Lipscomb announces intent to return to campus for fall semester

Lipscomb announces intent to return to campus for fall semester

Ever since the close of the spring semester, uncertainty has been in the air over the slowly approaching fall semester. Lipscomb announced its intention to move ahead on the fall semester; however, what that will look like depends on a variety of factors in the coming months. “The challenge is really how do you figure out how to bring 1,500 people back and live in dorms two to a room and use a common bathroom down the hall and take care of those that might get sick along the way,” said President Randy Lowry in a video call to faculty on May 7. A return to campus would come with potential adjustments, due to the spread of COVID-19 across the country. “The No. 1 concern will be our health security,” said Lowry, announcing his intentions to appoint a new director of Health and Wellness. Lipscomb follows in the steps of several other colleges and universities, each grappling with the impact of COVID-19. “We also are planning to be able to open not just the middle of August, but also right after Labor Day, and also the first of October,” Lowry said. “Students generally are not going to change their plans, especially if we have through the summer done all the things we’re trying to do to connect with them. They can tolerate three weeks online before we open the door.” Another possible plan mentioned by Lowry was an early finish before Thanksgiving. “Now, that may sound kind of screwy, but that’s a 12-week period of time,” Lowry said. “It’s essentially what a quarter would be in the other system....
Lumination staffers share their social-distancing experiences

Lumination staffers share their social-distancing experiences

The importance of family time, the joy of TV binge-watching, missing contact with friends in classes, worrying about the illness, learning how to sew, reading books or becoming aware of how important it is to wash your hands are just a few things that have occupied students’ minds in the weeks since spring break and the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown. Here are some of the thoughts and worries from the Lipscomb students in adjunct Tim Ghianni’s Practicum in Journalism. Chances are that fellow students will recognize themselves in these short essays: The thought of being locked in your house without face to face contact with the outside world is terrifying, especially for someone with a go-getter personality. That go-getter would be me. I am the type to try and fill every second of the day with productive tasks, oftentimes making more work for myself just to keep from what I would say is “wasted time.” Throughout quarantine, I have re-learned the art of relaxing. I don’t remember the last time I was able to just sit and watch a movie or hang out with my family just because. While I know this won’t last forever, there are several lessons I’ve learned that I plan to take with me out of quarantine. Most of them are simple, but I’ve learned they are crucial for my mental health. I plan to take more time to enjoy family and friends and just hang out. Life is too short to occupy each second with strenuous working and being “productive.” I also plan to spend more time on the things I love, like photography and art. I...
Coronavirus Prevention Tips and more from office of Health Services

Coronavirus Prevention Tips and more from office of Health Services

Lipscomb’s director of Health Services tells students “there is no reason to panic” about COVID-19, but there are steps to take to prevent the illness. “The group we need to be the most careful with are the elderly, over the age of 60 years, and those with chronic diseases especially those with compromised immune systems,” said Erin Keckley, the health director. “This virus is spread by respiratory droplets,” said Keckley, “So when you cough or sneeze, these droplets float in the air and then eventually land on a surface. Some common symptoms of this virus are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Some less frequent symptoms are headache, sore throat, or diarrhea. And, of course, it has been proven to induce dangerous blood clots and has been deadly in thousands of cases. The incubation period is two to 14 days. Keckley provided these simple tips to cut down on chances of contracting the disease: Make sure you are washing your hands. This is the single most important thing you can do. It is also important to be washing for at least 20 seconds or more and using soap and water. Keckley said, ” Take a song, make sure it’s at least 20 seconds long, and sing along.” Try to leave hand sanitizer in different places like your car, backpack, or room. Don’t shake hands. Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then, throw that tissue away. Clean and disinfect surfaces, like kitchen and bathroom counters. Try to avoid touching your face. Viruses are often transmitted through your mucus membrane through your hands, nose, and mouth....
Athletic director discusses NCAA rules changes, ‘heartbreaking’ COVID-19 impact on Bisons sports

Athletic director discusses NCAA rules changes, ‘heartbreaking’ COVID-19 impact on Bisons sports

