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a publication of missouri baptist university

W   orldview

How a semester away provides an opportunity for students to view the world—and themselves—from a different angle

winter 2013

Editor As a communicator who believes in the mission of this University, there’s perhaps nothing more thrilling than to be able to tell the stories of those MBU students who leave here transformed. Many of their stories are awe inspiring and lend themselves to the likes of the MBU Magazine. They are stories of skeptical students who become passionate believers while here. They are stories of perseverance and triumph. They are stories of complete and noticeable change. They are stories that typify what it means to “Shine On.” So, when we hear those stories—and we do often—the University Communications team is quick to spread the word. And rightfully so. Other stories, however, are a bit more elusive, but certainly no less significant. They are the stories of those students who may come here from the beginning because of our distinctively faithbased education. When they leave they too are changed, albeit sometimes in a less “newsworthy” fashion. They are the stories of students whose faith is strengthened— not found—while studying here. Their transformation occurs subtly, but surely. And when they graduate, they are confident Christian leaders, in part, because MBU challenged them to search for truth through academic inquiry all within a Christ-centered framework. As part of MBU’s liberal arts experience, the University’s host of study abroad opportunities — the focus of this edition’s cover story — are proving to play a significant role in the growth of our students, particularly those whose stories may otherwise go untold. They are stories like Victoria Scheibe’s, a quiet commuter who has spent the fall semester studying in a highly selective, academically rigorous study abroad program at the University of Oxford. During a Skype interview earlier this fall, she told me that the experience has strengthened her faith. It’s made her look at the world differently. It’s made her bold. They are stories like Daniel DeFonce’s, a budding politician who spent last spring studying in Washington, D.C., through the University’s partnership with the Best Semester program, an arm of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. There, he learned about the political system and even met some notable politicians.

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But perhaps the greatest takeaway during his time in D.C. was the appreciation he gained for people, particularly fellow Christians, whose political ideologies are much different than his own. A distinction of the program is that students, no matter the political preference, from Christian colleges and universities across the country live with one another. “This opportunity gave me a better understanding of how Christians can have such stark political preferences, but can still love and appreciate one another,” he said. MBU has played a formative role in the lives of Scheibe and DeFonce. They’re evidence of the University’s mission to “prepare students to serve in a global and diverse society.” They are the next generation of confident Christian leaders, and their stories are worthy. They, too, are stories of Shining On.

Bryce Chapman



MAGAZINE winter 2013

a publication of missouri baptist university


SENIOR VP FOR INSTITUTIONAL ADVANCEMENT Keith Ross ‘87 SENIOR VP FOR BUSINESS AFFAIRS Ken Revenaugh SENIOR VP FOR STUDENT DEVELOPMENT Dr. Andy Chambers EDITOR Bryce Chapman GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Grain, Jenny Gravatt PHOTOGRAPHY Jenny Gravatt, Lisa Hessel ‘04, Stephanie Callaghan Smith CONTRIBUTORS Coral Christopher, Jill Hanna, Dr. R. Alton Lacey, Kelly Leavitt, Linda Myers, Keith Ross ‘87


MBU Magazine is published by the University


Communications Office of Missouri Baptist University, One College Park Drive, Saint Louis, MO 63141-8698. Copyright 2013. All rights


reserved. Issues are published in summer and winter. Send change of address notification at least a month before effective date, including


both old and new addresses. Postmaster send address changes to MBU Magazine, Missouri Baptist University, One College Park Drive, Saint Louis, MO 63141-8698. Articles and letters to We are serious and intentional about our Christian faith. We will freely and responsibly search for truth. We strive for excellence. We believe in the importance and cultivation of character. We believe in social change through service and leadership.

MBU triumphs

hall are proof.

in community, vibrance and vitality. The new Spartan Row and a renovated dining

At MBU, studying abroad offers more than gift shop souvenirs and new cuisine. Studying abroad creates confident Christian leaders.

ImPact for details.


donors and friends. Contact 314.392.2304 or

Student life at

Sizzle & Pop

subscriptions are provided to University alumni,


subject to editing and will not be returned. Free




to All submissions are

World View

the editor are welcome. E-mail submissions

Three young men from the inner city of Louisville made a pact to graduate college. One of the three men, Professor Scully Stikes, not only kept his word, but also assists others in achieving their potential at MBU.

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The President

Dr. R. Alton Lacey President

Dispelling myths about private higher education The genius of American higher education is its diversity. Independent colleges and universities are woven into the fabric of American life and, indeed, they were the first American institutions of higher education dating back to 1636. They are today among the finest in a higher education system that is the envy of the world. Though accountable to the public, they also have the added advantage of following unique missions that allow them to meet the needs of their constituents. For example, Missouri Baptist University can offer a quality education from a faith-based tradition. In recent days there has been growing concern in the public about many aspects of higher education, and rightfully so. Accessibility, affordability, and accountability are undergoing changes, and the higher education community is at the forefront of solving these issues. However, this often gets

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reported in the media in the worst possible light mostly because all of higher education gets lumped into a one-sizefits-all approach without regard for the uniqueness of the many institutions that make up higher education in the United States. The National Association of Independent Colleges represents more than 900 private nonprofit colleges and universities. In an effort to address some of the misinformation about schools like MBU, it has published a piece entitled “9 Myths about Private Nonprofit Higher Education.” The following page highlights a few of the of those misconceptions. Despite what some may suggest, higher education is not broken. Independent colleges and universities offer affordable and diverse educational opportunities and produce highly successful graduates.

MYTH: Private colleges are not affordable.

FACT: MBU and schools like us provide generous institutional aid. More than 90 percent of our students get some type of help, and our net tuition and fees are less than half the national average of $29,056. MYTH: Federal student aid drives up college costs.

FACT: There is absolutely no empirical evidence that shows a link between increases in federal student aid and tuition. In fact, since 1982, private colleges have decreased tuition every decade when adjusted for inflation. MYTH: Private colleges enroll only white, wealthy, traditional students.

FACT: Private colleges enroll as many racially/ethnically and economically diverse students as their public peers. MBU is a very diverse institution and has a large number of first generation students. MYTH: Many college graduates leave school with more than $100,000 in debt.

FACT: Average debt is much lower than that. A very small number of undergraduate and graduate students, around 3 percent, have debt of more than $100,000. The average for all colleges in 2011 was $29,900. MBU students owe on the average $25,800. That is still a lot of money but far less than the $100,000 that is often reported. MYTH: A college degree is no longer a good investment.

FACT: This may be the myth with the most injurious consequences. College may not be for everyone, but for those who have the desire, motivation, and intelligence, it is the best investment they can make. The data shows overwhelmingly that college graduates earn more, are employed at a higher rate, get promoted more often, and keep their jobs at a higher rate than those without a degree. MYTH: Private colleges are not transparent or accountable.

FACT: In general, every aspect of every college is regulated. In fact, the accountability that is required to students, policymakers, and taxpayers is one of the reasons for the increases in tuition as additional personnel and expensive software are necessary to generate the many reports that have to be filed every year. You can read the entire list along with a discussion of each one at

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MBU named third in Post-Dispatch’s “Top Places to Work” Missouri Baptist University ranked third among large organizations in this year’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch Top Workplaces section. MBU was the highest-ranking higher education organization on the list. The Top Workplaces are determined solely on employee feedback. The employee survey is conducted by WorkplaceDynamics, LLP, a leading research firm on organizational health and employee engagement. WorkplaceDynamics conducts regional Top Workplaces programs with 37 major publishing partners and recognizes a list of 150 National Top Workplaces.

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“It is an honor to receive this recognition, particularly because the results were based exclusively on the way our employees perceive their workplace,” said Dr. R. Alton Lacey, MBU president. “MBU is proud to foster an entrepreneurial culture that encourages its employees to identify areas of interest that fit within the University’s strategic plan, and to pursue those areas with passion.” The St. Louis Post-Dispatch published the complete list of Top Workplaces on June 23.

Nice to meet you. Dr. Melanie Bishop, the new dean of MBU’s Education Division, wouldn’t complain if an iPad replaced the traditional red apple as the universal symbol of her industry. She’s dedicated to equipping MBU’s teachersin-training with the tools needed to teach the next generation of students. In fact, Bishop’s dissertation focused on blogging in the classroom, and she continues to explore how to integrate social media in education.

Still, Bishop has seen her fair share of those red apples with a career that has spanned more than 16 years at the middle school, high school and college levels. She brings an infectious energy and passion to the job. Oh, and a love for reality TV. Get to know the leader of the University’s largest division.

Bishop holds a B.S. in Mathematics-Secondary Education from Southwest Baptist University, an M.A. in Education and an Ed.D. in Instructional Leadership, both from Lindenwood University. When Bishop graduated with her M.A in Bishop may not be a fan

Education, her mother and sister joined her on stage,

of the red apple, but she

each receiving an M.A. of their own.

has two gold and glass apples –mementos of past teaching awards–on display in her office.

