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Freshman Class Beats All Predictions

As late as July, SC admission director Todd Moore was still cautious about the number of freshmen he thought would arrive at Southwestern College in the fall.

Maybe 160, maybe less—maybe more if everything fell into place.

Although early predictors were positive and he was confident he’d make his budgeted goal, Moore (in his first year as admission director) didn’t want to raise expectations about the size of the class. At 107, the entering 2002 freshman class had been one of the smallest in years, a number blamed on post-9/11 prudence and an economy that had made many parents cautious about private higher education.

But when counting was done on the first clay of classes Aug. 27, even Moore was pleased.
A total of 174 students had been in class on the first day, with 77 transfer students. Although numbers will shrink slightly before the official final count (on the 20th day of classes), it should go on record as the largest on-campus class of new students since 1981, when final count was 188. In the intervening years size of the freshman cohort was as low as 74 (in 1993) and had not passed 150 in 15 years.

The class filled all available residence halls, and had advisors scrambling to make sure all students could be accommodated in freshman integrative studies courses.

Moore credits work of his staff, coaches, activity directors, and faculty as being instrumental in the size of the class. Financial aid procedures were streamlined and prospective students received their proposed financial aid packages early in the search process.

“No one brings in a great class alone, and the size of this class is a tribute to everyone on campus,” Moore says. “We knew we needed to have an increase in the freshman class without sacrificing quality, and everyone worked hard toward that goal

Quality wasn’t sacrificed for quantity. Statistics on the freshman class:

  • Average ACT score of 22.
  • Average grade point average of 3.4.
  • Students from 12 states, and four foreign countries, including Ghana, Zimbabwe, Mexico, and Ireland.
  • Students from high schools with 10 in their graduating class, and students with more than 1,200 in their graduating classes.


Sondra (kyle) Stonebraker '75 and Kendra Stonebraker, Norwich, Kan., became a two generation Moundbuilder family on move-in day Aug. 22. Kendra is part of the largest freshman class in nearly two decades.




McConnell Invites Southwestern Onto Base

Southwestern College has been invited to be one of only four institutions that provide on-site classes at McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita. Baccalaureate degree completion courses will be taught at base facilities for active duty airmen, their spouses, Department of Defense contractors, military retirees, and others. Classes also will be open to civilian learners (with appropriate base passes).

The McConnell initiative is part of Southwestern College Professional Studies, a degree-completion program for working adults who have some college credit. Classes are scheduled during evenings and weekends and the course schedule allows learners to leave and rejoin the program as their individual schedules dictate.

“Selection of the school was based on military need and benefit to the military on base,” explains ??? Culliton, education service officer at McConnell. “Southwestern is the program that provides for the needs of the military learner.”

The college has professional studies centers at two additional locations in Wichita (including sites at 2040 S. Rock Road and at 7011 W. Central) and in downtown Winfield. Online programs allow for learners anywhere in the world to complete their degrees through Internet access to courses. Active duty service personnel deployed to other areas often are able to continue their Southwestern education through the online program.

On-base classes began in August with four classes scheduled in the first six-week session. First to be offered are classes from the business administration and business quality management majors, with coursework anticipated to be added from additional majors as based on demand. In all, 11 majors are offered through Professional Studies.

“Because we are able to have advising, enrolling, and student accounts all available in a one-stop location, this can make the connection with Southwestern College easily accessible,” explains Karen Pedersen, SC vice president for professional studies.

Enrollment of active duty airmen in Professional Studies and SC Online has been on the rise for the last three years, Pedersen adds, and the college anticipates continued growth in enrollment.

Sheppard Accepts Interim Dean Post

J.A. “Andy” Sheppard has been named interim academic vice president and dean of faculty at Southwestern College.

A member of the SC faculty since 1997, Sheppard had been associate dean of faculty from 2001-2003, and is associate professor of philosophy and religion. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Sheffield, England, and a master’s degree from Iliff School of Theology.

Sheppard has earned a reputation at Southwestern as a challenging faculty member whose philosophy classes stimulate far-ranging discussions.

“I’m grateful to Andy for accepting the challenge to lead the college’s academic program. He’s a creative and energetic colleague,” says President Dick Merriman.

The academic vice president serves as chief advisor to the president in all academic and related matters, and oversees the academic programs of the college.

Sheppard has continued to be an active scholar while teaching at Southwestern. His research interest in John Duns Scotus has led to several publications as well as a book in progress. He was recipient of the ORS Fellowship from 1996 to 1999, an honor awarded by the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals of the Universities of the United Kingdom on the basis of merit and research potential.

At Southwestern he organized the Books for Belarus project, leading a nationwide book drive designed to provide library books for the European Humanities University of Belarus. He’s been assistant soccer coach, student government faculty sponsor, and faculty sponsor for the Philosophy and Religion Club.

Elijah Reunioin Set
for March

An Elijah reunion is set for Saturday, March 6, in Winfield. The group will meet from 3 to 9 p.m. at the Winfield Community Center in Baden Square (formerly St. John’s College campus).

The Mendelssohn oratorio was performed many years at Southwestern, sponsored by the Winfield Oratorio Society. Schedule for the reunion day will include 3 p.m. registration, a 4 p.m. sing-through of portions of Elijah, and a 6 p.m. catered dinner and informal program.

All previous participants are invited to attend, organizers say. For more information contact John Paulin, (620) 229-7909 or jpaulin@sckans.edu, or Wilma Anglemyer, (620) 221-6343 or wilma_anglemyer@usd465.com.