May
18
2015

Special Presentations at Spring Commencement


Posted by Tiger Pride in Academics, Alumni, Faculty/Staff, Honors


Summa Cum Laude graduate Brittney Garner with ETBU Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler. Miss Garner received the Presidential Award. Photo by Ben Daily of Daily Photography-Marshall.

Summa Cum Laude graduate Brittney Garner with ETBU Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler. Miss Garner received the Presidential Award. Photo by Ben Daily of Daily Photography-Marshall.

Spring Commencement was held on May 2 in Baker Auditorium of the Ornelas Spiritual Life Center. Family, friends, alumni, current students and well-wishers came to see the 126 East Texas Baptist University students walk across the stage to receive their degrees.

ETBU President-Elect Dr. J. Blair Blackburn addressed the graduates. He encouraged them by saying, “Students, soon to be graduates of East Texas Baptist University, congratulations to you on the completion of your educational journey. The earning of your degree is a remarkable achievement but the journey of lifelong learning and discovery does not end with the awarding of your earned degrees. Today, you will commence from here to passionately pursue the vocational calling, God has on the rest of your life.”

Not only did the graduates receive the recognition they earned the ceremonies also had a time for special presentations. Three professors received Professor with Distinction honors and one student received the Presidential Award.

Summa Cum Laude graduate Brittney Garner received the Presidential Award from Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler. The Lumberton native graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with honors and Mathematics. Her Honors Project was titled “Community Plant Analysis: 10-Years of Succession.” The President’s Award is given to a graduating senior judged by the faculty to be the best all-around student enrolled in the University. The award includes scholastic ability and development, the degree of involvement in activities which reflect the ideals of the institution, character, integrity, and general attitude.

ETBU Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler with Dr. Donna Dooley, retiring Dean of the School of Education. Dr. Dooley, along with Dr. Stan Coppinger and Dr. Bill Mils were presented Professor with Distinction honors during Spring Commencement.  Photo by Brendon Sceroler.

ETBU Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler with Dr. Donna Dooley, retiring Dean of the School of Education. Dr. Dooley, along with Dr. Stan Coppinger and Dr. Bill Mils were presented Professor with Distinction honors during Spring Commencement. Photo by Brendon Sceroler.

Three faculty members were presented Professor with Distinction honors for the 2014-2015 academic year. The three honored were Dr. Stan Coppinger, professor of English; Dr. Bill Mills, professor of Computer Science; and Dr. Donna Dooley, professor of Teacher Education and Dean of the School of Education. Dr. Dooley is retiring after serving 17 years at ETBU.

Two sessions were held with the morning ceremony including graduates of the Fred M. Hale School of Business, School of Christian Studies, School of Humanities, and the Frank S. Groner Endowed Memorial School of Professional Studies (Nursing).  The afternoon ceremony had graduates of the School of Education, School of Fine Arts, and School of Natural and Social Sciences.

Congratulations to the Spring graduates of ETBU and those who received special honors.

May
11
2015

Two With ETBU Connections Elected to City Government Seats


Posted by Tiger Pride in Alumni, Faculty/Staff


Election Day was this past Saturday in East Texas. Two men who have strong ties to East Texas Baptist University were elected to serve in positions in their respective cities they live in.

Dr. Dennis Robertson

Dr. Dennis Robertson

Dr. Dennis Robertson, ETBU Professor of Communication, was elected to the Gladewater City Council, Place 6 and alumnus LaDarius Carter was elected to the District 4 seat of the Marshall City Commission. Both Robertson and Carter edged out incumbents.

Dr. Robertson has been at ETBU since 2005 and has lived in Gladewater for 20 years.  He won over incumbent Councilman Scott E. Owens and challenger Mark Carpenter.

Dr. Robertson, after winning, told a reporter from the Longview News-Journal, he will enter office in study mode.

“We’ve got to figure out where we are right now before we can take major steps,” he said. Dr. Robertson added that Owens had called to offer assistance to the new council member. “All (three) of us are friends,” he said. “And they both congratulated me.”

LaDarius Carter

LaDarius Carter

Carter is a 2010 graduate of ETBU and works at Marshall ISD as the site coordinator for the ACE afterschool program.  He won the Marshall City District 4 seat over incumbent Bill Marshall.

