After nearly three decades of teaching at CCU, Dr. Johnny Pressley, professor of Theology, will depart from the university at the end of this semester to relocate and begin a new ministry.

Pressley is best known on campus for teaching the Basic Biblical Doctrines and Christian Ethics classes that all undergraduate students must take, as well as the 14 other graduate courses he teaches.

He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Christian Ministry from Roanoke Bible College in Elizabeth City, North Carolina in 1975, before going to receive his Master of Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey and Master of Divinity from Cincinnati Christian Seminary by 1979.

Finally, he achieved his Doctorate in Philosophy from Westminster Theological Seminary in Glenside, Pennsylvania in 1989. Though he has taught at CCU for 27 years, in total he has 34 years under his belt as a full time professor, starting at Roanoke Bible College, now known as Mid-Atlantic Christian University. During his tenure, Pressley has also served as a Theology Department chair and the Dean of the Graduate School. He’s had a long history of preaching at churches, conferences, and retreats across 23 states and 15 countries. In addition, he’s an avid runner, having completed 19 marathons and a plethora of shorter races.

Having spent so many years at CCU, Pressley has quite a few memories to take with him, but one that stands out among the others is particularly humorous.

“At one of the midnight breakfast talent shows, I was asked to get up on stage and sing a song,” he explained. “So I got up and sang an ‘N Sync song for the students. I’ll never forget that.”

Though some rumors were that he was retiring, Pressley made it clear that he is really starting a new journey as the senior minister at the First Church of Christ in Washington, North Carolina.

It is here that he will spend his final working years, while also making occasional trips to speak at various locations. He indicated that these trips may also bring him back to Cincinnati on occasion.

“This is definitely a combination of ‘goodbye’ and ‘who knows when,’” he said.

In his last few weeks, he leaves CCU with one final sentiment.

“I hope that my legacy is that I taught Bible doctrine as solid and simply as I could,” he said. “My first class I taught was Basic Biblical Doctrine as a graduate student, and it will be the last class I teach. This seems like an appropriate beginning and ending for me.”




Recently, two groups on campus have taken up the task of creating a culture of renewal at CCU.

While they are two separate entities, the CCU Go Green Initiative (GGI) and the new garden built by the England service learning team, are linked by this common goal.

GGI, led by Freshman Zoe Smith, is a student organization working to improve CCU’s education, attitude, and the accessibility to environmentally-friendly choices.

Beginning just one month ago, GGI has already sparked changes around campus.

GGI’s first action was to post signs on paper towel dispensers around campus reminding not to waste paper. Smith said they also plan to get new recycling bins and arrange events to educate students about recycling and sustainable living.

Professor Dave Farris, department chair for the School of Business, is faculty advisor to the Go Green Initiative. Farris has a long-held passion for renewing the things (and people) who are typically deemed “disposable.”

Farris and the 2017 England service learning team he led were inspired after working in a garden in front of a prison visitor’s center in Birmingham, England. The garden was constructed by Dr. Sam Ewell, a missionary working with Christian Missionary Fellowship.

On Community Service Day, a group of about 40 faculty, staff, and students worked together to build a similar garden at CCU, beside Parking Lot 2.

Like the garden in Birmingham, nearly all the materials used would have been thrown away. Many of these materials were collected on campus.

For one year, the garden will lie unplanted while the compost elements break down, after which Farris will plant flowers.

“This garden serves two purposes,” Farris wrote in a post on his blog, daf words. “The first is to finally make that connection between something that we learned in Birmingham and brought home with us. The second is to give ourselves a constant reminder of what it looks like to reincorporate people and things back into the world.”

Smith has agreed to construct a found-object art installation which will act as both a sign and a unique scarecrow for the garden.

“From start to finish, it’s a really hope-filled thing for me,” said Farris.

Farris, Smith, and GGI have many more ideas to build a culture of renewal at CCU.

“We’re just starting something. We’re really hoping this will be a long-term thing that sticks around at CCU and the community, to engage God’s creation,” said Smith.



