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PUC Introduces the 2014 Maxwell Scholars

Emily Mathe and Cambria Wheeler, July 22, 2014
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Alexander Chang (Photo credit: Shaffer Originals)

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Lauren Chang (Photo credit: Shaffer Originals)

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John Jung

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Dominique Townsend

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Kallie Griffin

Among the incoming freshman coming to Pacific Union College in September are five exceptional students who have been chosen as this year’s recipients of the Maxwell Scholarship. Named for PUC’s iconic presidential couple, Dr. Malcolm and Eileen Maxwell, this prestigious award is given to students who show outstanding academic achievement, exceptional leadership experience, and a commitment to Christian service. The Maxwell Scholar Program awards recipients a $15,000 renewable scholarship for all four years they attend PUC.

Alexander Chang of Grass Valley, Calif., dedicated his high school career at Pine Hills Adventist Academy (PHAA) to scholastic, athletic, and extracurricular success. The Grass Valley, Calif., native was student association president his senior year, starting new programs like PHYSICS (Pine Hills Youth Spiritually Invigorating Campus Soldiers) and a Kicks 4 Kids shoe drive. During high school this natural leader also won awards in multiple sports and captained the basketball and flag football teams. Alex has been on six mission trips since 2006, assisting with construction projects, medical and dental services, Vacation Bible School, and Week of Prayer programs. He also succeeded scholastically as a member of the National and as the recipient of PHAA’s top academic awards in multiple subjects. Alex is looking forward to starting classes at PUC in September. “I'm really excited to study subjects that really interest me, meet new friends, make lifelong memories, and grow closer to God with my fellow students,” he shares.

Lauren Chang first heard about the Maxwell Scholarship in the pages of the Recorder, and since then hoped to be chosen as for the award. Like her twin brother Alex, Lauren is a model student, true leader, and compassionate volunteer. She served as social vice president of the Pine Hills Adventist Academy student association during her senior year and president of her class during junior year. Lauren founded PHAA’s first student newspaper, A Bird’s Eye View. She traveled on six mission trips, volunteers at the Grass Valley Seventh-day Adventist Church, and actively contributes her time at numerous community organizations. Lauren is a superstar academic: she was a member of the National Honor Society, received PHAA academic awards for multiple subjects, and won the “Take a Challenge” Project Award. Along with her many athletic and extracurricular pursuits, Lauren served as a medical research assistant, and like her brother Alex is listed as an author on papers published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

Kallie Griffin has already started making the world a better place. As president of Paradise Adventist Academy’s associated student body her senior year, Griffin led programs and events to support “Four Pillars”: community, outreach, spirituality, and academic successes. This busy leader had gained experience in various positions each year of high school. Kallie, who hopes to be a physician, accumulated many volunteer hours travelling on mission trips to Honduras and the Dominican Republic, working as a camp counselor, and contributing to her church’s Vacation Bible School. God will no doubt use this top student, and multi-talented instrumentalist and vocalist, and well-rounded athlete as she continues to make a difference!

John Jung, of San Diego, Calif., is a busy man. In addition to his exemplary academic achievements, this graduate of Del Norte High School has participated in multiple volunteer and mission programs, including trips to Mexico and Korea to provide construction and medical aid and spiritual programs like Vacation Bible School. John also regularly visited nursing homes, health expos, hospitals, and fundraisers to provide voluntary assistance to those in need. He also pursued leadership opportunities within his church. The Maxwell Scholarship is the latest of John’s recognitions, which include awards from the National Honors Society, the California Scholarship Federation, California State Recognition for community service, and others.

Redlands, Calif., native Dominique Townsend was chosen as a Maxwell Scholar for her dedication to scholastic excellence, spiritual leadership, and community service. At Loma Linda Academy (LLA), Dominique co-founded Youth Exceeding Limits, a non-profit organization called that encourages children to be engaged with their health, wellness, and education. She travelled with Youth Exceeding Limits on a service trip to Haiti that offered medical clinics, food delivery, construction assistance, and a Vacation Bible School program. Dominique adds smarts to her service; she became a member of the National Honor Society in her junior year and was the LLA’s society president her senior year. Her interests outside of school include music—she sings and plays piano, violin, and guitar—horseback riding, and soccer.

When she heard she was selected for the award, Dominique, who will pursue a degree in English education, felt it was an answer to prayer. “To me, receiving this scholarship shows that as long as I continue to follow God’s plan for my life, He will keep His promises, and take care of everything I need,” she says. “This scholarship means that my hard work is appreciated, and though that’s not why I’ve done and will continue to do such work, it is always nice to be recognized for hard work.”

In addition to the five Maxwell Scholars, five semi-finalists are selected. The 2014 semi-finalists are Stefaan Dick of PUC Preparatory School, Mark and Matthew Corbin of Sparkman High School, Sabrina Mastiff of Burney Junior Senior High School, and Brianna Richardson of Centennial High School.

These scholars will join hundreds of freshmen from around the world for orientation at PUC beginning September 17. We invite you to learn more about scholarships at PUC.