June 24-26, 2009, The Alliance for AG Higher Education team hosted its fifth AG Faculty Seminar at Evangel University (Springfield, Missouri). Nearly 200 faculty members and administrators from 17 of the 19 endorsed Assemblies of God (AG) colleges and universities met together for a time of sharing, growth and fellowship. The theme of this year's conference was "Common Challenges of the 21st Century," and the academic disciplines represented were Behavioral Sciences, Communications, Fine Arts, Humanities, Math, Science and Social Sciences.
This three day seminar, planned by Alliance Vice President Dr. Marilyn Abplanalp and a steering committee of various educators, was held to give faculty the opportunity to network with colleagues from other AG schools, to exchange ideas specific to their academic disciplines, and to highlight current topics in higher education.
The Faculty Seminar commenced with a dinner featuring General Superintendent George O. Wood and concluded with a dinner featuring Alliance Executive Vice President Bob Cook. Both leaders reaffirmed the ministry of the educators and strongly encouraged the importance of excellence in teaching. Five plenary sessions and numerous departmental as well as general interest break-out sessions took place over a two day period providing opportunity for dialogue. The attendees were also able to interact and build connections informally during a trip to the Springfield Cardinals game on Thursday evening.
Dr. Abplanalp stated, "Evaluations we have received indicate the seminar was successful with faculty indicating deep appreciation to the General Council for valuing their ministry in this way." LaDonna Friesen, an English professor at Central Bible College (Springfield, MO) and conference attendee stated, "I came away inspired by fresh ideas for the classroom, new professional friends from other universities, and a better understanding of the Alliance...My spirit and mind were nourished during each session, and I am looking forward to the next conference."
The Alliance recognizes the value of this conference to our Fellowship; therefore, instead of biennially, it will now be held annually. The next seminar is already scheduled for June 2010 and will include faculty from the Business, Christian Education, Education, and Physical Education departments as well as Librarians.
For more information about The Alliance for AG Higher Education, visit www.colleges.ag.org.