Summer 2020 Issue

Like something out of “CSI,” Linfield scientists are digging deep into the mysteries of decomposition.
Through twists and turns, ceramic artist Joe Robinson ’09 carries on a Linfield professor’s legacy.
Student-run media shifts from analog to digital

One wild ride

Jillian and Jeffrey Martin, editors

When Linfield asked us to guest edit this issue of Linfield Magazine, we looked forward to helping the university usher in a new era, with a new name and new graduate programs to build on its undergraduate successes. In January, we had no idea just how wild the entrance to this new era would be.… Continue Reading One wild ride

The urgency of the moment

We Stand Together Photo by Brooke Herbert/The Oregonian

Editorsʼ note: President Davis shared the following open letter with the Linfield community shortly after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis on May 25. It was published by The Portland Business Journal, The News-Register and The Linfield Review as an op-ed. We felt it was important to amplify Dr. Davis’ message as a beacon of leadership… Continue Reading The urgency of the moment

Introducing Linfield University

Dr. Miles K. Davis, president

By Miles K. Davis, president The semester we just concluded is not one anybody could have foreseen. Worldwide pandemic turned the lives of students, faculty and staff upside down, and forced Linfield to adapt quickly to a fast-changing environment. I’m proud to be part of a community that embraced the change, cared deeply for one… Continue Reading Introducing Linfield University

Record-setting $10M gift earmarked for new science center

Linfield STEM students will soon benefit from a state-of-the-art science center on the McMinnville Campus, thanks to a $10 million gift from the W.M. Keck Foundation. The largest single gift in the university’s history, the Keck donation supports the renovation of existing facilities and the build-out of new spaces to create a new science hub.… Continue Reading Record-setting $10M gift earmarked for new science center

Linfield VP becomes president of Mount Aloysius College

On June 1, John McKeegan, formerly Linfield’s vice president for institutional advancement and general counsel, took the helm as president of Mount Aloysius College in Cresson, Pennsylvania. McKeegan, a Pennsylvania native, joined Linfield in 2010 as advisor to the president and general counsel. He was appointed vice president three years later. His responsibilities for the… Continue Reading Linfield VP becomes president of Mount Aloysius College

Linfield president elected to national board

In February, Linfield President Miles K. Davis was selected as a board member of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). With more than 1,000 colleges, universities and associations as members, NAICU serves as the unified national voice of independent higher education and reflects the diversity of private, nonprofit higher education in the… Continue Reading Linfield president elected to national board

New master’s degree prepares nurses to transform health care

Linfield’s first graduate program will offer a master’s degree in health care leadership for BSN-prepared registered nurses. Designed with the work-life balance of nurses in mind, the new Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) in Leadership in Healthcare Ecosystems is an accelerated, online program for nurses who want to lead change and promote equity in… Continue Reading New master’s degree prepares nurses to transform health care

A new face in communications

In May, Kathy Foss joined Linfield as the university’s assistant director of communications and marketing. Foss comes to Linfield after 10 years at the University of Idaho, most recently as marketing and communications manager for the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences. Her previous experience includes several roles in collegiate athletic marketing. She holds… Continue Reading A new face in communications

Wildcats’ earning potential is tops among Oregon colleges

Linfield nursing graduates have the highest median earnings of any Oregon college or university. One year after graduation, Linfield alumni with bachelor’s degrees in nursing earn a median income of $79,300 a year, according to the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard. President Davis credits Linfield’s commitment to educating the whole person — in and… Continue Reading Wildcats’ earning potential is tops among Oregon colleges

’Cats get high marks for student voter turnout

Linfield’s strong voter turnout in the fall has earned national accolades. In November, the university received a platinum award at the 2019 ALL IN Challenge Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C. The award recognizes Linfield for achieving a student voter turnout rate of more than 50%. “Linfield is proud to receive this national recognition for our… Continue Reading ’Cats get high marks for student voter turnout

