December 16, 2011


Merry Christmas from Belmont University.


Don Purdy Receives Inaugural Gabhart Award
Belmont University recognized long-time employee Don Purdy with the first Gabhart Award for Staff Excellence and Service.

Purdy, director of Auxiliary Services, received the award Dec. 13 at the annual Staff Christmas Breakfast in Neely Dining Room. He previously worked as athletic director, men’s basketball head coach, assistant professor of physical education and assistant dean of students for the Gabhart Student Center and intramurals. Purdy will retire this month, after 33 years of service at Belmont.

He also was recognized Dec. 15 during the men’s basketball game against Troy.

Named for the University’s late Chancellor Herbert C. Gabhart, the award is the highest honor a Belmont staff member can receive in recognition of his or her exemplary commitment and service to the University as well as for achievements and contributions of a significant nature. Nominations are requested from students, faculty and staff during the fall semester, and the University Staff Advisory Council reviews the nominations and selects the finalists and overall winner. Read more.

Belmont University Winter Commencement Ceremony on Dec. 16
Belmont University will hold its winter 2011 commencement ceremony for graduate and undergraduate students at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 16 in the Curb Event Center.

The University will celebrate the graduation of a total of 364 students. During the graduation ceremony, 275 undergraduate and 89 master’s degrees will be conferred.

Dr. Todd Lake, vice president for spiritual development, will present the commencement address.

Dr. Cathy Taylor Appointed Dean of College of Health Sciences & Nursing
Dr. Cathy Taylor, DrPH, MSN, RN, has been named as the new dean of the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences & Nursing at Belmont University. Taylor currently serves as the assistant commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Health’s Bureau of Health Services Administration where she oversees delivery of traditional public health and primary care services in 89 rural counties and contracted services with Tennessee’s six metropolitan health departments. Dr. Taylor will begin her new position at Belmont on Feb. 1, 2012.

“Belmont’s outstanding reputation for excellence and commitment to teaching and service makes this the perfect fit for me and the logical choice for students, faculty and partners dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of our beautiful city and beyond,” said Taylor. “I am grateful for the opportunity to have served Tennesseans and the Department of Health, and I am honored to join the Belmont team at this time of extraordinary growth and potential to produce the next generation of exceptionally talented health care professionals.” Read more.


Click here for stories on the recent accomplishments of Belmont’s students, faculty, staff and alumni. This week highlights include Kenya Stevens, Ayesha Ghaffar, Rami Nofal, Jordan Holt, Shirah Foy, Jeff Cornwall, Rainey Qualley and Jennifer Walkup.


Save the Date for MLK Week Activities
The Martin Luther King Jr. Committee is pleased to announce its events for Belmont’s annual celebration of Dr. King’s life and legacy.  Our theme for the 2012 program is: Jazz, Freedom, and Democracy:  Living Dr. King’s Symphony of Brotherhood. We hope you will save these dates to attend the following events:
  • Wednesday, Jan. 11, 10 a.m. – MLK Chapel Service
  • Wednesday, Jan. 11, 7 p.m. – MLK Worship Service
  • Friday, Jan. 13, 10 a.m. — MLK Convocation
  • Tuesday, Jan. 17, 7 p.m. — Equality Jam Session!
  • Wednesday, Jan. 18, 7 p.m. — Candlelight Concert & Vigil
  • Wednesday, Jan. 18, 10 a.m. – Good News for the Poor
  • Friday, Jan. 20, 7 p.m. — Journey in Jazz Concert

Stay tuned to MyBelmont for information about how to participate as a performer for the Candlelight Concert or Equality Jam Session, and for information about attending these and other MLK activities in the coming weeks. For more information, contact Cheryl L. Slay at (615) 460-6534 or

Annual Kidz Klimb Competition on Jan. 14
You and your kids are invited to join Belmont University Outdoor Pursuits for our annual Kidz Klimb Competition at 1 p.m. Jan. 14. This fun event will be an extension of our Kidz Klimb program and will gather all of the participants together at one time to meet each other, win fun door prizes, eat pizza and climb. After the competition, all participants are invited to attend as the Bruin women’s and men’s basketball teams take on Stetson University in the Curb Event Center. Outdoor Pursuits will be partnering with Belmont Athletics to provide in-game promotions for the Kidz Klimb participants.

The competition will be held at the Fitness Center climbing wall  from 1-4:30 p.m., with two separate climbing times available for participants. The cost for the event is $8, and climbing equipment is free.  Children who wish to climb must have a parent’s signature currently on file at the climbing wall. For full registration information and to access the climbing waiver, click here or contact Megan Erbes at

Final Belmont FYI of 2011
This is the final issue of Belmont FYI for 2011. The next edition will be published on Fri., Jan. 6, 2012. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!


Friday, Dec. 16, 7:30-9:30 p.m.
Winter Commencement
Curb Event Center Arena

Sunday, Dec. 18, 2-4 p.m.
Women’s Basketball Hosts Austin Peay
Curb Event Center Arena

Wednesday, Dec. 21, 1-3 p.m.
Women’s Basketball Hosts Texas State
Curb Event Center Arena

Thursday, Dec. 22, 8 p.m.
Christmas at Belmont
Nashville Public Television Channel 8
A collage of familiar carols, classical masterworks, world music and light-hearted seasonal favorites. It also airs 7 p.m. Dec. 25. Check your local listings for additional times.

Dec. 23-26
Campus Closed for Christmas holiday

Saturday, Dec. 24, 2 p.m.
Christmas Eve Carillon Concert
Bell Tower
The concert features traditional Christmas music played on the tower’s 42-bell carillon located just off the corner of Belmont Boulevard and Portland Avenue.

Thursday, Dec. 29, 7-9 p.m.
Men’s Basketball Hosts Marshall
Curb Event Center Arena

Friday, Dec. 30
Campus Closed for New Year’s Eve Holiday

Jan. 1-3
Students Return to Campus Housing

Wednesday, Jan. 4
Classes Begin

Friday, Jan. 6
Wear Your Bruin Colors Day
Belmont students, faculty, staff, visitors, alumni and fans are encouraged to show Bruin Pride and wear their Belmont blue and red on campus in support of the men’s basketball team playing Lipscomb at 7 p.m. in the Curb Event Center Arena.


Belmont is a Christian community of learning and service that strives to support its members through prayer. The following concerns have come to our attention:

  • Betty Ezell, grandmother of women’s basketball head coach Brittney Ezell, passed away Dec. 6.
  • Hazel Kemp Granstaff, mother-in-law of Laura Granstaff Wheeler (Career Services), passed away Dec. 8. Her funeral was Dec. 11 at Carthage First Baptist Church. The family requests memorials to Smith County Retired Teachers, 901 Main St. N., Carthage, TN 37030-1002.
  • Lois Sawyer Pritchard, mother-in-law of Board of Trustees Chairman Marty Dickens, passed away on Dec. 12. Her funeral is 2 p.m.m Friday at First Baptist Church in Greensboro, N.C. In lieu of flowers, it was Lois’ wish that memorial contributions be made to the library at First Baptist Church Greensboro, 100 Friendly Ave., Greensboro, NC 27403.
  • Plant Operations Department retiree Willie Dickens Jr. passed away Dec. 12. A graveside celebration of his life was held Dec. 14. Click here to read his obituary. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to Alive Hospice.

Please keep all of these families in your thoughts and prayers.


If you notice an incorrect or missing birthday, please e-mail the update to

Dec. 17
Megan Cooper, Health Services

Dec. 18
Dane Anthony, Religion
Lucy Baltimore, Physical Therapy
Seth Sheridan, Athletics

Dec. 19
Barbara Ward,  Math/Com.Sci.

Dec. 20
Valerie Brooks, Health Services

Dec. 22
Nick Bacon, Sport Science
Gregory Faulk, Business

Dec. 24
Amy Baker, Sports Administration

Dec. 26
Cheryl Brown, Foreign Languages

Dec. 27
Angie Bryant, Fitness and Recreation
Jonathan Thorndike, Honors

Dec. 28
Alison McCommons, University Counsel’s Office
Susan Taylor, Business
Joe Woolley, CCSA

Dec. 29
Ernest Heard, Library
Michael Krouskop, Office of Communications
David Rich, Office of Communications

Jan. 1
Sharon Dowdy, Nursing
Joshua Kerley, Residence Life
Angie Shedd, Admissions

Jan. 4
Heather Copeland, Athletics

Jan. 5
Donna Gwaltney, Human Resources

Jan. 6
Howard Cochran, Business


Personal Training Holiday Discount
The Department of Fitness and Recreation is pleased to offer a special holiday discount for personal training for Belmont students, faculty and staff. From now until Jan. 13, you can purchase 15 sessions for only $240. Normal price on this package is $285, a savings of more than 15 percent. The package also includes a full body composition and cardiovascular fitness tests to measure your progress through the duration of the package.  We are dedicated to motivate you to accomplishing your health and fitness goals by providing the most affordable personal training prices in the Nashville area. Please contact Yuri, Danielle or Molly with any questions at (615) 460-6313.
Free Shipping from the Campus Store
Shop online at the Belmont University Campus Store and receive free shipping on all orders through the entire holiday season through Dec. 31. This offer excludes “I Am Belmont” merchandise.

Special Discount Performances at TPAC
The Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) is offering special discounts to Belmont students, faculty and staff for upcoming performances of David Alford’s Christmas Down Home, The Addams Family, Cloris! A One Woman Show, Monty Python’s Spamalot and Shen Yun
Performing Arts

Click here to purchase discounted tickets for these productions. Choose the “Promo code? Click here” link and enter the password “belmont.” Hit “Apply” and select which of the discounted performance dates you’d like to attend. Make sure to select a performance that says “eligible for promotion” to receive the corporate saver discount.

Discount on Circus Tickets
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey presents “Fully Charged” Jan. 26-29 at the Bridgestone Arena. All tickets have been reduced to a flat rate of $15 for Belmont employees. To purchase tickets, call Kathleen Garrett at 1-866-248-8740 extension 102. This offer expires on Jan. 23.