Season 6

Dec. 29, 2023
Sarah Kathryn Ricci

Baylor Alumni is Baylor’s official alumni engagement program, and facilitates numerous events, activities and volunteer opportunities across the nation to connect with the Baylor Family. Sarah Kathryn Ricci serves as Assistant Vice President of Alumni Engagement. In this Baylor Connections, she takes listeners inside opportunities to connect through affinity groups, outings, athletics and more.

Dec. 13, 2023
President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

As 2023 draws to a close, President Livingstone reviews an exciting year on campus and looks ahead to 2024. In this Baylor Connections, she highlights some of her favorite moments of the past year, discusses the opening of the Paul and Alejandra Foster Pavilion, analyzes new honors for Baylor and shares Christmas wishes for the Baylor Family.

Dec. 6, 2023
Alison Prahl

Individuals with intellectual disabilities and disorders (IDD) have a friend in Alison Prahl, whose research uncovers pathways to literacy. Prahl, assistant professor of communication sciences and disorders at Baylor, leads Baylor’s Language Impairment and Down Syndrome Lab, and her work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health. In this Baylor Connections, she discusses common misconceptions about literacy and disability, unpacks research designed to improve literacy and shares more about the opportunity to meet with families with IDD to address their needs.

Dec. 1, 2023
Stephen Newby

Stephen Newby came to Baylor this summer as the inaugural Lev H. Prichard III Chair in the Study of Black Worship. Dr. Newby brings a background in music, scholarship and ministry to the position, which leads research and scholarship efforts associated with the growth of Baylor’s Black Gospel Music Preservation Program. In this Baylor Connections, he discusses the power of Black worship, Baylor’s efforts to both preserve and share the music for future generations, and the path that led him to Baylor for what he calls his “dream job.”

Nov. 21, 2023
Jenny Howell

What are the connections between food, creation and faith? Jenny Howell serves as director of Baylor’s Theology, Ecology and Food Justice Program, which offers a holistic approach to educate students, ministers, leaders and more on the Church’s role in addressing hunger. In this Baylor Connections, she takes listeners inside Waco’s World Hunger Relief Farm, where her work takes place and models approaches to address hunger globally, analyzes complex issues impacting hunger and considers the role of hope as the Holidays approach.

Nov. 17, 2023
Dustin Benac

Baylor’s Program for the Future Church exists to convene professors and church and community leaders to listen, imagine, and pilot solutions for emerging changes facing the Church. Housed within Truett Seminary, the Program offers resources to connect stakeholders virtually and in-person. In this Baylor Connections, Dustin Benac, Program director and co-founder and author of the book Adaptive Church, takes listeners inside the challenges and opportunities for local churches to serve both the current and future Church together.

Nov. 10, 2023
Sharon Stern

Baylor students can access physicians, nurses, physical therapists, psychiatrists and more through the Baylor Health Center. In this Baylor Connections, Dr. Sharon Stern, medical director for Baylor University Health Services, shares how the University provides for student health and is proactive in meeting needs throughout the year.

Nov. 3, 2023
Lulin Jiang and Charles Dowdell

What if communities could reduce air pollutants in landfills and convert waste into energy? Baylor and the City of Waco are partnering on a competitive project to bring this idea to life. In this Baylor Connections, Lulin Jiang, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, and Charles Dowdell, chief sustainability officer for the City of Waco, share how this partnership could pay dividends for the Greater Waco area.

Oct. 27, 2023
Michael Motta and Luke Simons

Baylor’s men’s and women’s basketball teams enter a new season among the nation’s top 20 teams, lofty rankings that have become the norm for both. The months ahead bring additional anticipation with the opening of Paul and Alejandra Foster Pavilion. What goes into making sure the programs run smoothly? Michael Motta, Assistant Athletic Director for Basketball Operations for Women’s Basketball, and Luke Simons, Director of Operations with Men’s Basketball, know better than anyone. In this Baylor Connections, they take listeners behind the scenes in travel, planning, working alongside coaches Nicki Collen and Scott Drew and more.

Oct. 20, 2023
Jordy Dickey

Experience Baylor Student Activities’ impact with events like Homecoming and Christmas and 5th on the horizon. Jordy Dickey, Director of Student Activities, takes listeners inside campus events, student groups and more, and examines the importance of building student connections to the broader community to enhance their time at Baylor.

