Connecting through Goshen and a liberal arts education

By: Kelli Burkholder King

Kelli Burkholder King, Director of Alumni, Church & Parent Relations
As I begin my new position relating to alumni, churches and parents, I realize Goshen College has changed a lot since I was a student in the 1970s. One element that remains constant, though, is the quality liberal arts education that undergirds GC’s course offerings. Age and experience have strengthened my appreciation for this education. After receiving my bachelor’s degree, I pursued a master’s degree in public health and used that degree in a variety of health-related jobs. These positions varied from hospitals and health clinics to public health departments and health advocacy organizations.

What I now realize is that I was able to move from providing patient care, to management, to educational material development, to grant writing and now, to an area not related to health, because of a strong liberal arts education. Goshen College helped me develop communication, relational and problem solving skills, along with understanding the importance and complexity of cross-cultural communication.

The Association of American Colleges and Universities’ Web site recently included an article outlining what a liberal education means. The essay concluded that business leaders in a variety of sectors highly value thinking that is analytical, integrative, scientific and creative. Employers want graduates who are “skilled communicators, adept at quantitative reasoning, oriented to innovation, sophisticated about diversity, and grounded in crosscultural and global learning.”

As the Class of 2008 left campus, you can be sure these students received an excellent education that will serve them and the world well as they encounter the challenges and opportunities in this complex, global economy. The core values and the liberal arts education they have been immersed in at Goshen College are in urgent need out there!

I am looking forward to my work at GC and connecting to the broader college community. Some of these connections will happen through the Bulletin, some through homecoming weekend and others through alumni events in your areas. I welcome your feedback and look forward to meeting or hearing from you. E-mail me at or call me at (574) 535-7563.

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