Telling Lipscomb athletes that sports for the semester had ended hurt Athletic Director Philip Hutcheson as much as it hurt the athletes. “It was totally heartbreaking knowing what that meant for all of our spring sport athletes,” Hutcheson said. “When I went and told the baseball team about it, I felt like I was talking to 35 guys who had all torn their ACLs at the same time and their careers were over.” From quarantines and stay-at-home orders to school closing and everything in between, the coronavirus (COVID-19) has changed daily life for people across the world. For collegiate athletes and administrators, the virus has flipped their seasons upside down. In an announcement made in early March, the NCAA canceled the seasons of all spring and winter sports. This included the popular March Madness national basketball tournament. “Obviously there are many worse things going on in the world right now than not being able to play a sport,” Hutcheson said. “But for all of these students it’s very important and something they’ve worked towards for a long time. They realize that it’s not just games they’re going to miss, it’s time with their teammates and coaches.” To make up for the inability to play, the NCAA made the decision to give athletes playing spring sports an extra year of eligibility. Some athletes, however, may not be able to take advantage of this. “We know already that about half of the seniors will not be coming back,” Hutcheson said. “The rest of them – some financial decisions have to be made. Most spring sport athletes, if not all of them,...
Lipscomb LIFE Program Students Left Uncertain in Wake of COVID-19 Crisis

Lipscomb LIFE Program Students Left Uncertain in Wake of COVID-19 Crisis

COVID-19’s impact on Lipscomb reached the Tennessee Women’s Prison, where a ground-breaking university program allowing traditional and incarcerated students to work together was cut short for the semester. Each Wednesday night for about the last 12 years, inmates from the Tennessee Women’s Prison have studied side-by-side with traditional undergraduate students through Lipscomb University’s Initiative for Education (LIFE) program. The program provides college courses taught inside the prison by Lipscomb professors. It allows those incarcerated to earn credit towards an associate, bachelor’s, or master’s degree. But, due to COVID-19 concerns, the Tennessee Department of Correction suspended all visitors and volunteers, including traditional students from the LIFE program. Students enrolled on both sides of the bars were told the class meetings would be ending and it was left unknown when their educational paths would cross again. “It was all really sudden and really tough,” said Emmeline Stuart, who has been a traditional student in the LIFE program for the past two years.  “A week before spring break we were told that it would probably be our last class.” “What hurt the most was the women in the prison didn’t even know” Stuart, a senior, continued. “We talked to them and cried with them. None of us felt like there was enough time to even process it all.” Stuart, a ministry and theology major, said the relationships she’s made while a part of this program have only increased her compassion for those incarcerated. She said she hopes her post-graduation work will allow her to continue discussions around reconciliation and forgiveness, as well as to be an advocate for individuals who don’t have...
Commentary: COVID’s social distancing forces virtual adjustments for Biden, Trump and other campaigns

Commentary: COVID’s social distancing forces virtual adjustments for Biden, Trump and other campaigns

In an era of deadly pandemic-spurred social distancing and mandated hibernation, the 2020 presidential election seems to have been moved to the back burner. Concern over how to best campaign for national and local elections amid a global pandemic has been the subject of debate among Democrats and Republicans.  Manny Sethi — a Republican first-time candidate running for Tennessee’s open Senate seat that’s being vacated by Sen. Lamar Alexander, who is retiring — said he misses the world of full-on rallies and public forums. Sethi spoke with the Nashville Scene on the loss of person-to-person style campaigning due to the virus. “What we’re trying to do is recreate that feeling through these virtual town halls,” he is quoted as telling the Scene. Virtual campaigning is becoming a popular solution for those running for office. Joe Biden — who is going to be the Democratic nominee after he overwhelmed Bernie Sanders on Super Tuesday, spurring the latter to drop out — has been implementing virtual roundtables via live streams. Each of the “roundtables” cater to specific voter demographics. They also feature guests alongside Biden via remote video calls. “In some ways, this is the world that every digital person in every digital story you’ve ever written has said would come,” Biden digital director Rob Flaherty told BuzzFeed News. “We were just focused on getting him out there as soon as we could get him out there.” For President Trump, the halt on traditional campaigning is playing to his favor. As the sitting President, Trump’s coronavirus press conferences are broadcast daily and draw high ratings (averaging 8.5 million viewers). What stands in Trump’s way is the...