Archive for January, 2010


Amy Burritt: America Through the Eyes of a Student

January 14, 2010

Born on January 19, 1983, Amy Suzanne Burritt was raised in northern Michigan in a close-knit homeschooling family. Many homeschool families incorporate the educational benefits of travel into their lifestyle. Nevertheless, 12-year-old Amy Burritt at first thought her parents had gone crazy when she was told that they planned to sell their share of the family business, rent a motor home, and roam the country for a year. But later she would recall, “It’s hard to put into words the way homeschooling has shaped me. Homeschooling provided the opportunity to do these things. Being able to spend the time with my mom, dad, and Jon has been great.”

In the summer of 1995, the Burritt family – consisting of Amy, her younger brother Jonathan, and parents Kurt and Emily – started out on the adventure of a lifetime. They would leave their Traverse City home, drive from coast to coast, and fly to Alaska and Hawaii on a 50 state/50 week tour of the United States … from the forests of the Great Lakes, across deserts, over twisting mountain passes, through urban jungles of the east, past Southern battlefields, and among giant redwood groves of the Pacific coast. To focus their travels on learning about American history, geography, and government, they set a goal to meet the governors of all 50 states.

Amy’s favorite subjects were reading and writing. While on the nationwide tour, she studied interviewing and public speaking to prepare for meeting with the governors. Besides being an interviewer and gatherer of information, Amy was the official trip documenter and faithfully recorded daily events in a journal each night. In addition, by writing down ahead of time all that she hoped to accomplish along the way, Amy learned that “if you can dream it, you can do it.” Amy’s learning journey also taught her about compassion for others and the value of persistence.

As a result of the trip, Amy realized that she had learned a lot of valuable information about America. Upon arriving back home, Amy wrote a book about her adventures with the help of her mom and a writer friend. In May 1998, when Amy was 15 years old, the Burritt family self-published “My American Adventure: 50 States in 50 Weeks.” It was soon republished by HarperCollins/Zondervan. Adapted from the journal she kept on the road, her book is a travel guide, history text, and personal memoir that provides a firsthand account of the people and places she discovered on her American odyssey. Her story is interesting and heartwarming, imbued with a spirit of adventure that makes readers want to go out and do something themselves. It will also inspire teens to set high goals and keep reaching to achieve them.

Amy’s sojourn reads like a series of extremely well-written “What I Did on My Summer Vacation” essays. She cruised through the streets of New York City in a jeep, and walked the path of George Washington at Valley Forge. In Vermont, she narrowly escaped falling down a waterfall. She made friends with homeless children at a Rhode Island campground. She watched bighorn sheep butt heads in South Dakota. She swam with dolphins in Hawaii, and saw the Mendenhall Glacier in Alaska. Besides describing her many adventures, Amy also reflects candidly on personal struggles and relates amusing incidents, such as when her dad knocked off the 34-foot motor home’s television antenna.

Amy’s meetings with the governors provided some of her most vivid memories. The governors were as diverse in temperament as the states they came from. A few refused her request to meet them. Some curtly offered little more than a handshake. Others warmly granted interviews in which they reflected on their lives and work. Governor David Beasley of South Carolina invited her to his Christmas Open House at the governor’s mansion. Amy personally met 44 out of 50 governors, and she was able to get all 50 governors to sign her and her brother’s sweatshirt mementoes of the trip.

“I’ve learned that if you set your mind to it, you can accomplish anything,” Amy said. “But I didn’t know just what I was getting into at first.” The trip’s low point was a gloomy Easter in Alaska. Amy was tired of living on the road and interviewing governors; she just wanted to go home. But when her mom reminded her that “we aren’t quitters,” Amy resolved to keep going because she didn’t want to have to tell her friends that she had given up. Rather than admit failure, Amy decided to take charge. “That’s when it became MY project,” she said. “I saw real purpose behind it.” Her father adds, “That was the real turning point. She made a determination to finish what she’d begun and from then on you could see a change in her. We left with a girl and came home with a young lady.”

