Archive for August, 2012

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Zoyo Yogurt to Open Wednesday in Thunder Alley

August 16, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

The newest eatery on campus, Zoyo Neighborhood Yogurt, will offer “Thunder berry” as one of eight yogurt and smoothie flavors.

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Alumni: Mikel Longman Returns to Arizona as Top Cop for Community Colleges

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Doug Carroll  GCU News Bureau Imagine being police chief of a city of 275,000. Pretty big job, right? Now imagine that those people aren’t all in one place. In fact, they’re scattered in nearly a dozen locations over 9,000 square miles. But you’re still responsible for their safety. The scenario describes what Mikel Longman does every day. As chief of police and director of public safety for the Maricopa Community Colleges in metropolitan Phoenix, he oversees 10 campuses populated by 265,000 students and more than 10,000 employees. Longman, 58, a graduate of GCU with a bachelor’s degree in public safety administration, has been on the job since January of 2012. Although he served for 34 years in a variety of police positions in Arizona, it was a two-year stint as police chief for the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Colo., that best prepared him for his current post. “Collegiate policing is a unique discipline,” says Longman, a Tempe native who couldn’t pass up a chance to move home with his wife and be closer to their seven grandchildren. “With this, a community policing orientation is your bread and butter, and a college or university is a community unto […]

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A Community United: ‘One Spirit, One Purpose’ Theme Resonates in West Phoenix

August 14, 2012 / by / 1 Comment

By Michael Ferraresi GCU News Bureau Helping refugees learn English. Making sure struggling parents have Christmas gifts for their children. Spending time with aging military veterans, reminding them they are never forgotten. Community service is part of the fabric of GCU. For years, University students and staff have partnered with west Phoenix neighborhood leaders on the streets around campus. That dedication will be amplified this fall with more students on campus than ever before, and the results could be limitless.   A theme being introduced this fall is “Community: One Spirit, One Purpose.” The idea is based on the second book of Philippians, which encourages selflessness and caring for others. Dean of Students Pastor Tim Griffin said the theme is meant to focus students on staying humble amid the accelerated growth of GCU’s campus — that as the University sheds its image as a quiet little Christian college, it’s perhaps even more important to give back. The larger and more successful GCU becomes, the more resources will become available for programs to help at-risk people who share west Phoenix with the University’s students.  Neighborhoods west of Interstate 17 within several miles of the campus have long fought the stigma of […]

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A Mission to Heal: Guatemala Trip One of Several by GCU Students in 2012

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Bob Romantic GCU News Bureau There were times when they almost felt like prisoners. Other times when they were horrified at the sights of a cemetery and garbage dump (which sometimes were one and the same). And others when they felt frustrated by the level of care they could provide to some patients. But, more than anything, GCU nursing students who took a mission trip to Guatemala this summer said they felt blessed they were able to help so many people with little to no access to health care, and thankful for the opportunity to experience a different culture. “I got way more out of it than any of the patients we helped could have possibly,” said Tina Norton, one of three graduate students who made the trip. “They have such a different way of life; it makes me very appreciative of what I have living in America.” Norton’s experience is echoed by dozens of GCU students every year. This year, more than 100 participants took mission trips to locations such as India, Thailand, Rwanda, Malawi, China, Costa Rica, Fiji, Peru and Mexico. GCU students got a wake-up call when they arrived in Guatemala City. Their living quarters was […]

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A Life Redeemed: Online Student From Texas Credits GCU’s care, concern

August 14, 2012 / by / 2 Comments

By Doug Carroll GCU News Bureau Forger, thief, prostitute, drug addict and now … GCU online student. “God can do anything,” says LaTwan Gibbs, who is on track against all odds to graduate in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in counseling that would make her the first in her family to graduate from college. A conversation with Gibbs, 40, who lives in the town of Center, Texas, less than 20 miles from the Louisiana border, provides ample material for a book or made-for-TV movie. Three stints in the state penitentiary and dozens of trips to jail. At least six tries at drug rehab. In short, a series of serious problems. “I was a beast,” she says, and the unsavory details of a 13-year stretch of her life do little to dispel the notion. “There’s nothing I didn’t do.” The trouble began in August of 1995, when she witnessed the fatal shooting of her husband, a drug dealer. That began a swift downward spiral, which saw her habit reach $3,000 a day and her actions do anything to support it. She says she was run over twice and had guns pulled on her, acknowledging that she “should have been dead a long […]

