Stover Scholars Visit Pittsburgh Mayor Peduto, Judges Hornak and Flaherty, and the Imani Christian Academy
Waynesburg University’s Stover Scholars met with Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Federal District Judge Mark Hornak, Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas Judge Thomas Flaherty, First Presbyterian Church of Pittsburgh Senior Pastor Tom Hall, and visited the Imani Christian Academy on Friday April 25, 2014.
“This event-filled day provided the Stover Scholars the opportunity to interact with Pittsburgh’s executive, judicial, religious, and educational leaders and witness their innovative and creative attributes,” commented Dr. Lawrence M. Stratton, Director of Waynesburg University’s Stover Center for Constitutional Studies and Moral Leadership.
Mayor Peduto gave the Stover Scholars a tour of Pittsburgh’s mayoral suite and the city council meeting room and laid out his vision for Pittsburgh’s future.
“From having 19 years of experience as a councilman, Mayor Bill Peduto impressed me greatly with his aptitude and appreciation of Pittsburgh’s great history, along with his vision to revitalize the city as well,” reflected freshman John Wicker. Senior Daniel Czajkowski stated, “Regardless of whether one is Democrat or Republican, conservative or liberal, Mayor Peduto’s enthusiasm for public service in the city of Pittsburgh is undeniable. We are grateful for his willingness to meet with us and appreciate not only his deep understanding of Pittsburgh’s history, but also his passion for charting its future.”
Judges Hornak and Flaherty both provided insights into the operation of American legal system in the quest for justice.
Paige Carter, a freshman scholar noted, “Judges Hornak and Flaherty showed a humanity I wasn’t expecting; they mentioned how their losses have granted them humility that spurred them to become the great men they are today. Being able to see the different levels and dynamics of government makes law feel much more attainable.”
The students also toured the Imani Christian Academy and heard the school’s Principal, Terri L. Ayers discuss the inner-city school’s determination to help student discern their own divinely inspired purpose.
Junior Stover Scholar Jeremy Hinkle commented, “The Imani Christian Academy takes in students who are often in unfortunate circumstances and provides the love and care these students need to grow and thrive. With the presence of loving staff and the love of God in their lives, these students are able to realize their inner potential and discover the purpose that they are being called to in life.”
The Senior Stover Scholars were then honored at a Duquesne Club Dinner, which featured an address, by Rev. Hall who reflected upon his pilgrimage of faith from his thirty-year career as an Air Force Colonel before becoming a Presbyterian minister. The graduating seniors honored at the dinner were: Chase S. Ayers, Daniel G. Buzzard, Daniel V. Czajkowski, Patrick C. Kopas, and Mollie K. Pugh.
Reflecting upon the trip, freshman Andrew Stanko observed, “The Stover trip was an opportunity to meet really influential, engaging and talented individuals who shape the Pittsburgh area. It was a chance to place faces with names in local politics and judicial proceedings, and each offered different insights on topics like losing, knowing your history, taking advantage of opportunities, and learning from those talented individuals around you.” Stover Scholar Gina Robinson remarked, “Going to Pittsburgh was such a privilege for me. It was immensely interesting to take a day to hear the ideas of leaders within my community.”
The Stover Center for Constitutional Studies and Moral Leadership is a unique Waynesburg University program dedicated to transforming the political sphere in the context of Christian Ethics and American constitutionalism.