Zollikon Institute


Malone University has partnered with the newly formed Zollikon Institute of Holmes County, Ohio. Malone is partnering for the accredited portion of the program being developed for members of the Amish and Mennonite communities.

The Zollikon Institute is a non-profit organization that provides contemporary skills-training relevant to our changing world within an Anabaptist context. Holmes County native, historian, author, and educator Norita Yoder will serve as director of the combined programs. She earned a bachelor’s degree in history at The Ohio State University and a master’s degree from Yale University in the History of Christianity.

“My collegiate experience allowed me to feel the joy of learning, as well as the difficulty of crossing cultural barriers to access that learning,” said Yoder. “My desire is to make learning available to our Anabaptist communities and to find ways to cross the cultural boundaries in order to better facilitate education and career training among the Amish and Amish-Mennonite groups. We named the Zollikon Institute after a village near Zurich, Switzerland where the 16th-century Anabaptist movement emerged. It was a place where faith and learning came together in a changing world and was walked out in the shoe-leather of life.”

Malone President David King, who was raised in the Mennonite church and grew up in Wayne and Holmes counties, explains that Yoder’s vision for the Zollikon Institute aligns with the mission of Malone and the program is filling a need for the Plain Community.

“The Anabaptist community in our region has a need for educational opportunities that are deemed trustworthy, safe, and faith-aligned,” said King. “We are the perfect partner to fill that need. From its founding, Malone has welcomed students from all backgrounds. We respect, welcome, and mentor students to prepare them to serve their communities, their churches, and the world. Our partnership with the Zollikon Institute is born of God’s providence and rich common ground that includes shared vision, shared values, shared objectives, and strengths that dovetail well together, as well as a shared desire that our outcomes honor and glorify God.”

Yoder will partner with Malone faculty to develop the accredited portion of the programs to be offered at the Amish and Heritage Center in Berlin, Ohio.

“We want to equip the young person who needs to move into the future, but it’s not just the young person,” said Yoder. “We want to equip people of all ages with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive in a rapidly changing world. In doing so, we don’t lose our faith in God, instead our faith in God becomes sure, more steadfast.”

Inaugural classes of the partnership are expected to be offered this fall. More information will be shared as program offerings are finalized.