JFWA World School Team Missing International Travel This Fall


Three students from the J. Frank White Academy (JFWA) of Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) were selected to represent the United States for the World School International Forum in Tokyo, Japan, which was canceled this fall due to the pandemic. The cultural exchange program brings together high school students and teachers from 21 countries to create a network of friendships, broaden perspectives and develop globally-minded future leaders.


“When the pandemic hit, we thought the chances of World School happening were slim and told the applicants we weren’t going to put them through the rigorous application process,” said JFWA Principal Bobby Lockhart. “To their credit, they all said they wanted to go through it whether or not they would actually get to go. This speaks highly of their character and grit. This group is as talented and determined as any group we have selected. We are exceptionally proud of the way they have handled this tough circumstance.”


Jaymin Huddleston, junior, of Harrogate, Tennessee, Daniel Gao, senior, of Tazewell, Tennessee, and Elizabeth Melton, senior, of Middlesboro, Kentucky, were chosen as Team USA for 2020. The students competed for the three spots by presenting before a panel of JFWA administrators and faculty. Although international travel for the event was not possible, organizers and participants have met virtually.


“Being selected to be part of the JFWA World School team is something I have dreamed about for a while now,” said Huddleston. “We are all sad to miss out on the experience of making new friends from all over the world, but being chosen is something we can be proud of.”


Kanto International High School in Katsura, Japan, organizes and hosts World School International Forum every other year. It alternates to a different host country when not in Japan. LMU and the JFWA hosted World School in 2002 and 2012, and sends delegations each year.


Created in 1997 by Masaki Matsudaira, a former chairperson and current adviser to Kanto International School, World School aims to create a truly borderless entity that will bring together high school students and teachers from all areas of the world to help the participants create their image of an ideal educational program. The program trains students to adopt a global perspective by becoming receptive to differences.


Countries represented at World School include Australia, Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Macao, New Zealand, Romania, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam.


Lincoln Memorial University is a values-based learning community dedicated to providing educational experiences in the liberal arts and professional studies. The main campus is located in Harrogate, Tennessee. For more information about the undergraduate and graduate programs available at LMU, contact the Office of Admissions at 423.869.6280 or email at [email protected].

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