Berea College Welcomes Public to 2019 Opening Convocation

Lyle Roelofs, President of Berea College

Lyle Roelofs, President of Berea College

The public is invited to join the entire Berea College community in marking the beginning of the 2019-20 academic year at the College’s Opening Convocation on Thursday, August 29, 2019, at 3 p.m. in the Seabury Center. The program is free.

The theme for this year’s opening convocation will be Berea Stories.

“Berea consists of 1,600 great stories, stories of challenge, accomplishment and triumph,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “Every Berea student has a compelling story, as do all other Bereans— faculty, staff, alumni and retirees—who together constitute our wonderful community. Opening Convocation 2019 is a celebration of all those stories and how they connect and reinforce one another.”

This Opening Convocation will feature remarks by President Roelofs and representatives from the College community—including student, faculty, staff, alumni and retiree speakers—who will briefly share their own Berea stories. Special music will be performed by Berea College students and faculty.

This annual event opens the College’s year-long convocation series of lectures, symposia, concerts and performing arts productions. The series includes the Stephenson Memorial Concerts and offers outstanding scholars, artists and leaders that enhance the intellectual, aesthetic and religious life, and make important contributions to students’ educational experience at Berea College. View the schedule of all convocations this academic year. All convocations are free and open to the public.

Berea Named One of the Best 385 Colleges in the Princeton Review’s 2020 Guide

Graduates celebrating in Seabury Center

(Photo: Crystal Wylie ’05)

Princeton Review 2020 CoverThe Princeton Review has once again included Berea College in its just-released publication of The Best 385 Colleges: 2020 Edition.

Berea is nationally recognized for its high-quality education and its distinctive labor program, which hires every admitted student to help operate the school. Berea is also known for its Tuition Promise Scholarship that covers the $44,100 annual tuition cost for every student. That is particularly meaningful for Berea’s students since most come from families making an average of $29,000 and are the first in their families to attend college.

The Princeton Review’s list of best colleges is based on input from students at America’s schools on a survey that asked students 84 questions about their school’s academics, administration, campus community and themselves. The answer format uses a five-point Likert scale to convert qualitative student assessments into quantitative data for school-to-school comparisons. The company does not rank the 385 schools in the book hierarchically, from 1 to 385 in any category. Instead The Princeton Review surveyed 140,000 students at 385 of the nation’s top colleges to rate their schools on dozens of topics important to applicants and their parents.

“Berea’s continued recognition among America’s top schools is gratifying,” said Lyle D. Roelofs, president of Berea College. “Berea’s no-tuition model is especially important to our students whose families seek the kind of high-quality liberal arts education Berea College offers, but cannot afford to pay tuition. The national attention on Berea from organizations such as The Princeton Review helps families connect with a school that will meet their needs. This recognition also puts a spotlight on Berea’s many alumni and friends whose contributions replace tuition so that our student’s outcomes are not limited by their financial situations.” 

“The 385 colleges for this edition were chosen as ‘best’ overall, academically, based on data gathered in 2018–19 from more than a thousand school administrators about their schools’ academic programs and offerings,” said Robert Franek, The Princeton Review’s editor-in-chief and lead author of the book.

Berea College Nursing Program Named No. 1 Best Value in Kentucky

Three nursing students performing work on a dummy

Nursing students, from left, Palkyi Palkyi ’20, Bidhya Dhital ’20 and Bridget Bill ’20, administer a nebulizer treatment to the new SimMan Essential High-Fidelity simulator in the nursing wing of the new Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building. (Photo: Oluwatobi Adejumo ’20)

Berea College has been ranked by Nursing Explorer as the best-value RN program, taking the No. 1 spot out of 39 programs ranked in Kentucky. The annual ranking is made after reviewing data from more than 3,000 U.S. nursing schools. The ranking is based on information from governmental organizations, institutional information from the Department of Education and accreditation information from Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc.

