I’m Not Supposed to Be Here

Every student has a story. All you have to do is ask.

One of my favorite things to do each day is to eat in the dining hall with the students. Usually (and much to their initial chagrin) I will just approach a group of unsuspecting students who are eating and engaged in conversation, and simply say, “May I join you?”  I’m sure they are thinking, “What do you say to the president of our university other than, ‘Of course!’”

As one might expect, conversations usually begin with information about home towns and majors and then progress to discussions about how the semester is going. And they could easily end at that point as the students politely excuse themselves to head off to class. But if the conversation continues a little longer, I find that the students are more than willing to tell you “their story,” and open up to tell you why they are at Methodist. I find these to be some of the most fascinating conversations of my day.

One such meeting occurred recently over lunch. I noticed a student eating by himself so I invited myself to join him. After exchanging pleasantries, and understanding that I was not going to leave lunch without more of a conversation, this student stated, “I’m not supposed to be here.” I asked him to tell me more.

It seems that at an early age this student had some medical difficulties that led his physician to indicate to his family that he would never be able to do certain things. These included going to college or playing sports. What this doctor didn’t take into consideration was the power of a loving family and the personal drive of this student who was committed to succeeding. He went on to tell me that the day he received his acceptance letter to Methodist, he went to see the family doctor and showed him his letter. Yes, he was going to college, and yes, he was going to play football.

There are many stories like this one that I am privileged to hear as president, just by asking. I often say that I have the best job in America – because of having the best students in America. Every student has a story, and I find that they come to our University because of the opportunity to write the next chapter in their story. What Methodist does so well is provide opportunities for students to succeed. Many of them have hurdles to overcome – and one by one they learn that MU is committed to their success and to helping them create their own personal journey.

More than 40 years ago, as a first-generation college student with many hurdles to overcome, I, too, felt that “I’m not supposed to be here.” What made the difference in my journey were wonderful faculty mentors, capable staff, and engaging classmates who brought out the best in me. It’s amazing how little has changed in over four decades. The things that mattered to me still matter to today’s students.

So here’s my answer to these students who might say, “I’m not supposed to be here.” I say, “Welcome. You are supposed to be here. We have been waiting for you and are prepared to provide you with an amazing journey.”

Every student has a story. I am so fortunate to be president at a place that is so student-centered and provides opportunities for students to tell their stories and write the next chapter based on their MU experience.

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Game Day

There is something special about a Saturday in September on a university campus. Such was the case this past weekend when MU hosted its home opener in football, along with soccer matches for our women’s and men’s teams. The campus community, alumni, parents, and other visitors saw our university at its best. Our new students were introduced to “Game Day” and all the excitement. School spirit was abundant, as everyone watched the teams, marching band, cheer squad, and dancers.

DSC_0077Saturday was also “Gwen and Tim Holtsclaw Day,” recognizing their service to the university and community. One of my favorite things to do is to thank people, so what a wonderful occasion to celebrate the ways the Holtsclaws have contributed to Methodist and made it a better place.

This has been a wonderful opening of the year for Methodist University. We have witnessed a record enrollment and our highest number of residential students, who will enjoy the many activities that are available to all members of the campus community. To see these same students enjoy their university experience as they begin their educational journey and create lifelong friendships with classmates, teammates, and roommates is something to behold. They will remember their experiences during the first weeks of college and be loyal Monarchs forever.

At the end of the football game (after Methodist defeated Guilford, 41-34), new MU Football Head Coach C.J. Goss started a new tradition. He asked the football team, band, cheer squad and dancers to gather in the end zone. After the playing and singing of the alma mater, he asked me to address the group. I congratulated them on their victory and their perseverance, but most important, I thanked them for being such wonderful representatives of our university as they conducted themselves with class throughout the contest. The fans, including their families and fellow students, were very proud of them. And what a thrill to see a new tradition started and such a wonderful, positive experience shared.

It made a Game Day to remember and relationships to enjoy for a lifetime.

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It’s People That Matter

During my time as Methodist’s president, I have often remarked that a “culture of excellence” is best ensured by the acts of signature people. This has never been more true as we begin the fall semester.

During New Student Orientation and through subsequent email messages and letters, I have received so many compliments from new students, families, and other visitors about our University. While they have been very impressed with the physical improvements we continue to make to the campus, what impresses them the most are the people at Methodist. Admissions and financial aid staff, student tour guides, faculty members, business office staff, student affairs staff, and coaches have all made a difference.

