posted April 13, 1999

Mortar Board Honors Provost

The Alcor Chapter of the Mortar Board honor society at Hope College has named the college's provost, Dr. Jacob E. Nyenhuis, an honorary member.

          He was honored on Sunday, April 11, during an
  induction ceremony for the 40 students who will be members
  of the chapter during the 1999-00 school year.  "Our chapter
  desired to recognize Provost Nyenhuis for his contributions
  to Mortar Board, Hope College and the community," said Lori
  Guse, who is president of the Alcor Chapter and a senior
  from Cassopolis.  "Our chapter cannot imagine a person more
  qualified to receive this honor."
          Guse believes that it is the first time that the
  chapter has granted honorary membership.
          Honorary membership is reserved for individuals
  who have made a notable contribution over a period of years
  and whose influence has extended beyond a chapter's college
  or university.  Recipients should also be an advocate of the
  three ideals of Mortar Board:  scholarship, leadership and
          Nyenhuis, who is also a professor of classics,
  joined the Hope faculty in 1975 as dean for humanities.  He
  was appointed dean for arts and humanities in 1978, and
  provost in 1984.
          His publications include the textbook "Latin Via
  Ovid," currently in the seventh printing of its second
  edition, of which he is co-author.  He also co-authored
  editions of "Plautus:  Amphitruo" and "Petronius:  Cena
          Internationally recognized as an expert on the
  Greek myth of Daedalus, he was invited to serve as a
  consultant to the successful 1988 recreation of the
  legendary inventor's 74-mile flight across the Aegean Sea.
  His book-length manuscripte, "Myth and the Creative Process:
  Michael Ayrton (1921-1975) and the Myth of Daedalus," is at
  the publisher.
          Nyenhuis led the college's effort to have the
  statue of the Rev. A.C. Van Raalte, founder of Holland and
  Hope, cast and installed in Centennial Park in conjunction
  with the city's 1997 sesquicentennial celebration.  He is
  co-author of the book "A Dream Fulfilled:  The Van Raalte
  Sculpture in Centennial Park."
          He is past chair of the Michigan Council for the
  Humanities, and past president of the National Federation of
  State Humanities Councils.  He is also past chair of the
  Deans' Council of the Great Lakes Colleges Association
          Prior to joining the Hope faculty, he was a member
  of the faculty at Wayne State University.  He was a
  professor of classics from 1962 to 1975, also serving as
  chair of the Department of Greek and Latin from 1965 to
  1975, and as director of the Honors Program of the College
  of Liberal Arts from 1964 to 1975.
          He has held visiting professorships at the
  University of California, Santa Barbara, Ohio State
  University and the American School of Classical Studies at
  Athens, Greece.  He was named a member of the Green College
  Society at Green College, Oxford, after he spent a
  sabbatical there as a visiting scholar in 1989.
          Mortar Board is a national collegiate honor
  society.  The members, chosen based on their scholarship,
  leadership and service, are inducted during the spring of
  their junior year.
          The Alcor Chapter has existed at Hope since the
  1936-37 academic year, although it did not become part of
  the national Mortar Board organization until 1961.