JBU Appoints New Chaplain, Dean of Christian Formation

Photograph of Mark Irving
Mark Irving

John Brown University announced today the appointment of Mark Irving as University Chaplain, Dean of Christian Formation. Irving will begin the new role on July 1.

“Mark has a heart for college student discipleship, and we look forward to seeing how God will use him to give direction and support to the chapel and ministry programs of JBU’s Office of Christian Formation,” said Steve Beers, vice president for student development.

Irving serves as the executive pastor at Fellowship Nashville in Tennessee and leads a citywide young professional’s ministry through Navigators. Irving is a graduate of Cedarville University and Dallas Theological Seminary. He served in youth ministry on the West Coast and collegiate ministry in the Midwest before moving to Tennessee in 2014. 

“I look forward to serving as the JBU chaplain and walking alongside students in the great adventure of following Jesus,” Irving said. 

Irving and his wife Meredith have three daughters ages 11, 14 and 16.

John Brown University is a leading private Christian university, training students to honor God and serve others since 1919. As Arkansas’ top-ranked university (Wall Street Journal, 2020), JBU enrolls more than 2,100 students from 36 states and 59 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, online and concurrent education programs. JBU offers more than 40 majors, with top programs including engineering, nursing, family and human services, biology, graphic design and construction management.

Chief Judge Lavenski Smith Presents Barnett Civic Leadership Lecture at John Brown University

Photograph of Chief Judge Lavenski Smith
Chief Judge Lavenski Smith

John Brown University will host Chief Judge Lavenski Smith as the 2020 speaker for the Barnett Civic Leadership Series. Smith, who is the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, will present a lecture titled “Without Respect of Persons” on Tuesday, Feb. 4, at 7 p.m. in Simmons Great Hall at JBU.

“In his almost two decades of service on the Eighth Circuit, Judge Smith has demonstrated a firm commitment to the rule of law and a healthy respect for the constitutional separation of powers. But more than that, he is a man of deep faith with a long history of support for John Brown University,” Dr. Daniel Bennett, JBU associate professor of political science and assistant director of Center for Faith and Flourishing, said. “We are grateful to be able to host him for this event.”

Smith was nominated to the federal bench by President George W. Bush and began serving in 2002. He became Chief Judge in 2017. Before joining the federal bench, Smith practiced law in both private practice and public service. He was also a JBU professor and later on the board of trustees.

The event is free and open to the public.

The Ray and Laurine Barnett Civic Leadership Series, established in 2016, is funded by an endowment created with gifts from the Barnett family and donations from more than 20 organizations and individuals. The series, which brings a speaker to JBU each academic year, focuses on Christian leadership and addresses the intersection of faith and public service. Past speakers include Alveda C. King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the director of Civil Rights for the Unborn, the African American Outreach for Priests for Life and the African American Outreach for Gospel of Life Ministries; Shapri LoMaglio, vice president for government relations and executive programs at the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities; former Gov. Mike Huckabee and Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson.

“We at the Center for Faith and Flourishing are thrilled to partner with the Barnett Civic Leadership Series to bring Judge Smith to JBU,” said Dr. James Bruce, JBU associate professor of philosophy and director of Center for Faith and Flourishing. “This year’s lecture continues the great tradition of Barnett lectures, which give JBU students, faculty and staff the opportunity to think and reflect on Christianity, politics and the roles we have to play in our life together.”

John Brown University is a leading private Christian university, training students to honor God and serve others since 1919. As Arkansas’ top-ranked university (Wall Street Journal, 2020), JBU enrolls more than 2,100 students from 36 states and 59 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, online and concurrent education programs. JBU offers more than 40 majors, with top programs including engineering, nursing, family and human services, biology, graphic design and construction management.

JBU, Field Agent Partnership Offers Scholarships to Field Agent Employees, Families

John Brown University (JBU) and Field Agent are working together to offer scholarships to eligible Field Agent co-workers and their immediate family members nationwide toward JBU’s on-campus undergraduate, online undergraduate and graduate programs. Degrees offered through this collaboration include traditional face-to-face classes, online classes and a combination of online and evening classes, depending on the program. 

“We have team members that graduated from JBU that are now in leadership positions at Field Agent,” Rick West, co-founder and CEO of Field Agent said. “We look forward to our partnership and the new group of interns and new hires that will be joining us from JBU in 2020.”

“Over the years we have had many JBU students gain valuable internship and employment opportunities with Field Agent and we are proud to partner with them to help meet the development needs of their team,” said Ryan Ladner, dean of the Soderquist College of Business.

