Toccoa Falls Goes to Atlanta

Between the hours of six and seven on the night of November 30th, Toccoa Falls students crowded into the Defoor Centre, eagerly awaiting the dining room doors to open so hungry stomachs could enjoy a much anticipated meal. Quickly preparing the dining room before seven, the Defoor Centre staff weaved in and out of students who spent the hour taking pictures, laughing about the photography on the wall featuring a two-headed elephant, and quietly (and loudly) celebrated every time Georgia scored in the SEC Championship game.

When asked why SGA Executive Special Events Coordinator Casey Hurless chose the Defoor Centre for this year’s Christmas banquet, she said, “I spent many hours on Google trying I find a place within our budget and one that would be able to hold 265 people. The website had great pictures of the venue and I really liked the layout of the place. My committee and I visited once we got back to school and they really liked the place so I knew I made the right choice in picking the Defoor Centre.”

Hoping to avoid traffic from the SEC Championship, students arrived at the banquet hall as early as five in the evening. However, they were not with nothing to do. The walls were covered with photography and paintings and the Special Events committee had set up a photo booth with silly wigs, mustaches, and other accessories. And the venue had seating areas for conversation. So, they were close to having nothing to do. However, in the next room, students could find a café with a small coffee bar.

When the doors opened, the well dressed student body rushed to find their tables with salads already awaiting them. The centerpieces, made by Hurless’ Special Events Committee consisted of candles and clear and blue-painted glass bottles of various sizes. This room, like the others in the Defoor Centre had its walls lined with paintings and photographs. Attendees looking for a good laugh and conversation could find Mad Lib-like games of “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” on their tables.

The stage at the front of the dining room featured live musical performances. Nicholas Greenfield and Jaclyn Oliveras sang duet Christmas songs like as “Baby it’s Cold Outside.” Later in the evening, Ashley Graves and Josh Spangler joined them to do a rendition of The Civil Wars’ “Poison & Wine.” The duet swapped out periodically with Seth Kennedy and Josh Spangler who performed on their respective instruments, electric guitar and drum kit, instrumental versions of songs such as “Go Tell it on the Mountain” and “Silent Night.” Both sets of live performers did a great job of making each song their own.

The food was certainly worth the wait. After finishing their bread and salads, attendees stood in line for their entrées which consisted of grilled chicken and mushrooms, and seasoned potatoes and asparagus on the side. Students whose stomachs were so used to cafeteria food found themselves satisfied by the moist chicken and fresh vegetables.

Periodically throughout the night, Allysa Gailer took the stage to choose from a bowl of raffle tickets straight out of the Reaping in The Hunger Games the winners of, not a one way trip to a battle for their lives, but a cornucopia of various door prizes. (Yes, pun absolutely intended.) The raffle was much like a white elephant gift exchange in that winners would choose a gift from the table to unwrap having no clue what it is. Some gifts were less expensive things such as stuffed bears, pictures of wolves similar to those you’d find on a ’90s child’s tucked in t-shirt, and plates. Other gifts were worth much more such as gift cards, an iPod Touch, and a Kindle Fire. There was also a toaster. The most coveted prize of the night, the iPad Mini that was found in a card instead of a box, went to Lydia Knight.

“The best thing about planning was seeing it all come together,” Hurless said. “My committee and I have been planning things here and there but we weren’t able to see the final product until we were at the venue and everything was set up.”Hurless said she had been planning the event even before the Fall semester began. She’d like to thank her committee for the hours they put into the event, those who helped out during the event, and especially those who stayed after the banquet to help clean everything up. “I couldn’t have done it without your help!”

When all was said and done and after everyone had enjoyed their dessert of cake, pie, and/or cookies, students parted ways to find more shenanigans to get themselves into. Some went bowling, others went ice skating, and others just chilled somewhere and watched a movie. But everyone left the Defoor Centre that night with satisfied stomachs, the Christmas spirit in their hearts, and visions of __________ (plural noun) dancing in their heads.

