Class of '98
10-Year Reunion ― October 4, 2008
Hello Class of ’98!
At least in Minnesota, March seems to be living up to the saying “in like a lion, out like a lamb.” Although for us, the “lamb” is in the form of a 53 degree day that makes everyone run outside in T-shirts (like the lunatics we are) because it feels like summer. You don’t see much of that in Florida.
For this newsletter, our guest writer, Karen (from the reunion committee) will be taking you back to our freshman year…
Greetings fellow Gusties! My name is Karen Delgehausen and I am one of the volunteers working diligently on our 10-year class reunion coming up on October 4, 2008. I know we’ve all said this a thousand times already, but has it really been 10 years?? Part of me feels like it was a lifetime ago when we arrived on the hill for the first time, but the other part of me feels like it was just last week. I hope this letter stirs up some memories of your own as I take you back to our freshman tear, circa 1994.
1994 was a pivotal year for all of us; we graduated from high school and prepared ourselves to meet a whole new group of friends. I remember having so many mixed feelings as I headed south on Hwy 169 with my parents in the family car, which of course was packed to the ceiling. I was confident in my decision to go to Gustavus since I applied “early decision” and Gustavus was the only college I applied to! Even though I was excited for the whole college experience, the butterflies started to kick in as we got closer to St. Peter. What if I picked the wrong classes? What if I don’t get along with my roommate? Will I meet my future spouse at freshman orientation? What if I can’t decide on a major by the time I’m a senior? My day-dreaming was thankfully interrupted by shouts and whistles from an enthusiastic group of students I would later learn were the Gustie Greeters. There was an energetic buzz about the campus, and I remember feeling this overwhelming and dangerously exciting sense of independence. I couldn’t wait to get the car unpacked and meet my new buddies in good ol’ Rundstrom Hall.
As I started to write this letter, I couldn’t resist looking back at the pop-culture world of 1994. Let’s take a break from the reminiscing for a minute and look back at what we were watching and listening during our freshman year…Forrest Gump was one of the year’s most popular movies; I remember a bunch of us piling into Alumni Hall to watch Forrest Gump on the big screen. Jim Carrey starred in The Mask and Ace Ventura Pet Detective that year, too; I’ll just bet that if you ask Carl Lockrem to quote either movie he’d still be able to! Keanu Reeves wowed us with his incredible acting skills in Speed, and Harrison Ford kept us on the edge of our seats once again in Clear and Present Danger. And how about the music we listened to in 1994? Although our campus bands Mr. Hooper and The Silent Grey Fellows were awesome, Coolio, Pearl Jam, Tag Team, Boyz II Men and Hootie & the Blowfish topped the charts that year. Can you believe that out of all those great bands Ace of Base had three songs in the top 10 for the whole year? Yikes! Whitney Houston also received the honors with Record and Album of the Year for yep, you guessed it, “I Will Always Love You.” (My apologies if it’s stuck in your head the rest of the day!) On TV we were introduced to “Friends” for the first time, and I never knew that people were so into watching “Days of Our Lives” until I walked by The Dive one day and saw at least 30 people crowded around the TV! Another notable event of 1994 was when Tonya Harding’s cronies injured fellow skater, Nancy Kerrigan, in a below the belt stunt to keep her rival out of the Olympics.
Okay, okay I digress, but I couldn’t help but share some fun trivial facts about the goings on in 1994! Back to reminiscing…After we got our cars unpacked we headed to the Chapel to listen to Chaplain Elvee welcome us in true Elvee style to our new home on the hill. I can still hear his unmistakably shrill, but comforting voice so clearly, “After you are here a few Septembers, you will learn for yourself that the life of this little college is imprinted by the natural world in which it is set. Fall beginnings, middle-winter marches, late spring endings. And then once more, again, once more.” After the short service I believe we then headed off to the college version of Home Room. My class was music appreciation with Dr. John McKay. I remember sitting in that packed room in Bjorling listening to him speak and wondering if this guy was for real; and in an instant I was put at ease when he quoted a line from Young Frankenstein that had my parents and I giggling quietly to ourselves while the rest of the room looked around with a blank stare.
Once the year actually started and classes began, because everything was so new I remember that I could hardly wait to participate in different activities and events on campus: sports games, plays, concerts, etc. I also thought that I had died and gone to heaven when I realized that the Dive was open EVERY weekend. Most of us received our very first email address that year, and we had to physically walk or pick up a phone with a cord attached to it to find out where a friend was. Christmas in Christ Chapel was “Old and New Spain;” I can picture myself playing cello in the orchestra while the larger than life Sun and Moon appeared during a piece from The Mission. Then came J-term when some of us went off on adventurous trips while the rest of us braved the Minnesota cold. Spring finally arrived, and I could hardly wait for that first really nice day when the ground was dry enough to get outside and throw a Frisbee or football around. It seems like the population of the campus doubled overnight since we had been cooped up for so long! It got harder and harder to study as the days got warmer, and before I knew it, it was time to head home again for the summer. While it was fun to have a break from studying I couldn’t wait to get back to GAC again in the fall.
