100 reasons we are thankful for Marylhurst …

We wanted to know what drew you to this special place, and you responded with spirit. We are deeply humbled by your heartfelt words.


1. Marylhurst allowed me to be a student and a single mother at the same time! The ability to take night and weekend classes allowed me to be present for my children during the day.
- Michelle Bayley ’08

2. It allowed me to stand tall as a women, as a wife, as a mother of young men and women and as a leader in the work place.

3. It offered me a program, interconnected courses and passionate experts that introduced me to a whole new way of viewing my world and my place in it…and the passion for discovering even more!
- Jackie Fowler ’96, Interim Director, Center for Experiential Learning & Assessment


To walk or not to walk?

It’s that time of year when Marylhurst University graduates, and college graduates everywhere, celebrate their accomplishment in a ceremonial tradition called commencement. Many struggle with the decision — to walk across the stage to receive their diploma, or forgo the pomp and circumstance. It’s a very personal choice.

One Marylhurst student, Darla Mottram, articulates beautifully her choice in a piece she wrote called Why I Won’t Be Walking.


BACKWORDS: In the beginning

How we launched a new literary venture, despite fits and starts

Jenny M. Chu ’08

I don’t remember the exact moment the idea of the literary t-shirt press was brought to me. It’s very possible that Matt and I were strolling through Portland, or stationed at a coffee shop, or waiting at a bus stop, or just loitering at Powell’s Bookstore on Burnside. It’s possible that we wandered aimlessly in the literary fiction and poetry sections seeking respite, reading passages to each other the way emotionally weary post-grads just out of their MFA in writing programs do to one another as a spiritual practice.

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The Faces of Marylhurst Project

This project is more important than the pictures. It is really all about a certain kind of social set of coincidences. It is about constituency. It is about a group of people who strive to work together in a place, in order to make something good happen.

It is about us, people who are, or who have been, in a special time and place; all of them associated with the institution of Marylhurst University.

— Dennis Cunningham, in his artist’s statement


Response to NYT op-ed: College for Grown-Ups

by Melody Rose, Ph.D.

Dr. Stevens’ editorial, College for Grown-Ups, piqued my interest. Not because of the topic, but because of the date. This op-ed piece was published in yesterday’s New York Times on the topic of the changing reality of the traditional college student and that higher education needs to step up, adapt and provide an educational environment that meets the needs of today’s population.

Why did the date of the article surprise me? Because this is not a new issue, at least not new to us at Marylhurst University – a liberal arts college located south of Portland, Ore. Data and trends tracking the interests, needs and expectations of college students have pointed to this changing reality for decades.

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Tweets aren’t always digital

This essay, by Marylhurst Postmaster Mark D. Smith, first appeared on the United States Postal Service blog. We thought our readers would enjoy it in the spirit of the season.

One morning in late summer 2012, I arrived at my job as Postmaster Relief at the Donald, OR, Post Office in Oregon’s rural Marion County. It’s a quiet little town with a quiet little Post Office, but this day there was a new sound – something familiar but often ignored. Birds, chirruping and twittering. But these were no digital tweets. This was real life.

A good number of Donald’s customers work in farming, and this morning’s singing telegram was a shipment of infant turkeys belonging to a local man planning to raise them for Thanksgiving. I phoned him at the number listed on the carefully-prepared Priority Mail packaging, and he arrived an hour later to collect his musical treasures. Before he arrived, I went about my morning tasks of sorting and distributing the day’s mail. But there was something more than just birdsong in the air. Something almost meditative stirred my soul, reconnecting me to the larger, natural world that gets no notice in the Information Age.


Natalie Serber: Beyond the Margins

Natalie Serber shares excerpts from an essay she recently wrote for Beyond the Margins, a blog about the craft of writing and the business of publishing.

Write On Through to the Other Side: When Your Character’s Diagnosis Becomes Your Own
I clearly remember the day I gave my character, Mona Brown, her breast cancer diagnosis. I’d been writing a novel about Mona and her family, a husband and twin daughters, who moved from Portland to the rural community of Boring, Oregon in the hopes that they could protect their girls from the perilous teen trifecta—drug use, early sexual activity, and bullying. Since life and novels are rife with complications, you can imagine that things don’t turn out as Mona hoped.

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Kathryn Hubbell on the Advantages of Online Education

Communication studies faculty Kathryn Hubbell’s opinion piece on online education first appeared in The Oregonian on October 18, 2014. Here’s an excerpt:

In response to Ramin Farahmandpur’s Oct. 12 In My Opinion column, Online Courses Shortchange Their Students, I would like to defend online learning. I have taught both online and on-campus classes at Marylhurst University for the past six years.