Freshman finds new home with UMHB music
Sep22

Freshman finds new home with UMHB music

By Allyson Hinkle Staff Writer  My Welcome Week 2021 experience went off without a hitch; all the events were incredible, connections were made, and freshmen were thoroughly prepared for the first weeks of classes. Coming from the small town of Franklin, Texas, all the way to the larger community of UMHB, the atmosphere was completely different from anything I had ever imagined, and I am so excited to recount the memories made. As a freshman I enjoyed the time I spent with sophomores Sar ah Kmiecik and Caleb Guenther as they led my Cru Group throughout the week. However, I had to split my time between my Cru Group and another group that helped me make wonderful memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life: the Black shirt Cru Spirit Band.   My time with the Blackshirts started a day prior to Welcome Week, Tuesday, Aug. 3, because the band students were allowed to move in a day early, with similar treatment the rest of the freshman class received on their move-in. After everyone was moved in, the band met in the band hall at around 2:00 p.m. to start the day of practice for the upcoming Spirits and Traditions rally. On that first day, band freshmen did not have to worry about balancing Welcome Week and Spirit Band camp schedules. So for that day, which was solely dedicated to Spirit Band, there were numerous types of practices before the group called it a day. Afterwards, the members of Kappa Kappa Psi held a bonding exercise for the freshman, in which I made some of my closest friends. The exercise, titled Car Tag, involved upperclassmen and freshman alike gathering into several cars and traveling to numerous spots around the Belton area that may be important to know about during their time at UMHB. Once the game was over everyone headed back to their respective homes and awaited the upcoming day. The next day, Wednesday, Aug. 4, was one I was honestly nervous for: the official start of Welcome Week. In my mind I thought that the band would be strict about having to miss practice, but I was pleased to be proven wrong as the band was very accommodating towards freshmen. For instance, rehearsal and the Cru Group Meeting Two were scheduled for the exact same time. However, freshmen were encouraged by the band to partake in the Welcome Week event and then rejoin when they were ready. This was extremely encouraging to me as I did not feel pressured about keeping appearances and I could enjoy my time both with my Cru Group and the band....

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Outdoor rec courts getting a work-out with increased use and participation
Sep22

Outdoor rec courts getting a work-out with increased use and participation

By Emily Whitaker Contributing Writer  Every night since the school year started, students are going to the outdoor rec courts to play sand volleyball, basketball, tennis, and pickle-ball. Participants say that last year’s COVID-19 restrictions along with a growing uneasiness surrounding the virus made it tough to socialize. However, much has changed with the start of this semester.  “Courts are always used a great deal during the first several weeks of school…[and] this year was no exception,” said Sue Weaver, Director of Campus Recreation. Students say the recent improvements made to the courts are a contribution to the popularity.  Joshua Janis, a student who goes to the rec courts multiple times a week, estimated there are “75% more students going out to play each night compared to last year.” Another student by the name of Colby Arnold goes to the courts about four to six times a week and believes there is “only about a 55-60% increase” in students playing each night. The popularity of these courts is due to a multitude of reasons. The first being that they are a “way to step away from homework and be active and social,” Janis said. Students are also able to play intramural sports such as sand volleyball and the newly famous pickleball which can be found and signed up for on the Cru Rec mobile app. The Campus Rec Instagram page promotes these intramural sports and different ways to get active. Along with spreading the word, they also post tips to keep yourself healthy even if you are not going to play each night.  Recently, the outdoor recreational courts got a new and improved look. According to Weaver, “all new sand was in- stalled on the volleyball courts, all court surfaces were refinished with a new coat of the specialized paint, two of the old tennis courts were transformed into six new pickleball courts, and new glass backboards were installed and new single-rimmed, break away rims were installed.” Janis and Arnold both enjoy the newer aspect of the rec courts and believe it plays a factor in the rise in popularity.   During the 2020-2021 school year, the campus implemented restrictions set in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and the rec courts were no exception. According to Weaver, intramural play was kept to “sports that are naturally more distant of other players.” They also set up hand sanitizer stations around the courts. This year there are no COVID restrictions, however Weaver tells us that once intra- murals start again, they “will provide hand sanitizer on the side of the courts.”  According to the UMHB website, campus recreation has “something fun and active for every BODY.” This includes sand volleyball, basketball, tennis, and pickleball outside along with an open indoor court, aerobics room, weight room, and...

