Maroon & Gold
March 31, 2020

A Note From Home.....

Here we are...starting week 3 of Operation "Stay at Home." 
My first inkling that the Coronavirus was actually going to touch my life was a few weeks ago when I started receiving some email communication from alumni who have been diligently planning the 50th reunion of the class of 1970. The discussion and planning for this began 18 months ago and these classmates, who have celebrated every decade since graduation were the first to make the wise decision to "Postpone." At the time, I thought it was a cautious move but I fully supported it considering the age of this group, distance many would travel and the cost incurred should the planning proceed.
Everything became very real on March 15 when I received word from my sales rep that Major League Baseball had canceled Spring Training the day before our gatherings were to take place. (I had flown to Arizona the day before with colleagues to host 30+ alumni for a two-game weekend of sunshine and baseball in the Arizona desert.) After the announcement, I frankly couldn't get home fast enough. The next week, POSTPONED or CANCELLED became the order of the day for everyone.
Now a few weeks later I am working from home (along with everyone else who isn't serving in an essential role area of healthcare, public services, etc...) adjusting to a new normal while dealing with the underlying stress of the unknown. Social media has been so good at capturing what so many of us are experiencing. I cannot resist posting a few of my favorites below.

As I close this month's "Note from Home," I want you to know that the Alumni/Development Office is here for you. We truly care about you, our alumni and friends and are looking for ways to connect with you during this time. Our events may look different for a while and although our interactions with you may not be in-person, we remain committed to keeping you all engaged as we all get through this challenging time. I am also so thankful for our alumni and friends who are on the front line helping to care for the sick and keep the healthy safe. We are all in this together and we need each other. 

I would be remiss if I didn't share with you that the news of our fellow Illinois institution and SLIAC conference member, MacMurray College hit me like a "ton of bricks." I cannot imagine how their alumni are feeling as the news that their alma mater is closing soaks in. As President Wright recently shared with the campus community, " While Eureka College shares a lot in common with MacMurray College, we continue to be financially stable and in a position to explore growth opportunities that will lead us into a bright and prosperous future. Still, it reminds me to NEVER take for granted our beloved Eureka College. It will always need our financial support to ensure it endures for the next generation. It is our duty to keep it thriving for decades to come.
As alumni, let us never forget how Eureka College has blessed us in so many ways. And those blessings are being passed on to the next generation. What a privilege to be a part of such a great legacy. 

Shellie Schwanke '87
Director of Alumni Relations and the Ronald W. Reagan Society
Special Assistant to the President 

Eureka Adjusts to the Coronavirus Pandemic with Caution and Planning

Online Learning Continues for the Remainder of the Spring Semester
In order to maintain a safe campus environment as we respond to the COVID-19 global pandemic, Eureka College classes will continue being offered online or through alternative delivery methods for the remainder of the semester. Also, students will remain off campus for the rest of the semester, as well. We believe that these decisions are in the best interest of the health, safety and well-being of the entire campus community and the general public, overall. 
Commencement Moved to Opening Week of the 2020/21 Academic Year 
With graduation season just around the corner, many members of the campus community have asked how the pandemic is going to affect Eureka College's commencement.  We are pleased to inform you that our storied tradition of honoring our graduates 'Neath the Elms has not been canceled for the class of 2020; however, senior activities, including senior dinner and commencement, will be postponed until Friday, August 14 & Saturday, August 15.

Alumni Weekend Events Rescheduled for Homecoming 2020
The Alumni Office is regrouping and working to move some key Alumni Weekend events to the Homecoming schedule. We will keep you posted as plans firm up for such events as the Alumni Award Recognition ceremony, Golden E 50th Reunion Ceremony and BAA Meet and Greet are solidified. In the meantime, be sure to have October 23 and 24, 2020 marked on your calendar. It will be a Homecoming you won't want to miss! 
A Philanthropic Opportunity for our Caterpillar Alumni Employees and Retirees 

The Caterpillar Foundation has made the announcement that they will provide a 2:1 match for employee and retiree gifts made March 16 through May 1, 2020. The gift minimum to qualify is $20 and each participant has an overall cap of $25,000 which is exempt from the standard $2,000 annual cap.

The Caterpillar Foundation will match up to $1 million total for gifts made during this time frame. Once $1 million in match requests has been submitted, the 2:1 match will close and revert back to the standard 1:1 match with $2,000 annual cap per participant.

We understand  especially  at this time, there are many worthy causes to support. However, we ask that you remember Eureka College, where personal success began for so many.

The generosity of Caterpillar Foundation has made a difference at Eureka College. We are exceedingly appreciative of this support. Their generosity at this particular time will make a difference. Please give to Eureka College so your gift will be matched. 

Request a Matching Gift Form HERE
Make a Donation HERE

Cancelled: Springfield Area Alumni Gathering
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, it has become necessary to cancel this event, scheduled for  April 1. We pray you stay safe and well during this time and look forward to putting events like these back on our calendars in the near future. 
Dr. Logsdon's "Stories Beneath the Elms" Continue...
Dr. Loren Logsdon '58

Dr. Loren Logsdon, Professor Emeritus of English, AKA Gort Rumson, Maroon and Gold's roving reporter, has captured the spirit of Eureka College history in a special project he fondly calls the "Studs Terkel Project."  If you have a story that speaks to the  "Spirit of Eureka," contact Dr. Logsdon at

This month's edition is below:  

