Calling it a “remarkable milestone,” Dr. Christopher Cone, President of Calvary University, recently announced that CU has been awarded the 2017-2018 Jonathan N. Thigpen Enrollment Growth Award.
“As Calvary’s staff and faculty have been faithful to plant and water, God has been causing remarkable growth,” said Dr. Cone.
The award was granted by the Evangelical Training Association and the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) for having the largest student enrollment growth (55%) of any of ABHE’s twenty-seven largest schools.
“This Spring,” said Dr. Cone, “we are seeing our sixth consecutive semester with student enrollment growth, and we are deeply honored to receive the Thigpen Award,” which was awarded to CU because in the past year, it has moved into ABHE’s category of largest schools, and led that group in overall growth.
Along with the growth comes the need for more student scholarships. One of CU’s four distinctives is to provide high quality education at low cost. During 2018, the amount of scholarships CU granted to students outpaced donor support by roughly $450,000.
“To God be the glory, great things He has done!” said Dr. Cone, adding that even though CU has been in the black for the past two years, it will not be possible to sustain such a high level of support for students without strong donor support.
“Please join me,” said Dr. Cone, “in praying for our staff and faculty, who are laboring vigorously to serve these students well, and to make the most of the opportunity God has set before us.”
Christmas, Julie Andrews, Awesome Parents, and Joy to the World
“And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.’” (Luke 2:10)
Sitting at my desk, writing thoughtfully, with Christmas music in the background, I was able to focus on the writing until Julie Andrews’ “Joy to the World”: “Joy to the…Joy to the…Joy to the…Joy to the….” I had stopped writing, was listening, and my mind was a million miles away (note to self: stop with the tunes when writing). As far back in my childhood as I can remember, my brother and I woke up to Andrews’ “Joy to the World” every Christmas morning. It was our official wake up call—Christmas had begun because Julie Andrews said so, and my parents had given her permission to say it.
“Joy to the World” is much more than a Christmas hymn—it’s celebrating the promised kingdom of God coming to earth (cf. 2 Sam 7) when the Messiah King will sit on a literal earthly throne. But for me, the song is also a reminder of how two parents taught their children about the Source of authentic joy: true joy is found in Him.
“Joy to the…Joy to the…Joy to the…Joy to the…” Those echoes remind me of the vital principles my parents instilled in me from my youth. The same exhortations that Paul shared with the Philippians (“Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say rejoice,” 4:4), and that Nehemiah shared with his people (“the joy of the Lord is your strength,” 8:10).
I can’t hear Joy to the World without remembering those Christmas mornings when we would read Luke 2, thank the Lord for His kindness to us, and then spend time together sharing gifts. Thank you, Dad and Mom, and Merry Christmas.
“Joy to the world, the Lord is come. Let earth receive her king. Let every heart prepare Him room….”
Song’s over for now…back to writing…Merry Christmas, everyone!
By now I hope you have all heard of our recent announcement that God has blessed us with an incredible 7.5-acre property with a beautiful 130,000 square foot building in Fort Morgan, Colorado. We also announced that we would be launching the Calvary University Innovation Center as a second location there. Quite a few have asked what exactly this Innovation Center is.
Excellent question. I am glad you asked. While God has been very gracious in allowing us the wonderful property at our main campus in Kansas City, Missouri, we don’t quite have the room there to do some of the things we believe necessary for Calvary University to best fulfill its mission. So we have been on the lookout during these past couple of years for properties that might fit our needs for a second site to complement what we are doing in Kansas City and online. Our new Innovation Center offers just what we need.
First, the Innovation Center will be a hub for student and faculty engagement in the Western United States. Calvary U currently offers more than 60 different degrees at our main campus, and many of those are available fully online as well. But along with our blended model which integrates the best of both the online and on campus worlds, we still want our students in other regions to be able to have an on-campus community. The Innovation Center allows us to do that in a ministry-rich area around Denver, Colorado. We plan to offer degrees onsite there in Bible and Theology, Christian ministries, Biblical counseling, intercultural studies, and business and organizational development, with classes launching late this Summer.
Second, the Innovation Center will be a center for community engagement. The athletic center seats nearly 1700 and the auditorium seats nearly 900. These are incredible facilities that will allow the Calvary University Innovation Center to be home to conferences, community groups, and more. We are working as we speak to develop relationships and partnerships with those who might be a great fit for collaboration. The facilities allow us to serve the residents of Fort Morgan and beyond. Further, we will have plenty of space to house ministries and businesses who want to locate their offices at the Innovation Center. This will provide great opportunities to connect community leaders with our students, allowing our students to learn and serve the community well. Have a ministry or business in the Denver area, and interested in being part of Calvary’s Innovation Center? Let’s talk! There may be a home for you at the Innovation Center.
Third, the Innovation Center will be a place of outreach to a beautifully diverse population. The area northeast of Denver is surprisingly diverse, with a few major companies operating factories and plants there. It is a growing area, and judging by the housing market in that area, the economy there seems about ready to explode (in a good way).
Speaking of housing – that will be one of our greatest challenges: to provide housing opportunities for students. While the opportunity is significant, so is the cost. We ask that you consider how you might prayerfully support our efforts there in providing opportunities for our students. If you can help in any way let us know!
