Class of '66
October 2001

Dear ’66 Gustie,

Considering the events of the last month and the energy used to handle our emotions, I considered the class reunion an evening of much diversion.  I was once again reacquainted with the spirit of the Gustavus alumni and reminded of how the Gustavus years introduced me to so many wonderful friends.  "Once a Gustie, always a Gustie" holds true for so many of us.  Christ Chapel, being in the center of the Gustavus campus, certainly takes on a new meaning for me when I think of the events that took place on September 11th.  Evaluating and pondering what is the center of my life gives me much to think about.

Those who were able to attend the reunion at the Bloomington Doubletree Hotel felt the warmth of reconnecting and catching up on events personal and global.  For those who did not attend you can be planning for that possibility in five years. You won’t be disappointed!

During the evening we were visited by President and Mrs. Steuer, Alumni Director, Randall Stuckey and former Food Service Director, Mrs. Young.  What a joy to hear Mrs. Young, who at 89 years of age, eloquently talked about her remembrances of Gustavus in the past and her continued excitement for the future of Gustavus.  Her enthusiasm made us consider our commitment to Gustavus in various ways.

One way to stay connected with our alma mater is through the class letters.  Loel Johnson Kuehne, our past class agent, has graciously passed the baton on to Mary Strand  Slinde, Joyce Henrikson Ramseth and myself (Sharon Anderson Engman).  We want to thank Loel for being our class agent since the fall of 1991.  Loel, you deserve a break and we will continue the race of keeping all of us connected.

It is so easy to lose track of our friends with such a busy, mobile society.  I want to encourage you to participate in the class letter news.  Please do not think, as I did, that no one would be interested in my life.  That is simply not true!  What is the first thing you do when you get your class letter or Quarterly?  You immediately look for news of your classmates, right? Some of you have so diligently kept us informed, but the rest of us need to follow your lead.  Let’s increase our participation and get reconnected.

Mary, Joyce and I hope to pass on any news and exciting information about Gustavus and you.  Those who attended the reunion please consider sending some thoughts or comments about the evening.  Others can share a Gustie memory, a new Gustie connection or some information unique to you or your family.  The responses will be included in the next letter.  Please help us make the next letter an exciting one to read!

To make it more convient for you and to save on printing and postage Gustavus will be sending letters through e-mail and the U. S. Postal Service.  Please update Gustavus with your address.  The address is:  Using the Gustavus website: you can go into the college home page and click on the alumni association.  The email addresses are kept private and will not be sold to other organizations.

Phonorama is coming up soon.  The dates for participation by those of you who would like to get together with other Gusties and talk to friends around the country are:

October 15,16 & 18 at the Hilton Garden Inn, 1050 Gramsie Road, Shoreview

October 22, 23 & 25 at the Radisson Hotel South, 7800 Normandale Boulevard, Minneapolis

October 17 & 24 in the Banquet Rooms on campus

Let' s designate October 15 as a mini-reunion night for the class of 1966.  Mark it on your calendar!  Contact the Gustavus Alumni Fund Office (866/487-3863) or one of us if you can come.  If you receive a call be ready to give them some news so we can include it in the next letter.

The Alumni Fund, which for many years has been around 60% participation, is now down to below 40%.  The year 2004 will be the 50th anniversary of the fund.  The goal is to reach 50% participation by all.  Please consider being apart of that goal.

Now on to the reason you opened this letter…news about your classmates.  Since we have not heard from you we only have our comments to send. 

Mary Strand

It was delightful to see many of you at the reunion.  Given the incidents of the last few weeks, it felt good to mingle with old friends, (old only in the sense of many years of friendship, not old in terms of age.)  I spent some time discussing the world situation with people with a wide range of opinion.  I found it stimulating and it made me think back to the many discussions in college surrounding the Vietnam conflict.  All of us have been struck by the tragedy of September 11.  We hold on to our loved ones and wonder what is to come.  Our middle daughter is scheduled to leave in January for a semester in Kenya.  She is working on her master’s in public policy and economic development.  Of course we wish that she would stay closer to home, but she has been assured that it is safe as staying in this country.  Ken and I spent a weekend at the synod convention at Gustavus last spring and marveled at the continuing recovery of the campus.  If you have not been back to visit, I would encourage you to do so.  Also, please consider contributing time and resources to Gustavus.  We need people for Phonorama in October―try for October 15 for the mini-reunion.  It will be fun.  I look forward to working with all of you as one of the class agents.

Sharon Anderson

Many of you have unique Gustavus connections.  Let me share my connection.  In July of 1967, Hans ’65 and I, (both Gusties) were married.  Betsy (Tripp) Schroeder, another Gustie, was in our wedding.  This summer on August 25th our daughter, Heidi ’98, a Gustie,was married.  One of her attendants was Betsy’s daughter, Molly ’98, another Gustie!  It’s a Gustie connection that has and will last for years.

