Rebecca Lapp returned to Guatemala to volunteer at the same orphanage she had visited following a semester-abroad program last fall. Courtney Seffernick, meanwhile, sampled social work-related opportunities at an inpatient hospice center and a nonprofit organization in northwest Ohio. Near or far, though, both Bluffton University students explored the link between vocation and faith as the 2015 recipients of $1,500 Summer Discovery Grants from the university. Lapp, a junior majoring in Spanish, was among seven Bluffton students who spent last fall semester in Guatemala, combining academic classes at SEMILLA (the Latin American Anabaptist Seminary) with field placements for service.
The Bluffton University Board of Trustees has a new chairperson for the first time since 2001. The trustees’ recent spring meeting was the last for Morris Stutzman, who retired from the board after 33 years, including the last 14 as chairperson. Kent Yoder, a trustee and Middlebury, Ind., businessman, assumed the chairperson’s duties from Stutzman, a Wooster, Ohio, attorney.
Two incoming students at Bluffton University have been awarded the university’s full-tuition Presidential Scholarship, valued at more than $110,000 for four years. Katelyn Amstutz of Dalton, Ohio, and Edwin Martin of Goshen, Ind., are the scholarship recipients. Amstutz, the daughter of Michael and Lisa Amstutz, was homeschooled, graduating this year. She has been active in tennis, the Heartland String Quartet and Science Olympiad. She attends Sonnenberg Mennonite Church near Dalton. Martin is a 2015 graduate of Fairfield High School. His activities included marching band, for five years; jazz band, for four years; and state solo and ensemble contest, for three years. The son of Grant and Janelle Martin, he attends Benton Mennonite Church near Goshen.
It’s called the Community-to-Classroom (C2C) Living-Learning Community, but “community” isn’t the only word you might hear more than once in a discussion of the campus program that debuted in 2014-15. First-year education majors who spent the year together on the fourth floor of Neufeld Hall also talked about “bonds,” “family,” “friends” and “home” when describing their shared experiences this spring. C2C was designed to be a community that blurs lines between classroom and residential environments -- “a classroom without walls” where students taking introductory education classes together could continue academic conversations, said Caleb Farmer, director of residence life.