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Dear Class of 2003,

I hope your Summer went very well. If you're going to be in Santa Barbara on October 14-15, I hope you'll drop by homecoming and look through some of the improvements that are (still) being made to campus...

After the completion of Westmont's new buildings for Art and Science last year, the Art Department vacated the old "Reynolds Gallery" (you remember the old building situated below Armington near Deane Chapel)...Crews spent the summer transforming the interior of Reynolds into a state-of-the-art Music building, complete with 12 soundproof practice rooms (up from just 4 in their previous home) and faculty offices...Check it out when you're on campus next...The improvement is stunning! And now that music has moved out of Porter Theatre, the Theatre Arts and Biology departments are getting new spaces for their students as well.

As always, I welcome and invite you to send me an article about what you've been up to recently. I'll collect your responses and include them in our next newsletter in December. For this newsletter, Rachel Snodderly (now Tan) sent me this update about the work that she's doing in Thailand. (By the way, I'm always so thankful for Westmont where I got to know amazing people like this...)

In His Grace,
Joshua Higa, Class Agent for 2003


Rachel (Snodderly) Tan '03

Photo of Rachel and Siri

I have been living in Thailand since 2008 working with Compasio Relief and Development (www.compasio.org) in the area of Media and Communications. Compasio works alongside those who are vulnerable, poor, and at risk. They focus specifically on protecting children, supporting families, and empowering communities along the Thai-Burma border. This past summer I married Siri Tan, a co-worker from Burma who coordinates youth activities with street kids and children who live in a garbage dump community.

I have always wanted to use my life for a purpose that matters and to help change people's lives for the better. Almost every day I come across cases of abandoned babies, victims of abuse, and people living in extreme poverty. My husband and I seek to practically demonstrate the love of Jesus to those we encounter. Our heart-wrenching ministry is sometimes overwhelming, but seeing women and children find hope and healing is what motivates and inspires us.


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