Using National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) pass rate for nursing students and net-price of nursing schools to formulate the ranking parameters, in 2019 Nursing Explorer ranked 1,721 schools across 45 states. A 70 percent weight was assigned to the NCLEX pass rate and a 30 percent weight was given to net-price. The result of the calculation is a score between one and 100 that reflects the quality of education offered at each school and its affordability. If a school has a high NCLEX pass rate and low tuition (or provides sizeable financial aid), then its ranking will be higher.

The data is made available to prospective students through a searchable database to provide students with useful insights into the nursing programs available in every state.

Berea College’s Nursing Department is the oldest college-affiliated program west of the Alleghenies. In keeping with the College’s aims and commitments, the mission of the nursing program is to prepare students with great promise and limited economic resources for the practice of professional nursing in a variety of health care settings and to provide a foundation for graduate study in nursing. Berea’s baccalaureate degree program in nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and is also approved by the Kentucky Board of Nursing.

View the complete list of nursing schools along with their rankings.


Upcoming Event

Berea College Department of Nursing is hosting an educational and interactive experience as distinguished professor and author, Laura Dzurec, PhD, PMHCNS-BC, ANEF, FAAN, presents healthy responses to workplace bullying on Thursday, August 22.

Dr. Dzurec currently serves as Senior Scholar in the Boston College Connell School of Nursing. Previously, she served as Dean at Widener University, Kent State University, and the University of Connecticut and held various posts at Oregon Health Science University, University of Maine, The Ohio State University, Kent State University, and Case Western Reserve University. She is a Fellow in the National League for Nursing’s (USA) Academy of Nursing Education and the American Academy of Nursing.

See full event details, including how to reserve your spot by August 9, here.

Berea College Science Building Gains LEED Green Building Gold and FSC Certifications

MAC Building Exterior

Berea College announced that the newly-built Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building (MAC) has been awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification and full project certification by the Forest Stewardship Council.

The LEED rating system was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) to assess and recognize buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human-health performance. The Forest Stewardship Council, which promotes environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of forests worldwide, certified the full project.

“Gaining LEED Gold is no easy task to accomplish with any building, much less one as large and complex as the MAC,” said Derrick Singleton, vice president of operations and sustainability at Berea College. “This building continues to support Berea’s mission to promote an environmentally safe and sustainable way of life.”

Berea College achieved LEED certification for implementing practical and measurable strategies and solutions aimed at achieving high performance in sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

“We also received the Forest Stewardship Council’s Full Project Certification for the MAC,” said Richard Dodd, LEED AP, director of Project Management at Berea College. “This certification requires a full audit of all wood products used in construction and verified to have been sourced with ecological responsibility.”

“This makes Berea home to five of eight such FSC certified projects in the U.S. and one of only 85 worldwide. These are testaments of our efforts to ‘tread softly’ on the environment while still making big impacts,” Dodd continued.

LEED promotes environmentally- and socially-responsible construction and operation of green buildings in order to improve quality of life. Berea College had both the first LEED-certified building in Kentucky (Lincoln Hall, the College’s administration building) and the first LEED certified hotel (Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant). Berea’s campus is also home to several LEED certified residence halls.

“Achieving LEED certification is more than implementing sustainable practices. It represents a commitment to making the world a better place and influencing others to do better,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO, USGBC. “Given the extraordinary importance of climate protection and the central role of the building industry in that effort, Berea College demonstrates their leadership through their LEED certification of The Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health project.

Elite and Affordable

Draper Building

Question: What do Harvard, Duke, Stanford, Princeton and Berea have in common?
Answer:  They were all named as the top five elite universities that also are the most affordable for low-income families.

Skyler Lucci, CEO of HeyTutor, says that with need-blind admissions and generous financial aid programs, “America’s most elite universities are also the most affordable for low-income families while also providing an excellent education.” Berea College is among the top 5.

Using data from research conducted by The Hamilton Project, an economic policy initiative at the Brookings Institution, Lucci’s article, published by T74 (the74million.org) states that sometimes students and parents don’t fully understand the financial aid process or the difference between the published and net prices. As a result, low-income students may (wrongly) assume elite schools will be too expensive for them, when in fact, substantial financial resources are available to them. For example, Lucci points out that “Unlike most colleges in the U.S., Berea does not charge tuition in the traditional sense. Instead, it covers costs through endowment income, funds from donations and other sources of financial aid.” The article also states that Berea is an “. . . excellent institution of higher education for students with limited economic means.”

