Summer 2015, Volume 8, Issue 3
The Student Talent Show is a perennial Homecoming favorite.
New and improved Homecoming for 2016
Make your plans now to attend Homecoming 2016 — Alumni and Parents Weekend, January 29–30. It’s the perfect weekend for alumni to connect with one another and for parents and families to revel in campus life and Falcon spirit.
Alumni and Parent Relations Director Bryan Jones says that Homecoming and the new Grand Reunion event (see article below) will reflect alumni feedback gleaned from the Alumni Pulse Survey taken in September 2014.
“New events throughout the year and changes in next year’s Homecoming weekend will provide more opportunities for alumni to connect with one another and with SPU in meaningful ways,” says Jones. “Many of those changes are the direct result of alumni input through conversations we’ve had and through the survey.
Homecoming 2016 Friday highlights
Students and their parents and families are invited to dish up at a special tailgate dinner planned just for them. The Student Talent Show onstage in Royal Brougham Pavilion is an annual fan favorite for all ages. And an invitation to sit in on selected classes in regular session will give you a Falcon’s eye view of faculty and students in academic action.
Homecoming 2016 Saturday highlights
- The Homecoming Luncheon, a hot ticket every year, features President Dan Martin, alumni awards, student musicians, and a delicious menu in good company.
- Falcon Women’s Basketball faces off with the Central Washington University Wildcats.
- On stage in E.E. Bach Theatre, “The Illusion” promises to cast its spell over you at matinee and evening performances.
- And don’t miss the All-Alumni and Parents Party being thrown in your honor!
Watch for complete Homecoming 2016 — Alumni and Parents Weekend details coming to you in the fall.
Grand Reunion 2016 inaugural event
In celebration of Seattle Pacific University’s 125th anniversary year, an exciting new annual event makes its debut. And the Grand Reunion weekend October 7–9, 2016, is expected to be the biggest alumni gathering in Seattle Pacific’s history.
The Grand Reunion will be a wonderful mix of fun, food, and reuniting specifically tailored to alumni and their families, with child care available (Future Falcons Nest) and activities geared for kids (Falcon Family Fun Center). It’s a fall event, which means fairer weather and that new academic year vibe.
- Thursday Highlight: President’s Circle Banquet for our most generous and most consistent donors.
- Friday Highlights: Alumni College — See your favorite faculty at class visits throughout the day. A special Young Alumni Evening event is planned, as well as a Falcon soccer or volleyball match-up.
- Saturday Highlights: Get your speed shoes on for the Alumni/Student 5k Run. Your hunger will be satisfied at the Academic Reunions Breakfast and the Class Reunion Lunch. A Falcon soccer game is on tap, along with Affinity Reunions and the Taste of SPU, the popular all-alumni reception in Gwinn featuring mouthwatering fare from multiple food stations.
Plan now to make history by joining in the festivities of Grand Reunion 2016 and SPU’s 125th Anniversary. Stay tuned for further details as they take shape.
Alumni served better than ever by newest strategies
The Office of Alumni and Parent Relations has made significant strides this year in providing new and improved services to the University’s more than 30,000 living alumni.
- Debuting in late October is a brand new alumni website that will be mobile responsive across all major social media platforms. Features include news and information, stories on creative and innovative alumni, dynamic and compelling imagery, marquee events, and highlighted alumni benefits.
- Check out the new “Falcons Forever” video. Be inspired by the stories of four alumni – Greg Asimakoupoulos ’74, Kristi Drake ’83, Ashley Reese ’09, and Toms Lee ’14 . Discover the varied ways they are involved with their alma mater, everything from mentoring students in their career choices to serving on the Alumni Association board.
- Handshake, a collaborative effort among several departments including Alumni, is the new streamlined way for SPU alumni and students to search for jobs, internships, volunteer opportunities, mentorships, and upcoming career events. Create your free account today!
