Judson to partner with Aurora Christian school offering scholarships, mentorship
Judson University in Elgin this week announced a new partnership with Covenant Christian School of Aurora to help grow Christian education and provide a pipeline of future students.
The nondenominational Covenant Christian School on the west side of Aurora serves roughly 180 students from more than 30 local churches in the surrounding communities of Aurora, North Aurora, Batavia, Sugar Grove, Montgomery and Oswego.
The partnership could include Judson faculty, students and alumni teaching and mentoring at the prekindergarten through 12th-grade school, and scholarships for CCS graduates admitted to Judson. It was the brainchild of the Rev. Huntley Brown, a Judson alumnus and international concert pianist who also is a CCS school board member.
Judson President Gene Crume said both institutions share a like-minded theology and appreciation for the values of Christian education.
"CCS has a very good music program, and they are very passionate about the arts in their school," Crume said. That fits well with programs offered through Judson's DeMoss Center for Worship in the Performing Arts, including degree programs in music performance, business and entrepreneurship and its Fox Valley Music Camp workshops, he added.
CCS also is committed to serving students with intellectual challenges, whom Judson also strives to serve through its Road to Independent Living, Spiritual Formation and Employment, or RISE, program for students with intellectual disabilities.
"That's a shared passion and a shared fit for us," Crume said. "Long-term student recruitment is definitely another benefit to Judson. I believe we could set a new model for how higher education and K-12 might look at partnering more closely together."
Judson currently partners with other area schools, including Elgin Area School District U-46 and Westminster Christian School in Elgin. The difference with the CCS partnership is that it's "much more integrated" in terms of connecting programs at the two schools, Crume said.
While there is overlap among the various Christian colleges in the Chicago region, Judson offers a few unique programs that sets it apart. It offers the only fully accredited architecture program at a Christian university and master's and doctorate degrees in educational literacy.
Judson's board of trustees will approve the partnership in May. This summer, faculty and staff from both institutions will brainstorm ideas for how they can working together.