Monthly Archives: February 2012

ASLC elections kick off with release of candidates’ names


The 2012 Associated Students of Linfield College elections are coming up, and Linfield has three prospective candidates running for leadership positions. Junior Nic Miles is running for ASLC president, while sophomore Jennifer Derke and junior Susana Fajardo run for the position of vice president.

Miles is running unopposed for ASLC president this semester, and he said he feels he would be a good candidate because of his belief that he has “the appropriate skills, connections, experiences and mindset to serve as the representation of the student body,” he said in an email.

Since working with ASLC, Miles said he has reached a place where he feels confident in running for the highest leadership position.

“I want to climb the ladder and create a Cabinet of students who have similar goals and ambitions as myself,” Miles said.

Miles has worked as a residence life advisor on campus for Campbell Hall, music entertainment chair of LAB, ASLC club director and chairman of the Activities Council.

In addition to these leadership positions, Miles runs varsity cross-country and track for Linfield, works for the Office of College Relations, has been an Upward Bound tutor for two years and is a “contributing and enthusiastic member to Linfield’s rock and roll music scene.”

“The biggest reason that I think I am the best candidate for president [is] the well-rounded experiences and leadership roles [I] have held during the past three years,” Miles said. “With experience comes confidence.” With no one running against Miles, he feels as though that says something about his character and reputation.

During the upcoming year, Miles has many goals for the future of Linfield. Miles’ main goal is to reconnect students with ASLC.

“With the exception of the recent taxi service, which has been a tremendous success, most of our work isn’t directly visible to the students,” Miles said.

Miles wants to pursue projects that get students excited about being at Linfield and enthusiastic about the “fantastic cabinet that serves them.”

While the presidential race is all but over, the vice-presidential campaign is set for some competitio



Derke is running for vice president this semester after being a senator for the past two years.

“I enjoy working with peers in Senate and want to continue solving problems and working together,” Derke said in an email.

Along with being a senator, Derke is also a part of the Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority and is their programming council member. She is also involved with the outdoor club, French club, work study and the curriculum committee.

She is a philosophy major and environmental studies and French minor.

Derke’s plans for the future include focusing on a strong unified student body voice and working together for positive outcomes. This would be done through more proclamations and attention to what students are saying and wanting.

“I am a fun person to work with and I will continue to make Senate meetings productive and enjoyable,” Derke said. “I am responsible, compassionate and creative and I bring these attributes to the environments I am in.”


Fajardo is also running for ASLC’s vice president this semester after deciding that she had the qualifications and felt that was the place for her.

“I really believe that student government, especially at Linfield, can be such a force for good,” Fajardo said. “I remember getting out of Senate meetings and feeling like we had actually made a difference. I want to be part of that again and I feel like I have a lot to offer the Senate and the student body.”

Fajardo has held other leadership positions such as being president of her Japan Adventure club and the Gay-Straight Alliance in high school.

Since coming to Linfield, Fajardo has been active in both the Senate and her sorority, Sigma Kappa Phi. During her freshman year, Fajardo was senator for the Ballroom Club, and she gave a special report last year in Senate on bringing back fall break. For the past three years, Fajardo has been the pledge class president, historian, treasurer and vice president for her sorority as well. She is currently the junior pledgemaster and co-chaplain for her sorority.

Fajardo feels she would be the best candidate for this position because of her compassion for the college.

“I truly care about Senate and about the well-being of the ASLC,“ Fajardo said. “Even when I was studying abroad I would always make sure to read Senate reports and keep as up-to-date as I could.” Fajardo makes it a priority to be well informed or become well informed when new information is presented.

Fajardo’s goals for the future are to “reconnect the Senate with the rest of the student body.” Fajardo feels as though having a smaller group, campus-wide email and stronger committees are all good things, but what makes a student government what it is, is a mouthpiece for students’ thoughts and concerns.

“Through [the mouthpiece], the student body can cause change and improve campus.” Fajardo said. She feels the foundational mission has been lost in the reconfiguration of Senate and current disconnection between senators and their constituencies.

“I want to reconnect senators with the rest of campus in order to get a real dialogue going,” Fajardo said. “Student government exists to aid and represent the student body. Student voices should be heard loud and clear.”

Fajardo is aware of the face that students are concerned about sustainability, food and a host of other issues. She believes students have the power to fix them, or at least to bring them to the attention of the college and Board of Trustees.

“Students can wield so much influence at Linfield, but sometimes we forget it,” Fajardo said. “We are the force and next year I want to make magic happen.”

