Mulling over what it means to be unambiguously Christian has been an important theme for me and for Student Government this year. In working with the administration and faculty, it has been interesting to see the different perspectives and understand where Baylor is right now. This is a big reason why I wanted to run for student body president. I think Baylor has been challenged to find a balance between embracing diverse ideas and embracing this community that we have here now, but also maintaining the foundation Baylor was founded upon, which I love.
What it means to be unambiguously Christian, is just staying strong in those roots, because the world is changing around us, and asking us to conform to worldly views. People might think we are doing things wrong if we don’t conform, and I think that’s made Baylor stick out a lot more. I’ve noticed that working with other universities on certain efforts can be very difficult sometimes because we just do things differently. I think we do a good job at maintaining what we were founded upon, but also, we are doing well at embracing new students that are coming in with new perspectives and still follow through on God’s greatest commandment, to love one another like Jesus did. But it is hard because the world is changing.
A recurring theme I’ve heard from students is how much the faculty and administration love them: how they want students to grow and how they want to be intentional with them. In creating the educational environment here, in staying true to those roots in a caring Christian community, Baylor faculty and staff make sure that students know they want to know you and really serve you. Baylor does a really good job of maintaining an unambiguously Christian educational environment, even with the way they hire faculty and staff who add to that caring community.
“Baylor has been challenged to find a balance between embracing diverse ideas and embracing this community that we have here now, but also maintaining the foundation Baylor was founded upon, which I love.”
There’s so much pressure in the business school and in the business world in general, and so I think that’s why I’ve changed my major so many times. But our instructors tell us that, while they want us to be successful in our careers and in our fields, they mainly want us to be successful as people. I’m not saying other schools don’t do that, but I think it’s just very rare, the close relationships you can establish with teachers and the smaller classroom vibe. Baylor is just more intentional.
It is extremely important that Baylor continues pursuing the unambiguously Christian foundation. There have been so many changes at Baylor and they’ve maintained that throughout the decades. They haven’t conformed and other schools have. When talking to other students and faculty, the biggest challenge for us right now is finding peer institutions in order to determine best practices so we can continue to improve our educational environments. And that’s something that Dr. Linda Livingstone has talked about, and something we do a lot within student government. But it’s been really difficult because there’s not another school that is kind of in our situation and there’s not another school that is doing things the way we’re doing them. And so, yes, that’s a challenge, but also it speaks a lot to what our University is doing.
We’re succeeding and being influencers for other universities and other students around the world because of how we’re doing things so differently. Other schools are looking to us for the way that we’re doing things. And that’s what makes me so happy, is when another university or entity reaches out to us and says, ‘Hey, we’re really interested in this that you’re doing,’ whether it’s something with administration or courses or something like Title IX. Sometimes you get so caught up on what’s difficult, but it’s been the neatest thing to see that we are different. It’s extremely important that Baylor continues pursuing an unambiguously Christian environment. A lot of schools have a hard time doing that and so they just change completely, and we haven’t. And, that really benefits the Baylor Family and also the world.