Center for Vision and Values
The Center for Vision and Values is a conservative think tank established at Grove City College in April 2005 to provide their faculty members with the opportunity to share the fruits of their research and scholarship with the public.. In 2010, The Center for Vision Values was given the Templeton Freedom Award for Excellence in Promoting Liberty, in the category of “Special Achievement by a University-based Center.”  Instituted in the fall of 2003, and named after the late philanthropist and pioneering investor—Sir John Marks Templeton—the Templeton Freedom Awards were the result of a partnership between the John Templeton Foundation and the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, which administers the prize. Paul Kengor is a professor of political science at Grove City College and the executive director of the center.
Objective and Mission
Many years prior to the establishment of the Center for Vision and Values, Grove City College faculty members had been pursuing research projects — books, white papers, laboratory experimentation — of all kinds in their fields of expertise. The center was established because the college's leaders recognize that this scholarship could enrich not only the classroom but the public square via hundreds of media placements such as opinion editorials, newspaper and magazine stories, web sites and blogs, and speaking engagements. Through this center, the leaders of the college hope to take the transformational scholarship of the College’s faculty into the marketplace of ideas.
The Center's focus is to advance freedom with Christian scholarship dedicated to the pursuit of truth. Scholars and contributors at the Center believe that freedom is the fountainhead of economic and political progress, and religious tolerance.
The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College works on the presupposition that God is sovereign, that man is made in the image of God and is therefore of inestimable and eternal value, and that the God of the Bible is the indispensable starting point for understanding truth. Hence, the center aims to share the results of their scholarship that helps the public to understand that the pursuit of truth is inextricably linked to personal freedom, political and economic freedom, religious freedom, and orderly progress.
The Center's purpose is to convince people to comprehend that God’s truth pertains to all areas of life and reality while providing answers for today’s difficult issues using scholarly methodologies that presuppose truth and human value – as opposed to relativism and chance – as the proper foundation for addressing society’s challenges.
One of the center’s first initiatives has been establishing an annual conference aimed at attracting some of the best minds from around the world to talk about topics of national and international importance.
Subsequent conferences examined such diverse issues as The bioethics and theological implications of regenerative technology such as stem cell research and cloning, Democracy's Prospects in the Arab World, The De-Christianization of Europe, the implications of China's one-child policy, the legacy of President Ronald Reagan, and the history of Church-State relations in America.
Additionally, the Center sponsors several regular lecture series and conferences. Among them are :
- The American Founders series, which aims to bring respected scholars on the American Founding and the founding fathers of the United States to present engaging talks focused on the beliefs, ideas, actions and character of those leaders who pursued the “Great Experiment” called the United States of America, in whether humans are capable of governing themselves.
- The Annual Ronald Reagan Lecture series, which is held around Feb. 6 each year, the day of Reagan's birth. The lecture aims to bring to light Ronald Reagan’s contributions to America and to history. Each year, the Center hosts an individual who worked for, knew or has produced important work on the 40th President. Michael Reagan, Reagan's adopted son, and nationally syndicated talk show host was the first guest lecturer. Edwin Meese III, Reagan's Chief of Staff, U.S. Attorney General and close friend and advisor, was the second guest lecturer.
- The Austrian Student Scholar's Conference, which is open to undergraduates and first-year graduate students in any academic discipline, the conference brings together students from colleges and universities across the country to present their own research papers written in the tradition of the great Austrian School intellectuals such as Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Murray Rothbard, and Hans Sennholz. Cash prizes are awarded to the authors of the top three papers, as judged by a select panel of Grove City College faculty.
- American Studies
- Economic theory & Policy
- Education policy
- Faith & Politics
- Middle East & Terrorism
- Poverty Studies & Poverty reduction
- Public Persuasion & Media
- Medical Ethics
- Science & Faith
- Artificial Intelligence, Technology & Computer ethics