Is There Something You’ve Always Wondered About St. Norbert College? Ask the Abbot!
Kelly (Langenecker) Peiffer ’97 asks: “How long has St. Norbert offered ‘alternative spring break’ programs?”
Maggie Hall ’15 asks: “Is it true that St. Norbert once beat the University of Notre Dame at hockey?”
Ben Cahall ’11 asks: “Can you share the story behind the Nativity scene that is set up in front of Main Hall every holiday season?”
Myron “Mike” Hauser ’57 asks: “I was on the college web page and saw this year’s Alumni Award recipients. Who is the earliest alum to be honored?”
Tom Basche ’46 asks: “Where do student do their shopping these days?”
Bryant McCray ’16 asks: “It’s hard not to notice the colorful line of flags on the back of the Bemis International Center. What do the flags represent, and do they ever change?”
Larissa Dallman asks: “At graduation, I couldn’t help but notice the “bling” that President Kunkel had on – what is the story behind the medal he wears?”
Danny Carpenter ’14 asks: “Who is the Phil in Phil’s, the Ed in Ed’s Cafe, the Ruth in Ruth’s Marketplace and the Dale in Dale’s Sports Lounge?”
Tim Berto ’07 asks: “Where were the science classrooms before JMS was built?”
Jay DeCleene ’94 asks: “How long has the ROTC program been at SNC?”
Elizabeth Krajnik ’15 asks: “Which fraternity and sorority were the first to be founded at St. Norbert, and which Greek group has been on campus the longest?”
Sami Quinn ’08 asks “Who was the first Ugly Man?”
Kathleen McKitrick ’11 asks: “Which current faculty member has been teaching at St. Norbert the longest?”
MaryBeth Earle Davich Ascher ’71 asks: “How many students have graduated from St. Norbert College?”
Holly Nickerson ’15 asks: “I was wondering, how old is Norby the Knight? Also, when he reaches the end of his fourth year on campus, can he receive an honorary degree? I think it'd be a really cute idea if Norby could graduate, too!”
Casey Wopat ’07 asks: “What’s this year’s homecoming theme?”
Colleen Shore ’14 asks: “As a student, I have walked past the sculpture of St. Norbert many times between classes. How long has the sculpture been there? Is there particular meaning behind what he is holding?”
Dan King ’15 asks: “Did any former St. Norbert football players ever go on to play for the Green Bay Packers?”
Jay DeCleene '94 asks: “It was exciting to hear that the De Pere Norbertines recently re-elected the Rt. Rev. Gary Neville as their abbot. How does the election process work?”
Samantha Schurhammer ’12 asks: “At this year’s Commencement, it was quite a sight to see all the faculty and even staff wearing a cap and gown along with me and my classmates. Has this always been the tradition at St. Norbert?
Quent Below ’70 asks: “Is one of the existing fraternities on the St. Norbert campus a successor to the Kappa Chi fraternity that existed in the late 1960s? I was a founding member of KX.”
Mary Symak asks: “Many years ago in my younger days when Bart Starr was still the Green Bay Packers coach, I attended the Summer Theological Institute. I am wondering if that is still being offered, or if there is something akin to that for us old duffers who may want a quick uplift in our spiritual renewal?”
Jena Paul ’14 asks: “Was Van Dyke Gym the first gymnasium at St. Norbert College?”
Brett Buboltz ’08 asks: “When was the first St. Norbert College Magazine published?”
Christine Linnehan Strigenz ’76 asks: “I lived in Mad/Lor Hall and am curious to know why it was given that name. What is the story behind it?”
Paul “Beta” Koehler ’59 asks: “What is the significance and meaning behind St. Norbert College’s presidential seal?”
Connor Romenesko ’15 asks: “Where did St. Norbert College football games take place prior to Schneider and Minahan stadiums?”
Nick Fry ’08 asks: “What state has the highest population of SNC alumni, other than Wisconsin?”
Patti VandenBusch Albers ’76 asks: “It’s quite remarkable that the St. Norbert College Music Theatre program is celebrating its 50th year this summer. I’m curious as to what the first production was.”
Patti VandenBusch Albers ’76 asks: “I noticed that the Shakespeare Garden between JMS, Bemis, Cofrin, and Todd Wehr halls had pavers added to the walkway this spring. When was the garden created? And is it really named after William Shakespeare?”
