Archive for the ‘News & Events’ Category

Exercise Science Program Expands Under Walters’ Vision

Thursday, December 14th, 2017

Prof. Christina Walters guides exercise science students Kristen Bellinger (L) and Heather Groves (R) in an Anatomy in Clay lesson in Kinesiology.

What do clay muscles, group workouts and pre-physical therapy classes have in common? They are all part of Grace College’s exercise science program, under the guidance of Program Director Christina Walters. Walters is taking the program to new heights, fueled by student interest and her passion for the profession.

Two years ago, Walters transitioned from Grace’s head athletic trainer to its first full-time exercise science faculty member. “Interest had grown so much that a professional in the field was needed to guide exercise science students and develop the program further,” Walters said. In addition to her experience as an athletic trainer, Walters brought her knowledge from a bachelor’s and master’s degree in athletic training. She earned her bachelor’s at Indiana Wesleyan University, where she was Athletic Training Student of the Year, a two-time NCCAA All-American and a NAIA Honorable Mention All-American for softball. She went on to Ohio University to earn her master’s degree and was named Outstanding Athletic Training Student.

As Walters stepped into the lead faculty role, she thought it was most important to first develop two separate tracks, or concentrations, within the exercise science major. “Some students major in exercise science with the hope of beginning a career in fitness through personal training, nutrition, wellness coaching, and other fields,” Walters explained. “The Health & Wellness concentration best prepares these students to hit the ground running after graduation.”

The other large group of students in exercise science are preparing for graduate school to study physical therapy, athletic training, occupational therapy and other professions. These students have specific prerequisites that must be met and observation requirements in their chosen field. The Pre-Physical Therapy concentration is best for students in this group, according to Walters.

Walters instructs student Maile Grout on volume of oxygen submaximal testing using the Fitmate Pro.

In addition to creating two distinct concentrations, Walters has been busy revamping courses and content, and adding courses including Kinesiology, Introduction to Exercise Science, and Strength and Conditioning. Walters’ Kinesiology course is a source of pride. Using a hands-on approach called Anatomy in Clay, each class period involves creating muscles. “We use clay to build the muscles we’re studying, and then we put them on a skeleton mannequin,” Walters explained. Walters’ Kinesiology students recently toured a cadaver lab, which they thoroughly enjoyed. The students’ interest impressed Walters, who hopes to take future classes back to the lab.

Another recent addition to the program are two new lab spaces in the Gordon Recreation Center for exercise science students. “One lab serves as a space for assessment of VO2 max (volume of oxygen maximum), body composition, muscular strength, balance and flexibility,” said Walters. “The other lab is a functional training space. This allows students to practice exercise instruction and organize groups for workouts.” One day, Walters hopes the labs will be open to all Grace students, faculty, staff and the community to provide fitness testing at an affordable price. “It would be terrific experience for students to use their skills to benefit real clients on our campus and in our community,” she said.

Walters is also looking to expand internship and practicum experiences for exercise science students. “Nothing compares to practical, hands-on experience to prepare students for a career after college,” she said. Walters is passionate about preparing students for successful and fulfilling careers in the exercise science profession. “Every good exercise scientist knows that it is our job to spread knowledge and help people realize the life they want to live. Whether that means being able to play a sport, run a marathon, play with their kids, recover from surgery or beat a disease, that’s what we’re here for.”

Many careers result from an exercise science degree, including athletic trainer, physical therapist, dietitian, fitness director, medical physician, and biomechanist. If you are a prospective student or internship/practicum partner, please contact Christina Walters at or 574-372-5100, ext. 6276, for more information about the Grace College exercise science program.

1st Source Bank Partners with Crossroads League at Grace

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Left to right: Chad Briscoe, Bill Katip, Sherilyn Emberton, Doug Baumgardner and Larry DeSimpelare

This week, 1st Source Bank partnered with the Crossroads League at a pair of Grace College basketball games.

1st Source Bank presented “Crossroads League Night” on Tuesday and Wednesday for the men’s and women’s games between Grace and Huntington University at Grace’s Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

Doug Baumgardner, President of Warsaw’s 1st Source Bank, made a presentation of $2,500 to the Crossroads League at halftime of Wednesday’s game, joined by league commissioner Larry DeSimpelare, Huntington president Dr. Sherilyn Emberton, Grace president Dr. Bill Katip and Grace AD Chad Briscoe.

