What we’re listening to: July 2022
July 14, 2022
It’s getting hot outside and so is our playlist for this month. Put together by our staff and curated just for you, this playlist is great for any occasion. Roll the windows down or hangout with some friends while listening to some of our favorite artists right now.
What we’re listening to: June 2022
June 16, 2022
Here is a playlist brought to you by our event staff. You’ll find everything from mellow indie jams to mood boosting ballads. Enjoy this on your nighttime drives or when you’re hanging at the beach.
What we’re listening to: May 2022
May 19, 2022
This month’s playlist is brought to you by two of our Event Supervisors, Justin Gibble and Walker Sandler. The weather is getting warmer, so here is a playlist to kickstart those summer vibes. Throw this on when you’re driving windows down, sitting in the park, or spending time with your friends.
Spring 2022 Semester Recap
May 6, 2022
Student Activities is known for putting on events that bring students together to find their closest friends. From bingo nights to Coffeehouse to free snow cones, this semester has been filled with the spirit of community, friendship, and entertainment.
At the start of this semester, I was looking at a very full but very exciting calendar. With this being my senior year, I knew I had to make the most of every moment. I remember being hired in the Spring of 2021 and feeling so thrilled to be a part of this team, and that thrill has stayed with me. I was ready to learn all I could and connect with students and my coworkers. Being a newbie simultaneously feels like a lifetime ago and like it happened last week. Now, wrapping up my final shifts has me reminiscing on this past semester with Student Activities.
Kicking off the semester with Rock the Rot, Open Mic, and a Student Concert, we welcomed students back with a week of music. The rest of the month featured nostalgic nights including Family Feud, 80s and 80s Bingo, and Prime Time Trivia. Everyone who showed up really showed off with their outfits, knowledge, and talent.
Moving into February, we learned that many students really paid attention in their elementary spelling lessons through our first ever Spelling Bee, and celebrated Valentine’s Day with a Rom Com Movie Marathon. Our staple events stayed throughout the month and before we knew it, we were ready to go to space at Coffeehouse: The Great Beyond.
We launched (literally) into that night with incredible performances, hilarious videos, and out of this world costumes. For everyone in attendance, it was truly a night to remember. Coffeehouse has always been my favorite event, so having my last one be that level of production and hype was very special to me.
But the semester wasn’t over yet. Spider-Man swung into our last Drive-In Movie of the spring. After that came more bingo and open mics, along with a concert with college kids’ favorite indie Christian artist, Chris Renzema. The semester concluded with a sunny shopping day on the Academic Lawn at the Community Yard Sale.
Through all of these events, there were a few constants: students, staff, and super good times. To everyone who attended any of these events, I offer you my most sincere thank you. These events really would be pointless without students attending them, so we are always glad you all enjoy them. To my coworkers, you guys are the best people I have ever known, and I would not have made it through college without you. Please don’t ever become strangers whose laughs I could recognize anywhere. Throwing the biggest hearts your way for the rest of my life.
There were points that felt like we’d never reach the end of a day let alone the semester, but for the most part it was pretty much a speed run. I’m not a big fan of running, but this job is something I would sprint toward like my life depended on it. This semester, along with the two before it, has been nothing short of remarkable. Student Activities has given me friends and memories for life.
But like everything in life, this experience must come to an end. It is with a bittersweet nostalgia that I will look back on this job. The time I had here was filled with laughs and hard work, and I will treasure it forever. Long live all the magic we made. Thank you all for a great semester.
Written by: Anna Pender
Anna is a Senior Strategic Communications major. She is thankful to have the opportunity to write for the blog because it gives her a chance to explore and write about topics and events that she is passionate about and that are relevant to the world. She loves getting to be creative and share her personality through writing.
Artist Expo: Gable Price and Friends
April 28, 2022
I’ll be honest with ya’ll, I didn’t know who these guys from Redding, CA were all that long ago. But now, Gable Price and Friends are a group of fist-pumping “bad boys” I’ll never forget. Formed in 2018, frontman Gable Price and his aforementioned friends, Adam Elizararraz (guitar), Daniel Vargas (drums) released their first EP “The Redding Ep”. The following year the band enlisted the talents of David Funk on bass (which with a name like that there was no other career path for the man), as well as guitarist Cameron Pablo to begin work on their freshman album. Going into their 4th year as a band, Price and the gang have released their first full length album, “Fractioned Heart” in 2020, a “reimagined” EP of previously released songs, a couple additional singles, and their newest EP, “If I’m Being Honest…” which dropped just last year.
