Samford University’s Howard College of Arts and Sciences (HCAS) named the 2021-22 Howard Scholars on the Sept. 2 birthday of John Howard, the 18th century humanitarian for whom the college and program are named. The students represent a variety of disciplines and are among the finest students in the college, working to promote research and interdisciplinary engagement both within the group and throughout the college.
Born in 1726, John Howard led an unremarkable life as a country squire in Bedfordshire until he was elected as the county sheriff. He was outraged to learn that some prison inmates were held captive even after they were found innocent because they could not afford the jailer’s fee. He then made it his life’s work to survey the jails of Europe in an attempt to bring public attention to the shameful treatment of prisoners. He died in Ukraine during a 1790 inspection of the prisons and military hospitals of Eastern Europe.
Howard’s life became a model of Christian compassion for society’s outcasts, and a half-century after his death a group of Alabama Baptists gave his name to their new college. Howard College of Arts and Sciences remains the academic heart of Samford University, and the Howard Scholars program continues to honor the college’s namesake.
In addition to ongoing involvement by HCAS dean Tim Hall and associate dean Emily Hynds, academic advisor John David Corwin serves as director of the program. “Howard College is thrilled to welcome another cohort of exceptional students for the John Howard Scholars Program,” Corwin said. “This year the Scholars will explore the theme of happiness and human flourishing, with attention to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on these aspects of life.”
The 2021-2022 Howard Scholars include:
Gracie Van Orden