Scooters, a local coffee shop is a favorite morning treat for Bishop.

Not only fast in wit,

In addition to education, students can

Bishop is an avid runner.

learn the art of shopping from Bishop. As

Before a full day, Bishop

a student, Bishop gave herself a $10 max

runs during her quiet

per item on shopping trips and continues

time to reflect and

to stick to her smart shopping techniques.


While Bishop is a talented and respected educator, you may

When Bishop has a chance, she enjoys relaxing on the beach 

not want her to teach a home economics class. Domestic

with copies of education journals of course.

tasks such as cooking an apple pie are not Bishop’s thing. mbu magazi ne  7  

News Outstanding Alumni Award recipients Erin and Rick Chamness (’04), Gary Hoelzer (’01) Melissa (Gowen) Payton (’04), Steven Zabriski (’75) and Paulo Ribeiro (’08, ’09, ’12) were honored during the homecoming chapel on Nov. 7.

MBU honors outstanding alumni In conjunction with Homecoming 2013, Missouri Baptist University’s Alumni Association honored outstanding alumni who have made a significant impact in their communities and made efforts to improve society. Honorees were selected by the Alumni Board of Governors and recognized at MBU’s Alumni Chapel service, which was held Nov. 7. 2013 Educator of the Year Paulo Ribeiro is an award-winning educator and a three-time graduate of MBU, holding his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology, Master of Arts in Teaching, and Educational Specialist in Curriculum and Instruction. In addition, he is a current doctoral student. He teaches Health and Physical Education at Southwest Middle School in the Parkway School District. Ribeiro is a 2009 recipient of the MBU Service Award and a 2012 Recipient of the Missouri Gold Exemplary Physical Education Award. Ribeiro left

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his home country of Brazil to attend MBU. While completing his degrees, he participated in men’s soccer and worked for Campus Operations. 2013 Outstanding Young Alumni Award Melissa (Gowen) Payton graduated from MBU in 2003 with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. Recently, she has been seen in Union Avenue Opera’s productions of Il trovatore, Otello, Pirates of Penzance, Turandot, and Madama Butterfly. Payton continues to perform as an oratorio soloist for many St. Louisarea churches, choruses and orchestras, including Masterworks Chorale, The St. Louis Philharmonic, and The Bach Society of St. Louis, where she served as a soprano young artist for five years and now is a principal singer. She continues to maintain a private voice studio at Mozingo Music and most recently accepted a new position as the executive director of the Bach Society of Saint Louis.

2013 Outstanding Young Alumni Award Rick and Erin (Lenihan) Chamness graduated from MBU in 2004. They became close friends during their time at MBU and both majored in religious studies. After graduation in 2004, Rick went on to study at Southern Baptist Seminary and Erin moved to Taipei, Taiwan, to teach English as a Second Language and do missions with a local church. In 2007, Rick joined his friend Erin in Taipei; the two became engaged and were married in 2008. Currently Rick and Erin are still living in Taipei, Taiwan. Erin is an education administrator for more than six English schools, Rick is starting a new business venture in higher education consulting, and they are both involved in ministry in their church in Taipei. 2013 Service to the University Award Steven Zabriski is a 1975 graduate of what was then Missouri Baptist College. He was very involved in the Student Government Association and served as president of the Association his junior and senior year. Between his junior and senior years, the college experienced a time of financial setbacks. Steven worked during that entire summer to secure additional financial support for the school. He was awarded the Campus Service Award in 1974 due to his work in this role. Since graduation, he has continued to support Missouri Baptist University by providing significant

financial resources and steadfast support. Zabriski lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife, Cathy. They have two children and a sonin-law, two stepsons and a daughter-in-law, and a grandson. Zabriski works for Polycom, Inc, where he has been for 18 years, as a senior product manager in the interactive videoconferencing group. 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award Gary Hoelzer is the city administrator for Town and Country, Mo., overseeing the daily operations of the city. He served 32 years in policing and has taught at the undergraduate and graduate level at MBU since 2007. Hoelzer has had numerous articles published on criminal justice and organizational leadership topics and is currently part of the teaching team for the St. Louis area Leadership Project sponsored by the St. Louis Area Police Chiefs Association, the U.S. Attorneys’ Office and St. Louis University. He has been married to MBU alum, Shari Ann, for 32 years and they have four children.

David Smith receives 2013 Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award David Smith, associate professor of mathematics, is the recipient of the 2013 Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award. Emerson, which has its world headquarters in St. Louis, has sponsored this program since 1989 as part of its commitment to promote quality education throughout the St. Louis area. This is the only public recognition event of its kind in the state of Missouri. Since Smith began teaching in Missouri Baptist University’s Natural Sciences Division, he has made a significant contribution to this university through his passion for both mathematics and the students he teaches. “Not only is David Smith a brilliant mathematician, he is equally devoted to equipping the students he teaches,” said Dr. Arlen Dykstra, MBU provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. “He has committed his life’s work to helping his students reach their full potential.” Smith’s impact at MBU is only part of his contribution to education in the St. Louis region. For more than three decades, Smith worked as a middle and high school math instructor in

several public school districts. During his time teaching in public school districts, Smith regularly went above and beyond his role in the classroom including acting as a sponsor of Fellowship of Christian Athletes. In addition to his role as an assistant professor, Smith has become an integral part of the University’s commitment to student success. Through the University’s Academic Success Center, Smith works one on one with students to help prepare them for success in the University’s Natural Sciences Division.

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MBU continues to see record growth First time freshman and transfer students on main campus increased by 18 percent MBU has continued in a season of unparalleled growth with the 2013-2014 academic year. The University’s total enrollment for the fall semester was 5,352, a nearly three percent increase from a year ago, according to the University’s official census. Main campus undergraduate enrollment again exceeded 1,200. Furthermore, the number of first time freshman and transfer students who began at MBU’s main campus increased by more than 18 percent in just the last year. The growth on main campus is the result of a deliberate focus in recent years to create an enhanced campus experience at the only evangelical Christian university in St. Louis. This fall, the University opened the second phase of Spartan Village, a 106-bed complex that features “pod” style living—complete with full kitchens and living rooms. The second phase compliments the University’s Spartan Village apartments, which opened in 2011 and feature private bedrooms. The University also revamped its dining hall and food offerings with the fall semester. In addition, the 2013-2014 academic year marks the first of a two-year roll out of the University’s football program.

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Non-traditional enrollment has also contributed to the record-breaking year. This fall marked the launch of the University’s partnership with BJC Healthcare to offer a bachelor’s of professional studies to the healthcare provider’s employees. The University began its first cohort with BJC employees in October. In addition, the University launched its second doctorate this fall. The new program provides focus on community college leadership. The University’s doctoral program saw an overall increase of more than nine percent.

Highlights • 3 percent increase system wide • 18 percent increase in first time freshman and transfer students • 9 percent increase in doctoral students

In Memoriam Dr. Rick Maclin passed away July 19, 2013. He served as a Professor of Business and Dean of Adult Learning at Missouri Baptist University. He taught undergraduate, graduate and doctorate level courses at the University. In addition to teaching, Maclin had 16 years of pastoral experience and wrote numerous magazine and newspaper articles throughout his life. Maclin ministered at churches in Missouri and Illinois, and served on the board of Destiny Church in St. Louis, Mo. Maclin received an associate’s from Illinois Central College, a bachelors from the University of Illinois-Springfield, a master’s from Bradley University and a Ph.D from St. Louis University. He completed additional studies at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and at Webster University. He was survived by his wife, Janace, his mother, Bertha, three sons, siblings, grandchildren and many relatives and friends.

Ms. Ellen Marie McIntosh passed away Nov. 12, 2013. Ellen Marie McIntosh was born January 5, 1920 in Flag Pond, Tennessee. McIntosh served as a professor of sociology at Missouri Baptist University for 13 years. Prior to MBU, McIntosh taught at Southern Baptist Seminary, Shorter College, Ouachita Baptist University and Grand Canyon College, where she served as dean of women. She received a bachelor’s degree from Carson Newman College in Jefferson City, Tenn., a masters of religious education at Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, Ken., and a masters in counseling at Peabody College in Nashville. McIntosh’s life mission was to assist “changed people change the world.” As a professor, McIntosh spent time with international students, and continued correspondence throughout the years. After retiring, McIntosh spent her time writing to homebound individuals across the nation.

