Andrews University | September 27-30

See who’s attending here:

Highlighted Events (may require additional registration)

Don’t miss the Spirit of Philanthropy & Homecoming Banquet, open to all alums. Enjoy Andrews’ signature dishes and greet your honored year classmates. Reserve your spot (it’s free!) by clicking on the link below.

Join us for a memorable day of golf at the beautiful Harbor Shores Golf Club in Benton Harbor. All proceeds go toward the Andrews Legacy Student Scholarship Fund.

This first annual program features the opportunity for you to grow professionally. Highlights of the program include a networking lunch with current student leaders, a Design Thinking Crash Course with Florida Hospital’s Innovation Lab team, and breakout sessions. The program begins at noon on Friday, September 28

Join the Women’s Scholarship Committee for a special brunch and program honoring this year’s Women’s Scholarship recipients, and listen to an inspiring presentation by Laura Malcolm, assistant director of Alumni Services. She will share her experience of training for and completing one of the most challenging triathlons in the world, the Norseman Xtreme Triathlon in Norway. Learn how to set and reach goals for yourself.

Come watch the 31st annual Homecoming Parade.  Viewing bleachers are between the Howard Performing Arts Center and the Seminary Building. The parade will begin at 5 p.m. on Friday, September 28.

S’mores over a bonfire, haystacks, wagon rides, and visiting with Andrews friends and classmates make the Harvest Picnic a memorable event. No registration required, event is complimentary of the Andrews University Alumni Association. The picnic starts at 6 p.m. on Sabbath, September 29 in the backyard of the Alumni House.

The Harvest Run features a 5k and 10.2k, as well as a 1-mile walk option. Explore the natural beauty of Andrews’ campus on one of these scenic courses.

Full Weekend Calendar

Click on the tabs to see each day’s schedule. Stay tuned as we confirm further details!

1:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Alumni House Backyard Tent

2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Wellness Lounge Open House

Campus Center 168

Stop by the University’s Wellness Lounge for a free body scan, short chair massage, updated sketches on the new Health & Wellness Center, and more!

9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Physical Therapy Continuing Education

Physical Therapy Building

  1. Anatomy review in the new anatomy lab by Ryan Orrison, PT, MSPT ’97, OCS, foundation sciences coordinator, assistant professor of physical therapy, Andrews University
  2. Health Promotion and Wellness in PT: Taking your skills to a new market by Sherry McLaughlin, PT, MSPT ’90, CSCS, founder, Michigan Institute for Human Performance
    Click to register here.

3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

“Phytotherapy Maximizes Innate Immunity and Cancer Healing”

Cancer Research Forum with Dr. Benjamin Lau

Garber Auditorium, Chan Shun Hall

The School of Health Professions is hosting its first Research Forum with Keynote Speaker Dr. Benjamin Lau on Sept 27, 2018, 3:30-5:00 in Garber Auditorium. Book signing with Dr. Lau will follow in the Andrews Bookstore with his latest book Stop Cancer with Phytotherapy. Faculty, students, alumni, and community health professionals are invited to attend.

5:00 – 6:45 p.m.

“Stop Cancer with Phytotherapy” book signing with author Dr. Benjamin Lau

Chan Shun Hall Lobby

6:00 p.m.

Spirit of Philanthropy & Homecoming Banquet

Alumni House Backyard Tent

All alumni are invited to this elegant banquet commencing the Homecoming weekend celebrations.  Greet returning classmates over plates of Sam’s chicken, mashed potatoes, and Andrews’ signature dishes. Members of the Class of 1968 will be inducted into the Golden Hearts Club after a roll call by the Alumni Association. Honored Alumni will be presented with the Andrews University Alumni Association Medallion, recognizing their outstanding service to church and community.  Also honored at this banquet are those who have partnered with Andrews through generous giving—they will be presented The Spirit of Philanthropy Award.  Please RSVP at to secure your complimentary ticket, as space is limited.

9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Alumni Tent

8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Women’s Scholarship Committee Brunch

Lincoln & Hoosier Rooms, Campus Center

RSVP Required; Click here to RSVP

Featuring an inspiring presentation by Laura Malcolm, assistant director of Alumni Services. She will share her experience of training for and completing one of the most challenging triathlons in the world, the Norseman Xtreme Triathlon in Norway. Learn how to set and reach goals for yourself.

