In my most recent blog posting, I referenced the fact that I had reached a significant milestone in my life—a 60th Birthday. January 1, 2011 marked another key event, the beginning of the 90th anniversary of Simpson University. Simpson Bible Institute was founded in 1921 in Seattle for the purpose of training men and women for cross-cultural missions and church-related ministries. The Institution moved to San Francisco in 1955 and the name was changed to Simpson Bible College as bachelor’s degrees were offered for the first time. The name was later changed to Simpson College, particularly as graduate programs were added to the curriculum. In 1989 Simpson College moved to its current location in Redding, CA, and the name was changed to Simpson University in 2004. It has been during the past 21 years in Redding that the Institution has experienced most of its growth in terms of students, faculty, staff, academic programs, and campus development. I am so honored to be able to serve as the President of a University with such a rich tradition of serving the Lord through Christ-centered higher education. When I think of this milestone in our history, the well-known hymn “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” immediately comes to mind.
God has certainly demonstrated His faithfulness to Simpson University over the past 90 years as we continue to carry out our mission of developing students in mind, faith, and character to influence the world through leadership, scholarship, and service, but He has also proven Himself to be faithful through his personal involvement in our lives. God has given us a wonderful group of dedicated faculty and staff and He has blessed us with terrific students—more than 1200 of them. In addition to many young undergraduates, we have older students who take classes at night and on weekends through our continuing studies program (ASPIRE) and our various graduate offerings (Education, Counseling Psychology, and A.W. Tozer Seminary). Many of our students are single, while others have been joined in their educational venture by spouses and children. Most are from the West Coast, but many represent other parts of the United States and different foreign countries. Some are interested in church-related ministries, while others desire to serve in market place careers. All of them are involved or plan to be involved in some type of meaningful service. Our students represent a wide range of backgrounds and interests, and they are living examples God’s faithfulness.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning, great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)
I pray that we are able to testify as Jeremiah did in Lamentations 3 that God’s love and faithfulness is “new every morning.” As we celebrate the 90th anniversary of Simpson University and see how God has worked in the lives of our faculty, staff, and students, may we truly be able to say, “Great is Thy Faithfulness.”
Dr. Larry J. McKinney
Simpson University Mission Statement: As a Christ-centered learning community, Simpson University develops students in mind, faith, and character to influence the world through leadership, scholarship, and service.