Avery Polchinski, the back to school alum
Oct13

Avery Polchinski, the back to school alum

Avery Polchinski, class of 2016, earned his bachelor’s in marketing and his master’s degree in education from UMHB while earning accolades as a Cru basketball player. “I chose to attend UMHB not only because I wanted to play basketball there, but because it felt like home,” Polchinski said. “I can remember my first visit and I just felt like this was where I was supposed to attend college. It’s a special place filled with a lot of caring people.” It wasn’t long before Polchinski was settling in at his alma mater and playing with the Cru basketball team. He said that his time spent with his fellow players was life-changing. “It pushed me to my limits mentally and physically, and made me realize I can do things even when I think I can’t.” The alumnus said the rigors of being a disciplined player helped him manage his time better and ditch the excuses. “Everything that I have learned in basketball has prepared for me every aspect of life,” he said. “Through basketball I learned more about myself and life than the game of basketball itself.” As a freshman, Polchinski lived in the green hall of McLane in 2011. He remembers the ups and downs of being a first-year college student, and he has some words of wisdom for those who are just beginning their time at the university. “If I had any advice for a freshman it would have to be to follow the career choice that they would love doing, regardless of the money involved. No matter what it is, the path of happiness is far more important than the path of wealth.” Born and raised in Temple, Polchinski has a special connection to the central Texas community and chose to stay and teach in the area after graduating from UMHB. He currently works as a middle school math teacher and coach at Eastern Hills Middle School in Harker Heights. He finds being teacher difficult, but rewarding. “If I had to say one thing to future teachers, I would say this: treat each and every day as an opportunity to be a better teacher than you were the day before. Your students will be able to feed off of you, which will not only encourage them to do better, but it will make your classroom a better learning environment and help students thrive in school and in life.” He chose to become a teacher because he wanted to make a difference in the world. “There were many teachers that affected my life in a positive way, and I hope I can be a role model to some of...

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New organization gives students the chance to dance
Oct13

New organization gives students the chance to dance

UMHB has a number of student organizations on campus. There is at least one organization that everyone can get involved in. Impact Dance is one of the newer organizations on campus. The organization was chartered in fall of 2016 and began meeting during the spring of 2017. Shelby Rogers, a junior phycology major, who has been dancing for 17 years is a part of the new organization. “Impact Dance is for students who like to dance or would like to learn how to dance.” No matter your skill level, Impact Dance is a place where you can come to have fun and dance all your problems away. Rogers is also the organization’s chaplain. At each meeting, she leads a devotional and prayer time for all who come. The fact that this organization is also faith-centered is something special that UMHB is able to offer. Each week the group averages 10-15 people and focuses on a different types of dance, such as cha cha. “My favorite thing about Impact is the fun we have,” Rogers said. “Our meetings are full of laughter and I always leave in a better mood then when I first came in. I also just love to dance.” The group also tries to make an “impact” on the commmunity. Impact Dance dedicates time to help others. Last year, Impact Dance had a fundraiser, “Candy for a Cure” to raise money for McLane Children’s Hospital. In addition to the hospital, the organization has also raised money for the Methodist church near campus. If you are interested in dancing and want to help the community, Rogers suggests checking out Impact Dance. You can follow their Instagram @umhb_impactdance or stop by one of their meetings on Monday nights at 6 p.m. in McLane Great...

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Nurses Christian Fellowship
Oct13

Nurses Christian Fellowship

Nurses Christian Fellowship is a student organization on campus that is available to nursing students who are looking for a way to get involved and take a break from the crazy hectic life of being in nursing school to spread the love of Jesus throughout campus and in the local community. “We are an organization that just wants to share the love of Christ and encourage each and every one of you,” Senior nursing student and president of the Nurses Christian Fellowship Keyarius Johnson said during the first NCF meeting of the year. “We are a very team driven organization. We work together, we don’t leave anyone behind.” Bethany Whately, historian of NCF, takes pride in her position as a board member and wants to share her love of the organization with other nursing students. “We are little people that just love Jesus,” Senior nursing student and NCF historian Bethany Whatley said. “However, we are all graduating this semester, so if you want to be a part of something, help encourage others and want to be a part of the board, let us know. “We need people to take our spots.” NCF aims to create a sense of a community among students during their journey through nursing school by supporting and encouraging one another always and lifting each other up through the whirlwind of it all. “In the past, we have had devotions where we get up in the morning, feed you guys breakfast and pray and have worship before any major exams,” Johnson said. “We know that after a long week of studying, sometimes the nerves just get the best of us so we just try to make sure you guys are relaxed and confident and just able to go in there knowing that you can do all things through Christ.” In addition to loving one another, NCF also shares the love of Jesus Christ with members of the Belton and Temple community through service. After the devastating hurricane that left many people homeless in Houston this fall, NCF sprung into action to create donation box for those that were taking shelter at the Bell County Expo Center. This is just one example of the many opportunities that NCF provides students with. “We have volunteer opportunities throughout the semester that we will let you guys know about how you all can participate in. We are trying to partner with Temple ISD this semester to try to get kind of a big sister/big brother club going to where we can volunteer with kids on the weekend and bring them to Cru football games and stuff like that. We also...

