For most Christians, there is a Bible verse or two that speaks volumes to them, becoming a motto they live by.
For Ash Melika, associate professor of archaeology and anthropology at California Baptist University, it is the parable of the talents .
The moral of the parable is to use the talents God has given each individuals. Melika demostrates his talents through humbleness of his Christian worldview.
He desires to multiply his God-given talents to strengthen his weaknesses to further God’s kingdom as well.
“My Christian ethics have definitely motivated me to not just do th-
ings for me, but try to get to places where I can influence and manage to be used to change other peoples’ lives,” Melika said.
Melika has obtained multiple degrees from some of the nation’s top universities, including Columbia University and Princeton University. He said working hard is what enabled him to succeed.
“I don’t have a God-given gift of a high IQ, maybe,” Melika said. “I’ve never tested it, but I don’t believe I do. I just worked hard a lot.”
Whether he is aware of it or not, Melika’s work ethic challenges his students to think about their worldview.
“His work ethic of education is so important,” said Matthew J. Dina, freshman undeclared major. “He’s teaching us how to think and to remember to think instead of just going along with what we do. He always says, ‘What are you doing? Why are you doing it? Always ask yourself why.’”
Melika also reminds his students not to take their education for granted because not everyone has the opportunity to get one.
“I get motivation for studying from all of his quotes,” said Keith W. Robinson, junior pre-nursing major. “It reinforces how im-
portant school is and how important studying is, because sometime I’ll forget about it.”
Melika said one of his God-given talents is having the ability to organize ideas and concepts, which he often talks about in his lectures.
“I have notes for class, and then on the side I have notes of Melika’s sayings and quotes because it’s so engaging and profound,” Dina said.
Melika started teaching at CBU during the fall 2013 semester and said the university has an uncommon culture that he is still discovering but is encouraged by everyday.
“In terms of the students, I see a level of maturity that is different, in terms of having a greater calling,” Melika said.
He said there is a difference between pursuing a degree for the sake of having a career and pursing a de-
gree to fulfill a calling placed on one’s life by God.
“Seeing the difference between a job and a calling excites me a lot because it does have quite an imporant ramification on the whole of society,” Melika said. “It’s definitely not something I’ve encountered before at an institution.”