Builder Care

Chapel at Your Desk - March 24, 2020

Dr. Dawn Pleas 3/24/20

Rev. Molly Just 3/24/20

Rev. Molly Just 3/17/20

Campus Connect Group

Feeling disconnected from your fellow Builders?

Answer a meaningful question once a week in a "potluck" style group that we put you in for fun. We will utilize the video chat app Marco Polo. Get to know someone new in this time of quarantine, and help us keep our campus connected!

What goes on in a Campus Connect Group?
Campus connect groups are simple. They are for anyone on our campus who wants to participate (faculty, staff, students). Once we receive responses, we will organize small groups of 5-7. We will send out one meaningful question for the group to respond to each week using the video chat app, Marco Polo (free download on Iphone or Android). We do need group facilitators -- these folks will receive the question each week from Rev. Molly Just and will pose it to the group. We truly envision the time commitment for this being only a few minutes per week for all involved.

Join a Campus Connect Group

Posted: March 24, 2020


The sudden transition from campus to an online platform has not been without difficulty. The pandemic has taken away an essential part of Southwestern College. The connections. The campus. The people. The beautiful scenery. But most importantly, you...THE STUDENT. It is WAY too quiet here. There are no hugs, noise, laughter, or energetic conversations.  

Despite the current circumstances, there is HOPE ahead. August 2020 is only four months away or something like 125 days. The college is ready for you to be back. We are willing to help any way we can.  

To make it happen, I need you to focus on two crucial things:

  1. Work really hard in class this spring semester. If you are doing great, keep pushing. If you are struggling, reach out. If you are ready to quit, don't.
  2. Enroll in class for the fall 2020 semester. The Self-Service is open to register all students. No lines, no pre-approval, no questions, even if you have a HOLD on your account. 

HOPE + WORK HARD + REGISTER = Back in August 2020.

If it is not that simple for you, email us at ​Student Success Office (

I miss you tons. dp (aka Mama Dawn or Dr. Dawn).

Dawn Elena Pleas
Vice President of Retention and Student Success
Southwestern College

Posted: March 24, 2020

Dear Builder Family -- 

I want you to get a moving picture fixed in your imagination:

Next fall, you are walking across campus, and you see someone who you happened to get to know through a small campus connect group during the quarantine times of COVID-19. You wave at each other, and remember that crazy time from last semester, when you both decided to sign up for a surprise small group to try something new, and keep connected with other builders during a time of social isolation. You remember how cool it was when you found out our librarian, Marjorie, was going to be in your group, or our communications extraordinaire, Kaydee Riggs-Johnson, or that biology senior you didn’t know yet. Who knew that the chaos of COVID-19 could provide a fun and meaningful opportunity to be seen and heard each week? You keep walking, remembering those weird times with a grateful heart. 

Today, your future self is inviting your current self to sign up for a campus connect group! Campus connect groups are simple.

  1. They are for anyone on our campus who would like to participate (faculty/staff/students). You can sign up a the link below, and once we receive responses, we will organize small, mixed groups of 5-7.
  2. We will be using the app Marco Polo (free download for Android and IPhone) to organize folks into video message chats. We will send out one meaningful question for the group to respond to each week, at some point between Monday-Friday.
  3. The time commitment is minimal in the midst of all the other transitions, and this is purely for fun, and to promote positive connection across our now virtual campus.
  4. Check out the sign up HERE. If you want to participate, sign up by Friday, March 27. 

On another note -- we will be meeting for chapel tomorrow, online, in a segment we’re calling “Chapel at your Desk.” Our goal is to keep things short, simple, and connectional from week to week. Keep an eye on Instagram @scchapel, as we share your own stories about how you’re experiencing God, and grace during this time. We want to know what you’re trying these days as you seek to grow in all kinds of ways. To join tomorrow for chapel: CLICK HERE.  The video will be released by 11 am, to keep with our normal schedule

May you be well in all ways, 


Rev. Molly Just
Campus Minister
Director of Discipleship Southwestern

Posted: March 17, 2020

Dear Builder Family –

A lot can change in a week. When I was a student at Southwestern, I majored in Philosophy and Religion. I remember having conversations in my classes where we would discuss case studies featuring moral dilemmas, and how to respond ethically. You might have had these conversations in one of our SC classrooms, already. As I have been reading the news about the devastating impact of COVID-19, caused by the novel coronavirus, I go back and envision myself in my undergraduate school classroom. It is one thing to talk about abstract moral dilemmas, and our responses in a classroom, and another to be living during an actual dilemma where we are the decision makers, whether we want to be or not. We do not have the gifts of hindsight, or answers in the back of our books here. We only have the recent present moments. In light of that, below are some things that I invite the Builder Family near and far to remember in the coming days:

First, Builders remember that they are on the same team. Your administration, faculty, coaches and staff have been considering the entire context, and working tirelessly to make ethical decisions on behalf of many in our community. As we are away from each other in the coming days, let us be mindful, and pray for all the leaders in our world who are having to make moment-by-moment decisions. We must remember we are on the same team, and therefore work together to keep everyone safe. After this, may Builders all around the world be remembered by the wise decisions that they made that benefited the whole.

Second, Builders remember to be thoughtful and flexible. It’s hard to have athletic games, music and theatre performances, and group gatherings cancelled for the foreseeable future. We are creatures who long to start and end well, and these are important, and natural desires. But for now, self-isolating, staying in one place, and co-existing in small groups are the ways in which we are called to be both thoughtful and flexible, and to care for our neighbors. Blessed is the Builder who can see just far enough into the future to know that buying only one case of needed toilet paper when there are two is the better decision.

Third, Builders are creative. As we speak, your professors, administrators, coaches and staff members are all thinking about creative ways to connect with you starting Monday, March 23, while we are distanced from one another. Professors are building up their online classrooms; staff members are testing out apps to help you meet face-to-face on a screen. From where I sit in the campus ministry office, we are planning to move our worship services online, starting Wednesday, March 25.

Last of all, Builders try. In Campus Ministry, our theme for the semester has been “Try Chapel.” We have been encouraging our student body to try something new as it relates to life and faith. At one of our first chapels of the semester, Dawn Pleas reminded us that Builders try. Full stop. During this challenging time, lean into the new things that you must try, and look for the positive. Remember that SC has prepared you in some important ways for such a time as this. We trust that the Builder Spirit is alive and well, even when we are away from each other. God is with us.

We invite you to follow along on Instagram with @scchapel and Facebook “SC Chapel” to keep updated regarding services, and what we are calling “connection groups.” These will be small groups that use virtual tools to combat social isolation. If you need to talk during this time, or need resources, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.

Peace and Good Care, 


Rev. Molly Just
Campus Minister
Director of Discipleship Southwester

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