BSM celebrates 95 years of serving UMHB
Oct14

BSM celebrates 95 years of serving UMHB

Ninety-five years ago, the 19th Amendment was passed, allowing women to vote, the American Professional Football League was formed, and the first ever Baptist Student Union in Texas was established at Baylor Female College. In 1920 the University of Mary-Hardin Baylor was chosen as the “laboratory” for the first BSU in Texas because of its roots in Christian faith and service. UMHB has always focused on the idea of teaching not only the knowledge found in books, but the knowledge found in knowing God. This is apparent in the 1945 Centennial Series: According To His Purpose. “During the past one hundred years… the college, and the student body itself have been concerned with ‘including the Christian religion within, and not just alongside of the educational process,’” according to the series. The University’s mission served as the foundation for organizations such as the Mission Circle, Women’s Ministry Union, Student Christian Association, Young Woman’s Auxiliary, and the Baptist Student Union. The name Baptist Student Union, however, was changed to the Baptist Student Ministry in 1994 to better describe the purpose of the organization. Despite this name change, the goal of the BSM has remained very much the same since its beginning in 1920. “[The BSU] has its object in the winning of others to Christ and His Church; the enlistment of Christians in Bible and Mission study… the calling out of the called for special service,” 1920 Student Secretary Joseph P. Boone said in a 1940s pamphlet about the ministry. Today the BSM offers over 20 ministries that impact the students as well as the community surrounding our campus. BSM director Shawn Shannon believes that the constant growth and change of the BSM is what has made it such a driving force on campus. “This is my 36th year in campus ministry. My 16th at UMHB. UMHB is a precious place. I am convinced that we can touch the world from here,” she said. Shannon is thankful her time here on campus and the opportunities it has provided for ministry. “The campus is a strategic place and the college season of life is crucial for making significant decisions… and what an incubator the campus is for relationships. What an important time to pursue Christ with others and for the sake of others,” Shannon said. It’s this passion for ministry that has inspired many students on campus to get involved with the BSM, including senior interdisciplinary studies education major Rebekah Peyton. “There is such an amazing peace in knowing that I am joined together in my UMHB experience with other students who are trying to follow Christ, lead ministries, and also be...

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SGA hopes to have big impact on campus policy
Oct06

SGA hopes to have big impact on campus policy

Student Government Association representatives recently met for the first time this semester to indoctrinate new members and brainstorm about ways to improve the student experience on campus. The organization had many new ideas at this first session because of an influx of fresh faces. “The only people that are returning senate members are those on the executive cabinet and then one or two of the other senate members. So we have a fresh senate; they’re still learning how everything works,” External Vice President Kirstie Wallace said. Despite many being new to SGA, the senate members are ready and excited to bring their ideas of change to the table. “SGA is not just about pushing agendas, but rather representing the 3000 students that attend UMHB,” Freshman Class President Tyler Baker said. “It is the only club at school that can have a direct effect on policy. I joined because I wanted to be involved in helping make our school even better.” Getting involved and listening to classmates is exactly what the members are doing. At the SGA meeting on Sept. 22, the senate members threw out many ideas that had been brought to them by fellow students. One of these ideas was inspired by a concern about the sun glare from the windows on the first floor of the Student Union Building, as well as in Mayborn Campus Center. “I propose getting blinds where the computers are in the SUB. It’s really bright and you can’t see the screen if you’re using the computers,” senior Senator Collin Cavendish said. “[I propose] possibly getting blinds and fans in Mayborn as well.” Another issue SGA hopes to address has to do with parking restrictions. Students have mentioned that commuters are being allowed to park in residential parking spots at all times, but residents are only allowed to park in commuter parking spaces after 2:30 p.m. Freshman cell biology with clinical lab science major, Bryanna Edwards, agrees with this issue and has expressed her frustration with the lack of parking spots closer to residential and academic buildings, and the competition this has led to. “As a Remschel resident there is very little parking. We are always competing with Stribling residents and other students for parking spots by the dorm. I know commuters take lots of residential spots as well because there isn’t enough commuter parking either. It’s just a constant competition for spots,” she said. Other ideas mentioned during the meeting were a return of the Homecoming 5K, a Day of Culture, and benches to provide seating at the bus stops. The association also voted to nominate sophomore Treasurer Jake Fereday as the...