7:30 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast | 8:30 a.m. Shotgun start

Wes Christiansen Memorial Golf Outing

Harbor Shores Golf Club, St. Joseph, Michigan

RSVP required

Entry fee: $105 regular, $50 AU students

Price includes 18 holes of scramble golf with cart, lunch and prizes. Support the Alumni Scholarship Fund while enjoying a morning of golf—Four Man/Woman Scramble. Course requirements are collared shirts, soft spikes and no denim pants or shorts.

9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Wellness Lounge Open House

Campus Center 168

Stop by the University’s Wellness Lounge for a free body scan, short chair massage, updated sketches on the new Health & Wellness Center, and more!

9:00 a.m. – 11:10 a.m.

Physical Therapy Continuing Education

Physical Therapy Building

10:30 a.m.

Campus Bus Tour

The bus will load at the Alumni House parking lot at 10 a.m.

Tour guides: John (BA ’76, MA ’83) & Judy Nay (BS ’76)

Take a trip down memory lane, while being introduced to several new developments on campus.

11:30 a.m.

Presidential Portrait Unveiling

James White Library

Our library collections include presidential portraits of seven of our presidents. Please join us in this historic moment as we add the Andreasen portrait, painted by Harry Ahn, to the collection. Niels-Erik Andreasen was the fifth president of Andrews University. Both Niels-Erik and Demetra Andreasen will be present to greet alumni and friends.

12:00 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

Professional Growth Opportunity

Alumni House Backyard

RSVP Required; Dress Code: Business Casual or Business Professional
Check-In: 12:00 p.m.

This brand-new program will feature opportunities for alums to grow professionally while reconnecting & networking with fellow Andrews University alumni and students. This exciting program will feature a Design Thinking Crash Course and breakout sessions with topic choices including “iPhone Photography” and “Budgeting Hacks.” Learn more and RSVP at

  • 12:30 p.m. Tambunan Leadership Luncheon (Student Programming)
  • 1:30 p.m. Design Thinking Crash Course: Presented by Florida Hospital’s Innovation Lab
  • 3:00 p.m. Break Time/Classic Car Show (Andrews Administration Building Parking Lot)
  • 3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. Breakout Sessions
    • “iPhone Photography” presented by: Marc Ullom, Department of Visual Art, Communication & Design
      Location: Harrigan Hall, Room 328 (top floor)
    • “Budgeting Hacks” presented by: Quentin Sahly, School of Business Administration
      Location: Chan Shun Hall, Room 108
    • Architecture Breakout Session: Health and Wellness Integration for Buildings presented by Mark Moreno and Tom Lowing
      Location: Architecture building Lecture Hall, Room 109
    • Nursing Continuing Education – Department of Nursing

3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Biology 50th Anniversary Open House

Bill Chobotar Student Commons

Come by and visit the Biology department.  This year it is the 50th anniversary of our biology graduate program! Explore some old pictures, reminisce with friends, and don’t forget to stop by the greenhouse and museum.

1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Homecoming Classic Car Show

Andrews Administration Building Parking Lot

Admire beautifully restored classic cars at this nostalgic fourth annual event hosted by the Andrews University Bookstore. Join us for a corn roast, walk around and view rows of classic cars, and bring your Homecoming name badge for discounts on Andrews gear and more.

5:00 p.m.

31st Annual Homecoming Parade

Viewing bleachers curbside, between the Howard & Seminary buildings
Lineup for entries begins at 4:15 p.m. in the Andrews Academy parking lot, and parade ends at the PMC parking lot.

Come out and watch the pageantry of the creative floats, marching bands and fire trucks as they move through campus during this harvest themed parade. Awardees will compete for over $500 in total prize money. Parade awards ceremony directly follows.

6:00 p.m.

Department of History & Political Science Picnic

Lesher Memorial Grove

Visit with faculty, students and alumni at this “come and go” event sponsored by the Department of History & Political Science.

6:30 p.m.

International Flag Raising Ceremony

Flag Mall

Our campus is world-renowned for the way it reflects the international composition of our world church. This annual ceremony provides a beautiful portrayal of our global family. If you have international attire, please wear it proudly! You are also invited to march with us in the preceding parade. Call 269-471-3345 to sign up.

7:30 p.m.

University Vespers

Pioneer Memorial Church

Speaker: Tacyana Nixon
Getting clear about the “I AM” in a distinctive and biblical way. Together we will look at the significance of God’s omnipresence.

8:45 p.m.

Impact Vespers

Burman Hall Chapel

Speaker: Pastor Dilys Brooks (MDiv ’05), Chaplain, Loma Linda University
Weekend Theme: “Passing the Torch”

10:30 p.m.

Meet and Greet Reception

Burman Hall Activity Center

BSCF Alumni and AUSA will host a reception after Impact for alumni and current students. Refreshments will be served.

