Yearly News Archives: 2014

HPU to hold spring Commencement Saturday

BROWNWOOD – May 8, 2014 – Howard Payne University will graduate 155 students during the spring Commencement ceremony this Saturday, May 10, beginning at 10 a.m. at the Brownwood Coliseum.

Dr. Bill Ellis, university president, and other university representatives will confer the undergraduate and graduate degrees, as well as the Honorary Doctor of Letters degree to Dr. Carol L. McDonald. Dr. Ellis will deliver the charge to the graduates.

Additional program participants include: Corey Ash ’92, associate professor of music and director of bands; Dr. Donnie Auvenshine ’75, dean of the School of Christian Studies and professor of Christian studies; Robert Carter ’73, chairman of the HPU Board of Trustees; Dr. Gary Gramling ’81, director of the graduate program in youth ministry and professor of Christian studies; Dr. Justin D. Murphy, dean of the School of Humanities, professor of history and director of the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy; Dr. Lois Patton, director of the graduate program in business administration and professor of business administration; Dr. Leslie Plagens, dean of the School of Business and professor of business administration; Pastor Steve Polaski ’81, associate pastor of Victory Life Church in Brownwood; Debbie Prude ’78, president of the HPU Alumni Association; Dr. Joe Robinson, director of the instructional leadership graduate program and associate professor of education; Dr. Michael Rosato, dean of the School of Education and professor of education; Dr. Jay T. Smith ’96, lead pastor at First Baptist Church in Bozeman, Mont.; Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost; Zachary James Tharp, candidate for graduation; Lana Wagner ’97, registrar; Dr. Julie Welker ’94, faculty president, professor of communication and chair of the Department of Communication Studies; and the HPU Instrumental Ensemble.

The Commencement ceremony will be preceded on Friday, May 9, by Chime Out, an HPU tradition in which graduating seniors pass a chain of ivy to underclassmen, symbolizing the passing of authority, responsibility and privileges to those students who remain on campus to carry on the traditions of the university. Chime Out begins at 6 p.m. at the university’s J. Howard Hodge Memorial Bell Towers.

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Dr. Mamie McCullough receives HPU Yellow Rose Award

Yellow Rose Award 2014 for webBROWNWOOD – May 7, 2014 – Dr. Mamie McCullough, Howard Payne University alumna and native of Dixie, Ga., was recently presented the 2014 HPU Woman’s Club Yellow Rose Award. The honor was announced at the Yellow Rose Scholarship Luncheon, held each year on the HPU campus.

Dr. McCullough was the scheduled guest speaker for the event, unaware of the club’s plans to surprise her with the prestigious honor. Her family joined her as she accepted the award.

In addition to a career in education, Dr. McCullough served as a director for Mary Kay Cosmetics. She was named Ms. Go Give in 1976, one of the highest honors within the organization.

Dr. McCullough, who now resides in Dallas, was president of the education division for the Zig Ziglar Corporation from 1979 to 1989. In 1989, she formed her own company working as a speaker and author.

She has authored several books including “I Can. You Can Too!,” “I’m Not Waving … I’m Drowning” and “Get It Together And Remember Where You Put It.”

Dr. McCullough has served on HPU’s President’s Development Council and the Board of Trustees. In 1997, the university presented her with an Honorary Doctor of Letters.

“We were thrilled to present this honor to Mamie,” said Dr. Diana Ellis, HPU first lady and president of the Woman’s Club. “She is one of our HPU treasures, and she publicly promotes the university everywhere she goes! What a blessing to have such a lovely lady representing us to the world.”

The HPU Yellow Rose Award is presented annually to a woman who has exhibited exemplary leadership within her sphere of influence, who has exhibited fiscal, emotional or physical support to the ongoing of Howard Payne University and who represents Christian values and beliefs foundational to Howard Payne University.

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Photo cutline: Dr. Mamie McCullough, right, received the 2014 HPU Woman’s Club Yellow Rose Award. She is pictured with Dr. Diana Ellis, HPU first lady and Woman’s Club president.

HPU scholarship creates new opportunities for Lampasas-area students

Emily Ramsey for webBROWNWOOD – May 1, 2014 – One of the most appealing aspects of Howard Payne University, according to freshman Emily Ramsey from Lampasas, is the sense of community.

“HPU is like a small town in itself,” she said. “It feels a lot like Lampasas. It’s a very personable school – everybody knows you and the teachers care about you and are focused on your success.”

Emily said she has no doubt God led her to HPU.

“I applied here and one other university,” she said. “I got a great scholarship to attend HPU, but none from the other university. It was an easy decision.”

She is one of many students receiving HPU’s Central Texas Scholarship, which awards $52,000 over four years to eligible applicants from Lampasas and the surrounding counties. Students such as Emily are finding they can attend a nationally recognized university not far from home.

“I’m only an hour away from Lampasas, but I still have the space I need away from home,” she said. “I know I can go home at any time and I also have friends and professors here who I can trust with anything.”

Emily is a business management major with a concentration in marketing/advertising and a minor in computer information systems. When not in class, she spends most of her hours at her on-campus job, Fambrough’s Eatery & Coffee Bar. She wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I’ve always been a worker,” she said. “I got my first job at 16, and I haven’t stopped working since.”

Her position allows her to interact with others on campus.

“Emily always seems to enjoy talking to students, faculty and staff while she prepares and serves their food,” said PJ Gramling, director of admission. “And we enjoy talking with her! She is a great addition to our campus.”

After graduation, Emily plans on having a career in advertising with a focus on web design. At HPU, she’s found the support she needs to help her achieve those goals.

“I can go to my professors at any time for any reason,” she said. “I love HPU. It is the perfect school for me.”

To learn more about HPU’s Central Texas Scholarship, call the Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or e-mail enroll@hputx.edu. For more information about Howard Payne University, visit www.hputx.edu.

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Photo cutline: Emily Ramsey is one of many students receiving HPU’s Central Texas Scholarship, which awards $52,000 over four years to eligible applicants from Lampasas and the surrounding counties.

Five HPU personnel to be recognized during book-signing event

HPU authors for webBROWNWOOD – May 1, 2014 – Howard Payne University will host a book-signing event next Monday, May 5, to honor five faculty and staff members who have recently published books. The event will be held from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room inside HPU’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

HPU authors recognized during the event will include Deborah Pierson Dill, administrative assistant for the School of Science and Mathematics; Dr. Derek Hatch, assistant professor of Christian studies; Dr. Melody Maxwell, assistant professor of Christian studies; John Nickols, assistant professor of history and political science and special assistant to the athletic director; and Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education.

Set in Central Texas, “Perfect Shelter” is a contemporary Christian romance novel by Deborah Pierson Dill. Released in 2010, it is the first in a series of three novels published by Pelican Book Group. The other novels in the series are “Return to Me” and “Moving On.”

Dr. Derek Hatch co-edited “Gathering Together: Baptists at Work in Worship,” which was published in August 2013. The book features a collection of articles by pastors and educators examining how acts of worship help shape the Baptist faith.

“Torches in the Corridor: 125 Years of Tennessee Woman’s Missionary Union” is an expansion of a thesis  Dr. Melody Maxwell published as an undergraduate student at Union University in Jackson, Tenn. Published in April 2014, the book features historical profiles of leaders within Tennessee Woman’s Missionary Union.

John Nickols recently published “The Last Three Outs,” a baseball novel with Christian themes. The book features a bright pitching prospect whose baseball career is suddenly threatened by a shoulder injury. According to Nickols, the story loosely parallels the life of Joseph in the Old Testament.

“Gavriel and Giselle: Anilange” is a children’s book by Dr. Daresa Voss. Written in response to the 2013 Moore, Okla., tornado, the story is designed to bring comfort to children, parents, teachers and communities following any tragic event.

Dr. W. Mark Tew, HPU’s provost and chief academic officer, said he is pleased that through research and writing HPU faculty and staff members continue to learn and grow in their respective fields.

“These authors are terrific examples to our students by demonstrating that education is a lifelong endeavor,” he said.

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Photo cutline: HPU will honor five faculty and staff members at a book-signing event on May 5. Left to right: Deborah Pierson Dill, John Nickols, Dr. Melody Maxwell, Dr. Daresa Voss and Dr. Derek Hatch.

HPU Jazz Ensemble receives superior rating at Temple Jazz Festival

HPU Jazz Awards April 2014 for webBROWNWOOD – May 1, 2014 – The Howard Payne University Jazz Ensemble was awarded the rating of “Superior” in a three-judge panel unanimous decision at the 24th Annual Temple Jazz Festival held at Temple College last month. Six from HPU were also awarded certificates as Outstanding Soloists at the festival.

The Outstanding Soloists were Ryan Contreras, freshman from Early, tenor saxophone; Joseph Dunlap, 2009 HPU alumnus and staff accompanist, piano; Angel Hernandez, freshman from Brownwood, drums; Juan Hernandez, senior from Brownwood, tenor saxophone; Bobby Martinez, freshman from Lampasas, bass; and Ethan Yeats, senior from Big Spring, trumpet.

Additional members of the Jazz Ensemble include Alex Atkinson, freshman from Haslet, baritone saxophone; Christopher Burnett, senior from Early, trumpet; Savon Caldwell, sophomore from Texas City, alto saxophone; Joshua Farquharson, junior from Iowa Park, alto saxophone; Micah Huebner, junior from Brazoria, bassoon; Megan Irwin, senior from Brownwood, trumpet; Kristin Musgrove, senior from Brownwood, trumpet; and Patrick Welsh, freshman from Frisco, bass clarinet.

The HPU Jazz Ensemble was awarded Outstanding College Band at the 2007 and 2008 Temple Jazz Festivals. In addition, the HPU Jazz Ensemble performed in the 2009 North Texas Jazz Festival and was awarded several prizes for Outstanding Soloists at that event.

The ensemble is directed by Stephen Goacher, professor of music.

“I am always interested in the way learning in the classrooms and rehearsal halls at HPU is shown valid and relevant on the world stage,” he said.

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Photo cutline: The HPU Jazz Ensemble was awarded the rating of “Superior” at the 24th Annual Temple Jazz Festival. Back row: Micah Huebner, Kristin Musgrove, Joshua Farquharson, Savon Caldwell, Patrick Welsh, Christopher Burnett, Alex Atkinson and Megan Irwin. Front row, holding “Outstanding Soloist” certificates: Bobby Martinez, Juan Hernandez, Joseph Dunlap, Angel Hernandez, Ryan Contreras, Ethan Yeats and Steve Goacher, professor of music and director of the Jazz Ensemble.

Tyler January of Brownwood to present senior recital at HPU

BROWNWOOD – April 30, 2014 – Howard Payne University senior Tyler January, a music major from Brownwood, will present his senior voice recital on Friday, May 2, at 7:30 p.m. in the university’s Grace Chapel.

The public is welcome to attend the recital and there is no charge for admission. For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500.

HPU to host Steinway & Sons president Thursday following American Music Spectacular

Ron Losby for webBROWNWOOD – April 28, 2014 – Howard Payne University will host special guest Ron Losby, president of Steinway & Sons – Americas in New York City, thisThursday, May 1. Losby will preside over a ribbon cutting ceremony to kick off HPU’s campaign to become an All-Steinway School. The ceremony will follow the 19th annual American Music Spectacular presented by HPU’s Symphonic Band. The evening’s events begin at 7:30 p.m. in the university’s Mims Auditorium and are free and open to the public. A meet-and-greet reception with Losby will follow in Grace Chapel.

Steinway & Sons, founded in 1853 by German immigrant Henry Engelhard Steinway, is dedicated to the ideal of making the finest pianos in the world. Losby has served as president of Steinway & Sons for the Americas since 2008. He is an accomplished pianist and has studied at both the San Francisco Conservatory and The Juilliard School in New York City.

“We’re delighted to have Mr. Losby on campus this week as we celebrate our decision to become an All-Steinway School,” said Dr. Bill Ellis, university president. “Steinway pianos are the best keyboard instruments we can offer our student and faculty musicians as well as all of the musical guests we host on campus. Becoming an All-Steinway School will also benefit our university in recruiting students and faculty in the fine arts.”

The American Music Spectacular is an evening of Americana that has become a tradition within the Central Texas area, said Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands.

wallace steinway for web“We will celebrate the American spirit and those who have fought and struggled to help win our freedom and democracy,” he said.

Song selections include “American Civil War Fantasy,” “America the Beautiful,” “At a Dixieland Jazz Funeral” and more.

“The band will also perform a special piece titled ‘Armed Forces Salute’ during which the men and women of our armed forces will be honored,” said Ash. “You won’t want to miss this amazing night of music celebrating America!”

For more information about the concert, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500. More information about the university’s Steinway campaign can be obtained by calling the Office of Institutional Advancement at (325) 649-8006.

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Photo cutlines: Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, professor of music, performs on a Steinway piano during a recent campus event. HPU has begun the process of becoming an All-Steinway School.

HPU will host Ron Losby, president of Steinway & Sons, on campus this Thursday.

HPU “beach reachers” minister at South Padre Island

Beach Reach Group Photo for webBy Rachel Ellington, Howard Payne University junior

BROWNWOOD – April 28, 2014 – Howard Payne University’s Baptist Student Ministry facilitates many events and trips that send students to spread the gospel. One of those annual trips is Beach Reach. For 34 years, college students from across the United States have traveled to South Padre Island during Spring Break to reach other students for Christ.

The founder of Beach Reach, Buddy Young, stated on the website that the main objective is to ensure a safe Spring Break while starting meaningful conversations about Jesus. While on the island, HPU students focused on servant hood and conversation while offering van rides, pancakes, bottled water and prayer, all free of charge.

This year’s Beach Reach kicked off on March 15, 2014, at Island Baptist Church, the base of operations. More than 800 students prayed for the week and shared a meal together.

Activities Sunday through Thursday consisted of van rides every day from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. The Beach Reach volunteers gave rides and took every opportunity to have conversations with each person. They also served pancakes in the church parking lot at the same times.

Giant sand sculptures in the middle of the beach – each depicting a different biblical theme or scene – also served as conversation starters. Beach Reach teamed up with Randy Hofman, a professional sand sculptor who created a different sculpture every day. Then students would stand around the sculpture and ask people what they thought about it. Hofman has created these sculptures at Beach Reach for 25 years in a row.

This year, according to Keith Platte, HPU’S BSM director, HPU partnered with Hardin-Simmons University and took 28 students. Seven of those students participated last year as well.

“We hope that every year the number of students we take on this trip increases because they keep coming back and they are bringing more students with them to be a part of this ministry,” said Platte.

HPU students had numerous favorite parts of the Beach Reach experience.

“My favorite part of Beach Reach was connecting with people on van rides, serving people and starting conversations about the sand sculptures,” said Courtney Tatum, a sophomore from Stephenville.

Beach Reach Sand Sculpture for webZac Sterling, a transfer student from Farmington, N.M., recalled, “Making connections and having real conversations with real people on the vans was awesome.”

“Being able to reach people and show them the love of Jesus when they think they don’t deserve it was incredible,” said Dalton Clark, a freshman from Abilene.

Sophomore Ruby Johnson from Alvarado, who was a returnee to Beach Reach, recalled the prayer room the students arranged.

“We had different stations around the room with a prayer request table, a praise table and even a Twitter feed on a big screen,” she said. “The more people who were in there praying, the more cool stuff you could see happening. You could really see God moving!”

In addition to Tatum, Sterling, Clark and Johnson, other HPU students participating in the trip were: Shaefer Church, freshman, Bloomfield, N.M.; Kaiti Cochrum, sophomore, Burnet;
Lacy Culpepper II, junior, Zephyr; Ruth Davis, freshman, San Antonio; Cristalyn Fitzgerald, senior, Burleson; Allyson Gainey, junior, Kermit; Trent Gainey, junior, Kermit; Samantha Hill, freshman, Irving; TaShana Hooker, freshman, Carrollton; Dillon Hughes, freshman, Richardson; Kim Lilley, senior, Brownwood; Xavier McFalls, sophomore, Amarillo; Andi Peaster, sophomore, Edinburg; Emily Selman, freshman, Red Oak; Rebekah Steadman, senior, Fort Worth; Katie Vernon, junior, Bangs; Colette Wilcoxen, junior, Austin; Ashley Willis, sophomore, Mansfield; Joshua Woods, sophomore, Annapolis, Md.; and Brandon Yost, senior, Roseville, Calif.

“Beach Reach is about showing people Jesus through actions rather than just words,” said Keith Platte. “Our students met physical needs as well as a need for Christ.”

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Photo cutline #1: HPU’s Baptist Student Ministry took a group to South Padre Island to minister during Spring Break. Pictured are (back row, left to right): Shaefer Church, Lacy Culpepper, Dalton Clark, Brandon Yost, Trent Gainey, Joshua Woods, Dillon Hughes, Ruby Johnson.

Middle row, left to right: Keith Platte, Andi Peaster, Rebekah Steadman, Allyson Gainey, Kaiti Cochrum, Ashley Willis, TaShana Hooker, Colette Wilcoxen, Courtney Tatum, Zac Sterling, Xavier McFalls

Front row, left to right: Cristalyn Fitzgerald, Emily Selman, Kim Lilley, Katie Vernon, Ruth Davis, Samantha Hill

Judi Parten of Killeen to present senior recital at HPU

Judi Parten for webBROWNWOOD – April 23, 2014 – Howard Payne University senior Judi Parten, a music major from Killeen, will present her senior voice recital on Monday, April 28, at 6 p.m. in the university’s Grace Chapel.

The public is welcome to attend the recital and there is no charge for admission. For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500.

HPU students participate in Social Work Student Day at the Legislature

social work students in Austin for webBROWNWOOD – April 23, 2014 – Six Howard Payne University students recently traveled to the Texas State Capitol in Austin to take part in the Social Work Student Day at the Legislature, sponsored by the Texas Association of Social Work Deans and Directors. The travelers are students in Dan Humeniuk’s Social Welfare Policies, Programs and Issues course.

“The purpose of the trip was for our students to get a sense of their opportunities for participation in advocacy and government processes,” said Humeniuk, assistant professor of social work and chair of the Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work and Sociology.

HPU students, joining students from universities across the state, participated in a legislative training session led by keynote speaker Ana DeFrates, assistant general counsel and legislative analyst for Senator Kirk Watson. The HPU group also met with Texas State Representative Jim Keffer’s legislative staff.

“Social workers and other human service professionals typically work with disenfranchised clients,” Humeniuk said. “This session taught them advocacy skills which can be applied at the local, state and federal levels.”

HPU students in attendance included Carolyn Barnes, a senior from Glen Rose; Brooke Goad, a junior from Carbon; Jennifer Goff, a senior from Austin; Angelica Gray, a junior from San Antonio; Paula Johnson, a junior from Spring; and Vanessa Marquez, a sophomore from Seguin.

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Photo cutline: HPU students recently traveled to Austin to participate in the Social Work Student Day at the Legislature. Left to right: Angelica Gray, Carolyn Barnes, Jennifer Goff, Vanessa Marquez, Brooke Goad and Paula Johnson.