S.D.A. Higher Education: a Personal View

Speaker: Categories: Oct 08, 1988


[1hr, 13min, 57sec / 55min, 41sec]


Many readers have attended or taught at an Adventist college. That, in itself, should make our October meeting particularly relevant!

Dr. Hodgen questions, "Why all the recent interest? Almost everyone has noticed both the range and passion of concern expressed in the last few years. Consider the following: major articles in at least two of the four most recent issues of Spectrum; frequent and emotional letters to the editor of the Pacific Union Recorder; skirmishes, spiced with vulgarity, among a variety of lay groups interested in the future of Loma Linda University; a committee, or commission, or seminar, or some such on higher education in almost every Union or local conference in the last few years."

He continues: "For more than a hundred years their colleges provided identity to Adventists, sharing that role, of course, with hospitals and publishing houses. Each of these institutions has changed, even fundamentally, but discussion about colleges seems most widespread, sustained, and impassioned. Our hospitals have abandoned denominational salary and employment practices. The location, appropriateness and existence of publishing houses is very different from those of fond memory. At the very least there's tension for us all between the comfort of continuity without change and expectations of current effectiveness."

"A description of the present forms, the context, and the indicators of change in Adventist higher education allows at least a sharpening of focus in future discussions."

"Because social institutions exist in a wider context (while having particular characteristics of their own) our discussion organizes around those two perspectives. We'll look first at denominational and then at higher education influences on current Adventist education. Then we'll look at both familiar and less obvious contours of Adventist higher education, particularly in North America."

Maurice Hodgen suggests that his presentation will be discursive and somewhat impressionistic, without hard statistical data or "research findings." And he also cautions that he'll not seek to offer panaceas nor solutions to salvage the tradition of SDA higher ed.

Articles in Spectrum -- 10:3; 16:4; 18: 3; 18:4; and 19: 1 -- would provide an excellent background for this topic. Maurice Hodgen's documentary history of SDA higher education, School Bells and Gospel Trumpets, (available from Loma Linda University Libraries, Loma Linda, CA 93350 -- $15) would also make for good reading.


Dr. Maurice Hodgen, a native of New Zealand, is a product of Adventist higher education -- Avondale College (Australia) and Pacific Union College. His graduate work was completed at Columbia University, New York.

He has devoted thirty years to teaching in Adventist colleges and universities, including nine years as Dean of Loma Linda's Graduate School; ten years as Professor, School of Education, Loma Linda; Director, Teacher Education, Helderberg College, Republic of South Africa; and Lecturer, Solusi College, Zimbabwe. Such background has given Dr. Hodgen a uniquely relevant perspective on higher education, Adventist style!

ve participant in formulating changes to Southeastern's Constitution.

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