Dr. David Che Joins Vogel School of Engineering

The Vogel School of Engineering is pleased to welcome Dr. David Che as Chair and Professor of Engineering, beginning this fall.

Dr. Che worked in the industry for over ten years before beginning his full-time teaching career. He has since taught for 11 years in various Christian colleges in the Midwest. His research interests include metrology, robotics, automotive engineering, manufacturing engineering and quality control, mechanical design, and engineering education. He is currently a member of the American Society of Engineering Education, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Society of Automotive Engineers and Christian Engineering Society.

In 1988, Dr. Che graduated from Harbin Institute of Technology (China) with a BSE degree in Precision Mechanical Engineering. He came to the US in 1990 and enrolled in the Mechanical Engineering program at Ohio State University. After obtaining his M.S. degree from OSU, he began his doctoral study at the S. M. Wu Manufacturing Research Center at University of Michigan. He then worked as a post-doc and a research investigator at University of Michigan for two years before joining the Global Research and Development Center of General Motor Corporation in Warren, Michigan in 1997. From 1999 to 2001, he worked as a senior project engineer in GM’s Competitive Operations Engineering Group. From 2002 to 2005, he worked in the Product Development division of GM Truck Group using modern engineering design and analysis tools to do full vehicle dynamic simulations and instrument panel and console design. From 2005 to 2008, he returned to his home country of China to live as a “tent-maker.” He worked in southern China for Stafast Products, Inc., a metal fastener and machinery supplier in Cleveland, Ohio, to develop new business ventures and supply to the furniture manufacturing industry in Asia.

Dr. Che has taught a broad range of courses over the years. These include:

  • Calling & Vocation (a.k.a. “learning and transition”, a freshmen seminar course)
  • Strength of materials
  • Statics
  • Dynamics
  • Mechanical vibrations
  • Machine component design
  • Computer Aided Engineering
  • Kinematics and robotics
  • Engineering economy
  • Digital systems
  • Senior design projects
  • Service engineering
  • Engineering ethics
  • Manufacturing engineering
  • Engineering materials and processes
  • Quality control

Dr. Che is passionate about partnering with industry and local community and promoting service-learning wherever he goes. Many of his class and senior design projects were sponsored by the local industry and non-profit organizations. Examples include design and rapid prototyping of a new animal tagging device for medical research, SAE Baja competitions, additive manufacturing and optical scanning techniques and their application to mechanical design, hard-band spring design for Marcellus Shale drilling operations using ANSYS, therapeutic pool cover mechanism design, and noise reduction of a gym.

Dr. Che has been married to his wife Sarah for thirty years. The Lord has blessed them with five children, all homeschooled. In his spare time, he enjoys reading classical literature, writing, listening to classical music, playing tennis, table tennis, soccer, and watching college football.

Welcome to the Bryan College family, Dr. Che!


Undergraduate Research Conference Announces Winners

Bryan’s Undergraduate Research Conference recently announced the three winners of its eighth annual conference. First place went to Patty Faas (‘19, Biology) and her interdisciplinary presentation titled Essential Oils: an Herbal Apothecary? Investigating New Applications of the Creation. Faas discussed how a study abroad program in Italy sparked her interest in the use of essential oils to restore classic art pieces and control bacterial growth.

Second place went to Cody Raymes (‘20, Saxophone Performance) who also presented in the interdisciplinary session on Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird: Composing a Symphonic Poem.

Gage Goddard (‘19, Philosophy) took third place with The Postmodern Problem with Language and a Trinitarian Solution.

The mission of the Bryan College Undergraduate Research Conference is to provide an opportunity for students to showcase the research and scholarship they produce in their courses as well as in their academic projects outside of class. The conference allows students to present their scholarship to a wider audience in a forum that encourages critical thinking, research skills, and cross-disciplinary communication. The BCUR Conference encourages holistic education of the entire person: heart, soul, and mind, so students can truly and competently make a difference in today’s world.

Each session (History, Interdisciplinary, Psychology and Health, and Theology & Philosophy) is a valuable open arena in which students gain the experience of presenting to and discussing research-in-progress with their professors and peers in a friendly and supportive, yet academically rigorous, environment. It offers undergraduates from different disciplines the opportunity to meet, cultivate connections, and exchange ideas.

