Updating Behrens Residence Hall
Funds from speakLIFE will support updates to Behrens Residence Hall. Behrens Residence Hall has provided a home for students since 1952. In its 70 years, Behrens has provided the space where formative experiences take place—where strangers become best friends, where callings are heard, and where friends turn into family. You can join us in transforming the lives of tomorrow’s Christian leaders! Your prayers, partnership, and financial support are key.
The HSU Impact
Julie (Joiner) Hammer graduated from HSU in 1994 with a Bachelor of Behavioral Science in Interdisciplinary Studies and serves as Children’s and Interim Preschool Minister for FBC Lewisville. A former member of both the Board of Young Associates and the Alumni Association Board of Directors, Julie has been honored with HSU’s Distinguished Alumni Award.
Julie recently shared some of her fondest memories from her time in Behrens Residence Hall. “When I moved into Behren’s Hall, it was the first time I’d lived away from my family or our small town. I knew for a fact Hardin-Simmons was the place God wanted me to be, but I literally knew no one. That said, when I stepped on campus, I instantly felt at home.” Julie shared cheerfully, “I did not have sisters growing up, but suddenly I had a building full of sisters and access to endless closets.”
“My experience in Behrens is not unique to me,” said Julie. Generations of people have learned about the Lord, themselves, and others within the walls of Behrens Hall. For the students who live in Behrens Residence Hall, it is more than just a building, they have an emotional attachment to it. “Behrens Hall was a place we all grew to love—cinderblocks, dorm smell, and all. Ms. Cul, with her iconic style and hospitality, made our dorm a home. The front steps provided a front row seat for everything from friends’ first dates (or break ups) to Cowboy Band serenades.”
Julie continued, “Behrens was the backdrop for a lot of learning. I learned how to study, about friendships, and about other people. I learned about myself and who God made me to be.” Behrens was (and is) a place for building life-long friendships.
Julie and her husband, Clinton, have also sought to give as they’ve been able. “God richly blessed me through Hardin-Simmons University. It is a joy to give to others and share the many blessings I’ve received from HSU. My story isn’t a story about me at all. It’s a story of God’s faithfulness to guide, provide, equip, and bless. I’m so thankful for the years spent at Hardin-Simmons and for the many ways God used HSU to set the trajectory for my life and ministry.”
Hardin-Simmons University Ex, Rebecca (Barlow) Jordan is a bestselling inspirational author who has won two American Christian Writer’s Awards along with the Serious Writer 2021 Book of the Decade Award for her book, Day-votions® for Mothers. Rebecca’s husband, Larry, received a Bachelor of Arts from HSU in 1967. Their daughter Jennifer (Jordan) Hanson received her Bachelor’s degree from HSU in 1995 and her husband, Craig, earned his Doctorate in Physical Therapy from HSU in 2010. In 2008, Hardin-Simmons University proudly recognized Rebecca Barlow Jordan as a recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award.
In her own words, Rebecca shared about her time in Behrens Residence Hall. “I remember a couple of times when Larry and I were dating and we returned to the dorm after curfew. We had to knock on the door and get Miss Culpepper’s attention. Miss Culpepper was a wonderful and gracious Dorm Mother. Whatever we needed, Miss Culpepper was there for us.” Rebecca continued, “Not only did God use HSU to confirm His choice of my life’s mate, and to give me the confidence to serve Him in ministry, but God allowed HSU, the professors and teachers, the classes I took, and the friends I made to continue building a solid foundation in my life.”
“I enjoyed having one-on-one devotions by candlelight with a roommate on the stairs leading to the roof of Behrens Hall. God’s Word became more precious while I was at HSU. God used Hardin-Simmons in my life in some unexpected ways and as I look back through the years to that time. I am so very grateful to God for the things He taught me,” Rebecca remembered fondly. “As I look back, I realize God had a plan all along. Whether we think we know the direction of our future, or even if we don’t have a clue, God does know. And I began to learn a little about that at HSU.”
Rebecca has describes herself as a “day-voted” follower of Jesus. “HSU helped plant the seeds of my yearning for a deeper intimacy with God and my passion to help others. I realize that it’s not how much we accomplish in life that really counts, but how much we give to others. It’s not how many goals we reach, but how many lives we touch.” Rebecca expounded, “Philippians 1:7 says, ‘He who began a good work will complete it until the day of Christ Jesus.’ I’m sure that means He will be completing the work of salvation in all of us. But maybe it also means that God will continue to use our legacies—and the lives God has touched through us. God uses HSU to make a difference for Him.”
You can speakLIFE!
HSU has a goal of raising $4M for updates to Behrens Residence Hall, so future generations can continue to experience and share stories like Julie and Rebecca. Behrens Residence Hall speaks life to those who enter its doors, providing an authentic college experience and a catalyst for lasting memories. Give now, so Behrens can continue to impact the trajectory of students’ lives!