News Archives: Student Life

HPU announces 2013 Homecoming Court

homecoming court 2013 for webBROWNWOOD – September 26, 2013 – Howard Payne University has announced the Homecoming Court for 2013. The HPU Homecoming queen and princess will be crowned on Friday, Oct. 4, at 2 p.m. during Homecoming Convocation in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

Homecoming queen nominees are Catherine Mullaney, a senior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and English major from Boylston, Mass.; Robin Scofield, a senior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and communication major from Naples, Fla..; and Morenci Young, a senior psychology major and health sciences minor from Gordon.

Catherine, the daughter of Daniel and Catherine Mullaney, is president of the Student Government Association and a member of Student Speaker Bureau and Gamma Beta Phi. She plans to one day become an author.

Robin, the daughter of Michael and Lynna Scofield, is a member of the Student Government Association, the Archery Club, Gamma Beta Phi and Sigma Theta Phi. Her career goal is to work in public relations for a corporation or government official.

Morenci, the daughter of Monty and Salena Young, is a member of Delta Chi Rho, the Archery Club and plays intramural sports. She plans to one day become an ultrasound technician.

Homecoming princess nominees are Katie Rose Bonner, a junior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and political science/pre-law and history major from Lytle; Neva Bowers, a junior business major from Victoria; and Adrianna Perez, a junior political science/pre-law major and criminal justice minor from Rowlett.

Katie, the daughter of James and Rosemary Bonner, is a member of Gamma Beta Phi and Moot Court. She plans to one day work as an attorney practicing international law or as a foreign-service officer for the Department of State.

Neva, the daughter of Billy and Denise Bowers, is an honorary member of Zeta Chi. Her career aspirations include entrepreneurism or sales.

Adrianna, the daughter of Ernest and Catherine Perez, is a member of Delta Chi Rho, the Student Government Association, Gamma Beta Phi and the Student Activities Council. Her career aspirations include pursuing a law degree in criminal or international law before working with Innocence Project, a national non-profit organization dedicated to exonerating wrongly convicted people through the use of DNA testing.

The Homecoming Court will be featured in the parade on Saturday, Oct. 5, beginning at 11 a.m., and in the half-time show of the football game versus Louisiana College at Gordon Wood Stadium starting at 2 p.m.

The student body selects the court each year by elections coordinated through the Student Government Association.

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Photo cutline: HPU’s 2013 Homecoming Court includes (from left): Katie Rose Bonner, Catherine Mullaney, Adrianna Perez, Robin Scofield, Morenci Young and Neva Bowers.

HPU welcomes new students with wide variety of activities

HPU students serve at the Brownwood Area Community Garden for the university’s annual Serving With A Right Motive (S.W.A.R.M.) project.BROWNWOOD – August 27, 2013 – Classes began last week at Howard Payne University, signaling the official start of the fall 2013 semester. New HPU Yellow Jackets transitioned onto campus earlier in the month with Jacket Journey, HPU’s new student orientation.

A variety of events were held on campus and around the community to introduce new students to their classmates, professors and the university they will call home for the next four years. After a week of games, picnics, Chapel services and other activities, Jacket Journey culminated with the university’s annual Serving With A Right Motive (S.W.A.R.M.) project.

Approximately 150 new students, upperclassmen and student life staff members participated in this year’s S.W.A.R.M. The volunteers, coordinated by Keep Brownwood Beautiful, completed community service projects at a variety of locations including Brownwood Area Community Garden, the Corinne T. Smith Animal Shelter and Lake Brownwood.

Stephen Gober ’07 of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department was appreciative of the group’s efforts in cleaning the area surrounding Lake Brownwood.

“The bike trail and the lake shore both show a significant improvement and the team out here is very grateful for all the hard work HPU students provided,” he said. HPU students clear debris near Lake Brownwood.

According to Dr. Brent Marsh, vice president for student life and dean of students, S.W.A.R.M. is typically the highlight of Jacket Journey.

