Thanks and Encouragement Project

Parents Express Their Gratitude for a Successful Fall Semester

The following notes of encouragement were written by current parents to all faculty, staff, and administrators. Be encouraged by these expressions of gratitude! 


To the Faculty, Staff, and Administration of Wheaton College,

There is no possible way in which I will find words to thank you.

My daughter only wanted to attend Wheaton; she did not apply anywhere else. Being accepted and receiving scholarships, she left a newly broken family to begin her freshman year; the gap between high school and that freshman year she spent with her younger sister and I as we navigated homelessness for several months.

Being at Wheaton has given her a place of safety in which she has begun to heal from childhood trauma and abuse. Student Health Services has been more than instrumental in being that safety; Jennie Nicodem working with her in accessing accommodations gave her the tools to be successful.

Every academic department and the professors with whom she has had classes demonstrated the generous love and grace to which we are called in Christ. They have been responsive and thoughtful and never once did she feel judged or a burden. This momma’s heart nearly bursts with gratitude, tears, joy…

Thank you, President Ryken for your steadfast commitment to Christ and his kingdom; it is a sacrifice in which you must not allow compromise and that is more than most would lean into. Thank you for leading with integrity.

Thank you Admin – it’s a big job…thank you for staying focused and faithful.

Thank you Staff – none of it happens without you, living your love for the Lord with your hands and feet and voices and keyboards and shovels and ovens and mops and ….all…

Thank you Faculty! So much. Your love for Jesus shows in your preparations, your questions and challenges; your assignments and assistance; your availability and accommodations. Your love for your students allows God to love them in intellectual, spiritual and embodied ways; you are affecting lives for generations and I am – we are – so very mindful and grateful for this.

I know without a doubt the only place God wanted my daughter was Wheaton College. Please know that you filled a gap in her life and perhaps saved her.



Dear faculty, staff, and administration,

My family wants to send this message to the staff and administration of Wheaton College to express our gratitude for the creative and detailed planning and hard work which has gone into making this Fall Semester run so well for the students. You have all gone above and beyond and you have set an example for others to follow!

Our daughter, Abigail Erickson (2022), has had a great semester and nothing has been lost from her wonderful Wheaton College experience. It's been good to hear from her how students have been so cooperative with the Covid 19 adjustments on campus.

Thanks again!
The Erickson family serving in Indonesia but displaced temporarily to Pasadena, California


To the faculty, administrators and other staff at Wheaton College,

My wife went back to teaching this year in the midst of the Covid pandemic, so I understand first hand all the added work and sacrifice that goes on behind the scenes to foster a safe environment which is conducive to learning.  I couldn’t be more happy to know that our two oldest children are in the conservatory at Wheaton College.  I know that it is difficult for the students, as well as the staff, but I appreciate that Wheaton is doing their best to add extra precautions instead of just following the minimum requirements.  I believe that they learn best within the nurturing environment there, so steps are being taken to enable this opportunity. 

I also believe that you are being very wise concerning your academic calendar.  I’m sure that this caused difficulties for some people, but I am grateful that you continue to seek the best overall solution for everyone involved. 

I pray that God continues to give you the endurance to keep pressing on as you serve Him by caring for our students in a Christ-centered manner.

Eric Smith


Dear Wheaton staff, faculty and administration,

Thank you for all you do to encourage, support, and love our students in their endeavor to seek Christ and His kingdom in college and as they prepare for life outside Wheaton. We pray that you will feel encouraged and supported by Wheaton parents who pray for you to finish this semester strong with joy and gratitude in Christ.


The Park family
Rochester, Minnesota


Dear faculty, staff, and administration,

I want to thank all the staff and faculty who have made adjustments for students to be on campus this year. My daughter is a freshman from California and it’s our first time sending a child off to college. You all have made the transition so smooth and I’m so appreciative of all that you have done to make this happen. I know it can’t be easy and we are so grateful. We are praying for all of you.


Kris and Laura Forberg


Dear faculty and staff of Wheaton College,

This has been a year of unprecedented challenges for educating our college students.  You are to be commended for the hard work, planning, and care with which you are handling this year for our students.  My son is a junior and is enjoying his best year yet at Wheaton.  Yes, there are many restrictions, but you have also worked very hard to create community within the limitations designed to keep our students on campus in person classes.  Thank you!  This is not the kind of teaching or administration you ever envisioned, yet you are doing it with grace and competence.  Know that we are so very grateful that our students are able to continue to get a quality education and finish up the semester in in-person classes.


