SBU physical therapy department enjoys night at the ballpark

Southwest Baptist University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program hosted its first PT at the Ballpark event with the Springfield Cardinals Monday, June 30. SBU DPT alumni, faculty, clinical faculty, and families came together to enjoy a buffet ballpark dinner, a double-header Cardinals game and fireworks. Attendees received Dugout Deck tickets, dinner, an event t-shirt, a commemorative Springfield Cardinals coin and SBU gear.

Jessica Gleason, 2014 SBU DPT Clinical Instructor of the Year, threw out the first pitch at the Springfield Cardinals game during SBU’s PT at the Ballpark event, June 30.

Jessica Gleason, 2014 SBU DPT Clinical Instructor of the Year, threw out the first pitch at the Springfield Cardinals game during SBU’s PT at the Ballpark event, June 30.

Jessica Gleason of Select Specialty Hospital – Springfield threw out the first pitch. Gleason was chosen as the 2014 SBU DPT Clinical Instructor of the Year.

According to Aaron Weaver, admissions and alumni coordinator for the DPT program, approximately 100 people attended the event. The event was created to connect with and thank clinical faculty for their service to the DPT program, as well as to reconnect with DPT alumni and their families.

Attendees enjoyed participating in the ballpark’s between-inning games and sharing stories with each other from their PT school experiences.

Approximately 100 alumni, faculty, clinical faculty, and family members attended the SBU PT at the Ballpark event, June 30.

Approximately 100 alumni, faculty, clinical faculty, and family members attended the SBU PT at the Ballpark event, June 30.

“Seeing and hearing the achievements of the PT program from our alumni and faculty made this event a great success and makes our program extremely proud,” Weaver said.

For more information about SBU’s DPT program, please contact Weaver at (417) 328-1690 or

SBU student is PBL national champion in cyber security; three other students claim top-10 national spots

Five students from Southwest Baptist University competed in the 2014 Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) National Collegiate Conference in Nashville, Tenn. Justin Stout, a senior computer science and mathematics major from Gardner, Kan., was named the 2014 national champion in cyber security. Stout is SBU’s fifth PBL national champion since 2005.

(from l to r) Justin Stout, Bobby Sterling, Jarrett Munton, and Steven Harris competed in the 2014 PBL National Conference. Stout became SBU’s fifth national champion since 2005.

(from l to r) Justin Stout, Bobby Sterling, Jarrett Munton, and Steven Harris competed in the 2014 PBL National Conference. Stout became SBU’s fifth national champion since 2005.

Bobby Sterling, junior computer information science major from Buffalo, Mo., placed third nationally in information management. Maura Sturgess, sophomore accounting and information assurance major from Chillicothe, Mo., claimed third place in parliamentary procedures. Jarrett Munton, junior computer science major from O’Fallon, Ill., finished in seventh place in statistical analysis. Steven Harris, junior computer science and mathematics major from Bolivar, Mo., also competed at the national competition.

The team was coached by Meilani Conley, instructor of computer and information science.

“The students did an excellent job of representing SBU at the national level,” Conley said. “There were students from all over the nation and from every size of school. It was incredible hearing our name called from a national stage. I feel very blessed to work with these students.”

More than 1,800 students from across the country attended the event. Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda, Inc. is a nonprofit education association with the mission to bring business and education together in a positive working relationship through innovative leadership and career development programs.

For more information, please contact Conley at (417) 328-1759 or, or contact Dr. Tim DeClue, chair of the department of computer and information sciences, at (417) 328-1704 or

SBU students to benefit from MCF grants

Southwest Baptist University will benefit from eight recent grants to the Missouri Colleges Fund (MCF), consisting of 17 member schools, from businesses and foundations.

• Monsanto Fund gave a $25,000 grant to fund the First Opportunity STEM Scholars Program.

• Enterprise Holdings Foundation’s $15,200 grant marks 25 years of MCF support.

• H&R Block Bank and H&R Block Foundation awarded a $10,000 grant.

