Published on September 6, 2015  
Howard College of Arts and Sciences celebrated the 287th birthday of its namesake in early September with a reception and the announcement of a new academic honor.

John Howard, born Sept. 2, 1726, led an unremarkable life as a country squire in Bedfordshire, England, until he was elected as the county sheriff. He was outraged to learn that acquitted prisoners were held captive only because they couldn’t afford the jailer’s fee. Howard 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 1790 in the Ukraine during an inspection of the prisons in Eastern Europe. Howard is now widely recognized as a model of Christian compassion for society’s outcasts. Half a century after his death, a group of Alabama Baptists decided to name their new college in honor of this great humanitarian, whose marble likeness was the first memorial in England’s St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Adding further honor to the name, the college has announced the inaugural class of John Howard Scholars, seventeen junior undergraduates chosen from among the finest in the college. The scholars will meet regularly with the dean in order to promote scholarship, service, and learning in the Howard tradition. The first John Howard Scholars are:

David Bayless (Philosophy & Physics)
Holly Howell (History)
Isaac Johnson (Philosophy and Religion)
Jared Miller (Classics)
Amanda Moritz (Psychology)
Elizabeth Mullins (English)
Adam Quinn (English)
Rachel Ray (Classics)
Michaela Reesor (Journalism and Mass Communication)
Dylan Rigg (Religion)
Meredith Robinson (Mathematics)
Anna Smith (Journalism and Mass Communication)
Nathan Smolin (Classics)
Audrey Ward (English)
Katy Ward (English)
Taylor Williams (Biology)
Kaleena Woodruff (Communication Studies)

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.