Our second stop on the Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) tour was Goshen College, a very small school that is home to around 800 or so undergraduate students. But don’t let the small size fool you – we learned during our time there that there are a lot of mighty interesting programs happening on this campus!
Though affiliated with the Mennonite church, Goshen actually describes itself as a campus that is international, intercultural, and inter-religious. Though the majority of students are Christian, it’s a place that’s very open to different people and viewpoints and nowhere is this made more apparent than in their unique Study-Service Term (SST), which has been a part of campus programming since 1968. One part cultural immersion, one part volunteer service, and one hundred percent educational, the SST program sends student groups led by a professor from the college into under-served areas for 90 days where they stay with two separate host families and participate in a volunteer initiative while immersing themselves in the language, history, and everyday life of the people that surround them. Language proficiency is (naturally) important and students are trained in the language they will need before they leave Indiana, but it’s really the immersion experience that seals their fluency in the end. The program rotates through eight or so countries and the safety of the students in foreign countries is always paramount.
Arts and the environment are also important to Goshen as a school and to Goshen students. They boast the top campus radio station in the nation and own one of only four organs in the world that is tuned as Johann Sebastian Bach intended when he composed many of his great works. They also own an 1,100 acre environmental center off campus and have adopted a natural landscaping plan in several areas of campus that has saved their maintenance and grounds crew over $1.2 million annually.
For equestrians, Goshen is not part of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association, but its rural locale would easily allow any riders wishing to bring horses to school with them to find boarding off campus. What’s more, its location in northern Indiana makes it relatively easy for serious competitors to access competitions in the Chicago area, in Kentucky, and in Michigan. (All of the major highways you would need to hit are easily reached.)
And if you’re pinching pennies to afford your horse habit while in college, it doesn’t hurt that Goshen currently boasts the least amount of student debt of all of the private colleges in the state of Indiana for its graduates.
Want to learn more about Goshen or about another college that might be a great fit for you? Contact me.