My Experience: C.S. Lewis Scholar Speaks on Campus

Hannah SmithBy Hannah Smith (Class of 2016)

Although students, myself included, encounter many distractions during their time in college, the central theme of a university is undoubtedly learning. Students are challenged to learn in classrooms, study groups, libraries and their own places of residence. That being said, it stands to reason that for many, this is the most opportune time to take advantage of academic resources, including extracurricular lectures. Just as a student may borrow a book from a library, or use university connections to gain access to resources, they also have numerous opportunities to learn from intellectuals outside of their academic sphere.

Recently, I was thankful that George Fox provided me with an opportunity to listen to a wise and intelligent man speak about his passion. Doctor Michael Ward, a C.S. Lewis scholar, visited campus several weeks ago to speak about his groundbreaking insight into The Chronicles of Narnia. Ward discovered that the seven books in the series, which had long been considered to be thematically unconnected, were really based upon medieval astronomy. With great interest, I listened as the speaker explained how each book correlated to a different planet and the ancient ideas associated with it. I found that this lecture was not only intellectually valuable, but also gave me a deeper understanding of C.S. Lewis and the Chronicles of Narnia.

Dr. Ward’s lecture completely challenged me to think deeper than just what was on the surface. He inspired me to take something that I am passionate about and explore it wholeheartedly. The greatest things in life are difficult and challenging, but sometimes they are truly worth the struggle. I am grateful that I got to hear from an inspiring man talking about his passion in life.

The Value of Real World Experience

FullSizeRender (1)-2By Jared Larson, senior psychology major

Since the beginning of the school year, I’ve been working at Newberg High School in the Counseling Office. I have been serving under school counselor Troy Monson. I’ve known him since my sophomore year of high school when he started working at my school in St. Helens, Ore. I always knew that I wanted to serve others, but wasn’t sure how I wanted to do that.

Then, during my junior year of high school, I realized that school counseling is a field I could potentially see myself go into. After my father passed away before my senior year, I knew I wanted to pursue the field. School has always been a place where I felt comfortable enough to disclose what was going on in my home life. I came to the conclusion that I wanted to be that person for someone else. At the beginning of my senior year, Troy encouraged me to work in the counseling office because he knew that I was passionate about helping others and was interested in the field. So I did. That was one of the best experiences I ever had. I learned so much about myself and my peers. Read More

Student success: Focus on learning, not grades


RickMuthiah-2By Rick Muthiah, Associate Director of Learning Support Services

I frequently meet with students who express high anxiety over test taking, either because they have difficulty learning course content or because they experience a mental block when they sit down to take the test. Our conversation generally winds its way to one of my most repeated phrases: focus on learning, not on grades. I drive home this point with any individual or group I meet with to talk about academic success. Whether on tests, papers, homework or projects, I practically beg students to exert their effort on the learning process and to let go of any fixation on grades. A funny thing happens for those who invest in learning – they generally end up with good grades, too. Conversely, students can get an A in a class without learning much from the course.

What does it look like to focus on learning? Let’s start with a commonly repeated formula that suggests that students should spend two hours out of class for every hour in class. To be frank, most college students aren’t spending sufficient time on learning activities once they leave class; they are spending about one hour out of class for every hour in class – half the recommended time. This standard will certainly fluctuate based on course demands and time of semester, yet a survey of students at my institution indicated that 70 percent spent 15 hours or less per week preparing for class (studying, reading, writing, doing homework or lab work, analyzing data, rehearsing and other academic activities). Given that a full-time course load is 12 to 18 hours of class per week, many students are skimping on learning activities.
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College visit tips: Slow down and stay awhile


Lindsay Peterson-2By Lindsay Knox, Director of Undergraduate Admissions

I am an efficiency-driven person. I like things to be neat, clear-cut and quick. Recently we welcomed a family to our campus and they were my kind of people. We were their third campus visit of the day and they were on their way to a fourth. They had planned down to the minute how long they could spend on each campus tour and exactly what time they needed to be pulling out of the parking lot to make it to the next destination. This family had the college visit system down to a slick and organized operation, and the efficient person in me admired their “get-it-done” attitude.

