LEXINGTON, Ky.—T. Wilson Dickinson, a 2002 graduate of Transylvania University, has been named associate dean for religious life at the university, effective July 7. Dickinson will help the university integrate religious life with the liberal arts. The position is a natural outgrowth of Transylvania’s commitment to ecumenism, reconciliation and inclusion in a 21st century context.
“Transylvania is committed to enabling students to know and experience the history and practices of various religious traditions and to interact with people of other faiths and practices,” said President R. Owen Williams. “This provides the tools they need to become informed and proactive leaders in today’s diverse world.”
Dickinson will promote spiritual development, theological reflection and social awareness on campus and will serve as chaplain for the campus community, adviser for student religious organizations and liaison between the university and the various religious bodies of Central Kentucky.
Dickinson received a master of divinity degree from Vanderbilt University and a Ph.D. in religion from Syracuse University. He served as a visiting assistant professor of philosophy at Transylvania during the 2011-12 academic year. Dickinson is an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). He cofounded Young Adult Ecumenical Forum, which offered conferences for college students of diverse backgrounds to engage in open theological conversation on issues such as poverty, ecological justice, violence and human trafficking. For the past year, Dickinson has been a worship leader at the Fayette County Detention Center.
Dickinson says his passion is counseling and leading students regarding issues of faith in their daily lives, focusing on intellectual inquiry, spiritual practice and social responsibility.
“I anticipate that a synergy will develop between the experiential components of my teaching, student immersion experiences and regular meetings such as quiet reflections, lunch discussions and service projects,” said Dickinson. “Creating communities, groups and practices will help students build bridges in their own lives so as to traverse the gap between college and their future.”