|Manchester around the clock
Editor’s Note: Reporter Deanna Quinn ’05 returned to campus for an around-the-clock visit last spring as a research project toward a master’s degree in English at IPFW. While some of the voices have changed with graduation, retirements and sabbaticals, the story endures.
Olesya Savinkova, an international student from Uzbekistan, hastens campus to the day, playing “Westminster Chimes” on the 10 bells in the chilly tower atop the Administration Building. She’s one of five chime players this year to continue the tradition.
For 15 minutes, her self-selected song list ranges from “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” to “Brahms’ Lullaby,” and, of course, “By the Kenapocomoco.” As the music major pumps rigorously down on each wooden lever, the corresponding chime in the bell tower above resonates out across campus.
At 8 a.m., she plays the hour chime on the middle C bell. Good morning, Manchester College.
The video camera lens focuses on Tony Herber as he nervously wipes his hands together, awaiting his mock interview with a career counselor.
In a black suit brightened with an asparagus green shirt, the chemistry and education major flashes a toothy smile, places his hands on the table and takes a deep breath. The 45-minute interview begins …
“I felt like I really got an idea of what sort of questions can be asked in an interview,” says Herber, who would be interviewing for a lab job with an orthopedic company in a couple of hours. “It’s great to be able to go into a real interview, knowing when they ask that question, I have the answer they’re looking for.”
Music Professor John Planer peers through his black, think-rimmed glasses at the clock. The instant the minute hand settles on 12, Experiencing the Arts class begins.
“Pipe down! We’re going to hell,” he commands, moving to the projector in the back of the room, as students laugh at his gruff introduction to artist Hieronymus Bosch, known for his depictions of sinful humanity and punishments in hell.
As Dr. Planer begins explaining the Christian iconography in the painting, students’ heads drop and hands begin furiously writing. He reminds them a few times to look up at the painting to understand what he is describing. He moves among the desks, peppering his lecture with questions, seeking recall of this and past lectures. He bends down for face-to-face communication and unavoidable response.
Senior Georgi Chunev is smiling, his hand on the mouse as he cleans out the hard drive of the Dell computer. As files empty into the virtual trash can, this third-year ITS micro-support assistant assesses and solves the problem.
The operation complete, he puts on his coat, covering the red-and-white ribbon pinned to his sweater that in his home country Bulgaria symbolizes the coming of spring – and this spring brings graduation for Chunev, who is earning degrees in computer science and mathematics.
“I’ve had some great opportunities at Manchester,” he says. “I found it difficult my first year with English, but the staff is so open and the international community really sticks together, which made things easier. I’m especially greatful to Dr. (Christer) Watson in the Physics Department. He helped me get two internships and I’ll be in IU grad school largely because of him.”
A discus thrower is face-down on the table in the Athletic Training Room, grimacing as he adjusts his huge sore calf muscle. Head student athletic trainer Katie Davis goes to work.
First, the junior rubs cocoa butter over the entire calf, then uses a hardened piece of orthoplast to scrape the sore muscle. Pushing down with all her might, Davis turns the injured area bright red, as the thrower taps his other foot in pain.
“I can feel the scar tissue breaking up,” Davis observes as the orthoplast vibrates over the calf. “It feels very bumpy and gritty.” Davis, with a double major of athletic training and exercise science, also is designing a workout program and helping two clients reach their goals for her Advanced Exercise Prescription class.
She wraps the calf in a brown elastic bandage, grabs her athletic training kit and heads out to the track to catch up with the team. “Pole-vaulters give me the most scares,” Davis offers. “They don’t always hit the mats.”
Every seat is filled in the Success Center as students bundle with peer tutors or spread out for individual study. Three calculus students and two tutors bend heads over complex graphs. Tutor Natalie Collar, a first-year student, intermittently moves to the next table to help two more calculus students.
“The Success Center helps me schedule my time better and keep a positive attitude about calculus class,” says Karla Conrad, a first-year student majoring in secondary education-math. “It puts me in a more academic atmosphere, so I’m more focused.”
Every computer is occupied by students typing papers or surfing the internet. A few chat and some bounce to music from ipods and cell phones. Books and notebooks are stacked close at hand, with snacks.
Seniors Danielle Moeller and Sabrina Brinkmeier sit at the Garver Hall front desk, swapping stories about student teaching. Moeller, who is staffing the desk, types her teaching lesson plans and reflections on her laptop. Though she now lives in East Street Apartments, she enjoys visiting Garver.
“This is where we met,” Moeller says of Brinkmeier. ”We spend a lot of time talking about lesson plans, students we teach and, of course, our personal lives,” Brinkmeier adds.
“Maybe we’ll find jobs in the same area,” Brinkmeier says hopefully. “Even if we don’t, we’ll definitely stay in touch. Danielle is one of my best friends and I can’t imagine teaching without her there to talk to.”
With less than 12 hours before deadline, junior Billy Snow reaches for another chunky chocolate chip cookie in the dim light and stuffiness of the Helman computer lab. Confident he will finish the research paper in time, Billy reclines in shorts and T-shirt, smiling as he pecks out the second sentence of the 10-page paper.
Two computers down, junior John Comas frantically types Page 8 of the same assignment. Sitting upright in business shirt and tie, Comas is too focused and anxious for bed to touch the chips and salsa by his left hand.
Sgt. Fred Lucas ’90 of Campus Safety unlocks the west entrance of Wampler Auditorium, midway through his second round of patrolling campus. The father of three scans the room and then walks over to jiggle the handle on the east door. As he turns back, Lucas passes Sadie Wampler’s portrait. “There are no ghosts on campus,” he declares with a laugh. “If there were, they would have gotten me by now.”
“While there are no ghosts on campus,” Lucas says, peering under the archway that marks the merging of the old Bible School Building, built in 1895, “it is still neat to think about all the past students who’ve walked these halls, too.”
Lucas will thoroughly check another 12 buildings and cruise the parking lots before returning to the Safety Office to type up his report. He’s bone-tired, working a second shift so other safety officers can train to become certified EMTs like himself.
Custodian Greg Smith wipes down black counter tops in the chemistry lab on the third floor of the Science Center, adroitly moving around brown glass chemical bottles with neon orange tags and black skeletons. He neatly lines up clear glass beakers ranging in size from pop cans to half-gallon milk jugs.
Smith already has cleaned the first floor and half the third. He still has to finish the third floor and the entire second. “I really like my job,” he says, pulling off his latex gloves and scratching his white goatee. “It’s difficult and stressful, but it goes by fast.”