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Evangel University to host lecture series on Christianity and Artificial Intelligence

Published on Mar 1, 2024 by Erin Hedlun

Dr. Michael Tenneson, professor of biology and Evangel’s DNAS chair

SPRINGFIELD, Missouri – Evangel University’s Department of Natural and Applied Sciences (DNAS) will host a series of lectures on Christianity and artificial intelligence led by visiting professor Dr. Derek Schuurman on Tuesday, March 5. Presentations will be held in Zimmerman academic building, room 105, with the first at 10 a.m. and the second at 2 p.m. There is no cost and the public is invited to attend.

“The Evangel University Department of Natural and Applied Sciences is proud to host these presentations by well-respected computer scientist Dr. Derek Schuurman,” said Dr. Michael Tenneson, professor of biology and DNAS chair. “The rapid, and apparently unregulated, development and expansion of artificial intelligence has caused many people to worry. We believe these lectures will broaden the ongoing discussions about AI and incorporate a Christian scholarly outlook into the conversation.”

Dr. Derek Schuurman, professor of computer science at Calvin University

The first lecture is titled “ChatGPT, AI, and Perspectives on Progress” and will explore technological progress and how differing worldviews inform the public vision for AI and the future. The second is titled “ChatGPT, AI, and the Biblical Story” and will examine a distinctly Christian vision for AI informed by the biblical story and recommendations for more responsible technology.

Schuurman is a professor of computer science at Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He worked as an electrical engineer before earning a Ph.D. in the field of robotics and computer vision using machine learning from McMaster University.

Schuurman is a fellow of the American Scientific Affiliation and is the author of “Shaping a Digital World: Faith, Culture and Computer Technology” and co-author of “A Christian Field Guide to Technology for Engineers and Designers,” both published by InterVarsity Academic Press.

Natural and Applied Sciences Department at Evangel

 The Department of Natural & Applied Sciences offers a variety of innovative majors to prepare students for careers in leading science-focused industries, including chemistry, computers, pre-engineering, and health care.

The department boasts many hands-on training opportunities for students, including a greenhouse and a cadaver lab.

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About Evangel University

Evangel University, with its embedded Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS), is a comprehensive Spirit-led Christian university located in Springfield, Missouri. It is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. Under the leadership of Dr. Mike Rakes, EU is committed to excellence in educating and equipping students to serve the Church and society globally and becoming compassionate innovators in their chosen vocations. EU offers more than 70 degree programs, including cutting-edge majors, pre-professional programs, and affordable and flexible online degree options.

EU is highly regarded and has been ranked:

  • #1 Best College in Springfield & #2 Best Christian College in Missouri by Niche
  • US News & World Report Best Colleges Top Performer in Social Mobility
  • Colleges of Distinction Best Christian University
  • Top 10 Best Universities by AcademicInfluence.com
  • Third Most Beautiful Campus in the Midwest by Christian Colleges & Universities
  • Top 10 Best Colleges in Missouri by BestColleges.com

With additional accreditations in business, counseling, music, social work, and theology and certification as an Excellence in Giving university, EU is focused on providing students with hands-on experience and real-world training for today’s professional careers. Learn more about the university at evangel.edu