Alum builds faith among ‘peoples of the earth’
David Ben-Avraham ‘08
Nursing alum
Eatontown, N.J.

While living in Israel, David Ben-Avraham (left) backpacked with friends along the Red Sea coast in Egypt, where he spend a few days with a nomadic Bedouin tribe. During his visit, he befriended a young Bedouin man over hot tea and a pipe. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in About Reconciliation, Study Abroad | 2 Comments »

Posted on February 22nd, 2010

Hope and Hospitality Blossom in Grantham

clarence-hertaClarence Sakimura (pictured with his wife, Herta)
Attended Messiah Academy 1950-1951
Joined Messiah College faculty in 1955 to teach Greek


Walk in front of Climenhaga Fine Arts Center, and you’ll notice a cherry blossom tree. Beneath the tree, stands a plaque with the following inscription:

“If someone wishes to know the essence of the Japanese spirit, it is the fragrant cherry blossom in the early morning.”
                                                                                               Motoori Norinaga

How does this quote from an 18th-century Japanese scholar converge with the history of Messiah College? The plaque and the tree are gifts from Clarence Sakimura, a man integral to the campus’ multicultural fabric. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in About Reconciliation, Messiah Academy | 2 Comments »

Posted on January 7th, 2010

Alum affirms Creator’s purpose for our lives

ryan-scott-bomberger-pic-12Ryan Scott Bomberger ’93
Marketing major
Atlanta, Georgia

Adopted into a multi-racial family of 15, Ryan Scott Bomberger’s acceptance into a loving Christian home fostered his own passion for adoption and seeking God’s purpose in his life.  Today, he and wife Bethany Koopalethes Bomberger ’97 are co-founders of The Radiance Foundation (, a life-affirming organization that seeks to empower people by building their sense of purpose.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 1993, About Leadership, About Reconciliation, About Service, Alumni, Grad School Bound, Marketing | 10 Comments »

Posted on October 8th, 2009

Broadcasting major gets big city experience

tshanaTshana (Guiswite) Jamara ’09
Broadcasting major
Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania

Contributed by Erin Kriner ’09

As a broadcasting major with an emphasis in production, Tshana Jamara ’09 took full advantage of her Philadelphia campus experience by landing an internship at the local ABC television affiliate, WPVI-TV, Channel 6.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, Broadcasting, Internships, Philadelphia Campus, Study Abroad | Comments Off

Posted on October 6th, 2009

Serving the community shapes student’s life

rachel-moffett1Rachel Moffett ’09
Elementary Education major

Every Tuesday afternoon Rachel Moffett ’09 boards a bus to work with inner-city youth at the Allison Hill Community Center in Harrisburg.  After four years of helping with homework, cleaning, serving meals, and lending a shoulder to cry on, this elementary education alum bids farewell to the individuals that have helped shape her life, broaden her horizons, and strengthen her fortitude.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, About Service, Alumni, Education, Service and Learning, Study Abroad | Comments Off

Posted on October 6th, 2009

Island life is for the birds

Photo copyright Jacinda Martinez

Cameron Rutt ’08
Summa Cum Laude graduate, biology
Currently resides in Borneo, Southeast Asia

Lions and tigers and bears? How about leeches, leopards, and pit vipers? Collecting data from bird’s nests in Borneo, Southeast Asia comes with unexpected dangers and welcome rewards for this biology alum from Messiah College. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2008, Biology, Environmental Studies, Honors Program, Majors & Minors | 1 Comment »

Posted on July 2nd, 2009

Great expectations: transfer student anticipates success at Messiah College

scott_hoeckele-for-webScott Hoeckele ′11
Biochemistry major
Langhorne, Pennsylvania

Welcome to the world of a transfer student. Unlike traditional first-year students, transfers come to Messiah College with at least a year of college experience under their belts.  They have an inkling of what to expect.  Yet, they’re not like sophomores either.  Transfers don’t know anyone, haven’t established themselves in clubs and student organizations, and are unfamiliar with the territory.  “It’s like being new and not new at the same time,” says Scott Hoeckele ’11, a pre-med transfer student who gave up a free ride at a college closer to home to get into Messiah’s highly regarded science program (see sidebar). Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2011, Biochemistry, Transfer Students | 3 Comments »

Posted on June 24th, 2009

Study abroad spurs international justice career

emily-rainville-3Emily Rainville ′04 
English Literature major
Currently residing in South Asia

Study abroad experiences in West Africa and France shaped this student’s view of the world and convicted her about the investment she could make in the lives of those outside her immediate circle of influence. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2004, About Service, Alumni, English, Majors & Minors, Study Abroad | Comments Off

Posted on June 18th, 2009

Athlete’s positive attitude focuses on the prize, not the pain

blosseyandteam01Nick Blossey ′09
Computer Science major
Erie, Pennsylvania

The actions and advice of a highly decorated American prisoner of war strengthened this benched goalkeeper’s commitment to the relentless pursuit of a positive attitude, and helped Messiah College’s men’s soccer team earn its sixth national title in program history.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, Athletics, Computer Science, Majors & Minors | Comments Off

Posted on June 2nd, 2009

Undergrad research yields great rewards

jess-unick-4Jess Unick ′04
Exercise Science major
Rockaway, NJ

Research design and development, presenting at conventions, and publishing in national journals, gave Jessica Unick, a 2004 exercise science alumna, a distinct advantage when applying for graduate school and beyond. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2004, Grad School Bound, Majors & Minors, Sports & Exercise Science | Comments Off

Posted on May 6th, 2009

Cross-cultural program examines reconciliation and race in South Africa

lawrence-burnleyLawrence A. Q. Burnley, M.Div., Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Multicultural Programs, Messiah College

Extending education beyond the classroom helps faculty members like Lawrence Burnley develop students’ appreciation for cultural traditions significantly different from their own, including contemporary and historical tensions and contradictions. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in About Reconciliation, Faculty, Majors & Minors | Comments Off

Posted on May 4th, 2009

Student pit director takes podium with aplomb

paul-cohen-3Paul Cohen ′09 
Music major with a concentration in commercial music 
ter, New York

A gifted performer and composer, Paul Cohen ’09 uses his musical talent to delight and faithfully inspire audiences from Grantham, Pennsylvania, to Rome, Italy.  

