, where Joe worked in several trades. Ruth did design work for the Dixie Cup Company and painted stylish handbags, which were labeled “hand painted by a European artist,” for some of New York City’s finest department stores. Their work ultimately brought them to Utah. They arrived in Salt Lake City in 1944, and by 1947, Joe had opened a clothing store and Ruth had begun teaching weaving at the Blind Center and the Pioneer Crafts House. The clothing business thrived, and soon they had several highly successful stores. When Joe passed away in 1964, Ruth was determined to complete something she had always wanted: a college degree. She chose Westminster and, although a bit older than most students, she made many friends and thoroughly loved her time at the college. Majoring in art and minoring in Spanish, Ruth graduated from Westminster in 1970 44

at age 58 with a bachelor of arts degree. Ruth is very proud that at an exhibit of graduating seniors’ artwork held at Westminster, the only painting that was stolen was hers. After graduation, she took a three-month trip to South America, where she immersed herself in the art of many countries. The adventure provided her with the inspiration to create many paintings and weavings that reflect the spectrum of colors and cultures of South America. Ruth also traveled back to her homeland and through most of Europe, as well as to Israel and Japan. While in her 80s, she followed the “Silk Road” across the entire width of China to Pakistan—a journey of more than 4,000 miles. Her trips continued to provide inspiration for paintings and weavings. The home she shares today with her son, Pete, is an exquisite art gallery—graced with beautiful artwork that is a tribute to Ruth’s independent, adventurous spirit and her superb artistic abilities. Ruth credits Westminster for helping keep her active with her art throughout her years. She remains a loyal supporter of Westminster and a member of Westminster’s Converse Society. Congratulations, Ruth, and our very best wishes to you on this very special occasion. 44

Alumni Remember president and was involved in the presidential search

Al u m n i Honor M ic ha el Ba s s is

that resulted in the hiring of Westminster president Michael Bassis. Then, as a staff member and alumni board chair, she witnessed Michael’s commitment to Westminster and the alumni program. While she’s sad to see Michael Bassis retire, she feels fortunate to have had the opportunity to learn from him and believes Westminster has benefited from his strategic and visionary leadership. The school’s academic curriculum has certainly been enhanced. The quality of Westminster students is stronger than ever. And, most importantly

Helen Langan (’98, MPC ’07) has a long history

to her, the alumni program has been rejuvenated and

in politics and communications, beginning her career

come to life under his leadership. As an alumna, Tofi is

after graduating from Westminster as an intern at the

grateful that Michael Bassis is leaving Westminster far

White House. After many years working for the Clinton

more advanced and well-positioned than he found it.

administration and while continuing to do advance work for Michelle Obama, Helen is now the senior advisor to the mayor for the Salt Lake City Mayor’s Office. Helen credits her success to the solid foundation and education she received at Westminster and appreciates Michael Bassis’ dedication to the college. Helen has had a long working relationship with Michael, as she helped plan his inauguration and worked with him in several capacities over the years. “The previous president had focused on the body of the college, and Michael was really hired to focus on its soul,” she said. Helen has appreciated his entrepreneurial thinking and openness to new, bold ideas. She said, “The college is on this huge upward trajectory, and he has been instrumental in that.”

Ray Bradford (’07) joined one of Silicon Valley’s most prominent venture capital firms, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, in November 2011. After graduating from Westminster, Ray earned an MBA from Stanford University. During that time, he interned at tech companies like Infopia, Second Life, and Twitter. After graduating, he took a position with Amazon. com in the company’s cloud computing division. Ray says the multidisciplinary educational experience he received at Westminster gave him a good foundation for both graduate school and his career. Ray credits Westminster President Michael Bassis for introducing his educational philosophy to Westminster. “Dr. Bassis has the right approach in learning how to learn. As a student, memorizing or cramming in information isn’t


Tofi Ta’afua (’01, MBA ’03) is a vice president of

very effective. From a content perspective you retain very

private wealth management at Goldman Sachs Bank.

little—you forget it, or it becomes outdated. Learning

Prior to joining the firm in 2005, Tofi was the assistant

how to learn, and practicing a process for finding new

director of alumni relations at Westminster College. She

information, is a much more repeatable process.” Last

says the experiences she had as a student at Westminster

summer Ray proposed to his longtime girlfriend. They

prepared her for success in the firm. Tofi served as ASWC

plan to marry this spring in Colombia.

Alumni News 1970s

1950s Gary Gebo (’59) is retired and living in Vaugh, Washington. He’s keeping busy by teaching GED math and loving it! He still sets his alarm clock five days a week.

Denise Love (’75, MBA ’94) spoke at the Fifth Health Insurance Summit in New Delhi, India, held by the Confederation of Indian Industry. Denise represented the National Association of Health Data Organizations and its national network of experts.

She has won numerous awards, been a featured artist, and been juried into multiple shows in Arizona, Utah, New York, Washington DC, and California. Trent Alvey (’87) received the Mayor’s Artist Award for Visual Arts at the 2011 Utah Arts Festival. Trent is a mixed-media artist who uses painting,

1960s Tom Metcalf (’65) spent three months in Ghana, Africa, teaching physician assistant students in Kintampo. Riley Grant (’66) indicates that this is his first class-note submission since graduation! He retired after serving 38 years as a minister in the United Methodist Church. After graduating from Westminster, Riley matriculated in the IIiff School of Theology in Denver and was ordained in 1970. During his career, he served churches in Salt Lake City; Bozeman, Montana; and Denver. Riley is the father of three sons. His oldest, Stewart, is an attorney practicing in Denver. His middle son, Eric, is head of the Creative Media Division of the Black Angus Association in St. Joseph, Missouri. His youngest son, Aaron, is an assistant professor of radiology at the Harvard University School of Medicine. At age 50, Riley earned his private pilot certificate; he loves flying in the mountains of Colorado. He also has a passion for horses, dancing, camping, skiing, and biking. James Craig Poulton (’66) is living in northern California, enjoying his recent retirement from Northwest Airlines. Eve Dorf (’68) welcomed the birth of her granddaughter, Anjolie, in France in March 2011. She and her husband have visited her twice and are thankful for technology allowing them to chat with her on webcam. Robert “Bob” Gilbert (’68) recently retired at the age of 65. He looks forward to spending time with his family: his grandson, Robert, and his daughter, Laurel, who is also a graduate of Westminster.