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Getting Tough on Bullying: Dean of Theology Brings Expertise to Troubling Societal Issue

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Bob Romantic GCU News Bureau Like many people, GCU’s dean of theology, Dr. Steven Gerali, was shocked and appalled when a video of junior high students bullying a 68-year-old woman on a school bus in Greece, N.Y., surfaced on the Internet this summer. The students maliciously taunted and degraded school bus monitor Karen Klein with a stream of insults, profanities and threats. At one point, they demanded to know her address so they could steal from her and deface her property. One boy, ridiculing Klein about her weight, said that if he stabbed her with a knife, hamburgers would slide out of her stomach. And, in what may have been the most stinging remark, one of the boys said, “You don’t have a family because they all killed themselves because they didn’t want to be near you.” Klein’s son committed suicide about 10 years ago. “It was an overt display of unfiltered, unrestrained, boundary-less kids,” said Gerali, who has been sought out in radio interviews during recent months as an expert on the subject of bullying. The interviews were aired on nearly 600 stations and reached roughly 2.5 million listeners. “There is a lot we can learn from an incident […]

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Head of the Class: Nursing Program Making Best Marks in Arizona

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Bob Romantic GCU News Bureau Shanna Cunningham gets affirmation almost daily on her decision to attend GCU and start a second career as a nurse. Sometimes it comes from the classes she takes or the faculty members she comes in contact with. Sometimes it’s in the Scriptures that are scattered about the College of Nursing building. Sometimes it’s in her dealings with health-care professionals at local hospitals. And sometimes it even comes when she’s working part time as a waitress at Babbo’s Italian Eatery in north Phoenix. “When I’m just talking to customers and I tell them where I go to school, they’re like, ‘Ooh and aah, that’s a good school. You’re not going to have any problem getting a job,’” said Cunningham, 42, a mother of four who previously worked as a manager in a law firm. “And people in the medical field, they know and respect GCU for putting out good nurses.” The statistics bear out Cunningham’s experiences. In 2011, GCU nursing graduates achieved a 95.79 percent pass rate on the National Council Licensure Examinations (NCLEX), which are required in order to be licensed by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. That was the best […]

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No. 1 in D-II: GCU’s Ascension as Top Athletic Program Was Fast, Furious

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

In just three years, GCU has gone from 173rd in the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings to No. 1. How did the Antelopes get that good, that fast?

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Sweet Science: New DNA, Forensic Chemistry Labs Open This Fall

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Michael Ferraresi GCU News Bureau Talk about working under a microscope. The DNA lab on the fourth floor of GCU’s brand-new College of Arts and Sciences building features a giant window separating students from visitors in the hallway – not to micromanage the novice DNA analysts, but rather to shine a spotlight on the detail-oriented work being conducted in one of five new laboratories on campus. Few students will be trained enough to test bodily fluids and conduct DNA comparisons by this fall. But that’s simply because the forensics program is less than two years old. With nearly 400 new forensic science students beginning prerequisite courses, the labs should see heavy use as the forensics program continues to evolve. In addition to the DNA lab, the 73,000-square-foot Arts and Sciences building includes two general chemistry labs, an organic chemistry lab and a forensic chemistry lab. Forensic science students will be joined by others in nursing, biology pre-med and other programs that require lab work.  Melissa Beddow, the assistant professor who leads GCU’s forensic science program, said students will use the same tools in the new Arts and Sciences building as they’ll encounter in most professional DNA labs. The idea […]

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Let There Be (More) Music: COFAP Adds Band Program

August 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comment

By Doug Carroll GCU News Bureau To the long list of things already named Herd at GCU, you can add one that will be Heard. That would be the new Thundering Heard Pep Band, which could have as many as 80 members under the direction of Paul Koch, the University’s director of bands and an instrumental professor of music. Koch (pronounced “Cook”) says his goal is to assemble a high-energy band capable of becoming the “sixth man” at Antelope men’s and women’s basketball games in GCU Arena. He says the process is kind of like shopping for a good car stereo. “I’m more concerned with the balance of instruments than pure numbers,” says Koch, who’s no stranger to launching a band. Before coming to GCU, he was director of bands at Perry High School in Chandler since the school’s opening in 2007.

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