How does a native of Massachusetts who lives among the rural poor in Bangladesh as a Fulbright Scholar become the president of one of America’s premiere evangelical Christian universities? It’s the incredible story of Dr. Barry Corey who became the eighth president of Biola University in 2007, the year of Biola’s centennial celebration. It’s a story of leadership, vision, mentorship – centered on Jesus Christ, spreading his message everywhere in the 21st Century.
Under President Corey, the Biola University Center for Christian Thought; the Center for Christianity, Culture and the Arts; the annual Imagination Summit event; and Open Biola — an online database for free educational content was created. He’s overseen the launch of the School of Education and the introduction of online learning. Biola has seen the highest enrollment in the university’s 105-year history, with construction of new facilities. He received a B.A. in English and Biblical Studies from Evangel University, an M.A. in American Studies and a Ph.D. from Boston College in Curriculum, Instruction and Administration. He and his wife, Paula, have three children: Anders, Ella and Samuel.
– Where did you grow up?
– What is one of your fondest childhood memories?
– Who influenced you most in your growing up years? Why?
– How did you become a Christian?
– When did you discover the unique leadership gifts God has given you?
– Who have been some of your mentors and how has the Lord used them to shape you as a leader?
– You led the university into its second century with the launching of an ambitious, 10-year University Plan (2012-2022) and the largest comprehensive fundraising campaign in the school’s history, entitled “A Soul of Conviction and a Voice of Courage.” What is your vision for Biola?
– Describe the most recent initiatives and it’s potential impact on the future.
– How is a university level Christian education vital to influencing society with the message of Jesus?
– When you look at a student at Biola what kind of potential do you see?
– As a leader of leaders what have you done to balance family life with the demands of your presidency?
– How has the Lord helped you through difficult times?
– What do you believe God would want you to tell someone going through a very tough time in life right now?
– If someone is listening but they don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus, what would you say to them?
Proverbs 16:16 says, “How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver!”