Engaging the City

Christianity Today Editor Speaks at Day of Common Learning

Andy Crouch, executive editor of Christianity Today, gave the keynote address at SPU’s 13th annual Day of Common Learning on October 22, 2014. The author of Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power kicked off the day of community conversation by encouraging listeners to consider how they might exercise creative power and embrace both vulnerability and authority as God’s image bearers.

SPU Hosts Voices of Autism Conference

As part of National Autism Awareness month, SPU’s School of Psychology, Family, and Community hosted “Voices of Autism: Individuals, Families, and Professionals” on April 11, 2015. The event included a community resource fair, lectures from leading experts in the field of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and a panel discussion with older adolescents and young adults with ASD sharing their perspectives and challenges.

Perkins Speaks at 10th Annual Lecture

John Perkins, one of the leading evangelical voices to come out of the American civil rights movement, returned to SPU’s campus for his annual lecture on April 21, 2015. Perkins is co- founder of SPU’s John M. Perkins Center for Reconciliation, Leadership Training, and Community Development.


Susan Okamoto Lane and Dr. John Perkins at the 10th Annual Perkins Lecture.

School of Education Tutoring Program Receives New Grants

SPU School of Education faculty members Kris Gritter and Greg Fritzberg collaborated to obtain a new grant through Washington Campus Contact and the Corporation for National and Community Service valued at $510,690 for 2014–15. Fritzberg has also secured an additional $505,000 in 2014–15 for future high school counselors tutoring in the University Tutors for Seattle Schools program.

Distinguished Speaker Event Welcomes SPU Alum Alec Hill, Head of InterVarsity

Alec Hill, president and CEO of InterVarsity/USA, was the keynote speaker for the annual Burton and Ralene Walls Distinguished Speaker Series Luncheon on February 24, 2015. The 1975 BA and 1993 MA alumnus served as the dean of SPU’s School of Business and Economics from 1995 to 2001. He led the school to its successful achievement of AACSB accreditation before going on to lead InterVarsity. Hill spoke on “Leading a Mission: The Business Side of Non-Profit Ministry.”

Grants Provide Vocational Advice in Music

Funded by SPU’s Spiritual and Education Resources for Vocational Exploration Program and organized by SPU’s Music Department, the Futures in Music lectures series connected students with top Seattle musicians in a variety of areas. Speakers in the music industry, worship arts, performance skills, and leadership discussed their career experiences, answered student questions, and performed at quarterly gatherings.

Perkins Center Partners with Taproot Theatre for Best of Enemies

The John Perkins Center at SPU partnered with Taproot Theatre in a series of post-play discussions following performances of the play Best of Enemies. The play tells the true story of racial segregation and desegregation in Durham, North Carolina. Members of the SPU community, including University Chaplain Bo Lim, John Perkins Center Director Tali Hairston, and Dean of the School of Theology Doug Strong, moderated discussion between the audience and actors.

SPU Hosts “Seattle Evangelicals for Racial Justice”

On December 15, 2014, Seattle Pacific hosted “Seattle Evangelicals for Racial Justice,” a gathering of Christians in the Puget Sound area who believe the church needs to unite for racial justice at a time when our country is deeply divided. Speakers from all racial backgrounds, including members of the John Perkins Center, led a challenging time of worship, prayer, listening, and encouragement.

Elementary School Visit Program Expands in 11th Year

Eleven years ago, Dearborn Park Elementary School brought its first group of fifth graders to tour SPU through collaboration with Ruth Adams, now associate vice president for academic success; her husband, Ed, a Dearborn Park PE teacher; and the School of Education. This year, nearly 60 exuberant students envisioned themselves as college-bound students, participating in science lessons, eating lunch in Gwinn Commons, playing tag in Tiffany Loop, and interacting with almost 50 SPU student hosts.

Former NSA Director, Cybersecurity Expert Speaks at Downtown Business Breakfast

Former director of the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command Keith Alexander spoke to 900 business and community leaders at SPU’s annual Downtown Business Breakfast on April 10, 2015, in a lecture titled “Espionage, Cybersecurity, and Privacy.” The retired four-star general also drew a crowd of 1,000 — including admitted students and their parents — to campus for a lecture about cybersecurity.

Keith Alexander

Former NSA Director Keith Alexander addresses SPU’s Downtown Business Breakfast.

Seattle Pacific Seminary Hosts Discernment Weekend

Seattle Pacific Seminary faculty and students shared a day-and-a-half retreat with others considering seminary during Discernment Weekend on February 20–21, 2015. Through thoughtful teaching, prayer, discussion, worship, and fellowship, participants explored their calling and vocation and learned about the seminary experience. Discernment Weekend is held twice annually, in November and February.