Hastings College students just crowned their 2014 Homecoming Royalty, naming Jayden Kauk from Farwell, Nebraska, Homecoming Queen and Carson Blum from Hildreth, Nebraska, Homecoming King. Alex Hedlund from O’Neill, Nebraska, and Isaac Mertens from Juniata, Nebraska, are the 2014 Homecoming Princess and Prince. Additional biographical information for all the royalty is below in alphabetical order.
Selected by a vote of the student body, the Hastings College Homecoming finalists are in their junior year. The royalty were announced at a dinner on Friday, September 26 in the Hastings City Auditorium.
Throughout the week, students have enjoyed competitions among members of various organizations and students living in residence halls, including bed races, skits, and a campus banner competition.
The fun continues this weekend with the Bronco Gallop 5K or 1 mile run/walk, the 63rd Melody Round-Up Parade through downtown Hastings, home games for the Hastings College Bronco Men’s Soccer, Women’s Soccer and Football teams and Hastings College Sunday at First Presbyterian Church of Hastings. The festivities conclude with the Mile Nebraska AIDS Walk on Sunday.
2014Hastings College Queen Candidate Finalists
Brooke Appelhans, a chemistry major from Sterling, Colorado, is the daughter of David and Brenda Appelhans. She serves as Co-President of Student Health Advisory Council (SHAC) and on the Marketing Committee of Active Minds. She is a member of the American Chemistry Society (ACS), Omicron Delta Kappa where she serves as Secretary and the Student Senate where represents the Sciences. She is a member of the Alpha Phi Sigma sorority and has served as its community service representative. She has served as the Altman Dorm Council Member at Large and the Head Desk Sitter. She is currently the ACS speaker coordinator.
Haley Gebers, an Agri-Business major from Nora, Nebraska, she is the daughter of David and Sherry Gebers. She is a dean’s list student, who is currently serving as the Secretary for Agvocates and taking part in the Business & Economics Talent Pool. For two years, she was a member of the Hastings College Lady Broncos Women’s Basketball team. She has been named a National Scholar Athlete. She is an active member at Salem Lutheran Church and a member of the Harry Huge Foundation.
Alex Hedlund from O’Neill, Nebraska, is the daughter of Dr. Michael and Carol Hedlund. A dean’s list student, she is active with HC Media Online, currently serving as webmaster and previously serving as social media director. Alex is a member of Lambda Pi Eta communications honorary, Society for Collegiate Journalists, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The web communication design major with a minor in communication studies and visual media played on the Bronco Volleyball team for two seasons.
Laura Hurley, a psychology major from Omaha, Nebraska, is the daughter of Timothy and Julie Hurley. She is a dean’s list student, who serves as Co-President of Student Health Advisory Council (SHAC). This is her second year as a member of the Psi Chi Honorary where she serves as Historian. She is a Student Senate member, representing the Honor Houses. She has served as Resident Hall Assistant for Altman Hall and served on its hall council. She is a photographer for the Collegian, HCMedia Online and the Bronco Yearbook. Laura is Co-President of Alpha Omega and has also served as the sorority’s secretary since becoming a member. This is her first year serving on the Inter-Greek Council. She was the recipient of the Alpha Chi Outstanding Sophomore of the Year.
Jayden Kauk from Farwell, Nebraska, is the daughter of Randy and Marcia Kauk. A biology major, she is a member of Beta Beta Beta, the biology honorary. For three years, Jayden has been a member of the Bronco Cheer team and currently serves as the team’s captain. Additionally, she is a member of the Student Alumni Ambassadors, Rush Chair for Chi Omega Psi sorority and an admissions tour guide.
Libby Kissinger, an education major from Hastings, Nebraska, is the daughter of Randy and Susan Kissinger. She is a dean’s list student, who is involved with the Student Education Association as a community service representative. She is in her third year as a member of the Hastings College Bronco Volleyball team.
Anna Lichti, an advertising and public relations major from Shickley, Neb., she is the daughter of Tim and Judy Lichti. She is a dean’s list student, who has served as a Student Senator and is currently Co-Chair of the Student Association Executive Council’s Banquet Committee. This is her second year as a member of the Society of Collegiate Journalists. She has served on Taylor Hall Dorm Council, Bronco Yearbook and the Collegian. She has served as an HC Media Account Manager and is currently the HCMedia Co-Advertising Director. This is her third year as a member of the Women’s Choir and Fellowship of Christian Athletes and her first year as a member of Alpha Omega sorority.
Chelsey Morten, an education major from Holdrege, Nebraska, is the daughter of Kelly and Angie Morten. A dean’s list student, she is a member of the Lady Bronco Women’s Basketball team and earned All-Nebraska NAIA Honorable Mention in 2013.
Kelli Poplau, a biology major from Hastings, Nebraska, she is the daughter of Mike and Kim Poplau. She is a dean’s list student, who serves as the New Student Days Planning Committee Co-Chair, the microbiology lab manager, an admissions tour guide, a member of Student Association Executive Council and a member of Alpha Omega sorority. Kelli was the Resident Hall Assistant for Taylor Hall and served on the hall council. She is the recipient of the Alpha Chi Outstanding First Year Student Award and the Frederick H. Mattes Chemistry Achievement Award. Kelli is a member of the Beta Beta Beta biology honorary and serves as the historian. She has volunteered at Catholic Social Services and EDGE as a Catholic Youth Group Leader.
