Students praise Bryan to CCCU president

June 4, 2014

corts3cropStudents’ lives are transformed at Bryan College because of the academic challenges and personal mentoring from faculty and staff members, students told the president of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) Friday.

From left, Dr. Stephen Livesay, Dr. Robert Coddington, and Dr. Paul Corts. Dr. Paul Corts, CCCU president, visited Bryan as part of a farewell tour of CCCU campuses before he retires later this year. He spent time with Bryan President Dr. Stephen Livesay and trustee Dr. Robert Coddington before meeting with faculty and touring the campus.

At lunch he told students, “We talk about wanting to help our institutions fulfill their mission, broadly to transform lives for Christ. Is there some person, an event, a circumstance you can look back on that has shaped you at Bryan?”

Aaron Shears, a senior biology major, said his experience in a Christian worldview class his first semester stands out for him. “(Teacher) Ben Norquist showed an interest in certain characteristics and skills I have. He said, ‘You are good in “this” and you should be trying to use that for the Kingdom.’ Bryan College enabled me to use these things God placed in me for Him.”

Dr. Corts, left, listens to students Aaron Shears
and Shannon McGowan. Shannon McGowan, a senior History and Politics and Government major, said women’s soccer coach Mark Sauve has been a significant influence. “He and his wife really care about us, who I am as a person, how I am growing. Coach really challenged me to think about life, about growing as an individual. Bryan introduced me to a variety of talented individuals who care about me, not just interested in grades, but helping me grow as an individual.”

Anna Stewart, a senior Christian thought and philosophy major, said, “I know the Lord better because of the example of the faculty and staff.”

Amy Morris, a junior liberal arts major, called her experience “holistic,” because of the balanced emphasis on life and academics. “Last semester, a student and friend of mine passed away. I was changed forever by the way the faculty, staff, and students handled that.”

Tori Woodson, a junior elementary education major, said in her first semester at Bryan she felt overwhelmed by the classes and the information presented about competing worldviews. “One day, Ben Williams (instructor in the Christian worldview class) got out the Word and read from Genesis, Judges and Revelation. That was the first time I realized that all this stuff matters, because the Gospel matters.”

Dr. Corts said he appreciated the students’ understanding of “the integration aspect of education here. We seek to do that at our (CCCU) schools, to emphasize the wholeness of everything centered on Christ.