Record enrollment: MACU students begin fall classes
By Reggie Ponder
Wednesday, August 22, 2018
Mid-Atlantic Christian University started fall semester classes this week with a record enrollment of 214 students.
MACU President John Maurice announced the enrollment figure during the university’s opening convocation on Tuesday, noting the previous record was 209 students in 2002.
Maurice added that the number could possibly grow by a few students when the final tally is complete. This year’s student body includes students from 21 states as well as Honduras and India.
Daryl Reed, lead minister of DC Regional Christian Church in Washington, D.C., challenged MACU students in his convocation address Tuesday to become the extraordinary Christian leaders God is calling them to be. He also urged students to show an extraordinary love for one another and to have an extraordinary trust in Jesus Christ.
“When you are young you can dream extraordinary dreams and God can do extraordinary things through you,” Reed said.
Citing the biblical account in 2 Kings 6 of the miraculous floating axhead, Reed encouraged MACU students to pray not only about big things but about seemingly small things such as an axhead that falls in the water.
“God can do extraordinary things through ordinary people when we pray,” Reed said.
MACU students said Tuesday they’re ready and excited about the start of classes.
John Hilts, a freshman from Jamesville majoring in general ministries, said he believes MACU will provide him great preparation for a career in the ministry. Hilts said he is interested in both worship ministry and youth ministry.
MACU was recommended by his father, who was a youth minister for 19 years, according to Hilts. Hilts visited MACU a number of times and became increasingly convinced that the campus was the right place for him.
“From the moment I got here I could feel the family experience going on,” Hilts said.
Another freshman, Clifford Shaw, a 2018 graduate of Northeastern High School, said he is excited about playing basketball as a MACU Mustang. Shaw is majoring in sports management and said he will be focused on keeping up his grades while also performing at a high level on the court.
Maurice advised students in his opening comments at Tuesday’s convocation that they should be an example of love, unity and service. As MACU begins its 71st year the current students will help write the next chapter in the school’s history, he said.
“I believe that God has led you to this place for a reason,” Maurice said.
Beth Strecker, MACU’s new library director, is a 25-year resident of Camden who has previously worked as a school librarian, technology director, and instructor at East Carolina University. Strecker, who gave the benediction at the end of Tuesday’s convocation service, continues to serve as an adjunct faculty member at ECU.
Strecker said coming to MACU as library director was an opportunity she felt she couldn’t pass up.
“I have always wanted to be a library director in an academic setting,” she said.
A new faculty member, Bobby Adams, who is teaching chemistry and physics, gave the opening prayer at Tuesday’s service.