|May 2010 Letter from Roy Goble
Does it pay to study?
It’s a question asked in an article published by The Economist a few months ago. The report looked at whether it made financial sense to invest in an education. Given the high cost of an education, it’s a reasonable question. But the answer was a clear “yes” in virtually every way. A study quoted in The Economist showed that the net present value of a student receiving a degree in the United States is over $150,000. Plus there is a benefit to the government, measured in future taxable income, of over $100,000.
As I read the article I kept thinking that it did not tell the whole story. There was something missing, but being in a rush I couldn’t put my finger on it.
A few weeks later I read another article in the Wall Street Journal about teaching ethics in the classroom. There is a renewed emphasis on this in light of the banking collapse, which is long overdue. But that’s when it clicked why The Economist article and even this Wall Street Journal article left me thinking there was more to the story:
You can’t measure the value of an education by financial windfall alone. Ethics and vocational training are not separate tracks of learning; they are interrelated.
An education that prepares a student to earn a higher salary is fine, but it is woefully incomplete. As Teddy Roosevelt is reputed to have once said, “To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.”
This is why PathLight’s mission is so important. The educational opportunities provided for at-risk kids are wonderful, but it goes deeper than that. The integration of faith and learning is central to a PathLight student’s experience.
One of my favorite passages about education comes from Deuteronomy 6:7. After clearly stating that we are to love the Lord with all of our heart, soul and strength, verse seven then instructs us to “impress these commandments on your children.”
This month I want to ask you to consider investing in the faith and learning of at-risk students. You can help PathLight fulfill the mandate of Deuteronomy 6:7 as we partner with parents, schools and the communities. Your gift provides training that will allow boys and girls to turn into financially productive citizens, but it does much more than that. It allows them to grow in faith so they become men and women of character who will transform their communities.
There are many ways to give. You might consider sponsoring a student. Perhaps you could make a monthly pledge. Or perhaps a one-time gift of any size. Please click the donate button and help this important work.
Thanks for your continued support, encouragement, and prayer.
President and Co-Founder