Pacific Union College’s guest for the October 23 installment of the Colloquy Speakers Series was Elissa Kido, Ph.D. Each fall, the special Adventist Heritage Colloquy celebrates PUC’s Adventist identity and history, and Kido’s presentation on how the Adventist educational system produces developed, prepared individuals who are destined for success was especially relevant for the students and faculty gathered in the PUC Church Sanctuary.
Following a special music by PUC’s String Quartet, academic dean Nancy Lecourt took the podium to introduce the Kido, a professor of education at La Sierra University and director of the Center for Research on Adventist Education and the CognitiveGenesis research project. Kido’s presentation, “How to Predict Success,” focused on the effects of Adventist education and how every student at PUC has the potential to be a success.
In her presentation, Kido referenced Martin Doblmeier’s film The Blueprint, a documentary exploring how the Adventist school system became a model for educational reform. (PUC had screened The Blueprint the night of Wednesday, October 22.) In the CognitiveGenesis study directed by Kido, tests administered to over 800 Adventist schools between 2006 and 2009 showed students in Adventist schools consistently outperforming the national average in all grades and in all subjects.
Kido also spoke about Malcolm Gladwell’s book, The Outliers, explaining that “outliers”—students who have increased in ability as well as achievements—have “an edge on success.” Her main point was that character, and not necessarily cognition, is the crucial key to success. Kido said Adventist education, which provides a Christ-centered framework and encourages independent inquiry, nurtures a worldview that will point students toward ultimate success and happiness.
As she closed her presentation, Kido encouraged PUC students to take advantage of the quality environment at PUC. She used her own experience as a PUC alumna to provide an example. “Studying at PUC gave me a big push forward, and I knew I achieved more than I would have otherwise,” Kido said. “You are in an environment that is helping you develop character, that is enlarging your worldview.” She ended her Colloquy presentation by encouraging students to take advantage of the opportunities in front of them, and be able predict their own success.