• Wells Fargo Advisors awarded a $25,500 grant to underwrite a $1,500 scholarship at each of the 17 member schools.

• Wells Fargo Advisors Foundation awarded a $20,000 grant.

• The George Riedel Foundation gave a $10,000 grant.

• Commerce Bank awarded a $10,000 grant.

Missouri Colleges Fund member schools include Southwest Baptist University, Bolivar; Avila University, Kansas City; Central Methodist University, Fayette; Columbia College, Columbia; Culver-Stockton College, Canton; Drury University, Springfield; Evangel University, Springfield; Fontbonne University, St. Louis; Hannibal-LaGrange University, Hannibal; Lindenwood University, St. Charles; Maryville University, St. Louis; Missouri Baptist University, St. Louis; Park University, Parkville; Rockhurst University, Kansas City; Westminster College, Fulton; William Jewell College, Liberty; and William Woods University, Fulton.

The MCF was incorporated in 1952 as a partnership of private enterprise and the member independent colleges and universities in the Show-Me State. The Fund is a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt corporation; therefore, all contributions to the Fund are tax-deductible up to the limits prescribed by the law.

More information about MCF can be found online at

Two SBU professors serve as AP readers

Dr. Stephen Bowling, associate professor of mathematics, and Dr. Shelley Kilpatrick, chair of the department of behavioral sciences and professor of psychology, served as Advanced Placement exam readers.

Bowling and Kilpatrick were selected to participate in the College Board’s Annual AP Reading. Each June, AP teachers and college faculty members from around the world gather to evaluate and score the free-response sections of the AP exams. During the June 2014 scoring sessions, more than 12,500 readers evaluated more than 4.2 million AP exams.

“The Reading draws upon the talents of some of the finest teachers and professors that the world has to offer,” said Trevor Packer, senior vice president, AP and Instruction at the College Board. “It fosters professionalism, allows for the exchange of ideas, and strengthens the commitment to students and to teaching. We are very grateful for the contributions of talented educators like Bowling and Kilpatrick.”

Kilpatrick helped read statistics exams and, according to her tally, graded more than 1,320 exams over a period of seven days. Bowling graded calculus exams.

According to the College Board’s official news release, the Advanced Placement (AP) program enables willing and academically prepared students to pursue college-level studies with the opportunity to earn college credit while still in high school. Through AP courses in 34 subjects, each culminating in a rigorous exam, students learn to analyze complex problems, construct solid arguments, and see many sides of an issue – skills that prepare them for college and beyond. Research indicates that students who score a 3 or higher (out of a possible 5) on an AP exam typically experience greater academic success in college and are more likely to earn a college degree than non-AP students.

For more information about Advanced Placement credit at SBU, please contact the Admissions Office at 417.328.1810.

SBU receives full initial accreditation for Bachelor of Social Work program

At the culmination of a four-year accreditation process, Southwest Baptist University’s Bachelor of Social Work program has received initial accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education.

“The program is really such a part of the mission of the university,” said Christine Saladino, M.A.C.E., L.M.S.W., assistant professor of social work and BSW program director. “I see social work as really being Christ’s hands and feet in this world and going out and ministering to people even globally.”

As the B.S.W. program director, Saladinooversees the curriculum, assessment and accreditation. Amanda Keys, M.S.W., L.C.S.W., Ph.D., instructor of social work, is the director of field education in social work. She organizes and supervises student field experiences. The program requires each student to complete 450 hours in an agency setting during the senior year.

“The field education component is one of our strengths,” Saladino said. “We have had students in a variety of settings, and we have had excellent, excellent field instructors that really pour into our students and have been such a blessing.”

An additional benefit of the B.S.W. program is that graduates can enroll in an advanced master of social work program that can be completed in one year rather than two. An M.S.W. is the terminal degree for a social worker. The B.S.W. prepares students for entry-level positions, but an M.S.W. is required for work in clinical settings.

