Northwestern College will be presenting a new NED series over four successive Wednesdays in April. Starting April 4, Vice President for Academic Affairs Mark Husbands will be presenting a talk entitled “Holy Grit.” On April 11, Director of Intercultural Student Development Rahn Franklin will be discussing the concept of “Cultural Intelligence.” On April 18, professor Erica Vonk will be speaking on “Leadership,” and on April 25, lecturer in religion Dan Den Boer will close the series with a talk on “Reconciliation.”
During each of the NED talks, students can look forward to being challenged in more ways than one. Husbands will define how to have a perservering faith that expects to face difficulties as part of a purpose-filled life. Franklin will be challenging students to possess a biblical vision for flourishing in the midst of culturally-diverse settings. Vonk will be asking students to engage in an effective Christ-centered understanding of how to encourage and lead systemic change. Lastly, Dan Den Boer will encourage students to incorporate an active faith that seeks God’s redemptive purposes in the world.
Dean of Christian Formation Mark DeYounge spoke of the value the NED talks bring to cultivating a better understanding of God’s world.
“As a Christian academic community rooted in the wisdom of the Bible, NW seeks to use our minds to better understand, serve and love God’s world,” DeYounge said. “We are called to participate in God’s redemptive work as we strive to love what God loves, valuing diverse people, cultures and ideas.”
NW decided to create NED talks for a number of different reasons. One of the primary reasons for these talks and different series is because, according to DeYounge, “the integration of faith and learning is a critical distinctive of NWC’s educational mission.”
NW places high value upon excellence, intellectual insight and innovative presentations of ideas. A NED talk is a compelling, faith-integrated 17-minute lecture capable of connecting NW faculty, staff and students to generative ideas as well as perspectives of cultural significance. The final motivation behind NED talks has been one students especially appreciate – general manager of campus dining Ned Price agreed to sponsor the event with free warm cookies, hot chocolate and coffee.
“I love the cookies and coffee, but more importantly, I love how engaging each talk is – leaving me with a completely different perspective of the topic,” freshman Becca Bindert said. “I am looking forward to the upcoming series in April; the headlines for each Wednesday sound interesting.”
Sophomore Ally Pettit enjoys the variety of topics NED talks have to offer.
“I think they provide a different experience and insight from chapel,” Pettit said. “Everything still comes from biblical truths but is presented from an academic perspective.”
The upcoming NED talk series kicks off 10:05-10:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 4 in the Vogel Community Room.