Denise Love at the Taj Mahal

1980s Brian Eastwood (’80) joined the Air Force after graduating from Westminster and has been using his education around the world ever since. After training at the Officer Training School in Texas, he was selected as an instructor at the missile schoolhouse at Vandenburg Air Force Base in California. He then moved to the Benelux area, spending time in Brussels and Bastogne, and in 1987, moved to Germany. He eventually returned to North Dakota and retired from the Air Force in 1993 as a Major. He currently lives in Cape Coral, Florida.

sculpture, light, and sound to create contemporary art work. Her work has been exhibited in the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington DC, the University of Utah’s Museum of Fine Arts permanent collection, the 337 Project, and the Salt Lake Art Center. Julie (Brown) Eaton (’84) is a commercial lobsterman and owner/operator of her own fishing vessel in Maine. Julie also started a small photography business with pictures of her boats. One of her pictures was recently entered in a contest at the Smithsonian Institution.

Julie (Brown) Eaton

1990s The artist, Joye DeGoede, with her subject, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer

Joye DeGoede (’82) was recently commissioned to create a portrait of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer. Joye is a juried member of the Arizona Art Alliance and Sonoran Artists League.

Bruce Hammond (’91) currently works for the Kansas City Missouri School District as an accountant. In 2005 he sold his stock in Hammond Toy Stores and semi-retired, spending his time with his three granddaughters. Later he accepted a job with a business analysis firm from Chicago and, after seven months of traveling, decided to take his current position. 46

Alumni News Kristi Knight (’91) was recently selected as a finalist for the 2011 Women Tech Awards. The award recognizes technology-focused women who are driving innovation, leading technology companies, and contributing in key ways to the community. Kristi is the VP of Communications for Vivint and formerly worked at Omniture, Inc. In 2001, she founded Envision Marketing Services. Beth Colosimo (’93) was recently hired as business development manager at the Economic Development Corporation of Utah. Through this job, she hopes to bring jobs and capital investment to Utah. Thom Canning-Skinner (’94) received his doctorate in Education in Executive Leadership last May as part of the inaugural doctoral class of Lincoln Memorial College in Harrogate, Tennessee. Thom’s dissertation was entitled The Lived Experiences of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Educational Leaders in Georgia and Surrounding States. Thom lives in Georgia with his partner of 21 years, Bart, and their two children, Andy (15) and Liza (17).

Angela Corbett with new PhD Ashley Argyle

Mary Lynn Wilson (’01) is living in Atlanta, Georgia. Her little boy is just over a year old.

Mary Lynn Wilson with her son

Chris Cook (MBA ’02) recently announced that her business, Capiche, LLC, earned accreditation by iOpener Institute for People and Performance. Capiche is a coaching/consulting firm based in Ashland, Oregon, and is the first iOpeneraccredited coaching company in the Pacific Northwest, giving Chris access to tools and solutions that no other coach in the region has.

through Pendrell Publishing. The book is a paranormal romance novel about soulmates. She held a release party in December at The King’s English Bookshop. During her time at Westminster, she was a double major in communications and sociology; in addition, she worked for a local newspaper where she won awards for her writing. She currently lives in Utah with her husband and her Pomeranian. Don Farmer (’02) has been a proud homeowner in Hawaii since 2009 and recently went on his first trip to Europe. He spent his entire birthday month backpacking through Barcelona, Paris, London, Amsterdam, and Rome. He turned 31 on 11/11/11 and has been dedicated to getting fit, marathoning, hiking the Hawaiian Islands, camping in and exploring Alaska, and training for his first triathlon, which he plans to complete by the end of 2012. Don works as a local artist in Oahu, Hawaii.

Don Farmer

Pam Denicke, (’95, MBA ’11) is the Founder/Executive Director of eSingleParent, a nonprofit organization committed to assisting single parents in Utah to achieve long-term self-reliance through networking, education, or training, as well as personal and career development. Learn more at www.

Chris Cook

Pam Denicke

2000s Ashley Argyle (’01) recently graduated from the University of Denver with her PhD in literature. She celebrated with her best friends, fellow Westminster alumni Dan Versoi (’02) and Angela Corbett (’02).


Angela Corbett (’02) recently published her first book, Eternal Starling,

Steve Johng (’03), Sarah Bebo Sherer (’03), and Chris Stromberg (’03, MBA ’05) started Project Delta, a faith-based soccer nonprofit organization that blends the game of soccer and the Christian faith with the intent of empowering players to make a positive impact in their communities. Steve is currently the head soccer coach at First Baptist Academy in Houston, Texas; Sarah Bebo Sherer is living is Salt Lake City, Utah, and is the organizational officer for Project Delta; and Chris Stromberg is living in Denver, Colorado, and acts as the finance officer for Project Delta.

Alumni News Miriam (Weinrich) Niemi (’04) and her husband, David, welcomed their second child on May 20, 2011. Miriam resigned her position with Parlant Technology to stay at home full-time with her children.

Jeff Nelson (MBA ’04) welcomed presidential candidate Jon Huntsman to his company, Nelson Laboratories. As CEO, Jeff said Nelson Laboratories had benefited from tax policies initiated by Huntsman during his time as governor of Utah.

her master’s degree in child advocacy from Montclair State University and is working for KUED’s Community Outreach department. James graduated from Seton Hall School of Law and has applied to sit for the Utah bar. Aleesa Kurtz Radoncic (’06, MBA ’08) was recently promoted to Manager of the Aircraft Operations and World Travel Services department at ORBIS International. ORBIS is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization that provides the tools, training, and technology necessary for local partners to develop their own capacity to prevent and treat blindness through quality eye care. Aleesa is based out of New York City. In September 2010, she married her husband, Emir. Hassan Hassan (’07) earned his master of public health from the University of Utah.