Portland campus renovations begin

After more than a year of planning, renovations kicked off on the new northeast Portland campus, home to Linfield’s School of Nursing. In early June, Walsh Construction began work to complete the approved renovations to five campus buildings with a target end date of mid-November. Walsh’s previous projects for the university include transforming T.J. Day… Continue Reading Portland campus renovations begin

Unprecedented generosity

For the past five years, the university’s giving day fundraising event has taken place in early spring. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic put some plans for Linfield Gives on hold. But the Linfield community realized students need support during the coronavirus crisis more than ever — and Wildcats stepped up in a big way. Instead… Continue Reading Unprecedented generosity

Linfield represents at TEDxMcMinnville

Nearly half of the presenters at McMinnville’s second annual TEDx event boasted a connection to the university. Speakers at the Linfield-hosted event on Jan. 25 in Melrose Hall included philosophy professor Leonard Finkelman, former Linfield health counselor Natalie Bowker, McMinnville teacher Matt Brisbin ’06, and equity and inclusion consultant Cinthia Manuel-Martinez ’05. Their wide-ranging presentations… Continue Reading Linfield represents at TEDxMcMinnville

Linfield will match students’ college savings

In late 2019, Linfield partnered with the state of Oregon to offer students matching scholarship funds for college savings accounts. As part of the Oregon Scholars program, the university will match up to $1,000 a year for incoming students who have saved at least that amount in their Oregon College Savings Plans. “The Oregon Scholars… Continue Reading Linfield will match students’ college savings

A Commencement like no other

With the traditional Oak Grove celebration canceled because of COVID-19, Linfield fêted the Class of 2020 in Commencement video presentations on the university’s YouTube and Facebook pages on May 31. The Linfield-Good Samaritan School of Nursing also held an online pinning ceremony. “Now we get to make our mark not just on Linfield, but on… Continue Reading A Commencement like no other

Linfield’s new look

Linfield's new look

In this issue of Linfield Magazine you may notice an updated visual look and feel for the university. You’ll still see our Wildcat pride highlighted in purple and red, naturally. But you’ll also find a wider color palette of gold, lavender and white. That’s in addition to the debut of our university logo. These elements… Continue Reading Linfield’s new look

Linfield bound

Linfield bound: The Nelson family

From generation to generation, Wildcat values link us. By Scott Bernard Nelson ’94 The most natural things in the world sometimes take us completely by surprise. I was floored this spring when my youngest announced he planned to enroll at Linfield. A purple “Linfield Bound” mailer had arrived in our mailbox only a week earlier,… Continue Reading Linfield bound

Against the odds

Linfield College class of 1928

Linfield’s enterprising spirit has always kept the college going — even when success seemed improbable at best. By Rich Schmidt Let’s start with this: Linfield shouldn’t be here. There’s a lot to unpack from that kind of declarative statement. So let’s go back to the beginning. One of the many byproducts of the Oregon Trail… Continue Reading Against the odds

Pig tales

Pig tales

By Kevin Curry ’92 Like something out of “CSI,” Linfield scientists are digging deep into the mysteries of decomposition. Their painstaking study of an animal’s body may fill a critical information gap for the state crime lab — and help solve missing-person cases. Day 1: Dec. 8, 2019 A pickup carefully navigates the path to… Continue Reading Pig tales

Worth 1,000 Words

During Oregon’s stay-at-home order, more than 60 staffers still reported to campus to maintain Linfield’s buildings and grounds. Cleaning crews, utility and building trades workers, groundskeepers and mailroom staff made sure our spaces were safe and sound — all while maintaining physical distancing. “The work we do every day, when no one is looking, is… Continue Reading Worth 1,000 Words

Beauty in the unexpected

Wood-fired kiln

Through twists and turns, ceramic artist Joe Robinson ’09 carries on a Linfield professor’s legacy. By Jennifer Nice Dampness seeps into Joe Robinson’s coat as night creeps toward dawn. It’s winter of 2006 and the Linfield freshman has been up all night. His job is to stoke the flames and monitor the pottery inside a… Continue Reading Beauty in the unexpected

