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Once in every generation or so, society makes a quantum leap forward.
In the cool pines about an hour northeast of Sky Harbor Airport lies the upscale hamlet of Payson, Arizona. A 300 acre forest in the heart of Town may hold the key to one of those quantum leaps forward for higher education.
Call it serendipity or fate or an alignment of the stars, but a unique nexus is evolving around the concept of creating a Multiversity / University.
Many retired senior leaders from business, education and government have chosen to retire and / or relocate to the community. Leaders of industry and commerce and education have come together to address one of the most critical issues of our time: “How do we re-enthrone the American spirit of innovation and creativity while providing students with the foundational science, technology, and basic skills needed to compete in a new world economy?”
Based on the assumption that the educational model of the past century must be changed, thought leaders identified foundational principles upon which this new Multiversity should be anchored:
Education must focus more on inspiring creativity and motivating innovation and on acquiring life skills than on just learning facts. Individual and collaborative communication and problem solving is one of those skills.
Acquiring life skills is essential to a 21st century education.
Employment skills are essential to become a contributing member of society and are best acquired by mentoring, internships and by partnering to provide apprenticeships with public and private employers.
Environmental responsibility will be taught by demonstrating sound principles in how we build and operate their campus -- more than by what we say in a classroom.
Students today learn differently therefore, Gigabit internet speed must be available to every student everywhere on campus on their own device of choice.
Access to, comfort with and competence in the use of technology and devices are an essential skill required for all disciplines.
Quality of life must be promoted by exposing and getting students to embrace telehealth, technology and healthy choices as tools for a happy and productive life.
This Multiversity campus will have a cottage-in-the-mountains appearance on the outside, will be located in the largest Ponderosa Forest in the world and will have state-of-the-art, world class technology inside. It will be designed from the ground up to inspire the American Dream and teach a new generation to aspire to new frontiers as they embrace lifelong learning.