What if our country’s most persuasive, top-notch journalists were classically educated?
by Nicole Ault, The Wall Street Journal
It almost goes without saying that classical Christin education (CCE), done well, equips students with the basics for good journalism. From our seventh-grade essays on The Epic of Gilgamesh through our senior thesis, our assignments drilled into us universal principles of good writing.
But compelling writing needs to answer thought-provoking, creative questions that carry the reader to the heart of the story. In the world of reporting, we need more of what CCE teaches, especially in the dialectic stage—courteous discussion of meaningful, often hard, questions.
Through literature and all other subjects of the liberal arts education, CCE provides something more fundamental: an understanding that the world is integrated and purposeful, and therefore abundantly fascinating. Everything in creation, CCE teaches, belongs to God, and studying the world—from ancient literature to calculus—is a way of knowing Him better. There is nothing to fear and everything to learn. Life is rich.
The motto of Rockbridge Academy, the classical school I attended K-12, epitomizes this: In captivitatem redigentes, omnem intellectum, from 2 Corinthians 10:5. “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” That mindset makes journalism much more exciting, and beautiful.
A journalist will have to tackle any number of subjects, and sometimes, they won’t be appealing. I’ve dragged my feet on many an assignment. But recognizing that all things glorify one God, and that all humans are made in His image, gives purpose and meaning and interest to each assignment. It becomes a gift, then, to tell each story.
NICOLE AULT graduated from ACCS Accredited school Rockbridge Academy, Crownsville, MD, in 2015. While earning her BA in economics from Hillsdale College, she served as the editor-in-chief for the Hillsdale College Collegian. She is currently assistant editorial page writer with The Wall Street Journal.