The Crossroads League is a 10-institution athletic conference in the NAIA. The Crossroads League offers 17 year-round sports throughout Indiana, Michigan and Ohio.

Grace Ends Year Strong at NCCAA Nationals

Friday, December 1st, 2017

Celebrating a kill from Sierra Smith on Friday, (L-R) Lady Lancers Sara Miller, Kelsee Zuidema, Alexa Hill, Marta Bleed and Sierra Smith


Grace’s volleyball team wrapped up its 2017 season on a high note on Friday.

Despite not advancing past pool play, the Lady Lancers put together two strong performances at the NCCAA National Championships. Grace lost narrowly to No. 1 Biola before sweeping No. 5 McMurry at the Kissimmee Civic Center.

In the opener, Grace put up a memorable fight against top-seeded Biola. The Lady Lancers were on the verge of forcing a fifth set against the NCAA Div. II opponent before losing 3-1.

Grace’s offense sputtered in the opening set, committing nine errors with seven kills in a 25-14 defeat.

The Lady Lancers bounced back with a definitive 25-17 win in the second set. Biola called both timeouts early, the first after a thunderous kill from Tori Bontrager and the second after Grace pulled ahead by five.

In the third set, Grace caught fire midway into the set. The Lady Lancers went on a 9-0 run thanks to two aces from Caylie Teel and a kill and a block assist from both Kelsee Zuidema and Kari Feddema.

Biola erased a three-point lead by Grace with a 6-2 run and snuck away with a 25-22 win to take the lead in the match.

Grace refused to back down from Biola in the fourth and seemed determined to force a tiebreaker. The Lady Lancers scored four of the first five rallies and forced an early Biola timeout with a 9-6 lead.

Biola called another timeout after an ace by Zuidema put the Lady Lancers ahead 16-11.

Alexa Hill pounded out a kill late in the set to give Grace a 23-18 lead, but Biola rallied.

The Eagles (25-7) held off three set points to tie the score at 24-24. The teams traded points down the stretch with a Sierra Smith kill holding off one match point, but Biola ended the match 28-26 on a kill and an ace.

Bontrager had 10 kills on a .444 percentage to go along with three block assists, and Zuidema added nine kills and five block assists.

Feddema tallied eight kills and three block assists, and Marta Bleed and Smith had seven kills apiece. Miller’s 25 digs were a team-high, and Teel (13 digs) and Gina Novotny (11 digs) reached double figures in digs.

Grace was dominant in the season finale against McMurry. Despite knowing they could not advance to the semifinal round, the Lady Lancers completed a thorough beatdown of the War Hawks (23-10) to end the season on a high note.

Grace hit 48 kills on a .279 percentage thanks to 35 assists from Hill. Zuidema’s 15 kills and Smith’s 11 kills led Grace’s hard-hitting attack.

In the opening set, Grace used a 7-1 run at the end of the game to win 25-17.

The second set was similar. The Lady Lancers strung together nine straight points at the latter stages to ease away for an eight-point win.

Grace was in control throughout the third set as an ace from Naarah Foster provided a 24-19 lead. McMurry rallied to within one point of Grace’s lead, but Hill made the winning play with a kill on the last rally.

Bontrager had five kills and three block assists, and Miller and Novotny each tallied a match-high 14 digs. Feddema had eight kills, and Bleed added six kills.

Friday officially wraps up the careers of graduating seniors Miller, Smith, Feddema, Hart, Naarah Foster and Bontrager. The senior class reached two NCCAA tournaments and won 86 matches.

One-of-a-Kind Gifts and Opportunity to Give Back Offered at Night Market 2017

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

Night Market, an alternative Christmas shopping experience, will take place Dec. 8 from 2 – 8 p.m.

Grace College invites the community to visit Night Market on Friday, Dec. 8, from 2 – 8 p.m. in the Winona Heritage Room, 901 Park Ave., Winona Lake. Night Market, an alternative Christmas shopping experience, offers an abundance of one-of-a-kind gifts and the opportunity to support charitable causes.

