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Delivery Boys and Entourage Comprehensive Review Complete

Dear Vanguard Community

We have recently completed a comprehensive review of the Delivery Boys and Entourage program at Vanguard University.  The review team of 9 members consisted of 3 faculty, 3 student life leaders, a youth pastor, and a current and former student.  Of these, 4 were former Delivery Boys & Entourage members.

The review included two phases – a research phase and then consideration of findings with recommendations for how to revitalize the teams.  The research component included interviews with previous team directors, a number of District Youth Directors and youth pastors, and several camp directors.  The review team conducted a series of focus groups with 28 former team members and with a number of current students.  The research phase also included a review of 24 student talent team programs at other colleges and universities.  The review team’s findings and recommendations have informed how the teams can be revitalized with greater emphasis on ministry and connection to training and leadership development within Student Life.

The review team has presented its report and recommendations to the President’s Cabinet.  I am pleased to now share some of the key outcomes:

  • Delivery Boys and Entourage teams will have a future as part of Outreach Ministries in Student Life.
  • The teams will be part of the Student Leadership Development program and participate in all student leadership events, including the Student Leadership Retreat.
  • This summer an advisory group will be formed to assist with recruitment, selection, training, and care for the teams.
  • Recruitment and selection of new teams will begin during the fall semester once we have finalized staffing and training to support the teams.
  • The teams will be available for camp ministry summer 2013.

We are committed to our mission of equipping students for Spirit-empowered lives of Christ-centered leadership and service and believe that the reorganization of support and training for the teams will better enable us to equip our students for effective ministry.

I want to express my gratitude to the review team for their many hours of careful research and prayerful reflection and recommendations on how best to support effective student ministry teams.

With gratitude,

Dr. Carol Taylor
President

Memorial Service for Cliff Taylor

Dear Vanguard Community,

I want to let you know that my father, Cliff, passed away peacefully Monday, April 2, 2012 at 10:30am.  My mother, Betty, and I were with him along with my father’s very dear friend Marlin.  Dad began failing last week and Saturday evening we took him to the emergency room at St. Jude Hospital for assistance with his breathing.  Sunday morning Dad was moved to a hospice room and all afternoon and evening friends came by to say farewell.  While my father was no longer conscious, his room was filled with singing and stories of how he had touched so many lives.  Somehow it seems fitting that his home going is this Holy Week.  My father has been eager for heaven for several months and now is safely home.

My mother and I want to thank you for your many prayers and words of encouragement this year as my father finished his life here. My father was a man of prayer and deep faith, and he prayed every day for Vanguard University.

Dad’s memorial service will be Saturday, April 14th at Eastside Christian Church in Fullerton at 11:00am.  Eastside is located at 2505 Yorba Linda Blvd between State College and the 57 freeway in Fullerton, California.  In lieu of flowers, my parents’ wish is for charitable contributions to either Vanguard University or Eastside Christian Church.

Thank you again for you many prayers and encouragement.

Dr. Carol Taylor
President

UPDATE April 9, 2012
If you were the recipient of an inlaid wooden cross made by Cliff Taylor, the family would like to request that you please bring that cross with you to the memorial service on Saturday.

Campus Update April 2012

Each spring, the Vanguard community hosts a variety of different events on campus and I am excited to share some of them with you. It’s wonderful to see the work God performs through the students, staff and faculty at Vanguard.

Vanguard was recently recognized in the Top 10 Schools for Online Early Childhood Education Degrees by the Super Scholar Smart Choice Awards and receiving a rank of #7.  Programs were selected and ranked based on publicly available information on their academic quality, student satisfaction, reputation in the field, and cost.  We are pleased to have received this recognition and opportunity to provide training for those whom Christ said represented the Kingdom of Heaven.  For more information visit http://www.vanguard.edu/earlychildhoodeducation/

I’d also like you to save the date for our second annual Celebration of the Arts event April 12-15. COTA will feature Vanguard’s national renowned theater, music and communication programs. Be entertained, inspired and informed as you enjoy some of the best Christian arts events in Southern California. For more information visit www.vanguard.edu/cota.

I am always impressed with our students and their passion for missions. Students visited Mexico and San Francisco over their spring break and I commend them as they to spread the word of God and minister to those who need God’s healing hand upon them.

I would also like to invite you to our annual Spring Concert on April 15 at 4:00pm at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach. The Vanguard music department, along with the St. Andrew’s Choir will be performing works of the composer Dan Forrest. To purchase tickets, please visit www.standrewstickets.com.

