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Asbury professor honored with excellence in teaching award

From staff reports

Dr. Chris Bounds was recently awarded the Francis White Ewbank Award for Excellence in Teaching during Academic Convocation, the inaugural chapel of the semester, at Asbury University.

“Wow, [this is] deeply and profoundly humbling,” Bounds said. “Asbury has always been gifted with incredible teachers and spiritual mentors. As an alumnus, I have been the beneficiary of them. I can’t imagine being considered this type of teacher when I look at the level of excellence embodied by my faculty colleagues. They are incredible. Many of them have modeled for me what it is to be a teacher and mentor. Whatever I am as a faculty member is because of the many faculty here who have invested in me.”

The Francis White Ewbank Award for Excellence in Teaching is the university’s highest honor for teaching and was created in 2002 by Dr. Paul A. and Dr. Kay Fuller.

One full-time faculty member is picked annually who demonstrates an outstanding achievement in both teaching effectiveness and spiritual modeling in and outside of the classroom.

Graduating seniors at Asbury submitted nominations during last year’s spring semester which was then reviewed by a committee before a final selection was announced at the initial chapel during the fall semester.

“Dr. Bounds is a gifted speaker, teacher and scholar,” Interim Provost Dr. Bonnie Banker said in a prepared statement. “In addition to being sought as a speaker at events around the nation and internationally, our Asbury community values him as an engaging chapel speaker, insightful classroom teacher and an involved campus participant. As well as being fully engaged in our academic endeavors, he actively embraces the campus community in its fullest sense. We are blessed to have him as a part of our Asbury community.”

Bounds completed his undergraduate studies at Asbury University and graduated with a degree in Bible and minor in Greek in 1988.

Following this, he received his M.Div. degree with a focus in theological studies from Asbury Theological Seminary in 1991. He earned his M. Phil. in 1994 and a Ph.D. with an emphasis in systemic theology in 1997 from Drew University.

His current projects also include serving as editor for a patristic devotional wherein Bounds oversees the work of 12 other scholars who are writing entries in the realm of Christology.

“The purpose of this exercise in spiritual formation is to walk a reader through all the major points of Christian doctrine by appropriating the teaching of the Fathers (and some Mothers) in a devotional manner, helping the reader see the relevance of these truths for life and apply them,” Bounds said of the devotional, which should be completed by June 2019. “At the very heart of who we are as Asburians is the love of God and neighbor. We believe that through the fullness of the Holy Spirit in our lives, the Holy Spirit can impart to us the life of Christ, so that we can truly walk in holiness and love, fulfilling this command. At the heart of this is having the ‘mind of Christ’ which is to have the heart of a servant (Philippians 2:4-11). It is this empowerment that hopefully forms the foundation for my engagement with the world on a daily basis.”

To learn more about Asbury University’s Christian Studies and Philosophy Department visit asbury.edu/christian-studies-philosophy.