Many visitors and long-time friends of ACU gathered in Moody Sunday night as this year’s Summit began. With the theme of “Earthed,” Summit will go back to the beginning and focus on Genesis.
“This year’s theme is ‘Earthed,’ and it represents God’s creative work in humanity,” said Dr. Phil Schubert, president of ACU. “This week the speakers and experiences will challenge you to walk closely with God and enrich the work being done in churches around the world.”
Throughout the week, different sessions and speakers will focus on the idea of Genesis and our beginnings. Brady Bryce, director of ministry events and assistant professor of practical theology, said the speakers who will speak at the forums are well-known authors and thinkers who will challenge and encourage listeners.
Many students often attend Summit sessions to receive Chapel credit. This year, Summit will offer students the chance to earn up to 20 Chapel credits with 10 possible opportunities.
There will be 10 forums, and each forum will be worth two Chapel credits.
“This is going to allow students to go to Chapel and hear some amazing stories and testimonies,” said Mark Jackson, co-director of Chapel.
The forums will take place Sunday through Wednesday. Monday through Wednesday will offer three different credited forums a day at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Moody Coliseum.
Students often use Summit week as a way to get ahead with Chapel credits. The chance to earn 10 in one week doubles the amount students can earn in a normal week.
Offering credits for these sessions increases the desire for students to attend Summit lectures.
“It makes me want to go to them,” said Kala Arnold, sophomore accounting major from Austin. “More so than the sessions or classes I don’t receive credit for. Last year, the forums were interesting.”
The Bible Department is required to cancel classes during Summit week, so many Bible professors take the opportunity to attend lectures and have their students do the same.
While some teachers require students to attend a session, others strongly encourage it.
NoemÃ Palomares-Kern, Bible instructor, offers her students the option to attend a session and bring a response to turn in. If they choose to do so, the grade for the response will replace a low quiz or homework grade.
“I think that motivates them to choose one that they want to go to and do it with more motivation than if it were another assignment,” she said.
Dr. Phil Vardiman, professor of management sciences, said in the last few years he has started cancelling classes and requiring students to attend a lecture and turn in a summary of key items they learned that impacted them. He gives his students a list of forums, and they are to choose one to attend.
“They put a lot of work into Summit and bring in tremendous speakers,” Dr. Vardiman said. “I’m constantly looking for ways to integrate faith into my teaching and I believe this is a good way to do that while also supporting ACU Summit.”