News Briefs

April 7, 2020
Spring 2020 - law students revisit Boston Massacre trial of 1770

History, law students revisit Boston Massacre trial of 1770

To commemorate the Boston Massacre’s 250th anniversary, faculty members in the Department of History in the College of Arts and Sciences and Baylor Law School partnered in an interdisciplinary mock trial of the two British soldiers found guilty of manslaughter in 1770. 

Two professors, who have collaborated on previous projects, made the mock trial a reality in March. Gerald Powell, BA ’74, JD ’77, Master Teacher and The Abner V. McCall Professor of Evidence, had his students working with students of Dr. Julie Sweet, professor of history, to put on the retrial. Sweet is teaching a class this semester called The Boston Massacre Trials.  

The repercussions of the trials had an enormous impact on what would become the United States and its legal system. Powell said that people in those days viewed trial by jury as a guardian against an oppressive government and a guarantee of their liberty.

What made this event different from a simple reenactment of the original trial is the element of uncertainty that was introduced, since the mock trial jurors were not bound to come to the same conclusion as the jury did in 1770. Instead, the jury could choose whatever verdict they felt was justified by the arguments and historical evidence presented in court. 

Students, alumnus earn major academic honors

Lawson Sadler, a senior University Scholar from San Antonio, is one of 46 American college students to earn a prestigious 2020 Marshall Scholarship. The honor annually brings American students to the United Kingdom to study; thanks to the award, Sadler will continue her studies after Baylor at the University of Sussex, where she will pursue a master’s in migration and global development. She plans to return to the United States for law school.

Senior political science major Gabbi Mucerino was awarded a 2020 Charles B. Rangel Graduate Fellowship, which is funded by the U.S. Department of State and supports top students pursuing a career in foreign service. The Lakewood, Colorado, native is the first Baylor student to receive this highly competitive national award, which will fund her graduate studies at a school yet to be determined.

Zane Zovak, BA ’18, was named to the 2021 Class of Schwarzman Scholars, one of the world’s most prestigious graduate fellowships located at Schwarzman College at Tsinghua University in Beijing. The fellowship will allow Zovak to pursue a master’s degree in global affairs. Zovak is one of 145 Schwarzman Scholars who were selected from more than 4,700 applicants.

Inaugural Family and Faith Film Festival Brings Hollywood to Waco, Baylor

Organizers of the inaugural two-day Waco Family & Faith International Film Festival rolled out the red carpet for members of the Waco, Baylor and Central Texas communities.

The family friendly event brought more than 70 national and international films to the city Feb. 6-8. The festival is designed to leverage the power of storytelling to open hearts and minds and have a positive impact on the film industry by presenting more diverse voices, Dr. Tyrha M. Lindsey-Warren, founder and lead producer, said.

Screenings and associated events, including workshops, live music performances, community gatherings and “film and faith soul sessions,” were hosted at venues throughout the city and on Baylor’s campus. A majority of the films — including the Waco premiere of Miracle in East Texas — were screened at the Waco Hippodrome. 

Lindsey-Warren, clinical assistant professor of marketing at Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business, said the initial response to the festival was overwhelming but inspiring since the organization received many high-quality submissions.

Learn more at


Spring 2020 - Truett Hosts Science and Christian Ministry Conference

Truett Hosts Science and Christian Ministry Conference 

Baylor ’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary presented the Science and Christian Ministry Conference, Feb. 24-25, featuring four national speakers who addressed topics that pastors and churches encounter in their ministries. 

Dr. Kimlyn Bender, professor of Christian theology, said Truett Seminary received a $75,000 Science for Seminaries grant from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The grant is part of a larger project to integrate science into the Seminary’s core curriculum.

“The conference is focused on helping pastors and seminarians in training, as well as all interested persons, speak responsibly and knowledgably about issues in science that directly impact Christian life and ministry today,” Bender said.

The conference speakers highlighted four main topics in the workshops and lectures: Science and the Bible; Pastoral Care and Mental Illness; Engaging the World and Stewardship of Creation; and the Relationship of Theology and Natural Science.

The featured speakers were Dr. Jonathan Moo, Whitworth University in Washington; Dr. Nancey Murphy, Fuller Seminary in Houston; Dr. Matthew Stanford, CEO of the Hope and Healing Center & Institute; and Dr. John Walton, Wheaton College in Illinois.

To view the Science and Christian Ministry lectures, visit

Tips to keep your data secure

Baylor joined with the National Cyber Security Alliance to focus on global data privacy awareness during the annual Data Privacy Day (Jan. 28), an effort to raise awareness about data privacy, security and trust issues. 

Doug Welch, BBA ’90, Baylor’s chief privacy officer, says marketers and hackers are constantly looking for new ways to collect data. He said awareness and diligence regarding online and smartphone activity is essential, and he offers seven steps people can take to help protect their personal data.

  1. Turn off or limit location sharing on your smartphone apps.
  2. The most commonly used web browsers have a “private” mode. Use it. 
  3. Enable “Do Not Track” mode. 
  4. Manage your Google account settings. 
  5. Turn off your microphone. 
  6. Manage cookies on websites you visit and delete your browsing history and cookies on all your devices. 
  7. Don’t create unnecessary accounts. 
More information on privacy settings can be found at