Archive for the ‘2017 Archives’ Category

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 

Grace College Community Wind Ensemble to Perform Free Concert Friday

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

Join the Grace College Community Wind Ensemble on Friday, Nov. 17, for an evening of American folk music. The free concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Winona Heritage Room, 901 Park Ave, Winona Lake.

Among other professionals and community members, eight Grace College students will play in the ensemble. Featured music includes “American Salute” and “Yankee Doodle” by Morton Gould; “Slidin’ Down the Mississippi,” arranged by Clifton Taylor; “Shenandoah,” arranged by Randol Alan Bass, and other American classics. The concert will be conducted by Eric Criss, a 1999 Grace College graduate and current band director at NorthWood High School.

“I am excited to conduct my first concert at my alma mater. Many new community players have joined us this season,” Criss said. “We’ve selected creative arrangements of folk tunes for this concert, several of which one might recall from childhood. It should be a great night!”

PALNI Honors Grace College Library Staff at 25-Year Celebration

Monday, November 13th, 2017

Grace College Librarian Rhoda Palmer was honored with the Hall of Fame award from the Private Academic Library Network of Indiana.

The Private Academic Library Network of Indiana Inc. (PALNI) recently honored Grace College & Seminary library staff who have contributed to its 25-year success at Marian University’s Allison Mansion in Indianapolis. The PALNI organization has successfully partnered to provide the systems, expertise, and resources to support collaboration, innovation, learning, and efficiency for all 22 PALNI institutions and their libraries since 1992. The celebratory event included an awards reception, the PALNI Innovation Grant Symposium, team/leadership skills building, and strategic planning to strengthen the collaboration into the future.

PLANI Executive Director Kirsten Leonard presented the “Hall of Fame” award to Grace College Librarian Rhoda Palmer for her exemplary service throughout the lifetime of the PALNI collaboration. Hall of Fame awardees were recognized for their contributions to generate PALNI’s synergistic environment, strategic direction, and innovative services.

Ten founding members of PALNI were also recognized for significant contributions to the creation of PALNI 25 years ago. Former Grace College Library Director William (Bill) Darr was one such honoree presented with the “Founders Award.”

Since its establishment, PALNI has embarked on several initiatives well beyond the traditional library to support assessment, scholarly communication, and instructional technology.  “PALNI is a trailblazer in working together at scale. Consortia worldwide are looking to PALNI for guidance and for what new services we will develop next,” said Leonard. The PALNI board of directors is committed to “deep collaboration” between PALNI institutions, providing better service to students and faculty by sharing resources to reduce duplication and fuel innovation.

To read more about PALNI’s 25-year history and keep up with their future, visit


Lancers Win Historic League Title in Overtime

Monday, November 13th, 2017

Grace’s men’s soccer team celebrates its Crossroads League Tournament championship Nov. 11 at Spring Arbor.


History was made Saturday night for Grace’s men’s soccer team. Nikola Djordjevic’s goal in the 98th minute won the Crossroads League Tournament championship for the Lancers, coming from behind to beat Spring Arbor.

With the score tied 3-3 late in the first overtime period, Joshua Coupar sent a cross into the middle of the penalty box. Djordjevic, who broke his finger earlier in the match, reached behind and deftly backheeled a shot, which lofted softly over SAU’s goalkeeper into the back of the net.

The Lancers and the large contingent of fans who braved the 32-degree weather spilled out onto the field in mass euphoria.

Grace won its first championship in 25 years and clinched an automatic bid to the 2017 NAIA National Championships. Grace will be making its first appearance since 1982 — 35 years ago — at NAIA Nationals.

Grace will play an Opening Round match in the national tournament on Nov. 18 against a team to be announced. The NAIA selection show and bracket unveiling will be streamed live Monday at 1 p.m.
“I’m so happy for everyone involved. The guys went into the game with confidence, and we knew what we could accomplish tonight,” said Grace head coach Matt Hotchkin. “This is such a huge blessing, and we are really happy to bring a championship back to Grace. This was a full team effort, including a great group of Grace supporters who made the trip to Spring Arbor and also watched online from literally all over the world.”