“We are proud and excited about these great new tools for serving our alumni better,” says Alumni Director Bryan Jones. “One aspect of our slogan ‘Falcons Forever,’ is that we in the Alumni Office are committed to enhancing a life-long relationship with Seattle Pacific alumni. We’re here to make the connection between you and SPU stronger and more meaningful than ever.”
Graduation joys and new directions
More than 1,300 students experienced the joy/anticipation/relief of graduation from Seattle Pacific University on June 13, 2015. They included 930 undergraduates, 345 graduate students, and 30 doctoral students.
They and their families gathered in Seattle’s Key Arena for Commencement where they listened to speaker Steve Moore, executive director of the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust and former SPU vice president for campus life.
Graduates of the Class of 2015.
Among them were sociology major Madelyn Hogue and applied human biology major Ryan Alcantara. Hogue spent her first two years at SPU exploring different majors. With a passion for children with disabilities, she spent a study abroad quarter in Guatemala. One of her assignments? Discover how to better meet the needs of children with disabilities in rural villages.
Back at SPU, Hogue focused academically in urban and gender studies. In early 2015, she worked with two professors on research around a three-month stay on campus by Tent City 3, a residential camp for the homeless.
“We broke down the social distance between us and the TC3 residents, and friendships were made,” she says. “Those friendships allowed us to advocate with and for those experiencing homelessness. I have accepted a position at the University of Washington Autism Center where I can use the degree and skills learned at SPU to contribute to the early intervention, research, and professional development the Center is pioneering.”
Passionate about running, Alcantara’s dream job was to work in research for a large sports footwear company. His advisor cautioned him not to lose the dream and helped Alcantara build an academic plan to get him there. He entered the SPU Mentor Program, found focus, and was exposed to the material engineers, developers, and researchers at Brooks Sports Inc. through the mentor program’s Career360 emphasis.
Today, Alcantara works in the high-tech biomechanics laboratory at Brooks, just a mile from the SPU campus. “I have the mentorship program to thank for this,” he says. “I recommend the program to all my friends.”
New Legacy Bell rung at Ivy Cutting
This year’s Senior Class Gift was a new bronze bell to be rung each Ivy Cutting in recognition of multiple generations of SPU alumni families. The bell, cast in 1891, in addition to the traditional ivy sprigs for each graduate, is an enduring symbol of the SPU legacy. Falcons forever!
On the move with emeriti faculty
Dozens of SPU emeriti faculty are edified, encouraged, and connected through the Emeriti-Times Newsletter produced monthly by Emeriti Faculty President Mike Macdonald (philosophy, retired 2007) and newsletter editor Evette Hackman (family and consumer sciences, retired 2004). Recent newsletter highlights include:
Professor of Art Michael Caldwell (retired 2006) paints daily and continues to show his work at the Winthrop Gallery in Winthrop, Washington. This summer he was a volunteer host at the Shafer Historical Museum. During the school year, he will mentor at an elementary school.
University Librarian Gary Fick (retired 2013) is having a new home built on hill property overlooking Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Assistant Professor of Education Sharon Hartnett (retired 2012) worked with Hallmark for a year and takes long walks with her dog, Scout.
Track Coach Doris Heritage ’64, MS ’70 (retired 2002) took a bike/river barge excursion out of Amsterdam with her husband, Ralph, and SPU Track Coach Ken Foreman (retired 2001). Their trip coordinator was author and Holocaust survivor Hannie J. Voyles.
Associate Professor of Art Tim Malm ’75 (retired 1997) will join the American Heart Association’s speakers bureau to expand on his stroke story.
Tight end Jimmy Graham, captured by Maurice Labrecque ’99.
Seahawks photographer once Falcon sports editor
As a communication/journalism major at SPU, Maurice Labrecque ’99 thought he would graduate and write for a daily newspaper. He combined his love of sports and writing into a job as sports editor for The Falcon student newspaper. Sadly, as he drew closer to graduation, he watched the number of viable newspapers across the country steadily dwindle. He decided to capitalize on his photographic abilities instead.