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Contestants prepare for Miss MHB pageant
Oct13

Contestants prepare for Miss MHB pageant

The Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor pageant has been an annual tradition at the university since the 1950’s. However, the pageant we know today was a little different when it first premiered on campus. Originally titled the Miss Bluebonnet Pageant, the peageant was later changed to the Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor College Pageant in the 1960s and was a part of the Miss Texas Pageant System for a short time. Once UMHB achieved university status, it was no longer associated with other pageant systems. Its purpose is simple— to provide the contestants and pageant staff an opportunity for developing leadership skills, theatrical training, responsibility, and confidence. Many changes have been made to the university and the pageant is no exception. In the past, the show was held on two separate nights with the latter involving the crowning ceremony. Last year, the university decided to show it only on one night instead. This year we will be continuing with this new tradition and will host the UMHB pageant on one night only. The pageant will be held in Walton chapel on Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. Jenna Albright is a junior film studies major and is representing the junior class in this year’s pageant. She said that students can expect a lot of fun during the performances. Junior mass communication major Tori Pharris is representing Search Cru and is looking forward to the talent portion of the evening. “Each talent varies and wasn’t what I was expecting,” Pharris said, “The girls in the pageant are great so I have no expectations of being crowned, but if it happened my goal is to just love people. I don’t want to change just because of a crown.” Sophomore psychology major Sarah Szyperski, this year’s Miss MHB director, agrees with Albright. “All of the contestants are absolutely amazing and beautiful inside and out,” she said. “They each bring their own unique quality to the show,” she said. Szyperski said that her role as director is to develop a theme and vision from the pageant, as well as lead the ladies and prepare them for the process. However, she doesn’t take all the credit. Szyperski credits a portion of the work to her assistant directors, committee, and advisors. “I am so excited to watch the girls grow and discover new things about themselves,” she said. “It was a great transition last year from Miss MHB being only one night instead of two, and it was one we wanted to continue. The show still contains the main components: talent, dance, evening gowns, and stroll.” The director said it is more than a traditional beauty pageant – it is...

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Service animals become more common on campus
Oct13

Service animals become more common on campus

With an increase in awareness of mental illness, and a growing acceptance for animal services for disabilities, the UMHB campus has seen a spike in the number of Emotional Support Animals (or ESA’s) and Service Animals. Seeing a service animal in class is becoming more and more common on campus. To date, there are 21 ESA’s on campus and 4 service animals on campus. Service animals are allowed in all buildings at UMHB, and allowed to live with their handler. For those who are unaware of the etiquette of approaching or encountering the animal, the experience can be new and confusing. “A service animal is a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.” Said Dr. Nate Williams, head of both counseling center, and overseeing support and service animals. “Other animals, whether domestic or wild, do not qualify as service animals. Examples of such work or tasks may include guiding a person with impaired vision, alerting a person with a hearing impairment, pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a person with a mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack, and/or performing other duties. Service Animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a Service Animal has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. These animals serve important purposes in the lives of people with disabilities. ” When asked about his own personal experience with service animals, Dr. Williams was eager to brag on his diabetic alert dog, Lucy. “My service dog has been a life saver for me. In many ways, she is another reminder to me of my disability, but at the same time she is one of my greatest allies in my fight for ongoing health. She amazes me almost daily.” There are a few simple things to remember when encountering a service animal, that can ultimately benefit both your and the handler’s experience over all. First, make sure to remember that the animal is working. When a service animal has a vest on, or even when it doesn’t, it is expected to focus on the tasks it has been trained to perform. This means that distracting the animal by petting or cooing at them can deter them from their work. If you want to pet the animal, but are unsure if it is appropriate, ask the handler. Some handler’s do not mind this attention; however some find it detrimental to the training. Next, be sure to...

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Job fairs, etiquette dinners prepare students for future
Oct13

Job fairs, etiquette dinners prepare students for future

Career Services hosted the Job and Internship Fair in Lord Conference Center this fall. Located on the second floor of Mabee, Career Services hosts several events throughout the semester to help students find jobs. There were 36 different booths set up at the fair. Students had the opportunity to visit with representatives from the various companies, score free merchandise, and submit resumes to potential employers. According to Career Services’ Director Don Owens, the university restructured the fair this year to include more majors. Before the restructuring, most of the booths were geared toward business and IT majors. Some of the companies at the fair included Baylor Scott and White Health, CGI, Farmer’s Insurance, FBI San Antonio, McLane, the U.S. Army, McLane Company and Dell. A unique feature of the job fairs is that students can submit their resumes before the event to be included in a resume guide that Owens gives to every employer. “[Employers] do not get a recruiter’s guide at many places,” he said. Senior finance major Kegan Hayes plans to graduate in May of 2018, and hopes that he will be called in for an interview with one of the companies he visited with at the fair. “I’ve talked to a couple of people and put my resume out there,” he said. “I’m excited to hear back from them.” Owens said that while employers such as IBM or one of the “Big 4” accounting firms aren’t represented a t the fair, students should attempt to practice their elevator speeches and find out about careers they may not have explored in the past. UMHB alumni Dylan Teepole (’15) and Lamar Seals (’16) were at the job fair representing CGI, where they work as a business analysts. “I remember coming to these things, and thinking that everybody is a big professional, but we’re all people here too,” Teepole said. Seals said that communication skills are imperative for any college student. “The way you present yourself is very important,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to talk to an employer because they’re a person like you’re a person.” The job fairs for each sector (business, education and nursing) are held twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. The teacher job fair will be in Lord Conference Center from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 19. Owens said that 20 school districts have signed up for the fair. However, as many as 60 school districts have come to the spring fair in the past because more schools are hiring in the spring. Another career services event coming up is the annual senior etiquette dinner held...

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