FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 25, 2010
Office of College Communications
Wenham, MA—Communication arts major Katie Thompson is preparing for a two-week mission trip to Haiti in early June with 14 other Gordon students. Study body president Jesse Adams is interning for a U.S. senator. English major Stephanie Bittner is studying international journalism in Italy. And biology major Samuel Maldonado is conducting research in a lab at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center with a scientist from Harvard Medical Center.
These young leaders are part of a large number of Gordon College students who are taking advantage of their summer breaks to continue their academic pursuits and community engagement. For instance, 116 students are currently enrolled in 15 May Term classes taught at Gordon. The three-week innovative courses include hands on subjects such as Marine Biology with local trips to the marsh areas on the North Shore, and Arts in the City with visits to museums throughout Boston.
But the summer learning experiences extend far beyond campus. Three international seminars have provided 39 students the opportunity to study biblical geography in Israel and Jordan, 14—including Bittner—are honing their reporting skills with the International Journalism Seminar in Assisi, Italy, and in August, 20 students will travel to London and Scotland for a course in British theatre that includes watching a number of plays.
In addition to such travel opportunities, students are also gaining professional experience. Nine students are serving in youth ministry practicums, half a dozen are working with professors on campus to conduct academic research, and several—like Adams and Maldonado—are working in internships and co-ops throughout the country.
“Just because the sun comes out doesn’t mean our students stop learning or leading,” said Chris Carlson, associate dean of student life and leadership. “I’m always impressed and inspired to hear of the many opportunities these young scholars take to continue their education, even through the summer months. They’re building a strong foundation for their future with each experience.”
And even as they enhance their academic careers, many students choose also to serve the world through mission trips like the one Thompson is joining to Haiti. In addition to that trip, a team of 12 students will help bring sustainable efforts to the small village of Bulembu, Swaziland. Seven students will also be working on community development in Senegal while two other teams travel to Costa Rica to serve in an orphanage and to India to work with women who are at risk for temple prostitution.
“The range of summer opportunities through Gordon is great and varied,” said Carlson. “Whether it’s global ministry, personal scholarship or professional development, our students seem to respond to the calling they have in ways that really matter. It’s exciting to see.”