Last week CCU Seniors Sam Baker, Makenna Granger, Sarah Stacy, Sophomore Rachel Menzel and a few others had the opportunity to work with University of Cincinnati, Xavier University, Mount St. Joseph University, and Northern Kentucky University in a team competition to try to solve problems for some Price Hill businesses with in an event called University Brainsteer Slam.

As a member of the winning team, Menzel will receive $1000.

Sponsored by the Incline Incubator, an organization that helps start new businesses and create jobs in Price Hill, the first-time event was planned and coordinated by CCU’s Entrepreneurial Marketing class.

“The event was put together as a collaboration between the universities but primarily driven by the Incline Incubator and the CCU Entrepreneurial Marketing class,” CCU’s School of Business and Department Chair Professor Dave Farris explained.

Teams of six students mixed across the universities worked Friday night and all day Saturday to research and present a plan solving a challenge outlined by one of the participating businesses.

Local Price Hill businesses — BLOC Coffee House, Primavista Restaurant and Henke Winery — were the three businesses who presented problems for the students to solve.

Each business chose a winning solution to the problem that they had presented. Then the competition continued to declare one student team overall winners.

The winners will get to see their plan implemented into the business in addition to splitting a $6,000 prize.

“Something really nice was that our names got put out there for other businesses. People who are looking for hires have seen our names and it brings attention to the university,” said Menzel, whose team won the prize.

Granger said she would “do it all over again in a heartbeat.”

She added, “Brainsteer was a weekend long event that was one of the most stressful yet rewarding school events I have ever done. “Being the only undergrad in the group it was amazing to be able to work on a business problem with MBA students who work with problems like these all the time in the real world.”

Organizers indicated they hope to repeat the event, next time focusing on business needs in other parts of the city.

This event had so much success that Farris, Baker, and representatives of other universities were interviewed on radio station WVXU.

If you did not get the opportunity to listen in on Wednesday you can follow the link here.



If a whole lot of commotion can be heard at sporting events starting next fall, do not be alarmed. CCU is adding Athletic Band and Cheerleading to its options next semester, as well as the football team returning for its sophomore season.

Despite spring being football’s off season, Head Coach David Fulcher has kept his team focused with spring practices.

“Spring ball has been going well. We finally have the players in here not just to play football, but to practice it as well,” commented Fulcher.

“The mindset of what I’ve been trying to teach these young men is that hard work will pay off,” Fulcher continued.

The football team will split up and face each other in an intrasquad scrimmage tomorrow at Western Hills High School. The game will begin at 2 p.m.

Cheerleading is celebrating its inaugural season, with Katrina Avery as head coach. Avery previously won regional championships in three consecutive seasons.

The Athletic Band will be a welcome addition to the stands at some home football and basketball games next fall.

“We are going to build it around a rhythm section, which would consist of guitar, bass, and drums,” said Ken Read, department chair of Music and Worship.

“If enough percussionists are interested, we will also have a drumline,” added Freshman Sean Steele, a member of the Athletic Band.

“You do not need to be a professional on your instrument to join,” he commented.

Adjunct Percussion Professor Willaim McMullen will direct the band.



CCU’s men’s golfers Senior Taylor Suggs and Junior Austin Taylor garnered accolades this season, with the whole team finishing sixth in the River Side Conference [RSC] with a low-team score of 305.

“We had a really good season. We played probably tougher conditions than last year, but overall I think the guys performed a little bit better than what they did a year ago,” said Head Coach Micah Peavley.

Taylor and Suggs were both first team conference. Taylor placed second in the Cedarville Tournament, while Suggs finished second in the IU Kokomo Invitational and was awarded RSC Player of the Year.

“So the interesting thing about winning conference player of the year this year is that I missed out on qualifying for nationals by one shot,” said Suggs.

“I am still very disappointed by that, but there is still an outside chance that I may receive an at-large bid and still get to go but there’s no guarantee. Winning POTY was a little bit of consolation, so that helped me feel a little better,” he continued.

“In the three years that I’ve been here, that was definitely the best season that we’ve had as a team, just in terms of like finishes in tournaments, like multiple tournaments we came in like second or won it,” said Taylor.

Peavley said they are looking to have about eight to nine players altogether for the golf team in the fall, when they play in the NCCAA.

