TAKE NOTE: New Student Orientation August 4-7, 2022

The Talon, March 31, 2020


A grip on news in the Huntingdon College Community

March 31, 2020

What’s New?

Life As We Know It

When we sent out the last Talon, February 13, few could have predicted what would transpire in the world, our country, and our campus in the next six weeks. As the novel coronavirus and COVID-19 leaped across lives and borders, we learned that no one person or entity is invincible and that almost every human on earth will be affected in some way by this pandemic. We’re all in this together—separately, in the interest of social distancing. You can see the communications that have been sent to members of the Huntingdon family on the College’s COVID-19 page here. Here are a few new bits of information:

  • Online classes, which began yesterday, will run through May 1 (instead of April 24); finals will be held May 4–8 but will be scheduled by the faculty member for your class and will not necessarily correspond with the chart on the academic calendar.
  • Grades will be posted in Self-Service by 2:00 p.m. May 11.
  • In-Service dates for March 24 and April 10 (Good Friday) will be observed in the online schedule.
  • Updates will be made to the academic calendar online soon.

A Precedent No One Remembers First-Hand

In 1918, the first H1N1 pandemic infected at least 500 million people world-wide—about one-third of the world’s population at the time—killing more than 50 million people (675,000 in the United States). Huntingdon, then named Woman’s College of Alabama, was in its tenth year on the Montgomery campus, and Dr. Mifflin Wyatt Swartz was in his fourth year as the College’s ninth president. Public buildings and businesses in the city closed as the virus, which was particularly deadly to healthy young people aged 20–40, spread rampantly. In order to protect students, a campus quarantine was enforced. In 1918, the campus was surrounded by tall iron gates with entrances at the front and back, which President Swartz padlocked October 3, 1918. Students were not allowed to leave campus for any reason. Classes went on. Most faculty, many staff, and the president lived on campus. The only persons allowed to leave, according to The History of Huntingdon College: 1854–1954, were the chaperone, who completed errands and shopping for the students, faculty, and campus; the president, who conducted the College’s business; and the male faculty members, whom the president transported in his Model T to the barbershop every two weeks. By Christmas, students and parents demanded that students be allowed to go home for the holidays, so against his better judgment President Swartz removed the padlocks. After the students returned in mid-January, more than 175 students became ill, in addition to some faculty members. The fourth floor of each residence hall was converted to an infirmary for that hall and a faculty committee was appointed to take each student’s temperature (a process that took three hours) every night. One student developed pneumonia, but no one in the campus community died of the virus.

COVID-19 Updates

  • Several news agencies are reporting that the loss of the senses of taste and smell are symptoms of COVID-19 in a number of cases, especially among younger people. While fever, dry cough, body aches, a general feeling of being unwell, and difficulty breathing were the symptoms medical experts had warned the public to watch for, the loss of smell and taste are sometimes the only symptoms present when a person doesn’t know s/he has the virus and is therefore contagious. See this article in USA Today.
  • Here’s an excellent article on avoiding viral illness, written by a young person.
  • While it was originally thought that people older than age 60 developed the most severe symptoms of COVID-19, statistics of European and American patients show that at least half of those sick enough to be hospitalized are in the age range of 20 to 55, according to news reports. Young people can not only get the virus, they can also suffer serious complications. Please be vigilant, wash your hands often, and practice social distancing, Hawks!
  • Speaking of which, social distancing is the only way to break the chain of infection, according to many experts. See this article from an epidemiologist.

Here are a few resources you might find helpful:

Miss Huntingdon 2020

Belated congratulations to all of our Miss Huntingdon contestants! Brynn McGlamery ’22 was crowned Miss Huntingdon 2020 during the annual pageant held February 29. Nine women competed for the crown and scholarship awards. First Runner-Up honors were awarded to Addison Fuller ’21Laura Vermillion ’21 was named both Second Runner-Up and Miss Philanthropic. The Miss Congeniality award was shared by Alina Shoemake ’23 and Hedvika Docking ’21Alyssa Lear ’22 was voted Fan Favorite. Also competing were Lucy Burch ’21Abby Cody ’22, and Brittany Kane ’23Read more.


