TRUSTEES: MBTS trustees elect DeRouchie, cite record enrollment, plan for library renovation

by T. Patrick Hudson, posted Thursday, October 17, 2019 (one month ago)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (BP) -- Midwestern Seminary's Fall Trustee Meeting on Oct. 14-15 was highlighted by the election of Jason DeRouchie to the full-time faculty, the announcement of record enrollment, and the finalization of plans for renovation of the institution's library.

Library Renovation

The lone remaining space in the heart of Midwestern Seminary's campus to be renovated -- since his arrival in 2012 -- is the campus library, said President Jason Allen. As such, beginning within the month, the facility will undergo a significant overhaul.

Allen noted that in the digital age, and with access to books from other libraries, only about 15-percent of the Midwestern Seminary library's hard-copy books are used regularly. As such, the square footage of the library will be reallocated for other use.

This opens space for library staff offices, faculty offices, conference rooms, and significantly more study space for students. Additionally, the building's second floor will host more faculty office space and doctoral study carrels. Lastly, the third floor will subsequently be used to house Midwestern Seminary's archives, which are currently housed in multiple places around campus.

The estimated $3 million project is slated to be completed by the start of the 2020/21 academic year. It is being paid for through the seminary's capital budget.

DeRouchie elected to Faculty

Based upon a recommendation from the Academic Committee, Jason DeRouchie was elected by the Trustees to Midwestern Seminary's faculty as research professor of Old Testament and biblical theology.

"I cannot be more pleased to announce the election of Dr. Jason DeRouchie to the faculty of Midwestern Seminary," Allen said. "As an established author and teacher, Dr. DeRouchie is widely respected as an accomplished Old Testament scholar; yet he's young enough to be numbered among a rising generation of scholars here in Kansas City. By God's grace, we hope Dr. DeRouchie will be used to serve the church and reach the nations for decades to come."

Of being elected as Midwestern Seminary's newest faculty member, DeRouchie said, "My heart beats 'for the Church' of Jesus, both near and far, and I'm thrilled to have joined Midwestern Seminary's strong, God-dependent faculty in helping to mobilize biblically faithful, Christ-exalting, globally-minded Christian leaders who will seek the obedience of faith for the sake of Christ's name among the nations."

Trustee Meeting Business

During his President's Report, Allen reminded trustees of the current state of higher education and reported record enrollment gains.

In presenting the school's fall semester enrollment, Allen explained that both headcount and hours sold had reached record levels.

"We are grateful to the Lord that he continues to allow us to be in a season of incredible enrollment growth," Allen said. "Over the past academic year, we enrolled 4,000 students. This continues our recent trend of significant enrollment growth. Our continued focus is the residential M.Div., but Spurgeon College as well as our online, master's, and doctoral degree programs continue to flourish as well."

In other business, during the plenary session the trustees welcomed four new members as well as promoted a faculty member.

In recommendations coming from the Academic Committee, the trustees -- in addition to DeRouchie -- John Mark Yeats was promoted to professor of church history, and Andreas Kostenberger was approved for sabbatical for 2020-21.

T. Patrick Hudson is assistant professor of communications and history at MBTS.
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