“We’ll start our fall season immediately so the guys have to come back to school, ready to play probably two weeks after we’re back in school and in the fall, we’ll start playing our first tournament again,” commented Coach Peavley.

“The whole season was quite a success,” said Junior Jonathan Burrows. “It’s time we bring home some metal. Big goals? Go to nationals.”

Tom Thatcher: Man or Myth?


Scotland has the Loch Ness Monster, the Pacific Northwest has Sasquatch, and CCU has Tom Thatcher.

If you have read any of the emails sent by the trustees throughout the year, you are probably familiar with the name.

But who is Tom Thatcher? Why are we just now hearing from him? Does he even really exist? Has anyone ever even seen him?

Dr. Tom Thatcher carries the title of CCU’s Chief Academic Officer and a Professor of Biblical Studies in his email signature. After reaching out to Thatcher through his email, The Eaglette received what appears to be an auto-generated email claiming that Thatcher was unavailable for comment due to him traveling for an “undetermined amount of time.”

“Tom Thatcher? I’m not familiar,” said Interim President David Ray. “I’m pretty much up to date with who all works at the university and to my knowledge there is no one named Tom Thatcher employed here.”

The investigation led to the office of Executive Assistant to the President Wendy Spalding, who is said to be office neighbors with Thatcher. When asked about Thatcher, the usually very cordial and friendly Spalding turned aggressive, even violent.

“You’re barking up the wrong tree,” said Spalding as she reached for the nearest paper weight to throw in attempt to detour us from continuing the investigation. This reporter realized that less conventional methods were required to get the story.

“Oh yes, he’s quite real,” commented CCU’s resident unofficial historian and Biblical Studies Professor Dan Dyke.

When asked why so few people on campus know about Thatcher, Dyke said:

“Let’s just say, I’ve been teaching at this university for 29 years now and I have never personally met Tom Thatcher because the university keeps him hidden.”

“The last time a group of people started asking questions about Thatcher, CCU made some ‘budget cuts’ and those people are no longer here,” Dyke went on to say.

Upon being asked about the supposed chief academic officer, Junior Caleb Crabtree simply asked, “Who is that?”

The Eaglette has recently received a cease and desist order from an anonymous source. “If you value your time at the university you’ll stop this line of investigation, immediately. We would hate for something to happen to you,” the email stated.

It seems that the mystery surrounding the possible existence and role of Tom Thatcher will remain unsolved.

Editor’s note: Since filing this story, The Eaglette reporter Connell has been reported missing. If you have any information on the location of Connell, please let us know. But you might want to also check tomorrow’s date.



*The Eaglette regrets its mistake made previously in the article below. The article has been corrected as of April 28.

CCU is offering a pre-law certificate that could start any student on a path to becoming a lawyer.

All students are qualified to earn this certificate, especially those with open elective hours.

Four courses are required to earn the pre-law certificate, totaling 12 credit hours. The classes are only available once per semester.

Professor Paul Friskney, department chair of arts and sciences, took on organizing the pre-law certificate courses two years ago.

All four courses are taught by Adjunct Professor Bill Frank, who has been practicing law for 29 years. “He has been practicing law locally for awhile. He has a strong network [in the court system],” said Friskney.

Intro to the Legal System will be offered in the 2017 fall semester. Students may attempt Intro to Constitutional Law during the 2018 spring semester.

Business Law and Non-Profit Law take place the following two semesters. It is not required that these courses be taken in the order above, but Friskney advises it.

“Intro to the Legal System will be the discovery of the legal system on a national and state level,” said Friskney. “Intro to Conservative Law will begin to focus more on the specifics.”

In Conservative Law last year, CCU alum Perry Moore and Senior Christy Hiance had the opportunity to present arguments regarding the Little Sisters of the Poor v. Burwell case to Honorable Robert C. Winkler, judge of the Court of Common Pleas for Hamilton County.

“This is one example of how the CCU pre-law program will continue exposing students to the actual practice of law,” said Frank.

CCU has already had one student go on to pursue law degree at the Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University.

If you are interested in pursuing CCU’s pre-law certificate, contact your student advisor or Paul Friskney.