Additional participants and their topics are listed below.

Brian Kamer: Where the Three Rivers Meet: The Impact of Fort Southwest Point on East Tennessee History

Bryan Knowles: Confederate Convictions: George Gibbs Dibrell and the Civil War in Tennessee.

Joshua Robe: Unpreparedness for War in U.S. History

Morgan Schafer: Holiness and the Fear of God in the Works of C.S. Lewis

Marymai Berchtold: The Effects of Prehabilitation on ACL Tears in Females

Spencer Baker: The Measure of a Man: Intelligence Research and Intrinsic Value

Ben Reagan: Xenophilia and the Two Types of Religious Conservatism

Charles Wilcox: The Positive Effects of Social Support on Stroke Rehabilitation and Recovery

Nathan Ecarma: Untied Union: Paul’s Theology of Union with Christ

Evan Van Sickle: Do Your Words Matter? Fatal Flaws in Van Til’s Presuppositional Apologetics

Congratulations to the winners and all who participated, and special thanks to faculty judges who attended!


Vogel School of Engineering Officially Opens

The Vogel School of Engineering celebrated its grand opening April 11th, officially dedicating the previously unbuilt half of Mercer Hall’s third floor to a future of educating missional engineering students. In attendance were representatives from the Chattanooga Engineering Club, Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Dean of Engineering Dr. Thomas Marshall, and various other representatives from the local engineering community. Also present was Dr. David Che, a faculty addition for the 2019-2020 school year. Dr. Che will expand the program significantly via his knowledge and experience in mechanical engineering.

President Stephen Livesay opened the ceremony by thanking Dr. Marshall and his assistant, Ms. Audrey Henderson, for their dedication to the school and attention to detail in the opening ceremony. He quoted Genesis 2:15 and the Creation Mandate: “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.” This, he instructed the inaugural class of engineering students, was their mission- to create and care for God’s creation with the degree they obtain from Bryan.

In addition to remarks from Dr. Marshall and a student testimonial from freshman engineering major Russell Green, the crowd was able to hear from Deborah Vogel Cornwell, daughter of General George and Doris Cornwell, the school’s namesakes. Ms. Cornwell spoke fondly of her parents’ journey to Bryan as “a leap of faith”, and how her father (unable to make the long journey from California) would have wanted to thank his mother, Anna, for encouraging him in his military career. The Vogel’s granddaughter, Elizabeth Cornwell, was also present. “My grandparent’s legacy is now your legacy,” she told the gathered engineering students.

The Chamber Singers closed the ceremony with a moving rendition of “All Glory Be to God” under the direction of Dr. David Luther. Dr. Douglas Mann, Provost and Vice President of Academics, closed the ceremony with prayer, after which the school was officially opened for tours.

The 14,000 square foot space is home to new offices, study rooms, a robotics lab, a thermal fluids lab, and a new amphitheater-style classroom, among many other additions. Over $750,000 of equipment has been installed, with more to come.

You can see highlights from the Ribbon Cutting on our Facebook page.
Learn more about the Vogel School of Engineering here.


Criminal Justice Program Sees Quick Growth

A student actively investigating the staged crime scene for a criminal justice class.
Freshman Desmond Sales, investigates the permanently staged crime scene on campus.

April 12, 2018 – Among several fields of study seeing exciting changes and growth lately, the criminal justice program at Bryan College is growing by leaps and bounds.

Two years have passed since John Sterling, associate professor of criminal justice and director of college safety and security, was hired to help the college establish a vibrant and relevant criminal justice program. According to Sterling, the program’s purpose is “promoting realistic and relevant training that will accomplish the mission of the college to train leaders for Christ, and also making available to the law enforcement community people who are well trained, people of character, people with integrity.”

And this encompasses more professions than that of a street cop: students in the criminal justice program are also those interested in going into courts, corrections, fish/game/wildlife, etc. “Our goal is to promote integrity within the discipline and to prepare students to be a success as they enter this profession,” Sterling says.

