Krejci Named Provost
Dr. Mark Krejci was named provost and dean of the college, effective July 1. Krejci has served as vice president for Academic Affairs and dean of the college since 2005.
As provost, Krejci will create a direct connection between Academic Affairs and Student Affairs, expanding Concordia's student advisement program.
In addition to Krejci's new position, Dr. James Aageson, chair of the Division of Arts and Humanities and religion professor, was appointed to serve as the dean of Arts and Sciences. He will administer all academic departments, with the exception of the Concordia School of Business. Dr. Greg Cant is dean of the business school and began his work in the fall of 2008.
"The new administrative structure will allow us to create a thoroughly integrated learning environment," Krejci says. "From orientation to graduation, we intend to engage every student in developing a customized plan for success at Concordia and beyond."
Digging Up History
Michele Hockett '10, Havre, Mont., has always been drawn to the history, myths and stories of ancient Greece. A semester with the Credo in Crete program solidified her interest.
This summer she'll return to Greece as a field excavator at the Athenian Agora, one of the most important sites in the history of Western civilization. Hockett is one of 15 American students chosen this year to work at the premier American archaeological site in Greece.
She will spend nearly two months studying the finer points of archaeology from digging and cleaning techniques to classifying finds.
"The thought of walking where Socrates and Plato walked excites me," she says. "When you touch something that hasn't been touched for thousands of years, you're building history."
Biology Professor Remembered
Professor emeritus of biology Jack Powers, 78, passed away Dec. 13 in Ulen, Minn., leaving behind a legacy of academic success. He specialized in entomology and taught at the college for 38 years before retiring in 1998.
Students in the biology program were certainly motivated by Powers and influenced by his teaching, says biology professor Dr. Gerald Van Amburg.
"Jack was known for his enthusiasm for his students," he says. "He was a driving factor in encouraging students to go to graduate school in entomology. He brought things to life."
Active in insect taxonomy, Powers discovered several new species of insects, three of which are named after him.
Chinese Major, Minor Added
A year and a half after offering its first Chinese language course, the college has added a major and minor. The program will include formal classroom instruction and other study opportunities, such as an internship or weekends at Concordia Language Villages. The college also will establish a study abroad program.
Dr. Tao Ming, assistant professor of Chinese, currently teaches three courses, including beginning and intermediate Chinese language. Additional offerings will include higher-level language courses, readings in Chinese literature, the study of Chinese culture and civilization, and business.
"The Chinese language becomes increasingly important in the business world," Ming says. "Offering Chinese to Concordia students will definitely help to increase their competitive edge."
Eight Concordia faculty and administrators retired this year, with a combined total of 251 years of service to the college. From directing theatre productions and coaching football players, to teaching courses and helping students register each semester, they have played important roles serving the mission of the college. They were honored at the annual spring faculty and administrator appreciation dinner April 14.
The retirees include Dr. Albert Bartz '55, psychology, 50 years; Bob Nick '65, physical education, 43 years; Helen Cermak, CSTA, 36 years; Ansel Hakanson, physical plant, 33 years; Linda Widme, Cobber Bookstore, 32 years; Robert Foss '65, School of Business, 29 years; James Ellingson, education, 17 years; and Carole Stalheim, Registrar's Office, 11 years.
Two Students Honored With Fulbrights
Megan Stolte '09, Lakeville, Minn., and Sarah Walker '09, Sioux Falls, S.D., were awarded Fulbright English Teaching Assistantships.
Stolte received a grant to teach in a primary school in Valencia, which is in eastern Spain, for nine months. "This is a wonderful opportunity to get back to Spain," says the Spanish and organizational communication major who studied abroad in the fall of 2007.
Dr. Mary Rice, Spanish professor, says Stolte's experience abroad makes her an ideal candidate because she is culturally prepared.
"In addition, Meg is very kind and patient," Rice says. "She will excel at working with students."
Walker, a history and English literature major, received a grant to teach in South Korea. She credits her professors for helping inspire her.
"Although I've always been pretty driven, my mentors at Concordia have pushed me to a new level of critical thought and achievement in my studies," Walker says.
Concordia has averaged about one Fulbright winner a year since 1980, says Dr. David Sandgren, the Fulbright adviser on campus. Winners complete a rigorous application process that includes writing essays and interviewing with an on-campus committee, which then recommends candidates to the national program.
"These are absolutely standout people," Sandgren says of Concordia's two winners. "It's an enormous accomplishment for both of them."
Walker was also named a Gilder Lehrman History Scholar for the second consecutive summer. She and one other scholar from last summer's program will serve as mentors for 50 students participating in the mid-June one-week program in New York City.
"Sarah not only excels herself, but she also brings out the best in others," says Dr. Linda Johnson, history chair. "She listens attentively to others and expresses appreciation for their contributions."
Language Villages Celebrates Culture
Concordia Language Villages will once again celebrate cultural diversity by hosting the annual International Day festivities Friday, July 10, and Friday, Aug. 14, at Waldsee, the German Language Village. Planned events include parades, a World Cup soccer extravaganza, a U.N. summit and an international film festival. Tours of several Language Villages also will be available.
The Language Villages hosted Europe Day in St. Paul, Minn., May 7-9, with school visits, a gala and family friendly events at the History Center. The activities, which included speakers from foreign embassies, storytelling and a fashion show, highlighted European cultures, as well as emphasized the importance of cultural diversity.
The celebration was made possible with a grant from the Delegation of the European Commission to the United States.
Kingston’s Books Named Summer Read
The 2009 Summer Book Read features two books by award-winning author Maxine Hong Kingston, who was honored by the National Book Foundation with its 2008 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. Kingston and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Annette Gordon-Reed will speak on campus Oct. 29-30 during National Book Awards at Concordia, which was rescheduled because of spring flooding.
"The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts" is a disturbing and fiercely beautiful account of growing up Chinese-American in California.
The second book, "China Men," is an imaginative journey into the hearts and minds of generations of Chinese men in America, from those who worked on the transcontinental railroad in the 1840s, to those who fought in Vietnam.
Both books will be discussed during Orientation and fall semester.