One of the reasons students attend HU is that we believe there is something significant about Christian higher education—Christ infused in the knowledge we glean from class and the community we interact with. Our hope is that our Christian higher education experience will influence our vocation and our lives.
One day, we will preach Christ through our deeds in the workplace. This calling is learned through watching others; we glean ideas from our professors’ and administrators’ examples. As a student, I am dismayed to think of where I would have been without the many people at HU who preached Christ through deeds. I believe all of us have had those people who glimpsed potential in us and helped us develop it. For me, Dr. Timothy Troyer was one of those people. From his willingness to spend hours answering my questions and encouraging my growth as a future researcher, I developed my God-given talents.
Not only do we learn from our professors how to live out Christianity in our vocations, but we also learn from our administrators entrusted with leading the university. Often, leaders are called to make difficult decisions, but in those decisions, God calls Christians to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with Him. As Christians, we are called to a higher standard—one that may not make sense to a fallen world. This higher standard demands respect for our administrators as they labor over decisions, along with honest questions regarding how their decisions meet a Christian standard.
Recently, a tough choice was made to deny tenure to Dr. Troyer that considered his efforts to improve CH111 student experiences, training of upper level students into scientists, community involvement as a local pastor, involvement in student research and commitment to faith as a seminary student. While there are reasons beyond my knowledge our leaders have carefully considered, I know there are aspects of the process that make me ponder, such as an incomplete explanation of the tenure denial to Dr. Troyer, and an appeal process that left the final appeal decision before the committee who made the original decision, along with a choice to tell two students the tenure denial was a growth opportunity.
While students are at HU for a short time and then leave, the examples shown to us in that time influence us for a lifetime, and hopefully call us to a higher standard.
Jeniece Regan is a junior Biology pre-medicine major. This reflects the views of the writer only.