Featured Student

As an English major in the honors program, I’ve also spent the past 4 years as a member of the Catholic Studies Minor. While my initiation into the Catholic Studies program basically consisted of Fr. Bosco sitting me down in his office and, after finding out I was an English major and in the honors program, signing me up for the minor, it’s become one of the best components of my college years. Through the Catholic Studies program I’ve been able to connect with some great people both in ministry and faculty, as well as make several new friends in the other CAS minors. And now in my fourth and final year the Catholic Studies program has not just provided me with a set of classes to take, but given me a vehicle for personal growth and enrichment through various opportunities. I’ve been able to serve as a Teaching Assistant for a freshman seminar with Dr. Murphy, something that, as an English major not in the education program, I never thought I would have the opportunity to do. I was granted a research fellowship through the Catholic Heritage department, in which I get to research how the battlefield experience affects Catholic soldiers. As the daughter of WWII scholar, I couldn’t have chosen a better topic.  I’ve even had the pleasure of being able to work with Fr. Garanzini personally at the recent “Catholic Q&A” on his background in psychology, in which I learned that he makes homemade pear sorbet. This year I’m a member of the Catholic Studies executive council, a role that the freshman sitting in Fr. Bosco’s office never would have imagined holding.  I’m sure, had I not been a member of the Catholic Studies program, that I wouldn’t have even known about these opportunities, let alone be in a position to take advantage of them. The minor is unique from others in the sense that its goal is not purely educational betterment, but driven by the desire for multifaceted growth of the individual. I’ve learned that LUREC is not only the place where the chickens live and the best food is served, but a space that consistently surprises me with the spiritual peace and connection I feel there. I’ve learned that in the classroom, instructors of Catholic Studies courses are more concerned with our reflection and thought process than what the right answers are. I’ve learned that running a Loyola Q&A involves the terrifying experience of making 6 boxes of mac’n’cheese in one pot and requires not only the ability to speak in front of others, but crank out a large quantity of grilled cheese sandwiches in a short span of time. Above all, the Catholic Studies program has given me the experiences and the tools to grow from the high school senior I was when I entered, to the almost adult I am now, ready to take on whatever the real world throws at me next.