UPDATE: Alumni Directory Project is Going Strong

Thank you to all our alumni who are responding and are invested in this project. We have received a lot of responses from you in the form of directory purchases, additional donations, as well as calls to our office with feedback on the process used for creating and selling a directory. 
Please remember that when you call in to update your information, your call will be answered by a  call center on our behalf. The Alumni/Development office is working with PCI, a company that specializes in these projects for many academic alumni associations. This is the first step in verifying and updating what information we have in the database. Should you choose to participate you agree that your information can appear in the directory. If you choose NOT to respond or participate, your information will NOT appear in the directory. We announced this initiative in the last few issues of the Maroon and Gold E-newsletter, but we know it can be very easily overlooked in the flood of emails that alumni receive every day.
To date, your responses have secured the following number of updated verified data for our office:
  Respondents 1,208 (as of 3/24/2020)  NEW VERIFIED  
  Emails 596 717  
  Job Titles 753 347  
  Employer Names 634 379  
  Business Addresses 429 171  
  Business Phone Numbers 313 149  
  Home Addresses 165 987  
  Home Phone Numbers 396 401  
  Cell Phone Numbers 449 472  

Why is this important? We are proud of our alumni! Staying connected and up to date is what the Alumni Office strives for! Thank you for making sure this happens by participating in this project. 
Questions? Check out our FAQ's at .
Or, contact the Alumni Office at 877-892-7823 or email at We always enjoy hearing from you!  
Join us for an all-campus virtua; EC Gathering with guest host Jason LeVasseur!   
Eureka College is staying connected with our students during this time of "shelter in place" for Illinois residents. If you want something to do, join the Lunch & Learn Series on Thursdays. Join students, faculty and staff as we all learn together to maneveur through this unprecedented time. 

Thursday, April 23, 12:20 - 1pm
Inspiration for finding hope and possibilities through adversity! Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 299 022 333
Hosted by Eureka College Office of Student Life
Making a Difference: Alumni Trustee Pat and Laury Patwardhan
"Being a Eureka graduate, I always wanted to pay it forward for the opportunities Eureka College offered me. Getting a scholarship to come to Eureka College from India was a dream come true. Everything I have achieved in my life started at Eureka College.  My wife Laury and I learned to support my college by offering them scholarships to incoming students hoping they will open their lives to reaching their dreams and goals. We wanted to express our gratitude for people who shaped our lives.  I wanted to dedicate the first scholarship to my American parents; Frank Leon and Elois Meshberger who made it possible for me to come and stay with them and become a member of their family. Their son Lynn met me in India as a member of the first American Field Service exchange student group. The second scholarship is being dedicated to my wife Laury's mother; Caryl Taylor who was an innovative teacher before her time and a Trustee for 12 years for the Village of Bartlett, Illinois. We strongly believe that a liberal arts education can provide better career opportunities, a stepping stone to become a lifelong learner, and a better quality of life.
I am honored to be a trustee on the Board of Eureka College and besides attending meetings and providing ideas, I touch our students and help them by 1:1 coaching sessions and encourage them to Dream Big to achieve their goals. My wife Laury was recently announced an Honorary Alumni of Eureka College and dedicates herself by offering creative ideas to students and staff and spreading positivity to all she meets. If you can dream it, you can achieve it."  Pat Patwardhan '75

If you have a story you would like to be considered for publication, please submit the story (written by YOU) along with an accompanying electronic photo to . Due to our small staff we will only consider publishing completed stories submitted by our campus community. We reserve the right to edit and publish at our discretion.    
The Department of Alumni Relations and 
The Ronald W. Reagan Society of Eureka College present 
Magnificent Cities of Central & Eastern Europe
March 14-27, 2021
Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Krakow, Warsaw
14 Days 18 Meals $4399 Air Inclusive
A blend of world history and fairy-tale charm comes to life in the culturally rich cities of Central & Eastern Europe. Enjoy 2-night stays, guided tours and local restaurants in Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Krakow and Warsaw. Make the most of your adventure with a perfect balance of included sightseeing excursions and leisure time. Choose your tour in Berlin - a traditional city tour or a Cold War focused tour featuring "Check Point Charlie." Walk across the spectacular Charles Bridge in Prague and dine at a traditional restaurant that features a folklore show and dance lesson. View the lavish Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna. Discover the picturesque Hungarian countryside. Embark on a poignant journey through history at Auschwitz and conclude in Warsaw, a city with history both joyous and tragic. Explore some of Europe's most magnificent and legendary cities.
Contact Shellie Schwanke, Director of Alumni Relations and the Ronald W. Reagan Society for more details at

Share Your News
We are always looking for news from you about what you are up to!  New job? Recently married? New baby? Retiring? Send it to us!
Here is our monthly collection of photos of alumni we have interacted with on campus and on the road. During this unusual season of virtual event-ing, we encourage you to email us your photos of ways you are staying connected to family, friends and fellow alumni at .

Get the Eureka College Connect App
Experience Eureka! The Eureka College app is designed for students, alumni and friends of Eureka College to stay engaged with the campus community! Keep up to date on the latest campus news, or find an alumni event to attend near you. You can subscribe to the alumni calendar, academic calendar and student engagement calendars, use Geo Awareness to "check-in" at locations upon arrival and utilize push notifications for campus- and community-wide communications.   Go to the App store and download  Eureka College Connect today!     
Recommend Eureka to a Student You Know!
Do you know a recent high school graduate who hasn't yet decided where to go to school this fall?  
How about that student who just earned her associates degree and wants to pursue a bachelors program? 
Or maybe you know a current high school student who would make a great Red Devil? 
Now is the time to encourage these students to check out Eureka College. Share your memories with them. Encourage them to see campus for themselves. 

If you have a student who would be a great addition to the student body, click HERE to make your recommendation or email