The Personal Formation Subcommittee was charged with examining, assessing, and making recommendations to improve how effectively the University influences the attitudes and experiences of its students, and other members of the community, as related to matters of race, culture, and faith.
This subcommittee began its work by revisiting the University mission statement, leading to a recommendation to review and potentially update the statement to reflect a commitment to the whole person.
Additionally, the team reflected upon the experiences and contexts that influence students before arriving at the University, noting that “many students’ primary and secondary educational institutions and neighborhoods were not populated by people of different races, religions, and socio-economic backgrounds.” Today’s students are influenced by the culture and find great “meaning and purpose in serving others.”
Three recommendations from the subcommittee focus on building connection and understanding between students. The proposed experiences would focus on a number of outcomes, including strengthened communications; servant leadership; awareness, deeper respect for, and appreciation of cultures, life experiences, and heritages, especially those that are different from one’s own; and an understanding of personal formation as a lifelong experience that benefits not only oneself, but our community.
The subcommittee’s final recommendation would help support the Center for Cultural Engagement’s (CCE) transition program for first-generation students, provide advice for student organizations, and support programs and events that promote student development and community building.
Hold a President’s Weekend focused on servant leadership that provides an opportunity for student leaders to engage one another, the President and other University administrators, faculty, and staff in formal and informal settings off-campus.
Create an assistant director position for the CCE.
The University’s Board of Trustees should revisit the University’s mission statement, aims, and goals in order to make systemic changes that clearly articulate the University’s role in educating the whole person, describing the community to which we aspire, and conveying how this relates to working for the common good.
Offer personal formation not only during August Orientation, but throughout the academic year to expand student understanding of the relationship between the University community and Brookland; greater Washington, D.C.; and global communities.
Create a “Welcome to THE Catholic University of America” community experience, which would serve as the launch of a personal-formation year. These experiences would be held over several late spring/ early summer weekends prior to online summer Orientation from the Division of Student Affairs.