10 students to gain experiential education on ‘Happy Together Tour’
This June, for the second year in a row, 10 Belmont University students will join professor and legendary musician Mark Volman (a founding member of the band The Turtles) on the road for an East Coast run of the “Happy Together Tour.” The tour’s “classroom” and schedule looks something like this: one tour bus, a precious few hotel rooms, long hours and many stages—for two and a half weeks and a grade.
Under the guidance of faculty advisor Mark Volman and staff advisor Lucas Boto, students will work with touring artists and crew professionals in the areas of tour management, stage management, audio engineering, tour accounting and merchandise sales. These duties will be in addition to their continued learning each day during the process of load-in, setup, tear-down and load-out. These hands-on educational avenues outside of the classroom provide networking opportunities with all of the supporting organizations while gaining an understanding of the revenue flow from music consumer to touring performer. Click here to view a recap of student tour experience from Summer 2012.
“Only at Belmont do students get such a unique opportunity to experience the world of tour management, live production and what life on the road looks like before embarking on their career paths. I’m excited to teach them what I know outside a normal classroom space and to see what I’ll learn from them. Inevitably, their energy will add to the tour experience for the performers as well,” says Turtles founding member and Curb College Assistant Professor of Entertainment Industry Studies Mark Volman.
Amanda Mae Renkel, a senior from Phillipsburg, New Jersey who is majoring in music business, said, “I knew this [tour] was an opportunity I had to seize. I’m excited to get the chance to learn what life is like on the road—beyond the classroom, the campus and the textbooks. I am so looking forward to getting the hands-on experience while building lasting friendships.”
Program receives provisional accreditation in earliest possible timeframe
For the first time in nearly 50 years, a Tennessee law program has received accreditation from the American Bar Association (ABA). The ABA’s Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar informed Belmont University College of Law it had been granted provisional accreditation at a meeting this past weekend. The milestone was achieved in the earliest possible timeline allowed by accreditation guidelines.
Belmont University Provost Dr. Thomas Burns said, “We are extremely pleased by this recognition of the legal education program that Dean Jeff Kinsler and the faculty of the Belmont College of Law have developed. The granting of provisional accreditation by the ABA validates the outstanding work being done by our administration, faculty and staff to develop a law program of the highest quality focused on preparing practice-ready attorneys.”
Under ABA rules, provisionally accredited law schools are entitled to all rights of fully accredited law schools. In particular, graduates of provisionally accredited law schools are entitled to the same recognition accorded to graduates of fully accredited law schools. A law school must be provisionally accredited for at least two years before applying for full accreditation. To grant provisional accreditation, the ABA reviews numerous factors including curriculum, facilities, library, admissions and faculty.
Thousands of students and adults will make Belmont their summer home in the coming weeks as the University hosts several summer camps and conferences.
Event Manager Sarah Brown has prepared for the influx with 15 Belmont students and four residence directors, who will facilitate the groups on campus throughout June and July.
Among the summer camps are Bruin Camps with Belmont Athletics coaches and programs through the College of Visual and Performing Arts for ballet dancers as well as piano, strings and wind instrument players.
The largest of the camps is MFuge, which brings 3,000 high school students to Belmont over the course of the summer. Lifeway began the camp in 1979 and has grown it to include Bible studies, team-building recreation activities and community service projects at more than 60 Nashville organizations including Metro Parks, Nashville Rescue Mission, Front Porch Ministries and local nursing homes.
Also with a mission-oriented approach, Project Transformation provides leadership development and ministry exploration opportunities to 32 college-age young adults through immersion in churches in Middle Tennessee’s low-income neighborhoods. For nine weeks the students, known as young adult interns, coordinate free summer day camps for children in under-served Nashville neighborhoods. Project Transformation helps churches to fill the void in ministries that resonate with young adults and allows the students to have transformational experiences to help them figure out how their career goals align with God’s plan.
“These students live on campus and provide academic enrichment for at-risk children and youth across our city. This partnership with the United Methodist Church began last summer and resulted in two Belmont students founding a ministry to continue their work all last year,” said Vice President of Spiritual Development Todd Lake. “In addition, one of the Belmont participants last year went on to seminary and has returned this summer as a Project Transformation supervisor. Vision 2015 states that we will give increasing evidence of our Christian character by partnering with outside Christian organizations, and this is one exemplary way we are able to live this out.”
The University’s Towering Traditions orientation program Foundations, which is designed to welcome freshmen and transfer students as well as their families, runs June 10 through 29 and brings approximately 250 students to campus for each session.
