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“What Starts Here Changes the World…”

Now that we live in Austin, I have had the opportunity to get to know more about the University of Texas. Debbie graduated from the University of Texas in Arlington, and I have several family members who attended U.T. here in Austin. I have to admit though, as a Baylor graduate, we’ve always considered U.T. as our rival. Unfortunately, UT doesn’t consider Baylor at all.

Of the many things I’ve discovered about U.T., one of my favorites is the motto: “What starts here changes the world.” Here are some interesting facts about U.T.:

  • Except for MIT, UT Austin attracts more federal research grants than any American university without a medical school.
  • U.T. has earned more than 300 patents since 2003.
  • In 2009, UT Austin created nine new start-up companies to commercialize technology developed at the university and has created 46 start-ups in the past seven years.
  • UT is a world-leading research institution in fields such as computer science.
  • Energy is a major research thrust of the university, with major federally funded projects on biofuels,battery and solar cell technology, and geological carbon dioxide storage,[76] among others.

My hope is for Gateway to play our part in making this motto become more and more true of the spiritual movement on campus and from the campus. Our Gateway College team (Ben, Emily, Jordan, Kyle, Mattias, David, and so many others) have been doing an amazing job, and I’m excited to serve them as they serve students.

Here are some facts about the spiritual climate on campus:

 

  • 51,195 students enrolled at UT
  • 5313 UT students involved in campus ministries
  • 10.3% of UT students are involved in campus ministries
  • 928 students went on missions trips
  • Students went to 44 countries
  • Students went to 47 cities in the USA
  • 1369 students participated with local service organizations and projects
  • Students partnered with 58 service organizations in Austin

The second thing that has impressed me has been the way those who want to invest in the campus spiritually team together.

Today I participated in a workshop with 80 other women and men serving the campus from 63 different campus ministries. I met some great people doing some great things! Justin Christopher the director of Campus Renewal Ministries has written a book on the movement here at U.T. called Campus Renewal: A Practical Plan for Uniting Campus Ministries in Prayer and Mission. He led our time and shared some of the following insights:

“Paul gave one of the strangest and most difficult commands in his letter to the Corinthians when he said: ‘I appeal to you… that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.’ – Paul (1 Corinthians 1:10) Is this even possible? How can we do this?

True unity changes the spiritual climate and maximizes our impact. Unity must be pursued, relationship-based, and vision-based. Humility should be our goal which leads towards unity.

Unity is NOT absent of conflict, uniformity, or proximity.

Division stunts our growth, ruins our message, and causes God to resist us.”

How have you seen organizations team together to make an impact together?

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ebryant@churchleaders.com'
Dr. Eric Michael Bryant serves with Gateway Church in Austin as the team leader for Central and South Austin and as part of the teaching team. Eric previously served at Mosaic in Los Angeles and his books include Not Like Me: A Field Guide to a Influencing a Diverse World and A Fruitful Life: Becoming Who You Were Created To Be. Eric coaches church planters and campus pastors, teaches on Post Christian Ministry, and leads a cohort for a Doctorate of Ministry in Missional Effectiveness through Bethel Seminary where he earned his Doctorate of Ministry in Entrepreneurial Leadership.