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Apr 21st, 2022

Class of 2022 Outcomes: Al Dean Jr. Studies Divinity

HPU graduates are leading prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the Class of 2022:

Name: Al Dean Jr.

Hometown: Burlington, North Carolina

Major: Sport management with a minor in nonprofit leadership and management 

Post-graduation plans: Dean will be attending Duke University’s Duke Divinity School to pursue a master’s in divinity.

How HPU helped you get there: “At High Point University, I was blessed with many resources and connections that helped me get where I am today. HPU’s innovative environment required me to rise to the occasion and believe that anything is possible. Over the last four years, I have been involved in the Student Government Association, learning from those who were leaders on campus and brought new ideas. This inspiring environment is something that I will carry as I develop into the man I will be. High Point University is an institution that has made me dream about empowering those around me for what seems impossible. The Office of Career and Professional Development helped me develop a passion for what I really want to do in life. In the midst of looking for my next steps, they emphasized the importance of a clear, in-depth resume. They made sure my cover letter and resume were in sync. Students should visit The Office of Career and Professional Development often because they provide many resources for development, such as networking and internship opportunities, information, and hands-on experience.”

Most impactful mentor at HPU: “The last four years at HPU have been amazing but also challenged me. Whenever I needed someone to talk to and explore my next steps, Dr. David Bergen, professor of human relations and nonprofit studies, was there. Dr. Bergen has been a great influence and motivator. He made sure I analyzed every scenario before making a decision. When I shared with him my goal of going to Duke Divinity School, he lit up with so much excitement for me. Through the ups and downs at HPU, he was there. This is what HPU is all about. The people at this university truly care. I will never forget how he made me feel as a student and the belief he has for each person at HPU. ‘You got this, Al,’ has ​​catapulted me into my next journey.”

Most impactful moment at HPU: “I had some of the best moments of my life at High Point University, like meeting lifelong friends and creating memories every single day. While studying at HPU, I was heartbroken by the loss of my grandmother and father. At that moment, I did not want to continue my studies. But HPU was there through it all and made sure I had the support to continue on. Receiving calls from HPU President Dr. Qubein, counseling services speaking with me, professors reaching out weekly, the Office of Student Life continuously reaching out and peers motivating me was so impactful. It was at this moment I realized that HPU cares and loves their students! At my breaking point and lowest times, they were there to encourage me. I learned not to give in, but seek greatness in all you do as you press on. It has been my goal to first please God in all I do, and secondly make my grandmother and father proud. I will never forget how HPU was there for me and how it made me feel to be a part of this special family.”

What are the life skills HPU helped you develop that prepared you for long-term success? “HPU allows every student to reach their highest potential. Some of the life skills HPU helped me develop are critical thinking, adapting a growth mindset and effective communication. In the First-Year Seminar of Life Skills, Dr. Qubein talked about the power of communication, and I still have the book written by him titled, ‘How to be a Great Communicator.’ Communication has been essential as I explore my goals, dreams, hopes and challenges. Having a growth mindset gave me the ability to think with a clear mind while learning new things. Long-term, these life skills will help me in any environment and are a solid foundation which I can continue to build on and grow.”

What are the values and virtues HPU’s campus helped you develop that you’ll take with you after graduation? “High Point University is an institution that stands on honesty and integrity. Those are the values I will take on throughout my life and were the things I held close as a leader on campus. Whenever I am in the workforce or continuing my education, integrity will be key in new environments. I have valued HPU’s honest approach in all they do so every person has a clear understanding of what is happening. I believe that if I keep the values of honesty and integrity, my future will be bright!”

Advice for underclassmen: “I come to encourage you! Senior year is stressful — looking for internships, applying for jobs, searching for a place to live, looking at graduate schools and getting ready to step into the real world. During my sophomore year, I sat down to think about what life would be like after HPU. I wrote down goals and dreams I wanted to accomplish. So, my advice is to believe in your goals and dreams and write them down so you know what you want to achieve. If you believe something, walk in newness and know that it will happen. Everyday, before I get my day started, I proclaim and speak what has not occurred yet but I have the belief that it will. Allow yourself to measure your success by doing things you are passionate about.”

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