by Brent McCollum
After celebrating a short 125 years of life, Greenville College is on schedule to be removed from life support on the date of September 20, 2017. Rumor has it that this elaborate murder plan has been in the works since 2014. There has been more support for this scheme — from faculty, staff, and students — than anyone could have anticipated. Due to the college’s recent efforts to expand their global reach, this news will impact both their on-campus and international students and friends. In order to help the students adjust to the finality of this death, the current Greenville College administration has called for a permanent ban on the mentioning of the school starting July 1st, from which point students will only be able to speak of the birth of Greenville’s son, Greenville University, whose expected due date is also September 20, 2017 (*cue “Circle of Life” from the Lion King*). So, from the depths of my own heart, I present to you this eulogy, in honor of the life and death of Greenville College.
In a few short months, we will say goodbye to a place near and dear to all of our hearts: Greenville College (may its name rest in peace). It seemed as though just yesterday I was taking a walk with Greenville College across Scott Field, textbook in hand and Jo’s Java in my nervous system. Greenville College was one of those friends that never really gave you a lot of space, but was always there for you when you needed them. I’ve known Greenville for four years now, and am proud to say that I will become one of a dying breed, a graduate from Greenville College.
Dearest Greenville, over the last four years you have left me with both tuition and intuition, and I know you will never be forgotten for either. However, it was your tuition before which all the wonderful qualities of your existence emerged, whether it funded your incredible faculty or chicken nugget day. Furthermore, let us not forget about your incredible desire for a transformative Christ-centered education and the holistic development of an individual, and your constant call to service. It is these key qualities that collectively created the theoretically impossible amount of community that Greenville College was able to achieve. No community had the community to create the amount of community that Greenville’s community was able to create as a community communally, I guarantee it.
Even in its passing, Greenville College got the last laugh. Through its death, it found yet another way to create a common bond through which we can come together as a community. This reveals the true essence of Greenville College — selflessness. Greenville College was always giving back to us in any way possible. Whether it was the sacrificial faculty, devoted coaches, or those free 10 coffees given out at TED Talks, Greenville loved unconditionally. In my soul, I know that Greenville College still loves us, even though we decided to kill it.
Though this death is a significant community-builder, I wouldn’t wish this experience upon anyone. It is truly heartbreaking to watch Greenville College pass away while it so faithfully searched for a new direction in life. Greenville College is survived by its oldest sister Spring Arbor University, and its hipper, millennial west-coast best-coast sisters, Azusa Pacific University and Seattle Pacific University. But do not fear, Greenville College, your legacy will live on in my memory and the memories of those who have gone before me. I promise that not a day will pass in which I do not think of you, as I pay off student loans for the rest of my life.