When James Davenport was in his senior year of high school, he received a very important phone call, one he remembers to this day. At the time, he and his sister were exploring the Alamo in Texas—now a memorable place for James for more than one reason. On the other line was Paul Charles, Director of Recruitment for the Templeton Honors College. As the two discussed the college and its values, James was so convinced he decided to fill out an application. Looking back on this moment, James laughs and says, “I had no idea what I was getting myself into!” And yet, he is pleased with the choice he made.
Currently, James is nearing the end of his sophomore year at Eastern University. He is part of the Honors College Cohort of 2016 and has created his own individualized major: Politics, Philosophy, and Theology. In his studies, James is exploring what it means to interpret the Bible through the lens of politics. Although he currently plans to pursue law after graduation, James remarks that he becomes more interested in theology with each day. He intends to study abroad at the University of Oxford because, in his words, “Where better to study theology?” He looks forward to immersing himself in the rich church history and amazing academics there.
Overall, James says the highlights of his college experience have been the people and conversations. Knowing that his professors and peers care about what he has to say means a lot to him. James enjoys having in-depth, respectful discussions with members of his cohort and the university; he adds that this is a unique privilege Eastern offers, not often found at other schools. Finally, James is grateful for the number of people who have willingly given him advice and guidance throughout his time in college.
Before coming to Saint Davids, James graduated from Tully Central High School in central New York. He was raised by his mother and father in Tully—a small, rural town—along with his three older sisters, with whom he is very close. They now have children of their own, which makes James an uncle to three nephews and one niece. He describes them as “all wonderful and very cute,” and himself as “most definitely the fun uncle.”
James also pursues a number of hobbies when he is not in class. Many of them include spending time outdoors, such as fishing, hunting, or just relaxing while in nature. His participation in these activities certainly came in handy when attending Honors College camping trips in the Adirondacks; first with his cohort and a second time as a student staff member. James enjoys exercising and is often found in Eastern University’s fitness center. In addition, he loves to spend his time singing and playing guitar. When he was twelve, James saved up his money to buy his own guitar, and has taught himself to play ever since then.
Thanks to a simple phone call two years ago, Eastern University and the Templeton Honors College are now blessed to have James as part of the community—both inside and outside the classroom.
Grace Newman is a sophomore in the Honors College majoring in Middle Level Education with a concentration in Reading. She has served on the Templeton Student Council since January 2017, both on the Hospitality Committee and as head of the Council. In addition, she enjoys giving tours for Eastern Admissions and introducing visitors to the beautiful campus.