Eli Baker could be considered shy by most, but his passion for the game of basketball and his transition from Eli the nice guy to Eli on the court is clear and intense. Eli grew up in Arlington (TX), a suburb of the Dallas-Fort Worth area where he attended Arlington High School. Upon his high school graduation, Eli signed to play basketball at Mountain View College, a small junior college in Dallas. After two successful years at Mountain View, Eli was faced with the decision of where to go next to either finish out his college basketball career or his education. His answer came in the form of Lubbock Christian University and the Men's Basketball program. "I had a choice between LCU or Missouri Valley, but I came for Coach Duncan," said Eli in a sit-down with The Duster Today. He also said his decision was influenced by a recommendation from former Chap hoopster, Rashad Samples. Once at LCU, Eli has enjoyed a very prominent role for the Chaps. When asked about his favorite moment as a member of the team, Baker said that signing with LCU was an experience he'll never forget but that his favorite individual moment was in the 2012-2013 season when he broke and set a Rip Griffin Center record with 21 rebounds against conference foe St. Gregory's University. In his spare time, Eli enjoys being a "typical college student." He likes to just chill with his friends in the dorms and hang out in the sub. When asked who he admires most in his life, whether a famous person or athlete, Baker told The Duster Today that his hero is his mother: "My mom taught me everything I needed to know to succeed. It's why I work so hard." Baker's hard work, on and off the hardwood, is paying off. Eli is pursuing a degree in education with the hopes of coaching after his graduation in the spring of 2015.
If you are a female, or male for that matter, in the age range of 20-26 you may have seen the Disney Channel Original movie Cadet Kelly. Now this isn’t necessarily thoughts about the character Kelly in the movie, but more about the productions that Disney and several other major networks used to make. When I sit and think about the girls that I had to idolize (and yes I know that’s a taboo word) as a young teen, I am severely worried for the young girls growing up today. Yes, as we grew older, they got more and more "interesting" with their clothing choices and the actions that they were involved in started to become more adult, but they were still ultimately good people. They were teenagers along with us, not adults like the sensations that are looked up to today. They wore sweaters with their tank tops, and went to the mall with their friends. The girls that we grew up fantasizing about being best friends with now have families and are starting lives of their own; it's crazy as I think about having sleepovers to watch the newest Disney movie, those once girls, are now women living full lives. I feel it is our duty as women now to help young teenagers grow. We should be the ones that young girls in our lives look up to as Christian examples instead of the world examples they are offered. We are called to love all types of people, and to be Christ like in all of our actions. Now that's a lot of pressure, especially as a young woman myself, but we are now those that we once strived to be. It's our time to have our effect on the world, and I sure hope it's a positive one.
It's crazy to think that the semester is halfway done. It feels like just a few weeks ago that we started this spring semester, yet it's about half way over. I can think of at least one midterm I have that's going to be a tough time and a huge portion of my grade, so let's take a minute to think about some things and de-stress. Have a midterm next week? Start studying now! If you start studying now and set up some study sessions with friends, you'll do way better than if you panic and cram in half a semester worth of studying in one night. Relax. I don't know about you, but I've never done better on a test by freaking out and stressing out over it. Relax and think and study with a clear head, because the class room is going to be quiet and calm when you take your test. Print things out. I know I like to study off my computer, but it can be much easier to study on-the-go when you have your notes and study materials printed out and available. Get your study materials ready so you can spend the ten minutes you have after lunch studying or that fifteen minute break you get between your classes studying your notes. This will help even more so that you're not cramming at the last minute. Be prepared. If you know the test is open book, bring in your book marked up and highlighted and have a list of key sections written down. Open note? Make sure you have some awesome notes. If you're not lucky enough to have a test you can bring materials to, make sure you study all the harder. Quiz yourself and make sure you're prepared. Study with a friend. Get a study buddy and share your notes with them. See what they wrote that you didn't and it might save you a few points on your test. It's easier to quiz each other than it is to quiz yourself. Good luck, everyone! I hope everyone does great during these stressful few weeks of midterms. I'll be right there with you as we all do our best to make the grades.