Compliments have been specific and in detail, and include one of our housekeeping staff members introducing herself to the family and offering to be of assistance. This family was simply “blown away” by the genuine hospitality and sense of caring that was expressed at every turn. As one mother of a new student told me, there are many good colleges between our home in New York and here in North Carolina, but it was the people who brought us here and why our son decided on Methodist.

officerJ

During last week’s Opening Convocation, I had the pleasure of awarding the University Medallion to Lorenzo Josephs who is the “official greeter” at the entrance to campus. His warm welcome and positive attitude epitomizes MU hospitality, and was worth singling out through this award that recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to our community. Mr. Josephs received a standing ovation from a packed Linda and Ralph Huff Concert Hall audience, as we all called out his favorite phrase, “I hope you have a nice day.”

It is not by accident that Methodist University will witness a record enrollment this year. It will be directly because of the people here who make a difference. People matter to prospective students and their families. People matter to visitors. People matter to all of us who want to transform the lives of students who enter our gates and are welcomed by Mr. Josephs. That’s the Methodist way, and that’s why I have the best job in America – because we at Methodist have the best people in America.

 

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A Monarch Heart

Thai2Earlier this summer, Debbie and I joined University Chaplain and Vice President Mike Safley on an extraordinary trip to Thailand. Two years in the making, we were not disappointed in any aspect of the journey.

Many members of the Methodist family are unaware of our deep roots in Thailand. Since the 1970’s we have attracted students from this beautiful country – a tradition that continues today as one of our current students, Noon Kantapasara is benefiting from a Methodist education. Noon was home for the summer, and we had the pleasure of meeting her father and sharing stories about Methodist.

The Thai people are known for their hospitality, and our hosts for the visit, two Methodist alumni, Kreetha Matitanaviroon ’74, and Kittinant Cholwibul ’74, far exceeded our expectations. We had an opportunity to meet other alumni and friends, including Suthathip “Benz” Suanmali ’02, who was our first United World College graduate and presently serves as Assistant Professor at Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology (SIIT) in Bangkok. Benz hosted a meeting for us with the leadership of the Institute, and we shared information about our two universities.

A highlight of the trip was a dinner held with our alumni and friends and hosted at Kittinant’s (Kit’s) restaurant. It was so wonderful to have traveled half way around the world and feel so much at home.

During one of our many excursions hosted by Kreetha, Mike Safley asked his former roommate why he had such strong feelings for Methodist University, which were so clearly evident, as he shared story after story of his undergraduate days on campus. Kreetha’s response was, “Heart of a Monarch.” He went on to talk about his transformational experience here, as everyone at Methodist was so welcoming, even though his language, food, and culture were so different. This had such a profound impact on him that he coined a phrase that has stayed with him to this day, as he feels it is his duty to “give back” and continue the tradition of the Heart of the Monarch.

This morning I greeted the new group of approximately 50 international students joining our community, and as they introduced themselves and mentioned their country of origin, I couldn’t help but think of Kreetha and how some 40 years ago he was sitting in a similar place, experiencing Methodist (and the U.S.) for the first time. We hope they will all have transformational experiences and leave with “A Monarch Heart.” Hopefully, they too will make a difference in this world based on the education, perspective, and life-long relationships they will develop here at Methodist.

 100 Partnerships

 As a result of our visit to SIIT an agreement is being developed between SIIT (as a part of Thammasat University) and Methodist University that will include faculty and student exchanges. We look forward to moving forward with this program once the memorandum of understanding (MOU) is finalized, creating opportunities as early as the 2014-15 year for our two institutions to benefit from this partnership. And through our outreach to our alumni and friends in Thailand, we will expand our recruitment efforts to attract future Thai students to Methodist so they can benefit from an MU education. We look forward to these partnerships and all they will do to further our university-wide commitment to global education.

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There’s Something Going On Behind That Wall

Photograph08I have been delighted by the many comments the University has received from community people, alumni, parents, students, employees, and visitors about the new brick wall and banners that are visible along Ramsey Street. These streetscape improvements have “dressed up the campus” and resulted in many more people noticing the University than ever before.