In the Sunday edition of the Marshall News Messenger Carter said, he looked forward to what the future holds for Marshall. “I feel great about tonight. There’s so many people in this community, some that are friends, some that I just met, who came out and knocked on doors, they made campaign donations, they told their friends, they made phone calls, they encouraged us…  I’m excited about what the next several years will bring for this community.”

Carter is a 2006 graduate of Marshall High School and serves as the youth minister for the Marshall campus of Mobberly Baptist Church.  His wife Trista is a graduate of ETBU and teaches kindergarten at Robert E. Lee Elementary in Marshall ISD.

Congratulations to Dr. Robertson and Carter.

May
5
2015

ETvarsity Best Preps Banquet: The Natalie Bach-Prather Cross Country Runner of the Year Award


Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff, Honors


etbu run for boston group 6

It is not every day that an award that represents the best is named after you. Well, this has happened to East Texas Baptist University Cross Country and Track & Field Coach Natalie Bach-Prather.

The first ETvarsity Best Preps Banquet will be held on June 16 in Longview and the top male and female cross country runner will be awarded the Natalie Bach-Prather Cross Country Runner of the Year award. The evening will recognize the top high school athletes in all sports in the combined coverage areas of the Longview News-Journal, Marshall News Messenger and Panola Watchman.

Here is what the Longview News Journal printed on May 3rd  about Coach Bach-Prather.

Bach-Prather is a Marshall native, who was homeschooled and later attended and ran cross country at ETBU. In the fall, she will begin her seventh season as ETBU’s coach.

“Never in a million years did I expect this,” Bach-Prather said. “I would never have thought that this is where I would end up but I’m so glad and grateful that I did. It’s just awesome.”

Bach-Prather was a four-year letter winner and All-American Southwest Conference runner at ETBU, and she has competed in the Boston Marathon three times.

“It’s so cool, it’s such a huge honor,” Bach-Prather said of having the awards named after her. “I feel so honored to be a part of this. It’s just so cool. It’s great for the kids to have a big ceremony like this. It’s fantastic.”

Apr
6
2015

Two ETBU Staff Members Win TAPME State Awards


Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff, Honors


blogs photo

Two East Texas Baptist University staff members have won state awards for the blogs they write for the Marshall News Messenger website.

At the annual Texas Associated Press Managing Editors Conference held in Waco (3/29/15), in the Best Blog category for  similar size papers in the state,  Ryan Lueders, Schedule/Records Assistant in the Registrar office,  received the second place award. Mike Midkiff, Director of Public Relations in Enrollment Management and Marketing, received the third place award.

Lueder’s “Reel Ryan’s Movie Reviews” blog, brings a unique look at movies through the perspective of an actor who watches a ton of films, and also has a local Marshall perspective.

Midkiff’s  “From the Hilltop” blog, is about the good that happens at ETBU through the lives of students, faculty, and staff.

To read blogs by Lueder click here.

To read blogs by Midkiff click here.

The editorial staff of the Marshall News Messenger entered the blogs in the statewide completion. Each year, the TAPME joins the headliners Foundation of Texas to recognize outstanding journalism as practiced by the state’s daily newspapers.

The staff of the Marshall News Messenger also did well at the annual convention winning many awards.  Among the honors were first place in the Freedom of Information category and Star Online Package of the year.  Click here to read “Marshall News Messenger wins at Texas APME.”

To see the complete list TAPME winners click here.

Feb
16
2015

A Story of Love from KTBS Channel 3 Shreveport


Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff


 

Screen shot: KTBS.COM

Screen shot: KTBS.COM

One of the professors teaching in the East Texas Baptist University School of Education, Dr. John Sargent, was featured in a story aired by KTBS-TV Shreveport. Dr. Sargent has been at ETBU since 2003 and over the weekend, Gerry May, evening anchor for KTBS-TV Shreveport, did a feature on Dr. Sargent and his wife, Kathleen.

Since Valentine’s Day was this past Saturday, the story for the Hometown Patriot segment, dealt with love. The Sergeants met in 1991 while serving our country in the U.S. Air Force at Dyess Air Force base located in Abilene, Texas.