Other summer conferences on campus include the United Methodist Men: Inside Out For the Glory of God from July 12 to 14, American Scientific Affiliation’s Annual Conference from July 19 to 22 and Lifeway’s Main Event from July 26 to 27.
Largest meeting of Christians in the sciences comes to Nashville in July
The American Scientific Affiliation’s 68th Annual Meeting will take place July 19-22 at Belmont University as some 250 scientists and academics advance the conversation about faith and science. This year’s theme is “In God’s Image: Celebrating Creativity in Science and Invention” based on Psalm 8:6, “You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet.”
American Scientific Affiliation Executive Director Randall D. Isaac said, “Our meeting enables Christians in the sciences to meet and support each other. As Christians with a vocation in the sciences, we seek to bring a Christian perspective to our work. As scientists with a commitment to Christ, we seek to understand how a study of God’s creation strengthens our Christian faith. Personal interaction is a vital part of that community of support. We share our insights and experiences to encourage each other in the faith.”
Plenary speakers are Belmont Director of Entrepreneurship Jeff Cornwall, Princeton University Chemistry Professor Andy Bocarsly, U.S. Department of Energy Fusion Energy Sciences Research Division Director Jim Van Dam, University of Illinois College of Engineering Associate Dean for Administration Bruce A. Vojak and Rutgers University Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice Mary Wagner.
With a mission to “engage all of Greek Life at Belmont University,” Belmont’s annual Greek week in April sought to challenge individuals to re-think what it means to be a part of something bigger than one’s self. Fraternity and sorority members across campus focused on three objectives during the week-long event: generating pride and excitement about being Greek, educating the community about the impact of Greek life and joining together as a group to accomplish something great.
As part of that mission, Greeks raised more than $8,700 during Greek Week to donate to the Mental Health Association of Middle Tennessee, an organization that educates and provides services and treatment for mentally ill patients.
Coordinator of Student Activities Kevin Reynolds said, “The fraternity and sorority community at Belmont is incredibly special. Greek organizations set themselves apart from other student organizations through their lifetime commitments to the core values of scholarship, leadership, service and friendship. Events like Greek Week are important because they give Greeks the opportunity to come together to celebrate that commitment with fun activities, friendly competition and time spent reminding themselves of the reasons Greek Life exists on college campuses – to make an impact. I am so proud of the accomplishments of this community. Philanthropically, scholastically and in service, they constantly show why they matter.”
The week included a variety of fun activities and competitions, including a Greek Bootcamp Relay Race, the Greek Olympics and a Worship Night. In addition, approximately 500 students spent a day in the Nashville community at various locations taking up their call to service and civic engagement.
Greek Week culminated with the always popular Greek Sing. For months students write lyrics, choreograph dances and warm up their vocal chords for a night of performances for their peers. For the third year in a row, Phi Delta Theta took home the trophy for its performance of “Phi Delts in Space” – an homage to Star Wars that closed with a jaw dropping a capella number. Click here to view Phi Delts in Space.
Belmont University and SouthEast Bank announce the formation of a new scholarship to award $28,000 over four years to an incoming business student. The reoccurring scholarship will be awarded biennially to a new student.
SouthEast Bank Scholarship Director Tommy Schumpert said, “SouthEast Bank is proud to support Belmont University in awarding scholarships to promising Tennessee students. Because we are operated by local employees who live and work alongside the people we serve, SouthEast Bank is a true community bank that uses our resources to reinvest in our schools, organizations, and neighborhoods. Through the SouthEast Bank Scholars program, we fulfill this mission by rewarding outstanding students who demonstrate a combination of academic excellence, community service, and financial need with the opportunity to reach their greatest potential through higher education.”
The first SouthEast Bank Scholarship will be given in August to a student from Tennessee studying finance, accounting or banking with at least a 3.25 high school grade point average and 23 ACT score as well as the financial need and evidence of community involvement.
“The creation of the SouthEast Bank scholarship will assist our highly talented and skillful finance and accounting students in achieving their dreams of a Belmont education. SouthEast Bank’s generosity reflects their high regard for education and dedication to ensuring a well-prepared workforce through our students” said Charles Harper, Belmont’s director of financial aid and associate director of student financial services.
Ranked No. 7 in the Regional Universities South category and named for the fifth consecutive year as one of the top “Up-and-Comer” universities by U.S. News & World Report, Belmont University consists of approximately 6,650 students who come from every state and 25 countries. Committed to being a leader among teaching universities, Belmont brings together the best of liberal arts and professional education in a Christian community of learning and service. The university’s purpose is to help students explore their passions and develop their talents to meet the world’s needs, a fact made evident in the University’s hometown, Nashville, where students served more than 60,000 hours of community service (valued at $450,000) during the last academic year. Belmont is also home to the World Cup champion Enactus team, a group of 42 student leaders committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better, more sustainable world. With more than 80 areas of study, 23 master’s programs and five doctoral degrees, there is no limit to the ways Belmont University can expand an individual’s horizon. For more information, visit www.belmont.edu.
