Joseph Spears JrDepartment Chair
Unit: Sport Management
Location: Tigerville, SC
Spiritual Fitness is the Solution
Teaching & Education
Ten years as a university professor (tenured) of sport management, pastor, department chair, academic advisor, MAT program coordinator, Secondary Education program coordinator, Sport Management program coordinator, Football chaplain, and Faculty Athletic Representative (FAR), all have allowed me to gained valuable experience leading and collaborating with university faculty, staff, and students. My role as department chair, program coordinator, and faculty athletic representative has allowed me to work closely and collegially with various administrative offices under the Office of Academic Affairs Services and Enrollment Management. In addition, I know my Masters of Higher Education along with my Master of Divinity will be important aspects of me providing high-quality assistance to faculty, staff, and students that is timely, accurate, sensitive, cooperative, and proactive on a Christian University campus. I am able and willing to work creatively and collegially with internal and external constituents to build harmony and integrity within a shared format.
My experience in ministry and higher education has covered a wide range of topics in the various areas relevant to departmental, spiritual success, and outcomes. My experience in a University setting has provided me with the experience, managerial supervision, and the opportunity to draw connections between these different areas and communicate difficult concepts that exist in University campus settings. This experience has to help me understand the unique context of spiritual development on a University campus, and the core values of the institution must remain inviolate. However, the institution must also be willing to embrace the opportunity to serve intergenerational who come from diverse backgrounds and cultural contexts. Achieving this goal does not come easy and presents both a unique opportunity and a positive challenge.
I look forward to serving as a spiritual counselor and advisor to the individuals and families in my care and providing grace-filled, loving, Biblical counsel for all aspects of life, whenever needed (2Timothy 4:2; Ephesians 4:11-12; 1 Thess. 5:14). I believe that the most effective way of doing this is to engage the spirit, soul, and body of an individual (1 Thess. 5:23) using contemporary methods, approaches, styles, and strategies. This methodology will remain successful so long as the timeless Word of God is the anchor, guide, and authority in all matters of faith, life and practice, and that all is done under the direction and filling of the Holy Spirit, for the glory of Jesus Christ, and in accordance with the will of the Father. I sincerely believe this and know that the message itself never changes. Still, our methods of delivery should change without compromising the objective Word of God or its timeless standards, principles, and commands.
Dr. Joseph Spears obtained his Ed.D. in Sports Management. His bachelor’s and two master’s degrees are in divinity and higher education from both Morgan State and Virginia Union Universities. He has held positions as a pastor, sports chaplain, and professor of sports media and entertainment.
He currently serves as a chair and full professor, of sports management at North Greenville University. All his experiences have enabled him to hone his skills in leading and working with groups, teams, and organizations.
Dr. Spears believes that “spiritual fitness” (spirit, soul, and body) is the solution to the problems of today. He understands the need and importance of developing families and communities spiritually, socially, and economically.
To that end, Dr. Spears utilizes sports as a framework to partner with other community organizations and leaders to provide educational and informational programs that promote the well-being of the entire community. His sports background is long-distance trail running, mountain biking, and boxing.
- Spears, J. C., Jr., & Hernandez, E. (2018). Church & Sport in Alabama. Sport Journal, 19.
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). Positive impact, benefits of sports ministry in the local church (1st
- Spears, S. R., & Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). Winning in life spirit, soul, body (1st ed.). n.p.
- Spears, J. C., Jr., Long, L. L., & Hernandez, E. (in press). The transformative power of STEM
through sports among urban elementary aged students. Living Academic ELearning, 2.
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2016). The athlete’s ultimate plan. The Sport’s Digest.
- Spears, J. C., Jr., (2018). Church leader’s perception of the benefits of utilizing a
sports ministry program within the African Methodist Episcopal Churches. A.M.E
Publications Under Review
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). Sport management students at HBCU using mind mapping tools to
improve library research strategies.
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). The effect of an athlete’s self-perception and spirituality on success at a
historical black college and university.
Publications in Preparation
- Spears, J.C., Hernandez, E., Long, L. (2019) Sport & Physical Activity and
Academic Performance in Urban Education.
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). Developing a multidisciplinary research-based program for sports
- Spears, J. C., Jr. (2018). Does a healthy mental state enhance academic performance and/or
graduation rates among Black student-athletes at HBCUs or other member institutions with limited financial resources?
- Spears, J. C., Jr., Daniels, K., & Coleman, S. (2016). Do sport activity in conjunction with
social emotional training enhances social emotional knowledge among 3rd-5th grade
minorities in urban elementary schools?
- Recognition Keynote Speaker Maryland College Personnel Association
- Service Award Education Innovation for Undergraduate Research
- Appreciation Speaker Community based Classrooms Career Day
- Appreciation Poster Session at The Maryland Library Association
- Appreciation Speaker at Johnson Middle School’s Boy’s to Men Conference
- Participation Award NASA/HBCU Pre-service Teacher Network
- Nominee for the Faculty Service Award- Bowie State University
- Nominee for the Faculty Service Award- Bowie State University
- Commitment to Academic Excellence- Bowie State University
- Completion/Recognition Fellowship Christian Athletes Coaches Training
- Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA)
- North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM)
- International Sports Leadership School/International Sports Coalition
My personal sense of calling in a Christian University ministry is directly related to the Great Commandment as written in Matthew 22:36-40, which declares “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depends the whole Law and the Prophets”.
My goal in serving the Lord in a University setting is to utilize my spiritual gifts to boldly, passionately, and accurately preach and teach, under the guidance and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, the whole counsel of the Word of God in a clear and consistent way. Through the utilization of the gifts of pastoring, teaching, administration, and evangelism I strive to assist and effectively lead (discipleship) those who I have been called to serve so that each individual member in my care will know and understand their spiritual gifts. This “perfecting of the saints” will help them to consistently and accurately apply their gifts to carry out the work of the ministry. This will, in turn, empower them to reach out to both the saved and unsaved in their surrounding communities so as to become a beneficial presence beyond the University.
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