Oct. 13, 2023
Kallie Kobold

The Baylor Counseling Center offers a wide array of services and resources to meet the mental health needs of Baylor students. Kallie Kobold is a psychologist and coordinator of outreach in the Counseling Center. In this Baylor Connections, she shares insights from serving students, examines student approaches to mental health and explains how Baylor outreach encourages students to consider their own needs and breaks down stigmas surrounding mental health challenges.

Oct. 6, 2023
Craig Gundersen

Craig Gundersen is an agricultural economist whose game-changing research examines the causes and effects of food insecurity. Gundersen, who serves as the Jim and Tammy Snee Family Chair in Food Security, has developed metrics used by food banks nationwide, and provided research yielding greater understanding of the SNAP program’s impact. In this Baylor Connections, he examines approaches to the fight against food insecurity and shares the path that brought him to Baylor.

Sep. 29, 2023
Kevin Dougherty and Michael Ryan

Graduate students play an important role in Baylor research and teaching, and the mentorship they receive from Baylor professors is significant in preparing them for excellence in both. In this Baylor Connections, a professor and graduate student-Kevin Dougherty, professor of sociology, and Michael Ryan, a sociology Ph.D. student-share their experiences from this distinct time in a student’s life.

Sep. 22, 2023
Daniel Pack

Dr. Daniel Pack was appointed as Dean of Baylor’s School of Engineering and Computer Science (ECS) after a successful tenure as dean at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. In this Baylor Connections, get to know Dr. Pack and learn more about his insights into the school’s research, teaching and future growth.

Sep. 15, 2023
Nancy Brickhouse and Tiffany Hogue

Baylor has started the process to pursue the University’s next strategic plan. Provost Nancy Brickhouse and Chief of Staff Tiffany Hogue serve as co-chairs of the Strategic Planning Group, whose members will walk with the Baylor Family through the comprehensive, year-long process. In this Baylor Connections, they take listeners inside the goals and process of strategic planning, examine the success of Illuminate as Baylor pursues its successor, and examine the pillars that Baylor will follow to elevate the University’s mission and impact on the world.

Sep. 8, 2023
President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

At the start of a new year, President Livingstone examines a variety of topics on this Baylor Connections. The Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center, research momentum, Big 12 expansion, a new strategic plan and the addition of Indy and Belle to the Baylor campus are all on the agenda in this week’s conversation.

Sep. 1, 2023
Kevin Villegas

In his role as Dean of Intercultural Engagement and Division of Student Life Initiatives, Kevin Villegas works with students and colleagues to create a more vibrant, inclusive, and supportive campus environment. In this Baylor Connections, Dr. Villegas examines those efforts, provides insights from his work with students and shares how this work is an expression of the Baylor University mission.

Aug. 25, 2023
Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center

The Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center has arrived, a spectacular new front door to Baylor University. The beautiful, technology-rich facility houses a variety of features and amenities—among them, four columns which offer unique interactive experiences to visitors, an alumni center, ballroom, auditorium, spirit shop, coffee shop, meeting spaces and more. Learn more about the Hurd Welcome Center from Jason Cook, Vice President for Marketing and Communications; Toby Barnett, Interim Vice President for Advancement; and Ross VanDyke, Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management, Marketing and Recruiting, in this Baylor Connections.

Aug. 18, 2023
Major General Joel Carey

Major General Joel Carey serves as Director of Operations, Strategic Deterrence, and Nuclear Integration of the United States Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa, based in Germany. This year, he was recognized as Baylor’s 2023 Alumnus of the Year. In this Baylor Connections, General Carey shares where Air Force service has led him and his family, looks back on his time as a Baylor student and football player, and examines the privilege of working with the men and women of the Air Force.

Aug. 11, 2023
Rebecca Kennedy and Mason Flippin

BearAid is Baylor’s disaster relief outreach team, where students partner with Baylor Spiritual Life to meet needs in Texas and across the country after national disasters like tornadoes, ice storms and floods. In this Baylor Connections, Rebecca Kennedy, Assistant Dean of Spiritual Life, and Mason Flippin, a Baylor senior and BearAid team member, take listeners inside BearAid’s work and mission as they serve neighbors in need.

Aug. 4, 2023
Benjamin Rose

The Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope is NASA’S next flagship mission and offers significant technological advancements to explore the universe. Among those helping to prepare for that mission is a new Baylor faculty member—incoming assistant professor of physics Ben Rose. Rose is one of four leaders on a project infrastructure team preparing for the 2027 launch. In this Baylor Connections, he shares the story of the Roman Telescope and why NASA is investing $11 million in his research team’s work.

