Bob Wilson Named Athletics Director of the Year

Vanguard University Athletic Director Bob Wilson has been named Athletic Director of the Year for 2011-12 by the NAIA Athletic Directors Assn.

Wilson, in his 18th year at Vanguard, will be formally recognized at the 2013 NAIA Awards Banquet, part of the NAIA National Convention scheduled April 19-23 in Kansas City, Mo.

The annual award recognizes Wilson’s integrity, commitment, mentorship, education and motivation to student-athletes, coaches and staff at Vanguard.

“When I think of Bob Wilson, I think first of a man of impeccable integrity, deep commitment to the best that the NAIA represents, great loyalty to his institution and programs, and a commitment to mentoring future athletics leaders,” said Vanguard President Carol Taylor.

Vanguard athletics offers nationally competitive teams and a pioneering approach to forming athletes’ character that ahs been recognized with multiple awards, honors and grants.

Wilson, who has headed Vanguard’s athletic department since 1995, has overseen 57 teams that have competed in NAIA national championship play, including the 2008 NAIA champion women’s basketball team.  Bob Wilson is himself a member of the NAIA Hall of Fame for basketball.

Lions teams have won 11 conference titles during his tenor and Vanguard programs and student-athletes have collected distinctive honors for outstanding achievements in competition and in the classroom. During Wilson’s tenure, Vanguard has had 199 NAIA scholar-athletes and 149 NAIA All-Americans.

Wilson has been instrumental in the installation of the NAIA Champions of Character program at Vanguard since its launch in 2000. Vanguard is now a Certified Program Center of NAIA Champions of Character, and Vanguard has garnered 10 NAIA Team of Character awards, two Dr. LeRoy Walker awards and two National NAIA Coach of Character awards. Wilson has worked hard to make Champions of Character a critical element in Vanguard athletics culture. He educates his student-athletes tirelessly on important concepts and values, and he motivates them to be persons of good character.

We are grateful to have Bob on campus and thankful for his service as a positive role model over the years for all athletes that have been a part of the Vanguard Athletics program.

To see the Daily Pilot story click here

U.S. News & World Report Announces the 2013 Best Colleges: Vanguard University ranked in Top 10

Washington, D.C. – September 12, 2012U.S. News & World Report released today the Best Colleges 2013 edition, which includes the rankings and data of more than 1,500 schools nationwide.
Once again, Vanguard University was named in the Top 10 colleges in the west.

“Since 1983, U.S. News has strived to provide students and their families with the best data and information available to help navigate the college process and make informed decisions,” said Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer. “As the college process becomes more competitive and comprehensive each year, U.S. News continues to improve and expand the array of school data, photos, reviews, tools, and resourceful content on USNews.com.”

Along with the 2013 rankings and data, new to the U.S. News education site this year is the addition of job and internship opportunities for college students and recent graduates. The job listings, powered by AfterCollege, can be found on a school’s profile page and highlight companies and organizations recruiting students and recent graduates from particular schools.

The college ranking categories are based upon the 2010 Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching classifications. The Carnegie classification system has been used by U.S. News since the Best Colleges rankings began because they are the basis for classifying schools by most higher education researchers.

For the first time, the results from the past two years of high school counselor reputation scores, which are only used in the National University and National Liberal Arts Colleges rankings, have been averaged. This was done to account for the fluctuation of ratings year to year, and also to increase the number of ratings each school received. The high school counselor ratings are one of the factors that indicate a school’s academic quality. Other indicators include financial resources, alumni giving, assessment by administrators at peer institutions, faculty resources, student selectivity, and the retention of students. To find more information on the Best Colleges 2013 rankings methodology, go to www.usnews.com/collegemeth.

For more information about Best Colleges, visit www.usnews.com/colleges or find them on Facebook or Twitter. To learn more about the U.S. News College Compass, which provides access to the most complete rankings and data, or to order a copy of the companion Best Colleges 2013 guidebook, visit the online U.S. News Store.

About U.S. News & World Report

U.S. News & World Report is a multi-platform publisher of news and analysis, which includes the digital-only U.S. News Weekly magazine, www.usnews.com, and www.rankingsandreviews.com. Focusing on Health, Money, Education, Travel, Cars, and Public Service/Opinion, U.S. News has earned a reputation as the leading provider of service news and information that improves the quality of life of its readers. U.S. News & World Report’s signature franchise includes its News You Can Use® brand of journalism and its “Best series of consumer guides that include rankings of colleges, graduate schools, hospitals, mutual funds, health plans, and more.

Daily Pilot: Chef ‘Ambushes’ Student, President at Vanguard

By Brittany Woolsey

DAILY PILOT

Kristina Kuzmic believes anyone can cook.

