Let me first say that IWS is a unique community and once you’re a part of it you always belong. Bob Webber and the entire IWS community had a significant and lasting impact on my life and ministry while I was a student at the school, so I consider it pure joy to serve the alumni, students and faculty in an ongoing capacity.
The Alumni Association was established when the first class of DWS students graduated in June 2002. Chris Alford was one of those first graduates, and he led the efforts of extending the IWS community to the alumni in the early stages of the association. Then, in June of 2004, I was appointed Director of Alumni Activities. I was also privileged to be a part of the first graduating class—the Alphas.
The IWS Alumni Association exists to celebrate and maintain the unique community established among the students and faculty while on campus in Jacksonville. Our aim is to encourage, edify, and inspire the alumni. Several key resources and endeavors help to that end:
The IWS newsletter is published several times a year to keep the IWS community informed and connected through information on fellow graduates, students and faculty members, and IWS activities.
Our website facilitates communication and ongoing renewal through tools that include directory information, worship resources, articles by the faculty, and media files from the on campus sessions.
Annual post-graduate courses are offered in a seminar format taught by respected scholars. Stanley Grenz, Robert Webber, Harold Best, Brian McLaren, Don Saliers, Phyllis Tickle, Christopher Hall, John Witvliet, Leonard Sweet, Gordon Smith, Michael Hawn and others have led these sessions. Along with the seminar, various alumni events are planned during this time for renewing friendships, reconnecting with faculty, visiting classes, and worshiping with the IWS community, which is a highly valued time for everyone on campus.
Regional alumni gatherings meet is several locations across the country, giving graduates and friends opportunities to meet for mutual growth and encouragement. Some groups enjoy discussing a book each time they meet; others gather to simply enjoy one another’s company and exchange ideas and prayer requests. IWS Regionals will continue to spring up as graduates come from all over our country and the world.
Come and be a part of this unique community where personal and ministry transformation is the norm. Your spiritual journey will be enriched through a deeper intimacy with the Triune God, and the warmth of lasting human relationships will give you encouragement and challenge in a community that desires to seek and love God first and best of all.
Kent Walters, D.W.S.
Director of Alumni Activities