2021 ALCF Conference

Association of Lutheran College Faculties (ALCF)
85th Annual Conference
October 1-2, 2021

Confronting the Brave, New World:
Science, Politics, Culture & Society in 2021

“O brave new world, that has such people in it!” The Tempest, Act 5 Scene 1

If we asked ourselves in January 2020 what the world would be like in 2021, few would have guessed what changes were in store. We were thrust from the calm of relative naïveté to a storm of ever-changing circumstances and situations. The scientific, political, cultural, and social events of 2020 seemed to vacillate wildly between extremes, and like a ship battered in a tempest, many of us were unmoored and adrift as we sought signs of normalcy on a far-off horizon. Now, in 2021, we find ourselves approaching solid ground after the shipwreck (or, at least gaining some form of perspective). But, what new world is this? What lessons can we take as we move toward the future? As fellow travelers on the journey, we invite you to join us as we explore these ideas together.

It is in this spirit that we cordially invite you to the 2021 meeting of the Association of Lutheran College Faculties.

This meeting is designed as a way for faculty at Lutheran institutions of higher education to meet and reflect on topics as far ranging as intellectual scholarship, our shared experiences in higher education, and our faculty fraternity. This meeting is open to all faculty who teach at a Lutheran institution of higher education, no matter your background. We seek to foster the crucial communication, support, and camaraderie which unites us in uncertain times.

This year, we examine and evaluate the impact that recent events have had through several different lenses. Our scholarship, stories, and perspectives weave together a rich tapestry of insight into the current landscape and the future that lies before us.

We invite papers from all disciplines and from all perspectives. Each discipline has important messages regarding impacts from this past year and directions for the future. Some examples include (but are not limited to):

  • the impact of attitudes toward vaccines and medical professionals;
  • the intersection between theology, politics, and environmentalism;
  • the future of race relations in the United States;
  • the call to reassess or reinterpret past events in light of recent issues;
  • the impact of virtual learning on university education;
  • the societal shift towards online entertainment and interaction during lockdown;
  • the tensions between the impulse for public safety and social justice;
  • using historical metaphors to better understand today’s issues; and
  • perspectives on maintaining work-life balance while working from home.

Join us in the discussion! Your input and voice is valuable, and we’re waiting to hear your perspective.

Register Now »

Abstract submissions are open until August 15, 2021.


Keynote Speaker: Ryan Bebej, Ph.D.

Ryan BebejRyan Bebej is a professor in the Department of Biology at Calvin University, where he was selected by students as professor of the year in 2017. He earned his Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology with a focus in paleontology from the University of Michigan.

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Schedule & Program

We anticipate hosting an in-person conference in Austin this year with a virtual option for those unable to travel. Details will be released later this summer.