Archive for April, 2014

Lee Sellers to Lead Multnomah’s Business Administration program

Comments Off Written on April 29th, 2014 by
Categories: Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore.- Multnomah University has hired Lee Sellers to lead its Business Administration program.

As chair, Sellers will teach and mentor students, hire and supervise adjunct instructors, manage curriculum, and identify ways to grow the program. He also will help develop marketing, recruiting and retention strategies while cultivating partnerships that benefit students and the community at large.

Sellers, who holds an MBA, comes to Multnomah with considerable experience in business and higher education. In addition to teaching at two colleges and two universities, Sellers has owned and operated his own consulting business for more than 14 years.

Sellers said he’s looking forward to getting into the classroom and connecting with students. “I enjoy challenge, and I’m excited to build something here,” he said. “I want to develop a world-class program that prepares students to go into the real world and make connections with people that reflect the gospel.”

Multnomah’s emphasis on biblical integration drew him to the University. “I don’t have to covertly communicate my faith like I had to at my old jobs,” he said. “I can talk about it openly here.” And the position itself was too good to pass up. “The job description fit me so perfectly,” he said. “I still can’t believe this is real.”

Sellers focused on leadership, organizational behavior and ethics while earning his MBA. His teaching experience includes positions at George Fox University, Eastern Oregon University, Clark College and Mount Hood Community College.

He has a broad background spanning business, academia and non-profit environments, and he has created, developed and grown several businesses. In each business, Sellers was responsible for all aspects of strategy, finance, sales, marketing, personnel, operations and internal controls.

Sellers is committed to community service. He has spent more than 26 years volunteering at various nonprofits, including the American Red Cross, St. Benedict’s Hospital and Big Brothers Big Sisters. He also uses his consulting business to provide free personal finance training for low- and middle-income families. “My goal is to assist families in becoming debt free and meeting future financial goals,” he said.

During his time at Multnomah, Sellers plans to change the Church’s often skewed perception of Christian business leaders. “You don’t have to be a pastor or a missionary to serve God well — you can be salt and light in the business world too,” he said. “It’s not a second-class calling. Every time our business majors graduate, I hope they find their true purpose and that they are adequately prepared to pursue it. I want them to have the chops to hit the road.”

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About Multnomah University
Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education located in Portland, Oregon, with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada, and Seattle, Washington. Composed of a college, seminary, graduate school, degree completion program and online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, as well as professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit multnomah.edu.

College Basketball’s Top Sharpshooter Plays for the Lions

Comments Off Written on April 28th, 2014 by
Categories: Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. — Multnomah University student Stevie Sansone is the most prolific long-range shooter in college basketball. Statistically speaking, he shot (423) and made (157) more three-pointers this past season than any player in the country — at any level.

Sansone is a junior at Multnomah University, which holds a dual affiliation in the smallest college associations in the country: the National Christian College Athletics Association Division II and the Association of Christian College Athletics.

“Stevie has been a blessing to have in our program,” Coach Curt Bickley said. “He is a great leader and can really shoot the ball.”

When you see him on campus, the 6-foot Sansone appears to be a typical college student. However, meet him on a basketball court and get ready to witness a shooting clinic. Sansone’s smooth form and quick release allow him to drain threes at a rapid clip.

“His off-season shooting program with Mike Penberthy has made a tremendous difference,” Bickley said. “The difference between a good shooter and a great shooter is 1,000 shots a day — that is Stevie.”

Even with his incredible athletic abilities, Sansone possesses the qualities of humility and perspective.  Many 21-year-old college athletes might be tempted to boast after accomplishing a feat like this, but not Sansone. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to get Sansone to admit his accomplishment without first watching him blush and redirect the attention.

“I believe that my passion for basketball and for being in the gym is truly from God,” Sansone said. “My hope is that whoever sees me shooting can see that this really is a God-given gift.”

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About Multnomah University
Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education located in Portland, Oregon, with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada, and Seattle, Washington. Composed of a college, seminary, graduate school, degree completion program and online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, as well as professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit multnomah.edu.

MU Partners with Portland Police to Create Safer Campus

Comments Off Written on April 25th, 2014 by
Categories: Events

smiling officerMultnomah University hosted an all-day training exercise with the Portland Police Bureau's Rapid Response Team (RRT) on campus April 25, 2014. The RRT, a group composed of 70 law enforcement members, spent the day practicing crowd control procedures and techniques. More than 30 law enforcement officials from the Portland metro area, Washington and California observed the scenarios.

