HUNTINGTON, Ind. – HU cross country coach Lauren Davenport Johnson has had her sights set on competing in the Tokyo Summer Olympics and later this week the Huntington native will see if she can turn that dream into reality at the 2021 Olympic Trials.The U.S. Olympic Trials will take place June 18-27 at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.
HUNTINGTON, Ind. – The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced its annual NAIA Men's Regional Awards to recognize coaches and players for their excellence on the court throughout the season.Among the list of honorees was Kreg Eckert as the East Regional ITA Assistant Coach of the Year.
Nashville, Tenn. – Three Foresters extended their track season into the summer by competing in the 19th annual Music City Track Carnival hosted by the Nashville Track Club over the weekend. The meet featured over a dozen Olympians from Rio and a host of Olympic hopefuls.Sophomore Emma Wilson competed in the 5000 meters where she finished fifth out of 13 runners by clocking in at 16:25.01.
HUNTINGTON, Ind. – Huntington was named the 2021 USTFCCCA NAIA Women's Program of the Year as announced by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Association (USTFCCCA) earlier today. This distinguished honor is a first in Forester history. To be considered for this award, teams must qualify for each of the NAIA Championships. Scoring is based on a team's finish at each NAIA Championship in cross country, indoor track & field and outdoor track & field (i.e. 1st = 1 point, 2nd = 2 points …15th = 15 points) with the lowest point total for all three championships determining the winner.
Gulf Shores, Ala. – The 2021 NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships saw the Foresters turn out two national champions and rack up 13 All-American badges at the Mickey Miller Blackwell Stadium in Gulf Shores, Ala.Sophomore Emma Wilson lived up to her No. 1 seeding in the 1500 meters by cruising in at 4:28.60 to be deemed a national champion. A few hours she toed the line of the 5000 meters where she clocked in at 16:44.50 to take 2nd. The University of Illinois transfer finished with a pair of All-American honors and earned 18 of her team's 37 points.
HUNTINGTON, Ind. – The NAIA released its 2021 national men's tennis awards and among the list of honorees was junior Alejo Bagnera. The Cumberland transfer garnered Honorable Mention All-American accolades as one of just four Foresters in program history to earn an All-American badge."Alejo has been a leader on and off the court," said HU Coach Ignacio Poncio. "He deserves this milestone and will be a key player to help take us to the next level."
Huntington University marketing and management alum Mzatiwathu Banda, Class of 2021, has self-published Eye x Foot, his first manga in a Japanese comic book style, on Amazon.
The story's plot consists of two players — Keisuke and Dieudonne — on the same team using their skills to work together to win in futsal, a soccer-like game played mainly indoors on a hard court smaller than a football pitch. Keisuke is better at thinking about their way around the court (eye), while Dieudonne is better at the game's fundamentals (foot). This helps the two players come together to meet the desired end goal: playing the game they love and learning more about each other.
Banda came to the United States in 2017 from Malawi to pursue his dream of earning a college education while continuing his passion for writing comic books. Having played soccer at Huntington University for four years, Malawi has a passion for futsal that he reveals as the story develops in Eye x Foot.
As a child, Banda wanted to write comic books, but that passion began to disappear as he got older. Then, Banda was attacked by two robbers with a machete his sophomore year of high school. Following the incident, he said, "You know, maybe I should get serious about writing." It was an eye-opener for Banda because his desire to write was always next to him. Banda and his writing took off.
After Banda's accident, Eye x Foot was one of the first ideas that came to him. The characters in Eye x Foot are based on people in his life. The main character, who has Banda's middle name, Dieudonne, is based on Banda himself. Dieudonne's best friend in the story, Keisuke, is based on Banda's high school best friend, Sam. The dog, Peaches, is based on the memory of Banda’s dog back home. The coach, Mr. Komoto, is based on one of the head teachers Banda had in high school.
"The fact that many people in the book are similar to real-life people made it a story I had to finish," said Banda.
In the first three months of its release, there have been over 200 copies of Eye x Foot sold, and sales continue to rise. Writing helped Banda through high school, and his end goal is to reach out to others through this comic book and future ones. Banda encourages others to keep trying and pushing to achieve their dreams even when difficult times occur in life — just like he was able to overcome. Additionally, of course, he wants to entertain his readers.
Huntington University was pleased to be a host site for the 2021 Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC) Summer Workshop on June 1, 2021.
AITC is an agricultural outreach program for school children in grades Pre-K through 12, facilitated by Indiana Farm Bureau and coordinated nationwide by the United States Department of Agriculture. The program teaches students where the food they eat is grown and how important farmers are to their daily lives. The June 1 AITC Summer Workshop offered a variety of learning opportunities for volunteers and educators and was hosted by some of HU’s own faculty and alumni.
