I have started a list of positive things that are happening at Methodist, and the list is growing so quickly that I decided to share a number of them at one time, creating a “top eleven list.”
11. I saw Alex Socinski on campus several times this week and each time we talked about his Semester at Sea experience this summer. I call that look the “smile of discovery,” as Alex came back a different person, possessing a new-found perspective on the world and a better sense of who he is as a global citizen in this world. I hope many members of our community will take the time to talk with Alex about his journey—a journey made possible because of his time at Methodist.
10. As I was working in my office this morning, a group of ROTC cadets ran by during their morning exercise and chanted, “Good morning, Dr. Hancock.” What a great time to be at Methodist and in the United States of America. The future of our country is in good hands.
9. At the Wednesday Chapel Service this week, a student commented on how excited she was with the creation of the Student Alumni Association on campus. Here we have a group of students who are already excited about being graduates of MU. Amazing!
8. Enrollment Vice President Rick Lowe commented at yesterday’s Cabinet meeting that he has the best group of Student Ambassadors (formerly known as tour guides) ever. As he mentioned their names, other Cabinet members noted that these are the same students who are serving as peer mentors and campus leaders for a whole host of organizations. Our students are fully engaged and making us proud.
7. Academic Dean Del Crisp shared an article with me that featured a jacket from a new book co-authored by our own Christopher Cronin entitled, Mormons in American Politics: from Persecution to Power. What timely research and publication! Congratulations, Chris.
6. Zack Sweet spoke at the Freshman Convocation today about his amazing Center for Community Engagement experiences. This pathway of the MU Journey has transformed Zack, and his outlook on citizenship and his future career.
5. Nyomaclement Nicknora spoke at the Freshman Convocation today about his experience this summer as a volunteer in South Sudan, creating a library for school children. His testimonial for the Center for Global Education was inspirational, and challenges each of our students to consider studying abroad and being more involved with other cultures.
4. Jennifer Perez also spoke to students at the Freshman Convocation about her work in the Lura S. Tally Center for Leadership Development. She spoke of her personal journey during her time at Methodist where her leadership experiences have increased her confidence.
3. Erin Fegley asked the students at Freshman Convocation if they had ever wanted to spend time with a teacher on research, and a number of hands went up. She went on to talk about the Center for Undergraduate Research and Creativity and how the University helped create opportunities to have hands-on opportunities.
2. I had the opportunity to attend the memorial service for Lura Cowles Self Talley yesterday, and was so moved by the tribute. What an amazing woman who meant so much to North Carolina and the people she served, mentored, and inspired. We are so fortunate to have our leadership center named in her honor, and to know that so many individuals in this community and beyond consider this one of the most significant ways to recognize her life of public service and caring.
1. Debbie and I attended Wrightsboro United Methodist Church this past Sunday at the invitation of Rev. Dr. Jerry, ’75 and Annette Jackson. What an amazing experience. We enjoyed their service, complete with a wonderful choir and praise and worship band, and taking advantage of all the latest technology. The level of engagement by the members of the congregation through this progressive and inspirational service was unparalleled and we left not only with renewed optimism for the future of the Methodist Church but also a sense of longing to return soon to enjoy the genuine hospitality and spirit of God that filled the sanctuary.
Eleven current and past members of the MU family. Eleven stories under one university banner. Eleven opportunities for engagement worth celebrating. Eleven reasons why “I have the best job in America!”
This weekend the long run is 16 miles. (I won’t share how long it takes me to cover this distance!) Five weeks from this Sunday I will be in Chicago for the 26.2 mile race. What was I thinking?
I mentioned in last week’s blog entry that I would begin a “morning walk” around campus and invited anyone who would like to join me. On Thursday, September 6, at 6:30 a.m., I will be making a loop around campus. Please feel free to join me, no matter what your pace, as I will make a point of walking this particular course which may amount to about a 5K. We will start at the entrance to my driveway across from the Nimocks Center.