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, Arts, Music | Comments Off

Posted on May 4th, 2009

Philly campus a rewarding experience

lacey-wardLacey Ward ′09
English major with an emphasis in literature, and a minor in Urban Studies
Catasauqua, Pennsylvania

Throughout the 2009 academic year, Lacey Ward hit the streets and the books as both a student at Messiah’s Philadelphia Campus [MCPC] and a teacher’s assistant at William Penn High School, ultimately earning her the right to stand among Philadelphia’s finest young educators.  Now, as she prepares for her greatest challenge—the Philadelphia Teaching Fellows program—Ward looks back to what got her started on this unexpected journey. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, Education, English, Internships, Philadelphia Campus | Comments Off

Posted on May 4th, 2009

Grad pursues global environmental awareness

amandamcmillan1Amanda McMillan ′08
Politics major with a minor in environmental studies
Hometown:  Herminie, Pennsylvania

Amanda McMillan ’08 is on a crusade for conservation. In just her first two months on the job as the executive assistant to the president of a worldwide Christian environmental protection organization, McMillan travelled from New York City, to Barcelona, and then back to the company’s operation in southern France. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2008, About Service, Alumni, Environmental Studies, Giving Back, Go Green!, Honors Program, Politics | 4 Comments »

Posted on April 3rd, 2009

Student activist/ecologist challenges ‘Silent Epidemic’

ryan-witmerRyan Witmer ′09
Environmental Studies major
Hometown:  Wooster, Ohio

Planting gardens in abandoned lots strewn among Philadelphia’s economically disadvantaged neighborhoods is more than a beautification project. To Ryan Witmer ’09, and others studying at Messiah College’s Philadelphia campus (MCPC), the ongoing service project is an effective way of combating gang warfare, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity, in addition to supporting ecological sustainability among the historic city’s 30,000+ vacant lots. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, About Service, Environmental Studies, Giving Back, Go Green!, Internships, Philadelphia Campus, Service and Learning | Comments Off

Posted on April 3rd, 2009

Is America truly a Christian nation?

Richard Hughes
Distinguished professor of religion and senior fellow, Ernest L. Boyer Center
Messiah College

Is America a Christian nation? Not likely, according to Richard Hughes, distinguished professor of religion and senior fellow of the Ernest L. Boyer Center at Messiah College. Listen to excerpts of Hughes’ new book, “Christian America and the Kingdom of God,“ to draw your own conclusions. 
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Christian Ministries, Ernest L. Boyer Center, Faculty, Humanities, Majors & Minors, Politics, Religious Studies, Scholarship | 8 Comments »

Posted on April 3rd, 2009

Stepping up when things are down

Housing crisis moves agency to pick up the pace

Becca KnightBecca Knight ’03
Majored in Sociology

Director of Home Repair Ministries
ppalachia Service Project, Inc. (ASP)
Johnson City, Tennessee

The national housing crisis has been in the news lately but housing problems are not new to Appalachia (pop. 20 million)—one of the poorest, most isolated regions of the United States. Yet, as the economic downturn deepens and the number of troubled families continues to rise, there are those who plan to not only meet the need, but to double their efforts.  Becca Knight ’03 is among them. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2003, About Service, Agape Center, Alumni, Giving Back, Sociology | Comments Off

Posted on March 3rd, 2009

Engineering team builds inspiration for one million teens

Paul GustafsonPaul Gustafson ’09
Engineering major
Chester, Vermont

“Whatever your plans are for the summer, cancel them. I’ve got the best job for you that you’ll ever have.” Those immortal words—etched indelibly in Paul Gustafson’s memory—led to a once-in-a-lifetime experience for this Messiah engineering major and honors program participant. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 2009, Engineering, Faculty, Honors Program, Internships, Majors & Minors | Comments Off

Posted on March 3rd, 2009

From success to significance — It’s what you make of it

Scott HeintzelmanScott A. Heintzelman, ′89
Partner, McKonly & Asbury, CPA, CMA, CFE

For the unstoppable Scott Heintzelman, success is a journey, not a destination. At 42, this self-directed, self-proclaimed “exuberant accountant” holds a list of noteworthy achievements that reads like a who’s who of Pennsylvania movers-n-shakers, yet he’s only just begun to live a life of significance. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 1989, About Leadership, About Service, Accounting, Alumni, Giving Back, Majors & Minors | 1 Comment »

Posted on March 3rd, 2009

Restoring dignity to those in need

Chris BookChris Book ’78
Religion major
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Chris Book ’78 views his years at Messiah College as the formative years that confirmed God’s call to a life of Christian service. Now executive director of Paxton Ministries in Harrisburg, Book and his wife Marlys have a goal of continuing in service that makes a direct impact in improving the quality of life for people in a way that honors God. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in 1978, About Leadership, About Service, Alumni, Giving Back, Majors & Minors, Religious Studies | Comments Off

Posted on March 3rd, 2009


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