Ashley Knoke ’10 asks: “When did St. Norbert change from an institution for future priests to a Catholic college open to any student?”
Brittany Draxler ’12 asks: “Was there really a high school on campus at one time?”
James Reinkober ’55 asks: “Now that Minahan Stadium is history, who was the Minahan for whom the stadium was named? Did he contribute the funds for the stadium?”
Jess Kropp ’12 asks, “Abbot Pennings, what would you like for Christmas?”
Bern Diederich ’65 asks: “What notable American read the oath of office to the graduating ROTC cadets from the class of 1965?”
Mallory Ford ’09 asks: “Back in the day there was a St. Norbert yearbook. Do you know why the title of it used to be ‘Des Pères’?”
Tressa Boldt ’10 asks: “Is it true that a former Green Bay Packer player was involved in a St. Norbert Homecoming?”
Alissa Roff ’09 asks: “When was the first year in which St. Norbert College graduated more women than men?”
Bridget Zach ’11 asks: “Who is Mel Nicks and why is St. Norbert’s sports complex named after him?”
Andrew McIlree ’06 asks: “During my Commencement from St. Norbert, I recall the Norbertines wearing a special hat that I believe is called a biretta. Does it symbolize anything in particular?”
Carla Cucciatti Overbeck ’66 asks: "After reading an article in the current St. Norbert College alumni magazine about married alumni who met at St. Norbert, I wonder if there are any other couples who met at Camp Tivoli (the Norbertine camp near Cecil, Wis.) the way my husband and I did. I am a St. Norbert alumna, and Julius was a counselor at the camp. We married a year after graduation and are still together."
Arnie Beimborn ’43 asks: "From my college days – ’39 to ’43 – I remember Fr. Anselm Keefe’s constant companion, a dog named Betsy. Father left the campus with Betsy riding backward in the sidecar of his motorcycle. Any information on what happened to Betsy?"
Jessica Flynt ’03 asks: "I was wondering, what is the name of the crowd-pumping song played as the men’s hockey team enters the ice? And how long has our hockey program been around?"
Brian Kerhin ’92 asks: "As I was giving my five-year-old daughter a quick walking tour of campus this past weekend, we came upon a sculpture in front of JMS that I think it used to be in front of Main Hall. I am wondering what it’s called, when it was installed and how much it cost."
Paul Conners asks: "I read with interest a previously submitted question about the college's "Alma Mater" song. If I read your answer correctly, Heather Schmidt (Music) wrote the lyrics - but who wrote the music?"
Kat (Kilok) Herald '07 asks: "What are the most popular items at the caf nowadays? Chicken Caesar salad night and Pizza Hut night were always a hit when I was a student."
Frank McQuilkin '53 asks: "How many Norbertines are there at St. Norbert Abbey?"
Kaylee Beck '13 asks: "I'm not an alum (yet), but I have a question. What does the "F.K." stand for in F.K. Bemis International Center?"
Deirdre Gehant, parent and Packer fan asks: "Now August is here it will be preseason for football. Just what is the history of the relationship between the Packers and St. Norbert College? Is it true they hold their training camp on campus? Are the Green Knight cheerleaders also Packer cheerleaders? Is one of our priests also the priest to the Packers team? Any other interesting tidbits to share?"
Christine Donovan '07 asks: "Dear Abbot Pennings, when I was a student, there was a white squirrel on campus. Is it still around?"
Kristen Buettner '09 asks: "Dear Abbot Pennings, there was a son we sang at graduation... I believe it was called the "Alma Mater." Could you share with me the history behind it?"
Caitlin Zach '09 asks: "Dear Abbot Pennings, now that you have relocated to your place of honor inside the new library, I'm worried I won't be able to take a photo with you before I leave St. Norbert. It has been a tradition of so many graduates who have come before me - how can you keep it going?"
Beth Clabots '83 asks: "Dear Abbot, I keep hearing that the old library will be renovated - but into what? I am curious to know, having spent many an evening inside its walls."
Kim Szatkowski '81 asks: "Abbot, I've always heard what a wonderful, generous man my great uncle, Father Luke Dionne, was. But he died suddenly when I was very young - I believe that would have been in the 1960s. Now, since nearly everyone who knew him is deceased, I wonder if the college archives have any more information on his legacy?
