Faculty Friday: Meet Lynn Russell

Bryan College welcomes Lynn Russell as the new instructor of English on the residential campus. Russell graduated from Bryan College in 2016 with bachelor degrees in English Literature and Music: Piano Pedagogy. Following her graduation from Bryan, Russell earned a master’s degree in English Literature from the University of South Florida.

Russell enjoys the intellectual conversations and rigors of teaching in a college setting. Her desire to work at Bryan College is rooted in the ability to be open about her beliefs in the classroom. The Bryan College community’s inclusion of family and support for one another also drew her to return to Bryan and invest in the lives of students.

In 2017, Russell worked on a research team at the University of South Florida that datamined 17,000 college freshman essays, drawing conclusions about how student vocabulary, syntax, analysis etc. affect student grades, improvement, and college success. She also helped code the university’s online writing program where professors can now compare first and second drafts of papers to give a percentage of how much (or how little) a student had changed from each draft revision. In addition to this work, Russell also was the project leader on grade norming in the 2017-2018 school year.

Russell will soon have a chapter published by the esteemed Edinburgh Press, considered one of the leading university presses in the UK. This chapter on John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress argues for a historic reading of the novel because Bunyan’s fantasy world is the literal road of England, including its Great North Road, fair systems, toll gates, and failed bog systems. She argues for this historical reading because it brings further allegory and Bunyan’s own commentary of Early Modern politics and religion.

Russell is originally from Sarasota, Fla. and recently relocated to Dayton, Tenn. after her marriage to her husband, Chad, on June 2, 2018. She is most excited about teaching Introduction to Literature this fall. One of the most interesting facts about Russell is that she has tent camped across the country from Florida to California. When asked who she would want to take a trip around the world with she responded, “My husband because I love him”.

Please join us in welcoming Russell to the Bryan College family. To learn more about Lynn Russell’s experience, visit her faculty profile.

President welcomes faculty and staff back to campus in 2018 State of the College address

August 16, 2018 – On Tuesday, Bryan College President Stephen Livesay welcomed faculty and staff back to campus during the State of the College address. The President focused on three key areas during his talk, where we are going, how we are getting there and how we are doing, encouraging faculty and staff along the way.

As the college looks to the future, Livesay acknowledged the significant progress that has already been made in regards to the strategic plan. As 2020 draws near, the need for a specific and targeted goal became clear. In light of the College’s mission of preparing difference makers, a strategic goal of producing 320 graduates by 2020 was set.  The President noted specific objectives to reach this goal include increasing the freshman class size, increasing retention rates, increasing the average ACT score of incoming freshman and increasing student life coaching experiences per year.

The President identified people, projects and programs as significant aspects of accomplishing the College’s strategic goals. Livesay recognized the significant achievements of several faculty members in various departments across campus. Five faculty members were celebrated for successfully defending their theses and earning their doctoral degrees since August of 2017. In addition, Dr. Jonathan Newman and Dr. Neal Doran were recognized for their contributions of articles and papers to various academic publications. Five new faculty members were introduced.

The Professional Development Program was highlighted. This program is providing people across campus vital management and professional development training. The program will continue to provide access to new training and development opportunities in the 2018-19 academic year.

Many campus improvement projects were completed over the summer. Projects include repurposing existing campus spaces to improve the student experience. The President also recognized the IT staff, and many of their accomplishments. The new lecture capture system was installed in two test classrooms, providing professors the ability to record their lectures for various purposes.

Many student programs were reviewed, revealing the incredible number of opportunities students have taken advantage of over the last year.  Bryan College impacted the world for Christ through more than 20 service projects and internships across the globe.

The many accomplishments of the various athletic teams were celebrated, with eight NAIA Scholar Teams maintaining a 3.0 GPA or higher. For the spring semester, 44% of student athletes earned a 3.3 GPA or higher including 20 earning a 4.0 GPA.

The Bryan College Institute of Leadership, Business and Marketing, a partnership with East Hamilton Middle High School, was highlighted as a significant achievement for the college.  The partnership is one of the many ways the college is furthering its mission.

Adult and Graduate Studies (AGS) was recognized for numerous achievements and partnerships established over the last year, positioning AGS to make significant advances in the online and adult education market over the next year.

The President concluded the gathering by reviewing the theme verse of the year for 2018-19.

“Therefore, my dear brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

The verse is already emblazoned across campus in banners, serving to remind faculty, staff, students and visitors that we are strong in the Lord, that we shall remain immovable and that our work as servants of Christ will be rewarded.

Bryan College partners with Hamilton County Department of Education in bringing Future Ready Institute to East Hamilton Middle High School

Dr. Bryan Johnson, Superintendent and Dr. Stephen Livesay, Bryan Collge President, sign the MOU at East Hamilton Middle High School

August 13, 2018 – Bryan College has partnered with the Hamilton County Department of Education to announce the Bryan College Institute of Leadership, Business and Marketing at East Hamilton Middle High School. The Future Ready Institute program begins this fall and focuses on making students work force ready.

“Bryan College is proud to be a part of such a promising new program,” said Dr. Stephen Livesay, President of the College. “Preparing students to be ready for the next chapter in their lives is a natural role for us and we look forward to how the Institute of Leadership, Business and Marketing will do just that. We have a long-term commitment to this program and are eager to meet our first classes of students.”

Future Ready Institutes provide students with learning opportunities around a career theme, this one being leadership, business and marketing. The goal of the program is to provide students with continued opportunities after high school.

Students of the Bryan College Institute of Leadership, Business and Marketing will be part of a learning community of peers with similar career interests. The curriculum includes business, marketing, accounting, management and entrepreneurship.

