At this years’ convocation students were challenged to let God’s light shine through them as they become leaders of their own lives and of the world, and three students received the Gary and Diane Heavin Servant Leadership Award.
The speaker, Dr. Donald E. Wesson, is the chief academic officer of Scott & White Healthcare, a professor of medicine and dean of the Temple campus of Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine. Wesson has accomplished much in his lifetime and continues to strive to be a leader.
Wesson acknowledged the fact that though he holds several leadership positions whether in work or in his family life, he believes the role God has laid before him can be difficult at times.
“I struggle with leadership in my church. But I most struggle with leadership in the world, and I will tell you that is where the real demand is,” he said. “This world needs leadership, and that’s a part of the mission of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.”
Wesson went on to compare the leadership that Jesus showed when performing the first miracle of turning the water into wine.
The fact that Jesus exemplified leadership, service and faithfulness through the miracle, Wesson said, shows He is a leader in the lives of humans.
“Jesus is concerned about our own individual affairs. He is concerned about the affairs of the community. He is concerned about the affairs of the country,” he said.
Before the speaker made his way to the stage to reveal how to be leaders in this modern world, three students were honored with the Heavin Award.
It is awarded to students who have committed their time and energy to ministering and community service, in addition to school work.
This year’s awardees were junior Bethany Franz and seniors Sarah Herriott and Miles O’Neil.
The students are awarded $1,000 to be donated to a charity of their choice.
Nursing major Sarah Herriott decided to donate her money to Cathleen Rosco, a leader for an anti-sex trafficking organization.
She said, “The Lord had really been working on my heart about sex trafficking.
“As I was researching, I really was thinking I want to give it to an organization that I see the work that they are doing and I know the faces from the organization and it’s not some website charity.”
Cathleen Rosco came to UMHB three years ago and spoke at chapel about her work, and that has always been in Herriott’s mind.
One of the other awardees, O’Neil, was honored to be categorized with students like Herriott and Franz.
“Bethany and Sarah are good people and that came from Jesus rubbing off on them,” he said.
Franz was honored first and donated her money to Hope For The Hungry.
“I chose to donate to Hope for the Hungry because I have been able to join them in the local outreach ministry along with going to Haiti with them last March,” she said. “I have been able to be a part of their heart for missions.”