I spent the last two days doing an outside evaluation of the history department at Northwestern College in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area (Rosedale). Northwestern is a small evangelical college that occupies a beautiful lakeside campus (Lake Johanna) on property that used to belong to a Catholic seminary. I think it is safe to say that the architecture is unlike any other evangelical college in the country.
Northwestern has a vibrant history department. The faculty is doing wonderful things with limited resources. (When I arrived I learned that a faculty member had just won an NEH Summer Stipend and another faculty member had received an invitation to participate in an NEH summer institute on Russian history. This is quite impressive for a department of four historians). The history majors at Northwestern are eager to learn, think, and engage the past in all its fullness. They have a passion for history that is contagious and have a fierce loyalty to their professors and department seldom seen in colleges and universities today. This was refreshing. My favorite part of the visit was spending time with these students.
Thanks to Charles Aling, Clyde Billington, Matt Miller, all the students, and especially Jonathan Den Hartog, for a great couple of days. I left with a real appreciation for the work being done at this institution. Also thanks to Bryan Bademan, formerly of Sacred Heart University and the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, for working with me on this evaluation.