Five Accomplished Alumni to be Recognized in 2012

Bethel College will honor five outstanding graduates in 2012. The Awards Committee of the Alumni Association selected three awardees; the Bethel Deaconess Hospital/Bethel College Nursing Alumni Association (BDH/BCNAA) named two.

Young Alumnus Award

Jaroslav Tir ’95, Boulder, Colo., will receive the Young Alumnus Award in convocation on March 9. Tir majored in history and mathematical sciences and minored in economics and political science. With a Ph.D. in political science, he is an associate professor at the University of Colorado-Boulder, specializing in international relations with a focus on causes and management of armed conflicts. Originally from Croatia, Tir is also a researcher, consultant and prolific writer who has received numerous honors, awards and grants. His work spans the topics of territorial disputes, environmental conflict and security, domestic and ethnic conflict and diversionary theory of war.

Outstanding Alumnus Award

Glen Ediger, North Newton, will receive the Outstanding Alumnus Award at the Alumni Banquet on May 19. Ediger majored in art and minored in industrial arts. He is a designer, consultant, model builder and inventor who has nearly 100 U.S. patents and nearly as many foreign patents to his name. Ediger has been director of design at Vornado Air near Wichita for 22 years, and has led marketing and engineering there. He has received design awards and had pieces exhibited across the United States. Ediger has also volunteered for various local and regional agencies, including serving on their boards. He is currently president of the Kauffman Museum board of directors. Recently, Ediger’s interest in both design and history has manifested itself in research on threshing stones.

Distinguished Achievement Award

Toshihiro "Ted" Fukudome ’72, Tokyo, who majored in economics and business administration, will receive the Distinguished Achievement Award at the Alumni Banquet on May 19. After graduation he joined Sanrio, the company famous in the United States for the "Hello, Kitty!" brand. Fukudome earned an MBA, has been director of marketing for Polaroid Japan and Tupperware Japan, and president of Mattel Toys Japan. For the past 15 years he has been president and representative director for Chicago-based ACCO Brands Japan. Since March 2011, Fukudome has dealt with the challenges to the company and worked with fellow citizens to respond to the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that struck northern Japan.

BDH/BCNAA Outstanding Alumnus Award

Marie Voth and Martha Voth, North Newton, will receive the 2012 BDH/BCNAA Outstanding Alumnus Award at the Alumni Banquet, as well. The association chose them last summer and recognized them at Fall Festival 2011. Now retired, the two spent their nursing careers in hospitals, including Bethel Deaconess Hospital and Newton Medical Center. Both earned nursing degrees from BDH in 1962 and bachelor’s degrees from Bethel in 1965.

Sisters’ Estate Gift to Benefit Sciences, Facilities

After decades of making strong impacts on their students, two sisters and noted academicians have done the same for Bethel College.

Bethel recently received a generous gift from the estate of Dorothea Franzen ’37 and Ruth Franzen ’44....

A portion of the Franzen estate is restricted to the sciences and is intended to establish a science equipment endowment. "This generous gift helps the college create an important new endowment that will enhance our laboratories and directly impact students’ education," noted President Perry White.

The remainder of the Franzens’ seven-figure gift is designated for upgrades to campus facilities, as outlined in Bethel’s Strategic Plan for Campus Enhancement and Marketability. The college is currently seeking gifts to make improvements to Schultz Student Center, the Fine Arts Center, Thresher Gym and student housing.

"We are grateful to Dorothea and Ruth," President White continued, "for remembering Bethel College and for understanding the important role estate gifts can play in the life of a college."

For the complete story, click here.

BCWA Extends Limerick Contest Deadline

Feb. 29 is the new deadline for entering the Bethel College Women’s Association’s limerick contest.

BCWA is soliciting entries for "A BC ABC Book," in which each letter of the alphabet will describe an aspect of Bethel through a limerick.

"The limerick committee has received a significant number of entertaining and informative submissions," said project co-coordinator Berneil Rupp Mueller ’62, "but would like to have a larger selection for specific letters: I, J, N, O, Q, R, U, V, X, and Y."

Writers are encouraged to compose limericks on subjects pertaining to Bethel, beginning with the letters listed above, one subject for each limerick. Anyone interested may send a limerick for consideration.

Submissions must be postmarked on or before Feb. 29. They may be mailed to BCWA, 300 East 27th St., North Newton, KS 67117; or submitted online on or before Feb. 29

For more information, check the website or contact Mueller at 316-283-1663, tabco@cox.net, or Susan Bartel ’74 at 316-283-5632, asbartel@cox.net.

Mealtime Ritual Helps Preserve Joy of Camp Worship

After a summer in which she spent significant time as a counselor at Camp Mennoscah near Murdock, Melissa Volk, Newton, returned to Bethel for her senior year with an important internal question: "How can I bring my camp self back to my everyday life?"

One of her favorite camp experiences was the shared prayer before each meal, when campers, counselors and summer staff stood behind their chairs to sing a grace. Volk began thinking about how she could share this with the Bethel community.

"I’m Catholic," Volk says. "We say the same prayer before every meal and it’s spoken, not sung. In volleyball, we have team meals and at[some] people’s houses, they want to sing. So I had heard people sing different prayers [like ’Johnny Appleseed’]."

At camp, Volk says, "I felt weird at first because I didn’t know [the grace songs], either. But as soon as I did learn them, it was a nice, different way to say that before-meal prayer. Since I’ve been saying the same one my whole life, I found this really interesting. I loved it. It’s a very pure form of worship."