Sgt. David Abrahamson, RRT member and former Multnomah student, led the training. Abrahamson was excited to spearhead the event, which was mutually beneficial for emergency responders and the University. “We have an ethical and moral responsibility to our citizens that our response to them is safe and efficient,” he said.

police

For Abrahamson, the opportunity to join Multnomah in a communal effort was inspiring. “This process has blessed all of us,” he said. “MU has gone above and beyond to help us. I can't say enough good things about this school.

“I hope the event caused people to start imagining what they would do in an emergency situation. The concepts that they gleaned today are things they can take with them for the rest of their lives.”

MU Communications Specialist Kristina Rhodes was in close contact with Abrahamson and other local law enforcement officials and coordinated communication with MU students, staff and faculty during the weeks before the training. “It's Multnomah's privilege to partner with Portland Police in an effort to increase the safety of our community,” she said.

guy smiling

Rhodes served as the point person for the event and spent the day managing media relations and coordinating interviews. “Multnomah is committed to serving the city of Portland,” she said. “This partnership with Portland Police is an example of our close friendship with local law enforcement. Because of their time at MU today, our campus will be one of the safest in the NW — they’ll know it like the back of their hand.”

You’re Invited to MU’s Free Student Recital and Choir Concert Next Tuesday, April 29

piano pictureHey, all!

My name is Peter Wilson, and I'm a music major here at Multnomah. Next Tuesday, April 29, you'll have an awesome opportunity to see what MU's music department has to offer by attending our free Spring Student Recital.

The Ambassador Choir will be presenting a concert in conjunction with the recital, and there will also be a few surprises, including piano recital pieces featuring some of Bach's compositions and vocal presentations from some very talented individuals!

This will be an awesome night filled with community, excitement, art, and great food after the concert. This is something you don't want to miss. I know that a lot of work has been put into this event by everyone in the music department to make it a night to remember, so come join us!

When: Tuesday, April 29, at 7 p.m.

Where: Bradley Hall, Room 1

This is a free event

If you would like more information about the Ambassador Choir or this event, call the Music Ministry Department at 503-251-5390 or email choir@multnomah.edu.

Interested in MU's music major? Check out our music ministry page.

Spring Thaw Unites, Inspires 800 Students

Spring Thaw is over. The event that took months of dreaming, planning and building successfully transformed one weekend into 44 hours full of unforgettable games, teaching, laughter, worship, Disney characters and donuts (check out the Spring Thaw photo album!).

Out of the 825 high school students and youth leaders at the event, seven took time to share their Spring Thaw experiences.

springthaw1'It was an encouragement'

Emma Barnett and Amanda Foreman, freshman from Redemptive Church in Duval, Washington, were Spring Thaw first-timers. "I think the event is a great idea," said Barnett "Everyone did a great job organizing everything. And I loved the shows and activities."

Barnett and Foreman agreed that their favorite activity was Library Laser Tag, where they tip-toed, slunk and ran through the darkened MU library with laser guns rented from a local party store. But a theology seminar led by seminary professor Dr. Val Clemen left a deeper impression. Both girls were struck by Clemen's life story, which heavily emphasized the importance of forgiveness. "It was an encouragement," said Foreman.

Barnett agreed. "Her story made me want to love people more,"  she said. "Especially my enemies — because they have it worse."

springthaw2'A lot of growth and bonding'

Millie Dugger, another Spring Thaw first-timer, has been a youth leader at Imago Dei Community in Portland, Oregon, for six years. As a married woman who works full-time, Dugger has limited time with her youth group each week. Spring Thaw was a refreshing break from normal routine.

"What meant the most to me was having 44 hours of uninterrupted time with my girls," she said. "MU provided and planned everything, so we didn't have to cook and clean up! I saw God reveal opportunities to pray with the girls and be more present since I didn't have an agenda. A lot of growth and bonding happened because of it."

'God's love is always there'

One of the girls in Dugger's youth group, Ashley Smith, also valued the freedom the retreat gave her to build relationships with others. Smith said she expected to meet new people and play lots of fun games during the weekend. But what she didn't expect were the teachings about love and peace that speaker Chap Clark shared with students. "Chap was very motivational and inspirational," she said. "He talked about love in a way we could understand."

The message of hope was just what the senior needed."Society is so caught up with fitting in, but I learned that God's love is always there and that you can find peace," she said. "I've been going through some stressful times, and it was good to be reminded of that."

Smith encourages all high school students to attend the event if they can. "When you have the chance to go, just go for it, and don't be nervous" she said. "I didn't see anyone being left out. Spring Thaw will give you the opportunity to be stronger and make more friends in the Christian community."

springthaw4'It was intense'

Tim Blank, a senior from Abundant Life Church in Sandy, Oregon, also appreciated the sense of community he felt during the weekend. "It was intense," he said. "I learned about how important it is to respect people and to actually act like we're brothers and sisters in Christ."

And although Blank loved the activities and teaching, he was quick to credit the volunteers that made the retreat happen. "I think it's great that MU can open up and do this for us," he said. "It says a lot about the school. I'm glad I got to be here."

Jason Chess, Blank's youth leader, felt the same way. "This is such a great event that our high schoolers can get excited for," he said. "And it's a safe place for them."

springthaw3'God has a place for me'

Eric Irvin, from Mid Valley Community Church in Woodburn, Oregon, thought the weekend was transformative.

"I definitely have different feelings toward other people now," he said. "I'm more accepting because I know God made them in his image."

Irvin especially liked the worship sessions. "Singing songs is one of my favorite ways to connect with God," he said. "This is a place to get away from the worldly things and praise him. MU is not only open and welcoming — God's presence is here too."

As the sophomore prepared for the drive home with his youth group, he felt encouraged. "I've had a lot of struggles lately," he said. "But I learned that God has a place for me in this world."

Spring Thaw is an annual event put on my MU's youth ministry program.

Students Skip Class to Serve Portland

A blue sky and sunshine greeted more than 130 Multnomah University students as they left campus to participate in Day of Outreach on April 14.

Once every spring and fall, students volunteer at several locations in the Portland community, including nonprofits, nursing homes, schools and community centers. MU cancels classes for the day so students can devote their whole morning to service.

‘Get a different perspective’

Chris Cleaverdayofoutreach_492, a full-time counselor at Multnomah, led a group of students to Door to Grace, a Portland nonprofit providing restorative care and safe shelter for survivors of commercial sexual exploitation. The day home needed some TLC, so students took Windex to mirrors, vacuums to rugs and push brooms to sidewalks. Freshman Johanna Quezada carefully watered the small boxwood trees that stood in a line near the front door.

“This is definitely a cool opportunity,” said the TESOL major. “I love hearing about the different ministries here in Portland. My world can get so small because I live and work on campus, so it’s good to get outside and get a different perspective. We’re at MU for more than just time in the classroom.”

Olivia Botsford agreed. As she wiped the kitchen counters with a washcloth, the psychology major talked about how she appreciates a day devoted to helping neighbors. “We’re not just focused on getting our degrees,” she said. “We want to serve and be in the community, loving people in the real world.”

‘Be a light’

dayofoutreach_501Dean of Students Jon Mathis and Psychology Department Chair Dr. Elliott Lawless joined another group of students volunteering at Drive Away Hunger, the home of Portland Rescue Mission’s vehicle donation and sales program. The men took on yard work, sweeping, raking and cleaning and organizing the auto shop.

Danny Kugelburg, Community Partnership Lead at Drive Away Hunger, leaned against a blue Chevy as he explained the impact of volunteering. “You might not have direct contact with the people we’re helping, but what you’re doing is changing lives,” he said. “We’re a nonprofit that survives solely on the gift of volunteers.”

Kugelburg is an M.Div. student at Multnomah Seminary, so he’s familiar with the school’s  mission. But watching it come to life in the auto shop is inspiring. “Multnomah has a desire for its students not to be insulated, but to be a light in the community — in voice and in deed,” he said.

‘Actively love’

dayofoutreach_534At the Montavilla Community Center, Multnomah students sat at tables piled high with paper plates and colorful ribbons to craft decorations for the center’s upcoming Easter celebration. Sophomore Edwin Granados carefully cut the plates into half moon shapes as he spoke with fellow volunteers. The music major is on the student-led Day of Outreach planning committee and was in charge of promoting the event this season.

Granados said he loves the opportunity to branch out of the University and into the surrounding community. “It’s one of my favorite things to do,” he said. “Our planning committee had a vision — that students could actively love in a way that will last beyond today. I hope this will be a kickoff for people to begin serving more frequently.”

Besides MU's two annual Day of Outreach events, MU students provide more than 100,000 hours of service to the community each year through the University's Student Ministries program

How have you been impacted by volunteer work? Share your thoughts below.

