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An April to remember at Monmouth College

Barry McNamara
April 2017 will be a month to remember at Monmouth.
The fall semester at Monmouth College hits the ground running with a flurry of back-to-school events, but the spring semester typically waits a few months to reach peak activity.

And with the official arrival of spring, the semester is ready for its own flurry of events in what promises to be an April to remember at Monmouth.

History will be made with the celebration of a sesquicentennial of one of the College’s oldest organizations, a beloved movie musical will be brought to the stage, and two campus events will make their debuts.

Here are some of the College’s April highlights:

April 6-9: Meet Me in St. Louis, a 1989 musical based on the 1944 MGM film, will be staged as a joint production between the College’s departments of theatre and music, and the Buchanan Center for the Arts. With songs by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane, and book by Hugh Wheeler, the two-hour musical will begin at 7:30 p.m. April 6-8 at Wells Theater, with a 2 p.m. matinee April 9. The production includes Monmouth College students, faculty and staff as well as community members from Warren County.

April 10: Kunal Kapoor, who on Jan. 1 took over as chief executive officer of Morningstar Inc. (NASDAQ: MORN), will deliver the College’s annual Wendell Whiteman Memorial Lecture at 11 a.m. in Dahl Chapel and Auditorium. A 1997 Monmouth graduate, Kapoor has steadily moved through the ranks at Morningstar over the past two decades.

April 18: Scots Day of Giving. Going by the hashtag #ScotsDay17, the day will raise money to support academic programs, co-curricular activities, and scholarships and financial aid for Monmouth students. Beginning at 5 a.m. CT, the College will spend the next 18 hours and 53 minutes (in celebration of its 1853 founding) raising money from alumni and friends throughout the United States.

April 18-23: The College will observe Earth Week with a series of talks on topics such as climate change and renewable energy, and will conclude the week with a tree planting at LeSuer Nature Preserve from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on April 23.

April 21-22: The inaugural Conference of Undergraduate Research & Scholarship, co-sponsored by the Midwest Journal of Undergraduate Research and Monmouth College, will provide an opportunity for young scholars from around nation to come together to share research, learn about other students’ projects and interact with peers. The keynote speaker will be Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson. More than four dozen undergraduate students are expected to attend the event.

April 22: Kappa Kappa Gamma, founded at Monmouth College in 1870, will formally dedicate its new chapter house at 1 p.m. The purchase of the 915 E. Broadway home last summer was underwritten by gifts, largely from Kappa alumnae. It overlooks the site of a wooden bridge where tradition holds that Kappa was originally planned.

April 25: Monmouth College students have taken a scholarly approach to the celebration of spring, celebrating the end of winter with a festival of the mind. The College will cancel April 25 classes in observance of Scholars Day – a day devoted to scholarship, arts presentations and academic discussions. The day includes the College’s Honors Convocation at 10:30 a.m. in Dahl Chapel and Auditorium.

April 28: A year after formally dedicating its new chapter house on East Euclid Ave, the women of Pi Beta Phi have another big reason to celebrate – the 150th anniversary of the organization’s founding. Pi Phi began as I.C. Sorosis on April 28, 1867. Its 12 founders had the vision to form the first secret society for women, patterned after men’s groups at a time when only five state universities admitted women.

April 29: The College will host ILLOWA 2017: The 44th Annual Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference. It will include a keynote address by Christie Nelson, a 2006 Monmouth graduate who got an early start toward her professional career by presenting research at ILLOWA on two occasions. Nelson is a drug abuse coordinator at the federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas.

Fighting Scots Events: The Fighting Scots baseball and softball teams will combine to host eight doubleheaders in April. In addition, the month will feature a combined six home men’s and women’s lacrosse matches, five home men’s tennis matches and single home meets for the men’s and women’s golf teams.