Thursday, May 6

Coronavirus

One year of COVID-19: life in a pandemic as college students
Coronavirus, Features

One year of COVID-19: life in a pandemic as college students

Just over a year ago, Trevecca’s campus cleared out for spring break; many students and faculty unaware that those classes would never resume in person. Some would never again set foot in a Trevecca classroom altogether.   Students went from celebrating an extended spring break, to the harsh reality of a pandemic—an email asking them to return to campus when possible, gather their things, and transition completely online for the remainder of the semester as a precaution for a rapidly spreading virus.  “I was definitely heartbroken when they officially told us we had to pack up and head home,” said Allie Tracy, an intercultural studies major who graduated last year. “I was not going to get to say goodbye to people. Not to friends, not to professors… I said goodbye to my r...
One year of COVID-19: the unforgettable experience of pastoring a college campus through a global pandemic
Coronavirus, Features, Spiritual Life

One year of COVID-19: the unforgettable experience of pastoring a college campus through a global pandemic

When Trevecca chaplain Erik Gernand thinks back to his first reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic putting a halt to campus life as students knew it, it doesn’t take him long to remember the main concern on his mind.  “I think the first pastoral prompt was how do we maintain some sense of connectivity as a campus community and how can we shift the content and the spaces we have to be able to try and address some of the current issues we’re facing,” Gernand recalls. In the early days of COVID-19, Gernand worked to create a YouTube series called “How Christians Respond in Times of Crisis,” where religion faculty, mental health professionals and medical workers joined him to speak about where faith fits into this new reality of a COVID world. Gernand also hosted a podcast with Tim G...
One year of COVID-19: how Trevecca’s educators adjusted to online teaching
Coronavirus, Faculty, Features

One year of COVID-19: how Trevecca’s educators adjusted to online teaching

By Diana Leyva Nine hundred and six LinkedIn Learn courses viewed, 2,471 active Blackboard courses (41 which are fully online for traditional students), 9,472 Blackboard video files, and 14,675 Panopto video views and downloads: These are just some of the statistics that can describe the spring 2020 semester at Trevecca.  When the university announced that all classes would be moved completely online for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester, Director of Online Learning, LaMetrius Daniels and her team of instructional designers knew they had to be quick and strategic when it came to helping faculty understand how to deliver remote instruction.  Normally, they would use a plan to approach online learning, but with the pandemic they had to steer away from the nor...
Students turn to small groups to foster spiritual community on campus during COVID-19
Coronavirus, Spiritual Life

Students turn to small groups to foster spiritual community on campus during COVID-19

Every Thursday night, Ashley Forman grabs her Bible and heads out the door to worship with her friends in Soma for what she describes as some of the most authentic community she’s experienced all school year.  Forman is one of several students who participate in some sort of small group each week on campus. Some of those groups are official and sponsored by the chaplain’s office or the counseling center, while others have been organic and popped up out of what students say is their need to connect, pray with and be in community with people.  “There’s something so special about being able to do life with these people and see them every day. They’re like my family,” Foreman says. Students gather for worship at Soma. Photo by Sommer Bright. College students face a uni...
Admissions pushes through pandemic to bring in new students
Campus News, Coronavirus, Faculty

Admissions pushes through pandemic to bring in new students

Next year's freshman class is on track to surpass the numbers of the freshman who came to Trevecca in 2020. “Based on what I am seeing, it looks like the pandemic may have affected us more in the fall of 2020, than it is going to affect us in the fall of 2021,” said Melinda Miller, executive director of traditional admissions. Trevecca admissions officials say they have admitted 985 freshmen as of Monday, Feb. 22, while at the same time last year they had admitted 765 freshmen. They attribute this increase of admitted students to their test optional policy adopted for the fall of 2021. This fall, 350 freshmen and 66 transfers enrolled at Trevecca. That's about 61 fewer than the 392 freshmen and 85 transfer students in the fall of 2019, the year before Covid-19. For the coming f...
Adjustments made to spring semester plan after fall feedback
Campus News, Coronavirus

Adjustments made to spring semester plan after fall feedback

by Kaylee Franklin With the spring semester nearing the midway point and less than 100 days to go until summer break, students are feeling the weight of this pandemic school year.   For Erica Wigart, associated student body president, her number one priority has been making sure that students feel heard and advocated for.   “My main goal this year has just been to listen to people if they ever come to me with different concerns and just advocate for them,” said Wigart. “If I’m experiencing something a lot of other people are probably experiencing that as well.”   When it came down to evaluate the efforts of the fall semester, Trevecca administrators sat down with the COVID-19 student advisory board, a focus group of students working with administr...
Students work to host modified Friday Night Live event
Campus News, Coronavirus, Events

Students work to host modified Friday Night Live event

By Isabel Landers A small group of students on campus are meeting every week to try and figure out how to still host the university's most popular social event of the year. Friday Night Live, an event based on the popular TV show Saturday Night Live, typically draws more than 200 students a year.  After canceling last year's show because of COVID-19, organizers are in the process of figuring out how to host the event this year in line with restrictions on crowd gatherings. Rachel Thompson, social life director, hopes that the show is similar to how it has always been. She knows that there will be a few minor differences but thinks that from an audience perspective it will look the same.  Thompson said there will still be live components and video components.  Th...
Student retention holds steady despite pandemic
Campus News, Coronavirus

Student retention holds steady despite pandemic

When COVID-19 sent Trevecca students and faculty scrambling to figure out online learning last spring, Megan McGhee, the director of new student programs, said student development went into crisis mode. “In the spring, I think it was all so new that, to a certain extent, we were all just trying to survive,” she said. The crisis in question? Convincing students to return to Trevecca in the fall. Jeff Swink, the coordinator of retention and assessment, defines this problem as “trying to make sure that every student is retained at the university each semester.” Across the United States, the average student retention rate at four-year institutions is 81 percent. Trevecca’s average retention rate in the past has been 87 percent. This year, largely because of the pandemic, the ...
Freshmen face unique challenges during pandemic
Coronavirus, Features

Freshmen face unique challenges during pandemic

By Isabel Landers Gathered around tables in the cafeteria and sand volleyball courts, jumping in the car with nowhere to go: This is how Trevecca freshmen have found community amidst a global pandemic.  Freshmen students have learned to make traditions of their own. Ending their high school career with canceled proms and high school graduations prepared them for the things they would miss out on coming into college.  “It's not really difficult to adapt to the situation we are in because it's not like we have known anything different,” said Adam Newman, a freshman.  Trevveca’s 336 freshmen are among the 3.2 million high school graduates to start college during a global pandemic, according to educationdata.org. College administrators nationwide have struggled...
Counseling Center still operating virtually
Coronavirus, Mental Health

Counseling Center still operating virtually

By Diana Leyva Jacob Caitlin Lassiter, a Trevecca senior, sits in her bedroom, careful not to disrupt her roommates, and prepares for her online counseling session.   Lassiter is one of many students to access counseling remotely on campus since August.    To lower the risk of contagion and abide by COVID-19 regulations, counseling services have moved completely online. Students can request a session and meet with a counselor via Telehealth.   Sarah Hopkins, director of counseling services, said since COVID began she has seen an increase in loneliness and people struggling with how to access good resources and support during this time.   “Anxiety and depression are typically the number one causes of counseling referrals on any college camp...