Go Further…Dream Bigger

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Philippians 4:13, NKJV

No matter what’s happening in your life today, remember, you are not limited by your resources, your family or your background. God has equipped us. He has given us creativity, ideas, skills and talents. So, don’t you dare settle for mediocrity. Today, call for the seeds of greatness that God has placed within you.

Today, declare that your best days are ahead.  Declare that you are going further than anyone in your family ever did, that you are going to dream bigger than you ever have.

Walk and live in that blessing by following God’s commands and stay fully committed to him in everything you do.

Active Faith

“And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come.  And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.”

Matthew 14:28-29 KJV

Have you ever thought about why Peter wanted to get out of the boat? Why did he all of a sudden think he could walk on water? Well, you might say, “It’s because he saw many of the miracles performed by Jesus.  For instance, when Jesus opened the blind eyes and cleansed the lepers.” Yes, that’s true. But, the other disciples in the boat saw the same things. Why didn’t they want to get out?

Peter understood that it was his time. He stirred his faith up. He believed at that moment that he could do what God placed in his heart. Jesus said, “Peter, do you want to get out of that boat?” He said, “Yes, I do.” Jesus replied, “Well, come on out.” Notice that Jesus didn’t say, “Peter, stay in that boat. Don’t you know I’m the Son of God?” No, He said, “Peter, I like your attitude of faith. I like the fact that you believe you can do great things.”

Today, we should have that same kind of boldness! Start believing that your time is here! All the dreams that you have, those desires that you thought would never work out, it’s time to start believing again. So when you grab your flip-flops and beach towels take some time to reflect on what God has put in your heart.  Then activate your faith and step out of the boat. It’s your time!  Maybe you started but stopped-out of your courses at Belhaven.  Perhaps, it became too difficult and you felt you could not manage it all.  Whatever the situation is, ask yourself the question “Would God put it in my heart and not give me the power to accomplish it?”  Whatsoever God has placed in your heart, it’s time to be found doing it. He never said it would be easy…but His grace is sufficient.  We were created for good works and good works we must do.

A Beacon of Light

As Christians, often times, we get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of the day that we lose focus on the fact that we are handling God’s most precious gift – the human life.  We could learn a thing or two from Moses and how he treated the people of God.  We must be careful to treat each other as we should and not as we feel.  This truth became apparent several months ago when we encountered an emergency with one of our students.

Call 911!  Call his wife! Meet at the Emergency Room!  Hold the baby! It’s after-hours… but he’s our student!  In a time when he was most vulnerable, everyone raced to his rescue.  The student was completely baffled by the care and concern of everyone.  You see, his prior disposition had caused everyone to deal guardedly with him.

The next day, to our surprise, the student brought lunch and a thank you card for the staff to express his gratitude.  We were flabbergasted!  It wasn’t until we took the time to get to know the student that we begin to understand him. We had always reacted to situations but never really understood this student.  After the incident, he explained to us that he had suffered a traumatic head injury early on in life which severely affected how he dealt with his emotions. Like many adult learners, this student was bearing the burden of “life”.  He attended graduate classes, carried the weight of taking care of a wife and new  born baby while at the same time worked day in and day out to manage his own business.  He was overwhelmed!  But how would we know, if we don’t ask?  We’ve heard the old saying…you can’t judge a book by its cover…but many times we do.  It was unfortunate that this incident happened.  However, it brought about a realization that “people (students) don’t care how much we know until they know how much we care”.  We must be genuinely concern about the wellbeing of others.

This student has become one of our greatest proponents.  He has referred several students to Belhaven and now when we see him, he is wearing a smile.  The care and concerned experienced on that day left a lasting-positive impression on this student.  We have been given a special charge in Christian Higher Education…to be that beacon of light as we point individuals in the right direction.  Students should feel our prayers and support constantly as they maneuver their way through life.



A New Year

It’s January and with every New Year comes New Year’s resolutions.  Some decide to lose weight, attend church services regularly or even save money but, all in all most resolutions are used to improve one’s self.  Many of you have decided that getting your degree is your resolution.  What better way to start your New Year off than by furthering your education.  Education is the gateway to success and opportunity.  Although statics show that most people break these resolutions by mid year, we must resolve in our minds to finish what we start.   Isaiah 40:30-31 tells us that “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint”.

