Thursday, January 23, 2014

Brother Louis, other Christian Brothers leaders to be honored

Brother Louis DeThomasis, president emeritus of Saint Mary’s, will be honored Thursday, Feb. 13, at a special event at the university’s Twin Cities campus.

The event will include a dedication of Brother Louis Hall, formerly Park Avenue North (PAN). In addition, Brother Louis and four other Christian Brothers who have served as presidents at institutions throughout the nation will be recognized and presented with honorary doctorates. The event is scheduled to begin at 4:45 p.m. in the Saint Mary’s University Center, 2540 Park Ave. S., Minneapolis. The indoor ceremony will be followed by a reception with light refreshments.

During a 21-year tenure that began in 1984, Brother Louis helped increase Saint Mary’s enrollment from 1,400 students to more than 5,000. He also oversaw expansion from a single Winona campus to locations in the Twin Cities, Rochester and Nairobi, Kenya. By 1996, graduate school enrollment had grown dramatically, and Twin Cities Business named Saint Mary’s the “Best College Turnaround” for that year. The Saint Mary’s University Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs have continued to build upon the strong foundation that was established 30 years ago under the leadership of Brother Louis.

The four other Christian Brothers to be recognized include:

• Brother Mel Anderson, FSC, past president of Saint Mary's College of California
• Brother James Gaffney, FSC, president of Lewis University (Ill.)
• Brother Michael McGinniss, FSC, president of La Salle University (Pa.), past president of Christian Brothers University (Tenn.)
• Brother Thomas Scanlan, FSC, past president of Manhattan College (N.Y.), past vice chancellor of Bethlehem University (Palestine)

Together the five have served more than 125 years as leaders of Christian Brothers institutions that follow a heritage of innovative, student-centered education.

News from Nairobi

Father Michael Kirwen displays a copy of Professor Laurenti Magesa’s latest book “What is not sacred? African Spirituality” Magesa is a faculty member and has lectured at MIAS since 1989.

By James Chege
Librarian at the Maryknoll Institute of African Studies

Second Semester Begins at MIAS

Jan. 17 was the official opening day of the second semester 2013-2014 academic year at the Maryknoll Institute of African Studies. As is required, the new and continuing students assembled in the main hall for an orientation session conducted by the program director Father Michael Kirwen and the assistant directors Denis Odinga and Dr. Edith Chamwama.

At the orientation exercise, emphasis was laid on the unique MIAS method that attaches high importance to field research. This allows students to discuss first-hand what they learn in class and read in books about African culture and more importantly it facilitates an in-depth understanding of their own cultural realities.

Following the orientation, the first field research workshop was conducted. In order to equip the students with skills needed when going about their field research, the workshop focused on data gathering methods with particular emphasis on stream-of-consciousness oral interviews and participant observation.

Brother Peter Iorlano visiting Saint Mary’s

Brother Peter Iorlano, an English teacher and coordinator of institutional values at Bethlehem University, is visiting Saint Mary’s for the next five weeks as part of his sabbatical.

Brother Peter is a member of the District of Eastern North America. While on sabbatical, he spent five weeks at Lewis University and five weeks at La Salle University. And in the spring he will visit a Jesuit university, St. Joseph’s, in Lebanon. He also recently hosted a group of SMU and Lewis students and staff who were on a Holy Land social justice pilgrimage over the Christmas break.

During his time at Saint Mary’s, Brother Peter is connecting with faculty, staff and administrators. He is particularly looking at what is going on in campus ministry and mission offices, and in the areas of Lasallian formation. He is interested in seing how he can  incorporate what other Lasallian schools are doing into his work at Bethlehem University, where he is responsible for the pastoral care of faculty and students as well as mission integration. “I’ve have the opportunity, after nine years at Bethlehem University, to look at what I’ve been doing and what can be done in the context of a Lasallian Catholic university in a predominantly Muslim culture,” he said. He will depart Saint Mary’s on Feb. 22.

Page Series event Jan. 28 brings favorite stories to life

Theatreworks USA will perform “Teacher From the Black Lagoon and Other Storybooks” Tuesday, Jan. 28, as part of the Page Series.

The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. in Page Theatre.

Introducing children to the wonderful world of live theatre is something Theatreworks USA knows about. For 50 years they have brought together some of the finest young talent and seasoned professionals to tour the country, bringing literature to life on stage.

This production is a new musical adaptation of seven story books including “The Teacher From The Black Lagoon,” “Dogzilla,” “Grumpy Bird,” “I Want My Hat Back,” “Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse,” “Love Splat (Splat The Cat),” and “The Grasshopper And The Ant.” These classics are on every child’s must-read story list.

Tickets are $14 for adults, $6 for seniors and students and are available at the SMU Box Office, Ext. 1715, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays or online at

A gathering at the Winona Public Library is planned for 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25. Everyone is invited to a reading of the seven storybooks to be featured in the Jan. 28 performance. Tickets to the Page Series performance will be given away.

Leung, Heukeshoven recruit in La Crosse

Dr. David Leung and Dr. Janet Heukeshoven, Music Department, visited La Crosse Logan High School last week to recruit music students. They played duets, talked to the students about the music program and practice methods, and Dr. Leung conducted the string orchestra rehearsal.  

Faculty display works at current art exhibition

Faculty members of the Department of Art and Design have joined talents for the current art exhibit, on display through March 8 in the Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries.

