CU hosts Baptist Fellowship Center students

CU hosts Baptist Fellowship Center students

July 23, 2012
For Immediate Release

Campbellsville University hosted the Baptist Fellowship Center (BFC) from Louisville July 11 as part of the BFC’s summer enrichment program. Students from BFC and Campbellsville University pose for a group picture. From left are: Front row – Rusty Watkins, CU coordinator of summer camps and conferences; BFC student Shantel Walton; BFC student James Thompson; CU student Maribeth Milburn; BFC students Anthony Jackson; Josiah Finley; Makayla Conn; Rashad Reed and Jurni Woodson. Second row – CU student Shane Williamson; CU student Christian Malcomson; BFC student Virgil Jackson; CU student Kimbra Compton; BFC students Donovon Armstead; Mallory Stone, Raegan Stone; BFC student Cecile Stone (crouching); and BFC Jammie Stone. Back row – CU student Scott Blakeman; BFC Hannah Landgrave; CU student Mitchell Monroe; BFC student Breon Armstead; CU student Matt Macon; CU student Mary Kate Young; CU student Ashley Buchanan; the Rev. Matt Smyzer, executive director of Baptist Fellowship Center; BFC Reagan Jones; and John Chowning, CU vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president. (Campbellsville University Photo by Joan C. McKinney)

By Joan C. McKinney, news and publications coordinator

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – “Education in life is elevation of life” is the seed that was planted in the minds of the 15 elementary and middle school students from Louisville’s Baptist Fellowship Center “Summer Enrichment Camp” who visited Campbellsville University July 11.

The Rev. Matt Smyzer, executive director of the Baptist Fellowship Center, urged the students to go to college and to consider Campbellsville University when the time comes for them to be college bound.

“I hope you leave here and think about CU,” Smyzer, who is a trustee at CU, said.

Cecile Stone, 13, said she “really had fun” as she toured the athletic facilities on campus. Cecile plays basketball and track at her school.

For Donovan Armstead, 12, the games played with the students by members of CU Crew and students helping with summer camps were a high point for him.

 Wanda Washington leads students in a game.
(Campbellsville University Photo by Joan C.

“I liked lunch too,” he said. “I pretty much liked everything.”

Eleven-year-old Shantel Waton wanted to come to CU for college immediately. She was impressed with how different Campbellsville University is from Louisville.

The students heard several guest speakers at the enrichment program, had lunch in the Winters Dining Hall, toured campus and had interaction with summer camp staff and CU Crew.

Reagan Jones, BFC intern, said the students were excited to come to Campbellsville University, and “my expectations for the trip were far exceeded. The day before our visit, we talked with the kids about the upcoming trip. They were very excited, and they had so many questions.”

She said the group was “treated with such great hospitality and friendliness that I was blown away. The CU staff and student volunteers did an excellent job in working with the kids, sparking their interest, and answering their questions.
“For our kids, this was the first time that many of them had even seen a college campus, but more importantly considered it as an educational choice for themselves.

“I cannot express how thankful I am that the group from Campbellsville blessed us with this incredible opportunity and used their resources to invest in this group of wonderful children. I know that Campbellsville University and everyone involved left a huge impact on not only the kids, but to the staff here at Baptist Fellowship Center as well.”

She said her director, Jammie Stone, was the creator of the theme for camp this year, “A Summer of Success.”

 Rashad Reed relaxes in a rocking chair
while waiting for lunch. (Campbellsville
University Photo by Joan C. McKinney)

Jones said, “We have been relying on God to help us strengthen these children in all areas of their lives, with an emphasis in spiritual education. Campbellsville University has made it possible for these children to turn their summer of success into a lifetime of success.”

Dr. Mary Wilgus, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, urged the students to work with, serve and help each other. “Learn to care for each other,” she said. “Learn about the Bible and learn to go to the next grade. Keep your minds and body focused.

“Learning is one thing we all can do.”

She said the apostle Paul, in the early church, had an “enrichment” program, and she read from Galatians 5:22-23 as follows: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentles and self-control.”

DeMarcus Compton, admissions counselor, told the students that CU is “on the rise and move.” He said there is a Christian atmosphere at Campbellsville University and a “sweet spirit.”

“It’s Jesus on our campus,” he said.

Compton said the CU is diverse with the most international students of a private institution in Kentucky. He said there are small classes, which makes it easier to teach and learn, and the professors care about the students and know you by name.

“College is an investment,” Compton said. He told the students there are many scholarships available and urged them to do their best in order to receive the scholarships.

Wanda Washington, coordinator of Greater Campbellsville United, told the students, “You are all God’s children. He has no favorites.”

 Students enjoy an ice cream break following
games. (Campbellsville University Photo by
Joan C. McKinney)

She told them education is learning how to be leaders, and she played an activity with the group in which they tried to put a puzzle together without a last piece. She said the missing piece symbolized parents, teachers, friends, preachers, etc. who all help the students “work together to be a whole person.”

Smyzer gave thanks to Dr. Michael V. Carter, president of Campbellsville University, and John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the group, who served as facilitator of the campus program

“Thanks to Dr. Michael Carter and John Chowning for sharing in the vision that we need to expose our young people to college life at an early age,” he said.

“The fact that CU gave to each of these students a $500 scholarship (to be used upon completing high school) if they choose to attend Campbellsville University, serves as a testament to the investment of seed planting CU is willing to make knowing that it will be six-eight years before a harvest can be realized.”

Smyzer said investing in the lives of others through the love of Christ is “what we do here at the Baptist Fellowship Center, and we thank Campbellsville University for partnering with us so that there can be a return on this investment.”

Chowning said, “Rev. Matthew Smyzer and the staff at the Baptist Fellowship Center have put together an exciting summer program to help encourage this group of young people to appreciate the value and importance of education and to help them develop servant leadership skills.

“Campbellsville University values the opportunity to host the group, to provide each of the participants with a scholarship commitment and to encourage them to pursue their dreams including plans to go to college or other postsecondary education opportunities.”

Chowning said the Baptist Fellowship Center has a “rich history of ministering to people in the name of Christ and making a difference. We are very excited about this partnership and opportunity to help make a positive impact of the lives of these youth."

More photos from the visit appear on Flickr at:

Baptist Fellowship Center from Campbellsville University on Vimeo.

Baptist Fellowship Center students from Campbellsville University on Vimeo.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,500 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is
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