While the brick wall, banners, and landscaping represent modest improvements at best, they suggest that “something new is going on behind that wall,” and that has people talking. The substance of these improvements is far from modest and represents the hard work of the campus and the support of the Board of Trustees and many other friends of the University. One only has to drive or walk around the campus to notice real progress on the Campus Master Plan. The renovations suggest MU is on the move and expanding its offerings through the availability of these renovated facilities.

The best compliments we’ve received have been the frequent comments from visitors about the friendliness of the campus and how excited everyone seems to be about what is happening. As I have often said, a Culture of Excellence depends on signature people even more than signature programs and facilities. As we move forward with our focus on all three elements, we are in the strongest position in the history of the University.

If you haven’t visited Methodist lately, I invite you to drive on the campus – past the wall and banners, past the new lines of trees, and past the buildings under construction. Park your car and strike up a conversation with one of our employees or students. They will be happy to share with you all the exciting things happening “behind the wall.” And stay tuned, as all of us associated with Methodist University believe “the best is yet to be.”

100 Partnerships

Last Friday, we were fortunate to host Womack Army Medical Center’s Summer Commencement in Reeves Auditorium. Womack has been a key partner with Methodist in the health sciences. They often use our health science facilities and are the largest provider of clinical rotations for our PA students. The Commencement ceremony gave me an opportunity to thank the leaders at Womack for their assistance and to celebrate our mutually beneficial relationship.

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40 under Forty: Our Community’s Succession Plan

40 Under FortyThis past Friday night I had the honor of attending and speaking at The Fayetteville Observer’s annual “40 Under Forty” dinner held at the Cape Fear Botanical Garden. Among the 40 honorees were six individuals with Methodist University degrees, including Malia Kalua Allen ’04, Jasmine Coleman ’05, Jennifer Kirby Fincher ’02, Kamina Fitzgerald ’03, Doris Munoz ’06, and Kimberly Sublett ’11MBA. And this doesn’t include other winners who have roots at Methodist, including Ben Chambers, grandson of long-time trustee Charles Warren, and Meagan McCabe, who formerly worked in MU’s Career Services. As I state’d to the assembled group, it felt like MU had “swept the Oscars” with so many winners in one evening! I am so proud of our graduates who have assumed leadership positions in the greater Fayetteville community.

My message to the audience, and in particular to the 40 young professionals, was similar to the one I share with our students at the beginning of each year. I truly believe that I have the best job in America … for me, and I want our students to aspire to have the best job in America … for them. In looking at the credentials of the honorees, it was clear that they, too, believe they have the best job in America and live their professional and personal lives with such a positive attitude. Therefore, there were at least 41 individuals in the room who believed they had the best job in America, and I challenged the rest of the audience to encourage these young people to continue their quest for excellence.

My second message had to do with finding “The One Thing.” Again, in my opening remarks to new students I talk about finding their “One Thing,” meaning their passion that will inspire them to maximize their experiences during the MU Journey. I note that for each student the “One Thing” will be different, and the key is to try so many things as a part of their quest, because when they finally discover their “One Thing,” it will be transformational and set the stage for a successful MU career and ultimately a life full of meaning and purpose. I end my message to the students by saying that they are my “One Thing,” thereby communicating to them that there is nothing more important to the president of the University than their collegiate success.

The individual inductees of the 2013 Class of 40 Under Forty have unmistakably found their “One Thing.” Their accomplishments, enthusiasm, and passion for what they are doing in their professions and in the community clearly demonstrate that they are transforming this community just as they are transforming their own lives through service to others. Their “One Thing” is the greater Fayetteville community, and I called on everyone assembled for the evening to recognize and support their contributions. This class of 40, the two classes that preceded them, and those that follow represent the greater Fayetteville’s “succession plan.” We will need for their passion to continue and for their volunteer interests to evolve into leadership positions with the many institutions that will benefit from their experiences, perspectives, and drive. For it is people who define institutions, and not institutions that define people, and Fayetteville is in good hands as we look to the future.

My final challenge to the Class of 2013 was to think down the road 20 years hence, at the “60 Under 60” dinner, and try to see themselves in that audience and whether or not they had lived up to their potential and assumed those leadership positions – that their “One Thing” had been realized. I asked them to remember three things from my message: (1) people matter and they are what makes the difference – something this 40 Under Forty Class clearly understands; (2) you can’t do things alone – you need to form partnerships with fellow inductees and others to create a sustainable team approach to address challenges and opportunities; and (3) the best is yet to be.

