Vocational Discernment at Three Christian Universities
When: June 9, 2023, 9:00 am - Friday
Where: LTL Main Hall
More and more colleges and universities have embraced the work of encouraging students to discern their calls to vocation, and several have established centers devoted to this task. In this session, leaders of this work in three church-related colleges—Catawba College, Pacific Lutheran University, and Lipscomb University—will explore the work their respective centers do with students, especially in light of Willie Jennings’ published work that offers ways to rethink the task of theological education and, by implication, the task of Christian higher education.
Samuel Torvend, Pacific Lutheran University, “Context Matters: Promoting Human and Ecological Flourishing”
How does regional culture influence perceptions of vocation within a Christian college or university and how can the promotion of vocation benefit from knowledge of one’s regional culture? In some if not many regions of the U.S., one of the primary responsibilities of those who serve in centers of vocation is translating the richness of their school’s religious heritage into a language that students, staff, and faculty can grasp.
Earl Lavender, Lipscomb University, “Created and Creative in the Image of God: Lipscomb University’s Center for Vocational Discovery (CVD)”
The Christian university experience provides an amazing opportunity to assist finding one’s place in God’s redemptive narrative. Every student brings questions of identity, purpose, calling, and vocation. The CVD seeks to integrate all student experiences, curricular and extra-curricular, into a holistic transformative journey, intentionally addressing each of these questions in multiple arenas. We invite every student to consider one’s self and one’s work as conduits of God’s continuing gracious work in the world, created and creative in the image of God.
Hannah Hutchens McNeely, Catawba College, “The Root of Who We Are: The Lilly Center for Vocation and Values”
The Lilly Center for Vocation and Values provides a variety of programs that help participants, especially students, discover and use their gifts in ways that serve others and improve the world around them. Thoughtful and thought-provoking programs, as well as vocational retreats and mini retreats are offered each year. A special area of emphasis is to encourage interested students to consider how they can make a positive difference in their community and beyond through Christian ministry.
Richard Hughes, Lipscomb University, Convener
- Hannah Hutchens McNeely, Catawba College, “The Root of Who We Are: The Lilly Center for Vocation and Values”
- Samuel Torvend, Pacific Lutheran University, “Context Matters: Promoting Human and Ecological Flourishing”
- Earl Lavender, Lipscomb University, “Created and Creative in the Image of God: Lipscomb University’s Center for Vocational Discovery (CVD)”