JBU currently offers business partnerships to many organizations across Northwest Arkansas, including Mercy, Arkansas Children’s, DaySpring, City of Siloam Springs, Simmons Foods Inc., Tyson Foods Inc., Harvest Group, Sam’s Club and Walmart. If your business is interested in a partnership agreement, please contact Dr. Joe Walenciak, dean of business development and strategic partnerships, at jwalenciak@jbu.edu for more information.

JBU Professor Releases First Collection of Poems

Photograph of man wearing bow tie holding a book of his poetry.
Dr. Jacob Stratman

Dr. Jacob Stratman, professor of English at John Brown University, will have a reading and book signing for his newly published collection of poems, “What I Have I Offer with Two Hands” on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 7:30 p.m. in Simmons Great Hall at JBU.

Stratman, who also serves as chair of JBU’s division of humanities and social sciences, began writing the poems in this collection in 2015. The collection illustrates the divine in everyday moments — the hills and creeks of the Ozarks, the Eucharist, his son’s Batman toys in the tub or the author’s own childhood.

“Each poem, in some way, tends to explore the same three subjects: parenting, the natural world, and God,” Stratman said. “In writing these poems, I’m trying to rest in the difficulties and complexities of raising kids in a polarizing world. What can love look like?”

“What I Have I Offer with Two Hands” is published through Cascade Books’ Poiema Poetry Series and is available for sale from major online book sellers.

John Brown University is a leading private Christian university, training students to honor God and serve others since 1919. Arkansas’ top-ranked university (The Wall Street Journal) and top-ranked regional university (U.S. News Best Colleges, 2019), JBU enrolls more than 2,300 students from 36 states and 59 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, online and concurrent education programs. JBU offers more than 40 undergraduate majors, with top programs including engineering, nursing, family and human services, biology, graphic design and construction management. Sixteen graduate programs are available in the areas of business, counseling, cybersecurity, education and higher education.

Arkansas Children’s, John Brown University Partnership Offers Tuition Scholarship

Arkansas Children’s Inc. has partnered with John Brown University to offer tuition scholarships to eligible Arkansas Children’s employees and members of their immediate families through their employer benefits beginning fall 2020.

“Arkansas Children’s is always looking for ways to enhance our total rewards package for our employees,” said Amy Koresdoski, vice president of Total Rewards for Arkansas Children’s health system. “Our partnership with John Brown University is another way we can help our team members meet their career goals.”
 
Eligible Arkansas Children’s employees and immediate family members can receive a JBU tuition scholarship. Employees and/or immediate family members may declare a major in any traditional undergraduate, online undergraduate and graduate program JBU offers to be eligible for the scholarship. Eligible recipients must apply to JBU, meet standard admissions requirements, submit an employer verification form, and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

”As John Brown University continues to expand its offerings in the area of health care, we are very proud to partner with great organizations like Arkansas Children’s,” said Joe Walenciak, dean, business development and strategic partnerships. “Each of us, in our own way, are working to serve and strengthen families in Arkansas and beyond.”

John Brown University is a leading private Christian university, training students to honor God and serve others since 1919. As Arkansas’ top-ranked university (Wall Street Journal, 2020), JBU enrolls more than 2,200 students from 36 states and 59 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, online and concurrent education programs. JBU offers more than 40 majors, with top programs including engineering, nursing, family and human services, biology, graphic design and construction management.

JBU Construction Management Students Place First in Ethics Competition

For the fourth year in a row, John Brown University construction management students took first place at the American Institute of Contractors (AIC) Ethics Competition, a national construction ethics competition and conference hosted by the AIC. 

Photograph of 6 men wearing suits
JBU Construction Management Students

Team members Leo Castillo, Joshua Barnett, Noah Hubert, Brett Heidelberg and Cameron Crawford qualified for the event by submitting an initial response paper based on ethical issues tied back to a case study based on actual industry events. JBU was one of three teams selected to make their final presentation at the national competition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Other universities represented were Texas A&M and the University of Houston.

Teams were evaluated based on how well they understood the AIC Code of Ethics and how accurately they applied it to the case study.

“Winning this competition for the fourth year in a row represents the character and work ethic of JBU’s construction management students,” said David Ellingson, adjunct JBU instructor and team sponsor. “JBU’s emphasis on integrated faith in our teaching demands that we prepare our students to have a clear grasp on what ethical practice is and how to live it out in their industry.

In past competitions, JBU’s construction management team has won against the University of Florida, Arizona State University, Cal Poly and Weber State (Utah).

The AIC seeks to provide national leadership in establishing and maintaining high ethical standards in construction management. The competition measures college students’ abilities to apply the AIC Code of Ethics for Contractors to case studies that include illegal, unethical or unprofessional situations.

John Brown University is a leading private Christian university, training students to honor God and serve others since 1919. Arkansas’ top-ranked university (The Wall Street Journal) and top-ranked regional university (U.S. News Best Colleges, 2019), JBU enrolls more than 2,300 students from 36 states and 59 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, online and concurrent education programs. JBU offers more than 40 undergraduate majors, with top programs including engineering, nursing, family and human services, biology, graphic design and construction management. Sixteen graduate programs are available in the areas of business, counseling, cybersecurity, education and higher education.

DaySpring, John Brown University Partnership Offers Tuition Scholarship

DaySpring has partnered with John Brown University to offer tuition scholarships to eligible DaySpring employees and members of their immediate families through their employer benefits.

“DaySpring is about people and their relationship with God and each other,” said James Barnett, president of DaySpring. “We are very pleased by our long-time relationship with JBU through various scholarships, sponsorships and internships. Many of our DaySpring people came to us from JBU and this new partnership offers them a chance for personal growth and additional educational possibilities.”

Eligible DaySpring employees and immediate family members can receive a JBU tuition scholarship. Employees and/or immediate family members may declare a major in any traditional undergraduate, online undergraduate and graduate program JBU offers to be eligible for the scholarship. Eligible recipients must apply to JBU, meet standard admissions requirements, submit an employer verification form, and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

”JBU is proud to work alongside a great local company with a global focus such as DaySpring,” said Joe Walenciak, dean, business development and strategic partnerships. “DaySpring has a strong mission and amazing workforce, and we look forward to a stronger future through this partnership.”

JBU, Mercy Partnership Offers Scholarships to Mercy Employees, Families

John Brown University (JBU) and Mercy are working together to offer scholarships to eligible Mercy co-workers and their immediate family members nationwide toward JBU’s traditional undergraduate, online undergraduate and graduate programs. Degrees offered through this collaboration include traditional face-to-face classes, online classes and a combination of online and evening classes, depending on the program.

“Mercy is pleased to work together with John Brown University,” said Scott Sell, Mercy’s vice president of talent selection. “While Mercy co-workers are continuously pursuing lifelong learning opportunities, financing their education can be one of their top concerns. With tuition scholarships, our co-workers can shift their focus from finances to their education. Thanks to the university, we are able to offer our co-workers in northwest Arkansas and across the four states we serve additional educational possibilities.”“JBU has called Siloam Springs home since the founding of our main campus here. As such, we’ve had a long history of strong relationships in northwest Arkansas that have benefitted the local community,” said Dr. Ed Ericson, JBU’s vice president for academic affairs. “We’re excited to provide opportunities that expand JBU’s mission to reach Mercy co-workers nationwide as they further their educational pursuits and career goals.”

JBU currently offers business partnerships to many organizations across northwest Arkansas, including the City of Siloam Springs, Simmons Foods Inc., Tyson Foods Inc., Harvest Group, Sam’s Club and Walmart. If your business is interested in a partnership agreement, please contact Dr. Joe Walenciak, dean of business development and strategic partnerships, at jwalenciak@jbu.edu for more information.

Harvest Group, John Brown University Partnership Offers Tuition Scholarship

Harvest Group has partnered with John Brown University to offer tuition scholarships to eligible Harvest Group employees and members of their immediate families through their employer benefits beginning in fall 2020.

“At Harvest Group, our mission is ‘To glorify God by serving our clients and people with a passion for growth.’ This not only includes growing the businesses we work with, but a big part of our mission is investing in our people and enabling them to grow,” said Steve Blair, vice president of operations. “This partnership with JBU is another great opportunity for our Harvest Group teammates and their families to pursue personal growth and live out one of our core values – Journey.”

Eligible Harvest Group employees and immediate family members can receive a JBU tuition scholarship. Employees and/or immediate family members may declare a major in any traditional undergraduate, online undergraduate and graduate program JBU offers to be eligible for the scholarship. Eligible recipients must apply to JBU, meet standard admissions requirements, submit an employer verification form, and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

“Harvest Group has been a partner with JBU in many ways, and we are proud of our students who have served there in internships and through fulltime employment,” said Joe Walenciak, dean, business development and strategic partnerships. “We look forward to building a deeper relationship and becoming more engaged in meeting the development needs of Harvest Group and our strategic partners.