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Grandparents Day at Bethel

About 340 grandparents attended Bethel’s fourth annual Grandparents Day on April 15. (Photo credit: Nathan Klok '17)

Many Bethel students enjoyed visiting with their grandparents on April 15 during the fourth annual Grandparents Day. About 340 grandparents had the opportunity to visit with their grandchildren and experience campus by attending Chapel, eating lunch in the Monson Dining Center, attending classes, and taking a campus tour.

Grandparents were greeted by Bethel University President Jay Barnes and Director of Alumni and Family Relations Jim Bender during a morning opening session in Benson Great Hall. Barnes shared how the Bethel community takes care of its students and recognizes how challenging the college years can be. “Students in college are asking and answering some of the biggest questions they’ve ever asked,” he says. “Questions about faith—does what I believe connect with the way I live? How has God gifted and wired me? What makes me valuable and worth something? These are the questions behind the curriculum here at Bethel.”

Grandparents also had a chance to hear from Truman and Priscilla Koehn. The Koehns have five children and 18 grandchildren. All five of their children—Jeffrey Koehn '85, Curtis Koehn '87, Cheryl (Koehn) Davis '89, Rocky Koehn '90, and Robin (Koehn) Prigge '97—as well as their spouses attended Bethel. On Grandparents Day, the Koehns were able to see four of their grandchildren who all currently attend Bethel: Jessica Davis '16, Megan Davis '18, Jack Koehn '19, and Hannah Koehn '19.

As a former railroad engineer, Truman Koehn is proud of the fact that he was able to put all five of their children—at one point, three at one time—through Bethel without a single loan. “We’ve always looked at it as an investment in our children’s lives, and it has been just that,” says Priscilla Koehn.

“Guys like to talk about stocks they bought and investments they made, but of all the investments we made, I think the best one was sending our five children to Bethel,” Truman Koehn adds.

After Chapel, grandparents could attend two special classes taught by Bethel professors: “The Alpha and Omega of Wellbeing,” taught by Seth Paradis, professor and program director of biokinetics, and “What Good is Leisure? Living the Rest of Your Life,” taught by Dan Ritchie, professor of English.

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