“Our goal is to help new students be more familiar with the surrounding community and be aware of various opportunities to serve,” he said. “The S.W.A.R.M. event is fun because the new students get to serve shoulder-to-shoulder with returning students and make lasting memories while helping others. This entering class of students is an amazing group, and I look forward to seeing the impact they’ll make on campus, in the local community and beyond.”

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Photo cutlines:

Left: HPU students serve at the Brownwood Area Community Garden for the university’s annual Serving With A Right Motive (S.W.A.R.M.) project.

Right: HPU students clear debris near Lake Brownwood.

HPU food service employees honored for 25 years of service

sodexo staff with don green for webBROWNWOOD – August 20, 2013 – Howard Payne University’s food service provider, Sodexo, recently honored five staff members for longtime service to the company and to the university.

Those honored for 25 years of service to Sodexo included Margie Coker, cashier; Lyndia Collier, beverage attendant; Wanda Gibbs, salad production; Paulette Henderson, lead cook; and Roseanna Stone, administrative assistant. Additionally, each of the staff members were also employed by HPU – with tenures ranging from one to five years – before the university contracted its dining services to Sodexo.

The employees were presented with gifts from Sodexo and a reception attended by many across the university. Don Green, Sodexo general manager, said the staff members are known and appreciated by the HPU community.

“Good food and good service doesn’t just happen,” he said. “It takes a lot of work. These ladies have been very instrumental in making the food service program at HPU so great for our students, faculty and staff.”

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Photo cutline: Five employees of Sodexo, HPU’s food service provider, were recently honored for 25 years of service. Left to right: Roseanna Stone, Paulette Henderson, Don Green (general manager), Wanda Gibbs, Margie Coker and Lyndia Collier.

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.”

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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.

Ashley Krueger named recipient of HPU’s Yellow Rose Scholarship

yellow_rose_scholarship_winner_2013_for_webBROWNWOOD – April 24, 2013 – Howard Payne University sophomore Ashley Krueger, a music education major from Howe, was named the recipient of the HPU Woman’s Club Yellow Rose Scholarship for the 2013-2014 academic year. The award was presented at the annual Yellow Rose Scholarship Luncheon held recently on campus.

Krueger is involved in a wide range of campus activities. She is a member of the Yellow Jacket Marching Band, performs with the HPU Symphonic Concert Band and has played French horn for HPU’s Homecoming musical, choir concerts and University Singers concerts. She is an officer in Tau Beta Sigma, a national honorary band sorority. She is also active in the community, performing with various musical groups at First Baptist Church and other venues in the Brownwood area.

Krueger is the daughter of Mike and Amy Krueger of Howe.

The HPU Yellow Rose Scholarship is presented annually to a female sophomore at HPU who maintains at least a 3.0 grade point average, participates in extracurricular activities and exhibits leadership qualities representative of Christian values.

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Photo cutline: Ashley Krueger, center, was named the 2013-2014 recipient of the HPU Yellow Rose Scholarship. She is pictured with her mother, Amy Krueger, and Dr. Diana Ellis, HPU first lady.

HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau wraps up successful spring semester

ssb_2013_for_webBROWNWOOD – April 10, 2013 – Student Speaker Bureau, Howard Payne University’s competitive speech and debate team, completed their spring tournament schedule in March.

The Student Speaker Bureau (SSB) competed in two tournaments during the spring semester: The Sweetheart Swing at Oklahoma University in Norman and the National Christian College Forensics Association tournament held at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Ark.

The team had a strong showing in debate at both tournaments. The open division team of Marcos Corley, a sophomore criminal justice major from Corpus Christi, and Ben Palmer, a junior youth ministry and Academy of Freedom major from Van, advanced to quarterfinals at the Sweetheart Swing.

At nationals, the team of Katie Bonner, a sophomore political science and Academy major from Lytle, and Katie Mullaney, a junior English and Academy major, advanced to quarterfinals. Additionally, Mullaney won 8th place debate speaker award.

“I am extremely proud of all four of these students,” said Dr. Julie Welker, chair of the Department of Communication and SSB coach. “We debate against the some of the best teams in the nation and we consistently hold our own.”

Dr. Welker added that the SSB competes against teams from schools that travel to a tournament every other weekend and are more seasoned in terms of competition.

