BJU President Steve Pettit surveyed the sea of maskless students in Founder’s Memorial Amphitorium and said “Your success is our joy.”
Pettit, along with BJU Chancellor Bob Jones III and others, welcomed the Class of 2025 and returning students, faculty and staff to the University’s 95th academic year during opening exercises Aug. 23.
Classes begin Aug. 25. Evangelistic meetings, with Pettit the main speaker, will be held at 7 p.m. Aug. 24 and 25 in FMA and will be webcast.
Pettit said that BJU has returned to “the good old days” for the fall semester — free from the COVID-19 protocols that were instituted for the 2020–21 academic year.
“Last year we decided here at Bob Jones to have a full year of on-campus, in-class education. God honored our prayers,” Pettit said. “We completed the year successfully and we celebrated the end of this past school year with two graduation ceremonies — the Class of 2021 and the Class of 2020 — and we praise the Lord for that.”
While vaccinations and universal masking aren’t required, BJU remains committed to helping the University community stay healthy. Directives of the South Carolina governor’s office and state legislature will be followed, and free COVID-19 testing and quarantine spaces are available on campus.
“Obviously, COVID is still among us and we’ll continue to do the best we can,” Pettit continued. “We don’t look at this with fear and we don’t look at this with arrogance. We just want to do the very best we can to give you the best education possible.”
The president charged students to make the most of the opportunities throughout the year — in the classroom, in community outreach, in a local church and in building relationships.
“Aristotle claimed that education should prepare a person for an active life. Jesus invested his life in his disciples and then he told them to go and do the same thing,” Pettit said. “(BJU is) here to do the same thing, and that is to empower God’s people — Christian young people — to be able to reach their highest potential through these influences (of) life coaching, engaged, experiential learning and biblical thinking. And to do all of that for one great, ultimate purpose: for the glory of our God.
“So let’s get to work and have a great semester.”