It wasn’t too long ago that we moved to a new house, and every so often, in our mailbox, we find letters, catalogues, or junk mail addressed to the home’s prior occupants. Now, the vast majority of this doesn’t garner much attention, but recently an alumni magazine from Wheaton College made an appearance in our stack of mail and, intrigued, I began to flip through its pages. Readers, you’ve probably already guessed where I’m going with this. Yes! Welcome to the next installment of the 3026 Series!
Now, the first thing to note is that there are a handful of colleges and universities out there with very similar or sometimes even identical names. Take, for instance, Cornell College (in Iowa) versus Cornell University (in New York). Wheaton is another perfect example, as you can find a Wheaton College in both Massachusetts and in Illinois. My home’s former owner attended the former, and it is this school to which we look today, an investigation beginning with the aforementioned appearance of the Wheaton Quarterly in my mailbox.
You may be surprised to learn that colleges’ alumni magazines are actually a great source of information about the schools, as one of the goals of these magazines is to keep those in the alumni community up-to-date on college events and other happenings on campus and around the world. This being the case, in order to give you a brief look into life at Wheaton College, I thought it prudent to provide you with the highlights from the latest issue of the Wheaton Quarterly. To begin with, on the magazine’s back cover we discover that the college is located at 26 East Main Street, in Norton, MA. In flipping through the pages, we further learn:
- Faculty, students, and staff bear witness to some spectacular fall foliage on campus each year.
- The college’s First-Year Seminars program, which focus on “topics of contemporary relevance and concern” will soon be celebrating its 30th anniversary. One of the First-Year Seminar teachers explained, “What I want for my students to develop as a result of this class is really a sense of ownership for asking questions and the sense that curiosity will be rewarded.” Well said!
- Wheaton has partnered with MassChallenge, an organization that “helps early stage entrepreneurs win”, in order for students to “contribute their energy and expertise to MassChallenge start-ups as they provide project-based and internship-based support in a variety of areas.” I like the sound of that! To learn more, click here.
- In October of 2015, the college hosted the “inaugural Lyons* Pride 5K”, raising over $5,500 for athletics programs.
- College Recruiter ranked Wheaton first on its list of “Hidden Gem Colleges for Employers Hiring Business Majors.” Click here to learn more about the college’s Business & Management major!
- Among the 437 students in the Class of 2019, you will find “a Junior Olympics qualifying fencer, a ski instructor and mountain rescuer, a competitive fiddler, a Carnegie Hall performing pianist, an Italian opera singer and an Arabic translator”! To learn more about the college’s current freshman class, click here.
- The dining hall had undergone renovations and has now reopened “with a new look and new menu offering made-to-order sandwiches and stations for cooked-to-order meals, and dedicated serving areas for students who have food allergies.”
- The college’s president, Dennis Hanno, is quite an innovative fellow! He worked to established The Wheaton Edge (a program guaranteeing that “all students in the Class of 2019 and beyond will have the opportunity for a funded internship”), along with a summer program for high school students at Wheaton College called Discover@Wheaton. What the alumni magazine focuses on, however, is a program he created called WILL – the Wheaton Innovation and Leadership Laboratory. This program is based in Rwanda and helps participants, many of whom are high school-aged, to become community leaders and entrepreneurs. This is accomplished through the offering of week-long seminars, many of which are taught by Wheaton undergraduates, and is helping to transform the college’s identity into one of a “globally engaged liberal arts institution.” To learn more, click here.
- Current and former students are doing very cool things out in the world – this issue of the magazine tells stories of a photography project in India, a career in neuroscience, giving aid to HIV/AIDS survivors in Africa, carrying out cancer research in China, signing a professional soccer contract, fighting crime in New Orleans, improving public housing (working to provide not only shelter but “a foundation of stability so that families can move up and out of public housing”), using a 3D printer to create prosthetics, working as both a software engineer and circus performer (really!), helping to create a positive school environment at a charter school in Brooklyn, playing tennis in world championships as an octogenarian, performing at the San Francisco Fringe Festival – and the impressive list goes on!
Are you curious to learn what the College Scorecard has to say about Wheaton? Click here. Furthermore, if any of this has sparked your interest, as it did mine, visit Wheaton College’s admissions page. Perhaps you will one day count yourself as a Wheaton Lyon!*
*Yes, Lyon is spelled with a “y” – click here to learn the story behind the name!