Mic drop

John Lutaaya ’21

Student-run media shifts from analog to digital By Travis McGuire Don’t worry about a thing, cause every little thing gonna be alright.” Bob Marley’s lyrics send a calming melody through the Renshaw Hall basement studio. David Magnello ’22, co-host of the “Love I Reggae Show,” stands behind a microphone. “We have about a minute and… Continue Reading Mic drop

Fresh off the Press

The Portable Community: Place and Displacement in Bluegrass Festival Life Robert Owen Gardner, professor of sociology Routledge, 2020 A study of the central role arts and music play in facilitating disaster relief and recovery. Thieve Joe Wilkins, professor of English Lynx House Press, 2019 Wilkins, winner of the Oregon Book Award, returns with a fourth… Continue Reading Fresh off the Press

Generation green

Generation green

Linfield’s current students are the first to come of age in a time of legal marijuana. What does that mean for campus life? By Eric Fetters-Walp ’93 Resident assistants like Kendall Harrison ’21 aren’t focused on busting students who violate Linfield’s alcohol and drug policy, despite what their peers might think. But sometimes they can’t… Continue Reading Generation green

The Big One

The Big One

By Alexandra Feller ’21 Earthquakes large and small set off seismographs almost daily on the West Coast. And in Oregon, we’re used to the idea that a catastrophic quake isn’t a question of “if,” but “when.” The Cascadia subduction zone, the 700-mile fault line that stretches from Vancouver Island to Northern California, has sourced devastating… Continue Reading The Big One

Sustainable, but make it fashion

Artie Johnson ’21 checks out the Cat Closet

Campus thrift store introduces Wildcats to a greener way to shop By Ramsey Cox The fashion industry is notoriously hard on the environment. Now, a student-run resale shop is offering the Linfield community an alternative. The Associated Students of Linfield College opened the Cat Closet thrift store in January as a way to offer low-cost,… Continue Reading Sustainable, but make it fashion

Online overtime

Addie Klindt ’23 and Natalie Amara ’20

Amid virus, teams manage to connect away from the field By Travis McGuire Addie Klindt ’23 is lucky. She’s a two-sport student-athlete, so she was able to complete her fall season on the women’s soccer team. Many of her spring teammates in the track and field program were not as fortunate. More than 100 Linfield… Continue Reading Online overtime

Goodbye, nationals

Noah Cutting ’20 and Neirton Oliveira ’20

COVID-19 dashes three Wildcats’ NCAA dreams By Avi Mehta When track athlete Keaton Wood ’20 and swimmers Noah Cutting ’20 and Neirton Oliveira ’20 began training for their respective 2019-20 seasons, the seniors’ goal was pretty simple: to represent Linfield at the NCAA Championships. All three had earned qualifying marks to punch their tickets to… Continue Reading Goodbye, nationals

Hooping it up

It was a season for the ages for the Linfield men’s basketball team. Whitman dealt the Wildcats a 85-70 loss in the Northwest Conference Tournament semifinals at Ted Wilson Gymnasium in late February, but it hardly dampened all that the team accomplished. Linfield finished with a 20-6 record, the most successful season in almost two… Continue Reading Hooping it up

Two new faces join Linfield’s coaching community

In January, Haley Doerfler was tapped to lead the women’s volleyball program, becoming the first woman to guide the Wildcats since Robin Vealey led Linfield to a 30-7 record and the Northwest Conference championship in 1979. Doerfler comes to McMinnville following a season as an assistant coach at Seattle Pacific University and another at the… Continue Reading Two new faces join Linfield’s coaching community

A great football game, even in defeat

According to, Linfield was involved in one of college football’s greatest games of the 2019 season. It was No. 83 on ESPN’s list, to be exact, and it was the Wildcats’ final game of the year — the 68-65 triple-overtime loss at Chapman in the first round of the NCAA Division III playoffs. Need… Continue Reading A great football game, even in defeat

Informal focus group

Students share Gen Z insights with Major League Baseball executives By Travis McGuire Engaging with younger audiences is a whole new ball game for professional sports leagues and franchises, and Generation Z is a key demographic for Major League Baseball. To continue MLB’s goal of connecting with young people, league marketing executives invited Linfield students… Continue Reading Informal focus group

