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Life Enrichment

Life Enrichment will take place on Thursday mornings for the 2022-23 school year instead of Wednesdays as it has in the past. The first sessions will be on Thursday, August 25. We are excited to bring Life Enrichment back to the Bethel campus!

The Life Enrichment series is planned especially for adults age 60 and over.

Since 1974, Bethel College has sponsored Life Enrichment, supported by volunteers, registration fees and the generosity of speakers who share their talent and expertise without compensation.

Cost: $30 per semester or $3 per week; first-time attendees get a free day
Time: Thursdays, 9:30 a.m.-11:50 a.m. for two-session dates; Thursdays, 9:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. for three-session dates
Location: All sessions will be in Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center on the Bethel campus
Lunch cost: $6.50 full meal; $4.50 soup/salad/dessert. Please purchase tickets for lunch by 10:30 a.m. with cash, or check payable to “Aladdin Foods.”

Donations help cover our costs for coffee and cookies. Lunch is served in the Shultz Student Center cafeteria "The Caf".


August 25
9:30 a.m. “The Thresher Way,” Jon C. Gering, president, and Megan Kershner, dean of vocational experiences, Bethel College
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
10:50 a.m. “Learning from the Kansas People,” Larry Hatteberg, TV anchor and photojournalist, Wichita
September 1
9:30 a.m. “The Contested Plains: The German Family Story,” Ken Spurgeon, Andover
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “A weather career predicting the unpredictable, and occasionally dangerous,” Steve Schurr, Newton
11:30 a.m. “The Highs and Lows of Grandparents Raising Grandkids,” Cindy Miles, MBA, founder of Parenting Again and Miles and Miles of Entrepreneurial Ventures, Wichita
September 8
9:30 a.m. “Little Arkansas Reservoir: The Lake that Never Was,” Brian D. Stucky, Goessel
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
10:50 a.m. “Life of Rodolphe Petter, a Swiss Missionary to America,” Weldon Schloneger, photographer and retired pastor, North Newton
September 15
9:30 a.m. 9:30 “Moses the Two-World Peacemaker,” Josué Coy Dick, Bethel College student in peace and conflict studies, North Newton
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “The Fate of Food – What Will We Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World?,” compiled by Jim Goering and presented by Mary Goering, North Newton
11:30 a.m. Mary Goering continues (double session)
September 22
9:30 a.m. “Astronomical Imaging in the Bethel College Mabee Observatory,” Roger Reimer, manager of the observatory and Bethel maintenance staff, Walton
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “The Hidden Gem: Carriage Factory Art Gallery,” Mary Lee-McDonald, gallery director, and Diana Torline, gallery board president
11:30 a.m. “Songs of the Flint Hills – From Wildflowers to Wild Horses,” Annie Wilson, Kansas Flint Hills Balladeer, Elmdale
September 29
9:30 a.m. “Ukraine: A Personal Perspective on People and Politics,” John McCabe-Juhnke, Bethel College professor emeritus of communication arts, and Karen McCabe-Juhnke, retired public school teacher, North Newton
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
10:50 a.m. “Where have all the pastors gone, and what can we do about it?,” Michele Hershberger, Bible and youth ministry professor and department chair, Hesston College
October 6 No Life Enrichment – BC Fall Fest week
October 13
9:30 a.m. “Creating a Haven for Birds in Your Backyard,” Gregg Friesen, Newton
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “Hopi Missions Today,” Kay Neff, Sedgwick
11:30 a.m. “Thriving at Any Age,” Dr. Jeanne Erickson, Rose Hill
October 20
9:30 a.m. “Soils for Life,” Isaac Broeckelman, USDA soil conservationist, Hutchinson
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “Mental Health is Health,” Eric Litwiller, director of development and communications, Mental Health Association of South-Central Kansas, Newton
11:30 a.m. “Playing Piano Duets – A Favorite Way to Create Music at Home in the 1800s,” Karen Bauman Schlabaugh, Bethel College professor emeritus of music, Newton, and Ben Woodward-Breckbill, pastor at Shalom Mennonite Church, Newton
October 27
9:30 a.m. “Eco-Arts-Spheres: Art as a pollinator creating transformative changes towards restoring the human relationship with the land and natural environment,” Ann Zerger, McPherson College professor emeritus, co-owner of Prairie Works Design Studios, artist, sculptor and educator, Moundridge
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. 10:50 “Fresh Produce Orchardists, Market Growers and Truck Farmers,” Cindy Higgins, Eudora
November 3
9:30 a.m. “Brief Overview of Disease in Harvey County,” Skip Cowan, disease investigator, Newton
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. “Pioneer Bluffs: Center for Flint Hills Ranching Heritage,” Lynn Smith, Pioneer Bluffs executive director, Matfield Green
11:30 a.m. “Scenic Harvey County,” Bruce Regier, North Newton
November 10
9:30 a.m. “He saw… She saw… – Travel photography from two different perspectives, Mars vs. Venus,” Paul and Gail Bowen
10:15 a.m. Coffee break
10:35 a.m. 10:35 “Wildlife and Wild Weather in Kansas,” Eldon Clark, photographer and owner of Eldon’s Photography, Minneapolis
11:30 a.m. “How Has Music Enriched Our Lives?,” the Brain Flowers (Kenna Graber, flute, Rebecca Schloneger, violin, and Seth Girton, cello)
November 17
9:30 a.m. “Athena, Atlas and the Plight of Sisyphus,” Lisa Otter and Micki Fryhover, Newton
10:30 a.m. Coffee break
10:50 a.m. “Stop Watching TV News!,” Sierra Scott, TV host, KPTS-TV Channel 8, Wichita


Life Enrichment Committee:

Gary Rediger, chair

Helen Nachtigal, vice-chair

Gloria Rediger

Byron Ediger

Judy Friesen

About Bethel

As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.