Campus Scene


“While staring at a stone, I’ve witnessed a whole culture — gossip in Latin on the walls, pleas for remembrance during a plague, a whole host of animals and faces, staves of music carefully laid out, building plans and even reminders to pray.”

As she has shared in “The Accidental Archaeologist” on the Department of History’s blog, Crystal Hollis ’10 didn’t set out to become focused professionally on medieval graffiti, but found herself drawn to the work as a way of learning more about people whose stories aren’t usually told. “Graffiti became a doorway to understanding and connecting with the average person of late medieval and early modern society — the more marginalized and forgotten individuals who only show up as a blip on the historical records’ radar if they’re lucky,” she wrote.

She also notes that she has found her Hope liberal arts education (she graduated with a history major and computer science minor) solid preparation. “It turns out the blend of humanities and science education has been perfect for my career in archaeology,” she noted.

Please visit the college online for more about Crystal’s journey.


The cold, short days of January seem long past in April, but perhaps January 2019 will linger in memory a bit more than its kin for producing record lows, pounding winds and campus closings spread across an unprecedented four days.

Hope rarely cancels classes for weather, but the brutal polar vortex that afflicted much of the nation this year led the college to do so all day on Monday, Jan. 28, and from 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 29, through 11 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31.

Hope had last canceled classes in 2015, from 4 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 8, through the entirety of Friday, Jan. 9. The use of partial days makes providing a precise historical count challenging, but the total through the years has been about 11 full days and 5 partial days.


Three members of the music faculty received awards from professional associations this semester.

Mike Norman, a part-time instructor in music and music-education coordinator, received an Award of Merit from the Michigan Music Education Association (MMEA).

Ingrid Dykeman ’85, also part-time instructor in music and music-education coordinator, has been named the MSBOA Orchestra Teacher of the Year 2018 by the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association, which also recently presented her with an Emeritus award.

Benjamin Krause, a visiting professor for music theory, was named Distinguished Composer of the Year for 2018 by the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA). He was honored for his composition Taxonomies of Pulse, which was commissioned by the Indiana Music Teachers Association and MTNA.


Meg Peel
Mitchel Achieng

Swimmer Meg Peel and track and field’s Mitchel Achien’g represented Hope as the MIAA’s Most Valuable Athletes in their sports, as chosen by the league’s coaches. Peel helped the Flying Dutch give retiring co-head coach John Patnott his 22nd MIAA women’s team championship. She was also NCAA runner-up in the 200 backstroke while setting school-record times in that event and the 100 backstroke. Achien’g earned Most Valuable Field Athlete honors and won the MIAA triple jump title on her first try.

In other winter sports results: Men’s swimming and diving took fourth place; women’s basketball finished second (24-5 overall), with an NCAA appearance up to the second round, while the men’s basketball team tied for third place (15-11 overall); and, women’s and men’s indoor track and field claimed second and fourth places respectively. Among other individual athletic honors, Francesca Buchanan became the second-leading scorer all-time for the Flying Dutch in basketball with 1,476 points, and men’s diver Brian Simonich finished 12th in 3-meter diving at the NCAA Division III Championships.


Dr. Steven Bouma-Prediger
Dr. Kristen Gray

The college’s 154th Commencement, celebrating the graduating Class of 2019, will be held on Sunday, May 5, at 3 p.m. at Ray and Sue Smith Stadium. Baccalaureate will be held earlier in the day, at 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. in Dimnent Memorial Chapel.

The Commencement speaker will be Dr. Kristen Gray, who is the associate dean for health and counseling and directs the Counseling and Psychological Services office at the college. The Baccalaureate speaker will be Dr. Steven Bouma-Prediger, who is the Leonard and Marjorie Maas Professor of Theology.

In the event of rain, Commencement will be held at the Richard and Helen DeVos Fieldhouse. Admission to Baccalaureate, and to Commencement if indoors, is by ticket only.


Even across the winter months, construction continued on the Campus Ministries house, keeping the building on schedule for opening with the start of the new school year. Please visit the college online for a gallery of images chronicling the construction and for video showing 80-ton Fried Cottage being moved as part of the site preparation.


It all started with a single course offering — Introduction to Neuroscience — in 2000. Then, due to that class’ popularity, courses were added and, in 2002, a neuroscience minor was born. Next, Hope will offer a full-fledged neuroscience major starting with the 2019-20 academic year.

The new major will be rooted in two of Hope’s greatest strengths: the liberal arts and undergraduate research. Neuroscience naturally blends the academic worlds of biology, chemistry and psychology. At Hope though, it’s more than that. Students who major in neuroscience must also select from a list of offerings in computer science, engineering, mathematics, philosophy and physics. Research opportunities throughout will begin with Introduction to Neuroscience. In the neuroscience capstone, seniors will write an original grant proposal, conduct an original research study and write a complete journal-style manuscript.

Hope In Pictures

Hope students give of themselves through service in countless ways across the school year, ranging from individual volunteer activity to banding together through multiple campus organizations. It’s been that way for generations.

One of the most prominent efforts, Dance Marathon, held on March 8–9, celebrated a milestone this year: its 20th annual installment. The event stayed true to tradition, with hundreds of students participating in fund- and awareness-raising on behalf of Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital across the school year and for 24 consecutive hours in the Dow Center. The record-number 1,100 students raised a record-high $340,172.20, bringing the 20-year total to more than $2.67 million.

Please visit Hope online for more images from this year’s Dance Marathon as well as photo galleries of a variety of other events in the life of the college.