“We offer students the opportunity to get a professional degree and go out and be social workers in a wide range of settings,” Saladino said. “Social workers work in schools, prisons, hospitals, nursing homes and a variety of settings.”

Initial accreditation is for four years through June 2018. SBU’s first cohort of BSW students graduated in 2013.

“The Bachelor of Social Work program certainly is a perfect fit with our university’s mission as we prepare students to be servant leaders in a global society. By the nature of their work, social workers make a positive impact on people’s lives every day in many different settings,” said SBU President C. Pat Taylor, Ed.D. “We have been so blessed to have Christine and Amanda to skillfully work through the accreditation process to provide this outstanding program for our students.”

For more information about the B.S.W. program, contact Saladino at (417) 328-1740 or For more information about CSWE, visit

SBU CIS achieves 100-percent job placement

All students in the Southwest Baptist University Department of Computer and Information Sciences’ 2014 graduating class have accepted offers of employment from leading software companies less than a week after graduation ceremonies.

Students and their employers are: Luke Abbott and David Haugh, computer science/math majors, Accenture in Bolivar; Nathan Hawkins and Josh Tiffany, computer science majors, Cerner Corp. in Kansas City; Jason Jakusz, computer science and math major, and Amber King, computer information science major, O’Reilly Automotive headquarters in Springfield; Nathan Toombs, computer information science major, Jack Henry & Associates in Springfield; and Jason Williams, computer information science major, ANPAC in Springfield.

“The economy has been sluggish for several years,” said Dr. Tim DeClue, CIS Department Chair, “but our graduates are having no difficulty finding great positions with leading software and information technology companies. It is truly one of my greatest joys seeing our students utilize their God-given talents to land a great first job.”

Students graduating from SBU’s CIS department regularly record starting salaries in the $46,000-65,000 range depending on company, position accepted and geographic location.

SBU’s Department of Computer and Information Sciences houses five full-time faculty members, two faculty associates and more than 100 students majoring in computer science, information science or web systems and design. SBU’s CIS Department is home to the only accredited computer science degree program at an Evangelical Christian school within 400 miles of Springfield, Mo., and SBU is one of the leading producers of software engineers in the United States among Evangelical Christian institutions. For more information about SBU CIS, contact DeClue at (417) 328-1704 or

SBU Marketing receives advertising awards

Southwest Baptist University’s Department of Marketing and Communications recently received three awards in two national higher education advertising contests.

Collegiate Advertising Awards

SBU received a Silver for Student Viewbook – Printed from the 2013/14 Collegiate Advertising Awards. CAA is an elite program recognizing higher education organizations for excellence in communications, marketing, advertising and promotion of their schools. The 2013/2014 CAA program had more than 800 entries from the United States and Canada representing small community colleges to very large schools and universities.

Awards were issued for entries that received top marks from judges placing them in the top 16 percent of the nation for advertising excellence.

Educational Advertising Awards

SBU received two awards in the 29th Educational Advertising Awards competition sponsored by Higher Education Marketing Report. Merit awards were received in the categories of Search Pieces and Brochure.

A panel of industry specialists reviewed each piece, judging creativity, marketing execution and message impact.

SBU’s Marketing and Communication team includes Shelly Brown, Charlotte Marsch, Rollie Skinner and Rebekah Wright.

Phipps, Huff receive Life Beautiful Awards at SBU graduation

SBU graduation candid

With 581 graduates, Southwest Baptist University’s May 2014 graduating class was the largest in the University’s 136-year history. The commencement ceremony also included the annual presentation of three prestigious awards: two Life Beautiful Awards and the Orien B. Hendrex Distinguished Teacher Award.

Life Beautiful Award

The 2014 recipients of the Life Beautiful Award are Kara Phipps of Bolivar and Alex Huff of Da Nang, Vietnam.

Kara Phipps, biology major from Bolivar, Mo., is the female recipient of the Life Beautiful award. She is the daughter of Michael and Tammy Phipps of Bolivar.

