Whitworth University has received a pledge of $3 million to establish an endowed dean of spiritual life position.
The gift, from anonymous donors , is believed to be the first of its kind among the nation’s Christian colleges and universities, according to a press release.
“What sets Whitworth apart from so many fine institutions of higher learning is its faithful commitment to engage both mind and heart, and for students to benefit from its strong Christ-centered approach to education. This unique and fabulously generous gift will propel Whitworth’s campus ministry programs into the future, providing for even more opportunities for students to grow spiritually while also receiving an extraordinary education,” said Whitworth President Beck A. Taylor in the press release.
When fully funded, the gift will make possible the expansion of Whitworth’s campus ministry programs and will allow the university to increase its chapel staff.
“It is extremely exciting to consider what doors this endowment will open for Whitworth’s campus ministry as we endeavor to participate in God’s Kingdom work here,” said Forrest Buckner, Whitworth’s Dean of Spiritual Life in a press release. “It provides important resources to help us fulfill our goal of cultivating opportunities for every student to grow with Jesus during their time at Whitworth.”
Tracy Simmons is an award winning journalist specializing in religion reporting, digital entrepreneurship and social journalism. In her 15 years on the religion beat, Simmons has tucked a notepad in her pocket and found some of her favorite stories aboard cargo ships in New Jersey, on a police chase in Albuquerque, in dusty Texas church bell towers, on the streets of New York and in tent cities in Haiti.
Simmons has worked as a multimedia journalist for newspapers across New Mexico, Texas and Connecticut. Currently she serves as the executive director of SpokaneFAVS.com, a digital journalism start-up covering religion news and commentary in Spokane, Wash. She is also a Scholarly Assistant Professor at Washington State University.