News Archives: Alumni Relations

HPU to present Homecoming musical “The Pirates of Penzance”

Pirates of Penzance logoBROWNWOOD – October 9, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s School of Music and Fine Arts will present Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Pirates of Penzance” in conjunction with the university’s Homecoming 2017 celebrations. Performances are Thursday, October 19, through Saturday, October 21, at 8 p.m. each evening at HPU’s Mims Auditorium. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for children and students. Tickets are available for purchase online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming or at the door on the evenings of the performances.

“The Pirates of Penzance,” a classic comedic operetta, is one of the most famed products of the theatrical partnership of librettist W.S. Gilbert and composer Arthur Sullivan. It follows the story of Frederic, a member of a band of pirates. It is quickly explained that when Frederic was young, his nurse mistakenly apprenticed him to a pirate rather than a pilot. Frederic announces his resolve to forsake the pirate life and work wholeheartedly to their extermination.

Dr. Celeste Church, professor of music and dean of institutional research and effectiveness, serves as the production’s artistic director.

“‘The Pirates of Penzance’ is a well-known and much-loved show that allows the audience to enjoy the humor of opera while keeping it well within the grasp of general audiences,” she said. “Our cast, orchestra and crew have spent weeks rehearsing to put on a great show suitable for the whole family.”

Cast members include Caleb Bostick, freshman from Brownwood; Jake Bowren, sophomore from San Antonio; Jayland Brown, freshman from Temple; Leland Brown, freshman from Euless; Kayla Chadwick, senior from Tulia; Josh Collier, freshman from Voca; Camila Cotter, junior from Garden Ridge; Piper Davis, freshman from Bulverde; Taylor Davis, sophomore from Alvin; Jarod Dowling, junior from Grandview; Christopher Freeland, junior from Bangs; Marissa Godbey, senior from Austin; Josiah Hughes, sophomore from Katy; Hayden Jacobs, senior from Lytle; Victoria Malone, senior from Fort Worth; Bryce McWhirter, junior from Pflugerville; Ryan Miles, sophomore from Goldthwaite; Madison Miller, sophomore from Granbury; Ashleigh Moss, junior from Alvarado; Sadie Perez, freshman from Brownwood; Brendyn Porter, junior from Red Oak; Cassia Rose, senior from Winnsboro; Andi Rosenquist, freshman from Brownwood; Penny Stehlik, sophomore from Round Rock; Natalie Stephens, senior from Alvarado; Izzy Vela, freshman from Brownwood; and Luke Victor, sophomore from Austin.

In addition to Dr. Celeste Church, crew members include Dr. Gregory Church, professor of music, as musical director; Dr. Nancy Jo Humfeld, professor of theatre and chair of the Department of Theatre, as choreographer; Dr. Nicholas Ewen, assistant professor of theatre, as set/technical designer; and Deejay Moses, junior from May, as stage manager.

For more information about “The Pirates of Penzance,” contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

More than 30 other events are scheduled for Homecoming weekend, October 20-21. Alumni and visitors may register for Homecoming online. Some events require purchased tickets while many are free of charge. For complete details and the latest schedule information, visit www.hputx.edu/homecoming or contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 325-649-8044 or via e-mail at alumni@hputx.edu.

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HPU invites choir alumni to participate in Homecoming choir concert

Alumni_Choir_LogoBROWNWOOD – October 5, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s School of Music and Fine Arts will present a Homecoming choir concert at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 21, in the university’s Mims Auditorium. All HPU alumni choristers are invited to participate in the program.

During the concert, the alumni choir will present one special piece and then join the HPU Concert Choir for “The Majesty and Glory of Your Name” by Tom Fettke. Rehearsal for this special concert will take place Saturday, October 21, from 8:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Alumni who are interested in participating will be provided music and more information upon registration.

“The choir concert is an incredible visual and aural representation of the musical heritage of HPU’s choral program, and we look forward to seeing different generations joining in song,” said Dr. Christopher Rosborough ’08, assistant professor of music and director of choral activities.

If you are interested in taking part in this event, register at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and follow the prompts to sign up for the HPU Alumni Choir.

More than 30 other events are scheduled for Homecoming weekend, October 20-21. Alumni and visitors may register for Homecoming online. Some events require purchased tickets while many are free of charge. For complete details and the latest schedule information, visit www.hputx.edu/homecoming or contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 325-649-8044 or via e-mail at alumni@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts invites all HPU alumni choristers to take part in the Homecoming choir concert on October 21.

