SMC provides a wide range of activities that are fun and encourage students to meet one another. Student activities are planned and organized by POPS (People Organizing Programs Successfully). POPS is a great leadership opportunity that allows students to take part in programming and planning campus activities and social events.
Check out POPS on Facebook
POPS on Facebook
Some of our annual events include the:
Freshmen Day of Service
SMC Idol Competition
Homecoming / Family Day
Another recent event which the SMC Student Activities office coordinated along with faculty, staff and student leaders from across campus is The Jeremy Vangsnes 5K Benefit Run.
For more information on any of these programs, contact the Office of Student Activities and Leadership Developmen,t Room 202 of the Burgess Student Center; phone (864) 587-4006.

March 24 2014 the Importance of Being Ernest

Spartanburg Methodist College to present Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest

Spartanburg Methodist College is pleased to announce the SMC Players will present The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde’s most well-known and successful play, Thursday March 27, Friday, March 28 and Sunday, March 29 at 7:30 p.m. in Gibbs Auditorium located in Ellis Hall, both of which are handicapped accessible. The public is invited and general admission tickets are $5, area students tickets are $3, and all SMC students, faculty and staff are admitted free of charge.

The play, which has rarely fallen out of popularity since its first production in London in 1895, is a comedy that draws a parody of Victorian-era morality and its endless concern with status and respectability.  The plot is a complicated stew of false identities, misunderstandings, and marriage which turns the bromides of upper-class British society on its head.  In Earnest, Wilde revived the brittle wordplay of the comedy of manners, a form long abandoned on the British stage, and combined it with more the familiar elements of melodrama.

The Importance of Being Earnest is directed by Dr. Les Buhite. Director of the SMC Drama Program and Adjunct Professor of Public Speaking.  Dr. Buhite holds a BS in Communications Arts/Theater from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania; and a MA in Theater from University of Akron; and a Ph.D in Theater from Florida State University. Scenic and lighting design is a collaborative effort with SMC’s Drama Workshop class. The cast is composed of:

Carl Gibson, who is portraying Algernon Moncrief.  Gibson is a regular performer at SMC as both a musician and an actor. He has previously appeared in The Apple Tree, Antigone, and Mr. Scrooge. Hailing from Inman, SC, he is the son of Gary and Robin Gibson and a graduate of Dependent Christian School;

William Chandler Goodrich, who is portraying Ernest John Worthing. Another regular on the SMC stage, Goodrich has previously appeared in An Unexpected Murder, The Apple Tree, and Harvey.  A Film (Cinematography) Major from Greer, SC, he is the son of Debra and William Goodrich and a graduate of Greer Middle College Charter High School;

Leah Meahl, who will be portraying Lady Bracknell, brings an impressive resume to the SMC stage. She is a sophomore from Greenville, and most recently appeared as a narrator in Antigone and Passionella in The Apple Tree. A Wade Hampton High School graduate, she is the daughter of Bruce and Rhonda Meahl of Greenville, SC and is majoring in English;

Torey Brown, who has the role of Miss Gwendolyn Fairfax.  An Arts major from York, SC, she most recently appeared in the SMC production of Antigone, as well as in The Apple Tree, Mr. Scrooge, and Harvey. Brown is the daughter of Garland and Robin Brown of York, SC and a graduate of York Comprehensive High School;

Shakira Jackson, who will be portraying Miss Cecily Cardew.  An Inman SC native, she appeared in a number of plays in her church and high school, as well as in the SMC production of Antigone. The freshman Fine Arts major is graduate of Chapman High School and the daughter of Joey and Diane Jackson;

Adell Gordon, who has the role of the Rev. Dr. Frederick Chasuble, is a freshman Fine Arts major from Greenville, SC. He is a member of the Army Reserves and the Gospel Choir, appeared in the SMC production of Antigone, is the son of Shirley and Enrique Gordon and graduated from Berea High School;  

Patrice Haynes, who will be portraying Miss Laetitia Prism. Haynes attended Ridge View High School in Columbia, SC. She is the daughter of Angela and Floyd Haynes and a graduate of Ridge View High School.  Haynes is a Performing Arts major and this is her first appearance on the SMC stage;  

Davis Phillips will be portraying Lane and Merriman:  “The Butlers.” Phillips is a Communications Major from Inman SC.  Prior appearances at SMC include The Apple Tree and Antigone.  He is a graduate of Spartanburg Christian Academy and the son of William and Melinda Phillips; and

Hannah Faires, who is serving yet another time as Production Stage Manager. She is an Early Childhood Education major from Mauldin, SC. The Mauldin High School graduate is the daughter of Ned and Terri Faires. 

The Easter Bunny

Sheriff Department’s Easter Egg Hunt to be held at SMC

Spartanburg Methodist College is pleased to announce the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Department’s Annual Easter Egg Hunt will be held on the SMC campus on Saturday, April 12. The exclusive event, open only to Sheriff’s Department employees’ children and grandchildren, will also feature an appearance by The Easter Bunny.

In 2006 Sheriff Chuck Wright and his wife Kim happened upon information on The Easter Bunny Foundation, a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide a personal visit and a toy from The Easter Bunny during the week of Easter to children in hospitals and pediatric wards across the United States. In 2013, thanks to the Foundation, The Easter Bunny hopped throughout 33 states delivering smiles to 13,000 hospitalized children with the help of 92 Sheriff’s Offices and 4 Police Departments.

Sheriff Wright and The Easter Bunny have visited the pediatric floors, and other areas, of Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System and Mary Black Memorial Hospital each year to share soft, plush Easter bunnies and the excitement and wonder that only a personal visit from The Easter Bunny can bring.  Within the last few years, they have also visited the Children’s Shelter as well.

Several years ago Sheriff Wright expanded their mission to also include an egg hunt for the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Department’s families.  “The annual egg hunt has been held at the Sheriff’s Office parking lot in the past,” shared Vicki Biggs, Senior Administrative Assistant for Sheriff Wright, “so we are excited to move it to SMC and have a safe, grassy location for our families and their children.”

SMC_Seal Reflex Blue

SMC announces 2014-2015 Presidential Ambassadors

Spartanburg Methodist College is pleased to announce the 2014-2015 SMC Presidential Ambassadors.  This elite group of rising sophomore students is chosen to represent the college on and off campus.  Presidential Ambassadors are specifically chosen because of their outstanding leadership qualities and involvement on the SMC campus.

“These young men and women represent what a SMC Pioneer is, at their best. They provide an invaluable service to the campus and are key to our admissions efforts,” shared Dr. Colleen Perry Keith, President of Spartanburg Methodist College.  The following students have been selected as the 2014-2015 SMC Presidential Ambassadors:

Matthew Bishop, son of Teresa and David Bishop, of Spartanburg. Matthew is a graduate of Dorman High School;

KeiAndris Black, of Taylors, SC, a graduate of Riverside High School;

Jacob Cannon, son of Tonya and Brian McGuffin, of Roebuck, SC.  Jacob is a graduate of Doman High School;

Ian Clevenger, son of Brenda and Michael Clevenger, of Inman, SC. Ian is a graduate of Boiling Springs High School;

Zach Davis, son of Valerie Davis, of Rock Hill, SC. Zach is a graduate of South Pointe High School;

Patrice Haynes, daughter of Angela and Floyd Hayes, of Columbia, SC.  Patrice is a graduate of Ridge View High School;

Alisha Morehart, daughter of Tamara and Albert Morehart, of Greer, SC; Alisha is a graduate of Riverside High School.

Robby Norton, son of Pamela Davis, of Chesterfield, SC. Robby is a graduate of Chesterfield High School;

Samantha Rich, daughter of Betty and John Rich, of York, SC. Samantha is a graduate of Clover High School;

Kelsey Robinson, daughter of Kelly and Casey Robinson, of Greer, SC. Kelsey is a graduate of Eastside High School;

Jason Smith, son of Deborah and Jason Smith, of Iva, SC. Jason is a graduate of Dixie High School; and

Hannah West, daughter of Kimberly and John West, of Roebuck, SC. Hannah is a graduate of Dorman High School.

Presidential Ambassadors work with the President’s Office, the Office of Admissions, and the Office of Institutional Advancement to promote the college at events on and off campus. Often, Presidential Ambassadors are the first college representatives that prospective students meet and are critical in helping showcase SMC and all of the great opportunities that await them on campus.

Principle responsibilities include assisting with organizing and conducting three Guest Fest open house events; assisting the Office of Admissions with conducting campus tours for prospective students; being knowledgeable about Spartanburg Methodist College and be able to share that information with prospective students and their families; assisting the Office of Institutional Advancement with Alumni Weekend, donor dinners, alumni tours, and other events as needed; representing the student body at events on campus and office campus for the Office of the President.

Curry talk

SMC to host Georgia author Carolyn Curry

Spartanburg Methodist College will host author Carolyn Curry for a talk and book signing on Tuesday, March 25th from 3 to 4 p.m. in the SMC Davis Mission Chapel.  Curry’s “Suffer and Grow Strong, The Life of Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas, 1834–1907,” is destined to become a classic in women’s studies, and is as enjoyable as it is educational.

Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas’s journals have long been an indispensable source for anyone seeking to understand the nineteenth-century South and Southern white women’s experiences,” says Michele Gillespie, Presidential Professor of History at Wake Forest University. “Yet surprisingly, Thomas has never been the subject of a full-length biography. Carolyn Curry’s welcome new book carefully documents Thomas’s life story and puts her journals into an intriguingly fresh context.”

Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas was an intelligent, spirited woman born in 1834 to one of the wealthiest families in Georgia. At the age of fourteen she began and kept a diary for forty-one years. These diaries of her life before, during, and after the Civil War filled thirteen hand-written volumes with 450,000 words. In the early years she described her life of leisure and recorded the books she read. Her father recognized her love of learning and sent her to the first college for women in America, Wesleyan Female College in Macon, Georgia. After college graduation in 1851, she was a “gay young girl of fashion” who met and married her Princeton-educated husband in 1852.  However, with the coming of the Civil War and its aftermath, her life changed forever.

Thomas experienced loss of wealth, bankruptcy, the death of loved ones, serious illness, and devastating family strife. She gave birth to ten children and saw four of them die. But, through it all, she kept pouring thoughts into her diary. Thomas examined what was happening, asked questions, and strived to find ways to improve her family’s dire economic straits. She started a school in her home and later ran a boarding house out of the old family mansion.

In 1893, Thomas left Augusta and moved to Atlanta where she became active in many women’s organizations. She found comfort in her work with the Women’s Christian Temperance Union and the Suffrage Movement. She began producing articles for newspapers, keeping them in scrapbooks that tell the story of her life after she quit keeping a diary. In 1899 she was elected president of the Georgia Woman Suffrage Association. Because of her own losses, Thomas was sensitive to the well-being of other women. As she said, she had “suffered and grown strong.” Her life is an amazing story of survival and transformation that speaks to women in our own time.

History has been a great silencer of women, but on Tuesday, March 25th SMC invites you to experience this masterfully researched and inspirational story of a remarkable Southern woman, written by a Southern woman, with women, like yourself, from around the Upstate at the 3 p.m. talk and book signing event.  The public is invited and admission is free of charge.

Carolyn Newton Curry holds a BA in English from Agnes Scott College and MA and PhD degrees in History from Georgia State University. She has taught at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta and The University of Kentucky. Curry is the founder and chair of Women Alone Together®, a non-profit foundation created to meet the needs of women who are alone in our culture. The well-being of women past and present has been her lifelong passion. Curry resides in Atlanta, Georgia.

Betsy Fleming-Converse College

Converse’s Dr. Betsy Fleming to speak at SMC Honor Societies Recognition Ceremony

Spartanburg Methodist College will hold their 2014 Honor Societies Recognition Ceremony on Thursday, March 13th at 6:30 p.m. in the Gibbs Auditorium located within Ellis Hall.

Approximately 70 students will be inducted into the honor societies of Sigma Delta Mu, Psi Beta, Sigma Kappa Delta and Phi Theta Kappa.  Sigma Delta Mu is the National Spanish Honor Society and requires an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher and one semester of Spanish or equivalent.  Sigma Kappa Delta is the National English Honor Society and requires an overall GPA of 3.3 with a B average in a minimum of one college course in English or Literature.  Psi Beta is the National Psychology Honor society and requires an overall GPA of 3.25, completion of 12 academic hours with a B average in Psychology 101 and/or Psychology 201 as well as a high standard of personal behavior and integrity is required.  Phi Theta Kappa is the National Scholastic Honor Society and requires an overall GPA of 3.5 or higher with a minimum of 16 academic hours and students must be of good moral character and possess recognized good qualities of citizenship.

This year’s guest speaker will be Dr. Betsy Fleming, President of Converse College.  “Dr. Fleming was selected due to her passion for creativity and community, her commitment to liberal arts education, and her fervent belief that learning, leadership and service are integral components of a successful, balanced life,” according to Dr. Bethany Perkins, SMC committee chair for the Honor Society Recognition Ceremony. “We feel Dr. Fleming’s dynamic brand of leadership, profound belief in the power of individuals to effect positive change, and a focused commitment to advancing and transforming higher education to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century will make for a vibrant and inspirational presentation.”

Dr. Fleming was graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University with an A.B. in Fine Arts, received a Master of Arts degree in History of Design from the Royal College of Art in London, and earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in the History of Art from Yale University.  She has served in administrative and curatorial positions at The Frick Collection and Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, J. Paul Getty Trust in Los Angeles, Yale University Art Gallery, and Victoria and Albert Museum in London.  Dr. Fleming has taught at Yale and Parsons School of Design.  Immediately prior to her arrival at Converse, she was Executive Director of the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, South Carolina.

A native of Spartanburg, South Carolina, Dr. Fleming is among the youngest college presidents in the country and has served as President of Converse since October 2005.  An Aspen Institute Liberty Fellow, she has served on the boards of the Women’s College Coalition and the National Association of Independent Colleges, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Charlotte Branch and BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina.  She lectures widely on creativity, art and design history, women and leadership.

