One thing I celebrate about the Carroll experience is the emphasis on teaching students the value of leadership. The Jesuit beliefs that influence the University – strong ethical values and moral integrity – are essential building blocks to prepare our students to go forth in the world with a solid sense of self and a fervent desire to lead. Our students navigate the complex world we live in because our service-based campus environment paired with academic rigor creates the cornerstone that challenges students to live more meaningful and purposeful lives. We teach students to use their moral compass to direct their personal and professional lives.
Our alumni use this compass to exemplify leadership, while completing incredibly important and deeply meaningful work. They pursue personal and professional goals that serve the greater good of humanity. The ethical backbone of a Carroll education has helped shape generations of graduates for more than 125 years. Alumni are able to hear the needs of humanity and communicate effectively on their behalf. Sara Bloomfield ’77G and Travis Roxlau ’92 are two alumni using history to propel a different outcome for the future. Their work at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington creates a life-changing experience for the 1.7 million visitors who walk through the museum’s doors each year. It’s this type of purposeful work that creates indelible memories in young minds, so they can learn from the mistakes of the past and create a better tomorrow.
Another tribute to leadership is taking place much closer to home, right here on campus. Retired Lt. Col. Eric Patterson, director of veterans affairs and international services, is making higher education more attainable for veterans. The transition from military life to a civilian one is oftentimes a difficult task for soldiers coming home from active duty. We’re working to make this transition as smooth as possible by helping students such as Jason Simms ’15 and Michael Snitzer ’16 put their GI Bill to excellent use. Under Patterson’s leadership, the veterans program has grown from accepting 10 GI Bill students two years ago to 37 taking advantage of all that Carroll offers.
Our world is in desperate need of leaders who can overcome what Pope Francis recently described as the globalization of indifference. It’s my hope we reflect on how we educate our students to overcome indifference and help make the world a better place – to be leaders with the knowledge, compassion, and character to help our brothers and sisters throughout the world. Look around – our alumni are the greatest tribute to that kind of leadership.
Yours in Christ,
Robert Niehoff, S.J.