Spring Arbor University will formally welcome students and faculty back to campus on Friday, Sept. 6, with its annual convocation ceremony. This celebration takes place in the Spring Arbor Free Methodist Church at 10:05 a.m. and will also include a keynote address by Brent D. Ellis, Spring Arbor University’s new president. The event is free and open to the public.
The convocation will begin with an invocation by senior Steven Hlatky, student government association president and a welcome from Ron Kopicko, University Chaplain, followed by a traditional responsive challenge by Brian Kono, assistant professor of theology, and senior Taylor Damavoletes. Ellis will then make his keynote presentation before the “Lighting of the Lamp of Learning” ceremony concludes the traditional start of another academic year.
Classes are set to begin a day earlier on Thursday, Sept. 5. Students began moving in on Monday, Sept. 2.
Previously, he served Spring Arbor University since 2009 as special assistant to the president and then vice president for university advancement, where he has been responsible for all aspects of university development, communications, alumni, external relations, SAU Foundation and Spring Arbor University Radio. He has also served on the university executive team.
Prior to that, Dr. Ellis served at LeTourneau University (Texas) where he created, instituted and served as dean for the Center for the Development of Christian Leadership.
His experience also included teaching courses in biblical studies and developing the foundation of life and learning curriculum.
He holds a doctorate in higher education administration from Indiana University, a Master of Divinity from Asbury Theological Seminary, a master’s degree in ministry from Bethel College and a bachelor’s degree in pastoral ministry from Greenville College.
With special emphasis in Christian higher education, Dr. Ellis has made several presentations at national conferences and has published several articles in nationally-recognized journals.
Dr. Ellis and his wife, Christy, have three children: Charlie, Lainey and Joey.