Mar 31, 2009

Ask and receive: productive Q&A

by Lee Sandy

Concerned students took the floor, barraging a panel of Liberty’s finest, including Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. in a question-and-answer session. The long line of questioning coupled with heavy student turnout, sent the session 20 minutes past its scheduled time.

Director of Commuter Affairs Larry Provost moderated the event, which took place last Thursday, and frequently helped by answering questions presented by participants.

In the first half of the Q&A, questions were directed toward Elizabeth VanWingerden, marketing manager of Liberty Dining; Timi Plyter, of the Student Advocates office; Daveta Saunders, associate director of the Center for Multicultural Enrichment; Matthew Zealand, chief information (technology) officer; Brian Yates, CASAS director of advising; Robert Ritz, director of Financial Aid and Provost.

Many questions regarding on-campus technology inspired student questioning. Zealand informed the student body that IPTV would be available over Liberty’s wireless, high-speed connection by the upcoming fall semester.

When asked about programs that could possibly help students be able to afford college next semester, Ritz acknowledged that a lot of students and their families are experiencing hard times right now. Of the more than 40 alternative loan lenders that once provided loans to Liberty students, only 14 remain in business. However, Ritz informed students that an “internal loan program” is being considered.

Provost announced that the Office of Commuter Affairs will be holding a Spring Apartment Fair on Tuesday, April 7.

The second half of the Q&A featured Falwell; Lee Beaumont, the director of Auxiliary Services; Colonel Richard Hinkley, the chief of police for the Liberty University Police Department; Dr. Mark Hine, vice president of Student Affairs; and Pastor Dwayne Carson, director of the Office of Student Leadership.

The information mostly concerned construction and renovations on campus. Falwell mentioned that since July 2007, $38 million in donations has been spent on construction and renovation projects.
Falwell said that a company known as OPSEC3 is being considered as a possibility to make Liberty’s new shooting range become one of the premier in the country. Plans could possibly include urban training centers where room-to-room training courses could be held.
Halfway through the final part of the Q&A students began to line the center aisle armed with questions for Falwell and the other faculty.
Freshman Class Officer Timothy Leong saw the event as a way to get questions answered and to reassure students that Liberty’s administration has their best interests in mind.

“The average student does not typically get the opportunity to speak one-on-one with administrative figures, and this (event) gives students that opportunity,” Leong said.

Freshman Class President Liz Baldwin worked closely with Leong to organize the event, and both hope to see it become a regular event in the years to come.

“Students that had questions found answers,” Baldwin said. “The panelists did an excellent job at taking time to answer them.”

Contact Lee Sandy at


Printable Version

» Female steps up as president
» Keep Talking
» Getting back to the basics
» Values Voter Summit unites conservatives
» SPC Mitch Roberson Student fights obstacles at home and abroad
» Seeking a safe haven
» Seeing the Unseen
» Clayton King new campus pastor