TFC’s got talent

Don Schaeffer and Brandon Pearce perform at SMF talent show

Saturday night, a large crowd of TFC students gathered together to watch their peers participate in the Student Missionary Fellowship’s (SMF) talent show.  The competition consisted of a wide variety of talent, such as cultural dancing, cooking, singing, acting, and stand-up comedy. “I was pleasantly surprised,” says senior Katie Nossick, “I really didn’t think there was that much talent on our campus.”

 After each competitor introduced their act, the judges deliberated who would win. According to Professor Jason Mehl, one of the judges, the decision was tough. Yet, Dean of Women, Debbie Moore, Professor Joyce Griffin and Mehl awarded Jon Wright runner-up and Hannah Segool and the duo Mang Khang and Judy Xiong with first place to share. Each of the winners received a prize for their hard work and display of confidence and talent.

 The behind the scene effort also helped to make SMF’s talent show successful though. “The [SMF] team as a whole was able to work together in setting up for the talent show,” says SMF fundraising coordinator Rachel Thorpe. Before the event, SMF’s Public Relationist Inna Cubara handled advertising and Prayer Band Leader Yeng Her, Head of SMF’s Interns Caroline Greene and SMF’s President Don Schaeffer kept in touch with the contestants. During the show, Kaelyn Watson, who was a volunteer, graced the stage as the MC, introducing the contestants, while Treasurer of SMF Shelby Hornsby and SMF’s Vice President Courtney Vickers were in charge of selling baked goods.  There was also SMF’s Worship Leader Willis Norman and volunteer Nathan Fitzgerald, who managed the technological equipment. 

 According to Thorpe, whether the efforts were on stage or behind scenes, the talent show was a success! SMF worked as a team to coordinate an event and accomplished getting many TFC students involved. If it was unclear before, TFC can be sure that they’ve got talent!

Funding’s the issue

As a student ambassador, we are trained to point out the positive of the school and not the negative because the negative will point itself out. There more than plenty of positive aspects to this school.  For example, the schools historic sight of the waterfall and the legend of Toccoa, the Indian princess. There is also the history of TFC, such as the flood in 1977, in which the town of Toccoa along with other organizations came to its rescue. Yet as students attend TFC and figure out where they want to spend their ministry time, some lack the funding, for instance, the student run radio station WTRX 89.7, The Eagle.

“Oh, we have so little money,” says the station manager Jason Tepp. Mr. Tepp has many goals that he would like to achieve before he graduates from TFC, such as update most of the equipment, to include a kill switch that will power off the station from its actual location, rather than cutting it off by the satellite near little falls, etc.

This makes me a little concerned that our school would promote a ministry that lacks any funding.

To further investigate the matter, I spoke to David Gruen the vice-president of finances. “I actually have a budget for them. We’ve spent about $1,045 last year between both stations on this campus, to pay for the rights to play songs on the air, and some for student salary and some expense,” says Gruen.  

According to the chair of the Department, Curt Wanner, however, he wants “the radio station to be an all school radio station, not a Communication Department radio.” Although he does not know how to solve the issues with the lack of funding, “we are a non- commercial station, we want to be a growing and relevant college radio station that is growing with the school,” says Wanner.

When I ask some students if they listen to the station, without hesitation, many say no.

However, how many do actually listen to the station, and how do they keep count? Tepp and Wanner say, “we are trying to come up with strategies to be a relevant station that students consistently listen to.” Furthermore, on average, the station has about 5 to 10 listeners accounted via internet in all of its weekly shows. This does not include those who listen in their car though.

Regardless of the popularity of the station on campus, the facts still remain. Many students who are involved with the station do not have funding to accomplish their goals. Therefore, all parties a part of this ministry need to take charge and add a bit of funding to help make the station worthwhile for the school’s student body, who are interested.

20 Years and Still Tasteful

Last Thursday, Taste of Toccoa celebrated its 20th year on Main St. in downtown Toccoa. Combining food, entertainment and activities for the entire family, the event was a great success.

Some 20 restaurants lined the street serving sample-sized portions of their most popular dishes.  A few vendors included Pizza Hut, McDonalds, Cornerstone, BBQ Shack, Gate Cottage and many others.

For entertainment, the TFC Jazz Band performed a few numbers that were sure to get toes tapping.  Then, YMCA Gymnastics, BG Steppers, Rhythm Academy and The Wild Herd showed real talent, as they hurdled, cart wheeled, tumbled and danced for the community.

Activities included the Jurassic Adventure, sand art, a climbing wall, a swing ride, a moon bounce, face painting, Euro-bungee, train rides, chuggy choo-choo, a Ferris Wheel and pony rides.

After 20 years, Taste of Toccoa 2010 was just as enjoyable as it has been in the past.

Students respond to chapel changes

This week, the administration put together a chapel-trial suggested by the Chapel Task Force.

Monday’s chapel included all praise and worship music.  For Tuesday’s chapel, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Barbara Bellefeuille, spoke.  On Wednesday, TFC Trustee Dr. Jeff Norris spoke, and on Thursday, students could either attend their Barnabas groups, or go to chapel and listen to Sarah Shell, missionary in residence, give her testimony.

The chapel-trial could possibly be the new structure for next year’s chapels, so it is important to know students’ thoughts of the system.

Lora Lei Mantooth, a freshman at TFC and chapel attendee, was enthusiastic about the change:

“I love it!  I am most excited about having more praise and worship time.  I think it is a good time to seek the heart of the Lord and a great way to start the week.  As for the chapel speakers, I like having a biblical perspective from professors other than those in the Bible and Theology department.”

Josh Spangler, sophomore chapel attendee, had a few insightful ideas:

“I like the change.  In the old chapel system, we didn’t give enough time to the Lord.  Rather than having speaker after speaker, I think it is good that we are taking special time to praise the Lord.  This new chapel system brings a sense of community, but it needs more structure.  I also think they should ask the students what they think about the change, since most professors do not attend chapel.”

Katie Boss, a junior at TFC and a member of one of the worship teams, gave some advice and insight to the behind-the-scene work of worship teams:

“I like the system now, but I also like the idea of change.  It is a good change, but it is not a change that will throw people off.  Overall, it is more of an organized system.  For Monday’s praise and worship, though, there will definitely be a need for more preparation.  It is a good idea to have a plan, but being flexible is good also.  As for the speakers, I like the fact that it will give more perspectives.  Last week, we had a few of the Bible and Theology professors speak on wisdom, and then this week we had Dr. Bellefueille speak.”

If anyone else has suggestions, concerns, or comments, feel free to post them.

Snow impacts class schedules

A constellation of white, fluffy snowflakes began to descend from the thick, gray sky.  They clustered on the limbs of trees and on the tops of cars. With tips barely showing, the grass was lightly coated and the roads were covered in snow that quickly turned into slush.

Last Tuesday, Toccoa Falls College administration announced their decision to cancel classes via WRAF radio station and the TFC website due to a wintry weather mix.

Logan Seckinger enjoyed the day off.  “I had a research paper to write, so I didn’t even get to play in the snow,” she said.

Tuesday classes, especially night classes, however, suffered from the cancellation.  Dr. Barbara Bellefeuille, the Academic Dean, mentioned that professors, who teach Tuesday and Thursday classes lost a class and a half worth of teaching time and were concerned about making up the loss.

The Administration, therefore, decided to use May 6, marked as a study day in the TFC calendar, as a make-up day.

“But students should not be worried, the day was already there,” Dr. Bellefeuille said, “we are using the study day as a make-up day, as was originally intended in case of snow.”

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