Emily Snider Andrews
M.Div. / M.M. Graduate
At a young age, I sensed God calling me to vocational ministry. I was blessed with a family who, very early on, encouraged me to consider ways I might offer my gifts and work to God. My home congregation, which became a second womb for my young faith, further cheered that calling, inviting me to play an active role in our church’s ministries. My love for music felt innate, so it was only natural that I began looking for ways to use my talents in the ministry of music and worship.
When I went to college and settled on a major, the choice was simple: I loved music, and I sensed God calling me to congregational ministry, so combining these two passions in a church music degree was a natural progression. During my undergraduate years, God further solidified my developing call and interests. At that time, I envisioned my future self as a minister of music and planned on attending seminary to prepare for that vocation. But my interests had always combined ministry and music; I did not want to leave my musical studies behind.
Enter: Baylor University. Baylor School of Music’s collaboration with George W. Truett Theological Seminary made it possible for me to dig deeply into the two fields on which my passions centered. The interlacing of music and theology through the M.M./M.Div. dual degree program came to embody for me a model of ministry, study, and vocation that has become essential to my life’s work. My church music professors always supported my efforts, contributing to and demonstrating a healthy, interdisciplinary academic environment, one in which students are equipped for a variety of vocational identities. It was also at Baylor where I sensed God broadening my call, expanding my horizons to include a future that early on was a dream, but one which Baylor helped me pursue. I discerned God preparing me for the vocation of teaching, the opportunity to prepare young minds who also discerned a call to ministry.
Baylor equipped me for this journey by preparing me for doctoral study. This was confirmed when, after applying to Ph.D. programs, I received multiple offers of acceptance. As I continue this path, I recall with gratitude the roles Baylor and my Waco family played in helping me reach my goals. It is this dual mission—connecting faith and learning, the congregation on Sunday morning and the classroom on Monday, that has come to form the core of my vocation. Baylor played a vital role in empowering me to do that work. While my journey is ongoing, I am thankful for the ways in which Baylor has formed me to play a valued role in God’s story.
Emily Snider Andrews (PhD candidate, Theology) teaches music and worship at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. She received the Master of Music and Master of Divinity from Baylor University. An ordained minister, Emily is deeply committed to the corporate worship life of the church and has maintained an active role in congregational music ministry.