Berea College to Host Open House at Woodworking School at Pine Croft

Berea College invites the public to an open house at the Woodworking School at Pine Croft, Saturday, July 13, from 10am-1pm. The open house event will provide information about the upcoming classes and an opportunity to meet our staff. Andy Glenn, Berea College’s director of Woodcraft and the head of the Woodworking School at Pine Croft, will demonstrate woodworking techniques and be available for questions during the event.

The Woodworking School at Pine Croft will offer two courses this summer, both of which will focus on production of Shaker-influenced furniture. The first class will be held July 22-27, 2019. This class “Building a Two Drawer Side Table,” will be taught by Kelly Mehler and assisted by Andy Glenn. The class is currently fully booked, but names are being accepted for a wait list.

Openings are still available for the second class, “Building a Two Drawer Peg-Leg Stand,” that will be held August 5-9, 2019. This class will be taught by Andy Glenn and assisted by Kelly Mehler. Contact Aaron Beale at 859-985-3224 to register or email: bealeaa@berea.edu

A woodworking school for adults, Pine Croft is a newly-added component in the repertoire of Berea College’s Crafts Program. It extends Berea’s support to the local, regional and national crafts communities. Located just minutes from campus and adjacent to the Berea College Forest at 1865 Big Hill Road in Berea, KY, the woodworking school is on the site of the former Kelly Mehler’s School of Woodworking. The full schedule of classes for 2020 will be announced on October 15th. The 2020 classes will be taught by expert instructors from all over the country.  Learn more about the classes currently offered.

The school was named “Pine Croft” after the title originally given to the property by Mrs. Anna Ernberg, the weaving director of Berea College’s Fireside Industries, when she made her home on the site in the early 1900s. The new woodworking school will continue the tradition of fine woodworking for which both the College and Kelly Mehler are well known.

Wood Worker’s Journal Features Berea’s Craft Expansion Through New Pine Croft School

Berea student working with woodcraft

Pine Croft, a woodworking school for adults, has been added to the repertoire of the Berea College Crafts Program and extends Berea’s support to the local, regional and national crafts communities. Located just minutes from campus and adjacent to the Berea College Forest, the woodworking school is on the site of the former Kelly Mehler’s School of Woodworking, which has been renamed The Woodworking School at Pine Croft.

Continue reading Wood Worker’s Journal Features Berea’s Craft Expansion Through New Pine Croft School

Nerdwallet Spotlights Berea’s Student Work Program

Student carrying a plant at the Ecovillage

Nerdwallet, a personal financial services blogsite that provides information on banking, credit cards, college loans, mortgage loans, insurance, and stock trading, highlighted Berea College in a recent article. The feature focused on Berea’s Student Labor Program and two other schools that are members of the Work Colleges Consortium that also require students to work.

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Channell Barbour Named Vice President for Student Life

Dr. Channell Barbour portrait

Dr. Channell Barbour

Berea College President Lyle Roelofs appointed Channell Barbour as vice president for Student Life. Barbour, who is currently serving as associate dean of Student Life, will replace Virgil Burnside upon his retirement June 30.

“As vice president for Student Life, Dr. Barbour will serve on the Administrative Committee and be an officer of the College,” Roelofs said. “I want to thank her for being willing to take on this important responsibility, and I look forward to working with her in the leadership of Berea College.”

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Berea College Alums Produce Scholarship Performance

Noel and Reb cast

Berea College alumni and former College staff members are performing in “Noel and Reb,” the final play at Berea Arena Theater. The play, a comedy by Paul Nelson Power ’58, is being performed as a tribute to Power’s widow, Barbara Byrd Power ’56.

