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Boston's Colleges and Universities: An International Center

By Jay Rogers
Published October 2, 1991

Oiver Wendell Holmes once called the city of Boston: “The thinking center of the continent, and therefore of the planet.” Boston’s title “the hub of the universe” has been applied many times. When you look at the area’s colleges and universities, it is easy to see why.

The legacy of education in America began in Boston in 1636 with the founding of Harvard College, the nation’s first institution of higher learning. Today there are more than 50 colleges and universities in the area. Being the largest urban center in New England, Greater Boston claims more than half the region’s 117 colleges. Intellectual pursuits permeate the city. About 200,000 students return to the hub each September; the undergraduate culture makes up about one-quarter of the population.

Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) – both located on the Charles River in Cambridge – are world class institutions. Many other prestigious schools also inhabit the area, including such well known music schools as Berklee College of Music and the New England Conservatory of Music. In addition, the city boasts an impressive array of art, medical, law, and business schools. Nowhere else in America is there such a mixture.

Vast libraries, including Harvard’s Widener Library – the largest in the world, and abundant bookstores hold the promise of locating virtually any book; cultural events and visiting speakers fill the calendar; art galleries, theaters and music recitals are open to the public daily. A recent Boston Globe survey asked students at six universities if they considered New England to be the “academic center of America.” Seventy percent of American students and 79 percent of international students said “yes.”

Many of New England’s colleges grew out of the powerful Christian influence of the first three centuries. Harvard was sponsored by the Congregational Church; Boston College was founded by the Jesuits; Amherst, Brown, Dartmouth, Mount Holyoke, Wellesley, Williams and Yale were all founded as Christian institutions for the purpose of training ministers, missionaries and teachers.

International Population Growing Rapidly

The schools of New England draw students and faculty from all corners of the globe. It is an international community in every sense of the word. Boston has the highest concentration of international students of any city in America. Currently there are at least 20,000 internationals studying in Massachusetts and close to 40,000 internationals attending school in New England.

Many foreign students come to Boston because it has a large international community. In Boston, they can travel anywhere in the city within minutes on a subway trolley and experience the many events and places of interest the city has to offer.

Boston, with its cosmopolitan flavor, is arguably the most “Old World” and European city in the United States. Yet at the same time it offers the richest New World heritage, the ideas of freedom and democracy being germinated right in the heart of the city during its first two centuries. The influx of immigrants in the last century brought it most of its European culture. Currently there is an influx of Asian and Hispanic influence. The international student population only adds to this potpourri. The brightest minds of many nations are being nurtured right here.

One of the main reasons for growth is that area schools are trying to make up for the large number of students who have not been born. The entire U.S. is on a downward demographic trend in the college-age-population. The Northeast has been the hardest hit; the college-age-population in Massachusetts has dropped 30 percent in the last seven years. In order to keep admission standards high, colleges are forced to make up these numbers with students from overseas.

The region has traditionally attracted its international student population from Western Europe, but now the Asian population is on the upswing. Ten percent of Boston University’s freshman class are internationals, with the largest contingent coming from Asia.

With the shortage of American college age students, the region will remain a growth area for internationals at least for the next five years.


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Why Creeds and Confessions? (Book)

High Quality Paperback — 219 pages

Foundations in Biblical Orthodoxy

Driving down a country road sometime, you might see a church with a sign proudly proclaiming: “No book but the Bible — No creed but Christ.” The problem with this statement is that the word creed (from the Latin: credo) simply means “belief.” All Christians have beliefs, regardless of whether they are written.

Yet a single book containing the actual texts of the most important creeds of the early Church will not often be found. Out of the multitude of works on the evangelical Christian book market today, those dealing with the creeds of the Church are scarce.

Why Creeds and Confessions? provides a foundation of biblical orthodoxy as a defense against the false and truly heretical doctrines advanced by the spirit of this age.

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Go Stand Speak (DVD)

With “preaching to the lost” being such a basic foundation of Christianity, why do many in the church seem to be apathetic on this issue of preaching in highways and byways of towns and cities?

Is it biblical to stand in the public places of the world and proclaim the gospel, regardless if people want to hear it or not?

Does the Bible really call church pastors, leaders and evangelists to proclaim the gospel in the public square as part of obedience to the Great Commission, or is public preaching something that is outdated and not applicable for our day and age?

These any many other questions are answered in this documentary.

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Martin Luther: Digitally Remastered 1953 Classic (DVD)

“Here I stand … I can do no other!”

With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.

The dramatic classic film of Martin Luther’s life was released in theaters worldwide in the 1950s and was nominated for two Oscars. A magnificent depiction of Luther and the forces at work in the surrounding society that resulted in his historic reform efforts, this film traces Luther’s life from a guilt-burdened monk to his eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.

Running time: 105 minutes

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The Four Keys to the Millennium (Book)

Foundations in Biblical Eschatology

By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.

All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?

These and many more questions are dealt with by four authors as they present the four views on the millennium. Each view is then critiqued by the other three authors.

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Frank Schaeffer Will You Please Shut Up! (Book)

High Quality Paperback — 200 pages

A Reasonable Response to Christian Postmodernism

Includes a response to the book Christian Jihad by Colonel V. Doner

The title of this book is a misnomer. In reality, I am not trying to get anyone to shut up, but rather to provoke a discussion. This book is a warning about the philosophy of “Christian postmodernism” and the threat that it poses not only to Christian orthodoxy, but to the peace and prosperity our culture as well. The purpose is to equip the reader with some basic principles that can be used to refute their arguments.

Part 1 is a response to some of the recent writings by Frank Schaeffer, the son of the late Francis Schaeffer. This was originally written as a defense against Frank’s attacks on pro-life street activism – a movement that his father helped bring into being through his books, A Christian Manifesto, How Should We Then Live? and Whatever Happened to the Human Race? These works have impacted literally hundreds of thousands of Christian activists.

Part 2 is a response to Colonel Doner and his book, Christian Jihad: Neo-Fundamentalists and the Polarization of America. Doner was one of the key architects of the Christian Right that emerged in the 1980s, who now represents the disillusionment and defection many Christian activists experienced in the 1990s and 2000s. There is still great hope for America to be reformed according to biblical principles. As a new generation is emerging, it is important to recognize the mistakes that Christian activists have made in the past even while holding to a vision for the future.

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