Zimbabwe to Johnson:Mission professor brings on field experience to classroom

KNOXVILLE—Brent Brewer has diverse experiences apart from teaching and his love of global missions.Brewer earned a Bachelor of Science in preaching and youth ministry from Johnson University Tennessee in 1982.

He then earned a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts in Secondary Science Education from East Carolina University and a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies from Columbia International University in South Carolina.

Brewer attributes the influence of his father, who was a pastor, for leading him to the mission field.Brewer said he always knew he wanted to be a part of evangelism both in and outside the church.

Growing up near Kentucky Christian University, Brewer knew he wanted to go to Bible college but did not want to attend KCU.

“I came to Johnson without ever going on a college visit,” Brewer said.

Brewer graduated in 1982 and while at Johnson, met his wife Jondra. With no background in missions he “didn’t think that missions was the path” his life would take.

After gaining a degree in secondary education the Brewer family moved to Zimbabwe where he taught Bible and science which he calls an “interesting combination.” Brewer taught in Zimbabwe for 12 years.

Six months after returning to the states, Brewer began to teach at JUTN.

One of the most difficult things to adjust to was “practical aspects of living and working cross-culturally,” Brewer said. “My first five years I made a lot of mistakes, but I used this to help my fellow missionaries who had not realized mistakes, to then learn from them.”

In Zimbabwe, Brewer had a very different teaching style than here in the U.S. In Zimbabwe the students do not speak English as a first language, therefore Brewer had to teach “using simple words and speaking slowly.”

Outside of his field experience, Brewer is known for his love of the outdoors. He enjoys running, hiking and backpacking in the mountains. He also started the cross-country team at JUTN.

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