The Students of Christian College

Remember life before college? I was pretty easy, right? Who needs math when you’ve got a calculator? Sleeping in class was so much easier to get away with. And I didn’t even learn to read until my junior year of high school. Now that you’re in college, you have to deal with the extensive reading assignments, the sleepless nights, and the profs all up in yo’ grill. The laid back high school life doesn’t translate well into the college years. You’re a scholar now; time to be serious. College is just like a Catholic wedding ceremony: if you’re having fun, you’re doing it wrong.

Of course I’m exaggerating. Everyone’s experienced high school differently, and can make their own judgments about college in comparison. There are four major demographics of high schoolers that end up at Christian college, and I hope I can offend them all equally (but preferably not at all): the homeschooler, the missionary kid (MK), the private schooler, and the public schooler. I’ve grown up a public schooler my whole life, but I’ve dressed like a private schooler, I’ve gotten out probably just about as much as a homeschooler, and I drive like an MK, so I’d say I’m pretty much a professional on stuff like this. So whether you went to public school, your kitchen school, private school, or desert school, this post is for you. My hope with this post is not to make fun, but rather to break down some of the stereotypes people have.

The Homeschooler
According to a good number of public schoolers, “You can spot a homeschooler from a mile away.” I can’t do that, but I can tell you these facts. They’re generally known for being super awkward, and introverted only under the circumstances that a debate about evolution isn’t introduced. At that point, you may need to walk away because by the end of that discussion, you may feel accused of not loving Jesus anymore. Many homeschoolers major in music, but those who don’t are sick violinists anyway. They use it to rock out to Skillet.

The MK
The reason the MK is in a separate category is because they all receive different types of schooling from all kinds of ethnic backgrounds, but somehow they know exactly how to relate to each other. It’s as if the whole world works in a certain way and they’re not sharing any of those great ideas with America. I think that’s really the only reason we still call it soccer. Speaking of soccer, if you see someone walking around on campus wearing a soccer jersey who isn’t on a soccer team, ask them to say something in a different language. MKs love that. They really do.

The Private Schooler
They’re pretty easy to spot. They’re usually the ones trying a little too hard to subtly break the dress code. No one wants to be accused of having had their high school principal pick out their clothes every morning. Or do private schools not do the uniform thing anymore? I really don’t know since they’re so private. (See what I did there?) Anyway, you’d rarely see a private schooler in the teacher education department because, really, who wants to go through that again?

The Public Schooler
Perfectly normal in every way. Except for the fact that everyone who wasn’t in the “in” crowd in high school is hoping to start off on a new leaf in college far, far away. It’s their time to reinvent themselves. And that, of course, means piercings. All over their faces. I’m just waiting for my parents to let me.

President Myers Inaugurated

Not everything went perfectly at President Myer’s inauguration last Thursday night. Men fell on the stage, speakers didn’t show up, and the hair of anyone who took the podium was temporarily dyed blue and green by the lights. But students who chose two chapel credits over catching the exciting Vice Presidential debate that night were pleasantly surprised. The TFC choir gave magnificent performances throughout the night and speakers cracked wise and joked to ease the seriousness of the event.

On the first day of classes, Dr. Bob Myers received a warm welcome from the red shirt wearing student body as a parody of/homage to a photo of the Myers’ family in all matching outfits. Since then, Dr. Myers has shown his support for the school by cheering on the Eagles at sporting events and giving an encouraging word to almost every student he came in contact with. Senior Michael Laffey said, “I think as a leader he’s been very transparent and open, and that has positively impacted my view of him.”

On the night of the inauguration, after reminding students of Dr. Myers’ history in law enforcement by referring to him as a “G.I. Joe,” Student Government President Alex Merritt said that of all the changes he had seen in the past three years at TFC, the inauguration was a celebration of “the best change of them all.” “The president never ceases to impress me,” said Senior Sarah Sharpe. Senior Jaclyn Oliveras remarked that she appreciates how much Dr. Myers invests in the students. “It really shows his character and that he truly cares about this college and wants it to be successful.”