Enter Maurice Photo Inc., his business shooting weddings on location, fashion models on the rise, and sweaty professional football players in the game of their lives. As a writer and a photographer, he is a double threat in a highly competitive profession.
Though he’s been flown to Cancun and the Caribbean island of St. Martin to shoot happy brides and grooms, Labrecque says few exotic locations compare to being in New York’s MetLife Stadium for Super Bowl XLVII.
“I took something like 12,000 images of the game and the Seattle victory parade that followed,” he says. “But even better was to be at the NFC Championship game in Seattle in front of the home crowd with everything on the line to get to the Super Bowl.”
It surprises some people to learn that Labrecque as part of the team’s photo pool receives no credit when one of his images is used. The payoff is the privilege of being one of the Seahawks photographers for the last 12 years. “It’s fun and good promotion for my business.”
Funny how life goes. He can’t say that he’s taken the perfect shot, something he’s always chasing. “Luck plays a big part. If I got the perfect shot, I’d probably quit the business.” A bigger motivator for Labrecque is pursuit of the funny, quirky, nontraditional shot that reveals a person’s personality in a unique way.
His wife, Kristen Labrecque ’98, MED ’04, is associate director of academic counseling at SPU.
It’s the agent’s life for her
As a literary agent for Alive Literary, Andrea Heinecke ’01 works with award-winning and best-selling authors of adult, youth, and children’s books in both fiction and nonfiction categories.
One of her recent projects was negotiating a publishing partnership between the Henri Nouwen Legacy Trust and Convergent Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
“I’ve spent time in Henri’s Toronto archives where there is a great deal of unpublished material that is all very well preserved,” says Heinecke. “I’m particularly excited about Henri’s letters, which are beautifully written, prophetic, and capture the intimacy and compassion that characterize his published works.” Watch for Love, Henri, a collection of some of Nouwen’s best letters to be released in September 2016 to coincide with the 20th anniversary of his death.
Heinecke is also helping author Caleb Wilde shape his message into a book. “(His) wildly popular blog, Confessions of a Funeral Director, has been featured on numerous national media outlets,” she says.
The agent’s love of books was nurtured as an English literature major at Seattle Pacific University. For her British Isles Study Abroad program her junior year, Heinecke spent time in Oxford, London, Stratford, and Bath. The avid traveler has scuba dived in Israel, ridden an elephant in Thailand, and worked at an orphanage in Ukraine. Today, the mom of two is married to Matt Heinecke, instrumental music director at Coronado School of the Arts in San Diego, California.
For Alive Literary, she acquires books, develops and implements marketing and publicity plans, and negotiates contracts. She has contracted more than 100 books with major publishers and notes that a forthcoming book from Korean-American missionary Kenneth Bae will share the personal account of his 15 years in a labor camp.
Join other alumni in the Holy Land
You are invited to experience the land that Jesus walked. Two of the Northwest’s most dynamic Free Methodist leaders are conducting a trip to the Holy Land in early 2016. They would like to include Seattle Pacific University alumni.
Matt Whitehead, superintendent of the Pacific Northwest Conference of the Free Methodist denomination, and Blake Wood, pastor of Seattle First Free Methodist Church, have joined forces on an 11-day trip to Israel and Jordan, January 31–February 10, 2016.
Included are visits to the famed sites of Petra, the Sea of Galilee, Nazareth, Gethsemane, Masada, and the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. There is also an optional extension of three days in Cairo, Egypt.
Find more information online or email for more details.
Alexander Hall thank you!
Thanks to a groundswell of generous support from Seattle Pacific University donors, and monetary awards totaling $1.4 million from the Murdock and Norcliffe foundations, the $6.2 million renovation and seismic retrofit of Alexander Hall is close to being fully funded.
As of August 31, 2015, total giving stands at $5,985,394.41.
Because of the many gifts and pledges by those who appreciate the heritage of SPU’s original building, President Dan Martin says Alexander Hall stands “solid and secure” at the heart of campus. He asks for prayer in the remaining effort to reach the final goal. To make an online gift to help complete the funding, visit the Campaign for Alexander Hall.