Faculty Provide Spiritual and Academic Mentorship

Faculty Provide Spiritual and Academic Mentorship

Brisa Ramirez

Southwestern Adventist University’s mission of inspiring knowledge, faith and service through Christ-centered education is exemplified by the dedication of the teaching faculty at the institution, who aim to provide a well-rounded education that is mentally and spiritually filling. A cohesive campus experience is made possible through the dedication of over a hundred faculty across more than a dozen departments because each member of this team values high quality, faith-centered education. The faculty are diverse in thought and background, serving tirelessly through their areas of expertise. 

Dr. Steve Jones, Chair of the Department of History & Social Science; Dr. Marcia Azevedo, Assistant Professor of Nursing and Dr. Nicholas Madhiri, Chair of the Department of Mathematics & Physical Science are three professors who are passionate about their work and hope to impact their students by providing more than simply the information in a textbook.

Dr. Jones has worked at SWAU for nearly 25 years and continues to have a passion for sharing the importance of understanding history with his students. Having loved history from a young age, he is now dedicated to showing students the importance of understanding history in order to apply it to the present.

“I enjoy being a professor at SWAU because I get to focus on and talk about things that matter,” shared Jones. “I can research, write and teach about important topics. I find it so rewarding when a student starts to realize the relevance of history.” 

When Dr. Nicholas Madhiri was searching for his first job after graduate school, he had hopes of serving in the church. What he loves not only about being a professor but more specifically about being one at SWAU is that it gives him the opportunity to serve God and to interact with students consistently. He appreciates seeing the impact he and his fellow professors have on students and in particular enjoys the positive feedback he receives from his students. He has a love for the faith filled environment on campus and appreciates that his colleagues are motivated by their love of God and their hope to display that love to their students. It is what drives his love for the university.

Marcia Azevedo, whose husband Dr. Joaquim Azevedo is also part of the SWAU faculty, was born and raised in Brazil, earning her bachelor’s in nursing at the Adventist College of Nursing in Sao Paulo. She has now been teaching in the Department of Nursing at SWAU for the last four years and is motivated by her love of God and her hope that she can show His love to her students. She feels rewarded when students begin to be able to apply what they have learned as a theory in a clinical setting but most of all has a desire to show them the value of walking with God. “Walking with God impacts your personal, academic and professional life,” she shares. She knows this from personal experience, as she has felt the impact her relationship with God has had in her own life.

The spiritual motivation behind each professor’s teaching clearly makes a difference, as the relationships they have with their students are about more than the academics or the connections they can provide for their students’ careers. Rather, these professors focus on providing an example of the difference leading a Christ-centered life can make.

Learn more about Southwestern Adventist University’s areas of study at swau.edu/academics.

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