A few thoughts on the importance of Christians in higher education. From the book A Grander Story: An Invitation to Christian Professors.
"If you think about it, so much of what we love and cherish is downstream of the American university:
- Every child and grandchild, for generations to come, even if they don't attend college, will be shaped by our universities' contributions to culture.
- The belief systems and values of our nation flow largely from our universities.
- Almost all our civic, judicial, and business leaders are shaped in our universities.
- The greatest challenges and crises facing our nation and the world are addressed through research in our universities.
- Scholars in our universities serve as primary arbiters of what is good and true for the rest of our society.
- Professors establish the culture or 'climate' that encourages or prevents the gospel from taking root.
Other reasons could be offered as well. It is difficult to conceive of an institution with greater potential to shape (and bless!) the world than the university.
"In Luke 6:40, Jesus remarked, 'Everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher' (emphasis mine). Personally, we wouldn't have concluded this; we would have suggested, 'Everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teaching.' But according to Jesus, teachers indelibly shape students. There are two sides to this coin: If students become like their teachers, what are the ramifications of generation after generation of university students graduating without ever having met a single professor they knew to be a Christian? Conversely, what would be the impact if every university student in America had the opportunity, at least once, to study under a Christ-following professor? This reason alone, that our universities shape every future generation, is decisive evidence for the critical importance of the university as a mission field." (pp. 10-11)