To Be Sung As If John Coltrane Were a Mennonite

These are a few of our favorite things:

1. Weather Vane: I have spent four years pouring myself into the Weather Vane. I firmly believe that while it is not perfect, it retains the possibility for true impact. It is a unique space to share with the campus community through story, critique, and gathering together. It is an important student voice.

2. Community: In high school I thought community was a dirty word, sorely overused. But here I have appreciated the company, the sharing, and growing together that community entails. We have a special community, one that can be tremendously open and accepting, but not without faults.

3. Scholarship: I have heard people complain that EMU does not hold to the standards they expect from a university. Mark Metzler Sawin wisely pointed out that here we have the potential, the resources, to hold ourselves to whatever level of scholarship we want. I made a conscious effort to run with this, and I do not regret that.

4. Faculty: Faculty care, and want to be involved. This is an incredible opportunity. Talk to them; do it regularly. Build relationships for no particular reason; you will not regret it. And maybe they can help you later, but that does not matter.

5. Parkwoods: The actual woods, not the apartments, though they are nice too. There is something nice about slipping away from the bustle of society to enter into a separate place. Squirrels, crows, and catbirds are there for company, and it feels a world apart.

6. Belonging: My soul has found a resting place.

-Joel Nofziger, Co-Editor in Chief


1. The Shenandoah Valley: Of course I am a bit biased, as Harrisonburg is my hometown, but going to a school tucked between two charming mountain ridges is a real treat. Not only does the valley provide a perfectly rust-colored backdrop to campus in October, but it offers many options for recreation all year round.

2. The Caf: I think the cafeteria is more impressive to me than it is to many others. For the size of EMU, the selection is quite varied and creative. And nothing beats a dining hall director who responds personally to every suggestion put into the suggestion box. Thanks, Bruce.

3. Mystery: What does the old gym building look like on the inside? Do the heads in the Head Room or the Presidents in the Presidents Room come alive at night? Why will Peter Dula not join Facebook? Some questions are more fun to ponder than get answers to.

4. Cross-Cultural: Troubling as it can be, the experience of leaving home and spending time somewhere unfamiliar cannot be understated.

5. Common Grounds: The number of uses for this space is astronomical. And most of them are good! I most commonly use it as a comfy coffee dispenser where I can get things done while simultaneously being open to conversation with passersby.

6. Academic Variety: Liberal arts schools try to expose students to the broadest education possible. EMU has certainly done that for me, as I have been lucky enough to study in several different fields. Learning so many different ways of looking at the world has been both confounding and rewarding.

-Ryan Eshleman, Co-Editor in Chief

Categories: Opinion

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