11/30/08 — Three honored during MOC Founders Day

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Three honored during MOC Founders Day

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on November 30, 2008 2:00 AM


From left, Founders Day Leadership Award recipients Frank Harrison, former campus minister at Mount Olive College, and students Tiffany Hope McPherson and Laura Keith Thompson stand with presenters Dr. Burkette Raper and his wife, Rose.

MOUNT OLIVE -- Two students and a former campus minister at Mount Olive College were honored during the college's annual Founders Day celebration on Tuesday.

Tiffany Hope McPherson of Clarendon and Laura Keith Thompson of Kinston received the Founders Leadership Award, a scholarship sponsored by former president Dr. Burkette Raper and his wife, Rose.

The $500 scholarship award is presented each year to seniors who have distinguished themselves in character and demonstrated strong leadership qualities.

Ms. McPherson is a senior business administration major with an emphasis in business management. Ms. Thompson is a senior religion major and was a college marshal.

They both along belong to the concert choir and Free Spirit, are involved in the student ministry Big Coffee and part of the honors program.

Harrison's ties to MOC go back to the early 1960s when he attended the school and earned his associate's degree. While continuing his education, he pastored two churches, in Fountain and Lucama. Upon receiving his master of divinity degree, he accepted a job at North Carolina Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem and did two years of post-graduate studies in pastoral counseling.

In 1971, he returned to Mount Olive College as campus minister, where he also taught religion courses, planned the weekly chapel services, counseled students and served as director of religious life. His career there spanned 31 years.

"I think inviting Frank Harrison to be the campus minister was one of the most important decisions I made at the College," said Raper, who is now president emeritus and presented the award. "Frank Harrison is a different person because of Mount Olive College, and Mount Olive College is a different college because of the Rev. Frank Harrison."