this is a topic that really needs evaluation, evaluating......it could be that the institutions are not up to date. The educational level is not high....it seems that we Adventists need to see what we have ..the value of what we have...and put all that we have into enabling that it is the BEST.
I think some of us tend to look at the track record of an institution and education levels of the faculty at different schools also. Many non-Adventist schools (depending on the economy of the country) are heavily subsidized by the government and are therefore able to hire only faculty members with terminal degrees and so the educational experience may be better than a SDA institution that isn't subsidized by the government or the church or is only subsidized to a small degree by the SDA church. Paying faculty members with Ph.Ds is difficult. I think it is also hard to attract the right faculty. Not all are missionary-minded and willing to teach for less than what they will earn in a non-SDA institution.
I attended an SDA University and it was the norm to hear students complain about the school and it's policies and procedures and mistakes etc, etc, as if they felt that other schools were all perfect. Quite a number of those who complained were SDA.
I valued an SDA education (especially since I accepted the truth of the seventh-day Sabbath and got baptized there). It was a blessing to be surrounded by other SDAs and be in a place where mission was emphasized; worship was also emphasized and I was able to learn much through Bible class and Sabbath school and AY programmes.
Truly, we don't realize what we have in SDA institutions. But I found that the persons who were more missionary-minded and Christ-centered were the ones who showed appreciation for the school. SDAs who were more in league with the world and many of its attractions were among the ones who decried the school's lack of state-of-the-art-ness (if there's such a word). Nonetheless, there were many who were converted while on that campus.
Let's praise God that all the non-SDAs who decide to attend SDA schools are in a place where God can reach them, if they allow themselves to be reached. God bless you for posting a discussion that is a relevant one for all of us.
Let me start by saying that I fully support Christian Education. I must however, present a few points of my own as I am currently attending Harvard University.
I believe the major issue with SDA's choosing to attend other institutions of higher learning is mainly due to cost and quality of education. I've had the opportunity to attend one of our schools, and while I found the experience rewarding in some instances, it became bitter over time. I now have nothing positive to say about this institution. In the interest of brevity, I won't go into great detail, but I will say that [particularly for "this" institution] when you have become tuition/money driven, you begin to push students away. A large number [in the hundreds] of students continue to not be able to clear financially, and have to find other means to complete their education. From an economical standpoint, it does get expensive to attend Adventist schools.
Second, and please excuse my bias, you simply cannot measure Harvard University in the same caliber as Adventist schools. The intellectual, challenging, research-based, quality, and outright solid education you get from Harvard is unmatched. Additionally, you can find similar characteristics in many other secular schools. You can also find spirituality on these campuses as well. Your spiritual walk should not be based on a semester-by-semester, 3 - 5 classes a day, 4 year program of study. Your walk is a lifetime!
I must admit also, that of course I miss the prayer time before the class session, chapel each week, and the general spirituality of being on an Adventist campus. But I must be honest, today you often times CANNOT tell the difference between Adventist schools and secular institutions. The amount of sex, drugs, secular music, alcohol, cursing, and open homosexuality that our college leaders allow on campus, far out weigh the supposed "christian environment". Many "grounded" young people come to our campuses and get pregnant, part take in drugs, party, and live a "worldly" lifestyle. They find it right there on Adventist campuses!
Let me also add that Christianity should not be worn exclusively by Adventists as if it only applies to OUR schools. Harvard University has a list of Christian organizations available to every student, including SDA ministries. Each student should be the standard bearer when attending non-SDA schools. Don't wait for Christianity to be there when you enroll; bring it with you! Set the bar! You can be a witness and soldier for Christ right there on campus.
You make some very solid points. Difficult to argue with them. However I do still support Adventist education. It's a shame that we are encountering secularism on such a high level in our SDA schools. We are having the same difficulties at my alma mater. However, I must say that it is important to have schools that are specifically designed to train people to go out as strong, ministering SDAs, and schools that have a focus to win souls for Christ. It's important to be able to hear a prayer at the beginning at each class and know that you have praying faculty and staff members. So many students will attest to the value of a "Noon Power Hour" which was and I think still is a staple at my alma mater.
Let's pray for our SDA institutions. Worldly influences are flooding in and we seem to be drowning. But there is still hope and many are going through by faith regardless of those influences and the lure of academically unmatched secular institutions. I pray that your journey will be one that will be a blessing and a powerful witness to others.
It is true that Adventist schools are too expensive, I am a student in one of the church universities in Kenya, it has quality education in all aspects of life compared to public universities. I have been in school for the last 3years but it may take me 8years to get my degree, this is because i do work program in school to support school fees. Can i get someone from the Adventist online site to sponsor me?
yes..i agree with u Vicky. Adventist Institutions are bit expensive compared to other public institutions of higher learning somehow there are many things for life hereafter like morning worship, personal Bible study, week of prayers and so on. even i myself need to think twice to attend Adventist university as it is not located in our country but in neighbouring country. When i figure out the courses' fees including lodging and so on, it would cost me more than RM40 thousands(Malaysian Ringgit) - USD11 - 12 thousands. However, if i were to futher my study in public university(but no theology- because Malaysia is Islamic Country), the fee for bachelor Degree(e.g. any courses) costs us only RM23 thousands/USD 6,764.00 and the government has an educational aid/educational fund but must be paid upon completion of our degree/once we have a job. See this is sometimes looked by many of us. Yes, vikcy, you are just like me begging here and there to find sponsors for my Theology degree as i'm going to take my Bachelor of Theology Degree(Mission College, Thailand now Asia Pacifik International University). Please come forward my friends giving us some support to complete our education at the Adventist institution. thanks and GOd bless..
I can't say for sure because i do not attend one. I can say that i chose not to attend because the closest SDA school was 1) far away from home
3) not as highly rated as the school i am attending now.
A friend who does attend an Adventist institute told me that sometimes she feels a bit smothered,and also as if many of the students there were hypocrites, they went to church on the sabbath but were out friday evening at parties that could be worse that you would see at other colleges.
Public schools are great provided you don't get tangled up in due process. I am convinced attending public school is good but most of the time, the Lord's name isn't glorified, we get into books, books and we forget that the Lord has to be lifted up.
Otherwise whether attending Adventist or non-Adventist university you have to stand out like Ezra, Nehemiah, Jeremiah, Timothy such that the world can see the good works and glorify the Lord.
i was thinking about this topic of Our Adventist Institutions! but i'm more interested to discuss and find ways to make our Adventist institutions more reasonable in their fees and other than that are the ranking and other aspects to make them in par with other prestigious Public universities around the globe..What shall we do to our Adventist Institutions & what shall the administrators do with the Adventist institutions?
Come forward with your wise recommendations and ideas and insights and so on. Never to give negative recommendations but more to the positives recommendations..God bless..
A limited number of courses are being offered at Adventist Universities. For example, in Ghana, Valley View University does not offer courses in Architecture, Medicine, Sociology or Psychology. This means that any Ghanaian Adventist who desires to study one of the above mentioned courses will have no option but to study at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, University of Ghana, or Central University.
Another reason is that Adventist Universities do not come cheap. As a Ghanaian it might be more affordable for me to attend a state university.
Adventist educators need to think outside the box and come up with innovative ideas to make Adventist education more affordable.