Sarah Pike (’10) is completing a master’s degree in rhetoric, composition, and professional communication from Iowa State University. She plans to graduate in May. While teaching in Egypt, Dallin VanLeuven (’10) witnessed the downfall of the Egyptian government and wrote a compelling article for the Westminster Forum newspaper: “The Beginning of the End.” Blake Bassett (’11) was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the US Army.

Michael Hafen (’11) was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the US Army. Cassidy Jones (’11) was awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship. She is teaching English for a year in Turkey, as well as continuing her research on oral traditions about environmental stewardship.

Lynnette Averill (’05) is a doctoral candidate in counseling psychology at the University of Utah. She was one of a very few students admitted to the program without a master’s degree because her undergraduate academic accomplishments at Westminster surpassed those of most of the master’s-level applicants. In 2008 Lynnette was awarded the University of Utah Founders Day Scholarship and completed post-traumatic stress disorder research in Australia as a Fulbright Scholar.

Seth Longhurst (’07) married his partner, Brandon Roman, in September 2010. The couple hosted their wedding celebration on July 24 at the Canyons in Park City. Seth and Brandon are living in Washington DC, where Seth is working as a marketing account manager for MarketSmart.

Sean R. Evans (’05) is living in Stratford, Prince Edward Island, Canada. He is working for Other Oceans Interactive as an associate producer.

Raquel Gabbitas (’08) earned a master of arts degree in child psychology and is continuing in the PhD program at the University of Minnesota.

Emily Thunberg (’05) is currently working towards obtaining her MBA at Westminster and was recently appointed President of the Board of Directors for the Mundi Project, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing arts education along the Wasatch Front. She has recently hosted events promoting the arts to both elementary-school-aged students and college students, and says Westminster’s Center for Civic Engagement has been extremely helpful and supportive in her service efforts.

Angela Andrade (’09) received a master’s degree in developmental psychology from Oklahoma State University and is continuing in the PhD program.

James (’06) and Elise (Hose) Peterson (’06, ’07) moved back to Salt Lake City after recently completing graduate school in New Jersey. Elise received

Lauren McCrady (’10) is attending the University of Nevada–Reno for a master’s degree in English, where she will pursue her interest in eco-criticism.

Demetri Coombs (’11) was accepted into a post-graduate summer study program at the University of Cambridge.

Christina Oliver (MBA ’04) was appointed Department Manager of Transit Oriented Development for the Utah Transit Authority. She formerly worked at the State of Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

Michelle Barber Lyhnakis (MPC ’06) and Vasili Lyhnakis (MBA ’10) welcomed their second child, Sofia Josephine Lyhnakis, on December 2, 2011. Their son, Gary, is two years old.

Development, where she works to promote Utah’s energy resources, technology, renewable energy, and energy efficiency throughout the state.

Navy Seaman Robert A. Bland (’09) completed US Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois. During the eight-week program, Bland completed a variety of training, which included classroom study and practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety. Samantha Julian (MBA ’10) is the director of the newly created Office of Energy Development housed in the Utah Department of Environmental Quality. Since 2009, Samantha has served as the Director of Energy and Natural Resources Cluster for the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic

Gus Paras (’11) is attending law school at the University of Southern California. Sarah Pettit (’11) is a political journalism fellow at the Georgetown Institute and is interning at the World Wildlife Fund. Jeremy Reynoso (’11) began doctoral studies in education at Washington State University. His specialization will be culture studies and social thought in education. Erika Rodriguez (’11) is attending the University of Oregon, working on a master’s degree in romance languages. Sean Rush (’11) was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the US Air Force. Kamille Sheikh (’11) is pursuing a master’s degree in human development and social policy at the University of Utah. David Sondrup (’11) was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the US Air Force. Benson Stevens (’11) is attending Georgetown University’s Interdisciplinary Program in neuroscience. After conducting a year of research in their labs, he will enter the PhD program this summer. Kim Tosti (’11) studied opera with La Musica Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy, last June and July, and she is singing with the Utah Opera Chorus for the 2011– 2012 season.


With Remembrance

Laura Ann Murphy M ay 4 , 1 9 5 9 – F e b r ua r y 2 0 , 2 0 1 2 Laura Murphy, Westminster’s Executive Director of Communication, passed away before this issue of the Review went to press. But her spirit is a part of every page.

William Campbell (’35) Died July 12, 2011.

For almost eight years, she ran the college’s communication efforts. Few understood just how much work that involved and how many areas that made her responsible for. At a minimum, it required her to work on, review, and improve every piece of printed material the college produced for both its internal and external audiences; every press release from the college and all contact with the media; the college’s marketing strategy and the consistency with which we presented our “brand;” the expanding use of social media; and the college’s website.

Robert Nickerson (’41) Died July 7, 2011. E. Brayford (’43) Died July 9, 2011. Alexandra Butler (’47) Died October 8, 2011. Charles Halstead (’51) Died September 12, 2011.

