Severe weather causes flooding, power outage

Severe weather causes flooding, power outage

Torrential rain and strong winds hit Nashville this weekend, causing a variety of problems. The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) declared a State of Emergency Saturday in response to severe weather and widespread flooding across the state. On Lipscomb’s campus, the storms resulted in an hour-long power outage, the Nashville Electric Service said. “Crews determined the outage was caused by equipment failure. They were able to make the necessary repairs and all power was restored.” According to the National Weather Service, Nashville received nearly three inches of rainfall on Friday and Saturday. This brought the month’s total to 13.5 inches, making it the wettest February on record. Downtown, the Cumberland River’s water level is expected to reach 43.8 feet by Sunday evening. That would put the river in flood stage, but Metro Water Services does not expect the flooding to affect any businesses in the downtown area. The upcoming days are expected to remain dry and sunny. Flooding occurring with rivers and creeks will take a while to disappear, but roadways are expected to dry up...
An inside glimpse into the Lipscomb LIFE Program

An inside glimpse into the Lipscomb LIFE Program

The white concrete rooms of the Tennessee Prison for Women are a stark contrast from the typical Lipscomb classroom. However, students and faculty have transformed the space into an environment where knowledge and personal growth thrives. Classes taken in the LIFE Program originate from the on-campus curriculum and are filled with both residents of the prison (“Inside Students”) and traditional Lipscomb students (“Outside Students”). According to the program history provided by the university, “The mix of students and specifically designed coursework provides academic and character-building benefits for both students at the prison and students from campus.” In an introduction to communications class, students take turns standing in front of their peers to share speeches on their favorite foods. “We’re all going to Bonefish, and since it’s a research project, President Lowry is going to pick up the tab,” joked one student at the end of her speech about her love of seafood. She received critiques and compliments from both her peers and her professor, Mr. Alan Griggs. The atmosphere in this classroom is indistinguishable from any introduction to communications course taken on campus. In the master’s level course Ministry Personhood and Discipleship, students sat at desks arranged in a semicircle. Discussions over how society functions flowed through the room. “A little bit of change will have a multiplying effect in the system,” Dr. Steve Bonner told the class. The statement is reminiscent of the change the LIFE Program has had on its students. “I can be a member of a community here,” said Amelia Stem, an organizational leadership major with aspirations of going into customer service. She is a first-generation...
Lipscomb appoints Dr. Al Sturgeon as new Vice President of Student Life

Lipscomb appoints Dr. Al Sturgeon as new Vice President of Student Life

Lipscomb announced earlier this week the appointment of Dr. Al Sturgeon, a former Dean of Students and Dean of Graduate Programs at Pepperdine University, as the new Vice President of Student Life. Sturgeon’s appointment follows the departure of Scott McDowell. McDowell served as Lipscomb’s Vice President of Student Life from 2014 until last summer, when he took the same position at Abilene Christian University. President Lowry spoke about the “rigorous search” for a new Vice President in a letter to Lipscomb faculty. “We did not rely on just those applying for the position but sought to contact all in the field who might be a strong fit for the position at Lipscomb,” Lowry said. In a letter to students, President Lowry spoke about what made Sturgeon stand out from the other candidates. “Dr. Sturgeon has a passion for Christian education and for impacting the lives of young people and views the role of the Student Life office as integral to the learning process,” Lowry said. Sturgeon currently serves as the preaching minister for University Church of Christ in Malibu, California, but he will be relocating to Nashville in March. In a personal blog post, Sturgeon discussed his upcoming career transition. “I am humbled and honored to serve in this important role and join the Lipscomb community, but it will be difficult to say goodbye to the Pepperdine community that has been our family for the past eleven years,” he said. “But for my sweet wife and I, it is very clear that we have been called to another stage of this pilgrimage called life. I can say that a decision ‘has never been...
Tennesseans, Lipscomb students gather to celebrate inauguration of Gov. Bill Lee

Tennesseans, Lipscomb students gather to celebrate inauguration of Gov. Bill Lee

Gloomy skies and flooded sidewalks didn’t stop the crowds from gathering at Governor Bill Lee’s inauguration on Saturday. The inauguration was moved indoors to the War Memorial Auditorium after concerns over inclement weather. The new location caused problems due to the limited capacity of the auditorium, and some ticketholders were turned away from seats they had already reserved. Austin Travis, a freshman political science and history major at Lipscomb, was one of those attending the inauguration. Travis said he voted for Lee because of his stances on criminal justice reform and his goals in improving vocational and technical education. Travis noted that he is optimistic for Lee’s upcoming term, but he also expressed concern for Lee’s transition from the business world to politics. “He can’t just tell someone to do something and it gets done anymore,” Travis said. “He’s got to get those proposals approved by the General Assembly, and he has to make sure he never oversteps his bounds as governor. But he’s a smart guy; I think he’ll adapt fairly quickly.” Inauguration attendee Ed Elam spoke about his trust in the new governor. Elam said he voted for Lee because of his integrity and values. “I am expecting some transparency [from Lee],” Elam said. “My experience and knowledge with him is that he looks at everyone as Tennesseans. He promotes inclusiveness not divisiveness. I expect him to pull everyone together.” Tennessean Adam Smith had more personal motivations when he was in the voting booth. Smith met Lee seven years ago through the Y-CAP program, an outreach organization that serves teens. Lee became a mentor for Smith. “He saw a...
Cyntoia Brown featured on ABC’s ‘Nightline’

Cyntoia Brown featured on ABC’s ‘Nightline’

Governor Bill Haslam announced last week that he would be granting clemency to Lipscomb graduate Cyntoia Brown. Since then, mixed reactions to Haslam’s decision have been broadcasted across the country. Wednesday night, Brown’s story was featured on ABC’s “Nightline”, a late-night news program. The story examined everything from the factors that led to her sentence to the next steps to come after her release in August 2019. The broadcast highlighted moments from the documentary Me Facing Life: Cyntoia’s story. The story was brought to Lipscomb’s campus in 2010, while Brown was working towards her associate’s degree from the University. The film was shown to Lipscomb students free of charge for the HumanDocs series that aimed to “encourage dialogue among students, faculty, and community members about pressing issues of social and economic justice and the environment.” The HumanDocs film series included a panel discussion with several notable figures in Brown’s case, including Lipscomb professor Preston Shipp, a former appellate prosecutor for Brown’s case who ended up becoming her teacher through the LIFE Program. Shipp’s coincidental presence in Brown’s life was highlighted in Nightline’s story. He once argued in favor of a life sentence for Brown. However, during Cyntoia’s July hearing, Shipp argued for her release. “If you grant her early release, she is going to invest herself [in people] who might otherwise come to [the Tennessee Woman’s Prison],” Shipp said. “She will seek them out. She will find them. She will mentor and minister to them, and she will keep other people from coming here.” Nightline reports that a sequel to the documentary, Me Facing Life: Cyntoia’s story, will be released later this year, focusing on Brown’s journey to...