Summer 2024
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Message from the President

President Robin Baker

This spring we celebrated our 132nd graduating class at George Fox University. One of the things that made this particular graduation different was the class itself. The Class of 2024 came to George Fox during the COVID-19 pandemic, facing hurdles that no other class in history faced – masks, social distancing, quarantines, devastating forest fires, hazardous air quality, and threats of evacuation from a fire in the Chehalem Mountains. The Class of 2024 is characterized by resilience, grit and commitment. We are proud of all our graduates, but especially proud of this group for what it endured.

During commencement, each student walks across the stage, and as I prepare to shake their hand I listen carefully to their names. Although there are far too many students for me to remember, I want to be able to look them in the eye at that moment, call them by name, and congratulate them for their achievement.

Our students are not merely members of a community but are also unique creations of God. As C.S. Lewis noted, “Your soul has a curious shape because it is a hollow made to fit a particular swelling in the infinite contours of the Divine.”


President Robin Baker takes a selfie with the Class of 2024 during spring commencement.

My mentor, former university president David Brandt, always told me that he wanted each person to hear their name pronounced, stand and pause to be recognized. We hope in this way that we honor the Be Known promise of our university and reflect on the God-given potential of each student.

While we have become a larger university over time, we continue to see lives transformed. It is why we serve and the reason why many give to the university. You will read some of these stories of transformation in this magazine.

One student story from this year particularly stands out in my memory – that of Alvin Lai. Alvin came to our spiritual life staff and asked if he and three other students could go to the Asbury Revival. After they returned, Alvin and his team started their own prayer ministry at George Fox. While they knew that our employees and trustees consistently prayed for them, they wanted to engage students to ask God to awaken them to his work at George Fox, and more broadly, in the Northwest. The prayers of these students made a significant difference on our campus this year.

May you be inspired by the voices of the George Fox community.

Robin Baker

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Summer 2024 Journal Cover

Cover of Summer 2024 issue

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