News

NEWS RELEASE
April 17, 2014
Contact: Steve Rottinghaus, Baker University public relations director, (785) 594-8330 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Student newspaper, website earn national, state honors

Baldwin City, Kan. — The Baker Orange newspaper and its accompanying website, thebakerorange.com, recently earned several national and state honors.

The print version of the Orange received a 2014 Apple Award from the College Media Association as the best newspaper among four-year schools with an enrollment under 5,000 students. Apple Award winners were announced in New York in mid-March. All colleges nationwide were eligible to enter.editorsforweb

On April 14 at the Kansas Collegiate Media spring conference in Wichita, Kan., thebakerorange.com won the All-Kansas Award from Kansas Collegiate Media as the top collegiate news website among all colleges in the state. This award was presented in Wichita during KCM's spring conference. One judge's feedback noted that "this is an engaging, visually attractive site that delivers on its mission to provide relevant content to keep the university community informed while giving students practical mass media experience."

The print version won the Kansas Collegiate Media's All-Kansas Award as the top private-college newspaper in the state. One judge wrote that "several articles told a story beyond a simple interview. It's obvious the reporters have spent time with their subjects."

Seniors Sara Bell and Tera Lyons serve as this year's editors. In addition to the group honors, Bell received $100 as runner-up for the four-year newspaper Journalist of the Year Award.

In individual KCM contests, Lyons led Baker by placing first in three categories: illustration, photo essay and feature photography. She also placed second in page design, ad design and sports photography. Bell had two separate entries that took first and second place in sports writing.

Other Baker students who earned individual honors:

Freshman Chad Phillips, Wichita, Kan. — first in sports photography; second in news photography.

Sophomore Taylor Schley, Topeka, Kan. — first in infographics.

Junior Lauren Bechard, Gardner, Kan. — second in sports feature writing; second in column writing; third in feature writing.

Senior Jenna Stanbrough, Emporia, Kan. — second in feature writing; second in news writing.

Junior Abbey Elsbernd, Andover, Kan. — second in illustration.

Senior Callie Paquette, Ottawa, Kan., and sophomore Jordan Ratterman, Overland Park, Kan. — second in photo essay.

Sophomore Jordan Ratterman, Overland Park, Kan. — third in feature photography.

Senior Katie Thurbon, Topeka, Kan. — third in news writing.

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Baker University is committed to assuring student learning, and developing confident, competent and responsible contributors to society.

 

NEWS RELEASE
April 14, 2014
Contact: Steve Rottinghaus, Baker University public relations director, (785) 594-8330 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Baker junior receives scholarship from National Federation of the Blind

Baldwin City, Kan. — Dustin Turner, a Baker University junior from Overbrook, Kan., has been awarded a scholarship from the National Federation of the Blind based on his performance in the classroom, an essay competition and campus activities.Dustin-Turnerforweb

Turner is on the dean's list and a member of Baker's wrestling team. He serves as a resident assistant and is a peer tutor for Student Academic Services. Turner also has volunteered for the Numana Swipe Out Hunger event on campus and at The Big Event, an annual national one-day community service project.

"I am really glad that my work had finally paid off in a big way," said Turner, majoring in business management and computer science. "For me it is all about staying positive and focusing on what I can do rather than the things that I can't. Spending time focusing on things I cannot do leaves me feeling helpless and defeated. I work much better staying positive and doing the best I can. Everything else will take care of itself.

"My Baker experience has been great. The small campus, friendly students, and helpful staff and faculty have made it easy for me to work at my best even if I have to do things a little bit differently than others. Baker started to feel like a family from the very beginning. I wouldn't trade my experience for anything."

Turner, who has 20/400 vision, suffers from congenital nystagumus, a condition that causes his eyes to shake rapidly and uncontrollably in the presence of light, causing blurred vision at distances as close, in his case, as 5 to 10 feet. The condition also causes his eyes to be extremely light sensitive and frequent headaches. Despite the vision impairment, the legally blind student has thrived in the classroom, on the wrestling mat and in student activities on the Baldwin City campus.

"At first it was about finding my limits and range of abilities," Turner said of adjusting to college life. "After that it was about talking to the instructors and figuring out ways to bridge any otherwise unfilled gaps between what was expected and what I could do. This is where Baker really shined for me because the instructors were so accepting and helpful with suggestions and possibilities. Once those two pieces came together it was about working as hard as I could to get the job done in the classroom or on the mat."

Technology is invaluable to the Baker student. He relies on magnifiers, audio recorders, laptops and tablets for taking notes and completing his assignments.

"These keep me from falling behind with lectures as well as keeping my notes, assignments, and other media in formats that can be easily manipulated to get larger fonts and screen readings," he said. "Without these tools I would fall well behind my classmates and spend all my time catching up instead of focusing on my work."

Turner enjoys being involved on campus as an RA and competing for the Wildcat wrestling team.

"Wrestling is a very demanding sport," he explained. "It requires a lot of hard work and sacrifice. It has also given me a smaller subset of the Baker family to belong to. I am closer to other wrestlers just because I see them more and talk to them more often. Wrestling gives me a great outlet for my work ethic as well as personal growth. Being an RA has been a phenomenal experience as well. It allows me the opportunity to interact with other students on a more personal level and help them to become successful and have a good college experience. It also gives me the chance to use my disability to connect with and understand others' points of view, and that has been crucial to my development as a student and as a person."