8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Nursing Alumni Sabbath Come-and-Go Breakfast

Nursing Department, Marsh Hall

9:00 a.m. & 11:45 a.m.

The Church at Worship
Pioneer Memorial Church

Speaker: Dwight K. Nelson (MDiv ’76, DMin ’86)
Sermon: Tales from a Vineyard: When You Can’t Get Any Closer
Scripture: John 15:1–5

10:00 a.m. & 11:45 a.m.

One Place

Newbold Auditorium, Buller Hall

Speaker: June Price, lead chaplain
Key Scripture: Acts 6:8 – 8:1

10:30 a.m.

Sabbath School
Pioneer Memorial Church

Presented by the Class of 1968.

11:45 a.m.

BSCF Alumni Worship Service and New Life Church

Howard Performing Arts Center

Speaker: Pastor Dilys Brooks (MDiv ‘05), Chaplain, Loma Linda University
Weekend Theme: “Passing the Torch”

1:00 p.m.

Honor Class Reunion Luncheon Buffets
Badger, Hoosier, and Lincoln Rooms of Dining Services, Campus Center

Luncheon pricing: $10.07 for dine-in; $11.13 for take-out

Senior citizen pricing: $9.07 for dine-in

Child (ages 6–12): $7.69 for dine-in

Meal cards may be purchased ahead of time at the Dining Services office, or pay with debit/credit card (no cash) as you go through line.

1:30 p.m.

Department of Public Health, Nutrition & Wellness International Cuisine Potluck

Third Floor, Marsh Hall

A potluck luncheon for alumni of the Department of Public Health, Nutrition & Wellness.

1:30 p.m.

Physical Therapy Celebration: Reminisce, Unite and Empower

Physical Therapy Building

Physical Therapy graduates and their families are invited to lunch and fellowship in the PT department to enjoy reminiscing about the past, seek to reunite lost connections and share their vision for the future. PT alums will have an opportunity to empower current students with stories and encouragement. Lunch provided.

Click to register for this and other PT events.

2:30 p.m. – 3:30 pm

Robert A. Wilkins Memorial Service

Chemistry Amphitheater, Halenz Hall

Bob Wilkins’ (BA ’61) influence in the lives of students and faculty during his 30+ years of teaching and leadership in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry was deep and sustaining. Bob’s encouragement and mentoring led many of his students to careers in teaching, healthcare and industry. His devotion to God and the church was sincere and he put his beliefs into action in every community he lived. This time and place will provide an opportunity for alumni and friends to reflect on a life well-lived by a friend we all miss.

3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Museums and Open Houses
You are encouraged to explore campus and to check out your former department. Some buildings you may remember and others may be new to you.

  • Architecture Resource Center, Architecture Building: Featuring a fascinating collection of architectural models, original artwork and a comprehensive library, this inspiring display should not be missed.
  • Dairy Open House, Andrews University Dairy, 8225 Dairy Rd: Come stop by the Andrews University Dairy to reminisce over the end of an era in dairy farming at Andrews.
  • Horn Archaeological Museum, 9047 U.S. 31, Berrien Springs
  • Natural History Museum, 108B Price Hall, Science Complex: Featuring Andrews University’s own Prillwitz Mammoth, the most complete mammoth skeleton ever found in Michigan. The museum also includes a large collection of mammals and birds.
  • Ruth Murdoch Elementary School, 8885 Garland Ave: RMES alumni and friends are invited to tour our building and browse student displays. Refreshments will be served.
  • Kingman Observatory Open House, Robert & Lillis Kingman Observatory: Solar observing will be led by Stephen Thorman, weather permitting. For more information, go to

4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Biology 50th Anniversary Program: Recollections of the Past

Biology Amphitheater, Price Hall, Science Complex

3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Michiana Adventist Forum Presentation

Garber Auditorium, Chan Shun Hall

Speaker: William Johnsson
Topic: Time to Speak Out

Join the retired editor of the Adventist Review, William Johnsson, for a presentation and Q & A session.  Johnsson has served as a missionary in India, taught New Testament at the Theological Seminary, and served as editor of the Adventist Review for over 20 years. He has written more than 25 books and 1,000 articles. In this session, Johnsson will discuss the disconnect he finds between the church’s official position and what he personally has witnessed of the Spirit’s activity in two matters: The One Project and the ordination of women.

