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Press Releases | Citizenship

ACTA Recognizes Princeton Theological Seminary’s Scala Foundation as Oasis of Excellence

January 6, 2022 by ACTA

Washington, DC—The Scala Foundation, founded by Princeton Theological Seminary professor Margarita Mooney Suarez, has been named an Oasis of Excellence by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) for its commitment to promoting academic excellence and the liberal arts tradition.

Oases of Excellence are outstanding programs at colleges and universities across the country dedicated to educating students for informed citizenship in a free society by maintaining the highest academic standards, introducing students to the best of the foundational arts and sciences, teaching American heritage, and ensuring free inquiry into a range of intellectual viewpoints. ACTA’s Oases network now includes over 70 programs at a wide range of institutions. The network is a forum for sharing ideas and best practices on running an independent liberal arts program and serves as a valuable resource for donors who are committed to supporting academic excellence.

The Scala Foundation aims to “renew American culture by restoring beauty and wisdom to the liberal arts.” Scala holds summer programs, conferences, courses, reading groups, and lectures focused on the power of the liberal arts to help citizens develop meaningful lives. These programs serve undergraduate and graduate students, teachers and educational entrepreneurs, creative writers, and other artists.

“Scala shows students how the study of the liberal arts can help them lead more thoughtful and meaningful lives,” said Michael Poliakoff, president of ACTA. “Its ongoing outreach to educators enables them to bring the treasures of civilization into their classrooms. In an age too often defined by apathy and ignorance, Scala shows a path by which students can grow into the informed citizens and thoughtful leaders that our nation needs.”

Ms. Mooney Suarez commented, “As recent debates about critical race theory in education demonstrate, trying to solve social problems while neglecting universally recognized virtues acquired through self-mastery—virtues like hope and love—not only fails to build democracy, it also makes us angry, anxious, depressed, and divided. Educators should not ignore historical complexities and conflicts, but they also need to teach students about the universal principles that unite us and sustain the hope needed for social harmony. I am honored that ACTA has included Scala in its Oases of Excellence initiative, highlighting programs across the United States that are renewing classical education and the liberal arts.”


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Launched in 1995, we are the only organization that works with alumni, donors, trustees, and education leaders across the United States to support liberal arts education, uphold high academic standards, safeguard the free exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that the next generation receives an intellectually rich, high-quality college education at an affordable price.

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