Making the Case for Catholic College
Two writers in the National Catholic Register recently made the case for attending Catholic college.
In a piece called “Youth Synod Needs Good News from Faithful Catholic Colleges,” Kelly Salomon quotes Benedictine College President Minnis to make the case for Catholic education.
“October’s Synod on Young People comes amid growing awareness of the Catholic Church’s many failures to teach, inspire, and even protect its young,” she writes. “But if the synod fathers are looking for good news, there’s plenty to be found at America’s most faithful Catholic colleges—and these can be examples for the entire Church.”
To show how Catholic colleges “go above and beyond to ensure that students have good role models on campus,” she quotes President Minnis saying:
“I interview every job applicant on campus, and I ask them to explain to me how they see themselves contributing to our mission — not just accept that we have a mission, but how they will support it. I want every man or woman who works for Benedictine College to be someone I hope our students will aspire to be like.”
Even outside the classroom, the campus culture is important, she writes, and quotes Minnis saying the key is to make it “contagious to live the good life” and to let the “good things run wild.”
Meanwhile, in an article called “The Case for Attending a Faithful Catholic College,” Elizabeth Anderson writes: “Many think it unnecessary to attend a Catholic college, especially if they come from a Catholic high school.”
She suggests that attitude is dangerous, and quotes two brothers who work with teens in southern Maryland to prove it.
The first, high school teacher John Olon, says:
“We live in a culture in which the social norms tend to be implicitly contrary to our Catholic understanding of reality and there is always so much more to learn about our faith — I’d even say that we are obligated to learn so much more about it.”
His brother, Rich Olon, a parish youth minister, says, “This will be the first time that a young person will be living away from home and making important decisions on their own … An 18-year-old goes from living at home with pretty constant supervision and guidance, to living at college with none at all … Peer pressure is the strongest influence on a young person’s decision making.”