Obviously, not even Laura could do all that by herself. So she assembled a staff of talented individuals and did something amazing with them: she turned them into a team committed to her and eager to professionalize every element of the college’s communication operations. And as her office became more and more able to handle the demands of their day-today work, Laura spent more time working with President Bassis and other key players to think through how the college could best communicate its evolving educational mission and ensure that it received the national recognition that Westminster’s work merited. She took a complex educational philosophy, combined it with the access our location gives us to the mountains and the city, threw in our historic commitment to our students and came up with “A Unique Environment for Learning,”a phrase that captures both who we are and how we differ from other institutions. But a phrase in and of itself is not a communication strategy. As Westminster transformed itself into a learning-centered institution, she worked with faculty and staff, with the president and the Office of Admissions, to better understand what kind of students would appreciate a college that wanted them to assume more responsibility for their own learning. And once the characteristics of those students were defined, she developed specific strategies to make sure they knew about us, what we offered, and why they would find a real home at Westminster. As we succeeded in enrolling those students, Laura took responsibility for documenting their success, both as a way of proving that what we were doing worked and as a way to attract more students who would benefit from a Westminster education. The list of her accomplishments as our Executive Director of Communications is an impressive one. But even more impressive were Laura’s accomplishments as a person. She was a warm, loving, caring human being. She treated people with respect and dealt with everyone fairly. She knew who she was, she had a core, and she lived her life in a way that was consistent with her beliefs. Everyone on campus was in some way touched by her, and everyone would probably want to add something to this description. But this is her magazine. And we are her staff. So we are taking this opportunity to write about her and tell you—and her—that we learned from her, we are better people for having known her. And we love her.



Lois Jones (’55) Died September 23, 2011. Delma Potter (’57) Died September 6, 2011. Jon Linde (’62) Died August 5, 2011. Ruth Ross (’78) Died September 18, 2011. Janean Butterfield (’80) Died October 15, 2011. Jill Schroader (’80) Died October 3, 2011. Brenda Dais (’81) Died August 8, 2011. Debra Rae Duncan (’81) Died July 8, 2010. Dale Rogers (’82) Died August 21, 2011. Cindy Dee Lewis (’91) Died October 15, 2011. Jaret Peterson Died July 25, 2011 Claudio Shaw Died August 16, 2011.

Laura’s Staff:

Thomas Cronin

Sara McCaskey

Robert Seltzer

Danny Lessig (’12)

Robin Boon

Krista DeAngelis

Andrew McQuinn

Johanna Snow

Died November 19, 2011.

Laurie Brenchley

Matthew Ellis

Joanna Pham

Arikka Von

Faculty News work with biology and chemistry faculty members at Westminster on further research. Mary Jane Chase (history) presented her paper “The Meaning of Blasphemy: Evolution of a Concept in Practice in Sixteenth-Century Amiens” at the 2011 Rocky Mountain Scholars Consortium in Salt Lake City.

Richard Badenhausen (honors), director of Westminster’s Honors program, was one of seven faculty members from around the country to be named a 2011 National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) Fellow. Badenhausen was recognized during the NCHC national convention in Phoenix in October. According to NCHC past President John Zubizarreta, this “distinction celebrates [his] many contributions not only to our organization, but more widely to honors teaching, learning, scholarship, and leadership within the growing international influence of NCHC in higher education.” Badenhausen became involved in Honors education in 1994 and has since been active in NCHC in a variety of ways: helping plan the last seven national conventions, co-chairing the student research program at those meetings, and giving 16 different conference presentations on Honors pedagogy and administration during the past five years. He sits on the editorial board of HIP: Honors in Practice, is a former member of the NCHC Board of Directors, and is a Recommended NCHC Site Visitor. His most recent essays on Honors education in JNCHC: The Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council are “Immigrant Song: A Cautionary Note about Honors and Technology” (10.2), “‘Help, I Need Somebody’: Rethinking How We Conceptualize Honors” (11.2), and the forthcoming lead essay “Costs and Benefits in the Economy of Honors” (13.1). Badenhausen came to Westminster in 2001 to direct and teach in the college’s Honors program; he holds the Kim T. Adamson chair.

Bonnie Baxter (biology) attended the American Society for Microbiology Regional Meeting at USU in May. She was also an invited speaker at the Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement Conference (MESA) presenting “Life in Salt: From Earth to Mars.”

Seong-In Choi (psychology) completed the national license exam in psychology (EPPP: Exam for Professional Practice of Psychology) and the Utah Law and Regulation of Psychology exam this past spring, allowing her to now provide clinical supervision to graduate students in the Master of Science in Professional Counseling program. Daniel Shank Cruz (English) had his article “Desiring a Transformed Society: Subversive Notions of Rape in Margaret Atwood’s ‘Rape Fantasies’” accepted for publication by the journal Short Story. Sean Desilets’ (film) article “Cocteau’s Female Orpheus” is forthcoming in Literature/Film Quarterly. Will Deutschman (chemistry) coauthored an article “Brewing Beer in the Laboratory: Grain Amylases and Yeast’s Sweet Tooth” with B. Gillespie, which was published in The Journal of Chemical Education (2010) 87(11):1244–1247, last November.

Photo courtesy of

Jaimi Butler (GLSI) and the Great Salt Lake Institute crew are collecting orbweavers from the shores of the Great Salt Lake (GSL). Orbweavers, a type of very large (yet harmless) spider, become so numerous at the GSL during the waning days of summer that they actually make people run to their cars and hide in fright. During Jaimi’s 15-year career at the GSL, she has always wanted to put some energy into exploring orbweavers’ populations, ecology, and behavior. With the help of students, she will identify over 100 spiders already collected and will

In July, Georgiana Donavin (English) presented a paper entitled “Rhetorical Distinctions: Classifying Gendered Discourses in John Gower’s Confessio Amantis” at the meeting of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric in Bologna, Italy. Recently, her essay “Hearing Gower’s Rhetoric” appeared in a Modern Language Association fall volume entitled Approaches to Teaching the Poetry of John Gower. She recently completed a merit leave during which she laid the groundwork for her next book, which will also be about John Gower’s rhetoric. In Gower studies, she continues as director of the Gower Project, an international consortium of scholars collaborating


