Letter from the President

Are you happy? Are you fulfilled in your job, and in the work God has called you to? If you are, there’s a good chance you had a professor or mentor in your college years who inspired you and supported you.

That’s the big takeaway from a recent survey of 30,000 college grads by Gallup and Purdue University, where exceptional OC alum Richard Lawson (66) went to graduate school. The study found that graduates who felt emotionally supported by a professor or mentor were three times as likely to report they thrived as adults. 

If these grads recalled having experiential and deep learning in college, their odds of being engaged at work more than doubled. Their involvement in extracurricular activities, jobs, and internships as collegians also made them twice as likely to have enjoyment and fulfillment in their work today.

That’s the kind of life we want for our graduates, and that’s the driving force behind the way we do life at OC. You likely experienced that firsthand in your personal OC experience, and I’m proud of our faculty and staff’s dedication to students’ well-being today. We have a first-rate faculty – teachers who know their stuff and how to teach it, but who also care enough about students to challenge them, expect great things from them, and mentor them along the way so they can achieve those great things. We have a staff that comes alongside our students to shepherd them through college, not in a way that coddles, but in a way that enables them to take responsibility and succeed. 

Our new Ethos spiritual life program (page 22) is a prime example of that. Students can take charge of their spiritual growth through a rich menu of Chapel experiences and other meaningful, faith-building activities. Through Ethos, we’re seeing students engaging with faculty, staff and other students in meaningful ways. Our students’ lives are being changed through their connections with mentors and through the opportunities they have here at OC.

And that goes beyond the relationships that students develop on campus. The opportunities include campus visitors who enrich the lives of our students and community. Our lineup of guest speakers both last year and this year is just amazing – for any college and especially for one our size.

On the heels of last year’s visits by N. T. Wright, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, John Westerhoff, Emanuel Tov, Chris Spielman, Missy Robertson, Harold Hamm, General Romeo Dallaire, and two members of the Little Rock Nine, we’re blessed to welcome distinguished guests like Ravi Zacharias, Nicholas Sparks, Donald Miller, Nika Maples, David Myers, Chris Herren, Fred Gray, Claudette Colvin, and Dave Dravecky this year.

We hope you’ll return to campus for these special events and for a great Homecoming weekend November 14-15. Thank you for continuing to support OC through your presence, gifts, and prayers. We are humbled and blessed to have alumni who love their alma mater. Thank you for helping us Thrive!

In His Service,
John deSteiguer

Fall 2014

View more stories from the Fall 2014 issue of Vision magazine.