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June 19, 2008 - Five Hastings College students receive national recognition by The Fund for Theological Education
Five Hastings College students were recognized by The Fund for Theological Education (FTE), Atlanta, Ga., for their outstanding work in religion and community service. More Hastings College students were recognized than from any other college in the United States.
Four undergraduate students were named FTE Fellows for the 2008-09 academic year, out of 50 selected from across the country. A fifth student was named an FTE Congregational Fellow.
Fellowships are awarded annually as part of the Fund’s objective to increase the number of highly capable young people exploring or preparing for ordained ministry as a profession.
Junior Megan Worthman, Greeley, Colo.; sophomore Victor Short, Salida, Colo.; junior Nathan Tramp, Norfolk, Neb.; and junior Joel Niemann, Lincoln, Neb.; were selected and will receive $2,000 for tuition, other educational expenses, or a self-designed experience related to the exploration of ministry. Students also attended the 2008 FTE Conference on Excellence in Ministry at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology, Atlanta, Ga., in June. The conference focused on “Next Generation Leaders: Voices & Vocation that Change the World.”
Whitney Burr, Juniata, Neb., a 2008 Hastings College graduate, was named an FTE Congregational Fellow and will receive financial assistance to attend Vanderbilt Divinity School in the fall. She also attended the June conference.
The Rev. Dr. Trace Haythorn, president of FTE, nominated the Hastings College students, and then they were selected competitively from a pool of applicants from across the U.S. and Canada by a national committee of theological educators and church leaders.
Students had to be nominated by a professor, school administrator, pastor or campus minister; had to have a minimum 3.0 grade point average; had to display an interest in exploring ministry as a vocation; and must have demonstrated leadership in a church or school community.
FTE is a leading ecumenical advocate for excellence and diversity in Christian ministry and theological scholarship. It supports the next generation of leaders among pastors and scholars, annually providing $1.5 million in fellowships and support to gifted young people from all denominations and racial/ethnic backgrounds. Since 1954, FTE has awarded nearly 6,000 fellowships in partnership with those committed to the future of quality leadership for the church.
FTE seeks to reverse a 20-year decline in the number of clergy under the age of 35 by attracting and supporting gifted college, seminary and doctoral students whose talents qualify them for any profession but whose passions draw them toward the ministry or theological scholarship.
The Hastings College students selected participate in the college’s Vocation and Values Program, a program made possible by a $1.97 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc., in 2002. The program provides the opportunity for students to think deeply about the ethical and spiritual dimensions of their life’s work and to consider careers of service to others.