5:30 p.m. – 7:45 p.m. (time and location subject to change)

Class Reunion Photos

Alumni House Backyard Tent

5:30 Golden Hearts Club (1968 and earlier)
5:50 Class of 1948
6:05 Class of 1958
6:20 Class of 1968
6:35 Class of 1978
6:50 Class of 1988
7:05 Class of 1993
7:20 Class of 1998
7:35 Class of 2008
7:40 Class of 2013
7:45 Class of 2017

5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. (tours will depart every half-hour)

Harvest Tours
The wagon will load at the Alumni House backyard. Tours will depart every half-hour.

Climb on board and join the wagon tour as it meanders around the orchards and farm. We ask that an adult accompanies small children. In case of rain, the Harvest Tour will be canceled. Please note: Outdoor activities of these kinds can be hazardous and carry some risk of injury. I mindfully accept the responsibilities of my participation/that of my child.

Please note: Class Reunion Photos will be taken at the Alumni Tent during the Harvest Picnic in the following order:

6:00 p.m.

Harvest Picnic

Alumni House backyard

Parking is available behind the Science Complex, with additional parking at Chan Shun Hall and Howard Performing Arts Center.

Join us for this family favorite Homecoming tradition. Whether it’s under the big tent or sitting around the crackling campfire and roasting s’mores, enjoy fellowship and a light haystack supper.

8:00 p.m.

Alumni Homecoming Gala

Howard Performing Arts Center

“Among Friends” is a complimentary concert featuring the Andrews University Symphony Orchestra, the University Singers & Chorale, and Wind Symphony.

Dr. Chris Wild makes his debut as the new conductor of the Andrews University Symphony Orchestra performing the delightful Minuet and Trio from Joseph Haydn’s 100th Symphony, followed by the Leonore Overture by Ludwig van Beethoven. Charles Reid, tenor, collaborates with the University Chorale and Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Gounod’s abiding Sanctus.

Andrews University Singers, under the direction of Stephen Zork, will perform Elaine Hagenberg’s tone poem The Music of Stillness, Shawn Kirchner’s bluegrass hymn I’ll Be on My Way, and a stirring new arrangement of the spiritual Hold On arranged by John Tebay. The University Chorale will collaborate with the Symphony Orchestra in Nicholas Zork’s When You Come arranged by Stephen Zork.

The Andrews University Wind Symphony presents America-themed music conducted by Byron Graves, featuring centerpieces such as America the Beautiful, Sousa’s Liberty Bell March, a collection of American Riversongs by Pierre LaPlante, and Copland’s “Tis A Gift” from Appalachian Spring.In a stirring conclusion to the evening’s festivities, Mr. Graves will conduct the University Chorale and Wind Symphony in Wilhousky’s famous Battle Hymn of the Republic.

A dessert reception will be held after the program.

9:00 p.m.

Alumni vs. Students Basketball Game

Johnson Gymnasium

The Mens Cardinal basketball team will make their debut as they compete against the alumni team. Be sure to come and cheer your team on.

8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

School of Education Alumni Breakfast

Room 180, Bell Hall

Hosted by the Department of Graduate Psychology & Counseling. Come see Bell Hall and enjoy a delicious breakfast with fellow graduates from the School of Education.

7:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Aviation Annual Fly-In Drive-In Pancake Breakfast
Andrews University Airpark

Adults $7 | Children aged 10 and under $3

The Andrews University Airpark invites pilots and non-pilots alike to come out for this annual event. Come for a hearty pancake breakfast in one of our large hangars. Stay to check out the interesting aircraft or vehicles that show up. Learn about the services available to pilots and their aircraft as you see the airport facilities and check out our fleet of planes. Breakfast will be served until 11 a.m.

9:00 a.m.
Harvest Run 5K/10.2K and 1 Mile Walk

Alumni House 

Parking Available at Andrews Academy Parking Lot

(Day-of Registration and packet pick-up from 8–8:45 a.m. at Alumni House Tent)

Come enjoy the beautiful views of Andrews University’s central campus and (for the 10.2k) challenging forest trails. Run past iconic scenes such as the J.N. Andrews sculpture, the entrance globe and ULC arch.

Click here to learn more.

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Hard Hat Tour of the Health & Wellness Center

Health & Wellness Center Construction Site

Come be one of the very first people to step foot inside the new Health & Wellness Center! Join on a hard hat tour led by Paul Elder, Director of Facilities Management for Andrews University, to see the Health & Wellness Center construction site.


Making your stay for Homecoming a great experience is possible with more than 20+ lodging options near the Andrews University Campus.

A range of accommodations are offered on-campus including a full-service cafeteria and a visitors center located on the first floor of the Integrated Marketing & Communication building.

