Story Author: Steve Shenk

Drafty, old, beloved Martin House yields place for future lovely, traffic-smart entrance to EMU

Facebook lit up with nostalgic comments when Eastern Mennonite University posted a photo of Martin House being torn down in August 2013. Hundreds of students had lived there since the 1960s, when EMU purchased the house. “Gasp!” exclaimed one former student. “Noooo,” said another. A third alum recalled his “two great years in that drafty … More

Outstanding Young Alum 2013: Isabel Castillo

Still in her 20s, Isabel Castillo ’07 is already a nationally recognized leader of the immigration-law reform movement in the United States. She was the commencement speaker at the University of San Francisco, was called one of “the 21 brave thinkers of 2011” by Atlantic magazine, and was featured prominently in the New York Times. … More

Outstanding Young Alum 2015: Martin Histand

  When he was young, Martin Histand ’05 may have been the only kid in America who didn’t like peanut butter. Who would have thought that someday he would be part of an effort to save Africa’s malnourished children through peanut butter? Histand, 31, is the operations manager for Project Peanut Butter (PPB), an 11-year-old … More

Distinguished Service Award 2012: David Boshart

Some people dream of a denomination that grows by embracing diverse groups of people. David Boshart ’86, MA ’87 (religion), is facilitating such growth in his corner of the Mennonite Church USA. Boshart, who is executive conference minister for the denomination’s Central Plains Conference, has worked at better relationships with Hispanic-Mennonite churches. When told that … More

Alumnus of the Year 2013: Tim Leaman

In one typical afternoon at his health clinic, Tim Leaman ’93, MD, treated a 9-year-old with a sexually transmitted disease, examined an HIV patient who was in tears about upcoming cancer surgery, and counseled a colleague who was overwhelmed by the needs around her. Leaman is the site medical director at the Kensington Avenue office … More

Alumnus of the Year 2015: James L. Rosenberger

James L. Rosenberger ’68 is not your average college professor. Sure, he teaches, researches, advises graduate students, and serves on committees, which he’s been doing for nearly 40 years at Pennsylvania State University. But in recent years, he also won election to the local city council and is now its president, built a straw-bale house … More

Alumni of the Year 2012: Vic and Christina Buckwalter

Two idealistic young people meet at EMU, earn their degrees in pre-med and education, and spend their entire careers serving others – without fanfare – at home and abroad. Now they get some fanfare from a university that values service and promotes the helping professions. Vic Buckwalter ’73, originally from Cochranville, Pa., went on to … More

Distinguished Service Award 2013: Ezra T. Peachey

Ezra T. Peachey ’54 (Seminary ’56) left his home in Belleville, Pa., in 1959 to drive 2½ days to remote northwestern Ontario. His initial mission, along with his wife Nannie and her sister and father, was to organize a two-week summer Bible school for native peoples in the small town of Red Lake at the … More

PAX service program, predecessor to the Peace Corps, recognized by Mahatma Gandhi Center for Global Nonviolence

In 1951, Jay “Junior” Lehman, then a 21-year-old farm boy from Ohio, sailed by freighter to Antwerp, Belgium. He was among the first wave of conscientious objectors to participate in a new alternative service program called Pax. Reaching their eventual destination in Germany, Lehman and about 20 draft-age men labored to turn Nazi poison-gas bunkers … More

Graduating as high school valedictorian at 16, Lyubov Slashcheva racks up accomplishments on way to being public-service dentist

Lyubov Slashcheva has an awfully long resume of accomplishments for a 21-year-old. Add to this her start in life—in a small mining town in a remote corner of the former Russian Empire. Slashcheva emigrated from Kazakhstan to the United States with her family at age 5. She started kindergarten in Harrisonburg, Va., with no knowledge … More

One alumnus passes the torch to another as CEO for large retirement community

A hospital administrator and community leader will be the new president and chief executive officer of Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community in Harrisonburg, Va., starting in April. Judith (Reitz) Trumbo ’82 succeeds Ron Yoder ’68, who is retiring. VMRC, neighboring Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) on the northeast, has a $20 million annual budget, 400 employees, and … More

Alumnus remains leading researcher into bipolar disorder

The link between genetics and mental illness continues to engage Abram Hostetter, a psychiatrist who is in his fourth decade of world-recognized research into why Old Order Amish are more susceptible to bipolar disorder than the general population. Hostetter, an alumnus of two Mennonite colleges, is part of a University of Miami team that has … More