Julia Young is a child of Catholic University, where her family roots go deep. Her father, Malcolm Young, J.D. 1974, graduated from the law school, and her mother, Robin Darling Young, subsequently began teaching in the School of Theology (today, the School of Theology and Religious Studies). As a child who spent many hours on campus, Julia enjoyed pretending she was a student here — they seemed so grown up!

The fantasy became real when she enrolled. She graduated summa cum laude from the University in 2001, went on to earn graduate degrees from New York University and the University of Chicago, and then returned as an assistant professor in the Department of History in 2011. She was granted tenure and promoted to associate professor in 2017.

“What surprised me when I came back is how young college students are,” Young said. “Now, I see students here as if they’ve just left the nest for the first time; they’re popping their heads up and looking out into the world.”

The girl who dreamed of being older is now a professional woman who sometimes looks back wistfully at her younger self.

“Sometimes I teach in classrooms where I took a class 20 years ago,” Young said, “and I have this dreadful sense of how much I’ve forgotten.”

Her research interests include Mexican and Latin American history, the Catholic Church in Latin America, and global migrations.

“I try to introduce students to some issues and historical events that they didn’t know about, and get them to think in new ways.”

To read a more extensive Q-and-A with Young, visit the CatholicU Magazine website