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May 19, 2010

Press Photo

BCF President Thomas A. Kinchen (right) with retiring professor William Stuart McArthur and wife, Fran.

Retirements always bring about a multitude of emotions at The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) in Graceville and that is especially true regarding Mathematics Professor William Stuart McArthur. Even though it is exciting to think about what God has in store for an individual who is leaving the classroom, it is often sad to think about the immediate void that is left behind.

At the close of the spring semester, the BCF family celebrated the career of Professor McArthur. He has taught classes at BCF in mathematics for the past 12 years and has seen many changes throughout his time on staff. Math is not typically a class that students enthusiastically sign up for, so McArthur has always sought to help students find an understanding for math and perhaps a passion for the subject. It is a challenge he has always been willing to accept with a smile on his face. Amidst all the changes, one thing that Professor McArthur says has never changed is the excitement he feels when a student finally grasps a mathematical concept. "It's like a light bulb goes off, and it brings a tear to my eye every time I see that look of understanding," said McArthur.

"I did learn one valuable lesson before giving my first test here," remarked McArthur. "I called on a student to pray, and he prayed for 20 minutes. Now I always lead the prayers prior to testing."
McArthur has several teaching responsibilities under his belt. His career began in the United States Air Force where he taught basic electronics before instructing seventh and eighth grade math classes at Opelika Middle School. His nights and summers were filled teaching classes at Southern Union Junior College which later became Opelika Junior College. He taught two years at Wallace Community College before joining the faculty at BCF.

McArthur holds a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Mathematics from Auburn University and resides in Ashford, Ala. He and his wife Fran live in the house his grandfather built. It is where he lived until he was five years old.

He says his wife has the immediate months after retirement mapped out for him, but as far as long-term plans are concerned, "The Lord hasn't told me what He wants me to do yet, but I'm sure He has something for me."