The Catholic Studies Graduate Program is
Newman’s genius loci can arguably be understood not so much as “place as place” but “place as people,” yet the place itself serves a role. It is a great advantage that St. Thomas Catholic Studies has a place in beautiful Sitzmann Hall, that its professors are there in community, that it has students there in community. Online students will ever benefit from that, even at a distance. Newman speaks of students being “the gainers by living among those and under those who represent the whole circle,” ( Idea , 101) and we consider that abundantly true in the case of Catholic Studies. The place and people, the genius loci, of St. Thomas Catholic Studies informs the content of all our classes and the character of our whole community. And sometimes the genius loci extends out from Sitzmann Hall, nurturing friendships at conferences and out-of-state student meetups.
Would Newman support online university education? That must remain an open question. But it is clear that those seeking to develop enriching online educational opportunities would benefit from reflecting on Newman’s principles and insights – and holding fast to the ideals of university education he articulates. If online university education is to offer something of value, it must look not just to technologies and techniques, but more importantly, to the true ends of education. Dr. Erika Kidd is the director of the St. Thomas Catholic Studies Graduate Program. Gerriet Suiter ’19 CSMA is program manager for the new Department of Catholic Studies at Duquesne University and a scholar at the National Institute of Newman Studies.
pleased to offer a variety of online and on-ground courses during the spring 2021 semester: Philosophy Catholics Need (Online) , Dr. Cathy Deavel Science and Catholicism (HyFlex instruction) , Dr. Peter Distelzweig Augustine’s City of God , Dr. John Boyle
Crisis in the Church , Dr. Robert Kennedy The Catholic Novel , Dr. Ray MacKenzie
For more information about theOnlineMaster’s in Catholic Studies courses and other program options, visit our new website: link.stthomas. edu/onlinegradcathstudies
St. Thomas Lumen Winter 2020 Page 17
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