Guest Services also offers campus tours to families, individuals and groups. You may arrange a tour by calling 269-471-3360 or by email to Guest Services.

Click here to view lodging options in the area!

When arriving at Andrews, please stop by the Campus Safety Office to obtain your free visitors parking permit.

2018 Featured Artist

Drew Tetz is a designer from Silver Spring, MD who specializes in phenakistoscopes, a pre-cinema technique that uses a turntable to play an animation. He has created these “animated records” for clients like Barneys NY, They Might Be Giants, & Midland.

Drew graduated from Andrews in 2010 & is currently attending the MFA program at Georgia State University.

More of his work can be found on instagram at @drewtetz

2018 Honored Alumni

Deborah Bennett Berecz is a family lawyer today for good reason. She has been a student of conflict since she was 6 years old, enduring her own parents’ contentious marriage and eventual divorce. Deborah graduated from Andrew’s University 30 years ago at almost 30 years of age because she took a few detours on her way to a college degree, all of which provided another few credit hours toward becoming a conflict resolution professional.

Those detours included an early marriage, birth of her son Jamison Bennett (BS ’02) and then her own divorce and remarriage with bonus children. All of these experiences contributed to her education and a deep understanding of her clients’ challenges.

While at Andrews, Deborah served as chair of The Branch Network, the student association’s religious organization, and prayed that God would use her to be a conduit of his love to others. After attending Notre Dame Law School (JD ’93), Deb knew that her experience over years of observing and negotiating conflict within her own family might have a purpose and could be used to serve others. So after earning a law degree, she focused on family practice.

However, after practicing for a few years, it became clear to Deb that while the courthouse was a fine place to resolve contract disputes and car accidents, it simply wasn’t designed for people who would continue in relationship. Divorced families regularly see one another at parenting exchanges, their children’s school and extracurricular events, at church and birthdays, graduations and weddings. Setting spouses up as adversaries when they divorce (Smith v. Smith) only further lessened the hope of a cordial, respectful and cooperative post-divorce relationship for the children’s benefit. As she watched the devastating effects on children from a system that often exacerbated conflict and deepened wounds, it broke her heart.

Deborah set an audacious goal: to change the way divorce is done in the communities in which she practiced. She spent hours working with a local family court judge to develop a new norm. Deborah also served as chair of the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Section of the State Bar of Michigan and today mediation is ordered by the court in every case involving children. Family lawyers now move into problem-solving through mediation rather than putting families through multiple court hearings and depositions. Many people are choosing to start with mediation before the court or lawyers are even involved. Gratefully, family law is practiced far differently today than it was in the early years of her practice.

In addition, for the last dozen years, Deb has worked across the state of Michigan to develop the Collaborative Law options for families. This team approach engages mental health professionals, lawyers and financial specialists to work together on behalf of the family, always keeping the focus on the children. Deborah served as president of the Collaborative Practice Institute of Michigan and founded two active and growing professional practice groups in the state. She and four colleagues annually train other lawyers, therapists and financial experts in the Collaborative Law model and she has presented on various topics at the annual Forums of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.

Deborah recognizes that divorce occurs within the church at the same rates it occurs outside its doors. Over the years, she’s represented pastors and conference workers and chaplains and seminarians. And she’s watched numerous people turn away from the church because they feared judgment and condemnation. Too often their fears have been justified. She knows that ignoring the reality of divorce hampers the ability to process it effectively, prolongs healing, and deepens the damage to children. Deborah always first explores with clients whether a divorce is absolutely necessary and then supports them if they determine it is. Additionally, Deb teaches Family Law and Public Policy in the seminary, primarily to educate future pastors as they minister to troubled families.

Deborah deeply believes that difficult experiences in our lives come packaged with a gift, “the gift wrapped in trauma” as she puts it. Difficult life events are awful. We wouldn’t choose to go through them. They can come close to breaking us. But the Spirit is always there. Through the awfulness, not necessarily removing the trauma but right by our side whispering, “I’ve got you. We’ll get through this.” And then we do and the gift slowly begins to open, often revealing itself as a purpose, a focus for professional or volunteer or family endeavors. That’s been her experience. The trauma is never just the trauma.

Deborah counts as an additional gift her 31-year marriage to former Andrews University psychology professor, John Berecz. Together they have parented three sons in their blended family: Dr. Michael Berecz (att.), Hon. Lamont Berecz (BA ’97) and Jamison Bennett (BS ’02). They are blessed to have 13 (not a misprint!) “Grand Ones:” Isabelle, Lucy, Tristan, Andrew, Lydia, Keira, Jane, Ayla, Audrey, Susanna, Christian, Tauriel and Juliet.

