Meet the stars…

Dr. David Bradstreet came to Eastern University as a freshman on a full-ride scholarship , because he had plenty of experience working in a planetarium at his own high school. He was later persuaded into studying astronomy by the faculty, and this year marks his 37th year of teaching at Eastern. This makes him the longest-teaching professor currently at Eastern. He believes that as Christians, we should completely immerse ourselves into our talents, and that we should serve God to the best of our abilities that He has given us.

Dr. Bradstreet also thinks that astronomy is important to a liberal arts education. Of course, every professor thinks his or her class is important, but more people would agree that astronomy is important, if they knew more about the subject.
This leads to a topic that Dr. Bradstreet is very passionate about: the fact that astronomy is no longer taught in high school. Around the turn of the century, high schools in the United States decided that astronomy was no longer important, since we already had reached the moon.
Dr. Bradstreet said, “Science is not difficult; it is only perceived as such as we cannot understand science and scripture together. Jesus tells us in the book of Matthew that, ‘The sun rises and sets on the evil.'” However, Dr. Bradsteet thinks that it should have said, “the earth rotates for everyone” as scripture gives the illusion that the Earth is center of the world when in reality the Earth rotates the Sun.
Dr. Bradstreet welcomes any students, who wish to learn more about God’s creation, to join his class, which will be available during the spring semester.

Steve Sanders is the Observatory Coordinator here at Eastern and considers himself a “lowly staff member with no Ph.D.” He actually came to Eastern in 1997, aspiring to be an astronomy major, having met Dr. Bradstreet in 1996 during his tour, only one week after the observatory had been completed! Upon arriving at Eastern, Sanders realized that Eastern took faith a little more seriously than the way he was accustom to, and felt like an outcast amongst his classmates. He soon realized that the Christian faith fit in well with his own beliefs, “what few I had at the time,” he confided to me. He then decided to give the whole Christian thing a try, and gave his life over to Christ the second night he was here.
This sort of put a giant kink in his astronomy plans. He said, “I was on fire for life and God and learning as much as I could and wanting to fully invest my life into making a strong foundation at the time.” However, Dr. Bradstreet had advised him that astronomy might not be the best major for him. Instead Steve Sanders decided to pursue a minor in astronomy and a major in English Literature. Approximately one year after he graduated, the position of observatory administrator opened up and he applied. Needless to say, he got the job and has started his 11th year at Eastern as a full-time employee.

Science, as many of us know, has conflicted with our own personal beliefs. For those of us who went to public school, we were taught that the beginning of life, as we know it, started with the supposed ‘Big Bang Theory.’ Upon asking Mr. Sanders about his beliefs on science and faith, he said, “I think they go hand in hand. God’s creation is, for me at least, the most powerful tool that has brought me to Him. The study of that creation is a way to honor what has been created, and the striving for knowledge through uncertainty is a powerful act, not to mention fun!” He states that “there is nothing science can prove that will ever disprove the existence of God.”

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