North Central College - Naperville, IL

Joe Birkett '77

Joe Birkett ’77 in December was sworn in as a justice of the 2nd District Appellate Court in Elgin, IL. He was formerly DuPage County State’s Attorney and a prosecutor for nearly 30 years. Birkett’s wife Patty watched the oath, which was administered by Illinois Supreme Court Justice Bob Thomas. Daily Herald photo by Daniel White.

D-Term Trip to Berlin: Bad weather turns to opportunity

When Heathrow International Airport closed due to bad weather a week before Christmas, it posed quite a dilemma for 18 students, their professor and a staff member, Brian Rainville, who were stranded in Berlin at the conclusion of a D-Term course. The group was supposed to transfer flights in London.

A Thriving Global Community

On any given day at North Central College, students are sharing travel stories from D-Term, learning about new study abroad options to places like Jordan and Peru, practicing German at a language table, taking flamenco lessons and viewing a documentary film about India. They may encounter an English professor who grew up in Romania and a student organization comptroller from Haiti.

President's Message

One of my theories about great colleges is that they must include a few “magnificent crazy zealots.” Too many MCZs, and the institution could implode. Too few, and the school has a tendency to settle for good instead of great. The MCZs are the professors and coaches who refuse to accept constraints … whether they be resources, attitudes, “turf” or time … in their pursuit of excellence.

New American Colleges and Universities Fellow Adds to Science Lore

J. Burton Kirkwood, professor of history at the University of Evansville in Evansville, IN, used his sabbatical as a New American Colleges and Universities fellow at North Central during fall term 2010. While observing the College’s senior administrative leadership, he also researched North Central’s rich legacy in the sciences and its many distinguished alumni.

Dr. Carl C. Gamertsfelder '35: A Witness to the Launch of the Nuclear Age

"It seemed a little magical to me,” was how the late Dr. Carl C. Gamertsfelder ’35 described the nuclear reaction that took place at the University of Chicago on December 2, 1942.

Lynda Buric Elliott '70

Lynda Buric Elliott published “Children’s Songs of the Southwest” in 2010. Her 25 original compositions were written for preschool-aged children at Pinnacle Presbyterian Day School in Scottsdale, AZ, where she is a musician-educator. “The songs are intended to be fun and educational, giving information in a musical way about the Southwest and the people and animals that live there. The songs also allow children to explore the range of their voices and teach a variety of music concepts,” she says. Lynda may be reached at desert.home@cox.net.

Sarah Levine '05

Sarah Levine is a clinical research associate at ICON Clinical Research in Chicago. She works in pharmaceutical drug development and travels to sites involved in clinical research. She ensures the collection of quality data in clinical trials as well as the safety of patients enrolled in the trials. She may be reached at sjlevine@yahoo.com.

Rae Ann Steinhebel '70 Hoehn

Rae Ann Steinhebel Hoehn has been teaching art in the Fox Valley area of suburban Chicago since 1970 and is now using the Web to expand her classroom. She has developed a series of lessons and a blog for aspiring artists who want to learn from home. Among her students are home-schooled children and their parents. “This is a great thing because I can have a homeschool class from Maine to Texas or Iowa,” she says. “Or I can teach those who cannot get to my classes because of work schedules even if we each live in the Fox Valley area.

Brandon Townsend '05

Brandon Townsend is the full-time assistant baseball coach at Concordia University Chicago in Forest Park, IL. He’ll work with the pitching staff and help with recruiting. His coaching career began in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin (CCIW) with one-year stints as pitching coach at North Park University, and varsity pitching coach, head JV coach and recruiting coordinator at North Central College. He was then with Central College in Pella, IA, for three seasons where he served as the team’s pitching coach.

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