Bruce Boyer was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1944. Bruce graduated with his BA in behavioral sciences from Andrews University in 1968. For the past 45 years, he has served as a teacher, researcher, healthcare administrator, president/CEO and chairman of healthcare companies, often service multiple companies simultaneously. In addition, he has served on many boards, committees and commissions at the local, county and state level as well as on boards and committees from the local Adventist church level to the Union Conference level.

Some of his most notable positions have been as the president of the State Healthcare Association, serving on the Board of the American Health Care Association, working as a Hospital Board chairman and serving as a Conference health ministries director. Notably, he has been a member of the Washington Adventist University Board of Trustees for 43 years.

Boyer currently works as the CEO of Sloan HealthCare Management, Inc.

In addition to spending a large amount of his time in the healthcare business, Boyer has also done his fair share of traveling. He has traveled to numerous locations within Europe, South Africa, Central and South America, the Caribbean, Canada and Asia Minor.

Boyer is married to his wife Gail who is a church administrator and serves on the Conference Executive Committee, the Highland View Academy Board and the NAD Executive Committee. He and his wife have three children who all have MBAs and work for his companies.

In reflection of how his time at Andrews shaped him into who he is today, Boyer says, “All that I am I owe to my Church, my Christian education of which Andrews was the capstone, and God’s grace for which I’m eternally grateful.”

Bruce Closser first discovered he wanted to be a teacher when, during his junior year at Forest Lake Academy in Florida, his history teacher asked him to teach a history class during the school’s annual role-reversal day. Bruce read the assigned pages, constructed a lecture outline, and prepared a quiz. On the day of the lecture, Bruce enjoyed the experience so much that he barely remembered being frightened. Years later, at an academy reunion, his history teacher admitted that he, too, predicted Bruce would be a teacher. “I still have your outline and notes in my files,” he said with a grin.

It was not history that Bruce ended up teaching but English, and this was thanks to the fact that both he and his favorite academy English teacher graduated in 1970 and went to what was then Southern Missionary College; Bruce to begin a BA in English and Sue Baker to teach in the English department. The two years Bruce spent grading papers for Baker reinforced his desire to be an English teacher. After completing his undergraduate degree in 1974, Bruce accepted his first official teaching position at Louisville Junior Academy where he taught seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth-grade English as well as eighth-grade math, typing and photography. He also sponsored the school’s newspaper.

After two years at Louisville Junior Academy, Bruce moved to Andrews University to begin a master’s degree. During the two years he was studying he taught freshman composition as a graduate teaching assistant. Bruce fully expected to return to academy teaching after he finished his MA in 1978, but when a position unexpectedly opened in the English department, Bruce gladly accepted the offer of full-time university teaching. Bruce continued teaching freshman English as well as various other writing courses and the occasional Arthurian literature course. In 1980, Bruce began doctoral studies at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and over the next eight summers he completed classwork, comprehensives, dissertation and defense, graduating in 1988 with a degree in the teaching of writing. In the mid-90s, Bruce became director of the Writing Center, a lab where peer tutors offer students help with their writing. Today, after 42 years, 40 of them as a full-time teacher, Bruce continues to enjoy helping students improve their writing skills.

One of Bruce’s favorite teaching memories occurred during his second year in Louisville when Bruce worked with his ninth-graders to write a temperance play. As a direct result of the play, at least one student became a professional actress, one became a public relations officer, and others ventured out in careers which gave them opportunities to build on the communication skills they developed in their ninth-grade year.

Since then Bruce has been active in campus drama. While working on his master’s degree he played the Chorus in Jean Anouilh’s “Antigone,” a play critical of Nazi-occupied France, assisted with “The Crucible,” and played a small role in the “Andersonville Trial.” During his time at Andrews University, Bruce has assisted in one way or another with productions of “St. Joan,” “The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail,” “Crossing Delancey,” “84 Charing Cross Road,” “Steel Magnolias,” “Twelve Angry Men,” “Our Town,” “Little Women” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.” During the last three years, Bruce sponsored the Andrews University Theatre Wing, a student drama club, and supervised student-directed productions of “The Importance of Being Earnest,” “Pygmalion” and “Fiddler on the Roof.”

