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Monmouth College’s top stories and photos of 2019

Here’s a look back at some of Monmouth College’s top news stories from 2019, as well as some of the top images:

Top stories of 2019

  • On the cutting edge

    In late November, the Center for Science and Business welcomed its newest resident — a five-ton teaching assistant. The installation of an HMC-390 computer-numeric control machine from Jupiter Machine Tools of Galesburg, Ill., was made possible thanks to the generosity of a local supporter. The CNC machine will be a boon not only to the College’s programs in engineering and the physical sciences but also to many other disciplines. Very few, if any, residential liberal arts and sciences colleges have such a sophisticated piece of equipment. Pictured from left are Jupiter executives Andrew Heath and Roy Whitehead, physics professor Chris Fasano and President Clarence R. Wyatt.

  • Doc’s homecoming

    Outstanding faculty are at the heart of Monmouth College. That was a recurring theme during Homecoming weekend in October. Two professors – Trudi Peterson and Bill Urban – were honored at the Alumni Impact Awards. Another professor, the late Richard “Doc” Kieft, was celebrated twice – once at the Fraternity and Sorority Life Hall of Fame induction and later that evening at an off-campus mixer in his honor. Pictured here is a group at the Homecoming parade, showing that “Doc” can still be the life of the party. read more

  • Two thrilling titles

    Two Fighting Scots fall sports teams captured Midwest Conference championships, and they did so in thrilling fashion on back-to-back weekends in November. The women’s soccer team advanced to its first-ever NCAA tournament by defeating Knox in penalty kicks in the title game, which had ended with a 0-0 score. Goalkeeper Kensey Arlt stopped three straight PKs, including the game-clinching save (pictured). The following Saturday, the football team drove 89 yards in less than a minute with no timeouts, scoring the winning touchdown with two seconds left to defeat St. Norbert 10-7. It was the Scots’ third title in five seasons under head coach Chad Braun. read more

  • Advice that’s good as Gold

    In a year when the commencement exercises were moved indoors, it was only fitting that featured speaker Ron Gold advised the Class of 2019 of what to do when plans go awry and “they get smacked in the face.” The survivor of a 2011 accident that left his spine permanently crushed, Gold is now an entrepreneur and motivational speaker. He advised Monmouth’s 192 graduates to “plan to be passionate about your career. Plan to show grit and fortitude. The best things in life are at the other end of fear.” read more

  • The candle is lit

    The candle is lit: In March, Monmouth College launched a campaign to significantly bolster its endowment. “Light This Candle: The Campaign for Monmouth College” aims to raise a minimum of $75 million by Dec. 31, 2022. Through mid-December 2019, more than 72 percent of the goal – about $54.4 million – has already been raised. The campaign will increase financial aid and scholarships available to students; create more opportunities for faculty and staff support and academic innovation; add to a capital improvements fund that supports campus infrastructure; and create a stronger financial base for the College by building an even stronger culture of philanthropy. read more

  • More giving records fall

    As Monmouth College’s third annual Scots Day of Giving came to a close near midnight on April 17, more than 900 hearts filled the windows of Mellinger Commons on the first floor of the Center for Science and Business. Each of those hearts represented a gift made to the College during a day when Tartan Nation showed its support from Florida to Alaska and from Hawaii to Maine. Those 937 gifts totaled $255,664. Both figures smashed the Scots Day of Giving records set in 2018 by more than 250 gifts and more than $32,000. read more

  • Moving on up

    Monmouth College continued its rise in the national rankings in 2019. The College is ranked No. 82 among liberal arts colleges in the current issue of Washington Monthly’s College Guide and Rankings, up 101 spots since 2014. Support of innovative academic programs and a high social mobility rank helped Monmouth College continue its rise in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges. The guide’s 2020 edition places Monmouth No. 124 nationally in its “National Liberal Arts Colleges” category, an increase of almost 50 spots since 2013. read more

  • ACE is the space

    ACE is the space – the new space – for several key student services at Monmouth College. The acronym for Academic and Career Excellence, ACE is a space created over the summer in Hewes Library. ACE is the new home for: the Office of Student Success & Accessibility Services (formerly the Teaching and Learning Center); the Office of the Registrar; the Wackerle Center for Career, Leadership & Fellowships; and the Office of Global Engagement. read more

  • New administrators

    Two administrators at Monmouth College received promotions to vice president, while a third VP was added late in the year. Interim dean of the faculty Mark Willhardt was officially announced as dean and vice president for academic affairs in February. Two months later, Kristen English was promoted from associate vice president for admission to vice president for enrollment management. In December, higher education veteran Melony Sacopulos took over as vice president for finance and business. She has more than 25 years of experience in higher education administration, finance and law at Indiana State University.

