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Garrett-Evangelical Receives Wabash Center Grant for “Mapping ‘Race’ Across the Curriculum” Project

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The Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion has awarded Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary a grant for a “Mapping ‘Race’ Across the Curriculum” project. The project will conduct a “syllabus mapping” to identify and classify the ways in which critical consciousness of race is infused in the seminary’s Master of Divinity (MDiv) curriculum, especially in the required courses and core distribution electives.

“The Garrett-Evangelical faculty has engaged in a series of activities over the last few years to bolster our critical awareness and competencies to engage complex, intersectional issues of race in the classroom and the broader curriculum,” said Rev. Dr. Mai-Anh Le Tran, vice president of academic affairs and academic dean. “Since the root meaning of ‘curriculum’ is the ‘course’ or track that we run together, this work is a reflection of our commitment to a steady marathon rather than a short sprint.”

By undertaking this mapping exercise, Garrett-Evangelical hopes to demonstrate some of the ways in which it is delivering on a key goal of its MDiv program to “develop graduates capable of engaging in critically informed analyses of gender, race, culture, social, and economic structures that shape human beings.” The grant will also support and facilitate conversations among faculty to explore how syllabi are “stories” that reflect their attempts to express and align race-conscious (along with other justice) commitments as theological educators at a United Methodist seminary.

The project is led by Rev. Dr. Mai-Anh Le Tran, vice president of academic affairs and academic dean, and Rev. Dr. E. Bryon (Ron) Anderson, associate dean for institutional and educational assessment. Work on the project is already underway with an anticipated completion date in December 2019.

The Wabash Center supports theology and religion faculty and doctoral students reflecting on their teaching practice — in both theological education and undergraduate education, in North America. We facilitate faculty conversations about the goals and processes of teaching and student learning. Our programming develops faculty skills for critical reflection on teaching practice. All Wabash Center programs are funded by Lilly Endowment Inc.

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, a graduate school of theology related to The United Methodist Church, was founded in 1853. Located on the campus of Northwestern University, the seminary serves more than 450 students from various denominations and cultural backgrounds, fostering an atmosphere of ecumenical interaction. Garrett-Evangelical creates bold leaders through master of divinity, master of arts, master of theological studies, doctor of philosophy, and doctor of ministry degrees. Its 4,500 living alumni serve church and society around the world.