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Cedarville professor Dr. Mark Caleb Smith on a television newscast.

Freedom to Flourish Focuses on Economics

by Public Relations Staff

Cedarville University’s School of Business Administration and Department of History and Government will host the second annual Freedom to Flourish mini-conference on Thursday, April 7. The event focuses on the importance of religious and economic freedoms. 

The conference consists of a keynote address during Cedarville’s chapel service at 10 a.m., along with a panel discussion with select faculty in the evening.

Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute and a best-selling author, will deliver the main message at 10 a.m. in the Jeremiah Chapel. Brooks recently published “The Conservative Heart,” a book that analyzes the effect that political policies have on poverty.

“We want to focus on the inherent freedoms we have as creatures created in God’s image and how the political system influences those freedoms,” said Bert Wheeler, Ph.D., Berry Chair of Economics. “These beliefs determine how we plan to minister to others in the social realm.”

The panel discussion will take place at 7 p.m. in the Recital Hall of the Dixon Ministry Center. The panel will participate in a discussion about how being created in God’s image, yet being imperfect sinners, affect a Christian’s political choices.

Wheeler will be joined on the panel by Marc Clauson, Ph.D., professor of history and law, Jeff Haymond, Ph.D., dean of the school of business administration, and Mark Caleb Smith, Ph.D., professor of political science. Both the keynote address by Brooks and the panel discussion are free and open to the public.

“We want to relate how humans in Imago Dei but fallen will impact our choices in this election season,” said Wheeler. “As created beings, we need to think deeply about how our political allegiances affect the kingdom of God.”

“We will explore the relationship between human nature and human flourishing, with an emphasis on religious and economic freedom,” said Wheeler. “We want students to understand how important these freedoms are to our wellbeing as spiritual beings and as a community.”

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,711 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit

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