George Ella Lyon to Speak at Berea College Commencement

George Ella Lyon

(Photo: Ann W. Olson)

George Ella Lyon, Kentucky Poet Laureate for 2015-16, will speak at Berea College’s 2019 Commencement Ceremony, May 5 at 2 p.m.

An American author and poet, Lyon has published award-winning books for readers of all ages. Her teaching takes the form of workshops, conferences and author visits to as many as 40 schools a year. Aside from publishing, she also taught writing at a number of colleges, including the University of Kentucky, Centre College, Transylvania University and Radford University. She has also acted as an executive committee member for the Women’s Writers Conference.

Adults and children read Lyon’s writing, which includes novels, picture books and poetry. Her poem, “Where I’m From” has been used as a model by teachers around the world and was listed by the New York Public Library in 2000 as one of the best books for teenagers. A sampling of Lyon’s book titles include “She Let Herself Go” (poems) and picture books including “Which Side Are You On?” “The Story of a Song” and “All the Water in the World.” Her book “The Pirate of Kindergarten” received the Schneider Award from the American Library Association. Other accolades for Lyon’s work include a Jane Addams Honor, a Golden Kite and the Bluegrass Award. A series of rhyming books about transportation include “Trucks Roll!,” “Planes Fly!,” and “Boats Float!”

Lyon is a graduate of Centre College, and holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Arkansas and doctorate in English from Indiana University.

Originally from the mountains of Harlan, Kentucky, Lyon says growing up surrounded by extended family and their stories helped develop her voice as a writer. Her Appalachian roots figure prominently in much of her work. Lyon has written more than 40 books, including the poetry collection “Mountain,” which won the Lamont Hall Award in 1983, and “Catalpa,” which was named Appalachian Book of the Year in 1993.

Tickets are required for admission to the Commencement ceremony. Tickets must be obtained in advance and are required for main arena as well as overflow seating. Contact Amanda Leger (legera@berea.edu or 859-985-3775 directly for ticket requests by Friday, April 19. Please note that seating is limited and cannot be guaranteed. Watch the ceremony via livestream on May 5 at 2 p.m.

Earlier in the day, a Nurses’ Pinning Ceremony for Berea’s nursing program graduates will take place at 8:30 a.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

The Baccalaureate Ceremony will follow at 10:30 a.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel. Rev. Paul Prather, pastor of Bethesda Church in Mount Sterling, Kentucky and a contributing columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader will be the speaker. Music will be provided by the Berea College Concert Choir.  (No tickets are required for the Nurses’ Pinning or Baccalaureate ceremonies.)

Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: commencement, George Ella Lyon, graduation

Berea College Student Shyeila Bowers Named a Newman Civic Fellow

Shy Bowers headshot

Shyeila “Shy” Bowers ’20

Shyeila “Shy” Bowers, a junior at Berea College, is one of 262 students named as a Newman Civic Fellow for 2019-2020 by Campus Compact, a Boston-based non-profit organization advancing the public purposes of higher education.

“Shy is a hard-working and positive student leader and undergraduate scholar,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “She uses her community-building approaches to promote dialogue and action to address pressing social issues.”

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Categories: News, People
Tags: Bonner Scholar, Education Studies Department, Newman civic fellowship, Peace and Social Justice Studies Department, Students

Setting Sail: Berea Forestry Logs White Oak Trees for Ship Restoration

Berea College foresters riding horses on a trail in the forest

(Photo: Taylor Six, The Richmond Register)

Guest post by Taylor Six, The Richmond Register

A writer, photographer, a history professor and tree-logger from all across the nation were brought to the small town of Berea Thursday afternoon for their one shared similarity in the interests of John Steinbeck and the restoration of The Western Flyer.

The Western Flyer, known as “most famous fishing vessel ever to have sailed,” was made famous with the sailing of the author Steinbeck, along with marine biologist Ed Ricketts, in their 1940 journey to the Gulf of California, which helped accumulate the notes for their 1951 book, “The Log from the Sea of Cortez.”

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Categories: News, Places, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Berea College Forest, Clint Patterson, Forestry, Forestry Outreach Center, Wendy Warren

Red Molly to Perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial Concert

Red Molly group portrait

(Photo: Whitney Kidder)

Red Molly, a group known for American music ranging from blues and folk, to country and bluegrass, will perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on Thursday, April 11, at 8 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

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Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Convocation, Red Molly, Stephenson Memorial Concert

Nobel Prize Comes “Home” to Berea

Berea College installed a Nobel Prize—won by alumnus John Fenn ’37, for his notable work in chemistry—in the new Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building. Science faculty, students, College officials and family members of the late Dr. Fenn gathered to hear remarks about his development of Electrospray Ionization and its impact on developing life-saving medicines.

