Renovations rejuvenate Summers Gymnasium

January 23, 2015 – Over the past month Bryan College’s Summers Gymnasium has been undergoing significant aesthetic and practical changes that have added new energy to the space.

Summers Gym RenovationThese renovations are made possible through the generosity of donors who saw the need for a gym “facelift.” Visitors to the gym will now enjoy improved bleacher seating and 104 additional fold-down stadium seats. In addition, bright LED lighting will illuminate the space, making for better video and photography and a better overall visual experience. New video booths for the home and away teams will provide an ideal location to shoot footage from. A 9×12’ video board will also be installed, in addition to improved branded tile flooring above the bleachers.

David Shumaker, Bryan’s women’s volleyball coach, commented, “This is a great step for our volleyball and basketball programs. The new bleachers and stadium seats will help our parents and students enjoy our home matches even more than before.  I think it also shows everyone who sees our gym just how serious we are about offering our athletes and fans a great athletic experience.”

The “great athletic experience” these renovations will offer will allow Summers Gymnasium to become an aesthetically pleasing event venue, not simply a gym.

“It is exciting to be able to make facility improvements that will make it more enjoyable for our students to come out and support our athletic teams,” said Vice President of Student Services and Ministries Tim Hostetler. “We greatly appreciate all of those who donated so generously so we could make this happen this year.”

Athletic Director Taylor Hasty ’06 agreed: “These are exciting times for our athletic department! God has blessed us in so many ways and I am thankful for the kindness of the donors who have made this renovation possible. The hard work of our coaches and student athletes does not go unnoticed, and this much-needed renovation demonstrates how much our alumni, community and other supporters care for Bryan College.”

These renovations are projected to be completed before the last few games of the season to take place.

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ’13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


First-Ever Student Leadership Fair Attracts Campus Attention

January 22, 2015 — On Tuesday students flocked to Bryan College’s first-ever student leadership fair.

Student Leadership FairSeveral booths were set up on the second floor of the Latimer Student Center, representing the Department of Outreach Ministries, the worship leadership team Devotion, the Department of Residence Life, orientation group leaders for student life, the Worldview Initiative, and the Bryan College Enactus team. Each group had arranged a table with handouts, photos, and displays for those interested, and student and staff participants in each group manned these booths, answering questions and giving helpful tips.

Senior Kristle Welton, a business major, attended the fair and said, “To me these fairs that showcase the clubs are incredibly important because this is how underclassmen will find a club that they love and get involved here at Bryan college, which help them in their journey in becoming servants of Christ and making a difference in today’s world.”

“I appreciated the opportunity to talk to students in a low-pressure, interactive atmosphere,” said Dr. Adina Scruggs ‘91, a business professor and faculty sponsor of Bryan’s Enactus team “I felt like all the organizations represented were able to better inform students about the leadership opportunities at Bryan College. These leadership opportunities provide tangible learning experiences that often translate to post-college jobs and careers.”

Fair attendance was so high that some booths completely ran out of handouts and had to print more to meet demand.

Vice President of Student Services and Ministries Tim Hostetler is positive about the continuation of student leadership fairs in the future, remarking, “It was our goal to make students aware of leadership opportunities on campus and with so many students expressing an interested we seem to have made great strides in doing that.”

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ‘13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


Spring semester in full swing, missions conference opens

"This Urgent Mission"January 21, 2015 – Today marks one week from the beginning of an already-successful spring 2015 semester at Bryan College. Students have returned, classes have begun, and the campus is rejuvenated by the unseasonably balmy weather that has been blessing east Tennessee over the past couple weeks.

Opening the semester was the spring spiritual life conference, titled “This Urgent Mission” and led by Dr. Mike Barnett, the dean of the College of Intercultural Studies at Columbia International University. Dr. Barnett spoke on God’s mission for missions – His “endvision” as seen in Revelation 7:9-10: that ultimately “a great multitude that no one could number, from all tribes and peoples and languages” will be singing praises to the Lord, unified in Him. Emphasizing that the Lord Himself is the Great Missionary, Dr. Barnett charged listeners to remember that the Church exists because of its mission and not vice versa.

Many other missions representatives present during the conference openly discussed missions work with interested students at their display tables and at the Wednesday/Thursday global stories lunches. These individuals included

Eric McEachron, Bryan’s outreach ministries director, said, “Especially at a liberal arts college, where the most students are preparing to go into the marketplace, it’s so important to be reminded that all believers have a role to play in God’s saving mission to the nations. All of us should be making disciples in the power of the Spirit wherever he calls us.”

