The Voice: Winter 2003

The Voice

Campus Capsules

Voice students earn honors

At the recent competition of the National Association of Teachers of Singing on November 1 and 2, three Dordt College students won awards. Brenda Janssen and Kelly Hanenburg, students of Deb Vogel, advanced to the semi-finals; Liz McPherson, a student of Pam De Haan, advanced to the finals and took first place in the category of junior women.

Biennial rat olympics showcases psychology students’ trained rats

On November 14, Dr. Danny Hitchcock hosted the Sixth Biennial Dordt College Rat Olympics which featured the athletic prowess of eight highly-trained Norwegian hooded rats. The competition is always a highlight of the psychology course, “Learning: Theory and Applications.” Students in the course used techniques of operant conditioning to train rats to perform athletic events such as the hurdles, long jump, and high jump. The event was experienced “live” via a video feed into the S-101 lecture hall where about sixty friends and family members watched as a new world record was achieved in the high jump this year by Vader—trained by Jesse LeSueur and Chris Schreur—who successfully jumped twenty-five inches to get a piece of his favorite All-Bran cereal!

Dordt and Northwestern students host art show

Students at Dordt and Northwestern colleges joined forces to present their shared annual art show on Thursday, December 12. This year Dordt College hosted the event in the new Campus Center Art Gallery, with a reception for the community and artists.

A jury of Dordt College students traveled to Northwestern College to select their favorite works from that school, while a jury of Northwestern College students did the same at Dordt College. Art students also served as curators for the show and decided how to display the art.

The artwork encompassed a wide variety of mediums, including ceramics, computer art, drawing, mixed media, painting, photography, printmaking, and sculpture. All exhibits were created at the college the artist attends.

Art students display work at Sioux Falls coffeehouse

Art classes at Dordt College teach maturing artists the techniques they need to create artwork, but as Professor Susan Van Geest’s Advanced Drawing Class recently discovered, they also prepare artists to display and sell their work. In November, each student in the class prepared three drawings to be displayed in the Firehouse coffeehouse in nearby Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The Firehouse is run by a group of volunteers, many of whom are Dordt College alums.

“The main purpose of this assignment was simply to get our artwork out there,” says Joe Hoksbergen, a sophomore art major. “It also helped to get us used to the process of displaying art.”

According to Van Geest, displaying art can be intimidating at first. The Firehouse, students agree, was the perfect place to test their wings and get used to showing their art. Since the coffeehouse acts as an informal outreach, they are always on the lookout for good Christian art.

“It’s really a place where people can come if they’re feeling lonely,” says Jeff Van Roekel (’01), a volunteer worker at the Firehouse. “People can come to enjoy music or artwork, or just to talk to someone over a cup of coffee.” He adds that they have a lot of wall space, and are always looking for something new to add to the atmosphere of the coffee shop.

“Our art mainly served aesthetic pur-poses, by drawing people in,” says Hoksbergen. “But hopefully it added to the outreach, too.” Students put up artist’s statements along with their work, explaining the ideas and feelings that are part of their art.

But the students are the ones who benefited most from this assignment, Hoksbergen admits. “If there’s anything I learned from this experience, it’s that there are people out there who will help you by giving you a place to show your work. It’s very encouraging.”