Mollie Strain, a psychology major from Rapid City, South Dakota, is the daughter of James and Debora Strain. She is a dean’s list student, who is involved with Psi Chi psychology honorary and Alpha Chi academic honorary. Previously, she was a member of Active Minds and Co-President of the Student Education Association. This is her second year serving as Co-Chair of the Student Association Executive Council’s Banquet Committee. She has served on Resident Hall Council, as Resident Assistant for Altman Hall and Copy Editor for the student-run Collegian newspaper. This is her third year as a member of the Alpha Omega sorority and her first as Co-President. Additionally, she is a member of Inter-Greek Council.
2014 Hastings College King Candidate Finalists
Justin Arends, a communication studies major and music minor from Grand Island, Nebraska, is the son of Todd and Leonida Arends. A member of the Hastings College Choir who has participated in other vocal ensembles and in theatre productions, he is a member of the National Association for Music Education and served as the local chapter’s treasurer in his sophomore year. Additionally, he is a member of Lambda Pi Eta communications honorary. Justin is the social science representative in the Student Senate and Vice President of Social Affairs for Pi Rho Sigma fraternity. His community service included teaching English as a second language at the Hastings Literacy Program and volunteering with the Heartland Pet Connection.
Lane Baker, a sociology and criminal justice major from Hebron, Nebraska, is the son of Steve and Jill Baker. He is a dean’s list student who has been a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes for three years. He was a member of the Bronco Football team for two years and is now a member of the Bronco Men’s Basketball team.
Carson Blum, the son of Dale and Jacqueline Blum, is from Hildreth, Nebraska. An accounting major, Carson is a member of the Bronco Men’s Basketball team and served as Co-Chair for the 2014 New Student Days Committee. He was previously a resident assistant in Bronc Hall and a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
Leland Dexter, a business administration major from Casper, Wyoming, is the son of Nathan and Nadine Dexter. A dean’s list student, he is Co-President of Pi Rho Sigma fraternity, involved with the leadership at the Bronco Apartments and a member of the Bronco Men’s Tennis team, earning all-conference honors. Leland is a member of Omicron Delta Epsilon leadership honorary, Lambda Pi Eta communication honorary and the Inter-Greek Council. He has volunteered with Catholic Social Services and the English Language Learning Center in Hastings.
Tyler Donovan, a theatre and advertising/ public relations major from Thornton, Colorado, is the son of Terrance Donovan, Jr. and Laura Donovan. President of the Alpha Psi Omega theatre honorary, he has been active in campus theatre productions and interned with the Scottsbluff (Nebraska) Repertory Theatre and the Des Moines Metro Opera. Tyler received the 2014 HC Theatre Scarlet Mask Award, the Hal Shiffler Memorial Scholarship and the Harold Shiffler Award for Unique and Lasting Influence in Theatre at Hastings College. He is a Resident Assistant in Weyer Hall and a Student Senator.
Derek Kissinger, an accounting major from Minden, Nebraska, is the son of Brian and Amy Kissinger. Now in his third year as a member of the Hastings College Bronco Men’s Basketball team, he previously was a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
Matt Kissinger, an exercise science major from Hastings, Neb., is the son of Randy and Susan Kissinger. He is a dean’s list student who was a member of the Bronco Football team for two years.
Isaac Mertens, the son of Robert and Lisa Mertens, is from Juniata, Nebraska. An accounting major, he has served as Treasurer of the Artist Lecture Series Student Symposium Committee for two years and currently serves as the Student Association Treasurer. Isaac is a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and President of the Professional Business Leaders club. He has held leadership positions in Altman Hall and the Bronco Apartments. For three years, Isaac has played for the Bronco Men’s Tennis team and been named to the dean’s list. He has taught at Faith Lutheran Church in Hastings for three years.
Aaron Pierce, an English secondary education major from Cozad, Nebraska, is the son of Harvey and Shelly Pierce. A dean’s list student and member of the Bronco Forensics team, he is active in theatre productions, serves as music director for the student-run KFKX radio station and a peer educator with the Peer HIV Educators Organization (PHIVE-O). Aaron is also a member of Alpha Psi Omega theatre honorary, Sigma Tau Delta English honorary, the Student Environmental Action Coalition (SEAC) and Radical Notion. He was named the Alpha Chi Outstanding Sophomore Male Student; published in the Spectrum, the student literary magazine; and honored as the Outstanding First Year Speaker for the Bronco Forensics team. His community service includes sitting on the Hastings Family Planning Education Committee.
Ian T. Tuttle, a physics and math major from Greeley, Colorado, is the son of Wes and Amy Tuttle. A dean’s list student, he has been active in campus Christian ministries including the Chapel Committee, Chapel Band, Revive, the Christian ministry program and the Religious Organizations Committee. Named Alpha Chi Outstanding First Year Male Student, Ian helped found Mu Chi Phi fraternity, earned a physics awards, participated in the Hastings College Band and Hastings College Choir and served on the Weyer Hall Council. He is a member of Omicron Delta Kappa leadership honorary and College Acquaintance Rape Educators (CARE) peer education group. His community service includes helping with youth and college groups at Lakeside Community Church in Hastings.