Jul. 28, 2023
Richa Sirohi

From a childhood in Nebraska, to Baylor, to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Richa Sirohi pursued her dreams and is achieving significant goals as an engineer. A 2018 Baylor graduate, Sirohi is Baylor’s 2023 Young Alumna of the Year. In this Baylor Connections, Sirohi takes listeners inside her work and shares what it means to serve as a role model for students hoping to follow her footsteps into the STEM fields.

Jul. 21, 2023
Ken Buckley

Baylor students are attaining jobs and grad school positions at an elite rate. The University’s most recent placement rate is 92 percent, and the Baylor University Career Center has played an important role in helping students build a successful approach to their career. Ken Buckley serves as Assistant Vice Provost in the Baylor University Career Center. In this Baylor Connections, he shares how the Career Center partners with students and adds value to their Baylor education.

Jul. 14, 2023
Ryan McManamay

When flooding in Yellowstone stalled a family vacation, Ryan McManamay turned his attention to those impacted by the disaster. McManamay, an associate professor of environmental science at Baylor, earned a grant to survey business owners around the park to determine the floods’ impact on their communities. That data sheds light on the role of natural resources on the communities around them. In this Baylor Connections, he tells the story behind the project and shares a broader vision for the role of places like Yellowstone National Park as critical infrastructure.

Jul. 7, 2023
Cindy Wu and Emily Hunter

What constitutes a good workday break, and how can breaks impact both productivity and health? Cindy Wu and Emily Hunter from Baylor’s Department of Management studied these topics, and their research broke new ground and shattered a few long-held myths. In this Baylor Connections, Wu and Hunter help listeners consider their own workday breaks and how to effectively utilize them for benefits on and off the job.

Jun. 30, 2023
Barbara Walker

A trailblazer, social worker, civil servant and leader, Barbara Walker was Baylor University’s first Black female graduate. This Spring, statues of Walker and Rev. Robert Gilbert, Baylor’s first Black male graduate, were dedicated in front of Baylor’s Tidwell Bible Building. In this Baylor Connections, Ms. Walker shares stories from her time at Baylor and her career in social work, and examines what it means to see a statue which immortalizes her contributions for future generations.

Jun. 23, 2023
Taryn Anderson

Many students and parents have questions about financial aid. One Stop Student Services is Baylor’s resource for financial aid, billing and payment. Earlier this year, they moved to a new location in the Bill Daniel Student Center. In this Baylor Connections, Taryn Anderson, Senior Director for Enrollment Services, shares insights into financial aid, scholarships and more, and invites students and families to utilize One Stop services.

Jun. 16, 2023
Paul Putz

The intersection of faith and sports is where Paul Putz’s research and teaching resides. As Assistant Director of the Faith & Sports Institute at Baylor’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary, he works with both current and future leaders in sports, and his research examines topics ranging from Christian sports organizations to social issues, sports and religion. In this Baylor Connections, Putz considers these topics and more, and shares how his work on James Naismith’s faith led to a connection with the family of the inventor of basketball.

Jun. 9, 2023
Dakota Farquhar-Caddell

This Spring, Baylor announced the upcoming addition of two cubs to campus—Judge Indy and Judge Belle. Indy and Belle are American black bear cubs who will soon call campus home. Dakota Farquhar-Caddell, Associate Director of Student Activities and the Robert Reid Director of the Baylor Chamber of Commerce, oversees the Baylor Bear program. In this Connections, he takes listeners inside the process to find Indy and Belle, shares insights into their personalities and highlights Baylor’s care for Lady as she graduates from campus to her new Baylor home.

Jun. 2, 2023
Paul Martens and Elise Edwards

The Baylor Ethics Initiative is a community of scholars across campus who engage in purposeful conversation to elevate the role of ethics in their research and teaching. Paul Martens, associate professor of ethics, serves as Baylor Ethics Initiative director; Elise Edwards, assistant professor of religion, is co-convener of the Initiative’s Ethics in Leadership working group. In this Baylor Connections, they share how faculty come together to discuss interdisciplinary issues and sharpen a focus on ethics in their work.

