Bryan College making global impact through international development

The Bryan College entrance sign.May 31, 2018 – Earlier this month, Bryan College’s Center for International Development (CID) hosted Theresa Turtukowskyj from CARITAS, an international Catholic charity based out of Rome that serves the impoverished and vulnerable around the globe.

The Latin word for respect and love, CARITAS works to provide that and more for people in all walks of life. CARITAS offers services that support, counsel, and care for those in need including refugees, migrants, the elderly, individuals with mental and physical disabilities, and those seeking shelter from abuse.

Theresa Turtukowskyj, Director of CARITAS Burgenland, runs three major facilities along the eastern border of Austria that houses and treats children and adults with severe mental and physical disabilities.

In working with individuals with disabilities, CARITAS Burgenland stresses the principles of normalization, self-determination, and integration. CARITAS Burgenland integrates modern, needs-oriented services with high-quality care so that each individual can express their individuality and independence.

Turtukowskyj spent her time in Chattanooga visiting with local nonprofits including the Partnership for Families, Children and Adults, Siskin Hospital, and Orange Grove Center. She got to know local leaders and learned how the different nonprofits manage their various services and reviewed their policies so that she can improve how her centers are managed in Austria.

Dennis Miller, CID Director said, “Bryan College stresses the importance of outreach not only in our local community, but around the world. In connecting members of our community with those who do similar work across the globe, we are able to learn from each other and foster long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationships.”

Bryan College’s CID and the Partnership have a long running relationship spanning over 13 years. In that time, Miller has connected the Partnership with seventeen guests from countries all around the globe including Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Greece, and China. These guests typically specialize in human rights issues like human and sex trafficking and abuse of women and children.

“Since 2005, Partnership has worked with Bryan College in spreading our mission of empowering people and building communities at a global scale,” said Partnership Chief Operating Officer Regina McDevitt. “Partnership has sent employees to Slovakia and Romania to consult and train directors at their centers, focusing on issues related to domestic violence and sexual assault. In a true give and take spirit, Partnership has brought home priceless experiences and knowledge to benefit our clients while also sharing the practices that have worked best for us to help them serve the vulnerable in their communities.”

Since 2003, CID has organized more than 600 global education lectures, seminars, conferences, and projects to provide Bryan students and others with the opportunity to interact with major international experts in areas such as business, politics and government, communications, Christian worldview, and more.

Bryan College 2018 faculty and staff service awards

May 23, 2018 – Each year Bryan College celebrates the years of service of the faculty and staff. The 2018 Citation of Merit awards are as follows.


25 Years of Service

Assistant Professor Bernie Belisle headshot Mr. Bernard Belisle
Assistant Professor of Performing Arts


20 Years of Service

Associate Professor Michael Palmer headshotMr. Michael Palmer
Associate Professor of Communication Studies


15 Years of Service 

Vance Berger, Brenda Sims, Karen Randen, Stephen Livesay(in order of appearance left to right)

Mr. Vance Berger

Mrs. Brenda Sims
Environmental Services

Mrs. Karen Randen
Physical Plant Office Manager
Landscaping Supervisor

Dr. Stephen Livesay

Mr. Dennis Miller (not pictured)
Executive Director of External Communications
Director, Center for International Development

Mr. Steven Paulson (not pictured)
Lead Instructional Designer, AGS


10 Years of Service 

Matt Meloncon, Vickie Patterson, A.J. Caudill, Dr. Adina Scruggs, Dr. Dwight Paige, Dr. Dave Perron(in order of appearance left to right)

Mr. Matt Meloncon
Senior Applications Developer

Mrs. Victoria Patterson
Student Financial Aid Specialist

Mr. A.J. Caudill
Pioneer Food Services Manager

Dr. Adinal L. Scruggs
Dean, School of Adult and Graduate Studies
Associate Processor of Business
Chair, Department of Business and Economics
Secretary of the Faculty

Dr. H. Dwight Page
Professor of Languages and Linguistics

Dr. David E. Perron
Associate Professor of Exercise and Health Science
Assistant Coach, Fishing

Dr. Kathryn A. Saynes (not pictured)
Associate Professor of Education
Chair, Department of Education

5 Years of Service 

Andrew Smith, Wendy Harris, Tommy Shook, Trudy Oviatt, Dwayne Hardyman, Dr. Daniel Gleeson

(in order of appearance left to right)

Mr. Andrew Smith
Assistant Director of Admissions

Mrs. Wendy Harris
Website Content Manager

Mr. Tommy Shook
General Repair and Maintenance Specialist

Mrs. Trudy Oviatt
Environmental Services Assistant

Mr. Dwayne Hardyman
Environmental Services Assistant

Mr. K. Daniel Gleeson
Assistant Professor of English
Assistant Director, Academic Success Center

Mrs. Chloe Townsend (not pictured)
Advancement Writer and Editor

Bryan College receives reaffirmation of accreditation of business and management programs

IACBE accredited official logoMay 16, 2018 – The Board of Commissioners of the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) recently reaffirmed accreditation of the business and management programs offered through Bryan College’s Department of Business and Economics and the School of Adult and Graduate Studies. The Council has seven principles that Bryan College met to receive accreditation. They are: outcomes assessment, strategic planning, curriculum, faculty, scholarly and professional activities, resources, internal and external relationships, international business education and, educational innovation. Bryan College undertook a rigorous self-evaluation; underwent a comprehensive peer review and met the principles to achieve reaccreditation.

The IACBE is nationally-recognized by the Council for Higher Education (CHEA). It is the leader in mission-driven and outcomes-based programmatic accreditation in business and management education. IACBE has hundreds of member institutions around the word and has accredited over 1,500 business and business-related programs in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Central America and South America.

“We are honored that the quality of our graduate and undergraduate business program has once again met the high standards of IACBE,” said Dr. Adina Scruggs, Dean of Adult and Graduate Studies, and department chair of Business and Economics. “I especially appreciate how the IACBE measures academic quality and excellence in business education as it relates to our mission of ‘educating students to become servants of Christ in today’s world’. The emphasis on mission-related outcomes is fundamental to the entire quality assurance process of the IACBE and truly reflects the desire of our business faculty on campus and online.”

Bryan College President Stephen Livesay said, “The faculty and staff of our Business and Economics Department are to be congratulated for this tremendous achievement. They are setting a high level of standards for our students which in turn, prepares students for the business world they are about to enter. Thanks to their efforts, our students can confidently enter their professions prepared and ready to meet both present and future demands of business.”

About the IACBE – The International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) was founded in 1997 and is nationally-recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). The IACBE is the leader in mission-driven and outcomes-based programmatic accreditation in business and management education for student-centered colleges, universities, and other higher education institutions throughout the world. The IACBE has hundreds of member institutions and campuses worldwide, and has accredited over 1,500 business and business-related programs in the United States, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Central America, and South America.

The IACBE’s World Headquarters are located at 11374 Strang Line Road in Lenexa, Kansas, 66215, USA. For more information, please visit the IACBE’s website at

Holcomb receives Staff Member of the Year: teacher and scholar of the year announced

May 9, 2018 – Bryan College recently bestowed several faculty and staff awards in the annual Honors Chapel service on April 25. Each year Bryan College supervisors and colleagues nominate a full-time staff member who has modeled exemplary service to the college for Staff Member of the Year. The 2018 recipient of the Staff Member of the Year is David Holcomb, scholarship fund director and director of the Bryan College Martial Arts Academy.

David Holcomb holding his award for Staff Member of the Year

The 2018 Teacher of the Year recipient is Dr. Samuel Youngs. The Teacher of the Year is selected from nominations received by students, staff, faculty, administrators or alumni. The recipient exemplifies excellent teaching skills, mastery of content, effective communication skills, integration of faith in the classroom and in his life, and is widely viewed as a positive influence on the Bryan community.

