Follow Christ, Lead the Way
Professor Scott Barr: Fruits of Summer Labor image

By Amber Ginter ‘19

English Professor Scott Barr, after over four decades of teaching, is no stranger to being productive during Central Ohio's long, hot summers. Investing in summer projects this year, Barr found his activities refreshing and fruitful.

In May, Barr became lead writer for Ohio Christian University’s (OCU) accreditation report for the Higher Learning Commission. In preparing for the Commission’s 2019 visit, he is examining all aspects of OCU’s effectiveness. Barr met with the audit preparation team to discuss five main areas within 21 sub-components. These included how to meet standards and support claims with plans for improvement. Completing two-thirds of the project has occupied Barr’s time the past few months. He is putting into practice what he teaches his English Composition students. “This is a big project of about 100 pages,” Barr explains.

During the summer, Barr interacted with OCU friends, faculty, and retired teachers and classmates of Teays Valley High School’s Class of 1971. In May, he presented “Raising the Bar on College-level Writing” to teachers in the Trailblazer Academy/ College Credit Plus program and shared creative ideas on how to handle frustrating aspects of writing, encouraging educators to overcome challenges. Barr noted the importance of passionate discipline in teaching: “As Emerson writes, ‘Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.’ We need to bring God’s spirit into instruction,” he asserted.

In addition to OCU-related activity, God had many fruitful summer experiences for Barr. Speaking at Village Chapel, Barr referenced Psalm 90:12-17: “May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us—yes, establish the work of our hands.” He related how this Biblical advice applies to his farm chores. “Since my riding mower broke, I have time to think as I walk laps with my push mower!” Of chasing his sheep back into the yard, farmer Barr asks, “Perhaps the grass was greener on the other side of the fence? ‘Good fences make good neighbors,’ wrote Robert Frost. I see the wisdom of this saying. I'm thankful that Jesus, the Good Shepherd, leaves the 99 and comes after each of us when we are lost.”

When Barr isn’t writing, gardening, remodeling his house, or tending his flock of Cheviot sheep, he is re-reading Wendell Berry’s fiction. Berry’s Civil War to World War II works particularly inspire Barr since he wrote his master’s thesis on Berry in 1975. Figuratively, Barr has spent time in Berry’s fictional community, Port William, Kentucky, which influences his teaching. “I teach a course on ‘The Beloved Community’ and hope to again next spring.”

Coming to the end of his “stay-cation” of the summer’s long days of sweltering heat and now cooling nights, Barr reflects on a fruitful summer: “This has been a fun and productive summer. I’m ready for the new academic year. Bring on compositions and books, and especially the fall weather, football, and pumpkin pie!”

Perhaps Professor Barr’s productivity is instructive for nurturing our spiritual fruit?

Articles of Interest

2019 Georgia Commencement image

2019 Georgia Commencement

2019 Georgia Commencement image

Published: April 11, 2019

On Saturday, April 6th, Ohio Christian University held its fourth commencement ceremony in Jonesboro, Georgia at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center. This is the first year at this location. OCU President, Dr. Jon Kulaga welcomed the record crowd of nearly 1,300 students, family and honored guests declaring, “We are living in a time where Christians have never been more needed-to be out there in society being salt and light.” He further challenged them stating that “your community needs you, your city needs you and your country needs you”.    Terence Chatmon was the commencement
On Saturday, April 6th, Ohio Christian University held its fourth commencement ceremony in Jonesboro, Georgia at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center. This is the first year at this location. OCU President, Dr. Jon Kulaga welcomed the record crowd of nearly 1,300 students, family and honored guests declaring, “We are living in a time where Christians have never been more needed-to be
On Saturday, April 6th, Ohio Christian University held its fourth commencement ceremony in Jonesboro, Georgia at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center. This is the first year at this location
Faith and Work Seminar a First on Campus image

Faith and Work Seminar a First on Campus

Faith and Work Seminar a First on Campus image

Published: April 10, 2019

On Saturday March 23rd, Ohio Christian University hosted the Faith
On Saturday March 23rd, Ohio Christian University hosted the Faith
On Saturday March 23rd, Ohio Christian University hosted the Faith

Archived Articles of Interest

OCU Student Finds Hope Through Classmates image

OCU Student Finds Hope Through Classmates

OCU Student Finds Hope Through Classmates image

Published: October 17, 2016

By Krista Williams In a time where our country and humanity is living in a great amount of fear, being at OCU gives me so much hope. I find peace in being here as I look around the classrooms- I see the future. I sit and look at all of the hardworking students and how each one of them has a divine purpose they are preparing for. A purpose given specially to them because of their skills and abilities. A purpose given to them because our King knows what He is doing. I sit in a class of 20 people and think, "there are 20 world changers right here." It amazes me to think what we, as
By Krista Williams In a time where our country and humanity is living in a great amount of fear, being at OCU gives me so much hope. I find peace in being here as I look around the classrooms- I see the future. I sit and look at all of the hardworking students and how each one of them has a divine purpose they are preparing for. A purpose given specially to them because of their skills and
By Krista Williams In a time where our country and humanity is living in a great amount of fear, being at OCU gives me so much hope. I find peace in being here as I look around the classrooms- I
OCU to Host FAFSA Workshop on Oct. 8th image

OCU to Host FAFSA Workshop on Oct. 8th

OCU to Host FAFSA Workshop on Oct. 8th image

Published: October 3, 2016

By Amanda Plotts, Staff Reporter for the Circleville Herald   Future college students who need help navigating the financial aid system are encouraged to attend FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) Day, a financial aid workshop sponsored by Pickaway HELPS (Higher Education Learning Partners for Students) and Ohio Christian University (OCU). The workshop is free and will take place on Oct. 8 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at OCU’s Maxwell Center. Professional financial counselors will be available to give individual help, answer questions, and assist with the online
By Amanda Plotts, Staff Reporter for the Circleville Herald   Future college students who need help navigating the financial aid system are encouraged to attend FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) Day, a financial aid workshop sponsored by Pickaway HELPS (Higher Education Learning Partners for Students) and Ohio Christian University (OCU). The workshop is free and will
By Amanda Plotts, Staff Reporter for the Circleville Herald   Future college students who need help navigating the financial aid system are encouraged to attend FAFSA (Free Application for
Is college preparation worth it? A teen's perspective. image

Is college preparation worth it? A teen's perspective.

Is college preparation worth it? A teen's perspective. image

Published: September 15, 2016

By Jordyn Williams (pictured) In the years approaching college, the weight of the world is on us teens. Our stress is magnified as the expectations for college readiness intensifies. Our days grow longer and our nights shorten as we return home from a seven hour day of school only to spend additional hours studying and completing homework for multiple AP and honors classes. We wake up early the next morning to repeat the cycle. Work-free weekends are infrequent when they have become filled with youth leadership group gatherings, club meetings, community service, and SAT/ACT prep. The
By Jordyn Williams (pictured) In the years approaching college, the weight of the world is on us teens. Our stress is magnified as the expectations for college readiness intensifies. Our days grow longer and our nights shorten as we return home from a seven hour day of school only to spend additional hours studying and completing homework for multiple AP and honors classes. We wake up early
By Jordyn Williams (pictured) In the years approaching college, the weight of the world is on us teens. Our stress is magnified as the expectations for college readiness intensifies. Our days grow
OCU Graduates Celebrate Commencement at the Morning Ceremony

Record 810 Graduates Celebrate Commencement

OCU Graduates Celebrate Commencement at the Morning Ceremony

Published: May 26, 2016

On Saturday, April 30, 2016, Ohio Christian University held its 66th Commencement Ceremonies at the university’s main campus in Circleville, Ohio. A record 810 associate, bachelor, and master level graduates participated a total of four ceremonies: three in Ohio and one in Georgia earlier this month. Kelvin J. Cochran of Atlanta, Georgia, was the 2016 Commencement speaker. Originally from Shreveport, Louisiana, Cochran followed his childhood dream and became a firefighter in 1981. Working his way through the ranks, he was appointed Fire Chief of the Shreveport Fire Department in 1999
On Saturday, April 30, 2016, Ohio Christian University held its 66th Commencement Ceremonies at the university’s main campus in Circleville, Ohio. A record 810 associate, bachelor, and master level graduates participated a total of four ceremonies: three in Ohio and one in Georgia earlier this month. Kelvin J. Cochran of Atlanta, Georgia, was the 2016 Commencement speaker. Originally from
On Saturday, April 30, 2016, Ohio Christian University held its 66th Commencement Ceremonies at the university’s main campus in Circleville, Ohio. A record 810 associate, bachelor, and master level
Morrow Campus graduates gather for a photo-op.

Georgia Campus Celebrates First-Ever Graduation

Morrow Campus graduates gather for a photo-op.

Published: April 20, 2016

On Saturday, April 9, 2016, The Morrow Campus of Ohio Christian University held its Inaugural Commencement Service at Divine Faith Ministries International in Jonesboro, Georgia.  70 Associate, Bachelor, and Master level graduates, for onsite and online, participated in the historic ceremony. MBA graduate Charlotte Daniely said, “The graduation was excellent.  I am extremely proud to say I am a graduate from Ohio Christian. The Lord was in the house!” An honorary doctorate was awarded to Former Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran. Dr. Shawn Thomas, Dean for the Morrow Campus said, “
On Saturday, April 9, 2016, The Morrow Campus of Ohio Christian University held its Inaugural Commencement Service at Divine Faith Ministries International in Jonesboro, Georgia.  70 Associate, Bachelor, and Master level graduates, for onsite and online, participated in the historic ceremony. MBA graduate Charlotte Daniely said, “The graduation was excellent.  I am extremely proud to say I
On Saturday, April 9, 2016, The Morrow Campus of Ohio Christian University held its Inaugural Commencement Service at Divine Faith Ministries International in Jonesboro, Georgia.  70 Associate,