Cedarville professor honored for 50 years on the job says he will teach through pandemic

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CEDARVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – While 2020 has brought a series of changes to what we know as normal, one Cedarville University instructor is being honored for his consistency. Dr. Lyle Anderson is the Senior Professor of Music at the Christian college, where he was recently honored for 50 years on the job.

A native of Indiana, Anderson completed his undergraduate degree at Cedarville in 1970, where he said experiences with professors more than five decades ago led him back to share his love for music with today’s students. 

“Roughly 3,000 students have been in my choral groups, and the rich memories I have of serving with them, watching them grow in their maturity not only musically, but personally and spiritually, has been so rewarding. It’s really, frankly, kept me in education.”

Over the last half-century, Anderson said he’s poured his all into his students through his music career, devoted to educating them on-campus, and through mission trips. He said he’s also gone on more than 75 domestic concert tours with students, proud to expose them to cultures and experiences they could carry back to their community. 

“We visit foreign countries from China to Puerto Rico, to Spain, to Ireland, and a host of other countries, 13 in total. What we bring back, is that we few like we have lived twice from having been a different culture.”

When he’s not with his own students, Anderson said he enjoys spending time with his family and wife, who will also celebrate 50 years of teaching in the Miami Valley in 2020. And those who know Anderson say his dedication to his job and his students is what’s gotten him so far. Chair of the Department of Music and Worship at Cedarville, Beth Porter, said she’s worked with Anderson more than 20 years, expressing that his love for music and devotion to sharing his passion with students is what makes him such a staple in the school and in the community.  

“One of the most remarkable things I think about Lyle Anderson is that he remembers every student’s name. Whether it was 50 years ago or whether it was a year ago, he can call them by their name and he can usually call their children by name.”

Anderson said even at age 72 and with decades of laborious years under his belt, nothing, not even COVID-19, will stifle his plans to educate students now and into the future.

“Like everyone, we pray for the conclusion to the COVID chapter in our lives, but in the meantime, we are adapting, we have a 30×60 tent in which we’re holding our rehearsals outdoors, still with masks, of course. And we have the opportunity to prepare wonderful music for the time when it will be normal to once again sing forth to honor of [God’s] name and to make his name glorious.”

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