HIGH POINT, N.C., July 5, 2022 – High Point University faculty and students recently received the following academic and professional awards and recognitions.
Strickland LIFT Scholar Mentored at Spoleto Festival
Senior Reyna Alston, part of HPU’s Strickland’s Leading and Inspiring Female Trailblazers Fellowship, attended the 13-day 2022 Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina. While there, she networked with professional musicians, conductors and cast members as part of different musical performances. Alston also attended the world premiere of “Omar,” an opera conducted by John Kennedy, watched the opera “La Boheme,” and participated in private rehearsals where she was able to observe the conductors.
Deborah Kennedy Kennard, Alston’s mentor through the LIFT Fellowship program, is on the Spoleto Festival board and invited Alston to attend this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Dr. Rhonda Butler is the inaugural director of HPU’s Strickland Women’s LIFT Fellowship program and connected Alston to Kennard.
“As an aspiring choral and orchestral conductor, having this opportunity through Dr. Butler, the Strickland LIFT Fellowship, and my mentor, Deborah Kennedy Kennard, was monumental in my college experience,” said Alston. “I left feeling inspired, motivated and excited to continue learning at HPU in the fall.”
Alston plans to apply for a Fulbright scholarship this fall to study at the Liszt Academy in Budapest, Hungary, upon graduating in May 2023.
Music Professor Receives U.S. State Department Grant to Perform and Teach in France
HPU’s Scott MacLeod, associate professor of music, received a grant from the U.S. Consulate in Marseille, France, to perform and teach in June. While there, he engaged in cultural exchanges and performed a concert titled “Musique pour l’Océan: Music for the Ocean.” The program included a variety of songs inspired by the oceans and highlighted climate change awareness. MacLeod selected pianist Anja Arka, soprano Lorena Guillén, and electric bassist and contributing composer Alejandro Rutty to perform with him in France. The concert included the world premiere of Rutty’s piece “Because the Oceans,” which was paired with an original video created by HPU’s Brad Lambert, associate professor of media production.
“My collaborators and I were proud to add our voices of advocacy for ocean preservation through the performing arts and act as artistic ambassadors for the United States,” said MacLeod. “We are grateful to Consul General Kristen Grauer and the U.S. Consulate in Marseille, the Carmago Foundation, and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, for their generosity while hosting us.”
While in France, MacLeod led two workshops at disadvantaged schools in Marseille, performed a recital at the Carmago Foundation in Cassis and taught a masterclass for apprentice artists at the Nice Opera House. MacLeod’s itinerary concluded with a concert in Monaco for His Serene Highness Prince Albert II and invited guests.
Minister to the University Featured on Podcast
Rev. Dr. Preston Davis, minister to the university, was featured on the Means of Grace podcast, discussing the rise of fear and anxiety in young adults and how the Chapel community’s ministry on HPU’s campus addresses it. Rev. Davis shared his doctoral research on the episode and how HPU is providing students a brighter, more hopeful future through unique resources.
“In an era where families desire a return-on-investment from their college degree, I talk about how young adults can feel reduced to a project instead being a person,” said Davis. “I talk about HPU’s value of life skills and Dr. Qubein’s vision for a return not only on investment, but a ‘return on life.’ Specifically, I talk about how the HPU Chapel is on a mission to dismantle the crippling loneliness young adults feel today by deepening their belonging to one another and God.”
Means of Grace is a podcast from the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church. The goal of the podcast is to equip church leaders through expertise and examples.
History Professor Presents at National World War II Museum in New Orleans
Dr. Frederick Schneid, Herman and Louise Smith Professor of History and chair of HPU’s Department of History, recently led two seminars during The Summer Seminar in Military History, co-hosted by the National World War II Museum’s Institute for the Study of War and Democracy in New Orleans and the Society for Military History.
Schneid was invited to speak on the nature of war and warfare in the 19th century and on pedagogy. In addition to the seminars, he participated in the battlefield staff ride at Chalmette Battlefield, which is where the Battle of New Orleans was fought on Jan. 8, 1815.
“What a wonderful opportunity to speak to young scholars and teach content and teaching methods for 19th century war and warfare,” said Schneid. “I emphasized five central themes in my content lecture, and for pedagogy, I demonstrated the efficacy of using military art and simulations to teach these themes.”