The Changing Face of Bethel
By Dawn Garber
September 19, 2003
New buildings arise, current buildings are renovated, graduates leave and freshmen arrive: the face of Bethel College is constantly evolving. The 2003-2004 school year celebrates Bethel's fifty-sixth anniversary and brings with it many exciting changes.
Probably the most noticeable modifications this year are the additions and renovations of several of the facilities. Hired crews and maintenance staff have been hard at work all summer making the campus beautiful and upgrading Bethel's living and office environments. Sidewalks in front of the Administration building have been replaced, most of the parking lots have been tarred or resurfaced, worn lawn areas have been hydroseeded or replaced with new sod, and spectacular additions to the baseball stadium are currently in progress. The housing count has changed this year with the demolition of the Northwood house and purchase of the Logan Village town houses which hold seventy-seven beds. Fundraising has just begun for a future addition to the Goodman gymnasium that will turn the Goodman-Weikamp gym complex into a Recreation Center with possibilities for new weight rooms, racquetball courts, and many other facilities. The campus' physical attributes have dramatically improved over the summer with a number of other changes in the making.
Aside from changes to its appearance, Bethel's student life is undergoing renovation as well. Surprisingly, this year boasts another record enrollment for Bethel. Statistics taken at the beginning of the summer showed a definite decline in student enrollment for Christian colleges and universities all over northern Indiana. However, in the past month new student applications have been pouring in, and this year's class of over 300 incoming students is the largest in Bethel's history. What was thought to have been a more open housing inventory has turned out to be a waiting list.
These numerous areas of growth and transformation are evidences of God's hand at work on Bethel's campus. Bethel continues to be a strong and vibrant community seeking God's direction and sharing His vision with others. The changing face of Bethel unfolds as another new school year begins with ‘Christ at the Helm.'