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Welcome to Briercrest Connections: Issue #1

Briercrest Connections
The latest news from Briercrest alumni and friends, both on campus and around the world.

COVID-19 Campus Update
It’s hard to believe that almost eight weeks ago we sent our students to their dorm rooms to pack their belongings, abruptly ending education on campus for Briercrest Christian Academy, College, and Seminary students. The COVID-19 pandemic has required us to make a number of adjustments to our life on campus.
Online education
Once students were home, our professors started teaching online, some for the first time in their teaching careers. While for some it took a little bit of time of get comfortable with this new format, others took more naturally to the online space:
Prof. Geoff Dresser created opening themes for his online Worship Arts classes.
Prof. Geoff Dresser created opening themes for his online Worship Arts classes.
Across all three schools, students made the transition to online education with patience and dedication and had positive things to say about the way their semester ended. 
Please be in prayer for our school administrators and provincial leaders as we are in regular communication about potential school formats in the fall.
Online discipleship
Our high school and college chaplains took to connecting with students virtually, offering encouragement, sharing reflections, and hosting discussions on the Briercrest Blog, YouTube, and social media feeds
The graduation class of 2020 celebrates
Sadly, our College and Seminary graduation weekend scheduled for April 18–19 was postponed and tentatively rescheduled for the fall. Read on for some of the alternative ways students have celebrated this milestone.
Although our on-campus celebration had to be postponed, the College and Seminary class of 2020 still marked the occasion with a class video.
BCS Grad Class Video
Watch: Grad Ceremony for Senior Briercrest Athletes Courtesy of WestJet
Watch: Grad Ceremony for Senior Briercrest Athletes Courtesy of WestJet
Congratulations to Graduates | President Michael Pawelke
Alumni feature: Cheryl Rosenkerr
Staying at home in Ulaanbaatar
Looking back on Youth Quake 2020
YQ2020 Highlight Video
The Recap
This February, 1,200 retreaters joined us on campus for Youth Quake 2020 Build My Life. Read the recap of the weekend here.
Youth Quake continues to be an important marker in the Briercrest yearly cycle. With a dedicated team of staff, interns, and volunteers, our campus opens its doors to students and youth workers from all over the country, and we couldn’t be more thankful that the Lord continues to allow us to host this event.
Youth Quake Director AJ Crocker recently wrote a blog on the importance of retreat and the “mountain top” experience. We invite you to read that here.
Summer class opportunity: Open to Alumni
This summer, you’re invited to join Dr. Wes Olmstead’s Introduction to the New Testament class online! Every Briercrest Alum can take one free class through our Back to Briercrest Scholarship. Normally, this does not include online offerings, but Covid is hard and we want to spread some love. In order to take advantage of this audit, alumni need to fill out the Back to Briercrest Scholarship application and submit it to Student Finance (if you don’t have the means to print and scan this document, please email enrolnow@briercrest.ca to reach a staff member).
Please note – Priority will be given to new and current students who require this course. 
This course is happening live on weekday mornings from June 15–26 2020 and is open for alumni to audit alongside new and current students. The registration deadline is June 1.
Course description: In this course with Dr. Olmstead, expect nothing less than a deep dive into the New Testament. Throughout this course, you will encounter the New Testament’s theological, historical, and literary dimensions, as well as modern scholarly approaches to the study of early Christian literature.
Email enrolnow@briercrest.ca with questions and to register for the class.
On the Briercrest Blog this month
The Seven Stages of Coronavirus Grief
Parent's Blog: Closing the Gap on Social Distancing
What Are We Asking of Technology?
Thank you!
Thank you for your support for the Keeping the Faith campaign. 
Because of your generosity, $3.25 million of our $8.9 million target has been raised to date!
The Keeping the Faith dinners held in Saskatchewan, Alberta, BC, and Manitoba were well received. Unfortunately, we had to postpone three events in Saskatchewan due to the COVID-19 crisis.
We are looking forward to see the amazing things God will do in the future through our students! Would you join us in prayer that God would continue to provide what is needed to help young adults keep the faith?
COVID-19 and on-campus activities
We are sorry to announce the following event cancellations:
  • Briercrest OnStage Summer Stage productions of Fiddler on the Roof and Brigadoon
  • All on-campus reunion events for the foreseeable future 
  • President Michael Pawelke has suspended his travel for the “Keeping the Faith” campaign events but will be offering a video series in its place soon
  • Our recruitment team has replaced travel and on-campus events by embracing the webinar format to connect with prospective and future students. The first webinar was titled “Expensive, But Worth It: How to Pay for Christian Higher Education” and had over 40 registrants. You can watch on-demand, or share this with a student in your life, by clicking this link.
  • As of May 1, Briercrest Athletics has not cancelled summer sports camps, but please visit the website for updates.
For all updates related to COVID-19 adjustments, visit briercrest.ca/coronavirus.
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