By Brandy Campbell, Hannibal-LaGrange College
Hannibal-LaGrange College ended the 2004-2005 school year the same way it began it — by breaking records.
What began as a record-breaking residential enrollment year ended with a record-breaking graduation as HLG presented diplomas to more than 200 students for the first in its history.
Another record was broken during the summer as more than 100 HLG students served as summer missionaries around the world, including groups in the Philippines, Africa and France.
Another area of growth at HLG was in the dual-enrollment program, which recently added the Early Enrollment (E2) program, offering local high school students the opportunity to attend college classes on the HLG campus.
More than 50 students from Hannibal and the surrounding area are currently taking part in the program.
HLG has also fostered a partnership with Three Rivers Community College to offer teacher education program classes at the school. The HLG online program continues to grow, with new classes added each year.
Students returning this fall were greeted by a number of changes to the HLG campus. The most noticeable were the renovations to the college's cafeteria. Gone were the drab tables and long lines and in were bright red booths and continuous serving from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
"We're trying to create a whole new look for a whole new service," said Sue Booth, chairperson for the renovation committee. "Our goal was to produce a student-friendly area that is bright and contemporary. We wanted a place that students could hang out, a place that showcases the HLG spirit."
In September, HLG held a decennial celebration for president Woodrow Burt. Burt was honored at a chapel service for his 10 years as president of Hannibal-LaGrange College.
Burt has served at HLG for a total of 26 years, including positions as dean of student development, academic dean, registrar, chief development officer, executive vice-president, interim president and president.
February 2005 marked Burt's official anniversary. During his tenure as president, Burt has seen the residential enrollment grow by more than 200 percent. Under his supervision, dorms have been renovated, the athletic program has expanded, and the college's administrative organization has been restructured.
Burt's largest undertaking to date has been the Roland Fine Arts Center, and most recently he oversaw the addition of the Carroll Missions Center to the campus.
"The heart of [Dr. Burt's] leadership is found not in physical buildings but in the building of people," said Tom Hufty, vice president for collegiate affairs and assistant to the president.
"I feel I'm a better leader by virtue of the time I've spent with him. I also believe others on campus have benefited from sitting under the shade of his leadership."
As part of the celebration, HLG's Board of Trustees announced the renaming of HLG's administration building to the Woodrow W. Burt Administration Building.