Looking Outside the Frame

A new Toccoa Falls College student organization, Looking Outside the Frame has flourished under the leadership of Samara Spence.

Looking Outside the Frame is a photography-focused student organization on the campus of Toccoa Falls College. Officially notarized by the Student Government Association in September, Looking Outside the Frame has quickly developed an active role on campus. The organization’s mission is “to enable photographers to develop both passion and skill for photography by taking risks and engaging in communities around and beyond them.”

Picture taken by Abby VanWye.

Picture taken by Abby VanWye.

Samara Spence, a sophomore at TFC and founder of Looking Outside the Frame, developed an interest in photography and was inspired by Brandon Stanton’s Humans of New York. Spence loves that people are the focal point of the popular photography project. Through Humans of New York, Stanton highlights everyday people and their stories. It is a simple concept with a huge impact. Spence said that photography can be used as a method of anthropology. She desires to authentically portray people and their lives through Looking Outside the Frame and its photographs.



Picture taken by Samara Spence.

Spence also enjoys nature photography. When in nature, she feels as though she can experience God and learn more about His character. “I find peace; all my worries are washed away with the sounds of the wind against the trees and water running down a stream.” Spence photographs moments like these so that she can look back and remember them. She hopes that the members of Looking Outside the Frame can experience and share the beauty of nature through photography.


Spence wanted to start a student organization because she was looking for a way to grow as a leader and build a community. While she experienced some difficulties when implementing Looking Outside the Frame, Spence views these bumps in the road as learning lessons.

Working with people is difficult, yet beneficial.  Spence has learned when to stand firm on an idea and when to compromise. She said, “ I’ve learned that you can’t please everyone. And as much as you like your idea, sometimes, you should let it go if other people don’t agree with it.” Strong communication is crucial to an organization’s health. Spence has developed in both speech and listening skills. She has found it important to portray respect even when it is difficult. She said, “Leading a group of people will always be a challenge for me, but it is a learning process.”


Picture taken by Jenalee Hinkle.

Through the commitment and work of Spence and other Looking Outside the Frame leaders, the organization has quickly developed a significant presence in the Toccoa Falls College community. The organization is actively meeting and taking advantage of many photography opportunities on and off campus. A strong bond is growing among the members. Being surrounded by students with similar passions yet unique perspectives has been rewarding for Spence.

Looking Outside The Frame meets on Tuesdays at 9:00pm in the Student Center lounge. The organization is not exclusive to skilled photographers. Anyone from the Toccoa Falls Community is welcome to attend. Photojournalist, Jim Loring, will be hosting a workshop on November 29th. Also, Looking Outside the Frame will be providing an opportunity for students to display their photographs and art on December 2nd. More details regarding these events will be advertised in the coming weeks.

Photographs taken by students are showcased on Looking Outside the Frame’s Instagram account: @looking_outside.the_frame. The account posts weekly themes, not to only connect but challenge followers. Participants  are encouraged to step outside their comfort zones and use creativity.



*Featured image taken by Levi Cornelius.

Battling Defeat During Midterms

It’s here! It’s that time of the year where it becomes progressively harder and harder to persevere. It’s that time of year when professors and parents are giving constant encouragement to “finish strong.” It’s that time of year where assignment after assignment comes due. It’s midterms week.

Before fall break, it is very academically, and emotionally, difficult for students. There is a great deal of pressure and stress involved with finishing final assignments and preparing for the first break of the year. Students lose sleep, and drink more coffee to keep them going. With everything that they have to do, it is easy to give into feeling defeated. It is easy to focus on this one week of academic strain and lose sight of the big picture. God has given each of his children strength for every moment. Anything one could ever need, they already have in Christ. He has given his children enough strength, enough patience, and enough perseverance to overcome anything they may face. With all the anxiety this time of year causes, it is easy to be consumed by defeat. It is difficult for students to juggle the greater amount of responsibilities and obligations given to them. With the high level of stress that accompanies this week, it is even more important to remember to keep one’s eyes set on things above, not on things below. As soon as one is consumed by anxiety, crippling defeat is not far behind.  An anonymous Toccoa Falls College Sophomore wrote a short piece of poetry concerning this week.


“Dear defeat,

It’s been a long battle between the two of us. You knock me down, and I’ll recover, then you’ll knock me down again. You haven’t given me a moment’s rest. You’ve come at me with everything you possibly could, but I will not be undone. I am in the palm of the one who crafted the heavens and the earth. You have no power over me. The things you attack me with are temporal. They are ultimately meaningless. You have lost. By the grace of my God and my King, it is YOU who are undone.