  • Interested in serving on the new Huntingdon Dance Line next fall? The Dance Line will join the rest of the Marching Scarlet and Grey to create even more exciting shows. Contact band director Dr. Russell Logan at rlogan@hawks.huntingdon.edu.
  • Even though we are scattered at present, you can still make sure your registration is counted for fall 2020. Don’t miss deadlines and don’t lag behind, Hawks!
  • Check your email (students) for important communications from Eric Kidwell and Paige Crumbley on library usage and from Belinda Duett on billing/financial aid/student financial services procedures in light of COVID-19.
  • Returning students: planning to commute to campus in the fall? Make sure you complete Part A of the commuter application form for returning students; then print Part B and bring it with you for a brief interview in the Hut. The deadline to apply is June 1.
  • Although Houghton Library (the building) is closed for the remainder of the semester, the library staff are here to serve you. Interlibrary loans are less available than in the past, but still can be attempted. Virtual reference/research assistance is available from any member of the staff. Library cards can be obtained by completing this application and indicating Montgomery as your home campus (you’ll need a card in order to access electronic subscription resources). Curbside pick-up is available for resources you’d like to check out, and you may return any materials to the book drop located on the Smith parking lot side of the building.
  • If you are the recipient of a loan through the General Board for Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church and are currently in repayment, you may request loan payment suspension by emailing umloans@gbhem.org and requesting a form. Payment suspension forms must be completed and signed by the borrower and co-signer by April 15, 2020. Other updates to policies have been made, as well. The new loan period for fall 2020 opens May 14 and closes October 15. See the GBHEM website for more information at gbhem.org/loans-scholarships.
  • Students, a new section of REL 242 (Biblical Interpretation in Church History) and a new section of ENGL 202 (Intro to Literary Genres) have been added to the fall schedule.
  • Chaplain Rhett Butler ’13 will offer TNW Tuesday nights at 8 through Insta-Live for the remainder of the semester. He’s also organized two small groups, Senior Sanity and Faith in Hard Times and invites you to reach out if you’d like to be included or if you have a need for individual pastoral care. Reach him at rhett.buter@hawks.huntingdon.edu.
  • Wednesday, April 1, at 11:45 a.m., the CCV will offer their Internship Information Session live via Zoom. You can join here:
  •     Meeting ID: 875-533-594


