This story is from the March 2020 edition of The GēDUNK, the Grove City College alumni magazine, which is available online here. Frank is currently playing a lead role in the transition to online instruction at Grove City College.
Dr. Peter Frank ’95 is very familiar with the impact that Grove City College can have on its most important constituency: the students.
Frank, the College’s new provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, was not, admittedly, an amazing student when he first arrived on campus more than 25 years ago. “I knew I should go to college, but I was not focused at all,” he said. It took Frank a little while to find his footing at the Grove, but, he said “as I grew in my faith and began to see things with the help of great professors, I got excited.”
One of the things he got excited about was economics, thanks to the influence of a dynamic faculty in the department. Another was his faith, which led him to a leadership position with the New Life ministry and a second academic home.
Frank graduated with a double major in Economics and Religion and went on to earn a master’s degree in economics at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and a doctoral degree at George Mason University, Fairfax, Va., where his dissertation committee included nationally renowned economist and Grove City College alumnus Dr. Peter Boettke ’83. Frank served as a professor and dean of Wingate University’s business school and, in 2012, was a Fulbright scholar, teaching and studying economic development in Moldova.
In January, Frank returned to campus to take on the job of overseeing the academic affairs at his alma mater. This time around, he is much more focused. “I’m really looking forward to meeting and getting to know the faculty and learning about the different programs and the different departments,” he said. “I want to partner with them in assessing: What are our strengths? What are our weaknesses? What are areas where we need to grow and develop, in terms of expansion of programs and enhancement of existing programs?”
As an alumnus, Frank understands the College’s commitment, “first and foremost,” to students. Serving them is the mission of an “amazing” student-focused faculty and a historic commitment to the liberal arts and a Christian worldview, he said.
“The end goal,” he said, “is to develop the whole person so that they have the tools to understand tough questions and deal with ethical issues that they are going to be faced within the ‘real world,’ and in their more narrow professional disciplines. That’s crucial to developing good citizens – good people – who can engage the world and are equipped to be much more productive.”
“What is unique about Grove City College is that integrating faith and learning leads to the development of mind, body, and soul,” Frank said. “Our faculty have a commitment to their Christian faith and thinking deeply about how this commitment shapes their academic understanding, how they approach teaching, and how their courses fit into a much greater body of truth. Thus, our students are challenged to learn how their role in the world is informed by a long history of revealed truth and are then better prepared to live meaningful lives that can help enhance human flourishing.”