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This project is supported by The BioLogos Foundation’s Evolution & Christian Faith program. BioLogos does not necessarily endorse the views expressed by the Project Leader(s) or their institution, nor do the Project Leader(s) or their institution necessarily endorse the views expressed by BioLogos.
Equipping the Next Generation of Christian Paleobiologists: A Seminar for Christian Graduate Students in Paleontology and Paleoanthropology
Dr. Ralph Stearley and Dr. Cara Wall-Scheffler
Christian graduate students in paleontology and paleoanthropology are often caught in a mire of distrust, fostered by a polarizing cultural climate which perceives these historical sciences as somehow “at war” with Christian faith. While this “warfare model” of the relationship between science and faith has been demonstrated to be historically naïve, it is unfortunately publicly promoted by some well-known scientists and by some vocal Christians. Christian graduate students attempting to navigate these conflicting claims and expectations can experience a profound sense of isolation; often resulting in the privatization of his or her faith. We propose to assist these young Christian paleobiologists through a one-week seminar during summer 2014 and a one-week reprise/workshop in summer 2015, providing them with a solid background in the long positive history of participation by Christians at the forefront of paleontological research, as well as Christian responses to claims by secularists. As one of the requirements for acceptance, seminar participants will agree to communicate their personal story and a positive view of the relationship between science and Christianity to their local congregations. We also intend and expect this seminar to initiate long-term friendships and collaborations, forming the basis of a network of future Christian scientists in academia.
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