Bruce is committed not only to the academic and artistic education of college students, but to the spiritual development of the children of the church. Bruce’s interest in children’s ministry emerged during his doctoral studies when he took a literature class for children and young adults. One of the projects of this course required students to tell stories to children. Bruce arranged to be a storyteller in the children’s tent at the Pennsylvania Seventh-day Adventist camp meeting. Several years later, when the first of his two boys was a student in the pre-kindergarten Sabbath School class at Pioneer Memorial Church, Bruce became a co-leader. Today, 25 years later, Bruce is still a co-leader of 4-year-old children every Sabbath morning. He regularly encounters students in his University classes who remind him that he was once their Sabbath school teacher. “Do you remember me?” one of his freshman writers recently asked. “I was the little girl whose hair caught fire from the candles on the birthday cake and you put it out with your hands.”

When not in his office, Bruce enjoys a variety of hobbies. He constructed a consort of crumhorns for the members of the early music ensemble in which he played. He has created chain mail shirts and sewn medieval costumes, both for adults and for a series of medieval-themed dolls. He has spent the last six years teaching himself to read and write Korean. Most recently he has renewed his interest in piano and has begun learning Chopin’s 24 preludes.

Bruce is married to Linda Morton Closser and they have two adult sons, both of whom have pursued artistic careers. Evan is a musician in New York City and Dylan is a photographer at Whirlpool in Benton Harbor.

When Kevin McDonald arrived on the Andrews University campus in the 1990s as an undergraduate student, the last thing he expected was to find a campus whose diverse community would help prepare him for his future position as the first-ever chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer of the University of Missouri System.

“What I didn’t anticipate was a compositionally diverse student body, who was engaged, welcoming and inclusive,” says McDonald. “I hadn’t been exposed to the breadth and depth of diversity that I encountered at AU, but it was so refreshing and reflective of the global context AU was preparing its students for.”

At Andrews, McDonald expresses that he found a community of students, faculty and staff who maintained a genuine concern for his wellbeing and future success. Reminiscing, he recalls administrators and mentors like Newton Hoilette and David Knight. He fondly remembers having men of color on staff who served as wonderful role models. Additionally, McDonald took classes from faculty like Duane McBride and former faculty member, Lynn Caldwell, who got him excited to learn about the contributions he could make in the world.

Following his Andrews experience, McDonald went on to receive a Juris Doctor from the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law in 1996 and a Doctor of Education from the University of Rochester in 2014. After earning his law degree, McDonald worked as the Disability Rights Investigator for the U.S. Department of Justice, Disability Rights Section in Washington D.C. from 1996 to 1997. There he examined, mediated and resolved over 500 disability-based discrimination claims. He continued to do this type of work for the Internet’s first domain name registrar, Network Solutions, Inc., where he served as the Dispute Administrator from 1997 to 1999.

Since then, McDonald has been making transformational contributions towards organizational equity, diversity and inclusion goals in various executive academic leadership positions throughout the country. Some of his roles have included teaching and leading the diversity efforts at Rochester Institute of Technology and working as the vice president for equity and inclusion at Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University.

While at these institutions, he learned a great deal about the importance of understanding organizational climate and culture in performing this kind of work and the importance of developing and maintaining strong relationships with campus and local community members.

“Degrees and professional pedigree may help get you in the door,” says McDonald, “but your ability to forge and maintain strong interpersonal relationships is what helps keep you there and allows you to advance in your career.”

While he worked in a similar capacity at his previous jobs, his current position at the University of Missouri is different in that it is charting the strategic diversity and inclusion efforts for an entire university system of approximately 75,000 students, 6,000 faculty and 17,000 staff. The University of Missouri System is comprised of four institutions each with their own mission, vision and campus culture, and that presents a unique opportunity in the diversity and inclusion arena.

The challenges at University of Missouri-Columbia are those of countless campuses across the country. With the accessibility of various forms of media, especially social media, these realities on university campuses become increasingly exposed. McDonald believes that inherent in the changing demographics and increased diversity on campuses across our nation are opportunities for conflict.

He asserts that institutions have a responsibility to society and believes if colleges and universities are truly committed to inclusive excellence, they have to hold themselves accountable for making diversity and inclusion efforts an integral part of their everyday practices.

For McDonald, faith plays a significant role in both his personal and professional life. He sees Jesus’ example as one that teaches us how we should treat, engage and uplift others. “I remain extremely grateful for the firm foundation that Andrews helped me establish in this regard,” says McDonald. “Every opportunity that I’ve been afforded is a blessing that I’ve never taken for granted and I remain humbled by every blessing bestowed upon me.”