Dr. Samuel Youngs as the Teacher of the Year recipient.

The 2018 Scholar of the Year is Dr. Neal Doran. This award celebrates the scholarly activity of the faculty both in its traditional forms of publishing and presenting and in its less traditional forms, such as performing and professional consulting. This award recognizes the effort it takes to engage in one’s discipline and with one’s peers.

Dr. Neal Doran as the Scholar of the Year recipient.

The Faculty Appreciation Award is selected by the Office of Admissions and recognizes a deserving faculty member who has gone above and beyond to meet with prospective students and families during their visits, make phone calls, and assist the Admission Office in their mission of recruiting students to Bryan College. Dr. Daniel Gates is the 2018 recipient of the Faculty Appreciation Award.

Dr. Daniel Gates headshot

Bryan College congratulates all the award recipients. We are grateful for your dedication to Bryan College and our students.

Bryan Graduates one hundred thirty two in commencement 2018 ceremonies

Graduating senior Shania Rogers, SGA president, cheers on fellow graduates during 2018 commencement.
Graduating senior and SGA president Shania Rogers cheers on fellow graduates during 2018 commencement.

May 7, 2018 – On May 5, a mild and overcast morning, the Class of 2018 proudly turned their tassels as Bryan College conferred upon them their well-earned degrees. College president Dr. Stephen D. Livesay charged them with “honoring the motto of your alma matter, “Christ above all. For as you honor and live out that motto you honor Bryan College and all who have gone on before you representing this college throughout the world. And as you do so, you give encouragement and support to all who continue on in this ministry at Bryan.”

The morning ceremonies featured Abigail Brown as the senior class commencement speaker. Miss Brown spoke with poise and wit and reflected on the class of 2018’s time at Bryan College. Also speaking was Dr. Kenneth Hanna, former Bryan College president, who reflected on his time at Bryan College and encouraged the graduates to finish strong. A total of one hundred thirty two degrees were bestowed in the School of Arts and Sciences and School of Adult and Graduate Studies, including two Master of Arts in Christian Ministry degrees, six Master of Business Administration degrees, three Master of Education degrees, 65 Bachelor of Science degrees, 32 Bachelor of Arts degrees, 20 Bachelor of Business degrees, one Associate of Arts degree, and three Associate of Science degrees.

During this exciting weekend Bryan also welcomed back many alumni from the Class of 1968, who were honored as “Golden Grads,” receiving commemorative diplomas from Dr. Livesay during the commencement ceremony.

Alumni Director Paulakay Hall ’84 remarks, “make your life count, let your light shine… and make a difference Bryan lions. Welcome as our newest members of a priceless link in a golden chain of Bryan alumni.”


P.A. Boyd Prizes: Awarded to the seniors whose principles and character have secured for them the highest degree of influence over their fellow students.

  • Emily Bell
  • Stephen Ricketts

Highest Scholastic Record:

  • Chesney Brakhage – 4.0

Most Progress:

  • Emily Teft
  • Kevin Roenpage

Faithfulness and Loyalty Award:

  • Chava Green
  • Stephen Ricketts

Former CIA officer speaks to Bryan Students

May 5, 2018 – On Monday, April 9, students filled the Rhea County room to hear a lecture organized by the Bryan Center for International Development (CID). The featured speaker, a former CIA officer, spent her life serving the secretive organization. Due to the sensitive nature of her work, we are unable to include her name and photo.

Following the presentation, students expressed a sense of confusion and had difficulty reconciling such a sweet woman with their vision of a CIA officer. But that is what the students saw. A short, sweet woman who, even though she spent her life serving the CIA, did not conform to what the students suspected her to be: cold and distant. Such a situation speaks to a broader issue: the distrust between the public and the CIA.

