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Calvin-Parents E-Newsletter: August 24, 2010

Student Treats: The  perfect way to show   your student you are thinking of them

Student Treats

Student Treats are a fun and easy way to let your student know that you're thinking of them. Everybody loves to give and get treats! There are six seasonal treats and three special occasion or "anytime" treats available.  Encourage and surprise your student with a delicious gourmet apple, a box of goodies at exam time, or a sweet Valentines treat.

You can order them individually or as a "Year of Treats" package (which includes a FREE birthday treat) but that offer expires on September 15. Treats may also be ordered for students who live off campus. Although treats cannot be delivered to off-campus locations, those students will receive an e-mail notification and can pick up their treat in the registrar's office.

Order your treats online today!

Off Campus Housing website

Off-campus housing

Calvin has two new initiatives starting in the fall for off-campus housing.  The first is an off-campus address registration form.  The second is clear expectations and consequences for students living in off-campus housing.  As you are probably aware, over the last several months the college has been talking about tensions stemming from students living off-campus who are not in compliance with the Grand Rapids Housing Code.  In particular, one important ordinance states that only “up to four unrelated persons” may live in a home.  In at least 15 cases in the fall of 2009, Calvin students were found to exceed this. These situations have created difficulty both for these students and for our neighbors.

More recently an e-mail was sent to students concerning fires in a neighborhood adjacent to Calvin's campus. Find more information about all these matters on the housing website.

Homecoming and  Family Weekend, October 22 & 23, 2010

Family Weekend now combined with Homecoming

Calvin College's Homecoming is now in the fall -- combined with Family Weekend -- on October 22 & 23, 2010, and all are invited.  Some of the activities planned include tours of Grand Rapids and trolley tours of campus, a lecture by National Forest System deputy chief Joel Holtrop, a River City Improv show, the dedication of the Covenant Fine Arts Center and the Calvin Music Festival held there, Disco Bingo, Poetry Jam, Art Show, class reunions, sporting events and many more family-friendly activities.  All this takes place while the campus displays the beautiful colors of fall.  See or call (616) 526-6142.

Another event that weekend is "A Choral Retreat For All Who Enjoy Singing" with Pearl Shangkuan and the Calvin Alumni Choir.  They will present creative ways to improve your musical skills as individuals and in community with others.  If you enjoy singing and would like to learn something new, consider taking part in this half day workshop.  Registration fee to attend the workshop is $10 per vocalist (includes music packet and refreshments). You can register online or by calling (616) 526-6360.

Have you heard about Calvin Alumni Travel for alumni and friends?  Trips planned include:

Read more about these trips online and contact the alumni office at (616) 526-6142 or e-mail

Please also plan to join us for the 41st annual Alumni Golf Tournament on September 11, 2010!

Philippians Campus Bible Study image

Campus-wide Bible study

This fall the Calvin community--students, faculty and staff--will be studying Philippians together starting on September 12, 2010.  Study groups will gather for 10 weeks, using study guides provided by the campus ministries office and books by N.T Wright and the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. The Sunday evening LOFT services will also dig into these themes. 

Parents are invited to follow along individually or are welcome to use these resources to lead a small group in their church, workplace or community.  The campus ministries website provides links to order books and download study guides.  Hope College and congregations from Michigan to Washington will also be studying Philippians with us this fall.  Won't you join us, too?

Calvin wall calendar on its way to you

To parents and grandparents of current students:

The familiar words of Ecclesiastes 3 begin this way: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.”

This year’s Calvin wall calendar—back by popular demand after a one-year absence, and 16 months in length so that you can begin using it next month—depicts in images and words the seasons of our Ecosystem Preserve. A jewel on our campus, the 100-acre preserve is used creatively by several academic departments. It is also a gift to the Grand Rapids community, an oasis where each year thousands of visitors study and enjoy the rhythms of God’s creation.

Like the preserve, the educational pursuits that take place at Calvin also have seasons: students progress from the promising days of arrival on campus to the fruition evident at Commencement; professors grow as teachers, mentors and scholars; new buildings arise, while others are rejuvenated. And through it all we feel the Spirit’s moving as together we faithfully seek to educate young men and women to answer God’s transformative call in their lives.

Thank you for your support of Calvin.
Gaylen Byker

Chaplain Hulst thumb's up image

Move-in day information, map, parking signs

Move-in day for returning students is Friday, September 3, after 9 a.m. Meal plans will be active at lunch that day.

When you arrive on campus you'll notice a major renovation project underway— the Covenant Fine Arts Center. While this project will benefit the Calvin community for years to come, it has also required us to make some minor changes to the move-in process from previous years. We ask that you read this information carefully, as it provides important information that will help as you move into the residence halls.  It also has links for a map and car parking signs.

See the complete Welcome Back message for students from the vice president of student life.

Knight helmet image


Did you know that both of Calvin's cross country and soccer teams, plus the volleyball team, were in the NCAA post-season tournament last year?  As the teams prepare for action, bookmark the sports page where all the fall sports previews can be found, and also to keep up on the latest news, scores and stats throughout the year.  You can also sign up for the daily sports report e-mail or an RSS feed of the action.

Other sports news:

campus  image

String Summit 2010

Bringing together talented college and high school string players with some of the finest string musicians in the United States, the Calvin String Summit, which concludes on August 27, provides a setting that promotes a week of musical growth. Individuals will have opportunities to hone skills in solo, chamber and orchestral playing, while also connecting with other advanced string players.

textbooks with water bottle

Online, not in line, for textbooks

The Calvin Campus Store textbook reservations system is now open! Visit the site for full details and instructions on the easiest way for your student(s) to get textbooks for fall. Book orders will be delivered directly to dorms before classes start, or held at the store for off-campus students.  There's still time to be one of the first 1500 to reserve textbooks (on orders over $75) and receive a FREE Vapur foldable, reusable, freezable water bottle! 
As always, parents can consult the Incoming Student Information and Gifts page to prepare for the start of school. 
Send an e-mail to if you have any questions or problems.
streetfest working students image

Financial services information

Here is some information from financial services as you prepare for the school year:

Student Billing Information Brochure 2010-2011 . On this form (.pdf), you can find information about due dates, calculating the minimum amount due on tuition, account delinquency and returned check/ e-check policies. There are links to sites with other helpful information about student financial issues, as well. Try it out! 

All student financial service resources are linked on their site here. To contact any financial services staff, see this directory.

Important dates and campus events

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

Sept. 1: Tuition, room and board payment due; residence halls open 9 a.m.; QUEST (fall orientation for new students) begins
Sept. 1 - 4:Orientation and Registration
Sept. 3: Move-in day
Sept. 7
: Fall semester classes begin at 8:00 a.m.; Opening Convocation 9:50-10:50 a.m.
Sept. 13: Last day to add fulland first-half semester courses

The Student Activities Office tries to accomplish two goals in all of its programs: it seeks to help students engage with popular culture and to discern the positive and negative messages contained within. It also strives to provide a season of concerts, films, lectures and other programs that allow Calvin students to interact with the best and the brightest artists of a wide array of genres.  See their site for an event listing.

The music department also hosts many events all year long.  Bookmark their event page to keep track of who's performing when and where.

Want to keep track of on-campus programs and events open to the public?  The Calvin-Connection is an e-mail newsletter sent regularly to friends and neighbors of Calvin College.  If you would like to receive this e-mail, please visit the community relations site. Your e-mail address will be kept private and never be sold.

In Other News

News & Stories from campus

Check out a wealth of great stories on the News & Stories site, including U.S. News & World Report gives Calvin high marks. Also see: