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Cover 51


September 2013

Do You Have
Sticky Faith?


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news at welch college


Welch College (formerly Free Will Baptist Bible College) in Nashville, TN, has been the official college of the Free Will Baptist Denomination since 1942. To find out more information about the school, visit their website.


Welcome Days Visitors Experience Welch College

Sixty-one high school students from 12 states visited the campus of Welch College April 18-20, for spring semester Welcome Days, according to Director of Enrollment Management Debbie Mouser. The enthusiastic high school students represented Florida (13), Michigan (9), Tennessee (9), Illinois (7), Alabama (5), Ohio (4), Georgia (3), Missouri (3), North Carolina (3), Virginia (3), Indiana (1), and Oklahoma (1).

The schedule included a tour of Nashville and opportunities for the visiting students to experience life at Welch College by attending classes, worshiping in chapel, and taking in the Music and Drama departments’ production of “The Music Man.” The students toured the campus, played games, and met President Matt Pinson during a Friday reception. Visitors also met with professors in their fields of interest and took in a financial aid seminar.

Visiting students participated in a survey rating their Welcome Days experience. They ranked the hospitality of their personal hosts and other students they encountered 4.96 and 4.80 (1=poor; 5=excellent) respectively. They gave a 4.94 ranking to faculty and staff hospitality and a 4.87 to “The Music Man” performance on Friday night. One student commented, “Welcome Days was an awesome experience. I look forward to being a part of the Welch College family in the fall.”

Mrs. Mouser said, “The Enrollment Management Team was extremely pleased with the outcome of Welcome Days. Our Welch students were great hosts and made our visitors feel at home.

The faculty and staff were also acknowledged as being a valuable part of their experience on campus. We know that we will see many of these students as members of the Welch College family in the near future. We especially appreciate the youth pastors and sponsors who are committed to educating their youth about the value of a Christian education.”

For more information about campus visits and events, contact the Enrollment Management Office at


Matthew Bracey Joins Welch College Team

Matthew Bracey will join the Welch College family as Registrar beginning July 2013. He will assume many of the responsibilities of the academic administrative assistant position formerly held by Lynsey Riggs, along with registrar duties, according to Provost Greg Ketteman. Mr. Bracey will also teach courses in history, law, and theology.

Matt is a 2008 graduate of Welch College (B.A., history) and holds an M.A. degree in theology from Beeson Divinity School and a J.D. from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University. Bracey sat for the Tennessee Bar Exam in February, and he and his wife Sarah celebrated their first anniversary in May. 

Dr. Ketteman, said, “Matthew Bracey is exceptionally well-prepared to assume his duties at Welch College. It is rare to find an individual who is so qualified to wear the various hats the college needs at this time. Thank God for His providential leading of Matthew back to his alma mater.”


College Graduates 37

Welch College conferred degrees on 37 students from 14 states in commencement exercises at Memorial Auditorium on Friday, May 10, according to President Matt Pinson. Students completed degrees in multiple programs ranging from two-year associate’s degrees to four-year bachelor’s degrees. Forty percent of the class graduated with honors.

Dr. Timothy George, founding dean of Beeson Divinity School, delivered the commencement address, highlighting the importance of the Heritage, Message, and Mission of the graduating class as they go forward to minister in the Ecotone that is the post-modern world. George has served churches in four states and has written over 20 books. He is also senior editor at Christianity Today magazine.


2013 Graduates

Michigan pastor Rick Locklear presented Thursday evening’s baccalaureate message from 2 Timothy 2, encouraging graduates to take seriously their call to leadership and serve the Lord diligently and with excellence. Locklear, a 1980 Welch College graduate, has been involved in the work of Woodhaven Free Will Baptist Church in Woodhaven, Michigan, for over 28 years and serves as a member of the board of directors of the Free Will Baptist Foundation.

Dr. James Stevens, chairman of the Music Department, was named Academic Advisor of the Year. President Matt Pinson presented gifts to Business Program Coordinator Rebecca Deel and Librarian Carol Reid for 25 years of faithful service to the Lord through the ministry of Welch College. The college commends to you and to the work of the Lord the members of the 2013 graduating class.


2013 Graduates with Majors and Honors

Associate of Science Degrees

Pamela Lynn Ham
Franklin, TN

Carol Spruill Holland
Waipahu, HI

Russell Douglas Houske
Dover, TN

Julie Marie Montero
Miami, FL

John Leonard Shamblin
Iuka, MS

Wayne Thomas Smith †
Pamplico, SC

Jesse Robert Timmons †
Florence, SC

Gregory Allen Whitehead
Hampton, TN

Christian Tyler Wilson †
Pleasant View, TN


Associate of Arts Degrees

Haylee Lanise Hubbard
Hot Springs, AR

Rebecca Jolene James†
Manor, GA


Bachelor of Science Degrees

Jacob Logan Culwell*
Springfield, TN
Business Administration

Amber Michelle Freeman
Glenwood, AR
Child Development and Learning
Licensure K-6

Nicholas Edward Hampton*
Pleasant View, TN

Kelly Lynn Hicks
Taft, TN
Child Development and Learning
Licensure K-6

Rachel Ann Jackson**
Newport, TN
Child Development and Learning
Licensure K-6

Nicholas Blake Jordan
Iuka, MS
Youth Ministry

Stephan Alexander Knox
Ashland City, TN

Matthew Jordan Looney***
Smithville, TN
General Christian Ministries

Catherine Lynn Pointer***
Russellville, AR
Child Development and Learning
Licensure K-6

Christen Paige Pointer***
Russellville, AR
Physical Education
Licensure K-6

Leigha Ruth Ramos*
Ashland City, TN
Early Childhood Education
Licensure PreK-3

Michael Anthony Shearon
Joelton, TN
Youth Ministry

Brittani Chari Sims**
Brighton, MI
Business Administration

Allison Leigh Wilkerson
Coker, AL


Bachelor of Arts Degrees

Aaron Lee Pierce***
Tupelo, MS
Pastoral Ministry

Steven Christopher Reeder**
Doe Run, MO

Bethany Dawn Shope
Knoxville, TN

Gregory Mitchell Smith
Tawas City, MI
Pastoral Ministry

Robin-Lynn Marie Snow**
Tecumseh, MI

Kacy Rachel Stone
Morehead, KY

Montgomery Frank Thornsbury
Paintsville, KY


Bachelor of Music Education

Rebekah Ayers Talbot***
Tuscaloosa, AL
Licensure K-12

Brittany April Brown*
Woodbridge, VA
Licensure K-12

Kristina Nichole Clem**
Decatur, IL
Licensure K-12

Christian Elizabeth Cyrus**
Ashland, KY
Licensure K-12

Kayla Lynn Gaddis
Marion, NC
Licensure K-12

*** Summa Cum Laude
** Magna Cum Laude
* Cum Laude
† Not Present



©2013 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists