When one hears the words "college" a variety of images come to mind. We see long corridors, bricked pathways, stone buildings, musty libraries and ___________ (fill-in-the-blank); however, those images emerge when we limit the definition of college to "an institution of higher learning." What if we expand the definition, as dictionary.com does to include in derivation #10 to read "a company; assemblage." An "assemblage" is group of persons and if that group is gathered to learn is it that far of a stretch to call it a college? Perhaps! Nevertheless, that is what we envision with the Visible College. It is a gathering place for people to come and learn together. It is "visible" because our learning is not to be boxed or contained (or published) but to be shared freely with others. The Visible College is an extension of the work of Fit-2-Serve which has as a mission to "equip God's people for works of service." In my opinion, to truly serve, it is important to engage heart, mind and spirit and that is what we desire to do while increasing the standard of living for the residents of Coles County.
Often in our society, we perceive that the standard of living can only be increased with money but we perceive that it is enhanced with time. Raising the standard of living in Coles County simply involves every member of our community feeling like a valued citizen.
What does that cost? Is it worth pursuing? If so, how it is pursued? Why should it be pursued? Why should it be ignored? These are just a few of the questions that will be engaged by those that assemble as a part of the Visible College!