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Calvin-Parents E-Newsletter: January 5, 2010

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Updates on Calvin students

Dear Calvin Community,

As many of you may know, Calvin student Matthew DeVlieger, a junior and member of the men's tennis team, was involved in a serious scuba diving accident while vacationing with his family in the Florida Keys over the break. He experienced decompression sickness when he had to come up quickly from a 135-foot dive due to lower-than-expected oxygen levels in his tank. Shortly after arriving at the water's surface Matthew began experiencing some of the more serious symptoms of decompression sickness. He was rushed to the hospital and remains hospitalized, able to breath on his own but paralyzed from the chest down.  At this time the doctors are uncertain whether or not he will regain his mobility.  Matthew is in Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. The address is: Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit, West Wing # 851, 1611 Northwest 12th Avenue, Miami, FL 33136-1096. This is a "cards-only" address, but Matthew would love to get your notes of encouragement and support. You can also post messages on Facebook, either on his page or on the Prayers for Matthew DeVlieger page.

Also, a quick update on two other Calvin students with recent health emergencies: progress for Brenna Hannan remains steady but slow. She has opened her eyes but is not yet aware of her surroundings. She is able to breath on her own for longer periods of time while being supported by the ventilator. She has sat up in the special chair, and she has some small movement of her muscles.  Getting her medications calibrated is the biggest challenge- not sedated too much and yet enough to control the seizures and now some muscle spasms. Check her care pages for daily updates. Tim and Katrina Hannan so appreciate the Calvin outpouring of love, visits, prayers, food and donations.

Steve Okeyo is making a steady recovery and living in Glen Oaks East for another month.  He has been gaining strength after his third open heart surgery and is grateful to Calvin, his Kenyan church and his brother, Joseph. It is his goal to return second semester to class.

These students and their families are a providential part of our community, and we are privileged to care for them. I see the many ways Calvin cares and it is humbling and faith-impacting to have this front row seat for God's goodness through you, the community.  We, these students and families, have a ways to go. We will do it together by God's grace. Please continue to pray.

Shirley Hoogstra, Vice President for Student Life

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Calvin vs. Hope tomorrow; Satellite game soon!

Calvin will host Hope at home on tomorrow, January 6, 2010.  The Van Andel Arena will be hosting classic rivalry action with the JV team game starting at 5 p.m. and varsity at 7:30 p.m.  Tickets for this game are still available online or at the box office (remember the temporary location in the Spoelhof College Center).  This game will be shown on WGVU-TV with live audio and video available on "The Rivalry" Web site.

The Calvin/Hope rivalry is in its ninth decade of play, with Hope leading the series 88-85.   This year's date for the immensely popular satellite game---the rivalry game when fans gather at a satellite viewing location in their city, will be January 30, 2010.  There are over 60 sites---one near youRead more about the news and history of the rivalry.

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Interim 2010 begins tomorrow

Interim 2010 will officially begin tomorrow, and while the majority of students are taking a class that keeps them on campus or in the area, many students have already left, or soon will depart, for their Interim experience off-campus. If you have a son and/or daughter studying abroad for January, you can bookmark the off-campus programs site and there read about all the off- campus offerings for this Interim term.  You can start reading one of the Interim blogs, this one from Calvin's senior writer Myrna Anderson.  She is traveling to Cambodia with one of two groups that will be studying there.

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"Anytime" student treat

"Pizza and a Movie" is one of the more popular student treats and this year was included in the Year of Treats package.  Did you know that "Pizza and a Movie" is also an "anytime" treat and can be ordered for delivery to your Calvin student . . . anytime!  This treat would make a fun surprise for your student during Interim or might be ideal for those snowy, cold days. "Pizza and a Movie" ($25) features a coupon for a large, two-item pizza which can be redeemed at your student's convenience for free delivery, pick-up or dine-in.  The treat also includes a Blockbuster gift card and a bag of microwavable popcorn.  Find out more about the Student Treats program.

