Undergraduate College at SWBTS

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by gb93433, Oct 21, 2004.

  1. gb93433

    gb93433
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    Southwestern trustees press on with undergrad college
    By Brent Thompson
    Oct 21, 2004

    FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)--Trustees of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary continued formulating plans to move forward on an undergraduate college during their semiannual meeting Oct. 19.

    The school, tentatively named The College at Southwestern, will offer a baccalaureate degree in biblical studies and other programs in the history of Western ideas at the Fort Worth, Texas, campus. Seminary President Paige Patterson said that the college would do what secular universities often are failing to do.

    “Many of our students are coming here from the great secular universities and they have never read Plato, Thucydides or even Herman Melville’s ‘Moby Dick.’ You are not prepared, you are not educated if you have failed to accomplish these things in your undergraduate education,” Patterson said.

    Trustees approved a recommendation to become involved in recruiting efforts for the school, pledging to recruit 50 students for the initial class. Vice President of Student Services Rudy Gonzalez said trustees also would assist the new school by providing names and contact information for homeschool associations and Christian academies in their respective areas across the United States.

    A task force at the seminary has begun formulating the school’s curriculum and has designed application materials, Gonzalez said.

    Classes at The College at Southwestern are slated to begin in the fall 2005 semester. Greg Tomlin, spokesman for the seminary, said The College at Southwestern would provide “unique preparation for students who wish to engage culture and advance the Gospel.” Tomlin also indicated that the cost of attending the college would be much less than the average university or private Christian school.

    Trustees also elected a new vice president, a new faculty member and approved the inauguration of two new academic chairs.

    C. Gregory Kingry Sr. was named vice president of business affairs. A career missionary with the International Mission Board since 1997, Kingry oversaw business services in Israel, Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan and Jordan. Most recently, Kingry was based in England where he served as the IMB’s regional business services manager for the Northern Africa-Middle East region.

    Kingry holds a Master of Divinity with biblical languages degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C. He is also a graduate of North Georgia College in Dahlonega, Ga.

    Chris Thompson, a Ph.D. candidate who has been serving as interim vice president of business affairs, now assumes the newly created role of seminary chief of staff.

    Trustees elected Johnny Derouen as associate professor of student ministries. Derouen has served as minister to youth at Travis Avenue Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas, the past nine years. Since 1971, he has served as youth minister to churches in Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas, including First Baptist Church in Houston and First Baptist Church in Muskogee, Okla.

    Derouen wrote and taught “The Leading Edge,” a nationally distributed video series for youth workers. He is a frequent contributor to Youth Leadership magazine and LifeWay Christian Resources’ Sunday School publications for youth.

    Derouen holds a Master of Arts in religious education degree from Southwestern and will receive a Ph.D. from Southwestern’s school of educational ministries in December. Derouen’s election is effective Jan. 1.

    Trustees approved the establishment of the James T. Draper Chair of Pastoral Ministry and chose Larry Ashlock to occupy the chair. Ashlock is associate professor of preaching and pastoral studies and associate dean for the doctor of ministry program.

    The James T. Draper Chair of Pastoral Ministry honors the former Southern Baptist Convention president and current president of LifeWay Christian Resources in Nashville, Tenn.

    Trustees named Gerald Aultman to occupy the newly established Richard D. Baker Chair of Music Missions and Evangelism. Aultman is professor of church music. He previously taught church music at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the organist at the First Baptist Church in Dallas.

    The Richard D. Baker Chair of Music Missions was established in honor of the respected music evangelist and composer of hymns such as “All to Thee.” Baker also was minister of music at the Dallas-area Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, Texas.

    Seminary officials will inaugurate both chairs Nov. 10.

    In other business, trustees:

    -- authorized the presentation of the seminary’s B.H. Carroll Award to John and Pat Carlson and to George and Nancy Mixon.

    John Carlson is the founder and president of Carlson Engineering in Fort Worth. Pat is in her third term as the chairman of the Tarrant County Republican Party. Their commitment to world evangelism and soul-winning is manifest in gifts and pledges to the seminary’s department of evangelism and more recently to a new school of evangelism and missions.

    George and Nancy Mixon began their support of Southwestern by setting up a scholarship fund for international students. Since then, the Mixons have continued supporting the funding of the seminary’s Leadership Development Complex and the Eklund Chair of Stewardship. Together with their son, Jeff, the Mixons are partners in Mixon Investments, a real estate and shopping center management firm in Dallas.

    -- approved $40,000 from current year revenues for the creation of a master plan for future seminary development. The funds would enable the seminary administration to conduct a study to evaluate the seminary’s needs as it grows and expands its ministries.

    -- authorized the administration to continue health insurance coverage for employees and retirees that does not exceed current costs plus the consumer price index, and if necessary provide employees and retirees the option of purchasing enhanced coverage.

    -- revised the Master of Theology degree program from 25 hours, inclusive of a thesis, to two options: 24 hours inclusive of a thesis, or 26 hours without a thesis.

    -- received a report from Jack Terry, vice president for institutional advancement, regarding possibilities for funding a new chapel which also would house the seminary’s new school of evangelism and missions. In addition to donations and gifts, Terry informed the trustees that once a footprint, floor plan and elevation had been laid out, the seminary could set about securing challenge grants from charitable trusts.