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Baker University is committed to assuring student learning, and developing confident, competent and responsible contributors to society.

 

NEWS RELEASE
April 4, 2014
Contact: Steve Rottinghaus, Baker University public relations director, (785) 594-8330 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Colleges of Distinction recognizes Baker University

Baldwin City, Kan. — Colleges of Distinction, a guidebook highlighting four-year institutions that are considered "hidden gems," has recognized Baker University in its 2013-2014 publication.Parmenter-flagforweb

Founded in 1858 and the first college in Kansas, Baker was honored for its commitment to engaging students, excellent faculty, vibrant communities and successful outcomes. Colleges of Distinction is designed to provide students, counselors, and parents with information about schools that excel in these key areas. It describes schools that take a holistic approach to admission decisions, consistently excel in providing undergraduate education, and have a truly national reputation.

Colleges and universities are nominated for consideration in Colleges of Distinction by high school college counselors. The selection methodology is a mix of qualitative and quantitative information. Its qualitative information is collected from college admission experts around the country. Feedback is gathered from administrators at other colleges and high school counselors across the country.

The guidebook also uses a range of quantitative data such as graduation rates, classroom size and other key stats. It highly regards schools whose students are valued by graduate schools and employers for their outstanding preparation.

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Baker University is committed to assuring student learning, and developing confident, competent and responsible contributors to society.

 

NEWS RELEASE
April 1, 2014
Contact: Steve Rottinghaus, Baker University public relations director, (785) 594-8330 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Hopkins embraces 'calling to serve God'

Baldwin City, Kan. — As a baritone bugler for the Sky Ryders Drum and Bugle Corps from Hutchinson, Kan., during his youth, Kevin Hopkins always enjoyed attending music camps at Baker University. Those fond memories have remained for more than 30 years as Hopkins, now known as RevKev, prepares to return to the Baldwin City campus this summer.Kevin-Hopkinsforweb

Hopkins, the senior pastor at Leavenworth (Kan.) First United Methodist Church since 2009, was announced in January as the minister to the
University, effective July 1. He will succeed the Rev. Ira DeSpain, a 1970 Baker graduate, who announced last year his plans to retire at the end of the 2013-2014 academic year after serving his alma mater for 22 years.

"I have been affiliated with several private colleges in Kansas, and Baker has always been the school that is highly respected by other regional schools," Hopkins said. "For the past several years now, I have felt God calling me to return to campus ministry and when this position became available I knew I wanted to apply. Based on my memories of Baker, my higher education experience, and my passion for campus ministry I thought it would be a good fit."

His experience in campus ministry includes stints at Grace United Methodist Church in Winfield, Kan., on Southwestern College's campus and as dean of students and campus pastor at Kansas Wesleyan in Salina, Kan. He previously held faith-based leadership positions at Southern Illinois
University in Carbondale, Ill., and Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.

"I greatly look forward to watching Rev. Hopkins connect with our students," said Brian Posler, vice president for academic affairs and dean
of the College of Arts and Sciences. "This University has a great history of outstanding ministry, and I am confident Rev. Hopkins will continue
that tradition."

Hopkins, who earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Kansas and a Master of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in
Evanston, Ill., is eager to return to a campus setting.

"I embraced my calling to serve God because of my involvement in campus ministry," Hopkins said. "I have always felt called to serve on a campus
and give back. Hopefully I can help students juggle academic and social expectations while at the same time encourage them to grow in their faith.
For those students who have a faith background, I hope to encourage them to continue to grow in their faith. And for those students who are
seeking, I hope to create an open welcoming environment to ask questions."

In his role at Baker, Hopkins will lead weekly services at Osborne Chapel, the University's place of worship since 1996.

"It is vitally important to have many students involved in campus ministry," Hopkins said. "Campus ministry is their program — it is for
them. I can plan all kinds of activities and spiritual opportunities, but I value their ideas and vision for campus ministry through chapel, Bible
studies and whatever other opportunities are there for their spiritual growth. I want to build a program based on what they feel is meaningful
for their lives. I hope that through campus ministry we can equip and send graduates back into local churches as dedicated, passionate clergy and lay
people. I do feel that campus ministry can strengthen the local church."

Hopkins and his wife of 24 years, Joni, who works for the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City, have six children. The Hopkins family plans to move
to Baldwin City. Kevin's interests include running and playing basketball, Ping-Pong and racquetball. He has served as a chaplain with the Kansas Air
National Guard for 14 years and recently completed a six-month deployment to Dover Air Force Base, where he worked with Air Force Mortuary Affairs
Operations, welcoming home fallen soldiers and working with their families.

Hopkins plans to use his first month at Baker to visit with the campus community.

"I anticipate I will wear out the sidewalks on the campus as I try to meet as many faculty and staff as possible before school starts," he explained.
"I also hope to meet as many students as possible during the summer. I plan to meet with the Ambassadors and do a lot of planning and programming
for fall semester for chapel and campus ministry programs."

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Baker University is committed to assuring student learning, and developing confident, competent and responsible contributors to society.

 
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