Throughout the millennia, skeptics and believers alike have asked, “Is God good?” while confronting horrors and tragedies that might – and often did – lead them to answer with a resounding “No.” As an esteemed scholar and social psychologist, David Myers, ’64, has returned to campus to present lectures on this subject, and has written about it and dozens of other topics related to psychology and the Christian faith. Myers’ résumé reveals his passion for connecting science and theology; it is reflected in the National Science Foundation grants and fellowships he has received to support his research and writing, as well as in the awards his work has generated.
Myers originally attended college to study medicine, but he realized that he wanted to teach. His approach to teaching and research is both scholarly and relatable. Myers says his textbooks should include information that is important for the educated reader, but should not be so technical that the reader can’t understand or retain it.
His scientific writings have appeared in three dozen academic periodicals, and he has digested psychological research for the public through articles in four dozen magazines. He has also authored 17 books, as well as textbooks and teaching supplements. He’s been featured on television news programs for his research on happiness. Some of his recent research explores the ways in which social networks are changing human connections.
Myers has also been recognized for his efforts to transform the way America provides assisted listening for people with hearing loss. As a person who lives with hearing loss and whose mother lost her hearing, he has written A Quiet World: Living With Hearing Loss (Yale University Press, 2000), which chronicles his experiences and provides information about the psychology of hearing and new hearing technologies. He advocates for “hearing-aid-compatible assistive listening,” and he has created an informational website about “hearing-loop” technology.
Myers majored in psychology at Whitworth, and he earned master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Iowa. He joined the faculty of Hope College, in Holland, Mich., in 1967. In 1995, he was elected to Whitworth’s board of trustees, replacing his father, Kenneth Myers, a longtime Whitworth board member. David’s wife, Carol (Peterkin), is a member of the Whitworth Class of 1965. Since 1995, they have underwritten Faculty Scholarship luncheons at Whitworth to provide a forum for faculty to present their research and invite feedback.