So what makes these guys special? The band makes no efforts to hide their faith within their songs yet aren’t your typical sounding worship group. They’ve blended a unique rock sound that makes you want to jump around and dance with your friends, and personal, heart-jabbing lyrics that cause you to do a little soul-searching. Take “I Need You” off their latest EP for example. If you aren’t listening too closely, you could simply nod your head along with the up-beat chorus and guitar riffs. But tune those ears just a little more and you’ll hear the cry of a desperate man singing about his drifting from God and ongoing lack of honesty about it. And the coolest part is, you can have both of those things together. You can put the windows down and jam out with your friends and get vulnerable about real things. That’s not something you find combined in your everyday rock band. And people are taking notice. The group now amasses over 100,000 monthly listeners on Spotify (the obviously superior music streaming service) and is playing shows throughout the US in the Spring and Summer of 2022.
If you weren’t there, we got to experience Gable Price and Friends firsthand on April 23rd at the first ever Student Activities After Party. It was amazing to see them rock out on stage and balance their vulnerability with a fantastic stage presence. If you were not able to catch Gable price and Friends on stage at After Party, go check them out wherever you find your music, I promise you wont regret it. It would be good to brush up on their music since you may see them again sometime in the future.
Written by Jordan Hassler
Jordan is a Sophomore studying Event Planning with a Biblical Studies minor. He enjoys expressing his creativity through words, and sharing his experiences and personality by way of writing. He’s passionate about music, nature, and forming genuine connections with others.
After Party: Serve Lynchburg
April 21, 2022
Uncertainty and chaos are everywhere we turn today. When you look at the news it can feel both overwhelming and shocking and you are left to wonder if peace will ever reign. God, however, is never surprised with chaos.
When Paul wrote Colossians 3:15 to the church of Colossae, He wanted the church to discover peace through the Lordship of Christ, but they needed to first experience the inward transformation before they could know true peace.
What kind of peace? The peace of the gospel – the good news that Jesus saves and frees sinners. That’s who Jesus is and what He does. He brings calm, assurance, and reconciliation. He does that through service and through the ultimate sacrifice of His life.
Mark 10:45 says, “For even the Son of Man came not be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
You see, service that is rooted in sacrifice creates opportunity for reconciliation and peace, and service is the bridge for bringing that peace. Both service unto the Lord and towards those around you, has no defined shape and can be seen and expressed in many different forms. But one thing is certain, it should always be characterized by love, sacrifice, hope, and peace.
At LU Serve, we lead and train students to volunteer and speak His peace and reconciliation through service and outreach. LU Serve is predominantly known for the CSER program, and rightly so as students serve over 500,000 hours each year through the CSER program to bless communities and organizations around the U.S. and the world.
Whether service on group trips, individual experiences around the U.S. and the World, or through the Serve Now program, LU Serve helps students seek to bring peace through loving our communities, in both word and deed.
One of the biggest ways that we do this locally each year is through this one-day effort called Serve Lynchburg. Serve Lynchburg is an annual event in which Liberty University students, faculty, staff, and Lynchburg residents join together with community partners to meet local community needs.
On April 23rd, students will serve alongside 75 organizations in the Lynchburg community. This is a day Liberty University gets to invest the greatest asset it possesses, the Liberty University students.
This will be the 5th annual Serve Lynchburg with the inaugural year being 2017. Each time LU Serve leads out on this event, we get to link arms with many departments across Liberty University to maximize impact on the students that serve and the organizations we work alongside. This event cannot happen without Liberty as a whole coming together.
From 10:30 am to 2:30 pm on April 23rd all around the greater Lynchburg area, you might find a Liberty student planting flowers at a local elementary school, stocking a warehouse for a humanitarian organization, singing to elderly people at a nursing home, mulching a playground, or playing with some youth. No matter what you see being done, all of it is making an impact and serving the needs of the organizations.
Many of these organizations rely heavily on volunteers throughout the year to move the needle for their organization. But on a day like Serve Lynchburg, this needle moves much farther along and they can feel the impact and influence!
