Tag Archive | "Indiana Wesleyan University"

Jazzing it up: Abbey Coffee Co. features IWU musicians

By Mallory Tucker

Coffee and jazz are meant to go together, and Indiana Wesleyan University jazz musicians are making that happen.

Tuesday, Sept. 16, students got their first opportunity to play live music at The Abbey Coffee Co. in Marion, Ind. Over the summer, Dr. Marc Wooldridge, professor of music, and Todd Williams, assistant professor of music education, worked together to create opportunities for students to get more experience.

All that jazz - Abbey Coffee Company features their first IWU jazz ensemble, whose members include Kai Roberts (sr) and Dr. Marc Wooldridge. Photo by Becka Roth

All that jazz – Abbey Coffee Company features their first IWU jazz ensemble, whose members include Kai Roberts (sr) and Dr. Marc Wooldridge. Photo by Becka Roth

Wooldridge then reached out to The Abbey, seeking arrangements for IWU music students to perform live jazz music for its customers. Now, IWU musicians perform Tuesday nights at 7 p.m.

“We’re hoping the students will be able to feel comfortable using things they learned in class as tools—tools that they could use indefinitely for their careers,” Williams said.

According to Williams, the musicians are performing on a volunteer basis and cover a wide range of skill levels.

“I think part of the beauty of it is that those who are advanced learn right alongside of those who are beginners,” Williams said.

The performances won’t always be a full jazz combo. As the students begin to collaborate, it could just be a duo or someone singing in an open microphone.

Kai Roberts (sr) was one of the first IWU students to play music at The Abbey performing flute for the evening.

“The coffee shop atmosphere gives the audience a lot of freedom,” Roberts said. “[Customers] don’t have to listen to the live music, but most choose to relax at a table or couch near it and use it as a comforting background while they study, socialize or simply drink coffee.”Roberts also believes it will be a great opportunity for those who want to get involved with jazz since the performances still give authentic, real-life experience in jazz groups.

Abbey Coffee Co. Marketing Assistant Garrett Langebartels (alumnus ‘14) believes the first performance was a success.

The performance brought in some business and exposure we might not have had otherwise,” Langebartels said in an email interview.

Abbey Coffee Co. believes if they are supporting the arts in the community then they are accomplishing one of their goals as part of the Marion and Grant County communities.

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Who’s who in the Barnes Student Center

Several offices in the Barnes Student Center have swapped locations in the past year. Click on the layout below to know where offices are and what they do.Second Floor of Barnes

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Gungor goes on at IWU, despite near cancellation due to Biblical views

Controversy over the near cancellation of Christian music group Gungor has prompted Vice President Dr. Keith Newman to establish a new committee, which would decide whom Indiana Wesleyan University should host in future events.

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Michael Gungor’s blog post on his website: Gungormusic.com

Recently, lead singer Michael Gungor found himself in the middle of controversy with some blog posts expressing his belief that the early Genesis stories shouldn’t be taken literally. The Christian Post interpreted those posts as Gungor undermining God’s Word.

Many churches and organizations have refused to host Gungor as a result of these posts. IWU needed to make a decision whether it was going to allow them to come.

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Michael Gungor’s tweets reacting to what all of the articles were saying about his faith.

Q90 FM, a radio station in Wisconsin, pulled out of covering a concert on air because Gungor was scheduled to perform. According to the station, it “cannot support a concert venue by lending our name and giving free air time to promote such a blasphemous stumbling block to our young people.”

Peter Khosla, former IWU student body president, approached current Student Body President Tim Scurlock this summer about having Gungor perform at IWU, to which Scurlock immediately said yes. Khosla has been a music promoter and has ties with Gungor.

“I thought it would be a good idea because Gungor is super popular now,” Scurlock said. “There seems to be a genuine student interest there.”

Scurlock and other Student Government Association members continued to work out the logistics for hosting this event, such as lighting and location.

Director of Conference Services Keith Brakel suggested they get the approval from Dr. Jim Lo, dean of the chapel, to allow Gungor to perform at IWU.

When Lo reached out to faculty, staff and students, he received negative feedback because of the articles regarding Gungor’s blog. This led him to think maybe IWU should not host Gungor. Scurlock, who disagreed, contacted IWU President Dr. David Wright and Newman.

Articles that claim Gungor doesn’t believe in Scripture don’t understand “the broader and philosophical issue that Gungor is trying to address,” Scurlock said, which is that Scripture can be interpreted in different ways.

After Scurlock and the residential cabinet spoke with Wright and Newman, Newman made the final decision to allow Gungor to perform on campus. Newman thinks IWU can be more open to other theological interpretations.

Michael Gungor and his band performing at Indiana Wesleyan University Sept. 21.

Michael Gungor and his band performing at Indiana Wesleyan University Sept. 21. // Photo by Becka Roth

If people still criticize IWU’s decision to host Gungor, Lo now says they have the research to back up their thoughts on the situation.

“Christian colleges and universities need to be places where you can hear a dissenting voice or where you can hear somebody speak,” Newman said. “That may not be in complete harmony of what the Wesleyan church believes.”

Because of this situation, Newman plans to create a committee of about six to seven people that will examine “those rare occasions” when the school isn’t sure about hosting someone. The members and name of the committee have not yet been decided.

 Newman said he did not want people to look at Lo negatively because of his thoughts on this situation.

“Dr. Lo wasn’t blocking this. … I would hate for him to be characterized in this manner,” Newman said. “In the past we have asked Dr. Lo for an opinion because he is the dean of the chapel, and he is somebody we look to for direction and value his advice.”

“The whole description of my job is that I am kind of the theological gatekeeper for this campus,” Lo explained. “My job is to come along and raise concerns saying, ‘This is something you have to be concerned about,’ because if you invite [Gungor] on campus … you have to worry about what the constituency would say.”

Lo hopes that people do not think of him as a “mean ogre” because of his hesitation on this event.

Newman said he was the one who reviewed the articles Lo gave him and had a discussion with the residential cabinet.

“The truth is … if there are people to be upset, then I am the one to be upset at,” he said.

Newman is glad this happened because he thinks that, as a staff, it will be better at “figuring this stuff out in the future.”

“What Gungor did for us was help us realize that we have put the Dean of the Chapel in a really awkward position,” Newman explains. “Because if he becomes the one who says yes or no, he’s either got people that love him or he’s got people that hate him.”

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Pioneer responds to Baldwin’s dirty glasses


As Kenzi Ahnert (fr) walked into Baldwin on a Monday morning, she was looking forward to a refreshing glass of milk. However, as she picked up a glass from the crate, she was disgusted by the mystery fog covering it.

“I was nervous to drink out of my glass,” Ahnert said. “It did not look like it had been washed thoroughly.”

According to James Lipetri, Pioneer College Caterers’ Food Service Director, Baldwin staff is aware of the problem.

“This issue has been addressed as we have had multiple issues which can cause the buildup of hard water deposits on the glasses,” Lipetri said in an email to The Sojourn. “It is much more noticeable on the clear glasses than the white china.”

According to Lipetri, Pioneer has been making an effort to change the state of the glasses.

_MG_1786-2“We had the dishwasher serviced and have had the water softener checked,” Lipetri said. “We have called our janitorial company to verify the wash and rinse on our machine.”

Lipetri also said since the janitorial company serviced the machine, he has seen a significant improvement in the state of the glasses.

The janitorial service is scheduled to return for one more check up within the next two weeks, according to Lipetri, who hopes the second trip takes care of the problem.

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