The host of “The Ambush Cook” proved her theory when brought her show’s theme to Family Weekend at Vanguard University on Saturday.

Kuzmic, a 2001 theater alumna, won the “Your OWN Show: Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star” competition in 2010. In her show, she teaches unsuspecting people how to cook. She said these people, from new moms to bachelors, needed to know how to cook.

At Saturday’s demonstration at the Costa Mesa campus, Kuzmic invited unsuspecting Vanguard freshman Erika Gray, 17, to the stage to learn how to cook a caramelized onion butternut squash tart.

Erika’s mother, Tiana Gray, entered her in a competition to learn to cook with Kuzmic after Erika failed to make brownies from a box.

Kuzmic also asked Vanguard President Carol Taylor to learn how to make the dish, which Kuzmic refused to follow a recipe for.

“Cooking shouldn’t be about copying someone else,” Kuzmic said. “You should be creative.”

Although the stage lacked an oven, Kuzmic made a makeshift one to show Erika and Taylor how to make the tart.

“My true desire is for people to let loose in the kitchen and enjoy the cooking process,” she said.

Kuzmic also shared some of her cooking secrets. She said always having chocolate around can make the cooking experience more enjoyable, so she frequently spoon-fed Erika Gray and Taylor some Nutella during the demonstration. She also said she uses goggles to prevent tearing up while cutting onions.

About a half hour after the demonstration started, Kuzmic presented the crowd with a tart, which she said she prepared the night before. While she shared the tart with Erika Gray and Taylor, Kuzmic said there was not enough to around for the audience members.

“This isn’t like Oprah,” she said jokingly. “Not everyone gets some. You don’t get a car either, so sorry.”

Erika Gray said her experience was “surprising.”

Tiana Gray said she was impressed with her daughter and that she expects her to make the tart for Thanksgiving.

Kuzmic said she enjoyed sharing her talents at her alma mater.

“[The experience] was so neat,” she said. “It was like a full-circle moment. I loved my experience here at Vanguard, and this meant a lot.”

Read the full story on DailyPilot.com

Forbes recognizes VU as one of America’s Top Colleges

Vanguard University is proud to be recognized in Forbes 2012 “America’s Top Colleges” list.  Given that there are over 4000 colleges and universities in the country, this means that Vanguard is in the top 10%.  These statistics are exciting as they are not about reputation, but educational outcomes and Vanguard has succeeded. Click here for the full profile on Forbes.com

Jeff Hittenberger, Provost/Vice President for Academics Affairs is thrilled with the acknowledgement and proudly states, “Vanguard has been recognized by Forbes as being among the top 10% of colleges and universities in the United States based upon our students’ post-graduation success, our students’ satisfaction, their relatively low levels of debt and default compared with students at other comparable colleges and universities, their four-year graduation rates, and the prestigious awards they earn.  Vanguard has accomplished these great things while strengthening our emphasis on our mission: ‘To equip each student for a Spirit-empowered life of Christ-centered leadership and service.’”

The rankings, which are compiled exclusively for Forbes by the Washington, D.C.-based Center for College Affordability and Productivity, focus on the things that matter the most to students: quality of teaching, great career prospects, high graduation rates and low-levels of debt.

The rankings are based on five general categories: post graduate success (32.5%), which evaluates alumni pay and prominence, student satisfaction (27.5%), which includes professor evaluations and freshman to sophomore year retention rates, debt (17.5%), which penalizes schools for high student debt loads and default rates, four-year graduation rate (11.25%) and competitive awards (11.25%),  which rewards schools whose students win prestigious scholarships and fellowships like the Rhodes, the Marshall and the Fulbright or go on to earn a Ph.D.  The complete methodology is available here.

To see the complete list of schools from Forbes.com, click here.

About Vanguard University

Vanguard University is a private, Christian, comprehensive university of liberal arts and professional studies equipping students for a Spirit-empowered life of Christ-centered leadership and service. The U.S. News & World Report has ranked Vanguard among the best baccalaureate colleges in the west in their 2011-2012 rankings of colleges and universities and The Princeton Review named VU a 2011-2012 “Best in the West” College. Vanguard is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

Interview with Vanguard’s Director of Global Center for Women and Justice

Sandie Morgan is the Director of Vanguard University’s Global Center for Women and Justice and teaches Women’s Studies, Family Violence, and Human Trafficking at Vanguard.  As a Registered Nurse, Sandie served on the Board of the International Nurses Association in Athens, Greece where she lived for ten years.  It was there that she discover human trafficking wile doing a story for Lydia Living magazine and working on reducing violence against women. Below is an interview by Terence Loose telling more insight about Sandie and her life work.