McDonald has been married for 21 years to Kimberlyn and has three children: Rodney Osborne Jr., Kayla and Kesslyn. He enjoys singing and developed a love for it while singing in male groups on and off campus while as an undergraduate at Andrews. He fondly remembers being a member of the Black Student Christian Forum, and the many opportunities for music ministry it provided him. He is a vegan who enjoys exercising regularly and watching his daughters play volleyball, describing them as “fanatics” about the sport.

Esther Harriott Ottley was the first person of color and the first woman of color to have graduated with a BA in mathematics from Andrews University, class of 1954. She was born in Panama, where her Jamaican parents were serving as missionaries and her father helped to build the Panama Canal. When Esther was 3, the Harriott family returned to their home on the island of Jamaica to attend to her paternal grandmother. From then until her early teenage years, Esther was homeschooled by her mother, Euphemia, before going off to Ferncourt High School near their home in Claremont, St. Ann, Jamaica.

Esther placed second on the island when she passed the Cambridge Overseas Examination at the high school, which qualified her for scholarships and opportunities. The decision was made for her to travel to Mandeville, Jamaica, to pursue teacher education at West Indian Training College (WITC, now Northern Caribbean University-NCU), where in 1926 both of her parents had received college degrees.

Following her graduation from WITC with an associate’s degree in math (class of 1948), she taught math at the college for several years before migrating to the U.S. to attend Emmanuel Missionary College (EMC, now Andrews University). At EMC she recalls being assigned a work/study placement with then math professor William Specht, for whom she worked the rest of her time at EMC. She had great admiration for Specht and continues to credit him with inspiring her to pursue a career in math and physics. She graduated from EMC in 1954, in a ceremony held at Johnson Gym, and continued on to Columbia University in New York to pursue a master’s degree in education.

In 1955, Esther married her Trinidadian college sweetheart, Dr. Neville Ottley (BA ’49, BA ’53). They moved to Washington, D.C., to be together while he finished his last two years of medical school at Howard University (class of 1957) and completed his residency in general surgery. During these early years of their marriage, they started a family, and Esther joined the math department at Howard University while completing her doctorate in math/physics education at American University, graduating in 1965.

Esther was promoted and received tenure while teaching courses such as calculus and college algebra in the math department at Howard University until 1975, when she was called to be the founding associate dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at the university. She later served several years as the interim dean of the Graduate School at Howard but did not want to be considered for the permanent position (though asked) due to potential Sabbath conflicts. Her dedication to God’s will remained steadfast. Just after her retirement in 1994, Howard University honored her with an endowed graduate scholarship which bears her name: the “Esther Ottley Graduate Scholarship.”

Having learned the benefits of education early in life, Esther has spent a great part of her almost 90 years being a champion of Christian education. She has anonymously funded the college education of several worthy students at NCU in Jamaica. Many of these students have gone on to higher education. She has served on the boards of Andrews University, Loma Linda University and local Washington, D.C., area Adventist schools. In 2000, she funded the renovation of the men’s chapel at NCU. The resulting lecture theater was named the Solomon Harriott Lecture Theater in honor of her father. As recently as 2017, Esther helped fund the Esther Harriott Ottley Reading Bank at West Indies College Preparatory School in Jamaica. In addition, a scholarship fund was begun at the school that helps cover tuition, fees and books for students in need. This year, she plans to endow the scholarship fund. She will continue to influence many through her contributions and example of Christian leadership.

The Ottley family boasts a strong Andrews University legacy demonstrating their belief in Christian education. Their daughter, Dawn Ottley Nelson, graduated from Andrews in 1983. Dawn’s husband, LeRoy Barnes, also attended Andrews during the early 80s. Their daughter, Maya Nelson, is a current student, and their son, Avery Barnes, attended in the 2000s. Beyond these, Esther’s Christian education commitment can be seen in her son, Dr. Mark Ottley, who attended La Sierra University, and her grandson, Jeremy Ottley, who attended Southern Adventist University.

Throughout her career, Esther has been sought out as a graduation speaker, university administrator, church leader, Women’s Day speaker, counselor, organizer, math tutor and supporter. More importantly, she has been a fabulous mother, wife, grandmother, family member and friend. Esther and Neville were respected members of the Washington, D.C. professional and Adventist communities for several decades until Neville’s passing in 1994 and Esther’s relocation in 2010 to Mount Pleasant, Michigan, to live with her daughter, Dawn Ottley-Nelson-Barnes, a professor at Central Michigan University.

Esther celebrated her 90th birthday with her family on August 24, 2018. She spends her days contemplating God’s love for us as well as His promises. She encourages everyone with whom she comes in contact to remember what is important and to be ready when Jesus comes.

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