A number of LCU students were honored at the LCU Student Appreciation Dinner on Sunday, Apr. 12, in the Baker Conference Center.
The student appreciation banquet is held every spring and is hosted by Student Affairs, LCU Dining Services, and academics, with a special committee that organizes the event.
There are two awards given to selected students at the event, silver and gold. The silver awards have two divisions, Academic and Service. Academic awards are chosen by each department on campus, with most departments giving an “outstanding student” award. Academic awards are mostly based on GPA and how students participate in their classes. Generally, members from each department will meet prior to the banquet and discuss the students majoring in their field and then vote on award recipients.
Service awards differ slightly from the Academic Awards. Awards in this grouping are for performance groups, Student Senate, outstanding student teachers, and the writers for LCU’s online publication, “The Duster.”
Top awards for the evening include the President’s Award, the Trustees’ Award, and Mr. and Ms. LCU. The President’s Awards honor a senior man and woman, chosen by faculty members, who show great promise of spiritual service. The Trustees’ Award, also chosen by faculty, is given to a senior man and woman in recognition of outstanding service to the university through representation of its high ideals. Mr. and Ms. LCU nominees are chosen by the faculty based on their academic performance, character, and service to the campus. Once the finalists are chosen, the student body votes on who they believe best represents the ideals of the university.
Students are allowed to bring up to three guests to the event, with many inviting their family and friends. Faculty members sit alongside the students and their guests, and, as students are called to the front to receive their award, a faculty member speaks of the students’ character and their accomplishments, thus allowing their guests to hear something special about the students.
When asked about the importance of the event, Susan Blassingame, Dean of the Hancock College of Liberal Arts and Education, said, “It is one of the best things we do at LCU. I always leave that dinner thinking that LCU is a great place. We are so lucky to watch our students mature as people, academically, socially, and spiritually. This dinner is a recognition of their growth. We say LCU is the life changing university, and we get to see those changed lives most dramatically at the Student Awards Dinner.”