Categories: News, People, Places
Tags: alumni, Chemistry Department, John Fenn, Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building, Nobel Prize

Berea College Announces Winners of “Appalachian Narratives for Our Time” Awards

Berea College’s Loyal Jones Appalachian Center has announced the winners of the “Appalachian Narratives for Our Time” award for essays about how Appalachians thrive in the places they call home.

The submitted essays focus on the authors’ compelling life stories and illustrate the challenges of coming of age, working and living in the realities of family and community.

“Appalachia has a rich and, at the same time, challenging history,” said Chris Green, director of the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center. “All too often, however, national media portrays difficulties in the region as the fault of people who live here. We wanted to give the majority of Appalachians who grow up and make good lives a new opportunity to tell their stories.”

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Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: alumni, awards, Dr. Chris Green, Loyal Jones Appalachian Center, Silas House

Needle Work Musical Drama Coming to Berea College March 26th

Higher Ground will present an original one-act musical drama, Needle Work, at the Phelps Stokes Chapel at 7 p.m., Tuesday March 26, 2019. The performance includes stories collected in eastern Kentucky communities and music from the cast and local musicians. It is free and open to the public.

Needle Work examines the pros and cons of needle exchanges, where substance abusers can exchange dirty syringes for clean ones without fear of legal consequences, as a way of stemming the spread of diseases such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS.

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Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: CELTS, Higher Ground, Loyal Jones Appalachian Center, musical, Needle Work, Phelps Stokes Chapel

Dervish to Perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial Concert

Dervish

(Photo: Colin Gillen)

Dervish, acclaimed as one of the biggest names in Irish music internationally, will perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on Thursday Mar. 14 at 8 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

Described as “an icon of Irish music” by the BBC and “the most soulful Irish traditional folk band playing today,” by Irish journalist and broadcaster Stuart Bailie, Dervish has played at festivals from Rio to Glastonbury. They come to Berea just in time to set the mood for St. Patrick’s Day.

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Categories: News, People
Tags: Convocation, Dervish, music, Stephenson Memorial Concert

Berea College Named as a Gilman Top Producing Institution

Spectrum News recently highlighted Berea’s recognition as a Gilman Scholarship top producing institution. View the broadcast above and the full story on the Spectrum News 1 website.

The U.S. Department of State recognized Berea College as one of the U.S. higher education institutions that sent the most students overseas through the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program in academic year 2017-2018.  Berea was noted for its success in making international study and internships more accessible and inclusive for American students of all backgrounds through the Gilman program.

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Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Accolade, Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, Gilman International Scholarship, Study abroad

Berea College Professor Awarded Whiting Foundation Grant

Jason Cohen headshot

Dr. Jason E. Cohen

The Whiting Foundation awarded a $50,000 grant to Jason E. Cohen, associate professor of English at Berea College. Cohen is one of seven humanities scholars named as a Fellow and grant recipient in the Whiting Public Engagement Program, which empowers early-career scholars and their collaborators to amplify unheard stories and circulate insights gleaned from immersion in the humanities. Cohen’s project, titled Histories of Overburden, is a partnership with the Pine Mountain Settlement School and public schools in Harlan County, Kentucky. The project will bring high school students into Pine Mountain’s vast archive of environmental and cultural history to study firsthand how the past—especially resource extraction and industrialization—has affected the local environmental and cultural heritage.

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Categories: News, People
Tags: English Department, humanities, Jason Cohen, Pine Mountain Settlement School, Whiting Foundation

bell hooks Honored in New York Times Column

bell hooks speaking at a podium

bell hooks speaking during the formal presentation of her papers to Berea College on April 10, 2017.
(Photo: Bethany Posey ’18)

bell hooks, Distinguished Professor in Residence in Appalachian Studies, was recently highlighted in a New York Times column by award-winning novelist and former student, Min Jin Lee. In the article, Lee looks back on her time as a student at Yale University in hooks’ “Introduction to African-American Literature” class. The writer reflects on how hooks’ writing helped shape the perception Lee initially had of her place in the feminist movement as a Korean woman. (more…)