The show features new works — ranging from sculpture to photography — by Lisa Truax, Matt Winkler, Preston Lawing, Rob McColl, Rod Robertson and Tony Calabrese.

Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, and the show is free and open to the public.

SMU 10K event scheduled for Jan. 26

This year’s SMU 10K cross-country ski races will be held on Sunday, Jan. 26, at Saint Mary’s.
The public is invited to the classic-style citizens’ ski event at 11 a.m., while the skate race will begin at 1 p.m.

Participants can register in competitive or recreational classes.

Both races wind through the beautiful and challenging bluffs and valleys surrounding the Saint Mary’s campus. The cost to participate is $10 for one race or $20 for both races.

Registration, the starting line and the finish line will be near Saint Yon’s Hall, located on the back east portion of campus.

For more information, or to pre-register online, go to

Area students invited to submit ideas for contest

The Kabara Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies and the Business Department of Saint Mary’s University are offering an Elevator Pitch Business Idea Contest.

All high school students who have ideas for starting a new business are encouraged to enter.

Winners will receive $1,000 in prize money, Saint Mary’s University scholarships and many other prizes.

Contestants will create an idea for a new business and answer a brief series of questions about that idea. Entries must be submitted online by Feb. 15. For complete information and a contest entry form, go to

Winners will be announced before March 1. For more information, e-mail Dr. Tom Marpe at or call Ext. 6963.

Cardinal Plunge Feb. 8 to raise money for Ellinghuysen family

Brave souls and warm hearts are invited to join Saint Mary’s University for the fifth annual “Cardinal Plunge” 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Lake Lodge Recreation Center, in coordination with the Winter Carnival Goose Bump Jump.

This year, Cardinal Plunge participants will be freezin’ for a reason. Proceeds will be given to SMU junior Conner Ellinghuysen’s father, Robert Ellinghuysen of Winona. Robert was hit head-on in a collision in June 2012 along Highway 14 in Stockton. He underwent numerous surgeries and lengthy hospital stays. Proceeds will help the Ellinghuysen family with ongoing medical expenses and other family needs. A silent auction will also be held. Cash donations and items can be brought to the SMU Alumni Office.

The cost to plunge is $20 ($15 for the SMU community). This event is sponsored by the Saint Mary’s Future Alumni Committee.

Pre-register online at For more information, contact Kenzie Corrow at (507) 995-4863 or Conner Ellinghuysen at (507) 429-7960.

Chamber Music Concert scheduled for Feb. 7

The Saint Thomas Trio Chamber Music Concert will be held 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7, in Figliulo Recital Hall. The event, sponsored by the Department of Music, will feature Winona State University musicians Dr. Woobin Kim on piano and Dr. Dan Sheridan on clarinet, along with Dr. David Leung from Saint Mary’s on viola. The performance is free and open to the public and will include music by Mozart, Schumann and Bruch.

Tickets sold out for Ladysmith Black Mambazo; waiting list will be available

At this time there are no tickets available for the Page Series Ladysmith Black Mambazo performance Tuesday, Feb. 11, in Page Theatre.

The performance begins at 7:30 p.m. Some tickets will become available at the door the night of the performance. A waiting list will begin at 6:30 p.m. the night of the show. Tickets are $27 for adults, $24 for seniors and students.

The Singers to premiere work by Dr. O’Shea

The Twin Cities-based choral ensemble, “The Singers,” will perform in Winona as part of its 10th anniversary legacy tour.

The group will perform music by Mortin Lauridsen and Benjamin Britten, as well as beloved American folk songs and spirituals. The event will also include the premiere of a work by Dr. Patrick O’Shea (Music Department) commemorating the lives lost in the tragic school shooting in Connecticut.

Under the direction of Matthew Culloton, The Singers will perform at 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 2, at Chapel of Saint Mary of the Angels, 1155 W. Wabasha St. The concert is free and is funded, in part, by Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the Legacy Amendment vote of the people of Minnesota on Nov. 4, 2008.

Tickets are available at the SMU Box Office, Ext. 1715, Monday through Friday or at the door.

SMU news

Here are just some of the ways SMU has made headlines recently:

• The Winona Daily News featured stories on one of the Dr. Martin Luther King events on campus in “Let Freedom Ring” on Jan. 21. Read it online at

• An interview Dave Dicke from HBC conducted with Eric Heukeshoven about his recent trip to Cuba can be found online at

• On Jan. 17, the Rochester Post Bulletin profiled a women’s basketball player in “Auseth gets defensive with Saint Mary’s.” Read it at

Seebach presents on use of E-folios

Dr. Elizabeth Seebach, Psychology Department, presented “Using E-folios for Developmental Advising” at the National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology on Jan. 4.

Chili cookoff will warm up cold winter

In what has become one of the hottest competitions at Saint Mary’s, the annual SMU Chili Cookoff is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 21.

No beans about it, the Volunteer Committee believes this is a great fundraiser.

All faculty and staff are invited to submit their award-winning chili and vie for the golden ladle. Prizes will be awarded to the top three entries, and all competitors will get SMU shirts.

Let Deb Nahrgang (Ext. 6966 or know if you plan to enter the contest, so that there is enough to go around. Then, just bring your unmarked crockpot to the Common Room by 11:15 a.m. sharp and check in.

Everyone is invited to eat chili between 11:45 a.m. and 1 p.m. You do not need to compete to enjoy. Toppings, sides and desserts will also be provided. Awards will be presented at noon.

Proceeds will benefit our presence in Jamaica.