Seattle Pacific University and the Faculty Life Office are pleased to present the 20th annual Day of Common Learning with Dr. Monica Coleman.

The impulse for unity and wholeness often leads us to see brokenness as a personal or communal failing. We strive to be unbreakable, and struggle when we find that we are not. When we consider our fragility as part of the human condition, we will uphold new ideals as we renew community in these uncertain times. At this year’s Day of Common Learning, Dr. Coleman will address ways in which we can form resilient communities by asking how we live amidst broken pieces, how we repair, and how we become stronger at our fissures.

About our speaker

Monica A. Coleman is professor of Africana studies at the University of Delaware.  She spent over 10 years in graduate theological education at Claremont School of Theology and Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.  Answering her call to ministry at age 19, Dr. Coleman brings her experiences in evangelical Christianity, black church traditions, global ecumenical work, and indigenous spirituality to her discussions of religion.

Dr. Coleman is the author or editor of six books and several articles that focus on the role of faith in addressing critical social and philosophical issues. Her memoir Bipolar Faith shares her lifelong dance with trauma and depression, and how she discovers a new and liberating vision of God. Her book Making a Way Out of No Way is required reading at leading theological schools around the country.

Dr. Coleman speaks widely on navigating change, religious diversity, mental wellness, and surviving sexual and domestic violence.


Thursday, October 7

About the 2021 Day of Common Learning

Now in its 20th year, the Day of Common Learning is a campuswide event in which students, faculty, and staff have the opportunity to engage in deep thought and conversation around a topic of interest and concern.

All DOCL 2021 events are free. Masks will be required. Because of COVID-19 requirements, the day’s events will not be open to the public.  


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Thursday, October 7th
10:00 AM

Unbreakable: Unifying Principles of Long-Lasting Communities

Monica A. Coleman, University of Delaware

Royal Brougham Pavilion

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

1:30 PM

Emeriti Faculty Panel: Navigating Cultural Shifts Through the Years at SPU

Kathryn Bartholomew, Seattle Pacific University
Kathleen Braden, Seattle Pacific University
Debra Sequeira, Seattle Pacific University
Les Steele, Seattle Pacific University
Frank Spina, Seattle Pacific University
Rob Wall, Seattle Pacific University

Upper Gwinn Commons

1:30 PM - 2:10 PM

2:15 PM

Current Faculty Panel: Navigating Cultural Shifts Through the Years at SPU

Hee-Sun Cheon, Seattle Pacific University
John Hossler, Seattle Pacific University
Kevin Neuhouser, Seattle Pacific University
David Nienhuis, Seattle Pacific University
Bethany Rolfe Witham, Seattle Pacific University
Brenda Salter McNeil, Seattle Pacific University

Upper Gwinn Commons

2:15 PM - 3:00 PM

3:30 PM

Cultivating Emotional Resilence Through Building Community

Cher Edwards, Seattle Pacific University
Robin Henrikson, Seattle Pacific University
Emily Huff, Seattle Pacific University

Demaray 355

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

How Do We Build Community in a Time of Isolation?

William Purcell, Seattle Pacific University

Demaray 353

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

How to Talk About Cultural Shifts Without Making Enemies of Your Friends and Family

Ruth Ediger, Seattle Pacific University
Christopher Hanson, Seattle Pacific University
Krystle Jalalian-Chursky, Seattle Pacific University

Demaray 358

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Theology as Autobiography

Phillip Baker, Seattle Pacific University
Jenny Vaydich, Seattle Pacific University

Weter 202

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

To Be Continued: Imagining Ourselves into SPU's Unfolding Story

Jeffrey Overstreet, Seattle Pacific University

Demaray 150

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Womanist Theology and the Future of SPU

Katherine Douglass, Seattle Pacific University

Demaray 356

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM