ROTC program expanded
Oct21

ROTC program expanded

The university has a new program this fall that promotes building bonds with fellow students and teaches how to become a responsible leader in various situations. The Army ROTC organization has now expanded its courses to UMHB. The headquarters for the curriculum is based out of Tarleton University in Stephenville, Texas, but has a detachment in Killeen and on the UMHB campus. Five students participate in the program, while Killeen has about 60 who are stationed there. Among the UMHB students, the leader is Cadet Sgt. Major Alex Petrowski, who is a junior and a criminal justice major. Petrowski was in the Army for two and half years before joining the ROTC program and is excited the campus has joined the program. “UMHB really wanted to have an Army program of their own,” he said. “The university has had an Air Force ROTC program based out of Baylor University for some time now. We just thought there should be an Army detachment,” he said. However, with only five students participating, the program is small. Junior sports management major Ariel Bush is one of the five. Both Bush and Petrowski stress the want and need of new recruits to join and become a part of the new organization. “Army ROTC is a great opportunity and learning experience,” Bush said. “There are many different scholarship opportunities associated with the program for anyone that is interested. Whether you are prior service, active duty, National Guard, reserve or none of the previously listed, it is definitely a life—changing experience, and I love every minute of it.” For those who are nervous about the demands of the Army, the ROTC program prepares people for the commitment of the Army. “As ROTC cadets, we must first learn to be great followers before we are great leaders,” Bush said. “In class we learn all the mechanics of how to lead tactical squad missions, and then we apply what we learned in the classroom to practical exercises. We also participate in land navigation classes, combat water safety training and field training exercises.” Head of the recruiting at UMHB is Major Chris Jay. He was in the Army for more than 21 years and is now trying to get students to join the challenging program. “My main hope for the program is just wanting it to grow,” he said. “The students here at UMHB that have committed to the organization are outstanding.” Jay also believes that, along with building ROTC on campus and recruiting more students, the university can also have an advantage from it. In his eyes, UMHB has the potential of enrolling more students now that...

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Couple tag-teams in Chapel
Oct21

Couple tag-teams in Chapel

By Joshua Thiering Students’ attentions were wrangled and corralled when Candice Meyers, a Christian country singer and former Miss Kansas, and her husband, Rope, a world champion steer wrestler, spoke to students recently during chapel services. Candice Meyers sang and interjected personal words of wisdom to the students. Her first song was dedicated to the “World Changers.” “Have a little faith. You can move a mountain,” she sang. Rope Meyers, whose father was also a world champion steer wrestler, spoke about his history of roping when he was a young adult. He also jokingly dispensed a little marriage advice saying, “When you get married, you find that you lose half of your vocabulary, because your wife has the other half.” Using the illustration of Jesus as a river flowing forth, he emphasized that Christians should have a bottomless faith. “God needs you at a place where you are not ankle deep … you need to move to that place where there is no bottom, where you cannot stand.” With a name like Rope, one could say Meyers was destined to become a cowboy. He said, “It is on my birth certificate: Rope Meyers. My sister’s name is Tie and brother’s name is Cash. They named us that way because you rope the calf, you tie the calf, and you win the cash.” He added, “My dad was a world champion steer wrestler when I grew up. So I wanted to do the same thing. Every little kid wants to play cowboys and Indians. I just got to do it with a real horse.” Where Meyers draws inspiration from his father, Candice Meyers finds inspiration from her favorite country music artist, Martina McBride, and her heroes from her hometown who have walked with God successfully for a long time. “I look at them, and they are 40 years married, their children are raised and grown and they are just as passionate about God as they ever were,” Candice said. Senior history education major Amanda Jane Foss said of the hour—long performance, “I liked that she explained the meaning of her songs, and the significance that they had in her own life.” She also enjoyed listening to Rope’s talk. Foss said, “I really liked that Rope talked about it being a long journey, of just walking day by day, moment by moment with Jesus—that you might walk a thousand steps and only be ankle deep, and keep going and walk another thousand steps until you get to that place where Christ is in control of every aspect of your life.” Other students were a bit more critical. “I thought she wasn’t...

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Plunging economy: What students, parents should know about America’s deepening financial crisis

Jordan Gustin Over the course of a month, the implosion of Wall Street shocked the world and has prompted many to search for the cause. The discovery of denial, greed and rampant corruption is unsettling. The great irony is that clues of the collapse have been around all along. So how could the signs be overlooked, and does it foreshadow the fate of America? A recession is a decline in economic activity (such as a drop in house purchases or a decline of the stock market) for six consecutive months. “There is an almost-certain 99.9 percent chance we are headed for a recession,” finance professor Dr. Larry Woodward said. Woodward offers his advice. “The problem isn’t caused by over-regulation or under-regulation, and we don’t need government to regulate more or regulate less; we need a thoughtful government.” As for whether or not America is headed for another Great Depression, Woodward thinks the only way to follow that path of disaster is if deficit spending continues. How does all this affect college students? Dr. Paul Stock, finance, accounting, and economics chairperson, said, “This crisis might affect college graduates looking for a job in the financial sector. If there is a recession, businesses will be looking to cut costs, and the first place they will cut are the number of employees. Unemployment will go up.” Stock believes that the crisis will impact students’ parents more than the students themselves. He said that parents who are retired “might lose some money in their retirement accounts, and those who are looking to retire in the next three to five years might have to wait. Unfortunately, if there is a recession, there is a good chance many of them will be laid off.” The origins of the financial crisis can be traced back to an act passed by Congress in 1977 called the Community Reinvestment Act. It has essentially forced businesses to sustain a minimum percentage of low-income mortgages every year or risk being fined. These mortgages eventually became the highest amount of loans in any income category. Lenders misled many potential homeowners into higher loans. Just about anyone, regardless of the ability to afford them, was able to take out a home loan. The Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) received preferential treatment from Congress in 1991, giving them an advantage over competitors in that they were not subject to many of the taxes and standards other companies were. This allowed Fannie and Freddie to use their reputable appearance to sell risky low-income mortgages to gullible investors as low-risk investments. The Federal Reserve’s takeover...

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University encourages different denominations
Oct21

University encourages different denominations

This institution prides itself on its Christian values and emphasizes the impact that students can make on the world as young adults. The campus is labeled as “Baptist,” but the university embraces thousands of students of diverse backgrounds. The student handbook says that the university prepares students to make a global, positive impact on the world through its “Baptist vision.” Is the Baptist vision that the university instills in each student welcoming to students of other denominations and religions? Sophomore organismal biology major Mike Kroll is Jewish and said that the people on campus have been very accepting and welcoming of his different beliefs. Kroll’s stand-up comedy routine includes Jewish humor, but he is a regular performer and fan favorite at Open Mic Night. His comedy routine and sense of humor have allowed him to have a positive outlook toward people who are critical of his faith. He said, “It keeps me strong in the face of animosity, even though I have not faced too many hard things on campus.” Kroll urges students to “get involved in the other religions, even if it is just a basic knowledge, so that you can strengthen your own faith. It helps you improve as a person.” Sophomore cell biology major Annjelica Madali is Catholic and has encountered discrimination at times because of her beliefs. “Some people are really nice about it and then, of course, there are some that are completely ignorant of the fact that other religions do exist,” she said. Madali also believes that a diverse religion base on campus is beneficial to the student body. She said, “It’s extremely important to have different religions on campus, so that people can learn to not be so close-minded to different ideas and beliefs.” Senior education major Amanda Foss has attended several different types of churches. “I don’t think people think of me any differently knowing that I am or was one denomination or the other,” she said. “I like all three denominations that I have been a part of and love worshiping at all of the different kinds of services.” For the most part, the view on campus is one of acceptance and finding the things each faith shares. Foss said, “I really think we all need to focus on what we have in common among all the different denominations of Christians, rather than focusing on all the differences.” To many students on campus, faith is the cornerstone of who they are and what they do. “My faith affects all of my life. It’s the foundation of who I am, and it impacts the way I try to live my life...

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World War II vets bring insight
Oct21

World War II vets bring insight

In the living room of Troy, Texas resident, Frank Thompson, junior history and political science major Olivia Gustin and senior history major Naomi Johnson recorded the stories of a World War II veteran. Unlike the tales of noble soldiers who went for days without food or water while pulling comrades to safety, Thompson told his story of what each brave soldier did every day. Gustin and Johnson are part of history/political science chair Dr. David Chrisman’s History Inquiry class. Members interviewed vets for the Veterans History Project sponsored by the Library of Congress. “It’s really nice because these are the stories that aren’t being told,” Gustin said. “This is the mass of the military. This is what got us through World War II are guys like him who did their job … ” Thompson was drafted from Texas A&M’s Corps into the Army’s 172nd Infantry Company H and served from February 1943 to September 1945. He fought in the Southern Pacific on the front lines and then returned to Texas to continue farming. Thompson said, “I was glad to give it (his story). I guess if I never give it, nobody will ever know about it.” The interview started for students in the classroom but it quickly grew into pure interest of first-hand experience. Johnson said, “I think what was interesting was a small-town boy from Texas being thrown into a worldwide phenomenon and seeing how he dealt with it.” One of the issues was coping with his brother’s death while he was still fighting in the southern Pacific. The reality of war hit Thompson in a few ways that surprised his interviewers. Johnson said, “There were times where it was very intense. We would ask him questions, anything to do with the combat that he was in. He would put his head down, and we would have to give him about 30 seconds to compose himself because the memories … were still so intense.” The outlook on the war also surprised Gustin and Johnson. “I think the thing that struck me the most, and where I actually expected the opposite, was in how he spoke about the war,” Gustin said. “I think history likes to paint World War II as some sort of patriotic rousing of the country, and that they were all behind it, and that they were all wanting to engage. But (Thompson) said if there hadn’t been a draft, they wouldn’t have gone.” His outlook created a similarity between Thompson and the people he fought. Johnson said, “He didn’t see them as an animalistic enemy. He saw them as boys who were on the front...

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Living waters: Recreational ambitions serve as a ministry tool
Oct21

Living waters: Recreational ambitions serve as a ministry tool

Extreme sports have never been an issue for junior Christian studies major Patrick Muñoz. “If I could use rock climbing, snowboarding or scuba diving in ministry around the world, that would be awesome,” he said. Muñoz grew up in Merida, Mexico, where he began his college career. He graduated from the Universidad Marista with a business degree in 2001. He then hit a crossroad in his life. “I had to decide between work and college,” Muñoz said. “I felt led by God to go into Christian studies.” Muñoz’s father had a job offer in the United States in 2006. “My Dad decided to be in the ministry,” he said. “He is the Spanish pastor at First Baptist Church in Belton.” Muñoz visited his parents a couple of times before deciding what he felt was the right path for his life. “I moved to Belton permanently in 2006 and decided to attend UMHB in 2007.” Muñoz was also interested in athletics as well. “I chose recreation as my minor,” he said. “I have done camping, adventure racing and rock climbing.” His next adventure with extreme sports was scuba diving when he enrolled in a UMHB course this fall. “I have family in Cozumel, Mexico,” Muñoz said. “It’s a wonderful place for diving. I also want to experience cave diving even though it is really dangerous.” Tom Young is the instructor for the scuba diving class offered at the university and has experience with the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Navy. “Scuba diving is a new adventure, something to try … and enjoy,” he said. Muñoz believes scuba diving is a chance to learn how to communicate in a unique way. “I would love to be able to share my experience with others,” he said. “It really is an incredible feeling. How many times do you have the opportunity to enjoy people in silence?  Since you can’t talk underwater, you have to learn to pay attention to people and their body language.” Patrick, Muñoz’s father, believes the sport is a wise choice for his son. “Scuba diving is a good thing for Patrick,” he said. “It is a lesson that he will be able to share with others everywhere.” Patrick Muñoz also created many memorable experiences. “When we were at the bottom of the pool at 10 feet for the first time, it was amazing,” he said. “I was nervous at first. We had to practice drills on how to retrieve our breathing regulator if we lost it. It was a terrible feeling not being able to breathe. But with the training that I had learned, I was prepared.” After...

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