With all the business of spring semester, students and teachers alike can't wait for spring break next week. Everyone is tired of schoolwork and honestly, at this point, I don't doubt many people are just tired of dealing with everything in general. Spring break is the opportunity waiting around the corner for some of us to finally have a chance to rest. However, as fun as spring break is, the toughest part of school can be coming back to all the schoolwork the next week. As a big procrastinator naturally, I know we all could use a little push through the transition. So I've made a list of some tips students can use to make the transition from break to school just a little bit easier. 1.Prepare for Battle. The last thing you want is to be that girl or guy who figures out they have a huge project or test to do when they get back with little to no time to do it. As much of an escape from school spring break is, it can also be an opportune time for you to figure out your schedule in advance. Go ahead before the break and make sure you know what your goals are when you get back. It'll make your life that much easier just by giving you one last thing you have to do. 2. Recharge Your Batteries. I know this may seem like a no brainer or a lecture, but seriously? Sleep. As a student here, I know most of us are never in bed before midnight. Midnight's fine because we still get at least seven hours, but staying up longer than that isn't going to help you get the rest you need. Many of us are still catching up from pledge week and follies. Plus, every student has a lot of homework no matter what major we are in. We need the sleep. I'm not saying make yourself go to bed at a certain time, but try to at least make sure you’re getting the seven hours you need. 3. No Hibernating. It's so easy to just sleep the day away, but in many cases you'll just make yourself more tired. You want to rest over spring break, but you want to make sure you have fun too. Try setting your alarm for the times you know will have to wake up when you get back for school. This way your body clock won't have to reset and you have more time during the day to do whatever you want. 4. Keep Your Torture in Line. The last thing you want to do may be having a butt load of work when you get back, but the next to last thing you want to do is have a bunch of work to do over the break itself. Be honest. The last thing you want to think about over the break is school, and you most likely won't do any work you have until the last day. Find the time to get it done before the break. The only thing you'll accomplish by not doing the work is creating more for yourself when you get back. 5. Have Fun. Spring break is for rest and relaxation. Don't just sit in front of netflix all day ,as nice as that is. Don't work yourself to death either. Find a happy medium of friends, family, and miscellaneous stuff. Read the book you haven't read yet this semester for fun. Go outside and throw the ball around or tan or whatever outside activities you like to do. If you enjoy yourself you'll actually be well rested when you get back and school probably won't seem as daunting to you. Seriously, so we have school still after spring break. Trust me; it's not the end of the world. You can follow these tips and find others online for dealing with the transition from spring break to school. So give people hugs, be happy, and have a blessed blast during your break.
If you are anything like me when it comes to doing school work, then you must be a procrastinator. Procrastination is a nasty little habit that the majority of college students have and it is extremely hard to kick. We obviously feel some type of rush from waiting until the very last hour to complete our assignments, right? That may be a good way to justify it, but the fact is that we procrastinate because we just don't want to do the work! The truth is that when we procrastinate it only causes us to have anxiety and stress! So how can we kick this habit and become better students? A great first step is accepting responsibility for your work. When we accept the task at hand, it is up to us to take responsibility for our outcomes. Secondly, motivate yourself! Find interesting facts about the subject, or find something that you are passionate about in order to discover new goals to achieve. If you are not an organized person, get a planner and start writing down every assignment or task you need to get done. When we plan and take action our results will be much more satisfactory and efficient. The most important way to become a successful student is to believe in yourself! The majority of the time when we procrastinate we become negative; however, when you have positive thoughts and have faith in yourself, it is inevitable to achieve success.
Out of the Darkness is a student-led week full of events held annually here at LCU. Tuesday night featured gender-split events for the boys and the girls. Boys enjoyed team building laser tag in the SUB, while girls watched (and sang along with) Mulan and The Prince of Egypt in the Katie Rogers parlor. Staff writer, Zach Woodbridge, attended and reports on the guy's night event. The night kicked off with laser tag and ended with way more pizza than the players could eat and an awesome devotional, led by junior Brandon Hettick and sophomore Jonathan Wynne. I played in the first game of laser tag, and it was a bit confusing. Rules needed to be established because teams were a rather loose suggestion, which led to a lot of friendly fire. It quickly got interesting as the next game, and every game after that, we started to get handicaps. Some people were tied together at the ankle, some blindfolded. Upon seeing the first person being led around by a team mate blindfolded it looked more like a hostage situation than anything. Eventually, it was my turn to play again and I ended up being one of the few handicapped people in the game. However, I got double handicapped: blindfolded and tied to someone else. It wasn't the most favorable conditions for a laser fight and I ended up getting out first. I was glad my team had my back though. Of course, there was a point to it all. We talked about watching out for each other and having each other's backs as brothers in Christ when we got to the devotional time. It was a great night. Everyone should keep future Out of the Darkness events in mind to attend.
There are several things that make "Baggage" a unique experience. Firstly, it is the show that the LCU theatre department will take to festival in Brownwood next week. Secondly, it was jointly written by LCU alumni Kyle Bullock and Gary Head. "Baggage" runs Friday, February 28th, and Saturday, March 1st, at 7:30pm in the CDC theater. Tickets are $5 for students and $10 for adults. Instead of having a running plot throughout the show, each scene features different characters facing problems that range from hilarious to serious. The characters Cal (David Denton) and Julie (Taylor Prather) appear consistently over the course of the show trying to runaway from their problems. A few of the other characters make multiple appearances, but all of them deal with themes of baggage: literal and emotional. The cast spends most of the show on stage, adding to the main action of the scenes by supporting the featured actors. It takes a lot of work for the actors to change characters every scene and they do a great job of transitioning. The set is a little busy but lends to the abstract nature of the show. The costumes are black and white so they are very versatile. The set and costumes both are enough to establish the scene while also leaving much up to the imagination of the audience. Make plans to see "Baggage" while you can. It only runs the one weekend and it's definitely worth your time.
