Special academic programs

Academic Success Center

The Academic Success Center seeks to empower all students as they strive to achieve their academic goals.  The ASC supports students who are placed on academic warning or probation. In addition, the ASC assists students with documented disabilities by helping them advocate for themselves and by assigning and facilitating reasonable academic, housing, and dietary accommodations. The ASC also trains peer tutors who are available to help all students grow as scholars. ASC offices are located in the first floor of the Good Library.

Alerts system

The Academic Success Center and the Director for Orientation and Retention coordinate an alerts system to identify and provide timely support services to students who are experiencing problems that impact their academic performance.

Adult and Non-traditional programs

Goshen College offers several programs for adult non-residential students. See the Adult Programs section of this catalog for details. Graduate degree programs are noted in the Graduate Catalog.

Honors opportunities

The academic ethos at Goshen College is rigorous and engaging. Requirements for the Dean’s List and the Latin Honors system for graduates are described in the Academic Policies section of the catalog. Three special honors opportunities are described below.

Academic Symposium

An annual Academic Symposium features exemplary student research and performance. The symposium brings together students and faculty members involved in original research and scholarly activity from all disciplines. A selection of papers representing the quality of student research at Goshen College is published on the Academic Symposium web site.

Maple Scholars

Each summer the Maple Scholars program supports numerous student-faculty research partnerships. Maple Scholars is an eight-week program that gives students the opportunity to participate in independent research alongside Goshen College faculty members of various disciplines. Each scholar is paired with a faculty member who works with and supervises student researchers to help carry out their work. Students who are selected as Maple Scholars live in campus housing and receive a stipend.

Inquiry Programs

The Goshen College Inquiry Programs (Camping, Ministry, Service) give students the opportunity to spend three months in a camp, congregation, or service agency with the goal of exploring the intersection of faith and vocation, while also developing skills for leadership. The program provides students with a stipend to be put toward tuition and the opportunity to earn college credit.

Professional and pre-professional programs

Undergraduate professional programs at Goshen College

Three undergraduate professional programs are offered at Goshen College: education (elementary and secondary), nursing and social work. In addition, accounting and sign language interpreting majors offer a full-time semester-long internship. In addition, other majors such as business, broadcasting, communication,  film production, journalism, public relations, and informatics offer extensive opportunities for internships and professional preparation. Details about these programs are in the academic programs section of the catalog.

Teacher certification programs

The teacher education programs below lead to certification in Indiana. Many states have reciprocal certification agreements.

  • American Sign Language education (5-12)
  • Business education (5-12)
  • Elementary education (K-6)
  • Elementary education/Exceptional Needs: Mild Intervention (K-6)
  • Elementary education/English Learners (K-6)
  • English/Language Arts education (5-12)
  • English Language Learners (ELL) education (5-12 or P-12)
  • Mathematics education (5-12)
  • Music education (P-12)
    Vocal and/or Instrumental and General
  • Physical education (P-12)
  • Physical education and Health (P-12)
  • Science education (5-12):
    Biology, Chemistry,  Physics
  • Social Studies education (5-12)
    Historical perspectives and government and citizenship; optional additions: psychology, sociology, geography, and economics
  • Spanish education (5-12)
  • Theater Arts education (5-12)
  • Visual Arts education (P-12)

Professional undergraduate program completed at another university


Goshen College offers a two degree, or 3-2, engineering program resulting in a B.A. in physics, chemistry or computer science from Goshen and a B.S. in engineering from a major university with an accredited engineering program. Goshen College has articulation agreements with University of Notre Dame, Case Western Reserve University, and Valparaiso University. The student spends the first three years at Goshen and the final two years at the university. Engineering specialties available at University of Notre Dame are; mechanical, civil, environmental, electrical, computer, chemical, and aerospace. For details and requirements, see the engineering physics major the physics department web site at goshen.edu/physics.

