Dr. Sergio Guillen '56 - 1987 A Award Recipient

Bio from 1987:

A restless teen had dropped out of school.  His Spanish tongue hindered his studies.  The recent loss of his mother added to the emotional hurt that was pulling his family apart.  Discouraged and confused, the steamy Miami streets became his jungle as he searched for answers.  One day a volleyball game in a church parking lot got his attention.  It was no mere chance - providential I am sure - that God would touch a young immigrant from a Hispanic culture through his love for sports.

A church family and pastor encouraged this lonely youth to return to school to finish his education.  Dr. Sergio Guillen exceeded their vision.  He successfully pursued and won a Bachelor of Arts from Asbury College, a Master of Arts at Vanderbilt University, and then a Ph.D. from Purdue University followed.

While a student at Asbury, Dr. Guillen developed a passion for education.  His first teaching assignment was in the Louisville public schools.  His brilliance opened teaching positions at Michigan State University, Vanderbilt, Converse College, New York State University and Anderson College, where he has served on the faculty since 1969.

At the time of receiving the "A" Award, Dr. Guillen served as the chairperson for the Department of Foreign Languages. His recent publication, Contigo, is used as a college text for beginning students of Spanish.

This Asburian has earned the rank of educator and scholar.   One worthy of honor is known and respected best by his own community.  Dr. Guillen has received the accolades of the Anderson Herald and Daily Bulletin, the city newspapers. The mayor of the city of Anderson, Indiana, describes him as "one of our community's greatest assets."  The president of Anderson College praises him as a"great teacher and vibrant leader on campus."

Through his "love run," now a 200 mile cumulative run in one month, Dr. Guillen has inspired donors to join him in his fight against muscular dystrophy.  In five years, with the financial support of the Kiwanis Club, he has logged more than 800 miles and raised nearly $18,000 for the cause against this dreaded disease. 

His love of sports opened to him his greatest challenge. On sabbatical from the classroom in 1987, Dr. Guillen was assigned the position of manager of languages and meeting services for the 10th Pan American Games which are to be staged in the city of Indianapolis during the summer of 1987.  Thirty-seven nations from the western hemisphere competed in this in August of 1987 in 27 competitive sports.

Exuberant, our friend, once a Cuban, now an American, senses that all of Latin America is coming into his front yard.   Dr. Sergio Guillen sits atop the Hispanic and Anglo-Saxon cultures where every printed document for the Pan-Am Games - from the athlete's handbook to the spectators in the stadium - must be translated and printed in two official languages - Spanish and English.

Some 60 years ago a volleyball game at a Florida church was instrumental in transforming the life of a young Hispanic.  We have the privilege to congratulate a fellow Asburian who has great influence on the volunteers of America, and who has the opportunity to welcome the peoples of Latin America to the United States in the spirit of Christ's love.  The alumni of Asbury College recognize this 1956 graudate for his achievements in higher education and community service.

Along with his wife, his class sweetheart, Myrna Wheeler of Louisville, we salute Sergio Guillen, known affectionately by all as Sid.

Other 1987 A Award Recipients:

Dr. Thomas A. Collins, Sr. '41
Dr. Paul A. Getty '54
Dr. Robert A. Oetjen '36