More Than We Could Have Imagined

President Greg Christy


We celebrated the achievements of the Imagine Campaign during Raider Days Homecoming and Family Weekend. More than $48 million was contributed by alumni, parents, friends, businesses and churches in support of the largest fundraising effort in the history of Northwestern College. We are so grateful for every donor and every gift!

The centerpiece of the Imagine Campaign is the new boulevard and plaza entrance and the beautiful Jack & Mary DeWitt Learning Commons, which have transformed the heart of the campus. Dedicating this long-anticipated building reminded me of April 13, 2011, a day I’ll never forget.

Jack and Mary, along with their grandson and five of his friends, were in Orange City for a campus visit. My wife, Michelle, and I had lunch with Jack and Mary after they had interacted with students, attended chapel and taken a campus tour. Over dessert, Jack said the visit had moved them to give $2 million to Northwestern—in addition to the $1 million they’d already given earlier in the campaign for the learning commons.

With tears in my eyes, I told Jack I didn’t know what to say other than, “Praise God!” And with tears in his eyes he responded, “That’s right. Praise God! We’re just so glad we’re able to do it.”

Jack and Mary love Northwestern. Mary says she senses the Holy Spirit at work on our campus and sees something in our students that’s different from those at other colleges. Jack’s parents, Marv and Jerene, got Mary and him involved in giving to the college more than 30 years ago. They continue their family’s rich legacy of commitment to the college because they know our students will leave this place better prepared to impact the world for the cause of Christ.

Donors gave for other projects as well—scholarships, the Northwestern Fund, mission trips, Rowenhorst Student Center renovations and new academic initiatives. As those who attended our recent Donor Appreciation Banquet heard, there are many reasons why donors choose to give their hard-earned dollars.

One 1969 graduate said it this way: “I appreciate the knowledge Northwestern gave me to not only be successful in business, but also to realize what is really important in life. I feel that more so today than ever before. We need college graduates with Christian values to spread the love of Jesus Christ.”

We are humbled and grateful for all who invested in the mission and ministry of Northwestern these last several years. As the apostle Paul said, “We thank our God upon every remembrance of each of you.” May God bless you richly for your generous, faithful and—in many cases—sacrificial support. Praise be to God!

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