Esther Camacho of Flagstaff among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

CamachoBROWNWOOD – October 5, 2017 – Esther Camacho of Flagstaff, Arizona, has been named the 2017 Coming Home Queen by Howard Payne University. She is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Camacho and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

A 1963 HPU graduate, Camacho earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English with minors in history and Spanish before going on to earn a master’s degree from Baylor University and counselor certification from Southwest Texas State University. She served as a Texas educator for more than 30 years with school districts in Anton, Goliad, Abilene and Brownwood. She additionally worked at HPU’s Walker Memorial Library for six years. Camacho was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma Omega, an international society for women educators, for 30 years.

Camacho taught Sunday School and was on several committees through her church. She has also served on the Board of Directors of HPU’s Alumni Association. An HPU endowed scholarship was created in memory of her parents, Zenaido and Petra Camacho, and has helped many students attend the university.

Camacho said her HPU professors were good role models who encouraged her to do her best.

“Striving to do my best helped me to gain self-confidence when I began my teaching career,” she said.

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Cutline: Esther Camacho of Flagstaff is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.

HPU Homecoming 2017 scheduled October 20-21

HC Logo 2017BROWNWOOD – October 3, 2017 – Howard Payne University alumni, friends, students, personnel and guests from the community are destined for a memory-filled weekend as The Yellow Jacket Express – Homecoming 2017 arrives on campus. The train-themed weekend, October 20-21, features more than 30 events, many of which will appeal to the entire community.

Alumni and visitors may register for Homecoming events online. Some events require purchased tickets while many are free of charge. For complete details and the latest schedule information, visit www.hputx.edu/homecoming or contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 325-649-8044 or via e-mail at alumni@hputx.edu.

Laura Benoit, HPU’s director of alumni relations, said she is looking forward to the many events scheduled on campus and around town.

“Of particular interest this year is our bonfire and fireworks display, which many from the community enjoyed last year,” she said. “We’re excited to bring it back, and this year the event will take place at the Bert V. Massey II Sports Complex.”

The bonfire and fireworks display begin at 9 p.m. on Friday, October 20. The sports complex is located at 2301 Dickman Drive in Brownwood, near the Camp Bowie Aquatic Center.

Additional events are highlighted below.

Performances of “The Pirates of Penzance” will be held in Mims Auditorium on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. each evening. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students and children. Tickets may be purchased through the Homecoming website or at the door on the evenings of the performances. Those who purchase tickets online for Thursday’s performance should contact the Office of Alumni Relations prior to the event at 325-649-8044.

HPU’s Walker Memorial Library will open its Archival Display and Treasure Room to the public Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday, 8:15 a.m. to noon.

“Self-Curated 2 Exhibition,” the artwork of the Brownwood Art Association, will be exhibited in the Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery located inside HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center. Gallery hours during Homecoming weekend are Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Golden Graduate Luncheon honoring the Class of 1967, sponsored by Wendlee Broadcasting, will be held Friday from noon to 1:30 p.m. in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room of the university’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

The Booksaw Off the Rails Escape Room, hosted by the Walker Memorial Library, is scheduled Friday, 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Homecoming Court will be presented during Homecoming Convocation at 2 p.m. on Friday in Mims Auditorium.

The Alumni and Sports Hall of Fame Banquet will be held Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Beadel Dining Hall of the Mabee University Center. During the banquet, the Homecoming 2017 honorees will be recognized. Doors open at 5:45 p.m.

Following the banquet on Friday will be Cobbler on the Campus sponsored by Underwood’s Cafeteria. This event begins at 7:30 p.m. at HPU’s Muse Plaza and Mall.

Friday evening will conclude with a bonfire and fireworks display (time and location listed above).

The Alumni Association Remembrance and Reflection, a time designated to gather in memory of alumni who have passed away, will take place at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday at HPU’s Muse Plaza and Mall by the statue.

Saturday morning’s Decades Breakfast begins at 8 a.m. During this time, alumni are invited to reunite with friends from their class decades in the Beadel Dining Hall of the Mabee University Center. Also at 8 a.m. on Saturday will be the Class of 1972 45th Reunion Breakfast in the dining hall, the Hispanic Fellowship Breakfast in Bullion Suite A of the Mabee University Center and the Letterman’s Breakfast in Bullion Suite C.

The Homecoming Parade, sponsored by Bruner Auto Group, begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday morning. The parade will begin at the Brownwood Coliseum, travel down Center Ave. and end at the university’s Doakie Day Art Center. The best areas to view the parade are downtown and on campus along Center Avenue.

