In January 2014, Dr. Mark Robison, professor of English at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, was making preparations for an original Union College drama “Fifty Years Later,” commemorating the fifty years since Dr. Martin Luther King's “I Have a Dream” speech. Robison had invited Oscar Harriott, his friend and deputy ombudsman at the Nebraska State Capitol, to tell stories about “the bad old days.” Harriott, a Lincoln resident, told the actors and writers stories about his time at Union College--both shocking and inspiring.
Just weeks after the announcement that Mt. Vernon Academy in Ohio will cease operations at the end of the current school year, news broke that another Adventist academy will likely close this year as well. Leaders in the Texas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists voted on February 26 to close Valley Grande Adventist Academy, a K-12 school in Weslaco, Texas.
On Wednesday evening, March 3, Niels-Erik Andreasen, president of Andrews University, issued an apolgy for an article that appeared in Andrews’ official student newspaper, the Student Movement. The article, written by Andrews student Nathan Davis, appeared in the February 25 edition of The Student Movement and was entitled “On Black History Month.” Davis, who
Kyle Berg is a senior language arts student at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, and in early February, he nervously stood before Union's Board of Trustees to address the school's racist past. Berg wrote for The Clocktower, Union's official student paper,
From the 1930s to the 1960s, Union College participated in racial discrimination and segregation on campus. My point was that Union did take part in this, and my part was to insist that a formal apology be made by the college.
The impending closing of Mt. Vernon Academy has generated much discussion. The problem, according to Dr. Thambi Thomas, the former Pacific Union Conference associate director for education, is not just with boarding academies, but with K-12 day schools as well. What follows below is the executive summary of a paper Dr. Thomas presented at the NAD Education Summit in October 2010 that looks at the problem from a different perspective and offers a few of what he calls "let's-think-outside-the-box" solutions.
Stories are crucial to the identity of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The Adventist denomination grew out of vivid narratives of a people overcoming trials, shared and re-shared until the stories reached around the globe. For the Seventh-day Adventist community to maintain and evolve its identity, it is important that the denomination's future professionals, particularly those in Adventist higher education, master the art of storytelling.