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Author Topic: An Orthodox College?  (Read 2747 times) Average Rating: 0
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Ebor
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« on: May 25, 2004, 12:23:33 AM »

I recall that there was an attempt to start an EO college some while ago (Rose Hill, I think?)  but it didn't last.  I wonder if the American EO churches could cooperate/join there would be enough to get a school going and surviving...

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« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2004, 12:34:02 AM »

Yes, it was Rose Hill...it was doing very well in the first few years, but the man who financed everything wanted to rule the college with an iron fist and it collapsed around him.  At least that is what I have heard from one of the former professors there.  

I've often thought it would be wonderful to put together a two year residential junior college.  It wouldn't be terribly difficult, it would just require funds and time.  After the two year school is accredited, it could grow into a four year school.  St. Vladimirs was started on a shoestring budget back in the 50s, if a few Orthodox professors got together I think they could make a go of it.
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« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2004, 12:50:23 AM »

Yes, it was Rose Hill...it was doing very well in the first few years, but the man who financed everything wanted to rule the college with an iron fist and it collapsed around him.  At least that is what I have heard from one of the former professors there.  

I've often thought it would be wonderful to put together a two year residential junior college.  It wouldn't be terribly difficult, it would just require funds and time.  After the two year school is accredited, it could grow into a four year school.  St. Vladimirs was started on a shoestring budget back in the 50s, if a few Orthodox professors got together I think they could make a go of it.

Maybe this can be a long term goal for some of us here? I also like the idea of forming more Orthodox High Schools.
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« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2004, 12:52:23 AM »

This is an interesting turn in the conversation...hold on and I'll split this and create a new topic so that we don't clutter Joe's thread.
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2004, 12:58:10 AM »

There we go...room to breathe.   Now then...:

I didn't know we had that many members who are interested in becoming postsecondary educators?  To start such a school I think we would need at the bare minimum of faculty:

An English Professor
A Mathematics Professor
A Science Professor
A Social Sciences Professor(someone who can do history, psych, etc until the school grows)
A Religion Professor

Some of these cold also hold administrative offices.  You would also need a few staff members.  Make up a two year curriculum for an AA and an AS.  

What do you think Peter?
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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2004, 02:10:20 AM »

well this seems like an interesting idea indeed!  I would assume that the religion professor would be a Priest?

I think a four year institution would be better myself (particularly for those of us who already have their two year degree).  

I am eventually planning on getting my masters in history or maybe another related discipline after getting my BA and teachign (high school) for a few years.  I do want to eventually teach ont he college level.  I doupt I will be able to handle the hormone driven antics of highschoolers for the rest of my life.

Also, would this be near a monastary for services? would a Priest be on staff for services?

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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2004, 10:20:25 AM »

Well, this would never be finished in time for you to graduate from it, sorry Joe. Smiley  

It is much easier to start out with only having to have the resources for two kinds of two year degrees than for the multitude of degrees needed in a four year school.  If it worked out, then it'd eventually grow into that.  

Having a priest as the religion professor is a good idea, and he could also serve as chaplain.
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« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2004, 02:23:24 PM »

yeah I kinda figured that it wouldn't be.

Good idea bout killing two birds with one stone.

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« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2004, 03:09:26 PM »

There we go...room to breathe.   Now then...:

I didn't know we had that many members who are interested in becoming postsecondary educators?  To start such a school I think we would need at the bare minimum of faculty:

An English Professor
A Mathematics Professor
A Science Professor
A Social Sciences Professor(someone who can do history, psych, etc until the school grows)
A Religion Professor

Some of these cold also hold administrative offices.  You would also need a few staff members.  Make up a two year curriculum for an AA and an AS.  

What do you think Peter?

I think it sounds like the beginnings of a good idea! Whether something like this happens in 5, 10, or 20 years, it's good to discuss the prospects of it happening at all.

