Those of you who follow BGU through may have been asking yourself this question when you heard that a BGU PhD has been approved. Pursuing a PhD is usually considered to be a high-brow, very theoretical, university-focused, imminently unpractical research endeavor. That is the opposite of what BGU stands for: transformation of society focusing on urban settings, its challenges and joys. Our vison continues unchanged: to offer quality leadership development to Kingdom leaders in urban settings around the globe.
Just to calm your fears – BGU is not “going theoretical”. The reality is that many strong academic, degree-granting programs already serve the global community. BGU has something unique to offer people who lead in their churches, NGO’s, and mission-centered organizations – a PhD program with a strong emphasis on innovation which produces transformation in society while being based on disciplined research and high academic standards. It is a delicate balance to maintain, but a strategically important equilibrium for Kingdom leaders who desire to further prepare themselves for wider and more impactful service in their countries. Obviously, we have designed our PhD to be an extension of our masters and professional doctoral programs – with the added emphasis on a more rigorous standard of research that will form a foundation for the innovative solutions needed to address urban problems.
How will we maintain this balance? It is the leadership of BGU’s PhD program which will guarantee that the complementary focus of research-based practice permeates the teaching, mentoring, and research driven by the PhD program. Dr. Martine Audéoud came to BGU three years ago with the desire to develop a PhD program. Her years of missionary service include Congo, Cote D’Ivoire, Niger, and Haiti. Born in France, she has embedded herself in African society, becoming a global educational leader dedicated to the development of global leadership across the world. Dr. Claire Henry led the design team for the PhD program, culminating in the approval of the new offering by the TRACS accreditation agency in December of 2019. Dr. Henry grew up in Guyana and is passionate about providing high quality education at the Master’s and Doctoral levels. Dr. Paulette Jordan is a retired Air Force Logistics Officer who has been teaching at local universities in the U.S. and four countries overseas. Dr. Jordan has successfully owned and operated several small businesses and served on management teams with major corporations while being an educator at heart. Dr. Lester Hirst, the academic coordinator for our PhD program, has championed leadership development in Latin America and Asia as a missionary as well as serving Compassion International on their Global Leadership Development team. These four professors will be leading off in the first courses as the new PhD program launches.
BGU is presently accepting applications for the PhD program. DTL and DMin graduates can apply now in order begin conversations about entering with advanced standing – each applicant will be evaluated on their own merit. Others with life experience and/or PhD level studies will receive individualized consideration in their application. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Martine Audéoud (email@example.com) or Dr. Les Hirst (firstname.lastname@example.org). There is still time to apply and start in July!