Part of the distrust springs from a misunderstanding of what the CIA does. But, put simply, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) collects intelligence, whether openly or covertly. Collecting methods vary. After collecting, analysts siphon through the information, discerning what is true and false. The CIA will also “work on fostering relations at our host country at every opportunity,” the former CIA officer said.

“It does make us sad that we are misunderstood or maybe not appreciated, but it doesn’t affect how we do our work because the work is really important.”

Another aspect of the distrust springs from what the public can know. “The public is not allowed to hear about our successes because all of them are classified information,” she said. “Occasionally, the failures become headlines because of course they become big news when something bad happens.” The public does not hear about any of the successes but only hears of the failures.

This distrust also results from the public viewing the CIA as the government. “Most people don’t trust government. They view the CIA as government. And we’re really not. We don’t govern anything.” As a part of the Executive Branch, the CIA does work for the government, but she explained, they are not the government.

“There are a lot of flaws with [the US government],” she said. “But I love my country with a passion. I would give my life for my country in a heartbeat if I thought it would amount to anything worthwhile.” Most of the CIA and definitely her colleagues, felt that way, she said. “We were doing God’s work. We always joked about that. We are doing God’s work because we are keeping our country safe.”

This love for her country seeps out of her at Independence Day celebrations. American Embassies celebrate the Fourth of July by hosting huge events, and at these events, she said, “I always got teary-eyed when we began with the National Anthem.”

Not only did she and her colleagues have a love for country, but they had a sense of humor, she explained. One day, she was walking by the logs office in headquarters and looking to her left, she saw Mr. Tenet, her boss. He was having a bad day, she said. He had been testifying on the Hill. “He looked haggard.” So, he decided to check out the logs department, only to find it was run by younger people. When he walked in, they froze. And he joked saying, “Is there any adult supervision here?”

Another time, she was given complete access to every cable that oversaw Russia. She went to her bosses’ office, and leaning against the door, she said, “By the time I get to my car, I’ll have forgotten everything.” And so, they responded, she said, by saying, “That’s why we chose you.”

Responding to this notion that CIA are cold and distant, almost robots, she said, “They are humans. I worked with humans only. You have to have a sense of humor because life can get you down.”

When she was stationed in Tel-Aviv, Israel during the initial Gulf War, Saddam Hussein was bombing them. To handle the stress, she would bake cakes. Then the next day, she would give them to her colleagues.

Another aspect of the distrust comes from many drawing a comparison between the CIA and the KGB, Russia’s security agency. “The CIA does not operate in the same way as the KGB,” she said. “We don’t poison people. We don’t kill people. We don’t do that kind of thing.” And even though both are security agencies, “The CIA cannot be compared to the KGB.”

At its founding in 1954, the KGB “quickly assumed responsibility for arresting, imprisoning, and executing ‘enemies of the state.’” The Bolshevik government wielded the KGB to be “sword and shield of the Communist Party.”

The CIA, however, was founded in 1947 by the National Security Act under Harry S. Truman’s administration. In the early days of the CIA, the former CIA officer said, many worked without a paycheck because they were already wealthy and wanted to serve their country. Legend has it that the heir of the Campbell Soup company served with the CIA. He supposedly never cashed any of his checks, she said.

What students saw in the Rhea County room was not what many of them assumed they would see, but instead, the students saw a cheery, humorous, woman who spent her life serving the CIA.

Written by Nathan Ecarma ’19, Christian studies: bible option, journalism minor

Edited by Britney Wyatt, director of marketing

Bryan College to stream graduation online May 5

April 30, 2018 – Bryan College will stream the upcoming graduation ceremony live on the Bryan website. The Bryan College Commencement ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 5th, on the Dayton Campus at 9:30 AM. Over one-hundred and thirty undergraduate and graduate students from the School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Adult and Graduate Studies will be honored during the event. In the case of inclement weather, the services will be moved to Rudd Auditorium. 

Abigail Brown, a senior business administration: management major from Adams, Tenn., will be the senior class speaker. Dr. Ken Hanna, president of Bryan College from 1986 – 1993, will be the guest speaker. The ceremony will be streamed live for those who are unable to attend but wish to view the celebration.

