Mike Hendrickson ’64 Remembers

Posted on February 9th, 2014 by

Class of ’64 Remembrances and Stories

dsc_0090-copy.jpgSome of the GREAT things I remember about my years at GAC:

• Being roommate with John Johnson
• Having Bill Home next door and Dan Johnson down the hall
• Playing handball with GAC’s “Best”…not using a glove helps
with competition!
• Serving as Assistant in the Philosophy Department
• Concert Choir Tours with Phil Knautz
• Sorority and fraternity parties
• Late nights at the “Flame” bar
• Senior year late night “forbidden” parties and romps across
campus
• Great debates in the Common’s
• Jack Clark’s lectures were over the top!
• Sheer beauty and solace of GAC Campus and Christ Chapel
on a wintery night
• Pushing the boundaries on what was culturally acceptable
• Stretching your mind with classical literature: Kant, Hegel, Kierkegaard, Tillich, Wittgenstein and Alfred Tarski’s little “Logic” book
• Seeing 29 Nobel Laureates dedicate the Nobel Science Hall

After GAC, I spent 4 years at Luther Seminary followed by a clinical psych residency in Milwaukee and 5 years in parishes while completing a MTh in systematics. In 1965, married my childhood sweetheart, Sandy Parisi, (we met in kindergarten). In 1971 entered a PhD program at MN that eventually led to a 35 year career in geriatrics, health services and health policy research…Looking back I have had the fantastic opportunity to teach at 5 universities, served as senior research scientist (PI) on several national studies in aging and health services; as CEO for 5 health care organizations including a large geriatric church related health system, chair many professional conferences, lead several international exchanges in aging and health care and start an assisted living company. I remain active chairing CME conferences associated with UCSF School of Medicine and most recently started a special practice in nutritional medicine and integrated health. (www.mbcih.com)

Gustavus gave me the great honor in 1992 of the Gustavus Alumni Award and as a speaker at the 2004 Nobel Conference on “The Science of Aging”.

mt-shasta-8-13.jpgOn a personal level, we have three children and four grandsons. My son Erik (29) and I are active mountain climbers. 14 summits above 14,000 feet, including Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt. Aconcagua, Mt Whiney and Mt Shasta. Sandy and I sing with the San Jose Symphonic Choir with multiple concerts including tours to Germany, Austria, Spain and this year Greece. We enjoy regular trips to our Bayfield, WI home especially in the summer. Monterey, CA is our preferred place the balance of the year.

While Gustavus provided me the foundation, life experiences have given me the following insights: keep focused, maintain your passion for life, push to expand your boundaries and recognize that your “faith” is ultimately pragmatic in that it provides a framework for life and the capacity to transcend your own self-imposed limitations.

I send warm greetings and best wishes to all my GAC classmates!

Michael Hendrickson, PhD

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One Comment

  1. Linda Hammarberg Willette says:

    Mike,
    I just read your “summary” and loved reading it. Two items in particular jumped out. Your remembering
    Jack Clark’s lectures as being over the top and faith as being ultimately pragmatic. Jack Clark gave me the
    only A+ I’ve ever received…in Christian doctrine. My faith journey, too, has led me to, what I view as a definitely incarnational expression of LOVE.
    My first year at GAC was the best! Rooming with Donna Olsenius in section 406B and 11 other gusties
    provided a good start and lasting friendships.
    Brian and I will be grandparents for the first time this August.
    Hello to Sandy. We’ll look you up in Monterey when we’re in California! Linda