April 20, 2021
Shelby Nallin of Bossier City, Louisiana was recognized on Friday, April 16, during East Texas Baptist University’s 74th annual Senior Girl Call-Out. Selected by a faculty and staff vote, the individual “called out” each year is distinguished for her exemplary Christian character, social consciousness, personal poise, academic achievement, and spiritual vision. Senior Girl Call-Out is ETBU’s longest-standing tradition, and this year’s in-person ceremony was highly treasured by the seniors after last year’s event was held virtually.
Nallin, a senior worship studies major, exemplifies what it means to be fully immersed in student life at East Texas Baptist University. During her time on campus, she has served as the Chapel Coordinator for two years, a Bible study leader for Titus Women’s Ministry, Resident Assistant for three years, and has been a member of Concert Choir. Shelby is the recipient of the Outstanding Choir Student Award and was the 2020 Homecoming Queen.
“I had always seen the people that I admired and the people that I really looked up to participate in Senior Girl Call-Out because of how special ETBU was to them, and I wanted to be a part of that legacy and savor the sweet moments of senior year,” Nallin said. “It is so humbling to be recognized by faculty and staff because every single girl deserves to be recognized and has excelled in so many ways. Throughout my time here, Jesus never left my side and all of the glory goes to God. I am honored to pass on that legacy and that special moment to my little sister. It's so bittersweet, but it's also the cherry on top of my last four years here.”
Not only is Nallin active in ministry on campus, but she is also a member of Summer Grove Baptist Church in Shreveport, Louisiana, where she serves as the Worship Associate, and has served in community outreach, leads worship on Sundays and Wednesdays, disciples youth girls, and gives voice lessons.
“I have been meeting with Shelby for about a year and a half now and really answering her questions that she encounters in Scripture,” ETBU Professor of Chemistry Dr. Jacqueline Morris said. “It has been such a joy to see her grow spiritually and have a heart to lead people in authentic worship of the Lord during chapel and for her ministry position at Summer Grove Baptist Church. She has such a heart and passion for people to truly know Jesus and grow more in love with Him. It is so encouraging to see this in such a young person! The Lord will continue to work in her and use her mightily as He is humbling her every day and teaching her new truths. So many people have been blessed and encouraged in their faith by her sharing her testimony of God's forgiveness and grace in her life, and God will continue to use that still.”
Seventeen young women participated in the event alongside their “little sisters,” underclassmen chosen by the seniors. During the ceremony, each senior girl passed onto her little sister the symbols of the ideals and traditions of the University – the grace of the myrtle, the strength of the oak, and the ever verdant life of the pine.
“We are so blessed to have our senior ladies honored in person, with their family and friends in the audience,” ETBU Director of Student Activities Laura Coursey said. “These young women have had a hard year of adjustments on campus with COVID protocols, but the ability to celebrate their achievements with their guests is so special. Each senior lady has left a mark on campus unique to their personalities, interests, and campus involvement that will be missed dearly as they move on to pursue what the Lord has called them to conquer next. We are honored to have spent time investing with these students, learning more about them, and watching them grow in faith and circumstance during their time at ETBU.”
Over 1,000 young women have participated in this treasured tradition over the last 74 years, however, the sentiment remains the same as the University community honors the long-standing tradition of recognizing senior girls for their Christian character and academic achievements.
“Each senior will pass along the tradition to their little sister, leaving behind their legacy on the Hill,” Coursey said. “These little sisters have looked up to the senior class, and now they will look back at the memories and Christian fellowship they have shared as landmark moments in their lives.”