Junior Senior Banquet Revealed on Monday Night, February 25, after Classes Battled on Heath Lawn

Vanguard University clash of classesBattle lines formed Monday night, February 25, when the junior and senior classes faced off on the slippery, wet grass of Heath Lawn in preparation for the reveal of the Junior Senior Banquet’s date, theme and venue.

Drumroll please…on April 5 at 7:00 p.m., the Junior Senior Banquet (JSB) will take flight with the theme of “Flying to the Moon” at the Turnip Rose venue. The big reveal came through a classy video with music fit for the theme and the 50-60 students in attendance gave shouts of approval at its conclusion.

Before the reveal, the event had a very different mood as the “Clash of the Classes” kicked off with a classic schoolyard game: dodge ball. Junior Vasili Brasinikas detailed the event’s lineup having various games of junior guys combatting senior guys and then junior girls battling senior girls. When asked whom he believed the final victors were, Brasinikas answered, with a hint of bias, “the juniors.”

With an ice cream truck serving ice cream sandwiches made from various flavors squished between students’ cookies of choice, the night was bound for greatness. “There was a fun game, free ice cream, it doesn’t get much better,” Brasinikas said.

The senior class activities director, Anjolie Phillips, planned and coordinated the event with the help of various Student Government Association members and other students. Commenting on the dodge ball games, Phillips said with a smile: “we had a lot of people out there playing their hearts out.” When detailing their goal in creating a fun event for the top-secret reveal, Phillips said she considered the turnout and overall event a success.

To watch the JSB reveal video, click here.

Vanguard University to Host Annual Jazz Festival on Saturday, March 2

Bring your snapping fingers to the Jazz Festival on Saturday, March 2, where school student groups from Los Angeles and Orange County, as well as Vanguard University’s own Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo will jive the day away.

What better way for a Christian university to have a day of celebrating the gift of music than hosting a jazz festival? Vanguard University invites bands, combos and individuals to register and come to this special event. Attendees will enjoy performances, clinics, workshops, a concert by VU’s Jazz Ensemble and the Jazz Festival’s Professional Adjudicators, and more.

Top groups and individuals will receive awards in various categories including best overall group performance, best solo, and more, the Coordinator of Music Events and Concert Operations, Luke Baumgartner, said. Having been a part of the festival in past years, Baumgartner looks forward to this unique opportunity for people to come together and just have enjoy playing the music they love.

The competition also gives performers a chance to be selected to take part in the Vanguard Honors Jazz Band, which will perform at the closing concert. The selected students will play along side other accomplished musicians of their own caliber as well as the Jazz Festival Adjudicators and the Vanguard Jazz Ensemble.

The Jazz Festival Adjudicators are comprised of top professional Christian musicians in the business. Adjudicators include Dave Stone, instructing the rhythm sectional; Josh Welchez, instructing the brass sectional; and Vince Hizon, instructing the sax/woodwinds sectional. The Director of Vanguard University’s award winning Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo, Dr. Kenneth R. Foerch, will be adjudicating as well.

Not only can student groups share their ensemble’s pieces with fellow attendees on a collegiate stage, at this year’s event they can join in the festival’s newly added feature: The Jazz Jam Session. This expression session invites performers to get creative and join with the VU Jazz Combo for improvisation, sight-reading and fun.

“Improv is probably one of the hardest things to master,” Baumgartner said. This special session gives students a chance to begin strengthening their improvisational skills, which are crucial in thriving as a jazz musician, he said. The Jazz Jam Session is an opportunity to jive and jam together and is open to anyone, parents included, he added.

The festival provides student groups from grades six through twelve “an opportunity to perform at a college venue, hear other Christian student groups, and the opportunity to learn more about Vanguard’s renowned Department of Music,” Dr. Foerch said in his letter to student groups.

For more information on registration and costs, click here.

Director of Vanguard’s Global Center for Women & Justice speaks at The Justice Conference, featured in Christian Post

Christian school Vanguard University sex trafficking expert quoted in Christian Post

Sandie Morgan, director of Vanguard University’s Global Center for Women and Justice presented  at the Justice Conference last week in Philadelphia, PA.  The conference, which created dialogue around justice related issues such as human trafficking and slavery, was held last Friday through Sunday.

During the conference, Morgan was interviewed by Napp Nazworth at the Christian Post.  In the article, Morgan discusses the three “P’s” of fighting sex trafficking: prevention, protection, and prosecution.

Vanguard to Host a Free Tax Filing Event for Faculty, Staff and Students on March 2, March 9 and April 6

Filing taxes can be a daunting experience, but it doesn’t have to be this year. Vanguard University staff and students have the opportunity to receive a special free tax service.

At Vanguard, a top christian university, Enactus will host the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, which provides free tax return services for individuals and families who make under $50,270 a year. Enactus, a student-led, environmental advocacy organization, is focused on using its positions to “transform lives and shape a better more sustainable world,” its website said. The VITA program is an arm of the IRS, which partners with the OC United Way.

Individuals who qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) could claim up to $5,891.

The requirements for qualifying are as follows:

  • Be a U.S. Citizen or Legal Permanent Resident
  • Have a valid social security number
  • Have earned income during 2012
  • Have earned less than $50,270 (total household) in 2012
  • Cannot use “Married Filing Separately” Status
  • Cannot be claimed as a qualifying child
  • Cannot file Form 2555 or 2555-EZ (relating to foreign earned income)

When going to the appointment, individuals should bring:

  • Picture Identification
  • Copy of 2011 income tax return
  • Social Security Card or Individual Taxpayer identification number (ITIN) for each family member
  • W-2s, 1099s and all other tax-related documents for 2012
  • All 1098 E&T forms for educational expenses
  • Childcare provider name, address & Tax ID Number

Members of the Vanguard community will have three opportunities to take advantage of this free tax service: March 2, March 9 and April 6. Each event’s services are provided by appointment only.

To schedule an appointment and receive answers for any questions, please call: 888-434-8248.

Summer Study Abroad Programs in El Salvador, Nepal and India Now Available for Students

As a Christian university, Vanguard has the unique privilege to take what could be simply a long term summer missions trip and transform it into an accredited college learning experience for students to experientially see how organizations work to make real changes in the world.

Two of these experiential courses will take place this summer. Vanguard’s Department of Anthropology and Sociology is offering two study abroad programs, one based in El Salvador and the other in Nepal and India, to challenge students to take their education to the front lines in the battles against poverty and human-trafficking.

In the El Salvador study abroad program, led by Dr. Jamie Huff of the Anthropology Department, students will learn skills in nonprofit management, community and economic development, public health, and church-based strategies for poverty alleviation.  Students can join with members of the VU faculty and spend their summer gaining hands-on experience by coming alongside nonprofit leaders and local pastors of El Salvador. This program runs from May 13 to June 1.

For students interested in helping to prevent child trafficking, there is the study abroad program in Nepal and India. It focuses on introducing students to strategic solutions for stopping the trafficking of girls along the border of Nepal and India. Students will work with local organizations and churches, and learn about the Daughter Project. This program runs from June 17 to July 5.

An informational meeting will be held Thursday, Feb. 28, at 4:15 p.m. in Heath Rm 105.

To learn more, visit the Department of Anthropology and Sociology’s news site by clicking here.