TRUSTEES: Southeastern adds 4 new faculty

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP) -- Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary trustees elected four new faculty members during their April 18-19 spring meeting in addition to voting on curriculum revisions and approving the 2016-17 budget.

Southeastern's newest faculty members are:

-- Keith Whitfield, SEBTS vice president for academic administration, elected as assistant professor of theology. Whitfield, who came to the seminary in 2014, has served as associate dean of The College at Southeastern (C@SE) and as associate vice president of institutional effectiveness. Whitfield holds a doctor of philosophy degree from Southeastern; master of divinity and master of theological studies degrees from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky.; and an undergraduate degree from Clemson University in South Carolina.

-- Matthew Mullins, elected as assistant professor of English and history of ideas. Mullins holds a doctorate in English from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro; a master of arts in English from North Carolina State University; and an undergraduate degree in history of ideas and biblical studies from C@SE.

-- Joshua Waggener, an SEBTS faculty member in music and worship education since 2008, elected as assistant professor of music and Christian worship. Waggener holds a Ph.D. in musicology from Durham University in England; a master's degree in music from the University of Georgia; a master's degree in church music from Southeastern; and an undergraduate degree in music from Trinity University in San Antonio.

-- Benjamin Quinn, elected as assistant professor of theology and history of ideas. Quinn currently serves as the seminary's associate dean for institutional effectiveness and as C@SE program coordinator of general education. He holds a doctorate in theology from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom; master of divinity in Christian ministry and master of theology in Christian ethics from Southeastern; and an undergraduate degree in biblical studies from Union University in Tennessee.

Four faculty members received promotions during the trustee meeting: Keith Harper to senior professor of Baptist studies, Kenneth Keathley to senior professor of theology, Larry Purcell to professor of theology and Alvin Reid to senior professor of evangelism and student ministry.

Trustees also reviewed and approved curriculum revisions and additions at the undergraduate and graduate levels. These actions created new bachelor of arts and science degrees; approved curriculum revisions in biblical studies, ministry studies and theological studies; and updated the seminary's advanced M.Div. degree.

A $26.5 million budget was approved by trustees for the 2016-17 academic year, a 2.2 percent increase over the current budget.

To conclude their meeting at the Wake Forest, N.C., campus, trustees gathered around the newly elected faculty to commission them in prayer.

In addition to the trustee meeting, Southeastern hosted its biannual meeting of the Southeastern Society (SES) where donors and ministry partners receive an update on the happenings of the seminary and college.

SES members heard a report from President Danny Akin that overall student enrollment is up 123 students from last year, making 2016 the sixth year of record enrollment for SEBTS. They also had the opportunity to meet and pray for several 2+2 missions students and participate in a Skype call with an SEBTS student living in Prague, Czech Republic.

At the annual trustee and SES banquet, held at Richland Creek Community Church, Akin asked SEBTS ministry partners and donors to continue to pray, send and support the seminary's students, faculty and staff as a partnership in fulfilling the Great Commission.

"We consciously, intentionally say 'every classroom a Great Commission classroom, every professor a Great Commission professor and every student a Great Commission student' who we pray will become a Great Commission graduate who will go out and lead Great Commission churches," Akin said.

During Tuesday chapel, Akin recognized three trustees for their service, Stacy Davidson, Chris Griggs and Henry Williamson, who will rotate off the board this year.

For more on the Southeastern Society's role in sending SEBTS students to minister throughout the world, click here.

To view photos from the trustee and SES meetings, click here

Harper McKay is a news and information specialist at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
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