View the live commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 5th beginning at 9:30 AM.

11th Annual Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program Dinner features Larnelle Harris

Larnelle Harris accompanied by the Bryan College Chamber Singers
Larnelle Harris entertains the 2018 Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program Dinner crowd accompanied by the Bryan College Chamber Singers.

April 23, 2018 – On April 19 more than 540 alumni and friends of Bryan College attended the eleventh annual Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program Dinner at the Chattanooga Convention Center. The dinner was hosted by the college and Host Co-Chairs Bob and Nan Coddington and Leighton and Jan LeBoeuf, to raise funds for scholarships for low-income Tennessee students.

The evening’s special guest singer Larnelle Harris has been honored with 5 Grammy Awards, 11 Dove Awards, 3 Male Vocalist of the Year Awards, a Silver Bell Award for Distinguished Public Service, a Lifetime Achievement Award in the Arts in the state of Kentucky, and is a member of 3 halls of fame.

One of the Bryan Opportunity Scholarship’s students, junior accounting major Alan Terry, gave his moving testimony during the dinner, as well. Being the oldest of seven children, Terry emphasized how the Bryan Opportunity Scholarship played a major role in him being able to attend Bryan College. He expressed sincere appreciation for all those who have given to the scholarship fund in the past and those who were in attendance last evening.

Student Alan Terry speaks to the Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program dinner crowd

Since the program’s inception in 2008, a total of over $2,255,000 has been raised to make a Bryan education a possibility for 243 students whose total annual family income is less than $35,000. The donors at this year’s dinner raised an estimated $230,062 making Bryan College possible for students in the upcoming academic year.

“I was so blessed by the number of alumni and friends who joined together in worship, and in blessing students.  It seemed no one was ready for the evening to end as so many lingered laughing and catching up with friends long after the program ended,” said Director of Advancement Janice Pendergrass. “It was moving to hear student Alan Terry’s deep, heartfelt appreciation for the Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program, and to hear how he is motivated to be involved in several ministry opportunities Bryan offers because of his deep gratitude for those who’ve made this experience possible for him. His testimony drives me to find even more ways to enlarge this program.  God is raising up many Christian leaders through this program.  To God be the glory!”

In addition to the evening’s primary focus of raising scholarship funds, the College also made a surprise announcement. In honor of over four decades of commitment to Bryan College, President Stephen Livesay announced that the new welcome center will be named in honor of Glenn and Jackie Stophel. Construction on the Stophel Center will begin in September with completion anticipated by July 2019.  The two-story building will encompass 18,000 square feet and will be located at the top of the new entrance, making it the first building to greet arriving guests.  Once complete, the building will house 25 offices including Admissions, Advancement, Marketing and Executive Offices, as well as, a medium-sized banquet facility.

Bryan College makes surprise announcement regarding naming of new welcome center

Headshot of Mr. Glenn StophelApril 20, 2018 – Bryan College leadership surprised long-time supporters Glenn and Jackie Stophel by naming the soon-to-be constructed welcome center in their honor. The announcement came during the 11th annual Bryan Opportunity Scholarship Program fundraiser attended by more than 500 friends and supporters of the college. Mr. Stophel served as a member of the Bryan College Board from 1978 to 1986 and again from 1992 to 2010. He served as Chairman of the Board from 1996 to 2003 and later served as Legal Counsel to the College from 2010 to 2015. Presently Stophel serves as Trustee Emeritus in honor of his valuable service to Bryan College.

Glenn Stophel has not only provided leadership and support to Bryan College but also to the entire community. He currently serves as Director and Secretary-Treasurer of the Clifton and Clara Ward Foundation, President and Director of the Joe and Velma DeWitt Foundation, and, President and Director of the Weldon F. Osborne Foundation. He is past President of the Kiwanis Club of Chattanooga, former Director of the National Association of Christian Athletes, past Chairman of the National Center for Youth Issues, and, former Member of the Chattanooga Rotary Club. He has previously served as a member of the House of Delegates of the Tennessee Bar Association and was appointed by President Gerald Ford as a member of the first Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation in 1974.

