Dr. Peter Beck receives 2013 Excellence in Teaching Award
Dr. Peter Beck, religion professor and director of the honors program, makes history come alive by making it about people and ideas. His teaching style has earned him the 2013 Excellence in Teaching Award from the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities.
Beck said finding out he was the winner was “life flooring for the guy who never thought he would go to college. I went from being the class clown to a class master.”
Enrolling in college after stints in the military and the advertising world, Beck chose biblical studies because he was fascinated by the things of religion. “Initially I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but it became clear in the end I was supposed to be a teacher,” he said.
Beck views his role as a teacher as shepherding souls and pastoring. “I’m not teaching to a test,” he said. “I’m teaching to change lives.” Recently he received a thank-you note from a student thanking him for stopping class sometimes to give fatherly advice. “I’m guiding them, and who knows how many lives they will impact,” said Beck.
Dr. Jackie Fish, vice president for academic affairs, said, “It is such a pleasure to work alongside such talented and knowledgeable faculty members who are annually recognized by the SCICU. Dr. Beck’s students enthusiastically attest to the high quality learning experience he brings to his classroom. His colleagues nominated him based on his continuous service on committees, his endless dedication to the success of his students and his commitment to serving the Lord as both a faculty member and a pastor.”
Beck has taught at Charleston Southern since 2008 and is the author of The Voice of Faith: Jonathan Edwards’s theology of prayer.
His fascination with history and theology affects his writing and teaching. As he studied Jonathan Edwards in preparation for writing the book, he had a paradigm shift in his thinking. He sees the same thing happening in his students. Edwards believed God created the universe for His own glory. Beck said students learn to think, “How is God being glorified through this? Are we glorifying God? If not, we fall short of the glory of God.”
He hopes to begin working on a book about William Carey, considered the father of modern missions, this summer. Beck holds a BA from Boyce College and an MDiv and PhD from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
For more history on Charleston Southern University and winners of the Excellence in Teaching award, visit our CET homepage.
Founded in 1964, Charleston Southern University is a private, four-year liberal arts college. CSU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and is affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention. The University’s vision is to be a Christian university nationally recognized for integrating faith in learning, leading and serving.