Many artisans and organizations will be present at the event, including Grace Refuge Outreach Worldwide (GROW), Breath of Life Haiti and Boomerang Backpacks. Grace College student vendors will also participate.  Items for sale will include home décor, jewelry, clothing, toys and much more.

GROW will participate in Night Market for the third time at this year’s event. “We love what this event is all about!” said Jeana Harley, executive director of GROW.  “By purchasing gifts from GROW, shoppers are able to make a difference in the lives of people on multiple levels. In fact, 100 percent of their purchases go to providing a safe place for Thai children to live, learn and be loved,” she said. GROW rescues physically and sexually abused children and those at-risk of being taken into the child trafficking industry in Thailand.

Each Night Market vendor donates a portion of their proceeds to a variety of causes, including adoption funding, fair wages for workers and food for the hungry. Some vendors, including many Grace College students, will give a portion of their proceeds to Boomerang Backpacks, a food distribution program for low-income children in northeast Indiana.

“Night Market is a great way for us to bring awareness to food insecurity in our schools,” said Tracey Akers, local coordinator for Boomerang Backpacks. “God has used this program to bring joy and purpose to volunteers and the students we serve. We are so thankful to partner with Grace College in this effort.”

Brandon Haun, a senior at Grace College, is coordinator of this year’s Night Market.   “We’re looking forward to another great year at Night Market,” Haun said. “We will have live Christmas music throughout the afternoon and evening.  Families can enjoy the music and pack a Boomerang backpack for a local student for $3 donation.  There will be something for everyone at Night Market,” he added.

For more information or questions about Night Market, please email Grace College Director of Student Involvement Kearstin Criswell at

A Calling Repurposed

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Grace College graduate Bryce Glock   (BS ’16, MBA ’16)


This story first appeared in the fall 2017 edition of Grace College’s “Two Eight & Nine” magazine.

For Bryce Glock (BS 16, MBA 16), attending Grace College was a natural choice. He’d grown up in the area, had many friends and mentors from the school, and won a scholarship to play soccer there. When Glock enrolled, Grace was in its second year of offering an accelerated degree program that allows students to earn a combined bachelor’s and master’s degree in four years. Glock’s experience with this combined degree program reveals a signature Grace story — one where strong relationships and spiritual insight help form a student’s understanding of his role in the world.


Nearing the end of his senior year at Grace College and eager to propose to his then-girlfriend, Glock was highly motivated to figure out a plan for life after graduation. During his junior year, he and several other Grace students had participated in a countywide program called Kosciusko Leadership Academy, which included opportunities to tour a variety of local businesses, government groups and nonprofits for insight into how they functioned. One of those tours took place at Poly-Wood, LLC, a Syracuse, Ind., startup in 1990 that over the past 20 years had realized exceptional growth and was located just down the road from Grace. Poly-Wood was the brainchild of two high school friends who found an innovative use for post-consumer materials — turning recycled milk jugs into exceptionally durable outdoor furniture. Their model has since inspired a number of imitators, but Poly-Wood continues to lead the industry while maintaining their homegrown values and familial culture.

This culture really impressed Glock during his tour. “From my first interaction with the company,” he remembers, “I felt welcomed and appreciated by everyone, even the president went out of his way to acknowledge me.” The following year, when Glock applied to Poly-Wood, his interview process was a further testament to the company’s openness. “They were involved all the way through, from my first initial meeting throughout the entire interview process. I felt valued from the very beginning.” For Glock, this impression quickly crystallized into a career goal. “There wasn’t even a job description I was looking to fit — it was ‘I want to be a part of this company; where can I fit in?’”

This was exactly the type of employee Poly-Wood was looking for. In addition to his willing spirit and enthusiasm for the culture the owners had worked to build, Glock brought with him an impressive résumé, which included a master’s degree in business completed concurrently with his undergraduate degree. In today’s competitive landscape, an MBA sets candidates apart from the pack. And as an early member of Grace College’s four-year bachelor’s and master’s program, Glock was able to get a jumpstart on life after college. After graduating from Grace on a Saturday in May 2016, Glock showed up for work the following Monday.


