Baylor in the News

In the Spotlight

9/29/2014
Sept. 27, 2014
VIDEO: In this Voice of America broadcast segment shot on the Baylor campus, Lori Baker, Ph.D., associate professor of anthropology in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences, discusses the extensive work that she and her team of forensic scientists and students undergo to identify immigrants who died while crossing the Texas-Mexico border. As part of her Reuniting Families program, she identifies and returns the remains to the deceased’s family for a proper burial and to “restore some of the human dignity- to the unknown by giving them a name. The Voice of America is funded by the U.S. Government and is available in 40 languages and reaches an estimated weekly global audience of 164 million. (Tonya Lewis, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, coordinated the interview with Voice of America. Lewis covers research and faculty in the anthropology department and has placed numerous national media stories since 2012 about Lori Baker’s DNA project.)

Research

9/29/2014
Sept. 29, 2014
Byron Johnson, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences and co-director of Baylor’s Institute for Studies of Religion, asserts that headlines about the decline of religion in America are “misleading, inaccurate and biased- after analyzing data from major social and religion surveys, including the General Social Survey and the Baylor Religion Survey. Young people are not abandoning church, although they may be switching churches and denominations; and the percentage of atheists has not increased, but rather held steady for decades, Johnson writes in The Heritage Foundation’s recently published “2014 Index of Culture and Opportunity: The Social and Economic Trends that Shape America.- (Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers ISR faculty and research. Goodrich wrote and placed this story.)
9/29/2014
Sept. 27, 2014
Few seminaries teach future ministers the skills needed to help church members deal with mental health crises or psychological distress, according to a study by Matthew Stanford, Ph.D., professor of psychology and neuroscience in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences, whose research was published in the Journal of Research on Christian Education. “Christians should not see their job as fixing the mentally ill but rather showing them Christ’s love,- Stanford said. The topic is discussed frequently in Truett courses devoted to ministry, although it does not have courses focusing solely on counseling and mental health. (Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers research and faculty in Baylor’s department of psychology and neuroscience.)
9/29/2014
Sept. 25, 2014
Article about ways to keep the faith, no matter how tough things may get, cites recent research from Baylor that found that prayer can “keep you spiritual, or at the very least help you understand how you feel about your religion.- The research, published in the journal Sociology of Religion, was conducted by Matt Bradshaw, Ph.D., assistant professor of sociology in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences, who found that those who saw God as loving and supportive were less likely to show symptoms such as worry, fear, dread and obsessive-compulsive behavior than those who prayed but did not expect God to comfort or protect them. (Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers research and faculty in the department of sociology and originally pitched this research nationally in August.)

Baylor in the News

9/29/2014
Sept. 28, 2014
Author of the best-selling novel “The Joy Luck Club,- Amy Tan will speak at Baylor as a part of Baylor’s Beall-Russell Lectures in the Humanities. “She achieved amazing success without sacrificing any of the values of good writing,- said Greg Garrett, Ph.D., professor of English in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences, who will introduce Tan. The Beall-Lecture Series was started in 1982 in order to promote the humanities and bring notable authors and scholars to Baylor’s campus. Past lecturers have included Maya Angelou and Nobel Prize winner Czeslaw Milosz. (Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers faculty and research in the department of English at Baylor.)

Faculty in the News

9/29/2014
Sept. 27, 2014
New York Times op-ed columnist Ross Douthat, writing about the seeming decline of cults and lack of media attention to them, cites observations by Philip Jenkins, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of History in Baylor’s Institute for Studies of Religion (ISR). Jenkins has written that the decline in the number and scale of controversial fringe sects should worry rather than comfort mainstream religious believers because the lack of “a wild fringe- also may signal a lack of spiritual activism and inquiry. (Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers ISR research and faculty.)
9/29/2014
Sept. 26, 2014
Baylor University’s department of religion hosted a panel discussion on “The Crisis Facing Churches in Syria and Iraq.- Guest speakers Jalil Dawood, pastor of the Arabic Bible Church of Dallas, and Mar Awa Royel, bishop of the Assyrian Church of the East, Diocese of California, joined Abdul Saadi, Ph.D., assistant professor of Arabic in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences, in addressing the audience regarding the persecution of the church in Iraq and Syria. Saadi and Jeremy Courtney, MA •04, are quoted.
(Terry Goodrich, assistant director of media communications, covers faculty and research in the department of religion at Baylor.)

Alumni

9/29/2014
Sept. 25, 2014
VIDEO AND TRANSCRIPT: Kim Lawton, correspondent with the PBS program “Religion and Ethics Newsweekly,- sat down for an interview with the Rev. Dr. Amy Butler, a Baylor graduate and the first female senior pastor of The Riverside Church in Manhattan, a megachurch known for prominent voices in its pulpit in the past, among them Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Butler, who earned her B.A. in religion and political science in 1991 and her M.A. in religion in 1996, says she wants to join with her congregation in tackling tough questions, among them finding biblical meaning in modern times.
9/29/2014
Sept. 27, 2014
Baylor graduates and entrepreneurs Anand Venkatrao (B.B.A. in entrepreneurship, 2010) and his sister, Gitanjali Venkatrao (B.S. in fashion merchandising with a business minor, 2007) have created jeans with a hidden phone holster in the seam to accommodate new super-sized iPhones. Their I/O denim design is aimed at solving the problem of consumers who say the phones bend in their pants pockets. (Eric Eckert, media communications specialist in Baylor Media Communications, covers research and faculty in Hankamer School of Business, while Terry Goodrich, assistant director of Baylor Media Communications, covers research and faculty in the department of family and consumer sciences.)
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