"Creating an open space for discourse requires a confidence about who we are in Christ, and who God is in the midst of a shifting culture."
In a recent focus group of university students, participants described Tyndale with the word “home.” They feel like they belong. They genuinely feel known. They describe the ways in which faculty and staff check into their lives. Students know that people are actively concerned about their intellectual, spiritual and character development.
Feeling at home however, is not enough. We want our students to be challenged. As President, my hope is that students will view Jesus differently than when they first arrived at Tyndale. For that reason, the overarching principle that drives what happens in and out of the classroom is to share our Christian journey together. Whether you are a university student arriving straight out of high school or a seminary student pursuing a second or third career, we want every student to have a clearer understanding of who Jesus is and who they are in light of His love and plan for them. Tyndale is unapologetic about who we are as a people who follow Christ.
Being unapologetically Christian does not mean we are closed to differences of opinion. We are teaching and modelling for our students an openness that allows for dialogue and influence to happen. Creating an open space for discourse requires a confidence about who we are in Christ, and who God is in the midst of a shifting culture. Launching students as graduates with a confident faith enables them to meaningfully engage in a culture full of differing perspectives.
I love the fact that students described Tyndale as home. A place where they feel like they belong, where they are known and where they can grow in knowledge, faith and character. The doors have been open all summer for summer school and the arrival of a new cohort of Bachelor of Education students. In a few days, the fall semester will begin. The lights are on. We can’t wait to see the new fall students arrive.
Gary V. Nelson, DMin
President and Vice Chancellor
Tyndale University College