In a unique partnership, Belmont University recently became home to a Christian nonprofit organization dedicated to providing health care in Haiti. The partnership will also allow Belmont students to provide medical and educational resources as well as business development to the ailing Caribbean country.
Founded by retired trauma surgeon David Vanderpool, Live Beyond moved in May into the Facilities Management Services building at the corner of 15th and Delmar avenues. Formerly called Mobile Medical Disaster Relief, Live Beyond provides basic health care and clean water in several developing countries.
“We at Live Beyond strive to generously live beyond our culture, our homes and our wealth so that others may live. We see this same spirit in Belmont University and are excited to forge this new partnership to reach the lost and dying together,” Vanderpool said.
The Belmont location will serve as headquarters as Vanderpool and his wife, Laurie, move to Thomazeau, Haiti, a region of 200,000 people he adopted shortly after the 2010 earthquake that leveled much of the already poor nation. Since then, the Vanderpools have traveled to Haiti each month to provide medical care and food through Live Beyond. The foundation has already built a 40-bed teaching hospital in the country and plans to expand a local elementary school to all grade levels. (more…)
Belmont University held its spring 2013 commencement ceremonies on May 4 in the Curb Event Center, but the 955 graduates first enjoyed a week’s worth of activities to mark the end of their college careers.
First, on the Wednesday before graduation, an event was held at the Bell Tower amphitheatre called “Life Beyond the Tower,” which gave students a chance to reflect on their history at the University while looking ahead to adventures to come.The event provides an appropriate four-year bookend to “Life Under the Tower,” held each fall for incoming freshmen the night before their first classes begin. Click here to view a spoken word performance by graduating senior and former Mid South Grand Slam college champion Levi Gordon from this year’s “Life Beyond the Tower.” Photos from the event can be seen here.
On Friday, graduating students and their families were invited to participate in an annual worship service. Held in the Curb Event Center, “Baccalaureate: A Service of Ordination to Daily Work” featured students from across the disciplines telling how God is calling them to use what they have learned at Belmont in service to others. Follow the links to listen to the speeches given by graduating seniors Meghan McKechnie (nursing), Kayla Becker (mass communication), Jim Darter (Accounting) and Hilary Hambrick (international business).
Saturday brought the culmination to the week as Belmont celebrated the graduation of a total of 955 students during two ceremonies on May 4. During the graduation ceremonies, 765 undergraduate, 105 master’s and 85 doctoral degrees were conferred. The morning ceremony saw candidates from the College of Business Administration, the Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business and the College of Visual and Performing Arts receive their degrees while the afternoon honored candidates from the College of Arts and Sciences, the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences and Nursing, the College of Pharmacy, University College and Interdisciplinary Programs and the School of Religion. Online video streams of both events are available for viewing here.
More than 50 volunteers with Sweet Sleep gathered the bed sets from Hillside Apartment buildings and loaded them into two trucks. Belmont previously coordinated the mattress donation with Sweet Sleep, a faith-based nonprofit organization that exists to share God’s love by providing beds to the world’s orphaned and abandoned children.
“Belmont has a desire to treat the environment with care, so simply throwing away the mattress was not an option. We were looking for other ways to re-purpose them, and donating them to an organization that could put them to good use, like giving them to children in the foster care system and to disaster victim, fits with Belmont’s mission of influencing the community in a positive way,” said Hillside Residence Director Hannah Aschliman.
Sweet Sleep President and Founder Jennifer Gash said the organization arranged to put many of the mattresses in storage before the tornadoes hit Oklahoma’s suburbs on Monday, causing more than $2 billion in damage, damaging or destroying more than 1,200 homes and killing at least 24 people. She called the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, which had an “overwhelming need for mattresses. We lifted such a large burden off them,” Gash said. (more…)
“We could not be more pleased that Cameron has accepted our offer to lead our women’s basketball program,” Strickland said. “Throughout this process, Cameron has exceeded our expectations in every regard. His impressive background in both the women’s and men’s game speaks for itself. Yet Cameron’s character, sincerity and enthusiasm are unmistakable and ideally suited for Belmont University.”
