SBU’s new Strait Center integrates science, Christian faith
October 12, 2004
BOLIVAR—The Darrell R. Strait Center for the Integration of Science and Christian Faith at SBU started its new academic program this fall. The Strait Center offers both major and minor academic degree programs in the integration of science and Christian faith. These academic degree programs are new to SBU, and new to Christian higher education.
According to Gary Gray, dean of the College of Science and Mathematics and the director of the Strait Center, no other member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) offers degree programs focusing on science and Christianity.
The Strait Center and its associated academic programs were approved by the SBU board of trustees last February, with a fall 2004 target date to begin classes. Funding for the Strait Center was generously donated by the SBU faculty and staff, and by the Bolivar community, alumni, friends and the family of Strait.
Strait retired in May 2004 and served SBU for 23 years. For more than 11 years he was the dean of the College of Science and Mathematics and held the faculty rank of senior professor of chemistry. Strait received the Parkway Distinguished Professor award in 1995 and was the two-time recipient of the Faculty Life Beautiful Award.
Students in the program will study the history and philosophy of science, Biblical hermeneutics and the integration of science and Christian faith. Working from the authority of Scripture and the assertion that Christianity is true, these programs enable students to establish and validate Biblically-based personal belief systems on the interrelations between science and Christian faith.
With the authority of Scripture as a foundational principle, students undertake a scholarly examination of the best available science and all points of view about the integration of science and Christian faith. It is hoped that students participating in these programs of study will be equipped for personal evangelism and ministry in their chosen profession by facilitating the student’s understanding of the different belief systems of the people they encounter.
The first classes in the Strait Center began this fall with the offering of two sections of SCF 3402 – Biology Through the Eyes of Faith. These classes are team-taught by Rosalyn Snellen, associate provost and professor of biology, Craig Endres, professor and chairman of the department of biology, and Hillary Glauser, instructor of chemistry, who recently completed her master’s degree in molecular biology.
Classes scheduled for subsequent semesters will include SCF 3432 – Physics Through the Eyes of Faith (spring 2005), SCF 3422 – Mathematics Through the Eyes of Faith (fall 2005) and SCF 3412 – Chemistry Through the Eyes of Faith (spring 2006).
For more information about the Strait Center, contact Gary O. Gray, director of the Strait Center and dean of the college of science and mathematics at 417-328-1659 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the Strait Center website at www.sbuniv.edu/cosm/strait/index.htm.