Tag Archives: college

Vandy Can’t Seem to Make the Grade


Not my alma mater, but soon to be Mindy’s. I found the College Sustainability Report Cards when Adam linked to the terrible grade received by Princeton Theological Seminary.

The Sustainable Endowments Institute released its College Sustainability Report Card, which grades 100 leading colleges by looking at campus greening practices and endowment policies.

Hopefully this is something Vandy starts taking into consideration as it continues building and expanding. In fact, all colleges should be taking these sorts of critical analysis’ seriously.

Many uses for vacant campuses

Passing through Vanderbilt’s fairly vacant campus tonight, Mindy pointed out how sad it was that all these dormitories and other buildings sit pretty much vacant for about three months out of the year. At the same time, plenty of folks spend the nights out on the streets with no where to lay their head. The Fine brainstorm ensued and here where some thoughts the brilliant Mindy produced…

Imagine a three month rehabilitation center set up on vacant university campuses each summer. That is a good amount of time to offer a sort of detox and rehab program for a number of folks. It’d also be ample time to help diagnose mental health concerns and provide plans of care for those in need. Something like this could easily be supported by current students serving as interns and having an opportunity to gain some hands on real life experience related to their field of interest.

Another idea was to set up a three month summer education program for and put together by both students and community members (particularly those in need of living spaces). Imagine being part of a three month summer school that offered classes, workshops, discussion groups and more put together by college professors, students, homeless and formerly homeless persons, and a great many other people. Imagine living in a dorm with that sort of array of people and backgrounds. Imagine breaking bread together with folks from the other side of the tracks. Unfortunately, current colleges don’t seem to provide this, but what about the opportunity to offer these sorts of things on empty college campuses in the summer.

This is me thinking out loud.
What are your thoughts?

Education Pays

If there is any major encouragement for staying in school it is because it pays off in the end. Here’s a chart from the Department of Labor Statistics.


When you start crunching those numbers you find some pretty impacting things.
Just graduating high school increases your pay over $8000 a year. Sticking it out through an associates degree is another $6000+ a year.

The unemployment rate decreases by a large amount just by completing high school. These are some powerful changes.

How to Read a book

When in college I was a mass consumer of information. Books, lectures, sermons, classes, magazines, papers, etc. I decided it would be worth my time to set down an intentional list of questions that I would ask myself as I spent my time doing these things.
I’ve found, though I don’t do it all the time, that this is HUGELY beneficial to making the most of your time and the information you take in.

Reading a Book, Listening to a Lecture, and Taking a Class

Why do I do these things?
To gain insight, knowledge, wisdom for life.

What questions should I ask while I read, listen, etc. to make full use of that time?


  1. Why do I think this book/lecture/class will further my life?
  2. Of what importance is this aspect (from question #1) in my priorities in life?
  3. Am I committed to giving the time and effort to make this thing as beneficial as possible to my life?


  1. Is this sentence, chapter, idea or thought, new to me? (If yes: Write it down!)
  2. Does this new thought involve me taking action?
  3. Should I memorize it, read it again, or research further?
  4. How can I practically implement this new thing into my life right now?
  5. Is there anything I did not understand? Seek to understand it. Do NOT ignore new words, confusing sentences; read again or ask for help, until I understand.


  1. What did I learn from this?
  2. Is there actions I can take immediately to implement that?
  3. Did I make a mistake by choosing that thing? How can I not let that happen again?

After After

  1. Has this produced fruit in my life? Is it good or bad fruit?
  2. Am I giving my full energy and potential to applying this new thing?
  3. Have I implemented this to were I am satisfied?
  4. Can I then begin to take in something new?

Why I am was at Wheaton

Before I walked into my room on the sixth floor of Traber dorm at Wheaton College, I had taken the time to sit down and write a statement to myself about why I was going to be spending the next few years of my life in that place.  Writing out this mission statement was probably the most impacting and influencial step I took in making my time in college worthwhile. 
For those new and current students who come across this post, I strongly encourage you to write your own statement and post it in a prominent place in your room.  Because I was intentional about them, most of the statements below of proven true.


I believe God has called me here.
1.He got me in despite my shortcomings
2.He’s provided the finances to be here

I am at one of the best Christian academic schools in the world because God wants me here.

God has called me here to…
-Learn about him and his work in many areas.
-To interact and study under some of the smartest Christians in their particular field in the world, and learn to glorify God in that area.
-To be a part of a body of young people eager for God
-To get a degree (because I have been afforded this opportunity)
-To be a light of God’s truth to the people around me
-To root myself in the factual evidence of God’s truth that I may stand on that firm foundation of God’s word.

“…And we take Captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
–I Cor. 10:5

When I think about my time at Wheaton I undoubtedly think of the many wonderful friendships that I have built through my time there.  I also look back with few regrets about where my priorities were.  There are many who look back wishing they had went to more classes, read more of the books, visited with more of the professors.  No one I know wishes they had slept through more of their college years.  I say all this to encourage current Wheaton students and any other college students to be intentional about your time.  The parties will be forgotten.