September 2009 Posts
Meet the Artist Reception
With John Frost
BA 1996, Hardin-Simmons
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Old Jail Art Center
201 S. 2nd Street, Albany, TX 76430
A Cell of One's Own: John Frost
Exhibit runs Saturday September 26, 2009 - January 24, 2010
Upstairs in the historic jail
In 1928-29, British author Virginia Wolf (1882-1941), made the case that in order to write, it was necessary to have a room of one's own.
The Old Jail Art Center (OJAC) is turning over its historic cells to contemporary artists in this series, A Cell of One's Own, in the hopes that each artist will create unique works of art for the two galleries.
The fall Cell Series features Dallas artist and Hardin-Simmons University alumnus John Frost '96. The museum was intrigued by site-specific works Frost had done in gallery exhibits over the last several years, incorporating wood, metal, porcelain, and graphic components.
Dr. Pam Williford, dean of the Irvin School of Education says she wouldn't miss this. "John has achieved so much in the world of art. He has had exhibits at universities within and without the state of Texas and at most of the reputable galleries of modern art in the DFW area. He is such a fine young artist; I don't think anyone will be disappointed in his exhibit!"
Hosted by the Hardin-Simmons University Board of Young Associates in partnership with the Old Jail Art Center...
Photos: Art by John Frost; John Frost, 1996 HSU graduate
Albany is just a 30-minute drive northeast of Abilene. Take State highway 351 northeast of Abilene, and follow it for about 20 miles. Then take the ramp onto U.S. Highway 180 East. Follow this road for about 10 miles, all the way into Albany until you come to the stoplight. Turn right at the light. The art center will be two clocks down, directly on your right.
HSU authors sign books 9:00-3:00, Saturday at Civic Center Steven
By Steven Wegrzynowicz, HSU student
The West Texas Books and Music Festival is geared toward promoting literacy and reading throughout the community. The festival is used to encourage new authors as well acknowledge more experienced writers from all around Texas. Funds raised are generated toward the success of the Abilene Public Library.
This Saturday's events are of special interest to Hardin-Simmons. Several HSU authors will be signing and selling their books in the Hall of Texas Authors. Dr. Carol Layton, professor of educational studies at HSU will be moderating the panel of the "Writing for Children" workshop.
Interested in the process of becoming a children's author, Dr. Layton looks forward "not only teaching at the workshop, but learning along with everyone else."
The workshop will prove to be a strong learning experience for anyone interested in writing for children. Following the workshop, held from 9:00-10:30 a.m., Dr. Layton and other panelists will be available for questions.
Several Hardin-Simmons authors have been featured during the books and music festival.
Leland Harden, Vice President for Institutional Advancement wrote Digital Engagement, a book about internet marketing. Dr. Bernie Scheer, assoc. professor of music theory and composition wrote Organ Preludes. Professor of Bible, Dr. Larry McGraw's latest book is The Bible Says: Daily Devotional Insight from Matthew. Graduate Bill Neal's latest book is "Sex, Murder and the Unwritten Law". He is a retired trial attorney. Dr. Dan Stiver, professor of theology, wrote Life Together in the Way of Jesus Christ. HSU grad Chad Mitchell wrote "The Superman Syndrome."
Harden, Mitchell and Neal have tables in the Hall of Texas Authors during this Saturday's festival at the Abilene Civic Center.
Hardin-Simmons faculty attending Saturday's events will be Dr. Renee Collins Assistant Professor of Education, Dr. Diana Higgins Head of the department of Educational Studies, Ms. Martha Kiel Associate Professor of Art and Head of Dept. of Art, and Dr. Carol Layton who is one of HSU's newest additions to the Education Department.
Students attending these events are Alaine Capper, Stephanie Harvell, Amanda Neal, Jennifer Sharewi, and Steven Wegrzynowicz.
Photo: Bill Neal, Dr. Bernard Scheer, Dr. Larry McGraw, Leland Harden, Chad Mitchell; Vice-President for Institutional Advancement, Leland Harden signs book for Becky Rentz, Friend of the Library
How often do you get to hear a finalist in the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition?
Friday will be the chance of a lifetime for Abilenians to hear this world-class pianist for FREE.
Di Wu made her professional debut with the Beijing Philharmonic at the age of 14. She will perform with the Abilene Philharmonic on Saturday but is conducting a master class in the Woodward-Dellis Recital Hall at 3-4:30 on Friday, September 25th at HSU.
HSU faculty and staff, as well as the public, is invited to come and hear Di Wu perform and instruct our students.
Several students have been selected to play a piece and then be instructed by Di Wu on how they might improve their performance.
HSU Master classes are a fun and inexpensive way for people from all over the Big Country to see some of the best musicians in the country! You also get to hear what our HSU students are capable of and you will be amazed!
Dean Lawson Hager encourages you to take advantage of this unique opportunity on Friday. He will even drag out the 9-foot grand Steinway just for you!
Go to: www.diwupiano.com for photos, music, bio, etc. or to www.cliburn.org.
Piano Master Class
Friday, September 25, 2009
Woodward-Dellis Recital Hall
Photos: HSU students Abigail Michel, Julie Holleman, Briana Isaac with Di Wu and Nathan Hamilton of ACU
Kristin Akin doesn't mind grabbing a horse's front leg and bending it back so she can clean the hoof. In fact that is why she is in the coveted position as a rider of one of the Hardin-Simmons University Six White Horses.
The Six White Horses team has been a Hardin-Simmons tradition since the 1930s. The horses and their riders have been featured in inaugural parades going as far back as Herbert Hoover and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The girls chosen to share the stage with the famous horse team must be skilled riders and be able to carry a flag representing one of the eight changes of sovereignty in Texas.
Each year the team of riders is selected from a tryout which is judged by some of the toughest critics around. Rancher and Taylor County Judge Dr. George Newman was on hand for the tryouts to assess which of the candidates could best handle the horses. The HSU professor emeritus knows a good rider when he sees her, and the completion is stiff.
Linda Boeshart is another judge with a critical eye of a good rider. She is responsible for several of the intercollegiate rodeo trophies you will see in the HSU horse facility trophy case.
Six White Horses program director Debbie Jones says, "I can tell how much someone knows by just watching them saddle the horse. We also watch as the girls maneuver the horses through a gauntlet of barrels and figure eights." Jones says, "Speed is also something we look for. If a candidate will only trot the horse, I know she hasn't ridden in a while."
Akin has already been a member of the team for two years. Even so, she and the other current riders must try out again. Jones says, "We have to have the best riders available, but often the current riders can be pretty hard to beat."
The confident HSU junior from Hawley says she loves what she does. She recently was one of the six riders who helped lead the West Texas Fair and rodeo parade. She is one of six returning riders.
New riders are Amanda Hollingsworth of Whitt, Texas; Jamie Lou McCarley from Gatesville; and Mandy Roloff from Spring.
Returning riders for the 2009-2010 school year are Becky Daniels of Truscott; Whitney Hicks from Hamby; Rachel Newman from Paris, Texas; Kristen Ringler of Alvarado; and Amy Turner, a Rochester native.
The next big event for the team is the Buffalo Days Parade in Snyder on October 3. The team will ride in the opening ceremonies for the Homecoming football game at Shelton Stadium on October 17. The team will also ride in the Veteran's Parade through downtown Abilene in November.
Photo: Kristin Aken, Dr. George Newman, White Horse Team in West Texas Fair Parade
By Melissa Green
Hardin-Simmons University Department of Theatre presents a diverse season of works as part of its 2009-2010 season. The season will feature the traditional fall and spring dinner theatres and the annual children's show, along with a unique off-campus production honoring an Abilene Landmark.
The season will begin with the fall dinner theatre production of the classic Southern drama Steel Magnolias by Robert Harling.
The play focuses on a group of women in Louisiana who spend their days at the local beauty shop talking, but in the end shows a stronger connection between the women besides their interest in gossip. Steel Magnolias is directed by Melissa Green and assistant director Jaclyn Rosbrugh. It will run the weekends of September 24th-26th and October 1st-4th.
The next production will be Museum by Tina Howe, October 29th-31st in The Grace Museum's Main Gallery. This production focuses on patrons and employees within a museum and will have no better location than Abilene's own Grace! This production will be in association with The Grace Museum's Centennial Celebration and is directed by Melissa Green.
The final production of the fall semester will be the family favorite Alice in Wonderland, based on the classic story by Lewis Carroll. Patrons will be able to join Alice through her trip down the rabbit hole and meet classic characters such as The Mad Hatter, The Red Queen and the Caterpillar. Alice in Wonderland will be directed by senior theatre education major Hope Hayes and will run November 19th-21st and December 3rd-5th.
The spring dinner theatre will be the beloved musical Once Upon a Mattress, Music by Mary Rodgers, Lyrics by Marshall Barer and Book by Jay Thompson, Marshall Barer and Dean Fuller.
The story follows Princess Winifred as she is tested to be the bride of one Price Dauntless and features well-known songs such as "Shy" and "In A Little While." Once Upon a Mattress, is directed by Melissa Green featuring musical direction by Dr. Jaynne Middleton and runs February 25th-27th and March 4th-8th.
It will be HSU's entry into the Christian University Theatre Festival to be held March 8-10, 2010 on the Hardin-Simmons campus.
The Down Center Stage Lab Production will be Mindy Kaling ("The Office") and Brenda Withers's farcical play Matt & Ben. The play looks into the creation of the Academy Award winning screenplay "Good Will Hunting" and its creators Matt Damon and Ben Affleck. The comedy of the play, however, is found in the fact that Matt & Ben are portrayed by women. Directed by senior theatre major Adam Singleton, Matt & Ben will run April 8th-10th.
The season will end with DirectFest, the directing class of 2010's one-act play festival. Dates and titles for these shows will be announced at a later date.
Season tickets are available now for only $40, granting one admission to each mainstage production, including both dinner theatre productions. For more information on season tickets or the 2009-2010 Season, contact the HSU Theatre Box Office (325) 670-1405.
Coffman Responsible for New Music Facilities
Dr. Wesley Coffman, former dean of the Music School at Hardin-Simmons University (1981-1995), died earlier this week.
Dr. Coffman devoted his life to Texas music education in the church, the school, and the community. For generations to come, Texas musicians will be shaped by his influence.
Peggy Pattillo, Dr. Coffman's administrative assistant at HSU, said "Dr. Coffman was a gentle man...a good man to work for. No matter your place in life, he cared about you. He never wanted to bring attention to himself, but was always there praising others. He was a mentor and friend to all."
During his service at Hardin-Simmons University, he formulated the plans for a new music building and the complete renovation of an existing building. He tenaciously fought for his dream and convinced the University Administration to raise the funds necessary to build what is now the Hemphill Music Building and the complete restoration of old Caldwell Hall.
Completion of this project has given the School of Music a beautiful home for his true passion in life of educating students. He retired before the project was complete, but was present for the dedications of both buildings.
His second goal was to have a support foundation for the School of Music. He had amazing organizational skills and employed these skills in the shaping and design of the Hardin-Simmons University School of Music Foundation.
Today the School of Music Foundation has a membership composed of former students and friends who maintain Dr. Coffman's dream of supporting the activities of the School of Music.
Photos: Stained glass ceiling uncovered in Caldwell Hall during renovation; Hemphill Music Building
Below is Dr. Coffman's obituary:
Wesley Surber Coffman was born June 17, 1927, in Ardmore, Oklahoma to George Wesley Coffman and Mayme Rebecca Surber and died September 13, 2009 in Dallas, Texas.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years Elaine Russell Coffman; his son and wife, Russell and Hilary Coffman of Pecos, New Mexico; his daughter and her husband, Cathy and Barrett Pulham of Mesquite, Texas; his daughter Rebecca Coffman of Huntington, Indiana; his grandchildren Sara and Yusuf Coffman of Santa Fe, New Mexico; his great grandson, Joseph Coffman of Santa Fe, New Mexico; his sister-in-law and her husband, Nancy and George Mixon of Dallas, Texas; his niece and her husband, Patt and Chuck Martin of Shawnee, Oklahoma; and dear family friend Mary Ransom of DeSoto, Texas.
Wesley served in the U. S. Navy during World War II and completed his education at the University of North Texas and Florida State University. He was a music educator and church musician and served schools and churches in Sherman, Houston and Dallas, finishing his career as Dean of the School of Music at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas.
Memorials may be made to the School of Music Foundation at Hardin-Simmons University or the Jeff Herrick Music Scholarship at Dallas Baptist University.
And other faculty Adventures, Accomplishments and Kudos...
Dr. Mark Ouimette says he has had a fascination with the exotic islands along the California coast since he was a kid growing up there.
The HSU chair of the department of geology says he hopes to one day get a close-up look at the islands, "primarily because they don't belong there," he says. They are directly west of San Francisco, but do not match the rocks and terrain of the city just 30 miles away.
"We have microscopes on campus which can give us accurate descriptions of the rocks and help determine where they are from," says Ouimette. His recent attempt to get on the islands failed, but he says he will try again next summer.
Ouimette's story is just one of many stories HSU faculty members have to tell. Below is just a sampling of some recent conquests and accomplishments. Professors are listed alphabetically.
Dr. John Davis, assistant professor of management, co-wrote with J. G. Hunt Levels of Performance: Multi-Level Perspectives on Outstanding Leadership, a book published this summer.
Dr. Bob Fink, W. D. and Hollis R. Bond Professor of English, has a poem "Local Man Hit By Train" in the current issue of Crab Orchard Review (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale) and a poem "The Midway, Friday Night, 1951" in the current issue of Iron Horse Literary Review (Texas Tech University). ...
Fink was the featured writer for Dallas Baptist University's annual lecture series. He gave a poetry reading and a literary nonfiction reading to the DBU faculty and students on the topic "Writing Toward Grace and Beauty: A Process of Faith."
Fink is beginning his 14th academic year as editor of Texas Tech University Press, Walt McDonald First-Book Series in Poetry.
Dr. Nancy Kucinski, Hemphill Chair of Business and director of the Kelly College of Business MBA programs, has returned from teaching International Business in Salzburg, Austria, at Fachhochshule, Salzburg University of Applied Sciences.
Kucinski taught 23 students from countries all over the world, including Kenya, Russia, Bulgaria, Sri Lanka, and Austria.
Ms. Melissa Milliorn, assistant professor of social work and director of field education, serves on the Nominations and Leadership Identification Committee for the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Texas Chapter and West Central Texas (WCT) branch.
Milliorn was recently appointed by the State Board for NASW as the local WCT branch chair. This group is currently active at the state and national levels in social work reinvestment to enhance working conditions, pay, and benefits for social workers.
Texas Field Education Consortium (TFEC) established a plan to begin curriculum development for collaborative field instructor training across Texas. As a member of TFEC and director of field education in social work at HSU, Milliorn approached her colleagues at ACU to work together to develop a local collaborative training.
Darrell Jordan, director of field education at ACU, and Milliorn worked together to develop the curriculum. They held the first annual Collaborative Field Instructor Training on in mid-August. Their curriculum will be considered by TFEC as a model to be implemented in all social work programs and schools of social work across the state.
Dr. Robert Moore, graduate director for kinesiology, sport, and recreation, is currently working on an article called "The Intersection of Sport Psychology and the Christian Worldview." The article will be used by the Christian Sports, Kinesiology, and Leisure Studies Association.
Moore is also the editor of the family fitness department of the magazine Faith and Fitness. He is also writing an article focusing on family fitness, as well as selecting and editing articles related to his theme to include in the magazine.
Dr. Mark Ouimette, chair of the HSU Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences and director of the environmental science program, attended a workshop sponsored by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Scripps Institute of Oceanography.