Categories: News, People
Tags: bell hooks, faculty, Feminism, New York Times, women's history, Women’s History Month

Berea Recognized in Kentucky House of Representatives

In its February sessions, the Kentucky House of Representatives takes time during Black History Month to recognize groups or individuals who have made a positive impact on the African American community. R. Travis Brenda, the Kentucky representative for District 71 and a Berea College alumnus, recognized Berea from the House floor for the College’s many historic efforts for racial equality. (more…)

Categories: News, People, Places
Tags: Black History, Black History Month, Carter G. Woodson, Dr. Alicestyne Turley, Jackie Collier, Kentucky House of Representatives, Kim Brown, R. Travis Brenda, Tim Jordan, Virgil Burnside

Diverse Magazine Features the Father of Black History

Berea College and the Father of Black History by LaMont Jones Jr.

Preeminent scholar Dr. Carter G. Woodson has been dubbed “the father of Black history” and is known for earning degrees at the University of Chicago and Harvard, but less well known is how living in Appalachia and attending Berea College informed his towering intellect and tireless work ethic. Diverse Issues in Higher Education magazine writer LaMont Jones Jr. visited Berea’s campus to learn more about this alumnus who changed the way America views Black history. Hear from Alicestyne Turley, Berea’s director of the Carter G. Woodson Center, about how Woodson’s Appalachian roots and time at Berea impacted his life and how Berea College is keeping Woodson’s legacy alive today. Read the full article here. Alternatively, you may view the print version of the article here (PDF).

Categories: News, People, Places
Tags: Black History, Black History Month, Carter G. Woodson, Diverse Issues in Higher Education, Diverse Magazine, Dr. Alicestyne Turley, Father of Black History

Berea Named a “Best Value” College by the Princeton Review

Student forming a clay mugBerea College, widely known for its no-tuition policy, is one of the nation’s best colleges for students seeking a superb education with great career preparation at an affordable price, according to The Princeton Review®.

The newly-published 2019 edition of The Princeton Review’s annual guide, The Best Value Colleges: 200 Schools with Exceptional ROI for Your Tuition Investment, recommends colleges considered the nation’s best for academics, affordability and career prospects. The distinction is based on a ROI (return on investment) rating score developed by The Princeton Review that weights more than 40 data points, including data from previous years’ surveys of students and administrators at more than 650 U.S. colleges. Other factors include starting and mid-career salaries and career social impact. (more…)

Categories: News, Places
Tags: Accolade, College Affordability, Princeton Review, tuition, Tuition-free

Flamenco Louisville to Perform Free at Berea College

Flamenco Louisville performanceFlamenco Louisville will perform authentic flamenco music and dance at the Berea College Convocation on Thursday, Jan. 31 at 3 p.m., in Phelps Stokes Chapel.

Flamenco Louisville is the oldest flamenco organization in the area. The musicians and dancers of Flamenco Louisville are Spanish-trained professionals who bring authentic flamenco in the puro tradition. Flamenco Louisville is a community-oriented organization, dedicated to the life of their art form and sharing it with others. (more…)

Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Convocation, Dance, Flamenco Louisville

Berea College Noted for Easing Student Financial Burden

A Berea graduate raising her arms in celebration with her diploma in hand

(Photo: Desiree Dunn ’21)

A recent article published by U. S. News & World Report included Berea among selective colleges where students are eager to apply, be accepted and attend. The story named highly competitive colleges that are considered “high yield,” which refers to the percentage of accepted students who choose to enroll. The article specifically cited Berea College and the United States Naval Academy for high yields and no tuition, stating “Two liberal arts colleges with high yield figures – the Naval Academy and Berea College in Kentucky – provide a tuition-free education, easing the financial burden on students and their families as the cost of school continues to rise across the nation.” Read the full article here.

