News Archives

HPU exhibiting “Contemporary Vanitas,” artwork by David E. Harmon

Vanitas photo with David Harmon for webBROWNWOOD – October 24, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Department of Art is exhibiting “Contemporary Vanitas,” pastel still-life drawings by David E. Harmon, department chair and professor of art. The exhibition is open now through November 3 in the Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery, located in HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center.

Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The gallery will be open extended hours of 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. throughout HPU’s Homecoming weekend, Friday, November 2, and Saturday, November 3.

Vanitas is a genre of still-life painting, popular in the Netherlands in the early 17th century. Harmon’s modern vanitas have been created from a Christian perspective, drawn from his experiences, favorite Bible verses and thoughts about life.

“Most of the works were created out of my personal experiences, but I encourage viewers to take the time for self-reflection and ponder what the drawings may mean to their own lives,” he said.

For more information about the exhibition, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500. A complete list of Homecoming 2018 activities is located at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

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Cutline: David Harmon, professor of art and chair of HPU’s Department of Art, poses with artwork from his “Contemporary Vanitas” exhibition. Photo by Katie Cravey, HPU junior.

Henderson’s Milton McGee named HPU’s Homecoming 2018 Medal of Service recipient

Milton McGee for webBROWNWOOD – October 24, 2018 – Milton McGee of Henderson has been named Howard Payne University’s Homecoming 2018 Medal of Service recipient. He is among eight who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2018 festivities, November 2-3. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

McGee and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, November 2, beginning at 5:45 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, November 3, 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.

McGee is a former member of Howard Payne University’s Board of Trustees, through which he served as chairman of the Finance Committee. He was raised in Coushatta, Louisiana, and earned a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s degree from Northeast Louisiana University.

A Certified Public Accountant, McGee has served as president and chief executive officer of several Texas banks including RepublicBank of Brownwood (1983 to 1986) and, most recently, Texas Leadership Bank in Royse City.

In addition to HPU’s Board of Trustees, McGee has served on the boards of the Independent Bankers Bank, the Independent Bankers Association of Texas, the Texas Bankers Association and the Baptist Church Loan Corporation, among others. He is a former executive committee member of the Baptist General Convention of Texas. McGee is a member of First Baptist Church of Henderson where he serves on a variety of committees. He is active with the Henderson Optimist Club and his other civic service includes the Rusk County Chamber of Commerce, the Henderson Economic Development Corporation, the Henderson Industrial Trust and the Henderson Civic Center project. He received the John R. Alford Award for the Outstanding Young Man of the Year in 1983.

McGee and his wife, Sharla Freeman McGee, have two children and four grandchildren.

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Cutline: Milton McGee of Henderson has been named HPU’s Homecoming 2018 Medal of Service recipient.

Early’s Dwayne Grooms named HPU’s Homecoming 2018 Grand Marshal

Dwayne GroomsBROWNWOOD – October 24, 2018 – Dwayne Grooms of Early has been named Howard Payne University’s Homecoming 2018 Grand Marshal. He is among eight who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2018 festivities, November 2-3. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

Grooms and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, November 2, beginning at 5:45 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, November 3, 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.

Grooms graduated from HPU in 1965 with a degree in education. He also completed additional coursework at Texas A&M University. He has been a member of HPU’s Board of Trustees since 2011, currently serving on the Marketing and Communications Committee.

Grooms is a member of First Baptist Church of Brownwood where he has served as a deacon since the 1970s. He achieved prominence as a Brownwood businessman through his leadership of Grooms Seed. He also serves on the Brown County Farm Bureau Board and the Ag Committee for the Brown County Appraisal District.

Grooms is married to Barbara (Smith) Grooms, a 1959 HPU graduate. The couple has two children, LeAnna (deceased) and David, and two grandchildren. David’s wife, Wendy Grooms, is associate professor of mathematics at HPU.

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Cutline: Dwayne Grooms of Early has been named HPU’s Homecoming 2018 Grand Marshal.

