Charis Flake’s accomplishments were too numerous to list when Dean Dr. Duane Meeks introduced her as the School of Communication & Media’s Outstanding Graduate during a special chapel service last week.
That’s because there isn’t much the communication major and student ministries minor hasn’t done during her time at PBA. A student in the Frederick M. Supper Honors Program, Flake has been a member of the President’s Lyceum, a resident assistant and a Steering Committee member for the Student Activities, Involvement and Leadership Office. On the Steering Committee, she helped plan and implement more than 30 events that take place over six days to welcome hundreds of new students to campus. The committee also planned campus-wide events throughout the year.
“I was given so many opportunities to be in leadership,” Flake said.
Flake is one of two students to receive the 2019 Women of Distinction scholarship, which she received in addition to the Beulah Kahler, Frank Wright and Trojan Labor Scholarships for academic achievement and service. She was also awarded the Provost’s Scholarship for exceptional SAT and ACT scores.
She is as passionate about ministry as she is about academic excellence. Every summer, she volunteers at Canal Lake Bible Camp in her hometown of Blairsville, Georgia. She’s taken on increasing levels of responsibility, interning and helping plan the camp that she attended.
“It’s a lot of hard work, but it really benefits our community, and I’m just glad to be a part of it,” Flake said.
Children — many of whom are underprivileged — attend the camp, thanks to the generosity of the local church. Flake has walked them through the gospel and feels she’s utilized her gifts the most while serving children in her hometown.
She’s able to invest in others because of the way PBA faculty, administration and staff have invested her, she said. For example, she taught camp counselors the conflict resolution skills she learned in one of her classes.
Learning happens after class ends, too, she said, noting that professors have invited her into their homes for dinner and taken time to answer her questions about ministry — even if she’s not in their classes.
After graduation, Flake will complete an intensive, post-graduate discipleship program at Sky Ranch, a Christian camp in Van, Texas.
Photo: Charis Flake shakes hands with Dr. Duane Meeks, dean of the School of Communication and Media, after he introduced her as the school's outstanding graduate.