During the 2018-2019 school year, the staff at Mount Pisgah Academy (MPA) realized that the school was in desperate need of a new bus to transport students. Although MPA has been blessed to own three buses for the past several years, some of the older buses continue to have mechanical issues. Lucy Hall, director of development, was able to secure a $50,000 grant for matching funds from AdventHealth. Leslie Louis, president of the Carolina Conference, heard about this issue and began encouraging constituents to donate to this worthy cause. As a result of many prayers and petitions, $50,000 was raised and the grant was earned. Additionally, MPA received a bequest from a Carolina donor’s estate, which was a great help in the fundraising process. As of mid-October, MPA had received $220,000 in donations toward the Transportation Fund.
Once the funds were raised, it was important to consider which vehicle would best serve the school’s needs. With the help of alumnus Ryan Piercy (’97), who works at Prevost (Volvo), MPA was able to navigate the purchase of this huge asset. Vehicles of this nature are quite costly, even if previously owned, and Piercy was able to ensure that MPA was treated fairly during the purchase. John Knowles, director of maintenance and plant services, aided in the negotiation for and procurement of the bus.
A dedication ceremony for the newly purchased bus was held October 14, 2019. Representatives of the Carolina Conference officers, pastors, and teachers attended, as did the entire MPA student body. During the dedication, many thanks were given to the donors who gave generously to the fund, as well as to Piercy for his help in acquiring the vehicle. Following the recognitions, everyone was asked to place their hands on the vehicle while Louis offered a prayer of thanksgiving and dedication for the new bus. In his prayer, Louis spoke of how God had blessed so greatly and requested that safety be upon all those who utilize the vehicle. After the prayer, Louis and Remy Guenin, principal of MPA, cut a ribbon on the door to the new bus. Visitors and students were then invited to view the inside of the vehicle. Some of the features that are especially appreciated are charging outlets, enclosed storage compartments, and even game tables in the back. MPA staff and students were grateful for the opportunity to celebrate this milestone in the school’s development, and were especially pleased that so many could be in attendance.
Since acquiring the new bus, MPA has been able to utilize it for transportation on the junior class history trip to New England; the View Southern trip for the senior class to Chattanooga, Tenn.; and the senior class trip to Florida. Additionally, parents of MPA students enjoyed the bus on a drive through the Blue Ridge Parkway to a hiking spot during Parent Open House Weekend in October.
Although MPA has acquired the bus, they are still in need of two 15-passenger shuttles.
Carolina | January 2020