HPU students honored for servant leadership
Howard Payne University honored six students for their servant leadership demonstrated on campus and in the community at the annual Servant Leadership Awards Chapel on April 6. Students honored were Katherine Burnside of Lorena; Olivia Catlett of Alleyton; Casey Dufner of Austin; Camdyn Hering of Alvord; Linsey Piper of Early; and Rishona Raub of Celina.
“At Howard Payne University, we seek to follow the teaching and example of Jesus, who said, ‘Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant,’” said Dr. Gary Gramling, dean of the School of Christian Studies, director of Christian studies graduate programs and professor of Christian studies. “He also said that he himself ‘did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.’ We are grateful to be able to recognize some amazing students who are known for a lifestyle of service to others.”
Seniors Dufner and Burnside were each awarded the Dr. Nat Tracy Servant Leader Award. HPU Servant Leadership Awards were presented to Catlett, Hering, Piper and Raub. Recipients of both awards are selected from nominations made by HPU personnel and students.
The Dr. Nat Tracy Servant Leadership Award was established in 1998 to honor the life of the late Dr. Nat Tracy, a faculty member in HPU’s School of Christian Studies from 1950 to 1975.
Dufner is majoring in kinesiology and the son of Matt and Robin. He has been named to HPU’s President’s List in recognition of his academic excellence during five semesters at the university. He has been a member of the Yellow Jacket football team since 2019. He has also served on the team’s leadership council since 2021.
Burnside is majoring physical education and the daughter of Ann and Andrew. She has been a member of the HPU women’s soccer team since 2019. She is a member of HPU’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes and is currently the organization’s president. She is also a member of HPU sorority Chi Alpha Omega, national collegiate honor society Gamma Beta Phi and HPU’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee.
Established in 2007 by HPU through the generosity of the Moore Foundation and Barney II Foundation, the HPU Servant Leadership Award recognizes student excellence in the areas of leadership and service. A $1,000 scholarship is provided to each recipient of the award.
Olivia Catlett is an elementary education major and the daughter of Bart and Amy. She is involved with the Baptist Student Ministry, intramurals and is a student worker in the HPU Office of Institutional Advancement. She also serves as the church intern at May First Baptist Church in May. She has been named to the President’s List in recognition of academic success during all her semesters at HPU. She has also been recognized as a Presidential Leadership Scholar in two semesters and is one of the 2022 Yellow Rose Scholarship Recipients.
Camdyn Hering is a social work major. She is the daughter of Ken and Cathy. She is active in the Baptist Student Ministry, intramurals, the Social Work Club and HPU First Lady Melinda Hines’s College Girls’ Bible Study. She also serves as a volunteer with Coggin Avenue Baptist Church’s youth group.
Linsey Piper is an elementary education major. She is the daughter of Toby and Stephanie. She has served as a resident assistant in Veda Hodge Residence Hall since the fall semester of 2021. She is also involved with intramurals, is a member of national collegiate honor society Gamma Beta Phi and was chosen to represent HPU at the Christian Association of Student Leaders Conference in 2022. She has also served in various roles at Victory Life Church. Additionally, she was HPU’s Homecoming Princess in 2021.
Rishona Raub is a strategic communications and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major. She is the daughter of Yvonne and Scott. She is a member of HPU’s Chapel Band, Student Speaker Bureau and national collegiate honor society Gamma Beta Phi. She was also a member of the Baptist Student Ministry leadership team from fall 2020 to spring 2021. She also serves in her local church’s AWANA children’s ministry. She has been named to the Dean’s and President’s Lists in recognition of her academic success since the fall of 2019.