“Our students have been able to step in and succeed even though we have travelled and competed much less than other teams this year,” she said. “This has been a growing semester for us. We have a smaller team than usual and have no graduating seniors, but on the flip side that is exciting in terms of next year’s season.”

Other students who competed in both debate and individual events this spring were Kaleigh Tankersley, a sophomore communication studies major from Iraan, and Dorie Walton, a sophomore communication studies and theatre major from Lolita. Kim Bryant, associate professor of communication, helps coach the team.

At the national tournament, Dr. Welker was re-elected treasurer for another two-year term for the National Christian College Forensics Association.

“I’m looking forward to next year’s season,” she said. “We have some great recruits and are already preparing for next year.”

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Photo cutline: HPU’s SSB recently completed its spring semester. Back row, from left: Marcos Corley, Dorie Walton and Ben Palmer. Front row, from left: Kim Bryant, Katie Bonner, Katie Mullaney, Kaleigh Tankersley and Dr. Julie Welker

The Almost to headline 18th annual HPU Fest

hpu_fest_2013_logo_for_webBROWNWOOD – April 10, 2013 – Howard Payne University will host its 18th annual HPU Fest on Saturday, April 13. The Almost will be the headlining band for this all-day music festival.

Other artists to perform will include Jenny Simmons, Michael Henry & Justin Robinette, Jenn Grinels, Homestead Music and Here & Sea. Also performing will be HPU’s Taylor Castleberry, a senior business major from Paradise.

HPU Fest is an all-day event that is free and open to the public. In addition to music, the event includes inflatable games, a chili cook-off and a hot-dog-eating contest. There will also be booths featuring HPU organizations as well as local businesses. Music is scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m. and conclude at 11:30 p.m.

For additional information, visit www.hputx.edu/hpufest or call 325-649-8305.

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Photo cutline: HPU will host its 18th annual HPU Fest on Saturday.

HPU hosts Model United Nations conference

BROWNWOOD – April 9, 2013 – Howard Payne University hosted a Model United Nations (MUN) conference recently, welcoming 40 students from five universities across Texas. In addition to HPU, participants included Baylor University, East Texas Baptist University, Hardin-Simmons University and the University of the Incarnate Word.

HPU’s MUN team members hone their understanding of the world and the United Nations system through weekly class sessions and attending conferences. In recent years, the team has traveled to San Francisco, Washington D.C., Austria, the Czech Republic and the United Kingdom.

“Hosting a MUN conference was a great learning experience for our students,” said Dr. Samuel Greene, assistant professor of political science and MUN sponsor. “Understanding all that goes into developing and running a conference will make us better delegates as we travel. It was an honor for us to host a group of talented delegates and staff members from four other universities, and we look forward to building on this experience.”

HPU team members include Kathryn Barrackman, a senior from Houston who served as the conference director; Ashley Chapman, a freshman from Ennis; Cara DeLoach, a junior from San Angelo; Kerrie Ford, a junior from Houston; Adrianna Perez, a sophomore from Rowlett; Robin Scofield, a junior from Naples, Fla.; Erik Swenson, a senior from Carrollton; and Ryan Young, a senior from Mesquite.

HPU students share Christ during Spring Break on South Padre Island

hpu_at_beach_reach_2013_for_webBROWNWOOD – April 4, 2013 – Heading to the beach for Spring Break is a common experience among college students, but a group of Howard Payne University students had perhaps a different purpose in mind when they travelled to South Padre Island last month. Ten students from HPU’s Baptist Student Ministries, along with BSM director Keith Platte, shared the love of Jesus Christ with beachgoers during Beach Reach 2013.

According to the South Padre Island Convention and Visitors Bureau, an estimated 50,000 students visit the island each March for Spring Break. Beach Reach was created in 1980 by Buddy Young, a seminary student and part-time Baptist Student Ministry director in Dallas, as a way for Christian students from different universities and churches to share the Gospel with their peers. The outreach has since expanded to Panama City, Fla., and other popular Spring Break destinations.