As an adult learner there will be times when you may feel overwhelmed because of finances, work, and family but remember God is our provider and shall supply all our needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19).

Wishing you a Happy New Year!  Continue to examine the past and renew your future with education.

Returning to College

The good news for students who have put their education on hold is that we have made  the readmission process a painless one. In many cases, while returning to college may seem like a far-off possibility, it’s pretty straightforward to put a student back on track toward meeting their academic goals.

At Belhaven University, we know that working adults are also concerned about fitting academics into a lifestyle that’s already busy with family and/or work. For this reason, we utilize student services staff that specializes in planning course schedules that fit into your life. This balance ensures that adult learners have a workable course load that also gives them the education that will unlock new earning and job opportunities.

Anyone who is interested is welcome to attend our Lunch and Learn on September 6, 2012 to find out more about our Graduate Programs.  Please be sure to RSVP by Friday, Tuesday, September 2, 2012. You can do so by visiting www.jackson@belhaven.edu .  We will be happy to speak with you regarding our degree programs.

What is a Re-entry or Adult Student?

Re-entry or adult students (also called non-traditional students) are generally age 25 or over, with ages ranging from 25 to 69 at many colleges and universities. Re-entry students are often female; but men are returning to college in record numbers to update professional skills and further career advancement. Some may never have attended college or started college and then stopped because of personal, financial, or other reasons. Many have spent time in the workforce, the the military, or in raising a family, and want to go back to fulfill lifelong dreams or potential. Some are retired while others are single parents looking to achieve a better life. (The Department of Education recently reported that 13 percent of students now enrolled in college were single parents, up from 7.6 percent in 1993.) Economic reasons are a strong factor: students want to change careers or update professional credentials. Some adult students continue to work while returning to school while others attend part-time. It is never too late to go back to school. You may be just starting a degree program, returning to finish a degree, seeking a second degree or an advanced degree, or taking courses for occupational or personal enrichment.


Should I Go Back to College?

 Millions of adult students successfully return to college to obtain a degree. However, they often have numerous responsibilities to consider when making the decision. These responsibilities can include marriage, children, work, community obligations, or care of elderly parents. The time and commitment needed to complete a degree program and balance these responsibilities can be a challenge.

Adults can also be concerned about fitting in with the younger, “traditional” students, or that they may be “too old.” However, so many adults are returning to college that they are no longer being considered “non-traditional” students. Recent statistics from the U.S. Department of Education show that adult students are the fastest growing educational demographic, and these numbers are steadily increasing. In 1970, 28 percent of all college students were 25 years of age or older. In 1998 the number of adult learners had increased to 41 percent. The number of students age 35 and older in degree-granting institutions has soared from about 823,000 in 1970 to an estimated 2.9 million in 2001 — doubling from 9.6% of total students to 19.2%, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The Institute for Higher Education Policy reports that students aged 40 and older increased by 235 percent from 1970 to 1993. (Life After Forty: A New Portrait of Today’s – and Tomorrow’s – Postsecondary Students.) The Association for Nontraditional Students in Higher Education (ANTSHE) reports that students who are over 25 make up 47 percent of the new and returning student population on many of today’s college campuses.

With increased longevity and an unstable economic future, more adults 55 to 79 are determining what they want to do in the upcoming years. The American Council on Education report, Framing New Terrain: Older Adults & Higher Education, shows more older adults are starting to return to college, pursue new career directions, start new businesses, and realize lifelong dreams. (For more inspiring information on these trends, please see our Special Reports section.)

The good news is, going back to college has never been easier. Many colleges and universities offer re-entry student services and campus childcare centers, and flexible course scheduling with classes one night per week, on the weekends, or in accelerated format. Students can now complete their degree program online on the Internet or through computer multi-media, broadcast television or correspondence courses. Statistics from the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) show nearly four million students taking college courses through distance education. (For more information, see Online Education Gets Accolades, How Do Employers View Online Degrees, Tackling Online Degree Programs, and Should You Get Your Degree Through Distance Learning, which includes tips on how to choose a distance learning program.)

 Is it necessary to return to college for additonal training and education?  What’s your take?