Faculty News on hypertextuality and new theoretical approaches to the author’s fourteenth-century poems. Outside of Gower studies, she is working on several administrative and scholarly efforts. In her last year as president of the Medieval Association of the Pacific, she is collaborating with the other officers to improve governance and give their yearly publication a higher profile. Always desiring to be part of the conversation with other medievalists around the world, she has just completed two book reviews in the field. Finally, and most importantly, Georgiana’s book Scribit Mater: Mary and the Language Arts in the Literature of Medieval England was published by The Catholic University of America Press in December. In May, Katy Evans (English) presented on a panel about Native American performance at the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) conference in Sacramento. Her paper, “‘For Advantage of the Nations’: Early Twentieth-Century Anishinaabe Hiawatha Pageants,” analyzed how the specific creative choices made by the Native actors and the specific cultural, economic, and political contexts that surrounded Native-produced pageants of Longfellow’s poem at the turn of the century complicate earlier views of these performances as vehicles of Euro-western assimilation. Katy is developing this research into a longer essay for an edited collection on indigenous performances of Hiawatha forthcoming in 2013. In October, David Goldsmith (paleontology) presented his paper “Subfossil Mollusks of the Bear Lake Basin, Utah–Idaho Border” at the Geological Society of America’s 2011 Annual Meeting and Exposition in Minneapolis. Angie Hicks (psychology) has a new paper in press, “It’s the Economy, Honey! Couples’ Blame Attributions Moderate Associations between Financial Distress and Relationship Satisfaction During the 2007–2009 Economic Crisis,” in the journal Personal Relationships. Recently, Angie published an invited entry on attachment in the Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine. 51

Sabrina Hom’s (philosophy) article on the psychoanalysis of race has been accepted by Hypatia and will be available soon. After an exceptionally long gestation, the Thinking with Irigaray edited collection was published last December.

October 3 through October 14. His work was also displayed at the Williams Fine Art Gallery from October 20 to November 11. Laura Bennett-Murphy (psychology) published an article, “Therapy with a Child Refugee with Disorganized Attachment,” in the July 2011 edition of Attachment: New Directions in Psychotherapy and Relational Psychoanalysis. On August 25, Laura presented an invited talk called “Women of War” as part of the US Department of State’s Visiting Leadership program. Twenty-one international delegates participated in the three-week program on “The Role of NGO’s in Promoting Global Women’s Issues.” In September, Laura gave an invited paper, “Attachment,

Christopher LeCluyse (English) sang with Istanpitta in its performance of Marie de France’s “Chevrefoil” in the Westminster Concert Series last September. His ensemble Utopia Early Music received a Salt Lake City Weekly Arty Reader’s Choice Award for Best Classical/Opera Performance.

Culture, and Trauma” for the Infant and Toddler Mental Health Coalition in Phoenix. In October, she delivered the keynote address “Working Effectively in our Kinetic Ethnic and Cultural Landscape” for the 15th Annual Critical Issues Facing Children and Adolescents Conference. She also led

Hikmet Sidney Loe (art) presented the keynote lecture during the Salt Lake Art Center’s “Evening for Educators” on September 8. “Planting the Seed: Gardens, Growing, and Agriculture in Art” presented examples of historic and contemporary artists whose works overlap with many core-curriculum subjects such as social studies, science, geography, economics, and health. Examples included contemporary projects where schools and institutions have engaged in planting, gardening, and growing as a form of art. Hikmet’s article “Now You See It: Edward Burtynsky’s Industrial Sublime at Weber’s Shaw Gallery” was published in the September edition of 15 Bytes, Utah’s Art Magazine. An interview Loe conducted with the artist is forthcoming in the magazine’s “Daily Bytes” section.

an invited breakout session entitled

In August-September, Nick Mendoza (art) had two relief prints at the Woodbury Art Museum in Orem. Nick also had a solo show, “The Line Between US,” at the Alvin Gittins Gallery (University of Utah) from

Annual Meeting in Las Vegas,

“Creating Family: Helping Refugees and Other International Adoptees Touched by Trauma and Anxiety” at this conference. Finally, Laura delivered an invited colloquium for BYU’s MPH program on “Refugee Health and Mental Health: Working with Children and Families.” Lance Newman’s (English) new book, The Grand Canyon Reader, was published in August by the University of California Press. Kristjane Nordmeyer (sociology) and Mark Rubinfeld (sociology) co-presented a paper “Developing the Ideal Sociology Program and Senior Capstone Experience” at the American Sociological Association in August. Mark Rubinfeld also presented another paper, “Beyond Pop: Exploring the Functional Applications and Symbolic Meanings of Popular Culture,” at the meeting.

Faculty News Giancarlo Panagia (justice studies) was a discussant at the Public Interest Environmental Conference meeting last March held in Eugene, Oregon. He also gave a paper “Practices of Inverting the Law: Internal Colonialism on Fort Belknap” for the panel “Environmental Theory” at the Western Social Sciences Association meeting in April. Then in June, Giancarlo gave his paper “PublicPrivate Land Swaps and Public Choice” at the Law and Society Association meeting in San Francisco.

State Department employees who are promoting American education to international students. Jennifer has now started to participate in EducationUSA virtual sessions. In October, she provided a virtual presentation with Kazakh students and counselors who participated at Bilim Almaty, Kazakhstan. Later that month, she led an EducationUSA Connects Virtual Seminar on the topic of Academic English Programs. Participants came from countries like Thailand and Turkey.

Cassie Power (psychology) was the recipient of the Mary Roth Walsh Teaching of Psychology of Women award. This is a national award given each year at the American Psychological Association’s annual convention. APA is the largest organization of psychologists worldwide, with over 154,000 members. The above award is sponsored by Division 35 of the Society for the Psychology of Women, and it honors distinguished professors and teachers who demonstrate innovation in teaching.

Judy Rogers (biology) attended the conference on Conflict Resolution in Northern Ireland at Queen’s University in Belfast.

