Discipleship as Means to Reinvent Higher Education
This paper exams the purpose of Adventist Higher Education and how it can be achieved. It suggests that the purpose of Christian education is to transform believers into the image of Christ. It contrasts contemporary Christian education with Ellen White’s vision of education and suggests that current models of education, especially in General Education, fall far short of this ideal. The paper concludes that character development, the transmission of strong biblical values and the holistic development of the overall person should be the purpose of Adventist higher education. The paper then suggests that the most effective way to accomplish this vision of education is through discipleship. The methods of Jesus’ discipleship model are explored and implications of this model are applied to contemporary education. Three particular areas are emphasized: (a) service learning; (b) community experiences through cohorts; and (c) experiential learning. The author also uses two theorists of religious education, Groome and Browning, to develop a four-stage process of experiential learning in the classroom.