“I appreciated the opportunity to participate in a variety of program topics as well as the flexibility to apply information learned across multiple grade levels. It was also great to visit with other educators and volunteers that have a passion to tell agriculture's story to our future consumers. The afternoon hands-on learning sessions offered valuable tools to add to project-based curriculum development,” said Kelley Sheiss, agriculture instructor at Whitko Career Academy.
Sheiss also mentioned that the day allowed a chance to recharge after a long school year and spark inspiration. “It offered additional resources for classroom instruction and the chance to connect and collaborate with other participants, allowing for idea and information exchange. Huntington University [Department] of Agriculture served as an ideal location for the event, allowing us to take advantage of the many resources their program and campus facilities have available.”
Workshops included “Conducting a ‘Pet Plant Project’” with Natalie Porter, greenhouse and lab manager, “Helping Students Think about GMOs” with Dr. Raymie Porter, associate professor of agriculture and director of academic programs for the Haupert Institute for Agricultural Studies, and “Erosion — Battling the Age-Old Menace” with Joelle Neff, Class of 2020.
The Department of History and Political Science at Huntington University is pleased to announce that Ashley Spirek is the winner of the 2021 S.G. Whittle Johnston Memorial Award. Ashley is from Kiev, Ukraine, and is a 2021 summa cum laude graduate of Huntington University with majors in history, philosophy, and political science.
Spirek’s award-winning research paper was chosen by a competitive process, and her project, “The Transformation of the Southern Ukrainian Steppe,” detailed the modern agricultural development of Ukraine’s rich chernozem, or black soil region, under tsarist and later communist rule. It was completed under the direction of Dr. Jeffrey B. Webb in his advanced seminar in environmental history.
The Johnston Memorial Award is given annually to the author of a research paper written in the Department of History and Political Science. Nominations for the award demonstrate the highest level of intellectual engagement and adherence to the standards of professional scholarship.
“Ashley’s research drew from current literature in the fields of environmental history and geography, and it demonstrated keen insight in the problems of conservation and environmental rehabilitation,” said Dr. Webb.
The S.G. Whittle Johnston Memorial Award honors the memory of S.G. Whittle Johnston, professor at the University of Virginia, and carries a cash award of $1,000 dollars. It is funded by the S.G. Whittle Johnston Memorial Award Fund, which was established by an HU alumnus and former faculty member to encourage students to strive for excellence in research in the fields of history and political science.
Huntington University is pleased to welcome Michelle Caulk, LPC (MO), LPHC (FL), NCC, as an assistant professor and director of clinical experiences in the clinical mental health counseling program, effective August 1, 2021.
Caulk has founded a counseling center, worked with many clients to help them live in hope and wholeness and taught counseling students as an adjunct professor for John Brown University and Missouri Baptist University. She has an established history of writing and speaking passionately and effectively on topics such as mental health in the church and counseling the bereaved. She partners with community churches to create “relational homes” in which those with mental illness may find community, advocacy and understanding.
Currently a doctoral candidate within the Counselor Education and Supervision (CES) program with Regent University, Caulk’s research interests include spirituality in grief, creating trauma-informed churches and the experiences of the Christian childfree by choice population. Caulk is a graduate of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature, the University of Illinois with a Master of Science degree in library and information science, and Argosy University with a Master of Arts degree in mental health counseling.
Founding director of HU’s clinical mental health counseling program Jerry Davis, PhD, is excited about Caulk’s transition to Huntington University, saying that she has “excellent teaching experience” at the graduate level, is involved in her own counseling practices and plans to continue practicing.
When asked how she feels about joining the HU faculty, Caulk responded that “optimistic and grateful are the two words that come to mind. Optimistic about the people I will get to serve alongside and grateful that God has opened this door. The care that the staff and faculty showed me during the interview process speaks highly about the importance of relationship; of caring for one another deeply; and for moving forward together in creating the best learning environment that we can for our counseling students. I am so excited to build upon the strong foundation upon which the counseling [program] resides, while contributing to a future that reflects the changing nature of how, when, and why we do the work of counseling. There is much to be done to achieve our goals, yet I feel that we are seeking God's Kingdom first, and all else will be provided (Matthew 6:33).”
To learn more about Huntington University’s clinical mental health counseling program, visit huntington.edu/Counseling.
