Excellence: Growing Bigger, Growing Up

Tulsa, OK - David BurkusWhen Dr. David Burkus looks into the future of ORU, he gets excited.

"We've been an amazing teaching institution for a long time," he says, "and now we're answering the call to globalization in trying to make an impact outside these 200 acres or so that we have here."

Burkus, an Associate Professor of Management, is referring not just to technological innovations like the Global Learning Center or ORU's amplification of its online learning portal. He's talking about a shift in the mindset of the faculty in the College of Business, as well as university-wide.

"ORU is kind of a teenager," Burkus says. "We're in adolescence compared to a lot of universities that have been around for a long time. We're in this moment where we've figured out what's ahead and we're moving toward it."

"Yes, it's online, it's the GLC, [but it's also] having faculty members who are teachers, researchers, and influencers outside just ORU, and even outside the Christian community. One of the ways we can be a Spirit-empowered university is to make an impact beyond that community."

Burkus is doing his part to make that outside impact, authoring best-selling books and speaking globally in notable platforms. But he also understands that the future is cyclical, and now is the time for him to invest in it.

"I'm not naïve to think I'm going to have an impact on everyone," he says, "but several ORU professors were so important in my life back in the day, so it's great to think I can do that for someone in this next generation."

"This is a different place than your average teaching position. You're not just teaching, you're also working on guidance and direction in students' lives. This place lets students figure that out much more than most schools, which makes it all the more rewarding to be a part of. This is a much more lasting impact than books or speaking tours."