Furthermore, Interim Vice President of Academics Dr. Kevin Clauson looks forward to a wonderful semester. “As we begin the spring semester of the 2014-15 academic year,” he said, “a number of our students are in the home stretch headed for May graduation. It will be a challenging semester for all students, because of our high academic standards. But for those looking at commencement in May, it will also be exciting (and perhaps a bit sad or frightening for some).”

He confidently concluded, “Bryan’s very competent and caring faculty, I am sure, will make the learning experience this spring semester both enjoyable and productive.”

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ’13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;

Students give Bryan high ratings on Noel-Levitz survey

Noel-LevitzJanuary 21, 2015 — Results from a national survey indicate that Bryan College students are consistently more satisfied with their college experience than are their counterparts at other four-year private schools. For the 17th year Bryan students have participated in the Noel-Levitz Student Satisfaction Inventory completed by hundreds of thousands of students from private institutions across the country.

“While many schools consider exceeding national averages on some of the scales as a great success, Bryan students have once again rated their satisfaction higher than peers at other private colleges on all 12 scales,” stated Vice President of Finance and Enrollment Rick Taphorn.

Information gathered from this survey helps the college administration categorize institutional strengths and weaknesses by identifying what academic and support services the student body thinks are most important. Studying the survey results helps the college understand how students perceive various programs and services campus-wide.

Individual questions in the survey were ranked on a seven-point scale, with “7” indicating the highest satisfaction.  Responses from Bryan students, grouped into the 12 broad categories addressed by the survey, are reported below, along with Bryan’s top 20 ratings.

12 Scales – Student Satisfaction Inventory                   Bryan College 4-Yr Privates Mean Difference
Instructional Effectiveness 5.91 5.55 +0.36
Academic Advising 6.12 5.56 +0.56
Student Centeredness 5.94 5.46 +0.48
Concern for the Individual 6.12 5.40 +0.72
Campus Climate 5.84 5.39 +0.45
Recruitment and Financial Aid 5.92 5.18 +0.74
Safety and Security 5.24 5.07 +0.17
Registration Effectiveness 5.80 5.22 +0.58
Service Excellence 5.84 5.28 +0.56
Campus Support Services 6.01 5.52 +0.49
Campus Life 5.61 5.06 +0.55
Responsiveness to Diverse Populations 6.05 5.32 +0.73


Bryan’s top 20:

Item Bryan College
The campus staff are caring and helpful. 6.39
Library staff are helpful and approachable. 6.39
On the whole, the campus is well-maintained. 6.37
My academic advisor is approachable. 6.35
The institution is committed to students with disabilities.** 6.35
Faculty care about me as an individual. 6.34
My academic advisor is knowledgeable about requirements in my major. 6.29
Residence hall staff are concerned about me as an individual. 6.27
Nearly all of the faculty are knowledgeable in their field. 6.24
Library resources and services are adequate. 6.23
Admissions staff are knowledgeable. 6.22
My academic advisor is concerned about my success as an individual. 6.21
Counseling staff care about students as individuals. 6.20
I am able to experience intellectual growth here. 6.19
Campus item: My development of a Christian worldview has been enhanced at Bryan.* 6.19
Faculty are usually available after class and during office hours. 6.18
The institution is committed to part-time students.** 6.18
Class change (drop/add) policies are reasonable. 6.17
There is a commitment to academic excellence on this campus. 6.16
The campus is safe and secure for all students. 6.15


*Noel-Levitz allows school-specific items to be added to the basic survey.

**Indicates insignificant change to item wording for clarity.

Alumna returns to recruit for summer camp opportunities

January 20, 2015 – Yesterday and today students swarmed the booth set up just outside the dining hall, where alumna Callie Dawkins ’13 was recruiting for Lake Forest Ranch in Macon, Miss.

Callie Dawkins '13Callie has been working as a full-time intern for Lake Forest Ranch since this past summer, when she was brought on as administrative assistant to the executive director. She called working at the camp “a once-in-a-lifetime thing” and noted that “it’s amazing and beautiful how the Lord orchestrated” her working there. Having worked there as a counselor in 2011, Callie was already familiar with the camp, and she found herself in need of a place to go between her May 2013 graduation and her anticipation of beginning graduate school in the fall.

“The Lord just put Lake Forest Ranch on my heart,” Callie said, so she called Camp Director Rich Malone and asked about working as his office assistant. “It was just beautiful.  Jesus paved the way, and it’s been really cool to see that.”