The Lancers (12-4-4) got off to a dream start in the first half, scoring two goals in the opening 20 minutes to stun the top-seeded Cougars (16-4-1).

The Lancers’ first goal came in the 12th minute. After a strong buildup, Grace switched sides to attack on the right.

Gabriel Osti dribbled into the penalty box and passed ahead to Damon Binkley. Binkley blasted his shot above the goalkeeper from close range for an early 1-0 lead.

Not long after, Cody Boerema was fouled in the box to win Grace a penalty kick. Boerema stepped up and slotted his PK beyond the reach of the goalkeeper in the 20th minute for a 2-0 lead.

The Cougars proved their mettle with a dynamic response. SAU scored two goals in a three-minute span to level the game.

With four minutes to play, Grace constructed a direct attack toward SAU’s goal. The ball came to Togo Narusawa, and his low drive forced a diving save from the Cougars.

A memorable first half ended with the score knotted 2-2.

Grace started the second half sharply, resulting in two shots from Binkley in the first two minutes.

Ten minutes later, Grace nearly pulled ahead. Colin Cape found space on the right edge of the box, and his long, hard drive beat SAU’s goalkeeper but clanged off the goalpost.

Shortly after, Grace had another golden opportunity on the right side, but Ulisses Miranda’s shot was saved.

The Cougars went ahead 3-2 on a counterattack, finding space inside the box for a goal that beat Kurt Hamlin.

Grace did not seem fazed and found an equalizer from Binkley. Cody Boerema tried a shot from the right endline that was saved. The rebound fell to Binkley who hit a laser past the goalkeeper at the 70:47 mark.
Both teams had chances to win the game in regulation; Hamlin made several key saves in the second half, including two in the last minute.

With 12 minutes remaining, Breno Oliveira hit the goalpost off a deadly curling kick. On the ensuing rebound, a header in the box from Cape went high.

Minutes later, Grace won possession deep in SAU’s territory. Cape’s shot under pressure was saved, and the game entered extra time tied 3-3.

The Lancers, who have shown a flair for dramatic wins this season, seemed destined to score in the first overtime. Miranda tried a swerving shot from the left side, but his attempt whisked wide of the far post.
Oliveira also had a shot from outside the box that was saved seven minutes into the period.
The Lancers continued to apply pressure and found the magical winning touch from Djordjevic at the 97:18 mark.

“We scored two goals early which was a strange place for us to be. We lost the lead and some of our composure, but this team knows how to dig down deep, and you can’t ever count us out,” Hotchkin said. “This team has seen a lot of growth this year and not just on the field. God has been doing a lot in all of our lives, and we can only thank Him for the opportunity to work for this. It’s one game at a time for us, and we will stay hungry for the next match.”

Grace’s win ended an impressive 33-match home unbeaten streak for the Cougars, dating back to the 2014 season.

Hamlin made 11 saves for the Lancers in 98 minutes of action. Binkley tallied six shots to lead Grace’s offense, and Miranda and Oliveira tried three apiece.

Grace Online GOAL Degrees Go Textbook Free, Quality Management to Launch in January

Thursday, November 9th, 2017


Grace College has reformatted its bachelor degree completion program, GOAL (Grace Opportunities for Adult Learners), to utilize open educational resources, or OER, for its online degree curricula. OER replaces traditional textbooks, providing students immediate access to the latest, most relevant learning resources. Currently, Grace offers three online OER degree completion programs: Business Administration, Management and Human Services. Beginning in January, a fourth degree in Quality Management (QM) will be added.

“We are excited to utilize open educational resources for all of our online GOAL curricula,” said Tim Ziebarth, executive dean of the Grace College School of Online and Professional Education. “It was a big undertaking to rewrite all of our courses to align with OER and eliminate textbooks, but we’re certain it was the best decision for our students and their learning experience.”