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UMHB teams up with United Way
Oct06

UMHB teams up with United Way

United Way of Central Texas has teamed up with UMHB to create one of the campus’ most successful organizations, while still meeting their mission. So far, they have been working on building a strong leadership team to help them reach their goals for the year and future years to come. Senior public relations major Christopher Stroup has risen to the occasion and is now the president of the upcoming organization. Although Stroup graduates in May 2016, he is confident he will set a firm foundation to help make the UMHB chapter of the United Way successful before he leaves. “We are trying to empower students and provide ways for them to give back to the community,” he said. They have already started planning service opportunities for future UMHB events like Parent’s Weekend. In the spring, the group is planning a Play 60 event where the NFL gets involved to teach students the importance of health, exercise and eating right, while also having fun. Director of marketing and volunteerism at United Way Central Texas, Mary Beth Kelton, is helping Stroup and the other leadership members get started. “The university prepares students for leadership, service, and faith-informed discernment in a global society. This is the foundation of Student United Way UMHB Chapter,” she said. “This is a great opportunity for students to get involved with a global organization right here in Belton, Texas.” Because the UMHB Chapter is just building momentum, they have relied heavily on the help of United Way Central Texas. Stroup said they have been very helpful and supportive after hand-picking him to be president. The organization is adopting the original mission of the non-profit that strives to “bring the entire community together to find lasting solutions that change people’s lives,” according to the organization’s website. “Student United Way represents the next generation of community leaders. We focus on education, financial stability and health – the building blocks for a good quality life,” Kelton said. Their primary goal for this year is to get the word out about the new organization. They have meetings every other Thursday at 6 p.m. in Brindley Auditorium. The first interest meeting had about 50 people, and they are hoping the number stays consistent or grows in the upcoming meetings. Because of UMHB’s relationship with United Way, it has made it easier on the leadership team to communicate and get things done for them. “I am a proud Crusader undergrad and MBA graduate and I know UMHB is the perfect place for a Student United Way chapter,” Kelton said. “UMHB students have a heart for serving the community. We will have many social...

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Lt. Gen. Milley, Sen. Cornyn comment on Fort Hood shooting investigation
Apr03

Lt. Gen. Milley, Sen. Cornyn comment on Fort Hood shooting investigation

THE BELLS — Antonio Hebert and Seth Stephens Just after 4 p.m. April 2, 2014, a shooter identified as 34-year-old Ivan Lopez opened fire in a medical facility on Fort Hood killing four and injuring 16. All were military personnel. Some were treated at Scott and White Hospital in Temple.     The gunman died of a self-inflicted gunshot wo und shortly after the incident. The investigation is still ongoing. Police and military personnel will release information as it becomes available.     Texas Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and Lt. Gen. Mark Milley held a brief press conference April 3 at 3 p.m. Milley began by asking reporters and media outlets to avoid speculation.     “As for the investigation, the criminal investigation division of the U.S. army continues to lead investigating agencies and they are right now synchronizing all of the investigative work of the federal, state, local and army agencies throughout Fort Hood and the surrounding area. They are interviewing witnesses as an ongoing and active investigation,” he said.     Milley hinted at the possibility of the Lopez’s psychological history playing a role in the tragic incident. He also said that authorities are still looking into all possibilities concerning motive.     “At this point we have not yet ruled out anything whatsoever. And we are letting the investigation run its course. But we have, again, no indication that this… (has) any link to terrorist organizations,” he said.     Cornyn said he considers mental health problems to be “among the most vexing” and said measures are being taken to care for the psychological well-being of soldiers.     Milley discussed future plans to remember the deceased saying, “We’re planning a memorial ceremony early next week in honor of the fallen. I’d also like to thank the outpouring of support from the central Texas community and the entire state of Texas. And all of our national leadership within in the military and civilian leadership at the national level. Everyone is chipping in trying to assist in anyway they...