Yes, I have the best job in America at the best University in America in the best community in America. And if you don’t believe it, I invite you to sit down with members of the graduating MU Class of 2013 or The Fayetteville Observer’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2013. You’ll hear about their “One Thing” and their passion for the Journey.

And yes, the best is yet to be.

100 Partnerships

Methodist University is fortunate to have a wonderful relationship with The Fayetteville Observer as a community partner. President and Publisher Charles W. Broadwell is a leader in this community and demonstrates daily that his “One Thing” is the people of Fayetteville.  Furthermore, he and others from the Observer serve on a number of advisory boards at the University, sharing their passion and expertise that is so beneficial as we strive to provide the very best educational and practical experiences for our students.

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Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things

I had a dream the other night, and while I usually don’t remember them, one phrase stood out: “Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things.” In this instance “ordinary people” refers to “every day people” as opposed to those possessing certain advantages above others.

This caused me to reflect on the last few days—typical days, mind you, for this University president. I was reminded of so many examples on our campus of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Our students, faculty, staff, and community offer so many examples of promoting a “culture of excellence” that is so much a part of our “culture of excellence.”

Let me provide just a few examples . . .

. . . at our Center for Entrepreneurship Summit several individuals in the community were recognized for their success in business . . . ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

. . . at our Athletic Awards Ceremony, student athletes were recognized for their success on and off the field . . . Methodist University providing opportunities for ordinary students to do extraordinary things.

. . . at a luncheon within the University’s endowed professors, I engaged in a conversation with outstanding faculty or are committed to enabling ordinary students to do extraordinary things.

. . . at a luncheon held for the University’s Board of Visitors, I was impressed with the community representatives in the room, all assembled so that they as a group of ordinary citizens, could do extraordinary things for our students.

. . . at induction ceremonies for the National Honor Society of Leadership and Success and XIII Women’s Leadership Society, I witnessed ordinary students being recognized for extraordinary leadership abilities based on their University experiences.

On Saturday, May 11, we will celebrate Commencement. On that occasion, we will hear from two individuals who have done extraordinary things . . .

. . . Al Cleveland, a successful attorney and an ordinary man who has done extraordinary things for this University and the community.

. . . Lieutenant General Daniel Allyn, an American hero, an ordinary man who has done extraordinary things for his country.

Ordinary people doing extraordinary things. In this University environment the stage is set, through a culture of excellence, for our ordinary students to do extraordinary things. In our community, the stage is set for our friends to collectively accomplish extraordinary things to benefit our students. They serve as critical role models and mentors to help guide the way.

Methodist University is so grateful to those who have created pathways for our students to do some extraordinary things. In the end, that’s the only reason we are all here.

It’s what is expected of us.

It’s what is required of us.

It’s what makes an extraordinary University. 

100 Partnerships

At the recent Career Fair sponsored by the Methodist University Office of Career Services, a number of regional businesses and organizations took time out of their schedule to provide information and career guidance to our students. I would like to recognize just a few of these partners who are committed to our students and contribute to the environment that produces extraordinary graduates: PWC (Public Works Commission); Finish Line, IRS (Internal Revenue Service), BB&T, The Fayetteville Observer, and the State Employees’ Credit Union.

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A Global View

GlobalEducation4I spent part of last week meeting with members of our faculty and staff, discussing ways we can expand international experiences for our students. I was impressed with the level of interest these individuals displayed, as they understand how important it is for all Methodist University students to have experiences outside of the classroom that prepare them to be global citizens.

In December 1951, John F. Kennedy suggested to a group that “young college graduates would find a full life” if they volunteered overseas. Then, in March 1961, President Kennedy established the Peace Corps by executive order “to promote world peace and friendship.” In the 50 years since that historic act, hundreds of thousands of college students have answered the call, and places like Methodist are instilling the principles of peace and friendship through undergraduate engagement, thus setting the stage for graduates to live lives of meaning and purpose as they truly understand what it means to be a global citizen.

Through the Center for Global Education and the Office of International Programs and Study Abroad, Methodist University has invested in two initiatives to maximize student engagement. Our international recruitment efforts bring over 100 students from 55 countries to our campus annually, creating one of the most ethnically diverse institutions in the country. Students from around the world have an opportunity to study and work alongside one another. As our University Chaplain, Rev. Mike Safley, likes to say, “we get it right.” The world stage could learn from this community comprised of so many different faiths, political systems, and cultures that thrives and sets an example for other parts of the world.

The second initiative is our Study Abroad program, highlighted by our amazing faculty or staff-led short term study abroad experiences. Ten different study and travel tours were offered this academic year, held either during Spring Break or our emerging May Term. Such experiences expose our students to other countries through a more economically feasible model that also accommodates busy academic schedules. It also paves the way for some students who go on to participate in semester-long study abroad programs. In addition, there were three different mission trips sponsored through the Office of Campus Ministry during Fall Break, Winter Break, and Spring Break. Every student involved in these trips came back sharing stories about their unique “transformational experiences.”

What does the future hold? Our strategic plan and initiatives launched last year as a part of the MU Journey call for a doubling of the number of international students and study abroad opportunities over the next five years. We simply must expand in order to meet the growing interest in these programs and their critical role in preparing our students for the world of further study or professions they will enter.

Methodist University is a player on the global stage and has a critical role to play as we move forward. We are preparing our students to be leaders who can think critically, exhibit creativity, solve problems, and possess a keen understanding of the world around them. I am proud of our students’ willingness to step outside their comfort zone, and equally proud of the faculty who are taking them there.

President Kennedy was thinking of the transformational power of young college graduates when he created the Peace Corps, and he was right. Five decades later, Methodist University students are getting it right, thanks to their faculty mentors who will not settle for anything less for their students from around the world, preparing to serve the world.

Projects for Peace | The Vision of Kathryn W. Davis

We remember and give thanks to Kathryn Wasserman Davis, who died April 23. She was 106 years old. Known for challenging today’s students to work effectively toward ensuring lasting peace in the world, Methodist University students took her vision to heart and acted boldly on her desire for world peace.

She is known fondly for saying, “My challenge to you is to bring about a mindset of preparing for peace instead of preparing for war.”

With awards totaling over $90,000, our students stepped up to meet her challenge. Recently, Esra’a Al-Shawafi’s project, “Sewing and Business Skills for Economical and Peaceful Integration of Women in Society” was selected to receive funding for summer 2013. In 2012, Nyoma Clement Nickonora and Talata Evers (South Sudan) engaged in a global peace project with fellow South Sudanese student Joy Minalla. Their project was titled, “Rebuilding the Ruins and Promoting Peace.” In 2011, “Collecting Smiles in Srebrenica” was spearheaded by Anna Causevic, Dzenana Dzanic, Emina Hodzic, and Samra Mrkovic. In 2010, Fredy Oxom and Camilo Rubiano completed a project in Guatemala titled “Build to Educate.” In 2009, Milca Baptista initiated a community water project in East Timor. In 2008, Heather Eckhardt and Marco Marin completed a greenhouse project in Ecuador and Gladys Michelle Reyes Chiapas answered a “Call for Help” in Honduras.  In, 2007, three projects were completed by Sana Sabri (India), Rahila Muhibi (Afghanistan), and Husein Nasiro-Sigo (Ethiopia).

With a lengthy list of completed projects and many other outstanding proposals, I am confident our students will continue to carry on the legacy of Mrs. Davis, ensuring that they are doing their part to become global citizens who are committed to building peace.

100 Partnerships

Methodist University is indebted to the Shelby Davis United World College Scholars Program which partners with 76 U.S. colleges to make it possible for students from the 12 United World Colleges to attend these institutions. What a wonderful legacy for these students and for the receiving institutions who benefit from these engaged and highly motivated students. It proves that the vision of one family can have a magnificent impact on global education and the promotion of peace, setting an example for every student attending these institutions.

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“26.2”

Methodist University

I’ve run a marathon. The exhilarating feeling you have when you see that finish line in front of you—the sense of accomplishment that you have met a remarkable personal goal. The last thing that is on your mind is that someone would harm you. And the fact that you are so mentally focused, and physically and emotionally exhausted, means that you are also so vulnerable.

Two of my children are runners and have participated in many marathons. In fact, one has actually run the Boston Marathon and knows every turn, every crack in the pavement, every excruciating moment along those 26.2 miles that define the city.

