Our alumni send their words of encouragement during this time of transition. They are cheering each of you on and wishing you well as you finish this semester.
“I am proud of the way that our students and faculty have handled the uncertainties of the past few weeks, and I am thankful we are continuing to build a strong community. I know this can be a scary, overwhelming time. But I hope you will find God’s mercies anew every morning and find things to give thanks for all around you. There is kindness. There is community, even virtually. There is hope.
Even in the book of Lamentations, poetry of weeping & sorrow, we see that hope:
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23
My work space is filled with to do lists, student notes, and toddler crafts. My husband is working upstairs, and sometimes our virtual meetings overlap so we each hear echoes of the other as we work. I am enjoying more meals with my family, wearing my bedroom slippers to work, and not having to do my hair. It’s also been fun to still meet virtually with Campbell committees and teams – and to see everyone in their home environment, still giving their time and talents to help Campbell students grow.
Cheering you on, and I look forward to seeing you again in August!”
— Renee Green, Director of Leadership & Student Success for the Business School
“Nothing in this world can take away the things you’ve learned, the time you’ve spent, or the memories you’ve made during your time at Campbell, cut short or otherwise. You are just as much a camel as any of us, and there are wonderful plans in store for your life! Even if things are different whenever you can go back to Campbell, remember that you can always go back. It will always be home. And you’ll share that bond with every other Campbell alum forever. I can’t imagine what you’re feeling right now, but I hope you know that you’ll never be alone. We’ve got your back!”
— Rebekah Cheney (’13)
“Hey, Camels. I’m currently a grad student at Clemson, and we’ve also just begun the transition to online for the remainder of the semester. My master’s hooding ceremony was postponed, as are tons of other events I was looking forward to in my last semester here, so I know how tough this must be. I can’t imagine what it would have been like to leave the Creek when the rest of the semester had so much in store.
But since the decisions to close campuses across the nation have taken place, I have seen SO MUCH support from the academic community: students sharing tips on how to work from home, professors checking in with their students and making sure they have the resources they need to be successful, and people striving to connect with one another despite physical distancing. No matter how your semester has changed, I hope you’ll lean into your community — we’re all here from afar. You’ve got this, Camels!”
— Anna Marie (’16)
“Campbell quickly became my home after getting out of the military and sure enough, it wasn’t long before I was called back to active duty during Desert Shield and Desert Storm. I guess you could say my education kept getting interrupted by things beyond my control or fault. I know it might seem like things are working against your goals and dreams. I know it can feel like barriers pop up and try to force you to give up. Especially, when you aren’t sure what the future holds. There is a reason Campbell feels like home. Home is the place you can come back to. It’s where roots take hold and hope draws you to the best parts of your future. Life will at times ask you how much do you really want to achieve those dreams and passions that brought you to the Creek? You know the ones that made you want to discover what you’re made of?
This is your time and chance to fill in the blanks that you discover are in you with the right answers. Endurance and relentlessness. I know it’s hard and weird right now but your education isn’t out of reach and it isn’t impossible to achieve. Don’t let the fears you face become your limitation. Face that fear. Refuse it any victory or any place in your life. You are amazing and you are meant to not quit. Some will quit— don’t let it be you. You will draw from your time at Campbell for many years to come, as I have, so grab hold of the time there now and trust that you are not finished there yet. There are too many conversations to be had. So many relationships to discover and yes even a formal education to take with you. I am praying for you.”
— Jason Stone (’96)
“In times like these, this verse means everything: God is our refuge, a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1”
— Winslow Carter
“Those of you my age will remember the great ice storm of ’68. The Creek had no power or telephone service and was isolated from the rest of the world for about a week. We made it through this by bonding as a community. We will get through the present pandemic the same way. Thoughts and prayers to all.”
— Woodrow W. Hathaway Jr. (’71, ’93)
“Our God is the Great Physician. We are told in scripture 365 times to not be afraid. One for every day of the year! May God hold you and keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy.”
— Lisa Orr (’17)
“Keep your heads up, graduates! I remember when the US entered the Gulf War in January as we prepared to graduate in May. Classmates and faculty were called up daily. Lee Greenwood’s great song ‘Proud to Be American’ played. Jobs for graduates were hard to come by and most of us would start out as graduates earning less than we did the previous summer. As my own daughter graduates this year, finishing classes online, I can”t help but think of the similarities. You are strong and smart and willing to do what it takes. You put others first and stay centered on what makes you uniquely you. Follow God’s plan for you and rise up. You, like your fellow alumni, will Reach the Stars through this Difficulty.”
— Bo McMinn (’91)
“We are all in this together and we are behind you in these turbulent and trying times. Help your friends and families as much as you possibly can, even if remotely. Have faith. Ultimately this will pass and the experience, while painful and testing, will have shown the best in us instead of the worst. Stay healthy and safe!”
— Barry Honeycutt (’78)
“This event is challenging in every facet of your lives for sure. There may not be anything I can say that will solve a single dynamic of your urgent concerns as a student. However, there are ways to get through the traumatic decisions you need to make. First, stop, and reflect on what has been learned in your studies, and your belief structure of how to live a daily life that help you differentiate rights from wrongs. Hopefully you have one or two professors, maybe a family mentor if you are now away from campus, that you can touch base with by phone. May you remember that you are never alone.”
