Anderson University recently gave John A. Morrison Awards to Dr. Merle Strege and Jennifer Steiner for their commitment and diligent service to AU.
Strege has been on the faculty of Anderson University since 1980, coming first to the School of Theology and then moving to the undergraduate Department of Religious Studies in 1992. He is a great teacher, able administrator, and capable scholar and author, who cares deeply about his students and Anderson University.
Strege exemplifies what it means to be a professor. Whether talking about his Liberal Arts Seminar or his upper level courses in history and Biblical interpretation, his students regard his classes as being very demanding, but also very rewarding. Inspired by him, a number of alumni have gone on to graduate school to prepare to teach at the university level. Strege’s name is consistently among those names cited by students when asked who has had the greatest impact on them.
Strege takes seriously his role as a senior professor. He has served on many university committees and recently was a member of the search committee for the new Vice President of Academic Affairs. When asked, he is always ready to take on new assignments for the university. His wisdom and advice are sought by many members of the faculty and administration.
Strege is not only a professional role model for his colleagues and students, but he is a spiritual role model as well. He is active in his local church where he teaches an adult Sunday School class. He has served the Church of God through the books he has authored and through the writing of Sunday School curricula used in Church of God congregations around the world.
Strege’s scholarly abilities, honed in graduate school, have served him well as he writes about the history of the Church of God and Anderson University. He serves as the Historian for the Church of God, and is active in the Church of God Historical Society. In these capacities he strives to keep alive the legacy of those who have gone before in the church and university. Presently he is updating the late Dr. John W. V. Smith’s book on the history of the Church of God. Once this book is finished, he will begin the preparation and writing of the history of Anderson University that will be published in 1917, on the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the university.
Jennifer Steiner, this year’s Morrison Award staff recipient, is an AU alumna and has served Anderson University for nearly 30 years in various support roles. She began in the Tri-S Office, served in the IMC, the Purchasing and Personnel office, and is currently the Development Office Manager of Gift Records and Research.
During her time with the university, Steiner has been setting standards of service and professionalism wherever she goes. In her current role, she has built a remarkable base of knowledge about the constituents of the institution bringing invaluable assistance to staff and academic departments as they serve the students, parents, donors, alumni, and friends of Anderson University. Steiner is known for going the extra mile. Instead she has demonstrated a steadiness, an optimistic word to co-workers, and the tenacity to see that no detail goes unaddressed. Her work ethic is amazing.
Those who are privileged to spend time with Steiner know her to be a compassionate listener who will always makes time for friends. Steiner has clearly earned the respect, admiration, and affection of all those she works with and all those she has served so well.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,800 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson continues to be recognized as a top Christian college: in 2008, U.S. News and World Report ranked Anderson University among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest for the fourth consecutive year. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing and theology.