News Archives: Admissions

HPU named a great value, veteran-friendly institution by U.S. News & World Report

PrintBROWNWOOD – September 10, 2014 – Howard Payne University maintained high rankings in the 2015 edition of “Best Colleges” by U.S. News & World Report. The publication announced Tuesday that HPU advanced four places from 2014 to be ranked fourth among the regional colleges of the west in the “Great Schools, Great Prices” category. Additionally, the university placed 15 out of the ranked institutions in the “Best Regional Colleges of the West” category and seventh among the regional colleges of the west in the “Best Colleges for Veterans” category.

According to the publication, U.S. News determines its “Great Schools, Great Prices” category by taking into account an institution’s academic quality based on its “Best Colleges” ranking and the 2013-2014 net cost of attendance for a student who received the average level of need-based financial aid.

“The higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal,” the publication stated.

U.S. News determines the “Best Colleges for Veterans” by examining institutions in the 2015 “Best Colleges” rankings which participate in federal initiatives helping veterans and active service members apply, pay for and complete their degrees.

Institutions are ranked in all categories within four geographic regions: North, South, Midwest and West. Universities and colleges in Texas and Oklahoma compete in the West region, which is the largest geographic section, encompassing the entire Western U.S.

Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president, voiced the university’s pleasure at once again being recognized as one of the top institutions in the region.

“We continually strive to be an outstanding value to our students and their families,” he said. “We’re honored to have been recognized for these efforts.”


Photo cutline: HPU, celebrating 125 years of excellence in 2014, maintained high rankings in the 2015 edition of “Best Colleges” by U.S. News & World Report.

TexasBank awards $25,000 in scholarship funds to HPU through Doss Foundation

TexasBank presentation 2014 for webBROWNWOOD – June 24, 2014 – TexasBank recently presented $25,000 to Howard Payne University through the Doss Foundation. The donation was part of $88,000 in scholarship funds that will be given to local and area high schools and colleges in 2014.

Within the past seven years, the Doss Foundation has given more than $425,000 to area educational institutions.

“TexasBank is proud to be affiliated with the Doss Foundation, whose gift will give back to local students through HPU’s Heart of Texas Scholarship Fund,” said Greg Dodds, president and CEO of TexasBank. “The Heart of Texas Scholarship has played a vital role in providing an affordable path to a quality university degree for our local high school students. The success of this program is evidenced by the steadily increasing proportion of the total student population at HPU that is comprised of our own kids from nearby communities. The Board and Ownership of TexasBank value our relationship with Howard Payne University, and we are honored to support this institution and its students.”


Photo cutline: Greg Dodds, left, president and CEO of TexasBank, presents a $25,000 check to Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU 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 For more information about Howard Payne University, visit


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.

HPU admission counselor guides Lampasas-area students through the transition to college

Natalie Stary for webBROWNWOOD – April 9, 2014 – Howard Payne University admission counselor Natalie Stary’s goal is to help as many young people as possible take part in the same college experiences she enjoyed as a student. Stary graduated from HPU in 2003 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Christian studies and now works for her alma mater, recruiting students from Lampasas and the surrounding Central Texas areas.

Stary develops close relationships with prospective students and their families and enjoys guiding them through the college selection and transition process.

“It is an honor to be allowed to walk with students through the senior year of high school and into the first year at HPU,” she said. “Because my office is not located on the main campus in Brownwood, I have the opportunity to meet many of my students at places such as coffee shops in their hometowns. I feel that I get to know my students and their families on a personal basis.”

Now in her fourth year as an admission counselor for HPU, Stary is seeing many of the students in her first recruiting class graduating and transitioning to a new stage in life.

“It is so exciting to see how they have made HPU their home and how they are about to venture out into the working world,” she said.

Stary hopes that opportunities such as the university’s Central Texas Scholarship will inspire even more students from Lampasas and the surrounding areas to consider HPU. The scholarship awards $52,000 over four years to eligible applicants from Lampasas County and other counties in the area. Students must have at least a 2.5 grade point average and score 910 or higher on the SAT (critical math and reading combined) or 19 or higher on the ACT to qualify for the scholarship.

“The Central Texas Scholarship was developed as a way for HPU to invest in students who live in counties that are close to the university,” Stary said. “I have seen how this scholarship has enabled students, who previously did not think it was possible, to receive a college education.”

More than anything, Stary said, she wants prospective students to know that HPU is “unlike any other university in the world.”

“The faculty and staff at HPU are some of the most wonderful people I have ever met,” she said. “I am always amazed at how quickly students feel loved and feel like HPU is their home. I think it is because of how HPU’s faculty and staff invest in the lives of students who come here. My time at HPU is something I will treasure the rest of my life, and I am so proud to tell people about my alma mater.”

Stary and the other staff members in HPU’s Office of Admission enjoy the opportunity to speak with students interested in attending HPU. Contact them at (325) 649-8020 or via e-mail at For more information about Howard Payne University, visit


Photo cutline: HPU admission counselor Natalie Stary helps Lampasas area students transition from high school to the university.

HPU to host financial aid seminar for parents of area high school students

BROWNWOOD – Feb. 3, 2014 – Parents of area juniors and seniors in high school are invited to a free seminar at Howard Payne University to learn more about financing college educations. HPU will host the meeting on financial aid and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6, in the university’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

Glenda Huff, HPU’s director of student aid, will discuss the financial aid process with a special emphasis on the FAFSA, the application used to award loans and grants to students at universities across the nation.

According to Huff, it is extremely essential to begin the financial aid process as soon as possible after January 1.

“Some schools have very early ‘priority dates’ for awarding financial aid funds,” she said. “Parents of all area students, even those not planning to enroll at HPU, are welcome to attend this session.”

University representatives will also discuss HPU’s Heart of Texas Scholarship Program, designed to benefit students graduating from high schools in Brown, Callahan, Coleman, Comanche, Eastland, McCulloch, Mills and San Saba counties. The scholarship awards up to $14,000 annually to students who meet the requirements.

For more information about the seminars, contact PJ Gramling, director of admission, at (325) 649-8406 or For more information about HPU financial aid, visit or call (325) 649-8015.

HPU New Braunfels center to host graduate and undergraduate preview events

BROWNWOOD – October 31, 2013 – The Howard Payne University New Braunfels Center will host two free preview events for those wishing to pursue or continue their higher education careers. An event for college graduates interested in HPU’s Master of Business Administration degree will be held November 5 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at 1259 Loop 337 North in New Braunfels, Suite #200 (Aflac Suite). An undergraduate preview event for students wishing to begin or complete their bachelor’s degrees will take place November 14 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the New Braunfels High School library.

Faculty and staff members will discuss the admissions process and academic offerings available in New Braunfels, and attendees will have the opportunity to meet them and ask questions.

Dale Meinecke, assistant vice president for extended programs and church relations, and his wife, Christy, an HPU admission counselor, live and work in New Braunfels.

“We absolutely love that our jobs revolve around telling people about the quality, Christ-centered higher education they can experience right here in New Braunfels,” he said. “We hope people take this opportunity to meet our faculty and staff and learn more about the opportunities awaiting them.”

The preview events are free, but registration is requested. To register for either event, visit Contact Christy Meinecke at (830) 629-2366 or via e-mail at for more information.

HPU welcomes largest number of incoming freshmen in more than 30 years

jj_group (1)BROWNWOOD – September 4, 2013 – Howard Payne University announced today that the largest number of new students in more than three decades enrolled at the university for the fall 2013 semester. HPU welcomed 340 first-year students and 50 transfer students to the university. Total enrollment for the semester is 1,170 which includes undergraduate and graduate students from HPU’s Brownwood, El Paso and New Braunfels campuses.

“We’ve anxiously awaited the totals so that we could officially share the good news,” said Kevin Kirk, associate vice president for enrollment management. “This is the largest number of incoming freshmen the university has seen since the 1970s, and they are joining a great group of returning students.”

Kirk compared seeing the new students on campus to the excitement a child feels on Christmas morning.

“The HPU faculty and staff all worked so hard to bring in this incredible class of great students and we are so thankful that God chose to bless those many efforts,” he said.

Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president, says the enrollment figures are encouraging but he sees value beyond the numbers.

“There is so much potential in each and every one of these students,” he said. “We are extremely blessed to welcome so many into the HPU family and I pray that the university, in turn, is a blessing to them.”

TaShana Hooker, a music education major from Carrollton, is a member of the freshman class.

“I’ve already met so many wonderful people, and the professors are so kind and understanding,” she said. “Most importantly, I’m able to expand my faith here without worrying about feeling uncomfortable about it. I love HPU so much, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of this semester and school year holds.”

Photo cutline: HPU enrolled the largest number of new Yellow Jackets since the 1970s for the fall 2013 semester. New students are pictured doing the “Sting ’em” cheer during Jacket Journey, HPU’s new-student orientation week, with upperclassmen group leaders and student life staff.

HPU hosts Super Summer camp for Christian youth

Blue School by Old Main for webBy Kendyl Moore, HPU senior

BROWNWOOD – July 15, 2013 – Howard Payne University recently hosted Super Summer, a youth leadership camp created by the Baptist General Convention of Texas. The camp ran from June 24 through June 28, and 458 eighth graders to high school graduates attended. Among the leaders present were 40 HPU alumni, faculty or current students.

Super Summer was created in 1974 for the training and teaching of Christian students. Originally a cooperative effort by several churches in the Dallas area, Super Summer has grown to include many churches and camps across the state and is held at five Baptist university campuses.

