New organization helps vets feel more at home
Nov16

New organization helps vets feel more at home

According to the Veterans Affairs office, there are 480 military veterans on the campus. That’s nearly 13 percent of students, faculty and staff. To celebrate those who dedicated their time to service, UMHB played Marches of the Armed Forces at halftime of the home football game on Veterans Day, and students wore red to their classes on Friday. Despite the high percentile of veterans, Mike Harrigan and Thad Imerman noticed a lack of social groups for veterans. With this absence in mind, Harrigan and Imerman formed Veterans Helping Veterans, a Bible study through the Baptist Student Ministries that’s dedicated to creating a group specifically for veterans and ROTC cadets. Harrigan, senior pastor of Fairview Community Church and senior biblical studies major, said Veterans Helping Veterans is a Bible study group for veterans, where they also discuss any veteran issues here on campus or in their lives. “We have experience and contacts with veterans’ administration, and hospitals, but we concentrate on the spiritual formation and spiritual health of the veterans. We want them to feel a little bit more at home here.” The organization’s founders understand the struggles of veterans because they both have served in the military. Harrigan spent 21 years in the Army and retired as a first sergeant, while Imerman was honorably discharged as a first lieutenant from the Army. They found the process of continuing their educational career difficult, and seek to aid other veterans who want to further their academic careers. “[The group] helps a lot in validating the experience. I had veterans coming into campus as transfers, not new students. There was no sit-down explanation of what benefits they’re going to get, that the VA provides for them…there was no real guidance given for these vets coming in. The camaraderie also helps with those still suffering from PTSD or separation from the military.” Through their connections and experiences throughout the VA and other benefits of the military, Harrigan and Imerman are able to assist newly discharged or retired veterans who are still adjusting to civilian life. Since veterans are nontraditional students, most of them commute from the Temple or Killeen areas to school each day, isolating them from traditional campus life. “They’re gonna feel sort of lonely,” Harrigan said. “This is another way to get our arms around them in that so they feel welcomed and a part of the program. It’s an easy way to create that camaraderie again.” Imerman praised the group for its ability to connect him with people he wouldn’t have otherwise met as a journalism major. “I’ve met four or five veterans I didn’t know, and an ROTC kid.”...

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Tori Pharris crowned Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor
Nov15

Tori Pharris crowned Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor

Twenty young women, representing student organizations, classes and residence halls displayed their inner beauty at the annual Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor Pageant this Veteran’s Day, Saturday, Nov. 11. Miss Search Cru, junior mass communication major Tori Pharris was crowned 2018 Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor. Pharris will represent the university at parades, Crusader Knights and other campus events. She will also work to carry out her platform, “supporting military families during deployment.” “It’s kind of overwhelming,” she said. “I just went into the pageant with the expectation of, ‘let’s just have fun and meet some new people,’ so it’s kind of crazy.” Junior psychology major Sarah Szyperski directed the pageant, along with her assistant directors, public relations majors senior Rhema Jones and sophomore Mary De Acetis. “[Directing] was honestly one of the biggest blessings and honors of my life. It’s such an honor to put on this big of a tradition, and work alongside two awesome assistant directors.” The contestants were judged by four categories: interview, talent, platform, and evening gown. The night began with the talent portion. From singing about avocados, to dressing like Napolean Dynamite, to karate chopping a boyfriend, the talent portion brought many laughs and smiles. Pharris’ showcased her musical abilities during the talent portion of the pageant by playing the school’s alma mater using water glasses. “The school song means so much [to me,]” Pharris said. “By the end everyone was singing, and it made it much more heartfelt.” The contest also had the evening gown portion, where the ladies showcased their grace and poise. The ladies then performed a group dance together, and the top five finalists were announced. Each were given interview questions about their platforms and the organizations they were representing. While the judges collaborated on the winner, co-emcee Annah Jane Pascall performed an original song that she performed last year when she was a contestant in the pageant. Runner-ups for the pageant were Miss McLane Hall Sarah Jane Leaverton, Miss Junior Class Jenna Albright, Miss Senior Class Katie Winekauf, and Miss Baptist Student Union Hannah John. 1st runner-up John said that she looks forward to supporting Pharris through her reign as the 2018 Miss MHB. “I don’t plan on stopping with my platform, but I’m excited that I get to support her.” Several special awards were given out to a few young ladies. Miss Freshman Class Ally Jordan won best talent for her Bon Qui Qui Starbucks skit. Best Evening Gown went to Miss Student Foundation Hannah Yoes. Miss Farris Hall Keyarius Johnson won both Best Interview and the Congeniality Award. “We are all just family, so it was an amazing feeling to...

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Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor photo gallery
Nov15

Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor photo gallery

Emma Spellings and Shara McClure wait while Jenna Albright intoduces herself. Photo by Madeline Oden. Tori Pharris plays the alma mater using wine glasses. Hannah John performs a traditional Indian dance for her talent. Photo by Madeline Oden. Hannah Yoes plays the flute for her talent. Photo by Madeline Oden. Ally Jordan performs her Bon Qui Qui Starbucks skit. Photo by Madeline Oden. Rosalind Harrell praise dances to “Don’t Cry” by Kirk Franklin during the talent portion of the pageant. Photo by Madeline Oden. Jenna Albright sings about avocados as she makes guacamole. Photo by Madeline Oden. Katie Winekauf dressed as Napoleon Dynamite for her talent. Photo by Madeline Oden. Katie Winekauf dressed as Napoleon Dynamite for her talent. Photo by Madeline Oden. Katie Winekauf dressed as Napoleon Dynamite for her talent. Photo by Madeline Oden. Haley Whitmore scooters onstage during her talent. Photo by Lauren Lum. Laurin Hoffa poses in her evening gown. Photo by Madeline Oden. Rosalind Harrell poses in her evening gown. Photo by Madeline Oden. Sara Lindsey poses in her evening gown. Photo by Madeline Oden. Alexys Wharton poses in her evening gown. Photo by Madeline Oden. Katie Winekauf poses in her evening gown. Photo by Madeline Oden. Bridget Silman poses in her evening gown. Photo by Lauren Lum. 2018 Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor Tori Pharris. Photo by Madeline Oden. 2018 Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor Tori Pharris reacts as 2017 Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor Bridgit Sillman crowns her Saturday, Nov. 11 in Walton Chapel. Pharris’ rendition of the alma mater using musical glasses had the audience singing along, and her platform to support military families, interview contributed to a winning performance. Contestants left to right are Bailey Haire, Shara McClure, Hannah Yoes, Haley Whitmore, and Sarah Jane Leaverton. The masters’ of ceremonies at right are: Kris Hurst and Annah Jane Paschall. Photo by Madeline Oden. Among others, Danielle Salazar, Keyarius Johnson, Ally Jordan, Emma Spellings, Sara Lindsey, Jenna Albright and Haley Brewis pose in their evening gowns. Photo by Madeline...

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2017 Homecoming festivities bring students, alumni together
Oct26

2017 Homecoming festivities bring students, alumni together

Crusaders enjoyed a fun-filled homecoming week with Race for the Gold competitions, skits, lanterns, and a win against Belhaven University. Homecoming week kicked off with a tank giveaway and early morning yoga at Luther Memorial on Monday. The day continued with Race for the Gold events: three-legged soccer and balloon juggle. The night ended with Lanterns and Lily Pads, a new homecoming event where students lit paper lanterns in Burt Pond. “[Lanterns and Lily Pads] was so serene, and a much-needed night during a stressful week,” said junior mass communications major Felicia Suominen. Tuesday continued with more Race for the Gold events and ended with Taste of Belton, where students sampled eats and treats from Belton restaurants. On Wednesday, students participated in a mechanical bull contest on King Street and then went to various church small groups. The fun continued Thursday with Giant Jenga on King Street. In the evening, students enjoyed a Cru-Toon-themed Stunt Night. The freshmen skit was a long lost episode of Spongebob Squarepants, where Sandy misses her home at UMHB, so Spongebob and the gang try to cheer her up. The sophomore’s skit followed Timmy Turner of The Fairly-Odd Parents on his first day as a sophomore at UMHB. The juniors’ portrayed how Pebbles and Bam-Bam from The Flintstones first started dating at the University of Mary Hardin-Boulder. The seniors ended the night with their skit featuring Scooby-Doo and the gang as they track down who stole the diplomas from the Alumni House. After watching skits, students headed to the Hoco Hoedown on King Street. The hoedown had food trucks and live music by the Hunter Rea Band. On Friday, students answered trivia questions at the Trivia Challenge, while alumni reminisced about their life at UMHB at the “When I was Here” Alumni Mixer. Students and alumni gathered Friday night to watch the Stunt Night skits. During intermission, the homecoming court was introduced. Senior exercise sports science major Matthew McVey and senior nursing major Kristin Cherry were crowned Homecoming King and Queen. “It’s a blessing honestly,” McVey said about winning Homecoming King. “Two years ago I would have never thought this would have happened. I’ve made so many friends and built relationships. I’m blessed to be here.” Next came the announcement of the Stunt Night awards. Best Song and Dance went to the senior class. Best Costumes went to the junior class. Best Comedic Moment went to Gary, the snail. Best Actress was awarded to junior Schyler Malloy as Pebbles, and junior Ben Roark won Best Actor as Fred Flintstone. The senior class was awarded Audience Choice. Malloy was thrilled to win Best Actress and...

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Cru rings Belhaven 45-7
Oct26

Cru rings Belhaven 45-7

The undefeated Cru gave fans a treat for homecoming, handily defeating the Belhaven Blazers 45-7. UMHB improved to 7-0 overall and 6-0 in ASC play. UMHB dominated on both sides of the football: the offense exploited personnel mismatches to score seemingly at will, and the defense ground out a near-perfect game. After a solid first quarter, in which running back Byron Proctor rumbled for a 34-yard score and kicker John Mowrey added the extra point and a field goal, the Cru offense took it up a notch, racking up 28 more points in the second quarter. After a 3-and-out from the Cru defense, quarterback Kyle Jones led the offense on a 43-yard drive, capping it off with a perfect pass to receiver TJ Josey for a 38-yard touchdown with 12 minutes to go in the quarter. Jones had targeted Josey on a similar route on the opening drive of the game, but Josey came up short with a rare drop in the end zone. After the game, Josey shared some insight on bouncing back and making the second-quarter play. “I was upset with myself,” Josey said. “But you’ve got to have amnesia; you can’t let it affect you. You have to forget about it and go out and make the next play.” Josey did exactly that. After the defense forced a turnover on downs, Jones began his second drive of the second quarter. He led the Cru to the Belhaven 23-yard line, but there was shaken up. “I moved up in the pocket and their guy hit me right in the chin,” Jones said after Saturday’s win. “I was a little dizzy, but I’m feeling better now.” Quarterback Carl Robinson III entered the game in relief and scored on his first snap of the quarter, cooly hitting receiver Bryce Wilkerson with a bullet to put the Cru up 24-0. Wilkerson had an explanation for the immediate touchdown. “Carl and I have been putting in extra work after practice,” Wilkerson said. “I got around the linebacker who had been jamming me at the line, and Carl saw me, and I scored.” The third touchdown of the Cru’s monstrous second quarter came at the hands of cornerback Kris Brown. Brown recorded his third pick-six of the season, returning the interception 40 yards for a score with six minutes left in the half. Brown continued his dominant play, also logging four tackles and a pass deflection. After defensive end Khevon Shepard recovered a fumble forced by linebacker Tevin Jones, Robinson III led the Cru into the red zone, setting up running back Olan Vining for the team’s fourth touchdown of the second...

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UMHB alumnus brings new life to downtown theater
Oct26

UMHB alumnus brings new life to downtown theater

The Beltonian Theatre, originally built in the 1920s, will reopen for audiences to enjoy classic films Friday, Nov. 3. Because the new owner of the renovated theater is owned by UMHB alumnus, Zechariah Baker, it will accept Cru cash. Baker, who graduated from the university in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in music, bought the theater three weeks ago. “I’ve wanted to open my own business since I was a kid,” he said. “About three or four years ago, I was managing a movie theater, and I saw the Beltonian was for sale. I started saving and planning. Everything fell the right way a couple of months ago.” The Beltonian, located at 219 E. Central Ave, boasts a 150-seat screening room complete with a small stage. Baker hopes to show classic films, UMHB games and other sporting events, and silent films. He will also be bringing in local artists. “A lot of these old classic movies are films that people saw when they grew up and now can only watch at home,” Baker said. “Now, they’ll be able to see quality classics on a big screen again in a great theater that has a long history in Belton.” Central Texas native and country singer Jenna McDaniel will kick-off opening weekend with a concert from 7 to 9 p.m on Friday, Nov. 3. Then Baker will play The Magnificent Seven (1969) starring Yul Brynner, Steven McQueen and Charles Bronson. The theatre will be open on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Baker also plans to keep the theatre open every day during the summer months. Tickets will be $3.99 apiece. “A lot of folks in the area have been to the theatre when they were kids,” Baker said. “I want to be able to provide the same kind of experience they got at a discount price.” The Beltonian will not only be showing classic films, but it will also serve buttery popcorn, cotton candy, fountain drinks, candy and a few locally-made gourmet items. Baker hopes that UMHB students will come to the theater for an inexpensive and fun experience. “It’s going to be affordable and close to [campus],” he said. “I’m working with several different organizations on the campus to get some activities here.” UMHB Junior Noah Crosby remembers visiting the theater as a child, when his church rented the theater to show a Gospel movie. “I went there with some old friends of mine, and they were serving popcorn,” Crosby said. “It was nice on the inside with dark red carpet. Crosby regrets that he didn’t go more often when he was younger. “I’ll probably go again. I didn’t know...

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