For her next adventure back at home, Amy switched from writing to music. She worked on expanding her vocal ability, knowledge of the guitar, and songwriting talent. She led her youth group worship band for several years, and was involved in a second church band. Amy also played with other musicians, picking up tips and tricks. At age 17 she recorded a demo CD and began playing in small venues, sometimes picking up paid gigs. Since then, Amy has written hundreds of songs and performed in a wide variety of venues. Her style is an original combination of folk, blues, jazz and pop combined with soothing vocals and engaging lyrics.

Amy attended Michigan State University and graduated in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications. The day after graduation, Amy moved to Asheville, North Carolina, where she started her own graphic design and creative consulting business called Carbonated Creative. Since then, Amy also has been performing in coffehouses around Asheville, where she always enjoys meeting new people. She released her own album in September 2008, and is currently working on turning her garage into a recording studio. Many of her lyrics reflect upon themes of driving, camping, and homelessness, harkening back to her travel experiences: “And we’re heading down the highway / I’m still trying to find my way / home.”

Visit Amy’s website:


The Master’s College

January 14, 2010


The Master’s College (TMC) is a private, non-denominational Christian college located in Santa Clarita, California, 30 miles north of downtown Los Angeles. For over 80 years, TMC has provided quality, Christian liberal arts education to thousands of students around the world. Ranked 3rd in the West for nine consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s Best Colleges in the category of Best Comprehensive Baccalaureate Colleges, TMC is also cited as one of the best values, ranking 4th in the category of “Great Schools, Great Prices.” Under the leadership of president Dr. John MacArthur, TMC provides quality education both on campus and through online distance education.

TMC is one of the academically-strongest evangelical Christian colleges in the nation. TMC offers bachelor’s degrees in over 55 different areas of study, all of which are founded on the Word of God and taught by highly qualified faculty. Academic programs include: Biblical Studies, Business Administration & Management, Computer & Information Science, English, History & Political Studies, Home Economics, Mathematics, Media & Communications, Music, Natural Sciences (Biological, Physical, & Environmental), Physical Education, Pre-Law, Pre-Medicine, and Teacher Education.

Most importantly, the mission of TMC is to empower students for a life of enduring commitment to Christ, biblical fidelity, moral integrity, intellectual growth, and lasting contribution to the Kingdom of God. The school’s motto is “For Christ & Scripture.” TMC has chapel three times a week – every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. It opens with worship, followed by a guest speaker or preacher, focusing mainly on encouraging the students to keep their lives committed to Jesus Christ. Students are only allowed a maximum of six chapel misses per semester.

Men’s and women’s basketball, soccer, baseball, cross-country, golf, tennis and volleyball are all available on the TMC campus, which is situated on 100 acres in a beautiful canyon setting. The campus provides dorms for the students. It is important to note that dorms are not coed. Off campus housing is restricted to married students, part-time students, students over the age of 21, or students who live at home and commute to campus.

The student/teacher ratio averages 16/1. Class sizes range from 30-40 students in lower division classes down to 8-15 students in upper division courses. However, some Bible classes will have close to 100 students. All students – including freshmen – benefit from being taught by exceptional full-time senior faculty members, 70 percent of whom hold doctoral degrees from many of the nation’s most respected graduate schools.

The caliber of TMC students is likewise exceptional. They exhibit high standards in personal character, scholastics, leadership, and performance talents, including music and athletics. According to Katie Meade, Regional Alumni Ambassador for The Master’s College, “One-third of our students come from homeschooling families.” Academically strong 11th & 12th grade students who demonstrate adequate academic capability to be successful in college-level courses may also take online classes at TMC. Applicants must be in general agreement with the TMC Doctrinal Statement, must regularly attend a local evangelical church and provide a pastoral reference from one of the pastors or church leaders, and must be able to give a clear testimony of the basis of his/her salvation and hope of eternal life.

Whether your goal is to become a teacher, start your own software company, pastor a church, or run a PR firm, TMC’s timely, robust liberal arts curriculum provides outstanding career preparation as well as a strong foundation for a lifetime of learning.


CONTACT:   Admissions Department, 800-568-6248 for more information