Samantha Sigler/
News editor
Samantha Sigler can be reached at

Professor emeritus of history explores novelist’s life

Dr. Richard W. Etulain, professor emeritus of history at the University of New Mexico, came to Linfield on Feb. 22 and discussed the life of novelist Wallace Stegner, who Etulain believes to be the most important writer of the American West since John Steinback. Christina Shane/Staff writer

A collision of history and literature occurred Feb. 22, as students and scholars gathered in the Austin Reading Room of the Nicholson Library to hear a special guest lecture on a novelist’s life.

Thanks to the Ken and Donna Ericksen Endowed English Department Fund, nationally recognized scholars such as Dr. Richard W. Etulain, professor emeritus of history at the University of New
Mexico, are brought to Linfield’s campus.

Etulain gave his lecture, “Wallace Stegner: Wise Man of the American West,” bringing Western American history to life through the literary works of Wallace Stegner, who Etulain considers“ Our most important writer [of] the American West since John Steinbeck.”

Etulain has had an extensive career combining history and literature as he has been both president of the western History Association and the Western Literature

“Professor Etulain straddles the fence between the two disciplines,” David Sumner, professor of English and environmental  studies, said when introducing the historian.

“I was trying to ride two horses at one time,” Etulain said.

So was his fellow historian and novelist, Wallace Stegner, the Pulitzer Prize-winning historiographer of the twentieth-century American West—who was the main subject of Etulain’s lecture.

Etulian’s lecture was teeming with academic stories—many of which were personal experiences with Stegner himself. In 1995, Etulain published “Stegner: Conversations on History and Literature,” which features intimate conversations between the two scholars.

His interviews encompassed not only historical and literary discourse, but also addressed environmentalism—a philosophy that Stegner reinforced in many of his novels.

“I thought the most interesting part was the fact that Stegner was fairly successful despite not publishing
novels under one specific genre,” freshman Summer Yasoni said.

Dr. Etulain addressed those who are familiar with his work and desire more information, as well as those who had never heard of him, which represented a fair amount of those who attended.

Roughly one-third of the audience raised their hand when asked if they had previously known the works of Stegner.

“I tried to show Linfield students and faculty members how much [Stegner] has contributed to our understanding of the American West,” Etulain said.

Etulain’s most recent work, “Abraham Lincoln and Oregon Country Politics in the Civil War Era,” is expected to be published next year.

Christina Shane/
Staff reporter
Christina can be reached at

Men’s tennis takes a swing at the new season

Freshman Luke Klienmen serves during a match against George Fox University on Feb. 24 at home. Photo courtesy of Tyson Takeushi

The men’s tennis team began in full with what assistant coach Matt Levering dubbed its “building season” Feb. 24.

Friday’s match ended with an 8-1 loss for Linfield.

Despite the loss, the team is not disappointed.

This year, seven freshmen joined the squad. With half of the team being new players, Levering said this is a season of transition.

The coaches aren’t looking for wins, Levering said. “I measure success by the amount of effort I see out on the court,” he said.

The match was against the George Fox Bruins, who had a similar season last year.

With more returning players, Levering said he knew this match would be a tough one.

Freshman Lukas Klienman, who played No. 2 doubles, said there is a lot of room for improvement. Klienman acknowledged that the George Fox team would be tough because they have a lot of talented players.

“A lot of their players are 10 times better,” Klienman said. “They’re more experienced.”

Assistant coach Levering also said that experience was a major factor.

The Wildcats are in a period of rebuilding, but not all players are new this year. Senior Cody Levien, playing  with junior Zach Lyons on No. 1 doubles and provided the Wildcats with their only point for the match, with a win of 8-4.

Levien wasn’t concerned about the loss.

“I had fun,” Levien said. “I see it as more of a game than just a sport.”

Levien’s statements seem to be the general consensus of the team. More than wins, improvement and fun are most important.

The weekend’s second game on Feb. 25 proved to be far more successful. The Wildcats beat the Lewis & Clark Pioneers 6-3, making their Northwest Conference  record 1-1.

“What we want to see is improvement in every match,” Levering said, referring to the goals of the team.

With so many new faces on the team, and each player improving with each match, the future looks bright for the men’s tennis team.

This week, the team will have two away matches. The first is against Pacific Lutheran University on March 2. The second will be against Willamette on March 3.

“We have a lot of room for improvement, [but] I think it will be a good season.” Klienmen said.

Caleb Goad/
Staff writer
Caleb Goad can be reached at

Lacrosse begins with scrimmage

As the first opening game approaches for the women’s lacrosse team, the Wildcats are preparing by playing scrimmage games.

