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Pioneer responds to Baldwin’s dirty glasses

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As Kenzi Ahnert (fr) walked into Baldwin on a Monday morning, she was looking forward to a refreshing glass of milk. However, as she picked up a glass from the crate, she was disgusted by the mystery fog covering it.

“I was nervous to drink out of my glass,” Ahnert said. “It did not look like it had been washed thoroughly.”

According to James Lipetri, Pioneer College Caterers’ Food Service Director, Baldwin staff is aware of the problem.

“This issue has been addressed as we have had multiple issues which can cause the buildup of hard water deposits on the glasses,” Lipetri said in an email to The Sojourn. “It is much more noticeable on the clear glasses than the white china.”

According to Lipetri, Pioneer has been making an effort to change the state of the glasses.

_MG_1786-2“We had the dishwasher serviced and have had the water softener checked,” Lipetri said. “We have called our janitorial company to verify the wash and rinse on our machine.”

Lipetri also said since the janitorial company serviced the machine, he has seen a significant improvement in the state of the glasses.

The janitorial service is scheduled to return for one more check up within the next two weeks, according to Lipetri, who hopes the second trip takes care of the problem.

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Dole named World Changer: Fall 2014 convocation set for Oct. 3

480px-Elizabeth_Dole_official_photoIndiana Wesleyan University named its 11th member of the Society of World Changers, humanitarian Elizabeth Dole. She’ll come to IWU for a fall convocation in her honor, something that may become an annual tradition.

Dole served as the president of the American Red Cross, a United States senator, as well as a cabinet member to two presidents. Most recently, she founded the Elizabeth Dole Foundation in 2012, which provides ways to help caregivers of wounded warriors in the military.

According to Larry Lindsay, special assistant to the president at IWU, Dole is preparing for an April 9 ceremony at the White House to recognize military caregivers through her foundation, so it conflicted with the original April 2 date.

About six or eight weeks before the spring 2014 convocation, Dole’s office called and said she had to reschedule. Lindsay said the university looked for another common date in the spring. IWU and Dole’s foundation couldn’t come to an agreement, so instead, the convocation will happen Oct. 3, 2014.

This date falls during IWU’s homecoming weekend, and Karen Roorbach, senior counsel to President Wright, said this could become a new tradition.

“If that works well, then we may continue that format of doing it in the fall,” Roorbach said.

Roorbach said the World Changer inductee could stay for the Friday evening alumni banquet during homecoming weekend. This way, he or she could speak to both students and alumni. But Roorbach said at this point, Dole has only agreed to speak during chapel.

SGA President Tim Scurlock (jr) said an annual fall convocation would be beneficial to the university, especially in conjunction with homecoming.

“I think moving it to the fall, if they were to do that long term, I think that would fit really well with homecoming week and maybe building a bit more tradition around that week as a whole,” Scurlock said.

Scurlock served as an advisory member to former SGA President Aaron Augello (alumnus ‘13) on the World Changer committee. Scurlock added that out of the world changers now in the society, the university hasn’t selected anyone who’s been involved with public service as much as Dole.

“Her impacts in the political sphere should be noted,” Scurlock said. “Because it’s something really, really hard to do.”

Even though Dole has extensive background in public service, Lindsay said she might not be recognizable among college students.

“I think she is a very highly qualified candidate,” Lindsay said. “The challenge with some of our candidates is that they have that national reputation, but they’re not a household word in terms of 18 to 22 year old students.”

Lindsay also added Dole has been on the “long list” of nominations for world changers for about 10 years. Dr. Jo Anne Lyon, general superintendent of the Wesleyan Church, recommended to former IWU President Henry Smith that Dole should be inducted as World Changer.

Because of this, Lindsay said the university contacted Dole’s office, and she agreed to the nomination pending the World Changer committee’s approval. And they agreed to it in spring 2013 in their meeting after the convocation of David Green.

But for now, IWU students and faculty will have to wait six months to get a glimpse of their next World Changer.

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IWU honors Gary and Connie Ott at naming ceremony

DSC_0360Indiana Wesleyan University held its naming ceremony for the Ott Hall of Sciences and Nursing Thursday morning at 11:30 a.m in the building’s foyer. The ceremony honored Gary and Connie Ott, Marion College (now IWU) graduates who contributed financially to the school’s health science and nursing initiatives. Gary also serves on IWU’s Board of Trustees.

The Otts both graduated from Marion College in 1974. Gary received his bachelor’s degree in economics and business, while Connie received her bachelor’s degree in sociology.

Gary said he first met Connie during their freshman year after she made an announcement in the student center.

“One day she walked in and announced to everybody in the student center, ‘Is there anyone who wants to go running with me?’” Gary said. “All of a sudden, I became a runner.”

The Otts married in 1975 and have three children. Two of them attended IWU, Bradley (alumnus ‘03) and Jennifer (alumna ‘05). Ryan went to Taylor University, but he now serves on the IWU Citizens’ Advisory Council.

Gary is now president and CEO of TLC Management, Inc. a provider of health and rehabilitation centers, assisted living and retirement centers and hospice services.