Esther Penney


Dear faculty, staff, and administration,

Thank you for all you are doing for the College and students! May you be encouraged to press on to the finish line of this fall semester! Even though it has been hard and challenging, despite the circumstances, God has you by His side and is in control! He sees you and cares about you as you tend to his flock of hard-working students. May God bless you abundantly, for your obedience to him…you will be greatly rewarded!

God bless you,

Erica Redmon

 “The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.” Psalm 28:7


Dear faculty, staff, and administration,

Thank you for all you did, and do, to help students follow the COVID restrictions at Wheaton College. COVID is real and has changed many things, but not God! God is still God! And He is with us 24/7! So stay Strong! Stay positive!

Today is a gift from God – 24 hours to do our best for Him. May you be blessed today!

Betty Lee
Grandmother of Grace and Peyton Melin


Dear Wheaton College Staff,

Thank you, so much, for everything you did to make life easier, and fun, for all the students this semester!  Our daughter had a good semester in spite of all the restrictions. We are missionaries in Ukraine and have our own challenges with COVID-19 but knowing that our daughter is in good hands helps us to focus on our work here. Please pass our sincere appreciation to all the staff at Wheaton College!

With prayer,

Chad and Leanna Wiebe
SEND International
Kiev, Ukraine


Dear faculty, staff, and administrators,

Thank you for all you have done to make it possible for our daughter to be on campus and have in-person instruction! I’m sure it was challenging and I appreciate your efforts!


Karen Hunter


Dear faculty, staff, and administrators,

My son is a transfer student this year and I want to take this opportunity to thank you. It has certainly been a difficult semester, no doubt, for faculty, staff, and students, but thank you for the part you have played in contributing to a great semester for the students at Wheaton. My son has loved his classes, and he has been challenged and grown as a result of what he is learning.

I am praying for you and thanking God for you.

Sarah Lumsdaine


To staff, faculty, and administration,

My gratitude is so full and bright towards you! I give praise to the Lord for how you have braved through circumstances and boldly stayed open. We all pray for things to return to “normal”, yet I rejoice in what the Lord is doing right now in and through each one of you. I’m so thankful!

“Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us (you) and establish the work of our hands; yes establish the work of our hands.” Psalm 90:17

Candace Jenkins


Dear faculty, staff, and administrators,

We are so grateful for you!

John and I would like to take a moment to express our deep gratefulness and thank you for all your hard work, determination, support and hope that you have expressed to our daughter, and all of the Wheaton students during this most challenging year! Many of us have experienced feelings of depression, frustration, anger, and loss this year, but knowing that our daughter is in good hands at Wheaton and in a learning environment that expresses the love of the Lord on a daily basis, can only bring us joy and hope for her future and for the futures of all Wheaton students!

Thank you so much!!

With love and gratefulness,

John and Vicky Maloley


Dear faculty, staff, and administrators,

Hello, I am new student Sally's father. I am in mainland China. Thank you very much. My English is very poor, here is my message:

Thank you to all the teachers and staff at Wheaton College; God is doing his amazing work through each and every one of you! In this unique time, God has used you to bless all the students at the college and the parents as well. Because of your dedicated and loving service, you have given the students a safe and welcoming learning environment, so that they could still learn and rest with a sense of normality somewhat. Because of your willingness to serve, I, a parent far away in China, don’t have to worry about the skyrocketing number of confirmed cases on the other side of the globe. Your work is worthwhile and outstanding. I am grateful to the Lord and also to you! I am very hopeful for the future of these students whom you serve because God certainly has a special plan for them. May the Lord continue to lead you, strengthen you, and give you wisdom. “Your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (I Corinthians 15:58).



Dear parent engagement, Wheaton professors and staff:

We wanted to thank you so much for all you have done to make our son Braydon’s freshman fall semester amazing. We have appreciated the wonderful communication, special events you hosted and  being creative in making Wheaton’s campus a wonderful place to be . We are so thankful for all the teaching, hard work, prayer, love, and care you are giving all of the students. It has made a huge difference and our son absolutely loves Wheaton and he is so thankful to be there. We can honestly say he is having a more normal college experience then most all of his friends. We are thankful to the Lord for Wheaton and all that you are doing and will continue to do for the students in the future. God bless all of you and happy thanksgiving.


Geoff and Tami Biehn