By Vicky Kaniaru

CLEVELAND, Ga. (TMCNews) –Due to increased enrollment, Truett-McConnell College recently hired eleven additional professors, bringing the total number of faculty teaching at the Cleveland, Ga., school to 38.

Encompassing humanities to sciences, new professors include Robert Bowen, Gary Fangmann, Anne Fortenberry, Cierra Winkler, Jason Graffagnino, Van Sanders, Richard Behrens, Phil Calvert, Matt Sanders, James Bailey, and Veronica Respress.

“What God has assembled here with regard to faculty is nothing less than phenomenal,” Vice President of Academic Services Brad Reynolds said. “The addition of 11 prominent faculty members to our existing stellar faculty highlights our academic prowess, but more importantly the sovereign blessings of God on Truett-McConnell.”

Notable additions to the faculty include Phil Calvert – a missionary with the SBC’s International Mission Board, a Fulbright Scholar, and a former atheist – who serves as visiting professor of missions; and Van Sanders, a former church planter with the SBC’s North American Mission Board, who will serve as an associate professor of missions and evangelism.

Sanders and Calvert are part of TMC’s World Missions and Christian Studies Division. Adding to the Education and Behavioral Science Division are Richard Behrens and Matt Sanders. Gary Fangmann comes aboard the Business Division, and Robert Bowen, Anne Fortenberry, and Veronica Respress will join the Math and Science Division. The Humanities Division will have three new professors: Jason Graffagnino, Cierra Winkler, and James Bailey. Five of the school’s six divisions have new faculty members.

In addition to teaching, Bailey is head coach of TMC’s new wrestling program, and Matt Sanders is the newly appointed head women’s basketball coach.

Regarding the new faculty and their respective roles, TMC President Emir Caner said, “While any parent or prospective student will be more than thrilled at the academic pedigree of our entire faculty, I believe our students will be most impressed with studying under men and women who love the Lord their God with all of their hearts.

“I am thankful God has assembled a faculty that honors the Lord through faithfulness to their field of expertise and, more importantly, to their Christian faith. While much of the world and, sadly, Evangelicalism do not believe a world-class faculty can be assembled who are also fully devoted followers of Christ, our faculty are evidence that such an animal is not only possible, it is reality.”


Truett-McConnell College equips students to fulfill the Great Commission by fostering a Christian worldview through a biblically-centered liberal arts education.


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