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Theology & Global Church Ministries Department — 2020 EU graduation awards

Published on May 5, 2020 by Paul K. Logsdon


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The Department of Theology & Global Church Ministries at Evangel University has announced its 2020 graduation awards. Due to COVID-19 and the cancellation of campus events, Evangel’s traditional Baccalaureate and Commencement ceremonies have been postponed until mid-August. The awards were given remotely by the members of the faculty.

The department houses the undergraduate programs of Evangel’s embedded seminary.

Students have the benefit of enhanced ministerial education in a variety of traditional, hybrid and accelerated formats, all the way from bachelor’s to doctoral degrees in Bible and Theology, Ministry, Missiology, Philosophy and Intercultural Studies.

Dr. Brandon Schmidly, chair of the Department of Theology and Church Ministries, presents an award to Emma Lander in an online ceremony. // PHOTO BY Dr. Bill Griffin


The following Theology 2020 awards were presented:


W.I. Evans Outstanding Graduate Award

  • Emma H. Lander from Crane, Missouri

Twila Brown Edwards Woman of Distinction Awards

  • Sophia L. Shore from Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri
  • Sarah G. Marsiglio from Stanford, Illinois

Outstanding Hebrew Scholar

  • Dakota J. Nelson from Tangier, Morocco

Outstanding Graduates in Biblical Studies

  • Alexandra E. Ross from Fallbrook, California
  • Jacob W. Presson from Midland, Michigan

Outstanding Graduate in Children’s Ministries

  • Jasmine N. Brunner from Springfield, Missouri

Outstanding Graduate in Church Leadership

  • Philip J. White from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Outstanding Graduate in Intercultural Studies

  • Aaliyah R. Kindt from Lee’s Summit, Missouri

Outstanding Graduate in Philosophy

  • Hannah M. Cox from Mt. Vernon, Missouri

Outstanding Graduate in Preaching

  • Donald F. Fragale from Sumerduck, Virginia

Outstanding Graduate in Youth Ministries

  • Payton W. Towers from Urbandale, Iowa


The Class of 2020

A survey of more than 500 spring graduates of Evangel University and its seminary showed that 84% preferred to have a traditional Commencement and have it postponed until later in the summer.

• The 62nd Annual Commencement for Evangel will be held Saturday, August 15, at 9:30 a.m. in the Central Assembly auditorium, 1301 N. Boonville in Springfield, Missouri.

• The 47th Annual Commencement for Assemblies of God Theological Seminary of Evangel will take place as a part of the same ceremony. The two schools were consolidated in 2013 and combined their graduations in 2018.

Emmy Award winning journalist Steve Grant will be the Commencement speaker. Grant is a 1976 Evangel graduate and a highly-regarded news anchor at KY3, the NBC affiliate for the Springfield metro area. In addition, he currently serves as president of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Mid-America Chapter.

The Commencement 2020 ceremony will be live-streamed at

For additional details on Evangel’s three Baccalaureate & Awards Ceremonies, and on Steve Grant’s life of service, see a feature story on the EU website.

Evangel University, which includes AGTS, is a comprehensive Christian university committed to excellence in educating and equipping students to serve the church and society globally. Evangel serves more than 2,300 students from all 50 states and numerous foreign countries, offering 65 undergraduate majors and 19 master’s and doctoral degrees.