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Calvin Symposium on Worship

The Calvin Symposium on Worship will be held January 28 - 30, 2010, and is an annual worship conference on the campus of Calvin College & Calvin Theological Seminary.  At this event, worshipers and worship leaders from around the world gather for a time of fellowship, worship, and learning together. Morning and evening worship services are held in Calvin's Van Noord Arena (PLEASE NOTE CORRECTION) and are free and open to the public (no registration needed). There are also ten in-depth seminars on Thursday and over 70 workshops each day on Friday and Saturday, offered by more than 80 presenters.  You can find out more and register on the Symposium Web site.

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The Summer Academy

The Summer Academy is a taste of real life at Calvin for 9th through 12th graders.  This program is ideal for students looking for an early or pre-college experience that will test and improve their academic readiness for post-high school studies.  Students receive college credit and experience campus life while enjoying Calvin's distinctively Christian learning and living environment. Check out The Summer Academy Web site

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Parents of 2010-2011 returning students: Off-campus housing

The city of Grand Rapids has a long-standing ordinance on its books which prohibits more than four unrelated people from living in one house. This past fall, often times as a result of complaints from neighborhood associations, some Calvin students who had more than four living in a house found themselves on the receiving end of eviction notices. There have been several forums on campus this fall to discuss this issue, and recently student life sent a letter to all students reminding them of their responsibilities if they choose to live off campus.

Student life has made a letter available to parents (parent letter in .pdf format) and to students (student letter in .pdf format) with advice about off-campus living next year. Please send any comments, questions or concerns to the following student life e-mail address: Know that the college is committed to working in partnership with both our students and our various neighbors and will host more open forums on this issue on January 21 and February 5, from 4-5 p.m.

There also is a story on the Calvin News & Stories Web site about the off-campus housing issue and the campus forums that should help parents in these conversations.

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Parents of graduates: Commencement information

Commencement will be celebrated on May 22, 2010, and that weekend will be filled with a variety of activities for graduates and their families.  For a basic outline of the weekend's activities, information about Commencement tickets, and a pre-graduation checklist for seniors, see the Commencement Web site.

There are photo galleries available from Commencement 2009.

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January Series 2010

For over twenty years The January Series has been the leading lecture/cultural arts series in the country. The diversity of presenters and topics has changed as the world of ideas has changed. No issue of importance to a great Christian liberal arts college founded on Reformed, biblical principles has been too controversial or too hot to handle. Why? Because at Calvin we have been taught to think with discernment and thoughtful skepticism. We know this is God's creation and each of us is created in His image so it follows we need to engage that world, learn about it, from it and in some cases confront it.

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Events for alumni, friends and families

Bookmark the alumni events calendar to keep track of important dates throughout the year, to which you are warmly invited, as a parent, alumni and/or friend of the college.  More information is found there for each of the following events:

January 6 - 26: The January Series 2010
January 15 & 16: Alumni Choir concerts in West Michigan
January 20: MBA@Calvin
January 30: The Rivalry - Calvin vs. Hope at a viewing location near you!

Check the Parent Calendar for important dates

Bookmark the Parent Calendar page to keep track of important dates throughout the year, including:

Jan. 5: Tuition, room and board payment due; on-campus housing opens 10 a.m.
Jan. 6: Interim term begins 8 a.m.
Jan. 18: Last day to drop interim courses; last day to change interim courses from credit to audit
Jan 26: Interim ends 5 p.m. (Travel Advice)

Campus Events: You Are Invited!

Calvin Sports: This week's athletic events

Calvin KnightsFor information about athletic events visit the redesigned Sports Information Web site. Need Calvin sports results fast? Call the Calvin sports hotline at 616-526-6522 for current sports updates. You can also sign up for the Calvin Sports-Report, a free e-mail bulletin notifying Calvin sports fans of current sports news.

Other Helpful Links:
Parent & Family Resources
Parent Calendar
Worship & Discipleship
Campus News
Daily Sports Update
Roving WebCam Click for the weather forecast at Calvin