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Churches Help West Community Rebuild
Oct09

Churches Help West Community Rebuild

The sound of accordions and brass performing waltzes and polkas rang out from the speakers as smiling clerks and customers happily exchanged midday greetings. After one step into the jovial atmosphere of the Czech Stop, home to West, Texas’ famous kolaches, one would not have suspected that six short months earlier, this little town, less than an hour’s drive from UMHB, was rocked by a devastating explosion that claimed 14 lives, nine of whom were first responders. Beneath the area’s relaxed, tranquil surface, dramatic memories of chaos and tragedy can be conjured up at a moment’s notice. “Initially I thought it was an earthquake,” Associate Pastor of St. Mary’s Church of the Assumption, Father Boniface Onjefu, said of the April 18 event. “I had just finished the 6:30 p.m. mass, and I came to the rectory when I heard a loud explosion.” The priest recalled walking out to the street to witness town residents streaming out of their houses to see what had happened. He said, “I saw people running around helter-skelter everywhere, saying the fertilizer plant exploded. While I was standing in front of the church, I watched the dark smoke head up into the sky…. We never had peace for three days.” Because West’s population is one deeply rooted in faith, many of the Czech-Americans being Catholic, the sanctuary became a safe haven of constancy in the midst of a tempest. “If you live in West, you will know that the church is the center of activity….,” Onjefu said. “The church is the centerpiece, so when the explosion happened, they all came here. People were asked not to go back home, so we kept them at the church to take refuge.” He said the parish was able to provide spiritual, emotional and monetary support to community members, who have expressed much gratitude. The town is a tight-knit one, and the clergy are no exception. Catholics and Protestants alike belong to the West Area Ministers Alliance. Because St. Mary’s was the largest unaffected church structure deemed safe at the time, all the congregations met there for a candlelight vigil and prayer service the Friday after the Wednesday explosion. The community of faith has played an active role in the revitalization effort. First Baptist Church of West continues to meet practical needs. Pastor John Crowder, a childhood friend of university President Dr. Randy O’Rear, said he and his family were on their way back home from his daughter’s track meet in College Station when he received a phone call from one of the church elders about the explosion. Naturally, he inquired about his home and dog, but the deacon...

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Roommates: Through Thick and Thin
Sep24

Roommates: Through Thick and Thin

One of the most terrifying parts of first arriving at college is meeting your first roommate. You have probably never met before and yet  have been paired to live together for at least a semester. Images from the horror movie, The Roommate, surely creep into the minds of students as they drive to Belton for move-in day. While their own first roommate stories don’t unfold as violently, some can be horrific in their own way. However, on rare occasions, roommates hit it off, and they become best friends. Senior education major Chad Manns wasn’t sure what to think about his roommate, senior mathematics major Ryan Frusha, when they first moved into McLane Hall their freshman year. “For the first two or three weeks, it was pretty awkward. We talked about school, and that was it,” Manns said. “I think the thing that brought us together was our music. I was listening to Usher, and he was like ‘you like this music?’” Once they discovered their similar taste in tunes, the duo decided to make some music videos.    Frusha said that was when he started to get to know his roommate better. “The first time we met, he was real quiet, and I was more upbeat. And then he came out of his shell a little bit when we did those videos,” he said. Whether or not they would be roommates past their freshman year was never mentioned between Frusha and Manns. It was an unnecessary conversation. “If anything, it was when the housing process came, we expected to stay roommates. The conversation was more of who’s going to be our third roommate,” Frusha said. Usually differences and disagreements are reasons why freshman roommates don’t stay together. Frusha and Manns are exceptions to the rules. “We’ve only had probably two arguments. But they’ve all been about sports,” Manns said, laughing. They both enjoy playing and watching basketball. However, Manns is an avid Dallas Mavericks fan while Frusha chooses to root for the Miami Heat. For many this could be an obstacle to friendship given the hot rivalry that has developed between the two teams over the past several years. “We weren’t at each other’s throats about it,” Frusha said. “When the Mavs won, he was pretty cool about it. Whenever they were beating the Heat, he wouldn’t bring it up. Then the next year when the Heat crushed them, I never said anything about it.” Their friendship doesn’t end once they leave Belton. This past summer, Frusha and Manns went to Hawaii to do mission work. They said the experience helped them grow closer spiritually. Another duo that has withstood...

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