Benedictine College planning to ‘Transform Culture in America’

Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, has embarked on a process that it hopes will make a significant impact.

On April 13, the college gathered industry leaders, thought leaders, and subject matter experts to discuss how the college can Transform Culture in America.

“We have spent 10 years with the goal of building one of the great Catholic colleges in America,” said President Stephen D. Minnis. “Now we are asking the question: Why? What can a great Catholic college do? How can we transform culture in America?”

Nine subcommittees will examine the impact the college can have on culture. These include Commerce and Finance, with banking and business leaders helping plan initiatives with faculty and board members; Technology, with engineers and entrepreneurs proposing ideas; Science and Health Care, gathering leading doctors and scientists, and more.

Nationally known experts will join in the effort. To name a few:

• EWTN’s Raymond Arroyo, author Amy Welborn, journalist Elizabeth Scalia and architect Duncan Stroik will help plan how the college can impact Arts and Media.

• U.S. Rep. Jeff Fortenberry sits on the Civic Life and the Law subcommittee.

• Brad Wilcox of the University of Virginia, Mary Hasson at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, and Rev. Eugene Rivers of Boston’s TenPoint Coalition will help address The Family.

• Patrick Reilly of the Cardinal Newman Society will participate in the Academia subcommittee.

The college has been working since June, 2018, on this project, a follow-up to Benedictine College’s transformative plan “Benedictine 2020: a Vision for Greatness.” Benedictine 2020 built five new academic buildings (including America’s finest small-college STEM building), four new residence halls, a dining hall and a recreation center, and dynamic new academic programs that saw Benedictine College move to a top 15 ranking in U.S. News & World Report.

The Chair of Benedictine College’s board of directors, Jack Newman, said: “The college has a proven track record of success and this is a tremendous opportunity to give back to the communities where our alumni live. These meetings are designed to turn lofty goals into pragmatic, practical solutions and the college is gathering people who excel at that.”

“A college whose motto is Forward, Always Forward, can never be satisfied with past successes,” said President Minnis. “We truly believe God blessed Benedictine College not for our own sake but for the sake of others, and we will be judged on our generosity. So we are brainstorming ways the college’s mission of community, faith, and scholarship can transform culture in America.”

The college’s mission is “The education of men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.” Preparatory materials  for the Transforming Culture meetings note that the mission mirrors the way Benedictines transformed Western culture through community, faith and scholarship.

“Our mission can transform culture in America by modeling community in an age of incivility, spreading faith in an age of hopelessness, and committing to scholarship in a ‘post-truth’ era,” says the Benedictine’s Transforming Culture in America document. 

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Monday
May 20, 2019
Newspaper of the Diocese of Kansas City ~ St. Joseph