HPU Homecoming 2018 festivities to include bonfire, fireworks and parade

Parade Route MapBROWNWOOD – October 24, 2018 – Howard Payne University will host The Carnival of Blue and Gold: Homecoming 2018 on Friday, November 2, and Saturday, November 3. Among the free events open to the public are a bonfire and fireworks and the annual Homecoming parade.

Bonfire on the Bayou and the fireworks display will take place at Riverside Park on Friday evening following an HPU pep rally. The pep rally begins at 8:45 p.m. with the bonfire slated to begin at 9 p.m. and the fireworks to begin at 9:30 p.m. Bonfire on the Bayou is sponsored by Visit Early Texas.

This year’s HPU Homecoming parade, beginning Saturday at 10 a.m., will follow the same route as previous years. Beginning at Brownwood Coliseum, the parade will travel north on Baker St., turn left onto Center Ave., move across Austin Ave. and enter the HPU campus. The procession will end in front of HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center on Center Ave. The best areas to view the parade are downtown and on campus along Center Ave.

The parade, sponsored by Bruner Auto Group, will feature student-designed floats and other attractions including the Homecoming Honorees, HPU Yellow Jacket Marching Band and the HPU mascot, Buzzsaw.

Community organizations interested in participating in the parade can register online at www.hputx.edu/homecoming. A complete schedule of Homecoming events is available at the same address.

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Cutline: Map showing the route for HPU’s 2018 Homecoming parade

Brownwood’s Karen Coppock Dodds named HPU’s 2018 Coming Home Queen

Karen Coppock Dodds for webBROWNWOOD – October 23, 2018 – Karen Coppock Dodds of Brownwood has been named Howard Payne University’s Homecoming 2018 Coming Home Queen. She is among eight who will be honored during HPU’s Homecoming 2018 festivities, November 2-3. Additional honorees are listed at www.hputx.edu/homecoming.

Dodds and the other honorees will be recognized during the Alumni & Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, November 2, beginning at 5:45 p.m. The honorees will also be featured in the Homecoming Parade on Saturday, November 3, 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.

Dodds graduated from HPU in 1964 with a degree in elementary education and physical education. During her time at HPU, she was a member of several groups including the Jacket Co-Eds, Phi Epsilon Mu, Sigma Alpha Sigma, the Association of Women Students, the Women’s Board of Affairs and more. She also served as a cheerleader and was on the Homecoming Court and the Football Sweetheart Court. She was especially impacted by her time serving as a student assistant to Martha St. Clair, then director of student activities.

Upon graduating from HPU, Dodds taught as a classroom teacher for 28 years, including 25 in Brownwood Independent School District. She is an active member of First United Methodist Church of Brownwood, serving in various areas of ministry. She additionally serves as a volunteer and board member for Brownwood Meals on Wheels, as a volunteer and former member of the Good Samaritan Ministries board and as a volunteer for the Food for Thought program. She has been a member of the HPU President’s Development Council, the HPU Woman’s Club, Friends of the Rotary and the Brown County Retired Teachers group. She is president of the Junior 20th Century Book Club.

“Howard Payne provided a strong faith-filled curriculum and professors and staff who were accessible and genuinely interested in their students,” she said. “I had the opportunity to learn alongside others with strong Christian beliefs and that certainly shaped the direction I would take after I left HPU.”

She and her husband, Johnny Dodds, a 1962 HPU graduate, have two children and five grandchildren.

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Cutline: Karen Coppock Dodds of Brownwood has been named HPU’s Homecoming 2018 Coming Home Queen.

HPU senior Kathryn Grice to perform Senior Recital on Oct. 25

Kathryn Grice photo webBROWNWOOD – October 22, 2018 – Howard Payne University senior Kathryn Grice, a music education major from Water Valley, will present her Senior Recital on the flute at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25, in HPU’s Grace Chapel. The recital is free of charge and the public is invited.

