An anonymous donor has made a major gift to Mercer University to establish an endowed scholarship fund in honor of longtime Baptist leader Jimmy R. Allen that will benefit students participating in the institution’s Mercer On Mission program.
“This generous endowment gift honors a man whose influence on Baptist life over the last several decades has been profound, while at the same time enabling more students to participate in the life-changing Mercer On Mission program,” Mercer President William D. Underwood said. “It is entirely fitting that this endowed scholarship fund is established in the name of a man who has spent his entire adult life promoting service to humankind, which is embodied in the Mercer On Mission program.”
Dr. Allen is a former president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas (1972-73) and the Southern Baptist Convention (1978-79) and was president and CEO of the Southern Baptist Radio and Television Commission from 1980-1990. He most recently has served as coordinator of the New Baptist Covenant, an informal alliance of more than 30 racially, geographically, and theologically diverse Baptist organizations from throughout North America. He has pastored churches in Texas and Georgia and holds honorary degrees from a number of universities, including Mercer. He earned his undergraduate degree from Howard Payne University and master’s and doctoral degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Mercer On Mission offers transformational experiences to Mercer students through participation in high-impact international service-learning opportunities. In the summer of 2011, Mercer On Mission teams composed of more than 150 faculty and students traveled to Armenia, Cambodia, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Greece, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Trinidad and Vietnam. They provided medical care, brought water to remote villages, fit land mine victims with low-cost prosthetics and worked to alleviate mercury poisoning among artisanal miners.
About Mercer University
Founded in 1833, Mercer University is a dynamic and comprehensive center of undergraduate, graduate and professional education. The University enrolls more than 8,300 students in 11 schools and colleges – liberal arts, law, pharmacy, medicine, business, engineering, education, theology, music, nursing and continuing and professional studies – on major campuses in Macon, Atlanta and Savannah and at four regional academic centers across the state. Mercer is affiliated with two teaching hospitals — Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah and the Medical Center of Central Georgia in Macon, and has educational partnerships with Warner Robins Air Logistics Center in Warner Robins and Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta. The University operates an academic press and a performing arts center in Macon and an engineering research center in Warner Robins. Mercer is the only private university in Georgia to field an NCAA Division I athletic program. For more information, visit www.mercer.edu.