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Encouraging students to question everything

Photo of Almeda Wright, Assistant Professor Celebrating Black History Month by honoring excellence

Dr. Almeda Wright, assistant professor of religion and youth ministry, describes herself as an inquisitive person who questions everything—a quality that has led her from corporate America to her current role at Pfeiffer.

Dr. Wright began her professional career as an electrical engineer. After a short time, she began looking outside the engineering field for opportunities that would fulfill her in a different way. She explored teaching, was accepted to Teach for America and eventually accepted a position at the Martin L. King, Jr. Open School in Cambridge, Mass., where she worked for two years as a middle school teacher.

It was during this time that Dr. Wright decided she could no longer ignore the call to ministry, something she first sensed at age 19. As she recognized the importance of searching for answers to her own questions about religion and the way the world operates, she observed that sometimes students in religious settings are not encouraged to think as critically as needed to come to their own decisions. To explore answers to her inquiries, Dr. Wright enrolled in the master of divinity program at Harvard Divinity School.

According to Dr. Wright, who is ordained by the American Baptist Churches of Massachusetts, she came to Pfeiffer by chance rather than design. Here, she appreciates the opportunity to be involved with students studying Christian education at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

“At the undergraduate level, I have the opportunity to help students explore the critical questions that they have,” said Dr. Wright. “On the graduate level, the students already have a heart for ministry and I help them learn and critically reflect on their ministry setting. It's the best of both worlds.”

As an educator, Dr. Wright hopes that she can encourage students to think harder in a supportive environment by pushing through the boundaries of what they think they know. She hopes that while in her classroom students learn to question everything and never settle for superficial answers—a practice that will help them to succeed post-graduation.

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Pfeiffer University celebrates Black History Month

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