Welcoming New and Returning Students to the DBU Campus

Dr. Wright Helps Students Move In

After a full summer of planning and preparations, University Hill is bustling again with activity at the start of another academic year, including a record number of more than 600 in the incoming class who join thousands more returning students in what will truly be a semester unlike any other in DBU’s history.

"In a year where we are seeing other schools show significant decline in their freshman enrollment, we have been absolutely blown away at what God has done," says Dr. John Borum, Assistant Vice President for Undergraduate Enrollment. "We are looking at an 8% increase over last year’s freshman class. God is so faithful and our team has worked extremely hard."

Classrooms have been outfitted for social distancing; personal daily health checks and masks are required to enter all buildings, and professors are teaching from behind a thin protective wall of plexiglass and/or through virtual learning formats. The pandemic has certainly challenged the way academic and student life operates at DBU, but there is still much excitement and expectation in the air about the start of fall classes and another year of experiencing spiritual community on the Hill.

As is traditional every year, and after the celebration of Move-In Day, the new incoming class during welcome and transition days (SWAT) was introduced to the University theme of servant leadership through participation in various service projects both on and off-campus, providing missional support to 18 different local community partners throughout the Metroplex. Organizations served included Mission Arlington, The Salvation Army, Grand Prairie Pregnancy Resource Center, and Brother Bill’s Helping Hand. 

Jacob Murphy, Director of Service-Learning, shared his enthusiasm in having students back on campus and for the opportunity to continue the DBU tradition of service to the community throughout the fall semester. “It’s going to be wonderful to see how the DBU student body doesn’t stop serving in the midst of this. We will just do it in new, creative, and safe ways.”

On the Friday evening before classes, DBU held its first-ever outdoor Candlelighting service for incoming students. It was a meaningful moment as students were encouraged to reflect upon their individual and collective callings, especially when walking through unusual or difficult circumstances, to reflect the light of Christ before a world that desperately needs Him. 

During the first Chapel service of the year, DBU President Dr. Adam C. Wright gave a personal greeting and welcome to all the new and returning students, some who attended six feet apart in Pilgrim Chapel, while others worshipped virtually online, and many more were spread out and viewing from other spacious facilities on campus.

In what is sure to be a semester of firsts and adjustment to a new normal, DBU remains committed to glorifying God by serving the diverse body of students He has led here. Lives will continue to be transformed through rigorous intellectual engagement, meaningful relationship building, and many opportunities for spiritual growth through mentoring and service.

Written by Dr. Michael Whiting

Dr. Michael Whiting is the Director of Written Content in University Communications at Dallas Baptist University.