News Archives: Guy D. Newman Honors Academy

HPU Model United Nations brings home three awards from Seattle conference

BROWNWOOD – December 13, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Model United Nations team recently competed at the Northwest Model United Nations Conference in Seattle. The team of seven HPU students brought home three awards and was named one of the top four teams among the more than 45 universities and 681 students from around the world represented at the conference.

Model United Nations takes current world issues and asks students, who represent various countries as delegates, to try to solve them through diplomatic means. Students learn the art of diplomacy through caucusing, writing position papers and presenting in formal settings, all while following the model of the United Nations.

“Awards went to approximately 5 percent of the teams at the conference, yet our team of seven out of the 681 at the conference brought home three,” said Dr. David Claborn, professor of government and Model UN adviser. “An average team of 20 may nab one award, generally. Yet our team came home with three times the metal.”

Lainee Hasty, senior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy and psychology and ministry major from Runaway Bay, won a Distinguished Delegate award. Caleb Kostreva, senior Honors Academy and social science/global studies major from Clifton, Colorado, won a Position Paper award. Two more HPU students were considered in the top 10 percent of their committees by the committee chairs, which landed HPU one of the four Distinguished Delegation awards.

“The students found the value in the collaboration, in the collective and creative working toward solutions to the international problems presented,” said Dr. Claborn. “To almost all of them, it was less about competing and winning and more about the work of resolving real issues in real ways with others.”

Emma Reed, senior Honors Academy and family studies major from Kennedale, served as head delegate. Competing for HPU in addition to Hasty and Kostreva were Madeline DuPre, sophomore Honors Academy, psychology and social science/jurisprudence major from Leander; Charles Lewis, junior Honors Academy and marketing major from Boerne; Andie McCoy, senior Honors Academy, social science/global studies and history major from Whitehouse; Penny Stehlik, junior Honors Academy and social science/global studies major from Round Rock; and Brad Ward, sophomore and social studies composite major from Live Oak.

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Cutline: HPU’s Model United Nations team recently brought home three awards from a Seattle conference. Left to right: Brad Ward, Caleb Kostreva, Charles Lewis, Emma Reed, Lainee Hasty, Penny Stehlik, Andie McCoy and Madeline DuPre.

HPU Sumners Scholars attend Texas Tribune Festival

BROWNWOOD – December 10, 2018 – Eight Howard Payne University students in the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy recently attended the 2018 Texas Tribune Festival, held Sept. 27-29, as part of their membership in the Hatton W. Sumners Scholar Program.

The festival, of which the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation is a sponsor, is an event hosted by the Texas Tribune intended to allow attendees to learn about various areas of politics and policy, as well as issues affecting Texas and the United States.

Among the more than 300 speakers at the conference were former Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Representatives Will Hurd (R-Texas) and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), and former Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency Christine Todd Whitman. During the three-day conference, sessions on domestic and international issues were held featuring speakers of divergent experiences.

“Events like the Texas Tribune Festival put our Sumners Scholars in front of leading politicians and policymakers on different sides of lots of different issues. They enjoy this unique access alongside equally civic-minded students from other institutions,” said Dr. Matthew McNiece, director of Guy D. Newman Honors Academy and associate professor of history and government. “This helps our Sumners Scholars more deeply engage in the world around them, which in turn helps better prepare them for a life of Christ-like service and good citizenship.”

The group of students who attended the conference included Jessica Catlett, a senior social work and Honors Academy major from Alleyton; Madelyn Deviney, a ¬¬senior accounting and Honors Academy major from Bulverde; Sidney Ganus, a sophomore English and Honors Academy major from Weatherford; Jordan Hahn, a junior social science: global studies, English and Honors Academy major from Burnet; Augusta Johnson, a senior social science: global studies, history and Honors Academy major from Gatesville; Tyler Olin, a senior social science: jurisprudence, psychology and Honors Academy major from Howe; Emma Reed, a senior family studies and Honors Academy major from Arlington; and Penny Stehlik, a junior social science: global studies and Honors Academy major from Round Rock.

