Class of '65
May 2004

Greetings to the class of ’65,

Are the seasons of this year going as quickly for you as they are for me?  I have heard the saying, “The older you are, the faster the time goes.”  Well, I do believe!

We returned from Florida a week ago just in time for some beautiful weather.  We did have a great “winter,” but we are very happy to be back here to this Minnesota life.

Thanks to Elaine Buck Stenman, we had a winter letter with news of some of our classmates.  Thanks, Elaine, for getting that letter out to us!  Since then, we’ve heard from others…

Marion Southers, Jr. is enjoying retirement.  His employments were a social worker in Ohio and a childcare worker in Kentucky.  His wife, Lillie, and he have been married 34 years.  They have three adult children, a daughter and two sons, all of whom are college graduates, and, they are enjoying three grandchildren!  Marion is taking piano lessons and serves as a volunteer in delivering lunch meals to the elderly.

Kay Johnson Shager has a new grandson, Kelsey, born in June!

Judith Swanson Grabow continues to work at the Lincoln (Nebraska) Regional Center and Lincoln Psychiatric Group as a Psychiatric APRN.  In January, she began UNMC as a postgraduate student in the family practitioner program.

Iris Benson Smyth sent us an update…she is still working (she has noticed that many of her classmates have retired) as a geriatric nurse practitioner in two local nursing homes doing both sub-acute and long-term care.  Their youngest child, Lisa, graduated last spring from Bethel College and married Jeff Olson someone she met in college, so Lisa is now a Minnesotan.  Their middle son, Jon, is completing his bachelor’s degree at Gordon College in Wenham, MA.  Their eldest, Peter, is a pilot for Continental Express.  He and his wife, Amanda, are the proud parents of four under five!!!

Norma Schneider Miller lives in Monticello, MN and has had two new grandchildren join her family last spring.

Allan Bailey sends a HUGE HELLO to all of his classmates.  He says he misses all of his classmates, and it looks like he is going to have more time to miss us…because he has sold his motel and resort!!  Allan and his wife, Cynthia, live in Wolfeboro, NH.

Julie Stensland Andrews was honored by the Florida Committee of the National Space Club at a special banquet in Cocoa Beach.  Julie, the communications manager for Lockheed Martin Aerospace at Cape Canaveral received the 2003 Harry Kolcum News and Communications Award.  She was cited for excellence in telling the aerospace story to the public in her job as an industry communications official.  Julie began her aerospace career at General Dynamics in San Diego, CA, advancing from a technical writing job to public relations.  During her work in the International Launch Services division of Lockheed Martin she traveled extensively overseas making business trips to France, Switzerland and Russia.  Since her assignment to Cape Canaveral, she has made her home on Merritt Island, Florida, with her husband Patrick.

Milo and Judy (Boline ’66) Larson send greetings and are enjoying retirement…they have time to enjoy their three grandchildren!

Paul Hammer is now among the retirees!  He has retired from full-time parish ministry, and is overseeing the building of a new lake home in northern Minnesota.  Carolyn continues to work for Kane County Public Health.  Their daughter, Sarah ’99, is a musician at Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany.

Jerilyn Rodeberg Hirsch has retired from Fosdick and Company and will be going to Vietnam in a volunteer teaching position in Ho Chi Minh City.  She will be working in a Catholic Elementary School teaching English to students and teachers.

Walter Swanson has a daughter getting married in June.

Charles Rodning was awarded Grand Prize (Kusamakura Taishou), Foreign Language Category, in recognition of the merits exhibited in the eight “Kusamakura” International Haiku Competition.  Haiku are short, imagistic poems about the things that make people feel connected to nature.

Campus News…

President Peterson inaugurated

Dr. James Peterson ’64 was inaugurated during a ceremony in Christ Chapel on Friday, April 16.  Other inaugural events scheduled April 15-18, included a symposium featuring Rev. Dr. Martin Marty, tree dedication, Gustavus Association of Congregations meeting, G.I.V.E. community service day in St. Peter, music concert, art exhibition, and an alumni reception preceding the Nobel Symphony Concert at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis.

50th Anniversary Alumni Fund Closes May 31

The 2004 Alumni Fund will close May 31 with a goal of 50 percent alumni participation. Thanks to everyone who has already participated with a gift.  If you haven’t given, please think about sending a gift along with your news in the enclosed gold envelope. Gustavus alumni have a long tradition of strong alumni participation.  Help maintain our national ranking by participating in the 50th anniversary year of the Alumni Fund.

Scholarships and financial assistance at Gustavus

Did you know that scholarships and financial assistance for Gustavus students totals $18M, almost 25 percent of Gustavus’ annual budget?  Alumni Fund gifts, including designated and unrestricted gifts, help enable students to receive a Gustavus education.  Gustavus offers two types of scholarships to students -- merit awards given to recognize academic achievement, and tuition grants are used to assist students with recognized financial need.  Endowed scholarships are an important part of the Gustavus grant program and currently nine percent of scholarship funds come from the endowment.

Alumni survey

An alumni survey was sent to 2,000 members of reunion classes.  Approximately 600 have responded as of April 1.  Questions on the survey consist of how well Gustavus prepared them for employment and graduate education, activities involved in while at Gustavus, personal growth skills, alumni events and services, and overall satisfaction with the College.  Results of the survey will be included in the Fall Quarterly.

Did you know …

  • Nearly 80% of Gustavus students graduate in four years, compared with 56% of students from other Minnesota private colleges; the national average is 17%.
  • There are seven choral ensembles and 23 instrumental ensembles, two jazz, four woodwind and three brass ensembles.
  • More than 40 percent of Gustavus students volunteer through the Gustavus community service center on a regular basis.
  • For student safety, the campus is well-lit, there is 24-hour Safety and Security patrol and escort service, residence halls are locked 24 hours a day, and there are blue light emergency phones throughout campus linked directly to Safety and Security.
  • And looking back -- during the college’s early years, students were awakened by a bell at 5:45 a.m. and all lights had to be out by 10:30 p.m.

Upcoming events

  • Class of 1954 and 50-Year Club Reunions – May 28 & 29
  • Commencement – May 30
  • Alumni Fund closes – May 31
  • Class reunions on Homecoming & Family Weekend – October 1 & 2


I sincerely want to thank each of you who have remembered Gustavus with a gift to the Alumni Fund this year.  As of March of this year, 79 of our class members have sent a monetary gift.  That is 31%, or one out of every three classmates have contributed.  Our goal is for 136 of us to send a gift to Gustavus by the end of this month.  Please consider sending this gift, whatever the amount.  It is truly appreciated.

Remember: The Alumni Fund closes on May 31.  Can I count on you?

Let us hear from you…you can call 1-800-Gusties, write a note in the gold envelope provided in the Quarterly or this letter, or e-mail to  It’s always good to read your news - wherever you are and what you are doing.

Best Wishes,

Beverly Nordskog Hedeen

1965 Co-class Agent