For the previous list of resignations, please see the post “Hail and Farewell Redux“.


The last sentence of the University’s Mission states that it “affirms a commitment to the Christian faith and strives to integrate Christian values within a nurturing community in its whole process of education.” This mission mandates that all faculty members live out a commitment to Jesus Christ in both belief and practice. Thus, potential faculty members must provide a written statement of faith indicating their basic beliefs and the ways in which they anticipate putting faith into practice. Also, potential faculty members must provide a well-written philosophy of teaching in which, again, they frame teaching in the ethos of a dynamic academic and Christian institution. This written document will serve to initiate a discussion with the University Provost regarding a candidate’s faith in Christ.

This has been the procedure for hiring faculty members for a number of years.  All employees have had to provide the statement of faith and the Provost has always discussed the issue of faith with potential candidates.  Why, then, have 63 people decided to leave Shorter?  Surely there is some answer that surpasses the issue of the new Personal Lifestyle Statement. Could it be the interference of the GBC and the Board of Trustees in academic matters and the threat to academic integrity?

The latest resignations:

Shorter University departure # 63.

Ms. Laura McRaney
Director of International Programs
6 years of service

Shorter University departure #62.

Dr. Christopher Brown
Asst. Professor of Biology
Freshman Lab Coordinator

Shorter University departure #61

Nickie Nicholson
Administrative Assistant
of Choral and Recruitment

Additionally, Provost Dr. Craig Shull  “stepped down” as of June 1 to teach in the Adult and Professional Program. Eleven days later, the recently named Executive Vice President Dr. Donald Martin, recently of Dr. Dowless’ former employer, Charleston Southern, (where he had been named provost in March of this year) has now been additionally named as Provost. This despite the fact that there seems to have been no advertisements, search committee or meetings with faculty as has is the custom at colleges and universities across the nation.


  1. Ms. Laura McRaney leaving? Wow! That is saying a lot. She is very conservative and a very fine example of a Christian woman. Her presence will be missed. She served the study abroad programs extremely well and was a blessing to the students she encountered.

  2. The new Dean of Education has been named. She is coming from Charleston Southern where Dowless was dean and provost. This is exactly what Paige Patterson did at Southeastern seminary during the takeover there—he brought a core group of faculty from Criswell College and Southwestern Seminary. Interestingly, Patterson destroyed the music program at Southeastern as part of his efforts there.

  3. John_of_Silence

    Are you still counting the person who died among your 63? Have you interviewed all 62 to make sure they are leaving Shorter for the reasons you want them to have left Shorter?

    • Apparently, it is far easier to simply allow readers to infer what they wish from such “lists” (context makes it difficult to arrive to conclusions other than what they wish to imply) than to pursue the tougher path of intellectual honesty.

      • Jonathan Luttrell

        I laughed out loud at first, and then the grave realization hit me that, and correct me if I am wrong, you would likely assent to creation “science” being taught in school over evolutionary biology? That there would be the biggest failure of intellectual honesty, especially in higher education.

    • John,
      Who died?

  4. John of Silence – Nobody has ever claimed that ALL of the people who have left Shorter did so because of disagreements in the direction the institution is going. The list of people who have left Shorter is simply that – a list. And, yes, the person who died is included in the list of people who have left Shorter. It is indeed unfortunate that he died, but again, the list is just a list of people who have left for whatever reason. There is one fact that is very clear and that is that the vast majority of people on the list left because they disagree with the direction the institution is going. I know this to be a fact because I work at Shorter and I have talked with the vast majority of these individuals. You, obviously, have not.

  5. ShorterStudent

    I’m a little confused about #62, Dr. Brown. Even though he was very unhappy with all the changes, he signed all the documents and indicated that he was coming back. I’ve talked with some of the other science professors this week, and they all say that he is coming back. I know he’s out of the country right now, but have you checked with him about his resignation?

    • Concerned Biologist

      An e-mail was sent to his advisees from him about his resignation…and I’m not sure which science faculty you spoke to, but we all knew Dr. Brown is leaving.

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