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Thursday, May 6, 1999

ACU senior leaves pilot school to earn 200-credit degree


Senior Staff Writer

A love of flying, mathematics, physics and God’s word led Anthony Todd on a strange path to Abilene Christian University where he will graduate Saturday with an intriguing degree plan.

His bachelor’s degree is in mathematics, with minors in Bible and physics, not the typical road for math majors, but one that makes perfect sense to Todd.

“For me, I just love God’s word — to me it’s so logical, and it fit in with math,” he said.

After graduation Todd will pursue a master’s degree in applied mathematics at Colorado State University, eventually working in an industry solving design and logistics problems. But he also has an eye on the ministry, perhaps because his father was a Church of Christ missionary.

“There’s a lot of opportunity just to serve,” he said, including part-time pulpit ministry.

Todd’s very active mind led him away from a planned career as an airline pilot to ACU to study math and Bible. During his junior year at Metropolitan State College in Denver, where Todd was studying to become a professional pilot, he realized he was bored sitting in a cockpit with nothing to concentrate on but flying.

“I didn’t think enough when I flew,” he said.

So Todd ended up at ACU, with 86 hours to his credit from Metropolitan State. That was in 1995, and since then Todd has amassed a total of 200 hours, considerably more than the 126 needed for a bachelor’s degree.

“I think I have a few more hours than a few of the people teaching here,” he said.

Even though Todd will get a degree in mathematics, he said he always had a desire to study the Bible in college. His father’s role as a Church of Christ missionary took Todd to various parts of the world, including East London, South Africa. That background taught him a love of ministry.

But when Todd came to ACU he already had a number of hours in mathematics, so he decided on that subject as his major, with Bible as a minor. He also realized he was only two classes short of minoring in physics, so he did the logical thing and took those courses, too.

He apparently chose well. Not only does Todd have a lot of hours to his credit, he also has a 3.956 grade point average to put on his resume.

If all those accomplishments weren’t enough to make Mom and Dad happy, Todd is fulfilling their ultimate dream for him in June when he marries former ACU student Jennifer Burden.

“Mainly they wanted me to get a wife,” Todd said. “They’re probably happier for that than my degree.”

Two commencement exercises will be held Saturday at ACU. Graduate degrees will be awarded to 69 students at 11 a.m. in Cullen Auditorium. At

2 p.m., 423 undergraduates will receive their diplomas in Moody Coliseum.

Loretta Fulton can be reached at 676-6778 or fultonl@abinews.com

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