May 26, 2023
Daniel Peppe

Daniel Peppe, associate professor of geosciences, is part of an international team whose decade-long research project has shifted Africa’s prehistoric timeline by ten million years. Their revolutionary discoveries were featured in the journal Science and supported by National Science Foundation funding. In this Baylor Connections, Peppe takes listeners to eastern Africa, where multi-disciplinary collaboration yielded insights that have a major ripple effect throughout the scientific community.

May 19, 2023
President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

As another semester draws to a close, Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D., reflects on the 2022-23 year at Baylor and looks ahead to important initiatives and projects on the horizon. In this Baylor Connections, she shares more about next steps in strategic planning, Baylor’s live bear mascots, construction projects like the Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center and Paul and Alejandra Foster Pavilion, the Big 12 Conference and more.

May 12, 2023
Kenyatta Gilbert and Malcolm Foley

In April, Baylor unveiled statues honoring the University’s first Black graduates, Rev. Robert Gilbert and Barbara Walker. Despite physical limitations and the burdens of being a trailblazer, Rev. Gilbert served his hometown of Waco and made an impact far beyond campus. In this Baylor Connections, his son, Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert, expands on his father’s journey and legacy. Dr. Gilbert, professor of homiletics at the Howard University Divinity School, is joined by Rev. Dr. Malcolm Foley, Special Advisor to the President for Equity and Campus Engagement and Director of Black Church Studies at Truett Seminary, sharing more about Baylor’s efforts to tell the University’s complete history and honor trailblazers like Rev. Gilbert.

May 5, 2023
Jessica Beachum and Allison Chew

Narrative as Reality: Constructing an Identity is the newest exhibit at Baylor’s Martin Museum of Art, featuring pieces from the Jessica and Kelvin Beachum Family Collection. The exhibit brings together 21 works of art from 19 artists across the globe, with a focus on human experiences, discovery and expression of oneself. Jessica Beachum, a 2011 Baylor graduate who shared her family’s collection with the University, and Allison Chew, Martin Museum of Art director, take listeners inside the collection on this Baylor Connections.

Apr. 27, 2023
Mitch Neubert

Research within Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business yields insights in business ethics, management, leadership, human behavior and more. Mitch Neubert serves as Senior Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development in Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business, Chavanne Chair of Christian Ethics in Business and Professor Management. In this Baylor Connections, he examines the role of business research at Baylor and takes listeners inside the factors that make Hankamer scholarship distinct in higher education.

Apr. 21, 2023
Michael Trakselis

DNA replication and repair is a constant process with implications for health challenges like cancer, infertility and more. Michael Trakselis, professor of biochemistry and director of graduate affairs in Baylor Chemistry and Biochemistry, is a leading researcher into this process. In this Baylor Connections, Trakselis helps listeners better understand DNA replication and repair and its impact on human health, and examines the impact of graduate program growth on chemistry and biochemistry research.

Apr. 14, 2023
Jared Alcantara

Preparing the next generation of pastors is central to Jared Alcantara’s work at Baylor’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary, and his research advances understanding of cultural engagement, race and ethnicity in preaching. In this Baylor Connections, Alcantara shares more about his role as holder of the Paul W. Powell Endowed Chair in Preaching, highlights figures whose work animates his research, and examines qualities he hopes to nurture in future ministers.

Apr. 7, 2023
Tracey Tevis

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month nationally, and Baylor offers resources and programming to educate and serve students on topics like healthy relationships, boundaries, bystander intervention and more. Tracey Tevis serves as education and prevention specialist in Baylor’s Office of Equity, Civil Rights and Title IX. In this Baylor Connections, Tevis takes listeners inside resources, training opportunities and programming to support a healthy and safe campus community throughout the year.

Mar. 31, 2023
Sara Dolan

National Graduate Student Appreciation Week runs April 3-7 this year, affording the perfect time to celebrate the more than 5,000 graduate students who daily enrich the Baylor campus community. In this Baylor Connections, Sara Dolan, Associate Dean for Professional Development in the Graduate School and longtime psychology professor and researcher, shares how graduate students impact teaching, research and scholarship at Baylor, and examines their impact long after their last class at Baylor.

Mar. 24, 2023
Stephen Reid

How can a university help new members of their community feel like a true stakeholder with a deep sense of belonging? Last fall, Dr. Stephen Reid was appointed as Vice Provost for Faculty Diversity and Belonging. As a Christian research university, Baylor seeks to build a nourishing and hospitable environment that promotes excellence and equity in living out the Baylor mission. In this Baylor Connections, Reid shares both the vision and specific approaches to support underrepresented faculty at Baylor.

