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Parent Support Net

Parent Support Net - November 2016

Dear Parents,


Fall has arrived, and we’re thankful for our first desperately needed rainfall!

While our days reach into the low 70s, the mornings feel cool and crisp, reminding me that things change, sometimes imperceptibly.

You might notice something similar with your son or daughter. Change happens slowly, forged by nine weeks of class, exams, papers, relationships and decisions about extracurricular involvements. Our students remain enthusiastic and committed to their faith, academics, friendships and activities.

Many exciting things are happening at Westmont! Our Global Leadership Center continues to rise from the ground. This facility will house students returning from international programs, Augustinian scholars and student leaders as well as leadership programs. Students will develop leadership skills by pursuing intense intellectual work, meeting with mentors, and engaging in internships. Participants will blend thoughtful study and practice to prepare for strategic leadership positions worldwide. The first residents move in at the beginning of the fall 2017 semester. You can follow construction progress on our website.

Last year, our Parents Council began hosting regional Parent Coffees. These informal gatherings allow Westmont parents to meet one another, ask and answer questions, hear news about Westmont and pray for students and the college. This fall, the council members hosted coffees or desserts in San Jose, Orange County, Turlock, Rocklin and Denver. While we cannot hold these in every city, we hope that if you’ll join others at these gatherings if you receive an email invitation.

About 200 parents visited Westmont for First-Year Parents Weekend November 4-6. They reunited with their students and got a glimpse of their life on campus. We enjoyed welcoming them back to campus.

In this season of Thanksgiving, I want to communicate our deep gratitude for you, our parents. You’ve raised amazing kids! We covet your prayers as we strive to be good stewards of our resources and to help your students be all God intended them to be.

God bless you and Happy Thanksgiving!


Teri Bradford Rouse ’77

Senior Director of Alumni and Parent Relations

Westmont's Residential Experience

Stu Cleek

Stu Cleek, associate dean for residence life, discusses how we’re strengthening the residential experience at Westmont.

We’re excited that the Global Leadership Center (GLC) will enhance Westmont’s residential experience and better fulfill our mission as a residential college by housing most students on campus. About 140 students will live in the new facility, primarily seniors who are leaders and scholars and have participated in off-campus study programs. Westmont will join leading liberal arts colleges in providing a four-year residential experience for all students. At nearly three-fourths of the top 25 liberal arts colleges nationwide, students live on campus through their senior year. About 140 seniors will still reside off-campus (70 in the off-campus Ocean View Apartments and about 70 in the community).

Westmont will also adjust the structure of our residence halls by combining first-year students and sophomores on upper campus. First-year students residing in Page and Clark will no longer need to adjust to a completely different living experience as sophomores and will have the option of staying with their friends in the community they’ve formed. Entering first-year students will become part of an established community and learn about navigating the college years from continuing students. This mentoring can help new students better manage the challenges and difficulties they encounter in college. Students who choose to stay in Page Hall for their sophomore year will be able to live in double rooms rather than triples. Westmont will also introduce the “flex-triple” option for returning residents in Page, Emerson, Clark, Armington and the GLC, which allows them to live in a double room in the fall and in a triple in the spring—or vice versa—to provide great flexibility for students entering or leaving off-campus programs. They can add a friend to a room for one semester without creating a triple the other semester. The college will continue to inform students about these exciting changes and will give them opportunities to provide feedback as we implement the new policies.


This Year in Chapel

Ben Patterson

Ben Patterson, Campus Pastor

One of the great and, at first glance, puzzling lines of Scripture is Psalm 46:4:

“There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.”

It’s great because it tells of a river that makes us glad, but puzzling because Jerusalem, the city of God, had no such thing as a river. The point of the psalm is that the God who dwells in his city is himself the river that makes his people glad. He is the living water that Jesus said springs up in his followers to eternal life. The chapel theme for 2016-2017 is about that river.


And Its Six Streams

“There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.”

