Welcome to the online Northwestern College and Northwestern Media Annual Report. We’ve highlighted a few stories and an overview of facts and figures for 2008–09.
In 2002, President Alan Cureton, the college administration and the Northwestern Board of Trustees outlined six priority goals, one of which was "to develop and communicate identity." Part of that goal meant establishing a unified and consistent "brand" or identity for Northwestern College. While the concept of brand is more comprehensive than just the logo an institution bears, a strong visual identifier in the form of a new logo became a clear priority.
Officially launched on July 1, 2008, the new logo was designed to accurately present Northwestern as a contemporary Christian college with a strong, Christ-centered mission—ready to "Light the Way." We have not changed what we do or how we do it, we simply have an important new marketing tool to help us convey to others who we are.
The Northwestern College logo contains several elements which work together to tell the story:
Shield – Strength
The shield represents the shield of faith and academic strength.
Crown – Jesus Christ
The crown communicates that we are under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Additionally, the color and shape of the crown also evoke rays of light, or an aurora or torch, which symbolize the Light of the World and reflect our call as believers to "Light the Way."
Cross – Salvation
The cross, appearing to stand on Calvary's hill, communicates that Jesus Christ and sharing the Gospel is at the center of all we do and who we are as an institution.
N – Community
The letter clearly identifies Northwestern-our name, our community. The "N" is intentionally positioned under the crown because Northwestern, as a community of believers, will always remain under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
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Northwestern’s expanding student enrollment led to a housing crunch in 2007–08 and ultimately a creative solution. The new property owner of a former Holiday Inn in Arden Hills learned of the college’s need and approached Northwestern about the possibility of negotiating an arrangement which would allow the building to be used, rather than remain vacant, during a city-imposed moratorium on development.
After planning and negotiation of a three-year lease, the Arden Hills City Council approved the former hotel 1.8 miles north of campus to become a residence hall for Northwestern.
The four-floor residence hall, named Arden Hall, opened to students at the start of the 2008–09 school year and houses about 280 students, two resident directors and a staff of resident assistants. The building underwent a student-friendly redesign by NWC’s facilities staff in just 90 days. The renovation included several common areas, including kitchen and laundry facilities on each floor. Bon Appétit also operates the Arden Café.
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On March 27, 2009 two busloads of Northwestern College students traveled to Grand Forks, N.D. to assist with sandbagging efforts against the rising waters of the Red River. The whirlwind service project, orchestrated in less than 48 hours by Dean of Student Development Paul Bradley, began as a response to a plea for help from officials in Fargo, N.D., but when Fargo roads were closed Bradley pursued other avenues for putting the Northwestern students to work, finding a need in Grand Forks.
The eager-to-serve students worked non-stop for almost seven hours throughout the night and filled more than 100,000 sandbags. The NWC students left such a positive impression that a student from University of North Dakota (who was also a Grand Forks resident) sent a thank-you letter to the NWC student body which read, in part,
It was only a few weeks ago that I found myself shoveling away at our sandbag-filling site, when an entire workforce of students and faculty rolled in from Northwestern to help. I learned that your original plan was to volunteer in Fargo, but since the flood made access difficult, you decided to add another 85 miles to your trip and come to Grand Forks. After getting the chance to meet many of you, I don’t think we could have found better or more pleasant helpers anywhere!! You laughed the whole time and literally worked straight through the night (with many students wishing they could stick around another day.) I don’t know how many of you there were, but it felt like two hundred; and I don’t know exactly how many sandbags were laid because of you, but it felt like a million!!!
Bradley felt it was worth everything it took to make this happen. "It was very rewarding," he said. "Our students were captured by it and seeing a new part of life that experientially put them outside of Northwestern." He noted local residents were "just really intrigued that we were willing to go that far. I’m very glad we did this."
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Northwestern hosted a team of peer consultant evaluators from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (HLC) on April 6–8, 2009, concluding a comprehensive campus evaluation and accreditation process.
In preparation for this visit, the Northwestern community was engaged in a comprehensive self-study process which began in early 2006 and culminated in an evaluative self-study report submitted to the HLC in February 2009. The self-study addressed five specific criteria the HLC uses to evaluate institutions of higher education:
- Mission and Integrity
- Planning for the Future
- Student Learning and Effective Teaching
- Acquisition, Discovery, and Application of Knowledge
- Engagement and Service
In each of these areas, the college provided examples of activity to support the criteria as well as areas being attended to for improvement.
The HLC notified President Alan Cureton that the Commission Board of Trustees voted on October 27 to continue full accreditation of Northwestern College.
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On June 29, 2009, Northwestern College reached the goal for the Kresge Challenge Grant. The culmination of our fundraising efforts, including the $750,000 grant, put Northwestern just over the $12.5 million building goal for the campaign, and $23 million total raised for the Envision Excellence capital campaign. The grant is a vital financial component of the Billy Graham Community Life Commons (now under construction). Through the faith and prayers of many in the extended Northwestern family, God indeed did something remarkable.
The Kresge Foundation has been instrumental in building facilities for U.S. nonprofit organizations for the past 83 years. Its Challenge Grant Program seeks to provide awarded institutions a significant tool to use in expanding the institutions’ donor base and creating long-term financial sustainability.
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Northwestern Media, which operates 15 radio stations in five different states, introduced new events, new initiatives and new strategies for reaching people with Christ-centered media in 2008–09. Here are several highlights of this fiscal year:
- 98.5 KTIS sponsored the 1st Annual Joyful Noise Family Fest at the National Sports Center in Blaine, Minnesota. On a beautiful June day, over 8,000 people attended the event which featured concerts by Mercy Me, Lincoln Brewster and Tenth Avenue North, along with family-centered activities, games and crafts.
- Mobilizing the KTIS listener base toward greater community service was the idea behind the launch of icanhelptwincities.com, a website that matches the needs of nonprofit organizations in the Twin Cities with people looking for opportunities to volunteer their time. Hundreds of volunteer matches are made monthly through the site on an ongoing basis.
- All Northwestern Media stations had a focus on prayer with the initiation of special websites (PrayerWorks in some markets, PrayerWall in others) encouraging listeners to pray for each other, and in many cases, notifying the person who posted the prayer that someone has prayed for them.
- The Drive Thru Difference initiated in the previous year continued with increased success in all markets. Listeners of Northwestern Media stations across the country bless others on a designated day each month by paying for the food or beverage of another person in the restaurants and coffee shops they frequent.
- Northwestern Media stations are non-commercial, listener supported stations. For many years, businesses whose owners share the values and support the message of Northwestern Media stations have expressed a desire to support Christian radio at a more significant level. In 2008-09 Northwestern Media was able to offer a program which would accomplish that goal with the initiation of Impact Partner programs in several stations. Having Impact Partners is a way to help the community know of businesses supportive of Christian radio while providing vital financial support to Northwestern Media stations.
- Many on-air personalities throughout Northwestern Media began to "tweet" on Twitter and post status updates on Facebook, the online social media networking sites. These social media venues provide a unique way to create personal connections with listeners.
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Numbers can tell a story all their own. Highlighted below are figures that provide an overview of key facts and figures showing Northwestern’s growth and health for 2008–09.
Access a downloadable version of the facts and figures.
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