Adult Education: Refreshment on the Rock

Through the open French doors came the sound of fountains splashing and the snip of gardeners cutting back foliage. Inside, men clad in shorts, slacks and sports shirts sat beneath an oak-beamed ceiling. Idyllic? No, pedagogic. The men were policymakers from 35 U.S. business firms, spending six weeks in an atmosphere that is part classroom, part sales conference and part religious retreat at the 25th session of Columbia University's Executive Program in Business Administration.

The campus is at Arden House, high on a ridge of the Ramapos on the west side of...

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