‘Reaching Hearts for Christ’: Volunteers Share the Mission Behind Spring Thaw

image'There's a lot of family out there'

It's Juan Gonzalez's first year volunteering at Spring Thaw, but the Youth Ministry major knows a thing or two about the event — he attended the retreat with his youth group all four years of high school. "I got saved in eighth grade and was surrounded by a great community and a great youth group," he says. "It made me want to provide the same thing for other kids."

Now a freshman at MU, Gonzalez is excited to contribute to an event that changed his life year after year. "When I was in high school, I'd see only about two other Christians at my school," he says. "But when I came to Spring Thaw, I would get so fired up when I saw how many Christians were here. This event shows people a broader community of believers; it lets them know that there's a lot of family out there."

Gonzalez will wear many hats during the weekend event, and he's eager for each one. "I'll be volunteering in the puppy room and helping out with with junta darts and operation underground," he says. "I want to branch myself out in this community, and I'm excited to get to know more youth groups."

IMG_1316'It's quality fun'

Katie MacDonald is busy turning Roger's Café into a Disney-themed karaoke hot spot: New lights glisten from the ceiling, clouds billow from a fog machine and a disco ball winks over the stage. It's the psychology major's second year volunteering at the event, and she's glowing with enthusiasm. "Disney karaoke is going to be super magical," she says. "My friend and I are going to MC and dress up like princesses; it's going to be awesome."

The junior hopes the karaoke lounge — and all of Spring Thaw for that matter — will be a place where students can relax and have a good time." So often high schoolers get so involved in what other people think about them," she says. "I want them to remember that they're still kids and can have fun. They can be real with each other and let God work. We want them to find their identity in Christ and not anywhere else."

DSCN0930'I want to be a role model'

Rodney DeJager, a Youth Ministry major, agrees. "MU is a safe environment for these students," he says. "We've been praying that the Holy Spirit will be working in them."

The senior has a big heart for high schoolers.  "It's a really crucial time in peoples' lives," he says "I appreciated the support and encouragement I got from my youth pastor. Now I want to be a role model."

This will be DeJager's third year  as a volunteer and his second year as an intern. He and a group of five other interns have taken months to dream, brainstorm, budget and plan for the 44-hour retreat. "It's a valuable experience," he says. "We've talked about all  this stuff in freshman and sophomore classes, and now I'm putting it into practice."

DeJager will continue to hone his leadership skills this weekend as he joins the more than 200 Multnomah volunteers that make the retreat successful. "Spring Thaw is great for marketing and publicity, but it really shows our school's heart for people," he says. "MU genuinely cares for these high school students. It wants to give them this gift — and reach hearts for Christ."

Registration is full, but visit the Spring Thaw website for more information about this retreat.

‘A Labor of Love’: Dr. Hildebrand Reflects on the Ultimate Youth Event

hildebrand_mainWhat do Disney karaoke, theology seminars, laser tag, MU’s campus and 825 high schools students have in common? You guessed it: Spring Thaw. The weekend retreat, open to youth groups and individuals, will kick off this Friday at 7 p.m. Every year brings a unique theme, and 2014 is all about medieval knights, fairy tales and Disney.

Youth Ministries Department Chair Dr. Rob Hildebrand has been running the event since its debut five years ago. "MU was awarded a large grant so it could offer theological training to high school students," he says. For years, the University hosted a leadership program called CREDO, which benefited hundreds of high school students. But when CREDO began to decline, MU needed to reimagine the event. That's when Spring Thaw was born.

Although many other Christian universities offer retreats for high school students, Spring Thaw stands out. "Our event is more community-based because everyone who’s volunteering already lives here," says Hildebrand. More than 200 volunteers — composed of MU students and staff — plan, build and facilitate the retreat each year. A small group of students majoring in Youth Ministry take on larger leadership roles and serve as interns. "Our students do well at getting hired after they intern at this event," Hildebrand says. "A lot of people do ministry lazily, but I want our volunteers to develop a good work ethic. I want them to see that when you do hard work, you really can make things better."

Making Spring Thaw better is something Hildebrand is passionate about. "I love being innovative, and I try to make improvements every year," he says. He was ecstatic to secure Dr. Chap Clark as the main speaker. “In my book, he’s one of the top five youth ministry experts in the world," Hildebrand says. Besides the main sessions with Clark, the high school students will attend theology seminars led by MU faculty."This isn't not a shallow, frivolous retreat," says Hildebrand. "I hope the seminars will help students see Christianity as it is and come to grips with who Christ is."

Hildebrand believes that students learn best when they're in a balanced environment, and he injects plenty of activities into the weekend, including comedy skits, a puppy room, bubble soccer, magic shows and a color run. "This really is a labor of love," he says. "Volunteers are going to be tired, it inconveniences staff and students in the dorms are giving up their space. But we’re doing this because we love these high school students. At MU, we're not all about MU — we're about serving and looking beyond ourselves. We care about the Church and the kingdom."

Registration is full, but visit the Spring Thaw website for more information about this retreat.

Dr. Craig Williford Selected as President of Multnomah University

Comments Off Written on April 7th, 2014 by
Categories: General, Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Multnomah University Board of Trustees announced today that the Rev. Dr. Craig Williford will serve as the University’s next president.

Williford will take on some leadership responsibilities immediately as president-elect and assume full presidential duties July 1. “Carolyn and I are honored to join the Multnomah family to serve as president and spouse,” he said. “We humbly take our place within the distinguished line of former and current trustees, faculty, staff, administration and presidents who served so sacrificially.”

The Board of Trustees selected Williford on a unanimous vote this past weekend. Board Chairman Jack Dryden said God’s faithfulness was evident throughout the presidential search process. “The Board of Trustees has been praying earnestly for some time that God would direct us to the person He was calling to lead Multnomah University for the next season,” Dryden said. “We are thrilled, but not surprised, that our gracious and kind Father in Heaven has exceeded our expectations. We are grateful for this gift.”

Over the past five years, Williford served as the president of Trinity International University (TIU), where he earned his doctorate in 1995. During his time at TIU, the university doubled its endowment and instituted numerous curricular improvements. TIU also secured funding for a new student success center while facilitating campus improvements such as remodeled classrooms and updated educational technology.

Prior to TIU, Williford spent eight years as president of Denver Seminary. He provided leadership as the seminary underwent a remarkable transformation in terms of its enrollment, curriculum, faculty development, financial health and campus facilities. He also taught pastoral leadership courses on the master’s and doctoral levels and continues to mentor five pastoral and nonprofit leaders who serve throughout the United States.

In addition, Williford served as a pastor for 20 years. His duties included leading pastoral and program staff, facilitating the strategic thinking process, preaching, leading significant change initiatives, designing new ministries, facilitating church planting strategies and pastoring two mini-congregations.

Godly, cross-cultural, innovative leadership focused on reaching the world is his passion. He researches, writes and speaks on this topic whenever he has the opportunity. Williford loves to help leaders embrace the spiritual dimensions of their calling as Christ leads them in their lives and their organizations.

The Willifords have been married for 41 years. They have four grandchildren (Tucker, Abby, Tyler and Nathan) and two sons: Robb, who died suddenly in December 2010, and Jay, who lives in Colorado with his wife, Rachael.

The Willifords are also authors and seminar speakers. Carolyn has written four non-fiction books and three novels that address areas of spiritual formation. Their latest co-authored books are “Faith Tango,” a practical guide on how to deepen one’s marriage through spiritual formation, and “Questions from the God Who Needs No Answers,” a devotional book for individuals, couples and small groupsCraig’s latest book is “How to Treat a Staff Infection.”

Williford will take over for Acting President Wayne Strickland, who assumed presidential duties when Dr. Daniel Lockwood stepped down Nov. 1. Williford said he and his wife are excited about the next chapter in their lives. “Please join us in praying that God will provide the faith, courage and wisdom needed as I now assume presidential responsibilities,” he said. “We look forward to meeting all members of the Multnomah community as soon as possible.”

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About Multnomah University
Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education, located in Portland, Oregon with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada and Seattle, Washington. Made up of an undergraduate Bible college, a biblical seminary, a graduate school, an adult degree completion program, and an online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees, and professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit http://www.multnomah.edu/

Visit MU in April

quincy_thumbWhy you should go

Our free visit events are the perfect, no-obligation opportunity you need to learn about our programs.

What to expect

Explore campus. Talk with our program directors, staff and students. Ask them as many questions as you'd like. Join a professor for lunch in our cafeteria. Sit in on a class. Meander through our award-winning grounds. Check out our campus housing options. See if MU is right for you.

community-interactionOur event schedule

Registration is open now. Sign up for as many events as you'd like, and tell your friends about it too!

College

April 7: Mondays @ Multnomah

MUsign_mainDegree Completion Program

April 3: DCP Info Session

Grad School

April 8: MAT Info Session

April 9: MATESOL Info Session

April 9: MAGDJ Info Session

April 10: MAC Info Session

Seminary

April 8: Seminary Info Night