Kappa Delta Pi, or KDP, is an honor society for Education majors. As with most honor societies, KDP looks fantastic on a resume. KDP focuses on getting Education majors engaged in service and the educational community. To become a member of KDP you must have a 3.35 GPA or higher, have 50 hours of school credits, 6 hours of Education course, and pay the required dues. Once you are a member of KDP, you must maintain the 3.35 GPA. Bryanna Wolfe, President of KDP, states how to stay a member of KDP, "You stay in by participating in our service projects that we have every semester. We try to have at least 4 projects for people to choose from! Also they need to come to our meeting once a semester to know what's going on and make sure that they continue to pay their dues!" KDP is a program that anyone can enjoy. As the future president, Amber Stark explained why she wanted be apart of KDP, "I transferred to LCU last spring  because of the Education department's reputation. God placed it on my heart to find an Education program that aligned with my personal beliefs." Stark believes education is a mission field, "teachers are sometimes the only influence or role model students get to look up to. When I began my educational journey at LCU, I heard about KDP. I met a few officers at the club meet and greet in the sub. They were so nice and encouraged me to keep my GPA up so I could join. So, I did and I joined KDP. I believe it was yet another opportunity God had offered me." Wolfe also felt the same about KDP, "I knew when I got to LCU and I heard about this program that I wanted to work hard so that I could be in it! I never would have thought that I would be the president someday but God definitely works in amazing ways!" Wolfe also explained what she loves about KDP: "I love how big we are and I LOVE that we serve others because that's what Christians are... We are meant to love and serve others!!" Wolfe proudly exclaims, that she loves KDP because she gets to meet new people every semester as well as help the community. KDP is an amazing club that offers many services for the community, and the reason why so many members love being involved in it. Stark stated she loved "that KDP is service centered. We donate cans and read at schools." Wolfe explains, "KDP does many service projects, like reading books to 1st graders at a Lubbock elementary school, a U-Can-Share food drive, and we have a toy drive for Christmas!" Stark is especially excited for this semester's service project, "We're raising school supplies for schools in Lubbock." As Wolfe explains, "We know a lot of kids are in need of school supplies, and at LCU we love to give back! It just makes me feel like I'm making a difference even if it's really small! KDP provides for the specific needs of the Lubbock community." Stark perfectly defines KDP, "it truly embodies the hands and feet of Christ by serving the community in need. The members of KDP know each other and enjoy serving together. KDP offers education majors specific opportunities to help further their educational experiences as they are able to meet students who share the same experiences."
Contrary to popular belief, the social clubs are not the only clubs on campus. In fact, many of the departments on campus actually have their own clubs. For example, the Behavioral Science Department has the Behavioral Science Society or BSS. For anyone majoring in Psychology, Family Studies, Social Work, etc. this club is beneficial for getting involved in the community and even offers study groups for people in the same classes in the department. The BSS also has speakers who talk about different techniques to give students an idea of what their future career might look like. Their speaker on Tuesday, February 25th, was none other than LCU's own Tonya Bonner. The meeting opened with a fun and humorous personality quiz, the Dailai Lama Personality Test, to lighten up the mood. Bonner, who works as a counselor outside of school, talked about how counseling "is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get." Most everyone appreciated the Forrest Gump reference. She then took everyone through an exercise. Four different students were chosen to act as a counselor for Bonner, who acted as patient with some kind of disorder. The first two students counseled her individually while the last scenario was joint counseling. The student then had to determine what kind of disorder she was exhibiting. The exercise was eye opening for the students and a good motivator for those who want to be counselors in the future. Though the BSS is mainly beneficial for student majoring in the Behavioral Science department, the meetings are open for anyone to attend. The information given is helpful and the activities are a lot of fun to watch as well as participate in. The meetings are every other week on Tuesdays at 9. Feel free to come and enjoy what’s almost always a fun and eventful night.
"The Pageant Play" runs Fridays and Saturdays February 28th, March 1st, 7th, and 8th at 7:30pm at CATS Playhouse. Doors open at 7 with ticket costs at $12 for students and $14 for adults. The farcical plot centers on two pageant mothers who have high stakes in the competitions. Pinky is the television worthy mom obsessed with winning. Marge (Danielle DeLisle) is new to the game with her daughter, Puddle, while Pinky (Erin Castle) and her daughter, Chevrolet, are seasoned pageant goers. The play keeps the audience on their toes with humor and twists they'd never expect. The onstage actors are phenomenal. The young girls aren't actually actors in the show, they are little dresses on hangers that are treated like props instead of people, which gives the meaning of the play more depth. Both the mothers and the pageant coaches (Reagan Sudduth and Zachary Kocurek) keep the audience engaged with their fun roles. Audience interactions were an unexpected but fun portion of the show. The set is gaudy and obnoxious, which is perfect for the play. Purple, pink, bright blue, and zebra print make a great backdrop for wacky children's pageants. Glitter and sparkle on everything completes the perfect set. Although there is some language and adult themes, all of the aspects lend to an interesting and funny play. Viewer discretion is always advised when going to see an unfamiliar play. If you can't make "The Pageant Play," CATS is beginning rehearsals on "Steel Magnolias," which is set to run in April.