Monthly Archives: February 2016

Thailand Mission Trip in Need of Funds


By: Jessica N.

On March 9th, Andrews Academy Silhouettes and String Orchestra will be boarding a plane to Thailand. After a 22-hour flight and a 3-hour layover in Dubai they will land in Bangkok.

“The goal of the trip is to be missionaries spreading God’s love through music,” says music teacher Hector Flores. For 10 days they will be performing at different venues such as churches, schools, and hospitals. Jeannie Leiterman, principal of Andrews Academy, will be joining the group on their trip.


Silhouettes, AA’s select choir, performs at the Paw Paw SDA church, January 16.

While in Thailand the group will spend time exploring the beautiful countryside and famous landmarks as well as enjoying the warm weather. Flores plans on taking the group on a boat ride around Phuket Island.

Flores’ connection with Thailand started when a previous music teacher at Andrews Academy, Mr. Karlton Keller, called asking for old recordings from the school. The two soon made plans to have the music groups make a trip to Thailand during spring break.

A trip like this is not easy to put together and requires much time and planning, as well as significant funding. Each student must raise 1,500 dollars. And although 53 students will be making the trip, those funds are barely enough to cover all expenses.

Offerings from local community churches during performances have provided additional funding, but more is still needed as the departure date approaches.

Students who cannot raise enough money are feeling the pressure of not making the trip to Thailand. Flores has provided prewritten letters for the students to send to family members and friends. Many students have been proactive, sending as many letters as possible, while others have been slack in their fundraising. In the past Flores would never leave students behind because of financial problems, but he says this year may be different due to the lack of effort from many of the students.

Although money is a big issue, Director Flores says the biggest challenge is dealing with the long distance planning that he is not able to supervise. He is asking for prayers that everything will go smoothly.

Anyone wishing to contribute to tour expenses is encouraged to contact Mr. Flores through Andrews Academy’s front office.


New class pushes students’ horizons beyond Berrien Springs

Pastor Glassford’s new Christian Service class meets to help students learn and understand what organizations do for people around the world, focusing on understanding how the organization works and how students can get involved.

One such organization students are studying is MSF, an organization that goes into other countries whenever there is a crisis. Helping people around the world, MSF works with doctors without borders to provide medical care to anyone, regardless of their religion, culture, or race. 

Glassford’s goal, he says, is to “push students’ horizons further than Berrien Springs.” Pastor Glassford says he wants students to “get excited about the challenges and rewards of living a selfless life.”

Christian Service class learns about other organizations as well: ADRA,, fundraising projects, investment projects in the Seventh-day Adventist traditions such as food and clothing drives by Andrews Academy for surrounding communities.

Instead of a textbook, this class has a lab fee of $25 dollars for all the different activities that will occur in class and to help with other projects that Glassford sees appropriate for the class. The course description emphasizes the Christian service core: “An introduction to a counter-cultural worldview that sees every human being as a brother/sister and every moment, every relationship and every resource a means of restoring in them the image of our maker.”

Students’ responses to the class have been positive. Senior Sandra Mosimbwa said, “I’m actually learning more than I thought I would. I would also consider becoming a humanitarian, but I’m not totally sure if I’m up for it.” When asked if she would recommend the class to other students, she said “Yes, I would. It would help open their eyes to many things.”


Andrews Cardinals vs Kalamazoo Homeschool

By: Olivia Woodard

The AA Junior Cardinal basketball teams are half way through their season. All four teams (JVG,JVB,VG,VB) have gone to[gone to is weak- what about “competed”, a good, strong verb?] a tournament [date?]at our sister college, Southern, in Collegedale, Tennessee. The teams fought tirelessly, with little sleep and hectic schedules.

The Girls Varsity won the Championship for 1st place and the Boys Varsity brought home the 3rd place trophy. Each week every player on the teams works 6-8 hours in the gym preparing for our[their] upcoming tournament: The Cardinal (Newmyer) Classic. But before they get to that on February 4-6 there are several games ahead of them against some tough opponents. 2/4 of the game days there were this week were cancelled due to snow and hazard.

The games last night[date] were tight games. The night started off with the Junior Varsity boys, coached by Jim Dronen, challenging the Kalamazoo homeschool in a hard back and forth lead battle all night. Kalamazoo pulled ahead in the end for a tough loss of 47-51. The tough fight was helped by sophomore Nate Greenhaw’s 11 points, freshman Max Dronen’s 9 points, and junior Chris Nwoke’s 6 points.

Varsity boys, coached by Bryan von Dorpowski and Christopher Davisson, followed the JV game, competing against tough competitor Varsity Kalamazoo Homeschool. This game was a hard-fought battle, ending with a tied score of 34-34 at half-time. Seniors David Sherman and Joseph Bradley played fantastic defense, trying to pull the game back with two blocks. Varsity boys eventually fell to the Homeschool after the tireless fight, 47-60. Michael von Dorpowski, senior captain, scored the game high of 12 points followed by seniors Chelliot Osuntade (Captain) and Mutungi Menani with 7 points.

The First to lead the way : Jeannie Leiterman

On February 12, Andrews Academy Board Chair Alayne Thorpe and the Andrews Academy Board announced that they voted to ask Jeannie Leiterman to serve as Principal. “Mrs.Leiterman has been serving as Interim Principal and all who have worked with her have come to appreciate her competence, her dedication and energy, and her loving, team-building leadership style,” says Thorpe.

Although Mrs. Jeannie Leiterman’s new role has been officially named, she has been doing the job for 7 months. Her leadership has been accepted, respected and appreciated by students, faculty, and staff, and parents. But the question is, what’s in the job of being principal?

I wanted to dig deeper to discover who Mrs.Leiterman is and what she thinks. I had a one-on-one talk with our new principal about her life, experiences, and advice.

Why did you choose teaching as your career?

“I had always known that I wanted to be a teacher. My mother said I did well in leading others. Though, along the way, I was studying to be a doctor – but as we can see, that didn’t work out.”

What is your vision for Andrews Academy?

“My vision for the academy is to make sure that it is a place where kids know God and have a personal relationship with him. A place that each student feels safe and secure. A place that students actually enjoy coming to school.”

What do you enjoy about working here?

“I’m grateful to be able to go to a job that I enjoy going to. The students, coworkers, and parents make it all worth it.”

How does it feel to be the first woman principal ?”

“Honestly, it hasn’t even occurred to me. I don’t feel like I’m making history like Barack Obama or even Hillary Clinton.”

Why do you bake for co-workers and not for students?

“I do bake for students. You just gotta come to my office. But it’s nice to treat my co-workers as well.”

Would you ever teach a baking class?

“I would , but it wouldn’t be healthy.”

What’s the hardest thing about being principal?”

“The hardest thing is where to draw the line. Some people have different situations, and knowing how to deal and decide can be tough.”
If you had to choose another profession or your dream job, what would it be ?

Since I love baking, I would love to own a bakery named Leiterman Mom’s Goods.

Will you ever hire/interview someone to have your old position or will the school just carry on without a vice-principal?

“The decision is not in my hands. The decision is decided by the board. Financially,where the school is now, one administrator is enough. If enrollment increased, then maybe a second administrator would be needed.”

What advice do you have for the students of AA?

“The most important thing is to know God. Always live to represent something bigger than you. Our lives will be drastically different if we do.”

Since we know a little bit more about Mrs.Leiterman, how do the students feel about Mrs.Leiterman? Students opinions matter. It encourages students to come back and to feel apart of the Andrews Academy family. To get an insight on how students feel, I asked Sarah Almeter  and Illy Mun on what they appreciate about Mrs.Leiterman?

Sarah Almeter, a senior at Andrews Academy, says, “I appreciate that she is more than an authority figure. She is a friend. Her office is a place of solitude and it’s a place where I feel welcomed.”

Illy Mun, a freshman at Andrews Academy, says, “She can relate and she talks to us like she has gone through similar problems before. And she is funny.”

It’s one thing being a student, but how does it feel as a teacher to work with her and to be under her leadership?

Mrs.Keila Sanchez, Spanish teacher at Andrews Academy, says, “She is a people person and approachable. I feel comfortable to be around her. And she is a great team leader.”

By these three interviews, I can truly say that “Mrs..Leiterman is appreciated and most welcomed by students and teachers. And that she has made an impression on people’s lives that she has interacted with.”

We are blessed to have such a humble person to lead this prestigious Adventist institution. Not too many schools are privileged to have such a leader that cares about the students, faculty, and staff and their well-being. As we continue to move forward in the years to come, we are putting our trust in God to lead Mrs. Leiterman and the school in the right direction.

Andrews Cardinals vs MCAC Wildcats

By: Olivia Woodard

Monday night the Varsity boys and girls team faced long-time opponents, the MCAC Wildcats. The cardinals have a history with this team in both the regular season and the Cardinal (Newmyer) Classic. For the past 10 years, the MCAC Wildcat Varsity girls have been undefeated against the Cardinal Women. They have also won the Cardinal Classic numerous times and are the reigning champions and number one threat.

Monday night’s double header started off with the varsity girls who charged into man-to-man defense right away in an attempt to secure a lead, then moving in to 2-3 zone D.

The girls showed hustle rebounding and scrapping for the stray balls, which is what kept them in the game, against the wildcats wide range shooters.

The Cardinal girls were tied at the half, 19-19. After a pep talk, they were ready to finish with the W. Going back into a shifting 2-3 zone secured the game. This exceptional defense is what shut down the usually unstoppable offense from the wildcats, who are notorious for hitting deep three’s.

It was a rough back and forth lead, foul-filled game, but the Cardinal Ladies were victorious against this team for the first time in 10 years, resulting in a score of 30-28.

This was a primarily defensive game but senior captain, Antoinette Cave, scored the game high of 9 points along with co-captain Taylor Ferris sinking 6 points, pulling 5 boards, and dumping 3 assists.

The triple header concluded with the varsity boys who started off solid and played exceptional defense.

The Wildcats had a great shooting night, which made the Cardinals step up their game once again.

In the end of the fourth quarter, the Cardinals were ahead 3 points, but a foul put the game on the line. The Wildcats were allowed two free throws, which were both sunk. Andrew’s attempt to tighten the defense succeeded and the Cardinal varsity boys took their first win at home.

Senior captain Chelliot Osuntade was on fire and scored a career high of 21 points, 3 rebounds, and 1 block. Junior starting point guard, Caleb Gomez, scored 11 points, and tossed 2 dimes. Senior, Mutungi Menani, contributed offensively with 10 points and Senior Joseph Bradley III helped the team defensively with 7 rebounds.


Andrews Cardinals vs La Lumiere

By: Olivia Woodard

Thursday night the Junior cardinal teams played returning competitors La Lumiere from Laporte, Indiana. The results varied dramatically, starting off with the Junior Varsity boys, coached by Jim Dronen and John Dronen, against JV La Lumiere boys. Our boys played a well structured, fast paced game and blew out the other team 70-33, giving all the player’s equal opportunity to get good playing time and score on ease.

The next game on this cold Thursday night was the Varsity Girls, coached by Anthony Cave, assistant coach Christopher Davisson and Cardinal Alumna Hayley Smoot. The Cardinal girls were lacking players due to many people absent due to bible camp, so they had to pull up a few girls from the JV. It was hard fought and back and forth the entire time, but the La Lumiere girls pulled ahead in the fourth quarter for a devastating loss to the Varsity girls, 30-35. Senior Captain Taylor Ferris had the game high of 14 points followed by senior Olivia Woodard, with 8 points and 4 rebounds and freshman starter Illiana Mun with 7 points and 7 boards.

The final game was the Varsity boys, coached by Bryan von Dorpowski and Christopher Davisson, against La Lumiere Varsity Boys. This game was exciting to watch with good plays by the Cardinals who were short in numbers as well.

The boys exercised fantastic Christian sportsmanship against the opponents, even in the end when it was becoming a tight game, it resulted in a 47-52 loss.

Senior captain Michael von Dorpowski scored the game high of 16 points with 4 three pointers. Senior Joseph Bradley III had his breakout game almost resulting in a double-double with 10 points and 9 rebounds. Senior captain Chelliot Osuntade came in with 9 points and 3 dimes. Overall the boys played very well taking into account circumstances, and it was a well played game.

How can we fix song service?

By: Patrick Miller

One of the many distinctive features of Andrews Academy’s student life is that a schoolwide chapel is held every day. Between the 8:00 and 9:20 class periods, a 20-minute block is reserved for all the students to gather for worship and praise together. Amazingly, the faculty sponsor is usually able to find a different speaker each day, and if an outside speaker is unavailable a teacher or student will step forward to give a spiritually themed talk.

While this could be a truly engaging spiritual time, it turns out that not too many people pay attention. When asked about the percentage of students that sleep during chapel and what percent are awake and listening, Andrews Academy junior Daniel Morant answers, “Depending on the speaker, I would say at least 30% of students sleep during chapel, and only 70% are awake and maybe listening to the sermon. But that’s on a good day.”

So what could we do to fix about our chapel? What will help wake students up and engage them?

One important thing I would change is the song service. Before the scheduled program begins, most days we have several students who go up front and lead the other students in praise songs. An effective song service will set the tone of worship and encourage us into a frame of mind where we will listen to the message. If we have people getting excited about the music, students might actually be awake for the rest of the chapel.

When I was a freshman, it seems to me that the seniors were very active in leading the praise service, and many students really participated in singing and doing the motions. However, as I have gotten older and become an upperclassman, there has been a prevailing culture to not sing in front of others. What happens when people get up front is that they end up performing a kind of special music for everyone in the audience.

So what can we do to improve the musical worship in our chapel? Senior Olivia Woodard said, “The singers who are up front need to be coordinated well, and sound good together. That way people won’t be focusing on their flaws and mistakes, and will focus on the music instead.”

Senior Sandra Mosimbwa said, “We should sing different songs that people like, and have song leaders that interact with the audience and encourage them to sing. It’s not like the audience is singing right now anyway, so song leaders have nothing to lose by being pushy and calling people out.”

All of this advice is good, but in order for it to work we need song leaders who are willing to use their talents up front for God. So I encourage you, readers, if you have a gift, step up. The rest of us are just waiting for someone to lead out.

Enrollment holds steady past 5 years

By: Charity O.

Enrollment is always an important issue in private institutions. At Andrews Academy, where 90 percent of the tuition goes to the expenses for the school, maintaining a stable enrollment is especially important.

According to Mrs. Ivonne Segui-Weiss, registrar at the academy, “Enrollment this year compared to other years has been about the same.”

At the start of this school year, says Mrs. Ivonne, 225 students registered. However, even with a maximum of 233 students enrolling throughout the two semesters, there are currently 226 students admitted. This number is comparable to the previous three school years.

Last year, 236 students enrolled at the beginning of the term, and by the end of the school year there were 218 students. In the 2013-2014 school year, 238 students enrolled in August and 233 were still enrolled by May. The 2012-2013 school year began with 235 students and concluded with 226.

AA’s demographics play a significant role in enrollment trends. The transient nature of the Andrews University community means that most students who leave Andrews Academy before they graduate do so because their parents find employment in other countries or states. In other cases, students leave because their parents finish schooling in surrounding universities and are obliged to return to their homeland.

The administration makes constant efforts to recruit more students. From the 8th grade graduation bash at the end of the year to the Penny Arcade in the fall, administration consistently seeks to stabilize enrollment.  Several programs and school events help to boost enrollment: The music groups in the academy that visit different churches, the cardinal classic in February, and the annual booth at the youth fair, publicize the school to the surrounding communities.

“I’m happy about maintaining students,” says Interim Principal Jeannie Leiterman. “After Christmas break last year, we lost 17 students. However, after this past Christmas vacation, the number of students that left were as many as those new students who enrolled. Adventist Education is expensive and we try to find as many ways as we can to help students financially, and to make their experience worthwhile.”

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