Login
Our Mission Three Models of Education Five Pillar Methodology Environments of Learning Welcome Message The Culture The People
-1
MySQL Error: Unknown database 'gwconlin_gw'
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected

About GWU

-1
MySQL Error: Unknown database 'gwconlin_gw'
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected

Our Mission

Three Models of Education

Five Pillar Methodology

Environments of Learning

Welcome Message

The Culture

The People

 

Who was George Wythe?

George Wythe was the first law professor in America, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and a delegate to the Constitutional Convention. He was the mentor to Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, James Monroe, Henry Clay and "enough other Founding Fathers to populate a small standing army," as Professor Forrest McDonald put it.

Biographer Robert Peterson summarized some of Wythe's major achievements:

"Often working quietly behind the scenes in the classroom or in his chambers, Wythe helped lay the foundation for the limited, Constitutional government that brought forth America's free enterprise system... Teaching both by example and precept, Wythe might be called 'America's Teacher of Liberty.' At the same time, his contribution to the legal profession as America's first professor of law earns him the title of(The Father of American Jurisprudence."

"Wythe's chief aim as an educator was to train his students for leadership. In a letter to his friend John Adams in 1785, Wythe wrote that his purpose was to 'form such characters as may be fit to succeed those which have been...useful in the national councils of America.' ...Mr. Wythe's School... produced a generation of lawyers, judges, ministers, teachers, and Statesmen who helped fill the need for leadership in the young nation."

His success is evident in the contribution of his graduates: he taught two United States Presidents, two Supreme Court Justices and over thirty Governors, Senators, Congressmen, Ambassadors and Judges. His methods were simple: students read the classics and were required to orally discuss what they had learned and how it applied to personal life and world events.

He questioned students about their readings and required both deep insight and clarity in their answers. Research, writing, thinking and public speaking skills were practiced, mentored and mastered. Another biographer described him as:

"One of the most learned legal characters of the present age...He is remarkable for his exemplary life and universally esteemed for his good principles. No man, it is said, understands the history of government better than Mr. Wythe..."

"N0 man ever left behind him a character more venerated than George Wythe. His virtue was of the purest tint; his integrity inflexible and his justice exact; of warm patriotism, and, devoted as he was to liberty and the natural and equal rights of man, he might truly be called the Cato of his country..."

Perhaps his student Thomas Jefferson said it best:

"He was my ancient master, my earliest and best friend, and to him I am indebted for first impressions which have [been] the most salutary on the course of my life."

 

-1
MySQL Error: Unknown database 'gwconlin_gw'
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected
-1
MySQL Error: No database selected

Copyright © 2002-2014 George Wythe University

Newsroom     |     Newsletter Archive     |     Ways to Give     |     Contact Us