Tag Archives: News

Hellie’s address showcases Linfield’s success

President Thomas Hellie spoke about the successes of Linfield during an economic recession and warned against complacency now that the storm of collapsing economy is over during his state of the college address Sept 8.
Boasting that Linfield survived the worst of the recession virtually unscathed when its competitors were cutting staff, faculty and programs, Hellie outlined the eight subjects he felt Linfield must address to remain a successful small college.
“One year ago, we were worried,” Hellie said. “The Great Recession had swept across our country … We had one of the smallest freshmen classes in years, some 10 percent below our original budget projections.”
Hellie also spoke about the sudden acceleration of the Northup Hall renovation, citing a sudden drop in construction costs and the effort of the faculty and staff involved in the project, along with Chair of the board of trustees Dave Haugeberg and T.J. Day, who he identified as a major donor.
“Were it not for the trustees — and especially those two men — Northup would still be in mothballs,” Hellie said.
Hellie thanked the college relations department and its head, Bruce Wyatt, for achieving record donations during a recession. To punctuate the turnaround made by Linfield, Hellie proudly announced the record number of incoming students.
“Today we have 535 freshmen enrolled at Linfield, more than 23 percent of them Americans of color,” he said.
Hellie then thanked the faculty for their dedication to recruiting more freshmen and urged the assembled staff to take pride at their accomplishments in the face of adverse conditions.
Hellie cited a list of publications that had recently mentioned increased respect for Linfield.
“I believe these ranking systems are unreliable and unscientific, but I can’t deny that it helps our college when we rise 13 places in the U.S. News college issue or when Parade Magazine names us as one of the 26 best small colleges in the country,” he said.
Hellie’s peak topic was the success of the branding of Linfield as a small college environment and the standardization of its promotional materials.
He encouraged faculty to join him in actively planning for the future and increasing the diversity at Linfield.
“We need to enhance our reputation and outreach and enroll students from a more diverse set of states and nations,” he said.
Hellie closed with a letter of gratitude from a Linfield graduate’s parents, thanking the college for the education it provided.
“We are so proud of Tommy [Thomas George] and appreciate everything that Linfield provided him,” wrote George’s parents, Tim and Tami George. “I’m sure that he would rather his parents not write or send this but that was not an option. It was time to say thanks to Linfield, and for the Linfield way.”

Joshua Ensler/News editor
Joshua Ensler can be reached at linfieldreviewnews@gmail.com.

Deans, dogs and daughters

Don’t be surprised if you see Susan Hopp wandering around the Oak Grove with a “furry little thing” (her
words) on a leash. Hopp said she walks her dog Charlie, a Lhasa Apso, around campus several times a
day. And the Oak Grove is one of her favorite spots on campus.
“It’s just really nice to be able to stand in the grove and look at the original buildings,” she said. “They’re
so full of history.”
Hopp, a Florida native, went to undergraduate school for English and humanities at Stetson College in
Florida, where she was a member of the Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority. She received a master’s in student affairs
at Indiana University Bloomington and a doctorate in public policy and administration at Portland State
Although she doesn’t have a long commute from her rental home in McMinnville to the campus, Hopp
said she has her radio dialed to NPR.
When she’s not settling into her new job as dean of students, she likes to garden, cook and travel, she
Hopp’s many years in student affairs provided her with experience connecting to students, but the mother
of three can relate to parents as well. Her oldest daughter is an urban planner back in Florida, and her
middle daughter is studying graphic design in New York.
As for the youngest? She’s finishing up high school in Lewisburg, Pa., where Hopp worked at Bucknell
“I’m doing the empty nest a year earlier than I had planned it,” Hopp said.
She said she’s encouraging her daughter (and her daughter’s friends) to attend Linfield after graduation.

