New Partnership Leads to the Establishment of the Ron Blue Institute Center at Cornerstone University
by Kristina Garvelink (M.S. ’15)
On Tuesday, April 17, 2018, Cornerstone University hosted Ron Blue, founder of Ronald Blue & Company and Kingdom Advisors, for its biannual Business Breakfast. Blue's presentation entitled "Master Your Money: A Biblical Worldview of Money and Money Management" reflected his legacy in the financial industry and communicated his renewed commitment to train college students with a biblically-based perspective of stewardship. The event also served to announce the establishment of a new Ron Blue Institute Center at Cornerstone University.
The Ron Blue Institute Center at Cornerstone University aims to give traditional undergraduate, seminary and adult learners financial management principles through the lens of a Christian worldview. New components to be integrated into the university's core curriculum include seminar series events, personal finance course materials, the addition of degree program tracks and exploration of the opportunity for students to become a certified financial planner.
"Establishing a Ron Blue Institute on Cornerstone's campus signals our commitment to equip the next generation with a biblical worldview of money," Dr. Shawn Newhouse, vice president for traditional undergraduate academics, said. "All students will be exposed to principles of financial wisdom through the [first-year] Terra Firma program, and we are pursuing other opportunities to integrate financial wellness into our core curriculum. We also plan to pursue exclusive financial planning curricular offerings which will allow us to send graduates into the marketplace who will equip their communities with a biblical approach to personal financial management."
As home to the only Ron Blue Institute Center in West Michigan, Cornerstone is one of a growing number of private higher education institutions partnering with the Ron Blue Institute.
"Ron Blue is providing a practical and spiritual service to Christian institutions right now," Dr. Brad Stamm, professor of economics, said. "By means of the Ron Blue Institute, he is educating the future influencers in our country so that we can live according to biblical principles in the area of finance."
In preparing students to think biblically about their money in the present and future, the university looks forward to resourcing students with new ways to understand, address and handle student debt.
"I am thrilled that Ron Blue will now have an influence on the students at Cornerstone in the coming years," Scott Stewart, controller and compliance coordinator, said. "The Ron Blue Institute Center will be able to provide information that demonstrates how Jesus instructed each of us to be good stewards. 'God owns it all' is a major theme of the Ron Blue Institute curriculum."
The institute's curriculum may also prepare students to offer peer-to-peer financial advising appointments in future years, promoting the hands-on application of principles learned in the classroom to real-life scenarios.
"Equipping our students with financial wisdom is an important way to empower them to impact their world for Christ," Newhouse said. "By giving generously, avoiding the use of debt, spending less than they earn, setting long-term financial goals and planning for financial margin, our graduates will flourish wherever their vocation takes them."
Support the Institute
Primary funding for the institute's partnership with Cornerstone is provided by Eastbrook Homes.
"It has been a privilege to work with Cornerstone University and launch the Ron Blue Institute," said Mick McGraw, president of Eastbrook Homes.
It costs $150 to educate one traditional undergraduate student in biblical personal finance. To learn how you can join us and support the Ron Blue Institute Center at Cornerstone University, contact Mark Tremaine, advancement advisor, for more information.