“The proceeds go to the Paul Nelson Power Scholarship at Berea College in memory of this legendary professor, author and director,” said Eddie Kennedy ’68, who is the founder and producer of Berea Arena Theater. “The scholarship was established in 1998 by students, friends and family to honor his boundless energy and enthusiasm for theatre.”

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Saderholm Named Berea’s Dean of Faculty

Matt Saderholm

Dr. Matthew Saderholm

Berea College President Lyle Roelofs appointed Dr. Matthew Saderholm as dean of faculty following a recommendation of the dean selection committee. Saderholm succeeds Dr. Chad Berry, who has served as dean since 2011.

“I am honored to be selected as the next Dean of the Faculty at Berea College,” Saderholm said. “The support of my colleagues and administrators has been truly humbling and I will work hard to validate their trust in me. Beyond sustaining the excellent work of our outgoing Dean and Provost, Chad Berry, I will focus on listening to my faculty colleagues so that we can move forward collectively on what is most important.”

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Hyde Park Living Features Berea College and Boone Tavern

Group of Berea students outside at Fee Glade

Berea College and Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant each were featured in recent issues of Hyde Park Living, a lifestyles publication based in the metro-Cincinnati area. Given Berea’s close proximity, many Cincinnati residents find Berea an enjoyable destination for day trips and weekend visits. Laura Hobson, a writer for Hyde Park Living, visited the College and the City of Berea for her three-part article series, which not only describe historic and contemporary features, but also include connections to Cincinnati. Several of the College’s buildings were designed by Cincinnati-based architects, and students, such as Gerald Thomas, a junior majoring in technology and applied science came to Berea from Cincinnati. Read part two of the article, featuring Berea College, and part three of the article, featuring Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant.

Sixteen Berea College Students Awarded $42,000 in Gilman Scholarships

Sixteen Berea College students won Gilman Scholarships for international study this summer in seven countries on five continents. Morgan Guess will study in Argentina; Justin Vankirk in Australia; Kerron Liggins and Caitlyn Roberts in Ecuador; Ethan Dye in France; Moriah Avery, Kristen Timmins and Victoria Otto in Ireland; and Furaha Irankunda and Elizabeth Owens in Tanzania. Another student, Izabella Walker, was named an alternate for study in Thailand. Six other Berea students had previously been notified earlier this spring that their advance scholarship applications had been approved for study abroad this summer. They include Lucas Collett and Brianna Dewitt who will study in Ireland, Nicole Itumba in Argentina, Kailyn Johnson in Sri Lanka, Day’sha’ron Sloan in China and Alonna Walker in Tanzania.

Continue reading Sixteen Berea College Students Awarded $42,000 in Gilman Scholarships

Three Alumni to be Recognized for Outstanding Contributions

Three Berea College alumni will be recognized with special awards during this year’s Summer Reunion. The Rodney C. Bussey Award of Special Merit will be presented to Virgil Burnside ’74 and Jackie Grisby Burnside ’74. The Berea Alumni Loyalty Award will be presented to Peter S. Thoms ’55. These three alumni will be celebrated during the Alumni Awards Presentation and Reception at 10 a.m., Sat., June 15 in the Boone Tavern Event Center. RSVP to attend the Alumni Awards Presentation and Reception here.

Each year the Berea College Alumni Association recognizes achievements of alumni with considerations given to professional accomplishments and service to their alma mater.

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Berea College Confers Degrees on 248 Graduates at Commencement

After remarks by American author and poet George Ella Lyon, Berea College conferred degrees to 248 graduates at Commencement on May 5. Focused on the topic of “Beginning Again,” Lyon said, “You can’t be sure where your path will take you. What you can be sure of is that it will change, you will change, the world and those you care for will change, too. Your job is to stay in touch with yourself and what matters to you most through these transformations.”

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Dr. Linda Strong-Leek Named Berea College Provost

Dr. Linda Strong-Leek Portrait

Dr. Linda Strong-Leek

Berea College President Lyle Roelofs appointed Dr. Linda Strong-Leek as provost, effective July 1. She currently serves the College as vice president for Diversity and Inclusion, associate vice president for Academic Affairs and professor of women’s and gender studies and General studies.