As for an Orthodox High School- this would be much easier to put together. Having worked in a boarding school for the past year, I've become interested in the prospects of an Orthodox boarding school where students study and live together with the faculty. This type of living really fosters a sense of community and communal responsibility. For this type of school(or any kind of Orthodox school for that matter) to take off we'd need take a few things into account:

-We'd need academically qualified teachers who parents can trust. Preferably teachers who have teaching certification and Masters' degrees. After all, who is going to send their kids off to study with just anyone?

-A very concrete mission and academic plan to present to parents and prospective students.

-Recognition of  the fact that many of our students would be preparing for colleges- colleges which require standardized testing to enter, look favorably upon Advanced Placement classes, and are increasingly looking for "interesting" students who are well versed in many disciplines. In addition to spiritual formation and the teaching of religion, I think an affective Orthodox school would have to stay away from that "insular" kind of mentality which you can see some places in the Orthodox world. The school should be ready to prepare students for the workings of secular schools and institutions, while never losing a spiritual focus.

-Donors! Will the school be associated with a particular diocese? Where will the money come from? Do we try to organize under the Greeks just to make sure we have enough cash? Wink

-Location. Starting an Orthodox school in Nebraska(no offense to Nebraskans) would probably not be the best idea. Where are the Orthodox people? Need to take that into account.

-Accreditation. How to work within the laws of the new school's state to make sure the kids graduate with real diplomas.

Just a couple of ideas, anyway.


Here's a link to a K-12 Orthodox school in San Francisco:

http://www.stjohnsacademysf.org/


Here's a link, if interested to the school where I work:
www.berkshireschool.org

I think writing something like the "overview" and statement of mission  http://berkshireschool.org/admissions/overview/index.htm ,with an Orthodox emphasis of course, would be a good start.


« Last Edit: May 25, 2004, 03:16:36 PM by Bogoliubtsy » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2004, 03:25:49 PM »

Just brought to my attention by Nicholas from the cafe:

-A boarding school takes away from the responsibility and duty of the parents to raise their children in the faith.

-The cost of sending your kids to a boarding school would be higher than a day school.

Both points are definitely valid. See, with communcation we're already moving towards a better understanding of what would be best.
 Smiley

Still, my suggestions above apply just as much to a day school.
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« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2004, 04:50:51 PM »

bogo, it sounds like you are thinking something along the lines of what was roomantically portrayed in "The Emperor's Club?"

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« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2004, 04:54:18 PM »

bogo, it sounds like you are thinking something along the lines of what was roomantically portrayed in "The Emperor's Club?"

Joe Zollars

Haven't seen it. Any good?
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« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2004, 04:57:25 PM »

I rather like it.  Of course it also deals with my discipline.  The movie centers around the history class of a "St. Benedict's School for Boys."

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« Reply #13 on: May 25, 2004, 05:03:03 PM »

You startled me, David.  I came in and didn't *remember* starting a new thread.  Had me wondering if I had been sleep-posting.  <g>

Ebor
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« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2004, 05:22:43 PM »

I don't mean to rain on everybody's happy parade but I thought I might throw this out:

What is the purpose of having an Orthodox College or any accreditted school for that matter?

Both the RCs and the Lutherans have conducted follow up studies on students who attended their numerous schools at all levels. Students who attended their schools are more likely to leave their respective churches than students who attended public schools, or schools run by other churches.

This is not the first time, or the last, such an idea has come up and I know that Orthodox Church leaders look to these Lutheran and Roman Catholic studies as eveidence that such schools do not in general strengthen faith.

As someone who attended Roman Catholic grade school I am evidence of that as now I am an Orthodox Christian. I know other Orthodox here have converted from other faiths and have also attended schools and colleges runby those churches. My Orthodox parish has many parishioners schooled inLutheran and Roman Catholic Schools.