The 2014 SMC Honor Society committee members include Dr. Bethany Perkins, Professor of English and Advisor for Sigma Kappa Delta, Dr. Kris Pratt, Professor of Religion and Advisor for Phi Theta Kappa, Dr. Mary Jane Farmer, Professor of Psychology and Advisor for Psi Beta, Dr. Johnathan Sedberry, Professor of English and Advisor for Sigma Kappa Delta, Dr. Cole Cheek, Professor of History and Anthropology and Advisor for Phi Theta Kappa, Ms. Lori Merck, Professor of Spanish and Advisor for Sigma Delta Mu, and Mr. Pete Aylor, Director of Counseling and Advisor for Psi Beta.  The evening also included a piano performance by SMC sophomore Carl Gibson.


Spartanburg Village

SMC to be part of Spartanburg Village Network’s Education forum – 3/6 at 6 p.m.

The Spartanburg Village Network, known as The Village Network, began about two years ago with members from churches, civic groups and professions. The group started as a way for people to support and get to know each other but developed into something more over time.

Members started focusing on ways they could unite and make a difference in the community. The goal is to come up with ways to help families in areas ranging from education to finances.

After weeks of planning, the group has scheduled its first community forum at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Spartanburg Community College-Downtown Campus. The forum is titled “It Takes A Village: From the Cradle to Career An Education Conversation.”

Leon Wiles, chief diversity officer at Clemson University and a former University of South Carolina Upstate vice chancellor, will serve as moderator. Panelists include Molly Talbot-Metz, vice president of programs at the Mary Black Foundation, Spartanburg Methodist College President Colleen P. Keith and Herb Johnson, Jr., vice president and chief diversity officer of Michelin North America. Other panelists include John Stockwell, executive director of Spartanburg Academic Movement and former chancellor of USC Upstate, Jil Littlejohn, president of the Urban League of the Upstate and Spartanburg District 7 Superintendent Russell Booker, who is also vice chairman of The Village Network.
If we are going to move the needle for graduation rates, then we need to focus on the African-American community,” Booker said. “This is a pretty strong and diverse panel. We wanted education to be the topic of our first forum. The event is open to everyone because it is going to take the entire community to make a difference.”

Booker said the education forum will outline programs available to help prepare children before they begin school and while they are in school. He also said the forum will help residents learn more about the importance of education.

“The idea is to share information and talk about the challenges of education,” Booker said. “This forum also will talk about the successes because that is just as important as talking about the challenges. There is so much going on that we want people to know what is happening in the community.”

Future plans are to hold discussions on health and wellness and financial planning. Organizers don’t plan to stop after offering a few forums. They hope to continue working on issues in the community and encourage other people to join them in the effort.

The Village Network organizers say their mission is “to unite a committed leadership base focused on educating, engaging and inspiring local families.” The other part of the vision is to focus attention on resources and programs that have the most potential in helping local families.

The Rev. Keith McDaniel, chairman of The Village Network and senior pastor of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church, said he is excited about the group’s first event. He said members spent time looking at ways they could help others.

“We have too many families struggling with education, housing, health and other issues,” he said. “The village concept comes from the African proverb that it takes a village to raise a child, and we have applied that to leadership. It takes more than one leader to lead a community.”


PSI BETA “Bullying and Its Effects” and “College Life” Presentation

On Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 1 p.m., PSI BETA, the Honor Society in Psychology, had the special privilege and honor to visit with students from Carver Middle School. After touring SMC’s beautiful grounds and having had the rare chance of dining in the cafeteria with SMC students, the Carver 6th, 7th and 8th graders were treated to two (2) seminars presented by the PSI BETA Honor Society, “Bullying and Its Effects” and “College Life”. Led by Dr. Mary Jane Farmer, advisor, and the officers, PSI BETA talked about the definition and the three (3) types of bullying – verbal, social, and physical. They also talked about various statistical records and the effects of bullying. The experience was made more personal and relevant when each of the PSI BETA officers, together with a number of PSYC 101 students, shared their personal experiences on bullying. The closing seminar was on College Life. All of the college students present shared with their younger counterparts a simple yet essential message: in order to get to college, one must be focused and ambitious. Persistence, sacrifice, high motivation, choosing friends wisely and putting academics first, were also a few of the nuggets of wisdom that PSI BETA and the PSYC 101 students shared with the middle school students of Carver. It was a beautiful and a meaningful experience to all who attended.

SMC students featured in the photo include: Daniel “Bear” Berends (on the floor); from left (L) to right (R) are Kaitlyn Pless (Sec, PSI BETA), Leah Meahl, Matt Bishop, Dr Mary Jane Farmer (advisor, PSI BETA), Alexis Landrum, Jason Smith, Alex Wooden, Myia McClurkin, Alex Blanding, Ryan Gruver, Tierra Izzard (VP, PSI BETA), and Stevonna Jeter (President, PSI BETA). Not in picture, Grace Kopacz and Amichia Corcher.

Champ Squires

SMC announces Champ Squires Endowed Scholarship

Spartanburg Methodist College is pleased to announce the establishment of an endowed scholarship to honor Champ Squires, a 2013 graduate of SMC.

The Champ Squires Endowed Scholarship was established by the estate of Betty Stewart Parnell in memory of her sister, Margie Stewart Treadway.  Treadway was a graduate of the class of 1943 and a former member of the SMC Board of Trustees.  Awards will be made annually, in honor of Squires, to students who demonstrate academic promise and determination and who are physically impaired.

The Champ Squires Endowed Scholarship name was selected by the executors of the Parnell estate because “Champ Squires exemplifies everything the scholarship is intended to reward – his abilities, stamina, and courage overcame his physical shortcomings,” an estate spokesperson shared. “SMC’s administration and student body treated Squires wonderfully as a student and Squires speaks and sings to glorify the Lord.”

“I met with Champ and his mother on their very first visit to SMC. I had no idea that day how much he would impact my life and heart. Champ stood out from day one, not because of his disability, but because of his ability to show love and compassion in all that he did,” shared Kelly Tillinghast, SMC Admissions Counselor. “In his short time here, I believe Champ represented everything that SMC is about. He was a friend to all, an outstanding student and a natural born leader. Champ was known to stretch himself thin, but only because he wanted to be as involved as possible.”

Squires currently attends Southern Wesleyan University and plans to go into full-time ministry in family counseling  Squires is a member of Lewis Chapel UMC in Sumter. While at SMC, Squires was an active member in Chapel, an Ambassador for the Office of Admissions and was a member of the Troubadours, an auditioned choral ensemble, which performed challenging repertoire at local churches and various venues throughout South Carolina.

A committee appointed by SMC will select a qualified recipient or recipients each year and the award is renewable for a second year, upon achievement of academic success in the first year.

According to Don Tate, Director of Development for SMC, the Champ Squires Endowed Scholarship fund is open to receive additional contributions from other individuals or churches in the community to assist in the perpetuation of this award. “The benefits of such an award to qualifying students is life-changing – not only for the individual recipient but for those of us fortunate to be blessed by their gifts and talents,” Tate added.  Contributions to this fund should be made payable to SMC for: Champ Squires Fund and mailed to:  Office of Institutional Advancement, Spartanburg Methodist College, 1000 Powell Mill Rd, Spartanburg, SC  29301.

SMC Wrestling

Spartanburg Methodist College Wrestling Team Earns National Rankings

Spartanburg Methodist College learned today that two of their 2013-2014 Wrestling Team members are ranked in the top 10 for the Nation.  The SMC Pioneer Wrestling team, who went 7-3 overall this season, was also ranked 16th in the country.

According to the NJCAA and Intermat, SMC Freshman DeAndre Johnson, son of Angel Johnson, from Beaufort, is ranked 4th in the Nation.  Johnson is a graduate of Battery Creek High School.  Fellow team mate, also a freshman, Ian Clevenger, son of Mike and Brenda  Clevenger of Inman, SC, and a Boiling Springs High School graduate, is ranked 7th in the Nation

The SMC Wrestling Team is under the direction of Rob Sater, who is in his third season at the helm of the SMC Pioneer Wrestling program. Sater helped lead the Pioneers to their first ever winning season in 2012-2013. During his tenure at SMC, Sater has coached eleven national qualifiers and one All-American wrestler.

“I am extremely proud of how our young team has come together and pushed through adversity all season to produce the best dual meet record in school history. Ian and DeAndre are two young men that truly deserve the honor of being ranked nationally. They are hard workers on the mat and in the classroom, and exemplify what it means to be a student-athlete at Spartanburg Methodist College,” shared Coach Sater. “We have a few other individuals that are on track to finish high on the podium at nationals as well. I’m excited to be a part of such a special group of wrestlers and coaches. The sky is the limit for these guys if they wrestle up to their potential over the next three weeks.”

Sater originally served as Head Coach of the Boiling Springs High School Wrestling Team for the three seasons. Sater was the 2009 Spartanburg Herald Journal Coach of the Year, 2010 and 2011 BSH won the County Wrestling Tournament Championship (2010 was the first in school history). Sater (66-13 dual meet record) had 37 Upper-State qualifiers during his three years as head coach at BSHS. He coached five of the schools seven South Carolina All-State Wrestlers. He also had five freestyle/Greco national qualifiers.