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Berea Hosts Race Dialogue in Washington, D.C.

Naomi Tutu speaking at podium

Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu ’83 addressed around 80 people at the Dialogue on Race and Education held in Washington, D.C. on April 27.

Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu captivated her audience of fellow Berea College alumni and donors while speaking at the Dialogue on Race and Education hosted by Berea College at the Newseum in Washington D.C. on April 27. Tutu, a 1983 alumna, shared experiences from her own life—both as the daughter of Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu growing up in Apartheid in South Africa and as a mother in the U.S.—to illustrate the challenges that people of color face in dealing with race in their everyday lives.

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Emmanuel A. Tuffuor ’88 Elected to Berea College Board of Trustees

Emmanuel A. Tuffuor headshot

Emmanuel A. Tuffuor ’88

Emmanuel A. Tuffuor ’88, CPA, was elected to serve on the Berea College Board of Trustees on April 13, 2019. His six-year term will run through June 30, 2025.

Tuffuor is the Head of Private Equity Business Development for the Americas and Global Head of Tax for Apex Fund Services, where his responsibilities include expanding the private equity fund administration business in the Americas as well as developing a comprehensive tax strategy to serve existing and future clients.

“It is a great honor and privilege to serve such a wonderful and historic institution that has changed so many lives and has a very special place in our hearts and lives,” Tuffuor said. “I look forward to serving and contributing to the progress of Berea College and continuing to fulfill the great commitments that has made Berea College unique in American education.”

From 1996 until March 2018, Tuffuor was with KPMG, LLP in New York, where he was a senior partner. He served as partner-in-charge of the Alternative Investment Tax Practice, one of the firm’s priority industries. He previously was associated with Coopers & Lybrand LLP and Deloitte & Touche LLP.

Tuffuor has provided leadership as a member of the Board of Directors of KPMG LLP, partner-in-charge of the Metro New York Alternative Investments Tax Practice and National Industry Tax Leader for the Asset Management Practice. He has extensive experience with strategic acquisitions including serving on the due diligence and post-acquisition integration team relating to KPMG’s acquisition of a regional accounting firm.

Throughout his career, Tuffuor has been active in professional associations, including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New York State & Maryland Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Wall Street Tax Association. He has authored and co-authored industry-related articles, taught courses on taxation of hedge funds and investment partnerships and served as panelist at numerous industry seminars.

A resident of Plainsboro, New Jersey, Tuffuor’s undergraduate education was at Berea College, where he earned a BA degree in economics and BS degree in business administration. He holds an MA in economics from Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia and a MAcc in taxation from the J.M. Tull School of Accounting at the University of Georgia.

George Ella Lyon to Speak at Berea College Commencement

George Ella Lyon

(Photo: Ann W. Olson)

George Ella Lyon, Kentucky Poet Laureate for 2015-16, will speak at Berea College’s 2019 Commencement Ceremony, May 5 at 2 p.m.

An American author and poet, Lyon has published award-winning books for readers of all ages. Her teaching takes the form of workshops, conferences and author visits to as many as 40 schools a year. Aside from publishing, she also taught writing at a number of colleges, including the University of Kentucky, Centre College, Transylvania University and Radford University. She has also acted as an executive committee member for the Women’s Writers Conference.

Adults and children read Lyon’s writing, which includes novels, picture books and poetry. Her poem, “Where I’m From” has been used as a model by teachers around the world and was listed by the New York Public Library in 2000 as one of the best books for teenagers. A sampling of Lyon’s book titles include “She Let Herself Go” (poems) and picture books including “Which Side Are You On?” “The Story of a Song” and “All the Water in the World.” Her book “The Pirate of Kindergarten” received the Schneider Award from the American Library Association. Other accolades for Lyon’s work include a Jane Addams Honor, a Golden Kite and the Bluegrass Award. A series of rhyming books about transportation include “Trucks Roll!,” “Planes Fly!,” and “Boats Float!”

Lyon is a graduate of Centre College, and holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Arkansas and doctorate in English from Indiana University.

