Class of '65
October 2000

Dear Gusties from the Class of 1965,

It was a beautiful weekend for the Gustavus reunions (classes ending in a zero or five) at the Hotel Sofitel on Friday evening and Gustavus homecoming on campus on Saturday, the weekend of September 29-30. The football team cooperated with a victory over Concordia and at game time the temperature was 80 degrees. The sun was shining and the campus was simply beautiful.

At our gatherings, it was great to reconnect with one another. At the Friday evening, there were 30 plus participants. We had a good time mixing and talking with friends and their spouses. We took some time to share "what’s up" with each one and we did have some interesting tales and stories! Jim and Jan From Hanson brought some excellent mood music from our past. Barb Raitz-Gaugert came the farthest from Phoenix, AZ. Barb and I met when we were section mates our freshman year in Wahlstrom Hall. She spent the night at our house and we stayed up late talking about the past and present! Our classmates that attended the luncheon on campus had more time to visit in a casual setting, in Linner Lounge. Most of us that were on campus, live within a few hours of the Twin City area except for Barb from Phoenix and John Kulander from Saint Ann, MO. Many thanks to those of you who attended and made the effort to keep in touch.

It was also a time of remembering classmates who are no longer with us. It was suggested that we list the names in this class letter.

        Deceased Members from the class of 1965:

          1. Mark E. Ahlstrom
          2. Frieda E. Beier
          3. Ronald Bloomquist
          4. Pamela Erickson Conner
          5. Douglas F. Dahlberg
          6. Sharon Rupprecht De Gatica
          7. Charles R. Digatono
          8. Robert B. Hawkinson
          9. Kathryn Kindstrom Kay
          10. Sue Midtaune De Lapp
          11. Owen O. Olson
          12. Allan J. Palmquist
          13. Daryl D. Schreiber
          14. Gail Thornburg Storlie
          15. Merrilee Stennes Vanek
          16. Gary Walton

Homecoming weekend was also the completion of my second term on the Alumni Board. My first term began in the fall of 1994. How quickly the time has gone. I truly enjoyed these past six years on the Alumni Board and participating in campus events three times each year¾ homecoming, February, and graduation weekend. It was a privilege and a pleasure to serve Gustavus in this way.

Dave Larson sent his reunion regrets from Santa Fe through an e-mail to Elaine and me. He wrote that he and his wife, Jody, had previously planned a backpacking trip in the Grand Canyon. He and his wife are both retired and in the last 17 months they have had wonderful trips to Italy, Austria, China, and Tibet! Next on their agenda is an African photo safari and Alaska. They continue to hike extensively in the Southwest where they have been particularly interested in the Native American rock art and ruins in Utah, Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico. They have two sons. Jeff, 34, who is a financial manager in Silicon Valley, and Matt, 30, who juggles managing a business, playing in three rock bands, and writing in Santa Fe. Dave plans to be in his hometown of St. Peter to visit his mother, Ruth Snyder Larson, class of ’33, in November. Dave says to greet all of you and invites us to call if we visit Santa Fe!

Campus News:

The 2000-2001 academic year opened with a record enrollment of 2,510 full-time students (compared with the previous record of 2,490 set last year), including 675 first-year students. When students arrived on campus in early September they were welcomed by the newly completed Carlson International Center/Swedish House, a new outdoor track/soccer field, and a newly completed Courtyard Café in the lower level of the Jackson Campus Center. This new café offers specialty coffees, bagels, pastries, and sandwiches, and opens to an outdoor eating area on the Johns Courtyard between the Jackson Campus Center and Lund Center.

Gustavus Adolphus College is once again ranked among the best of all national liberal

arts colleges in U.S. News and World Report's 14th annual "America's Best Colleges" rankings. Gustavus is again in the top 80 of the overall quality listings for national liberal arts colleges. Ranked again in the second tier in the national liberal arts college category, Gustavus is one of only two Minnesota colleges included in the tier two listing and one of four Minnesota colleges ranked in the top 80.

