Provost Dr. Gary Damore to Deliver Fall Commencement Address

Provost Dr. Gary Damore to Deliver Fall Commencement Address

Arizona Christian University is proud to announce that Dr. Gary Damore, the school’s Provost who is retiring at the end of this year, will deliver ACU’s 2016 Fall Commencement address. ACU’s Fall Commencement Ceremony is scheduled for 11 a.m. on Saturday, December 10, 2016 in Fultz Memorial Gymnasium at Arizona Christian University, 2625 E. Cactus Road in Phoenix. This will be ACU’s second Fall Commencement, this year featuring a total of 26 graduates from the traditional and Degree Completion Program who will receive bachelor’s degrees from Arizona’s most selective University. “Dr. Gary Damore has been at the heart of ACU’s resurgence during the past decade,” said ACU President Len Munsil. “His dedication to academic excellence, his leadership skills, and his heart for faculty, staff and students at ACU have been absolutely essential during ACU’s huge transition from Bible college to Christian liberal arts university. I’m so grateful for his friendship, and I know he will continue to be involved at ACU and as a leader in the body of Christ for years to come.” Dr. Damore has worked in the field of education for more than 40 years. He has been a teacher, principal, superintendent, college faculty member and Provost. Dr. Damore holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish, a Master of Science in English as a Second Language and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership, all from Northern Arizona University. As ACU’s Provost, Dr. Damore has been a strong spiritual leader to the staff, faculty and students as well as a gifted academic leader. He is passionate about quality, biblically-integrated instruction with a love for higher education. Dr. Damore also serves on...
What’s missing in American politics? Our Founders would say virtue and religion

What’s missing in American politics? Our Founders would say virtue and religion

I’m in the classroom every day with college students, most of whom will be voting for president for the first time in less than a week. As a political science professor, I am curious to hear what the next generation is thinking about the current state of American politics. What I hear consistently is what they don’t like about politics. They point first to the most obvious—the lack of character and integrity in the candidates and more generally in elected officials. They harbor an abiding distrust of politicians, who they see as fundamentally dishonest, willing to say anything to get elected. Like many Americans, they believe politicians are inherently self-interested, more concerned about their own power than the common good or the needs of the average voter. They are disgusted with the corruption they see in American politics. They want authenticity in their candidates. But more troubling, they are deeply suspicious of American institutions. They don’t trust the government at any level. They generally believe the economic system is “rigged” against them. And they are particularly disillusioned with the news media. As they prepare to vote, they are desperate to know where they can go for accurate information to inform their decision. They instinctively recoil at the “spin” of the news media, and distrust any political news, no matter the source. These concerns expressed by the next generation are spot on, mirroring those of the American electorate at large. Polls show that trust in government and other institutions is at an historic low. An extensive Pew Research Center poll from 1958 to 2015 shows trust in government in a free...
2016 Homecoming and Family Weekend BBQ Award Recipients Announced

2016 Homecoming and Family Weekend BBQ Award Recipients Announced

Arizona Christian University is excited to announce the recipients of the upcoming inaugural Homecoming Awards to be honored November 4th during ACU’s first Homecoming and Family Weekend BBQ. The on-campus event will feature five award recipients, nominated by their peers and chosen by a diverse group of ACU staff and faculty members. Each of the recipients embody ACU’s mission and have distinguished themselves by transforming culture with truth. The 2016 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year is Dr. Mark Bailey, class of 1972. Dr. Bailey assumed Dallas Theological Seminary’s presidency after years of service as both a professor in the Bible Exposition department and as the Vice President for Academic Affairs. In addition to his years at the Seminary, he has pastored various churches in Arizona and Texas. He was a seminar instructor for Walk Thru the Bible Ministries for twenty years and is in demand for Bible conferences and other preaching engagements. His overseas ministries have included Venezuela, Argentina, Hungary, and China. He is also a regular tour leader in Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, Greece, and Rome. His board service includes Bible Study Fellowship, Insight for Living, Jews for Jesus, and Walk Thru the Bible Ministries. Dr. Bailey began his academic career in the Bible department at ACU (then Southwestern College) and later became Dean of Faculty, for a total of nine years with the school. The 2016 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year is Grant Botma, class of 2005. Mr. Botma founded Stewardship Mortgage, Insurance, Financial, and Planning in 2007, located in Gilbert, AZ. The business was started and funded entirely on savings. Grant currently employs three other ACU...
Congrats, Sarenna Selzer!

