Message From the Executive Director
Early in my college career, I got myself into a bit of trouble with some of my professors.
Eager to communicate my faith on a non-Christian campus, I snuck a presentation of the Gospel into some of my research papers. A number of my profs told me, however, that academic assignments were not the place for proselytizing. Rather, I was expected to do good research, craft compelling arguments, and show my knowledge of the content I was learning in the class. In later assignments, I began to find academically appropriate ways to integrate what I was learning with what I believed.
At APU, we are similar to the university of my youth in that we also expect excellent academic effort from our students. We are different, however, in that we work hard as Christian educators to help our students discover God’s truth within every area of study. We expect instructors and learners (undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral) to be encouraged and equipped as they discern how themes within themes of study are challenged and deepened by historic Christianity.
Since APU’s founding, the Christian faith has been central to its mission. With roots in the Wesleyan faith tradition, knowing and living the truth of the Gospel is one of our unshakeable foundations.
More than 100 years later, APU includes faith integration as part of its academic vision. APU’s faculty represent a breadth of knowledge and experience from across the spectrum of Christian faith traditions. So do our students. To make APU a place where faith integration can happen in rich and rigorous ways, the fellows in the Office of Faith Integration (along with affiliates across the campus) support and resource our faculty in their work as Christian scholars and educators.
We expect APU students to finish their courses knowing that God First reflects our university’s central commitment. But we also expect them to find that all truth is God’s truth. Traditional liberal arts subjects, the sciences, areas of professional practice, and even intellectual and moral “hot topics” are places to grapple with the wisdom and ways of God.
That’s what faith integration gives us the opportunity to do, and we are set upon doing it with passion and excellence.
This website describes the faith integration activities in which APU faculty and students are engaged. Many of the resources here are designed for our faculty, but other folks may find them helpful as well.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
For the King!
Paul Kaak, PhD
Adjunct Professor, Department of Leadership and Organizational Psychology; Executive Director, Office of Faith Integration