Sater attended Division 1 Cleveland State University in Cleveland, Ohio for two years before transferring to and graduating with a BA in English from Limestone for his final two years. He wrestled at Limestone and was team captain for each year voted on by his teammates. Sater teaches English at BSHS.

Sater is assisted by his father, Bob Sater, who wrestled for Thiel College in Greenville, Pa where he was a Division III national qualifier in 1972.  The senior Sater returned to Madison HS in Madison Ohio to serve as an assistant coach for the first 14 years of his coaching career. He moved on to Perry HS to serve as their Head Wrestling Coach for the next 16 years. While serving in this position he was inducted into the Ohio Wrestling Coaches Hall of Fame Class of 2000. He was named the Ohio Wrestling Division III State Coach of the Year for the 2002 Wrestling Season.  He went on to serve as an Assistant Wrestling Coach for Cleveland State University (NCAA Division I) located in Cleveland, Ohio. He also served as an Assistant Wrestling Coach for Limestone College (NCAA Division II).

Humble Tip

Christian Rapper Humble Tip coming to SMC on Tuesday, February 11th

Righteous rhymes will ring out at Spartanburg Methodist College on Tuesday, February 11th  as they host a Christian Rap Concert featuring Humble Tip, Nick J and the SMC Gospel Choir.  The 7 p.m. event will be held in the Gibbs Auditorium, located in Ellis Hall on the campus of SMC.  The event is open to the public and admission is free.

Jason Lewis, aka Humble Tip, was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in Capitol Heights, MD. Hip-hop music and culture were daily influences in this inner-city setting, but until college, Lewis never had any plans to enter the music industry.  “I never wanted to do this whole rap thing,” Lewis said. “I wanted to go to school and become a sports agent. I never, ever saw myself rapping.”

Unlike many of his peers, he was fortunate enough to grow up with both parents in his household. They taught their three children the importance of family, church and faith, factors which heavily influenced Lewis to attend Liberty University after high school.  While earning his degree in Health Promotions, he began writing basic lyrics after a DJ from Liberty University’s campus radio station 90.9 FM inspired him to try.

Although Lewis admits his first rhymes were horrible, he continued to develop his talents as a lyricist and eventually started rapping at on-campus events after his father all but forced him to take the stage for the first time. As others recognized his up-and-coming talent, he began creating CDs and music videos to share his passion.

“Especially in the hip-hop industry, everything is so materialistic. Everything is based off of financial wealth, pride, respect, sexuality,” Lewis said. “When you come up with something so anti-culture, sometimes it’s received well. A lot of the times it’s not.”

Armed with in-depth knowledge of God’s word, academic success, and a deep connection with and passion for this youthful generation, Humble Tip is determined and focused on making an impact on today’s culture.

Lewis holds an Undergraduate degree in Health Promotions and a Master’s Degree in Health and Wellness from Liberty University, and currently resides in Lynchburg, VA with his wife Essence.

Humble Tip’s clearly Christian lyrics and higher calling transform him into something larger-than-life on stage. When guests leave a Humble Tip concert they are excited about the Gospel.

Mooneyham Field 020814

SMC Baseball Lighting Up The Night!

Baseball at Spartanburg Methodist College is looking a lot brighter these days…and nights, thanks to a generous gift that was specifically designated for lighting the C.B. (Slim) Mooneyham Baseball Field.

The lights are in honor of SMC Alum J. Wesley Sparrow, Jr. and former SMC Director of Admissions Henry B. Sparrow, II as well as the SMC baseball teams of 1977 and 1978.  Baseball is of great interest to the Sparrow family and John Sparrow donated the major gift with baseball specifically in mind. Wesley Sparrow served as the student manager for the SMC baseball team in 1977 and 1978. In fact, the opportunity to serve as the student manager was the deciding factor for Wesley attending SMC over Charleston Southern.

“This gift is transformative for SMC! Our players will no longer have to miss afternoon classes or labs because of games that could only be held in the daylight; afternoon or morning rain outs can be rescheduled for evening games and rain delays won’t be game-ending,” shared SMC President, Dr. Colleen Perry Keith. “The list could go on. It’s a big deal for us and serves to make SMC more competitive as our complex will be improved.”

Keith commended Bob Fuzy, VP of Institutional Advancement, SMC Baseball Coach Tim Wallace and former SMC President Charlie Teague for their assistance in working with the Sparrow family for such a wonderful gift…a gift that will forever change the game of baseball at SMC.

The Mooneyham Baseball Field is one of three facilities composing the Olin D. Johnston Outdoor Athletic Facility, named in honor of the late Mr. Johnston who was a graduate of Textile Industrial Institute and served as Governor of SC and as a U.S. Senator.  The other facilities include the Fred Nash Soccer Field and the William C. Buchheit Tennis Complex.

