The Lyon College Gospel Choir, The Anointed Ones, and the Philander Smith Collegiate Choir will present a gospel concert on March 4 at 3 p.m. in Brown Chapel.
Lyon’s Gospel Choir is a vocal ensemble open to students and community members regardless of their faith. The ensemble performs a variety of song forms drawn from the African American religious tradition, including traditional and contemporary gospel, anthems, and spirituals.
The Anointed Ones is a powerful group of ladies who have a gospel style ranging from high praise to urban/contemporary worship. These four sisters from the Cave City area are widely recognized for their distinctive gospel sound.
The Philander Smith Collegiate Choir presents music from a broad spectrum of artistic styles, performing works by African American composers as well as traditional Western European choral music.
Together, these three groups will provide their audience with a rousing and motivating afternoon of spiritually-inspired music.
Admission is free.
Lyon College junior Ridge Hester has a long list of accomplishments. Among other duties, he serves as a resource for campus residents as a member of the College’s Residence Life Staff, has bolstered Campus Ministry as the organization’s vice president, assists Black Students Association as its chaplain, and supports the College as a lead student ambassador.
Hester is also Student Government Association (SGA) President at Lyon. He says that it’s his most meaningful leadership role so far. “It really has shaped my perspective on leadership. Whenever you are in a huge role like this, you have to realize that there will be struggles. There will be times where you are stressed and anxious, but keeping your eyes on the prize and staying focused on the mission that you have is so crucial to being successful.”
For Hester, that mission is clear – he must represent students and provide student organizations with necessary resources such as funding for events and trips to research conferences. As SGA President, he serves as a liaison between students and administration, and he joins numerous college committees and searches to provide a student perspective on administrative matters. The concerns of his peers must always be on the forefront of his mind.
Serving this population through leadership has helped Ridge refine his idea of what it means to be a leader. Before he stepped into the role, he had a more idealistic picture of responsibility, but his time as president has shown him that stress and disagreements are valuable parts of learning and being a leader.
“Failure is key to success,” Hester says. “You can’t be successful and not go through things. You have to endure the same hardships as everyone else to become a well-rounded leader. It makes you more relatable, and that makes your leadership more effective.”
In fact, Hester believes that relating to people is one of the most important parts of leadership. He sometimes visits nursing homes to speak with the elderly and often stops to chat with other students on campus. He hopes that these connections can create change in a positive, personal way.
Working to support that goal, Hester proposed ten annual SGA awards to promote leadership on campus and to recognize other student leaders on campus for their work. The first recipients of these awards will be honored at this semester’s Honors Convocation, and Hester hopes that the recognition will encourage them to continue their service and to find new ways of improving their community.
He said, “There’s so much more that we can do to make sure students are aware of the importance of being open. I want to create a campus climate that is welcoming and open to diverse ideas.”
Planning to be a healthcare administrator, Hester will take these passions into the future. He hopes to attend St. Louis University for one of its dual degree programs that allows him to pursue an M.H.A. and an M.B.A. at the same time. He says, “My goal is to be a CEO of a hospital by age 40.”
The 14th Annual Lyon College Juried Student Exhibition will run from Tuesday, February 27 to Friday, April 6 in the Kresge Gallery of the Alphin building. It will feature student work and the work of the juror who will judge the students’ pieces. The winners of this juried exhibition will receive awards at the opening reception, held on Tuesday, February 27 in the Kresge Gallery from 5 to 6:30 p.m.
Lyon College Professor of Art Ian Campbell said, “The Student Juried Exhibition is a significant professional and academic opportunity for students engaged in the visual arts. Every year for this show we bring in a respected outside member of the art community to serve as juror. This is a competitive exhibition, and, for a young artist, having one's work selected for one of the juror's prizes or one of the purchase prizes is not only a major line for a resume. It is also a recognition of the combination of raw talent and hard work required to make a successful work of art."
This year’s juror will be Melissa Wilkinson, who is an assistant professor of painting at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. Wilkinson has shown her work nationally and internationally, garnering numerous awards, fellowships, and grants. She earned a BFA in painting from Western Illinois University in 2002 and an MFA in painting from Southern Illinois University in 2006. In 2016, the Arkansas Arts Council named her a “Woman to Watch.”
On Saturday, March 3, approximately 150 high school students will arrive on the Lyon College campus to compete in math and science tests. Winners will gain recognition and awards, and some may earn scholarships. Math winners advance to the State ACTM Math Competition in April.
Students will have the opportunity to participate in both the math and science sections if they so choose. The College will provide free lunch in its dining hall, tours of the campus, recreational events, and door prizes. The day will end with an awards ceremony in the newly renovated Brown Chapel-Fine Arts Building.
Kristi Price, who organizes the event, said, “We are enthusiastic about hosting our region’s best math and science scholars, and we anticipate a great competition!”
Students must register for the event in advance at www.lyon.edu/academic-day. Registration will end on February 23.
Lyon College is now offering loan repayment assistance to its graduates who come from nine area high schools and enter a teaching career. The new Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) helps repay federal, private alternative, and parent PLUS loans until the graduate is earning at least $40,000 a year.
If a graduate teaches for a year or two and then takes off a year or more to earn a second bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree, LRAP will continue to assist with loan repayment during that time as well. It also offers an extension of up to three years to those working or traveling outside the U.S.
The amount LRAP will cover is on a sliding scale. If the graduate is earning $36,000 a year, for instance, LRAP will pay 20% of repayment costs. At $28,000 LRAP assistance rises to 60%, and the total cost is covered if pay is $20,000 or less.
Those eligible to participate in LRAP are incoming freshmen who graduated from Batesville, Cave City, Cedar Ridge, Concord, Hillcrest, Melbourne, Midland, Newport, or Southside High Schools and are majoring in education.
To check eligibility and get started, potential students should visit mylrap.org/lyon. Students or parents can also contact the Lyon Financial Aid office at 870-307-7257.
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