April 18, 2019
East Texas Baptist University honored 150 graduating seniors with an official ETBU Class Ring during the 2019 Ring Blessing on Monday, April 15 in Baker Chapel of the Ornelas Spiritual Life Center. Initiated in December of 2018, the ceremony celebrates the accomplishments of students and connects generations of alumni. As a token of appreciation to graduating seniors, the graduation ring symbolizes the University’s blessing over students as they commence from ETBU to pursue their vocational callings.
“We hope your Class Ring is a symbol of your transformative experience on the Hill. As you move beyond ETBU, we hope it reminds you of God’s call on your life and encourages you to honor Christ in everything you do,” ETBU Vice President for Academic Affairs Thomas Sanders said. “Haggai 2:23 says that you are like a signet ring, a tool used to create a wax-seal for the purpose of identifying, because the Lord has chosen you as His people. I want you to know that we believe God has chosen you to be here, a part of our community forever.”
Inspired by Deuteronomy 6, the Class Ring allows ETBU alumni to carry and display the love of Christ. Each ring features the seal of East Texas Baptist, surrounded by the cornerstones of the University – Veritas, Mores, and Scientia, which translate from Latin to Truth, Character, and Knowledge. Inscribed in the ring are significant icons of ETBU and the Christian faith, such as historic Marshall Hall and the Light on the Hill, Max Greiner’s Divine Servant Statue, and the Bible. These symbols are meant to remind alumni of God’s Word and their transformational experience at East Texas Baptist University.
“This ring is special to me because I am a third-generation ETBU graduate,” senior Biology major Rileigh Boyd shared. “My dad has worn his class ring ever since I was little, and I have his tassel hanging in my car as an inspiration for me. ETBU has prepared me for the future by equipping me with the knowledge, servant leadership, and compassion that is necessary to become a practicing physician.”
ETBU Vice President for Advancement Scott Bryant served as the keynote speaker for the ceremony. Dr. Bryant previously served as the University Chaplain and Vice President for Spiritual Development at ETBU. Through his service and example over the last eight years and teaching from 2 Corinthians 5:17-21, he encouraged students to embrace their responsibility as Christ’s representatives in the world.
“As believers, we all have been given the message of reconciliation,” Dr. Bryant said. “God is able to use you as ambassadors, but there are no shortcuts for spiritual, academic, or physical growth. You need to put in the work and the time. No matter what God has called you to, He has called you to be an outstanding representative of Christ wherever you are.”