A letter from Jane Higa
VP of Student Life & Dean of Students
Welcome to the 2012-2013 academic year! This year is Westmont’s 75th Anniversary! What an exciting time to be a student at Westmont as we look back at our history and remember those years as a time when Westmont stepped out in new directions with energy and commitment to provide us with the Christian liberal arts education we have today.
In 1937, the vision for Westmont began with Ruth Kerr, who “God awakened out of a sound sleep one night with a still, small voice which said, ‘Now is the time to open the school.’” It was with her dependence on God and her faith-filled life that kept her and those she surrounded herself on the path to establish a “school that would combine faith and academic excellence…It was to be a school, not a Bible school, not a seminary, but a Christian college to develop Christian leaders….” Read more about the start of Westmont online at http://www.westmont.edu/anniversary to discover and cherish the determination, dedication and sacrifice of many whose legacy is the Westmont we know today.
The combination of faith and academic excellence is still a quality Westmont is known for today. One of the things that distinguish a Westmont education is our firm belief that you are not merely receptors of knowledge. In fact, we invite, even expect, you to participate in the task of contributing to the richness and depth of this place by the giving of your ideas, talents, gifts, and service.
This is no small task. It will require your very best effort. At times, you will need to take risks and learn from those who have different perspectives than you. At other times, you may need to play the challenging role of inspired and effective teacher. Westmont provides you with incredible opportunities and supportive people, but you must bring yourself to the learning process.
The student handbook is an excellent guide to help you enter into and contribute to life at Westmont. You will find our chapel schedule and a listing of resources, policies, and guidelines that will help you be successful. Directly following my letter, you will also find the Community Life Statement and the Diversity Matters at Westmont statement. Each is essential for you to take special notice of since they are foundational to our community and describe the high calling and responsibility of being in this community. Both are required reading for anyone who takes seriously the task of being a “world class student” at Westmont. As you read these two statements, I invite you to imagine how you will actively contribute to making Westmont a place that truly reflects our commitment to loving as Christ would love.
As we are all faithful to this task, you will have tasted what each of us longs for: a place we can all call home. Can you imagine such a place? I, therefore, invite you to join this grand adventure of living together as faithful scholars who are seeking each day to bring about the best of what God intends for one another and for us as a community.
Imagining with you,
Jane Hideko Higa
Vice-President for Student Life & Dean of Students