One of the most obvious benefits of completing both degrees is the opportunity to make a college education more cost- effective. For Glock, this was a powerful draw toward the program. There’s no getting around the inconvenient truth that private colleges tend to be more expensive than other options. But when Glock ran the numbers, completing a master’s in the four-year bachelor’s time frame offered significant value compared to a state or technical school. “The ability to graduate with both my undergrad and master’s in four years — which would have been a six-year journey in a more traditional setting — ended up coming out more to my advantage.” The financial aspect, he adds, is only one part of the equation. “The tight-knit community, the one-on-one attention from the faculty, the freedom to incorporate Jesus and the Bible into everything, those are all things that play into the value of choosing Grace.”

Even with the heavier course load that attends this combined degree program, the online class model gave Glock a level of scheduling flexibility that other undergraduate students didn’t have. “The professors were there when I needed them, but I enjoyed working at my own pace. It opened up a lot of time for me during the day, as compared to being tied to a class schedule.” Glock says that what really anchored his success was his clear set of goals for finishing his education early. While for some students, attending college is more of a vocational exploration, Glock seized the plan to complete a bachelor’s and master’s together as a rare opportunity to focus and achieve at an accelerated pace. “I really don’t mind being in control of my learning process, to dig in and find answers to my own questions. The program is designed so that you get out of it what you put into it.”

Glock stands in front of a mountain of thousands of recycled milk jugs at Poly-Wood. The jugs are one of the primary raw materials Glock’s company uses to build its outdoor furniture.


Along with the financial and timespan advantages, choosing this option gave Glock a new way of thinking about his calling. Glock initially entered college with his sights set on church leadership. However, his Bible professors and business professors alike encouraged him to explore his gifts and interests further, to take business classes alongside the Bible classes and see where his skills could best be applied. Following their advice led Glock to a revelation: “I was of the mindset that working in a church had more value to God, that it was a higher calling. But a lot of those relationships at Grace — with other students as well as key professors — helped me understand that every major, every profession has value in the same way. We all serve different roles, but we ultimately all have the same mission.” Allowing God to define his path opened a whole new avenue of opportunities for him. One opportunity was hatched with the help of Dr. Jeff Fawcett, dean of the business school. Glock and another classmate, Mike Shank (BA 16), worked with Dr. Fawcett to create Oikonomia (Greek for “stewardship”), a fellowship group within the business school. “The goal was to help everybody know that God has a role for all of us, and we all have a very important role to play in this life.”

The concept became so popular that it soon outgrew the business school and became a gathering place where Grace students in every department came to learn, discuss and encourage each other in the grand scheme of what God is doing around the world. “God doesn’t want everybody to be a pastor,” Glock laughs. “That wouldn’t work out so great for society. Once I got out of that limited thinking, it really opened my eyes to evaluate my skills and abilities.”

Since joining Poly-Wood, Glock’s affinity for business has only become more apparent. In just over a year, he has been tasked with a series of more creative leadership roles, from structuring the company’s direct-to-business sales team to spearheading the company’s commercial/contract sales. His enthusiasm for the company is matched by a pragmatic humility about his rapid growth within it. He says simply, “I have a very important role to serve here, and Grace reinforced that.” And for Grace students currently exploring where their calling might be, Glock offers a lesson that goes far beyond the classroom: “Be open— what God wants for you might not be what you expect.”

Grace College Seniors Apply Math for Real-World Solution

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

Grace College Campus Safety Director Glenn Goldsmith (L) with the mathematics students who found his team a more efficient route: Joshua Tew, Gabrielle Kuszewski, and Katelyn Ware.  Grace Mathematics Program Director Dr. Kristin Farwell (R) guided their work.

Even on cold, frosty mornings, Grace College’s Campus Safety team rises early and unlocks the doors to each academic building on campus. These quiet heroes make it possible for sleepy students to reach their 8 a.m. classes and staff members to open their offices each day. Thanks to three enterprising seniors from a mathematics capstone class, Campus Safety is now making their rounds more efficiently.

“The original problem was to find the best route for Campus Safety,” said Gabrielle Kuszewski, a senior mathematics student at Grace College. “Their original drive time to unlock all campus doors was 12 minutes and five seconds each morning” Kuszewski said. “We were able to get it down to nine minutes and 28 seconds.” The students improved Campus Safety’s driving time by 25.6 percent.