Little Jackets’ Nest, sponsored by Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce, featuring games and other free activities for children, will be held from 10:45 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Muse Plaza and Mall.

A Family Picnic Lunch, sponsored by Visit Early Texas, will be held from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Muse Plaza and Mall and Beadel Dining Hall.

HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts will present a Choir Concert at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

A variety of departmental and student-organization receptions will be held Saturday afternoon from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room of the Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

A pep rally will be held prior to the football game, beginning at 3 p.m., at Festival Park at Gordon Wood Stadium. Additionally, all HPU classes are invited to participate in a tailgate event featuring snacks and beverages. A reception for the African-American Alumni Chapter will also be held as a tailgate event at this time.

The HPU Yellow Jacket football team will play Sul Ross State University at 4:00 p.m. Saturday at Gordon Wood Stadium.

A variety of reunions, athletic events and other events will be held throughout the weekend. A complete schedule of events and ticket prices are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

In addition to the sponsors mentioned above, HPU thanks the following business for their support: Willie’s T’s (Homecoming t-shirt sponsor), Marsh & McLennan Agency, Mills County State Bank, Dr Pepper Bottling, United Supermarkets, Citizens National Bank, Down Home Digital, Early Blooms & Things, Painter & Johnson Financial, PF&E Oil Company, Porter Insurance Agency, TexasBank, John Woolsey Ice House, and Smith & Sharpe Insurance Agencies.

HPU names Laura Benoit director of alumni relations

Laura Benoit director for webBROWNWOOD – September 28, 2017 – Howard Payne University recently named Laura Benoit as director of alumni relations. Benoit joined the university’s staff in October 2014 as assistant director of alumni relations and was promoted in 2016 to the position of associate director.

“Laura has been a valuable member of our staff for the past three years and is a natural fit in this role,” said Randy Yeakley, vice president for development. “We’re proud to have her working with our vast network of alumni and former students.”

Benoit said she’s enjoyed meeting many of HPU’s alumni and friends.

“These individuals helped shape the university’s rich history, so it’s a joy to have the opportunity to develop relationships with them,” she said.

Prior to arriving at HPU, Benoit served as director of parent relations for Cazenovia College in Cazenovia, New York. She and her husband, Joseph, have two adult children, Amanda and Aaron.

Among other responsibilities at HPU, Benoit will oversee the university’s Homecoming celebrations each fall. HPU’s Homecoming 2017 festivities are slated for October 20-21.

For more information, contact HPU’s Office of Alumni Relations at 325-649-8044 or alumni@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: Laura Benoit was recently named director of alumni relations at HPU.

Mark Albin of Crandall among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

AlbinBROWNWOOD – September 26, 2017 – Mark Albin of Crandall has been named Howard Payne University’s Homecoming Grand Marshal. He is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s 2017 Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Albin and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

A 1979 HPU graduate, Albin earned a Bachelor of General Studies degree in religious education with a minor in recreation. He was very involved at HPU, participating in the Ministerial Alliance, Dorm Council, Student Foundation, intramurals and the Baptist Student Union among other activities.

He has served as a youth minister and educator and has been in the pawn shop business for more than 30 years. He is an active member at Point View Baptist Church in Combine, served eight years on the Crandall ISD School Board and is a retired Crandall volunteer firefighter.

Albin and his wife, Beth, have three children – Angela, Amanda and Adam – and four grandchildren. Angela and her husband, Tim Groves, are both HPU graduates.

He said that HPU’s small-school atmosphere prepared him for future success.

“Howard Payne is a place where a student, usually away from home for the first time, can develop lifelong relationships in a safe environment,” he said. “I’m truly thankful to be an alumnus of this wonderful university.”

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Cutline: Mark Albin of Crandall is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.

Dr. Allen Reed of Brownwood among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

ReedBROWNWOOD – September 22, 2017 – Dr. Allen Reed of Brownwood has been named a recipient of Howard Payne University’s Medal of Service. He is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s 2017 Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Dr. Reed and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

After 34 years of service to the university, Dr. Reed retired from HPU in May 2015 as professor of music and university organist. Dr. Reed was an integral member of HPU’s faculty, serving as teacher, performer, mentor, colleague and leader.

He continues to lend his musical talents to the university, often serving as organist for HPU concerts. He additionally plays the organ at Brownwood’s First Baptist Church and Coggin Avenue Baptist Church.

He and his wife, Judy, have three children, Elisabeth, Katie ’01 and David ’05. Additionally, the couple has four grandchildren.

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Cutline: Dr. Allen Reed of Brownwood is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.

Mac Eric Villanueba of Paradise among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

Villanueba HC HonoreeBROWNWOOD – September 15, 2017 – Mac Eric “Villy” Villanueba of Paradise has been named Outstanding Young Graduate by Howard Payne University. He is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s 2017 Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Villanueba and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

Villanueba graduated from HPU in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in criminal justice and a minor in Spanish. While a student, he participated in the Sigma Theta Phi fraternity and the Student Planning Committee.

Since graduating, he has served as a patrol deputy with the Hood County Sheriff’s Office and is currently a patrol corporal for Palmer Police Department. Earlier in 2017, he was honored by the Garland Police Department for taking heroic, life-saving actions in rescuing a woman from a burning vehicle.

He is active in his church, Watermark Community Church of Dallas, where he serves with the young adults ministry and plays in the church league softball team.

He believes the biggest way HPU prepared him for success was by teaching him how to be a Christ-like servant.

“As a supervisor, I get to be a servant to my officers and I get an opportunity to reveal to them a Christ-centered style of leadership,” he said. “I honestly believe that I would have not learned all of these things if it were not for HPU.”

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Cutline: Mac Eric “Villy” Villanueba of Paradise is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.

Dr. Mark Baker of Fort Worth among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

Dr Mark BakerBROWNWOOD – September 11, 2017 – Dr. Mark Baker of Fort Worth has been named a Distinguished Alumnus of Howard Payne University. He is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s 2017 Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Dr. Baker and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

Dr. Baker, HPU class of 1972, earned a Bachelor of General Studies degree with a major in chemistry and a minor in biology. While at HPU, he participated in the Yellow Jacket Band, Gamma Beta Phi Society, Kappa Kappa Psi-Zeta Beta Chapter and Alpha Chi-Texas Pi Chapter. Following graduation, Dr. Baker earned a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed an internship at Public Health Services Hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana, and his residency at Fort Worth Osteopathic Medical Center. Dr. Baker currently serves at Graham Regional Medical Center.

He has received many honors and awards throughout his career including Distinguished Alumnus of the Year from the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth/Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (1995); Fellow in American Osteopathic College of Radiology (2005); Dean’s Award for Philanthropy – Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (2006); Honorary Doctorate Degree from Rocky Vista University, College of Osteopathic Medicine (2017); and Distinguished Service Award from the Texas Osteopathic Medical Association (2017).

He has numerous publications to his credit, and his professional activities and civic engagement are extensive. He and his wife, Rita, have two adult children, Christopher and Carrie.

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Cutline: Dr. Mark Baker of Fort Worth is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.

Candis Hicks of San Angelo among HPU Homecoming 2017 honorees

Candis HicksBROWNWOOD – August 29, 2017 – Candis (Rodgers) Hicks of San Angelo has been named a Distinguished Alumna of Howard Payne University. She is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s 2017 Homecoming festivities, October 20-21. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming and will be highlighted in the weeks to come.

Hicks and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, October 20, beginning at 6 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21, beginning at 10 a.m. Ticket information for the banquet and a full schedule of the weekend’s events are available online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

Hicks completed a Bachelor of Music Education degree from HPU in 1978. While at the university, she was involved with Baptist Student Union and A Cappella Choir. She was also a class officer her junior and senior years. Upon graduating from HPU, she earned a Master of Music Education degree and administrative certification from Angelo State University.

She has completed 31 years in public education, including time spent as a choral music teacher, principal and private studio voice and piano teacher. She has also served as a wedding coordinator and as a consultant for the San Angelo Symphony. Her civic involvement includes serving with Young Life San Angelo, a children’s ministry, as well as teaching Sunday School and being active in Bible study through her church. She has one son, Hunter Rodgers Hicks.

Hicks said attending and graduating from HPU was one of the greatest blessings in her life.

“Howard Payne brought forth a missions heart in me that had been building since childhood,” she said. “The spiritual emphasis and spirit of the campus gave me a foundation for both good and bad times that lay ahead. The education classes were specific in what teaching would entail and the camaraderie with other music majors, as well as the choral experiences, gave me a great starting point, support system and network.”

For more information about HPU Homecoming 2017, visit www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

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Cutline: Candis (Rodgers) Hicks ’78 is among nine who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2017 activities, October 20-21.