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Operation Timothy MBU athletic program pairs coaches with students for Christ-centered mentorship program Iris Dixon is a serious person. MBU’s head women’s basketball coach served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army for eight years before deciding to pursue collegiate-level coaching. These days, Dixon is focusing her seriousness on raising up women basketball players who not only excel on the court, but who are also growing in their walk with Christ. “I feel like it is rare for a coach at the college level to want to know your hopes and dreams, to know your struggles and to push you to grow spiritually,” said Haley Elders, a junior forward from Energy, Ill. “Coach cares about my faith and pushes me to be better.” Dixon’s investment in the lives of her basketball players illustrates an athletic program that is intentional about the spiritual cultivation of the more than 750 Spartan athletes who compete in MBU’s 26 varsity sports. “Missouri Baptist University coaches take seriously the opportunity they have to profoundly influence a student athlete’s life,” said Dr. Thomas Smith, MBU director of athletics. “We have a great responsibility to help cultivate the whole person.” Last year, Smith spearheaded an initiative to pair a coach from every MBU team with two to three student athletes for intensive Bible study and discipleship. The reason behind the program was simple: Smith wanted a way to deliberately engage student athletes in discipleship. Every MBU team has long volunteered through regular community service opportunities. That was good, but Smith saw an opportunity to play a role in the strengthening of student athletes’ faith. Over the course of a year, coaches guide their students weekly through a program called Operation Timothy, a national mentorship program that uses the same one-on-one method Paul used to help disciple Timothy. A year later, Operation Timothy has proven to be an impetus for real, serious discipleship for the MBU athletic program, said Smith. “What we’ve seen are student athletes who are living out a college experience in a way that is meaningful and fulfilling,”

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Smith said. “The student-coach relationships are strong and have resulted in true discipleship. Elders and her teammate Hayley Parker of Leachville, Ark., are proof. The two basketball players are in their second year of Operation Timothy with Coach Dixon. The three meet weekly — whether that be at a coffee shop or just around a table in a lounge in the University’s Sports and Recreation Complex. They admitted that they haven’t gotten through as much of the text as they would have liked. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. They have found that the topic at hand, many times, springboards into substantive conversation about life. For Elders, the program has allowed her to see her coach,

Head women’s basketball coach Iris Dixon (right) meets with students Haley Elders (middle) and Hayley Parker (left) as part of the Operation Timothy project. who she describes as a fairly private person, in a way that few get to experience. “It is so cool to go through the Bible with your coach,” Elders said. “She shares stories about how her faith has been strengthened and tells us about areas of her life that are struggles. In many ways, I feel as if we’re growing spiritually together.” Ultimately, Smith’s vision for Operation Timothy is that its impact will reach an increased number of MBU’s student athletes. “Ultimately, what if student athletes who have gone through the program begin mentoring other student athletes?” Smith

asked. It’s something that is already playing out with the MBU women’s basketball team. “My team is more than just girls who I play basketball with,” said Parke. “We are a group of girls growing spiritually. They are my best friends because we are on this journey together.”

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 Sizzle & Pop With sizzling salads and 3D televisions, the new Spartan Row and renovated dining hall show that life at mbu is more vibrant and engaging than ever before. 14  mb u m agazine

Suffice it to say, MBU’s new 106-bed residential complex isn’t your parent’s dormitory. The innovative 106-bed complex, called Spartan Row, features “pod” style living—complete with full kitchens and living rooms—where 16 students live in community with one another. The urban-style design of the building, with unique, airy suite layouts and 3D TVs, may be indicative of a larger refrain at this University—one where students come to expect the unexpected. Our Christ-centered mission prepares students for a purposeful life all at a progressive, modern university. It’s a deliberate, strategic effort and touches nearly every area of our campus—from the designs of walkways and landscaping to the quality of food offered on our campus.




Speaking of which, students returned to campus to MBU this fall to a new, expansive dining hall, also. It includes a food court that features a range of food, from a stir-fry grill to a gourmet pizzeria station. Menus are now communicated electronically throughout the dining hall and include all of the offerings’ nutritional information. It’s a little thing, really. But we believe those little things make a big difference. In this photo essay, see for yourself how students are living and learning on a campus that is anything but ordinary.


1 2

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A dining hall chef sautés shrimp and fresh vegetables for a student’s made-to-order pasta dish. Elizabeth Harris, right, and Jenny Hampton, both MBU freshmen who live in Spartan Row, eat breakfast in their suite’s kitchen. MBU students peruse through the new food court inside the MBU dining hall. The new Spartan Row, which opened this fall, is home to 106 students and includes innovative “pod” style living, complete with kitchens and living rooms.

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Three of our favorites: A glance at the offerings in the new and improved dining hall





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Main Dish: Herb crusted pork tenderloin with sides of sage glazed carrots and whole-wheat penne, finished with a tomato-demi glace. Pizzeria: Roasted chicken Florentine pizza with baby spinach, roasted red peppers on a fresh baked artisan grain crust. Deli: Cold cut club with fresh leaf greens and hand sliced vegetables on a fresh baked sourdough sub roll.






MBU students make a salad at the Dining Hall’s new expanded salad bar. Along with the new dining hall, the University has made the offering of healthy food options a priority. Nutritional content for menu items are now displayed electronically throughout the dining hall. A photo of the new Spartan Row from Dink Marler Drive.




All Spartan Row suites feature community living areas, including living rooms, as illustrated here, and complete kitchens. MBU students relax on hammocks outside of Spartan Row. Each suite includes a walkout patio or porch.

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Mama Schertz meet the matriarch of mbu

Few people can, or—for that matter, would want to—lay claim to 350 children. Mama Schertz can. And that's just her crop of kids this year.

Since 2005, MBU Resident Director Taira Schertz has been the resident mother to hundreds, if not thousands, of Missouri Baptist University students. As motherhood goes, it’s a 24-hour-a-day job. One that comes with the highest of highs and lowest of lows. She’s seen a countless number of young college romances turn into strong Christ-centered marriages. She’s spent nights by the hospital beds of sick students, trying to be the next best thing until moms and dads arrive to take over. She’s plunged overflowing toilets. And she’s witnessed students come to know Christ. Its a job that, indeed, comes with new stresses and celebrations everyday. One that the 39-year-old has made into much more than a job. To Mama Schertz, its life. And a darn good one at that. "Its a calling that, at the end of the day, provides a type of fulfillment that most people will never get to experience," said Schertz. "I feel blessed to be able to invest in these kids' lives during such a pivotal time." That investment has been a family affair. Schertz and her husband, Eric, ‘97, ‘07,, who works as a senior accountant at MBU, made the life-changing decision more than eight years ago to sell their Florissant, Mo., home and move their then three-year-old boy and baby girl into a girls’ residence hall. “My friends thought I was absolutely crazy,” Schertz recalled. “To me, though, it seemed

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completely normal—almost as if I had been preparing my entire life for this opportunity.” Jon Hessel, ‘03, former resident director at MBU, said Schertz's impact on resident life was immediate and significant. "She brought a sense of community to North Hall," recalled Hessel. "The girls of North Hall became part of the Schertz family, plain and simple. She knew how to be a mother, and that's what she did. And she did it well." Over the past eight years, Taira and Eric have watched as their “real” children, which includes another boy born in 2008, have grown up with college kids. Countless numbers of students have gathered around the Schertz table for family-style dinners and, if they’re lucky, Mama’s gooey butter cake cookies, which have become a legacy in their own right around campus. To the Schertz’s kiddos, with their signature red hair and bright blue eyes, the MBU campus is their neighborhood. It’s a place to ride their bikes and explore—something that the MBU community has grown accustomed to seeing around campus. It’s a place they are creating lasting childhood memories. “Taira Schertz has invested her life and her family’s life in MBU,” said Dr. Andy Chambers, MBU senior vice president for student development. “Her selfless contribution to resident life at MBU can be plainly seen across campus, not to mention in the lives of countless numbers of current and past students.” Since Taira and her

family moved to MBU back in 2005, she's seen what was largely a commuter campus transformed into a residential community that offers some of the most innovative college housing around. She's also seen exponential growth in the number of students who live on campus. This year, more than 350 MBU students call our West St. Louis County campus home. The University opened Spartan Row at the beginning of the school year. The innovative 106-bed complex features “pod” style living—complete with full kitchens and living rooms—where 16 students live in community with one another. The new complex, the second phase to Spartan Village, provides a third living option for resident students. The University opened Spartan Village apartments, which feature private bedrooms, in 2011 as an alternative to the University’s traditional residence halls. Despite the growth, somethings remain the same. "I feel like Mama's influence on my life has helped shape who I am today," said Victoria Underwood, a senior resident assistant who has lived on campus all four years. "She's been there as I have struggled and celebrated with me when I have succeeded."•

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MY MOMENT to SHINE Ally Krus has become one of the top athletes, not only at Missouri Baptist University, but in the NAIA Volleyball world. The native of St. Louis is one of the premiere setters in the nation and ranks among the top 10 at her position. This season, the sophomore spent several weeks as the No. 1 ranked player in the NAIA in assists per game, which is the benchmark for all setters. She continues to lead the American Midwest Conference in that category as well, with 11.2 per game.

