Huntington University is preparing to reopen the campus for the fall semester. All campus activities were suspended in March because of the Covid-19 pandemic. But they’ve been working hard to prepare for a resumption of campus life, which is so important to the HU experience. Students are returning to campus, and classes will start August 31. The plan is to hold in-person classes until Thanksgiving, and then go online for the rest of the semester and January Term. Many other colleges are following the same plan.

In March 2020, Dr. Sherilyn Emberton, President of Huntington University, appointed a Covid-19 Task Force to examine HU’s response to the pandemic. Work groups have been studying the various aspects of college life, with the goal of maintaining a quality academic experience while practicing the highest level of healthy best practices. Many campus protocols and procedures have been put in place. You can read them here.

The University is diligently trying to cover all of the bases…and there are many.

The Centers for Disease Control has recommended using outdoor venues. With that in mind, Huntington University has raised six tents located throughout the campus to provide additional classroom space and social gathering space. These tents will provide safer venues for students, faculty, and staff to still enjoy the HU experience.

The United Brethren church made the tents possible. President Sherilyn Emberton partnered with the UB National Office and denominational churches, and UB people came through to fund the tents. The response was overwhelming.

Although classes don’t start until August 31, a number of student leaders, athletes, and others are already on campus. They began returning August 13. All of the fall sports (soccer, cross country, tennis, golf, and volleyball) are proceeding as scheduled, with competition set to begin in early September. The rest of the students will arrive next week.

In addition to creating more outdoor spaces, the college has posted clear signage in buildings throughout the campus to provide direction for students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Operational guidelines and protocols were developed, and physical preparations were completed. Those include dividers in lab spaces, personal protective equipment supplied to students and employees, classroom capacities limited, and furniture rearranged to ensure distancing.

Keeping Covid-19 out will require a lot of vigilance, but a small school like Huntington has a fighting chance of making it happen. Let’s pray toward that end.

HU Students in the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program.

Huntington University received accreditation for its Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program. This is the nation’s first accredited OTA bachelor’s degree program.

“As the first accredited OTA program in the country, we are able to provide education that is cutting-edge, evidence-based, and state-of-the-art,” said Dr. Nicole Scheiman, OTA department chair and program director. “We can provide advanced education in clinical practice, leadership, and professionalism.”

The five-year accreditation was granted by ACOTE, the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education. Accreditation enables students to take the exam needed to work as a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA).

Having the degree at the bachelor’s level prepares Huntington University graduates for leadership positions that require a bachelor’s degree. Graduates will have a competitive edge in the healthcare arena.

Huntington University’s Class of 2020 will be the first class of students in the nation to graduate with Bachelor of Science degrees in Occupational Therapy Assistant.

Kory Alford has been hired as coach of the Huntington University men’s basketball team. He is the son of Indiana legend Steve Alford, who won the Mr. Basketball award in high school and went on to lead Indiana University to the 1987 NCAA championship.

Kory played under his father at both New Mexico and UCLA, reaching the NCAA tournament all four years (and the Sweet Sixteen twice). He also played on two state championship teams as a high schooler in New Mexico. Most recently, he has been part of the coaching staff at the University of Nevada-Reno.

Said HU Athletic Director Lori Culler, “He brings tremendous knowledge of the game, strong recruiting connections, Indiana family ties and a faith-infused approach to coaching that will enable him to hit the ground running.

Kory said he has always dreamed of leading a basketball program, and it’s truly special being able to lead such a program in his home state of Indiana. “God has blessed me throughout my career in this sport, and I consider it a great privilege to be able to contribute to the Christ-centered mission of Huntington University.”

The video above is a very informative interview with Kory Alford. At the 4:15 mark, he begins telling his faith journey.

 

Tomorrow, November 21, is Day of Giving for Huntington University. The goal is to raise $100,000 on this one day. The Forester Fund supports 93% of students with scholarship assistance.

Keep these matching gift challenges in mind when you make your gift to Huntington University.

Dollar for Dollar: The first $5,000 in total gifts will unlock a matching gift of equal amount. Double your gift by giving early in the day!

First 50: Start the day off right by being one of the first 50 gift-givers. The 50th gift of the day will unlock a $15,000 matching gift!

Foresters Across the Country: Turn your part of the United States green by being the first from your state to make a gift. Every time five states turn green, we’ll unlock $1,500 in matching gifts.

Brand New: New to the Forester Fund? This is the challenge for you! The first 20 first-time gifts on Day of Giving will unlock a $5,000 matching gift.