Alumni Notes — Summer 2020

1950-59 Dave Lum ’58 of Astoria and his family celebrated the 50th year of business for Lum’s Auto Center. 1960-69 Gene Tapper ’63 of Las Vegas, Nevada, has retired from AmeriCal Insurance as the president and owner of the agency. Carol (Loftis) Granger ’68 of McMinnville received the McMinnville Economic Development Partnership Service Recognition Award… Continue Reading Alumni Notes — Summer 2020

Chapter: noun

chap·​ter | ′chap-tər: a local branch of an organization Linfield alumni chapters are regional groups that gather to connect and contribute to the university community and alumni network. These societies allow Wildcats to stay engaged without having to set foot on campus. Our chapter leaders in Portland and Seattle continually develop new opportunities for… Continue Reading Chapter: noun

Alumna credits Wildcat network for her success

As a student, Louie Deraita ’16 made connections in the classroom, the community and through Greek life that shaped her career. “I really enjoy helping people,” she said. “I was never great in the sciences, but I liked writing and I felt it was something I was good at.” When she took Intro to Mass… Continue Reading Alumna credits Wildcat network for her success

From the archives

In February, John Prutsman ’57 donated his 1956 Northwest Conference Championship football jacket to the university archives. The gift is part of a project to commemorate “The Streak” — Linfield’s 64 consecutive winning football seasons. “I was not a good athlete,” Prutsman deadpanned about his early days as a Wildcat in an oral history interview… Continue Reading From the archives

Financial aid director honored for inclusion efforts

Araceli Cruz ’09, Linfield’s associate director of financial aid, earned recognition this year from the Oregon Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators for her contributions to the profession. Cruz received the association’s Distinguished Service Award in February, in honor of her efforts to advance equity, diversity and inclusion. Cruz’s seven years as a financial aid… Continue Reading Financial aid director honored for inclusion efforts

Young alum donates what he can: his time

Nathan Pellatz

After Nathan Pellatz graduated in 2017, he knew his contributions to Linfield were far from over. He’d chosen Linfield for its small-school feel and sense of community, and he wanted to maintain that connection as an alum. “A lot of young alumni are in the same shoes as me, where we can’t necessarily donate a… Continue Reading Young alum donates what he can: his time

In remembrance

Mitsue (Endow) Salador '45

Mitsue (Endow) Salador ’45, a Japanese American internment camp survivor featured in the Spring 2019 issue of Linfield Magazine, died on April 22 from complications due to the coronavirus. She was 96. Salador was studying to be a teacher in 1942. In the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor, she was separated from her… Continue Reading In remembrance

Answer: ‘Linfield’

Heather Nelson '09 with Jeopardy's Alex Trebek

Question: ‘Where did the Jan. 24 “Jeopardy” champion go to school?’ “I wanted the chance to represent Linfield in a college tournament where most competitors are from big universities.”  — Heather Nelson ’09 By Alexandra Feller ’21 After a full day of teaching math at Lake Oswego Junior High School, Heather Nelson ’09, boarded an… Continue Reading Answer: ‘Linfield’

Sparking curiosity through generosity

W.M. Keck Science Center rendering

In March 2020, the W.M. Keck Foundation committed $10 million to Linfield University’s new science facility on the McMinnville Campus. The gift marks the largest single donation in Linfield’s history. The renovation and build-out of current and new facilities will create the state-of-the-art W.M. Keck Science Center impacting all Linfield science departments. “This project is… Continue Reading Sparking curiosity through generosity

Spotted someone new on campus

Barred owl on McMinnville's Campus

A barred owl made a rare appearance in front of Graf Hall on a quiet day this spring. Sometimes spotted in the tree line near the library, it belongs to an East Coast species that was unusual in Oregon 50 years ago but is now quite common.  

Summer 2020 Videos

Commencement Ceremony Nursing Pinning Ceremony Making the ‘L’ for the Class of 2020 Linfield Virtual Alma Mater Ceramics at East Creek with Joe Robinson ‘09 Pig Tales