Behind the Scenes of Nyack’s New City Campus

what will new classes look like at Nyack

 

It’s almost time to say goodbye to Broadway.  It’s almost time to pack up the trucks and make the move downtown.

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Nyack College is igniting a new beginning in a neighborhood steeped in history.  On an afternoon stroll through Manhattan, our students will be able to visit the Freedom Tower, St. Paul’s Chapel, and even Fraunces Tavern Museum—where George Washington delivered a farewell speech to his generals after the Revolutionary War.

Nyack College Battery Park

And this will be our new home.

 

Outside the administrative offices, a faux wall separates sidewalk traffic from the buzz saw commotion inside.  It’s hard to imagine new offices while watching this current hum of construction.  But with a few weeks left, the furniture and fixtures are almost ready for placement.

NY Christian College

 

 

 

Inside the main building, men at work lay colored tiles according to the bright schematic that our new New York City classrooms will have.  I visited the orange floor where the tangerine pop of color accented doorways and hallways.  On the red floor, carpenter tools stand by freshly laid textile carpeting while workers measure and check the quality of work.

christian college New York

 

 

 

In Fall 2013, undergraduate and graduate classes will be held in these rooms.  But for now, the space is maximized for organization.  Artwork and breakables are designated to their own classrooms while “the command center” resembles a gallery walk through a beautiful mind.

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what will new classes look like at Nyack

Maps, plans, and checklists line the walls.  Sketches lean against each other in the corner.  Meanwhile staff and administrative personnel from our Rockland campus flip through charts and check details on laptop computers.

Battery Park college

 

It’s happening!

 

Winter is ended and spring comes with many blessings including our city campus’s move to 17 Battery Place.  The days are ticking away and a small army of workers continue to hammer, paint, and solder their way toward our big move!

 

In a few months, students will climb out of subway stairwells and zip up elevators.  Fall classes will commence and in the backdrop through the windows, we’ll have this view!!

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The Wall at Nyack College

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“I love The Wall because there’s a great view of the entire campus from there. When the sun hits the stone, it gets nice and warm making, it a great place to relax. It’s also a great place to hangout with friends because it’s in a very central area.” -Inez Montgomery

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“I love it there because the view is really pretty. When you’re chilling on The Wall, you can see the river, and people on the field, and watch the sports games. It’s one thing the athletic department has that other schools don’t. Also, it’s a little dangerous up there.” -Rebekah Williams

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“The Wall is a great spot because it’s close enough to the cafe that you can grab a sandwich and sit there and just enjoy the view.” -Tori Hummel

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“It honestly makes me feel nostalgic. And it’s really high up, which is fun.” -Kathryn Stoehr

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“I love watching sports games from there. It’s a perfect view of the field.” -Brian Lawrence

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“The Wall is a wonderful place to interact with my friends.  It provides a neat, natural environment where I can enjoy watching nature and other students. Also, its central location is ideal for meeting up with people.” -Rachel Kunker

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What is Theology?

Pierce and PrestonWhile I was home for spring break enjoying the company of my family and some good food, I got to have a few good discussions with my brother, Preston. One of them got started because he asked me “So what, exactly, is theology?” Being a Biblical and Theological Studies major, I have an answer prepared for every time I am asked that question; it comes out automatically, almost like a reflex: Theology is the study of God; theos is the Greek route meaning “God,” and –ology is the suffix meaning “the study of.” When having a casual conversation with the average person, it is easy to leave it at this stock definition and move on, but I felt that my brother deserved something more in-depth.

When I first came to Nyack College I was also unsure as to exactly what theology is. What gave me the most helpful insight was the main text in my Introduction to Biblical and Theological Studies class, entitled Who Needs Theology, by Stanley Grenz and Roger Olson. This book posits that everyone is a theologian, even non-Christians…even Atheists! Theology is simply thinking and philosophizing about deity in general, whether that deity is the God of the Christians or some other deity. That means that even those who have decided against the existence of God are theologians, since they had to ponder and consider the divine in order to deny it! You may be surprised to hear this, but  you are a theologian, too.

Even after realizing this, you probably don’t feel like a theologian; I didn’t feel like one either when I first read this in the Grenz and Olson book. When most of us think of theology, we think of old men with their doctorates writing long, complicated books on topics that almost no one actually cares about. Many of us go as far as to think that theology is harmful to ministry because it confuses people with unnecessarily complex doctrine. The way that I view Christian theology, and the way I think that everyone should view it, is  the earnest search for better and more comprehensive understandings of God in order to more properly love and serve him.

Through my studies I have come to a realization that has helped me understand what I do as a Christian theologian and why it needs to be done. God is vast, infinite, and above human understanding. No matter how much humans ponder, study, and write, we will never have a complete understanding of who God is and how he works. Instead of using this as an excuse not to try to understand him, I see it as an invitation to continually increase my understanding of him, since there will always be more to learn. I feel closest to God when I am nose-deep in the Bible or a theological text.

Preston, I hope this helps.

Fill or Be Filled

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What’s the capital of Morocco? What’s the state bird of Iowa? Do horses really sleep standing up? You may have just opened up a new tab and asked Google these questions, you may have pulled out your iPhone and asked Siri, or you may just not care. But, the point is that we live in a world where it is easier than ever to gain access to information.

This is an amazing thing. If a loved one needs prayer, you can alert your 652 friends in seconds. If you accidently take the bridge from Manhattan to Queens and need to get back, Google maps can save the day. But on the other hand, how often do we open up tumblr when that paper is due in the morning? How often do we text things to people that we wouldn’t dare say to their faces? How easy is it for the world to suck us in and make us believe what it preaches?

The world preaches to us that the most important thing is that we be entertained. We need facebook, The Walking Dead deserves our undivided attention, and our smartphone cannot be out of our reach for a second. At the end of the day, these messages leave us tired and hungry. We are people created in the image of Christ Jesus, and we need to be filled. Trying to fill ourselves with media, distractions, and indulgence only leaves us more empty.

As finals approach, it’s easy to be lazy– to only do good enough. It’s easy to only study enough to get a passing grade, then ‘reward’ ourselves with exorbitant amounts of indulgence claiming that ‘we deserve it’. Does Colossians 3:23 mean anything to the Christian college student in America? We like to interpret that verse as saying, “If you’re doing something you like, do really well at it and you can tell all your friends you did it for God”, when in reality, anything we do should be done to the best of our ability because God deserves the glory.

As my older brother advised me today, don’t just finish strong, finish better than you started. When the world tells you that mediocre is good enough, and satisfactory is acceptable, tell it that your Savior deserves more. When you’re tempted to open up twitter or Netflix, open up The Word and let the truth fill you. If we don’t put the effort in, the world will not hesitate to fill us with it’s lies. So make a conscious effort today to be filled with the Truth and as finals come closer and closer, remember that,

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord and not for human masters. Colossians 3:23

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