Week highlights foriegn missions, brings visitors to campus
Nov07

Week highlights foriegn missions, brings visitors to campus

Missions Emphasis Week is one of the busiest weeks on campus, bringing people from all over the world together. The event is also one of the most popular traditions since it began in 1999 with Dr. George Loutherback.   It has grown exponentially in recent years, bringing missionaries from around the world to come speak to classes, chapel and scattered gatherings throughout the week.   “We do missions emphasis week because we believe you can touch the world from here,” Director of Baptist Student Ministries Dr. Shawn Shannon said. “It helps raise awareness of global issues and opportunities and creates ways to make connections with those with specific people and agencies.”   A steering committee of 43 students have been planning this year’s MEW for nearly a year. A lot of organization goes into preparing for the week-long event.   The students split up into groups that work on different things that involve interviewing, hospitality, public relations, prayer, seminars and special events.   “We want to engage the whole campus. We are engaging students, but also, we have missionaries in up to 90 classes now, and they’re there to communicate with anyone in the classroom. We had a luncheon for faculty and staff. There were more than 120 people there,” Shannon said.   Of course, with all the thought that goes into getting missionaries to come speak, there is a lot of planning into what else is going on during the week.   There were different places on campus where students could go listen to the missionaries, but there were also more hands-on occasions. This included having coffee with international missionaries, a special speaker at Wednesday night Focus and a recently added activity, the global runway.   It was first done two years ago, and was held again because it was such a hit with students.   Music and fun filled Brindley as people walked up and down the stairs and across the stage to show off a different cultures traditional clothing.   Student involvement is a big part of what makes MEW happen every year.   Senior nursing major Allison Toy has chosen her last year to be a part of the week. She served on the faculty relations sub-committee.   “We have a list of missionaries and their bios and what they’ve done and we connect them with faculty members. A faculty might request a missionary who has a business background or a specific missionary, and we pair them up,” Toy said.   She also said that being involved in the committee instead of just participating in MEW has been a great experience because she gets to...

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Smashaton: Destruction for a cause
Nov07

Smashaton: Destruction for a cause

A vehicle was vandalized on campus the evening of Oct. 25. It wasn’t crime, however, but rather a charitable event dubbed “Smashathon.”   The organized-chaos was sponsored by the university’s ASTRA club, which stands for Ability, Service, Training, Responsibility and Achievement. Proceeds from the event went to Project Angel Tree, which purchases Christmas presents for children whose parents are incarcerated.   Junior computer science major and ASTRA treasurer Riley Massey said the event was a community-wide effort.   Two junk yards worked together, one towing the vehicle, and the other actually donating the junk car.   Students could pay $1 for three swings at the vehicle,” he said. “We also purchased pumpkins from a local church in Temple and students could pay $1 to $4 depending on the size of pumpkin, to smash it up with a baseball bat or small sledgehammer.”   According to junior organismal-biology major and ASTRA secretary Victoria Camenisch, students made good use of the opportunity to take out frustration on the vehicle while supporting a good cause.   “We managed to bust a hole in the car, knock off the bumper and dent up the hood pretty badly,” she said.   ASTRA incorporated carnage into the event in other unique ways as well.   “We also played ‘pumpkin walk’ where students would walk around a numbered circle until the music stopped and then a number would be drawn to decide who won a free pumpkin to smash,” Camenisch said. “We encouraged students to wear a costume by offering six free swings at the car and we were a little surprised by how many students showed up in all-out costumes.”   ASTRA is a community service organization. The campus chapter was started three years ago and is sponsored by the Altrusa Club of Temple.   “The goal of ASTRA is basically to connect college students to a variety of service projects in the community, as well as connect them with the respectable members of Altrusa, whose careers and experiences range across almost all the majors offered at UMHB.”   Camenisch said ASTRA is always striving to find new ways to impact the community through events, volunteer work and creative activities.   “This is the most involved organization I’ve ever been a part of, ranging from campus-wide drives, Feed My Sheep lunch-packing to volunteering in local community fundraisers too.”   The group chose to donate to Project Angel Tree because Massey has seen firsthand the impact it can have.   He said, “I personally know a few people in my life who benefited from this organization while growing up and could see the positive impact that...

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Bawcom Student Union dedicated by students
Oct23

Bawcom Student Union dedicated by students

Chick-fil-A and Starbucks. An amazing view of the new football field. A new and improved bookstore. These are just a few of the things the Bawcom Student Union building has to offer. But there is more than meets the eye when considering the newest campus facility that students have already been enjoying for a couple of months.   To show their appreciation, hundreds of students gathered on King Street in front of the new building to celebrate with Dr. and Mrs. Jerry G. Bawcom in a ribbon cutting ceremony dedicated to them.   Not only did students come to show their support, but friends and family of the Bawcoms were also in attendance.   The building was named in honor of Dr. Bawcom and his many contributions to the university before, during and after he served as president from 1991 to 2009.   “In two short months, (the building) is already transforming the student life experience on our campus,” President Randy O’Rear said.   The building provides offices for faculty and staff, a band hall, a great hall, a food court, conference rooms and a board room for the Board of Trustees, SGA and other meetings.   During the ceremony, O’Rear announced that the great hall on the third floor of the building was renamed the McLane Great Hall as a surprise to Elizabeth and Drayton McLane Jr.’s family. The new sign was hung the morning of the grand opening.   “Dr. and Mrs. Bawcom, this remarkable facility was planned with one thing in mind: students,” Dr. O’Rear said. “And anyone who was fortunate enough to serve with you in your time of leadership knows how much you invested in and loved students, and knows how much they loved you.”   Vice President for Student Life Byron Weathersbee spoke about how the building has impacted many of the students on campus.   “When we opened this building, students got to flood into it, and I was standing right here. I was talking to a student and the student said ‘this building is a game-changer,’” Weathersbee said. “And as I stood there, I thought about the many years of planning and what all it took to make this building happen.… Thank you for allowing us to dream big and to encourage us to do that.”   The building serves faculty and staff as well. It has gone above and beyond what its original purpose was; it has become more than what the students, contractors, faculty, staff, the board and anyone involved could have imagined.   “I really do believe I could express for our student life staff.… I think I...

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Homecoming week brings joy to campus
Oct23

Homecoming week brings joy to campus

Homecoming. It’s a time for celebrating the past, living in the moment and excitement for the future.   During the week leading up to homecoming weekend, students participated in a sand volleyball tournament and hung out at Fest-of-Fun. They also spread out their blankets on the field at Crusader Stadium and bundled up to watch Little Giants.   The weekend officially kicked off on Friday evening with an alumni dinner in Millennium Oaks Park. After dinner and a carnival, alumni, students, parents, faculty and staff headed to W.W. Walton Chapel to watch Stunt Night and the crowning of the 2014 Homecoming king and queen.   Senior international business major Johnathon Kendall and senior interdiciplinary studies major Sarah Payne were voted by the student body as this year’s royalty.   Payne said being voted queen is “really overwhelming.”   “I wasn’t expecting this, and I certainly can’t describe how it feels right now. But it’s really great to know that UMHB students care about each other and these opportunities are available to us,” she said.   Stunt Night is a competition between all four of the classes that incorporates a skit and original song within a theme that is selected by each year’s Steering Committee.   Senior Katelyn Holm has been a director all four years for her class.   “I cant even begin to describe was Stunt Night has meant to me over the years…. I’ll never forget sitting around a table freshman year, trying to write an award-winning script with strangers. Then I look at us now, doing this production with the same people, some of my closest friends. It’s amazing. I’m so proud of my class,” she said.   The freshmen portrayed the story of Jacqueline and Aaron as they went through their first year at UMHB.   While they came across some bumps in the road, the class found they could do anything in unity.   The sophomores performed their rendition of Horton Hears a Who where Horton encourages his jungle friends to believe in something they can’t see—Cruville.   The junior class told the story of Ted who works so hard to win everything on campus to get a girl’s attention, but ends up losing his friends in the process. Ted eventually learns his lesson and finds that winning isn’t always everything.   The seniors performed a tribute to UMHB and told the story of Alec, a senior who is afraid to leave the university he loves so much. In the end, Alec finds that there’s a time to move on.   The senior class walked away with awards for best costume, song, dance and...