“Beach Reachers,” like the group from HPU, participate in a number of activities including serving free breakfasts on the beach, giving free van rides to people at night to anywhere on the island, cleaning up beach areas and many other acts of service. Most importantly, they serve and meet people with the intent of sharing the news of Jesus Christ.

“It was amazing how God was working through and in our students,” said Platte, who was particularly impressed with how open the beachgoers were to receiving the Word of God.

“The people in the vans were respectful and would let us pray for them when we asked,” he said. “Often, they wanted us to pray for them even more, which led to deeper conversations. Some people stayed in the van for longer than the length of their rides, so we would sit and talk for 45 minutes or so.”

The HPU group gave a ride to a man who stayed on the van for more than an hour as they delivered others to their destinations.

“He responded well when we presented him with the Gospel,” Platte said. “I can’t explain it any other way except to say that God was working on his heart.”

Platte and the students would have enjoyed more time with each of the people to whom they gave rides but recognize the importance of the interactions they had.

“Our job is to plant the seed,” Platte said. “Hundreds of seeds might be planted before anything takes root. All we can do is reach out and make that contact.”

Now that they’ve returned home, Platte encourages the BSM students to keep praying for the people they met.

“We pray that, even if they don’t remember our names or faces, the beachgoers remember the messages we were sent to deliver.”

BSM students who attended Beach Reach included Alex Caro, a senior from Howe; Lacy Culpepper, a sophomore from Zephyr; Allyson Gainey, a junior from Kermit; Jenny Goff, a junior from Austin; Ruby Johnson, a sophomore from Alvarado; Kim Lilley, a senior from Brownwood; Xavier McFalls, a freshman from Amarillo; Andi Peaster, a freshman from Edinburg; Rebekah Steadman, a junior from Fort Worth; and Whitney Williams, a sophomore from Gatesville.

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Photo cutline: HPU students recently shared the Gospel during Spring Break at South Padre Island. The top row, from left, includes Rebekah Steadman, Jennifer Goff and Alex Caro. Bottom row, left to right: Andi Peaster, Xavier McFalls, Allyson Gainey, Lacy Culpepper, Whitney Williams, Kim Lilley and Ruby Johnson.

HPU cheerleaders named National Champions

cheerleaders_with_banner_for_webBy Rachel Ellington, Howard Payne University freshman

BROWNWOOD – April 4, 2013 – The Howard Payne University cheerleaders recently participated in the 2013 Christian Cheerleaders of America Cheer Nationals and were named “National Champions” in the small co-ed college division and fourth place overall. The competition consisted of more than 50 divisions, ranging from toddlers to college students, from more than 20 states.

The HPU cheerleaders, divided into three teams, also competed in the group stunts division, receiving second-, fourth- and fifth-place honors.

“This year’s team has worked very hard throughout the semester and the championship highlights the students’ dedication, talent and ‘coachability’,” said Jeffri Foster, cheer coach. “I could not be any more proud of the team and I look forward to continuing to build a successful program alongside these cheerleaders.”

The HPU cheer team includes Brooke Belcher, a freshman from Gunter; Harli Benham, a freshman from Three Rivers; Aly Castle, a junior from Lampasas; Kelci Feist, a sophomore from Deleon; Kelsey Johnson, a freshman from Goldthwaite; Kris Lowrey, a freshman from Brownwood; Lawrence Martinez, a freshman from Pflugerville; Rachel Moore, a junior from Sierra Blanca; Whitney Presbaugh, a junior from Fort Worth; Dariann Reed, a sophomore from Houston; Rachel Runnels, a sophomore from Paradise; and Mitchell Sostarich, a sophomore from Devine.

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Photo cutline: The HPU cheerleaders were recently named “National Champions” at the 2013 Christian Cheerleaders of America Cheer Nationals. Back row, from left: Coach Jeffri Foster, Kelsey Johnson, Rachel Moore, Whitney Presbaugh, Aly Castle, Brooke Belcher and Kelci Feist. Front row, from left: Kris Lowrey, Rachel Runnels, Lawrence Martinez, Harli Benham, Dariann Reed and Mitchell Sostarich.