Mapping Your Academic Career: From Security to Success

As I wrote last Monday, my main goal for the second half of my fall sabbatical is to engage in some professional stock-taking. Having received tenure, been promoted to full professor, and just sent off the manuscript for my third project on Pietism, I’d like to step back and consider where I am in my academic career. My guide for this … More Mapping Your Academic Career: From Security to Success

What Comes Next? (On Reaching Mid-Career in Higher Education)

A big moment in my career happened last Friday around lunchtime, when I sent this document to our editor at InterVarsity Press: Yes, this is the manuscript for the book that Mark Pattie and I have been writing all year. There’s still a lot of work left to do before it comes out (maybe next fall?), but … More What Comes Next? (On Reaching Mid-Career in Higher Education)

If There’s a Crisis of the Humanities in Christian Colleges, What Does It Tell Us about Evangelicalism?

So what’s causing the decline of humanities disciplines in evangelical colleges? And why is it significant for those institutions’ constituencies? I think the answer to both questions may hinge on one word: fear. Now, I’m sure no single factor can explain why English, history, and philosophy accounted for only 5.5% of bachelor’s degrees awarded in 2014 by members of … More If There’s a Crisis of the Humanities in Christian Colleges, What Does It Tell Us about Evangelicalism?

Back to Basics: What It Is Christian Historians Do

Over the last three weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time talking with undergraduates about what it is that Christian historians do — and how, if at all, it’s different from what non-Christian historians do. • To help my Intro to History students prepare to write a preliminary statement of what they think it means to “think … More Back to Basics: What It Is Christian Historians Do

Thursday’s Podcast: A Lutheran Perspective

Our penultimate episode in season 1 of The Pietist Schoolman Podcast features Dan Hanson offering a Lutheran (and a student’s) perspective on higher education. About to start his final year at Luther Seminary, Dan reflects on the difference between a “college of the church” and a Christian college, explains why vocation and “faithful criticism” are central to Lutheran higher education, and … More Thursday’s Podcast: A Lutheran Perspective

College Professors as Church Leaders

Last Tuesday night I had the privilege of moderating my congregation‘s annual meeting for the sixth time — and the last for the foreseeable future. In 2009 I was elected chairperson of our church; after having been reelected three years later, I’ve now reached my constitutional limit of two terms and so happily gave way to a new chair. … More College Professors as Church Leaders

Does Passion Distract from Calling?

Baseball is my favorite sport. Field of Dreams is my favorite movie about my favorite sport. Well, not really — it’s Bull Durham. But I like Kevin Costner’s second-best baseball movie well enough that I was all cued up to enjoy Jeffrey Huston’s recent On Faith post arguing that Field of Dreams — a quarter-century old this year — “is nothing short of … More Does Passion Distract from Calling?