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Colleen Perry Keith, Ph.D. honored by Wofford College with prestigious Mary Mildred Sullivan Award

Spartanburg Methodist College President Colleen Perry Keith, Ph.D., was honored during the 161st Commencement Exercises of Wofford College with the prestigious Mary Mildred Sullivan Award on Sunday, May 17, 2015.

CPK SullivanAwards2015-web“Dr. Colleen Perry Keith exemplifies the values set out by the Mary Mildred Sullivan Award through not only her service as the president of a fine institution of higher learning, Spartanburg Methodist College, but through her leadership and service to her community. She teaches by example through her leadership on numerous local, state and national boards and foundations. We at Wofford College thank her and commend her, and we wish her well as she moves on to lead Pfeiffer University,” shared Dr. Nayef Samhat, president of Wofford.

Wofford College is one of 61 colleges and universities, most of them in the South, authorized to present the Algernon Sydney Sullivan and Mary Mildred Sullivan Awards.  The Sullivan Award program, reflects the commitment and passion of Algernon Sydney Sullivan and his wife, Mary Mildred Sullivan, to empower, educate and honor deserving students in the American South.

The Mary Mildred Sullivan Award was created in 1940 by the New York chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy to honor those who demonstrate the “spirit of helpfulness and an awareness of the beauty and value of the intangible elements of life.”

Sullivan Awards are highly prized, and over the years have been bestowed on notable individuals including Eleanor Roosevelt, television icon Fred Rogers, and Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell.

For the past six years Keith has been president of Spartanburg Methodist College. As of July 1, she will move to Pfeiffer University in Misenheimer, N.C., a sister United Methodist institution, where she will be president. Before taking her position at SMC, she was executive director of development at Ohio University in Athens; prior to that, she was executive vice president at Methodist Theological School in Ohio. A native of northern New York, Keith has nearly 30 years of experience in higher education in capacities such as student services roles, program development, teaching, fund raising and administration. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the State University of New York at Binghamton, a master of education from the University of Pittsburgh in educational counseling and a Ph.D. in higher education administration and student affairs form The Ohio State University. Keith serves on boards of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce, which she chairs; the Mary Black Foundation; the Greer Education Foundation; the Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg; the Spartanburg Academic Movement; Spartanburg Regional Hospital’s Hospice Home; and Habitat for Humanity of Spartanburg County. On a state level, she chairs the President’s Council for South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities Inc. and is the secretary for the South Carolina Higher Education Tuition Grants Commission. She also serves on the advisory board for South Carolina Women in Higher Education. On the national stage, she is past president of the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church and continues on its board.

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SMC Chaplain Candice Sloan Completes Doctor of Ministry Degree

Spartanburg Methodist College celebrated Chaplain Candice Y. Sloan’s completion of her Doctor of Ministry degree from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. with a campus-wide surprise reception following Chapel on Wednesday, April 29, 2015.

Chaplain Sloan, affectionately known as “Chappy” at SMC, is an adjunct professor of religion, who holds an undergraduate degree from Southwestern University and a Masters of Divinity from Duke University Divinity School. She began her recent studies in January, 2013 and presented her Doctorate paper and project on The Use of Spiritual Disciplines to Help College Students Grow Closer to God.

As the chaplain at Spartanburg Methodist College for the past thirteen years, Chappy has listened as students report God’s seeming absence from their lives during college. While college campuses can be places to explore both secular and sacred relationships, social and academic demands leave little opportunity for developing a deeper relationship with God. Over the years, SMC has used community service as a means of building peer relationships without focusing on the spiritual disciplines that enable students to hear God’s call to serve.

This past academic year, modeled after John and Charles Wesley’s Holy Club and with insight from scholars who have studied the faith development of youth and young adults, Chaplain Sloan introduced two small groups of students to the spiritual disciplines and how those disciplines can be used to bring the student closer to God.  For five weeks (culminating in an overnight retreat), students were introduced to ancient spiritual practices as well as contemporary adaptations of the practice.  “My hope was that through the weeks, as students disciplined their spiritual life, they would grow to love God more and that that love would find expression in a greater love for those in need around them, thus tying together God’s love for them, their love for God, and their love for those whom God has blessed them to bless,” shared Sloan.

Wesley Theological Seminary prepares more than 700 students annually, representing more than 30 denominations, to become exemplary teachers, preachers, and leaders in the world today. Their Doctor of Ministry program offers an advanced-level curriculum integrating the experiences of ministry with the academic resources of the seminary. As ministry is fundamentally theological in character, disciplined theological reflection is fostered as foundational in all offices and functions. The Doctor of Ministry Program aims at enabling pastors to develop an integrated theology of ministry that embraces the total life and mission of the church. The specific goals of the Doctor of Ministry program at Wesley include acquainting students with current theological trends and issues, deepening the integration of discipline and ministry, and providing students with opportunities for establishing lasting collegial ties with other students.