Pre-professional programs that require a graduate degree

Pre-health sciences

Goshen College provides excellent pre-professional preparation for students interested in medicine, veterinary science, physical therapy, occupational therapy, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, and physician’s assistant programs. Since course sequencing is important, any student interested in these programs should consult the pre-medical advisor or other faculty advisors in the biology, chemistry or kinesiology departments about course selection and the graduate school application process. The major in molecular biology/biochemistry provides a strong foundation for careers in medicine and related fields. The major in exercise science is good preparation for careers in physical or occupational therapy.


Law schools want students who can think, read, write and speak well and who have some understanding of public policy and human experience. Minors in pre-law and political studies are described in this catalog. Although no specific major is required for law school admission, the history major at Goshen College includes a law concentration option and most students who successfully apply to law school have majored in history.  Other major choices for pre-law students could include communication; English; peace, justice and conflict studies; psychology; business; or social work. Materials for the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) and information about law schools and pre-law internships are available from history department advisors.


Goshen College has a close historical relationship with Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS), Elkhart, Ind.; however, Goshen graduates attend a variety of seminaries for theological study or preparation for ministry. Students anticipating seminary study are counseled to complete a B.A. degree with a major in Bible and religion, Peace, Justice and Conflict Studies, English, history, sociology or psychology. If not majoring in Bible and religion, they are encouraged to complete a minor in theological studies and Christian ministries. They also should plan to serve as a Ministry Leader on campus, attend the annual fall missions banquet on campus and the annual spring vocation banquet at AMBS, and participate in a summer Ministry Inquiry Program internship in a congregation.

Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center

Owned and operated by Goshen College, the Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center is a nature sanctuary rich in biodiversity located near Wolf Lake, Indiana, 28 miles from the Goshen College campus. Most of the habitats found in northeastern Indiana are present in the 1,189 acres of Merry Lea. Unique geological features such as peat bogs, a marl pit, and glacial gravel formations are present.

Management practices include wetland, prairie, and savanna restorations, as well as sustainable agriculture. Management of the center is guided by commitments to creation care from a Christian perspective.

More than 5,000 Pre-K-12 students come to Merry Lea for environmental education programs annually. Facilities include an environmental-education building, a Farmstead, and Rieth Village, a set of “green” collegiate laboratory/residence buildings. Rieth Village received a Platinum award, the highest level possible, from the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system. The Sustainability and Environmental Education Department offers distinctive residential programs in sustainability leadership and agroecology at Merry Lea. A master’s degree in environmental education is also delivered onsite. In addition, Merry Lea serves as an ecological field station for research and field lab experiences.  See goshen.edu/merrylea for more information.

J.N. Roth Marine Biology Station

The Jonathan N. Roth Marine Biology Station, owned by Goshen College, is located in Layton, Florida about 1 1/2 hours from Miami in the Florida Keys. The station includes the C. Franklin Bishop laboratory, which facilitates research and study in marine science.

The marine station enables students to explore a world-class marine ecosystem, with coral reefs, mudflats, and seagrass beds adjacent to the station. The marine biology program at Goshen is growing and includes the annual May term marine biology course, summer research opportunities, and a semester-long residential program in the fall. Building on a 50-plus year old marine biology program at Goshen College, the Marine Biology Semester in the Florida Keys is a semester-long residential program in which students complete two classes, an internship with a local marine organization, and design their own research project — all while living at the college’s unique J.N. Roth Marine Biology Station in the culturally rich and diverse setting of Layton, Florida.

Goshen College Music Center

The Goshen College Music Center is a beautiful award-winning facility with excellent acoustics. The Music Center contains the 1,000-seat Sauder Concert Hall, 250-seat Rieth Recital Hall, rehearsal rooms, classrooms, practice rooms, and offices. The Hershberger Art Gallery features rotating exhibits by guest artists, faculty and students. The Music Center hosts a popular annual Performing Arts Series with world-class performers as well as dozens of other concerts. The Community School of the Arts, based in the Music Center, offers piano lessons, Suzuki string lessons, 3 children’s choirs, 2 youth orchestras, and the Music Together program for parents and pre-school children to more than 300 families. The Community School of the Arts also administers ECoSistema, a music and youth development program focused on building community through music, which is offered through partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of Elkhart County, the Tolson Center for Community Excellence, and Elkhart Community Schools. More information is available at gcmusiccenter.org.

