Dr. Joe Collins
Joe Collins joined the Department of Religious Studies and Philosophy in the Spring of 2005, but he has been in the immediate area since the Summer of 1986. It was then that he answered the call to Elizabeth Baptist Church of Shelby to serve as Minister of Education. After 13 years at Elizabeth, he served the Greater Cleveland County Baptist Association as Church Development Director, working with over 80 churches in various areas of church life including conflict resolution, youth ministry, education, organization, committee training, and missions. He received undergraduate and graduate degrees in English at East Carolina University (1978 & 1981), a Master of Divinity with Religious Education from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (1986), and a Doctorate in Adult Education from North Carolina State University (2004). His dissertation addressed the meaning of calling to adult Sunday School teachers in Baptist churches, and the area of calling and lay recognition of calling remains one of his primary research interest. He is the author of What Does God Want Me to Do?: Understanding and Responding to Calling (2013).
He is also an avid mountain dulcimer player. Playing since 1979, Dr. Collins has several recordings and tablature to his credit. In 2007, he won the National Mountain Dulcimer Championship determined at Winfield, Kansas.