Class of '98
10-Year Reunion ― October4, 2008
Greetings, Class of ’98! My name is Alicia Sutphen Schimke and I’m writing on behalf of our class’s 10-year reunion planning committee.
The temperature is currently below zero as I write this letter, and I find myself wondering (as I do every year during this season) why in the world I still live in Minnesota. Do I like the rush of not knowing whether or not the car will start at 7:30 a.m. on a sub-zero morning? Is it the exhilarating challenge of getting my three kids bundled with hats, mittens, scarves, jackets and boots just to get to the bus stop and back every day? Or is it that I enjoy the sensation of numb fingers and toes so much that I stay in this state?
As appealing as all of the above may seem, they actually have little to do with my residence in this frozen tundra. It’s because it’s where I belong…at least for now. It makes me happy to be surrounded by sincere people that care about me. There are opportunities for learning, growth, and service for me and my children. Really, the same reason that I chose Gustavus. Despite making a firm claim during my college search (I admit it was during the winter) that I would NEVER go to a college in Minnesota…I would surely choose something in Southern California, Arizona, or at least Iowa…I settled on a small college in St. Peter, MN. And I’m so glad that I did.
Would I have been able to sled down a hill on a cafeteria tray had I ended up at the University of Hawaii? Absolutely not. Would I have spent so much time inside my dorm, making Mac-n-cheese and watching “Friends” and playing pranks on Paul Jessup if it had been nice enough to go outside during J-term? No way. After my first Christmas break, I realized how much I missed my Gustavus “home” when I pulled up into the Rundstrom parking lot and saw a group of my friends having a snowball fight in the freshly fallen snow. Of course we complained when we had to walk across the “tundra” to Olin or Schaefer for a J-term class, but when the snow melted and we had our first 60 degree day, nothing could touch our feelings of jubilation. I still remember playing Frisbee down by the Gustavus sign with Lisa Hinds Jemtrud and Karen Delgehausen on one such day (of course in shorts and T-shirts…that’s just what you do when it gets above 50 in Minnesota).
Along with the cold weather in January, we got to experience something that I still need to explain to most of my non-Gustavus friends: J-term. When in our lives will we get to experience such a thing again? Whether you used your January term to travel abroad, do an internship, concentrate on a difficult course, try a class that peeks your interest, but has NOTHING to do with your major, or just take the month off physically or mentally (hey, don’t knock it, there’s value to be had in doing that sometimes too)…think about your J-term experiences and how lucky we were to have them. The “grown-up” world just doesn’t have a place for the concept of a J-term. Maybe because there isn’t enough time, or maybe because the knowledge gained is considered a luxury and not necessity. I took a class called “Parenting” during J-term, just for fun, and that is currently the college course that has the most relevance in my life! The class called “Discrete Mathematics” (with Jeff Rosoff – Mr. “Quite Easily Done!”) was the one that I thought was going to put my life on hold for a month, and turned out to be fun and light on the homework, leaving lots of time for, a-hem, other activities. I thought that was pretty fun so the next year I took a class called “Strangeness in Everyday Life” with Rich Hilbert, which I thought would give me plenty of time to goof off. I was surprised by the daily writing assignments and horribly difficult reading assignments, but still remember the heated in-class discussions, and the fascinating theories in the book. My remaining J-term was spent in Perth, Australia with Becca Pyle and Dawn (Durre) Nye. I hope and pray that my children will one day get to experience an education that so fully embraces the love of learning, personal growth, and the meaning of “liberal arts.”
Enough about J-term and all the fun we had. I’m supposed to be giving you the “scoop” on an autumn event: our 10 YEAR REUNION! For those of you who don’t live in Minnesota, I have checked the 10-month forecast, and the weather should be beautiful. Don’t let the current sub-zero temps scare you.
Here’s some information that we have determined so far about our upcoming event:
- We are intentionally not planning a Friday event. Use this night as an excuse to plan a smaller get-together with some close Gustie friends! We don’t want to divide the group by having multiple “large group” events. We want to see as many of you as possible on Saturday, October 4th.
