God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good. I was fortunate to grow up in a home where we were taught about Jesus and grew to love Him. My parents are both pillars of faith in the foundation of my life, and for that I am grateful.
Trey Lamb, a freshman Christian Studies major from Oak Grove, Ark., had a plan, but it was going to take hard work, commitment, and prayer. He was selfless and totally reliant on the Lord. He had this plan for a while and had to figure out how to execute it with grace and efficiency.
Most people have had good experiences with glow sticks and dance parties, but Carli Copell, a junior psychology and sociology double major from Canton, Texas, couldn’t say the same due to an injury that involved a glow-stick and her losing her hearing.
Being the new kid can be intimidating, but also overwhelmingly exciting. Kyleigh Stevens, a freshman music major from Hot Springs, Ark., knew this feeling all too well after she moved to Serbia when she was only 8 years old.
Donnie Copeland had an unconventional upbringing. He grew up over 6,000 miles away from the United States in Ogbomosho, Nigeria. His parents taught at a local seminary and did mission work, such as traveling to remote villages to connect with local churches.
A year and a half ago, Melissa’s life changed forever, all by a coincidence. Through her faith, the Lord guided her here to Ouachita where she uprooted her entire life.
In choosing a college to further his education and baseball career, Carter Wade, a senior accounting major from Little Rock, Ark., first decided to attend a Division I university. After a year of playing baseball at another Arkansas university, Wade said knew he was meant to attend Ouachita.
With dozens of NCAA Division I athletes getting an invitation into the Coastal Plain League, standout Tiger baseball third baseman Tyler Riebock, a junior biology major from Rockwall, Texas, had the opportunity to spend his summer playing against top competition.
Dr. John McCallum, senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Hot Springs and vice chair of Ouachita’s Board of Trustees, offered this prayer at the close of Commencement on May 8, 2021.
The Ouachita community truly is something special. While on campus, I was surrounded by faculty and peers alike who uniquely challenged me and pushed me to grow in my relationship with Christ. While Ouachita opened the door for me to gain wisdom from faculty, it also brought me some seriously great friends. Whether through class, clubs or other avenues, the friendships I made were each unique and welcomed new perspectives into my life.
Each year we select a theme to help us focus on Ouachita’s essential purpose. That theme is based on our university’s vision, mission and value statements. This year’s theme is: “Vision, Integrity, Service.” Each year, my convocation remarks introduce the theme. This morning, I want to spend a few moments to offer one perspective on the idea of “vision.”
Students who major in communication sciences & disorders at Ouachita are commonly known around campus as “Speechies.” The speech pathology program is led by two professors, Dr. Nancy Hardman, professor and chair, and associate professor Carol Morgan.
Colin McWhorter, a business major from Rogers, Ark., is a sophomore baseball player, but roaming the outﬁeld and hitting a baseball is not all he’s passionate about. On December 24, McWhorter’s grandfather Jim McWhorter passed away. The family was searching for someone to administer the funeral, and Colin stepped up.
The idea came in seventh grade when Mallory Wallace, a sophomore Biblical Studies and Strategic Communications double major from Longview, Texas, was inspired by the ice cream truck circulating the neighborhood. What started as money for trips to the movies with friends became a way Wallace could pay for college.
What started as just an idea in the minds of sophomores Mitchell Waite and Logan Daust soon turned into the campus-wide sensation known as Caf Reviews. Daust had seen a similar pizza review segment on the Barstool Instagram accounts, and the two decided to post a parody on Waite’s Instagram story.
Luke Hill, a junior biology major with chemistry, military science and a math triple minor is from Sheridan, Ark. Hill spent his summer doing research at UAMS and ROTC training.
What can you do with a history major? Kevin Jackson, a 2015 Ouachita graduate, currently works as an immigration lawyer to advocate for asylum seekers and trafficking victims, among others.
Being from Midlothian, Texas (a suburb of Dallas), most of my classmates had their sights set on large, nearby state schools. I couldn’t muster the same excitement they had about attending schools with such huge student populations. I wanted to be known by my professors, not just some number or a face in an auditorium full of students.
Serving his school, multicultural students and his country, Jomari Bailey has dedicated his time at OBU to working hard to make a difference. A freshman art and graphic design major from Prescott, Ark., Bailey was once known as the shy kid but has flourished through his first year in college.
I feel a special relationship with this graduating class. Many of you began in the fall of 2017, but we first met during your senior year in high school – my first year as president. We’ve been on this journey for five years. Our kinship runs especially deep because of our shared struggles and shared responsibilities. The persistence of COVID-19 marked your entire senior year. We asked you to help us manage that threat, and you rose to the occasion.
About the Ouachita Voices blog
The Ouachita Voices blog is a place for the people of Ouachita to tell the stories of Ouachita. Lend your voice to the conversation. Submit your ideas to email@example.com.
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