Holland earns top student award

Junior Acea Holland has earned the inaugural Student Legacy Award at the 2014 African-American Student Leadership Experience conference held in Washington, D.C., Jan. 9-12.

An elementary-education major from Louisville, Ky., she was one of more than 200 students eligible for the award, which according to the event website, “recognizes the accomplishments of an undergraduate student who has demonstrated transformative leadership, academic excellence, community service and a commitment to continuing the legacy of our ancestors.”

Holland is a member of the Benjamin Templeton Scholars Program, a full-tuition scholarship program that joins students from a variety of cultural, social and religious backgrounds to celebrate the tenets of cultural diversity, social justice and tolerance building within the Hanover College community. Monica Green, the program’s director and Holland’s academic mentor, recommended her for the award.

“Since her induction into the Templeton program, Acea has been an academic standout and exemplar for her peers,” said Green. “Not only is her GPA one of the highest among her group — and consequently that of the majority of non-Templeton students — Acea is a leader among her peers in promoting tolerance and cultural competence within the Hanover College community.”

“Acea gets the job done by being inconspicuous about it,” added Director of Multicultural Affairs Taran McZee, who attended the event with Holland. “ I think this award has boosted her confidence, and it recognizes the College for providing these opportunities in which our students can engage.”

Each year the African-American Student Leadership Experience organizations gathers Black college students from across the nation, as well as Nigeria, to participate in challenging activities and conversations with the goal of giving them the basic skills to make change in their communities. The theme for the three-day event was “iLead: Back 2 Basics...Beyond Mobilization towards Transformational Leadership” and featured guest speakers including political activist Kevin Powell, political analyst Donna Brazile and record executive Amir Windom. BET host Jeff Johnson kicked off the program with “The State of the Black Experience.”