UVF Celebrates Homecoming 2015

by Office of Marketing | Nov 02, 2015
Homecoming 2015
October 23, 2015, was the final day of the University of Valley Forge's (UVF) Homecoming week. There were a number of festivities for alumni and students to attend, making the joyous day a campus-wide celebration. Included in these festivities was the recognition of three outstanding alumni and the opportunity to reconnect with former classmates.
Alumni Recognitions
During the celebratory week, the three alumni award recipients spoke in chapel. They shared how God shaped their lives as students, their ministry accomplishments since then, and what God has taught them over the years.

Meghan Weber '04
Rev. Meghan Weber '04 received the first award of the week, the 2015 Young Alumni Award. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Youth Studies, Weber served at a church as a full-time assistant pastor for eight years. She resigned from her position once she learned she and her husband were expecting their second and third child — identical twin girls. Now she serves part-time as her church's children's coordinator at Central Christian in White Marsh, Maryland, and as a board member in her local Moms of Multiples Club non-profit organization. The club provides financial and personal support, and resources for mothers in need. 

Josh Torres '10
Rev. Josh Torres '10 was the second chapel speaker of the week and was awarded the 2015 Young Alumni Award. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Pastoral Ministry in 2005 and a Master of Arts in Christian Leadership in 2010. Torres served as a UVF admissions counselor and children's pastor after graduation. He currently serves as the equipping and connections pastor at Calvary Church in Wyncote, Pennsylvania, and oversees all of the adult ministries. Torres also serves as the chairman and CEO of the non-profit Calvary Community Development Corporation, is a certified coach with Assemblies of God Coaching, and is the  founder and managing partner of Torres Coaching Group, LLC. 

Roger Erdvig '90
Rev. Roger Erdvig '90 received the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award and was the week's final guest speaker. Erdvig worked as a carpenter, associate pastor and executive pastor over the years. He also received his Master of Education from Regent University. He co-founded the Center for Coaching Excellence and co-authored professional coach training modules, which he taught at UVF as an adjunct professor from 2007–2009. Currently, Erdvig serves as the Superintendent of Smithtown Christian School on the North Shore of Long Island, New York.  

Opportunities to Reconnect
There were several opportunities for those returning to their alma mater to reconnect. One such opportunity was Coffee Connections, a time for alumni to meet-up with their former professors. Gathering in The Anvil for a time of fellowship, alumni reminisced with classmates over coffee provided by Jazzman’s. During the event, Richard Fogel ’65 recalled the memories he and the friends surrounding him had made at UVF. “We had some real moves of God in that day,” said Fogel. “We were the recipients of the manifest presence of God.” 
Indeed, the group of close friends found great joy in recalling the amazing chapel services and prayer meetings where God had met with them 50 years prior. The group also found abundant pleasure in laughing again within one another’s company as they recollected the memories they made together at a former and beloved local diner named “Ernie’s.”
Later that evening, the Class of 1965 joined together in Solomon’s Porch to celebrate their 50th reunion. After Barbara Witwer ’67 graduated from UVF, she did her best to keep track of classmates and peers, each of whom received a letter from her in April informing them of the 50th reunion. “I’ve got friends in every state and all over the world. It’s part of my life. I love it,” said Witwer. 

During the event, alumni enjoyed looking at pictures from their time at UVF as they reconvened over dinner. “It was a real foundation for what the Lord had for us, and we made lifetime friends,” said Walftraud (Walie) Fogel ’64. “We have nothing but good memories.” Bill Walker '65 added, “We were like a family.”  
Class advisor, Jerry Forunato ’58 also commented on the event saying, “It’s great to see everyone and to learn of their journeys and how they are still serving the Lord, as we remember what we learned on the campus of Green Lane.” Following dinner, alumni had a time of worship during which beloved songs from their time as students were sung. As the event drew to a close, the class shared stories with one another, testifying to God’s faithful presence at UVF. 

Homecoming week closed with a Patriots versus alumni basketball game. The event was well attended by current and former students, staff and faculty. The women’s basketball game ended in favor of the Alumni team with a score of 59 to 57. After the game, Jen Mack ’03 said,” We had a great time! It was fun playing with some of my old friends once again.”
Mike Stum ’12, playing for the men's alumni team, reflected similarly on his experience saying, “It’s just great to come back. It’s different, but it’s an awesome experience to play with the other alums.” Previous Patriot Lance Harris ’14 played against former teammates. “I’m excited to be here,” said Harris, “It’s good to see the result of the investment former athletes made in the team.” The alumni won the men’s basketball game with a close score of 70-67. 

During half-time, members of the Student Government Association (SGA) presented the Ashcroft Award to two distinguished graduating seniors who exhibit outstanding leadership and service. The Ashcroft Award is a new tradition at UVF, and this year’s recipients are the second pair to receive the award. UVF faculty selected this year’s nominees and the student body voted for whom they thought should receive the awards. The 2015 nominees were Rachel Nestman, Rebekah Steiner, Millicent Centeno, Kevin Landis, David Cooper and Matt Godfrey. The recipients of the 2015 Ashcroft Award were Rachel Nestman and David Cooper. Nestman is an early childhood education major and Cooper is studying music production. 

As part of a closing UVF tradition for Homecoming, the student body congregated outside of the gym after the game to enjoy s’mores and fellowship around the warmth of a bonfire. This year’s Homecoming event was truly made special for current students and former students alike. The week can be summed up by the words of President Don Meyer, Ph.D., “The reunion of the former students and the current students makes a mark that is hard to measure.”