Luis I Prádanos (Iñaki) (Spanish) presented three conference papers: “Global Discourses and Digital Media in Recent Spanish Novels” at the 9th International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities, University of Granada, Spain, in June 2011; “Current Theoretical Articulation of Critiques and Alternatives to the Unsustainable Global Capitalism in Mediterranean Europe” at the Rocky Mountain European Scholars Consortium at the University of Utah (October 2011); and “Ecological Justice and Border Thinking in Eduardo Galeano,” at the Where Have All the Wild Things Gone? Ecocriticism and Comparative Literature, at the Comparative Literature Symposium at Texas Tech University. In June, Jennifer Ritter (ESL) went to Washington DC to participate in the EducationUSA Forum. While there, she worked with admissions and faculty representatives from American colleges and universities as well as

Christy Seifert’s (communication) book, The Predicteds, was published on September 1, 2011, by Sourcebooks. Gretchen Siegler (anthropology) received a Gore Summer Research Grant to conduct anthropological research on organizations that represent atheists, agnostics, humanists, secularists, and freethinkers. Christine Stracey (biology) published “Cats No. 1 Predator to Urban Mockingbird Nests” last May on the Science Daily website.

This summer Natasha Sajé (English) judged the Akron University Press poetry prize, choosing a manuscript titled Prop Rockery by Emily Rosko. Her own manuscript of poems, titled Vivarium, has been accepted for publication by Tupelo Press.

In October, Kim Zarkin (communication) presented at the National College Media Convention held in Florida on a panel called “Friend Request: Should Students and Their Teachers/Advisers be Facebook Friends?” Kim recently joined the board of the Liberty Well, a community journalism website, where she was elected president. Kim was also nominated as the District 6 board member for the Broadcast Education Association. Elections will take place at the end of October. Michael Zarkin (political science) presented his paper entitled “Cable TV Deregulation Reconsidered: An Exploration of Three Theses” at the Annual Meeting of the Broadcast Education Association in April. It won first place in the “debut” category paper competition at the conference and has been submitted for review to the journal Communication Law and Policy.


Athletic News

Cassie Mulkey (’13), #102

Men’s and Women’s Cross Country The Westminster College men’s and women’s cross country teams took steps to turn the program in the right direction in 2011. Both teams were deep and improved at every meet during the season. The Griffin men’s team was eight strong this season, with six men entering all five meets on the schedule. The team started the year with a sixth-place result at the Roger Curran Invitational. They also claimed fourth place at the Coyote Twilight, before finishing sixth at the Frontier Conference Championships. Oliver Lange earned All-Frontier Conference honors, becoming the first member of the Westminster men’s team to earn that distinction. He won the award for finishing 11th at the Frontier Conference Championships with a personal-best time of 26:09 over the 5K course. Lange paced the Griffins all season and finished as the top Griffin at four of the five events. He finished in the top third at four of the five events he entered. Dylan MacNevin placed in the top half in each of the four meets he entered. Parker Mildenhall also placed in the top half in four events; the highlight of his year was a 15th-place result at the Bob Firman Invitational. The Griffin women featured nine harriers, seven of whom competed in all five scheduled events. Westminster earned third place at the Bob Firman Invitational. The team finished sixth at the Frontier Conference 53


Men’s Soccer

Monique Alvisais-Anhalt anchored the women for most of the season. She was the top-finishing Griffin at four events and posted three of the top four times of the season. Chelsey Fraser also had a stellar season, capping it off by placing 26th and leading the team at the Frontier Championships.

The 2011 Westminster College men’s soccer team finished the year at 9–8–1 overall and 4–3–1 in the Unaffiliated/ Frontier Conference.

Jana Peale had a solid freshman campaign, earning two top-20 finishes. She posted a personal-best 20:35 at the conference meet, which earned her 30th place. Emmalee Barajas also had a personal best: 20:46 at the Frontier Championships. She ran a 17:10 4K in the seasonopening Roger Curran Invitational.

The Griffins’ offensive attack averaged 1.5 goals per game during the season. The team posted a stretch of 11 consecutive games with at least one goal and made more than one goal in eight of their games. Dennis Sellis led the offensive attack with a career-high 12 goals and led the team, ranked with 27 points. Gabe Gonzalez and Jace Maxfield added two goals apiece. Manuel Duenas led the team in assists, finishing with five, and was second on the squad, ranked with seven points.

Athletic News

Margo Hickman (’14)

Damir Sabanovic finished the season with 41 saves and 1.44 goals against average. In nine starts, Sabanovic recorded four wins with a 75.9 percent save percentage. Nathan Young made eight appearances with 25 saves. Young posted two shutouts and a 67.6 percent save percentage. Sellis and Adam Bullough were each named All-Frontier Conference for their play during the season. Sellis had three games with multiple goals and finished the year with four gamewinning strikes. He ranked 31st in the NAIA with those four game-winners and was also 36th in shots on goal, with an average of 2.17 per game. Bullough played in all 18 games, with 17 starts. He finished the year with one assist and attempted 14 shots. Bullough anchored the Westminster defense that allowed just 1.44 goals per game and held the opposition to 10.9 shots per contest. Westminster had nine studentathletes named 2011 DaktronicsNAIA Scholar Athletes: Bullough, John Burton, Gonzalez, Ryan Holmes, Maxfield, Alex Roegiers, Sabanovic,

Jason Tanner, and Young. Westminster has had 82 student-athletes named as Scholar Athlete in the history of the program, 36 of them since 2008.

Women’s Soccer The 2011 Westminster College women’s soccer team completed the most successful season in school history. The program’s fifth season saw records fall and postseason success like never before. Westminster finished the year at 12–7–2 overall. The 12 wins set a new school record, surpassing the 2010 season’s 11 wins. The Griffins earned a share of the regular season Frontier/ Cal Pac Conference championship for the first conference title in school history. The regular season success was followed with a conference tournament championship and the team’s first-ever trip to the NAIA National Championships. They finished the year ranked No. 19 in the postseason NAIA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll. That is also a new record high.

