Ideas for the University: Proceedings of Marquette University's Mission Seminar and Conference

Ideas for the University: Proceedings of Marquette University's Mission Seminar and Conference

Ideas for the University: Proceedings of Marquette University's Mission Seminar and Conference

Ideas for the University: Proceedings of Marquette University's Mission Seminar and Conference

Excerpt

Anyone reasonably familiar with either the trade or the academic press knows that criticizing higher education has been a popular sport for a number of years. My interest in the university as problem derives from a variety of sources, all of them related to my growing interest in the purpose of higher education and what constitutes the best and most appropriate kinds of pedagogy in that context. What I present here is a reflection on three of those sources, elaborated and commented on by yet other texts, with my own separate but related conclusions drawn from them. I close with a brief and what I hope is a modest review of some changed emphases in undergraduate education, suggested by those conclusions. The texts move from the more general and secular to the more particular and more religiously oriented. The three texts areJeroslav Pelikan's The Idea of a University.
A Re-examination, Ex Corde Ecclesiae
, the papal document on Catholic higher education, and Faith, Discovery, Service, a group of three essays published on the occasion of Fr. Albert J. DiUlio's inauguration as President of Marquette University.

As a way of preparing for the initial seminar which gave birth to this collection, I read Pelikan's book, hoping to derive some useful principles with which to argue my largely Newmanian view of what the university should be. Each of the other texts became a focus of attention over the course of the nearly two years that our seminar has existed. Professor Pelikan's is a timely work, full of useful knowledge, erudition, and a measure of wisdom not found in the more journalistic critiques of American higher education. Among its strengths are its use of key passages from Newman's Idea of a University.

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