This semester criminal justice students have had the opportunity to learn under a guest instructor who is a special agent with the Department of Homeland Security and a digital forensics expert. He has presented several classes on digital forensics and cyber-crime, a topic on which a new class will be offered this coming fall. These students also have an opportunity few others at their level of education have: the chance to get hands-on forensics experience exploring a permanently staged crime scene set up in an unused dorm room on campus. They have to determine the need for a search warrant and specify facts in an affidavit that must be approved to show probable cause, searching for evidence in the room and digitally on the computer, picking up pieces of evidence in the crime scene.

“This level of instruction is simply not generally available at institutions at this level,” notes Sterling. “We are definitely competitive. I expect great things!”

There is also an online criminal justice degree being offered through the School of Adult and Graduate Studies.

Written by Chloe Ann Townsend ’13, advancement writer and editor.


Bryan College Announces Dean of New Engineering Program

December 12, 2017 – One of the most anticipated new programs to be offered by Bryan College starting in 2018 is one step closer to fruition; the engineering program has officially acquired a program dean.

Dr. Thomas Marshall – who holds a Ph.D. in engineering from Oregon Institute of Science and Technology, a M.S. in engineering from Loyola Marymount University, and a B.S. in engineering from Ohio State University, along with a M.Div. from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – has an impressive range of experience to bring to the table in the new engineering program at Bryan.

According to Academic Vice President Kevin Clauson, “Dr. Marshall has helped two other schools start up engineering programs, at California Baptist University and Mt. Vernon Nazarene University. He has also been a consultant and has been in industry and started his own businesses. He has a passion for ‘missional engineering,’ providing engineering services to peoples and areas in need in the name of Christ, something he wants to instill into Bryan’s program.” Dr. Marshall will lead the engineering program, with specializations in both mechanical and civil engineering, starting in the summer of 2018.

“We are very excited to welcome Dr. Marshall on board as the engineering dean here at Bryan,” remarked President Stephen D. Livesay. “He is a man of great character and experience and has a wonderful vision for this promising new program.”

Learn more about Dr. Thomas Marshall.

The engineering program will be available starting in the fall of 2018, pending SACSCOC approval.

Written by Chloe Ann Townsend ’13, advancement writer and editor.


Bryan College Martial Arts Academy Signs Top Martial Artist Kila Owens

October 19, 2017 – Kila Owens is a senior at Straughn High School in Andalusia, Ala.. She is also a world-class martial artist: a 1st degree black belt in Isshinryu Karate (Okinawan style brought back by the Marines in the 1950s) who competes nationally in point fighting, kata, and weapons kata.

David Holcomb, the director of the Bryan College Martial Arts Academy, said “Kila brings instant credibility to our program starting in Fall 2018. It will be a great opportunity for high school students who want to attend college and train alongside her at the academy. I have been watching her since she won the women’s division at such a young age at the Isshinryu Hall of Fame tournament, the largest national tournament for Isshinryu in the country. Kila has the focus and determination to be a great instructor and trainer throughout her life. We are excited to have her at Bryan College!”

Since July Kila has won additional tournaments throughout the South in point fighting, kata, and weapons kata. “She is the type of person we want at Bryan, she wants to grow as a person physically, mentally and spiritually,” continued Holcomb. “We want Kila to be successful. Being able to give her a scholarship to continue to build on her incredible foundation in martial arts is a blessing that we are honored to provide.”

The Bryan College Martial Arts Academy is one of the new programs that Bryan College has starting in the Fall 2018 semester. The academy is for any student – with or without prior martial arts training. Members of the team will compete through the year, ending with a national tournament. In addition, students will work semester by semester to attain a black belt by the end of their senior year. If they already have a black belt, they will work towards their degree ranks in a partnership with their local martial arts school and Bryan College.

Holcomb said, “We already have recruits joining us from Texas, North Carolina, and all over Tennessee. We want this academy to become the standard in martial arts training at the collegiate level while simultaneously helping these students grow in their faith. We believe in the holistic approach of mind, body, and spirit.”

Kila is looking to major in education while attending Bryan College and helping to be a leader in the academy.

For more information contact David Holcomb at 423.605.1534. If you have a student interested in attending Bryan College and being in the Martial Arts Academy, click here.


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