Two Students Receive Samuel Robinson Awards
Two Alma College students have received a competitive award given to students completing their junior or senior year at a Presbyterian-related college or university.
Seniors Maggie Watters and John Gillette won the 2011 Samuel Robinson Award, which was created in 1956 to promote the memorization of the Westminster Shorter Catechism contained in “The Book of Confessions.”
“While the catechism was written in the mid-1600s, it can still speak to us today,” says Chaplain Carol Gregg. “One of my favorite statements on the purpose of human life comes from the first question, which, in essence, is, ‘What is the purpose of human life?’ The given answer is ‘to glorify God and enjoy God forever.’”
In addition to memorizing and reciting the catechism, each applicant must write a 2,000-word original essay on an assigned topic. This year, students were asked to reflect on specific aspects of the Shorter Catechism by discussing the effect of 21st century technologies and worldviews on prayer.
A team of experienced readers reviews each essay, evaluating how students incorporate the catechism and scripture into the topic.
The Samuel Robinson Program, which supports up to 16 students per year, awards student $2,500 to $5,000. In addition to reducing educational debt and helping fund mission trips, this makes the transition to seminary or other graduate programs easier for students.
“Every year, we have several students participate in this award,” says Gregg. “Many times our students have earned significant awards – up to $5,000 – but most importantly, they have had the opportunity to reflect on this important historical document.”
Along with student awards, each college receives a $500 grant in the name of their awarded students to be used to promote the award and to support campus ministry.
Posted: Mon, May 23rd, 2011 at 3:58PM