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Phonathon is coming, and every gift counts!

Bethel’s annual fund-raising phonathon is coming in February and, indeed, every gift DOES count. The college thanks everyone who gave during 2015.

In recent years, approximately 1,500 generous donors have responded to the phonathon mailing, calls, reminder mailings and phone messages, giving anywhere from $5 to more than $1,000.

Throughout the year, thousands of donors support Bethel by giving whatever they can, gifts that are essential to the college serving its students.

This year’s phonathon materials, which will be mailed soon, feature reflections by current students grateful for the benefits made available to them through alumni giving.

When the mailing arrives, please respond by:

  • sending a check (made payable to “Bethel College Phonathon 2016”) in the envelope provided,
  • giving online, noting that your donation is for the phonathon,
  • setting up a monthly credit card gift or bank auto-draft. Call 316-284-5250 or e-mail development@bethelks.edu for details.
  • or e-mailing your intention to development@bethelks.edu.

If the Development Office hears from you by Monday, Feb. 1, you won’t be called, allowing students, alumni volunteers and staff members more time to contact others.

Thanks again for your contributions in 2015, and for your phonathon donation to come. Every gift counts!

Bethel senior honored as Kansas Teacher of Promise

Senior Michelle Unruh recently attended the Kansas Teacher of the Year 2016 State Awards Banquet.

She did so because Bethel’s Department of Teacher Education named her a “Teacher of Promise.” College and university students nominated for this award were honored, along with the seven finalists for 2016 Kansas State Teacher of the Year, at the banquet held Nov. 21 at the Wichita Marriott.

Unruh, a 2011 graduate of Goessel High School, graduated from Bethel in May 2015 with a degree in music and completed education licensure in fall.

She did half her student teaching at Hesston Elementary School (USD 460) and the other half with students in Grades 1-12 at Freeman (South Dakota) Academy.

Unruh attended the 2016 State Awards Banquet with her parents, Fred and Diane Unruh, and older sister, Kristin Unruh.

Diane and Kristin are also Bethel teacher education graduates and kindergarten teachers -- Diane (Class of 1988) at Sunset Elementary School (USD 373) in Newton and Kristin (Class of 2013) at Hesston. Three years ago, Kristin was also a Bethel teacher education department Teacher of Promise.

Michelle Unruh was a member of the Concert Choir, for which she was a rehearsal accompanist, section leader and, as a Walter H. Hohmann Choral Conducting Scholar, a student conductor.

She sang with the a cappella women’s ensemble Woven and played clarinet in the Wind Ensemble.

Last fall, in addition to student teaching, Unruh served as the student assistant for the biennial Worship and the Arts Symposium, responsible for many of the publicity and logistical details that made the symposium possible.

For more of this article, visit the Bethel College website.

Bethel launches socially responsible endowed fund

One of the outcomes of fall board meetings at Bethel was establishment of a socially responsible investment (SRI) fund for endowed gifts.

The board’s Financial Affairs Committee reviewed a proposal to create this option as an alternative to existing endowed funds.

Bethel currently holds its endowment with Common Fund. The new socially responsible fund will exist in conjunction with it.

This initiative rose from donor requests, and it begins with a six-figure gift from Bethel alumni Lois '60 and Richard D. '57 Reimer, who recently retired to North Newton after careers in Ohio, Richard as a professor of economics at the College of Wooster and Lois as a nurse.

Bethel’s new fund is invested with Mennonite Education Agency, along with other, similar funds held by Mennonite colleges.

Screenings for the SRI fund include abortion, adult entertainment, alcohol, firearms, gambling, nuclear power, predatory lending, tobacco and weapons production, along with human rights and environment records.

Choir to circle the plains in March

The Bethel College Concert Choir will “circle the plains” when it goes on tour in March, heading first to northeast Kansas, then north to Nebraska, west to Colorado and back to Kansas.

The tentative schedule is as follows:

Friday, March 18
Manhattan Mennonite Church, 7:30 p.m. concert
Saturday, March 19
Grace Cathedral (Episcopal), Topeka, 3 p.m. concert
Sunday, March 20
Rainbow Mennonite Church, Kansas City, Kansas, morning worship
Tuesday, March 22
Bethesda Mennonite Church, Henderson, Nebraska, 7 p.m. concert
Wednesday, March 23
First Mennonite Church, Denver, 7 p.m. concert
Thursday, March 24
Beth-El Mennonite Church, Colorado Springs, 7 p.m. concert
Saturday, March 26
concert(s) in western Kansas (planning still in process)
Sunday, March 27
Memorial Hall on campus, 7 p.m., home concert

Alumni Weekend: BC Then and Now

Mark your calendar now for Alumni Weekend, Friday–Sunday, June 3–5. This year’s theme is BC Then and Now. All alumni and friends of the college are invited.

After checking in Friday, participants may attend an opening ice cream social with the president in the evening and stay overnight in Voth Hall.

A faculty lecture and coffee time will be Saturday morning, followed by the Alumni Banquet at noon, where the “Golden Thresher” Class of 1966 will be recognized as members observe 50 years since being at Bethel. The Alumni Association also will honor two graduates with this year’s Outstanding Alumnus and Distinguished Achievement awards.

