Skip to content

HIllgrove Hall Lobby

By Steve Esser

Young Harris, GA (06/04/2024) — Dr. WIlliam Harry and Harriet Hill are synonymous with Young Harris College. The couple from Powder Springs, GA, were ardent supporters of the College and young Mountain Lions who studied here. Dr. Hill was elected to the YHC Board of Trustees in 1976, elected a Lifetime Trustee in April 2014, and served until his passing in 2016. 

The Hills donated their time and resources to support the efforts of the College and its students, from scholarships to endowed faculty chairs in Biology and History. They also supported a wide variety of other projects, ranging from updating science facilities to purchasing musical instruments for band programs, building projects, and student mission projects. The Hills provided scholarships for students from Hillgrove High School, from McEachern Memorial United Methodist Church, and students he knew personally would benefit from a YHC education. 

“Harry and Harriet Hill have been a large part of Young Harris College and its success. The College and students owe so much to their support,” said Dr. Drew Van Horn, YHC President. “Young Harris College is a better place because of the care and involvement of Dr. and Mrs. William Harry Hill.” 

Hillgrove Hall Lobby

Melissa Zgonc and Carolyn Black, longtime friends of Dr. and Mrs. Hill , join YHC President Drew Van Horn and YHC Trustees Alvin Gibson, Jon Anderson, and Board Chair Bill Johnston at Hillgrove Hall.

After the recent passing of Mrs. Hill, the Hill Estate bequeathed a number of items from the Hill’s home to recognize their support of the College and the YHC Library team created a memorial display in the lobby area of Hillgrove Hall, a residence hall on campus – named for the Hills, combining the Hill name with Mrs. Hill’s maiden name – Hargrove. 

Hill served in World War II as a Commissioned Medical Corp first lieutenant and was also an avid horseman, showing Tennessee Walking Horses and winning many shows even into his 90s. As a result, the display includes items from his military service, including a surgical kit and the Bronze Star. Several trophies from riding competitions are also on display, not to mention keepsakes from their involvement with Young Harris College including honorary degrees, the YHC Outstanding Friend Award from the YHC Alumni Association, and the President’s Medallion, the College’s highest award. The W. Harry and Harriet Hill Society for Planned Gifts was named in honor of Dr. and Mrs. Hill in 2009. 

“When the estate passed the items on to us, we weren’t sure what was in there, so it was a bit of detective work, going through it,” said Jackie Bruen, YHC Library. Bruen led the display project working with student, Rin Schutz, Class of 2025. “It was a challenge to condense the mementos of their full lives into one display.” 

Schutz agreed: “I really enjoyed the project. I’ve never done anything like this before, so it was fun to learn so much about a couple that meant so much to the College.” 

The Hill’s display is now in the lobby of Hillgrove Hall. Visitors can call the College President’s office for information on viewing the display. 

About Young Harris College 

Young Harris College is a private baccalaureate and master’s degree-granting institution located in the beautiful mountains of North Georgia. Founded in 1886 and historically affiliated with The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College educates, inspires, and empowers students through an education that purposefully integrates the liberal arts and professional studies. The College has four academic divisions: Fine Arts; Humanities; Mathematics, Science, and Technology; and Professional Studies. Approximately 1,400 students are enrolled in its residential and Early College programs. The College is an active member of the NCAA Division II and remains a fierce competitor in the Conference Carolinas. For more information, visit