Today, the Torrey Honors Institute announced that they have hired Dr. Chris Mitchell. It’s an exciting development, for a few reasons. First, as Matt Anderson notes, “It doesn’t seem very often in the world of Christian higher education that people who are well established at leading institutions leave for different confines, especially when their responsibilities involve directing the highest profile center for C.S. Lewis in America.” Second, a scholar who has spent as much time with C.S. Lewis as Dr. Mitchell has is bound to share the vision for a classical education that Torrey has always attempted to work out in the real world (and, by my estimation, has succeeded in doing). Third, it shows that the Torrey Honors Institute is not only growing, but seeking to continue to support her students by hiring world-class faculty. The program has grown over the years, and already has first-rate professors, but still continues to seek and hire the best of the best. Dr. Mitchell even began his interaction with the program at the request of current professors, which shows that through-and-through, Torrey is interested in educating students in the best material and with the best resources available.
Dr. Fred Sanders, of the Torrey Honors Institute, recently interviewed Dr. Mitchell. When asked about the relationship between the great books curriculum and theology (particularly the amount of Bible read during the year), Dr. Mitchell had this to say:
The matter of being able to skillfully relate our learning of the faith to our learning of the world and our experience of the faith with our experience of the world is central to the life of every believer. It is a truth that informs my own practice and is one of the chief aims of my teaching and mentoring. The fact that the Torrey Honors Institute gives the entire Bible a central place within its curriculum demonstrates a clear commitment to this truth. Moreover, the program’s chosen form of pedagogy lends itself well to effectively achieving this indispensable skill. To be yoked with other like-minded teachers in a program that aims at inculcating this art is, once again, highly attractive.
It’s a response demonstrative of just how well Dr. Mitchell will fit in with Torrey. I’m excited to welcome him into the fold, so to speak, and look forward to his work out here in Southern California.