 Psalm 46:4

The six streams are the ways Christians have traditionally experienced God’s life, as Richard Foster identifies in his book, “Streams of Living Water.” Not all chapels will fit this theme, but many will, and all of my preaching will. My goal is to emphasize the unity and diversity of the Church and its worldwide significance as Christ’s Body, God’s new humanity in Jesus Christ.An exciting and rewarding feature of the series has been our partnership with the Willard Center, bringing in occasional chapel speakers to speak to our students as experts on each of the streams.

The Word-Centered Stream

Carolyn Arends

Monday, October 3

The Incarnational Stream

Frederica Mathewes Green

Wednesday, November 16

The Social Justice Stream

Juanita Rasmus

Monday, January 23

The Contemplative Stream

Chris Hall

Monday, February 13

The Holiness Stream

Trevor Hudson

Wednesday, March 22

The Charismatic Stream

Todd Hunter

Monday, April 3

So far this has been a blessed and stimulating experience for our students. It’s even been fun. Jesus, of course, embodies all six of the streams, and we pray that as we understand more fully how different parts of his Body the Church imitate our Lord, we will more fully know him in all his width, depth, length and height (Eph. 3:18). Pray for us, and listen in online to messages. Even better, come to chapel and worship with us this year!


Safety on Campus


Westmont considers the safety of students on campus to be one of its top priorities. All faculty and staff work toward a safe community, and the Public Safety Office takes a leading role in many of the daily activities that enhance safety. Eight public safety officers combine to provide patrols on campus 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Their duties include enforcing parking, locking and unlocking buildings, and serving as escorts between buildings and to and from vehicles for students at night. The Public Safety Office also works with Westmont’s fire brigade, a group of trained staff who use a college-owned tanker and other equipment to stand watch over the campus during red-flag days, when fire danger is high.

Other campus safety features include key-card access control points to enter many buildings (including most of the residence halls) and numerous security cameras in strategic locations throughout campus. In the event of an emergency on or near campus, Westmont will promptly communicate important information to students, faculty, and staff via cell phone, text and email through an effective emergency notification service.


Student Engagement in the Election

Hilary and Trump

A number of Westmont professors have engaged students and the broader community in discussing election-related topics this fall.

Political science professor Tom Knecht has been predictably busy.His course Presidential Election Politics had a waitlist this fall, and he hosted students for a viewing and discussion for two of the presidential debates. During a three-day period, he spoke at a Faculty Forum, gave a lecture in the Westmont Downtown series, and taught a course for alumni during Homecoming. His talks have underscored different theories about elections—the debate about whether “candidates and campaigns” make the difference in the outcome, or whether “fundamentals” (e.g. demographics, the state of the economy, party in power, etc.) eventually determine the winner. This may be a year, Professor Knecht theorizes, that “breaks all of the rules,” as the final outcome may run counter to what the “fundamentals” predict.

Finally, he and three other faculty members also spoke to students as part of a WCSA-sponsored Election Lecture series. While Knecht gave a “Politics 101” talk, the other faculty focused on major policy issues: Enrico Manlapig on taxes and the economy, Heather Keaney on foreign policy, and Cynthia Toms on immigration. Art professor Scott Anderson made his contribution as several of his drawings of the political melée appeared in LA Weekly.







Each year, the Campus Life Office presents a Focus Week on a specific issue. This year, they addressed “Race Matters” October 24-27, a timely topic given current events in our society. This program provided another opportunity for your student to address important issues this semester. Through workshops, discussions and presentations in chapel, the Westmont community engaged in the conversation. You can see a full Focus Week schedule on our website.


Did You Know?

studentsDid you know you can support Westmont while you shop onAmazon? When you shop through smile.amazon.com, Amazon will donate 0.5 percent of the purchase price of eligible items back to Westmont! We strongly encourage you to participate as it’s easy and can make a large, collective impact on Westmont.


To sign up:

1. Visit smile.amazon.com in your web browser.

2. Log in or register your account withAmazon

3. Designate Westmont College as the beneficiary of your shopping.

4. Shop and pay with the same security and privacy you’re used to from Amazon.

That’s it! Westmont will receive 0.5 percent of everything you buy from Amazon when you shop through AmazonSmile* (*AmazonSmile is a registered trademark of Amazon.com).

Important Links

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