Dear defeat, you have been defeated.”

Battling the feeling of defeat is a primary part of spiritual warfare. Once a student stops fighting and succumbs to defeat, it is so much easier to fall into depression and despair. This principle applies not only to midterms week, but in all areas of life. God calls us to “fight the good fight of faith.” We as Christians are to “take hold of the eternal life to which you were called” (1 Timothy 6:12). God has called his people to live courageously and fight with strength and perseverance. This spiritual battle is challenging. After all, if it was easy, God would not have encouraged His people to fight with courage.

It is the midpoint of the semester, fight to finish well! Fall break is in sight, so fight the good fight.

A Night of Improv and Comedy

This past Saturday and Sunday, the Toccoa Falls College Theatrical Society put on their spring production,“A Night of Comedy and Improv.”

Like the title of the show suggests, the actors and actresses performed a few short, comedic skits and entertained the crowd with some bits of hilarious improvisation. The small group of students who had committed to this production rehearsed and prepared for months. The resulting performance showed their hard work!

The skits included a two-part sketch called “Flirting Academy”, inspired by Studio C, and a zany skit called “Are you a fool?” directed by TFC Junior, Rachel Mayo.

The Theatrical Society performed a more serious play in addition to the comedies. TFC senior, Rebekah Stillwell, directed “The Lifehouse Everything Skit”. This silent skit portrayed the redemption story in a moving and beautiful way. Stillwell commented on the evening,

“This was one of the most fun performances the Theatrical Society has ever done! I loved the way almost everyone was in multiple acts. And while our scripted skits were awesome, the best parts (and the ones that got the most laughs) were the improv sessions. It made for an informal, more laid back interaction with the audience. It was a very close-knit group and I was so proud to work with them!”

The night was filled with laughter and a good time was had by actors and audience alike. One audience member said, “It was comical and interesting. I can’t compare it to anything else!”

Rebecca Colson, the leader of the improve troupe, Dead Joke Society, shared her parting thoughts about the production,

“I loved getting to hang out, goof off, and get to know the cast members. With all the stress of final assignments, acting with this group of people has been a great boost. And getting to pray for them before and after rehearsals has been a special joy for me as a director.”

 This statement from Rebecca really sums up what the Theatrical Society is about. This group of theatrically inclined students is able to come together, build each other up, and pray for one another. The group loves to have fun together and, through performing together regularly, has developed a strong bond. Their chemistry transcends from their personal lives to the stage, where they can encourage and entertain others through their passion for the Arts. Their goal is to glorify God in the talent they share with the community and the student body, and this goal has been achieved every semester.

The group loves to have fun together and, through performing together regularly, has developed a strong bond. Their chemistry transcends from their personal lives to the stage, where they can encourage and entertain others through their passion for the Arts. Their goal is to glorify God in the talent they share with the community and the student body, and this goal has been achieved every semester.

The Theatrical Society is a great facet in the student life at Toccoa Falls College. They will have more great performances and events next semester, so students can be on the lookout for their updates! For more information about the Theatrical Society contact club president, Callan Bentley at callanbentley@tfc.edu or Rebecca Colson at rebecacolson@tfc.edu.

For more information about the Theatrical Society contact club president, Callan Bentley at callanbentley@tfc.edu or Rebecca Colson at rebecacolson@tfc.edu.

A Magical Night on the Lake

Toccoa Falls College’s Student Government Association will be hosting the annual Junior/Senior Banquet on April 16, 2016.

This year, Junior/Senior will be located at Lanier Islands Resort. It is beautiful and rests on the bank of Lake Lanier. The lake can be seen from the tables. Those attending are encouraged to take advantage of the many photo opportunities. It is also conveniently located near Gainesville and Buford. This opens up many fun options for post-banquet activities.

The event was originally announced to start at 5:30pm. However, it has been moved to 6:00pm. Dinner will begin at 7:00pm and senior gifts, superlatives, stories, and dancing will follow.

The Junior/Senior Banquet is a tradition at TFC that holds great sentimental value. Gabrielle Mueller, a senior at TFC and the SGA Campus Life Chair, said, “This night is a neat way for people to really have focused time together in the midst of deadlines, plans for the future and the ever anticipated finish line that is graduation.” She explained that the banquet is a celebration of seniors and an opportunity to relax from school, fellowship with friends, reminisce memories, and anticipate the future.

