funds undergraduate program on work and faith
With a recent $2 million grant from the Lilly Endowment, Boston
College is developing programs and resources designed to encourage
students to integrate faith and career -- to consider their lives'
vocations in the broad sense of the word. Under the direction of
Vice President for University Mission and Ministry Joseph Appleyard,
SJ, the project, called Intersections, will have four focal points:
a voluntary junior-year reorientation program; undergraduate internships
in church ministry; seminars for faculty and staff; and an interactive
According to the terms of the project, vocation does not necessarily
mean a calling to the priesthood or to a religious order. "Every
person has a vocation," says Fr. Appleyard. "The challenge
is to find answers to the questions, What am I going to do with
my life, and what values do I want my life and career to represent -- whether
that career is in business, scientific research, the arts, teaching,
church ministry, or any other field."
The planning stage has involved a wide cross-section of the University
community. One participant, Carroll School of Management Associate
Dean for Undergraduates Richard Keeley, says, "It became clear
that we all -- faculty, staff, and students -- are involved in an ongoing
discovery of vocation. For relatively few will the discovery of
vocations be straightforward."
The third-year reorientation program begins in the summer before
junior year, a pivotal time in students' development. Students will
be asked to think about talents and gifts they have discovered in
themselves or that others have recognized in them during their first
two years at BC, and how the University might help them in developing
these talents toward a possible career path.
The internships in church ministry -- which will be offered in the
summer and the academic year -- will fill a gap for BC undergraduates,
says Fr. Appleyard, who notes that there are plenty of internships
or field placements in business, communication, nursing, and education,
but that the area of ministry tends to be overlooked. Ministry internships
will include opportunities to work in parishes, dioceses, national
church organizations, religious philanthropic foundations, and religious
"Our goal," says Fr. Appleyard, "is to produce graduates
of Boston College who have a clear sense of how their talents match
the world's needs."
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