“Since Super Summer returned to HPU three years ago, I have brought a group of students from our student ministry,” said Tim Stary, a 2007 HPU graduate and youth pastor from First Baptist Church in Salado. “The impact of Super Summer is huge, and many of the students had life-changing experiences with God while here.”

The camp is designed to be a challenging week of discipleship training for young Christian leaders. Students attend small-group sessions, worship services, lectures, games and other activities. The campers are divided into color-coded schools by grade. This year, HPU was the only location to offer the Purple School, designed specifically for students who feel called to ministry.

Although there were a wide variety of activities happening on campus, the week proceeded smoothly. Wolverton family for web

“Howard Payne has always done a wonderful job of rolling out the red carpet for us,” stated Leighton Flowers, director of Super Summer and youth evangelism at the Baptist General Convention of Texas. “This year’s camp went as smoothly as ever.”

Also available through Super Summer is a leadership forum for youth pastors. The leadership forum provides an opportunity for youth pastors to ask questions, present concerns and have them answered by other leaders and educators.

“We feel so honored to have hosted Super Summer weeks on our campus for the past three years,” said Dr. Gary Gramling ’81, director of HPU’s youth ministry program and professor of Christian studies. “It is an opportunity for Howard Payne University to serve as the setting for an intensive week of discipleship for some of the finest Christian students in Texas. We are grateful to God and to Texas Baptists for allowing us to be a part of such an important week in the lives of students.”


Photo cutlines: Members of the Super Summer “Blue School” pass by HPU’s Old Main Tower while on campus for Super Summer 2013.

Kelly Wolverton, center, Super Summer recreation director and pastor of Adamsville Baptist Church near Lampasas, stops for a photo with daughters Kelsan, left, and Sharon. Kelsan is an HPU sophomore and member of the summer camp staff and Sharon will be a freshman at the university this fall.

HPU to host college search event for high school students and families

mgc_side_2_for_webBROWNWOOD – June 4, 2013 – Howard Payne University will host a free celebration for area high school students and family members beginning the college search process on Friday, June 7, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., at the KPSM (99.3) radio station parking lot at 910 Main Street in Brownwood, adjacent to the HPU campus. KPSM will broadcast live during the event and serve free hot dogs and other refreshments.

HPU’s Mobile Go Center (MGC) will be on hand for those wishing to learn more about the university and the general college search process. The 42-foot MGC trailer, equipped with laptop computers, satellite Internet and more, visits schools, community events, festivals and churches throughout the state to present information about higher education in an atmosphere comfortable to prospective students and their families. HPU acquired the trailer and accompanying 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD Crew Cab truck in 2012 through a generous grant from the Texas Pioneer Foundation of San Marcos and assistance from the Bruner Auto Family of Brownwood.

“HPU’s Mobile Go Center is a great resource for area high school students and these communities,” said Stephen Sullivan, HPU admission counselor and Mobile Go Center coordinator. “We are excited to engage Heart of Texas students in the college selection process in ways they have perhaps never experienced and assist each student in selecting a college that will be a great fit for his or her higher-education needs.”

For more information, call HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or (800) 880-4478.


Photo cutline: HPU will host a college search event for area high school students and families at KPSM’s studio on Main Street this Friday. HPU’s Mobile Go Center will be on hand for those wishing to learn more about the university and the general college search process.

New Braunfels community invited to learn more about Howard Payne University

BROWNWOOD – February 27, 2013 – Howard Payne University New Braunfels Center invites all who are planning to enroll in undergraduate classes at New Braunfels – or those who are just interested in learning more about the university – to attend an HPU Preview Night at New Braunfels High School. These Monday-evening sessions are scheduled for March 4, April 1 and May 6 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Check-in for the preview events will begin at 6 p.m.

Attendees will have the opportunity to hear from HPU professors in the bachelor’s degree programs and learn about the future plans of the HPU New Braunfels Center. Each prospective student who registers for the event at will also receive a free HPU t-shirt. There is no cost to attend a preview night and participants are invited to bring their families.

“We are excited to welcome even more students from the New Braunfels area into the HPU family,” said Christy Meinecke, admission counselor for the New Braunfels Center.

Christy and her husband, Dale, who serves as assistant vice president for external programs and church relations at HPU, live and work full-time in New Braunfels.

“We’ve loved getting to know this area of Texas and have especially enjoyed meeting the people who make New Braunfels such a special community,” she said. “HPU is our passion and we find great joy in introducing more people to the university every day.”

New Braunfels High School is located at 2551 Loop 337, New Braunfels, TX, 78130.

To register for an HPU Preview Night or to learn more about the HPU New Braunfels Center, visit For more information, contact Christy Meinecke at (325) 649-8833 or via e-mail at