Tag Archives: vocations

Today You’re at Bree

Middle Earth Map

President Krueger, honored guests, distinguished faculty, staff, and administrative colleagues, friends and family members, and most of all to you, the Concordia University Irvine graduating class of December 2017:

I stand here acutely aware of two things:

  1. I am the last thing standing between you graduates and your diplomas; and
  2. Because of item 1, it is extremely unlikely that you will remember anything I say here today.

I’ve been a member of Concordia’s faculty for more than 25 years.  I’ve attended every commencement ceremony organized by the university during that time except one, and to be honest, I only really remember two graduation speeches: Continue reading Today You’re at Bree

An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part III

This is the final installment of a three-part essay on liberal arts education, professional studies, and vocations. The essay was originally delivered at the 81st Annual Conference of Lutheran College Faculties.

If, as has been argued so far, liberal arts and professional studies should work together so that students excel in all of their vocations of service to others, what should universities–particularly Lutheran ones–be working on now? In closing this essay, I highlight three educational opportunities. Continue reading An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part III

An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part II

This is the second installment of a three-part essay on liberal arts education, professional studies, and vocations. The essay was originally delivered at the 81st Annual Conference of Lutheran College Faculties.

With such long-standing tension between liberal and professional studies, is it worth trying to resolve the conflict? I’m sure that there are colleagues on both sides who would be happy with a divorce. Continue reading An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part II

An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part I

This is the first post of a three-part essay on liberal arts education, professional studies, and vocations. The essay was originally delivered at the 81st Annual Conference of Lutheran College Faculties.

The theme of liberal arts education, professional training, and the Lutheran doctrine of vocations provides plenty of room for a speaker to wander and ponder. In this address, I will focus my thoughts on some of the conflicts, responses, solutions, and opportunities before Lutheran universities as they engage students in liberal and professional education. Continue reading An Eloquent and Harmonious Education, Part I

Avoiding Lopsided Vocationalism

This is the final post of a three-part essay on the vocation of a student.

What we have examined so far is that college students are first and foremost called to study; this is directly implied in the title “student.” Yet, college students arrive on the doorstep of the university already having grabbed hold of multiple vocations. They have families with whom they are very involved. They have jobs that provide them the ability to pay for some of their daily needs. They have friends that mean more to them than many in older generations can imagine. Many of these students participate in sports and athletic endeavors, and are highly loyal to those social organizations. In other words, even as students arrive at college, they are loaded down with multiple responsibilities that will, inevitably, influence their academic pursuits.

Often times, these pursuits will come into conflict. Continue reading Avoiding Lopsided Vocationalism

Why Is College Valuable?

There has been a big push in the past few years—mostly from politicians, op-ed pundits, and tech venture capitalists—to make sure that college is valuable to students and their communities. This is understandable as the cost of a college degree can be expensive, the last educational investment before launching into a career. So, what makes college valuable? It depends on whom you ask, but not all answers are equally valuable. Continue reading Why Is College Valuable?