Deciding on TFC’s new president was not a quick and easy task, but President of the Board of Trustees John Allen assured those in attendance that Dr. Myers was chosen “with much prayer and much diligence.” After narrowing the search down from at least sixty applicants to only five candidates, Allen admitted that Dr. Myers was not his number one choice. But he asked to hear Dr. Myers’ interview again and the trustees took a vote. It was unanimously Dr. Myers. Interestingly enough, the President’s Cabinet also took a separate vote. Again, it was unanimous. If there was one theme that kept coming up in the speeches and greetings during the inauguration, it was that God called Dr. Myers to this position.

At the end of the event, President Myers took the podium to the deliver the Inaugural Address. The theme of his address was “Life Story,” and he began by humbly acknowledging the remarkable people in his life: his wife, children, parents, and remarkably, his in-laws; his first grad school professor; and finally one of his last managers in his law enforcement career. President Myers’ humility shone through as he went on to address the life story of the school and giving his vision for the future. He included in his speech the four cornerstones that define Christian character: Scripture, absolute truth, wisdom, and service. All of these could be found at what Dr. Myers says is “this place we call home, Toccoa Falls College.”

And we, as students looking around the chapel that night, are reminded that the ones who call Toccoa Falls College home are us. We are reminded that we are not small, but we are the reason Toccoa Falls College exists. We are reminded that President Myers took this calling not for himself. His purpose is the young adults who walk this campus, attend classes, and worry about grades, relationships, and when chicken patty Tuesday will finally roll around. But there are professors, administrators, staff members, and presidents who have been called for the purpose of students. For that, we appreciate the self-sacrifice and obedience of those who have answered God’s call in this time of their lives to consider our education important. So let’s partner with President Myers in glorifying God through our school.

How to Break Up with Your Roommate

Recently, I had to confront a professor about dropping a class, and it was terrifying and nerve-wracking. Here’s a transcript of what was said as he was signing the withdrawal form:

Professor: You’re not gonna get awkward around me now, are you?

Me: Well… I’m awkward around everyone.

Professor: I know.

Me: [Incomprehensible stuttering, and then…] Thank you.

Cue exit hanging head in shame.

Even though I’ve dumped classes, I’ve never had to dump my roommate. All of my roommate changes have been mutual. Okay, I’ve been dumped once or twice, but they had pretty good reasons. The point is, I learned a thing or two about dumping roommates: that it’s a lot like tactfully asking emotional questions to your significant other. Actually, it’s probably nothing like that, but comparing it to a girl dumping her boyfriend would be too easy. So here are your tips for breaking up with your roommate brought to you by a relationship advice article on asking sad questions or something.

Step 1: Decide exactly what you want to talk about and why.
I’ll do this step for you. You’re dumping your roommate, you jerk.

Step 2: Pick a time and place that is both relaxing and intimate — preferably in private
You could break the sad news to them in your room in front of your awesome HDTV and entertainment center that they’ll never get to use again. Try getting them on a good day too.

Step 3: Ask your question and be honest
I believe that questions work a lot better when dumping your roommate. “Do you know if Jim is looking for a roommate? Let’s find out together.” “Have you considered living off campus, but not with me?” “Would you mind tidying up your side of the room … by moving all of your stuff somewhere else?”

Step 4: Take care not to scare the person away or be too emotional
I think this step would make more sense if it were options. You can either take care not to scare the person away, or you can be too emotional. It’s really your pick because sometimes you want to be tactful, and sometimes you want to be so untactful that there’s really no chance that the guy would stay.

Step 5: Keep it casual
This is the point where you take your shoes off and shake your nasty feet in your roommate’s face until he gets the heck outta there. There’s no such thing as being too casual.

Step 6: Be confident and direct
“I’m confident that your bed is haunted.”

Step 7: Listen to the other person completely when they answer you
Okay, most of the steps leading up to this one may make you come off as a big meany. But despite this, listen to the other person’s stance on the whole issue. Whatever they want to say really isn’t gonna matter anyway. Why would he wanna continue to live with the guy who told him to go away?

Step 8: Be prepared to compromise
You might have to help move his stuff to his new room. I’m already working on the tips to avoid that part.

 

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