Dr. Jonathan Camp | Communication
Assistant Professor of Communication and Director of MSOD Program
Dr. Jonathan Camp didn't start out at ACU, but the assistant professor of communication says he is a Wildcat at heart. His family legacy has much to do with that: His grandfather, parents and older brother all attended Abilene Christian University.
ACU is unique in that it maintains a focus on faith while not requiring intellectual hegemony. We genuinely attempt to model to students what it means to disagree with each other while extending charity; and I believe we succeed in most cases. That is rare in a university and something to be cherished.
Because of his family's ties with ACU, Camp made many visits to the campus over the years and says it feels like home to him. "I feel like I have come full circle," he says.
Camp earned his B.A. and M.Div. from Harding University, then came to ACU to complete his D.Min. in 2007. He joined the ACU faculty and finished a Ph.D. from the University of Memphis in 2008.
A better world
Camp applied for the position at ACU after seeing an advertisement in the Christian Chronicle. He then moved himself, his wife and two boys to Abilene. However, before coming to ACU, he spent a summer in El Salvador while he did dissertation research on protecting vulnerable populations in medical research, a study funded by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
"I believe in conducting research that contributes to a better world," Camp says.
Now at ACU, Camp plays a key role as director of the Organizational Development program. Developed in the 1970s as an educational outreach to Dyess Air Force Base, MSOD is a master of science degree program that offers online courses in communication, psychology, business and management sciences, and conflict resolution.
"The MSOD degree provides a competitive advantage for candidates in various top-level careers," Camp says. "Critical thinking and strategic planning courses provide credible tools for the new 21st century decision maker."
As the director, Camp secures faculty, advises students and provides overall visionary leadership. Along with his involvement in the MSOD program, he is also plugged into another innovative aspect of the ACU campus - the use of mobile technology in the classroom
Innovative and personal
"In my Fall 2010 Cornerstone class, I polled students almost every time the class met," he says. "It was an effective way for students to see just how diverse the students' perspectives were on a variety of issues, and it served as a catalyst for meaningful discussion and critical thinking."
Camp says he values the way ACU openly encourages critical thinking and diversity.
"ACU is unique in that it maintains a focus on faith while not requiring intellectual hegemony," he says. "We genuinely attempt to model to students what it means to disagree with each other while extending charity; and I believe we succeed in most cases. That is rare in a university and something to be cherished."
Although he sees the world of higher education taking notice of the innovative learning taking place at ACU, Camp still believes the most satisfying part of his job may only be seen on a personal level.
"Mentoring students one-on-one, whether in a formal, research mentorship, or in an informal life mentoring relationship, is the most rewarding part of my job," he says. "I had two vital mentors during my time as an undergraduate student, and their impact on me was immeasurable. I hope to pass that on."
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