To top it all off, Serve Lynchburg is partnering with Student Activities and our collaboration has created what we are calling “After Party”, which is the end of year equivalent to the Block Party event they put on at the start of the year.
We look forward to having the biggest party of the year and celebrating the work of Serve Lynchburg together!
Written by: Steven Gillum – Director of LU Serve
April 19, 2022
So, I am going to start with the bad news about ending another year at college. The upperclassmen know this, but some of you are about to find this out the hard way. The last year was pretty special. You put in hard work, had great friends, dozens of late nights, and it was good. The hall that you lived on is one you’ll never forget, and your classes will end up being your all-time favorites. But in a few weeks, you’ll go home for summer break and return in the fall. Now, everything will still be here when you get back, but it’ll be a little different. Chick-fil-A will still taste the same, but the familiar smile you’ve come to know, handing you an 8-piece chicken nugget meal on your weekly Tuesday Chick-fil-A lunch will be different. The sophomore you pass every Wednesday in between lab and your 3:00 class, who you don’t know, but over 4 months have built a silent agreement to awkwardly nod every time you pass each other, won’t be there. Even the people you sit next to while watching Sony’s much anticipated Morbius are going to change. So, I’ll say it again, the last year was pretty special.
We’re at that time of year where everyone is buckling down and putting in every last minute into studying for finals. Or maybe you’re more focused on lining up a last-minute internship for the summer. Preparing for adult life is daunting, so it’s easy to forget about your last few weeks on campus.
As someone who has been in your shoes before, I beg you to take these last few weeks seriously. Work hard, study has much as you can, but take a few hours, and let yourself enjoy the precious and special time you have left before summer. Do one more cookout run, host a late-night worship session on the lawn, or go see the film everyone is talking about, Morbius. A movie that critics are calling “somehow the worst movie I’ve ever seen, but not the worst Jared Leto movie I’ve ever seen”.
Or you could simply join us, we are hosting a massive end of the year event in the LaHaye Parking lot, on April 23rd at 5pm. We’ll have carnival rides, food trucks, other departments, live music, ice skating, a DJ, and Gable Price & Friends. The event is called After Party, it is our way of saying thank you for another outstanding year. Student Activities has had such an amazing time reintroducing Coffeehouse, Block Party, Open Mic Nights, Chris Renzema, and more. But we are ending the year with After Party.
The event is going to take place in partnership with “Serve Lynchburg” and all who serve will receive free food at any of our food trucks. Also, seniors look for an email inviting you to come and pick up an exclusive After Party pullover (while supplies last).
This event would not be possible without the help of our premiere sponsors, Coca-Cola, Rookie’s, Domino’s, 90.9 The Light, and Your Event Source. They have come alongside to help us create an event worthy of the name After Party.
So come and let loose. Bring your hall, your friends, a professor or two… we don’t care. We know this last year has been a return to normalcy that was needed by everyone, so let’s end it right. Sure, you could spend Saturday night playing Elden Ring, or throwing back a bucket of popcorn while watching Jared Leto’s Morbius, a film Michael Keaton called “why am I in this?”… but don’t do that. Hang out with us instead. We’ll have cookie sandwiches and mechanical swings.
Written by: Cort Comfort – Director of Student Activities
April 14, 2022
Coffeehouse is such a special event for so many reasons, and I think it is so cool that Liberty does something like this for their students. I don’t know of any other schools that have something like Coffeehouse. It’s just a time for students to relax and enjoy musical acts, games, and fun videos all done by their peers! It’s something that I hope we as Liberty students do not take for granted. It’s a night where we can laugh, cry, sing, dance, and just have an all around good time. Attending Coffeehouse is a definite staple to attending Liberty University.
My favorite memory at Coffeehouse was actually my first-time attending Coffeehouse, my first semester here. My friends and I were very late to the party and planned very last minute because my one friend had won a table and was able to invite five of her friends to join. So, we made it a very special night. I remember walking down to the floor getting to the table. All the snacks were there, all the people around us were really dressed up, and it was starting to be a fun time before the show had even begun. We got settled in and ready for the show and to see people I knew showing off their talent on the stage was so special! It was so fun to see the show go on and to think of all the hard work that was behind it. Now that I work for Student Activities, that makes it extra special because we do put lots of effort into the show and want it to be the best for students to have a good time.