Congrats, Sarenna Selzer!

Arizona Christian University formally announced its third recipient of the full-tuition President’s Scholarship for the incoming class of 2016, Valley student Sarenna Selzer of Desert Ridge High School in Mesa, Arizona.  With the announcement, ACU’s Vice President of Enrollment, Pete Hamstra, expressed his confidence that Sarenna will be a positive influence not only in ACU’s Business Department, but to the campus overall. “Sarenna comes to ACU with a background that indicates she’ll be a significant presence in ACU’s Business Department. Having served as both the fundraising director and the president of the local DECA chapter, Sarenna’s leadership skills exemplify what ACU looks for in a President’s Scholar,” said Hamstra. He added, “Not only that, her record of volunteerism is consistent with the commitment to service that ACU is known for in the surrounding community.” In addition to her duties with DECA, an association with the mission to “prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe,” Sarenna served as the section leader, drum major and club historian for the Desert Ridge marching band. Outside of school, Sarenna is heavily involved in her church where she is an assistant preschool teacher, large group leader for children, and youth band vocalist. She has also participated in food drives for Goodwill and is a shift manager at Chick-Fil-A. Sarenna quickly realized that her commitment to faith and service would be nurtured at ACU, and that’s exactly what she looks forward to most. Sarenna shared, “Not only will I receive a biblically-integrated education, but I will also have the chance to study the...
Remembering the Forgotten

Remembering the Forgotten

Photo includes Jim Claypool and Tyler Carlson   During his four years on the maintenance staff at Arizona Christian University, Jim Claypool has been a staple in the small college community. It’s common to find Claypool around campus replacing sprinkler heads and lights, fixing thermostats, doors, bed frames and windows. And if you happen to catch his eye, he’ll never miss the opportunity to say hello. But Claypool’s life work extends far beyond the confines of ACU into the world intercity ministry. Here Claypool trades in his wrench and socket for a pulpit and a Bible. He trades in his time and his money for the chance to reach a marginalized people. And he trades in everything he has, for everything God wants from him. Claypool has been the head pastor at Bible Baptist Church in downtown Phoenix for the last 12 years. During his time, he has led the small church to make a large impact. The church feeds between 75 to 100 people every week in the surrounding intercity neighborhood and provides both drug and rehab services to those in need. This is just Claypool’s way of recognizing the large and needy intercity population whom he calls the “forgotten people”. But perhaps the most amazing piece of Claypool’s ministry, is the work that he does with the intercity youth. When much of the world looks on the troubled youth of the intercity with a wary eye and would prefer to forget them all together, Claypool has embraced them. Every Wednesday night for the last 12 years, Claypool has opened up his church to the youth of the...
Firestorm Film Festival Winners

Firestorm Film Festival Winners

“Run the Risk,” a short film about a lowly office employee who rediscovers life’s joy, took home the top prize at Arizona Christian University’s Firestorm Film Festival, held May 10th at Picture Show in Paradise Valley Mall. The film, by junior Communication major Nicole Jenkins, also earned Jenkins the award for Best Director. “The movie is about the importance of the arts in helping you find your life’s passions,” Jenkins said. The awards, the “Sparkies,” recognize outstanding achievement among Arizona Christian University’s film students. Junior Communication major Lauren Johnson’s film “Some Days Are Just Hard” won three Sparkies, including Best Screenplay for Johnson, Best Acting for PJ Sparks, and Best Music Composition for Julie Higby’s original score. The “Get a Grip” Sparkie went Eric and Sarah Dalrymple for Andrew Dalrymple’s film “Stanley.” The “Get a Grip” award recognizes individuals for behind-the-camera contributions. “Stanley” also won in the Best Supporting Actor category, with the Sparkie going to the film’s namesake—a 1960s Stanley thermos. Arizona Christian University and the Department of Communication and English thanks the Picture Show at Paradise Valley Mall for their support of the 2nd annual Firestorm Film Festival. The event was sponsored and supported by Pure Flix Entertainment, Brand Cure, The Arizona Coyotes Foundation, Connect the Dots Promotions, Illuminated Collective, Arcadia City Church, The Original Breakfast House, Kathy Loeffler Real Estate, and other private donors. Future sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Arizona Christian University’s Advancement Office. ACU is an accredited, private, non-profit, Christian university in Phoenix offering various bachelor’s degrees including a recently added Psychology major and programs of study such as Criminal Justice, Healthcare Policy,...
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