“The Tribune Fest is great because you can choose what sessions to attend and really tailor the event to your interests, so that you can learn as much as possible,” Reed said. “You also often have the opportunity to meet accomplished individuals in their respective fields. For example, Jessica Catlett and I were able to meet a former ¬¬¬¬department head in the Department of Health and Human Services.”

The Hatton W. Sumners Foundation is a nonprofit organization that seeks to increase public understanding of the benefits of individual freedom and of civic and personal responsibility.

As members of the Sumners organization, HPU students also attend leadership seminars at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas and lectures hosted in conjunction with the Institute for Policy Innovation. Through the Academy’s partnership with the Sumners Foundation, student members are provided with a stipend issued during four semesters of their undergraduate studies.

“The Academy’s partnership with the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation provides access to a wide range of experiences and opportunities that our students wouldn’t otherwise have,” said Dr. McNiece.

Junior-level students in HPU’s Guy D. Newman Honors Academy are eligible for application for the Sumners program. For more information about the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation, the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy and the other academic opportunities HPU offers, please visit hputx.edu/academics.

Applications are being accepted for the fall 2019 semester at Howard Payne University (www.hputx.edu/apply). HPU offers a variety of financial aid options, including scholarships for students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: Eight HPU students attended the 2018 Texas Tribune Fest as part of the Sumners Scholar Program. Pictured from left to right are Madelyn Deviney, Jordan Hahn, Jessica Catlett, Tyler Olin, Augusta Johnson (back row); Emma Reed, Sidney Ganus and Penny Stehlik (front row).

HPU Moot Court wins Baylor University tournament

BROWNWOOD – November 29, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Moot Court team recently triumphed at the Baylor University Moot Court Invitational tournament, competing against nine colleges and universities from across Texas and the neighboring states.

Four HPU students competed at the event – partners Jordan Hahn, junior from Burnet, and Lucy Manning, sophomore from Fort Worth, and partners Bailey Myler, senior from Brownwood, and Lauren Piper, freshman from Early.

Hahn and Manning advanced to out-rounds on day two and defeated the University of North Texas in the final round to win the tournament. Awards were also given to the top eight speakers at the tournament. Manning placed 5th, Myler placed 4th and Hahn was the top speaker at the event.

“This was the first tournament of the year for these four competitors and they did an amazing job,” said Lorianna Kelley, team adviser and assistant professor of government. “I am so proud of all the hard work the team has put in already this year, and I am confident they will continue to prevail at our upcoming tournaments.”

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Cutline: HPU’s Moot Court team recently triumphed at the Baylor University Moot Court Invitational tournament. Left to right: Lauren Piper, Bailey Myler, Jordan Hahn and Lucy Manning.

HPU Moot Court has successful showing at first tournament of 2018-19

moot court 2018 for webBROWNWOOD – October 17, 2018 – The newest members of Howard Payne University’s Moot Court team fared well at the first tournament of the 2018-19 academic year, the St. Mary’s School of Law Moot Court Invitational.

Representing HPU in this tournament were Reagan Coleman, freshman from Houston; Conner Faught, junior from Brownfield; Sierra Ross, sophomore from Canton; and Madison Zardiackas, freshman from Lockhart.

All four finished in the top half as individual speakers, with Ross and Faught advancing to the semifinal round.

“This tournament is very early in the season, and these four only had a few weeks to research a complicated constitutional issue, write legal arguments and practice delivering those arguments before a panel of judges,” said Lorianna Kelley, team adviser and assistant professor of government. “I could not be prouder of their success and am excited to watch their continued performance throughout the year and for the rest of their college careers.”

HPU is now enrolling for the spring 2019 semester. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options, including scholarships for students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: The newest members of HPU’s Moot Court team competed well at the first tournament of the 2018-19 academic year. Left to right: Conner Faught, Sierra Ross, Madison Zardiackas and Reagan Coleman.