Krus was the 2012 AMC All-Conference Freshman of the Year and was named a 2012 NAIA All-American Honorable Mention in her freshman campaign. This season, she rose to new heights and expects to again be named an NAIA AllAmerican and AMC All-Conference First Team selection. Among the young up and comers in the nation, Krus is likely at the top of the list.

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cover story

worl dv i ew Ever thought the idea of studing abroad was a bit extravagant? Not sure it's worth the investment? Keep reading.


ictoria Scheibe has been waiting her entire   life for this semester. The self-proclaimed “shy girl” from West   St. Louis County spent her first few years at MBU as a bit of a wallflower. She poured into her studies, foregoing much of the typical college experience like dorm life and basketball games. Her hard work has, to date, resulted in a 4.0 GPA. And while that is indeed remarkable, Scheibe had a dream for more. She wanted to be pushed beyond comfort. She wanted to test her faith. She wanted to experience the world. Since August, Scheibe has been doing all of that—and more—while participating in a highly selective travel studies program in Oxford. “This is completely opposite of what I would have done even two years ago,” said Scheibe during a Skype interview this past October. “It has forced me to be bold, and in the process, I have realized a lot about myself and my faith.” Scheibe is one of many MBU students who every year augment their MBU education through study abroad and travel studies opportunities across the globe. Whether its Scheibe in Oxford or a student interning in our own nation’s capitol, study abroad at MBU has one distinct purpose: to cultivate Christian leaders with a global worldview. “What we see time and time again is that

when our students return from their travels, they are truly changed,” said Dr. Arlen Dykstra, provost and senior vice president of academic affairs. “Their experiences many times provide them with a new framework in which to view our world. They are forced to think critically about their presuppositions and ultimately emerge as compassionate leaders of Christian thought.” Over the years, MBU students have traveled the world wide—from East Asia to Australia and places in between. The University hosts numerous international trips every year. Perhaps most notable is MBU’s participation in the Best Semester program, an arm of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. The opportunity provides MBU students an opportunity to study in 12 places around the world alongside students who attend other Christ-centered institutions from around the country. “There is a certain informed confidence and awareness that comes from exploring peoples and cultures from within,” said Deborah Kim, interim vice president for student programs for the Best Semester program. “By studying an issue, such as conflict in the Middle East, from many angles, and by developing relationships with real people from all sides of the issue, it prepares tomorrow’s Christian thinkers to confront difficult questions of faith. It

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1 MBU students have the opportunity to be dually enrolled at the University of Oxford and MBU during their time in Europe. This is an entryway into Oxford, the first University in the English-speaking world. 2  MBU senior Victoria Scheibe prepares for a quick bike ride in the Oxford neighborhood she’s living in this semester. Scheibe, a senior at MBU, is participating in the highly selective Oxford Scholar’s Semester.

challenges them to accept Jesus’ call to serve, and prepares them to think critically’, but ope about topics.” Scheibe is participating in Best Semester’s most selective program. Participants in the Oxford Scholar’s Semester must have, at minimum, a 3.7 GPA, and be in for an “academically robust” experience. Participants of the program are dually enrolled as visiting students at the University of Oxford, giving them full access to all student resources of the oldest English-speaking University in the world. Scheibe said the coursework has been difficult—and thrilling. “We do a lot of research and writing, but we’re so into our research that we don’t want to stop,” Scheibe said. “We tend to stay up late talking about our papers.“ Scheibe is living in a flat bordering Oxford with 40 other students from U.S. Christian colleges and universities. She knew from the start that her introverted personality was going to be stretched. “I pushed myself from the beginning to put myself out there and be vulnerable,” Scheibe said. “What’s happened is that the group of students in my program have become like family.”

It was significant because we were able to really dig deep and learn how our experiences and worldviews have helped shape our religious, cultural and moral philosophies.

24  mb u m agazine

MBU alum Daniel DeFonce, who graduated last spring, chose a travel studies destination a bit closer to home, although its impact proved no less significant. DeFonce spent his final semester at MBU living, working and learning in Washington, D.C. It was a dream come true for DeFonce, a self-described lifelong “political junkie.” While in D.C. as part of the Best Semester’s American Studies Program, DeFonce worked and lived alongside a diverse group of peers from Christian colleges, studying U.S. public policy by working alongside lawmakers and lobbyists in our country’s capitol. DeFonce worked with a conservative think tank studying the effects of two very different pieces of public policy: renewable fuel standards and the Defense of Marriage Act. “We looked at the good, the bad and the ugly of specific policy,” DeFonce explained. “We reviewed their implications economically and socially and even their effects on national securities and individual liberties.” And while the practical knowledge and networking DeFonce took away from the semester proved life-changing in its own right, the self-identified conservative said something perhaps even more significant occurred during his time in D.C. “I had the opportunity to live and interact with peers, who are now friends, who were

3 Oxford’s Bodleian Library reflects on a cobblestone road near campus. 4 Victoria Scheibe’s bike sits outside the flat she is living in for the semester with students from other U.S. Christian colleges and universities.





very different politically than me,” DeFonce said. “It was significant because we were able to really dig deep and learn how our experiences and worldviews have helped shape our religious, cultural and moral philosophies.” Like Scheibe, DeFonce lived with a diverse group of students from other Christian universities. Dr. Peter Baker, the director of the American Studies program, said one of the goals of the semester is for participants “to cultivate a greater awareness of—and capacity to respectfully evaluate, live, and lead amidst—the diversity of political perspectives and theological traditions in the church.” “We’re not here to change anyone’s mind from one political or theological perspective to another,” Baker said. “Serving an incredibly diverse CCCU constituency, our role is not to show preference, but rather teach students the leadership lessons of what it means to be in community where important differences do exist.” Baker said throughout the semester, students are challenged by answering big questions to understand that “differences do not have to lead to disunity.” “We all agree that we want our faith in Christ to shape our perspective and performance in the professional world, but why do earnest Christians come to different conclusions?” he asked. “How do we ‘love one another’ despite these differences and remain unified in our public witness as the people of God?” DeFonce said tackling those questions resulted in more compassion and confidence. “I got to see how Bible-believing people have formed political philosophies very different than my own,” he explained. “Ultimately, it was a great way to communicate well with Christians who may have a different view of politics. It’s an opportunity to better articulate and present my own worldview while gleaning from other people’s worldviews.” DeFonce also took away another more

mbu magazi ne  25  



m bu tr avel stud i es

Daniel DeFonce, ’13, poses for a photo beside the Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool located on the National Mall in Washington D.C. DeFonce spent last spring living in D.C. as part of the Best Semester’s American Studies Program. MBU students, along with English Instructor Kelly Leavitt, pose for a photo in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The stop in Paris was part of a two-week literature tour in London and Paris. This summer, Leavitt is preparing to lead students on a travel study excursion throughout Spain.

tangible benefit: real life experience working and networking with D.C.’s movers and shakers. Providing students with opportunities for career opportunities has long been an objective of the program, although, in today’s climate, it has never been more important, Baker said. “Employers want to know that you can apply what you’ve learned, that you can work collaboratively and under pressure,” Baker explained. “[The D.C. program] is designed to challenge students to produce through their internships, our professional mentorship program, and our client-based business and public policy programs.” Kim said preparing students for future professions is a prerogative of all of Best Semester’s programs. “Whether in Washington, DC or Coimbatore, India, BestSemester encourages students to engage with local people and the community. In doing so, students have the opportunity to gain knowledge and insight into relevant issues, increase personal awareness, gain cultural sensitivity, and hone cross-cultural communication and problem-solving skills,” Kim said. “Students need to be able to articulate benefits and provide examples of skills learned while studying abroad in order to distinguish themselves in the competitive job search and interview process.” DeFonce plans to move back to the nation’s capitol with the goal of making a career out of influencing public policy. He’s confident his experiences last semester have given him a leg up in a fiercely competitive environment. One thing’s certain: When he returns to D.C., he’ll do so with confidence and conviction

26  mbu m agazine

africa Uganda—Uganda Studies Program (usp)  argentina Córdoba—The Center for Cross Cultural Study  australia Brisbane—Australia Studies Center austria Vienna  china · Hong   Kong—Hong Kong Baptist University (hkbu)  · Shanghai,   Beijing, Xi’an, and Xiamena— China Studies Program Beijing costa rica Latin American Studies Program

1 but also with a deeper appreciation for those who are championing political ideologies much different than his own. “This opportunity gave me a better understanding of how Christians can have such stark political preferences but can still love and appreciate one another,” he said.

cuba Havana—The Center for Cross Cultural Study india Coimbatore, Tamil Nadua—India Studies Program (isp) israel Jerusalem—Middle East Studies Program (mesp) jordan Amman

