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How Knox College Changes Lives

Colleges That Change LivesExcellent teaching in class, opportunities outside of class, world-changing alumni

"Knox is a place that will take you seriously." -- from Colleges That Change Lives

Colleges That Change Lives is the newly revised edition of Loren Pope's book. Knox College and the 39 other liberal arts schools featured in Colleges That Change Lives are noted for our focus on undergraduate teaching and on the dimensions of education that will, as the book says, change your life because they "change the way that you think about colleges."

The experiences and achievements of current Knox students and Knox alumni demonstrate how Knox College will "challenge your assumptions, nurture your hopes... raise students' trajectories and develop thinkers, leaders and moral citizens."

In Class...

Knox College's emphasis on undergraduate education means that you will engage, in class, with a community of distinguished teacher-scholars...


Jenneke Oostman"My Knox professors helped me succeed as a writer," said Jenneke Oostman '13. "Marilyn Webb's classes persuaded me to become a journalist; her tough, but encouraging, advice pushed me to develop skills in news writing and reporting. Experience as a writing tutor [in the Center for Teaching and Learning] with John Haslem, as well as being a student in John's classes, challenged me to become a better writer." More...


John BergholzJohn Bergholz '14 says he was ready for his internship in archeology thanks to two courses, Native America and Human Origins, with anthropology professor Jon Wagner. "Those classes gave me a great background in the field of archaeology." More...


Michael GasparroMichael Gasparro '13 was nervous about taking Comparative Democratization, because it was one of his first upper-level courses. Thanks to Professor Daniel Beers, Gasparro says, "it ended up being a great class. I learned a lot about other governments and the democratization process. My curiosity never ended." More...


Loye OyedotunLoye Oyedotun '15 says that Professor Karen Kampwirth and her class on Latin American Politics helped him to decide on a career. "Her fire for Latin American politics made me want to be an international relations major and [eventually] a diplomat," he says. "The professor is so passionate about Latin America that she makes you truly enjoy the class." More...


Bridget GolembiewskiBridget Golembiewski '15 says that one of her favorite classes at Knox was also one of her first, "Science Fiction and Human Identity" taught by Jamie Spacco of the computer science department. "Professor Spacco was very enthusiastic and encouraged us to run with our ideas. This course prepared us in terms of analysis and writing skills, and also taught us that at Knox you can have a lot of fun in your classes and not to be afraid to form and share your own opinions in lively classroom discussions and projects." More...

In Action...

Outside of the classroom, Knox College offers a world of opportunities -- independent study, study abroad, research and creative projects...


Brent NewmanBrent Newman '10 was conducting biology research in Jamaica on a Fulbright Fellowship the year after he graduated from Knox when a local school principal asked him if he could teach Spanish to some grade schoolers on the island. An environmental studies major, Newman also played football at Knox and -- most importantly for the kids -- minored in Spanish and studied in Spain. Barcelona "completely changed my life. I realized how much you can learn from other cultures. I had the basic courses and upper-level courses, and then I could also throw in my knowledge of Spanish culture." More..


Tarere EyiminaTarere Eyimina '13, an international student from Nigeria, says she has interacted with individuals from a wide range of cultures and backgrounds at Knox. She says her experience is helping her explore and develop her potential. "I am much more of an outspoken person than I was before. I am also not afraid to take risks," she says. "I've learned about people around the world on this one campus." More... 


Philip Bennett '14Philip Bennett is aiming for a future in politics, and he has already completed two summer internships in the office he'd like to hold: Mayor  of Los Angeles. "The basic ideas about community that I have learned at Knox helped me at the Mayor's Office," Bennett says. "I have learned how one person can become involved in his or her community." More...


Hannah BasilHannah Basil '13 spent 2011-2012 at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Even though it's the world's leading economics research institution, and vastly different from an American college, Basil found she could apply skills she'd honed at Knox. "At Knox, we're encouraged to discuss and really critique the author's viewpoint. We're encouraged to think about the structure of the arguments." More...


Sophia GimenezFrom the Proto-Renaissance to the 21st Century, Sophia Gimenez '15 says her course in art history covered a lot of territory. When the class traveled to the Art Institute of Chicago, "I was able to tour galleries displaying masters like Monet, Durer, and Van Gogh. It made the material we cover in class so much more meaningful." More...

In Life...

From a diverse campus and rigorous academics to a wide range of extra curriculars -- Knox prepares you for success, in career, in life, in the world...


Norman GolarNorman Golar '02 promoted diversity on campus when he was an undergrad -- "looking beneath skin tone, regional and cultural origins, to bond and grow within each other's shadow." In his current position, chair of the English department at Stillman College, "I mentor, advise, and teach students who remind me of myself" -- a first-generation college student whose life was changed at Knox. More...


Matthew BergMatthew Berg '00 was named one of the 100 "most influential people in the world" by Time magazine,  pioneered the use of text messages to improve health services in Africa. About his Knox experience: "I appreciated the direct engagement of professors and the diverse perspectives of classmates. I had my identity and ideas challenged in a way I didn't expect." More...


Carol CraigCarol Craig '89 earned a graduate degree in electrical and computer engineering, and owns a national aerospace consulting firm. Her Knox experience helped her stand out, in the crowded high technology field. "I think my liberal arts education set me apart from other engineers." More...


Ross KellyAfter graduating from Knox, Ross Kelly '03 thought he would go to grad school in film. Then he thought he would spend a year making a documentary about the Cornerstone Children's Home, an orphanage in Southern Sudan. Change of plans. He ended up staying at the home, not as an observer, but as co-director of the orphange. "Knox built up my confidence and my ability to dive headfirst into ever more challenging environments." More...


David FridovichDavid Fridovich '74 recently retired as a three-star general and senior Green Beret in the U.S. Army who led counterterrorism operations worldwide. "I came to Knox," he recalls, "looking for independence and football." Great coaches "kept me wanting to come back for yet another season," while Knox faculty "saw something in me I didn't know existed -- a student/scholar." He is renowned for an approach to terrorism that is just 15 percent military; the rest is humanitarian, such as rebuilding schools and distributing medication. More...