Our freshman year represented a year of a lot of change for all of us. Maybe we met our new best friend, future spouse, best man or maid of honor. Some of us might have started to focus on a specific career path; but if any of you are like me I finally settled in to a fitting career several years after I graduated! As our class reunion approaches, please keep an eye out for details on a project headed up by Joe Gold and Mike Strong. We would like to organize a list of bios for all of us to enjoy; Joe thought this would be a good way to get the skinny on all of our classmates. So, we are going to ask that we all submit a brief history of what we’ve been up to for the last 10 years: trips, births, marriages, promotions, career changes―whatever you’d like to share. Don’t forget to send in pictures you’d like to share at our reunion too!
Enjoy the springtime―I hope you’re able to get outside and throw a Frisbee around. I'm looking forward to seeing you all back on the hill in October!
1998 Guest Writer
Aaaahhh…1994….it’s fun to think back. It’s fun to look back, too, so send us some photos, if you can!! As we approach Spring Break time, look for your Gustavus Spring Break pictures. You have them somewhere. Did you go on a Spring Break “Work Trip?” Did you work on campus during break? Did you go home to see family? Did you get to go to Acapulco with a group of 25 Gusties? You must have some photos. Dig ’em up and send ’em in! If you have a scanner, send them via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s what’s going on with the 10 year reunion plans:
By now you probably get the idea that we are planning one big event on October 4! Tailgating, the homecoming game, campus tours, slide shows, a sit down dinner (with child care provided!), and dancing and socializing are all part of our plans.
We met at the end of February to continue planning the details. We are working to get some things on the menu that will bring back memories. We are gathering songs for a ’94-’98 music play list. We are also planning on having a shuttle van available (free of charge) between Mankato and Gustavus (and Patrick’s toward the end of the night) so that you can let loose and not worry about getting safely back to your hotel. Consider making the journey back to Gustavus, even if it’s been a long one.
Part of celebrating our reunion is raising money for the Gustavus Fund in honor of our 10th anniversary year. You may remember that our goal is $35,310. Last I checked we only had about $5,400. Now, my numbers are not the “latest” (they are from the beginning of February), but at that time, the class of 1999 was kicking our butt with almost double the amount raised. C’mon, ’98, they are young and immature, remember?! We can’t let them beat us (er, I mean, this is not a competition…we are all in this together, right?).
You may have recently received a phone call from someone on the committee…we are trying to touch base with ALL of you! If you haven’t, hopefully you will soon. We want to see how things are going with you, get updates if you have any, tell you about the reunion IN CASE YOU AREN’T READING THIS and don’t know about it, and of course ask you to consider donating money to the Gustavus Fund. It wouldn’t be a phone call from your dear old Alma Matter if we didn’t, right?
Here is a useful bit of info that I didn’t know until recently: there is something called the “three year pledge” that could really help our total for our 10-year reunion year. Three year pledges are counted in
the reunion celebration gift to the college during the reunion year. For example, if you make a pledge/gift of $100 during the reunion year and a pledge for $100 next year and the year after, the reunion total will include $300 for the class celebrated at the reunion, even though you are only responsible for getting the first $100 in by October 3, 2008. Use the enclosed Reunion Class Giving card to share your pledge and/or gift today!
And now, some updates from your fellow classmates (a.k.a. the part of the letter where I feel quite lazy as I look at what everyone else has been doing)…
- Aleida George Zollman is now a social worker for Hennepin County.
- Mike Brown is currently a national accounts manager for Saxon Fleet Services.
- Matthew Santala is a kindergarten teacher for Billings Public Schools (Boulder Elementary).
- Jennifer Robe Reiland is a doctor of optometry at Dr. J. Marsh and Dr. J. Reiland in Wisconsin.
- Paul Jessup is a vice president at Bank of America in Chicago.
- Jessica Rolf is a registered nurse in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Le Bonheur Children’s Medical Center.
- Jake Heckenlaible is a partner at Leeward Trading Company in Minneapolis.
- Rebecca Wold Freeman is an associate pastor at St. John American Lutheran Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
- Emily Soderlund is an office manager for Grand Teton Brewing Company in Idaho. By the way, she also spent a year as a “lady carpenter” as she built her own house!
- Nathan Slinde is a lead teacher at Clover Ridge Elementary in Chaska.
- Bohdan Vadis is a pastor at Tierrasanta Lutheran Church in San Diego, CA.
- Katherine Liggett Patton is currently a 4th grade teacher in Austin, MN.
- Ingrid Nelson Al-Sattam is a kindergarten teacher….in Kuwait!! She teaches at the Universal American School.
- Scott Ziegler was named a partner at Piehl, Hanson, Beckman P.A., Certified Public Accountants.
- Sara Olson McConnell is a first grade teacher in Jordan (ISD #717), and graduated from St. Mary’s with a master’s in education (in May ’07).
- Jennifer Lee-Pentz joined the Affiliated Community Medical Centers in Willmar, MN.
- John Anderson is an associate attorney at Bellows and Bellows in Illinois. He also served a one-year deployment in Afghanistan with the U.S. Army Reserve. He returned in August of 2007. Welcome home!