Volk had an idea: Get a table grace going sometime during lunch in the Bethel cafeteria....

The planners finally settled on Wednesdays, right after chapel, at around 11:45 a.m. Someone from the Concert Choir always has a tuning fork or pitch to start....

Now, when the notes of the "Doxology" sound, the normal cafeteria chatter stops for a few moments, as people join in or just listen...

For the complete news story, click here.

Choir on Tour Next Month

The Bethel College Concert Choir will perform in Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas during spring break, March 16-25. Alumni and friends of Bethel are invited to any of the following concerts:

Friday, March 16
First Mennonite Church, 430 West 9th Ave., Denver, at 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, March 18
Bethesda Mennonite Church, 930 16th Street, Henderson, Neb., in the worship service at 9:30 a.m.
Salem Mennonite Church, 28103 443rd Ave., Freeman, S.D., at 7 p.m.

Tuesday, March 20
Faith Mennonite Church, 2720 East 22nd St., Minneapolis, Minn., at 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, March 22
Iowa Mennonite School, 1421 540th St. SW, Kalona, Iowa, in the afternoon
West Union Mennonite Church, 3253 305th St., Parnell, Iowa, at 7 p.m.

Friday, March 23
Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral, 415 West 13th St. (13th and Broadway), Kansas City, Mo., at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 24
Grace Episcopal Cathedral, 701 Southwest 8th Ave., Topeka, at 7 p.m.

Sunday, March 25
Southern Hills Mennonite Church, 511 Southeast 37th St., Topeka, in the worship service at 10:30 a.m.
Bethel College, home concert in Memorial Hall at 7 p.m.

Check Out "Church Relations Update"

Bethel’s Office of Church Relations coordinates various activities so that the college -- as an institution but also as individual students,faculty and staff -- may communicate with, listen to and join in worship with other believers. Dale Schrag ’69 is the director.

Schrag is a key planner for the annual choir tour (when it is in the United States). He arranges for faculty, staff and students to speak or provide music in churches.

Schrag also edits "Church Relations Update," an online newsletter that provides news on recent activities, reflections by staff, stories about student involvement in religious life and a schedule of upcoming Bethel presentations in churches.Click here to find publications.

The current issue includes highlights from spiritual life activities last fall and a "must-read" reflection by senior John Miller on his experience singing in choir.

"Although Mennonite congregations are more likely to be aware of the newsletter because of Bethel’s affiliation with Mennonite Church USA, it’s not just intended for those churches," Schrag said. "My hope is that alumni, pastors, families of current Bethel students and churchgoers in other denominations will find it interesting and useful, as well."

Pastors, church support staff and members are encouraged to print a copy to post on their church bulletin board.

"Check to see if your church has a copy on a bulletin board," Schrag said. "If not, print one off and post it!"

For more information about the Office of Church Relations, click here.

Help Shape Bethel’s New Website

To better serve prospective and current students, their families, alumni, donors, faculty, staff and the public, Bethel will soon redesign its website. The Web Development Team invites input from a broad range of users by Feb. 15.

"Plans for the new design are beginning to take shape," said Lori Livengood, vice president of marketing and communication. "However, we need your input. We value your opinion as friends and alumni.

"Please take a few moments to complete a short survey regarding your use, impression and suggestions of the current site. Thank you in advance for your help to improve the experience of those using our site.

The survey takes only a few minutes to complete. Go here here and offer your advice.

An Easy Way to Give to Bethel: Go Online

The annual Alumni Association fund-raising phonathon occurs this month. While many people mail their gifts, an easy way to donate -- in response to the phonathon or any other time -- is online.

"Thanks to everyone who gave in 2011," said Toby Tyner ’07, associate director of development. "As spring semester starts, Bethel continues to appreciate ongoing financial support. Each year we need $1 million in donations to the Bethel College Fund."

The fund undergirds a wide variety of projects and services related tothe Bethel student experience: scholarships, campus ministries, science equipment, computers, choir experiences, instrumental ensembles, theater and opera productions, library resources, convocation speakers, cross-cultural learning, student organizations, campus health center, athletic uniforms and equipment, upkeep of facilities, campus landscaping, salaries of faculty and staff and many other essentials.

The annual Alumni Association fund-raising phonathon occurs this month. While many people mail their gifts, an easy way to donate -- in response to the phonathon or any other time -- is online.

"Thanks to everyone who gave in 2011," said Toby Tyner ’07, associate director of development. "As spring semester starts, Bethel continues to appreciate ongoing financial support. Each year we need $1 million in donations to the Bethel College Fund."

The fund undergirds a wide variety of projects and services related tothe Bethel student experience: scholarships, campus ministries, science equipment, computers, choir experiences, instrumental ensembles, theater and opera productions, library resources, convocation speakers, cross-cultural learning, student organizations, campus health center, athletic uniforms and equipment, upkeep of facilities, campus landscaping, salaries of faculty and staff and many other essentials.

The system for online giving was upgraded over the holidays, Tyner said. "If at any point you’ve had trouble making an online gift, please contact me. That will help us remedy any issues you encountered. Thanks!"

Interested in Working at Bethel?

Alumni and friends of Bethel who are interested in employment at the college are encouraged to check online regularly for up-to-date job listings.

Current opportunities include serving as registrar, coordinator of the nursing/RN-BSN program or vice president for student life.

Openings are listed as they occur. In addition to detailed descriptions, the listings may include the anticipated beginning date and links to qualifications, duties, responsibilities and departmental information, plus an e-mail link to the person responsible for collecting inquiries or applications.