Set the Pace: Lead the way by making a gift of $1,000 or more. Your gift will set the pace for Day of Giving and grant you membership to the Pacesetter Society, complete with special perks throughout the year. Even better, the first 10 Pacesetter-level gifts will unlock a $10,000 matching gift.

Tomorrow, November 21, a giving form will be available on this page.

L-r: Connie Bonner, Luke Fetters, Jerry Davis, Kay Schwob.

Huntington University announced these personnel changes during the past few months.

Connie Bonner was promoted to Vice President for Finance and Treasurer, effective March 1. She was the Controller for the university 1991-1998, and in 2013 returned to HU as Controller and Director of Financial Services.

Dr. Luke Fetters was named Dean of Graduate and Professional Programs. He had served as interim dean since 2018. He is an HU alumn, an ordained UB minister, and a former UB missionary in Macau. He has filled a variety of roles at HU–teaching undergraduate classes in the ministry and missions department, teacher and curriculum writer for the EXCEL and professional programs, professor of graduate ministry courses, and founding director of HU’s Institute for TESOL Studies. More recently, he used his expertise in intercultural communication and ministry to develop HU’s Global Studies office.

Dr. Jerry Davis returned to the faculty as Director of Clinical Experience. He taught in the graduate counseling program 2007-2017, and has spent the past two years as clinical programs manager at Parkview Behavior Health in Fort Wayne, Ind. He is looking forward to sharing with students the new clinical insights and experiences he has gained.

Kay Schwob was named Director of Development. She has worked at Huntington University for 18 years, including the past two years in the Advancement Office as senior director of advancement operations, and most recently as interim director of advancement.

Dr. Robert Hale

Dr. Robert E. Hale, Professor Emeritus of Physics, died March 27, 2019, at age 90. Dr. Hale served Huntington University for 37 years beginning in 1961. Well loved by students and faculty, he was voted Professor of the Year twice.

Huntington University has launched a doctoral program in Occupational Therapy at its campus in Peoria, Ariz. It will share space with HU’s Arizona Center for Digital Media Arts.

This is an expansion of the highly successful doctoral program based at the Parkview Randallia campus in Fort Wayne, Ind. The current program already attracts students from the West Coast.

The Arizona program will begin classes in January 2021 for 32 students. In the meantime, the university is making arrangements to hire a full-time program director, academic fieldwork coordinator, faculty, and an administrative assistant.

Members of the South Africa team. Christia Whitacre is in the upper right.

In May 2018, Arthur Wilson, Dean of Spiritual Life and campus pastor at Huntington University, approached UB Global about the possibility of a trip to Africa with students. We thought of Impact Africa right away, which has a solid program for short-term teams. UB Global missionary Nichie Parish Stonall serves with Impact Africa in Johannesburg.

The group of 18 traveled during Huntington’s J-term. Christia Whitacre, whose husband Kevin is pastor of Anchor UB church (Fort Wayne, Ind.), came as one of two chaperones.

And, congratulations to Nichie and Chris Stonall, who were married in South Africa back in July and were able to celebrate with US family and friends in December!

At the Harvest Celebration.

On November 29, the Haupert Institute for Agricultural Studies hosted its third annual Harvest Celebration in Huntington University’s Habecker Dining Commons. Mitch Frazier, CEO of Reynolds Farm Equipment, was the featured speaker. His presentation focused on historic waves of innovation in the agriculture industry.

Reynolds Farm Equipment began providing agricultural equipment in Fishers, Indiana, in 1955. Since then, the business has expanded to include locations throughout Indiana and in Kentucky and Ohio and has become a leading equipment dealer.

“This year, we topped attendance records and continue to attract more regional voices in the agribusiness community,” said Dr. Sherilyn Emberton, president of Huntington University. “We are honored to host Mitch as our guest speaker. He represents the integration of agriculture and technology in providing our farming industry with emerging tools for use in crop and animal production.”

In addition to Frazier’s keynote address, the Harvest Celebration included a complimentary dinner, a recognition of the Haupert Institute’s sponsors and remarks from current Huntington University agribusiness students and members of the Ag Advisory Council.

The Haupert Institute for Agricultural Studies opened in the fall of 2015 and promotes a Christian perspective on agriculture which recognizes the responsibility to be good stewards of God’s creation. The Institute is intended to help meet the growing need for agriculture professionals and offers eight concentrations in agribusiness as well as an agricultural education degree.

November 15 was Huntington University’s second annual Day of Giving. With the help of 142 donors (up from 130 in 2017), they raised $76,675 for the Forester Fund (the goal was $75,000). Over 90% of HU students receive funding from the Forester Fund.