I think it’s very easy to be short-sighted with many of our investments. The housing market has been crushed in recent memory, the stock market has been up of late but it’s taken months for folks to come back to it after getting hammered in 2007 and 2008 and – who knows – another correction could be right around the corner. Given these disappointments, all of us are a bit sheepish about our investments, and we probably should be.
This reality tends to spill over into people’s thoughts about higher education. As families take a look at colleges this fall they are often reminding themselves of considerations of cost as they tour residence halls, classrooms, student centers, libraries, and – in our case – chapels, museums, service centers, and as they stare up at statues of Jesus or St. Ignatius (perhaps in prayer for guidance).
I am biased on the subject of Catholic, Jesuit education, having attended a Jesuit high school and twice – once for my undergraduate degree and once for my Master’s – a Jesuit university. I just think we provide the best possible education because our approach is not just to teach skills that are useful in next year’s economy. We teach the vital skills, values, philosophies that are essential in any economy. What I learned twenty years ago in college I will use twenty years from now. I will impart these lessons to my daughter and she will be equipped with more than the average person because my education was more than the average person’s. My parents and I were not short-sighted when they made the investment in my Jesuit education, and I am now filled with a lifetime’s worth of gratitude for that.
I’ve written several blogs about the value of a Jesuit education, and the value, specifically, of what we offer here at Loyola. I hope you’ll find these entries helpful as you decide how to invest in your future: