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Huntingdon expands Leadership Academy for high school students


September 9, 2016

For more information, contact:
Su Ofe
(334) 833-4515; news@hawks.huntingdon.edu

Huntingdon expands Leadership Academy for high school students

Montgomery, Ala.—Huntingdon College President J. Cameron West announced today the hiring of Sophy Shore to direct an expanded Huntingdon Leadership Academy in 2017. In 2015, the College received a $600,000 grant from Lilly Endowment, Inc., to expand the Huntingdon Leadership Academy, a summer leadership development program for high school students exploring religion and service vocations.

Shore, a graduate of Covenant College, worked for two years as an admission counselor for her alma mater before joining the staff of Senator Bob Corker as a caseworker, a position she held for two years. Shore says she was attracted to HLA because of its emphasis on equipping youth to serve in the church as lay leaders as well as preparing them to think about seminary and ministry. “To be a part of a program that encourages students whom we already see as having a passion for God’s people is very worthwhile,” said Shore.

West said the 2017 Academy, still being planned, will include not only college students, Huntingdon faculty, the College chaplain, and local ministers, but also will reflect the involvement of a Duke Divinity School faculty-member-in-residence. The five-day Academy will focus on discernment of each student’s calling, and will provide mentoring, discussion of important current topics in the life of the church, cultural and mission-related events, and time for fun, praise, and worship. The College plans to increase recruitment activity for student participation, but cap enrollment at 80 high school juniors and seniors.

Shore says she attended a similar Christian leadership opportunity as a high school student. “[That experience] made me realize I had a place in the church even at that age—and even though I wasn’t going to be a pastor.”

West concurred. “This program, in keeping with Huntingdon’s emphasis on helping college students to discern and follow their vocational calling, provides vital early intervention for young people who are hungry to serve and who have the gifts and graces for ministry,” said West. “A call to ministry can be lived out in many ways, in addition to serving as an ordained pastor. We’re thrilled to work with bright and forward-thinking young people who understand the essential role spirituality plays in a fulfilling life-path; and likewise, who understand the need for careful and strong leadership in the church and in society.”

Dates and registration information for the 2017 Huntingdon Leadership Academy will be announced soon.

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 recognized among “The Fastest Growing Colleges in America”  by The Chronicle of Higher Education; among the top regional colleges by U.S. News and World Report and by the Princeton Review; among “Colleges that Contribute to the Public Good,” by Washington Monthly; and on the Presidential Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The Huntingdon campus, a Tree Campus USA, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Suellen (Su) Ofe
Associate Vice President for Marketing and Communications
Huntingdon College
1500 E. Fairview Ave., Montgomery, AL 36106
(334) 833-4515; Cell (334) 324-6591