Over eight weeks, the team of three collaborated to find the best solution. First, they found the time it took for Campus Safety to get from each building to every other building on campus. The group used Google to map the distances and then found an equation that would calculate the time it took for Campus Safety to reach each building. “With that information,” Kuszewski said, “We were able to model our situation and find the best route, mathematically.”

The team used the integer programming formulation of the travelling salesman problem. This technique is famous in the world of computer science and mathematics; it addresses a specific problem and finds the optimal solution, starting and stopping at the same point of reference. In this case, Campus Safety had to start at McClain Hall and travel to every building on campus before returning to McClain. The student team found the quickest route for Campus Safety to take.

Kuszewski partnered with fellow seniors Katelyn Ware and Joshua Tew. Dr. Kristin Farwell, mathematics program director at Grace College, guided their work. According to Kuszewski, the process helped her team learn to collaborate effectively and work through obstacles. “Most of all, it was a great, practical example of how math can help people in the real world,” she said.

Grace College’s mathematics department is dedicated to developing concepts and real-world-applications. The department offers four mathematics majors. Graduates are well-prepared for careers in business, computer technology, science and other related fields. For more information on the Grace College mathematics department, visit here.

‘Through the Iris’ Art Exhibit Travels Across Country

Monday, November 20th, 2017

“Through the Iris” art exhibit traveled from Grace College to Indiana Wesleyan University before going across the country.

“Through the Iris” panelists (L to R): exhibit director Kim M. Reiff, professor of art, Grace College; Leah Samuelson, professor of art, Wheaton College; Erin Sweigard, art alumna, Indiana Wesleyan University; Dr. Nina Corazzo, professor of art history, Valparaiso University.










Kim M. Reiff, assistant dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Grace College, is director of “Through the Iris,” an art exhibition showcasing the work of 25 contemporary, professional female visual artists. After showing for eight weeks at Grace College’s Mount Memorial Gallery, the exhibit traveled to Indiana Wesleyan University (IWU) in Marion, Ind., where a panel discussion and reception took place Nov. 16.

Reiff was joined by three colleagues for the recent panel discussion in the Williams Art Gallery at IWU: Valparaiso University art historian Nina Corazzo; Wheaton College community art professor Leah Samuelson, and IWU alumna Erin Sweigard. The panelists discussed issues facing women in the contemporary art world and their individual depictions of these narratives through their art work.

All 25 female visual artists featured in “Through the Iris” hold the degree of Master of Fine Arts in Visual Arts from Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California. It is directed by Kim M. Reiff, associate professor of art and chair of the Visual, Performing, and Media Arts Department at Grace College. The collection is curated by William Catling, professor of Art at Azusa Pacific, and Sandra Bowden, New York-based artist. The exhibit will remain at IWU until Dec. 16 before traveling west to Texas, Oregon and California. For more information about the exhibit, visit here.

Village at Winona Heralds Christmas Season with Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony

Friday, November 17th, 2017

The annual tree lighting ceremony in the Village at Winona is a family-friendly way to kick off the Christmas season. Picture courtesy of the Village at Winona, 2016.


The community is invited to usher in the Christmas season at the annual tree lighting ceremony in the Village at Winona on Saturday, Nov. 25, from 1:30 – 6:30 p.m.  The family-friendly event will feature train rides for all ages, ornament crafts for children, live music by the Lakeland Community Chorus and a visit from Santa Claus. The event is free; visitors are encouraged to bring new, unwrapped toys for Toys of Tots.

“Everyone is invited to have a Winona Day on the shores of beautiful Winona Lake,” said Nick Hauck, managing director at the Village at Winona. “Our unique artisan shops and restaurants will be open, and free parking is available throughout the Village.  Please remember to bring a toy so that others may have a joyous Christmas this year.” Free cookies and hot chocolate will be available beginning at 4:30 p.m. when Santa arrives to hear children’s Christmas wishes.  The Christmas tree lighting will conclude the evening at 6:30 p.m. 

Christmas caroling by the Lakeland Community Choir is the final event of the 2017 Festival of Music. This year, the festival brought the community high-quality, family-friendly concerts throughout the summer and fall. The Festival of Music is sponsored by Grace College, Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts and The Village at Winona.  For more information, visit

Lilly Center’s 10th-Annual Art Contest Calendar Features 59 Local Students

Thursday, November 16th, 2017

Brianna Cumberland’s art piece, “Water Friends,” was featured on the cover of this year’s Lakes & Streams Art Contest 2018 calendar. The 2017-2018 Lakes & Streams Art Contest is now accepting entries.

The Lilly Center for Lakes & Streams’ 10th-annual art contest, “Life at the Lake,” was a success! The artworks of 59 students are featured in the 2018 calendar, distributed by the Lilly Center. Student art depicted native water life and activities like fishing and swimming.

“The art contest is open to all 4th-12th graders in Kosciusko County,” said Caitlin Yoder, education coordinator at the Lilly Center for Lakes & Streams. “We want them to capture and display the beauty of their local lakes and streams through art,” she explained.

Next year’s theme is “Seasons of the Lakes & Streams.” All entries are due Wednesday, April 11, 2018. They must include a lake or stream, and show the student’s understanding of the seasons. Artwork will be judged by college students from the art department at Grace College. Winning pieces will be displayed in local business around the community and be featured in the 2019 calendar. The top six winners from each grade category will receive cash prizes.

“No artwork showing invasive species will be considered,” said Yoder. “For example, trumpeter and tundra swans are acceptable, but mute swans are not,” she stated. The Lilly Center encourages students to draw or paint native plants and animals. For more details, visit

The Lakes & Streams Art Contest is one of the Lilly Center’s many educational programs that engages students in learning about the importance of local waterways. Through programs such as Classroom Lake Experience, Lake Adventure Days and Aquatic Petting Zoos, the Lilly Center installs 29 aquariums with native fish species in local classrooms and community centers, interacts with thousands of county students, and engages students in hands-on learning throughout the school year.

The 2018 calendar was sponsored by City of Warsaw, Clearwater Carwash, Didage Sales Company, Inc., KCH Lutheran Health Network, Lake City Bank, Louis Dreyfus Company, Medtronic Sofamor Danek, MutualBank, Surgical Power, Inc., The Papers Incorporated, The Watershed Foundation, Todd Realty, Inc., and Zimmer Biomet.

The Lilly Center for Lakes & Streams at Grace College conducts applicable research, engages and educates residents, and collaborates with other organizations in efforts to make the lakes and streams of Kosciusko County cleaner. For more information or to support their efforts, visit

Grace Basketball to Host Cancer Care Benefit Tourney

Thursday, November 16th, 2017

The annual Hoops for Hope Tournament will be played this weekend at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

This year’s tournament, hosted by Grace’s men’s and women’s basketball teams, features eight games over the weekend. Games will run from 2-10 p.m. on Friday and from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Saturday.

Admission to watch the games is $7 per day, and all proceeds will go to Kosciusko County Cancer Care Fund (KCCCF). The tournament is sponsored by Wyndham Garden of Warsaw and the Warsaw Morning Optimist Club. All cancer survivors are welcome to attend the tournament free of charge.

“Our goal each year is to raise around $2,000. We want to raise money but also to raise awareness in the community,” said Grace’s men’s coach Jim Kessler. “We chose to channel our money to KCCCF rather than the Jimmy V Foundation like most other schools do because all of the money stays local to benefit the area. It’s been a neat thing for us to be involved with as a team.”

The women’s tournament is named the Carol Forbes Classic after the late wife of longtime assistant coach Skip Forbes. The four-game setup is a classic format. Grace’s women’s basketball team will host Cincinnati Christian on Friday at 6 p.m. in the nightcap. The Lady Lancers will then host No. 18 IU Northwest on Saturday at 2 p.m.

The men’s tournament, named after D.A.R.E. Officer Terry Polston, is also a classic format and includes Huntington, Clarke and Grace Bible. Grace will play Grace Bible on Friday at 8 p.m. The Lancers will then play Clarke on Saturday at 4 p.m.

To find out more information, including game times and live coverage, go to