My daughter lives and works in Boston. She called us yesterday to tell us she was okay. Still, I wish I were there to give her a big hug. I texted her today and told her I loved her.

My story is not unique. I am sure there are many who have loved ones affected by Monday’s tragedy in Boston. Many others have run marathons—Boston and otherwise—and share similar feelings. And yes, as far away as Fayetteville, North Carolina, and on the campus of Methodist University, we make adjustments, we cope, we pray for those who are suffering, and we appropriately change our priorities.

Late today, we received a message on behalf of Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN chief medical correspondent, indicating that he would have to postpone his visit to Methodist to be our guest for tomorrow’s inaugural Presidential Speaker Series. Dr. Gupta is where he needs to be, and where all Americans should be focused, in Boston, trying to help a nation make sense out of a senseless act.

The reason Dr. Sanjay Gupta was chosen as our first Presidential Series Speaker is the same reason he had to postpone his visit to campus tomorrow; it is because of his ability to tell the story in a way that helps us understand what is happening, as if he were right in our living room talking to us.

We were hoping to have Dr. Gupta in Methodist University’s “living room” tomorrow night. For now, we’ll share him with millions of Americans who need him more than we do. And we’ll pray for his safe passage until he joins us, along with the victims and their families and friends in Boston. We will give our thanks for those who help us understand, whether they are journalists who relate to their audiences or Methodist University faculty who relate to our students.

26.2 – it will from now on mean more than a race. It will remind us of a tragedy, but more importantly, it will remind us, as such races were designed to do, of the resilience of the human spirit. It will remind us of our ability to endure so much more than we ever imagined we could, to heal thanks to the strength and support of others, and to move forward to race another day.

My thoughts and prayers to all members of the Methodist University community,

Ben Hancock
President

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Leadership and the Journey of MU Students

Over the past two weeks, I have had the privilege of meeting with two of our outstanding student leadership groups on campus: the inaugural class of 41 Leadership Fellows, sponsored by the Lura Tally Center for Leadership Development, and Student Leaders at Methodist (SL@M), sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs.  Through my interaction with these young people and so many other student leaders, I am convinced that the future of Methodist University, and indeed our country, is bright.

For the Methodist University community, these students will progress into leadership positions on the campus as upperclassmen, and ultimately be engaged alumni, assuming leadership positions with advisory boards, regional alumni groups, the Alumni Association Board of Directors, and the Board of Trustees. For the communities who will be fortunate enough to be the home of our graduates, they will be the beneficiaries of dedicated and caring individuals who possess the skill set to be effective leaders, and the experience in collaborating with others to solve problems and bringing people of all backgrounds together.

Our country was conceived on the principle of citizens “giving back” and being engaged in their communities. It is what makes America strong. It’s what makes individual communities strong. It’s what makes individual universities strong. What a wonderful time to be in our country, in this community, and at Methodist University.

During an informal discussion Debbie and I hosted in our home for the Leadership Fellows, I asked the students to share why they applied to be Fellows. I was moved by their responses that included “I want to improve my leadership skills,” “I want to be a better servant leader,” “I want to enhance my skills in preparation for my profession,” and “I want to be an effective servant leader.”

Methodist University students make this a better community and they are committed to “building better communities” wherever they go. I have the best job in America because of these exceptional young people. Methodist University gets it right because these student leaders are getting it right. No other university in America offers the same opportunities to its students, in part because no other University has the resources and community support at its disposal to offer its students.

Once again, the best is yet to be. The best for Methodist and the best for our country and its many communities is yet to be—all because of MU students and the future they will help shape and lead.

100 Partnerships

One of the distinguishing features of the Lura Tally Center for Leadership Development, directed by Dr. Andrew Ziegler, is its Advisory Board. This group of outstanding leaders takes the time to share their perspectives for the betterment of our program, and serve as excellent mentors and role models for the next generation of leaders emerging from the Methodist University.  We are so grateful for individuals like Charles Broadwell, Loleta Foster, Harry Shaw, George Breece, Terri Union, Mary Kinney, Burt VanderClute, Judge Mary Ann Tally, Cynthia Wilson, and many others who serve on this Board. They exemplify the real benefit of having community partners to strengthen our programs, and at the same time, they serve the community by helping to develop future leaders.

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