Professors awarded prestigious Lilly Foundation Award

Last Updated 11 March, 2019

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Jennifer Chase (right) and Dr. Donna Allen (left) for their work in receiving the Lilly Foundation Award. The Lilly Faculty Fellowship program has awarded our two professors with a grant to develop a Lilly program at NNU, which will span two years. During this time, Dr. Chase and Dr. Allen will attend conferences and will be given resources to help them develop a program on campus that encourages the integration of faith and teaching in fields designated as professional, natural and social science.

NNU will receive $10,000 to be used to establish this program for faculty to explore ways to combine matters of faith and academic disciplines, especially when teaching controversial and ambiguous content. Dr. Chase, professor of biology, hopes to make a space for STEM colleagues who have the challenge of presenting a scientific perspective alongside Christian thought. Dr. Allen, associate professor of communication, has expressed a desire to more formally develop ways for her and her colleagues to incorporate faith into curricula, allowing challenging and controversial content to be discussed both in the classroom and among faculty. She hopes to accomplish intellectual and respectful dialogue within the framework of Christian faith.

Founded in 1991, the Lilly Fellows Program seeks to strengthen the quality and shape the character of church-related institutions of learning through four programmatic initiatives. The Lilly program has three objectives for this initiative: 1) Refresh and enliven a sense of calling for participants as people of faith, as teachers and scholars; 2) Provide a space for the creative exploration of how Christian thought and practice intersect the academic vocation; and 3) Provide funds for Fellows to develop and pilot Faculty Fellow programs on their own campuses.

The Lilly Network represents among its current membership of 101 schools a diversity of denominational traditions, institutional types and geographical locations. Northwest Nazarene University has been a member of the Lilly Fellows Program since 2005. The Program is based at Christ College, the interdisciplinary honors college of Valparaiso University in Northwest Indiana.