- We’ll start the day off right with some brunch food at the ’98 tailgating tent, and then head to the football field to cheer on the Gusties. If you haven’t seen the new stadium, it will blow you away…it’s beautiful. A grassy berm surrounds the field, so families can sit on a blanket and informally watch the game!
- If it’s been awhile since you have been on campus (or if you just feel like a nice walk), there will be campus tours available after the game. There has been an unbelievable amount of transformation since our time up on the hill.
- If you have little ones, it’s time to release them to the capable hands of some Gustavus volunteers and go to a cocktail hour, dinner, and presentation. If you don’t have little ones, you’ll just get the first choice of tables. J
- After that, we’re thinking that a visit to Patrick’s may be in order for those that are not ready to call it a night (unfortunately, you’ll have to figure out what to do with those little ones at this point, as bringing them to the bar is not recommended).
We need YOU!
PICTURES! If you have any pictures that you’d be willing to send, it would be appreciated. You may only have pictures of a small group of people, but if 50 people sent in pictures of a few of their close friends, we’d have a great group of pictures to use for slide-shows, etc. Please note the year of the picture, if you know it. Anecdotes are welcome!! Please send photos (scanned or digital copies, please) and anecdotes you’d like to contribute to the Alumni Office via email at email@example.com.
We need your donations. We will be contacting all of you during the next few months to talk about contributing to the Alumni Fund on behalf of the class of ’98. Keep in mind that our goal is to raise the equivalent of one year’s tuition, room and fees as they exist for this present generation of students. Our goal, therefore, is $35,310.00. It’s a big one. But we have 529 people to do it! Something to consider is that if you don’t have much to give in a particular year, giving something, no matter the amount, really helps. Other foundations that give grants to the school look at the level of alumni participation when deciding if and how much they will give Gustavus. Strong alumni participation begets better gifts from other foundations. Even if you don’t normally give financial gifts to Gustavus, please consider a gift this year in honor of our 10 year reunion. If you look online at www.gustavus.edu/giving/gustavusfund/classtotals , you can track our class’ progress.
- Matt Kusilek is a print/web publisher for Super Lawyers magazine.
- Chad Gilpin is living in Maryland working in oncology for Novartis Corporation.
- Katie Otting is a security counselor at the Minnesota Security Hospital in St. Peter. (Ooh, remember when the two guys escaped during our sophomore year?)
- Rachel Dault Hudson is a biology instructor at St. Paul College.
- Molly Bohn Lee is a physical therapist at Sister Kenny Sports and Physical Therapy.
- Gwendolyn Kelly is a doctor of chiropractic and a certified chiropractic sports physician, and is the owner of Kelly Chiropractic, P.A.
- Cari Navara Lundell is owner of Snap Fitness in Minnetonka.
- Colleen Mulvihill Pacem is a nurse practitioner at the University of Washington.
- Joe Gold is a financial services consultant at TIAA-CREF.
- Reginal Klindworth is a pastor at the Crown of Glory Lutheran Church in Chaska.
- Dan Kelly is a general manager of operations for the Winston-Salem National Industries for the Blind.
- Peter Kluge is a cardiology fellow at Garden City Hospital in Michigan.
- Karl Sundquist is an assistant county attorney for Saint Louis County Attorney’s Office.
- Sean Lewis is a QA Technical Specialist for Jefferson Pilot Financial Insurance Company.
- Stephanie Johs Thiede works for Park Nicollet as a physical therapist.
- Sara Loftus Wishart is a third grade teacher for the Chaska School District (ISD #112).
- Wade Leuwerke is an assistant professor at Drake University in Iowa.
- Kjerstin Moody is still in Finland until the spring.
- Erik Hagberg is employed at ADM as a senior research scientist.
- Cristina Zarate Larson is a teacher (and on-call athletic trainer) at The Blake School.
- Amanda Paulson Laden is at Wayzata High School as a biology teacher.
- Angie Henrikson Fahl is a marketing manager for Allianz Life Insurance Company.
- Pete Eklund is finishing up an internship at St. Joseph’s Hospital in St. Paul doing cardiac ultrasound.
- Matthew Christenson is a 5th grade teacher at Spring Lake Park ISD #16.
- Jessica Hansen Carr is a kindergarten teacher for Osseo Area Schools (ISD #279).
- Kari Seidel Aase is a 1st grade teacher at Cowern Elementary School in North St. Paul.
- R. John Buckley is teaching English and focusing on his own travel writing in Daegu, South Korea.
- Melissa Johnson is now the director of children, youth, and family ministry at Grace Lutheran Church in Palo Alto, CA.
- Karin Hogberg Schatte is the choral director at Hope Lutheran High School in Winona.
- Carrie Nordlund is an assistant professor at Lake Forest College in Illinois.
- Jessica Iverson is a paralegal at the law offices of Thomas E. Francis, P.C. in Costa Mesa, CA.
- Macey Miller Mulheron is a choir director at Saint Bernard’s School. She and her husband Joshua ’99 are both members of the Two Rivers Chorale.
- Tennille Davis Haro is a 3rd grade teacher at Lammersville Elementary School in California.
- Sheila Schonrock Schultz is a basketball and cross country coach for Wayzata High School, in addition to being an elementary school physical education teacher.
- Rachel Gustafson Gosney is the owner of the Appleton Veterinary Clinic in Appleton, MN.
- Shane Thielke is the principal at Parkside Elementary School in Buffalo, MN.
- Heidi Pettis Meyer has begun a tenure track position in the Nursing Department at Gustavus!
More Education (for those that can’t get enough):
- Matt Detert is pursuing his MBA at the University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business.
- Gigi Wait Dobosenski is pursuing her doctorate in educational leadership through Argosy University.
- Theodore Rice received his Ph.D. in mathematics from Iowa State University in August of 2007, and is currently a lecturer at Southern Methodist University.
- Stacey Olson Huebner received her master’s in education from Colorado College in June of 2007.
- Erin Tripp Halverson received her master’s of education from Southwest State University in May of 2003.
New Babies (aka Future Gusties!):
- Cristina (Zarate) Larson and her husband, Blake, had a daughter named Eliza, born July 7, 2006. They currently reside in Plymouth, MN.
- Jenel Anderson Wavra and Brent had a daughter, Lindsey, born on July 11th of 2006. They currently reside in Moorhead, MN.
- Mary Ann Dodd-Hermansen and Joel had a new baby named, Shelby, born on October 17, 2007. They currently reside in Appleton, WI.
- Adrian and Christy (Anderson) Anderson had a baby girl, Linnea Michelle, on April 11, 2007. They live in Libertyville, IL.
- Lindsey Anderson Fabian and Peter had a new baby girl named Leah Marie, born October 7, 2007. They currently reside in New Brighton, MN.
- Matthew Christenson and Michelle had a baby boy, Owen, born in October of 2007. They currently reside in St. Paul, MN.
- Molly Bohn Lee and husband, Zach, had a baby boy named, Dylan Robert, born April 25, 2007. They currently reside in Bloomington, MN.
- Heidi Pettis Meyer and Mitchel had their third daughter, Sophie Rae, on September 4, 2007. They currently live in Hastings, MN.
- Sara Strain Kujala and Jake had a baby girl named, Emma Rose, born July 19, 2007. They currently reside in Coon Rapids, MN.
- Karin Hogberg Schatte and William had a baby girl, Anna Grace, born July 1, 2007. They currently reside in Winona, MN.
- Tammy Warren Krez and Ted had a baby boy named, Emmett Thomas, born April 10, 2007. They currently reside in Madison, WI.
- Sarah Jaeb Jensen and husband, Todd, had a baby girl, Callie Anne, born February 7, 2007. They currently reside in South Haven, MN.
- Heather Kuhlman Lorentz and Tim had a baby boy, Daniel Richard, born July 9, 2007. They currently reside in St. Peter, MN.
