Dr. Craig Ellison, Nyack's Distinguished Professor of Urban Studies and Counseling, the first professor to receive this recognition, was honored at Alliance Theological Seminary (ATS) Rockland recently. Faculty, staff, and students gathered for a high-spirited celebration of his service to the Alliance Graduate School of Counseling and to ATS.
Highly respected in his field, letters from two longtime associates, renowned Christian counselor and author, Gary Collins and Dr. James Dobson, founder/chairman of Focus on the Family, were read. Other tributes were compiled in an album. ATS Alumni Association President Donna Baptiste made a presentation on behalf of graduates. For the special occasion, an AGSC faculty and staff choir performed, "God Will Make a Way." The flock of students who surrounded Dr. Ellison with well-wishes (and their cameras for a bit of memorabilia) spoke volumes of their love for the AGSC Director.
From his side of the lectern, Dr. Ellison shared the following sentiments:
More than 240 students have graduated from the Alliance Graduate School of Counseling (AGSC) in the past nine years. On our New York City and Rockland campuses, 243 students have enrolled for the fall 2008 semester.
God has brought us through many Red Sea experiences--repeatedly confirming that this is HIS program. Because of His faithfulness, we can celebrate the launch of AGSC's second New York State approved program in Marriage and Family Therapy being offered this fall.
AGSC has become known as a program with 1. rapid and steady growth, 2. a solid spiritual foundation, 3. diversity, 4. a wonderful sense of community, 5. high caliber students and 6.
academic excellence competitive with similar programs throughout the United States.
Last year, two AGSC graduates passed the national comprehensive counseling exam in the 95th percentile. God has blessed us with outstanding full-time and part-time faculty. Our students have dared to trust Him with their future. They have demonstrated that they are motivated by ministry rather than money.
Saturday, September 6 was a celebration of the way the Lord has led in all of our lives. He has brought us together and guided faculty, staff, and students alike. As we continue to listen to the voice of God, He will continue to lead us with His faithfulness.
Add to your knowledge, vision. Vision puts fire in your soul and perseverance in your portfolio. Where there is no vision, the people perish. Where there is vision, people see God at work. Vision comes from walking closely with God--the ultimate therapist! May we be filled and unified in the vision God has given to us at AGSC.
God will make a way when there is no other way!
submitted by Dr. Craig Ellison