The team traveled to Forest Grove on Feb. 26 to participate in a tournament.

Three club teams, Portland Purple, Rose City and Ohana, participated in the tournament, as did Pacific University.

The Wildcats played their first game against Portland Purple, losing 11-3.

“Our philosophy is that every game we get better,” junior Libby Sturges said.

In their second game against Rose City, the Wildcats came out on top, winning 8-3.

In the game versus Pacific University, the Wildcats lost 9-3.

The women hope to beat Pacific when they play the team again in a real game on March 14.

The final game against Ohana came out in the Wildcat’s favor, winning 7-3.

“Every half we’ve played this season has been better than the last half,” Sturges said.

While this tournament was good practice for the Wildcats, next weekend is an important game. The
women play against Redlands, a team from California. The lacrosse team hasn’t played a team from California in seven years.

“We always keep it classy,” Sturges said. “We have a great group of girls.”

Freshman Halee Helgerson, who played lacrosse all four years of high school, said she is excited for the season.

“My goal for the team is to have a better record than last year,” Helgerson said.

Next weekend’s game is at 1 p.m. March 3 at home on the soccer field.

Meghan O’Rourke/
Opinion editor
Meghan O’Rourke can be reached at

Support for teams can ensure achievement

Welcome back to what is sure to be another jam-packed semester of exciting sports at Linfield. Unless you live under a rock, you’ll recall that our softball team is the defending national title-holder, and its season got underway last week. Is a repeat title in the works?

The baseball program is beginning the season with high expectations as well, and the chance to finally break open the deep playoff run that’s been millimeters out of reach for the past few seasons.

And in sports news, the Trail Blazers had a recent piece of feel-good news that will have Portland fans everywhere bouncing in their seats with joy and excitement.

But first, our softball team. Last Wednesday, the reigning national champion Linfield softball program began its title defense, and what a defense it was.

Catball pounded helpless National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics foe Concordia-Portland in a back-to-back, 7-3, 10-3 beat down at the newly-christened Del Smith Stadium.

From the look of things, the team is picking up right where it left off last season with a full head of steam. Senior slugger Emilee Lepp had a padded stat line, finishing with five hits, six RBIs and a homer.

The fresh pitching tandem of senior Lauren Harvey and sophomore Karina Paavola had an impressive collective performance as well, striking out 14 combined batters.

Make no mistake, folks: even with many returning starters to anchor the team, promising newcomers plugging holes and a unanimous preseason No. 1 ranking, repeating as national champions is extremely difficult.

I think this team is capable of pulling it off, and hopefully come May, it can take its talents to Salem, Va., and play for the national championship.

On the men’s side of sports, the baseball team looked poised to have a breakthrough season. For the past few years the team has been playoff-bound but has always come agonizingly close to a deep run before running out of gas.

This season’s team received a lofty preseason ranking at No. 4 in the nation.

You will recall that last year the team peaked at No. 3 before eventually finishing at No. 9, and this year’s team looks better on paper than it has in years.

If it can play to its potential and stay healthy, Linfield fans might have double national titles to celebrate for the first time in a very, very long time.

Now, about those Blazers. Earlier this week, former Portland center and current retiree Joel “The Vanilla Gorilla” Pryzbilla has decided to return to Portland for the veteran’s minimum contract, a surprising move that has this writer giddy with anticipation for his first game back.

Pryzbilla has been getting back into NBA shape for months, and after passing a physical Sunday, he’ll be eligible to play as early as March 1.

On Feb. 27, the team will sign him and make a choice on which player currently on roster to waive.

If you ask me, put Greg Oden and his two bum knees on the chopping block and finally rid Rip City of his bloated contract.

It’s time to wash our hands of this “era” and the good vibes surrounding Pryzbilla’s return ought to more than compensate for the severance of this once number one draft pick.

When you really think about it, Pryzbilla’s choice is as inspiring and surprising as any I’ve ever seen. The Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat, two of the NBA’s hottest teams this season, were seriously courting him to shore up their depth in the middle.

It just goes to show that the love for a city like Portland can trump the desire to join a title-contender, and that Rip City’s fans truly are the greatest on Earth.

When Pryzbilla steps onto the court for the first time this season in a Blazers jersey, the Rose Garden just might explode from the sheer noise Blazers are certainly going to make.

With that feel-good story in your minds, I bid you adieu. Go watch some sports this week, both at Linfield and on television. Remember: fans are half of the equation!

Chris Forrer/
Sports columnist
Chris Forrer can be reached at