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness — mark twain—

Jeanette Rock, a senior psychology major, had never been out of the country before. And while she knew she wanted to study abroad during her time at MBU, a semester-long program didn’t seem like the perfect fit. A two-week long literature and theater tour through London and Paris, however, was an opportunity Rock couldn’t resist. MBU offers a host of short-term travel study opportunities aimed at exposing students to intercultural opportunities. English Instructor Kelly Leavitt guided Rock and other peers last summer throughout Europe, exposing them to a bevy of historic and culturally rich locations associated with

mexico Guadalajara spain · Seville—The   Center for Cross Cultural Study · Alicante—The   Center for Cross Cultural Study switzerland Geneva  thailand Hua Hin/Cha-am  the netherlands Leiden the united kingdom Grantham—Harlaxton College Oxford—The Scholars’ Semester in Oxford Oxford Summer Program    · London—Regent’s American College London

literature and theater. The trip was preceded by a seminar aimed at educating the students of the significance on the historic and culturally rich locations they would view. Leavitt, who did her graduate work in England, is convinced that study abroad opportunities—no matter how brief—can change a student’s life. “It made me more open minded to cultures of the world,” Rock said. “I feel like I can see the world from a new perspective.” This summer, Leavitt is planning a similar trip throughout Spain where her group will visit Barcelona, Granada, Costa del Sol, Seville, Madrid and a day trip to Morocco. Rock was the first to sign up for the trip. “It’s certainly been the highlight of my college career,” she said. Students have other short-term travel abroad opportunities at MBU, as well.

the united states    · Washington D.C.    · Martha’s Vineyard—Contemporary Music Center · Los   Angeles Film Studies Program    · Washington Journalism Center (wjc)






DeFonce, who spent last spring interning in Washington, D.C., sits with peers at a congressional hearing inside the capitol. MBU senior Alex Yousef (left) chats with a child living in an orphanage in PortAu-Prince, Haiti. Students have the opportunity to take part in multiple international missions opportunities every year through MBU’s Office of Campus Ministries.

Members of MBU Chorale are set to tour the Czech Republic and Austria this summer, marking the MBU Music Department’s fifth international tour since 2002. The group is set to perform in Prague and Vienna. And while the study of music, literature and theater may be easily associated with Europe’s fanciful culture, one might not automatically think of the continent’s impact on the U.S. criminal justice system. Dr. Loftin Woodiel, assistant professor of criminal justice, has spent the last 10 years traveling the world working with international security operations and interacting with foreign criminal justice agencies. This summer, he’ll lead students on a criminal justice tour, visiting, among other places, the New Scotland Yard and meeting with commissioners who will be briefing students on the criminal justice practices and terrorism opportunities in the United Kingdom. In addition, students will be touring a prison and will even have the rare opportunity to interview British convicts, Woodiel explained. Throughout the week long trip, students will be exposed to key components of the criminal justice field—from criminological theory to investigations and legislation. Students will be challenged by seeing how the systems and processes they’ve been studying about in lectures and textbooks are carried out in a part of the world very different than their own. And as Scheibe, who is set to return to St. Louis in mid-December, can attest that’s one of the biggest advantages of getting out of your comfort zone. “I feel like this opportunity has helped challenge my worldview,” she said. “It has provided an incredible amount of faith strengthening.”• mbu magazi ne  27  

And Now You Know 28  mbu m agazine

From the top down After decades of making fitness a priority in his own life, this University’s longstanding leader has begun sharing his love for planks and push-ups with the mbu community as a certified group exercise instructor.

Here’s some things you might not know about MBU’s longstanding president: He can hold a plank—that grueling isometric ab exercise—for a good five minutes. He can do 81 push-ups within 3 minutes. And as of press time, he had climbed 187,747 floors on his Stairmaster since he started logging his exercises years ago. If it weren’t for those who have worked out alongside President Lacey in the fitness classes he attends twice a week, those little secrets probably would have never made their way into the likes of the MBU magazine. But the truth is, Dr. Lacey has long made fitness a priority in his life—from completing marathons to habitually hitting the gym. Now, the leader of MBU is sharing his love for fitness and health with others. In September, Lacey became certified as a group exercise instructor by the American Fitness Aerobics Association. “Fitness has long been something I have been passionate about,” Lacey said. “I’ve seen its benefits personally and have a desire to help others experience the rewards that come with fitness.” Lacey and his daughter, Brenna, MBU’s fitness coordinator, went through the intensive certification process together. Months of studying and preparation culminated with a lengthy written examination and oral boards—covering the gamut of group fitness genres, from step aerobics to slow lifting. Lacey, whose recent certification can be added to his list of academic degrees including

a PhD and additional studies at Harvard, is currently teaching his first exercise class. His class, held in the University’s Sports and Recreation Complex, is meant for people who don’t regularly exercise. Lacey’s program focuses on introducing group fitness to participants in a non-intimidating way with the goal of keeping them coming back. Lacey remembers going to his first group fitness class at the YMCA some seven years ago. The class’ instructor commissioned participants to do 100 repetitions of every exercise. “I was so sore for the next three day that I could hardly walk,” Lacey recalled. Despite that initiation, Lacey kept coming back—in part because he knows the benefits. “Research shows that there is value in regularly taking part in weight baring activities, particularly as you get older,” he said. “It can help stave off disease, help prevent and reverse preventable illnesses, such as diabetes, and it generally makes you feel better.” Lacey’s class meets from 7:30–8:15 am on Mondays. It gives him just enough time to begin what is sure to be a demanding workweek as the leader of this institution. It’s a routine he’s been doing for the last 19 years, which qualifies him as one of the longest-tenured University presidents in the region. Despite the pressures of the job, he’s remained remarkably healthy over the years—a likely testament to every single one of those 187,747 (and counting) floors he’s climbed. And now you know. • mbu magazi ne  29  

Creating a Culture of Healthy Living With the opening of the Carl and Deloris Petty Sports and Recreation Complex in 2011 came an intentional effort to engage the University community in healthy living. In addition to MBU’s state-of-the-art fitness center, the University’s exercise programming—ranging from yoga to total body training—begins before the sun rises on Monday mornings and goes strong throughout the week. The exercise classes are open to all students, faculty and staff, contributing to a campus that is creating a culture of making personal health a priority. 30  mbu m agazine


simple exercises W I T H B I G PAYO F FS


MBU’s exercise instructors share their favorite basic exercises you can do almost anywhere


Lemon squeezes, also called V-ups, are an effective exercise for toning your core, back and upper thighs. Visualize balancing a lemon on your abdomen and contract your muscles to squeeze the imaginary lemon without using momentum. This intermediate exercise isolates both the upper and lower abdominal muscles for an effective training move that can be incorporated in to your daily routine.




WOMEN WITH WEIGHTS with Brenna Lacey mbu magazi ne  31  



ONE-FOOTED BICEP CURL One-footed bicep curls can help build strength and improve balance. Using a manageable weight, do a traditional bicep curl while raising your opposite leg a few inches off the ground. Make sure to keep your elbows close to your side while slowly bringing the dumbbell to your chest before returning to the starting position.





THE TREE POSE Balancing poses are an excellent way to find your center during times of stress. Balancing poses command balance from both hemispheres of the brain — all faculties of the mind are engaged, soothing the nervous system. This pose also strengthens the

32  mbu m agazine



leg, core and waist. As you push down through your standing leg, you are pulling up and back with your core, centering in the strength of the belly. Breath deeply and calmly, keep your spine long and shoulders relaxed, and remain focused on the breath as you fix your gaze ahead of you.

YOGA with Maddie Webb



THE PUSHUP Pushups are a great exercise to build strength and power for the upper body, and they do not require any special equipment. Proper technique for the pushup is to place hands slightly wider than shoulder-width, place feet hip-width apart or closer but not touching, tuck your elbows, tighten abs and glutes, keep your neck and head in line with the spine in a neutral position, and look down. Lower your body until the chest is about one inch from the floor and push back up.





Intro to Total Body Training 7:30-8:15 a.m. with Dr. Lacey

Yoga 7-7:55 a.m. with Maddie

Women with Weights 12:10-12:55 p.m. with Brenna

Zumba 4:30-5:25 p.m. with Britney




Restorative Yoga 7-7:55 a.m. with Maddie Beginner Yoga 12-1 p.m. with Christy

Zumba 4:30-5:15 p.m. with Audrey

Total Body Training 12-1:15 p.m. with Denny

Barre Fusion 5-6 p.m. with Cindy

VISIT MOBAP.EDU/FITNESS mbu magazi ne  33  

Impact How a deal made between three freshmen 50 years ago is influencing MBU today.