A Church-run school does not promote growth in the faithful. Healthy parishes do. Why not work instead to build healthy Orthodox parishes near the college you attend or plan to attend?
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« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2004, 05:46:31 PM »

Just brought to my attention by Nicholas from the cafe:

-A boarding school takes away from the responsibility and duty of the parents to raise their children in the faith.

Well, I dispute this entirely. One does not lose responsibility or duty by delegating it. Indeed, it can be spun the other way around: that it is more responsible to delegate this instruction to a professional than to rely upon one's own probably inferior knowledge.

Quote
-The cost of sending your kids to a boarding school would be higher than a day school.

Well, no doubt about that. That's just a fact of life, however, and with work on endowing it properly this can be ameliorated quite a bit.

Boarding schools offer a quite different experience, says the one who's attended one. They offer particular advantages for religious schools because of the total immersion possible. Particularly for an Orthodox school the possibility would exist to physically associate a school with a monastery. Day schools, by contrast, are limited by the surrounding density of potential applicants.
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« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2004, 08:10:01 PM »

Interesting points, Keble.  You're making me think of having a situation similar to St. Tikhon's seminary.  Have a nice small school tucked away in the country with a monastery there.  Of course, if you located it near a metropolitan area, it could be both a boarding school and a day school.  

In my mind a junior college is still preferred as in my relatively brief experience it seems that most young people encounter a crisis of faith when they leave the nest and go off to college to be sucked into whatever secular agendas are out there.  If you had an Orthodox junior college, you could give them two years of development to find themselves and strengthen their faith(and perhaps even find a mate) and then they could go on to whatever level of university they can excel at.
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« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2004, 08:12:12 PM »

Of course a boarding school costs more, since they are providing room and board.  Add the costs of housing and feeding a child to the cost of a day school.

Ebor
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« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2004, 12:16:09 AM »

Yes, it was Rose Hill...it was doing very well in the first few years, but the man who financed everything wanted to rule the college with an iron fist and it collapsed around him.  At least that is what I have heard from one of the former professors there.  

I've often thought it would be wonderful to put together a two year residential junior college.  It wouldn't be terribly difficult, it would just require funds and time.  After the two year school is accredited, it could grow into a four year school.  St. Vladimirs was started on a shoestring budget back in the 50s, if a few Orthodox professors got together I think they could make a go of it.

Don't you mean (Professor) Vincent Rossi?  I just heard him give a commentary on a lecture (and dinner) at church after Vespers this evening.  He's a great speaker.  He sings tenor in the choir next to me, but I have to monitor him so he doesn't get out of tune too bad.  Rose Hill probably wasn't really Orthodox at the time, as it was run by CSB/HOOM people (Rossi was the director at one point).  Anyway, he goes to my parish and is a wonderful guy.  He actually only works as a Clerk/Typist III for the County at the moment, despite his advanced educational credentials.

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« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2004, 10:32:28 AM »

The man I referred to was not Dr. Rossi.  You have a PM waiting for you as I really don't want to gossip on the forum.
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« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2004, 10:42:06 AM »

I don't mean to rain on everybody's happy parade but I thought I might throw this out:

What is the purpose of having an Orthodox College or any accreditted school for that matter?

Both the RCs and the Lutherans have conducted follow up studies on students who attended their numerous schools at all levels. Students who attended their schools are more likely to leave their respective churches than students who attended public schools, or schools run by other churches.

This is not the first time, or the last, such an idea has come up and I know that Orthodox Church leaders look to these Lutheran and Roman Catholic studies as eveidence that such schools do not in general strengthen faith.

As someone who attended Roman Catholic grade school I am evidence of that as now I am an Orthodox Christian. I know other Orthodox here have converted from other faiths and have also attended schools and colleges runby those churches. My Orthodox parish has many parishioners schooled inLutheran and Roman Catholic Schools.

A Church-run school does not promote growth in the faithful. Healthy parishes do. Why not work instead to build healthy Orthodox parishes near the college you attend or plan to attend?

I guess no one here wants to address these issues.
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