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Year in Review: 2013 at Carthage

  • President Woodward giving his inaugural address.
    President Woodward giving his inaugural address.
    Carthage College
December 30, 2013

Here at Carthage, 2014 promises to be an exciting year, with construction on the new science center and the launch of the Carthage in Chicago program among the highlights. But we won’t let 2013 get away without remembering all of the great achievements and memories the year brought us.

What were Carthage’s top Facebook posts in 2013?
Check out the list


The year began, as always, with J-Term. Student groups explored four continents, soaking in lessons from professors with local knowledge, helping residents with their medical or educational needs, and sampling strange new foods like snake blood.
See a gallery of photos from J-Term 2013
J-Term 2013 Photo Contest winners

Meanwhile, back in Kenosha, members of the campus community joined in the fun. Students, faculty members, and staff alike showed off their best moves in a J-Term “Just Dance” video. (We give points for courage.)


Not to be outdone, students traveling with Professor Jonathan Bruning sent back their own version from Barcelona. In between covering matches and writing feature articles on the study tour Sports Journalism: European Football, they compiled “Solo Bailar”:



After a debut in Ireland’s oldest theatre, the Carthage Theatre Department staged “A Clamour of Rooks” for its home audience. Irish playwright Martin Maguire came to the College to host discussions before and after performances. (The play was just selected for the 2014 KCACTF regional festival. Congratulations, Carthage players!)
See photo gallery

It wasn’t quite the infamous Groundhog Day blizzard of 2011, but a snowstorm blanketed the campus with a glistening white sheen in February 2012. Resourceful students had snowball fights, built snowmen, and cruised downhill on makeshift toboggans.
See photo galleries  1    2


A rousing talk by Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Leonard Pitts Jr. kicked off Carthage’s first Diversity Summit. The Women’s Faculty Learning Community organized the monthlong series of speakers and workshops.

A year after advancing to the Elite Eight, the Lady Reds made it to the second round of the NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball Championship. That capped off a year in which they won the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin regular season and tournament titles.

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts honored Carthage with five national awards for its production of “Ghost Bike.” Then the Theatre Department landed another big fish for its New Play Initiative. Renowned playwright Jeffrey Hatcher is writing his next play, “No Name,” for Carthage. Based on a Victorian novel, “No Name” will premiere in Wartburg Auditorium in March 2014.


Although he already had been working diligently in the role for several months, Gregory S. Woodward officially was inaugurated as Carthage’s 22nd president. More than 40 delegates represented colleges, universities, and religious institutions from across the country at the ceremony, which was held during Spring Family Weekend.
See photo galleries:   1    2
Watch video excerpts

Fresh off his victory on “American Idol,” Phillip Phillips entertained fans at Tarble Arena during the latest event in the WOW Concert Series. By then his first single, “Home,” had debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s adult pop songs chart.
See photo gallery

Two Carthage seniors received word they had been awarded Fulbright English teaching assistantships. Nick Tackes ’13 went to India while Katie Niemeyer ’13 headed to Mongolia. That brought the College’s tally to eight Fulbright scholarships since 2008.

Later in April, Tarble Arena oozed with knowledge as 220 student and faculty presenters shared their original work at the third annual Celebration of Scholars. From tornadoes to tax evasion, Carthage students displayed posters describing their research, scholarship, and creativity.
See photo gallery


For 549 Carthage students, the fateful walk across the stage finally came. After completing her yearlong reign as Miss America 2012, Laura Kaeppeler ’10 passed along her advice as the 2013 Commencement speaker. The Commencement ceremony concluded a weekend full of heartfelt speeches and tasty food.
See photo galleries:
Commencement     Baccalaureate     New Alumni Convocation    Senior Dinner

The traditional senior video, titled “Blink of an Eye,” focused on … hmmm, the plot seems to have slipped our mind. It’ll come back to us. Maybe better just to watch it.



For the third time in four seasons, the women’s softball team made the NCAA Division III regional. The Lady Reds claimed their second straight CCIW regular season title, then picked up three NCAA tournament victories to finish just one win away from playing for the Great Lakes Regional championship.


Carthage launched a shadowing program with Aurora Healthcare. Six students interested in health care careers spent much of the summer observing professionals in different specialties in what will be an annual offering.

In honor of the Illinois campus reunion and the 100th anniversary of Kissing Rock’s association with the College, crews sandblasted the rock to restore it to its 1913 state. We lost count of the layers of paint.

In honor of the Illinois campus reunion and the 100th anniversary of Kissing Rock's association with Carthage, the rock was sandblasted and restored to its 1913 state. 


For the sixth straight year, the Carthage Microgravity Team flew an experiment on NASA’s Weightless Wonder (if you couldn’t tell from the name, it’s a zero-gravity plane). For their part in the Systems Engineering Educational Discovery flight program, team members worked on a segment of a larger experiment that’s ultimately destined for the International Space Station. (The team’s flight made the Top News Stories of 2013 for team member Kevin Lubick’s hometown newspaper, too.)


Just in time for students to return from summer break, the Center for Student Success opened. With a renovated space in the Todd Wehr Center and virtual links to other resources, the center became the one-stop shop for student support.


Carthage greeted 819 new students — 714 freshmen and 105 transfers — at the 2013 New Student Convocation. Although they span 26 U.S. states and three foreign countries, none of them had trouble finding the picnic spread by the Trinity House lawn.
See photo galleries:   Convocation    Picnic

Waterspouts — On Sept. 13, two waterspouts formed over Lake Michigan. Half an hour later? They were gone and the sun was shining. See more.


To welcome back alumni, the College rolled out the red carpet — what other color would it be? — with a flurry of Homecoming events. Besides familiar draws like the parade and football game, visitors took in the dedication of the new Augie Schmidt Field and got a sneak peek at composer Alex Shapiro’s specially commissioned work for the Carthage Band’s 140-year celebration.
See photo galleries

Think libraries are old and musty? Ours isn’t. The Hedberg Library celebrated its 10th anniversary with a party and a week full of performances and literary events.


The College announced plans for Carthage in Chicago, a semester-long program that will allow up to 20 students to live, work, and study in the Windy City. Informational meetings drew heavy interest.


More than 200 student musicians and readers participated in “Unto Us a Child Is Born,” Carthage’s annual Christmas festival. Candlelight filled A. F. Siebert Chapel during three performances.
See photo galleries:   Festival   Rehearsal

Faculty members accustomed to dispensing advice instead passed out helpings of scrambled eggs during Late Night Breakfast. The budding tradition gave students a little extra brain fuel and a chance to shake off the stress of finals week.
See photo gallery

What will 2014 bring? We can’t wait to find out!