Philosophy of Boarding

Our philosophy of boarding is that the residential life program, within a Christ-centered community, provides experiences and opportunities for directing students toward lives of learning, serving others, and loving God.  The purpose of a boarding program is to promote the learning of Christ-likeness in the way that students view themselves, others, and the world.

The boarding program is based upon Christ’s call to love one another, grow in obedience to Him, and live in harmony with others.  The boarding program provides opportunities for students to practice community living within the call of Christ.

A Safe and Secure Living Environment

The boarding program is a physically and emotionally safe place, where students know they are cared for and is safe from verbal or physical intimidation or harm.  Our boarding program is designed and staffed for fostering emotional and spiritual growth.

Programs and Environments that Nurture and Foster Growth

The boarding program creates environments and opportunities to help students develop in a variety of ways: spiritually through discipleship and mentorship; physically through healthy eating and exercise habits; intellectually through support for their education; and socially through the guidance provided by staff in student interactions.

Prioritizing Ministry and Service over Efficiency

The composition of the students in a dorm, and their ability to create a positive, encouraging, and nurturing environment, is of higher importance than filling beds and increasing the number of those enrolled in the boarding program.

Evangelism and Outreach:  We will seek to enroll students who will benefit from a positive environment – giving them the opportunity to also seek to emulate positive participation in the Oakdale program.  Students not professing a faith in Jesus Christ and those having demonstrated difficulties in attaining community standards will be given opportunities to enter a community of faith that embraces the values of the ministry.

 These values are practiced in the following ways:

  • Decisions on matters of student admittance, retention, and dorm census are focused on the service to the student and the student’s impact on other students.
  • Dormitories are designed to foster community living, yet provide personal privacy.
  • The boarding program provides guidance and resources for nutritional health and physical activity.
  • Students are given the space, the quiet, and the resources they need in order to study and complete their homework to the best of their ability.
  • Students facing struggles and challenges are directed toward a relationship with Christ.
  • The boarding program provides encouragement and opportunity for personal devotional time.
  • Students are intentionally placed in circumstances where they can learn valuable interpersonal skills such as working out a disagreement with a roommate or respecting the personal boundaries of others.
  • Students are exposed to people unlike themselves so that they can learn to appreciate persons of other cultures, races, social standing, and family resources.
  • The boarding program makes visible the value of living in community and caring for one another as brothers and sisters in Christ.