Kara Phipps, biology major from Bolivar, Mo., is the female recipient of the Life Beautiful award. She is the daughter of Michael and Tammy Phipps of Bolivar.

Phipps graduated with a bachelor of science in biology. She has received multiple honors while at SBU, is a member of the Gordon & Judy Dutile Honors Program Leadership Council and has been a biology research team leader since 2012. She is a member of Southern Hills Baptist Church in Bolivar, where she is part of the worship team and leads a Bible study. She participated in three mission trips while at SBU. One faculty member wrote, “Kara has a quiet, sweet spirit. She is patient and kind, always considerate of others. She is a true servant leader.”

She is the daughter of Michael and Tammy Phipps, both SBU graduates. Her brother Josiah was the male 2013 Life Beautiful recipient.

Alex Huff, economics and finance major from Da Nang, Vietnam, is the male recipient of the Life Beautiful Award. He is the son of Bob and Kathleen Huff.

Alex Huff, economics and finance major from Da Nang, Vietnam, is the male recipient of the Life Beautiful Award. He is the son of Bob and Kathleen Huff.

Huff graduated with a bachelor of science degree in economics/finance. He was selected as the Outstanding Business Administration graduate and is in the Dutile Honors program. He attends Alliance Christian Fellowship in Bolivar and served on two mission trips through SBU. One faculty member wrote, “He greets everybody with a smile and a can-do attitude. He takes the time to listen and get to know others. Alex has a heart for missions and sharing the gospel around the world.”

He is the son of Bob and Kathleen Huff.

The Life Beautiful Award was established in 1937 by Rosalee Mills Appleby, a career missionary to Brazil. This award is given annually to an outstanding man and woman in the Southwest Baptist University spring graduating class. These individuals have demonstrated by their scholarship and character that they are living a “life beautiful.” The faculty selects the recipients, whose identities remain confidential until commencement.

Orien B. Hendrex Award

Joe Wooderson, chair of the Department of Kinesiology and instructor of physical education, received the Orien B. Hendrex Distinguished Teacher Award.

The award is presented annually to a faculty member who has been judged by the previous three years’ graduating classes to be outstanding in both teaching ability and personal guidance. The SBU Board of Trustees designated this award in memory of Hendrex, a former academic dean.

Senior speaker

Shannon L. Gray of Schell City, Mo., delivered the Bob R. Derryberry Senior Address, reminding her classmates that though they have encountered difficult times during college, God sees the potential and beauty of each graduate.

Shannon Gray

Shannon Gray

“While in college we are looking at our lives from the underside of a tapestry, but our Creator has a bigger, better plan,” she said. “He sees the whole tapestry and rejoices in its picture with all of its beauty and its imperfections, because that is what makes us all unique. He sees us in our final form, full of success, lessons learned and growth shown. He sees his children, the men and women who breathed life into doing his work through mission trips, daily tasks and even being a listening ear.

“This part of the tapestry is now done and it is time for us to move on to this more exciting time of our future. We have bright futures, full of hope and ready for the world ahead of us, and we have been trained and held accountable by some of the finest people we ever have had the privilege of knowing, our teachers.”

Senior music was provided by Katelyn Hicks and Shelby Johnson accompanied by Tammie Pennington.

Faculty and staff recognitions

Dr. Taylor also recognized four retiring faculty members and one retiring staff member.

Retiring faculty members are J.D. Lynch, instructor of recreation and leisure and director of the Meyer Wellness and Sports Center; Susan Lynch, chair of the Department of Business Administration and professor of business administration; Robert Perry, professor of graduate studies in educational administration; and Libby Sanders, instructor of education at the SBU Salem campus. Retiring staff member is Larry Price, director of the SBU Mountain View campus.

Commencement speaker

Charles Graham, founder of Charles Graham Ministries, and a 2007 recipient of an honorary doctorate from SBU, told the graduates that God has a purpose for everything that has and will happen in their lives.

