Relationships are powerful. The 1993 film “Six Degrees of Separation” popularized research that demonstrated that everyone in the world was connected through no more than six people. Any of us could get a message to a person in Bolivia, Botswana or Bulgaria by connecting with someone who might know someone there. Later, researchers showed that the quality of connections matters a great deal. Some people create a vast array of relationships.
Elizabethtown College is at the center of a community rich in relationships.
… the quality of connections matters a great deal.”
When a mother, desperate to help her son, contacted the College’s engineering program after learning of our service mission and the good work of our students, Professor Sara Atwood’s students responded enthusiastically. They researched, tested and built a therapy vest, which allowed the young boy to sit up and raise his head on his own for the first time. Those 2016 engineering graduates have passed on the therapy vest project to seniors who are expanding production, much to the delight of area occupational therapists who have been anxiously awaiting vests for their young clients. Our Summer Creative Arts and Research Program made this life-changing work possible.
Dale High ’63 graduated from the College, inspired to strengthen the relationships that make his community a vital place to live and work. “Educate for Service” has few better exemplars. Over five decades, Dale has brought together leaders in business, government and higher education to serve Pennsylvania. We are proud to count Dale as “one of ours.”
The new Mosaic House at the College brings together students who flourish through building and sustaining relationships. Our newly appointed director of diversity and Inclusion, Monica Smith, joined us in July and quickly set about the exciting work of continuing to knit together our students, faculty and staff. The result is a colorful campus mosaic and a community poised to do great things together.
More than 25 years ago, sociologist Donald Kraybill asked a young bookstore clerk to help him with a project on the Amish. Building on that relationship with Don, the young clerk, Steven Nolt, became a renowned scholar and now joins the College as Don’s successor as the new Senior Scholar at the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies.
Only connect, as E. M. Forster put it. Live in fragments no longer.