Class of '45
February 1999

Dear Gusties of ’45:

It’s time for the class letter again, and having no volunteers to write it, I will see what we can come up with. I did approach a few classmates with personal requests, but didn’t succeed with that either. Next year someone will surely have an urge to communicate in the winter letter.

Last night we were privileged to hear the Gustavus choir in their home concert after returning from their South Africa tour. Rev. Dennis Johnson, Vice President for College Relations was one of the staff members accompanying the tour. The reports that they were most enthusiastically received. What a marvelous opportunity and learning experience to be able to make such a "safari." I don’t think we actually envy them, but I suppose we could be excused for reflecting that we may have been born some 50 years too soon! You will read more about their trip in the spring Quarterly.

Apropos to the above, Gustavus was recently ranked 16th in the nation, among baccalaureate institutions, for the number of students it sends overseas. The annual ranking, released in January by the Institute of International Education, was based on study abroad statistics from the 1996-97 academic year. Gustavus was one of five Minnesota private colleges to make the list of 30, with 236 students travelling and studying abroad.

Gustavus also ranked 12th nationally on the "The 1998 List of Smaller Colleges and Universities with Graduates Currently Serving as Peace Corps Volunteers," with 14 alumni now serving in the corps. In a recent letter to President Axel Steuer, the Peace Corps director recognized that the agency and the College have established a strong partnership over the years, saying: "This ranking reflects the high caliber of Gustavus Adolphus College graduates and represents the outstanding contribution that they have made to the Peace Corps’ legacy of service worldwide." Gustavus was one of only four Minnesota private colleges named to the top 25 list for smaller colleges and universities (undergraduate enrollment below 5,000).

Also, Gustavus is ranked 18th of national liberal arts colleges in the number of National Merit Scholars, with 17 students.

Mark Anderson ’66, Dean of Admission, reports that applications for admission for the fall of 1999 are running 20 percent ahead of last year. The Admission Office instituted several new campus visit days in the summer and fall to balance the fact that few students could visit last spring.

I wonder how many of our ’45 alumni have taken advantage of the Scholarship Program ($10,000 over four years for children and grandchildren of alumni) available to qualified applicants. You can call the Admission Office at 1-800-GUSTAVU(S) for applications.

Approximately 45 percent of Gustavus graduating seniors have a study abroad experience during their college days.

Building on the Student Center has progressed through the winter, with few stoppages for weather. It would appear that there is every intention that the new center should be ready on schedule next fall. Upon completion, the size of the center will have about doubled.

I have had a telephone visit with most of you during the past months. Most of our classmates have pledged, and others have indicated intention to give an as-yet-to-be-determined amount. The Alumni Office indicates that giving towards the Gustavus Fund (undesignated) is a priority for the College, though designated gifts are also welcome.

To date we are slightly behind last year in remittance. We need to be aware that the fiscal year of the College closes by May 1.

We have no news notes from class members this time, but there is some sad news to share:

Loyal J. Hayda died on May 6, 1998 after a rather brief, but very severe bout with chest cancer. After two years at Gustavus, he graduated from the University of Wisconsin and taught school in Robbinsdale (MN) School District. His wife, Arlene (Freeberg) continues to live at 3932 Florida Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55427. She will be at a new undetermined address after April 1, 1999. Our condolences to Arlene and family.

Ross F. Bloomquist died on November 19, 1998. He was retired Gustavus vice president for business affairs and treasurer and served as treasurer of the Alumni Association from 1961-98. His wife, Lavinia (Bloom) continues to live at 500 Jackson St., St. Peter, MN 56082. Our condolences to Lavinia and family.

Thanks for the good response from those we contacted through Phonorama, and thanks also to those who sent their contributions prior to Phonorama calls!

Please remember to include news notes along with your remittance. It may not seem like news to you, but might very well be for the rest of us!

After that, I will inject a personal news note: Our granddaughter, Sarah, class of 2001, did her J-term in Scandinavia. She wrote of enjoying the beauty of winter in Sweden, spending a weekend with relatives in Boraas, skiing at Lillehammer, Norway, and―they get credits for that! Another granddaughter, Sonia, class of 2000, spent a week of her J-term camping in Northern Minnesota with some classmates and Jim Gilbert, head of the new Environmental Studies Department. Granddaughter, Anita, class of 2002, spent the J-term at Gustavus on the hill. We are happy for all of them.


Elder Jackson

1945 Class Agent