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Spartanburg Methodist College Initiates Official Search for 8th President

The Board of Trustees of Spartanburg Methodist College announces the search for the eighth President of the 104 year old College. The Board and the Presidential Search Committee have retained the services of Coleman Lew + Associates, Inc. to assist in managing the search and the recruiting and evaluation of qualified candidates.

The President serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the College with responsibility for ensuring the success of the institution’s mission, enrollment management, academic integrity, fiscal stability, fundraising efforts, personnel development, and physical plant management. In doing so, the President works closely with the Board of Trustees in developing, communicating, and executing a strategy consistent with the overall mission of Spartanburg Methodist College as a two-year institution dedicated to providing a values-oriented, student-centered atmosphere in a Christian tradition that encourages academic excellence, intellectual exploration, social awareness, and character development within the liberal arts tradition, all in preparation for the senior college experience and lifelong learning.

The President of Spartanburg Methodist College is appointed by, and reports directly to, the Board of Trustees. The Board is comprised of 24 members: five clergy members and 19 laity. Positions reporting to the President include: VP for Academic Affairs; VP for Institutional Advancement; VP for Enrollment Management; Dean of Students; and the VP for Business Affairs.

Coleman Lew will begin screening and evaluating candidates immediately with the intent of presenting a group of highly qualified candidates to the Search Committee as soon as possible. The Board of Trustees and the Presidential Search Committee are expected to move as expediently as possible once a qualified group of candidates is developed.

Candidate nominations and submissions of interest will be accepted until such time as this group of candidates is presented to the Search Committee. Please submit all candidate nominations, letters of interest, resumes, and questions to:

Coleman Lew + Associates, Inc.
326 W. 10th Street – Charlotte, NC 28202
Ken Carrick, President or Janet DeLoache, Consultant
SMC@colemanlew.com
704.377.0362 or 800.533.9523 or fax 704.377.0424

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104th Commencement @ Spartanburg Methodist College will inspire all to claim the life to which the Spirit calls

Spartanburg Methodist College will hold their 104th commencement exercises at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 9th in Bridges Arena to celebrate an estimated 200 students who have successfully met the academic requirements for graduation. The class of 2015 boasts over 20 honor graduate students who have maintained a 3.5 or better grade point average and will be recognized as a Summa Cum Laude, Manga Cum Laude or Cum Laude graduate during commencement.

Click here for a live feed of the Commencement Service that will be streaming beginning at 9:45 a.m. on May 9th.

Courtney Tutterow, recipient of the Yandle Student Leader Award, will be the 2015 Student Speaker for commencement. Nominated by her peers and described as “an all-around outstanding person…Courtney has played soccer both years at SMC… and has also kept a 4.0 GPA. She is a Pioneer Peer, has great leadership skills and qualities and always has a positive attitude.”   Tutterow, daughter of Mike and Michelle Tutterow of Boiling Springs, SC was named a two-time all-region soccer player, an Academic All American and has served as a tutor and student mentor.  “Courtney personifies what it means to be a Pioneer,” stated SMC President Colleen Perry Keith, Ph.D.

Paul Roger Leonard, Jr. will be the 2015 Commencement speaker. Leonard s a man moved by a generous and loving spirit. His most recent work, When the Spirit Moves, is a collection of stories, poems, prayers and reflections that invite readers to look back on their lives, and witness all the ways the Spirit has prodded, poked, touched and moved them. Leonard wants his readers to laugh and cry with him, to get angry with things as they are, to pray for peace, to hope for a brighter tomorrow, to give thanks for every day and to reach out, touch, listen and love all who cross their path.  His goal for the book was for it to be more about you and your life, than it is about him and his, and together he wants us to claim the life to which the Spirit calls.

Throughout the book, Leonard shared the ups and downs and twists and turns of his adult life – spanning four decades, one wife, four children, eight grandchildren, lots of dogs, one cat and multiple jobs from minister to home builder and real estate developer. Leonard, who has worked for nonprofits and both privately and publically held for-profit companies, has served as interim CEO of Habitat for Humanity International, college trustee and board member.  His travels have taken him to all seven continents and over 60 countries and given him a global perspective on our world and its glories and sorrows—and render him a fitting speaker for the college’s 2015 commencement.

Author of WHERE IS CHURCH?-One Man’s Quest and MUSIC OF 1000 HAMMERS, Inside Habitat for Humanity, Leonard graduated Cum Laude with Honors in history from Davidson College, continued his studies, earning a Bachelor of Divinity from the University of Chicago and earned a Master’s in Business Administration from Emory University.   He first served at Trinity Presbyterian Church after which he founded a non-traditional church that focused on community action and service and eventually left the traditional ministry to work in city housing.  Leonard was recruited by the John Crosland Company, becoming the company’s president in 1984. After the company was acquired by Centex Real Estate Corporation, Leonard was appointed as its Executive Vice-President, responsible for the company’s southeast region. After retiring from Centex, Leonard was elected to the Board of Habitat for Humanity International; he served as Chairman of the Board from December, 2001 to December, 2003 and was employed as the Interim CEO of Habitat for Humanity.  Today he is a member of the US Council for Habitat for Humanity International.