Living the Moravian Promise
Each issue of InCommon tells the story of a Moravian alum or student who is "living the Moravian Promise." Moravian College promises to partner with students to
build a strong foundation for their personal and professional future. Moravian challenges students with: 1) a strong, personalized academic major; 2) hands-on
learning opportunities; and 3) an environment that promotes the development of a deeper enjoyment of life.
Honnie Spencer '90, M.D.
Fulfilling her life's passions
Honnie Spencer '90, M.D., a native of Antigua, first discovered Moravian College when a choral group from the college visited the island in January of 1985. As a music lover and a Moravian, Spencer was intrigued by the group and attended their concerts for two weeks. In the fall of 1986, Spencer left her home and moved to Bethlehem.
Although registered as a performance major on piano, she immediately informed her advisor that she wanted to double major with biology. “I love both worlds,” says Spencer, who could not choose between her passions. “If I majored in both at least I still could get the best of each.”
Her dual degrees could not be more different, but Spencer worked hard to stay attentive to both. She interned at Saint Luke’s Hospital before there was a program, and she got to see
Russia, Czech Republic, England and Germany with choral groups she participated in.
Even now, Spencer continues to mesh together her two passions. For 14 years, she practiced general medicine in Concord, N. C. at Cabarrus Community Family Practice, spending four years at the hospital’s health clinic. Additionally, Spencer runs the Logan Community Music School in a local Lutheran church in Concord, nestled in the Logan Community, that Spencer calls the “little melting pot.”
"Moravian was the best time in my life."
Spencer says Moravian’s generosity (she received several scholarships) inspires her to pass on the gift of education she received nearly 30 years ago, and so she provides free music lessons to young people.
Since she left the clinic more than a year ago, Spencer has been working at local hospitals as needed. This career change is just the start of her new future. In a few months, she will open her own clinic in an old colonial home she is renovating into a healthcare facility in Winston-Salem, N.C. “The key proposition and focus is to create an intimate relationship between the clinic and community,” says Spencer, who hopes the clinic will be “intertwined” with the tight-knit community. The mission: to promote healthy living, especially to the indigent populations that often cannot afford the healthcare they need.
Spencer recalls being only one of two black female students as an undergraduate, and yet she says, “I never once ever felt any different. Moravian was the best time in my life.” The school community welcomed her, and she carries that legacy on in her life as she works in a community with high diversity and low socioeconomic status.