Our Promise to Students

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” – Ecclesiastes 3:1

Now is the time to build fearlessly and to blaze a trail to serve students in radically new ways. 

We need Christ-centered education now more than ever. We need thinkers and doers, problem solvers and activators. We need compassionate hearts, willing hands and sharp minds. The world is different now; we need Christlike leaders and learners to invent the future and boldly lead us into it.

This is who we are at George Fox University. This is why we plan to open our campus this fall to any student who wants to be transformed.

At George Fox, we don’t cower in the face of challenge. We Stand Tall, fighting for what is good and true. And right now that means building leaders to compassionately carry the world into the future. 

Will we need to be vigilant for the sake of health in our community? Absolutely! We’re already making personal protective equipment, are continuing a rigorous cleaning regimen on campus, and are building out plans for residence halls with considerations for physical distancing.

Will our residence halls be open? Yes, our plan is to open in the fall! And we’ll take a thoughtful, measured and proactive approach to ensure students remain safe in their living areas.

Will education look different than before? We can’t speak for other universities, but we can guarantee it’ll look different at George Fox. Innovation is part of who we are – we were the first university west of the Mississippi River to offer an adult degree program and the first Christian college in the state to launch engineering, not to mention starting a football program while others shuttered theirs, developing an honors program that’s filled year after year, and pioneering Serve Day more than two decades ago to offer a helping hand to our neighbors. We embrace the opportunity that comes with challenge. The coronavirus has changed the fabric of our society, so we will pivot the model of higher education to address affordability, accessibility and relevance.

Can you promise your campus will be open this fall? We will always follow mandates from the governor’s office, but we can guarantee we’ll do everything in our power to bring students back in the fall to their George Fox home, to keep them safe and to transform them into the people they are called to become.

COVID-19 may steal our comforts of routine, face-to-face interaction, and predictability, but the deepest danger is allowing COVID-19 to rob us of the next generation of innovators, nurses, counselors, teachers, artists, pastors, physical therapists, business leaders, and social workers. 

Here is our promise: George Fox University will be ready for you. Ready to deliver the Be Known promise, ready to equip you for an exceptional life, ready to give you incredible memories. We’ll see you this fall.

Through the Fog

By Aaron Geist, associate director of financial aid

“These are uncertain times.” That is a statement we’ve all heard repeatedly these last couple months. I’ve heard it from companies and advertisements, pastors and school administrators, and in conversations every day. Though all times are uncertain, our world collectively realizes the unpredictable nature of this COVID-19 season. We feel it together as if driving through a thick fog.

I recall the time I drove through Sacramento, California, at 2 a.m. in a dense, almost unnavigable fog. I wasn’t alone but had three sleeping passengers on the way home from a college bowl game. We were driving our friend’s car, which had only high beams for working lights! You couldn’t see far ahead anyway, which was made worse by the headlights reflecting off the fog. Even the tail lights of cars further on down the road only lit up within a short distance. It was true white-knuckle driving.

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Campus Pastor Q&A: Jamie-Noling-Auth

Get to know university pastor Jamie Noling-Auth, featuring artwork by senior illustration major Abby Ickert! 

Q: In what ways do you hope George Fox students will grow spiritually? 

A: In chapel recently we have been singing a song that says, “I will build my life upon your love.”  That is my hope for each student and for our community. I hope that all of our students will find their truest home in the faithful, lovingkindness of God’s presence. I hope our students will learn to have real, honest, friend-style conversations with God.  

Q: What inspired you to serve students through ministry? 

A: When I was in middle school, I had an experience with God that was unmistakable and an invitation to friendship. That is where my ministry calling began – with experiencing God personally. And then, my own college years were such an exciting convergence of experiences, ideas and spiritual formation. Studying abroad, being a student leader on my campus, and interning in my field were pivotal in my growth. And in those years, I also got to witness some of my friends encounter God for the first time – all of which gave me a love for how God works in and through college students.  

Q: What’s one worship, small group or service opportunity you wish more students knew about? 

A: The prayer chapel is available to all of our students 24/7. It is a lovely and quiet place, protected from the rain and from the noises of your living area, where you can meet with God. The university doesn’t schedule any events in that space so that it is always available to students for prayer. And, you can even leave prayer requests in the locked box and a staff prayer team will pray for you. 

Be Known Student Profile: Jessica Daugherty

Get to know junior English major Jessica Daugherty – our Be Known student profile of the week!

