for the Liberal Arts

The Gaede Institute for the Liberal Arts was established in 2000 with the goal of strengthening liberal arts education locally and nationally. The Institute hosts scholarly conversation on the present and future of the liberal arts, provides liberal arts opportunities to area communities outside the academy, promotes educational access for first-generation and underserved populations, and fosters interdisciplinary contact between faculty and students through extracurricular events on campus.



The Conversation on the Liberal Arts

Our annual Conversation on the Liberal Arts gathers faculty, administrators, and students from colleges and universities nationwide to address opportunities and challenges in liberal arts education.


In an on-campus summer residency and yearlong mentorship, Trailhead invites high school youth to join a community of scholars, pastors, and other professionals in exploring God's call to a meaningful life.


Through retreat, intellectual rejuvenation, spiritual direction, and mentorship, Frontiers offers pastors and other ministry professionals vital supports to flourish in their calling.

Young Adult Leadership Lab

In a multi-year learning community, the Young Adult Leadership Lab provides funding, training, and ongoing support for churches that want to creatively engage young adults in their twenties.

Thriving Communities

The Westmont Center for Thriving Communities gathers area churches to explore how we can see and do the work God calls us to here on California’s Central Coast.

Liberal Arts Ambassadors

Westmont's Liberal Arts Ambassadors are first-generation college students who are trained to see and share with others the full value of a liberal arts education.

Lectures & Discussions

The Gaede Institute co-sponsors a variety of public lectures, conversations, and events.