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Lecture translates well with students
Oct23

Lecture translates well with students

William Carey never received the equivalent of a high school or college education. But he has translated the Bible into six different languages.   The department of Christian studies hosted the first installment of the Manning Chapel Lecture series Oct. 17.   The stained glass windows in the chapel are dedicated to several great missionaries and are indicative of the giving of the Great Commission in the Gospel of Matthew. The lectures will focus on the evangelists honored in the windows.   “The unique aspect of this chapel are the four Baptist missions windows around you — a part of what that great cloud of witnesses which the New Testament book of Hebrews says surround us,” Dean of the College of Christian Studies Dr. Timothy Crawford said as he opened the address. “These lectures are being offered to tell the stories of these people celebrated and remembered in these windows.”   Professor in the department of Christian Studies Dr. Carol Holcomb took the podium next to welcome the guest lecturer Dr. David Bebbington. His lecture was about William Carey, to whom the back left window commemorates.   “He is indeed a distinguished professor and we are very grateful that he is able to take time out of his busy schedule and join us here to talk about William Carey,” Holcomb said.   Expert on the life of Carey, Bebbington jumped into his lecture after some quick jokes about the university, Baylor and Judge Baylor’s bones.   Carey, recognized as the father of modern missionary work, influenced the Baptist Missionary Society. His zeal for missions at the time was different from English Baptists, many of which thought evangelism was pointless.   The self-taught man formed the BMS and then moved to India, where he began his missionary work. It was here that Carey began working on translating the Bible into six languages.   For seven years, he had no converts. But the work took root and Carey and his team began to start churches in India.   Bebbington spoke in depth about the work and life of Carey. He also talked about his influence on American Baptists.   “He was a marvel to the American,” Bebbington said. “The Philadelphia Baptist Association, the best organized organization in America, soon gave him some … support. In 1810 the American board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions was established. Its first missionary to India was Adoniram Judson.”   Senior Biblical studies major James Williams attended the lecture and really liked the additional information about Carey’s personal life, which Bebbington was able to relate.   “You can tell that he actually knows what he’s talking...

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Red Bus Project brings thrift shop to campus, helps orphans
Oct23

Red Bus Project brings thrift shop to campus, helps orphans

  As students on campus last week attended Homecoming events each day, some of them, in keeping with the university’s spirit of service, volunteered their time and donated clothing to The Red Bus Project, an organization that raises awareness and funds for the plight of orphans worldwide.   The non-profit is represented by a literal red double decker bus from England, which had been turned into a thrift shop that accepts donations and sells clothes at discounted prices.   Andi Hale, a senior mass communication/ public relations major was instrumental in bringing the group to campus. She’s very familiar with the operation, as she spent all of last semester working at its headquarters in Tennessee.   “I’ve followed Show Hope, Red Bus’ parent organization for the past five years,” she said. “I had heard about Red Bus Project through that. After my freshman year at UMHB, I went to China with Show Hope, and my team leader from that trip was one of the guys who helped start this program.”   Hale believes the organization helps involve young adults.   “We are a generation of activists, willing to get behind a cause and right injustices in the world, and let’s be honest, what college student doesn’t love to thrift shop,” she said.   Hale wants people to know that everyone can contribute to the effort no matter how large of an undertaking the cause seems to be.   She said, “I think that many students have it in their heads that orphan care is something that they can’t help with until they are in a place where they can adopt, but there is so much more to do for these children who are still waiting for families. My passion is informing students of ways that they can care for these kids now, rather than waiting until they’re ‘old enough.’”   Hale backs the organization proudly because she believes her internship was a life-changing experience. She knew her passion was real when she looked forward to waking up in the morning.   “I’m a college student. I couldn’t tell you the last time I was actually excited for my alarm to go off. But that was the effect that working for Red Bus had on me,” she said.   UMHB alumna and Assistant Director of Student Organizations Katy Bumpus helped realize Hale’s dream of having the Red Bus make a stop on campus as part of the homecoming festivities last week.   “This was something that I thought would be great to bring to campus to help spread awareness for orphan care,” she said.   Bumpus said the university responded...

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