Dallas International’s New Dean Of Academic Affairs
Coming to Christ in his teen years, Scott committed himself to serving in full-time ministry someday. While completing his BA in Biblical Studies at Biola University, he took various cross-cultural trips. His experiences with foreign languages led him to think about Bible translation. Also, his girlfriend, Tonia—now his wife of 30 years—was the daughter of cross-cultural workers.
Years later, Scott completed an MA in linguistics, followed by a PhD in linguistics, and a Certificate in Spanish Translation from the University of Texas at Arlington.
God led Scott and Tonia to serve with World Witness (1993–1999), Wycliffe Bible Translators (2000–present), and SIL (2001–2017). Their primary assignment was to translate the Bible for the Northern Pame people of San Luis Potosí, Mexico. They also served the Pame through evangelism, discipleship, and literacy work, as well as research and publications about the language and culture. Today, the Pame New Testament is in its final stages of village testing!
While in Mexico, God gave Scott and Tonia partnerships with various Mexican ministries. “We saw the Christian community grow from two small congregations to seven well established churches,” Scott said. “It was . . . wonderful to see the Bible translation as a key part to those churches’ growth. In the beginning, there was . . . not a lot of interest, but as the church grew, so did the need for the Bible in Northern Pame.” Also, God used a secular partner, Mexico’s secretary for Indigenous Affairs, which provided four grants for publishing Pame literacy materials.
Now, the Lord has brought Scott to Dallas International to serve as the new dean of Academic Affairs. “We sensed God moving me out of the language services role with SIL about two years ago but did not know what the end would be,” Scott shared. “God told us to ‘jump in the water and swim with no shore in sight.’ So, spiritually speaking, that’s what we did. When Dr. Tiffin and I began talking, it was clear that this is what God had in mind.”
Scott believes God prepared him for this new position in various ways. Throughout the translation process, he worked in administration, including as a linguist, training director, PR director, linguistics coordinator, board president, and Language Services director. Also, Scott directed the SIL training program in Mexico for seven years in partnership with a state university there. During a furlough, he served as an interim associate pastor, growing from the mentorship of a wonderful pastor and friend of his. More recently, Scott has taught as an adjunct professor at a Dallas community college. Praise God for his “Yes” to our prayers for an academic dean!
Join us in praying God’s wisdom over Scott as he learns about representing Dallas International before SACSCOC, the school’s accrediting organization. Also, let’s ask the Lord to move through Scott to communicate well with others “the unique contribution Dallas International is to God’s work in the world” and to connect Dallas International students and staff with local ministry opportunities.
Dallas International Alumni
“We have only just begun”
During a sermon on Romans 1, God moved Stacey’s thoughts toward cross-cultural service. Later, in a church-planting class, she decided to pursue cross-cultural work full time. So, when her husband Dave transitioned away from his film industry work, Stacey’s passion for cross-cultural service propelled them to attend seminary. Through that experience and through learning about the English Bible’s translation history and the current need in Bible translation, God cultivated in Dave and Stacey a desire to reach the Bibleless.
As a result, they came to Dallas International for training. In 2012, Dave completed the Certificate of Applied Linguistics, and Stacey finished most of the certificate courses as well the next year. The Lord placed Dave and Stacey in Cameroon to translate His Word for the Kwakum people. “We have only just begun, but we have started to see God softening the Kwakum to us and our work,” Dave shared. “They were at first very suspicious of us, not unfriendly, but they kept us at a distance. Through living with them, learning their language, and doing our best to help them in whatever ways we can, they have more and more accepted us into their lives . . . I believe that God is setting a firm foundation for the translation” work.
Dave said that he and Stacey “could not have had much success without phonetics, SLACA, and field methods . . . In Cameroon, we did language sessions every day that looked very much like our SLACA and field methods classes, and before we left, we were speaking and understanding Kwakum at a good level.” Their work has also been impacted by their instructors. “The humility of the professors and leaders at Dallas International has been a great encouragement for us, to be like them,” they shared. “We have also been encouraged by the steadfastness that we have seen in these mentors, who spent years working with different peoples.”
Currently, Dave and Stacey are back at Dallas International, planning to graduate in June with MAs in Applied Linguistics with a Bible Translation concentration. In July, they plan to return to Cameroon and spend another year of language learning before beginning a literacy and Bible translation project for the Kwakum people.
Pray that God will strengthen Dave and Stacey with His endurance. Also, they are the only ones working among the Kwakum—let’s ask the Lord to provide them with all the fellow workers they need (mother tongue translators, testers, exegetes, literacy teachers, etc.)!
Our tuition is low thanks to our faith-supported faculty and the generous support of donors. Yet our students often need additional help to pay tuition. Our goal for this year is to provide scholarships that will cover 25% of tuition for students who need financial aid and who are committed to cross-cultural service. To meet this goal we need to raise $143,000. To date we have $74,000 in hand or committed. This month we are praying for $20,000 towards tuition scholarships. Would you pray about this with us and then respond as God leads?
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Dallas International University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and masters degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Dallas International University.