One thing I specifically remember was watching all the videos, those were my favorite part of Coffeehouse. They give students the ability not only to show off their videography skills or their acting skills, but most importantly (in my opinion) their comedy skills. A lot of people at Coffeehouse want to laugh and the videos are a way for them to laugh at some inside jokes that only Liberty students would understand. I think that’s one of the best things Coffeehouse offers, instead of having professionals come in and put the show on, we get to watch people we know or see around campus give us something to laugh at. Coffeehouse gives students the platform to show off their skills and that makes it an extra special event. This Coffeehouse my sister (who was a senior when I was a freshman) was in a video and I remember being so proud of her and thinking it was so cool to see her on the big screen in Vines! It was so special watching people laugh and enjoy something she was a part of creating. I was a proud little brother, definitely a night I won’t forget.
Coffeehouse is so special for so many reasons and I will have those memories from that night for years to come. It’s so unique compared to other events because it’s done by the students for the students. Being a part of the Coffeehouse stage is a tradition like no other and I am so proud to be a part of it now that I am working for Student Activities. So, I highly recommend next time Coffeehouse rolls around grabbing your best friends and going to Coffeehouse not only supporting your peers, but also just enjoying the night! It’s something that you’ll remember and be grateful you attended!
Written by: Trey Voggenreiter
Trey is a junior majoring in theology desiring to go into vocational ministry. He has a heart for camp ministry and would like to work full time at a camp one day! Student Activities has given him the opportunity to work hands on in serving those around him and being able to be a light to those he interacts with at events.
Let’s Grow: 3 Lessons From SA
April 7, 2022
While we’re on the subject of growing, let me tell you how being a part of Student Activities has helped shaped me into the person I am today.
Even though I have only been a part of SA for a semester and a half, the things I have learned through this job are things that I will most definitely take with me into the future. Especially as I enter the “adult world” after I walk across the stage in May as I graduate and receive my diploma.
A few specific lessons come to mind.
PUSHING ONESELF: To be a part of Student Activities is to push yourself in ways you might have never imagined. Something I have been continuously reminded of, and humbled by, is how I am never in my lifetime going to be a power lifter. I am also not, by any means, Picasso’s prodigy when it comes to artistic ability. However, Student Activities has given me numerous opportunities to strengthen those skills and abilities such as allowing me to paint the moon for The Great Beyond Coffeehouse and making every day an arm day when it comes to loading/unloading the trucks when setting up for an event. The importance of pushing oneself is especially needed in a job such as Student Activities because there are so many times where the hours are long, and one may start to feel weary or drained. However, having the mentality and motivation of getting the job done and getting it done well to serve the student body is something that should drive one to push past the tiredness one may be feeling in that moment. Even after a potential difficult shift, being able to confidently walk away knowing you have done your very best is such a good feeling.
SERVICE IS NOT LIMITED TO ONE POSITION: After being a Community Group Leader last semester and absolutely loving it, I had a hard debate with myself whether I wanted to remain a CGL or join Student Activities. I liked the idea of being a part of leadership and spiritual growth on campus again. I had 27 girls in my community group (yes, you read that correctly!!) and being able to pour into their lives was such a rewarding feeling. Not only was I helping build community and encouraging my girls to grow in their relationship with Christ, but I was also able to become more intimate with Him through ministry as well. However, I decided to take the chance and step into a brand-new position – working for Student Activities – and I have no regrets whatsoever. Being a part of this team has reminded me that serving is not limited to one position such as being a CGL, RS, or any leadership position at all for that matter. Giving away free coffee and interacting with the student body on a day-to-day basis is its own form of service. Wearing a smile and bringing the light of Christ into people’s lives even if it’s just through giving them an SA branded tumbler, tote bag, t-shirt, etc. it is an absolute honor and joy. Seeing their eyes light up in excitement is truly such a sweet and heart-warming feeling! As Christians, we are called to live our lives overflowing with mercy, love, and compassion. These are the marks of the Kingdom of Heaven, and this is what Student Activities aims to accomplish by serving the students at Liberty – reflecting Christ in every interaction. Every day, we have the opportunity to be vessels and share the Gospel wherever we go – no matter what position we are in.