“I want you to realize God does have a plan for you,” he said.

“Number two, don’t allow a world of circumstances to rob you of your purpose. You may get your position, you may get your pay raises, but I want you to understand that the purpose is not the position nor your pay. The purpose will always be people. God will always use us in the lives of those around us.

“My third point, don’t let moments define the purpose. Don’t let them rob you of your purpose. When you enter your workforce, let your life be shaped by the Word that is within and not the world you are in.”

SBU student leaders chosen for 2014-15 year

SBU student leadership for 2014-15 (from l to r): Valerie Waddell, Kaisi Sandy, Julie McGlaughlin, Nik Fischer, Chelsea Hilbert, Ashley Pyeatt, Kaylee Dye, Caleb Olson

SBU student leadership for 2014-15 (from l to r): Valerie Waddell, Kaisi Sandy, Julie McGlaughlin, Nik Fischer, Chelsea Hilbert, Ashley Pyeatt, Kaylee Dye, Caleb Olson

Eight Southwest Baptist University students have been elected by the student body to positions of student leadership for the 2014-15 academic year.

Four students will lead the SBU Student Association, which is a dedicated team of student leaders who strive to improve the lives of students at SBU through the empowerment of clubs and organizations and by acting on behalf of the student body.

The new Student Association (SA) leadership is:

  • Julie McGlaughlin, a junior web systems and design major from East Moline, Ill., will serve as the next Student Body President. She is the daughter of James and Rhonda McGlaughlin.
  • Kaylee Dye, a freshman commercial art major with a concentration in graphic design from Blue Springs, Mo., is the SA vice president. She is the daughter of Rod and Mindy Dye.
  • Valerie Waddell, a junior exercise science major from Olathe, Kan., is the clubs/organizations chair. She is the daughter of Mike and Janie Waddell.
  • Nik Fischer, a senior philosophy and Biblical studies major from Maryland Heights, Mo., is the campus improvement chair. He is the son of Terry and Priscilla Fischer.

Another four students will lead the University Activities Council, which works to plan campus activities and events.

The new University Activities Council (UAC) leadership is:

  • Chelsea Hilbert, a sophomore intercultural studies major from Owasso, Okla., is the chair of the major events committee. She is the daughter of Bryan and Jenna Hilbert.
  • Caleb Olson, a junior social science education major from Chariton, Iowa, is the chair of the campus activities committee. He is the son of Paul and Denise Olson.
  • Ashley Pyeatt, a senior commercial art major with a concentration in graphic design from Springfield, Mo., is the chair of the integration of faith and culture committee. She is the daughter of Pete and Pam Pyeatt.
  • Kaisi Sandy, a junior commercial art major with a concentration in graphic design from Country Club, Mo., is the chair of the publicity committee. She is the daughter of David and Kristi Sandy.

“These student leaders play an important role by providing opportunities for students to be involved and connected on campus,” said Nathan Penland, director of student activities. “I am excited about each student leader and the skills each is bringing to their position.”

For more information about student activities, please contact Penland at (417) 328-1828 or

Lilly receives Dean’s Legacy Award

Kezia LillyKezia Lilly, dean and nursing administrator of the Mercy College of Nursing and Health Sciences of Southwest Baptist University, received the Dean’s Legacy Award from Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. She received the award upon graduating with her doctorate of nursing practice (DNP) degree.

The Dean’s Legacy Awards are given by the CWRU Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing to an outstanding graduate of each of its academic programs whose achievements and contributions to the school and community exemplify the legacy of academic excellence, service to the larger community and the capacity for leadership and innovation in health care for which Frances Payne Bolton is known.

Mercy College of Nursing and Health Sciences of SBU offers a wide variety of nursing and allied health programs from entry-level degrees to advanced degree programs for registered nurses who wish to advance their professional education.

The college is at 4431 S. Fremont Ave. in Springfield, Mo. For more information about nursing and health science programs at SBU, call (417) 820-2069 or send email to