He received his J.D., from The University of Tennessee College of Law and his B.S. degree from Bob Jones University. He is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, Chattanooga Bar Association, State Bar of Georgia, and the American Bar Association.

Exterior rendering of the upcoming Stophel CenterConstruction on the Stophel Center will begin in September with completion anticipated by July 2019. The two-story building will encompass 18,000 square feet and will be located at the top of the new entrance, making it the first building to greet arriving guests. Once complete, the building will house 25 offices including Admissions, Advancement, Marketing and Executive Offices, as well as, a medium-sized banquet facility. The Stophel Center is among the first of several capital projects funded through Bryan’s ‘2018 Making a Difference: Vision to Reality’ initiative and is estimated to cost $3 million.

Bryan College Board Chair Delana Bice said, “Glenn’s leadership over the last four decades has brought us through both good as well as challenging times. He has led by example, remaining constant, consistent and committed to what is always in the best interest of Bryan College. It is with great appreciation that we honor Glenn and Jackie Stophel.”

Dr. Stephen Livesay noted, “Glenn has provided not only leadership for Bryan College but also to the law firm that bears his name.  Chambliss, Bahner and Stophel has long been one of Chattanooga’s best-known firms with a reputation that was built by the reputation and character of Glenn and John Stophel and their partners.  We are pleased to honor both Glenn and Jackie Stophel and look forward to welcoming visitors to our campus at the center that bears their name.”

Bryan College ENACTUS team helps transform lives for a better world


Bryan College 2018 ENACTUS team at regional competition
ENACTUS team from left to right: Back row: Daniel Vonthin, Peter Urban, Logan Parsons, Cooper Ferguson, Tomas Aleman
Front row: Maebry McNeese, Abigail Brown, Shania Rogers, Michaela Thomas

April 16, 2018 – The Bryan College Enactus team recently presented a live, multi-media summary of the entrepreneurial-based projects they developed and implemented throughout the year at the Enactus United States Chicago Regional Competition. They were judged by a panel of business leaders on how successful they were at using business concepts, which empower people to transform opportunities into real, sustainable progress for themselves and their communities.

“Competition encourages creativity, motivates excellence and rewards results,” says Alex Perwich, President, Enactus United States. “Enactus students are transforming lives and enabling real human progress through entrepreneurial action, while developing key business and leadership skills that will differentiate them from their peers.”

Bryan College’s Enactus presentation team was named Regional Champions and will compete in the National Exposition in Kansas City in May. The team was led by Abigail Brown, a senior management major from Adams, TN and Logan Parsons, a senior marketing major from Crossville, TN, Tomas Aleman, a freshman Management major from Seville, Spain, and Maebry McNeese, a senior marketing major from Nashville, TN. The presentation team included Abigail Brown, Shania Rogers, a senior Management and Marketing major from Halls, TN, Daniel Vonthin, a senior Marketing major from Wetzlar, Germany, Cooper Ferguson, a senior Film major from Cleveland, TN, and Peter Urban, a freshman Management major from Fillmore, Indiana. Michaela Thomas, a senior Leadership major from La Follette, TN provided audio-visual support.

Benton Jones, assistant professor of business, served as the advisor for the Bryan College Enactus team. Mr. Jones said “I am very proud of this student-led group for developing meaningful, impactful projects which benefit residents of Rhea County, students at Bryan College, and citizens of Haiti. Seeing them showcase these projects in such an esteemed venue was quite an experience. Being recognized for their excellence in community impact, project management, and presentation skill reinforces their desire to serve their communities.”

Bryan College’s Enactus team (formerly known as Students Incorporated for Free Enterprise, SIFE) has been a source of community organization and entrepreneurial project at Bryan College for over a decade.