~Complied by Kelley Hungerford

New dean brings spirit and talent

To say that Susan Hopp is excited about being Linfield’s new vice president of student affairs and athletics/dean of students is an understatement: She’s only been a Wildcat since July, but she already describes her new role as the “best student affairs job in Oregon.”
The former dean of students at Pennsylvania’s Bucknell University got a call from an Oregonian colleague, who alerted her of the opening at Linfield. Hopp knew of the school’s reputation; she’d heard great things about the campus during careers at Western Oregon, Oregon State and Portland State universities. She even knew former dean Dave Hansen, professor of economics, and Jeff Mackay, associate dean of students and director of Residence Life.
But it wasn’t just rumors and professional associations that drew her to the campus. She said she liked the idea of managing both athletics and student affairs and the prospect of nurturing Linfield’s student experience as the college develops its vision within its new brand.
“I like to be a builder. I’m not a maintainer,” Hopp said. “I just think you take the best of what has already been created and you sort of move into the next phase.”
The search
The Vice President for Student Affairs and Athletics/Dean of Students Search Committee started meeting in January to hunt for a new dean.
Senior Colin Jones, Associated Students of Linfield College president and a member of the committee last year, said Hopp stood out as one of the top candidates.
“You really saw that she knew what she was talking about, and she could articulate a lot of the really complex issues around student services really well,” Jones said.
Examples of these key issues included the possible tensions between athletics and academics and an eagerness to interact with students, Jones said.
After the first round of interviews, the committee, comprising three faculty members, two student services administrators and two students, was charged with whittling those applicants down to three.
Hopp, along with Xavier Romano, dean of students for Knox College in Illinois, and Glenn Smith, vice provost for student services and enrollment management at Concordia University in Portland, visited Linfield in May for an intensive interview process.
Hopp and Smith emerged as the primary competitors after grillings by students, faculty and the search committee.
“Xavier, he brought with him a degree of controversy which we were not looking for,” Jones said.
The controversy involved a student forum at Knox in March that questioned how college authorities handled sexual assaults on campus.
According to The Knox Student, the independent, student-run paper of Knox College, “Main concerns about how the administration deals with sexual assault include … whether there are sufficient consequences for those who commit sexual assault, whether having the same person [Romano] be a Greek advisor and the Dean of Students presents a conflict of interest and whether there are enough services provided by the college to aid sexual assault victims,” (“Candidates for dean to visit in May,” TLR, April 30).
But Hopp’s expansive career in student affairs put her on top.
“Susan brought a breadth of experience at a number of institutions,” Jones said.
Smith’s experience, while impressive, stemmed almost exclusively from Concordia, Jones said.
Vast experience
Hopp brings to Linfield more than 30 years of experience in higher education administration.
After graduating with a master’s in student affairs from Indiana University Bloomington, Hopp was hired as associate dean of students and director of housing at Eckerd College in Florida. She soon traveled west, working at Western Oregon University as director of residence life and then at Lewis & Clark College as assistant vice president and director of campus life.
An opportunity for assistant vice provost opened up at Portland State University, and Hopp leapt on the chance to work at a large institution.
“I really learned a lot about curricular innovation, collaboration – sort of thinking about the student experience holistically,” Hopp said about her stint at PSU. “But I didn’t get to know students in the same way because it was so huge, and I was so removed from them.”
Hopp eventually took the reigns as director of student services and academic support programs at Oregon State University when a joke among friends became reality.
“We sort of had this longstanding joke about, ‘Well if they ever start a campus in Bend, we should all get our best friends together and go work there,’” she said.
Hopp helped build the OSU Cascades Campus in Bend, all the while gathering skills that may help her at Linfield.
“We couldn’t even cash a student’s check the first day,” she said. “I was the registrar on Monday, student life on Tuesday, admissions on Thursday, academic planning on Friday. It was that kind of really fast-paced, fun environment.”
But when the state of Oregon tightened its purse strings on public education system, Hopp moved on, this time moving east to Pennsylvania.
“One of the things we were learning through all of our assessment projects at Bucknell was that students were having this incredible experience, but they weren’t attributing their experience to being at Bucknell,” she said. “And the same can be said of Linfield students or Lewis & Clark students, so something was missing.”
To solve this problem, Hopp helped develop five key areas for student affairs to focus on: health and wellness, values and ethics, global citizenship, environmental sustainability and community leadership.
“These domains were areas that we thought, in student affairs, that we could contribute [to] in the greatest way,” she said.
Before Hopp could see the fruits of her labor, though, she came to Linfield, leaving the same year as the Bucknell president who hired her.
“This is the year that things were going to happen, and that’s why it was hard to leave,” she said. “I wouldn’t have left if it hadn’t been for this job [at Linfield].”
The student experience
Hopp said she hopes to develop positive student experiences at Linfield.
“One of the things I thought would be transferable [from Bucknell] is the way we developed student learning outcomes and organized everything we were doing around creating the best possible educational experience for students,” she said.
Hopp said part of this requires transforming students into superior professionals and community members.
Working at the OSU Cascades Campus gave Hopp insights about handling student experiences on multiple campuses. She said this will help to make “students feel like they’re part of the bigger picture” on both the Linfield’s McMinnville and Portland campuses.
Hopp said she will spend much of Fall Semester meeting with administrators and faculty to get input on how to implement her goals.
But she wants to hear from students, too.
“I want students to ask me questions like, ‘Well, how did this stupid policy get approved?’,” Hopp said.
She said she will have open office hours for students to come and discuss topics on anything from food services to student government to judicial issues.
Hansen’s ‘big shoes’
As Hopp settles into a routine at Linfield, many people may be wondering how she’ll handle the vacancy left by Dave Hansen, who stepped down as dean last year after a 22-year tenure in the position.
“I have known Susan Hopp for quite some time and look forward to her being at Linfield,” Hansen said in an e-mail. “She comes with a wealth of experience, energy and ideas for enhancing the student experience.”
While no one can doubt Hopp has big shoes to fill, Jones said he isn’t worried. In fact, he said Hopp’s energy and ideas will provide a welcomed new perspective on student affairs at Linfield.
“I think we’ll see that it’s not much that she’s going to fill Hansen’s shoes,” Jones said. “She brought her own shoes.”