Gustavus recently received the results of a comparative alumni survey that measures alumni responses to a series of questions about their college experience. The study provides comparisons to other groups of colleges including Lutheran colleges, member colleges of the Minnesota Private College Council and, most importantly, with large public universities. We will share with you results of the survey in class letters this year. A sampling of responses to remembrances of college academic life include the following:

· Alumni agree that professors often challenged them, but also personally helped them to meet the challenge. Gustavus alumni agree 78%, large public universities 38%.

· Alumni agree that a large majority of classes were taught by professors as compared to teaching assistants. Gustavus alumni agree 90%, large public universities 32%.

· Alumni remember a high quality, teaching oriented faculty. Gustavus alumni agree 61%, large public universities 25%.

· Alumni remember many small classes with fewer than twenty students. Gustavus alumni agree 50%, large public universities 9%.

Gustavus has received word from the Lilly Endowment that it was one of 20 awardees (out of a pool of 31 colleges and universities) of a $1,963,425 implementation grant. It is the largest program grant the College has ever received. The award will support a comprehensive initiative to more effectively carry out some key aspects of the College's mission statement and encourage theological reflection and moral questioning that forms character, shapes lives, and guides career choices. It will build upon the ethos and climate of Gustavus by supporting already-existing programs, adding new ones, and creating a center to coordinate and intensify those vocation-oriented activities. In doing so, it will provide students with the foundational tools necessary for a lifelong exploration of their calling and a lifetime of community leadership and service to others.

G.I.V.E. (Gusties In Volunteer Endeavors), a day of community service, was held on Saturday, October 7. Numerous sites were selected in the Twin Cities and alumni in other cities around the country participated in the event.

Christmas in Christ Chapel, Heaven and Nature Sing, is December 1-3. A ticket order form was inserted in the Summer Quarterly. Contact Office of Public Affairs at 507-933-7520.

I also have some news to share….after being in education for 35 years, I have retired! The decision did not come easily, but it did come quickly. My sons and husband were the encouragers, and somehow I didn’t think I could…or should. Retirement was far away in the "some day" category. Over the years, I had been a classroom teacher, teacher of Title I, learning disabilities, emotional/behavior disorders, and assistant principal. And, I thought I always would be. But, once the conversation was started in February, I thought about my decision every day after that and wrote my resignation letter on March 24th and decided to "Go for it!" And, have I ever been having fun!!!

Several days ago I received a surprise call from Mary Nielson Allan, from Pleasant Hill, CA. She called to let us know that she had planned to attend our reunion party. However, she was invited to a banquet the same weekend, where she found out that she had received a special award¾ Contra Costa County Teacher of the Year! To make it even better, she went on to be named California Teacher of the Year! Because there are 300,000 teachers in California, there are five that are named Teacher of the Year. Mary is a teacher in an elementary school and their school schedule is year-round school. Mary is on break for the month of October. Congratulations, Mary and enjoy your month¾ You deserve it!

The weeks of October 16 and October 23 were Gustavus Phonorama. I was at the Deli Express on Monday, October 16, making phone calls along with Gusties representing a variety of classes. I was fortunate to have the company of Judy Johnson ’69 (married to Jack Johnson from our class). Judy and Jack were at the reunion weekend and she volunteered to join me at Phonorama. Also at the reunion and calling for Phonorama was Jim Uecker. Thanks to both of them and anyone else from our class who volunteers to call you, our classmates. The reason for Phonorama…reach out to our fellow graduates, keep in touch, share news both ways, and ask (and receive…!) a commitment for a financial gift to our college. Here is some information that may help you in your financial gift decision-making:

  • The Gustavus Fund provides the margin of excellence to current Gusties
  • Alumni support helps current Gusties receive the same quality education that we received
  • Our gifts help attract and retain quality professors
  • Tuition only covers 80% of the cost of a Gustavus education
  • Our gifts support the need for ever changing information technology
  • Strong alumni support and high alumni participation gets the attention of additional money such as grants and corporate gifts

Our gifts do make a difference. We are striving for increased alumni participation¾ especially from the class of 1965! Please participate by sending a gift to Gustavus by May 31, 2001. I am thanking you in advance!

As we get closer to the holiday season, I wish you and yours many happy moments.

Best wishes always,

Bev Nordskog Hedeen

1965 Co-class Agent