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AdvanceSC Ensures Success for Student Careers @ Spartanburg Methodist College

Spartanburg Methodist College has been awarded a $75,000 grant from AdvanceSC for an SMC project entitled “Testing and Internships that Ensures Success for Student Careers.”

According to SMC President Colleen Perry Keith, Ph.D., “We received our first $75,000 grant to start the ‘Signature SMC Experience’ with up to 100 incoming freshman beginning in the Fall 2015 semester.”  Keith elaborated saying, “the experience involves career testing, comprehensive debrief of that testing, and use of the results in the advising and career planning for those students. It will also include some type of internship or career shadowing experience.”

AdvanceSC supports economic development, education, manufacturing and public assistance agencies in Duke Energy’s South Carolina service area. Established as a limited liability company by Duke Energy in 2004, AdvanceSC is funded with profits from the company’s BPM program and is managed by a board of Upstate S.C. leaders. Information about AdvanceSC is available on its website at www.advancesc.org.

Spartanburg Methodist is continuing to seek additional revenue sources for their “Signature SMC Experience” so that all incoming students have the opportunity to participate.

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Two SMC Students will be Pepping up NCAA Tournament

Many college students travel to Florida during the spring, but two Spartanburg Methodist College students will have their trips fully paid for – thanks to the NCAA Tournament!

SMC’s Jesse Davis and Jaaron Snyder will have the privilege of a front row seat (so to speak) at the tournament. Yes, all meals, transportation and accommodations will be covered by Wofford thanks to Wofford College being named the 12th seed in the West Region of the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. Davis and Snyder have been loyal participants with Wofford College’s WOCO Band during the 2014-2015 Wofford basketball season and most recently traveled and performed with Wofford at the Southern Conference Tournament in Asheville. Ron “Doc” Miller, Director of Athletic Bands at Wofford College, shared “both are excellent student band members and we are delighted to have them travel and perform with us.”

Ask any hoops fan and they will tell you there is “something electric” about the environment of a college basketball game. Packed arenas, bright lights, shiny wooden floors, the undeniable sound of screeching shoes on the court and of course, long before the opening tip-off, each team’s pep band filling the building with energy and excitement in anticipation for the on-court action to come.

Davis, a sophomore from Startex who attended Byrnes High School, never imagined while pursuing his associate in Fine Arts at SMC he would one day be performing during the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.  Snyder on the other hand, a freshman from Jonesville who attended Boiling Springs High School and is pursuing an associate in Arts with a major in film, said the invitation to attend the NCAA Tournament and perform was like something straight out of a movie.

“The fact that Jesse and Jaaron are able to do this probably means we have some pretty envious students left back here on campus! This is not an opportunity that comes along for our students all that often. We are all excited for them! It is also wonderful that SMC and Wofford, as sister colleges in the United Methodist system of higher education, are working together in this way,” shared Colleen Perry Keith, Ph.D., President of Spartanburg Methodist College.

The Wofford Terriers will play the Arkansas Razorbacks on Thursday, March 19 in Jacksonville, Florida. The winner of the game will play the winner of a game between North Carolina and Harvard on Saturday. Wofford is 28-6 this season and won the Southern Conference Tournament championship. The Terriers enter the tournament on an eight-game winning streak and have won 15 of their last 16 games. It is the fourth time in six years Wofford has made it to the NCAA Tournament.

Davis and Snyder are looking forward to being a part of the Terrier nation traveling to Jacksonville. Snyder, who plays the tuba, and Davis, who plays the alto saxophone, participate in the WOCO Band out of pure joy and love of music. Both are quick to say they realize they do have a job – they are responsible for not only amping up the crowd but also motivating the team and keeping the Terriers pumped up during the Thursday game – and hopefully the Saturday game, too. But both agree, you can’t beat a few days in sunny Florida with 80 degree weather, knowing your SMC classmates are sitting in class while you have an enviable seat at the Big Show!

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The SMC Players present August Strindberg’s Easter on March 26-27-28 in Gibbs Auditorium, Ellis Hall

In co-operation with the August Strindberg Repertory Theatre of New York, SMC will be presenting their successful 2013 adaptation, set in New York City in 1958.

Easter (1901) is a late play by August Strindberg, Sweden’s most famous playwright. The drama takes place on days leading up to Easter Sunday. The plot concerns the fortunes of the Morgan family, who are on the edge of ruin. The father is imprisoned for embezzlement and their youngest daughter, Lenora, is committed to a mental institution. The family has been ostracized by their friends and neighbors for the financial scandal, and Ellis’ job is endangered. Into this situation steps Lindy, to whom the family is greatly indebted thanks to their father’s malfeasance. At the moment of greatest turmoil comes a breakthrough of unexpected and, indeed, quite undeserved grace and mercy.

Easter is one of Strindberg’s late expressionist dramas. Typical of the genre, the characters display extremes of emotional suffering and spiritual awakening. Strindberg was greatly affected by the bankruptcy of his own father, and the character of Ellis puts the playwright’s own suffering at center stage. The character of Lenora, one of his finest female roles, was inspired by Strindberg daughter, whose sanity was only tentative. Lenora’s spiritual gifts anticipate the play’s happy conclusion.

SMC Cast:

Pierce Allen Burch as Ellis Morgan, a college instructor.  Pierce is a freshman theater major from Holly Hill, SC and a graduate of Holly Hill Academy.

Shakira Jackson as Christine, the fianceé of Ellis.  Shakira is a sophomore Fine Arts/Fashion Design major from Inman and a graduate of Chapman High School

Tatiana Sade Ferguson-Short plays Mrs. Morgan, the matriarch of the Morgan household. Tati is a freshman Mass Communications major and graduate of Union County High School.

Samuel Stockdale plays Benjamin, a scholarship student living with the Morgans. He’s a Dorman High School graduate from Moore, SC majoring in Speech and Drama.

Anna Elizabeth Barrett as Lenora, the youngest daughter of the Morgan family.  Anna is a sophomore education and biology major from Greenville, and a graduate of J. L. Mann High School.

Patrice Faith Haynes plays Lindy, a family acquaintance to whom the Morgans owe great deal of money. Patrice is a sophomore Performing Arts major from Columbia, and a graduate of Ridge View High School.

The production opens in Gibbs Auditorium on Thursday, March 26 at 8 p.m. and will also be performed on Friday, March 27 and Saturday, March 28 at 8 p.m.  Gibbs Auditorium is located inside Ellis Hall.

 

 

 

Wells Shepard named Executive Director of Enrollment

Spartanburg Methodist College has named Wells Shepard Executive Director of Enrollment effective Monday, March 16, 2015.

The announcement was made by Danny Philbeck, SMC’s Vice President for Enrollment, who shared “We are thrilled to have Wells move into this position as he is understands the institutional mission and goals and he loves this College. I am confident he will operate at the highest level of integrity while providing inspirational leadership and serving as a role model for all colleagues.”

Shepard, a 1996 graduate of Spartanburg Methodist College, most recently served as Director of Retention Officer and Athletic Recruiter for SMC.  His new duties will include both admission and retention.  Shepard has 16 years of experience in counseling and recruiting students and previously worked as Director of Admission for both Wofford College and LaGrange College in LaGrange, Ga. He is well versed in the enrollment process at SMC, having previously served in the role of an Admissions Counselor, Assistant Director of Admissions and the Director of Admissions at the College.

Shepard, who holds an Associate of Arts degree from SMC and a Bachelor of Science degree in research psychology from Wofford College, resides in Spartanburg with his wife, Bobbie Jean Edwards. Shepard, and two sons, Hawkins and Gannon.

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The Lure of Fishing comes to Spartanburg Methodist College

Next Fall on the campus of Spartanburg Methodist College you can expect to find political-science and philosophy majors sitting side by side in the water, not just the classroom.  These academic anglers will be soaking up the sun and trading tips such as “use rock salt to calm your fish for the weigh-in, or pour Coca-Cola on a bass that bleeds.”

Fishing at Spartanburg Methodist College?   Yes, America’s oldest tradition, fishing, is one of the fastest-rising organized activities among college students. As you read this, a college team may be traversing the rivers and streams in your county. According to FLW Outdoors, an organization that runs pro fishing tournaments and started a college division in 2009, there are now 610 bass fishing clubs at campuses across the country. Five years ago, there were 90.

“Our fishing program is attracting a wide range of students, said Wells Shepard, College Retention Officer and Athletic Recruiter. “We know there are some ‘reel prodigies’ out there and we know there are simply students who shared this past-time with their parents or grandparents and want to now relish this hobby with students their own age.” The youth fishing movement is exploding. But make no mistake, this is a sport. “There’s no sport that compares to it for the agility you have to have, the knowledge you have to have and the thinking on the ground you have to do,” Shepard added. Skills involve finding and deciding what combination of lure, depth, location and retrieval is going to attract a fish. An approach that lands pounds of fish on a sunny day will fail on a cloudy one. Wind and air pressure matter. So do seasons and the time of day.

“SMC will offer a mix of competitive and recreational fishing, and in addition to weekly meetings and fishing excursions, SMC’s anglers will promote great habits against pollution of in-state and out-of-state bodies of water such as: lakes and creeks and rivers within the lakes,” shared Dalton Smith, cofounder of the SMC Fishing Team/Club.

Fishing once involved a couple of poles, a few hooks and some bait…today the sport of fishing is expensive…boats, fish finders, rods, reels, lures, life vests, etc., and SMC is currently seeking sponsors to assist with these costs, and hopes that there are a few boats sitting idle in the water that would love to be donated to the college so that the time-honored American pastime of fishing has a future. For more information on sponsorship or boat donations, contact Yvonne Harper, harpery@smcsc.edu (864) 587-4278 or 266-7409.