The alumna now works in the camp office, joyfully combining administrative work and ministry. With businesses and nonprofits increasingly switching to digital formats, a large part of Callie’s task has been to make the camp’s forms, paperwork, and databases accessible online. She has also helped start a girls’ Bible study there, by which she is able to show Christ’s love for those around her through consistent fellowship, life investment, and mentoring.

Now gearing up for summer, Lake Forest Ranch is recruiting summer staff. Just over the past two days more than 19 students have demonstrated written interest, with many more coming by to talk about camp ministry opportunities. The Lake Forest Ranch staff on campus conducted 12 separate interviews with students.

Callie highly recommends her fellow Bryan College alumni to return to their alma mater and talk to current students about the career and ministry opportunities they have been privileged to take part in. It is unspeakably important, she noted, that current students hear of God’s continuing faithfulness in the times after graduation, and their fellow Bryan Lions have the chance to do just that.

Anyone interested in setting up an informational booth at Bryan College are encouraged to contact the career services department for more information.

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ’13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


Online MACS program to launch March 2015

MACS to launch March 2015December 19, 2014 — This coming spring Bryan College will be offering its Master of Arts in Christian Studies (MACS) program in a fully online format for the first time.

In the past five years the MACS program has gone through two cycles (starting in 2010 and in 2012) graduating 17 students. Since then, the program has undergone considerable revamping under the leadership and vision of William Harle, dean of adult and graduate studies, and Dr. Matthew Johnson, director of graduate education.

The program’s reintroduction, according to MACS Director Dr. Kenneth Turner, has been revitalized and improved, experiencing a dramatic shift in terms of marketing strategy, class interactivity, flexibility, and reach. Dr. Turner said, “We are very sensitive to working a program that will fit as many people as possible in terms of their goals,” adding that the MACS will help equip people to go into many different fields with an in-depth background in Christian studies.

“The point is,” continued Dr. Turner, “to be flexible, to be creative, and to match the needs and desires of people with a program that is versatile enough that they can gain a degree to help them do what they want to do.”

The improved MACS will launch March 31, 2015. As a 36-hour program, it will feature 12 three-hour courses, which at least initially will be offered two at a time. Six of these will count as core classes, after which students will take courses more specifically pertinent to their career field. Typically a student will take two courses every 12 weeks, although they may choose to only take one per term. The courses will involve reading, writing, posting in online discussion forums, viewing mini-lecture presentations with pre-recorded audio from the professors, and ongoing week-to-week conversations both between classmates and between students and their professors, who are deeply invested in mentoring and coming alongside them.

“The online approach enables us to reach people literally around the world who are in ministry now or want to get into ministry,” commented Dr. Turner. “We’re trying to shape a program that will help people go into all kinds of areas, so we’re sensitive to that on every level.”

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ‘13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


Bryan awards 142 degrees at fall commencement

Fall '14 CommencementDecember 17, 2014 — This past Friday, Dec. 12, 2014, Bryan College graduated a total of 142 students from the School of Arts and Sciences and from the School of Adult and Graduate Studies (AGS) at the school’s 89th commencement ceremony, witnessed by proud friends and family members.

Dr. C. Jud Davis, professor of Greek and Christian studies and philosophy division chair, gave an encouraging and challenging address drawn from the pages of scripture to the approximately 1000 in attendance in both Rudd Auditorium and the overflow room in the Latimer Student Center. The musical portion of the ceremony, including a singing of “Amazing Grace” and additional special music, delighted onlookers, and Alumni Director Paulakay Hall’s welcoming of the new alumni into the Bryan College Alumni Association garnered applause and laughter.

The Honoris Causa student awards were presented before the long-awaited conferral of degrees to the new graduates. Joanna Hill ‘14, a history and English double-major from Dayton, Tenn., earned the Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges Award. Benedikt Müller ‘14, a politics and government major from Eichstaett, Germany, won the Highest Scholastic Record Award with a 3.978 GPA.

The 26 students from the School of Arts and Sciences to earn their undergraduate degrees were divided evenly between Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts recipients. Of the 116 AGS students, 27 earned their M.B.A.

“It is a tremendous honor for Bryan college to be part of the lives of each and every one of these graduates,” remarked Interim Vice President of Academics Dr. Kevin Clauson. “We are thankful for all the family members, faculty, and staff who have made all of this possible.”

