Colorado State Joins Air Force as Only Recognized “Character-Building” Universities in the State in Recent Foundation Honor

Colorado State University yesterday (Sept. 24) was named one of 134 character-building colleges and universities in the country by the John Templeton Foundation, joining the Air Force Academy as the only other institution in Colorado singled out for the honor.

The John Templeton Foundation announced the 1997-98 Honor Roll for Character-Building Colleges during a luncheon attended by more than 300 people in Washington, D.C. Attendees included members of the U.S. House of Representatives, college and university presidents and higher education policy and research leaders. Included with Colorado State in the honor roll are such institutions as Brown University, Notre Dame, Bethune-Cookman, Penn State, Oklahoma, Wake Forest, Florida State and Yale.

"Effective character education encourages young people to develop the virtues, integrity and ideals of service so vital to our society," said Dr. John Templeton Jr., president of the John Templeton Foundation in a release tied to the announcement. "The Honor Roll colleges and universities actively affirm and uphold character education initiatives essential to the mission of higher education, inspiring students to lead ethical and civic-minded lives."

The foundation also released a special reference guidebook, which is distributed free of charge to 24,000 high school principals and guidance counselors, 16,000 public libraries and 10,000 youth workers around the country. The free guidebook can be ordered by calling 800-245-1285. The book also is available on the Internet at

"We’re very pleased to be among the leaders in higher education, and gratified to be counted among those institutions that place importance on character development as a major part of the educational experience," said Keith Miser, vice president for Student Affairs at Colorado State. Miser was in Washington this week to receive the honor for the university.

Colorado State submitted materials addressing five selection criteria in essay form along with a 200-word summary statement confirming the university’s commitment to character building. The criteria for inclusion in the honor roll are designed to evaluate the extent to which an institution meets the following goals: inspires students to develop and strengthen their moral reasoning skills, encourages spiritual growth and moral values, provides community-building experiences, advocates a drug-free lifestyle and conducts a critical assessment of character-building programs and activities.