Texas Senate honors HPU Moot Court team

Moot Court Senate Proclamation for webBROWNWOOD – October 16, 2018 – Texas State Senator Dawn Buckingham has authored Senate Proclamation No. 569 in honor of HPU’s Moot Court program and team members Jordan Hahn, junior from Burnet, and Isaac Sommers, May 2018 graduate from Boerne. Moot Court is a competition during which students participate in the preparation and arguing of cases in front of judges, designed to simulate argument before the Supreme Court of the United States.

Hahn and Sommers, now in his first year at Harvard Law School, brought home numerous Moot Court awards during their time together at HPU. Most notably, the team was named 2018 National Brief Writing Champions, HPU’s second national championship title in the history of collegiate Moot Court.

“HPU is very proud of Jordan and Isaac, and their adviser Professor Lorianna Kelley,” said Dr. Matthew McNiece, director of HPU’s Guy D. Newman Honors Academy and chair and associate professor of history and government. “We’re thankful that the Texas Senate and Senator Buckingham honored them in this prestigious way.”

HPU is now enrolling for the spring 2019 semester. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options, including scholarships for students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: Texas State Senator Dawn Buckingham authored Senate Proclamation No. 569 in honor of HPU’s Moot Court team. Pictured are Jordan Hahn, senior, and Lorianna Kelley, Moot Court adviser and assistant professor of government. Not pictured is Isaac Sommers, May 2018 graduate.

Howard Payne University graduate Isaac Sommers prepares for Harvard Law School

Isaac Sommers photo for releaseBROWNWOOD – June 4, 2018 – Months before graduating from Howard Payne University in the spring of 2018, Isaac Sommers was already readying himself for the next step in his academic career.

He graduated May 5 from HPU with a double major in the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy: The Program for Civic Leadership and Public Policy, and social science with an emphasis in jurisprudence.

Sommers was informed of his acceptance to Harvard Law School in March. He said he is quite excited about pursuing his unique opportunity this fall.

“Harvard Law School has plenty of resources and many areas of focus in terms of what is available to study, which will open a lot of doors for me,” said Sommers.

He said his educational path has been influenced through the instruction he has received at HPU.

“I’m interested in going into public service and working in government,” said Sommers. “The Honors Academy is very oriented toward people who want to go that route. The focus on civic leadership and public policy offered in the Honors Academy are two things that are very much related to public service.”

Dr. Matthew McNiece, Guy D. Newman Honors Academy director and associate professor of history and government, said that Sommers has been an excellent student in the Honors Academy.

“We’re incredibly proud of Isaac’s accomplishments both inside and outside the classroom,” said Dr. McNiece. “He is a tremendous example of the Honors Academy’s motto, ‘Facing the Future with Faith and Knowledge,’ and we are eager to see how God continues to use him for great things both at Harvard and beyond.”

During his time at HPU, Sommers was very active in campus activities and student leadership roles. He was particularly involved in Student Government (SGA), serving as a freshman class senator in fall 2014, sophomore class presiding senator from fall 2015 through spring 2016, SGA vice president from fall 2016 through spring 2017 and SGA president from fall 2017 through spring 2018.

Sommers was also the captain of the Moot Court team, was the vice president of Gamma Beta Phi national honors and service society and participated in Student Speaker Bureau for several years.

“Through his involvement in SGA, Isaac has faithfully served as an advocate for HPU students and the entire HPU community,” said Dr. Magen Bunyard, vice president of student life and dean of students. “His love for the Lord, commitment to learning, sense of humor and concern for others have positively influenced our campus.”

His alma mater has also had a personal impact on Sommers.

“I started off much more introverted than I am now, though I still consider myself a pretty strong introvert,” he said. “HPU gave me the opportunity to come out of my shell in that sense and embrace the community that it has, because there really is a great community here.”

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2018 semester at Howard Payne University (www.hputx.edu/apply). HPU offers a variety of financial aid options, including scholarships for students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: Recent HPU graduate Isaac Sommers is set to attend Harvard Law School in the fall.

