A Letter From President-elect John Wesley Taylor V
March 10, 2023
Dear Andrews University family,
I am deeply humbled and honored to write to you as the president-elect of this remarkable institution. I want to thank the Search Committee for its work and the Board of Trustees for entrusting me with the responsibility to lead Andrews University into the future. By God’s grace, I pledge to do all in my power to uphold the values and principles that Andrews University represents and to ensure that the University will thrive.
Andrews University is an institution with a rich history, a vibrant community and a bright future. It is a university that is stellar in so many ways, with so much being accomplished so well and within a faithful mission context. With you, I share a deep love and commitment to the institution. Three generations of our family, my father, my son, and I, are alumni of Andrews University and we are greatly blessed to have studied here. As your president, I pledge to work tirelessly to advance the mission of the University and provide excellent Christian education to students around the world.
As a Seventh-day Adventist university, we have the continued and unique opportunity and responsibility to carry out our pursuits on the foundation of faith, guided by our commitment to God and His Word and to the divine plan for education. In this process we will seek to integrate biblical values throughout University life as faithful witnesses to the truth and love of God. In this journey we will be mission-focused, keeping our eyes on the redemptive purpose of Adventist education, and endeavoring to develop the whole person through intellectual, spiritual and personal growth, educating for eternity.
Here at Andrews University, we will continue to prioritize academic excellence, providing our students with exceptional academic programs, research opportunities and real-world experiences that will prepare them to be leaders in their professions and communities. We will invest in our faculty and staff, ensuring they have the resources and support they need to excel in their teaching, research and service.
To do this, we will need to be nimble and flexible, able to adapt quickly to changes in the academic landscape and the needs of our students and constituency. We must embrace innovation and new approaches, while remaining steadfast to our core principles and the values that have made Andrews University what it is today.
One of my priorities will be to nurture the spiritual life of our University family. We will foster an environment that encourages spiritual growth, worship and service. We will support and uplift each other in our faith journey, glorifying God and valuing and respecting our faith heritage. Each time I am on campus, I am reminded anew of the amazing nature of our Andrews community and the vitality and rich culture embodied by our truly nationally and globally diverse student body, a microcosm of the family of God. We will seek to nurture a multicultural community that is warm and caring, fair and just, and that fosters a culture of connectedness and collaboration.
I believe that the role of the president is not just to lead but also to serve. I am committed to being accessible and approachable, and I pledge to listen to your concerns, engage in open dialogue, and work together to address the challenges that may face our community. We will seek to support and develop our programs, to attract and retain competent and committed faculty and staff, and to provide our students with the resources they need to succeed. We will deepen our partnerships with the community and strive to continue to be an agent for good in the world.
I salute and affirm the important work taking place throughout the University, and I look forward to the entire campus community coalescing around and rededicating itself to these ongoing efforts. I am committed to working closely with each one who makes up the Andrews University family—faculty, staff, students, alumni and other stakeholders—as we fulfill our mission to Seek Knowledge, Affirm Faith, and Change the World. Together we will draw on the strengths and legacy of “Our Dear A.U.,” the valued leadership provided by Andrea Luxton as president these past seven years, and the enduring contributions of all who have gone before to build a successful and thriving institution that is committed to serving God, our students and our community.
To each of you, I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation for your dedication and hard work. I am inspired by your passion for learning, your commitment to service and your unwavering faith in Christ. In coordination with the warm invitation extended by President Luxton, I look forward to visiting the campus before long to meet and converse with many of you.
As we move forward together, I am reminded of the words of Jeremiah 29:11: “‘I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” With God’s guidance and blessing, we can together create a vibrant future for Andrews University.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your next president. I am eager to embark on this journey with you, and I look forward confidently to that which, by God’s grace, we will accomplish together.
With warm regards,
John Wesley Taylor V