Ashbrook Wins Templeton Honors
July 1, 1997
We live in a time when America’s leading politicians are calling for a national apology for slavery. Unfortunately, as survey after survey confirms, it is no longer true that every American schoolboy can tell you that that apology was already given, as Lincoln said, with our “last full measure of devotion” more than 130 years ago (it was called the Civil War). That said, it is heartening to know that there is still a program that teaches students to approach national events from a more informed perspective. The Ashbrook Scholar Program at Ashland University is such a program.
Ashbrook Scholars are chosen for their academic merit and personal integrity. They are pushed to test their mettle in seminars with the leading opinion-makers of the day while pursuing a serious course of study in the principles of the American constitutional government and the words and actions of our greatest statesmen.
Ashbrook Scholars know that these ideas are more than relics from a distant past. They are powerful and gripping ideas that inform every aspect of our national political life. They are ideas that we cannot afford to ignore.
For these reasons, the Ashbrook Scholar Program is honored with a spot on the prestigious Templeton Honor Rolls for Education in a Free Society. The Ashbrook Scholar Program was one of only 28 programs nationwide (including Harvard, Hillsdale, the University of Chicago, and Yale, among others) recognized in the category of “Departments and Special Programs.”
In their course of study, Ashbrook Scholars are required to read from the original sources—The Federalist Papers, de Tocqueville, Jefferson and Lincoln, to name but a few. They are challenged to pursue a traditional liberal arts education through the great books and writings of Western Civilization and particularly America.
Ashbrook Scholars come to understand that the purpose of their education is to teach them what it means to be free, self-governing citizens.
In addition to their traditional academic education, Ashbrook Scholars also participate in the programs and lectures of the Ashbrook Center and have the opportunity to meet and discuss with national political figures.
Most Scholars participate in political internships or attend supplemental seminars during their summer vacation. Through their own initiative, the Scholars have founded a political journal Res Publica to sharpen their talents in writing for the public prints. It is an intense and purposeful program from beginning to end.
“This honor represents the culmination of more than a decade of intense work on our lecture series, our programs and especially the curriculum and teaching,” said Ashbrook Center Executive Director, Peter W. Schramm.
“Our students are among the most serious in the country,” Schramm continued, “and our graduates have gone on to tremendous success in politics, business, the academy, and the law. But their success, in and of itself, would mean very little were I not confident that everyone brings with them an informed understanding of their obligations to themselves and to their country. I am delighted to see them receive this honor.”