Dockery, who serves as vice-chairman of the board of directors of the CCCU, presented this challenge in his keynote address to the Campus-Based Faculty Development W" />
JACKSON, Tenn. – June 9, 2003– Building community and a sense of belonging should be an "overarching vision" of the member institutions of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU), according to Union University president David S. Dockery.
Dockery, who serves as vice-chairman of the board of directors of the CCCU, presented this challenge in his keynote address to the Campus-Based Faculty Development Workshop of the CCCU June 5 in St. Paul, Minn. The workshop is designed to increase the quality, morale and effectiveness of member institutions' faculty.
"As scholars we are challenged to master one area of knowledge that is sometimes so specialized that we often cannot even explain our work to our spouses or our closest friends," Dockery said. "The interconnectedness of our work has seemingly become unimportant or has gotten lost altogether."
According to Dockery, this natural difficulty of academic endeavor must be overcome. He stressed that each campus should be a community where "people feel they share purposeful work that promotes a common life together. The quest for the experience of community and family and belonging needs to be the overarching vision."
Dockery also emphasized the importance of maintaining a Christian worldview in every area of university life. "We must be willing to say that it does make a difference to claim that Jesus Christ is Lord of our community," said Dockery. "To do so doesn't close off questions, it opens them up. It doesn't mean that we do education by indoctrination, but we do so by exploration within a confessional framework."
According to Dockery, thinking Christianly promotes academic integrity. "For those of us who take seriously the claim to live and serve in a Christ-centered community, we recognize that flight from intellectual challenges is not a Christian virtue," he said. "Jesus Christ reigns supreme as Lord over all knowledge and learning."
CCCU is an international association of Christian institutions of higher education whose mission is "to advance the cause of Christ-centered higher education and to help [member] institutions transform lives by faithfully relating scholarship and service to biblical truth."
Since its 1976 inception, the Council has grown from 38 to 168 members in the United States and 22 other countries, including schools like Union University, Taylor University and Wheaton College.