It was the fall of 1963 and inside a muggy dorm room at Kent State University three determined freshmen from Louisville Central High School made a pact. Whatever the cost, they would not leave their new university without a bachelor’s degree. Back then, earning a college degree was somewhat of a rarity for anyone, particularly if you were an African American man from inner city Louisville. Truth be told, just getting to Kent State in the first place for the trio of high school friends was quite the accomplishment. At that time, the three were among only two-dozen African American students enrolled at the large public university in Ohio. This fall marked 50 years since that promise was made. There was no way of knowing back then, but it would prove to have an impact on a countless number of people­­—including the community of Missouri Baptist University. Dr. Scully Stikes, MBU professor of counseling and sociology, was one of those young men. That moment proved to be defining for Stikes—one that would set him on a winding journey within higher education accented with a persistent conviction to make collegiatelevel learning an opportunity for all. “As Christians, I believe we are called to live and learn with one another in an authentic, meaningful manner,” Stikes said. “We live in a multi-cultural society, but ultimately God is love and we have a responsibility to love all, including ‘the least of these.’” Stikes grew up with his 11 brothers and sisters in the Louisville’s Shepherd Square Federal Housing Project, one of three black housing projects in the city at that time. His family didn’t have much, but his parents, who he describes as “deeply religious people,” were hard working, loving people who refused to accept that they were somehow less important than those who had either money or a different skin color. One time, during a father-son fishing trip, Stikes’ father decided he and his son would no longer be relegated to the “negro” section of the riverbank. The decision to move up river was one he’ll never forget. It

34  mb u m agazine

was scary, but mostly liberating, he recalled. Stikes himself found liberation in education, but it wasn’t easy. As a poor African American in the 40s and 50s, he and his parents knew his opportunity out of poverty would need to come by way of athletics. Growing up, he spent countless hours practicing football plays using an oatmeal box as a makeshift football. Of course, learning was also a priority. Paper was too expensive, so Stikes recalls tearing apart paper grocery bags and using them for homework. His dedication to athletics and learning turned into a football scholarship at Kent State and a brief stint in the NFL. It was at Kent State that, even while feeling the at times painful cost that came with civil rights advances, he would decide his life was “unusually blessed.” “I really began to relate with the struggles Jesus faced,” Stikes said. “In spite of the oppression he endured, He made me believe that right was going to win.” It was there that he learned he came to understand the remarkable power of prayer. It was prayer that helped him draw closer to God during what proved to be one of the most vulnerable times of his life, he recalled. Stikes would go on to receive that undergraduate degree he pledged to attain. But after that, he put his academic career on pause when the Miami Dolphins selected him the in 14th round of the NFL Draft pick. He played several exhibition games, but was ultimately cut from the team. After his time in Florida, Stikes zoned in on academia. He went on to receive two master’s and a doctorate in counseling from Kent State. He became an administrator at several universities across the country, including a stint as a president at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston, Mass. He moved to St. Louis in the 90s to be closer to his wife’s family. Despite his career in academia, he felt called to the ministry. He went to seminary and completed and earned a Master of Divinity. Stikes has pastored a church for the last 17 years, even while teaching full time in MBU’s Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences. He points to a trifecta of factors that have contributed to his successes over the years: An abiding faith, a close family with a strong fatherly influence and a peer support system. It is those formative influencers that Stikes believes can help MBU’s increasingly diverse community. For Dr. Stikes, the need for a good peer support system was never more apparent than his freshman year at Kent State. He was about four hours away from home, but his life in rural Ohio seemed more like a world away from Louisville. This past spring, at Stike’s 50th high school reunion, he relived his time at Kent State with one of the men who he made that pact with so long ago. Turns out, his old friend made good on his pact, too. He went on to receive a Doctor of Philosophy in Labor & Industrial Relations and had a successful career with the U.S. Department of Labor before recently retiring. Their other friend wasn’t able to see his dream of a college education come true. He died tragically and unexpectedly during his junior year in college. Stikes thinks about that friend often. He wonders how he would have made his mark on this world. One thing that never crosses Stikes’ mind, though, is whether or not he would have graduated from Kent State. “Not graduating wasn’t an option to us,” Stikes said. “We were there to support each other. To provide hope to one another.” •

mbu magazi ne  35  

Alumni A

Where are they now? ’70s

David Asher

her 9th #1 song “Calvary’s Cry” recorded

chair and a dance instructor at Ursuline

by Brian Free and Assurance. She also

Academy. Genevieve was a recipient

lives in Bridgeton, Mo. David has

hosted the 14th annual Write About Jesus

of the 40 Under 40 Award from the St.

backpacked through 11 European countries,

Songwriters Workshop this October in St.

Louis Business Journal in 2000 and was

including Great Britannica. David is a retired

Charles, Mo.

nominated for the Peabody Leaders in

(B.A. English Literature ‘75)

Education Award in 2013.

master carpenter and photographic artist.

Donald Renshaw (B.A. Music Education ‘79) lives in Punta

Vernon McClearn

(B.A. Natural Science ‘76) lives in St.

Gorda, Fla. Donald has two sons, Alan

(B.A. Religion ’88) lives in Jackson, Mo.,

Charles, Mo., with his wife, Patty (Parham).

and Franklin. While at MBU, Donald

with his wife. Vernon recently retired after

He participated in Student Council as

participated in concert choir, pit orchestra

22 years of service as a U.S. Army Chaplain.

well as managed the baseball team and

and created sets for musicals. Donald’s

He is currently the pastor of Illmo Church in

basketball stats as a student. He is a family

favorite memory of MBU is traveling with

Scott City, Mo.

physician at Christian Family Medicine in

the concert choir. At age 59, he was called

St. Peters, Mo., and is working with Barnes

by the Lord into ministry and is a current

Jewish St. Peters Hospital through the

student at Moody Seminary pursuing a

medical executive committee.

Master of Divinity.

Aubra Houchin



Chris Ramsey (B.A. Church Music ‘92) lives

in St. Peters, Mo., with his wife, Beth, and


Sue (Paschal) Smith (B.A. Communication ‘78) lives in St.


Charles, Mo., with her husband, John. Her

Genevieve (Sullivan) Woodward

their daughters, Claire (7) and Mya (3). They recently finalized Mya’s adoption and are excited to have her in their family! Chris was active in many groups as a

favorite memory of MBU is bringing her

(B.S. Physical Education ‘87) lives in

student, including Sigma Apple Pi, choir,

4-year-old to a Tuesday class each week,

Eureka, Mo., with her husband, Paul, and

ensemble,chapel worship, choir tour,

and students would sit in the lounge and

her four children, Brian, Margaret, Jessica

My Fair Lady, band, BSU and Ministerial

color with her during Sue’s class! Sue is

and Victoria. She played on the women’s

Alliance. His favorite memories include

a staff songwriter for Universal/Capitol

soccer team during her time at MBU. She is

choir tours that were always a lot of fun,

Christian Music Group and recently had

currently the Performing Arts department

musicals in the “old chapel” and yelling

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36  mb u m agazine


In Guatemala City, Guatemala, MBU alumni

Gabriela Morales is attending medical school

Steven (Christian Ministry ‘12) and Gabriela (Biology

to further serve the Guatemalan people. While the

‘11) Morales are shining as they daily live out their

teachings of MBU’s Natural Sciences professors,

Christian mission in their home country. After

including Dr. Mary Vedamuthu and Dr. Lydia

graduating from MBU, the couple moved back to

Thebeau, continue to serve Gabriela well in

Guatemala to serve as missionaries.

medicine, her instructors’ devotion to the Christian

faith instilled a lasting confidence that faith and

Steven Morales currently teaches Bible courses

at the K-12 school Christian Academy of Guatemala,

science don’t have to conflict.

in addition to serving as the school chaplain. As

the students seek answers about their faith and the

different, their objective is very much the same: to

Bible, Steven relies on the teachings and wisdom

share the gospel with a country they love.

of his MBU professors, including Dr. Terry Chrisope and Dr. Curtis McClain.

“Trout” cheers at basketball games with his Sigma Apple Pi friends. He loves his MBU friends and memories.

Amy (Long) Miller

Kimberly (Hudgens) Burton


David Miller (‘85), and two sons, Carson

A story of shining on.

Sheila (Douglass) Johnston

lives in Denton, Texas., with her husband,

(B.S. Communications ‘95, M.S.E. Sport

Richard. She is a social studies teacher at

Management ‘10, M.A.C. ‘11) lives in

Gainesville State School in Gainesville,

Dallas, N.C., with her husband, Darrell, and


their six children. Sheila and her firstborn child, daughter Hailey (16), were both

(B.S. Elementary Education ‘93) lives in St. Peters, Mo., with her husband, Dr.

While this MBU couple’s work may be quite

diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

Shirley Burton

cancer in the fall of 2012 within two months

(B.A. Religion ‘94) lives in St. Ann, Mo.

of each other. She is done with treatments

and Gage. While at MBU, Amy served as

While at MBU, Shirley was a night student.

and in recovery.

