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NSF Grant Aids work to bolster number of women, minorities in science

The United States system of higher education isn’t producing enough scientists and engineers. Bethel College, recipient of a recently awarded major grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), wants to help address that reality.

In August, two Bethel science faculty were notified that they had successfully written a $257,600 NSF grant proposal, awarded in the category Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, or S-STEM.

With the grant, Bethel plans to offer 42 scholarships from $3,000 to $10,000, each renewable for up to four years. S-STEM’s aim is to attract academically qualified students to study astronomy, biology, chemistry, computer science, environmental science, mathematics, neuroscience or physics, targeting students with limited financial means.

In addition, Bethel’s program will place special emphasis on attracting Hispanic, African-American and female students. Bethel science faculty hope the scholarships will increase the number of students graduating each year in STEM fields by 40-80 percent.

Bethel is only Kansas private college in new ranking

Bethel College is the only private college in Kansas and one of only three institutions of higher education in the state to be ranked in a new survey by Forbes.com.

Even as U.S. News & World Report was releasing its yearly survey of “America’s Best Colleges,” Forbes.com published the first of what it intends to be an annual analysis. Out of the 569 U.S. colleges and universities ranked, Bethel College placed #303, just behind the University of Kansas at #280 and ahead of Kansas State University at #504.

Students sing, build relationships at Newton First Presbyterian

As a lifelong resident of Newton, Walter C. Claassen, who now lives in North Newton, believes in giving back to his community.

That includes his church, First Presbyterian in Newton. Starting in 2007, Claassen endowed a scholarship at Bethel that provides up to five students to practice and sing with the church choir each Sunday during the school year.

“With the size of our church attendance [an average of 160-75 a Sunday], it’s rare to have all the parts equally balanced,” says Claassen, who has sung in the First Presbyterian choir himself for 50 years. “This provides a [consistent] strong voice in each part.”

Annual meeting provides opportunity to hear the latest and to fellowship

Would you like to hear the latest news about Bethel College? Do you enjoy visiting with Bethel alumni, faculty, staff and administrators? Do you like good food?!

The annual Bethel College Corporation meeting is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 26, at 7:30 p.m. in Schultz Student Center. Anyone interested in hearing current updates from Bethel administrators and members of the Board of Directors is invited to attend.

President Barry Bartel will provide a state of the college report followed by a brief business meeting. Dessert and a time of fellowship follow.

Bethel is an independent legal corporation governed by a Board of Directors. As such, it holds an annual corporation meeting for stakeholders and others interested in the college.

Museum to host artifact identification day

Kauffman Museum will host an “Artifact Identification Day” in collaboration with the Mud Creek Chapter of Kansas Anthropological Association on Saturday, Sept. 27, 1:30-4:30 p.m. The general public is invited to bring Native American and early U.S. historic artifacts for identification by Kansas State Historical Society archeologists.

The free event commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Sept. 10, 1908, birth of Dr. Waldo Wedel, the “father of Great Plains archeology,” who grew up on the Bethel campus as the son of chemistry professor P.J. Wedel and collected arrowheads along the banks of Sand Creek. Waldo was a 1926 graduate of the Bethel Academy.

For more information, e-mail Rachel Pannabecker at Kauffman Museum at rpannabe@bethelks.edu.

New events at this year’s Fall Fest

Plan now to attend this year’s Fall Festival activities, Oct 2-6. New events are listed below, including special features to observe the 120th “birthday” of the Administration Building and kick off five years of events celebrating the college’s 125th anniversary in 2012. For complete information, look for a Fall Fest flier in the mail.

Thursday, October 2

  • 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Kauffman Museum: “Pathways of Tradition: Native American Footwear, 1860-1930” and Other Exhibits (also 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 1:30-4:30 p.m. Sunday)

Friday, October 3

  • 2-4 p.m., Building the Ad Building in 2 Hours (creative student competition)
  • 4 p.m., Nursing Alumni Association Meeting, Centennial Celebration and Open House
  • 7:30 p.m., Farce: Protection Program by Aaron Christopher ’02, Minneapolis, Minn.

Saturday, October 4

  • 9-10 a.m., Documentary: Through the Desert Goes Our Journey
  • 9-10 a.m., Presentation: “Balancing Energy and the Environment in Alaska” by Stan Senner ’73
  • 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Special Exhibit: Administration Building Memorabilia
  • 10 a.m.-1 p.m., The Administration Building: A Sampling of Memories (oral history project)
  • 10-11:30 a.m., Class Reunions: 1993 and 1998 (alumni in classes one year below and one year above are welcome to attend, too, something new this year)
  • 11 a.m.-Noon, Newton Community Children’s Choir, Goessel High School Elbiata Singers and Maize South Middle School Singers
  • 11 a.m.-Noon, The Book of Jebb
  • 11 a.m.-Noon, Presentation: “María Rita Durán and the Tumacácori Mission” by Anita Badertscher ’85, Tumacácori, Ariz.
  • Noon-12:30 p.m., Mother Goossen (alumnus Debbie Goossen ’79, Beatrice, Neb.)
  • 1-2 p.m., Audiovisual Presentation: “A Castle on the Prairie: Bethel’s ‘Old Main’ in Word and Image”
  • 1-2 p.m., Presentation: “A Festival of Sound and Sight: The Katydids of Central Kansas”
  • 2-2:30 p.m., 120th Birthday Party for the Administration Building
  • 2:30-4 p.m., Class Reunions: 1973, 1978, 1983, 1988 (alumni in classes one year below and one year above are welcome to attend, too, something new this year)
  • 3:30 p.m., Farce: Protection Program by Aaron Christopher ’02, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • 3:30-6 p.m., African-American Alumni Association Gathering
  • 4-5 p.m., Presentation: “The Great Trek as a Spiritual Pilgrimage”
  • 4-6 p.m., KBCU Reunion

Sunday, October 5

  • 2 p.m., Farce: Protection Program by Aaron Christopher ’02, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • 7:30 p.m., Audiovisual Presentation: “A Castle on the Prairie: Bethel’s ‘Old Main’ in Word and Image”

Monday, October 6

  • 7:30 p.m., Documentary: Through the Desert Goes Our Journey