Winter Happening 2016

Saturday, January 23, 2016 at 9:30am

Haworth Inn and Conference Center 225 College Avenue, Holland, MI 49423

Winter Happening will feature multiple seminars in two blocks in the morning, a luncheon with musical entertainment and a home men’s basketball game with Kalamazoo College. Open to the general public, the event is sponsored by the college’s public affairs and marketing department.

Admission to the seminars is free.  There is an admission charge for the luncheon and the basketball game.  For additional information please contact: Lynne Powe
 (616) 395-7860 or

9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Registration: Haworth Inn and Conference Center, 225 College Ave.

9:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Seminars

A Quiet World: The Wonders of Hearing and Hearing Loss - Dr. David Myers
Ballroom 1 and 2, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

Drawing on personal experience and psychological science, Dr. David Myers will explain and demonstrate the psychology of hearing and the realities and humor of hearing loss. He will also describe user-friendly assistive technologies. These include the hearing loops that, in Holland-Zeeland and now across America, are doubling the functionality of hearing aids and cochlear implants.

Myers’ vocation is doing psychological science and communicating it to college students and the general public. His avocation is supporting Americans with hearing loss. In recognition of his efforts (which include the Hope College-hosted, he has received awards from the American Academy of Audiology, the Hearing Loss Association of America, and the hearing industry. He represents Americans with hearing loss on the Advisory Council of NIH’s National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

Water: Precious, Precarious, Problematic, Perplexing, Promising - Dr. David Van Wylen
Ballroom 3, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

Water is essential for life, and yet we humans have put this precious resource in a precarious state in the world.  This raises a myriad of international, domestic, and local problems.  Americans, especially, treat water in perplexing ways, mostly based on our perceptions that water is (or should be) abundant, accessible, and affordable.  At the turn of the century, then UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros Ghali said, "Water will be more important than oil this century."  We are slowly waking up to this reality, responding in many cases in a manner that provides promise that we are rising to meet the challenge.

Dr. David Van Wylen is the Dean for Natural and Applied Science and professor of biology at Hope College. He arrived at Hope in July 2015 after 21 years of faculty/administration at St. Olaf College. A physiologist by training, he developed an interest in water when he led a group of students to the Middle East for a study abroad semester.  Since that time, he has taught classes on water and speaks willingly to community groups on the topic.

Protestants, Catholics, and Jews in World War I America: The 1918 United War Work Campaign - Dr. Jeanne Petit
Gentex-TransMatic Room, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

During World War I, the Young Men's Christian Association, the Knights of Columbus, and the Jewish Welfare Board found themselves in an uneasy partnership with the United States government.  These three organizations were recruited by the War Department to provide wholesome entertainment and recreation to military camps as a way to combat venereal disease. In order to finance their work, the groups came together in the fall of 1918 to participate in the first major interfaith fundraising effort, which they named the United War Work Campaign. Dr. Jeanne Petit analyzes how the campaign illustrates the changing nature of religion in the United States during the early 20th century as well as the complicated relationship between Church and State during wartime.  Professor Petit and her students did research about the United War Work Campaign at the Library of Congress is the summer of 2015. You can view their website at:

Dr. Petit has been a professor of history at Hope College since 2000. She serves on the Women's and Gender Studies Council, previously directed the Women's and Gender Studies program and teaches a variety of United States history courses, including U.S. Cultural History, World War I America, Recent America, and Women and Gender in United States History.

11 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. Seminars

Using Nuclear Science and Entrepreneurship to Influence US Public Health Policy  - Dr. Graham Peaslee and Ms. Evelyn Ritter '15
Gentex-TransMatic Room, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

Researchers have long been studying chemicals found in our consumer products that have important implications for human health. In the past year Dr. Graham Peaslee and Dr. Paul DeYoung refined a nuclear process that tests for per- and polyflourinated alkyl substances (PFAS) in minutes when once the testing required days. This new low-cost PFAS screening method is now successfully being used to influence US Public Policy to identify and eliminate that chemicals’ use.  In addition, this new method for screening for PFAS has spun off a commercial start-up company co-founded by Dr. Peaslee— along with Hope colleague, Dr. Peter Boumgarden, and Hope alum, Evelyn Ritter ’15— called University Market Partners (UMP). UMP Analytical will endeavor to take advantage of a distributed network of academic labs to provide a commercial testing service.

Dr. Peaslee is the Elmer E. Hartgerink Professor of Chemistry at Hope College, where he has been teaching and doing research for 22 years. His interests are in nuclear and environmental chemistry, and the intersection of science with policy. Ms. Ritter is an aspiring technological entrepreneur focusing on environmental issues. She was a mechanical engineer major at Hope who was active in entrepreneurship programs as a student and has since played a leadership role in the start-up.

Hope at 150: How Rocky was the Road to Success? - Dr. Jack Nyenhuis, Dr. Dennis Voskuil and Dr. Elton Bruins
Ballroom 1 and 2, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

When Dr. Jack Nyenhuis was asked by then-Provost Jim Boelkins to write the Sesquicentennial History of Hope College, he agreed to do so, but he also recruited several colleagues to help complete the task. This presentation will feature reflections by three of the authors involved in a comprehensive history of Hope being written in conjunction with the college’s 2015-16 sesquicentennial commemoration. Dr. Jacob Nyenhuis, who is co-leading the initiative, will give an overview of the entire project and will highlight key discoveries about our history. Dr. Dennis Voskuil will present pithy insights into the relationship between the college and the Reformed Church in America, and Dr. Elton Bruins will give a summary of his approach to creating a list of alumni of distinction. 

Dr. Nyenhuis retired this past fall as director of the college’s A.C. Van Raalte Institute, and is provost emeritus and professor of classics emeritus at Hope; Dr. Dennis Voskuil is the current director of  the A.C. Van Raalte Institute and is the retired president of Western Theological Seminary as well as a  former member of the Hope religion faculty. Dr. Elton Bruins was the founding director of the A.C. Van Raalte Institute and is retired from the Hope faculty as the Evert J. and Hattie E. Blekkink Professor Emeritus of Religion.

Lessons from Century Club Companies: Managing for Long-Term Success - Professor Vicki TenHaken
Ballroom 3, Haworth Inn and Conference Center

The average age of companies today is 12-15 years. Less than one-half of one percent of U.S. companies have been in continuous operation for more than 100 years. For the last ten years, Professor Vicki TenHaken has been working with Meiji Gakuin University Professor of Economics Makoto Kanda studying companies in both Japan and the U.S. that have survived for over 100 years. Are there common management behaviors these lasting companies practice that have led to their longevity? Find out what these old companies have in common and what practices today’s companies might consider implementing if they want to live for the long term.

Professor TenHaken is the Ruch Director of the Baker Scholars Program at Hope College and professor of management. After 25 years in business with General Electric and Herman Miller, Inc. she began her academic career at Hope in 2000. Her corporate experience included roles as executive VP of strategy, VP of marketing, general manager of a new business venture, director of corporate planning, and several human resource management positions. She has published several articles on the topics of leadership and corporate longevity.

12:30 p.m. 

Luncheon with a musical presentation.

($13 per person, advanced reservation required)

Donnelly Dining Room, Haworth Inn and Conference Center, 225 College Avenue

3 p.m. 

Basketball Game (Adults $7, Non Hope students $5 for general admission bleacher seating)

Hope Men vs. Kalamazoo

Richard and Helen DeVos Fieldhouse


Event Type

Academics, Campus-Life, Sesquicentennial


See information about Winter Happening 2017

The morning will feature six seminars, three at 9:30 a.m. and three at 11 a.m.

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