Greetings this Easter season! I hope this message finds you in the fullness of joy and purpose as we collectively journey towards our shared goal of making a meaningful impact on the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.

Whenever there is a change in leadership, it is fair to ask if the priorities of the organization are also changing and what is going to be done differently. So I want to explore and explain both the what and the why of our plans at the Crowell School of Business.

As I see it, at Crowell we are dedicated to three critical priorities that define our commitment to nurturing the next generation of leaders, innovators and influencers:

Incubator of Leaders - we are in the process of establishing the Biola Leadership Academy, helping both local and national companies to cultivate leaders with unwavering character, elevating both business excellence and spiritual formation concurrently. We will be releasing more information about this soon.

Incubator of Innovators - we will leverage the Office of Innovation and our Master’s in Leadership and Innovation program to foster redemptive entrepreneurship, championing innovation excellence and responsible stewardship for a Kingdom influence. You will soon hear much more about this, too.

Incubator of Influencers - we have launched an AI Lab, equipping students to navigate intricate technological landscapes while infusing Kingdom influencer skills across our curriculum.

At Crowell, our focus is in shaping business professionals while also nurturing them as leaders who will inspire lasting change in a dynamic world. Today, I am honored to delve deeper into the multifaceted dimensions of our calling of Nurturing Kingdom Influencers.

In our quest to wield Kingdom influence, we are called to align our spheres of influence with the divine mandate outlined in Genesis 1:28 – to steward the earth with fruitfulness, multiplication, dominion and replenishment. This calling pulsates within our souls, urging us to embody the transformative power of peace, joy and righteousness in all our endeavors.

At the core of our philosophy lies a holistic approach, one that integrates spiritual formation with academic excellence, echoing the timeless wisdom exemplified by Daniel and his companions in Daniel 1:19-20. Their remarkable prowess — ten times greater than their peers! — underscores the potent fusion of faith and excellence, a hallmark we seek to instill within every member of our community.

The journey of nurturing Kingdom influencers at Crowell School of Business is guided by a robust framework of enduring skills, meticulously crafted to empower our students to navigate the complexities of the modern business landscape with unwavering integrity and visionary leadership. These skills include:

  • Understanding AI & Technology: equipping and empowering our students to harness its power for the greater good.
  • Critical Thinking & Analytical Skills: the ability to dissect complex challenges, analyze data and make informed decisions.
  • Ethical Decision-Making: navigating the ethical minefields of the business world with moral integrity.
  • Kingdom Centered Leadership: servant leadership, resilience and humility that leads with grace, wisdom and conviction.
  • Emotional Intelligence: a deep understanding of emotions, empathy and effective interpersonal dynamics, inspiring trust and collaboration.
  • Social Capital: the tools to cultivate meaningful connections, forge strategic alliances and amplify influence.
  • Team Management: experiential skills to build, inspire and lead diverse teams towards common goals.
  • Innovation and Creativity: Encouraging creative thinking, a spirit of innovation and transformative solutions to pressing societal challenges.
  • Adaptability: cultivating a growth mindset, resilience and adaptability to thrive amidst change and uncertainty with confidence and agility.

    As we continue to chart our course towards excellence and impact, I hope you stand with us in remaining steadfast in our commitment to nurturing Kingdom influencers — visionary leaders who illuminate the world with the radiance of God’s love and grace.

    With profound gratitude and anticipation for the journey ahead,

    Dr. Michael Arena
    Dean, Crowell School of Business, Biola University