Huntington University is pleased to welcome Elijah Lee, PhD, LPC/LCPC (MO/KS), NCC, as the program director and assistant professor for HU’s clinical mental health counseling program, effective July 1, 2021.
Lee is a licensed professional counselor and counselor educator who “seeks to advance the Kingdom of God through equipping shepherds in the field of counseling.” As well as receiving clinical training from MidAmerica Nazarene University (Master of Arts degree in counseling, spiritual formation) and Regent University (PhD in counselor education and supervision), Lee is an ordained minister with the River Fellowship and counsels out of his private practice, Hope Healing LLC.
“There is great excitement in joining Huntington University in the role of program director of the counseling [program] as well as a deep sense of honor,” said Lee. “I join Huntington University with an anticipation of God’s faithfulness in all of our lives and the hope of many shepherds being released into the field.”
Founding director of HU’s clinical mental health counseling program, Jerry Davis, PhD, is excited about the new director, saying that he is “outstanding in the counseling field. [He has] excellent teaching and clinical experience. [He] teaches and practices from a broad theoretical approach, which means our students will continue to be taught a variety of empirically validated treatments with a strong emphasis on the therapeutic relationship, the key contributor to positive client outcomes.”
Lee’s passion for training counselors is clear when he discusses his own reasoning for pursing this career path.
“Henri Nouwen writes about the ‘wounded healer’ as an archetype of the counselor. A dynamic that exists within the nature of a counselor is that our own wounds often produce the empathy to sit with the pain of humanity, to facilitate healing. This truth may be echoed in those seeking to become counselors, and it is part of my story as well. In the field of counseling, I have found both the poison and antidote of humankind’s ‘sickness’: authentic relationship. My pursuit of counseling involves both looking for this cure and the hopes of offering it to a world seeking it out.”
To learn more about Huntington University’s clinical mental health counseling program, visit huntington.edu/Counseling.
The Department of History and Political Science at Huntington University is pleased to announce that Lucy Landon and Aaron Hendryx are winners of the 2020-2021 Jack P. Barlow, Sr., History Book Prize.
Landon is from Roanoke, Indiana, and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree with majors in history and English, and Hendryx is from Huntington, Indiana, and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree with majors in history and political science.
The Barlow Prize is given to outstanding students in the department’s advanced research seminars. Landon was recognized by Dr. Jeffrey Webb, professor of American history at Huntington University.
“Lucy is a passionate student and an enthusiastic collaborator in class; she personifies the active engagement encouraged by the Barlow Award program,” said Webb.
Hendryx was recognized by Dr. Timothy Smith, professor of non-Western history at Huntington University.
“Aaron’s nuanced and scholarly analysis of British decolonization policy vis-a-vis its international critics displayed a highly sophisticated understanding of the decline of the British Empire,” said Smith.
The Jack P. Barlow, Sr., Book Prize honors the memory of Professor Barlow, who served for over three decades as professor of American history at Huntington University. The prize carries a cash award sponsored by the Ron Frank Fund, which rewards academic achievement and student participation at professional academic conferences. The fund was established in 1973 in honor of Ron Frank, a former student at Huntington University.
Huntington University and Kinema Pictures, LLC are partnering to film promotional footage for an upcoming feature film entitled, “Glenn Frank.” The film will be the first feature film project from HU’s Digital Media Arts program, and the launch of the new Film Production Capstone major, which will culminate in a large film project every year.
The first film, slated for production in May 2022, is “Glenn Frank.” Inspired by a true story set in rural Michigan in 1973, it tells how a young pastor’s kid with a dream to play guitar and his father, desperate to unite four small churches under one new roof, find the one person who can help them both – Glenn Frank – a washed-up, alcoholic country singer who happens to be a carpenter. As the pastor and Glenn work together on the church, Glenn secretly teaches the boy guitar, and the entire community comes together to find healing and unity through tragedy and redemption.
Kinema Pictures is a local production company started by Dr. Lance Clark and Professor Matt Webb, both of HU’s Digital Media Arts faculty. Both Clark and Webb have experience in corporate media, music videos and independent feature films. This will be their first feature film co-directed and produced together.
“We are excited to bring to Huntington a handful of film professionals from around the country, many of them HU alums, to mentor our students on this large-scale film project,” said Dr. Lance Clark, dean of the School of the Arts at Huntington University.
This May, professional cast and crew from Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Phoenix and Philadelphia will join students to create a trailer, music video, and several other promotional projects for the film. The promotional materials will be used to raise additional funding for this film and others to follow.
To learn more about Huntington University’s film program, visit www.huntington.edu/Film. You can also explore HU’s new Film Certificate at www.huntington.edu/Create.