Student Missouri State Teachers Association

Shirley’s favorite memory of MBU is all her

(SMSTA) president, and participated in choir

teachers and classes. Currently Shirley is

and the Baptist Student Union (BSU).

a substitute teacher and is retired from

Amy’s favorite memory from MBU is the

McDonnell Douglas in the Security Office

(B.S. Accounting ‘95, B.S. Business

musical My Fair Lady. Currently, Amy is a

and IBM Security Systems.

Administration ‘95) lives in St. Peters, Mo.,


Victoria (Evans) Peisker

middle school reading teacher in the Fort

with her husband. Victoria is currently

Zumwalt School District.

employed as a benefits manager at Enterprise Holdings.






mbu magazi ne  37  


PR EPA R ED FOR SUCCESS Adam Wilson (’12, Communications) continues

in St. Louis, after Associate Communications

to shine in the pursuit of his dream of

Professor Ray Killebrew persuaded Wilson to

professional acting. Last fall, the new grad

connect with a talent agent.

trekked across the country to Los Angeles to

advance his professional acting career. Within

actors and actresses, Wilson’s commitment to

months, Wilson had appeared on AMC’s Mad

Christ sets him apart from others.

Men and ABC Family’s Switched at Birth.

me where I am, and I give Him the glory for it,”

The influence of theatre directors Joy

“I am so thankful and blessed God has put

Powell and Kasey Cox encouraged and pushed

said Wilson. “I want to honor God with who I

Wilson to hone his acting skills, ultimately

am before anything else.”

preparing him for the roles in Los Angeles. Wilson began his professional acting career


While Los Angeles is filled with aspiring

Jason Soroski


A story of shining on.

James Ramsey

was a member of Spirit Wing as a student,

(B.A. Church Music ‘96, M.S.E Classroom

(B.S. Behavioral Science ’97) lives in Adams,

and her favorite memory is Lee Sisney and

Teaching ‘04) lives in Katy, Texas, with his

Tenn. with his wife, Jennifer (Nord, ‘00).

Tony Thompson screaming “Spirit Wing...

wife, Jana (Yates), and their five children,

James’ favorite memory of MBU is meeting

Comin’ through!” just like Ace Ventura

Rachael, Ruth, Hezekiah, Jena Grace and

his wife, Jennifer. He earned his Doctor of

whenever SW returned from traveling.

Isaiah. While at MBU, Jason participated in

Ministry from Erskine Theological Seminary

Jacqueline is currently a member of First

Sigma Apple Pi, Student Government, choir,

on May 13, 2013. James graduated Air

Baptist Church of Harvester where she and

newspaper, Ministerial Alliance,

Assault School and is now assigned to

her husband serve in the kids’ ministry.

the Animaniacs and was senior class

the 101st Airborne (Air Assault) Division.

Jacqueline is also a member of Evidence

president. Jason’s favorite memory at

Currently, James is employed as a U.S.

Sings, a Christian singing group. The group

MBU is touching “The Rock” at the

Army chaplain.

released its first album, New Heart Coming,

intersection of Dink Marler and One

in 2012 and is currently working on a

College Drive on the way to class in

second album — an all acapella CD!

is a worship astor at Calvary

Jacqueline (ThompsonSeverns) Foley

Baptist Church of Rosenberg, Texas.

(B.A. Music Education ‘99) lives in

honor of Dink Marler. Currently, Jason


Wentzville, Mo., with her husband, Travis,


38  mbu m agazine



Miriam (Like) Dapron (B.S. Psychology

daughters Natalie and Katherine, and a

‘02, B.S. Human Services ‘02) lives in

new baby on the way in March 2014! She

Kirkwood, Mo., with her husband, David.







Tia Washington

While at MBU, Miriam participated in the

MBU, Kevin played JV volleyball and

BSU and MBU Chorale. Miriam’s favorite

sang with Allusion and the Chamber

memory from MBU is everything about

Singers. Kevin graduated from Saint Louis

St. Louis, Mo., and works as an account

it! She loved the fall semester because of

University School of Law, passed the

services coordinator for the St. Louis Rams.

all the activities like Welcome Weekend,

Missouri Bar exam and is now working as

She became a first-time home owner in late

the fall musical, Hanging of the Green and

an associate with Blase & Associates, LLC,

August 2013.

Finals Feast. Miriam believes MBU was

where he drafts complex estate planning

one of the best things that could have

documents including trusts, wills, powers of

happened to her as a young adult. Miriam

attorney and health care directives. Kevin

currently works as a trust specialist at

and Kate recently celebrated their daughter

Edward Jones.

Evie’s third birthday with a party at the

Secondary ‘09) lives in St.Louis, Mo. with

family farm!

his wife, Monet. He is a pastor at Koinonia

Teaching ‘10) lives in Ballwin, Mo., with his

Brenna (Potthast) Ochterbeck

wife and three daughters. While at MBU,

(Social Sciences ‘07) lives in Cape

Jason participated in men’s wrestling and

Girardeau, Mo., with her husband. She

cross country.

recently graduated nursing school and is working as a registered nurse at Southeast Missouri Hospital.

Gina (Reese) Staley

(B.S. Sport Management ‘08) lives in

Merrimon Boyd (M.A. of Education Administration,

as a Special Education Teacher at Seigel Elementary in the St. Louis Public School District.

Jason Gilliam (MBA ‘09) lives in Farmington, Mo., with his wife, Dana, and their daughter, Grace. His favorite memories of MBU are those with

(B.S. Elementary Education ‘06, M.A. in Counseling ‘11) lives in Pevely, Mo., with


Baptist Temple. Merrimon is employed

Jason Lievanos (B.A Social Sciences ‘06, M.S.E. Classroom





Kendall (Vawter) Tanner

Professor Bill Hutchings. Since completing his MBA, Jason has become the assistant

her husband, Jonathan, and sons, Malachi

(B.S. Elementary Education ‘07) lives in

to the President/CEO at Southeast

and Isaac, who was born in June. While at

Sullivan, Mo., with her husband, Craig (‘02),

Missouri Behavioral Health and

MBU, Gina participated in FCA, resident life

sons, Josiah and Benjamin, and daughter,

completed his master’s degree in Health

and cheerleading.

Kristen. While at MBU, Kendall was an

Administration at Webster University in

administrative assistant in Admissions

2012 to focus more on the specific needs

and Career Placement. Kendall’s favorite

within his specific organization.

Kevin Leslie

memories of MBU are Homecoming Week

(B.A. Sports Management ‘07) lives in

and living in the dorms. Currently, Kendall

Chesterfield, Mo., with his wife, Kate, and

is a stay-at-home mom and an associate

their daughter, Evie. During his time at

pastor’s wife.

mbu magazi ne  39  

Alumni A




Jacob Hackerson (B.S. Applied Management ‘09) ) lives in

Kasey is the artistic director of Acting Out!

etc. He also ran sound for almost every

and an adjunct instructor of theatre at MBU.

play/musical during his 5 years at MBU and was in the Schoolhouse Rock student-

St. Charles, Mo., with his wife, Katie. They were recently married on May 18, 2013

produced musical. His favorite memory

in St. Louis. He currently works as the

Christy (Stiller) Friesen

I-9 implementation manager at Equifax

(B.A. Human Services ‘10) lives in

(English Comp 1 with Mrs. Fuquay) the most

Workforce Solutions.

Manchester, Mo., with her husband Matt.

beautiful girl he’d ever seen sat behind him.

While at MBU, Christy was the softball team

They were both wearing Relient K shirts so

manager. After graduation in 2010, Christy

they started talking right away. They were

got married and is currently a lead trainer at

married less than two years later and have

Lafayette Industries.

now been married for more than 6 years.


Kasey (Bartley) Cox (B.M. Musical Theatre ‘10)

of MBU is in his very first class at MBU

lives in Jackson, Mo., with her husband,

He is the chief operating officer/executive

Jordan (‘10), and son, Noah. While at MBU,

recruiter at Gruen Search Consultants as


Kasey participated in MBU Theatre, the

Nathan Gruen

well as a worship leader at River of Life

MBU Chorale, Chamber Singers, Allusion

(B.A. Worship Arts ‘10, B.S. Technical

and InCharactre. Kasey’s favorite memory

Communications ‘10) lives in Greenfield, Ill.,

of MBU is when her husband proposed

with his wife, Kacey (Trimm), and their sons,

to her after a dress rehearsal of Bye-Bye

Titus (2) and Luke (newborn). He played

Birdie. She recently founded Acting Out!, a

electric guitar in the Jazz Band and acoustic

(B.A. Elementary Education ‘10, B.S.

theatre company in Jackson, Mo. Currently,

for the Worship Ministry Team and worked

Behavioral Sciences ‘10, MBA ‘13) lives in

for Special Events running sound, lighting,

Ellisville, Mo., with her husband, Jacob (‘10).