HPU Sumners Scholars attend public policy lecture by Alan M. Dershowitz

BROWNWOOD – May 23, 2018 – Four students from Howard Payne University’s Guy D. Newman Honors Academy recently attended a public policy lecture through the Institute for Policy Innovation. Alan M. Dershowitz, acclaimed civil liberties attorney, spoke on the topic “The Constitution: Rights and Wrongs” as part of the IPI’s Hatton W. Sumners Distinguished Lecture Series.

Students attending the lecture were Rachel Hughes, senior from Llano; Tyler Olin, junior from Howe; Isaac Sommers, senior from Boerne; and Rachel White, senior from Arkadelphia, Arkansas.

HPU Sumners Scholars are selected for the competitive four-semester program after an in-depth application and interview by the trustees of the Sumners Foundation. The foundation provides a $7,500-per-semester stipend for its participating students to be used for tuition, fees, books or room and board. Additionally, the students are invited to attend annual leadership and policy analysis conferences, such as this one, to supplement their learning.

Named for its founder, former Congressman Hatton W. Sumners of Texas (Democrat, 1912-1947), who served as the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation is dedicated to the study, teaching and promotion of self-government.

“The Sumners Foundation is committed to promoting programs that increase understanding of civic responsibility and personal potential which is of great interest and importance to faculty and students in the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy,” said Dr. Matthew McNiece, director of the Honors Academy and chair and professor of history and government. “We’re very thankful that our students have opportunities such as these through the Sumners Foundation.”

More information about the Academy and the Sumners program may be found at www.hputx.edu/academy and www.hputx.edu/sumners, respectively.

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Three HPU seniors honored at annual Sumners Scholars Banquet

Sumners Scholars graduates 2018BROWNWOOD – May 21, 2018 – Three graduating seniors from Howard Payne University’s Guy D. Newman Honors Academy were honored during the recent Sumners Scholars Banquet. The students, who were selected during their junior year as Hatton W. Sumners Foundation Scholars, were each awarded a plaque and a copy of the book “The Wisdom of Hatton W. Sumners and The Sumners Foundation Scholarships.”

Honored for completing four semesters as Sumners Scholars were Rachel Hughes of Llano, Isaac Sommers of Boerne and Rachel White of Arkadelphia, Arkansas. The students also took the opportunity to express gratitude for the opportunities provided to them by the foundation.

The highly competitive and prestigious Sumners Scholar program offers students the opportunity to attend special lectures, seminars and conferences featuring world-renowned leaders from both public and private sectors. It also provides a generous scholarship of $7,500 per semester for two years. Students from the Honors Academy are selected following an in-depth application and interview by the trustees of the Sumners Foundation.

Named for its founder, former Congressman Hatton W. Sumners of Texas (Democrat, 1912-1947), who served as the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation is dedicated to the study, teaching and promotion of self-government.

“We’re very thankful for the Sumners Foundation and its continued support of HPU and its students,” said Dr. Matthew McNiece, chair and professor of history and government and director of the Academy.

For more information about the Sumners Scholars program at HPU, visit www.hputx.edu/sumners.

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Cutline: Three HPU students were honored during the university’s annual Sumners Scholars Banquet. Left to right: Rachel White, Rachel Hughes and Isaac Sommers.

HPU honors students and alumni for national success in Moot Court

McNiece and Ellis with Moot Court National ChampsBROWNWOOD – April 16, 2018 – The Board of Directors for Howard Payne University’s Guy D. Newman Honors Academy held its regular meeting and luncheon recently, during which a resolution was read honoring four individuals for national success in Moot Court.

Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president, and Dr. Matthew McNiece, director of the Honors Academy and chair and professor of history and government, presented framed copies of the resolution to HPU’s Moot Court national champions. Receiving the honor were students Jordan Hahn, sophomore from Burnet, and Isaac Sommers, senior from Boerne, as well as 2002 HPU graduates Lorianna (Anderson) Kelley and Rob Welker. Kelley now serves on HPU’s faculty as assistant professor of government and Moot Court adviser.

