Maggie Arnold '06 receives the Alumni Merit Award from Jeffrey Horst '95, chair of the Alumni Council.
Creating a Life of Wholeness
As if on cue, morning rain clouds parted just in time for nearly 700 graduates to walk across the stage for Messiah College’s 97th annual Commencement on May 13. With Shoemaker Field undergoing much-needed renovations, part of the College’s “Fields of Growth” initiative, Messiah relocated this year’s “pomp and circumstance” to the adjacent baseball field.
Giving the first commencement address of his career, Charles Marsh, professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia and director of the Project on Lived Theology, challenged the new graduates to rest in God and work hard to “restore wholeness to the earth.” He said, “In a time such as ours . . . learning to abide with Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, may be our only hope for renewal and meaningful action.”
William Stowman (right), associate professor and chair of the Department of Music, accepts the Dr. Robert and Marilyn Smith Award for Outstanding Teaching from Randall Basinger, provost.
According to tradition, the outstanding achievements of students and educators were recognized during the ceremony. Graduating senior Maggie Arnold received the Alumni Merit Award for her accomplishments in the fields of mathematics and business, and for her service as both student body president and student representative for the presidential search committee. William Stowman, associate professor and chair of the Department of Music, and Timothy Peterson, program director of the Philadelphia Campus, were each honored with the annual Dr. Robert and Marilyn Smith Award for Outstanding Teaching, after being nominated by graduating seniors. Both professors were cited for consistently demonstrating tremendous capacity for cultivating positive learning environments and having propelled, respectively, the music department and the Philadelphia Campus to new levels of excellence and achievement.
—Jonathan Vaitl ’06