APPRECIATING AND UTILIZING STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES: I will rave about this till the day is done….Student Activities is made up of such incredibly talented individuals. Like I mentioned earlier, lifting and visual art are things I struggle with and definitely do no pride myself in. However, what Student Activities has instilled in me is how that is perfectly ok! I know this might be a shock for some of you, especially you type A people, but you actually do not have to be good at everything!! It is okay to fall back and let those who do have talent in those areas pop off in areas where you may not excel. Just make sure not to limit yourself either. The Lord has created us all so beautifully and uniquely. It is up to you to find out what those things are and utilize them for further advancement of the Kingdom. James 1:17!!!
So, as you see, Student Activities has taught me more than I would have ever anticipated, but the Lord has used this department to bless me in numerous ways that I am so grateful for.
Come check out our Job Fair on April 12th from 1-3 p.m. on the third floor of Montview. Apply to join our team, and get ready to grow more than you could ever know!!
Written by: Hayley Lundberg
Hayley is a Senior majoring in Strategic Communications with a concentration in Public Relations. She enjoys working with her Student Activities family and is very grateful for the opportunity to be apart of such a creative team who truly cares about the students of Liberty. The blog in particular has been a great outlet for her to share with others!
Artist Expo: Chris Renzema
April 1, 2022
Though it may not feel like it, it is Springtime here in Lynchburg. And there’s no better way to usher in the warm weather and new growth than with Chris Renzema’s song “Springtime”. Chris Renzema has been a campus favorite for a few years now and for good reason. His music combines various topics of walking with Christ and a unique blend of indie, soft rock, and folk styles. This musical combination allows Renzema to hit the heart of his listeners and not be lumped in with typical Christian pop artists.
This may be a lofty comparison, but when I talk to my friends about Chris Renzema, I like to compare him to J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. These men were masters at their craft. They wrote good literature flat out, and because of their faith in God, gospel themes are weaved throughout. It may be a Liberty cliché to say “if it’s Christian it ought to be better”, but I think it applies. When Christians are excellent in what they do and do it in the name of God, I think that is when we make a difference. Lots of Christian content gets a bad rep for being cheesy. I think that type of content has its place too, but what if we started making things that were so good the world couldn’t help but take notice, and in them we proclaim the name of Christ. To me, that’s what these authors did. And I feel like Renzema is on the same path with his music. He writes good music, takes care to master his craft, and does it all through the lens of his faith in God. In one interview, he asked the rhetorical question, “How does Christian music fit into what I love about music?” and answered by saying, “I love Jesus and I love music and that’s why I make what I make” (Carpenter, 2020).
Renzema’s lyrics are deeply personal at times, asking the buried questions of the raw human heart. At other times, his music explores theology and the person of God, like in his song “Son of God”. The Nashville-based artist actually made his official debut with that song. Since releasing “Son of God”, Renzema has put out a number of singles, extended plays, and albums. Most recently, he released “Get Out of the Way of Your Own Heart” and “HOPE OR NOSTALGIA LIVE”. While his music is still centered around God, his newest album explores our relationship with God in the midst of a messy life. Songs like “Hope or Nostalgia”, “No Room For An Anxious Heart”, “Only The Good Die Young”, and “Hard Drugs” feel different from some of the artist’s past work. These songs are truly honest, asking how sinful people who struggle in this fallen world can relate to and be in relationship with a holy God.
Listeners love his music for the stories he tells, care he puts into the writing of his music, and the messages weaved throughout his calm/indie style. One of my coworkers described Renzema’s music as “a morning cup of coffee”. I feel like this is such a good description, the sound is smooth like coffee and the lyrics are awakening and sobering. If you haven’t checked out this artist yet, I recommend you go on a drive and put his music on shuffle. Maybe you’ll find your new favorite artist!
Chris Renzema is currently sharing his music with the country on his tour with Antoine Bradford, who will also be joining us for the concert. The two are playing over 26 shows all around the country, and they will be stopping here on Saturday, April 9 at 7:30 PM in the School of Music Concert Hall.
Written by: Courtney Stone
Courtney is a Business Administration: Digital Marketing and Advertising major. She enjoys writing for the blog as a way to explore relevant topics and grow in written communication.