January Offers Travel Opps >

First Year Timeline - Typical First Year Adjustment Issues >

FAFSA Deadline Reminder >

A Life-Changing Experience >

Staff Spotlight: Jennifer Fisher >


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ISSUE #19 January 2009

January Offers Travel Opportunities

January is a month of travel and exploration for many students at Manchester College. Each January session, professors teach off-campus courses in various fields of study in the U.S. and abroad. In their travels, MC Students experience firsthand the sights, sounds and cultures they learn about in the classroom. This January, for example, Leonard Williams took a class to Washington D.C. to witness the presidential inauguration.

Other January 2009 classes and destinations included:

  • Critical Connections – Great Britain
  • Experiencing the Arts - Italy
  • Intercultural Theatre - China
  • Medical Practicum - Nicaragua
  • Policy and Practice Issues in Social Welfare - Jamaica

If your student missed the opportunity to travel off campus this January, consider an off campus experience for summer session. Two off campus classes, India Story Seminar in India and Field Ecology in Alaska, are offered for Summer 2009. If interested, contact Thelma Rohrer or Jerry Sweeten respectively. Read more about January session >

First Year Timeline - Typical First Year Adjustment Issues and How Parents Can Be Supportive


  • Feelings of claustrophobia and depression of winter set in
  • Potential increase in alcohol and other substance abuse
  • Challenges with love relationships back home
  • Valentine’s Day brings out feelings of loneliness, isolation
  • Anxiety regarding finding roommate(s) for next year
  • Excitement and/or disappointment regarding spring break plans
  • Midterm exam stress
  • Concern over summer employment
  • Concern over winter weight gain

How can parents help?

  • Encourage use of campus resources, specifically counseling
  • Don’t panic—listen, assist in identifying support people (individuals and campus staff/faculty)
  • Ask questions
  • Refrain from rescuing
  • Accept that there are highs and lows in a student’s college experience
  • Listen, assure, ask exploratory questions to help the student brainstorm
  • Affirm the student’s good decision-making skills and your faith in him/her
  • Be clear about summer expectations
  • Refrain from judgment, jokes or teasing about weight; affirm that it is difficult

Visit for a complete timeline.

Have you filed your FAFSA?

FAFSA Deadline Reminder
March 10, 2009 for Indiana Residents
Questions? Call Student Financial Services at 866-982-5066
or email

A Life-Changing Experience
Moala Penitani, International Studies Assistant

Studying abroad is one of the great opportunities students at Manchester College should take advantage of before graduation. It doesn’t matter if students choose to go for one month, a semester, or an entire year. The important aspect of participating in a study abroad program is recognizing that the United States is integrating globalization into its policies, gaining an understanding of different cultures, finding oneself, increasing one’s appreciation for the families and friends one has, and growing internally.

How do I know this?  As international studies assistant, not only do I listen to stories from students who have taken the opportunity to explore various parts of the world during their presentations at our weekly Wednesdays around the World programs (WATW), but I’ve also studied abroad myself. 

I traveled to Mexico for Spring Semester 2006. It wasn’t something I had planned for long; it was more of a “spur of the moment” decision. My parents did not believe that I was leaving until I purchased the plane ticket. This was a new step in my life toward becoming more independent and moving away from my comfort zone. Thelma Rohrer, director of international studies and professor at Manchester College, prepared me for the culture shock of my life and assisted me in my departure.

I had traveled with another Manchester student and a student from Anderson College. We did not have much to say in the beginning, but in the end, we became close friends. Through the great times and bad, the new friends I made in Mexico kept me moving.

We explored Xalapa, the city in which I lived with my host family, and played card games while trying out new cafés. We watched excited children approach us to sell roses, handmade bracelets, or candy. We learned firsthand the helplessness one feels and the determination that arises when one realizes that it was the only way of survival for these bright children and their families. 

I won’t lie to you. It can sometimes get pretty scary to be on your own in a foreign land, but you learn to appreciate your independence and make the most of every minute. I was able to reflect on my future. To sit in a park in Mexico, where time seemingly does not exist, and peacefully contemplate various topics while enjoying the unique scenery gives one a true peace of mind and moments of clarity.

I know through my experience that each country and culture brings a new understanding to the students who study abroad. If I had to choose two words to summarize my experience, they would be “beautiful” and “life-changing.”

Staff Spotlight: Jennifer Fisher

As director of internships in the Office of Career Services, Jennifer Fisher helps place students into valuable work experiences—internships that put them into real career situations with real people in real companies. She guides students by assisting with resumes, cover letters and interviewing skills. Through internships, Manchester students gain experience in marketing, banking, accounting, law and many other fields.

An Ohio native, Jennifer earned a B.S. from Kentucky Christian University, majoring in social work. “The opportunity to help people, especially in an area that enabled me to gain experience in such a wide range of skills, always motivated me,” she says.

She’s adjusting well to Indiana and Manchester College. “I just love the atmosphere on this campus, especially the emphasis given to important values such as peace and justice,” says Jennifer.

In her spare time, Jennifer is a part-time musician—a hobby that took her to her hometown of Fort Wayne, where she performs regularly with a locally based band and shares her house with Eli, her 8-week old puppy.

“Live to love and love to live,” is Jennifer's personal motto. Her enthusiasm is shared with the students with whom she works, and they, as well as Jennifer, are glad she’s found her place at Manchester. As Jennifer says, “I knew this position and place were meant for me!"

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