HBU’s Academy exists to offer Great Books courses for dual credit (i.e., high school and college credit), which is flexible for homeschool families and partner schools. Through the program, our HBU faculty strive to make our courses characteristically Christian by engaging with the Great Texts of the Western World with charity for the author and for one another. We interact with the Great Texts from a place of Christian knowledge on the authority of the Christian Scriptures, so that all students might confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.
Over the last year or so, we have experienced some significant, albeit, positive changes. With the hire of Dr. Tyler D. McNabb (PhD, University of Glasgow), we are developing an internationally recognized faculty in the Academy. We have grown as a team to offer first-rate training in the Great Books with experts in philosophy, theology, history and English. In our curriculum, we engage the Great Texts from both a generalist and specialist perspective, demonstrated in the classroom with lectures on the book’s context and specialized lectures in philosophy, apologetics and theology, in addition to public lectures.
Over the last year, HBU’s Academy sponsored five public lectures on a variety of topics from John Milton – the afterlife, the art of reading and discussion and the nature of the University. We also offer a hands-on art course and summer art camps. Finally, general population University courses are now available to upper-level Academy students.
There are other noteworthy events this year from the Academy faculty. Thanks to the help of Kristen Burnette and with significant help from MLA student Margaret A. Garde, we had a successful and lively production of the play Pygmalion.
Spanning over the time period of summer of 2016 to early 2017, Dr. McNabb has participated in two debates/discussion with the well known atheist philosopher, Stephen Law. The first debate can be heard on Unbelievable with Justin Brierley. Finally, Dr. Farris has presented at several conferences throughout the year and published in several venues.
With a view to next year, we expect to continue the growth of HBU’s Academy in two ways. First, we intend to strengthen our relationship with other departments and programs at HBU. Presently, we work closely with the Honors College, the Department of History, and the Department of English and Modern Languages. We look forward to maintaining those relationships and building new ones across the campus. We also intend to extend the training offered to other groups in the Houston area.