University of Mobile Presents 2022 Weaver Awards to Avery Wilhite and Grace Whittington

Kathy Dean Education, Graduate, News

MOBILE, Ala. – The University of Mobile presented its two top student awards, the William K. Weaver Jr. Excellence Award and the Annie Boyd Parker Weaver Excellence Award, to Avery Todd Wilhite of Spanish Fort, Alabama, and Grace Elizabeth Whittington of Evergreen, Alabama.

The awards were presented during graduation ceremonies May 7, 2022.

The William K. Weaver Jr. Excellence Award is presented to the most outstanding graduating male senior for excellence in exemplifying the mission of University of Mobile. Selection is made by a secret vote of the faculty based on scholarship,Christian character, leadership, and service. The award, presented to Avery Todd Wilhite, is named for the university’s founding president and is considered the highest recognition possible for a University of Mobile male senior.

Avery Wilhite is described by his professors in the Grace Pilot School of Business as a model student who takes the most challenging classes, goes above and beyond what is required, and is a confident leader willing to help anyone in need.

He maintained a 3.89 grade point average with a major in digital media and advertising while serving as director of the Good Work Agency, a student-led marketing agency for churches and non-profits. He has taken lessons from the classroom and applied them for the betterment of the university as social media manager for RamCorps and, most recently, as communications assistant in the Office for Marketing and Public Relations, where he managed UM’s flagship social media accounts.

For the past two years, he has served as media specialist at East Pointe Baptist Church in Spanish Fort, producing and managing content for the church’s social media and leading a team on Sunday mornings to produce live-stream services. At the same time,
he launched a small business start-up, serving as a video producer and photographer for special events and weddings.

Wilhite graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in digital media and advertising and received the undergraduate area award in digital media and advertising.

The Annie Boyd Parker Weaver Excellence Award is presented to the most outstanding graduating female senior for excellence in exemplifying the mission of University of Mobile. Selection is made by a secret vote of the faculty based on scholarship, Christian character, leadership, and service. The award, presented to Grace Elizabeth Whittington, is named for B Weaver, the university’s first “First Lady,” and is considered the highest recognition possible for a University of Mobile female senior.

Grace Whittington is described by her professors in the College of Arts and Sciences as “the kind of student we all dream of having in a classroom – thoughtful, humble, articulate, well-reasoned, joyful and organized.”

She maintained a 3.97 grade point average with a major in sociology and a double minor in music and psychology. She has represented the university as a University of Mobile Ambassador, served her fellow students as a peer leader, provided leadership as president and vice president of Alpha Chi honor society, and shared the gospel as a member of Sofree vocal ensemble.

She has a servant’s heart and takes joy in heling her community, having volunteered with UM’s Project Serve, at the Joseph Project Food Pantry in the Dumas Wesley Community Center, and at Council Elementary. She has interned at Housing First as well as Redemption Church, where she serves in worship ministry. This summer she will be assistant director for Fuge Camps organized by LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Grace Whittington graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in sociology.

The University of Mobile is a Christ-centered university with a vision of “Higher Education for a Higher Purpose,” founded to honor God by equipping students for their future professions in an environment where they are known.


About the University of Mobile

The University of Mobile is a Christ-centered university offering on-campus and online bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in over 75 academic programs. Founded in 1961, the University of Mobile is affiliated with the Alabama Baptist State Convention and is located 10 miles north of Mobile, Alabama on a campus of over 880 acres.

For information about the University of Mobile, areas of study, admissions and more, visit umobile.edu, connect with UM on social media @univofmobile, or call Enrollment Services at 1.800.WIN.RAMS or 251.442.2222.

About the Author

Kathy Dean

Kathy Dean is assistant vice president for university communications and has helped tell the University of Mobile story since 1993. She is an award-winning public relations professional and former journalist. Her husband and daughter are UM graduates. She loves playing in the yard – planting flowers, picking blueberries, pulling weeds and petting her two mini-schnauzers.