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ‘13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


New integrated marketing communication major introduced

Integrated Marketing CommunicationDec. 12, 2014 — Approved by the faculty last week, integrated marketing communication (IMC) will now be offered as a major for a Bachelor of Science degree at Bryan College, effective this coming spring semester.

This new major provides students with the opportunity to choose marketing communications as their field of study, preparing them to enter the workplace with an in-depth knowledge of business and communications. It was born out of a collaboration between Bryan’s communication studies and business departments in response to major shifts in the marketing and advertising disciplines toward targeted digital and interactive media. According to the proposal, this new B.S. in IMC “blends coursework in corporate communications and public relations from the communication studies department with coursework in marketing from the business department.”

Dr. Randall Hollingsworth, humanities division chair and professor, said, “The resulting synthesis of our two departments in the IMC major is a reminder of the old saying, ‘It’s not what you have, it’s what you do with what you have.’ We are excited about the unique and strategic integration of some of our best courses which, as stand-alone courses, are good, but in concert with the IMC package, make an attractive option for those students who enjoy both communication and business disciplines.”

Associate Professor of Business and Secretary of the Faculty Dr. Adina Scruggs ‘91 is also enthusiastic about the new major because of what students will learn. She commented, “IMC combines traditional communication expertise, such as public relations and organizational communication with marketing coursework such as advertising and digital marketing.  IMC, by definition, is the application of consistent brand messages across both traditional and non-traditional marketing channels, both internally and externally. We are excited about this collaborative major that will prepare students to communicate consistent promotional messages in the dynamic marketplace environment.”

The college will still offer the communication studies’ corporate communication option (B.A.) and the marketing option in business administration (B.S.) in addition to the new B.S. major in integrated marketing communication.

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ‘13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


CareerShift aids students, alumni in career hunt

Dec. 11, 2014 — Bryan College’s career services department has recently brought on a new job hunting and career management platform called CareerShift, which promises to streamline the daunting task of searching for career possibilities for both current students and alumni.

“I am thrilled to be offering CareerShift to our students!” commented Career Services Director Chelsea Zimmerman. “The platform is user friendly and effective. CareerShift allows students to search for jobs based on various filters of their choice, leaving them with only the best and recent postings.

CareerShift takes the most useful aspects of other job search sites, combines them in a simple format, and allows users to personalize every facet of the search to ensure pertinent results. The platform provides users with tools that manage their job hunt all from a convenient centralized location online, including preorganized tabs labeled “My Jobs,” “My Contacts,” “My Documents,” “My Campaigns,” and “My Calendar.” The program searches all available job listings, including those from job boards and company websites.

Career services has run several demonstrations of the new platform with current Bryan students of different years and fields of study in order to spread the word and to gain valuable feedback. An overwhelming majority of students gave CareerShift a hearty stamp of approval.

After the demo he participated in, sophomore William Stokes said, “It’s like a webpage made just for me.”

Senior Jessalyn Pierce, who is majoring in Biblical studies with a film/media minor, agreed: “I think it’s a great idea and will be used by students as a less stressful and easier to understand system, rather than online public search engines. It’s organized, has no crazy ads, and has all the filtering tools I would want to be able to use.”

Zimmerman said, “This tool also provides students with contact information from employees within a given company or organization which offers students the opportunity to interact beyond the level of simply submitting an application. It is a great addition to our office!”

Written by Chloe Ann Nardone ‘13, assistant director of marketing, 423.775.7206;


Bryan College’s accreditation re-affirmed

Bryan College's accreditation re-affirmedDec. 9, 2014 — Bryan College is pleased to announce the decision of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to reaffirm the institution’s accreditation for the next 10 years with a request for a follow-up report on four items to be submitted in September 2015.  The college was notified at the SACSCOC annual meeting in Nashville on December 8, 2014.  This reaffirmation underscores that Bryan College is a financially stable, academically sound institution with the requisite faculty, administration, support staff, facilities, library resources, programs, and financial resources to fulfill its mission.

College president Dr. Stephen Livesay praised the entire campus community for their multi-year effort to achieve this milestone in the school’s history: “This reaffirmation is the result of the diligence and commitment of all our outstanding faculty and staff, led by Bryan’s SACS leadership team.”

Begun in 1930, Bryan College remains committed to its founding as a highly ranked Christian college with its distinctive motto of Christ Above All and a firm reliance on the Bible as the foundation for all of life and learning.

Bryan’s mission of “educating students to become servants of Christ to make a difference in today’s world” continues as the purpose for all the programs and activities of Bryan.