By the way, it is interesting that the Dionne family coat of arms includes the fleur-de-lis, also associated with the Norbertines, and that the family motto is "In Service to God." Just curious, perhaps this went into Luke's decision to become a Norbertine priest?"
Nick Patton '03 asks: "Abbot, the last time I saw you, you were not looking yourself at all. Would you like to tell us about what's been happening to you recently?"
Libby Hauser '08 asks: "Who was Francis Boyle? How did Boyle Hall come to be named after him?"
Maribeth Frinzi '05 asks: "How 'old' is Old St. Joe's?"
Chris Kirwen '08 asks: "I've noticed that the school was referred to as St. Norbert's College at one time. When as the 's' removed?"
Grace Meyer '84 asks: "I know you keep up to date with events on campus. Are any of the social groups getting together during Reunion Weekend this fall? In particular, the women from No Nonsense? It would be great to catch up with them."
Ragan Prucha Jorgensen '97 asks: "I'm curious to know how long the Green Bay Packers have been using St. Norbert College for training camp."
Kate Geenen '89 asks: "I have heard that an elephant participated in a particular St. Norbert Homecoming parade. Did this really happen, and if so, when?"
Billy Falk '08 asks: "As a recent graduate, I understand that I am now an official member of the St. Norbert College Alumni Association. I'm curious to know how long the alumni association has been in existence."
Sarah Kaminski '08 asks: "I'm graduating this May and I'm sad that I won't be on campus to see the building of the new Mulva Library. Are there plans to keep alumni informed of the progress?"
John Connelly '89 asks: "I've heard that there was an auditorium housed in Main Hall. What have been all the uses for Main Hall over the years?"
Kara Wymelenberg Eulgen '91 asks: "Are there time capsules in any campus buildings, and if so, do you know what's in them?"
Mike Kelly '08 asks: "What is inside the dome on top of the Ray Van Den Heuvel Family Campus Center?"
George Ermert '02 asks: "What is the oldest social group on campus?"
Allison Schmidt '05 asks: "Is it really true that a Miss America attended St. Norbert College?"
Tom Vavrek '70 asks: "Father Anselm Keefe obtained a large cannon for the lawn in front of Main Hall in the 1920s. A smaller cannon was placed there in the 1960s. We held a huge pro-Vietnam War rally there in 1966, prominently featured in the 1967 yearbook. What became of both cannons?"
Brian Bunkelman '94 asks: "You referred to the St. Norbert school colors in last month's letter. What is the origin of the Green and Gold - did we take them from the Packers?"
James Boyd '84 asks: "I have always wondered how St. Norbert came to adopt the Green Knight mascots. Do you know the history on this?"
Mallory Kroon '06 asks: "My time at St. Norbert was made even better because of some great professors I had. I'm a teacher myself now, and I'd love to find a way that I can easily connect with some of the faculty. Is there a way that I can do this?"
Ed Bellock '78 asks: "I heard a rumor that the armored Green Knight on display in Schuldes Sports Center 'disappeared' from campus at one point in time. Did this really happen?"
Ann Hillman '04 asks: "What programs or fields of study are most commonly selected by current students? Are there newer academic programs now available to students at St. Norbert?"
Sarah Schmidt '05 asks: "Before leaving SNC, many students have been known to climb up onto your lap in the middle of the night - braver students in broad daylight - and take a photograph with you as a St. Norbert keepsake. Do you mind when people sit on your lap and take pictures?"
Kristin Michails '03 asks: "As time passes from our graduation date I have started to lose track of some of my St. Norbert friends. Addresses change so fast as people get new jobs, shift careers or get married. Can you help me locate them?"
Olivia Dart '99 asks: "My husband and I met while we were students at St. Norbert College. I was wonderin how many couples who met at St. Norbert are now married?"
"How did the college radio station come by its call letters?"
Cathleen "Kitty" (Leonard) Finn '82 asks: "The cafeteria served the most delicious broccoli cheese casserole. The chef, J.R., finally parted with the recipe and it's been a part of my family's celebrations ever since. What is the most popular meal for students at the cafeteria today?"
"When did the tradition of "uglies" and "queens" first begin on campus?"
"I heard that astronaut John Glenn attended St. Norbert College in the 1960s."
"I've heard so much about ghosts on campus, especially in the current bookstore (formally St. Boniface). Any truth to these rumors?"