However, he didn’t start his career in health care. He wanted to be a pilot after college, and joined the military to continue that passion. After graduating from the academy, he worked for Texas Instruments.

Gary then took a job as a pilot back in Marion, where he grew up. His mother had recently died and he felt he needed to be close to his family.

After only six months at the flying job, the company went bankrupt. Gary went without a job for nine months, and he said he kept his options very open.

“I prayed to God and said, ‘Please give me a job. I’ll do anything, I’ll even work in a nursing home,’” Gary said.

God answered his prayer, and Gary found a job at a nursing home. He eventually worked his way up to an administrative position at the Wesleyan Health Care Center, owned by Marion College at the time.

But Marion College decided to sell the nursing home. And Gary wanted to buy it.

With Larry Maxwell and his brother John (IWU’s Maxwell Center’s namesake) financially backing him, Gary bought the nursing home.

Now, Gary has turned that one nursing home into 20 under TLC Management, with 3,000 employees in Indiana and Florida.

“I kind of feel like a turtle on a fence post,” Gary said. “I know I didn’t get here on my own, someone had to lift me up and set me there. I give a lot of credit to how God worked this all out.”

Connie has supported Gary in his business, doing social work in TLC’s nursing homes at various points. She has also worked as a preschool teacher.

“I love people, and it doesn’t matter if they are young or old,” Connie said.

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Dr. Keith Newman, IWU’s executive vice president  said the Otts saw an opportunity to support the school during the building’s construction. But the Otts weren’t seeking recognition for it.

“The honor isn’t something that they sought, but the building did give us a great opportunity to honor them,” Newman said.

The Otts’ character was also something that Newman said made them a good choice for the naming.

“When I think about the Otts, I think about people of faith. They’ve translated what they believe in their heart to what they do with their hands,” said Newman.

Gary stressed that he was just a normal person that God blessed in amazing ways.

“[During college], we were just ordinary people. We weren’t on the dean’s list or anything, we just felt like ordinary students like how many students probably feel today,” Gary said. “We’ve been very blessed, and we like to give some of our blessing back.”

Connie offered her final words of advice to students, stressing the importance of following God’s plan.

“Stay true to the Lord,” Connie said. “He has to be the one that guides your life.”

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Switchfoot comes to IWU for second time

switchfoot_img01_hiresFive California surfers turned musicians will travel to Marion, Ind. April 4 to share songs about experiencing the world.

Switchfoot last came to Indiana Wesleyan University in spring 2010 when the Chapel-Auditorium opened for the first time. Now four years later, they’ve released their ninth studio album, “Fading West.”

The band will headline the 8 p.m. concert for Fusion, a youth event hosted by IWU, alongside music by the Brandon Grissom Band, Jordan Brown (alumna ‘12) and a dance performance by Momentum.

This concert is in the midst of Switchfoot’s Fading West tour that began in September 2013. Chad Butler, Switchfoot’s drummer, says some of the band’s best shows have happened in small towns on the tour.

“In those big cities, they get concerts every night,” Butler says. “And then sometimes in the smaller towns, the music is more appreciated.”

Butler is one of the original three Switchfoot members, alongside brothers Jon and Tim Foreman. Even after spending 17 years together and the additions of Jerome Fontamillis and Drew Shirley, Butler says it’s still fun.

“It’s such a gift,” Butler says. “Every morning I wake up and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to play music that I believe in with people I love.”

And now, the band has done something completely different than ever before — starred in a documentary.

“We picked our favorite places around the planet that had good surfing and went to look for new musical inspiration and chase waves around the world,” Butler says.

The documentary is called “Fading West,” just like the album, and follows the band through their 2012 World Tour. Butler says this it’s the biggest project Switchfoot has ever done in their almost two decades of music. All of the songs on their newest album are based off places they visited.

“It’s a documentary about music and surfing, but it’s also a look behind the scenes to the humanity and the brotherhood that we have in the band,” Butler says. “It has a real heart beat and I think it’s a human story that anybody can relate to.”

Since the documentary focused on one year of the band’s life, they were able to travel throughout the world and wherever they wanted. Butler says Indonesia and South Africa were his two favorite places.

In Capetown, South Africa, the band visited a children’s choir called the Kuyasa Kids. These children became orphans because of AIDS. It was Switchfoot’s second time visiting them and on the “Fading West” album, they’re featured in the song “The World You Want.”

“So these kids, they have a really difficult circumstance, and yet they have so much hope in their eyes,” Butler says. “And we were really inspired working with them … We have a lot to learn from them.”

According to Butler, the band has always had a heart for kids. For the past 10 years, Switchfoot has hosted a concert and surf contest called Switchfoot Bro-Am during the summer. All funds raised at the event through vendors, sponsorships and an auction benefit San Diego children’s charities.

“Kids are really important to us,” Butler says. “I feel like we’ve been given so much and music has given us such an opportunity. We look for opportunities to give back to shine the spotlight on kids who need help, who need a hand.”

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