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October 2009

CSB/SJU receives new Phi Beta Kappa chapter

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University will be home to a new chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation's oldest academic honor society since 1776.

Delegates from more than 200 chapters and associations of Phi Beta Kappa voted to establish a new chapter at CSB/SJU Oct. 2 during their 42nd Triennial Council in Austin, Texas.

The joint CSB/SJU chapter will be known as Theta of Minnesota ("theta" is the eighth number in the Greek alphabet, and is the number of Phi Beta Kappa chapters in Minnesota).

The CSB/SJU chapter expects to induct its first student members into the society during spring semester, 2010. CSB and SJU senior students will be selected on the basis of excellence in the liberal arts and sciences. The selection of the best 10 percent of arts and sciences graduates will be made each year by CSB/SJU faculty, administrators and staff who are members of Phi Beta Kappa.

The CSB/SJU joint chapter was one of four new chapters established at the council meeting. The addition of the four chapters brings the total number of chapters to 280 nationwide. Only about 10 percent of the nation's institutions of higher learning have Phi Beta Kappa chapters. Each year, approximately one college senior in 100 nationwide is invited to join Phi Beta Kappa.

"Phi Beta Kappa membership is a validation of College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University's place among the nation's best liberal arts and sciences institutions, and a reflection of our long history of academic excellence," said CSB President MaryAnn Baenninger and SJU President the Rev. Robert Koopmann, OSB, in a joint statement. "The granting of the chapter both acknowledges the teaching and scholarly accomplishments of our faculty and offers an opportunity for our very best students to become members of this illustrious honor society."

There are more than 500,000 members of Phi Beta Kappa, including 17 U.S. presidents (Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush among them), seven of the current U.S. Supreme Court Justices and more than 130 Nobel Prize laureates.

Campus authors to sign books at Family Weekend event

The College of Saint Benedict Bookstore will host a book signing with two campus authors on Saturday, Oct. 24, as part of Family Weekend festivities.

The book signing will take place from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the CSB Bookstore, which is located in Mary Commons, on the CSB campus. Bookstore hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 24. The event is open to the public.

S. Mara Faulkner, OSB, will sign copies of her book, Going Blind. The book is a memoir about growing up in a family shaped by Irish ancestry, a close-to-the-bone existence in rural North Dakota and the secret of her father's blindness, along with the silence and shame surrounding it. Faulkner is a CSB/SJU associate professor of English. Going Blind will be 20 percent off for the day.

Poet Larry Schug will sign copies of his latest volume of poetry, Arrogant Bones. An award-winning poet, Schug draws upon his experience to create down-to-earth verse that anybody can understand and enjoy. He is the recycling coordinator at CSB. Arrogant Bones and Schug's other poetry books will be 20 percent off for the day.

In addition to the book signing, there will be many specials throughout the store including 20 percent off baseball caps, children's, parent and alumnae clothing.

Run (or walk) for fun during Family Weekend

The seventh annual 5K Family Fun Run/Walk takes place on Oct. 24 on the SJU campus. Registration begins at 8 a.m.; the run begins at 9 a.m. by the rugby field near the sugar shack and continues down the Logging Trail through the beautiful Saint John's Arboretum.

Registration for CSB/SJU card holders and children under 15 years of age is $15, and $20 for all other participants. Prizes will be awarded, and participants who register early will receive a free T-shirt and light breakfast at the finish line.

Registration is available online.