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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...




Blazing a Trail

By Bob Cook
Dec. 11, 2011

In addition to being the oldest active endorsed college in the Assemblies of God (begun in San Francisco, in 1919), Bethany was also a trailblazer for other AG colleges in the area of accreditation. In 1966, under the leadership of President Cordas C. Burnett, Bethany became the first AG school to receive dual accreditation with not only the American Association of Bible Colleges (AABC; now known as ABHE — Association for Biblical Higher Education), but also with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), a regional accrediting agency.

In Bethany College: 75 Years of Dreams ... of Destiny, Dr. Everett Wilson states, “While Bethany’s sister institutions, Southern California College (now Vanguard University) and Evangel College (now Evangel University), had both previously received regional recognition without seeking or retaining Bible college status, and some other schools chose not to seek regional accreditation, Bethany succeeded in retaining a format of competitive leadership preparation in keeping with its past emphases.” In time, seven other AG colleges followed Bethany’s lead and achieved dual accreditation.

This new regional accreditation allowed Bethany’s name to appear in WASC’s directories alongside prestigious California schools like UC/Berkeley, San Jose State, Stanford, USC and UCLA, as well as outstanding Christian colleges such as Westmont and Loyola Marymount. Bethany’s program of teacher education, started in 1967, soon became well-known in northern California as an excellent place for the training of schoolteachers in both public and private education.

Bethany’s legacy through the years was that it remained a vibrant school for the training of ministers and missionaries, but also expanded its curriculum to include “marketplace” majors, while maintaining a vigorous spiritual atmosphere mixed with academic excellence and rigor.

Interestingly, in 1972, Dr. Cordas Burnett became the first executive vice president for the Assemblies of God Graduate School (now Assemblies of God Theological Seminary) in Springfield, Mo. His daughter, Dr. Marilyn Burnett Abplanalp, now serves as a vice president in the offices of The Alliance for AG Higher Education in Springfield, Mo., after serving for 18 years on the faculty of Bethany, the last six as director of teacher education.

— Bob Cook, president of the Alliance for Assemblies of God Higher Education

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