Paul Bradford, director of the Westmont Office of Career Development and Calling, wanted to honor Ruth Kerr, Westmont’s founder, in a way that demonstrated how one life can make an impact on thousands, even after death. He commissioned Westmont alumnus Jacob Grant ’18 to create an artistic piece and what he received caught him by great surprise. Grant designed “Great Was Her Faithfulness,” a piece inspired by Kerr’s legacy and vision, which shaped the lives of so many people. The large mosaic, which hangs in the lobby of the Kerr Student Center, incorporates many small photos of Westmont students throughout the years into an image of Kerr. “The idea of merging the two evolved into a mosaic that literally represents how our Westmont experience as students points back to Mrs. Kerr’s original work and vision,” Grant says. “We wanted to display the many generations of students who have come, graduated and gone on to serve around the world because of her legacy.”
Grant came to Westmont from Santa Ana and serves at Ocean Hills Covenant Church in a pioneering ministry leadership residency that enables recent college graduates to dive into ministry with a safety net and tangible experience. He earned a bachelor’s degree in religious studies while minoring in art, and he works as a photographer and freelance artist. “My dream is to use my abilities as a creative thinker and developer to enable people, systems, businesses and the whole church to grow, mature, evolve and progress, while working in tandem with the Spirit and one another,” he says. “I am a direct recipient of Ruth Kerr’s vision for an educational experience that transcends academics to encompass the whole individual. I loved my time at Westmont and the way that I was trained to be more thoughtful, selfless, pioneering and global in my thinking and actions.”
March marks National Women’s History Month, and Westmont celebrates the life of Kerr who, along with Wallace L. Emerson, the college’s first president, conceived the vision for Westmont that still applies today. Kerr served as a trustee and the college’s chief benefactor for 30 years.
Westmont hosts the fourth annual Westmont Women’s Leadership Luncheon, “A Seat at the Table: Why Women Must Pursue Careers of Influence” with Megan Alexander, Westmont alumna and Inside Edition correspondent, on Friday, March 29, at noon at the Four Seasons Biltmore. For more information, please visit: westmont.edu/fourth-annual-westmont-womens-leadership-luncheon.