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Timeline of cross-cultural milestones

Remember reading the Bible along the Sea of Galilee, or finding a new “brother” or “sister” when you stayed in a mud-brick dwelling, or doing research at the National Institutes of Health in Washington, D.C.? Those and many more like them are the experiences at the heart of Eastern Mennonite University’s cross-cultural program, which has … More

Since 1996, Latino Student Alliance celebrates cultural pride and offers a welcoming space to all

“Pastel!” Student Sara Shenk-Moreno whispers dramatically in Spanish, pantomiming eating. Members of the Eastern Mennonite University Latino Student Alliance (LSA) retrieve a decadent cake and sing “Happy Birthday” with extra verses in Spanish. The song is fitting for the moment: Rick Castañeda ’98, who co-founded the club with four others in 1996, has just finished … More

Margaret Gehman

Margaret Gehman was a Art and Physical Education professor at Eastern Mennonite College from 1944-1987.  She remembers her nickname “Speedy”  and her education at Eastern Mennonite School.  During her tenure as a faculty member, Margaret recalls the tough conditions of teaching in a building with no heat in the winter and the relationships she built … More

Love of neighbor: Center for Interfaith Engagement continues to grow

Within hours of her arrival from Indonesia to Eastern Mennonite University, Fulbright Scholar Dr.Syafaatun Almirzanah had a new friend. At the faculty/staff picnic, five-year-old Julian Nussbaum tugged on her shalwar kameez, whispered in her ear and made sure she had enough food.  Their budding friendship was a small symbol of the work of his mother, … More

Alumni of the Year 1976: B. Charles and Grace (Brackbill) Hostetter

Charles (C 48, S 54) and Grace B. (HS 36, Cng38) Hostetter were named joint recipients of Eastern Mennonite College’s tenth “alumnus-of-the-year” award dur­ing the Alumni Association’s homecoming April 24. The Hostetters completed six years of mission work in West Africa this month under the auspices of the Mennonite Board of Missions, Elkhart, Ind. They … More

Alumnus of the Year 2004: Willard Swartley

Willard Swartley ’59 combines courageous academic inquiry with faithful commitment to Jesus Christ. One of the foremost Anabaptist interpreters of Scripture and EMU’s 2004 alumnus of the year, Willard was the first of his family to graduate from high school and college. One summer more than fifty years ago, Willard Swartley’s father faced a tough … More

Alumni of the Year 2003: Michael and Ginny Hostetler

In 1971, 21 years old, I had just finished six weeks working on a kibbutz in Israel and was doing some sightseeing with an orthodox Jewish friend from Canada before returning to the U .S. When we made a three-hour stop in Nazareth, I really expected to find something related to the most well-known resident … More

Seminary study “a tremendous privilege” for grad now working in missions in Africa

Greek conjugations, stone cathedrals, and stories from catacombs may not seem relevant to the Mennonite churches in East Africa, which use an assortment of indigenous African languages and meet in structures built of corrugated tin. Still, Eastern Mennonite Seminary (EMS) graduate Aram DiGennaro, MDiv ’05, gives testimony to the relevance of advanced theological training within … More

From touring rock musician to Teacher of the Year in Valley school system

After earning a degree in songwriting from Berklee College of Music in Boston in 2006, Harrisonburg native John Hostetter ’11 moved to Tucson, Arizona. He spent two years playing guitar in a bluegrass band, then joined a rock band called Harlem, moved to Austin, Texas, and started to get recognized nationally. “I lived [in Austin] … More

Distinguished Service Award 2015: John A. Lapp

    John A. Lapp ’54, who started his career as a history professor at EMU, witnessed a major historical event himself – Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech at a civil rights march in Washington D. C. in 1963. He remembers an atmosphere of joy and energy and a  feeling that something historic … More

Formerly homeless and drug addicted, father of three completes graduate degree

In 2005 Nathaniel Daniel had lost everything. He was jobless, homeless, addicted to drugs, and involved in criminal activity. His wife had left him, taking their three children with her. This year he will graduate from Eastern Mennonite Seminary with a master of divinity degree. “We are never beyond God’s reach,” says Daniel. “We are … More

Joseph Martin retraces his path to Harvard medical dean

Joseph Martin, a native of Canada and an Eastern Mennonite University graduate, credits a firm foun­dation in reality, tempered with plenty of humor, as the cornerstone of his tenure as head of one the nation’s most prestigious medical schools. Martin shared nearly 50 years of medical school wit and wisdom with about 75 people at … More