Grice was an All-State Flutist for two years of high school as well as a first-prize winner in the Texas State Solo Competitions.

“During the last four years, the public attending our concerts have commented on her beautiful tone and distinctive expression,” said Stephen Goacher, professor of music and Grice’s flute instructor. “On Thursday, they will have the opportunity to enjoy her playing in a recital culminating her work at HPU.”

Grice will perform works by Schumann, Brahms and Bizet. Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, professor of music and music department chair, will accompany Grice for these pieces. A performance of Chelsea Komschlies’ “Steam,” featuring clarinetist Paige Bowers from Corpus Christi, will serve as the chamber music portion of the recital.

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

Applications are being accepted for the spring 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: Kathryn Grice, a senior music education major, will present her Senior Recital on Oct. 25 in HPU’s Grace Chapel.

HPU’s community choral group to present inaugural Hymn Sing

Hymn Sing 2018 for webBROWNWOOD – October 18, 2018 – The Howard Payne University Singers: Brown County’s Community Chorus will host its inaugural Hymn Sing on Sunday, October 21, at First Baptist Church of Brownwood. The event begins at 7:30 p.m. and the community is welcome to attend.

“In its genesis, the idea of a hymn festival in Brown County was to cultivate a community event where local residents could join together in singing the beloved hymns of our Christian faith,” said Dr. Christopher Rosborough, assistant professor of music and director of choral activities at HPU.

The choir will sing several anthems and lead the entire audience in a variety of hymns. Accompanists are Dean Kiesling on organ/piano; Joseph Lahmann, HPU junior from Georgetown, on organ; and Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, chair of HPU’s Department of Music and professor of music on piano. Also accompanying the choir is HPU’s Brass Quintet comprised of Jayland Brown, junior from Temple, on trombone; Jared Dowling, senior from Grandview, on trombone; Lindsey Krueger, junior from Howe, on horn; Luis Moreno, junior from Springtown, on trumpet; and Dalton Pendergrass, sophomore from Paradise, on trumpet.

The mission of HPU’s University Singers: Brown County’s Community Chorus is to cultivate an ensemble of singers within the community and university who strive to offer a high level of artistry while advocating for great choral music in Brownwood and its surrounding areas.

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

Local officers speak to HPU’s Spanish for Law Enforcement class

Spanish for Law EnforcementBROWNWOOD – October 18, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Spanish for Law Enforcement course recently hosted local officers who offered students a unique perspective on challenges that may arise in law enforcement and the opportunities available to Spanish-speaking officers.

Speaking to students were Mike Corley, retired Brownwood Chief of Police; Trooper Chris Delgado with the Texas Department of Public Safety; and Officer Roberto Rodriguez of the Brownwood Police Department.

Spanish for Law Enforcement is an elective track offered to HPU criminal justice students who receive a certificate upon completion of the course. Dr. Danny Brunette-Lopez, associate professor of Spanish and chair of the Department of Modern Languages, teaches the course.

In addition to studying the Spanish language, students learn about Hispanic culture and customs including body language and common perceptions of law enforcement.

“Having a knowledge of the Spanish language and Hispanic culture ensures our future officers are better able to protect and serve all individuals,” said Dr. Brunette-López. “It can help prevent racial profiling and is vital to the safety of the officers as well as those with whom they come into contact.”

The law enforcement officers shared stories of specific situations they have encountered where a knowledge of the Spanish language was – or would have been – helpful.

“These criminal justice students are now better prepared to resolve situations peacefully,” said Dr. Brunette-López. “That is the ultimate goal of this course.”

Lynn Humeniuk, associate professor of criminal justice and sociology and director of HPU’s criminal justice program, also attended the presentation.

“These professional men place, or have placed, their lives on the line every single day for this community,” she said. “Their combined experience and knowledge as law enforcement officers verifies the vision that Dr. Brunette-López had years ago when he and I met about the possibility of combining Spanish and career choices. This is a unique academic course that most universities our size do not offer. I am very grateful that HPU prepares students to become law enforcement practitioners as the future of this great state of Texas continues to change demographics.”

