From the Chair
The Teagle Foundation continues to support and encourage the development of initiatives to advance the delivery of liberal arts education, which, as we outline in our mission, “prepares students for meaningful work, effective citizenship, and a fulfilling life.” We believe that a high quality liberal arts education has the power not only to prepare students for their first jobs but also to lay the groundwork for a lifetime of learning. Since we understand the significant financial investment required for higher education, we look to support efforts that focus on access and affordability for students.
While students are at the center of our mission, our initiatives are predicated on the understanding that faculty leadership is central to any transformation for deeper student learning. In the last year, the Foundation has pursued its mission through a variety of faculty-led initiatives that include developing clear curricular pathways, drawing connections between the liberal arts and pre-professional disciplines, and preparing graduate students as teachers.
Cost considerations also permeate the Foundation’s grant-making approach. Our Board of Directors carefully examines a project’s potential to enhance an institution’s capacity rather than adding new programs or procedures without promise of sustainability. We are especially attentive to ways faculty and administration partner to advance shared objectives around student achievement.
While undergraduate instruction is the heart of our enterprise, we also know that the benefits of liberal arts education can extend beyond the academy. We were especially pleased to renew support to a handful of organizations as they refine their programs that bring the liberal arts to special populations, including veterans and some additional community groups.
These days, some are questioning the value of liberal arts education, but we fundamentally believe that it has life-changing potential as it promotes self-reflection, enhances relationships with others, and widens horizons. It contributes to constructive change in the short-term while equipping students—of all ages—with tools for inquiry and reflective understanding for years to come.
Walter C. Teagle III, Chair