– Hometown: Spokane, Washington
– Dream job: Published Author
– Fun fact: I am deathly afraid of snakes. 

Q: Why did you choose to major in English? ⁠
A: I chose to major in English because I love stories. For me, I want to tell stories, both the stories in my head and the stories of other people. The major allows me to study the art of storytelling and how the many talented people before me have used it. I love my professors because they will sit down and nerd out with me about books but also because they are genuinely interested and care about my personal story. 

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Alumni Spotlight: ClearlyRated’s Nathan Goff on building a top-rated business

Nathan Goff leads a meeting at ClearlyRated in Portland. Photo by Randy L. Rasmussen.

So, just what is the “secret sauce” that makes for a successful business venture? According to Nathan Goff, chief technology officer and cofounder at ClearlyRated, named The Oregonian/OregonLive’s Top Workplace in Oregon in 2019, the answer isn’t found by mixing just one or two ingredients.

Rather, the recipe calls for a mix of several factors, including work ethic, a desire to build a better world, privilege and a bit of luck.

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Top tips to help you prepare for Scholarship Competition

So, how does one prepare for Scholarship Competition? We asked our students for their advice, and here is what they said:

10. Read the requirements for your major well ahead of time! This will give you the time and space you need to prepare any portfolios or essays that might be required and think about what excites you about your chosen major and why you want this scholarship. The further ahead you prepare, the more comfortable and less stressed you will feel. 

9.  Bring a couple of changes of clothes. Don’t stress about this, and don’t feel you have to go buy something. Interviews are business casual, and after there will be lots of fun campus activities, so bring something comfortable to walk in.

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Be Known Student Profile: Zack Lyda

Get to know freshman electrical engineering major Zack Lyda – our Be Known student profile of the week!

– Hometown: Newberg, Oregon
– Dream job: Developing biological 3D printing technology.
– Fun fact: I love Rubik’s cubes! I’m was actually printing one at the time the pic was taken

Q: Why did you choose to major in electrical engineering?
A: I chose electrical engineering because I have had a deep-seated love for electronics basically my entire life. One of the earliest memories I have of my childhood was finding a long strand of wire in a box in the garage and appropriating it as my own. I buried the ends of it in gravel, intending to make it do fantastic things (this seemed quite logical in my 6-year-old mind). This was over a decade ago, yet I still have that childlike curiosity, and still want to make wires do things. That’s why I chose double E.

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Be Known Student Profile: Nicole Hagen

Get to know senior illustration and English major Nicole Hagen – our Be Known student profile of the week!

– Hometown: Hudson, Ohio
– Dream job: Power duo of teaching art and working as a freelance illustrator.
– Fun fact: When I was little I lived in England for three years and had a perfect little British accent!

Q: Why did you choose to major in illustration and English? 
A: I honestly just chose my majors based off of the two things I really enjoyed: reading and making art. If I’ve learned anything in my four years here, it’s that majoring in something you’re passionate about makes life so much more fun.

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Be Known Student Profile: Jen Burke

Get to know senior elementary education major and lacrosse player Jen Burke – our Be Known student profile of the week!

– Hometown: Oregon City, Oregon⁠
– Dream Job: Elementary school teacher⁠
– Fun Fact: I am insanely afraid of worms. ⁠

Q: Why lacrosse? ⁠
A: I started playing lacrosse in middle school when a soccer teammate told me I should try it with her. I love it because it is such a fast-paced sport and I feel like there are always new things to learn. Lacrosse is just beginning to grow on the West Coast and I love to be a part of something new and challenging. I also love it because of how fun yet hard working my teammates and coaches are. ⁠

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Alumna Kirsten Johnson finds her creative voice as head of her own agency

There was a time Kirsten Johnson doubted herself – a time she didn’t think she had what it took to succeed in the art world. “One of my art professors [at George Fox] sat me down and encouraged me to teach in the art space, to step into my talent and to try the scary, hard things. My initial reaction was, ‘I’m not smart enough. I’m just an art major,’” she recalls

The beautiful irony is this: Coaching clients and her team on how to execute an artistic concept is now a fundamental part of Johnson’s job as creative director of the Reverie Creative Agency, a business she founded. The Amity, Oregon-based company specializes in luxury marketing, design and branding services that range from printed goods, logo design, remodels and installations to full-service online marketing strategies like video production, professional photography, email marketing, website design, and social media management. 

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