The workshop was held on board a charter vessel that cruises the Farallon Islands located 30 miles west of the Golden Gate in California. The Farallon Islands have long been popular as a source of murre eggs and seal meat and a dump for nuclear waste materials.
"These activities are no longer legal and the animal populations have recovered," according to Ouimette. "However, the nuclear waste remains embedded on the ocean floor." The Farallon Islands are positioned at the transition of the continental shelf and continental slope. "This location is where abundant nutrient-rich deep ocean water rises to supply this area with a diverse bounty of sea life," says Ouimette.
Ouimette's original goal was to collect rock samples from the main island and then use the HSU petrography microscopes to describe the mineralogy and textures. Ouimette, however, was denied access to the island by the Fish and Wildlife Service, who control the islands. Another attempt to gain permission to the main island will be made next summer.
A faculty colloquium is planned so that Ouimette can share with his colleagues some of the images he acquired of the islands from the vessel. He collected about 900 digital images from the workshop.
Dr. Bernie Scherr, chair of the HSU Department of Music Theory and Composition, was commissioned by the HSU School of Music and Fine Arts to compose a new work for combined orchestra, band, and chorus.
This new composition is titled "Psalm 139." It premiered Sept. 3, 2009, at the installation of Hardin-Simmons'15th university president, Dr. Lanny Hall.
His book Organ Preludes was published this past July by Zimbel Press and distributed by Subito Music Corporation, Verona, New Jersey.
Ms. Charlene Strickland, head of the HSU Department of Communication, participated in the 13th Annual Capital Conference hosted by the University Interscholastic League at the University of Texas. Strickland serves as a UIL consultant for speech events and taught four workshops during the two-day conference.
The conference is designed to help teachers learn about various UIL academic events. While the original focus of the conference was to assist new teachers with speech events, the conference now draws veteran teachers as well. The event has expanded to include workshops for high school, elementary, and junior high academic coordinators, and one-act play directors.
Dr. Carol Woodfin, associate professor of history, has returned from two months in Prague, Czech Republic. She was finishing research for a book on the International Baptist Theological Seminary. The book will be published next year by the Baptist History and Heritage Society, Atlanta.
Dr. Clell Wright, director of choral activities and Logsdon Professor of Church Music, is currently preparing the concert choir for its November tour to San Antonio. Wright is also interim music minister at First Baptist Church, San Angelo.
This is just a very short list of the many great things HSU professors are doing. Watch for more faculty tidbits every week.
Photos: Farrallon Islands, taken about 200 yards away from shore by Ouimette; Dr. Mark Ouimette; Dr. Bob Fink; Dr. Nancy Kucinski; Melissa Milliorn; Dr. Bob Moore; Dr. Bernard Scherr
"We gather to declare publicly that our different religions and cultures will not separate us, but rather unite us," says Dr. Rob Sellers. The professor of Missions Ministry at Logsdon School of Theology has invited students and faculty from all three 4-year universities in Abilene to participate in a rare opportunity.
Celebrated Jewish author and lecturer Dr. Marc Ellis will be on the Hardin-Simmons campus to speak about religious identities and how different faiths can talk with each other. The author of Toward a Jewish Theology of Liberation will hold two sessions this Thursday at Logsdon Chapel.
The student/faculty session at 3 p.m will specifically discuss Ellis's internationally acclaimed book, which is in its third expanded edition. The book's forward is written by South African Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Peruvian "Father of Liberation Theology" Gustavo Gutierrez. Gutierrez writes, "This is a vigorous and important work - passionate for justice, rooted in a strong love for his people, and [showing] a deep sensitivity to other human communities."
Ellis is the director of the Center for Jewish Studies at Baylor University and the only Jewish professor at the largest Baptist university in the nation. Ellis has authored over 20 books and spoken at more than 250 universities on five continents.
The evening session is open to the public and will feature a community forum by the Abilene Interfaith Council. The topic Ellis will present is "Speaking Honestly to Ourselves and Each Other About Our Religious Identity."
