Dr. Jacob Sackmann Endowed Scholarship for Peacemaking

Dr. Jacob Sackmann Endowed Scholarship for Peacemaking

“There is no time left for anything but to make peace work a dimension of our every waking activity.” -Elise Boulding

Dr. Jacob Sackmann was a Religion Professor at North Central College from 1958 until his untimely death in 1976 at the age of 50. Dr. Sackmann was listed as one of North Central’s Top 10 Professors in 1988.

Jay Sackmann, as he was known among faculty and students alike, was born in Ashley, North Dakota. He earned his B.A. at Westmar College, his B.D. at Evangelical Theological Seminary, and his Ph.D. at Boston University School of Theology.

A Phi Delta Kappa member, Jay was listed in Who’s Who in American Education. He was a member of the American Theological Society and the American Academy of Religion. He wrote for The Christian Century and Christian Scholar.

Jay introduced many students to Biblical scholarship and the academic study of Christianity in his Religion 210 course. He implemented the Urban Term in 1971 for students to live in Chicago and learn about community organizing. He took students to Atlanta, Georgia to explore the civil rights movement with leaders including Julian Bond and Ralph David Abernathy. He was also instrumental in bringing the first Black history class to North Central.

In memoriam, North Central President Gale D. Swing wrote, “I will remember Jay Sackmann as an effective teacher, a man interested in many good causes, and as the ‘conscience of North Central College.’ Jay, as he has told me, intentionally raised the difficult questions in the many issues facing an academic community. Then, with a puff on his pipe, Jay would await the responses and be ready to come back with his own insight.”

North Central Chronicle Co-Editor Kevin, B. Kiconas wrote, “The biggest challenge Jay left us was to tear down the barriers that separate us, join tother and finish the work that was started more than 2,000 years ago. In other words, to link arms and build a world filled with beauty, laughter, truth, love and a chance to create.

The challenge is truly monumental, but as Jay so often said: ‘We had jolly well better get to it.’”

The Dr. Jacob Sackmann Endowed Scholarship for Peacemaking was established in 2018 to honor Dr. Sackmann’s prophetic witness for peace and justice and to support students who study and organize for justice, peace, reconciliation and a livable planet.