- Katherine Whitman Sallah and Omar had a baby girl named Rubiatou Cheryl, born July 28, 2007. They currently reside in Santa Fe, NM.
- Heidi Anderson Bonner and husband, Marc, had twin boys, Aidan Conley and Cian Lewis, on November 24, 2007.
- Ryan Benedict married Leah Theisen on July 28, 2007.
- Stacy Bauer married Scott Carel on April 21, 2007.
- Tenille Davis Haro married René Haro on June 16, 2007 in Monterey, CA.
- Rachel Gustafson Gosney is engaged to Justin Bakeberg, and the couple will get married in June of 2008.
I’m adding another category to this Class Letter. It’s going to be called…
Something You Probably Didn’t Know:
· Maura Shuttleworth was a gymnast at Gustavus, and is now an international competitor with USA Powerlifting. She is a three time national champion on the Bench Press, three time world bench team member, and a Minnesota state record holder with a 187 pound bench press in the 105 lb class. COOL! Oh yeah…she also works as the assistant county attorney for Washington County .
Thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedules to read this letter. I hope it finds you well. Please mark October 4th on your calendars…it’s an important day! Make time for these important moments in life, or they will pass you by.
Alicia Sutphen Schimke
1998 Guest Letter Writer
Greetings and salutations from on top of the hill! My name is Adam Eckhardt and I am interning with the Alumni Relations Office over J-Term and through second semester! I am a senior, double majoring in Communication Studies and Business Management. I can hardly believe that J-Term has come to an end and before we know it the second semester will be upon us. Over January I had the privilege of interning full-time with the Alumni Office but coming this spring I will be on a part-time basis along with my classes. This January was my third J-term on campus and it proved to be just as cold as I remembered it. There were several mornings when I braved the trek across campus in the subzero blistering winds and the ice-coated parking lot that I wondered to myself, “Why do we live here?” I suppose if it weren’t for the people this would be a pretty dismal place but then I would get to work and see the people that make Gustavus happen every day and remembered why.
This year’s J-Term had a lot of opportunities to offer students. There were over 26 different classes that went abroad to places such as Guatemala, Fiji, Tanzania, South Africa (My roommate went on this trip, I’m so jealous), India, and Australia. Along with all of the classes the Orchestra toured in China for their international tour this year. The tour started on January 18th and went through February 1. If you look on the Gustavus web page you can see the orchestra doing the Gustie Rouser on the Great Wall of China! I wonder how many times that has been done before? The orchestra will conclude with a home concert in Christ Chapel on February 17th starting at 1:30 pm and the concert is free to the public. Speaking of tours, the Gustavus Wind Orchestra will be touring to Florida over Spring Break this year. The tour runs from March 22 to March 29 with a home concert on April 5 at 3:00 pm. The Gustavus Choir (I am a first tenor in this choir!!) will be postponing its tour this year due to Dr. Aune needing to leave for the remainder of the year for medical reasons. We wish him a speedy recovery.
Gustie winter sports teams are having another great year, as all are near the top in the MIAC.
Other things that are happening in the following months of the semester include the 13th Annual Building Bridges conference. This conference will focus on Genocide Awareness: How will history judge us? Paul Rusesabagina, whose life story was the basis of critically acclaimed movie Hotel Rwanda will speak at this year’s conference. The Gustavus Music Showcase will be at Orchestra Hall on March 9th at 2 pm. The Gustavus Choir, the Gustavus Symphony Orchestra, and the Gustavus Wind Orchestra will all be featured at this event. I encourage everyone to go since I will be singing in the Choir. Tickets can be purchased at the Orchestra Hall box office and may be purchased at the door, online, and via fax or phone. Go to www.gustavus.edu/musicshowcase to find out more.
I cannot believe that this J-Term has gone so fast and before I know it I will be graduating and be an alum myself. These four years have been great to me and I will cherish them forever. I am proud to say that I am a Gustie and I hope you all are too! GO GUSTIES!!!!