Race. Religion. Reflections. Andrews University: The Institutional Saga (1960-1980)

The founders of Andrews University fought and preached to restore the value of all human life and challenged the pervading belief that there was a hierarchy of human value. Andrews University was awarded an Institutional Saga grant from the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC): Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE) to re-examine our commitment to balance our history, identity, and heritage and allow minority voices to share their lived experiences. This grant supported, in part, our efforts to revise and update the institution’s history, tracing the thread of institutional vocation from its founding to the current time, and develop programs to broaden conversations to include faculty members, administrators, and trustees about the institution’s identity and purpose, with particular attention to incorporating the contemporary educational context into earlier works describing the founding mission. 

The 2024 Summit on Social Consciousness entitled “Race. Religion. Reflections. Andrews University: The Institutional Saga (1960–1980),” took place on Thursday, Feb. 29, and Sabbath, March 2, 2024. Andrews University values our membership in the CIC and we appreciate the support made available to continue to aid us in retelling our institutional saga.  The Summit on Social Consciousness shared the first of the enduring outcomes. 

Each of the sessions of the summit featured the screening of a video of alumni and employees telling their reflections on the time spent at Andrews during the years 1960–1980. Each video was followed by a panel discussion of experts that delved into the issues raised, celebrating our progress while exploring opportunities for growth as we continue to move forward in mission. The videos screened as part of this series include "The Alvin Kibble Story," "The Hyveth Williams Story," and "The BSCF Alumni Stories." The "Walter Douglas Story", which is part of the series, was screened at a prior event. 

The Summit on Social Consciousness is an annual event at Andrews University designed to focus our attention on important social issues that have special relevance to our students, faculty, staff, and community. These events are designed to put a spotlight on current social ills and provide opportunities to advance awareness, foster intelligent dialogue, and agitate for change. Click the headers below to watch the stories. 

The Walter Douglas Story





Walter Douglas, the first black faculty member of the Seventh-Day Adventist Theological Seminary, reflects on his life as a student, faculty member, mentor, and advocate at Andrews University. While at the Seminary, Douglas served as professor of Church History and Missions and also chaired the Department of Church History from 1994–2002. During that time, Dr. Douglas also served as the first chief diversity officer for Andrews University and established the University’s Diversity Council. 

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The Hyveth Williams Story





Dr. Hyveth Williams, the first black female pastor and the first female senior pastor in the Seventh-day Adventist denomination, tells of her call to ministry and the many ways God reveals Himself despite the challenges she faced within the church's institutions because she is a woman. Williams holds the distinction of being the first non-Episcopalian to receive the prestigious Fellowship from the Episcopal College of Preachers, National Cathedral, Washington, D.C. 

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BSCF Alumni Stories





Five Black alumni of Andrews from the late 1960s to the early 1970s who were part of the first years of one of Andrews’ largest and most active student groups, the Black Student Christian Forum (BSCF), share that although Andrews was a Christian college, located in a rural community away from the major events, protests, and riots that occurred during the Civil Rights Movement, they experienced “institutional racism” on campus, which motivated their social action. 

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The Alvin Kibble Story





Alvin Maurice Kibble, former vice president for the North American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church attended the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary from 1967 to 1969, where he said he, “enjoyed learning from his professors.” Kibble served in ministry for more than 50 years. A seasoned pastor and administrator, Kibble’s reflections, while optimistic about the progress at Andrews, included several deeply moving stories. Kibble passed to his rest on Friday evening, Aug. 11, 2023.

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