Students, faculty and staff gathered together in Metheny Fieldhouse to open the fall semester with the traditional Academic Convocation on Friday, September 2. Faculty of the college lined the aisle, beginning the ceremony with a processional of new first-year students into the gym. Dr. Ken Carson, Provost, welcomed students to a new year by reminding them of the mission and high calling of Geneva, to "learn how to love God with your minds."
Winner of last year′s Excellence in Teaching award, Professor of Psychology Stephanie Schindel spoke on "Engaging the Process" of your education. She challenged students to "view the cost and the struggle in the learning process as signs of success rather than obstacles to be avoided; and most importantly, to allow God to define success in your life and to engage the process that He has for you."
This year, the Excellence in Teaching Award went to Dr. Terry Thomas, Professor of Biblical Studies. This award is voted upon by the students of Geneva. Described by many as a mentor and friend, one student wrote that Thomas is "incredibly intelligent, but his humble sense of humor is something that none of his students will forget." He has taught at Geneva since 1992.
Dr. Esther Meek, Professor of Philosophy, was awarded this year′s Excellence in Scholarship Award, which is determined by Geneva faculty. Dr. Meek is involved with more than 153 professional activities including: writing and publishing books, reviews, articles, papers, lectures, and presentations. She has taught at Geneva since 2004.
President Dr. Ken Smith announced promotions and tenure during the convocation. Academic Tenure was granted by Geneva′s Board of Trustees to Dr. Todd Allen, Dr. Rodney Austin, Dr. Kim Gall, Dr. Yvonne Trotter and Dr. Brian Yowler. Eight faculty members received promotions in academic rank. Dr. Ralph Ancil, Dr. David Essig, Dr. Nancy Johnson, Dr. Eric Miller, Dr. Scott Shidemantle, Dr. Melinda Stephens and Dr. Maureen Vanterpool were promoted to full professor. Dr. Brian Yowler was promoted to associate professor.
Also, new full-time faculty for the 2011-12 academic year were recognized, including Professor Kyle Breneman, Assistant Professor to the Library; Dr. Anthony Comer, Associate Professor of Engineering; Professor Matthew Fuss, Assistant Professor of Business; Dr. Mario Oyanader, Associate Professor of Engineering; Professor Gordon Richards, Associate Professor of Business; and Professor Lori Wynn, Assistant Professor of Physical Education.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College′s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).