The Alumni Association of Eastern Mennonite University honored two of its graduates Sunday, Oct. 15, for their work in reflecting the school’s vision, mission and values.
Catherine R. Mumaw, a 1954 EMU graduate and veteran educator from Corvallis, Ore., and a former Harrisonburg, Va., resident, received EMU’s 2006 “alumna of the year” award during the Sunday morning worship service of homecoming and family weekend.
The award is presented annually to a graduate who has been recognized for significant achievements in their profession, community or church.
Claude Good of Lansdale, Pa., a fellow member of the graduating class of 1954, received the “distinguished service award,” also during the homecoming service.
The annual “distinguished service” award seeks to recognize graduates who have demonstrated in notable ways the Christian service and peacemaking emphases of the university.
Dr. Mumaw, a home economics graduate of EMU, returned to teach courses in that discipline at her alma mater, 1957-74. She earned a master’s degree in 1958 and a PhD in 1967 from Penn State University.
She was professor and chair of the home economics department at Goshen (IN) College, 1974-86, and served as associate professor in the Human Development and Family Studies department at Oregon State University, 1987-95.
Through OSU, she helped Bunda College of Agriculture in Malawi update their home economics and human nutrition programs and took part in a faculty exchange program with Avinashilingam Deemed University in India.
Mumaw retired early from OSU to work in Nepal. From 1995-99, through Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), she was an education adviser for Kathmandu University School of Education. There, she and her colleagues worked to improve education especially in Nepal’s primary schools.
While in Nepal, she served twice as a technical adviser for the Asia-Pacific region of the Food and Agricultural Organization, which developed distance education programs for rural women in Thailand, Laos and Vietnam.
In retirement, Mumaw keeps up with international friends, sings in a church choir, does amateur photography, serves on the International Federation of Home Economics’ Congress Committee that is preparing for its hundredth anniversary meeting in 2008 in Lucerne, Switzerland.
Having traveled to all the major continents and over 40 different countries, she has embarked on a new journey – as a newlywed. She married Clair Basinger of Harrisonburg, Va., on Oct. 14, 2005.
Mumaw is a daughter of the late John R. Mumaw, who was president of EMU 1948-65.
Good and his wife, Alice Longenecker Good, also a member of the class of 1954, lived among the Triqui Indians in Mexico for 25 years while translating the New Testament into their language.
With intestinal worms a major medical problem among the children they served, Good looked for ways to treat malnutrition caused by roundworms that can devour 25-30 percent of the food eaten by a child each day.
His investigations resulted in the “Worm Project” (www.fmc-online.org/wormproject), a medical treatment that, for about two cents a pill, can eradicate most parasitic worms in a child for up to six months.
“We hope to have at least 12 million pills distributed by the end of 2006 in about 70 countries,” Good noted, adding a wish that his receiving the “distinguished service award” will “help publicize something that the world truly needs.”
As part of his work with the Worm Project, Good frequently addresses groups who might contribute financially; these audiences sometimes include school-age groups. His soft and easy manner, as well as his general appearances, has resulted in his being dubbed “Mr. Rodgers.”
Good continues to work with international students from the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, connecting them with families and churches in the Philadelphia area. He also has an international scripture ministry in the Souderton (PA) Mennonite Church where he and his wife are members.