Finally, the Innovation Center will give us opportunities to launch innovative mission-supporting programs, complementing and aiding our efforts in Kansas City. We expect that the Innovation Center will help us grow and sustain the quality we need in order to best serve our students in both of our locations. We are excited about this second location for Calvary University, and we ask you to keep us in prayer as we strive to be excellent stewards with this unique opportunity. And if you have a pair of gloves or a few expendable dollars, come on! We could use your help…
As we move toward year’s end, there is much for which Calvary is thankful. God has again provided magnificently for His work at Calvary University:
God has provided financially, as Calvary was able to lower tuition across the board, finish in the black for this past year, and continue to be debt-free.
God has provided a growing number of students. Calvary’s enrollment has increased by about 27% in the past year, and Calvary is serving more students now than at any point since 1999.
The renovation of the old Seminary Building is now complete.
The new Dining Hall and Events Center renovation is underway.
The Nikao Leadership Institute launched successfully, providing leadership training and scholarships to a solid group of incoming students.
The Burnham Center for Global Engagement launched, expanding our missions/intercultural studies offerings and opportunities for students.
The Study and Work Program continues to grow.
Calvary announced plans to launch the Interdisciplinary Center for Creation Research in January, to be led by Stephen Boyd.
Calvary announced the hiring of Tommy Ice, who will officially join the faculty in Kansas City in January.
Calvary hired Gary Gromacki, who is leading the development of our Ph.D in Bible and Theology program.
This has been an incredible year of exciting growth through God’s provision, and we are deeply grateful for your prayerful support. We simply can’t fulfill our mission without you. As we conclude this year, would you prayerfully consider supporting Calvary in a specific way? Perhaps supporting one of the initiatives mentioned above – the building program, or one of the academic and ministry centers?
Of course, one of our highest priorities is to continue to reduce the overall cost of education to our students, so that they can serve effectively without the burden of student debt.Will you give a financial gift to Calvary to help us reduce our students’ costs?Calvary is committed to making high-quality Biblical education accessible to any believer willing to work hard to prepare for and engage in ministry. Your one-time gift, monthly support, or even adding Calvary University to your estate planning will help us fulfill our mission to “prepare Christians to live and serve in the church and in the world according to the Biblical worldview.” Thank you so much for your gift, and for joining Calvary in this important work. May God bless you as, together, we seek to honor Him.
Press Release November 13, 2017
From: The Office of the President, Calvary University Official Press Release
Kansas City, MO – Calvary University is pleased to announce it has entered into discussions with the Morgan County School District, and is considering the RE-3 old middle school as a possible site for Calvary’s expansion into Colorado. Calvary University, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and the Association for Biblical Higher Education, offers more than fifty four-year undergraduate and graduate degrees at their main campus in Kansas City, Missouri and online.
Calvary is planning to launch an Innovation Center in Colorado which will emphasize community involvement and partnerships for excellence in education. Calvary hopes to offer a number of bachelors and masters degree programs in Fort Morgan. The University plans to involve the community in campus culture and maintain the heritage of the facility as a center of community activity and engagement. Dr. Christopher Cone, Calvary’s president, expressed excitement in the potential of working with the Fort Morgan community, and expects Calvary to work in collaboration with local educators, including Morgan Community College and its leadership: “I hope to meet Dr. Freed soon, along with other leaders at MCC as we begin to discover ways that Calvary University can complement what they are doing here locally.” Dr. Cone emphasized that Calvary would not be competing with MCC, but would be a partner and a friend – just as Calvary has done with a number of other schools across the United States. Cone added, “Articulation agreements and partnerships have made Calvary better over the years, and we have found that some of our greatest contributions have been achieved in partnership with other educators.”
Dr. Cone announced Calvary University’s Colorado expansion plans to staff and faculty in the past week, and would like to see Calvary focus on the Fort Morgan area. Vice President of Strategic Initiatives and Director of the Innovation Center, Jeff Campa added that “in a time when colleges and universities are retreating somewhat, Calvary believes it is more important than ever that we reach out and engage with communities. We are excited about the potential of Calvary serving the Fort Morgan community.”
I met Harry Waterhouse not long after I was appointed as president of Calvary. He had written the fascinating history of Calvary, entitled, The Making of a Warrior – a book that was tremendously helpful to me as I sought to truly understand Calvary’s history and legacy. Harry’s work chronicles the school’s journey from its founding in 1932 until recent days. I remember being so excited to talk with him and gain an even greater historical perspective. Harry did not disappoint.
In that first conversation I was struck by his vitality, energy, and sharpness – I did not believe him when he told me his age. I pray that if God allows me the longevity He allowed Harry, that God would also allow me to be as effective as was Harry – he was just remarkable.
As time passed, I also got to know and appreciate Harry’s incredible generosity and kindness. He was readily willing to give of his time and energy to bless those God put in his path. It was very evident that Harry loves the Lord, he loves the Lord’s work, and he loves the Lord’s workers. Even though Harry is now at home with the Lord, I refer to him in the present tense, because I have no doubt he still carries those traits with him even now in the Lord’s presence.
I am so thankful for Harry’s ministry to Calvary these many years – both with the radio station and with the school – but more personally, I am deeply thankful for his investment of time in me and my family. I every context I saw him, Harry was a faithful steward of the time and skills God had given him.
Harry reminds us in his book about how God built Calvary, and he showed me in his life what a true Calvary Warrior looks like. I thank God for Harry’s example and for his friendship. I pray that God will encourage and strengthen Harry’s family as they will surely miss him. We all look forward to seeing him again soon. May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word (2 Thess 2:16-17).