SMC is planning a dedication ceremony for the lights during a double header against Surry Community College on Saturday, February 8.  The 3:30 p.m. dedication, which will follow the 1 p.m. game, will include the installation of the official naming plaque, as well as appearances by players, coaches, support staff of the ’77 and ’78 teams and other SMC supporters, will be held in Ellis Hall.  Terry Floyd, Coach of the SMC 1977 and 1978 teams, is expected to throw out the first pitch at the 5 p.m. game.


SMC’s Tim Wallace named to 2014 NJCAA Hall of Fame Class

Spartanburg, SC –  The NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association has announced its 2014 Baseball Hall of Fame class and Spartanburg Methodist College’s Tim Wallace is one of four inductees.

Other inductees include current head coach Eric Brown of Suffolk County College, New York, Steve Ruzich of South Suburban College, Illinois, and previous NJCAA World Series assistant tournament director, Thomas Rogers.

The four inductees will be honored at the pre-tournament banquet of the 2014 NJCAA Division I World Series on May 23rd in Grand Junction, Colo.  Since 1938 the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) has been the governing body of two-year college athletics, offering athletic and academic opportunities to college students. Now entering its 75th anniversary, the NJCAA is the second largest national intercollegiate athletic organization in the United States with over 500 member schools in 43 states. Each year 60,000 student-athletes compete in one of 28 different sports and the organization sponsors 48 national championship events and nine football bowl games. NJCAA Headquarters has been located in Colorado Springs, Colorado since 1985.

Wallace currently is in his twenty-third season at the helm of the SMC Pioneers baseball program while also serving his second stint as Athletic Director.  His previous teams have produced a 984-307 record with NJCAA Region X Championships in 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012 and 2013.  His .764 winning percentage ranks him among the leaders of those actively coaching at the NJCAA level.

Dr. Colleen Perry Keith, President of SMC elaborated on Coach Wallace, “He personifies what it means to be an excellent coach. If evidence of this is needed, one need look no further than the Slim Mooneyham Baseball Field at SMC on any given afternoon: he gets great players and he gets them to play great. He teases out the best in his players, and they respond by living up to the high standards he sets for them, both on and off the field.  I don’t think his players show up here because of who he is, though; they show up because of who they can become because of what he does. Could there be a better recommendation for a Hall of Famer than that?” Keith continued, “Coach Wallace is a winning coach, but beyond that, he is a coach who doesn’t take shortcuts, he does things the right way, and he expects the same of his players. I see it time and time again. They admire him and whether or not they realize it, they learn far more from him than how to consistently hit well or how to steal a base.  Almost without exception they become better baseball players but they also learn that they can become better men, who act with integrity and care.  If he had a personal mission statement as it relates to who he is as a coach, it might read: ‘to develop principled men.’ His success comes not from what SMC is providing him (he coaches at one of the smallest colleges in the NJCAA, with one of the smallest budgets, and a coaching staff of only one other individual), it comes from his integrity, his determination, his commitment to his players, his principled leadership, and his knowledge of baseball.”

Wallace has garnered many awards, included being named Region X Coach of the Year (1992, 1998, 2000, 2008, 2010), Carolina’s Junior College Conference Coach of the Year (1992), Louisville Slugger Coaches Award (1993, 1996, 1997, 2001)  and Diamond ABCA Regional Coach of the Year (2001, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2013) .  In 2001, Wallace earned his first Eastern District Coach of the Year award as his 49-12 club sported the best record in Grand Junction, Colorado at the NJCAA World Series. He earned his second Eastern District Coach of the Year award in 2003, when his club posted a 50-16 record. His 2007 squad earned him his third by posting a school record 54 wins while finishing third at the Junior College World Series. A fourth was awarded after the 2009 squad finished 5th at JUCO with a school record 55 wins.  Number five came after the 2012 Pioneers again earned a trip to Grand Junction for the Junior College World Series. 2013 made it back to back trips to the World Series and Wallace’s sixth District coaching award.

Wallace was inducted into the Spartanburg Methodist College Athletic Hall of Honor in 2012. In addition to having successful teams, Wallace has helped individuals realize their potential.  Three Pioneers have participated on the NJCAA All-Stars, a group put together to face international competition.  Of the three All-Star participants, Derrick Clay and Marty Gantt were named Offensive MVP’s of their respective groups. Sixteen players have been named NJCAA All-Americans during his tenure, while 68 have signed professional contracts.  Of these 68, 114 are actively playing and pursuing a shot at the Major Leagues. In 2002 Coach Wallace had his first player reach the majors, 1998 graduate Orlando Hudson with the Toronto Blue Jays. Hudson was a three time Gold Glove winner and four time All-Star second baseman. A second Pioneer under Wallace, Lee Gronkiewicz, made an appearance at the big league level in 2007.  Also during the Wallace era, players have signed letters of intent with or gone to play at major NCAA Division I institutions such as South Carolina, Clemson, Tennessee, Kentucky,  North Carolina State, College of Charleston, Coastal Carolina and East Carolina (just to name a few).  Numerous others continued their careers at the NCAA Division II level.