Lastly, during this Lenten season, I want to express my gratitude for you and your support of Vanguard University. I wish you and your family a wonderful Easter as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus and the sacrifice He made for all of us.

God Bless you and God Bless Vanguard,

Dr. Carol Taylor
President

A Beautiful Campus

Vanguard University has a rich history of equipping students for a Spirit-empowered life of Christ-centered leadership and service. And much of that happens beyond the classroom.

The things that happen as a professor talks with a student, as a group of students share with each other, these things happen physically somewhere and often on campus. As we approach the renewal of many of our campus spaces, we are being intentional about creating spaces that facilitate the important interactions that occur beyond the classroom.

Our facilities plan includes a significant component that addresses outside spaces, and several of the projects on the drawing board include areas for having a cup of coffee, eating together, and talking, as well as areas for studying and having moments of solitude.

The objective is to create a campus that provides spaces for student life outside the buildings, taking full advantage of our mild climate in beautiful settings. By providing park areas, outdoor courtyards and formal gathering spaces, as well as quiet semi-private areas for studying and reflection, VU can make the most of its spaces. This does not require significant budget, it does require knowledgeable planning and adherence to the plan by the facilities projects, the grounds maintenance team, and the community.

The first step was to establish a coordinated color palette, which has been done. All new facilities and any painting on our existing buildings are done in the new palette, enabling the University to maintain a pleasant environment. And consequently, it saves budget dollars as we can always have the right types and colors of paint on hand to make quick work of any touch up or project.

Additionally we have been working on an outdoor furniture plan to provide comfortable seating in our courtyards and other outdoor areas. The Towers Lobby provided us the opportunity to showcase our new plan elements including several new types of seating and tables. The new lobby also provides covered outdoor space that transitions informal spaces from indoors to outdoors. This approach is planned for additional places on campus in upcoming projects.

We are also focused on our landscaping. We love our Vanguard palm trees, but our spaces also need the beauty of a variety of trees, bushes, and flowers. Providing shade and beautiful vistas and spaces to enhance our lives while outdoors. We want the VU campus to reflect the beauty of God’s creation and to facilitate the best is Southern California living spaces for all of the Vanguard community.

God’s great artistic and redemptive project

Last summer, my daughter Brianne and I took a 5000 mile road trip: Grand Canyon, Santa Fe, Hannibal, Missouri (for the 100th anniversary of Mark Twain’s passing), Chicago…and back again.

The visit to the Grand Canyon set the stage for the rest of the trip. You’ve probably been there. Bri and I began our visit with a fossil hike led by a geologist called Ranger Mike. There on the limestone ground of the south rim, we found dozens of ocean fossils: coral, sponges, clams…Ranger Mike informed us that 250 million years ago this land was covered by what is now the Pacific Ocean, which left these behind when it receded. When the Colorado River, with the help of the shifting of the tectonic plates, carved out this stunning space, it uncovered these fossils…but not just one layer. Six separate layers of ocean fossils are lodged in the canyon limestone, suggesting six different historical epochs during which the ocean covered this land.

The scale and grandeur of the Canyon put our short lives in perspective. I was struck by the artistry of God: infinite patience, exquisite textures, creativity beyond imagination. And this eternal Artist has invited us, tiny ones that we are, to join him as sub-creators, apprentices in His grand creative project.

Bri and I saw this human sub-creativity in Georgia O’Keefe’s Santa Fe paintings inspired by the open spaces of northern New Mexico. We saw it in Marc Chagall’s stained glass “America Windows” at the Art Institute of Chicago and in that city’s extraordinary architecture (like the gothic flying buttresses on top of the Tribune tower). We saw it in Mark Twain’s stories and in the exhibits at the Field Museum.

In spite of the many ways in which we have botched the job and created ugliness instead of beauty, God’s redemptive work continues in us and through us. Whatever our particular calling, we are sub-creators, junior partners, like children who emulate their parents’ projects and experience their parents’ delight and passion.

This, I think, captures something of our journey as Vanguard University professors who integrate faith, learning, and life…We have been called into God’s great artistic and redemptive project. His project has a billion facets, all centered in Christ, and our discipline has taken us deep into one or more of those facets. We join, in our own small way, in that creative project and, in turn, invite our students to join us, equipping them for their lives as sub-creators. What beauty. What grace.