In 1993, HPU was a founding member of the Texas Undergraduate Moot Court Association. Kelley and Welker were named national champions for Oral Advocacy in 2002, and Hahn and Sommers were Brief Writing national champions in January 2018.

“HPU’s Moot Court program has enhanced the traditional and experiential education of well over 200 students since its inception,” said Dr. McNiece. “We’re proud to recognize the remarkable achievements of our past and present Moot Court students.”

Applications are being accepted for the fall 2018 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: HPU recently honored four individuals for national success in Moot Court. Left to right: Dr. Matthew McNiece, Jordan Hahn, Lorianna Kelley, Rob Welker, Isaac Sommers and Dr. Bill Ellis.

HPU Model United Nations team dominates Germany conference

HPU Munster AwardsBROWNWOOD – April 16, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Model United Nations team won six awards at the 2018 Münster University International Model United Nations conference, more than any other team in attendance. The conference was held recently in Münster, Germany, with more than 200 student delegates representing 40 nations.

Model United Nations takes current world issues and asks students, who represent various countries as delegates, to try to solve them through diplomatic means. Students learn the art of diplomacy through caucusing, writing position papers and presenting in formal settings, all while following the model of the United Nations. The theme of this year’s conference was “Might Makes Right? Challenging Power and Privilege.”

Bringing home awards for HPU were Lainee Hasty, senior from Runaway Bay, representing South Africa on the United Nations Environmental Assembly; Caleb Kostreva, junior from Clifton, Colorado, representing Kuwait on the UN Security Council; Morgan Andie McCoy, junior from Whitehouse, representing India on United Nations Women Council; Emma Reed, junior from Kennedale, representing the Russian Federation on the UN Security Council; Penny Stehlik, sophomore from Round Rock, representing the Russian Federation on the 4th General Assembly: The Special Political and Decolonization Committee; and Jessica Swonger, junior from Midway, Arkansas, representing El Salvador on the Economic and Social Council.

Hasty, Kostreva and McCoy were each named Outstanding Delegate, while Reed, Stehlik and Swonger received Best Position Paper awards. Also representing HPU were Alex Bingham, junior from Bridge City; Jessica Catlett, senior from Alleyton; Joshua Dykes, senior from Mount Pleasant; and Charles Lewis, sophomore from Boerne.

Dr. Kevin Kelley, associate professor of psychology and chair of HPU’s Department of Psychology and Family Studies, advises the team.

“I am very excited that HPU’s Model United Nations team is bringing strength and expertise to the world stage,” he said. “Six of our 10 delegates won awards, including taking the top two honors on the Security Council. All of our delegates should be proud as we also were able to humbly spread the Good News far and wide.”

Kostreva and Reed led the HPU team as co-delegate and head delegate, respectively.

“As co-delegate for the HPU MUN team, I am so proud of all our delegates and the immense effort put into the conference,” Kostreva said. “So much of our success is because of Emma’s incredible leadership, and I know I speak for the entire team in saying this. While we brought home six awards, we also saw success in other ways, including having one delegate compete excellently in a Spanish-speaking committee!”

Reed also praised team members for their preparation and effort.

“I’m incredibly proud of and thankful for the hard work that this team put into preparing for this conference,” she said. “They all put in hours of research and represented HPU well. This was my sixth MUN trip, and it was possibly the most fun because I was able to travel and compete with a great group of friends! We go abroad so that we can expand our worldviews and meet people from around the world, and that was definitely the focus of this team. The awards are definitely an exciting aspect of it, but I’m more proud of the hard work that was put in by everybody.”

Applications are being accepted for the fall 2018 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Cutline: HPU’s Model United Nations team brought home six awards from the 2018 Münster University International Model United Nations conference. Left to right: Penny Stehlik, Caleb Kostreva, Jessica Swonger, Lainee Hasty, Morgan Andie McCoy and Emma Reed.