  • Monmouth College has adopted a test-optional admission policy for new students who apply for admission in fall 2020. Monmouth officials said the policy reflects the College’s values and also helps it reach students who are underserved by higher education. Monmouth has long assessed high school performance, demonstration of service and leadership, and test scores as a part of a holistic consideration of candidates for admission. “Recognizing that many worthy candidates for admission are disadvantaged by standardized test scores, our move to test optional will enable all prospective students to present themselves more fully and fairly,” said President Clarence R. Wyatt.

    Test optional

     read more

 Top photos of 2019

  • Polar vortex

    In most years, the major blizzard that struck Thanksgiving weekend in 2018 would’ve been the most harrowing weather experience of the winter, but it turned out to be just the tip of the iceberg. January brought a record monthly snowfall amount and a polar vortex that saw temperatures bottom out around -25 degrees and wind chills hit -50. Roughly 50 tons of salt were used on campus during the winter, more than twice the total of the past five years combined.

  • Service sesquicentennial, almost

    Nearly 150 years of service to Monmouth College is represented in this photo from a May retirement ceremony in Poling Hall. Pictured from left are Vicki Wine (16 years), Kristin Larson (19 years), Mohsin Masood (25 years), Ken McMillan (25 years), Peter Pitts (27 years) and Kathy Haas (34 years).

  • KKG starts 150th year

    Founded at Monmouth College on Oct. 13, 1870, the women’s fraternity Kappa Kappa Gamma kicked off its sesquicentennial with a celebration at Stewart House, the home of founding member Minnie Stewart from the Class of 1872. In October, the “Minnie Van” left from Monmouth on a nationwide tour of the country. Pictured from left are Michelle Merritt ’89, Laura Cavanaugh ’86, Grace Simpson ’23 and her mother, Gail Cook Simpson ’87. All four are Kappas. read more

  • Down on Main Street

    Storefront theatre came to Monmouth in September, as the annual 24-hour theatre festival FusionFest was moved from the inside stage of the downtown Fusion Theatre to its display windows along Main Street.  read more

  • Lilly likes Lux

    During its first three years of service, Monmouth’s Lux Summer Theological Institute for Youth has attracted 40 exceptional high school students from around the nation. Earlier this year, the College received a sustainability grant of $225,950 from Lilly Endowment Inc. to help the national summer program become self-sufficient over the next five years. read more

  • He’s got your back

    The stresses of pending final exams and term papers were put on the back burner last spring, thanks to a healthy dose of nimble goats and adorable puppies. Rachel Boyles ’19 was one of the many smiling students at a goat yoga event sponsored by the Monmouth College Wellness Center. read more

  • A helping hand

    Members of the campus community volunteered their time and talents to help out a Monmouth College family. Under the direction of art professor Stacy Lotz, three students helped brighten a unique medical situation called craniosynostosis by decorating protective helmets for young brothers Thomas and Conrad Doyle, whose mother, Carissa Scott Doyle, is a 2008 graduate. read more

  • Hoop highlights

    Will Carius started the new year with a bang, and 2019 has gone on to be kind to both of Monmouth’s basketball teams. Carius netted a school-record 62 points against Grinnell on Jan. 2. In games played in 2019, Carius and his teammates are 16-7, which included a Midwest Conference playoff berth in February and a 6-0 start to the 2019-20 season. The women’s team also advanced to the MWC playoffs, falling in the championship game. They are 16-9 in games played in 2019. read more

  • ‘Voices of Maytag’

    Fifteen years ago, the Monmouth area lost one of its leading employers when Maytag closed its Galesburg, Ill., factory, throwing 1,600 people out of work. Under the direction of political science lecturer Robin Johnson, Monmouth students spent the spring semester exploring how the loss of those 1,600 jobs affected the region, reporting their findings in an 87-page report titled “Voices of Maytag.” A new group of Johnson’s students repeated the exercise during the fall semester.  read more

  • Global Scots

    Eleven Monmouth students found themselves almost as far south on the continent of Africa as one can go when they posed for this photo at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa. The trip was one of four following the close of the spring semester, with other groups traveling to Scotland, England and Colombia. read more