With experience at every level, Newbauer spent this past season as an assistant coach at the University of Louisville, where he helped the Cardinals to a 29-9 record. Earning an NCAA Tournament No. 5 seed, Louisville won five consecutive games – including four over nationally-ranked opponents in Purdue, California, Tennessee and consensus No. 1 Baylor – to reach the National Championship game. It was the Cardinals’ second National Championship game appearance in five years.
The Tennessee Economic Council on Women (TECW) continued its statewide hearing series on the subject of violence against women with a public hearing on Belmont’s campus yesterday in the Massey Board Room. The “Public Hearing on the Economic Impact of Violence Against Women” is just one of the ways in which TECW is committed to providing unique, relevant information about women in the state.
The hearing, the fourth of nine, followed events in Chattanooga, Columbia and Crossville, which have identified millions in local costs and exposed a need for better prevention efforts and communication among local authorities, service providers and funding sources.
TECW Council Chair Yvonne Wood said, “We learned from our 2006 research that domestic violence was costing Tennessee millions every year from legal costs, healthcare costs, lost productivity and a tremendous burden on our social services system. The 2013 hearings are revealing that the trend is continuing and it erodes more than just the social fabric of our families, but also the economic strength of our state. ”
Thursday’s event was co-chaired by Dr. Mimi Barnard, Belmont’s assistant provost for interdisciplinary studies and global education, who also serves on TECW.
Belmont University was more than a venue for this important event; the university sees the issue as one of significance. “We are honored to host this important event at Belmont. Raising awareness of the impact of violence against women can save lives and prevent immeasurable heartbreak,” said Cathy R. Taylor, dean and professor, College of Health Sciences and Nursing at Belmont. Among other efforts in its continued commitment to understanding issue that impact women worldwide, Belmont also plans to host a local viewing of the film Girl Rising this fall.
More than 100 Middle Tennessee high school students will convene Saturday at the Belmont University Curb Event Center on for the first regional STEM Expo, sponsored by the Middle Tennessee STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Innovation Hub, housed at Metro Nashville Public Schools. The Expo is free and open to the public at noon with a recognition ceremony scheduled for 2 p.m. Viewing of projects is from 3 to 4 p.m.
“It is an honor for Belmont to be a major sponsor and to host the Middle Tennessee STEM Expo. Belmont has a strong commitment to STEM education as evidenced by our STEM Education Initiative, our STEM Pathways project in the School of Sciences, and our accredited Audio Engineering Technology program in the Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business. The students participating in the Middle Tennessee STEM Expo and their exceptional projects demonstrate the value of supporting STEM education at all education levels,” said Belmont College of Arts and Sciences Dean Bryce F. Sullivan.
High schools from the 20 Middle Tennessee school districts that are part of the STEM Innovation Hub will participate. Expo projects represent one of five categories, including:
The STEM Expo is not a competition. It is a showcase for the most outstanding projects created by individual students and student teams from participating schools and districts. Each entry will be scored and eligible for an award, with recognition levels of Gold, Silver, and Bronze.
“The quality of projects students have prepared is inspiring,” said Vicki Metzgar, Director of the Middle Tennessee STEM Innovation Network. “The STEM Innovation Hub has encouraged students to develop projects in response to complex questions, problems or challenges, as a way to learn academic content and develop communication, collaboration and critical thinking skills. One of the primary benefits of Saturday’s Expo will be students coming together to learn and share with each other.”
Schools from all over the middle Tennessee region are turning to STEM education to engage students in rigorous and relevant learning and to prepare them to make informed decisions about their careers and college aspirations.
Click here to learn more about the Middle Tennessee STEM Innovation Network and the STEM Expo.
In addition to Metro Nashville Public Schools, the STEM Expo is sponsored by Aegis Sciences Corporation, Belmont University, Tennessee State University, Deloitte Services, Texas Instruments, the Vanderbilt School of Engineering, the American Society of Civil Engineers, MTSU’s Tennessee STEM Education Center, and Volunteer State Community College.
The Tennessee STEM Innovation Network (TSIN) is a unique, public-private collaboration between the Tennessee Department of Education and Battelle Memorial Institute designed to promote and expand the teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in K-12 public schools across Tennessee. The TSIN comprises six Regional STEM Innovation Hubs and six STEM Platform Schools. The schools are designed to encourage local educational innovation by investigating and creating new STEM teaching and learning best practices to be shared throughout the state, all while providing their students with the skills necessary to succeed in the 21st century workplace. In addition to supporting the platform schools, the hubs are the nucleus of regional STEM activity, representing a formal partnership among school districts, post-secondary institutions, STEM businesses, and community organizations.
Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools is the nation’s 42nd largest district, preparing more than 81,000 students to excel in higher education, work and life with the goal of being the first choice for Nashville’s families. The governing body for Metro Schools is the Metropolitan Nashville Board of Public Education, a nine-member elected body. For more information, visit www.mnps.org. The 2013-14 school year begins August 1, 2013.
Middle Tennessee children with special needs will swing for the fences on Saturday at Greer Stadium when Dave Clark, the only professional baseball player to have pitched and played from crutches, hosts Disability Dream Day Baseball Camp in partnership with the Nashville Sounds. Belmont University Center for Executive Education students worked closely with the Dave Clark Foundation and the Sounds to launch the camp in Nashville.
“We are thrilled to work with Belmont University to bring the Disability Dream Day to Nashville for the first time,” said Clark, who contracted polio at 10-months-old yet went one to become a Major League Baseball pitcher and first baseman. “The Nashville Sounds have stepped up to the plate to welcome Middle Tennessee’s disability community to Greer Stadium. Without a doubt, this will be an inspiring day for everyone involved.”
As part of the Belmont Executive Leadership program, executives enrolled in CEE are organizing, managing and facilitating the disability camp in partnership with the Dave Clark Foundation and the Sounds. Among them are Belmont’s Director of University Marketing and Special Initiatives Annie Mitchell, Assistant Provost of Assessment & Institutional Research Tracy Rokas and Director of Undergradate Studies in Nursing Martha Buckner.
“The leaders who participate in our program are already making a difference in Middle Tennessee, but we saw this as an opportunity where they can further develop their leadership skills while impacting an important segment of our community,” said CEE Executive Director Gene Mage. “We’re honored to play a role in bringing the disability camp and Dave Clark’s inspiring story to Nashville.”
In conjunction with the baseball camp, middle school students Jared Stevens and Justin Kievit will receive the Dave Clark: Pulling Each Other Along Award. The award honors the notable contributions of people who have helped individuals achieve their dreams under exceptional circumstances. Stevens, who has cerebral palsy, wrested Justin Kievit last fall and a video of their wrestling match received national recognition.
Belmont University’s Office of Advancement recently established the Clayton McWhorter Society, a giving society intended to further the work of Belmont’s health science programs. The new group, which held its inaugural membership lunch on May 2, is named in honor of long-time Belmont supporter Clayton McWhorter and will directly benefit the College of Health Sciences & Nursing, the College of Pharmacy and the new MBA for Healthcare Professionals.
Clayton McWhorter’s leadership and role in the development of healthcare industry giants HealthTrust, Inc. and HCA have made a strong impression in the field of healthcare. In 1996, Clayton, his son Stuart, and a close business friend created the venture capital firm Clayton Associates, which quickly evolved into a hub of strategic business development activities related to new firms in healthcare, technology and diversified services.
His relationship with the University began in the late ’80s through an invitation from Jack Massey “to get involved with Belmont,” and 25 years later, Clayton McWhorter continues his generous response to Massey’s challenge through his support of a variety of programs and initiatives.
Belmont Vice President for University Advancement Dr. Bo Thomas said, “While Clayton’s many achievements are based on sound business principles and bone-deep ethical standards, in the end it is his commitment to making a difference in the lives of others and giving back to the community that has sealed his enduring success and legacy. Belmont University counts itself fortunate to be among the many who have benefited from Clayton’s generous spirit and friendship. Through the McWhorter Society, Clayton is now challenging others to ‘to get involved with Belmont’ just as Jack Massey encouraged him to do years ago.”
Twenty-six local high school seniors came to Belmont’s campus Monday to sign a proclamation welcoming them to the University and to begin their college careers with an initial family orientation. Following the signing ceremony, students and their parents attended their first Belmont orientation sessions, took tours of campus and enjoyed a meal together.
As a participant in the “Bridges to Belmont” program, all of the students’ expenses—tuition, room, board, required fees and books—that are not covered by state or federal grant resources will be provided via scholarships from Belmont for four consecutive academic years beginning with 2013-14.
Enrollment eligibility will then follow the standard satisfactory academic progress expectations of all students. The Bridges to Belmont program is designed to enroll high potential students from Metro Nashville Public Schools who may not have previously been able to consider Belmont as an option.
Belmont University President Bob Fisher applauded the Bridge Scholars for their hard work so far and their acceptance to college and thanked them in advance for what they will contribute to the University throughout the next four years. “Our biggest focus is to help you figure out your purpose in life. I can’t tell you what it is, but I can tell you we’re going to figure that out in this journey together.” (Click here to view the Signing Ceremony on Belmont’s YouTube channel.)