    “We have needed a chapel on this campus for quite some time,” Patterson remarked.
    --30--

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  2. Todd

    Todd
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    I think the College is a great idea by Dr. P and the trustees of SWBTS. Under Dr. P's leadership, such a college was started at SEBTS and it is now one of the best undergraduate experiences available to youngsters along the Eastern Seaboard. Being in an area and pastoring a church in which some of my college kids attend Carson-Newman, I can tell you that a rigorous, biblically-sound undergraduate experience is desperately needed for our Baptist young people. For instance, this Fall semester's keynote Chapel speaker at C-N was Dr. Charles Kimball, Dean of the School of Religion at Wake Forest University. Among other things, Dr. Kimball is one of the foremost advocates of developing "interfaith alliances" that will help us to arrive at some eye-opening truths that will demonstrate how much the same all the world's religions really are. When I asked Dr. Kimball after his lecture if Christians, Muslims, etc. all worship the same god, he wouldn't even answer me with a yes or no! Is quality undergrad education needed for our young people...I think so. Kudos to Dr. P and the good folks at SWBTS.
     
  3. Jimmy C

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    There are many fine Batist colleges in the state of TX - from them most conservative (Criswell) to the more moderate - Baylor. I hate to see seminaries open up undergraduate schools as they undermine the efforts of these schools - who have provided a pipeline of students to SWBTS.

    I think that SWBTS opening up an undergraduate school is all about numbers and egos.

    on a sidenote I heard the other day that the school that provides the most students to SWBTS is Texas A&M (WHOOP!)
     
  4. WallyGator

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    One disadvantage I see with this is that it might have a tendancy to produce "cookie cutter" theologians. One of the greatest joys when I attended SWBTS was the diversity of backgrounds of the students. We were able to learn a lot from each other. Jimmy, quite shocked that A&M provides the most students, but, I guess that I shouldn't be shocked about anything concerning A&M(just preparing some of you for another shock next month. :eek: :D ;)
    WallyGator
     
  5. Todd

    Todd
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    Jimmy, I would agree with you if there were a plethora of godly Baptist schools still left, but look around...they're disappearing everyday. Right here in the state of Tennessee there are three colleges affiliated with the Tennessee Baptist Convention, and only one of them has a legitimate inerrantist in the Religion Deptartment (Union University in Jackson). Baylor, Wake Forest, Duke, Shorter, Samford, Stetson, Carson-Newman, Belmont, and countless others have abandoned Christian higher education in favor of the ever-popular liberal arts approach. Though there are some schools who are still walking in the old paths (Criswell, Union, Cedarville, others), there is still a great need for more godly schools. The colleges being created by the seminaries are filling that void and should be applauded, not ridiculed and labeled as "egotistical."
     
  6. Jimmy C

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    Todd,

    My personal opinion is that a pastor needs a good liberal arts education, or accounting or science, or business etc, before he begins his seminary training. Once again this is personal bias, but I like my pastor to be well rounded in his educational experience, I think it adds to his entire worldview perspective.

    If a student is looking to stay in TN and attend a good consevative college, he or she has plenty of options including Tenn Temple and Bryan College. Union University has a great reputation, and now that Crutchley is at C-N you have another strong conservative theologian there.

    I have heard that all the SBC seminaries are looking to add bible colleges, and that the main reason is to increase enrollment. I continue to think that it is a mistake for seminaries to take students from thier feeder schools when the seminaries should be focusing on their graduate programs.
     
  7. SaggyWoman

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    Depends on the age of the student returning, but otherwise, I think it is a great idea.
     
  8. Todd

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    Jimmy, again you base your opinion of the seminary-related colleges on what you've "heard" about them. Sure, colleges would increase enrollment, but have you considered that more students would have the opportunity to receive a top-shelf, biblically-sound education by the opening of said schools? I understand your desire for pastors to have a well-rounded education (by the way, I share your desire). But if you will notice when reading the BP Press Release attached at the beginning of this post, that is the very reason that Patterson states that he wants start a school. I know for a fact that students at SEBTS's College at Wake Forest receive a well-rounded education that includes studies in Math, Science, History, Geography, Philosophy, etc. These seminary-related colleges are not the "feeder schools" that you and your informants make them out to be.
     
  9. Jimmy C

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    Todd

    I come back to you with a question - who do you think will be teaching the courses? SWBTS is going to have to hire math, engilsh, biology, history proffs - build labs etc. It just does not make sense to me to have seminaries getting into the "college" business. Again, there are plenty of great colleges out there - why compete with them for the pool of undergraduates and not concentrating being excellent at what you do.
     
  10. Todd

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    Jimmy, I think I understand your point, but my point is that there are not enough of these "great colleges" of which you speak. Personally, I don't want to send my child to Belmont or Carson-Newman or Baylor where they are going to be fed Wellhausen's Source Theory in OT and egalitarian, openness theology in the NT. If we want our children to receive a better education (including liberal arts), then we need to offer more schools to our students. The schools being created at the seminaries are doing just that.
     
  11. RandR

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    As one who is both conservative and a graduate of Baylor and SWBTS (post-Dilday lest some think I'm not a "real" conservative), I personally don't like the idea of Southwestern starting an undergraduate college.

    I don't agree with Jimmy that it is all about egos. And if it is about numbers, I look for them to be sorely disappointed. Perhaps a bit larger number of students will enter than were enrolled in the DIPTH adn GRDIPTH programs, but likely not that many more.

    Ironically, the school that stands to lose the most if this undergrad school is successful is Criswell. (And please don't think that hasn't occurred to PP.) Other school most likely impacted will be ETBU and DBU. And I don't seem them ranking too highly on the lists of bastions of liberalism.

    But neither am I sympathetic to any BGCT arguments about it being a duplication of resources. They, being the experts at redirecting funds to duplicate resources and all.

    I'm just not sure its necessary at this point in time.
     

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