Joseph Carson (
21 Jul 96 17:58:32 EDT

> Someone else mentioned InterVarsity as possibly being interested and I
> support an InterVarsity rep at my alma mater (Uni. of Rochester) and will
> contact him about it.
Are you a UofR grad too? Both Keith and I are--we met there! Small
world. This sort of professional activity would seem to be up Mike
Hernberg's alley--if he isn't already swamped.

> Some numbers to mull. The Oak Ridge chapter of ASME has 200 members,
> although only 30 do more than pay dues and read the Journal. The other
> large engineering societies have similar numbers for Oak Ridge. How many
> potential ASA'ers are there in these societies?.
> Hundreds I reckon, as I know or know of dozens of Christian engineers (my
> church has over 3000 members, DOE is the major employer in the area, and due
> to my whistleblowing escapades, I feel like a character in the TV show
> "Cheers" - Everyone knows my name and at 6'6", I make a big target.)
> How many ASA'ers in Knoxville/Oak Ridge are there? Answer: About a
half-dozen at
> most, mostly academics is natural sciences at UT. ASA doesn't sell to
> engineers, in part because industry is a separate, and I would argue, a
> lower caste in ASA. If you disagree, please find other ASA'ers in industry
> to make your case, and please explain why I have such a hard time solicting
> interest in ASA (other than no one's ever heard of it!) to engineers.
Hmm. This is going to make your crack about KS being 10 yrs behind
the world rather interesting: of the 24 or so faculty in my EE
department, 10 or more are professing Christians, active in their
churches. Most are evangelical; one is Coptic Christian and attends
a Lutheran (ELCA) church; one is an elder in the big PC-USA church
here in town...How many ASA members? Two of us. Broaden the circle
some: we are aware of at least 200 professing Christians at KSU,
willing to have their names listed on ads in the college paper at
Easter and the like--and they are mostly evangelical again, as the
main-line types keep a little separate. Another perspective: I'm the
faculty advisor for the student branch of IEEE, and of my leadership
team starting this fall 3 of 4 I know are Christians. How many ASA
members in Manhattan? Four all told including Keith and myself.

I don't think it's academics vs industry that ASA doesn't appeal to,
but a great many of these Xian siblings don't think in terms of
linking their "work" to their faith--they are _very_ involved in
church, elders, deacons, sunday school teachers--but at school they
think almost entirely in terms of evangelism (of students, mostly)
and very little of whether what I do every day is important to the
Kingdom. It has been a major source of frustration for Keith and me
b/c we have a campus organization, with newsletter and monthly lunch
meetings for Xian faculty, and we get maybe 4 people, 6 if we're
lucky, at a meeting--where we want to discuss the kinds of things
that end up in ASA journals: Xian care for creation,
research/missionary trips to other countries, faith/philosophy books
we've read recently...Anyway, what with the baby coming and 5 yrs of
apparently fruitless dragging of horses to water, we've pretty much
hung it up. For reasons we can't fathom or siblings here do not feel
the need we do for likeminded discussion such as goes on at ASA
meetings. Suggestions welcome! Perhaps if we "creative engineers"
wrote a few relevant articles we'd spark our colleagues' interest?
I'm fresh out of ideas!


Ruth Douglas Miller, Assistant Professor
Electrical and Computer Engineering, Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506-5105. Ph 913-532-4596. Fx 913-532-1188.


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