This educator and nurse is fighting the modern-day slave trade, which exists even here in the OC.

BY Terence Loose
COAST MAGAZINE

If you’re like most Americans, you are under the impression that slavery ended with the Emancipation Proclamation – and the Civil War – in 1863.

But you’d be wrong. Slavery still exists. In fact, the U.S. State Department says there are 27 million victims of human trafficking worldwide – 100,000 or more in the United States and some even in Orange County. These unfortunates are sold into everything from the sex-slave trade to the restaurant industry.

But there is hope, and one big reason for that is Sandra Morgan, director of the Global Center for Women and Justice at Vanguard University. Recently, she also served as Administrator for the Orange County Human Trafficking Taskforce, which battles against the modern slave trade. In addition to teaching at Vanguard, she hosts a podcast called Ending Human Trafficking.

Her conviction is obvious to anyone who listens. She speaks with a knowledge and passion for the issue of human rights that is only found in someone committed to changing a seemingly unchangeable problem. And she says that this is part of her mission.

“Our mantra here is study the issue, be a voice, make a difference. I live by that myself. I do the research so I have an answer for people when they ask about this issue,” she says.

So we asked.

How common is human trafficking in Orange County?
Our Orange County human trafficking taskforce has served over 100 certified victims of human trafficking. Those are only the ones we’ve been able to get certification for so we can provide them with services.

Does one stand out in your mind?
I met one young girl named Shyima who was brought here from Egypt to be a household slave at age nine. For three years she lived in a $1.6 million Orange County home, only she slept in the garage and was up from early morning until late at night doing all of the cleaning and taking care of two small children. Her life was the life of a slave. She never went to school, she never got to play, she never went to the doctor or the dentist.

How was she rescued?
A neighbor noticed a child who never went to school and they called the authorities. [The national human trafficking resource center hotline is 888.373.7888.] Now, Shyima’s doing great. In fact, in November she got her U.S. citizenship. As for the family who had enslaved her, they were convicted, spent time in prison and then were deported.

Movies like to depict victims as being kidnapped into this life. Is that common?
No. Most of the media over-glamorizes the idea of force. People being kidnapped is pretty rare. More often you have people who are in a compromised position without any options and someone offers them a job or opportunity and they take it. In the area of our American children, the majority are kids who come from dysfunctional families – they’ve been in group homes, in foster care, they don’t have a home to run back to. So someone takes them in and the grooming process begins. They’re recruited and sold for sex.

A sex slave trade right here in Orange County?
Yes, we have several cases ongoing of juveniles who were being sold for sex right here in Orange County. That raises the question: Who in Orange County is buying a child for sex? And what other kinds of jobs are we talking about? The one that gets the most attention is the sex trade, but we also have victims that have been household servants, worked in eldercare facilities, in restaurants, hotels, magazine sales.

What keeps them loyal?
If you get down into basic child psychology and the way a child’s brain is developing, we are hard-wired to have a family. And even if that family is a gang or a pimp and three women he’s exploiting, at least you have someplace to go home to. So there’s this sense of belonging. In fact, often when the police show up to rescue them, they don’t want to be rescued.

What happens in that situation?
Fortunately, if they’re under 18 they don’t get to choose. We take them and help them. Many times, it takes months before young women and boys can go through restorative services. In fact, in Las Vegas, a judge pointed out that 85% of the juveniles they save run away, so they put them in juvenile detention.

There is also the situation of debt bondage. Can you explain that?
A trafficker tells a victim something like, “We have a restaurant job for you and you’ll be able to send money home to your family.” The [victim] says they don’t have money to get across the border. So the [trafficker] will say, “That’s OK, you’ll owe us.” So the victim comes across and earns little to nothing and what they do make goes to pay their debt. They’re charged for the place they’re sleeping – which is often nearly inhabitable – their groceries, exorbitant interest and other things, all at outrageously high prices. After a few weeks, the victim begins to understand there is no way out, and they’re threatened with being turned over to the cops so they’ll never see their family again, or even with harm to them or their family. So people could be human trafficking victims and right in front of you, but they’re afraid to self-identify.

Why did you first get involved in fighting human trafficking?
I was living and working in Greece in 2000. In Greece prostitution is legal and so I walked past brothels all the time. But I noticed that a lot of the girls in the doorways were very young and not Greek, so I started asking questions. That was the beginning of my journey. When I found out more, and how horrible the problem was, I tried to figure out how to change it.

And you now teach on a bigger scale at Vanguard University.
That’s why I love my position and what we’re doing here. I realize my limitations. I’m only one person; I can only do so much. But every semester, when I teach my students, I multiply myself 30, 40, 50 times. In that way, I hope I can really make a difference.

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