  • Huntingdon’s Adapted Physical Education classes were serving special needs students at Garrett Elementary, Wilson Elementary, and Pike Road Schools until in-person classes were suspended earlier this month. The children came to Huntingdon to work with Huntingdon students in adapted activities.
  • Macon Armistead ’14, director of the Huntingdon Leadership Academy, landed the lead role in the Prattville Players production of Little Shop of Horrors. The play is set to begin mid-April, but may be delayed because of COVID-19.
  • Before the season was shortened, the beach volleyball team achieved five wins, the most ever for the fourth-year team. Because there are only a few DIII teams, the women faced majority DI, DII, and NAIA opponents. Congratulations, Hawk women!
  • Stone Barnard ’10 serves as an IT program manager for Arizona Public Service and lives in Glendale. He completed an IT Project Management Certificate from Syracuse University in 2015, an MBA at the University of Washington in 2017, an MA in mass communications at the University of Florida in 2019, CSM certification in 2019, and PMP certification in 2020.
  • Brendon ’16 and Octavia Pendleton Brown ’16 welcomed daughter Amora Marie in February.
  • The Rev. Wren Miller Clanton ’06 serves as CYMT coach for a national Innovation Lab Grant for youth ministry and is a recipient of Millsaps’ Thriving in Ministry grant for clergy women. She serves as senior pastor for Valley UMC in Huntsville. She completed her MDiv at Yale University in 2009.
  • The Concert Choir completed a performing tour March 1–4, with performances at Opelika UMC; Islands High School and Savannah Arts Academy in Savannah, Ga.; Campbell High School, Milton High School, and Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta; and Spivey Hall at Clayton State University as part of the Young People’s Concert Series.
  • College organist and adjunct instructor Dr. James Conely has signed a contract with Lorenz Publishing for his volume of nine original arrangements of gospel hymn tunes, entitled Sweet Hour of Prayer, to be published later this year.
  • Morgan Coppini ’22 was named USA South Defensive Player of the Week for women’s lacrosse February 17. She and teammate Kailey Laudicina ’23, who also received conference honors, helped the team to a 14-5 win over Sweet Briar College and a 2-0 season start for only the second time in program history. Morgan recorded 12 saves, five goals allowed, five ground balls, and three caused turnovers in the two games.
  • John Crawford ’20 earned USA South Pitcher of the Week honors March 16 after his performance in the team’s 6-3 win over Hampden-Sydney, when he earned the start, struck out seven, walked four, scattered six hits, and gave up one earned run in six innings. John appeared in eight games this season and was tied for the lead in the USA South in saves.
  • Madeline Creel ’23 was named Rookie of the Week for women’s tennis by the USA South February 17 after beginning her collegiate career with two singles victories and two doubles victories in team wins over Fort Valley State and Albany State. Her doubles partner is Lucy Burch ’21.
  • Lexie DeVuyst ’20 has been admitted to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at the University of Florida.
  • Dr. Lisa Olenik Dorman, professor of sport science and physical education, spoke on the Importance of Inclusive Physical Activity and Education for legislators at the Alabama Capitol building on behalf of the Alabama State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (ASAHPERD), March 12. In January, Dr. Dorman presented on the topic, Disability Etiquette: Who is “Able,” and on Adapted Sport and Inclusive Programming for the annual conference of the Alabama Parks and Recreation Association, along with Dr. David Kyle, coach of the Ability Sport Network partner program at the University of Alabama-Huntsville. In the audience were parks and recreation professionals from across the state, including Pat Pickens ’15 from Anniston Parks and Recreation and Sam Havel ’15 from the City of Foley athletic department.
  • Jay Duke ’89 has been named to the role of chief financial officer of Tuscaloosa City Schools in Alabama. He served as the Hale County Board of Education’s chief school financial officer from 2014 to 2019.
  • Laura Hinds Duncan ’94 has returned as vice president for auxiliary services. Great to have you back, Laura!
  • Kaleb Fontenot ’21 ended the wrestling season with an eighth place finish at the NCAA III Lower Midwest Regional tournament March 1.
  • Matt ’07 and Claire Hart Gorum ’06 welcomed their second child, son Charlie, March 30, 2020.
  • Rachael Gautier Hatten ’11 and her husband welcomed son Stephen, January 18, 2020.
  • Jacob ’13 and Marybeth Wheatley Hollingsworth ’12 welcomed son Grayson Samuel, February 25, 2020.
  • John Hunnicutt ’19 has been accepted to Jones School of Law at Faulkner University beginning fall 2020.
  • Madison Hunt ’20 was named USA South Pitcher of the Week for women’s softball February 24. In three games that started the season she went 3-0 with two complete-game shutouts. In 18.1 innings, she struck out 10, walked two, and did not allow a run in 15 hits.
  • Dr. Doba Jackson, professor and chair of the Department of Chemistry, lectured for the Alabama State University Research and Creative Symposium March 11 and was joined by students who presented posters for the symposium March 12. Alexis Osteen ’20 and John Buford ’22 volunteered to work for the event. The following projects were presented:
    • Molecular evolution of the yeast α-domain: Stable HMG-box DNA binding motif and an evolving C-Terminal extension; Doba Jackson, Alexis Osteen, Jeffery Brown ’21
    • The structure of the yeast α-domain from MTLα1 from Candida Albicans: an HMG-box motif and an evolving C-Terminal extension; Alexis Osteen, Jeffery Brown, Prof. Doba Jackson
    • Probing the Elemental Content in Coral from the Gulf of Mexico and the Great Barrier Reef; Jordan Fleming ’21Colby Hutson ’22Sidney Ison ’20, and Prof. Maureen Kendrick Murphy ’78
    • Analysis of Exotic Phalaenopsis Orchids: What is Nature Telling Us?; John Samuel Cason ’23Allison Welch ’23Graycee Williams ’23, and Prof. John K. Berch ’98
    • Investigating the Breakdown of Cellulosic Materials in Environmentally Benign Conditions; Victoria Rose Parks ’20,  Amber Kaitlyn Shirley ’20, and Prof. John K. Berch
    • Elemental analysis of tobacco products, bananas, plantains, and plantain tree parts, to test for radioactivity and the transfer of these radioactive chemicals into food; Annah MacKenzie Kynard Smelley ’20Alexandra McCall Marchese ’20, Amber Shirley, Sidney Ison, and Prof. Jaime Demick
  • The Rev. G. Mark James ’02 was ordained in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian denomination (ARP) in 2017 and is pastoring Trinity Reformed Presbyterian Church in Monroe, N.C. He began the Master of Theology program at Erskine Theological Seminary in Due West, S.C., in 2019 and plans to write his thesis on social justice in the Old Testament. He serves on the Candidates and Examinations Committee of his presbytery and is the Hebrew TA for the online Hebrew courses for Reformed Theological Seminary-Global.