Faith Champion Newey, TFC alumna, Director of Leadership and Service, and Staff Advisor of SGA, has attended seven of the past Junior/Senior banquets. She shared why she believes this event is important to the community at TFC,

“In my opinion, the Junior/Senior Banquet is a graduation present to the senior class. Our hope is that those in attendance find more than just a pretty setting and an entertaining night, but also a night of connection and appreciation. The number one reason we (SGA) put so much heart, creativity and resources into this banquet is to give the senior class a beautiful signpost. This Banquet serves as a tribute to the Class of 2016 and a celebration at the end of a journey.”

Planning the Junior/Senior Banquet has been bittersweet for Gabrielle Mueller. The event’s personal significance has reflected in the time she has invested. It has been a creative outlet for her to process her experience at TFC and upcoming graduation. When asked about her favorite part of preparation, she explained that she enjoyed all of it. She said, “I really love the idea of creating an atmosphere in which everyone gets to enjoy each other and make memories together, and I get to participate in those last memories too.”

She gave much credit to the Campus Life Committee. They have worked hard and she could not accomplish the event without them.

The theme is Masquerade Ball. The Campus Life Committee has been planning for a night that is both classy and fun. There will be valet parking and the resort’s very own chef will prepare dinner. Those attending are encouraged to wear masks. The best mask competition may serve as motivation for participation and creativity. Superlatives have also been given entertaining categories and prizes. The diverting personalities of the students guarantee that it will be a night full of laughter.

Those attending can look forward to celebrating the seniors at this unforgettable black-tie affair!


*Picture taken from http://www.lakelanierfun.com/

Apply for SGA Executive Council

Toccoa Falls College’s Student Government Association is accepting applications for Executive Council positions until 5:00pm on Wednesday, April 6, 2016.

The Student Government Association has a significant role at TFC. Recently, John Thar and Mandy Sullivan were elected by the student body to become President and Vice President of SGA for the 2016-2017 school year. They are looking for motivated students to appoint as the five open chairs of Executive Council.The Executive Council is composed of Staff Advisor, Faith Champion Newey, President, Vice President, Campus Life Chair, Community Partnerships Chair, Collegiate Sports Chair, Publicity Chair, and Administrative Specialist.

The SGA Campus Life Chair operates as the director of student activities, formal events, and other aspects of campus life. The Campus Life Chair, like every Chair, manages a committee and is required to hold weekly meetings. The Campus Life Committee functions as the primary event-planning division of SGA aside from student organizations.The Campus Life Chair is expected to conduct a minimum of three large-scale activities every semester: one banquet and two traditional campus events. Homecoming, Fall Festival, Christmas Banquet, Mr. TFC, Junior/Senior Banquet, and Classapalooza are examples of traditional campus events.

The SGA Community Partnerships Chair serves to connect the student body of Toccoa Falls College to the city of Toccoa through a variety of support opportunities and activities. The Community Partnerships Chair and Committee promote the civic needs of Toccoa to the student body and networks with the local Toccoa community. This is accomplished through communicating with local business, programs, and initiatives in Toccoa and the surrounding areas. Examples of events and activities that have taken place within the Toccoa community include Keep Toccoa/Stephens County Beautiful, the Hangar Dance, the Toccoa Harvest Festival, the Feral Fashion Show, and Taste of Toccoa.

The SGA Collegiate Sports Chair manages spirit and traditions of Toccoa Falls College in regard to TFC Athletics. The Collegiate Sports Committee is the primary athletic division of SGA. Tasks include keeping informed on TFC Athletics schedules and events, including sports games, fundraisers, etc. The Collegiate Sports Chair promotes these events to the student body and organizes sponsored trips such as regional trips.

The SGA Publicity Chair is over of all intercampus communication, primarily the communication of important information from the various student organizations and departments to the student body. The Publicity Chair manages SGA social media accounts and carries out various publicity and production projects. The Publicity Committee assists the Chair in sharing and advertising information in a timely manner.

The SGA Administrative Specialist holds a much different role. The Administrative Specialist in the primary bookkeeper and distributor of information among the Executive Council. He or She attends meetings, takes minutes, and makes these minutes available to those involved. The Administrative Specialist works closely with the SGA President and Vice President, completes tasks involving finances, organization, and scheduling.

The SGA Executive Council is crucial to the overall function of Student Government Association. The members do not only influence the committees but the campus as a whole.The students of Toccoa Falls College can be grateful to past and present Council members. They have truly benefitted the community through their hard work.

All students who are interested in these positions are encouraged to apply!