Categories: News, Places
Tags: Student debt, tuition, Tuition-free, U.S. News, U.S. News & World Report

Berea College Implementing Total Smoke-out

Students walking across campus with a gazebo in the backgroundThe Berea College General Faculty Assembly recently voted in favor of a new policy prohibiting use of tobacco and electronic smoking devices on campus. The new policy, scheduled to take effect in July 2019, designates all College property free of tobacco smoking and vaping products. (more…)

Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Health, smoke-free, tobacco-free, wellness

Berea College Featured on “CBS This Morning: Saturday”

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“CBS This Morning: Saturday” featured Berea College in a broadcast about the rising cost of attending college on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2019. The show highlighted Berea’s unique no-tuition policy as a model to curb that national trend. (more…)

Categories: News, People
Tags: athletics, CBS, CBS This Morning, Computer Science Department, Dave Bell, Track and Field, Tuition-free

Berea College and Community to Celebrate MLK Day with Convocation and Events

Campus members holding sign for MLK Day march

Community (Berea and campus) members begin to march from Union Church to Presser Hall on Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2018.
(Photo: Crystal Wylie ’05)

Berea College staff, faculty and students have organized a series of events in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. The centerpiece event is a convocation featuring Zeb Harrison & The Sounds of Praise. The annual MLK Day activities are co-sponsored by Office of the President, Berea College Music Program, Black Cultural Center, Carter G. Woodson Center for Interracial Education, the Center for Excellence in Learning through Service (CELTS), Berea College Music Program, First Christian Church, Union Church, and Willis D. Weatherford Jr. Campus Christian Center. (more…)

Categories: News, Places, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Carter G. Woodson Center, Center for International Education, Center for Teaching and Learning, Convocation, Loyal Jones Appalachian Center, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Convocation, Union Church

Seven Organizations Named as Hubs for Results Count™ Leadership Development

Partners for Education, Berea CollegeIn a major step to boost the reach of Results Count™, its unique approach to leadership development, the Casey Foundation has selected seven organizations to work with the Foundation for three years as hubs that will expand the use of Results Count throughout the social sector.

The goal: to increase the number of leaders who take a results-oriented approach to accelerate measurable and equitable improvements in well-being for children and families in communities across the country. (more…)

Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Appalachia, Dreama Gentry, Partners for Education, Results Count

Berea College Westervelt Program Registration Now Open to Public

Dr. Alan Mills with two students

Dr. Alan Mills, Professor of Technology and Industrial Arts, helps Caleb Wetmore ’10, and Brittany Adams ’11, select their photographs, taken with an infrared camera.

The Berea College Technology and Applied Design Department is accepting course registration for spring 2019 Westervelt Program classes, which will focus on making jewelry, wooden boxes and photography. The Westervelt program is offered each year to Berea townspeople as well as students, faculty and staff. The program provides excellent opportunities for individuals to develop a well-rounded educational background and pursue specific areas of interest. (more…)

Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Dr. Alan Mills, Jewelry, photography, Technology and Applied Design Department, Westervelt program, Woodcraft

Berea’s Feature in The Atlantic Cited by the National College Access Network

Berea College was cited in a newly published article by Lindsay Broderick, a staff writer for the National College Access Network (NCAN), who called attention to the extensive feature about Berea in a recent issue of The Atlantic.

The National College Access Network is composed of member organizations across the U.S. that, like Berea, are committed to providing college access and success to students, especially for those who often are underrepresented in postsecondary education. Berea’s Partners for Education program is a NCAN member. (more…)

Categories: News, Places
Tags: National College Access Network, The Atlantic, Tuition-free

“Viral” Video Reaches One Million People

Berea College’s Bluegrass Ensemble’s performance of the “Carol of the Bells” has reached more than one million people—1,373,876 as of this writing—since their video recording was posted to the College’s Facebook page last year. The always-popular Bluegrass Ensemble is one of a diverse range of musical groups at Berea College. (more…)

Categories: News, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Al White, Bluegrass Ensemble, Christmas, Facebook, Music Department

70 Graduates Recognized During Mid-Year Ceremony

View full gallery of photos from the Recognition Ceremony for Mid-Year Graduates on Facebook.

Berea College’s Recognition Ceremony for Mid-Year Graduates was held Sunday, Dec. 9 at 3 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel. Alexander Gibson, executive director of Appalshop, Inc., addressed the 70 seniors who completed their degree requirements this term. The Berea College graduates represented 18 American states and 6 other countries. (more…)

Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: appalshop, commencement, graduation, mid-year commencement, Midyear Graduation, Students

Nine Berea College Students Achieve Awards at Kentucky Academy of Science Annual Meeting

Nine Berea College students received awards at the Kentucky Academy of Science (KAS) Annual Meeting held earlier this month at Western Kentucky University. More than 600 scientists and students attended the KAS meeting, and hundreds of students from Kentucky and regional colleges and universities participated in the research competitions. (more…)

Categories: News, People
Tags: awards, Kentucky Academy of Science, Students