Originally from the mountains of Harlan, Kentucky, Lyon says growing up surrounded by extended family and their stories helped develop her voice as a writer. Her Appalachian roots figure prominently in much of her work. Lyon has written more than 40 books, including the poetry collection “Mountain,” which won the Lamont Hall Award in 1983, and “Catalpa,” which was named Appalachian Book of the Year in 1993.

Tickets are required for admission to the Commencement ceremony. Tickets must be obtained in advance and are required for main arena as well as overflow seating. Contact Amanda Leger (legera@berea.edu or 859-985-3775 directly for ticket requests by Friday, April 19. Please note that seating is limited and cannot be guaranteed. Watch the ceremony via livestream on May 5 at 2 p.m.

Earlier in the day, a Nurses’ Pinning Ceremony for Berea’s nursing program graduates will take place at 8:30 a.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

The Baccalaureate Ceremony will follow at 10:30 a.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel. Rev. Paul Prather, pastor of Bethesda Church in Mount Sterling, Kentucky and a contributing columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader will be the speaker. Music will be provided by the Berea College Concert Choir.  (No tickets are required for the Nurses’ Pinning or Baccalaureate ceremonies.)

Berea College Student Shyeila Bowers Named a Newman Civic Fellow

Shy Bowers headshot

Shyeila “Shy” Bowers ’20

Shyeila “Shy” Bowers, a junior at Berea College, is one of 262 students named as a Newman Civic Fellow for 2019-2020 by Campus Compact, a Boston-based non-profit organization advancing the public purposes of higher education.

“Shy is a hard-working and positive student leader and undergraduate scholar,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “She uses her community-building approaches to promote dialogue and action to address pressing social issues.”

Continue reading Berea College Student Shyeila Bowers Named a Newman Civic Fellow

Red Molly to Perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial Concert

Red Molly group portrait

(Photo: Whitney Kidder)

Red Molly, a group known for American music ranging from blues and folk, to country and bluegrass, will perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on Thursday, April 11, at 8 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

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Nobel Prize Comes “Home” to Berea

Berea College installed a Nobel Prize—won by alumnus John Fenn ’37, for his notable work in chemistry—in the new Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building. Science faculty, students, College officials and family members of the late Dr. Fenn gathered to hear remarks about his development of Electrospray Ionization and its impact on developing life-saving medicines.

Berea College Announces Winners of “Appalachian Narratives for Our Time” Awards

Berea College’s Loyal Jones Appalachian Center has announced the winners of the “Appalachian Narratives for Our Time” award for essays about how Appalachians thrive in the places they call home.

The submitted essays focus on the authors’ compelling life stories and illustrate the challenges of coming of age, working and living in the realities of family and community.

“Appalachia has a rich and, at the same time, challenging history,” said Chris Green, director of the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center. “All too often, however, national media portrays difficulties in the region as the fault of people who live here. We wanted to give the majority of Appalachians who grow up and make good lives a new opportunity to tell their stories.”

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Needle Work Musical Drama Coming to Berea College March 26th

Higher Ground will present an original one-act musical drama, Needle Work, at the Phelps Stokes Chapel at 7 p.m., Tuesday March 26, 2019. The performance includes stories collected in eastern Kentucky communities and music from the cast and local musicians. It is free and open to the public.

Needle Work examines the pros and cons of needle exchanges, where substance abusers can exchange dirty syringes for clean ones without fear of legal consequences, as a way of stemming the spread of diseases such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS.

Continue reading Needle Work Musical Drama Coming to Berea College March 26th

Dervish to Perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial Concert

Dervish

(Photo: Colin Gillen)

Dervish, acclaimed as one of the biggest names in Irish music internationally, will perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on Thursday Mar. 14 at 8 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

Described as “an icon of Irish music” by the BBC and “the most soulful Irish traditional folk band playing today,” by Irish journalist and broadcaster Stuart Bailie, Dervish has played at festivals from Rio to Glastonbury. They come to Berea just in time to set the mood for St. Patrick’s Day.

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