“Ouachita Voices” commemorates university’s 125th anniversary

As Ouachita celebrates its 125th anniversary, Ouachitonians around the globe can enjoy a new piece of literature commemorating the many memories, traditions and other qualities that make this university what it is – a higher education institution committed to excellence in the task of combining faith and learning to produce well-rounded graduates as they begin the next chapter of their lives.

“In honor of Ouachita’s 125th anniversary, we wanted to publish a commemorative book that offers a fresh perspective of Ouachita’s rich legacy and bright future,” said Trennis Henderson, vice president for communications. “The book is designed to be an approachable, engaging account of Ouachita’s history with lots of photographs and personal anecdotes.”

For Ouachita’s centennial anniversary, Dr. Michael Arrington wrote a chronological account of the university’s first 100 years. In contrast, the new anniversary book’s “primary focus is a series of first-person essays telling the Ouachita story from individual perspectives,” Henderson said.

“As readers explore the content, design and quality of “Ouachita Voices,” it hopefully will become a treasured addition to their home, office or dorm room.”

“Ouachita Voices” includes the testimonies of various faculty members and students, both past and present, including Gov. Mike Huckabee, Terry Jones, one of the founding members of the Christian singing group Point of Grace, and Cliff Harris, a member of the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor.

The reflection features six chapters: Historical Voices, Presidential Voices, Alumni Voices, Faculty Voices, Trustee Voices and Voices of the Future.

Jacob Lively, president of Ouachita’s Student Senate and one of the Voices of the Future, was asked last fall to give his account of his Ouachita experiences.

“I was asked to sort of give an overview of what Ouachita meant to me along with just giving people an overview of what campus was like today,” Lively said. “One of the defining moments of my life was choosing to come to Ouachita. My essay [takes a look] at how Ouachita has impacted my life and provides a snapshot of what type of students Ouachita is trying to create.”

In a lecture he gave to business students last week, Frank Hickingbotham, former Ouachita student and namesake of the Hickingbotham School of Business, praised the book, suggesting it is a great pastime to reflect on the traditions and history of the university.

“This will come to be one of the great historical documents in the archives. It is beautifully written, well presented and I know you will come to love it,” Hickingbotham said. “This is a marvelous book.”

Working alongside Henderson for the past several months was Brooke Zimny, assistant director of communications.

“Mr. Henderson has completed a tremendous task in presenting this unique history,” Zimny said. “We each have our own Ouachita stories and I think it is very fitting at this important time in our history for us to look back through Ouachitonians’ own eyes at the university we all love.”

Thanks to a generous donation from Hickingbotham to underwrite production costs, “Ouachita Voices” can be purchased for $29.95 plus tax in the campus bookstore, online or in the communications office.

Picture by Bekah Hall.

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