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Corban University

April 22, 2020

Embracing Disruption with Technology and Hope 

Professor of English Dr. Marty Trammell shares how teaching remotely has shaped his interactions with students. But while this new teaching format comes with unique challenges, Dr. Trammell isn’t daunted or discouraged. Rather, he shares ways he has been encouraged and ultimately reminded that “now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face-to-face” (1 Corinthians 13:12). 

 What is the biggest challenge you and your students are facing right now? 

 “Although technology makes facetoface communication possible, it doesn’t necessarily make it personal. Some of my students appear to find less relational warmth in the online communication climate environs. Some non-verbal cues are distorted or missing.” 

 How have you been encouraged in this time? 

 “Being able to see and hear each other emotionally melts some of the miles between us. I have students in New York, Hawaii, Washington, D.C., and Alaska who seemed encouraged we could at least smile at each other and hear each other’s voices.” 

 What is God revealing about Himself to you through these experiences? 

 “This change in communication environs reminds me of C.S. Lewis’ statement in one of the sermons he wrote during World War II: 

 At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendours we see. But all the leaves of the New Testament are rustling with the rumour that it will not always be so. Someday, God willing, we shall get in. (“The Weight of Glory”) 

This change in communication at Corban feels a bit limited, like the difference between our experience of God today and what it will be like in heaven. Still, I’m so grateful our friends in administration and the IT department have made this form of connection, even if it feels like the wrong side of the door, possible!”