To watch the story that aired on KTBS, click here.

Congratulations to the Sargent’s who will celebrate 23 years of marriage next month.

To find out more about the ETBU School of Education and its programs, click here

Nov
20
2014

Two Eagle Scouts From the Same Family


Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff, Honors


Jacob Smith, right, and his brother, Lucas Smith, listen to the Eagle Scout Challenge at their joint Eagle Scout Court of Honor.  Parents, Laurie and Michael Smith look on.  (Courtesy photo)

Jacob Smith, right, and his brother, Lucas Smith, listen to the Eagle Scout Challenge at their joint Eagle Scout Court of Honor. Parents, Laurie and Michael Smith look on. (Courtesy photo)

The highest rank a young man can achieve as a member of the Boy Scouts of America is Eagle Scout. For an individual to obtain this ranking they at least earned 21 merit badge and demonstrate “Scout Spirit” through the Boy Scout Oath and Law, service and leadership.

East Texas Baptist University Professor of Sociology Dr. Laurie Smith, and her husband,  Michael, now have two Eagle scouts in their family as sons, Jacob Wiley Smith , 16, and Lucas Raymon Smith, 15,  earned their Eagle Scout designation during a Court of Honor held at First Baptist Church of Hallsville on Nov. 16.

To read more about these two fine young men, click here to read a story published in the Marshall News Messenger about the ceremony.

Congratulations from the ETBU family to the Smith’s. Dr. Smith has been teaching at ETBU since 1991.

Nov
3
2014

The Beauty of the Hill


Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff


The front entrance to East Texas Baptist University. Photo by Jason Funderburk.

The front entrance to East Texas Baptist University. Photo by Jason Funderburk.

One comment that students, faculty and staff hears on a regular basis from the Marshall community is how beautiful the campus looks. The entrance where one finds the brick wall with East Texas Baptist University spelled out is looking so colorful and nice after work done by the Physical Facilities Department.

According to Ground Maintenance Manager Jason Funderburk, the university purchased from Ellis Home and Garden of Marshall a total of 58 chrysanthemums and 10 flats of marigolds to plant this year. The gold, yellow and purple flowers are very stunning when the morning sun shines brightly on them each new day.   

A Tiger Pride high five to Funderburk, Joshua Klitz, Windell Moris and Randall Murphy for a job well done of landscaping the entrance to ETBU. 

Sep
18
2014

Need To Read An Encouraging Story?


Posted by Tiger Pride in Alumni, Faculty/Staff


carson front page mnm

At the age of two, Carson Bryant was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.  The words of the diagnosis heard by his parents, Tom and Leslie Bryant, are words a parent never wants to hear.

Tom works at East Texas Baptist University in our Institutional Technology Department.  Leslie is a graduate of ETBU and served as a teacher at Waskom Elementary until she decided to direct her devotion to Carson and her daughter Avery Kate, who just turned one.

I first became friends with Leslie when she began to work as a student worker in the Public Relations office here at ETBU during her early years on the Hill as a student. The Sulphur Springs native worked in the PR office until she graduated.  She was a shy young lady as she began to work in my office but grew into a mature, confident lady.

2005: Leslie Nelson Bryant aids hurricane victims on their way to shelters in Dallas. PHOTO: Hilltop News/Ron Munden

2005: Leslie Nelson Bryant aids hurricane victims on their way to shelters in Dallas. PHOTO: Hilltop News/Ron Munden

I remember when Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005 I saw Leslie jump into action one day to help those fleeing New Orleans. If you recall, a large group of people had to be evacuated from New Orleans to a shelter in Dallas. The route that the buses took came through Harrison County and they made a stop at the Texas Travel Information Center in Waskom.  

The call from officials is that volunteers were needed to greet the ones who no longer had homes and to hand out supplies as they stopped in East Texas. Leslie was on the front line handing out water, clothing, and food.  She got out of her comfort zone at ETBU to serve those in need.

Leslie and Tom are servants. Tom, even with a heavy burden on his heart concerning his son does his job each on our campus with a smile on his face. This strength to carry on, in my opinion, is because of their faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Take time to read their story in the Marshall News Messenger and see how the Bryant’s are giving back in an effort to help others.

