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Calvin College

Grand Rapids, MI

January 28, 1986

Professor Quentin J. Schultze initially taught a course regarding Shep's writings at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, during the interim semester in January 1986. In connection with the course, Shep gave a performance at the school, after which he took questions about his writing process. That same day, space shuttle Challenger exploded. Shep saw it while sitting in Professor Schultze's office. Prof. Schultze later had this to say about Shep and his performance: "I also believe that God can bail us out when we take risks. My colleague David Holquist, who is as much responsible for my joining the faculty at Calvin as anyone else, helped teach me this lesson in 1985. He co-taught with me an interim class on the storytelling of Jean Shepherd, the incredibly talented writer, performer and raconteur. (You might recall one of Sheperd's films, A Christmas Story, or his novels, including In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash.) "After I introduced Shepherd at his performance, he waltzed out on stage wearing a wide grin. He dubbed professors like me "mini-Hitlers," contemptuously labeled Calvin a "university," compared Grand Rapids culture to a Burger King restaurant, and eloquently wove a tapestry of profanity that is probably still hanging in the air inside the FAC. "Our students learned more wisdom about persona from that fiasco than they could have easily swallowed from a textbook. When we faithfully take risks on behalf of our students, we give God a new arena for displaying seemingly serendipitous grace." Shep would again appear at Calvin College to perform. And Prof. Schultze would teach the course two more times. It is believed to be the only college-level course entirely devoted to Shep.
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January 19,1986
The Grand Rapids Press

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 28,1986
Course catalog - course description

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 28,1986
Course catalog - cover

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 28,1986
Calvin College Announcement

Courtesy: Steve Glazer



Professor Q. Schultze

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 29,1986
The Grand Rapids Press

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 29,1986
The Grand Rapids Press

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 30,1986
The Grand Rapids Press

Courtesy: Steve Glazer


January 1986
On the Town announcement

Courtesy: Steve Glazer