Just a few days after commencement, this year’s H.M. Young Ring winner, Ronnie Funk, sent a letter to the Erskine College faculty. He thanked them for their formative role in his experience as a student and in the direction of his vocation.
We know Ronnie represents many other graduates across the years in articulating his gratitude. We asked him if we could publish his letter so the broader Erskine community could share in his thanks to our dedicated faculty for all they do for Erskine and our students.
Ronnie graduated magna cum laude with departmental honors in both areas of his double major, Biology and Chemistry. He will be attending medical school at Emory University in the fall where he hopes to pursue the MD-PhD program in the future.
May 27, 2015
Due West, SC
Thank you for selecting me as the recipient of the most prestigious student honor at Commencement. I was experiencing a time of sadness following the sudden loss of my grandfather, who played a significant role in my life. God used your decision to affirm the efforts and sacrifices I made during college to pursue my calling of cancer research. The award and ring will serve as an encouraging reminder for me to relentlessly pursue my calling of helping people stricken with cancer.
I have been fortunate to spend the last few days in reflection on Hilton Head Island with family. I identified 29 major academic pivot points, which God used to help me make significant steps (or leaps) toward developing my talents for His calling in my life. Erskine College faculty members were pivotal to 14 of the 29 major steps, including all of the major steps during my first two years. Faculty office hours and direct investment of the faculty were pivotal to my Erskine experience.
My true purpose in writing this letter is to show that people appreciate you for choosing to be in a place that allows you to spend time with students. I look forward to hearing stories of how the lives of future Erskine students change through your investment in them.