Family Church in Alton, Ill.


Julie (Leslie) Hammack

PR EPA R ED FOR SUCCESS Luke Sinak (‘09 B.S. Business Administration)

Sinak’s years at MBU were spent developing

continues a path of success as the purchasing

a wide array of knowledge and experiences

manager at Four Seasons — St. Louis. While

he continues to use everyday. Dr. Karen

working at Missouri’s only five diamond hotel,

Kannenberg, along with other faculty,

Sinak leads a team in charge of planning,

was instrumental in Sinak’s professional

forecasting, taking inventory and purchasing all

development. “She (Kannenberg) said be

items — from ball point pens to the luxurious

organized and be yourself,” said Sinak.

decor throughout the hotel. In addition, Sinak

“I’ve taken these things and brought them

trains new employees to provide premium client

with me and that has been a big help.”

service and he leads the hotel’s innovation team.

40  mbu m agazine

A story of shining on.



Julie participated in Allusion, the Chamber Singers, MBU Ringers and Student




Dustin Stockmann


is an All-American middle linebacker and tight end.

(B.S. Elementary Education ’10, M.S.E.

Activities during her time at MBU. She

Curriculum and Instruction ’12) lives in

recently completed her Master in Business

O’Fallon, Mo. Dustin’s favorite memory

Administration in the summer of 2013. She

of MBU is meeting all the wonderful staff

Katie (Peats) Drobina

currently works as the assistant director

members that helped him throughout both

(B.P.S. Education ‘11) lives in St. Louis,

of Student Activities at Missouri Baptist

of his degrees. In 2011-2012, Dustin was

Mo., with her husband, Todd, and newborn


selected as a National Science Teacher

son, Levi Joseph. While at MBU, Katie

Associate-New Science Teacher Fellowship

participated in the Chamber Singers, MBU

winner. Currently, Dustin is teaching in

Chorale, InCharactre and MBU Ringers.

Hazelwood School District. He is finishing

Katie graduated summa cum laude from

of Arts in Counseling ‘10) lives in St. Louis,

his third year teaching chemistry and

the University of Missouri—Columbia in

Mo., with her husband, Peter, and their

starting his fourth year teaching physics.

May 2013 with a Master of Social Work

Katherine Muschinske (Master children Nicole, Erik and Lianna. She is the

degree and a Military Social Work graduate

new administrative assistant for tutoring

certificate. Katie and her husband moved

services in the Academic Success Center F at MBU as of August 2013. She is excited

Andrea (Trask) O’Shia (B.S. Child Development ‘11) ) lives in

current job as a family support partner

to be back at MBU in a role to assist

Granite City, Ill. with her husband, Andrew.

at the The Children’s Home Society of

students to Shine On.

They married in March 2013 and are


back to St. Louis in June to began her

expecting their first child in May 2014.


While at MBU, Andrea played volleyball

Nicole (Lange) Perkins

and worked as a barista at the Perk.


Matthew Salzer

(B.S. Elementary Education ‘10) lives in

Andrea’s favorite memory of MBU is

(B.S. Social Sciences ‘11) lives in Orange,

Oakville, Mo. with her husband, Nathan

working at the Perk with awesome friends.

Calif. During his time at MBU, Matt

(‘08). While at MBU, Nicole participated in

Andrea currently works at a daycare in

competed with the Men’s Wrestling Team,

Student Government, Student Activities,

Edwardsville, Ill.

was a member of Student Activities, a

College Conservatives Secretary and ASCD.

three-time participant in Mr. PH and was

Nicole’s favorite memory of MBU is going

a member of the inaugural Resident Hall

with the Student ASCD Chapter to San


Antonio, Texas, for the national conference.

Brittany Dorman

Association board. His favorite memories

(B.S. Sports Management ‘11) lives in Tulsa,

include bonding with his fellow Spartans

Nicole and Nathan bought their first

Okla. She played basketball during her

at campus events. He recently started a

house in 2010 and have been renovating an

years at MBU. Brittany currently works as a

job writing for producing

outdated “60s Party House” into a modern

program assistant for the Special Olympics:

articles on the MMA industry.

haven that they love. Currently, Nicole is a

Oklahoma and says she would not have her

remedial paraprofessional and Director of

job without the help and encouragement

the Children’s Ministry at Hope Vineyard

of Dr. Pierce. Brittany also plays semi-pro

Patricia Carmitchel


women’s tackle football for Tulsa Threat and

(B.S. Unified Science ‘12, B.S. Secondary

mbu magazi ne  41  






Abbie (Leslie) Chastain

Education ‘12) lives in Hannibal, Mo. While

soccer team. He is currently employed as a

at MBU, Patricia played on the women’s

(B.A. Public Relations ‘12, B.A. Broadcast

videographer for the MBU Communicatons

basketball team and women’s golf team.

Media ‘12) lives in Chesterfield, Mo., with


She recently spent a year teaching in Illinois

her husband, Aaron (‘11), and they are

and is now teaching at Hannibal High

expecting their first child in February 2014.

Kayla Rea

School. She was recently named interim

While at MBU, Abbie participated in the

(B.S. Criminal Justice ‘13) lives in South

head girls basketball coach.

MBU Ringers, Faithful, Closer, InCharactre,

Roxana, Ill. Kayla received her minor in

MBU Theatre and Student Activities.

Behavioral Science in 2013. While attending

Abbie’s favorite memory from MBU is

MBU, Kayla earned a place on the Honor

Miranda (Buechting) Carter

meeting her future husband, Aaron, in

Roll at the Lewis and Clark Regional

(B.S. Behavioral Science ‘12) lives in Festus,

Principles of Journalism

Learning Center she was attending from

Mo., with her husband. They have recently

in the fall of ‘09. Abbie is currently the

2010-2013. Currently, Kayla is a sales

become new homeowners.

alumni engagement coordinator at Missouri

associate at Wal-Mart in Wood River, Ill.

Baptist University.

Catherine (Reed) Grant


(M.A. Teaching ‘12) lives in St. Louis, Mo.

Patrick McGuire

(B.A. Business Management ‘13) lives in

(B.S. Social Sciences ‘13, B.S. Secondary

DeSoto, Mo., with her husband, Mike, and

children and one grandchild. Her favorite

Education ‘13) lives in Moberly, Mo. His

her three daughters. While at MBU, Lisa

memories of MBU include graduation and

favorite memory of MBU is Dr. Buetler

participated in the Alpha Chi honor society.

all the great classes. Catherine is currently

threatening to throw his shoe at his class.

Lisa’s favorite memory from MBU is any

an instructor at the Extreme Institute by

Patrick is a first-year social studies teacher

class with Professor Hutchings.

Nelly and St. Louis Public Schools.

at Moberly High School, teaching American

with her husband, Oliver. Catherine has four

Government and World History as well


Lisa (Damuth) Sherfy

Andrea Seabaugh

as helping coach boy’s basketball as a

Justin Young

volunteer assistant.

(M.A. of Educational Administration,

(B.A. Religious Education ‘12) lives in

Secondary ’13) ) lives in Wentzville, Mo.,

Manhattan, Kan. While at MBU, Andrea

with his wife. He is currently teaching at Fort

participated in basketball, A Mighty Passion (AMP) Ministries and Campus


Devin Perry (B.S. in Accounting, B.A. in Marketing, ‘13,)

Crusade for Christ (CRU). She is currently

lives in Ballwin, Mo.. While at MBU, Devin

an intern with CRU at Kansas State in

was a member of Enactus/SIFE and the

Manhattan, Kan.

Zumwalt East High School.




42  mb u m agazine


Chelsey Gammon ‘15 Public Relations and Journalism major

As we unwrap gifts and wrap up another year, this is the time when we think most of others. The familiar saying reminds us it is “better to give than to receive.” As the year winds to a close, take time to make sure you have given to yourself by giving to others. The remaining weeks of the year give you a final opportunity to balance your income and giving for the tax year. When you give a gift to a qualified nonprofit organization, like Missouri Baptist

University, you receive an income tax deduction. Even if your income is less this year than it was last year, you may still want to offset it with a tax deductible contribution. Your gift can go a long way toward helping students. From scholarships, to classroom technology, to other learning tools such as microscopes, students will benefit from your generosity. This Christmas season consider a gift to MBU that will bless you, and our students.

For more information please contact us at 314.392.2305 or visit

mbu magazi ne  43  

Missouri Baptist University One College Park Drive Saint Louis, MO 63141-8698

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hav e you be e n ? We asked MBU students, faculty and staff to send us pictures of the world through their own eyes. Here are samples of the many responses we received.

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MBU Magazine Winter 2013  

MBU Magazine Winter 2013  

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