Prior to his coaching career, Wallace was a standout player himself.  A former second round pick of the St. Louis Cardinals, he played professionally for seven years.  This included a two-year stint in Italy, where he led the league in hitting and homeruns.  While playing in the States, Wallace was named an All-Star for both the Appalachian and Florida State leagues and also was team MVP for the 1983 St. Petersburg Cardinals.  This continued a streak of team MVP awards that included two Lancaster High School, one Post 31 American Legion, one Baptist College and two Wofford College seasons.  It was at Wofford where Wallace attracted professional scouts.  During his two seasons there he posted records for career batting average (.456) and longest consecutive game hitting streak (37).  He also led NAIA District 6 and the state of South Carolina in hitting as a sophomore with a .472 average.  For his efforts, Wallace was inducted into Wofford’s Hall of Fame in 2000.

Wallace returned to Wofford after his playing career and completed his B.A. in Sociology.  He then earned an M.A. in Physical Education from Gardner-Webb University.

Marty Woods

Martin Woods named Director of Facilities for SMC

Spartanburg Methodist College is pleased to announce Martin Woods has joined the college staff and will serve as Director of Facilities.

Woods comes to SMC from Presbyterian College where he served as Director of Facilities. Prior to PC, he served as Facility Operations Coordinator at BBA Fiberweb in Grey Court, SC and was a team leader/trainer for Albany International in Simpsonsville, SC.

Woods will be responsible for overseeing the maintenance, repair, and renovation of SMC buildings and maintaining compliance with all federal and state codes relating to fire and building standards. He will supervise all maintenance and housekeeping staff and the daily operation of the College physical plant and facilities management area.

Woods will also serve as liaison with contractors and vendors that provide services to the College in addition to working with consultants, architects and engineers on capital and non-capital building projects.

“Marty possesses the knowledge of the construction trades and modern building cleaning methods as well as fire safety codes and other compliance areas involving OSHA and EPA requirements,” shared Dr. Colleen Perry Keith, President of SMC.   “But more importantly Marty  is a highly motivated and results-oriented leader who focuses on providing quality service and consistently exceeding expectations.”

Woods holds a Bachelor of Arts from Liberty University and an Associate of Applied Science from Piedmont Technical College.  Marty and his wife, Kelly, live in Laurens with their son Justin.


SMC turns unused phones into Hope

On Friday, January 31st, Spartanburg Methodist College donated over 60 cell phones to SAFE Homes-Rape Crisis Coalition, a non-profit organization serving victims of domestic violence and their dependent children in Spartanburg, Cherokee, and Union counties, and victims of sexual assault in Spartanburg and Cherokee counties.

Upon discovering old Blackberry Smartphones and accessories the college no longer used, Trey Arrington, SMC’s new Executive Director of Information Technology, had Yvonne Harper, SMC Director of Public Information, reach out to the community for potential new homes for them. “Within minutes of contacting Sheriff Chuck Wright’s Office and 7th Circuit Solicitor Barry Barnett’s office both stressed the urgent need for such phones for area domestic violence victims and pointed us to SAFE Homes,” Harper stated. “Sadly one agency in Cherokee County was down to their very last phone.”  Upon hearing this fact, the college encouraged its staff, faculty and students to donate their unused cell phones, too.

SAFE Homes provides phones to local domestic violence agencies or local government and law enforcement agencies for use with their domestic violence clients and victims, many of whom live in shelters, to provide immediate access to emergency services. According to Lynn Hawkins, Executive Director, SAFE Homes-Rape Crisis Coalition, donated phones, with all prior customer data removed prior to distributing them for reuse, help victims of abuse feel safer and less isolated by giving them a way to call emergency or support services. “Phone donations given locally benefit victims of abuse within our communities – they provide Hope.”

“SMC, like SAFE Homes, envisions a community liberated from all forms of domestic violence and sexual assault.  The donation of our no-longer-used phones for such a new purpose embodies the positive environment of caring SMC seeks to instill in our students and our community,” shared SMC President, Dr. Colleen Perry Keith. “SMC is humbled to play a role in providing hope and perseverance – and we hope our actions will unite and inspire the public to play an active role in domestic violence awareness, prevention and victim recovery.”