Huntingdon News

July 01, 2013
For immediate release:

Huntingdon College
News Release

Huntingdon names honors program for Joyce and Truman Hobbs

Judge Truman and Mrs. Joyce Hobbs, with President West Montgomery, Ala.—During a special gala event held last month at the Montgomery Country Club, Judge Truman Hobbs Sr., Article III federal judge for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama, retired, and his wife, Joyce, were celebrated as the namesakes for the College's newly christened Joyce and Truman Hobbs Honors Program.  Judge and Mrs. Hobbs, who are long-time friends and neighbors of the College, were presented with Presidential Medallions by Huntingdon President J. Cameron West.

West said that the Hobbs Honors Program and Huntingdon's liberal arts academic programs are built around educational success with the goal of fostering in students a manifestation of responsible citizenship.  "We want students to learn how to place the well-being of their communities at the center of their beliefs, their decisions, their actions," said West.  "We want Huntingdon students to learn how to think critically and ethically, and to communicate with clarity and civility, so that they can extend themselves in service far beyond what they have ever experienced before coming to campus. ... Huntingdon, like all colleges and universities with honors programs, recruits outstanding students to take challenging courses and to be rewarded for their academic diligence with appropriate scholarship assistance.  Uniquely, however, we are seeking in The Joyce and Truman Hobbs Honors Program to create a community of students who live out the meaning of 'honor' both in their individual lives and as a body of scholar-citizens."

After completing his bachelor's degree at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in 1942, Hobbs, a native of Alabama, served four years of active duty in the U.S. Navy, achieving the rank of lieutenant, then completed his juris doctorate degree at Yale School of Law in 1948.  He served as a law clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black from 1948 to 1949, then became a private practice attorney in Alabama.  He was nominated to the federal judgeship for the Middle District of Alabama by President Jimmy Carter in 1980.  He served as chief judge of the court from 1984 until 1991, when he assumed senior status.  Joyce Hobbs graduated from Vassar College. 

West said that it is fitting for the the program to be named for Joyce and Truman Hobbs as they have both lived lives of honor and service to the community and for the greater good.  "... Joyce and Truman Hobbs would tell you that all the degrees and honors from Vassar, Chapel Hill and Yale; all the Phi Beta Kappa and military and Supreme Court clerkship accolades; all the prestige of serving in the federal judiciary; all the recognition that has justly come from the Tocqueville Society; all of this and more would mean nothing were it not undergirded by a way of living that is honorable," said West.  He added, addressing Judge and Mrs. Hobbs, that Huntingdon's Joyce and Truman Hobbs Honors Program is so named "in the hope and trust that we will be inspired to teach outstanding young men and women to live as you have lived." 

Dr. Chad Eggleston, assistant provost and director of the Hobbs Honors Program, articulated what makes the program different from those at other colleges.  "Two specific features of our honors program set it apart: a sense of the social nature of knowledge and the sense of civic responsibility that comes with it," said Eggleston.  "... We teach students in the Honors Program that they are responsible not only for their own success, but for that of their peers as well.  [Our honors students] are responsible not only to one another at Huntingdon, but also to others in the community, and toward that end we encourage students to ... recognize that their intellectual and academic achievements ought to be used in service. This is something more than the simple acknowledgement that our peers need our help, but the recognition that the body politic needs deep, serious engagement."

Huntingdon honors students are required to complete 18 hours of honors core courses, and then to complete a minor or to participate in interdisciplinary courses.  Students are asked to serve as tutors for their peers and to be involved in one or more of the College's many community service-oriented outreach initiatives. 

Huntingdon College, grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition of the United Methodist Church, is committed to nurturing growth in faith, wisdom, and service and to graduating individuals prepared to succeed in a rapidly changing world. Founded in 1854, Huntingdon is a coeducational liberal arts college. The College motto, "Enter to grow in wisdom; go forth to apply wisdom in service," is inscribed in stone above the front door of John Jefferson Flowers Hall.  Ranked in the top tier of regional colleges by U.S. News and World Report and consistently listed in the Princeton Review's "The Best Colleges: Region by Region," Huntingdon has for three years been recognized on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  Washington Monthly, which ranks colleges on the basis of their contribution to the public good, places Huntingdon in the top 20% of 352 Baccalaureate colleges.   

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Su Ofe
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Communications and Marketing
Office: (334) 833-4515
Cell: (334) 324-6591


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