March 9. 2009

Volume 3, issue 28
March 9, 2009
The Fountain

Historical document is evidence of the immutable

While Whitman has evolved from decade to decade and century to century and has survived the turn of a millennium, and though the specific experiences of alumni from all generations have been shaped by the ever-changing world around them, some things have not changed much at all. A recently discovered historical document, deeply yellowed and frail, provides evidence that Whitman’s mission and key messaging about that mission are immutable.

The document is an advertisement that the college placed in the Union-Bulletin on Feb. 27, 1938. Student Whitney Heyvaert ’09, who is an intern for ArtWalla, found the document in a box of materials that had originally been sent to the campus recycling center at the Outhouse.

Among the text that remains relevant for the more than 71 years that have passed since the ad was published:

  • “Through all the changes of the past, Whitman College, while keeping abreast with changing social and economic conditions and educational trends, has held steadfastly to the best traditions of the liberal arts college.”
  • “The fundamentals of education do not change.”
  • “The acquisition of factual knowledge is but one phase of education. Equally important are the modifying, conditioning experiences of the environment in which the individual acquires his factual knowledge.” (OK, contemporary messaging would make the reference to the knowledge recipient gender-neutral as opposed to his!)

The original document has been sent to the Whitman archives. Click here to see the ad at its original size.

More energy $aving$ — to the tune of $35,520 in rebates for Fouts

The energy savings measures that were incorporated into the Fouts Center for Visual Arts not only will mean long-term savings for the college, but they have led to more immediate rewards in the form of rebates. Dan Park, director of the physical plant, reports that last week Whitman received a check from Cascade Gas for $8,498 — a rebate for the center’s use of high-efficiency boilers that heat the building and its hot water systems. And in January, Pacific Power and Light rebated $27,022 for energy efficiency measures, including day lighting controls, improved ventilation, improved glazing and variable speed drives for the heating and cooling pumps.

Staff and faculty accomplishments

Lynn Lunden, associate vice president for development, participated in a panel presentation at the annual northwest regional conference of CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education). Titled “How Pilots Can Retain Their ‘Top Gun’ Crew, the session focused on helping senior team leaders to use clear, results-oriented communications to attract and retain the best people. Lunden was joined by alumni and communications leaders from the University of Alberta and the University of British Columbia. Her section focused on the importance of directional and motivational leadership for anyone in a position of leading employees.

Philip Silouan Thompson, Web content specialist, created a new design for the Whitman Pioneer Web site that won “Best of Show” in the Newspaper Web Site category at the National College Journalism Convention of the Associate Collegiate Press, which took place in late February in San Diego. The full list of awards is online here – scroll down to the Newspaper Web Site category. The Pioneer site beat out sites from such schools as UCLA and the University of Miami. Check out the Pio online at

Varga Fox, director of financial aid services, received the Distinguished Service Award from the Western Region of the College Board. It was presented Feb. 27 at the organization’s Regional Forum in Denver. Recipients are judged for exemplary contributions that enhance the aims and professional activities of the College Board. The award acknowledges outstanding professional achievement generally, but specifically significant contributions on behalf of students over an extended period of time. It also recognizes contributions in support of professional colleagues and individuals who have offered meritorious service to their profession and proven ability as a leader of leaders. Each of the region’s three assemblies selects a recipient; Fox was selected from the College Scholarship Service, of which she is the elected national representative. In receiving the award, Fox follows her Whitman mentor, Gene Adams. Whitman’s director of financial aid services from 1971 to 1995, Adams received the award in 1996.

Staff Profile: Karen Zollman
Executive Assistant to the Office of the Provost and Dean of the Faculty

  • Birthplace: Enterprise, Oregon
  • Education: Blue Mountain Community College
  • Years at Whitman: 21 years; for the Dean of Students, Division I and Provost and Dean of Faculty offices
  • Favorite …
    • Film: “Dead Poet’s Society”
    • Book: “Gift from the Sea,” by Anne Morrow Lindburgh (and whatever I’m reading at the moment).
    • Play: “Arsenic and Old Lace”
  • Favorite sculpture on campus: Jim Dine’s “Carnival,” in the spring when the dogwoods at BFC are in bloom.
  • Best travel experience: A trip to the East Coast that included my immediate family, and a sprinkling of nieces and nephews. We had a fun time seeing the sites together, from Atlantic City to Gettysburg, Mt. Vernon to Washington, D.C.
  • Interests/pleasures: Hiking, camping, wildlife, gardening, kite flying, traveling to new places, all enjoyed most when shared with my family. My husband, Lee, daughters Lynne and Alison, and son Nick are my greatest joy!
  • Recent accomplishment: I picked up knitting again, which has turned out to be a good stress reliever as well as a creative outlet.
  • What people don’t know about me: I was on my high school rodeo team.
  • A day in the life/on the job: The Provost and Dean of Faculty office is a great place to work. Each day is like a box of chocolates … my duties include assisting the associate dean, faculty recruiting, handling immigration issues, department chairs and committee appointments, external department reviews and the academic affairs budget.
  • Favorite aspect of Whitman: It’s a community.
  • Quote: “Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.” (Max Ehrmann)

Wellness newsletter offers tips

Whitman’s insurance broker, Parker, Smith & Feek, makes a health and wellness newsletter available to the campus community. This current edition includes information about energy drinks, chocolate, a refreshing recipe for salmon, poison prevention and much more. Click here for the newsletter PDF.

Comings and goings

The college bids farewell to Jim French on his retirement and Mary Lynn Dill, effective March 6. Brian Griffith of WCTS has had a title change: from IT services consultant to system administrator/developer.

Race and Ethnic Studies lunch series concludes March 12
Topic: Freedom of speech

The third and final installment of the Race and Ethnic Studies Program lunch series for this semester takes place Thursday, March 12, noon to 12:45 in Olin 130. The topic is “Freedom of Speech,” and the invited scholars are Kurt Hoffman, professor of physics; Julia Ireland, assistant professor of philosophy; and Elyse Semerdjian, assistant professor of history. RSVP to Alberto Galindo, assistant professor of foreign languages and literatures – Spanish, at The program is sponsored by the Race and Ethnic Studies Program, the Hubbard Family Endowment and the President’s Office.

Coming Events
All free unless otherwise stated

Now through April 17
Art: The new Sheehan Gallery exhibition is “Ricochet: The Installations of MaLynda Poulsen-Jones” and “Backward Glance: Prints from the Whitman College Collection.” The Sheehan Gallery is open Tuesday through Friday 12-5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday 12-4 p.m.

Monday, March 9
Hosokawa Lecture: William Murray ’92 delivers the 2009 Hosokawa Lecture, titled “The Problem with Today’s Media (Or Why News Coverage of Iraq was So Poor) And What We Can do About It.” Murray spent three months in Iraq as an embedded journalist. 7 p.m., Reid Campus Center, Young Ballroom. More information is available here

Tuesday, March 10
Arnold Lecture: Gill Wright Miller of Denison University, the Arnold Visiting Professor of Dance, presents the annual Arnold Lecture, “Performing the Private Body.” Professor Miller’s appointment brings to Whitman the academic study of dance. 7:30 p.m., Olin 130. More information is available here.

Wednesday, March 11
Lecture: Dr. Noël Sturgeon presents “Penguin Family Values: The Nature of Environmental Reproductive Justice.” 7 p.m., Kimball Theatre. More information is available here

Wednesday, March 11
Music: Recital by students Harrison Fulop and McKenna Milici with guest oboist Pablo Izquierdo. 7:30 p.m., Chism Recital Hall.

Thursday, March 12
Music: Evan Cartwright’s Senior Project, Performance of “La Serva Padrona” by Pergolesi featuring Evan Cartwright and Kaley Eaton. 7:30 p.m., Chism Recital Hall.

Save the date

Tuesday, March 31
Rempel Lecture: Dr. Harry Greene of Cornell will discuss “Pleistocene Rewilding.” 7:30 p.m., Maxey Auditorium. Post-lecture reception in foyer.

April 8-12
Theatre: “Medea’s Children” by Per Lysander and Suzanne Osten. This contemporary classic from Sweden views the story of Medea and Jason through the eyes of their children. Little Jason and Little Medea take us on a moving, often funny journey into the real world of children torn apart by divorce. Harper Joy Theatre’s Freimann Stage. For show times, reservations and ticket prices, call the Harper Joy Box Office at x5180.

Saturday, April 25
Concert: Leo Kottke. Tickets are free to Whitman students, faculty and staff, and will be available at the bookstore beginning April 1. Must have a valid, current ID; maximum two tickets per person. For more information contact

Parting Shot
By Greg Lehman, photographer/communications officer

A construction worker stirs up a cloud of sunlit dust as he fits one of the climbing wall panels along the south side of the new Sherwood Center complex last week. For more of a sneak peek of the facility, click here for a slideshow from last week’s hard hat tour of the facility, led by Dean Snider, athletics director. He reports that following the tour, Sherwood was closed for all usage for the duration of the school year to allow for the completion of construction. “The work is coming along very well, he says. “You can see the climbing wall going up this week, and the interior is really taking shape. The separation between the gym space and the construction site is gone, which is why the facility needs to be closed. Thank you for your understanding. We look forward with anticipation to the reopening of Sherwood Center this summer.”

Whitman College
In This Issue
Historical Document
Energy Savings
Staff and Faculty Accomplishments
Staff Profile:
Karen Zollman
Wellness newsletter
Comings and Goings
RAES Lunch Series
Coming Events
Parting Shot

Past issues

The Fountain is published by the Office of Communications. Send news to Editor Lenel Parish at Photos are accepted. Submissions are due by Tuesday at 5 p.m. for the following week’s issue. Director of Communications: Ruth Wardwell. Online: