Students then, Staff now

By Sarah Wallace

Some traditions stay even  while the campus landmarks change. In these interviews faculty and staff alumni speak about K’s campus compared to when they walked the Quad.

A headshot of Lisa Murphy '98 on graduation day at Kalamazoo College in 1998. Photo Courtesy of Lisa Murphy.

A photo of Greg Diment ''84 from the 1984 K Yearbook, The Boiling Pot. Photo courtesy of Greg Diment.

The College’s faculty and staff consists of over 45 Kalamazoo College Alumni. These professors, administrators, and staff shared their opinions about K’s campus changes since their graduation, including how the SIP was done, the summer quarter system, and the general look of the campus.


Index: How has the campus’ appearance changed since you attended?


Greg Diment ’84, Associate Provost for Information Services.

“There are a number of physical changes to the campus since…I was a student.  Dow is new; previously all the sciences were in Olds-Upton. There was not a Service Learning Center at the time. Today, the library is completely expanded and renovated, which was underway when I came back as an employee in 2005.”


Jennifer Combes ’99, Office Coordinator at the Student Health and Counseling Centers.

“The Library and Hicks are so much nicer now.  In my day…Quad Stop (the snack shop) had the best milkshakes and the caf had a smoking room.”


Kiran Cunningham ’83, Professor of Anthropology

“The campus is laid out the same. I do miss the snack bar that used to be in the basement of Hicks, however.  It was like a cavern, with dark wooden tables that students over the years had carved their initials into, and was a great place to go for a late night burger and fries, or a yogurt shake.”


Index: Did the college require a SIP for graduation when you attended? If not, how was the process any different?


Angela Gross ’93, Assistant Director at the CIP

“SIP was also required in my time at K. The main difference was timing—because K had four quarters, students could choose when to complete their SIP.”


Lisa Murphy ’98, archivist

“Back then, students were not on campus taking classes while they were completing their SIP. I think that this option allowed students to really focus on their research and writing.”


Amelia Katanski ’93, Associate Professor of English

“The big difference was that you devoted all of your time in your SIP quarter to the project and many people completed their SIP from off campus.  I did my SIP, for example, on two American Indian writers while living and working on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota for the fall quarter of my senior year.”


Index: Were you a student here when the school still had a summer quarter? If so, did you yourself attend during the summer and how was it?


Amelia Katanski

“Yes, we had summer quarter, and it was not exactly a ‘choice.’ Both paths through the K plan (known as Plan A and Plan B—and varying because of the amount of time you spent on study abroad and when you did your SIP) called for attendance in the summer quarter. Summer quarter was a time when only rising juniors and rising seniors were on campus.”


Kiran Cunningham

“Yes. That was one of the distinctive qualities of K College. I enjoyed summer quarters very much. I must say, though, that when I returned to K as a faculty member, I experienced summer quarters very differently.  I didn’t enjoy them near as much!”


Jennifer Combes

“I was in the first class to not have summer quarter.  The summer after my first year, I did come to campus to spend time with friends during the last summer quarter.  It seemed almost mythical, this quarter where students had fun, were relaxed, and attended class.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


6 + five =

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>