Mar. 17, 2023
Rod Sturdivant

Sports analytics as a tool to inspire the next generation of data and statistical scientists—that’s the idea behind a new project, led by Baylor and funded by the National Science Foundation. Rod Sturdivant, associate professor of statistical science and director of Baylor’s Statistical Consulting Center, is a co-principal investigator on the million-dollar project. In this Baylor Connections, Sturdivant shares how students will interact with sports-driven content and examines partnerships with 70 sports teams and five universities to train up a new generation of data and statistical scientists.

Mar. 10, 2023
Nancy Brickhouse

Inside the Office of the Provost at Baylor, the Spring Semester has been a busy season of faculty hiring, infrastructure growth and celebration. In this Baylor Connections, Provost Nancy Brickhouse examines honors like Baylor’s recognition as a Top Fulbright Producing Institution, shares factors that draw prospective faculty to Baylor and highlights research growth across the university.

Mar. 3, 2023
Jason Carter

Jason Carter came to Baylor at the start of the 2022-23 school year to serve as Dean of Baylor’s Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences. In this Baylor Connections, he shares his journey to Baylor, examines Robbins College’s role in health research at Baylor and delves into his own research in sleep and performance.

Feb. 24, 2023
Christie Sayes

“Safety by design” is a focus of Christie Sayes’ work at the intersection of toxicology and materials science. An associate professor of environmental science at Baylor, Sayes uncovers unintended consequences of new materials to promote safer design. In this Baylor Connections, she takes listeners inside products that utilize advanced materials, talks about her research with the U.S. Air Force and unpacks the “lung-on-a-chip” she developed to simulate the lung in real operational environments.

Feb. 17, 2023
Colleen and Davide Zori

Colleen and Davide Zori are Baylor faculty members and archaeologists uncovering history in Italy. Dr. Colleen Zori serves as senior lecturer in the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core in the Honors College and in the Department of Anthropology, and Dr. Davide Zori serves as associate professor of history and archaeology in the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core and Department of History. In this Baylor Connections, the Zoris take listeners inside their research through the San Giuliano Archaeological Research Project, which was featured on the Discovery channel Program Expedition Unknown.

Feb. 10, 2023
Matt Quade

What is the impact of a manager focused solely on the bottom line? How do employees respond to different forms of ethical or unethical leadership? Matt Quade, the Kimberly and Aaron P. Graft Professor in Christian Leadership in Business in the Department of Management, is a prolific researcher into workplace ethics. He takes listeners inside the importance and impact of workplace ethics in this Baylor Connections.

Feb. 3, 2023
Whitney Jones

Every student has a story, and at Baylor’s Center for Academic Success and Engagement (CASE), they get to know those stories as they help students find success and belonging on campus. In this Baylor Connections, Whitney Jones, CASE Senior Director, shares how Baylor helps students develop skills to make the most of their college years and provides resources to connect and engage with others.

Jan. 27, 2023
Kevin Dougherty

Baylor’s Faith and Character Study has yielded insights into student spiritual development that have led to greater understanding and tangible changes to better serve students. Kevin Dougherty, professor of sociology and co-director of the study, takes listeners inside the study on this Baylor Connections, sharing what factors really make a difference in helping students grow spiritually.

Jan. 20, 2023
Jason Cook

In the past year, Baylor has been named one of the nation’s 10 most trusted universities, was recognized among the country’s elite universities for teaching and research and has earned honors for excellence in numerous areas. There’s plenty of exciting news to share at Baylor and Jason Cook, vice president for marketing and communications, talks about the momentum at Baylor, branding the Big 12 and more on this Baylor Connections.

Jan. 13, 2023
Chet Garner

Chet Garner, a 2006 Baylor Law alum, hosts the Emmy Award-winning Texas travel show, The Daytripper. As the face of Baylor’s Bears in the Wild alumni campaign, he encourages alumni around the country to connect with their fellow Bears. In this Baylor Connections, Garner takes listeners inside his Baylor experience, his love for Baylor University and the Lone Star State, and the joys of traveling Texas highways to share hidden gems with viewers.

Jan. 6, 2023
President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

As a new year begins, Baylor University President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D., examines growth at the University over the last year and shares what’s on the horizon. From exciting construction projects on both sides of the interstate to continued momentum in faculty hires, national rankings and recognition, President Livingstone examines how the University keeps mission at the core of the pursuit of greater impact and preeminence as a Christian.