Ziebarth says the transition to OER is consistent with Grace’s innovation priority. “OER allows us to make the most up-to-date learning resources available to students 24-7. Students appreciate the accessibility and faculty like the ability to hand-select the best documents and media for their classes,” he said.

OER materials are housed on a learning management system which allows students to share and digitally archive resources – capabilities that aren’t possible with textbooks. Professors are also able to adjust course content in real-time, keeping pace with the “real world.” In addition, OER provides the ability for students to hit the ground running on day one of class – without waiting around for textbook delivery.

For eight years, Grace has offered GOAL for adults who wish to complete their bachelor’s degree while maintaining life, family and work commitments. GOAL was specifically designed for individuals who experienced interruption in pursuit of their bachelor’s degree. Grace developed GOAL to be accessible, affordable and manageable for busy adults. Building upon previous college credits and other learning experiences equivalent to about two years of college, a bachelor’s degree can be completed at Grace in as little as 16 months.

Starting in January, a bachelor’s degree in quality management will be offered through GOAL online. This program is designed for current quality management employees who wish to advance their career, as well as those with an interest in beginning a career in this high-demand field.

“In addition to our local orthopedic industry, there are a number of industries in our region that rely on well-trained QM employees to make their businesses successful,” said Ziebarth. These industries include manufacturing, automotive, food processing and service, according to Ziebarth.

Quality management degree graduates will learn proficiencies in quality systems, post-market surveillance, design control and assurance, supply chain management, statistical processes and more. The Grace program will prepare students for success in wide range of manufacturing positions.

“We hope that by offering degree completion in quality management, many adults with an interest or experience in manufacturing will determine to finish their bachelor’s degree and advance their careers,” said Ziebarth. “We’re glad to be able to help meet the needs of our local industries as well as reach out to professionals across our region and the country through the online program.”

Applications are now being accepted for all GOAL programs beginning in January. If you are interested in completing your bachelor’s degree in Quality Management, Business Administration, Management, or Human Services, call 800-823-8533 or log on to

Middlebury Resident Thrives in College, Wins ‘Realizing the Dream’ Award

Monday, November 6th, 2017

Grace College student Hannah Miller poses with supporters at the “Realizing the Dream” awards banquet. Left to right: Meghan Miller, Hannah Miller, Randy Polston, Clara and Willis Miller.

Hannah Miller, a second-year Grace College student from Middlebury, Ind., was recently recognized as a “Realizing the Dream” award recipient in Indianapolis. Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) celebrates outstanding academic achievement in first-generation college students like Miller through this annual recognition.

Miller is one of 30 winners from Indiana’s private, non-profit colleges and universities. Now sophomores, the winners are the first in their families to go to college. Each was selected by their college for outstanding achievement during freshman year and successfully advancing towards completion of their bachelor’s degree. Honored students receive a $2,500 check to help with college costs, and each student’s selected “most influential” teacher/mentor receives a $1,000 professional development grant.

Miller was overjoyed with news of her award. “The award will help me financially next semester, which in turn helps me earn my degree,” said Miller. “I will not have to take out an extra loan to cover the cost. That’s a huge blessing!”

Miller attended the honorary banquet on Saturday, Nov. 4, in Indianapolis with her father and stepmother; Randy Polston, director of applied learning at Grace College; and her “most influential” teacher, Meghan Miller, a fourth-grade teacher at Heritage Intermediate School in Middlebury, Ind.

“I asked Meghan to accompany me to the banquet because she has made a major impact on me and my education decisions. Seeing the way she taught me and other students inspired me to become a teacher someday,” Miller explained. “Randy Polston impacted my life both this year and last. I was his applied learning assistant in the Center for Career Connections office last semester, and he always went above and beyond to support and encourage me.”

“Hannah has always been a hard worker, deep thinker, and high performer,” said Meghan Miller. “I may have shed a tear when I found out Hannah was receiving this award. As a teacher, the ultimate goal for me is to impact the students I teach. To hear she chose me to attend this banquet is an honor and a memory I will not forget.”

Polston was also glad to accompany Miller to the banquet. “I was impressed with Hannah right from the start; she caught on so quickly. Every day that she arrived to work, her positive work ethic was present. Hannah quickly established herself in our office as someone we could count on.”

Miller has both realized her dreams and is working hard to accomplish her goals. “She is taking advantage of this and is making sure every day at Grace College is a day she has committed to do her very best,” Polston said. This fall, Miller accepted an important leadership role on campus. She is the resident assistant (RA) in one of Grace College’s dorms.

Looking forward, Miller plans to use her degree in elementary education to teach special education or upper elementary school. “God has given me a heart for teaching, and I’m very excited to use those gifts to benefit others,” Miller explained. “I’m not sure where exactly God is calling me to go, but I know that wherever it may be, Grace College is preparing me well for it. And I have many supporters to help me along the way.”

Grace College Students to Perform Hitchcock Classic “The 39 Steps”

Friday, November 3rd, 2017


Grace College’s theater team is pleased to present “The 39 Steps” on Nov. 10 & 11 and 16 – 18 in the Little Theatre, located in Philathea Hall, 1499 Alpha Dr., Winona Lake.  Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for students, and are available for purchase at Jazzman’s on campus and at the Wagon Wheel Theater box office, 2515 E. Center St., Warsaw, or by phone at 574-267-8041. Performances will take place every night at 7:30 p.m. as well as Saturday, Nov. 18 at 1:30 p.m. The community is invited to attend.

“The 39 Steps is a fast-paced whodunit,” said Mike Yocum, Grace College professor of communication and director of this fall’s play. “It’s sure to entertain the whole family!”

“The 39 Steps” first aired in 1935. It is a two-time Tony and Drama Desk Award winner. During the play, Richard Hannay, a Londoner leading an ordinary life, is thrust into a perilous situation. Accused of killing a counterespionage agent, Hannay must save himself while trying to stop a spy ring from stealing secret information. This classic Alfred Hitchcock play will keep the audience guessing until the end.

Photo, courtesy of Megan Manuel and Marc Baldwin, pictures Baldwin, who plays a lead role in “The 39 Steps,” Grace College’s fall play.

Marc Baldwin, a senior at Grace College, plays Hannay. “The challenging part about Hannay is his humor,” said Baldwin. “He tends to tell jokes at inopportune times, which is what I enjoy about the character: his pridefulness.” Hannay eventually learns that thinking only about himself is not the best way to live, but there is a lot of humor along the way. “We hope you leave with your face hurting from laughing so much,” Baldwin added. “Trust me, you’ll want to see this!”

Supermarket Sweep Offers Opportunity to Help Those in Need

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

Grace College students and Prof. Mike Yocum (far right) get in the holiday spirit by purchasing groceries for those in need at Supermarket Sweep.

Grace College & Seminary is partnering with Mission Point Community Church to sponsor the seventh-annual Supermarket Sweep on Wednesday, Nov. 8, at Owen’s Market in Warsaw. The community is invited to participate; grocery lists will be available for the public from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

As the holidays approach, Supermarket Sweep is fun and easy way to help community members who need food and other groceries. Shoppers purchase non-perishable food and baby products which are then packed and donated to local non-profit organizations which distribute the products to people in need. These organizations include the Salvation Army, Combined Community Services, Our Father’s House and Heartline Pregnancy Center.

According to Ken Locke, community ministries director at the Salvation Army in Warsaw, Supermarket Sweep is crucial to providing needed food for the community through the winter.  “Our pantry is pretty well depleted at this time of the year.  Supermarket Sweep is a big boost for us – in fact, it’s one of two main events that we rely on each year to stock our shelves so that we can distribute food to those who need it,” Locke said.

