Mercer’s Got Talent winners forgo prize for friend


Image: Marin Guta

First place winners of Mercer’s Got Talent gave their prize of a free semester of housing at the Lofts to their friend who commutes to school from Dublin, Georgia.

Summer Perrit, Staff Writer

Marin Guta

Alan Kim and Abby Henry performed their rendition of  “Should’ve Been Us” by Tori Kelly at Mercer’s Got Talent 2015 in the hopes of winning the first place prize — a full semester of free housing in one of Mercer’s Lofts.

But the real show came after the duo earned the coveted first-place prize.

Kim and Henry chose to give their prize away to someone who could benefit more from the special living arrangement, someone who has already made quite an impact on campus — Jave Boyboy.

Hailing from Dublin, Georgia, Boyboy is a junior at Mercer majoring in marketing with a minor in media studies.

His arrival at the university came suddenly in the last week of summer before freshman year, Mercer agreed to let him be a commuter student. The decision was a surprise for Boyboy and his family due to their location near the apportioned distance zone for students who are allowed to commute to campus, instead of living on it.

During his first year, Boyboy commuted nearly two hours a day, five days a week. For his sophomore year, Boyboy crashed on his friends’ couches several days a week to minimize on his trips back home.

“I thought I was only going to do that for a semester . . . it’s been like three years,” he said.

Despite the challenges of commuting, Boyboy became quite involved in on-campus. He has been involved with Reformed University Fellowship (RUF), The Cluster, QuadWorks and other organizations around campus.

Kim describes his friend as an involved person who really “pours into his relationships with people . . .going above and beyond the normal expectations of a friend.”  

It was because of this admiration for Boyboy that Kim immediately thought of him when he learned of the first place prize of the talent competition.

“From that moment I was determined to win the prize, not only for our organization [RUF] but also for one of my best friends” Kim said.

Both Boyboy and Kim attribute their friendship to their involvement in RUF, an on-campus religious life organization. At RUF, Kim and Boyboy have had serious life discussions and forged friendship bonds during the RUF summer conference this May.

“During the short amount of time Jave and I have been able to get to know each other, we have grown incredibly close. I am more than proud to call Jave one of my best friends,” Kim said.

When Boyboy learned of Kim and Henry’s decision to give away their prize, he was surprised and speechless.

“I’ve never been so shocked in my life. I’m just really thankful,” he said.

As for how his life will change here at Mercer University, Boyboy said he isn’t sure, but he is confident that it will be for the better.

“Commuting hasn’t stopped me,” he said, but he reiterated how grateful and excited he is for the new opportunity.

With the exception of a few details, Boyboy is poised to move into his new home upon return from winter break.

“I’m just really thankful for their friendship. That’s really meant a lot to me,” he said.