Romanian program director to be honored by alma mater

Dana Bates, an adjunct faculty member for Northwestern College and the onsite program director for Northwestern’s new Romanian Semester, will be honored by Gordon College, Wenham, Mass., on Oct. 5. Bates and his wife, Brandi, will receive the Jack Good Community Service Award from Gordon’s Alumni Association as part of Homecoming activities.

The Bates co-founded New Horizons Foundation, a ministry that seeks to use adventure education and service-learning experiences to help young Romanians develop responsibility, teamwork and trust, in 2000. One of the organization’s ultimate goals is to aid sustainable development in Romania.

Dana Bates serves as the organization’s executive director. He graduated from Gordon College in 1993, earned a Master of Divinity degree from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary and is a doctoral degree candidate at the Oxford Centre for Missions Studies.

Brandi Bates is a 1992 Gordon alumna. She serves as the administrative director for New Horizons Foundation and director of the summer Viata Program. She also coordinates human resources and fund raising for the foundation.

Northwestern’s Romanian Semester, a unique combination of cross-cultural learning, theory about social development, practice, service and adventure education, was begun this fall. Seven students are enrolled in the program, which is based in Lupeni in Jiu Valley, a deprived coal-mining region. They are living with area residents for five weeks and studying Romanian culture and history, Eastern Orthodoxy, sustainable development, and experiential education.