“This event celebrates service,” said Kearstin Criswell, director of student involvement at Grace College. “Beyond filling the food pantry shelves, Supermarket Sweep is a time for the community to support our own. Generosity and service can really unite us!”

Families are encouraged to participate. “It’s a great event for kids,” said Criswell. “You can buy a bag of groceries or fill an entire cart then leave it at the store for us to deliver. If you don’t have time to shop, you can donate money or gift cards that we will use to purchase items from the list.”

Last year’s Supermarket Sweep resulted in $26,000 worth of food and products provided to men, women and children in need in our community.  With the help of neighbors and friends, Grace College and Mission Point hope to provide even more this year.  “If many people are willing to give just an hour of their time to shop or a small monetary donation for others to shop with, we can make a big difference for a lot of families,” Criswell concluded.

Another opportunity to support the community is coming next month.  Grace College students welcome the public to Night Market on Friday, Dec. 8, from 2 – 8 p.m. in the Winona Heritage Room, 901 Park Ave, Winona Lake. This alternative Christmas shopping experience offers an assortment of unique, handmade gifts from local vendors who share their proceeds with a variety of causes.  More information is coming soon.

Grace College Statement on Grace University

Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

We are saddened by the news that Grace University in Omaha, Neb., will be ceasing academic operations at the end of this school year.  While we have no official affiliation with the university, we feel camaraderie with this Christ-centered institution, and are praying for the students, faculty and staff at this time.  Grace College (Winona Lake) President Dr. Bill Katip has reached out and offered to help with Grace University’s teach out and transition issues.

Click here to read the complete announcement from Grace University.

This statement was first published on Oct. 5, 2017.

Creating Beauty Beyond the Classroom

Monday, October 30th, 2017

Grace student Emily Stichter poses with the children’s book she published this fall.

Emily Stichter is a second-year Grace College student studying visual communication design and marketing. She is guided by her passion for art, which has recently led her to an unexpected avenue for creating beauty beyond the classroom.

To Emily, art is more than creating an attractive final product. “I enjoy doing art because it’s a way I can express myself and, at the same time, use my God-given gifts and talents,” said Emily. “I get the most joy when I can help others. I use art to promote something they’re passionate about—give visual identity to something they care about.”

Emily’s ability led her to an assistant position in the Visual, Performing and Media Arts Department (VMPA) at Grace College. She serves as the art gallery assistant, helping set up and organize art exhibits. Over the summer, Emily worked with Prof. Kim M. Reiff, chair of the VMPA Department, to print an extensive exhibit catalog.

“I had the opportunity to see first-hand all that goes into creating and printing a publication,” said Emily. “I really enjoyed being part of the publishing process and knew I wanted to do more work like it in the future.”

Armed with new knowledge and her desire to tell stories through art, Emily was the perfect fit for a local internship at RedBird Art Studio at Cardinal Services in Warsaw this fall. Cardinal Services is a non-profit organization serving adults with intellectual disabilities and families with small children who have needs. Over 80 of their clients are artists in the RedBird Studio.

“I’ve had the opportunity to publish a children’s picture book featuring paintings from one of the artists at RedBird Studio,” Emily explained. “It’s been very rewarding to get to know Julie, the featured artist, and collaborate with her on the project. I’ve also learned a lot from my art professors as they’ve directed me in how to make the book better.”

The best lesson Emily has learned is not a tangible one, though. “Designing isn’t an individual process. The more input you have from other people, the better the final product will be,” she said. “Learning how to communicate with others and use their feedback is a valuable skill for any endeavor.”

Looking ahead, Emily plans to pursue a career as a branding and visual identity specialist. She wants to be someone who can put a face to a product or business. “Ultimately, I want my art to be something that directly benefits people,” Emily said. “I want to integrate design into relationships and make a positive difference in people’s lives. It’s a way to share Christ, too.”