Senior Sarah Swenson became the second player in school history to be recognized by the NAIA as an AllAmerican. She was tied for second on the team this season, with 14 points for her five goals and four assists. The forward attempted 38 shots during the season and put 22 on goal. She played 1,797 minutes and started all 21 games the team played. Westminster had six players recognized as all-conference by the Frontier Conference, and head coach Tony LeBlanc was named Coach of the Year. Heather Hillam and Swenson were both named to the all-conference team for a second consecutive season. Dayna WinterNolte and Michelle Erickson earned their second all-conference honors. Margo Hickman made this year’s team in her first year with the Griffins. Corie Walch was recognized as an honorable-mention selection. Westminster had four studentathletes named 2011 DaktronicsNAIA Scholar Athletes: Hillam, Nikki Kopfman, Elaina Pappas, and Swenson. These four players give the Griffins 54

Athletic News a total of 16 Scholar Athletes in the program’s history. The Griffins also had 20 student-athletes named Academic All-Frontier Conference, the most in the league.

Women’s Volleyball The Westminster College women’s volleyball team finished the year at 11–15 overall and placed fourth in the Frontier Conference with an 8–6 mark. The Griffins played 12 ranked opponents during the season and finished the year having played the 11th-toughest schedule according to the Massey Ratings. They achieved two four-match winning streaks and started the year with wins at the Bison Blast Tournament in Oklahoma and the Concordia Labor Day Tournament in California. Emily Atkinson finished the year with 887 assists and was ranked 36th in the NAIA with an average of 9.54 assists per set. She became the third player in school history to reach 1,000 assists,

with the second-highest number yet achieved: 1,710. Atkinson was named the Frontier Conference player of the week on September 26. Ashley Marchant led the team with 256 kills while hitting .187 during the season. Marchant finished the year ranked in the Frontier Conference top 20 in seven of 11 statistical categories. She moved to fifth in school history with 478 career kills, while the 256 she had this season are the 10th most in a single season at Westminster. Three members of the women’s volleyball team were honored by the Frontier Conference at the end of the season. Marchant was named first team All-Frontier Conference. This was the first all-conference recognition for Marchant, and she became the sixth Griffin ever to make the first team. Kyndall Kordakis was named the Libero of the Year, along with being named second team all-conference. She is the third player from Westminster to receive the Libero of the Year honor,

while also becoming the fourth Griffin to be named second team all-Frontier. Kordakis ranked second in the league in digs at 4.4 per set, and her 411 total digs rank fourth. Alexis Aalona was named co-Freshman of the Year and also was named to the Frontier Conference All-Freshman team. She is the third Griffin to take home top freshman honors and became the sixth player from Westminster to make the all-freshman team. Stephanie Jones Morin and Marchant were both named Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athletes. This is the second consecutive year that Jones Morin has been named a Scholar Athlete, and she becomes the third Griffin to be a two-time recipient. This was Marchant’s first year receiving the award. The Griffins have now had 11 players named to the list.

Ashley Marchant (‘13)


Campus News along with prehistoric marine forms, to create a reef of yarn, an artistic vision of the ancient Lake Bonneville.

More Than Half of Students From Outside Utah Last fall Westminster welcomed the largest freshman class in its 130-year history, more than half of whom hail from outside Utah. Westminster now attracts students from 35 different states, and Westminster’s reputation now extends well beyond the US: current students represent 15 different countries, including Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Hong Kong, India, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Pakistan, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand.

Heads Up While Driving Everyone acknowledges the dangers of texting while driving, yet many people still do it, risking the health and lives of themselves and others. Now, Westminster students are sending a clear message: texting while driving is not okay. On September 21, Westminster, in conjunction with KUTV news, held an anti-texting campaign in Richer Commons, inviting all students to pledge to “drive now, text later” and aiming to raise awareness across the entire state. More than 300 students pledged to not text while driving.

The Predicteds Hits Bookshelves Christine Seifert, communication professor at Westminster College, published her first novel this fall. The Predicteds hit bookshelves in early September, and on September 7, Christy read from her new teen novel at The King’s English Bookshop and signed copies for the audience. Published by Sourcebooks in the US, the rights for The Predicteds have also been sold to Amarin in Thailand and S. Fischer in Germany.

Who Crochets a Coral Reef? Westminster hosted the Lake Bonneville Crochet Reef (LBCR), a collaborative project with the Great Salt Lake Institute at Westminster, FRIENDS of the Great Salt Lake, Brolly Arts, and the Institute for Figuring. The crocheted coral reef display serves as a tribute to the collaboration between community partners and local youth education as they focus on arts and sciences. For nearly a year, artists and Westminster student volunteers teamed up with students from three Salt Lake City schools, the Utah Museum of Natural History, and YouthCity to crochet the 200-plus pieces that form the coral reef display. Using crochet techniques, 165 children, 30 community artists, and Westminster students crocheted items shaped like brine shrimp and bioherms present in the Great Salt Lake today,

What are These Things? Westminster now uses yet another piece of technology, printing “QR codes” in print materials. QR codes are twodimensional barcodes designed to be read by smart phones. QR codes on Westminster print materials are a very quick way to take viewers to a specific location on our website.

A Day for Bishop In honor of Ryan Bishop, a Westminster student who recently died in a canoeing accident on Lake Powell, Liz Rogers, director of Westminster’s outdoor recreation program, hosted “A Day for Bishop” on October 8. The fundraising event was sponsored by Gear to Grow, a local nonprofit organization. Ryan’s “enthusiasm was contagious,” says Rogers, “and he is deeply missed by many. We hope this day will celebrate and honor his values and the way he lived his life.” Also in Bishop’s honor, the three-story indoor rock climbing wall in the Dolores Doré Eccles Health, Wellness, and Athletic Center was named “Bishop’s Wall.”

Westminster Makes Ethics Bowl Nationals for 6th Year in a Row Westminster College’s Ethics Bowl team once again qualified for Nationals during the 2011 Regional competition held at

Weber State University on November 12, 2011, which is Westminster’s sixth straight year to have qualified for the national competition. The national Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl (IEB) competition sponsored by the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics will be held March 1, 2012, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Utah teams from Westminster and Weber State University will compete against more than 30 other teams across the country.

