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.”
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.
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.)
The Division of Student Affairs held its Twelfth Annual Student Leadership Reception and Awards Ceremony last week, honoring students and faculty who enhanced campus life throughout the year through their service and leadership.
The Bruin Award, the highest honor bestowed by the Division of Student Affairs to student leaders, is given to students who exemplified the University’s Community Commitments of personal integrity, individual worth, critical thinking, self control and community responsibility on and off campus. Recipients also displayed consistent involvement in campus life, outstanding service to the Belmont community and significant participation in campus leadership. Bruin Awards were presented to nine students: senior Levi Gordon, junior Charlie Dankert, senior Anna Matlock, senior Daniel Warner, senior Sami Hodge, junior Sarah Currey, senior Megan Lamb, senior Robert Wallace and junior JJ Mann.
In addition to the Bruin Award, Student Affairs also presents an annual Tower Award to a faculty or staff member who has enhanced the campus life experience by being “exceptional at engaging and educating students.” The 2013 Tower Award was presented to Associate Professor of Management/Healthcare Administration Dr. Charles Wainright.
Finally, the Emerging Leader Award recognizes freshman and sophomore students who have begun to make significant contributions within their organizations and/or communities and have demonstrated the potential for leadership and continuing service. It was announced at the April 16 ceremony that this award is being named after Associate Provost and Dean of Students Dr. Andrew Johnston, “an individual that has spent his entire professional career investing in the lives of college students.” The first recipients of the Dr. Andrew Johnston Emerging Student Leader Awards were freshman Danny Zydel and sophomore MacKenzie Wilson.
While the annual Scholarship and Awards Day convocation always represents a highlight of the year, Wednesday morning’s celebration offered something special. This year-end celebration of academic achievement also demonstrated a son’s love and respect for his father, leaving few dry eyes in the Massey Performing Arts Center.
After receiving the John Williams Heart of Belmont Award, graduating senior Rami Nofal pulled Belmont President Dr. Bob Fisher aside and asked to do a presentation of his own. Nofal then asked his father to join him on stage as he publicly thanked him for the support and sacrifices that were making his graduation possible.
Another highlight of the morning’s celebration came when Dr. Rich Tiner, recipient of the 2012-13 Chaney Distinguished Professor Award, gave the Honors Address on the theme “Defining Moments.” Recalling the Apostle Paul’s charge in Philippians 3:14 to “press on to reach the end of the race ,” Tiner added, “This morning we recognize excellence and we should… But I encourage you to be defined not by the moment of recognition, but by your ongoing pursuit of excellence.”
Throughout the morning, all in attendance were also reminded of the ways in which the university is living out its Christian mission. For example, several award recipients were involved in projects at Belmont that have significant connections to local and international ministries, from work with Spring Back Recycling to Blood:Water Mission to Salama Urban Ministries.