New Core curriculum launches
The Core has been honed to prepare students to thrive in a rapidly changing world
4 min. read
October 1, 2016

The liberal arts matter for our students, for our alumni and for our communities.

That’s why Redeemer University College is launching a new curriculum this fall. On September 14, Redeemer launched the Core with an official cake-cutting by President Dr. Hubert Krygsman.

The Core curriculum connects the entire Redeemer experience together with ten courses that build on and complement the content of each student’s chosen discipline. In their first two years, students gain a deeper understanding of Western culture and learn to communicate through a variety of disciplinary approaches. In their last two years, students take on global and local issues, engage with non-Western perspectives and combine approaches in interdisciplinary capstone projects. Throughout their Redeemer education, students will discover more about their world, deepen their faith and begin to sort out what God is calling them to next.

The strength of the Core shows. For more than 30 years, the Core has shaped Redeemer alumni and, with three years of work by 49 faculty, the Core has been honed to prepare students to thrive in a rapidly changing world. Across the world, from the classroom to the convocation stage to careers and churches, Redeemer faculty, students and alumni are making an impact.

“A liberal arts university degree, with a strong Core curriculum changed the course of my life.”

Take alumna Kristel Bulthuis ’06. At 19, she started her studies at Redeemer. “I knew I wanted to work in long term care in recreation, but that’s about it. When I think back about what I thought I knew at the ripe old age of 19, I laugh,” she says. “A liberal arts university degree, with a strong Core curriculum changed the course of my life. Had I done what I wanted to do, and followed the path I thought was best, I would have gotten a two year diploma and been pigeon-holed into a job path. With a Core curriculum base of courses I didn’t realize at the time I needed, I became a well-rounded young adult.” Kristel, who graduated in 2006, is now communications coordinator with a developer in downtown Hamilton. Her role varies from touring prospective tenants around adaptive reuse projects to thinking critically about the role of buildings in the landscape of the city. “I can be Jesus’ hands and feet in my role,” she says, “and use the lessons I learned in Dr. Goheen’s worldview course that reminded me that our world belongs to God.”

Redeemer’s core philosophy—integrating faith and learning in higher education—has always made it unique. “Higher education has come to be seen as a pathway only to wealth and career satisfaction,” said Vice President, Marketing and Enrolment Dr. David Zietsma at a chapel service right before the launch celebration. “But there’s something different going on in Christian education, and, I believe, here at Redeemer. Our new Core program seeks to reflect the centrality of Christ at the heart of our academic mission. And that’s why places like Redeemer are graduating difference-makers.”

The new Core is already causing lots of buzz—from Redeemer students to guidance counsellors to high schoolers to employers. “We need critical minds tuned to engage big questions, complemented by honed skillsets and specific knowledge,” said Brian Harskamp, finance director at Cardus. “Redeemer’s grads find themselves in a wide range of roles, doing a wide range of work. Redeemer’s new Core is the connecting point.”

The Core will launch the class of 2020, and those that follow, with a forward-looking, Christian liberal arts education, ready to engage society’s biggest questions.

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