Chancellor delivers "State of the University" address
Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. addressed Liberty University students for the final time this school year at Wednesday’s convocation, where he shared the current state of the university and plans for the future.
In his speech, which he finished writing at 1 a.m. this morning, Falwell praised the student body for the register-to-vote campaign they joined last semester and the Liberty Champion staff for its recent tabloid publication showcasing the impact students can have on local elections.
Falwell also spoke about the solid financial footing of Liberty University and the decision to lower the current tuition rate by nearly $6 million, saving about $500 per student. This year, while many other universities raised tuition rates, he said, Liberty took into consideration the national economic downturn and made the decision to help students with families who had experienced financial troubles.
Falwell said by the 2000s, Liberty experienced an explosive growth in student enrollment and campus size and last summer the decision was made to limit enrollment. Now, as the university enters “a new phase of history,” Falwell said the focus will be on academic excellence in Liberty’s facilities and programs.
“The original vision of Liberty University was to create a worldwide university that is distinctively Christian. The vision was to have academic excellence, world-class facilities, NCAA Division I athletics — everything that’s offered by major secular universities but with an overriding commitment to biblical truth and morality,” Falwell said.
In the weeks and months to come, Liberty will be unveiling many projects, including the new Thomas Indoor Soccer Complex, the Snowflex year-round ski slope, a building expansion for Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, renovations for the Visual Communication Arts department and a new performing arts center.
Falwell also announced that the tennis courts are back on schedule to be rebuilt on Campus North and that the Career Center will be relocating onto the first floor of Arthur S. DeMoss Learning Center, in the space that formerly housed the university bookstore. There are also future plans to relocate the School of Business onto the fourth floor of DeMoss Hall.
“Our commitment is to continue to improve Liberty’s reputation so that as you go through your careers your Liberty education will become more and more progressive to you,” Falwell said.
- Troy Matthews, Liberty University professor, presented Volunteer of the Year Christian Service Awards to Liberty students Amanda Jo Forth (left) and Nathaniel Saxon (right) for their excellence in Christian service this year. Saxon spent the past year working at Liberty’s Graduate Writing Center while Forth is the founder and president of Students Behind Our Soldiers, which works to send packages to American soldiers overseas.
- Don Fanning, director of Liberty’s Center for Global Ministries, presented the David Arthur DeMoss Award to Liberty student Cameron Price. This award is presented to the student who displays a strong commitment and enthusiasm for cross-cultural ministries.
Liberty University launches “What’s Your Story?” campaign
The blue couch wants you to share your story. Liberty University kicked off its campus-wide “What’s Your Story?” campaign Wednesday during convocation.
As Liberty University founder Dr. Jerry Falwell used to say, Liberty University is a training ground for future “Champions for Christ.” In keeping with his time-honored vision, LU has launched its “What’s Your Story?” campaign to reinforce the idea that coming to LU is truly a pivotal decision.
On Wednesday students cozied up to the blue couch at Reber-Thomas Dining Hall and shared their testimonies of what it means to be a Champion for Christ and how LU impacted their lives. Students, faculty and staff can share their stories in person on the travelling couch or through a submitted video, written accounts or photos.
“… Nobody can tell the story of Liberty University better than our students,” Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. said at the Vines Center on Wednesday. “That’s why we want you to be the focus of our next big recruitment campaign.”
Click here for more information on how to share your story, and track down the blue couch on Twitter or join the “What’s Your Story?” Facebook group.
Josie MacInnis, from the Sounds of Liberty ministry team, performed “You are for Me” at Wednesday’s convocation. Originally from New Brunswick, Canada, MacInnis was recognized in the Liberty Journal for receiving a full scholarship to Liberty to help with finances after receiving news of her father’s pancreatic liver cancer diagnosis. Read her story here.