Mission & Core Values

Graduate Programs in Leadership and Development emerged out of the growing international ministry of Eastern University and the work of the Center for Organizational Excellence (COE) at Eastern College (now Eastern University). In 1991, Dr. James Engel and Dr. David Fraser, together with then-president Dr. Roberta Hestenes and Reuben Ezemadu of Nigeria had a vision for leadership development that focused on those in the non-western world, those with least access to needed ministry resources and education.

Today, that vision continues and has expanded. The formal education programs continue through Eastern's Graduate Leadership and Development Programs, which are currently comprised of four graduate degree programs, all in the areas of business, nonprofit management, leadership development, and economic development. In addition, Eastern also hosts partnership programs, including World Vision International and Habitat for Humanity International.


Our vision is that our students, alumni, staff, and faculty, drawn together by our programs and acting humbly through their faith, be used by God to create relationships and advance knowledge and practices to transform lives, organizations, communities, and societies in a way that glorifies Christ.


Our mission is to establish a community of faith, learning, and action around the programs of organizational leadership, transformational development, and non-profit management in a way that engages, teaches, and personally and professionally empowers those called to work for socio/political/economic and spiritual change, justice, and sharing the good news of Christ.

Core Values

Christian in tradition:
We will teach from a viewpoint that is Christian in thought and practice; learning and serving in effecting change and being transformed in the process; putting Christ at the center of our concern for  others; and our uncompromising commitment to truth, love, integrity, justice, transparency, and excellence in all we do.

Entrepreneurial in action:
We seek to be responsive in the development and delivery of our academic programs, looking especially to serve those with difficulty accessing the knowledge and skills we provide. We challenge our students to develop better solutions and think deliberately “out of the box,” drawing on current best practices to ensure our programs are relevant, consequential in impact, and transformational.

Collaborative in style:
We look for internal and external partnerships that are dialogic, collaborative, and reciprocal, seeking to engage and leverage the full resources we have inside the University. We value our students’ experiences as vital to the creation of knowledge and to the merging of the best of theory and practice.

Local and global in scope:
We seek to prepare our students to be proactive in creating and responding to the rapidly changing local and global environment.

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