2021 was another unusual year, but we forged ahead with creativity and caution to provide the best experience for our community. Read some of the top stories from this past year:
GC alums Joshua ’19 and Caleb ’18 Liechty, with their sister Bekah, joined voices as “Girl Named Tom,” and won season 21 of NBC’s The Voice on Dec. 14. On the same day, four of their songs were on iTunes Top 10 Songs Chart, including “The Chain” as #1. The trio, from Pettisville, Ohio, are the children of Chris ’88 and Holly (Hollenberg) Liechty ’88.
Grants expand Center for Community Engagement
Community engagement has been central to Goshen College since our founding, and that work will continue to expand through more than $4 million in grants from Lilly Endowment Inc., and the Community Foundation of Elkhart County to support the creation of the new Center for Community Engagement.
Students, alumni engage with public health
If there was ever a year to build a public health program, it was 2021. Our very own students helped roll out the COVID-19 vaccine on campus, and the first graduate of our new public health major graduated. Our alumni also played significant roles in developing and circulating vaccines, including Dr. Robert Lerch and Mark Wittrig, both 1984 grads at Pfizer, and Dr. Sally Hunsberger, who serves on the National Institute of Health Data & Safety Monitoring Board. And we can’t forget the hundreds, if not thousands, of our alumni who are working in the healthcare field during this pandemic.
Since the Sustainability Leadership Semester began in 2012, this immersive, residential semester has used water as a tool and gateway to broader discussions about how students can influence the holistic health of communities. Nearly 50 students have gone through this program and continue to make positive impacts in their communities today.
Students uncovered forgotten Goshen history in two documentaries. ‘Blosser’s Park’ tells the story of a former youth leisure park in the early 1900s, located on Blosser’s Island in the middle of the Goshen Dam Pond. And ‘Vital Passage” chronicles the amazing story of David Plaut and his son, Sidney, Jewish merchants in Goshen, who risked their business and livelihood to provide a passage for Jews escaping the Holocaust.
Student-athletes earn All-American honors
Seven student-athletes combined for four All-American honors this year.
- Nelson Kemboi was named All-American at the NAIA cross country national meet in November;
- Simon Graber Miller earned All-American honors in men’s high jump with a leap of 6 feet, 8½ inches;
- Jacob Gerber became the first GC male thrower to win All-American honors;
- Makayla Collier, Summer Cooper, Annika Fisher and Hannah Kurtz earned All-American honors for their record 4x800m relay.
SST finds a way forward
As study abroad faces new challenges and requires creative solutions, students completed GC’s first domestic SST unit in American Southwest. Students also returned to Ecuador for the first international SST since the pandemic began. Be on the lookout for news about further changes to global education at GC.
This summer, Kyle Mishler ’14, assistant track & field coach, trained Paralympian Sam Grewe, who won the gold medal in the men’s T63 Paralympic high jump at the summer Paralympic games in Tokyo.
Student awards include first EMMY
- Communication Department wins first Emmy Award for ‘A Festival of Carols’
- Communication Department’s FiveCore Media wins national Telly awards
- The Record wins ‘Newspaper of the Year’ award for fourth consecutive year
- GC named ‘Radio School of the Year’ for seventh time in ten years
- Augusta Nafziger wins first place in state journalism competition
- Three education students named Indiana Outstanding Future Educators
We also remember those who left us this year, including the following long-time Goshen College faculty and staff:
- Henry “Hank” Weaver, professor emeritus of chemistry and provost emeritus
- Mabel Virginia Brunk, former nursing professor
- Mervin D. Zook, former associate director of college relations and director of communications
- Mary Linton, former professor of biology
- Willard Martin, former dean and professor of German
- Theron Schlabach, professor emeritus of history
- Ruth Gunden, trailblazing champion for women’s athletics
- Russel Liechty, professor and dean emeritus