Kelley Hungerford/Editor-in-chief
Kelley Hungerford can be reached at linfieldrevieweditor@gmail.com.

News in brief

Linfield College Community Public Safety announced that a suspicious person was spotted near a
residence hall on the night of Sept. 7, at about 10:30 p.m.
The unidentified suspect was tall and thin, and was wearing black sweatpants and a red-and-black Nike
windbreaker, According to an e-mail sent by Robert Cepeda, director of Linfield College Campus Public
Safety on Sept. 9.
The suspect’s ethnicity is unknown.
The suspect allegedly urinated in the bushes, then attempted to gain entry to an unidentified residence
hall through an unlocked window, according to the report.
The e-mail also warned students not to prop open doors, allow guests to wander inside unsupervised and
to keep the doors locked when away, alone or asleep.
Cepeda deliberately withheld the name of the affected residence hall to emphasize the all-encompassing
message of campus safety, he said.
An unidentified man wandered into a woman’s room in Hewitt Hall April 4, last Spring Semester
after he tailgated another student through the doors (“Hewitt intruder causes alarm,” TLR April 5”).
LCCPS can be reached at 503-883-7233. Cepeda also suggests calling Residence Life or 911 in the
event of an emergency.

~Complied by Joshua Ensler

Cisco causes console crisis

The Linfield summer upgrade to a new version of the Cisco Clean Access Agent prevented video game consoles from connecting to the servers, a problem which was finally solvedSept. 8.
The new Clean Access Agent identifies all computers, including consoles, by their Internet Protocol address, or IP address. Consoles usually don’t have a static, unchanging IP address, which the new version of Cisco requires for all machines that connect to Linfield’s Internet.
The previous version of the Clean Access Agent only required the Media Access Control serial number of the video game consoles.
The Media Access Control is like every other serial number: It’s used to tell millions of identical machines apart from one another.
Since every console has a different serial number, networks call tell one machine from another.
Because the old version of the Clean Access Agent is no longer supported by its company, Cisco, Integrated Technology Services was forced to upgrade from the obsolete edition to prevent Linfield’s network security from being compromised by malware.
Irv Wiswall, chief technology officer for ITS, said the new version of the Clean Access Agent is also meant to be less intrusive than previous editions.
Previous stories in TheLinfield Review, such as “Internet falls short of expectations,” TLR, Feb. 19, detail some student complaints and the efforts of ITS to address those issues.
ITS was ready to address the issue with consoles when summer ended, as evidenced by its e-mails about registering gaming devices, but not enough computers were on the network during the summer.
This prevented the ITS from conducting a stress test — pushing the network as hard as it will go to see when it fails or its effectiveness degrades.
With so few computers and so much bandwidth available, it was impossible to overload the network, making a stress test meaningless.
With the network connection problem solved by ITS, students have resumed their multiplayer Internet games from their consoles.

Joshua Ensler/News editor
Joshua Ensler can be reached at linfieldreviewnews@gmail.com.