The Interfaith Council is comprised of people representing nine religious faiths in Abilene, including Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, and Christian. The group gathers each month, guided by the motto "Breaking Bread Together in Peace."
Dr. Sellers, who is a member of the Abilene Interfaith Council, says, "We want to increase understanding and strengthen friendships despite our religious distinctions. We gather to post a sign for our community: a message that says we believe people can disagree, but do so amicably, and then leave the session still in relationship."
"We hope that we are role models of respectful and reasoned dialogue for our community. And, when appropriate, we desire to join hands in worthy projects on behalf of all people who live in the Big Country."
Sellers says of the HSU public forum, "As an academic institution that offers 'an education enlightened by faith,' Hardin-Simmons fittingly welcomes the Abilene Interfaith Council Community Forum to the Forty Acres. Let us celebrate the fact that a group of our fellow citizens are dedicated to the dream that our community will be known as a welcoming, generous, and thoughtful place to live."
Both events are September 17th in Logsdon Chapel at the corner of Ambler and Pine. The public event starts at 7 p.m. and will include desserts and coffee. It is free and open to everyone. Dr. Ellis' lecture will be followed by questions from the audience. There will also be an opportunity to have a book signed by the author.
Joe Black Golf Classic Helps Golf Team for the 20th Year.
David Sherman says his favorite part of the golf tournament he organizes is seeing the camaraderie that goes on among the participants.
Sherman has been organizing the Joe Black Golf Classic for ten years and says it is always a lot of fun to see new players making friends. "We have a team coming in from Midland-Odessa," he says in his always friendly tone. "The players have never played in our tournament before, but they heard about it from a friend." In fact says Sherman, "We have about nine first-timers we are looking forward to meeting."
Anyone who has every met the Hardin-Simmons golf coach knows that Sherman will slap you on the back and give you a hearty welcome. That is just one of many reasons the tournament is so popular. Sherman won't take in any credit, however, for its growing numbers. He simply says, "It's the fun, the food, and the course that keeps the tournament participants coming back each year."
One of the longest returning players is a former HSU golf team member. "Bobby Sharp has been coming even long before I started organizing the tournament," says Sherman. "Tommy Hale is another one, but of course Joe Black himself tries to come every year. Last year, he wasn't able to come because of his participation in the PGA Championship."
That is why the Joe Black Golf Classic was moved to September, so it would not conflict with PGA events in which Black might be involved. "This is the first year it hasn't been in August, and I think we are going to really like this," says Sherman. "The weather is better, our players have started school so they are all here, and this month does not conflict with other golf events in Abilene during the summer."
This year, the tournament has grown to 90 players. Sherman says he's pretty happy with those numbers. "That's more than we had last year, so I'm pretty pleased, especially in this economy."
The money raised from the tournament goes to help the HSU golf team cover expenses. Many of the participants are former players themselves. Faculty and staff also participate, as well as friends of HSU, and some personal friends of Sherman's.
Sherman says it is a great year when Joe Black can get away from his duties with the PGA, "People enjoy seeing him, and I am particularly pleased that he and the other players can meet all of our students on the golf teams."
Black is a professional golfer and former president of the Professional Golf Association. He has also been the PGA tournament director, and the longest-running rules official with the Master's Tournament.
Black led the Hardin-Simmons golf team to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics title in 1953, and joined the PGA tour in 1955. He is also a 1982 Texas Golf Hall of Fame inductee, he is credited with placing the PGA in the solid financial position it now enjoys.
He established the Joe Black Golf Endowment at HSU in 1989, and organized the Joe Black Golf Classic to raise funds for the University golf program. You may see his plaque on the wall in the HSU Athletic Hall of Fame in Mabee Complex.
Also a recent inductee into the HSU Hall of Leaders, Joe Black is not only a legend in the golfing community, but a selfless mentor and leader.
The Joe Black Classic is open to the public. It is a four-person scramble September 11th at the Abilene Country Club Fairway Course. This is the 20th year for the fundraiser. That means Sherman becomes the event's longest-running organizer.