Students in the course include Ruben Cruz, sophomore from Irving; Julissa Ibarra, sophomore from San Antonio; Adrian Jaramillo, freshman from Palmer; Juan Luna, junior from San Angelo; Victoria Maldonado, junior from Brownwood; Crystal Ochoa, senior from Early; and Kayla Rayos, sophomore from Houston.

Applications are being accepted for the spring 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: Local officers recently spoke with students in HPU’s Spanish for Law Enforcement class. Left to right: DPS Trooper Chris Delgado, Brownwood Police Department Patrol Officer Roberto Rodríguez, Former Brownwood Police Chief Mike Corley, Juan Luna, Ruben Cruz, Crystal Ochoa, Adrian Jaramillo, Kayla Rayos, Victoria Maldonado, Julissa Ibarra and Dr. Danny Brunette-López.

HPU’s Sutton completes Doctor of Nursing Practice degree

Dr Laci SuttonBROWNWOOD – October 18, 2018 – Dr. Laci Sutton, assistant professor of nursing at Howard Payne University, recently completed the Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P) degree from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.

She additionally holds a Master of Science in Nursing Education and Administration degree from Lubbock Christian University and a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from HPU.

“I am proud not only of Dr. Sutton’s academic accomplishments, but also of her outstanding service to the university on a daily basis,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost and chief academic officer.

Dr. Sutton and Dr. Nina Ouimette, HPU’s dean of nursing, were instrumental in securing HPU’s unanimous approval from the Texas Board of Nursing to offer the pre-licensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. HPU is authorized to admit incoming students declared as nursing majors as early as the fall 2018 semester. These students will subsequently undergo a rigorous and competitive process to gain admission to the university’s School of Nursing during the spring semester of their sophomore year. If admitted to the program, students will start BSN coursework the following semester (fall 2019).

In addition to incoming first-year students, transfer students and HPU upperclassmen may enroll as nursing majors with plans to apply to HPU’s School of Nursing during the latter portion of their sophomore year.

For more information about HPU and its academic offerings, visit www.hputx.edu. The School of Nursing may be contacted by e-mail at nursing@hputx.edu or by phone at 325-649-8182.

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Cutline: HPU’s Dr. Laci Sutton recently completed the Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P) degree from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.

HPU’s Audrey Simpson named recipient of Frederick W. Fischer Helping Hands Scholarship

Audrey Simpson for webBROWNWOOD – October 18, 2018 – Audrey Simpson, a Howard Payne University senior from Cuero, has been awarded the Frederick W. Fischer Helping Hands Scholarship for 2018, administered by Cuero ISD.

Simpson is a marketing major and a member of HPU’s softball team. She is also active in Fellowship of Christian Athletes, serving as a softball representative, and is a member of HPU’s branch of Phi Beta Lambda, the university level of Future Business Leaders of America.

The annually awarded scholarship is named for longtime Cuero resident Frederick W. Fischer who donated $1 million to Cuero ISD for a performing arts center and left the remainder of his estate to the school district. It is available to graduates of Cuero High School attending a college, university or technical school, along with graduating seniors of the high school. Recommendation from professors or instructors is required as well as active community involvement on the part of the applicant.

Since arriving at HPU, the university’s unique community has affected Simpson personally and academically.

“I love that everyone knows everyone and that the professors here really care about you,” she said. “They care about your success and that’s huge, because at larger colleges that’s not as common.”

She also received the scholarship in 2017. Not only is the scholarship a significant financial benefit for Simpson, it has been a tangible recognition of her academic success.

“This makes me feel good about all of the work that I’ve put in to studying,” she said. “I can’t express how grateful I am for this scholarship.”

Applications are being accepted for the spring 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: HPU senior marketing major Audrey Simpson was selected as the recipient of Cuero ISD’s Frederick W. Fischer Helping Hands Scholarship for the second time since 2017.