Dr. Charles Pecor, former Shorter professor, sent the following to us via email. We asked his permission to post it on the web page and he graciously agreed. Thank you, Dr. Pecor.
I only recently learned of the plight of Shorter College. I am greatly distressed and disgusted to learn of what is happening. My wife, Claudia Thompson Pecor is a graduate of Shorter. Indeed, I met my wife at Shorter. I taught at Shorter and was the theatre director from the fall of 1962 until the spring of 1967. I left Shorter for a similar position at Georgia Tech, and eventually ended up at Macon State College where I spent my last ten years in the academic world as Chair of the Division of Humanities.
I have many warm memories of the school, the faculty, and the students with whom I came in contact. It was not perfect, no institution is, but it was a far cry from what it is becoming. A positive religious life was emphasized on the campus, but it was not “cult like.” No signed “pledges to be good” were required of students or faculty. (If pledges really worked, there would be no divorces.)
Within a few days of learning of what is happening, I called one of my former students who lives in New Jersey. He was also appalled. He said, “My years at Shorter were some of the best years of my life.” I felt the same way. The relationships between faculty and students in those days was something special.
I’ve been around higher education most of my adult life, so believe me when I say that NOTHING good happens when a college loses accreditation, and, from what I am hearing, Shorter seems to be on that path.
Recently I started working on a memoir of my life in educational and community theatre, and I was looking forward to dealing with the Shorter years. Now that effort will be hedged about with great sadness.
Claudia and I wish you good fortune in your attempt to turn back the tide.
Dr. Charles J. Pecor
Professor of Humanities emeritus
Macon State College (retired)
Dalton State College came very close to losing it’s accreditation in the late 90’s. I bunch of professors worked their buttocks off to get it back on track. Thank God!! Hate to hear this is happening at Shorter. Our daughter Kim went there for awhile. Our son graduated from Berry. Both good schools.
OK, all of this sounds great but what’s this going to get us as for as taking over Shorter College and returning it to it’s illustrious status? Are we working on a plan to do that? Testimonials sound great but don’t accomplish anything.
Charles, thank you so much for writing. It was good to hear from you and very kind of you to write about your time at Shorter. I remember our early years together there. Please give my regards to Claudia.
Brenda, thanks your your input and very valid question. We are certainly working on what we can do to restore Shorter. In the meantime there are things that you can do. 1) Direct everyone you know to this website. 2) If you are involved with a church, express your frustration and concerns to your pastor and church leadership and 3) Write to Dr. Dowless and Dr. Price at Shorter and express your concerns. We only ask that this correspondence be polite and respectful.
You did not mention..are you a Shorter Graduate or former student? Did you have family or friends that attended Shorter? What is your perspective on what has happened “on the hill”?
Class of 1984
“If pledges really worked, there would be no divorces.”
This is exactly the kind of mentality that Shorter is taking a stand against. Many in our current society believe that if an institution, such as marriage, doesn’t always function as it should, then the entire institution is flawed and should be reworked with postmodern values. This is flawed thinking: just because some marriages fail doesn’t mean that pledges do not work. To apply this as a syllogism using Shorter is even more flawed.
John, I see some issues with your logic that I feel compelled to point out. You said “This is flawed thinking: just because some marriages fail doesn’t mean that pledges do not work.” Marriage, in the Christian sense, is a pledge. You say “pledges do not work”. Is this a critique of Christian marriage? Should we now question the validity of any given marriage that we witness? The other side to this is to assume that that Shorter’s pledge’s will not necessarily work here and that the “relationship” (and I do not mean the employment) between the School and God is also flawed? Is this to say that “The Pledge” is wrong?
Just because some teachers have shown less than impeccable moral character in the eyes of the GBC, doesn’t mean the entire school has. Thanks for making a great point, John!
The entire institution of marriage IS fundamentally flawed, because it is of man. The illusion that our current understanding of marriage is ordained by God and described in the Bible has done a terrible disservice to many marriages. I have done some decent research on the topic, but this author illuminates the issue far better than I could.
Look forward to hearing your thoughts!
Hearts ache in unison with you, Dr. Pecor.
Jon, your views on marriage are mine exactly. I assume it is because we have the same brain.