Click to read, ‘Three-year old Waskom Child looks to overcome leukemia’.

Jul
14
2014

ETBU Professor Nominated to Serve With BWA


Posted by Tiger Pride in Academics, Faculty/Staff, Honors


Dr. Elijah Brown post a selfie from Ephesus on Twitter. He tweeted out, "Enjoyed seeing Ephesus today! Amazing experience." Photo by @ElijahMBrown.

Dr. Elijah Brown post a selfie from Ephesus on Twitter. He tweeted out, “Enjoyed seeing Ephesus today! Amazing experience.” Photo by @ElijahMBrown.

The Baptist World Alliance (BWA) is a fellowship of 228 conventions and unions in 121 countries and territories comprising 42 million members in 177,000 churches.  Last week, during its annual meeting held in Izmir, Turkey, a faculty member of the East Texas Baptist University School of Christian Studies was elected to serve on the BWA  Nominations Committee for the term of 2014-2019.

Dr. Elijah Brown, ETBU’s Director of the Freedom Center and Associate Professor of Missions, was nominated by the North American Baptist Fellowship to serve on this vital committee.

“With 26 member bodies, the North American Baptist Fellowship promotes fellowship and collaboration among Baptists across both Canada and the United States.  It is an honor to be selected as one of their representatives to the nominating committee of the Baptist World Alliance,” said Dr. Brown from Izmir.  “I am grateful for the support offered by East Texas Baptist University and for the willingness of both the NABF and the BWA to intentionally include young leaders in their decision making processes.” 

Dr. Brown  also tweeted from the meeting, “Thank you @NABF for recommendation with @samchaise_cbm to help with nominating committee @TheBWA for 2014-2019. Honored by the opportunity.”  Sam Chaise, the other NABF nominee, serves with Canadian Baptist Ministries.

Another attendee at the Annual Gathering, George Bullard, president of Columbia Partnership, based in Columbia, South Carolina, posted to his blog (www.BullardJournal.org), “It is important that this group have God’s wisdom in choosing a diversity of qualified people to serve BWA in the years to come so it’s a true worldwide organization.” Bullard also serves as the general secretary of the NABF.

While in Turkey, Dr. Brown took the opportunity to visit several early New Testament sites like Ephesus and the Church of Saint John, which is the traditional burial site where John the Apostle is said to have been laid to rest.  

To read more, click here.

To discover more about the ETBU School of Christian Studies,click here.

Apr
24
2014

Re-sil-ince [ri-zil-yuhs ns]


Posted by Tiger Pride in Alumni, Athletics, Faculty/Staff


 

ETBU Cross Country Coach Natalie Bach-Prather (far right) gives instruction to Tiger runner Landon Price of Mount Vernon during the Centenary Invitational. Photo courtesy of ETBU Sports Information.

ETBU Cross Country Coach Natalie Bach-Prather (far right) gives instruction to Tiger runner Landon Price of Mount Vernon during the Centenary Invitational. Photo courtesy of ETBU Sports Information.

Re-sil-ience [ri-zil-yuh ns] – the ability to recover readily from adversity, or the like.

As some 36,000 runners raced in the Boston Marathon on Monday  (April 21) with an estimated one million gathering on the 26.2 mile course to show support of the runners and remember the ones who died and were injured, “resilience” is the word that comes to mind after last year’s tragic bombing at the finish line.

As I heard the news last year for the first time that a bomb exploded near the finish line my mind wondered quickly, “Is East Texas Baptist University Cross Country coach Natalie Bach-Prather okay?”

I knew she was running in the 2013 race.  As I checked various social media outlets I saw the post from Natalie’s husband, Michael that she was okay. Natalie had crossed the finished line about 5 minutes after the bomb went off.

Natalie, 2008 graduate of ETBU, raced again in the Boston Marathon finishing with a time of 3:36:20.  Last week on a report by KSLA-TV about how Americans just can’t be shaken the Marshall native said, “You can’t stop us. We’ll show up every year in bigger, stronger, better numbers.”

Yes, resilience is the word that comes to mind.

“Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the LORD holds them by the hand.” –Psalm 37:24 (NLT)

To read more about Natalie’s experience at the 2014 Boston Marathon, click here.