— John Bland Jr. (’63)
“I am praying for you during this difficult time of transition in what you expected this school year to be and how it is turning out. Even through this time, God is using these circumstances for good and I know you are part of the good in the world. Please be encouraged that you will make it through this, even if the path you are on now is not what you expected. With God, you can do all things!”
— Christine Dodson (’03)
“First of all I would suggest that you trust in the Lord and offer prayers for others and your own family. This is a difficult time that none of us, even those of us who are old, have any experience with, which means we must listen to health officials and follow their recommendations so that we do not spread the virus inadvertently.
History teaches us that we will come out of this, and with the Lord’s help and comfort, we will. Take care, remain calm, serve others less fortunate and spread love.”
— John (’69)
“As followers of Christ, we are equipped to handle whatever crises we face with faith, trust, and hope for the future. It is times like these when we can experience God’s provision and protection the most, for it is when we are most in need. My encouragement to you is to stay steadfast in faith despite the fear-inducing headlines you see day after day. Stay in the Word — let His promises fill you with incomprehensible peace. And pray for each other, our nation, and the world! He will never leave us nor forsake us.”
— Taylor Schmaltz (’19)
“We have faced many challenges before – but by the strength we have in Christ, we always overcome. I have full confidence in the leadership of Campbell University and its ability to encourage faith over fear in this trying time for our state and nation. Psalm 23:1.”
— David Capen (’19)
“Psalm 34:18— The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Psalm 91:4— He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. Psalm 91:4— I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
God is not surprised by this situation and he wants us to draw closer to him during this time. He will provide us with refuge, safety, and strength as we trust him. Do not try to deal with your feelings of disappointment on your own but give all of them to God and let him turn your sadness to joy! He can do that better than any person or thing you might try to turn to and He empathizes with our feelings and wants to provide supernatural comfort and peace. Will you let him?”
— Diane Cook (’09)
“Stay active, stay sharp, stay interested. Make the most of these exceptional times. This WILL pass.”
— Raluca Papadima
“We have enjoyed seeing many students through virtual advising appointments! Your advisors care about you and are here to support your success…regardless of the distance between us!”
— Office of Academic Advising
“‘In headache and worry, vaguely life leaks away’ (Auden). So, with that said, see the positive in every situation! See the future and how much more you will be prepared having been thrown quickly into a new environment. Nothing prepares us for change better than change. Don’t give up. Soak up the technology and the seasoning you get to add to your resume! Use the technology to connect with your friends amidst the social distance! You will be fine. We will be fine, after all: We are Fighting Camels!”
—Sharon Kissick, AOE/Raleigh
“I know it is difficult to not be together with your friends and classmates. I am grateful for technology and the ways in which it has helped us stay connected. I would encourage each of you to reach out to one another and encourage and uplift each other during this time. I am a Christian and His Word has been a real encouragement to me, especially the Psalms! Our lasting hope is found in Jesus Christ and we can depend and put our trust in Him! God bless you!”
— Josh Tate, IT Services
“While walking to the Post Office this morning, I noticed birds are so fragile, yet so very free in their faith in our Creator. With respect to all faiths, the birds seem busy with their own routine and their songs are stunning. I pray always for you, our students, that you will study with the peace of mind that you are gaining all the more and working toward being a better servant to our Creator and humanity. God bless you for your constant labors and sacrifices.”
— Anita Mullins Brown
“The Campbell Community has never been working harder and has never been more determined to not only get through these times but to make Campbell better than ever when you return. This is a special place, with special people who are working every day to help you be the best you can be for now and the future. We are here for you!”
— Chris Heymeyer
“I love how students are learning to support one another in these strange times and have a great sense of humor doing it. Their response to my question of ‘how are you?’ at the beginning of our remote collaborate class was ‘I’ve never wanted to go to class so bad.’ It was really, really funny. We all had a good laugh together. Keep your senses of humor and grace!”
— Laura Lunsford
“Even though our semester looks different, it’s not over yet and we are still here for you! At Campus Recreation, we are making sure to provide online health, fitness, wellness, intramural, and recreational opportunities for you. We want you to know we are a resource to help you feel healthy, take your mind off the craziness, and thrive through these changing times.”
— Cora-Ann Licwinko
“For the short-term, you will likely see me teaching from my back porch into the near future, at least until things calm down a bit. I miss you guys and our face-to-face interactions in class and on campus, but it is what it is. I am keeping you and your families, as well as all my faculty/staff colleagues and our university senior leaders in my prayers daily. I am also reminded of a phrase from a sermon I listened to last Sunday — faith redefines fear — and the assurances of a favorite set of scriptures, Psalm 91, which sustained me daily during my tour in Iraq during OIF (2003-2004) in perilous times. ‘God is good; all the time. All the time; God is good.’ Remember, He’s in control, NOT COVID-19. Have a great day and stay safe.”
— Dr. Mike Larsen, Department of Biology
“Praying for all of our students and staff as they are having to be apart in this time. Know that the alumni are thinking of you at this time. Keep up your hard work and stay in touch!”
— LeAnne Kennedy (’93)
“Thank you for the phenomenal job that you are ALL doing online. Keep collaborating, sharing new ideas, and practicing your digital competencies. You rock!”
— Dr. Terrie Bethea-Hampton, SOE