Photos: David Sherman, HSU Golf Coach; Joe Black, former member of HSU golf team
You Will Have to Read to Find Out Which One
"I pledge to work hard to see that the value of your diploma continues to grow," says HSU president Dr. Lanny Hall to students filling Behrens Auditorium. The annual convocation ceremony kicked off Hardin-Simmons' 119th year. The pageantry of faculty in robes and dignitaries from across the state marked not only the annual convocation, but also the installation of HSU's 15th president.
The event brought coveted keynote speaker, Dr. Belle Wheelan, the president of the commission which accredits all universities in the southern United States. Hall said they have been friends since 1983 when they were at the University of Texas, both working on their doctorate. Dr. Hall drew a laugh from the audience when he said, "I have followed Dr. Wheelan's professional pilgrimage, and I knew she had hit the big time when I saw her on C-Span."
Hall came back to HSU in June, after having served as the 13th president and then later chancellor of HSU for a combined 13 years in Abilene. He has also served as president, most recently of Howard Payne University and previously at Wayland Baptist University in Plainview.
Board of Trustee chairman Hilton Hemphill told the capacity crowd, "When we began our national search for the new president of this university, we did so with God's guidance." Hemphill praised Hall for his skills and urged him to draw strength from his predecessors, then added jokingly, "except for the tenure of the 13th president."
Wearing the traditional robe with purple collar and the presidential medallion bearing his name twice, Dr. Hall reminded the sea of students, alumni, faculty, and staff of the accomplishments of presidents who have gone before him. "When you look out over the campus and see the pond, or enter the Johnson Building, or see the stained glass of Logsdon, we owe a great debt to Dr. Fletcher," he said turning to the president emeritus.
"We build on the good work of the past to become stronger and more effective. This is an institution on the move! Let us keep dreaming big dreams," he told the crowd.
Keynote speaker, Dr. Belle Wheelan, has been president of a university herself. She has also been Secretary of Education in Virginia, and currently serves as president of the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
"Let me begin by giving praise to God from whom all things are given," said Wheelan as she started her speech which addressed all segments of the university. "To the faculty --be sure students leave here believing they can conquer the world. Remind students they can acquire the skills to make them successful."
"It is for the students that we are here," Wheelan said. "It may be the 100th time you have answered the same question. Remember it is the first time for the student who asked."
She went on the address the student body, "Students - choose the statistic you want to be - a graduate or a dropout; employed or unemployed. You are in charge of your future!"
Sophomore Sarah Leathers said afterward, she enjoyed the levity of Dr. Wheelan, but especially her brevity. While Wheelan spoke less than ten minutes, "what she said had a tremendous effect," says Leathers. Erica Fairbanks concurs. The president of the student congress says "Wheelan got to the heart of how students feel."
A highlight of the event, and somewhat of a surprise to many on the lower floor of Behrens, was the orchestra, band and choir waiting in the balcony to perform a composition written solely for the installation of Dr. Hall as president.
Cowboy Band director and professor of music Dr. Wayne Dorothy conducted over two-hundred students in Psalm 139 for Chorus and Orchestra, written by HSU's own Dr. Bernard Scherr. To a roaring round of applause, Dorothy points from the balcony to Associate Professor Scherr, sitting below. Scherr takes a quick bow while applauding the superb performance of the students.
The events included an early prayer service, which was a request from Dr. and Mrs. Hall as a way of setting the context as to what lies ahead. In attendance for all of the day's events were two of the most important people to the Hall's, granddaughters Ada, four, and Lilly, who is nine. Along with first lady Carol Hall, also present was daughter, Lana, and her husband Jonathan McCutchen.
Oh yes, one last thing. All of the events just happened to have occurred on Dr. Hall's 60th birthday.
Photos: Hilton Hemphill, Dr. Lanny Hall, Dr. Jesse Fletcher, Carol Hall; Dr. Bernard Scherr; Lana McCutchen, Lilly, Ada, Carol Hall, Dr. Lanny Hall