Globalization’s Impact on Indigenous Peoples On November 16, LaDonna Harris (Comanche), founder and president of Americans for Indian Opportunity, addressed the challenges indigenous peoples, both in America and across the globe, face as globalization spreads. Forced to assimilate to a Euro-western culture, these cultures have lost land, language, resources, and cultural traditions. She discussed these issues, as well as her experiences with US/tribal governmental relations, federal Indian policy, and cultural oppression.

Westminster Receives Utah Green Business Award In recognition of its sustainability efforts, Westminster College has been named a Utah Business 2011 Green Business award winner. The award honoring “Green Education” was presented to the college at a ceremony on November 17 in Salt Lake City.

Spiral Jetty Stewardship Determined The Spiral Jetty is a monumental earthwork that was created by artist Robert Smithson (1938–1973) and is located off Rozel Point in the north arm of the Great Salt Lake. Made of black basalt rocks and earth, the jetty is a 15-foot-wide coil that stretches more than 1,500 feet into the lake. Its exceptional art, historical importance, unique beauty, and remote location have drawn visitors and media attention from throughout Utah and around the world. The owner of the sculpture, the New York-based Dia Art Foundation, will work with two Salt Lake City-based organizations, the Great Salt Lake Institute (GSLI) at Westminster College and the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA) at the University of Utah, as part of its ongoing stewardship. The partnership envisions a collaboration that builds on the existing and complementary relationships between the institutions that date back to 2008. Within this collaboration, Westminster’s GSLI will spearhead the vast biological and research opportunities that surround the Spiral Jetty. The GSLI is active in promoting the Great Salt Lake as an important resource, and Westminster faculty and students frequent the Spiral Jetty as part of ongoing education, research, and preservation efforts. The GSLI’s hands-on experience and close physical proximity make it an ideal collaborator for Dia, particularly with regard to environmental issues, maintenance, and site accessibility.


Campus News

$250,000 from Keck Foundation Funds Great Salt Lake Research The Great Salt Lake Institute (GSLI) recently received a generous $250,000 grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation. The Foundation’s Undergraduate Education Program promotes distinctive learning and research experiences in science, engineering and liberal arts, making the financial gift a perfect match with Westminster’s use of experiential, collaborative, and cross-disciplinary learning. The grant will help the GSLI develop a new undergraduate research initiative focused on exploring the science of Great Salt Lake’s extreme ecosystem. Building Research, Innovation, and Novel Experimentation (BRINE) will expand on existing faculty/student research, support new lake projects, and create a 57

network of interdisciplinary scholars. “The Keck Foundation funds only the most promising programs in higher education. We at GSLI are honored to be recognized as part of an elite group of institutions,” said Dr. Bonnie Baxter, director of GSLI. “Westminster has been a leading player in Great Salt Lake research, and many undergraduate students have had the opportunity to do graduate-level work. The Keck grant will more than triple the funds we have to support these projects.” Despite its vast size and unique natural resources, Great Salt Lake remains largely unexplored, giving it enormous potential for novel undergraduate research

projects. For example, GSLI faculty and students recently began studying high mercury content in the lake, comparing levels of mercury found in spiders from Great Salt Lake to spiders from Utah Lake. Other projects range from brine shrimp genetics to microbiology of these extremely salty waters. With support from the W.M. Keck Foundation, GSLI’s BRINE will draw on Westminster’s proximity to Great Salt Lake and new undergraduate research facilities to transform the landscape of undergraduate science education by adopting a theme-based, place-based research model that can be replicated at other institutions.

Converse Society

Grateful for Westminster Faculty by Jennifer Cooper

“Our professors were remarkable

Steve and Evelyn have many reasons

Both Steve and Evelyn credit their

for their attention to and intense,

to think Westminster College is

professors for ensuring they learned.

ongoing interest in their students’

special. They met as students,

“We had these iconic people

education. They were so accessible

took many of the same classes,

available to us who opened our

and generous with their intellect,”

and were on the ski team together.

eyes to concepts ‘outside the box’

remarked Evelyn (Fletcher)

They fell in love and married after

and honed our ‘critical thinking’

Donoviel when asked about her

their junior year. After graduating

skills—long before those phrases

Westminster experience. Both

in 1959, Steve went on to earn his

were commonplace. They didn’t

Evelyn and her husband, Steve,

PhD in psychology; and in 1966,

just teach. They encouraged us to

had many professors who left

they moved to Napa, where they

learn.” Recently, Steve and Evelyn

lasting impressions on their lives

have lived ever since. They have two

made the decision to bequeath

and hearts. They remember with

children, three grandchildren, and

a gift to Westminster College in

fondness Rosa Bird Marimon

long careers in the medical field.

their will. When asked why they

and Viola Chapman, among

Evelyn is a surgical nurse, and Steve

decided to make this gift, Evelyn

many. They enjoyed German

is a psychologist. Evelyn said, “The

stated, “We benefitted tremendously

classes with Frau Schwender,

things we learned and experienced

from our professors. We want to

who would often invite students

in those four years at Westminster

ensure Westminster always attracts

to her home where she would

were fundamental to our becoming

professors who care deeply about

serve sherry, invite dignitaries to

who we are today.”


speak, and once chaperoned a field/ski trip to Jackson Hole—a particular highlight of Steve’s

For more information, contact Kaye Stackpole at 801.832.2735, toll-free 866.832.2730, or

time at the college. 58

“It is not the strongest of species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the ones most responsive to change.� —Charles Darwin


, 2011

Westminster College 1840 South 1300 East Salt Lake City, Utah 84105


801.484.7651 800.748.4753 Toll Free



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Commencement June 2, 2012

We will be nationally recognized as an exemplary community of learners, distinguished by our distinctive educational programs, our record of preparing graduates for success in a rapidly changing world, and our commitment to continuous improvement, effectiveness, and value.

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