Doug Tiffin serves as Dean of the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (ThM 80)
I am the Dean of Academic Affairs at the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics in Dallas, TX. As a graduate school, we train men and women to accurately and effectively translate the Word of God for people groups who do not yet have the Bible. Some may not even have a written form of their language. Translation accuracy is critical to teaching truth but along with that, loving well means the translation needs to communicate in ways that are culturally appropriate.
I have great memories of friendships I made while living in Lincoln Hall. Living and studying together created relationships I still treasure to this day. I remember being in a study group and coming up with crazy acrostics so that we could remember the material. They didn't make any sense but they worked! Senior Theology (commonly known as Ryrie Roulette) was a terrifying experience but was one of the best preparations for ministry. Dr. Ryrie would announce the topic for the next class and tell us to be prepared. We never knew what to expect so we had to work hard to be ready for anything. What a great learning experience. For a couple of years, I worked in the seminary shop. I patrolled the parking lot and remember writing tickets for cars parked in Dr. Walvoord's reserved parking spot. As always, he was incredibly gracious towards everyone who used his spot. I learned the concept of a humble leader by watching him.
DTS gave me the tools to be successful in ministry. I was a senior pastor for twenty-five years. The education I received at DTS taught me how to communicate God's Word in a clear and interesting manner. I learned how to interpret the Word correctly. The seminary's demand for excellence helped me to develop the self-discipline necessary to survive under the pressure of ministry. But the greatest contribution that the seminary made was the freshman requirement to visit a variety of local churches. At one of those churches I met my wife, Mary Sue. Could there be any greater contribution than that?