The Huntington College Board of Trustees voted October 14 to change the name of the institution to Huntington University.

The campus will continue to operate as Huntington College for the next several months, says President G. Blair Dowden. A task force will be appointed to manage the transition to the new name, which will probably occur in mid-2005.

“Huntington will continue to be an institution that stresses the Christian faith and the liberal arts as foundational for our educational program,‚Äù Dowden said. ‚ÄúOur name may change; our mission will not.”

The decision comes after a year-long study.

  • Dr. Dave Rahn, professor of ministry and missions, had an article published in the September 2004 edition of Decision magazine. It is called “Church for the ‘Unchurched’ Kids: Tackling the cultural gap between church and unchurched kids.”
  • The Wall Street Journal ran a front-page feature on Jim and Lizzie O’Donnell, with mention about Jim’s book, Letters for Lizzie.
  • Huntington College has been formally approved to offer Master’s programs in Education and Counseling, and has been authorized to offer academic programs at off-campus sites within an expanded 100-mile radius.
  • The Huntington College campus radio station, 105.5 FM WQHC, has been accessed by online listeners in well over 100 regions and countries during the past six months. That includes the Americans (North, Central, and South), Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa.

Preeminence

On Saturday, May 15, Huntington College honored 206 graduates of the Class of 2004. HC’s 106th commencement services took place at 3 p.m. on the front lawn of campus. Dr. KunMo Chung, a licensed nuclear engineer and experienced science administrator from South Korea, delivered the commencement address.

Preeminence, a group of talented student musicians from Huntington College (see photo above), is touring the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions this summer. They will present about 60 performances between May 29 and August 14 in churches, camps, and conferences.

Huntington College has approved several new programs.

Master of Education. HC plans to begin offering the Master of Education degree in 2005. Master of Education concentrations will be available in Elementary Curriculum and Instruction, Elementary Reading, Early Adolescent Education, and Adolescent and Young Adult Education.

Business: Economics and Finance. Starting next fall, HC will offer a new bachelor’s degree in Economics and Finance. The program will prepare students for employment in fields such as financial services, banking, insurance, risk management and real estate. Since 1997, business program enrollment has grown 37 percent. Over that same time period, enrollment in the economics track has grown over 300 percent. The new Bachelor of Science degree in Economics and Finance is designed to meet this demand and serve greater numbers of students.

Digital Media Arts. In the fall of 2004, the Communication Department will launch a new Bachelor of Science degree in Digital Media Arts. It will prepare students for careers in web design and publishing, disc authoring, television production, film making, photography and image editing, illustration, 2D and 3D animation, advertising, and design.

Political Studies. Also beginning this is a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Studies program. It will prepare students for careers in public administration, the legal professions, teaching, public service, and political research and writing.

Social Work. Huntington College will launch a bachelor’s degree in social work in the fall semester of 2005.

Sports Ministry. A bachelor’s degree in Recreation and Sports Ministry will begin this fall. It will meet the needs of recreation and sports ministries in the local church, youth organizations, and other related agencies.

Worship Leadership (fall 2005). A Bachelor of Science degree in Worship Leadership will offer students a unique combination of ministry leadership preparation and specialized skill development in such fields as music, multimedia, and theater.

In addition to the seven new academic programs to be launched in 2004 and 2005, Huntington College is currently studying the feasibility of developing a new undergraduate degree in nursing.

HC held its annual appreciation dinner for faculty and staff May 11. Randy Neuman was recognized as Staff Member of the Year. Neuman, the College’s associate director of library services and director of the United Brethren Historical Center, was chosen by faculty and staff members. He has served the College for 22 years.

Christianity Today magazine named Huntington College one of “The 50 Best Christian Places to Work” in a report of its second annual national workplace survey. Huntington College placed third in the mid-size Higher Education category. Other finalists in this group, which includes colleges and universities with 151-300 employees, included Dallas Theological Seminary (Dallas, Texas), Belhaven College (Jackson, Miss.), The Master’s College (Santa Clarita, Calif.), Westmont College (Santa Barbara, Calif.), and Simpson College (Redding, Calif.).

The focus of this year’s survey was to find Christian companies where leaders strive to create a climate of trust. Best Christian Workplaces Institute (BCWI), which administered the survey, polled more than 10,000 employees from 107 organizations in a variety of industries. The process began by soliciting self-nominations from interested organizations that had more than 15 employees and a Christian mission. Employees in these organizations were then asked to complete an online survey examining their company’s practices. One hundred twenty-two Huntington College employees participated in this survey.

An independent panel of judges weighed together the averages from the employee scores, the participation rates of every organization’s employees in the survey and information from the management profiles. The finalists in 12 categories are listed in the May 2004 issue of Christianity Today.

Two Huntington College professors recently published books which you can find in local bookstores or order from the UB bookstore.

  • Letters for Lizzie, by James O’Donnell, tells about his wife’s battle with cancer and heart disease.
  • The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Christianity, by Jeffrey Webb, is a comprehensive overview of Christianity written as part of the popular “Complete Idiots” series.

Dr. Jeffrey Webb, a history professor at Huntington College, is the author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Christianity, which will be released in March. The book looks at the differences among Christian denominations today.

“I discovered through the process of writing that I could not do this without going back through the history of the church and identifying reasons for the different conflicts and schisms that produced the denominational divisions, Webb recalled. “Yet, I also tried to emphasize the points of agreement and unity among Christians.

Several Huntington College communication students received awards in the 2004 Intercollegiate National Religious Broadcasting (INRB) media competition at the National Religious Broadcasting Convention in Charlotte, N.C., February 13-17.

Each year students under the direction of Dr. Lance Clark, assistant professor of communication, enter various projects in the INRB media competition. This year, Huntington students won four first-place awards in nine categories.

Jaymie Shafer, a junior broadcast communication major from Canton, Ohio, placed first in the Al Sanders Essay Contest, and received a $1000 grant. Her essay, Cinematic Theology, compared the different approaches to Christianity in film. She focused on the movies Bruce Almighty and The Lord of the Rings.

Paco Michelson, a senior Bible and religion major from Huntington, Ind., and Jonathan Bordeaux, a senior broadcast communication major from Roanoke, Ind., placed first in the Television Field Production category with their production, Hannahs Cross. The short film dealt with religious persecution in foreign countries.

Michelson also won first place in the Radio Drama category with The Hiding Place, a production that served as an adaptation from the life story of Corrie Ten Boone.

Huntington College announced a total fall enrollment of 980. That includes 838 undergraduates, 89 adults students in its EXCEL Program, and 53 students in the Graduate School of Christian Ministries. This is down slightly from last year’s enrollment of 1016 (the graduating class last spring was a record 234). Retention is good: 77% of last year’s freshmen returned for the sophomore year–among the highest figures in recent years. Overall, 85% of students eligible to return do so.

Homecoming is being held this weekend. It will draw attention to the 100-year anniversary of powered flight, in tribute to the Wright family. Bishop Milton Wright, father of the Wright brothers, was instrumental in founding Huntington College. As Bishop, he laid the cornerstone of the school’s first building in August 1896, and offered the prayer of dedication for the college in September 1897. A residence hall, Wright Hall, is named after Bishop Wright.

Thirty-two students are enrolled in “Perspectives,” a course on world missions which the US Center for World Mission sponsors at various locations throughout the country. The class at Huntington College started January 7 and is running for 15 weeks, meeting for three hours every Tuesday night.