- Paul Jessup married Jian Tan on August 31, 2007.
- Rebecca Wold married Leif (aka “Sedge”) Freeman on May 19, 2007.
Births (Future Gusties):
- Nathan Slinde and his wife, Kirsten, had a baby boy on 2/23/2007. His name is Noah Oscar Slinde.
- Kristina Johnson Milinkovich and her husband, Max, had a baby boy on 8/10/2007. His name is Eli!
- Rachel Kjellberg Carnahan and husband, Lance, had a baby girl on 8/25/2007. Her name is Alice Rae Carnahan.
- Molly Milinkovich Wengler and husband, Robert, had a baby boy on 10/17/2007. His name is Robert Henry Wengler.
- Ryan and Karen (Lantz) Holt are the proud parents of a baby girl born on 12/17/07. Her name is Ingrid Martha Holt.
- Stacey Olson Huebner and her husband, Charlie, had a, baby girl on 1/23/2008. Her name is Riley Jaymes Huebner.
- Kristi Maidment Osgood and her husband, Ryan, had a baby girl on 3/11/2008. Her name is Margaret Edith Osgood, and I had the privilege of holding her last night so I can vouch for her― “Maggie” is beautiful.
- Cristina Zarate Larson and her husband, Blake, also had a baby girl on 3/11/2008 (same day and hospital as Kristi!). Her name is Brianna Joy Larson.
Something You Probably Didn’t Know:
Rick Henley is an instrument rated pilot of a single engine aircraft! This is a big deal―lots of work goes into achieving this rating. He is also a guitar instructor, a session guitarist, and a composer in the Denver area!
Thanks, once again, for reading this letter. Hopefully you had a pleasant flashback of some sort to YOUR freshman year on “the Hill.”
Alicia Sutphen Schimke
1998 Guest Letter Writer
World Renowned Primate Expert Speaks in the Twin Cities
Frans B.M. de Waal, a Dutch psychologist, primatologist, and animal behavior expert, will present two public lectures as part of a residency through the Rydell Professorship at Gustavus Adolphus College funded by Drs. Robert E. and Susan T. Rydell. De Waal will present “On the Possibility of Animal Empathy” at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 3 in Alumni Hall on campus and “Our Inner Ape: Human Nature as Seen by a Primatologist” at 7 p.m. April 8 at the Great Clips IMAX Theater at the Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley. DeWaal’s research centers on primate social behavior, including conflict resolution, cooperation, inequity aversion, and food-sharing. In 2007, de Waal was named to the “TIME 100”—a list of the 100 men and women whose power, talent, or moral example is transforming the world according to Time magazine. As part of his residency at Gustavus, de Waal is also co-teaching the course “Neuroscience Capstone” with Gustavus Professor of Psychology Janine Wotton.
Join other Minneapolis/St. Paul area Gusties for a once-a-month morning cup of coffee and breakfast while getting an update on Gustavus. The group meets the third Wednesday of each month 8-9:30 a.m. at the Doubletree Hotel, Minneapolis-Park Place, 1500 Park Place Boulevard (Hwy. 394 & Hwy. 100) $10 per person. Reserve a spot by calling Don Swanson '55 at 763-533-9083. Upcoming dates:
April 16 - featuring Linnaeus Arboretum Director, Cindy Johnson-Groh
May 21 - featuring Sports Information Director, Tim Kennedy
Alumni Awards Announced
The Alumni Association announces the following 2008 awards selected by the Alumni Board of Directors.
Greater Gustavus Award - Given to those who by deed, have notably advanced and aided Gustavus Adolphus College:
- Jim and Susan (Pepin) Peterson ’64 ’65
Distinguished Alumni Citations - Recognizing outstanding and exceptional professional achievement:
- Craig Johnson ’69, bishop, Minneapolis Area Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
- Talmadge King ’70, chair, Department of Medicine, University of California San Francisco School of Medicine.
- Barbara Berry Leonard ’63, nursing professor, University of Minnesota.
First Decade Awards - Recognizing early professional achievement:
- Miho Ihara, senior consultant, CPCS Transcom Limited.
- Jason Smerdon, Barnard Environmental Science/Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Environmental Science, Barnard College.
The Greater Gustavus Award and Distinguished Alumni Citations will be presented at the Alumni Banquet on Saturday, May 31 and the First Decade Awards will be presented during Homecoming Weekend, Oct. 4.
The women’s hockey team became the first team to finish the MIAC women’s hockey season undefeated. The team is currently ranked #3 in the country going into the playoffs. The men’s tennis team claimed its fourth ITA Division III Team Indoor Title in the eight year history of the tournament. The men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams both won the MIAC Championship.
Upcoming Alumni Events
- Naples, FL Chapter Gathering – March 29
- “On the Possibility of Animal Empathy,” Rydell Lecture - April 3 on campus
- “Our Inner Ape: Human Nature as Seen by a Primatologist,” Rydell Lecture - April 8 at Minnesota Zoo
- Seattle Chapter Gathering – April 13
- Austin, TX Chapter Gathering – April 13
- Class Reunions - for 50-Year Club, 1958, and 1963 - May 30 and 31