However, as they walked away from our office and on to their last visit of the day, I couldn’t help but feel like for all they had accomplished in their day they had missed out on so much.

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Worship with Passion


By Devon Halvorson (Class of 2017)

Recently my friends and I had the opportunity to see Kristian Stanfill and the Passion Worship Band perform on campus. Passion is a band, and also a conference, that travels around the country, encouraging student through worship and prayer. We were lucky enough to have them stop by George Fox and share in a night filled with music, dancing and prayer.

The night really began when the band started playing, lights began to flash, and students rushed to the front of the stage to dance and worship. The music was great and it was fun to see not only Fox students, but also other members of the Newberg community worshiping together. It was an awesome night shared among classmates and friends.
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The Return of Bruin Football

By Sammy Naluai (Class of 2016)

The wait is over – they’re back! The hype of football season has been building slowly for well over a year and the games have finally begun. Two games into their season and George Fox is still bustling with talk and support for our new football program. Football might be the most prevalent topic of conversation on campus right now. Not only is it exciting for us to welcome hundreds of football athletes to join the George Fox community, but they are bringing so much to the campus as well.

The largest impact they have had is in building community engagement. It was awesome going to the football games and seeing members of Friendsview Retirement Community walking across the street to come be a part of the unveiling. Recruits from different states drove out to experience the first game and see if they would want to be a part of the program. Partnering restaurants brought food carts to set up a tailgating area and thousands of fans poured into the stadium to fill our bleachers with cheers of encouragement. Read More

Internships: The key to connecting students to the world of work

Deb Mumm-Hill-2By Deb Mumm-Hill, Director of Student Success

So, what is the employment outlook for young adults? The good news for college students is economic forecasts indicate 66 percent of jobs in 2018 will require a post-secondary degree. The tough news is industry needs specific skills to go along with the diploma, so a degree with no industry experience makes it difficult to land a job within a specific degree area.

In the 1980s, industry hired large groups of recent college graduates with very little work experience and invested in three- to six-month training programs that prepared young hires to hit the ground running. In return for this investment, the expectation was that employees would stay with the organization 10 to 20 years as they aspired to climb the corporate ladder. Times have changed in an era with tight corporate budgets. Managers now realize it is not a wise investment of resources to train a millennial employee who only stays 18 to 36 months before moving on to a new company. So how can colleges and industry more wisely prepare the millennial for the world of work?
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Information on Griffin Huber celebration of life service

Photo by Chelsea Smith
Photo by Chelsea Smith
Pastor Mark Pratt-Russum of West Hills Friends Church asked that we share the following information with the George Fox community. Please contact Associate Pastor of Christian Leadership Jamie Johnson ( with any questions.


Dear Friends,

We would love you to join us to celebrate the life of Griffin Huber. We will gather at Southwest Bible Church (14605 SW Weir Road, Beaverton, OR 97007) Saturday, Sept. 20 at 11:00 a.m. There will be some food available following the service.
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My Serve Day Experience

IMG_8518By Heather Kurtz, Class of 2015

Serve Day is one of my favorite times at George Fox. Every year, we dedicate an entire day to serve others around our community. Students, professors and faculty come together and work to bless others, and in my case this year, to be blessed by others too.

Three of my friends and I partnered with a team leader and Faith in Action (a local non-profit organization) to help seniors in their homes for the day. The tasks we did for these people included washing windows, cleaning carpets, weeding and hooking up a TV. We helped three individuals, and all three were so appreciative and friendly, but Marilyn stood out most to me this year. When we were weeding her garden, she chose to stay outside and talk with us while we worked, telling us stories about her kids. It was nice to serve her with our actions, but also through conversation.
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Bruin Pride


By Tayler Main (Class of 2015)

Being a senior at George Fox has been great so far, and to top it all off, our football season has begun! On Saturday, Sept. 6, students gathered to attend the university’s first football game in 46 years! Hundreds of students showed up days before to pick up their tickets; no one was going to miss out on their chance to see history being made.

Being in the stands was a crazy event. There were faces painted and even a few full bodies. We all waited for the moment we could cheer on our team as they came running onto the new field.

George Fox has added two new sports in the last year. Women’s lacrosse played their first ever game last spring with the same support and enthusiasm from Bruin fans. Read More