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THE THIRD WAY

In the book of Romans, Paul illuminates the practical applications of the word of God in the lives of Christians and urges followers of Christ to eliminate barriers to God's grace by "renewing their minds" and seeking transformation and truth in a world that demands conformity.

As colleges and universities nationwide continue to commodify educational content and elevate the value of tangible results—often derived from standardized metrics that adhere to widely endorsed institutionalized values—Pepperdine has a unique opportunity to differentiate itself and demonstrate the advantage of Christian higher education. Indeed, it is the responsibility of Christian higher education to renew students' minds and, on the deepest level, set their souls on fire.

Pepperdine, however, is not in the business of defending the value of a college education, nor is it in the business of defending Christian higher education. For Pepperdine to survive and thrive in a space that is becoming increasingly homogeneous, it must demonstrate an overt commitment to integrating faith across disciplines and embracing intellectual and ideological diversity. Ethos is not enough.

This is the third way: an unabashed, unrestrained declaration of the ways in which faith helps inform and affirm academic discussions, spiritual discovery, athletic endeavors, and artistic aspirations. Many colleges and universities have been called similarly, but few have been faithful.

Though we labor in uncommon space among 4,300 institutions of higher education in the nation, we have proudly chosen the third way: a direction that eschews the "or" and embraces the "and." Choosing the third way is an audacious proclamation of our refusal to choose—between wonder and belief, individuality and diversity, tradition and progress.