I have earned three degrees in higher education: the first at a Christian liberal arts college (Wheaton College), the second at a public research university (Missouri School of Journalism), and the third at a secular liberal arts college (St. John’s College). The Graduate Institute of St. John’s College (Annapolis, MD; Santa Fe, NM) was – by leaps and bounds – the most transformative educational experience, owing to its mission below:
The primary aim of St. John’s classes is not scholarly mastery, but enhanced thoughtfulness. Through sustained engagement with the works of great thinkers, and through the give and take of discussion with peers, students cultivate habits of mind that will last a lifetime: a deepened capacity for reflective thought, an ability to transcend the limits of their own horizons, an appreciation of the persisting questions of human existence, an abiding respect for the value of serious conversation, and a lasting love of inquiry.
[Cross-posted at Bensonian]