SMU kicks off the 2014 holiday season with Celebration of Lights Monday, Dec. 1

Habitat for Humanity

SMU kicks off the 2014 holiday season with Celebration of Lights Monday, Dec. 1

celebration-of-lights-01-135x100ratioWith Christmas coming soon, SMU kicks off the holiday season with a number of campus events. From annual traditions to commencement ceremonies, the University offers many opportunities to celebrate the spirit of the season.

  • Celebration of Lights: Following Thanksgiving Break, SMU kicks off the winter holiday season with the 2014 Celebration of Lights Monday, Dec. 1, 7 p.m., on the Main Quad. Lighting the University Christmas Tree and the Main Quad, the University community will gather together to sing seasonal songs, enjoy live performers and hear the Christmas story ready by SMU President R. Gerald Turner.
  • Christmas Worship Service: SMU’s Perkins School of Theology celebrates its Christmas Worship Service Thursday, Dec. 4, at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. in Perkins Chapel. Under the theme “…waiting…hoping…”, Diva Dolce from Meadows School of the Arts and the Chancel Choir from Advent Lutheran Church directed by Peyton Strouth ’08 join Stefan Engels, professor of organ and Meadows’ Leah Fullinwider Centennial Chair in Music Performance, and the 40-voice Seminary Singers for a special performance. Next, Perkins Dean William Lawrence will preside with narration prepared by Professor of Christian Worship Mark Stamm. This service will honor composer and former instructor Jane M. Marshall on the occasion of her 90th birthday. For more information, email Professor C. Michael Hawn.

Research Spotlight: Cox study finds mortgage default minimal for Habitat homeowners

Stock photo of foreclosure signsAt a time when most lenders are overwhelmed by crushing caseloads of delinquent home loans and foreclosures, Habitat for Humanity International is telling a different story.

Habitat for Humanity is the Americus, Georgia-based nonprofit company that builds thousands of homes for lower-income Americans each year. Habitat also originates mortgages on the homes and, in most cases, holds the loans on its books. In 2010, it ranked as the one of the nation’s largest builders, constructing nearly 4,600 new homes nationwide. The group also fixed up and resold more than 1,400 homes.

Most of Habitat’s borrowers have household incomes below their area’s median income – a population often at risk for foreclosure. Yet Habitat says foreclosures are minimal.

A recent study led by SMU’s Cox School of Business, which was commissioned by the Dallas branch of Habitat, found that foreclosures in Habitat’s Dallas market were less than 2% last year. Although the report only looked at the Dallas office of Habitat, the findings mirror those found in other Habitat offices across the country, the organization says.

As politicians and economists disagree on whether and to what degree lower-income Americans should be encouraged to own homes – some even blame lenders’ outreach to lower-income borrowers for the housing collapse – the case of Habitat indicates these borrowers can receive mortgages without high default levels.

> Read the full story by Dawn Wotapka at The Wall Street Journal online

April 27, 2011|Research|
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