In the evening, the Class of 1966 will continue its celebration at a reunion dinner. The Classes of 1961 and 1956 also will dine together, as they observe 55 and 60 years since their Bethel days. The Alumni Office seeks volunteer hosts for each class reunion — individuals, couples or groups of classmates. If interested, contact Dave Linscheid, director of alumni relations, at 316-284-5252 or alumni@bethelks.edu.

Also Saturday evening, Advancement staff will host a “Heritage Class” reunion for those in the Class of 1951 and earlier, to visit and tell stories after attending BC 65 years ago or more.

Singers are invited to join an alumni choir, which will rehearse Saturday afternoon and sing during worship in the chapel Sunday morning. At the service, those in the Heritage Roll of Honor who supported BC through planned giving will be recognized, and family members or friends thanked for the legacy of support their loved ones provided.

More information will be in THRESHEReview in spring, details will be posted on the Bethel College website and reunion class members should watch for the schedule and registration brochure to be mailed in March.

Take the opportunity to reflect on “Bethel Then and Now” at Alumni Weekend in June!

Bethel yearbooks available online

Thanks to John Thiesen ’82 with the Mennonite Library and Archives on campus, and Internet Archive on the Web, digital copies of Bethel yearbooks are now online.

The collection may be sorted by “date published” — earliest to latest, or vice versa. Each online yearbook is accompanied by a “search inside” icon, to find names, events, topics or other text in the book selected.

“I wanted to digitize several Bethel publications and thought using the services of an Internet archives company would be the most logical,” said Thiesen, co-director of libraries at the college. “They do the scanning for a few cents per page and, in return, host collections on their website for free.

“They do a huge amount of archival scanning. We’ve also had them scan and post The Story of Bethel College and a few other Bethel-related publications.” Originally published as Echoes in 1908, 1911 and 1913, the yearbook was named the Graymaroon from 1915 through 1960, then changed to the Thresher.

If needed, a guide for using the Bethel yearbook site is available. A list of years when books were not published can be found on the Alumni Association section of the Bethel College website.

Internet Archive is a non-profit library of millions of free books, movies, software, music and more.

Get 15% off Thresher Shop apparel

As its online storefront continues to grow, Thresher Shop is offering a 15% discount on apparel to all THRESHEReview readers.

To receive the discount:

  • visit www.threshershop.com to view the apparel available
  • make your selections
  • during checkout, enter XO3FL4AAUC3 in the Coupon Code box before proceeding to the payment options.

Pay by credit card or via PayPal. And, Thresher Shop can ship almost anywhere in the world.

If questions, e-mail threshershop@bethelks.edu, or call 316-283-2500, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. CST Monday–Friday.

Thresher fall athletes earn academic honors

Six Bethel athletes in fall sports were named to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Daktronics Scholar-Athlete Team for 2015.

Four competed in cross-country:

  • Grace Bradfield, junior from Derby
  • Olivia Gehring, senior from Manhattan
  • Laird Goertzen, senior from Goessel
  • Erin Regier, senior from Newton

Two played volleyball:

  • Ashley Dishon, senior from Horton
  • Tia Goertzen, junior from Goessel

Student-athletes are nominated by their head coaches. To qualify for this academic honor, they must be juniors or seniors who maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

For more about Bethel sports, go to www.bethelthreshers.com.

Sixteen nursing students inducted into honor society

Bethel had the highest number in several years of inductees into the student nurses’ honor society Sigma Theta Tau. The induction took place Nov. 15 at Wichita State University.

The speaker was Marlene R. Pietrocola, R.N., MBA, DNP, NEA-BC, associate professor and chair of the Division of Nursing at Tabor College. The title of her address was “The A, E, I, O, U and Y of Nursing.”

Sixteen Bethel seniors received their Sigma Theta Tau cords:

  • Brandi Bergmeier, Wakefield
  • Shelby Bernt, Park City
  • Chianne Cates, Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Tanesha Cayton, Keyes, Oklahoma
  • Mekale Chapple, Jones, Oklahoma
  • Lindsay Fawcett, Wichita
  • Lisa Goering, Lawrence
  • Breanna Honer, Shawnee
  • Shelby Jessup, Wichita
  • Haleigh Kerr, North Newton
  • Reilly Klein, Salina
  • Abigail Ludwig, Phoenix
  • Bonnie Marnell, Park City
  • Alani Dodd Miller, Salina
  • Roseanne Riddle, Wichita
  • Abigail Schrag, Newton

This year, Fall Fest is early!

This year’s Fall Festival weekend will be in late September and early October — earlier than in recent years. The 46th Fall Fest fair will be Saturday, Oct. 1.

The extended weekend of activities will begin with Taste of Newton downtown Thursday, Sept. 29, feature special programming on campus Friday, Sept. 30, continue with an array of activities Saturday, Oct. 1, and end Sunday, Oct. 2.

The Fall Fest fair date is determined by the first home football game in October, as scheduled by the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference.

In coming years, Saturday’s fair on campus is scheduled for:

  • Oct. 14, 2017
  • Oct. 6, 2018
  • Oct. 5, 2019
  • Oct. 10, 2020