  • Lonnie Keenan ’16 completed a nursing degree in December 2019.
  • Chandler Kemp ’17 and his wife, Paige, welcomed son Easton Michael, February 25, 2020.
  • Tank ’11 and Britni Northington King ’12 welcomed a son, Dax Lucas, March 1, 2020.
  • Garrett Kull ’18 has moved to Rapid City, S.D., where he serves as the assistant men’s soccer coach and equipment manager for the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology team, the Hardrockers (DII). He’s working toward his master’s degree in sport management through Liberty University simultaneously.
  • Keegan Lambeth ’14 and his wife, Mallory, welcomed a son, Walker Ray, March 2, 2020.
  • Lambda Chi fraternity spent the remainder of their social budget for the spring by purchasing gift cards to Five-Points Deli and distributing them to the workers in the Covid-19 unit at local hospitals. Way to go, Hawks! You make our spirits soar.
  • Kailey Laudicina ’23 was named USA South Rookie of the Week for women’s lacrosse March 2 in recognition of her performance in the team’s win over N.C. Wesleyan and loss to Hendrix. Kailey helped the Hawks reach 20 goals in a game for the first time since 2014. The final score in the win was 21-7, of which Kailey contributed six goals. She earned one more goal in the game against Hendrix. She was also recognized as Rookie of the Week February 17 for her work in the team’s first two games of the season, scoring 11 goals, one assist, four ground balls, and three caused turnovers.
  • Lexi Stinard Lawler ’16 completed a master’s degree in early childhood education and early childhood special education through Grand Canyon University.
  • Jacob Lindsey and his wife, Imani, welcomed daughter Amara Marie, February 14, 2020.
  • Elizabeth Brogden Mackey ’09 and her husband, Tyler, welcomed daughter Eleanor Leigh, March 22, 2020.
  • Carden Mellown ’20 was chosen as USA South Pitcher of the Week for baseball March 9 in recognition of his performance in the team’s 4-0 win over LaGrange. Pitching a complete game, he achieved a two-hit shut-out, snapping an 8-game winning streak for the Panthers.
  • The men’s basketball team (14-14) ended their season at the conference championship game, losing 79-73 to Methodist, February 29. Damien Madison ’22 and Jacob Champion ’20 were named to the All-Tournament Team, averaging 20 and 14 points per tournament game, respectively. On February 26, Damien was named to the All-Conference second team and Jacob was named to the All-Sportsmanship Team. Damien led the USA South and ranked eighth in Division III in free throws. His percentage, at 83.2, was second in Division III. Jacob’s buzzer-beater shot won the team’s final four game against Averett and propelled them into the championship round for the first time since 2014.
  • Brandon Miller ’23 was named USA South Rookie of the Week for men’s lacrosse March 16 after scoring three goals on eight shots and earning two ground balls in the team’s loss to Carthage College. For the season, Brandon was second on the team with 19 goals in 10 games.
  • Alex Nishibun ’09 joined the group Cantus as a professional singer (tenor) in August 2019. The group tours nationally. Listen to some of their music here. We’ll also post some of the group’s music on the Huntingdon Facebook page. Alex and his wife, Jesi Dunaway Nishibun ’09 have moved to Minneapolis, where Cantus is based. Jesi works as an administrator at an architectural firm.
  • Dr. Michele Scharff Olson ’86, senior clinical professor in the Department of Sport Science and Physical Education, is quoted in a March 10 article in Self Magazine online, Do You Really Need Padded Bike Shorts for Your Cycling Class?
  • Tri Overby ’22 was named USA South Player of the Week for baseball February 17. In Huntingdon’s Five Points Deli Tournament, he went 6-for-6 with three runs and an RBI in the team’s eight-inning, 16-6 win over Lynchburg.
  • Hannah Shirley Rawlinson ’17 and her husband, Andrew, welcomed son Eli James, February 27, 2020.
  • Joshua Robertson ’11 serves as assistant principal for Enterprise High School in Enterprise, Ala. He completed a master’s degree in instructional leadership and administration from Troy University in 2016.
  • Congratulations to long-time adjunct faculty member Dr. Archie Rowe, who has joined the full-time day faculty as visiting associate professor of business.
  • Amber Shirley ’20 has been accepted to DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine in Tennessee and will begin classes this fall.
  • Granger Shook ’08 has been named to the head football coach position for the Trinity Presbyterian School Wildcats. Granger has coached for the Hawks, Colquitt County High School, and Prattville High School.
  • Stephanie Mattke Sickler ’02 authored a book, Soft Goods Guide for Interiors, available on Amazon.com.
  • Jon Colten Stanaland ’18 and Madison Fitzwater ’18 were married February 29, 2020.
  • Shaonica Thomas ’20 was named to the USA South All-Conference first-team West Division as the women’s basketball season closed. Through 26 games, she averaged more than 15 points and nearly 8 rebounds per game, earning 23 assists and 34 steals. Teammate Sidney Ison ’20 was named to the All-Sportsmanship Team.
  • Koby Townsend ’21 was selected as SGA director of public relations 2020–2021. In February, as a member of the national political science honor society Pi Sigma Alpha, Koby presented his research, entitled The Decline of the State Department: An Attack on American Diplomacy, at the National Student Research Conference in Washington, D.C. He served on a panel with students from Indiana, California, and Michigan. While in D.C. he visited the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court building, the Capitol, the National Archives, and the White House.
  • Dr. Jacqueline Allen Trimble ’83 served as the Wolff Cottage writer-in-residence in February 2020.
  • Terry Whisenant ’09 married Stacey Lynch Martin in Nashville, Tenn., February 15. Terry serves as an operations manager for Access Retirement Systems.
  • Mark White ’17 and Lexie Ofe ’17 have announced their engagement. Mark, executive assistant to the chief academic officer at Huntingdon, has been accepted to a Ph.D. program in educational policy at the University of Wisconsin, which he will begin this fall.
  • Ashton (Brinley) Williams ’17 has been hired as the head volleyball coach for Geneva High School, where she also serves as an assistant softball coach.
  • Katie Davis Williams ’02 serves as operations manager for Securing Moving and lives in Pelham, Ala.
  • The women’s basketball team made it to the USA South quarterfinal game February 22. We were sad to see the season end, but so proud of our Hawks!
  • Seven Huntingdon wrestlers placed in the top four of their weight classes in the Southeast Wrestling Conference Tournament in February. Quintez Pearson ’20 (149) placed first; Jack Haury ’23 (197) placed second; Andrew Smith ’22 (125) placed third; Michael Mort ’21 (141), Kaleb Fontenot ’21 (157); Gabriel Pittman ’23 (165), and D.J. Adams ’22 (197) each placed fourth.


  • Betty Bolton Mills ’54 passed away March 25, 2020. Betty and her son, Don Mills ’76, were on campus in October for Betty’s 65th class reunion. We extend our condolences to family and friends.
  • Huntingdon College Athletic Hall of Fame member Fred Simpson ’66 passed away February 20, 2020, in Americus, Georgia. The former Huntingdon baseball standout served as a special agent in the United States Secret Service in the presidential administrations of Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and Bill Clinton. He and his wife, Lisa, were fixtures at Huntingdon Homecoming events and he maintained close relationships with friends and teammates at Huntingdon. We extend our condolences to Lisa and to his family.
  • We extend our thoughts and prayers for every member of the Huntingdon family. May you be safe and well. Although none of us completed this academic year as we expected, we’re all in it together and here for each other. At Huntingdon, it’s all about the people.

Just before hitting “send” I came across this quote from Sam Sifton in The New York Times: “Recall that Ted Williams was one of the best hitters in baseball history. His lifetime batting average was .344. You are doing just fine. We are all of us doing the best that we can.”


Send your news to news@hawks.huntingdon.edu.
The Talon is produced by the Office of Communications and is e-mailed to students, faculty, and staff, and to those parents, friends, neighbors, alumni, and others who have requested to receive it.  If you would like to change your e-mail address or be added to or removed from the list, simply send your request to Su Ofe at news@hawks.huntingdon.edu (be sure to include your relationship to the College so that you can be added to or removed from the correct list). The Talon is posted on the College Web site, www.huntingdon.edu.

LIKE Huntingdon on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/HuntingdonCollege
Twitter:  @HuntingdonColl
Instagram:  @huntingdoncollege    

Su Ofe
Vice President
for Marketing and Communications
Huntingdon College
1500 E. Fairview Ave., Montgomery, AL 36106
(O) (334) 833-4515; (C) (334) 324-6591


Suellen (Su) Ofe

Suellen (Su) Ofe

Vice President
for Marketing and Communications
(334) 833-4515 | news@hawks.huntingdon.edu

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Scroll to Top
Close Menu