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Family Weekend active with commemorative events, sports, and more
Sep22

Family Weekend active with commemorative events, sports, and more

By Lauren Turner Staff Writer Family Weekend was September 10 through 11, and many families came out to visit their students and learn more about UMHB life. The weekend opened with registration and King Street Hangout, where families could grab snacks and talk to members of the Student Life team. Friday night was packed with activities starting with a Women’s Volleyball showdown. At 6:00 p.m. the UMHB Women’s Volleyball team opened their season at home and beat East Texas Baptist University by winning three out of five sets. The game drew a crowd of 603 attendees according to the UMHB Athletics website. At 7:00 p.m. the same night, seniors were presented their class rings at Luther Memorial, a milestone ceremony for many students and their families. The Wind Ensemble and Blackshirt Cru Spirit Band also performed for the public and attending families in the Baugh Performance Hall at 7:30pm. Saturday was more relaxed, with many come and go activities for families to enjoy at their own pace. The morning began with family worship in Manning Chapel at 8:30 a.m., and the service was followed by Meet the Faculty Brunch, where families had the chance to meet their students’ professors. Saturday after- noon offered open residence halls, an Alumni Museum Tour, Cru Creations Market Day, and the ever-famous CRUise spirit rally. The weekend officially concluded after the UMHB football game, where the Crusaders beat the ETBU Tigers 34-14. The game also consisted of multiple 9-11 memorial moments, including a flyover and moment of silence to commemorate those lost 20 years...

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Bash is a smash
Sep22

Bash is a smash

By Aries Ramos Contributing Writer UMHB students played games, bowled and participated in outdoor activities for free at the annual Back to School Bash at Spare Time in Temple on Friday, Aug. 20. This year’s Back to School Bash meant a little more to students. The UMHB Campus Activity Board (CAB), hosted the annual event on the heels of a long year of limited school activities. A senior CAB member, Sydney Ashborne said this was a good way to help bring the “sense of community” back to UMHB after a year of COVID. Senior psychology major Madalyn Lawton, junior Jasmine Collins agreed. “The Back to School Bash helps this school year feel normal again,” Collins said. She was grateful to be back on cam- pus because her “learning experience was not as good at home.” Many students say that they felt the same way about having to Zoom into class. Although they initially thought staying home would be positive, some say that the restrictions to stay at home caused students to lose campus resources and...

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Second Year Social welcomes sophomores back to campus
Sep18

Second Year Social welcomes sophomores back to campus

The past year was anything but normal for the freshman class in 2020. Though the staff at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor worked hard to give them a great experience, it was difficult with the COVID-19 pandemic looming over their heads. “With restrictions on campus last year due to COVID, we wanted to welcome back our second-year students in true UMHB style,” said Katie Gregory, Assistant Director of Student Success. With this in mind, the staff came up with an event with games, community and great food, now known as Second Year Social, or SYS. “We wanted to make students aware of the fun and exciting traditions that UMHB has to offer that they may not have experienced,” Gregory said. This event would also allow for sophomores to interact with other sophomores as they began their new school year. The pandemic took a lot of the community and fun out of last year for some students, and organizers aimed to bring that back. “I did not think about it too much until I saw the freshman this year get an awesome welcome week,” sophomore Dakota Powell said. Powell revealed that she felt hurt by seeing the difference in the previous year versus the current one. Like other sophomores, she admitted that it was difficult to watch the freshman this year have the full college experience that the COVID-19 pandemic robbed them of the prior year. The main goal behind SYS was assuring that these students did not feel overlooked. Organizers say the event cannot replace what they were not able to experience, but it can make up for the lost excitement and fun from that year. UMHB sophomores received an email from Gregory herself about the event. If a student did not receive an email, they were able to see posters and online advertisements about the event. Students were then able to get an idea about the purpose of the event and RSVP if they planned to attend. The event was complete with games, community, and great food.         “I believe this tradition should continue,” sophomore Hannah Maynard said. “The Second Year Social is a great way to get the sophomores involved and not feel left out.”    Maynard said that the majority of the time sophomores feel they receive no praise when they enter the new school year. She says this event allowed her to become better acquainted with her fellow students and the traditions of UMHB. “It was a very fun night to be with friends and relax before the semester picked up,” said Powell. She expressed that she really enjoyed the sense of community and felt...

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