As part of the partnership, business professors from Bryan College will serve as guest lecturers throughout the curriculum. Additional opportunities include school to college summer bridge programs, student externships, student leadership training, access to scholarships and more.

The three key elements to Future Ready Institutes are Engaging Instruction, Partnerships and Post-Secondary Jumpstart. There are 20 Future Ready Institutes located in 14 schools throughout the district.

Dr. Adina Scruggs, Dr. Johnathan Newman, Dr. Daniel Gates, and Vaughn Berger of Bryan College with students from EHMHS.

“A big focus for us is making sure our graduates are ready for the challenges of the future they will face after high school,” said Blake Freeman, director of Future Ready Institutes of Hamilton County Schools. “Partners such as Bryan College are helping pave the way to achieving this goal.”

An official signing of the memorandum of understanding took place between Bryan College and East Hamilton Middle High School on Friday, August 10. After the ceremony, East Hamilton students had the opportunity to engage with Bryan College business professors, setting a strong example for the launch of the partnership.

Bryan College announces dual degree program with Union University

July 26, 2018 – Bryan College is proud to announce the addition of a Dual Degree Program with Union University. The Dual Degree Program offers students the opportunity to complete a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Health Science from Bryan College and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Union University in 4.25 years.

Participants in the Dual Degree Program will complete three academic years at Bryan College, fulfilling all liberal arts general education and major requirements, which include the prerequisites for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Accelerated (BSNA) program at Union University.

Health Science majors who are accepted into Union’s BSNA program will spend their fourth academic year with Union, simultaneously fulfilling the remaining 30 hours required for the BS degree from Bryan. Upon completion of the Accelerated BSN program at Union University, students will be awarded a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Union as well as a Bachelor of Science from Bryan.

Bryan College President Stephen Livesay said, “The Dual Degree Nursing Program is a blessing that we are receiving during an exciting time for Bryan College. Bryan is adding several programs along with this new program, enabling us to further our mission of educating students to become servants of Christ to make a difference in today’s world.”

Through the new Dual Degree Program between Bryan College and Union University, participating students will gain a BS degree from Bryan along with a BSN degree from Union after just three years with Bryan and 15 months with Union. Both of these institutions provide a solid education with a Biblical worldview, so these students will be well equipped to enter the health care field and make positive contributions to patients’ lives.

Bryan College generates $28 million annual economic impact in Rhea County

28 million dollar annual impact.June 13, 2018 – A recent study conducted by Younger Associates found that the economic impact generated by Bryan College and all related operations total $28.6 million for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Bryan College generates annual economic impact from ongoing operations and by capital investments. Economic impact is also generated by student spending in the local economy, as well as the special programs operated by the College that serve groups of people other than enrolled students.

“We are fortunate to be a part of such a strong community,” said Bryan College President Stephen Livesay. “This report shows that investment in Bryan College’s success coincides with the success of our area. Bryan continues to grow and develop so that we can help make all facets of our community stronger.”

Each year the staff, students, contractors, service providers and other vendors of Bryan College spend over $14 million with local businesses, including over $2.5 million on housing, over $2.5 million spent on transportation costs, and over $1.8 million spent for food and groceries.

Individuals employed by the College, both directly and indirectly, generated more than $18.2 million in total wages and benefits, and $551,922 in local tax revenues during the 2016-2017 school year.

In total, 574 jobs in Rhea County are supported by Bryan College operations. The College and dedicated contractors directly employ the full-time equivalent of 372 people. There are 202 indirect jobs that exist throughout the Rhea County economy because of the College’s operations. These jobs exist across all economic sectors in areas such as retail, business and professional services, wholesale suppliers, transportation, utilities, and construction.

The study, conducted by Younger Associates, is based on a model of the local economy, which utilizes data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis that is specific to Rhea County. Regional Input-Output Multipliers have been applied to determine economic impact in terms of dollar value of total economic output, jobs, wages, and local tax revenues generated as a result of Bryan College.

Younger Associates has conducted hundreds of economic impact studies across the United States for over 25 years. The firm’s methodology is recognized by the International Economic Development Council and utilized in courses by the Economic Development Institute.

Bryan College ranked among best online colleges in Tennessee

2018 Best Online Colleges for Value - Tennessee - SR Education Group - Ranking SealJune 5, 2018 – Bryan College was recently ranked #8 in the 2018 Best Online Colleges in Tennessee on GuideToOnlineSchools.com.  The ranking is based on affordability and academic strength.

“This ranking is based on value” said Kelsey D’Ewart with SR Education Group. “We manually researched every regionally accredited online college in the state, taking into account both tuition and academic strength in order to determine the best value schools for students.”

Bryan College offers affordable tuition rates and regularly updates curriculum to meet the needs of the job market. Bryan also offers outstanding extra value through the Bryan Difference Maker; a program through which qualifying Bryan graduates can earn a tuition-free master’s degree.

“Bryan College has been a recognized leader in adult education for over 20 years,” said Dr. Adina Scruggs, Dean of Adult and Graduate Studies. “As the overall education market has trended online, we have transitioned to this preferred modality while maintaining the quality standards expected from Bryan.  We are honored by this recognition of placement in the best online colleges in Tennessee.”

Bryan College now offers seven online undergraduate degrees, twelve online graduate degrees, and two online graduate certificates. All online degrees are offered in an accelerated format to provide students the flexibility to work full-time and care for their families while earning a quality, valued degree.

Learn more about online education at Bryan College.

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 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 www.iacbe.org.

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