Joyce Henrikson

Not only do friends and relatives connect us to our college, but places and events do as well.  During an August trip to visit family in Juneau, Alaska, we felt compelled to fly out to another Gustavus, 41 miles off the west coast of Juneau.  This small community, lying at the base of  Glacier Bay National Park, is primarily a "lifestyle" settlement and its citizens include a mixture of professional people-teachers, retired professors, doctors, lawyers, musicians and artists.  But what makes this area so fascinating are the moving glaciers, the abundance of marine life, the 200 species of birds and the spectacular scenery.  This entire "Inside Passage" is a national treasure and if you travel to Alaska, don't miss Gustavus.

For many of us, Gustavus was the center of our universe for four years.  And now, 35

years later, names, experiences, and relationships continue to connect us.  We can strengthen that connection by generously supporting the Alumni Fund.  We hope to talk to you soon.

That’s it for now.  Please feel free to contact us through our e-mail address.  We look forward to hearing from you.  May God’s presence and love be abundant in your lives.


Sharon Anderson Engman

1966 Co-class Agent

News from Campus:

The Alumni Office is sending this class letter via U.S. Postal Service Mail and also e-mail to those alumni for whom we have an e-mail address.  Eventually class letters will be sent via e-mail only, when an address is available, unless you notify the Alumni Office that you prefer to continue to receive your letters via U.S. Postal Service.  Contact the Alumni Office at

As Gustavus enters its 140th academic year, the 2001-2002 year opened with an enrollment of 2,540 full-time students including 670 first-year students.  The Class of 2005, selected from a record number of applications (2,163), includes 18 National Merit Scholars and 18 international students, doubling last year’s number of nine international students.

Last year Gustavus athletic teams finished 18th out of 395 competing in the NCAA Division III national Sears Directors Cup Standings.  Standings are based on national tournament finishes.  The Gustie women athletes won the MIAC All-Sports title for the first time in its 18-year history.

Gustavus ranked among top colleges – Gustavus is ranked in the second tier and one of the top 114 best national liberal arts colleges by U.S. News & World Report magazine.  Gustavus ranked in the first tier in two categories, retention and graduation rates.  Gustavus’ first-year to sophomore retention rate of 92 percent ranks in the top 15 percent of all national liberal arts colleges and graduation rate of 76 percent ranks in the top 20 percent of all national liberal arts colleges.  Alumni giving ranks in the top 25 percent, down from the top five percent and a tier one ranking five years ago.  Raising the percentage of participation of alumni giving is of highest priority for the college and the offices of Alumni Relations and Gustavus Alumni Fund.

Gustavus named Best Buy... Gustavus has been named one of the best colleges in America and a Best Buy by The Fiske Guide to Colleges.  In the 2002 guidebook, the College is one of 300 best American colleges and one of 43 Best Buys nationwide.  Within Minnesota, Gustavus is among seven best colleges and is one of two private college Best Buys.  To determine which colleges make the annual Best Buy list, Fiske researchers combine cost data with academic and lifestyle information about each college and university.  Those institutions named to the Best Buy colleges list are said to offer “remarkable educational opportunities at a relatively modest cost.”  Gustavus is also included in The Princeton Review’s 2001 edition of The Best 331 Colleges.

Nobel Conference XXXVII, What is Still to be Discovered?, was October 2 & 3.  This year’s conference included five Nobel laureates and three other experts who will gave participants a foretaste of what the next big discoveries might be as we look toward the second Nobel century.  This year celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Nobel prizes and the conference will included the premier of Steve Heitzeg’s ’82 The Nobel Symphony, two art exhibitions in the Hillstrom Museum, and an exclusive 10-course banquet with a menu recreation of the Nobel dinner 100 years ago.

G.I.V.E. (Gusties In Volunteer Endeavors), a day of community service, is scheduled for Saturday, October 13.  Numerous sites have been identified in the Twin Cities and alumni in other cities around the country are participating in the event.  Contact the Alumni Office at 800-487-8437 or for more information or visit the events section of the alumni page at

Comprehensive alumni directory – In partnership with Publishing Concepts, the Gustavus Alumni Association is publishing its fourth comprehensive alumni directory.  Surveys were sent to all alumni in August and information will be used only for publication of the directory and updating database information in the Alumni Office.  The book is available for purchase only by former students of Gustavus.  Please correct or update any information and return to Publishing Concepts in the enclosed envelope provided with the survey.

New chaplain announced - The Rev. Rachel Larson has joined Rev. Brian Johnson ’80 in the Office of the Chaplain.  Larson will work in partnership with Chaplain Johnson and the other members of the Office of the Chaplain to provide spiritual guidance, worship, leadership, counseling, teaching, and other pastoral services to Gustavus students, staff, and their families.  Larson is a graduate of Augustana College in Sioux Falls, SD, and of what is now Luther Seminary in St. Paul.

Christmas in Christ Chapel, A Celtic Pilgrimage, is November 30 & December 1-2.  A ticket order form was inserted in the Fall Quarterly.  Contact Office of Public Affairs at 507-933-7520.