Off-campus May-term courses

Each May term, marine biology courses are offered at Goshen College’s marine biology facility on Long Key in Florida. Most other courses in the list below are offered every two years; some are special one-time courses. The off-campus May term courses offered by Goshen College in recent years include:

  • The Arts in London
  • Marine Biology (Florida)
  • Entomology (Merry Lea)
  • Ornithology (Merry Lea)
  • Field Experience in Environmental Biology (Merry Lea)
  • Camping and Recreation

Other off-campus programs

In addition to Goshen College SST and May-term courses, many other possibilities for off-campus study exist in cooperation with other colleges and universities. (See list below.) For information about registering for any of these programs, contact the director of global engagement. Special off-campus program registration forms are available in the SST and registrar’s offices.

Financial policies for off-campus programs

Special arrangements make it possible for students to register for Goshen College credit while participating in the programs below. However, since tuition and fees are collected and passed on to the other agencies or colleges, sources of student financial aid and scholarships while enrolled in these programs are nearly always limited to outside funding such as Pell grants, state grants, non-Goshen College scholarships, and Stafford Loans.

Goshen College tuition discounts, scholarships, and direct financial aid can be used only if a sponsored program is required for a student’s major and when those requirements cannot be fulfilled without the sponsored off-campus experience (Spanish major, e.g.). For Goshen College financial aid to apply to required off-campus study, an application must be submitted and the major must be declared by spring advising days prior to the year of off-campus study.

To obtain information on financial aid, contact the student financial aid office. Academic credits earned in these sponsored off-campus programs are considered residential credits. However, these are not Goshen College programs. Therefore, May-term fees are charged for students who were off-campus in one of these affiliated programs during fall or spring semester.

Off-campus programs affiliated with Goshen College

Mennonite Colleges & Universities Cross-Cultural program offers cross-cultural experience equivalent to SST through a collaborative program with Mennonite colleges/universities. See listings at Bluffton University, Eastern Mennonite University, Bethel College, and Hesston College.
Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies offers summer programs in Mancelona, Mich., and other locations. Contact the environmental science director for more information or see ausable.org.
CEA offers semester and summer study abroad programs in twelve countries in Europe, Latin America, China, and South Africa. See ceastudyabroad.com.
Central American Study and Service (CASAS) in Guatemala offers semester or summer programs in Spanish and Central American studies. See semilla.org.gt/casas for more information.
Chicago Center for Urban Life and Culture offers semester and summer programs in Soc 302, Urban Diversity, social work field placements, and many internship possibilities. See chicagocenter.org for more information.
Columbia College Chicago’s Semester in LA (SiLA): Work, study, and live in the heart of Hollywood. SiLA program provides students with critical experience in the media and entertainment industry to carry into your career after graduation. Students explore career interests through internships and class experiences that are only available in the Los Angeles area. Participation in the SiLA program is required for all Film Production majors.
Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) offers various semester and summer programs at locations including Oxford, Granada, and Los Angeles.
Council on International Education Exchange offers many academic-year and half-year programs in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. See ciee.org for more information.
Lithuania Christian College has summer and semester study opportunities. See lcc.lt/home/study-abroad for more information.
Oregon Extension, in an old logging camp, offers an interdisciplinary fall semester for students from Christian colleges. Contact oregonextension.org for more information.
Washington Community Scholars Center, sponsored by Eastern Mennonite University, has semester, year-long or spring/summer programs available in Washington, D.C. Includes significant internship experience and course work at a nearby university. See emu.edu/wcsc for more information.