On January 15 through 17, Dean Bill Henk and Dr. Martin Scanlan attended the first conference of the Catholic Higher Education Collaborative (CHEC) at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Dr. Jennifer Maney, Institutional Coordinator for the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium (GMCEC), whose office resides in the College of Education also participated, as did Father Joseph O’Keefe, a member of the Marquette University Board of Trustees and Dean of the Lynch School of Education at Boston College.
The conference theme was “The Immigrant Church: How Can Catholic Higher Education Assist K-12 Catholic Schools?” Among the distinguished speakers at the conference were:
Father Stephen Privett, S.J., President, University of San Francisco
Brother Michael Collins, President, DeLaSalle High School
Father Greg Boyle, S.J., Executive Director, Homeboy Industries
Dr. Anthony Bryk, President, The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
Father Robert Lawton, S.J., President, Loyola Marymount University
Each address served to inform and inspire the audience of nearly 80 invitees. These individuals were drawn from across the country and represented an impressive array of institutions and organizations deeply interested in Catholic education.
The Catholic Higher Education Collaborative grew out of the National Conversation on Catholic Education which was co-hosted by the Carnegie Foundation and the University of Notre Dame in September of 2007. That meeting had the related goals of: (1) leveraging resources nationally to sustain K-12 Catholic schools and (2) legitimizing Catholic education as an emerging field of scholarship. With these goals in mind, the CHEC plans to offer five more conferences over the next three years, and the host institutions and themes will be:
Loyola University Chicago – The Formation of Catholic School Leaders
Catholic University of America – Catholic Identity and Faith Formation
Boston College – Academic Excellence
Marquette University and Alverno College (representing the GMCEC) – Catholic School Governance
Notre Dame – Affordability, Access, and Stewardship
Charter members of the CHEC have been Alverno College, Boston College, Catholic University, Loyola Chicago, Loyola Marymount, Marquette, Notre Dame, and the University of San Francisco. Efforts will be made to expand the CHEC Board and its institutional members, to mount a CHEC website, and to produce a themed issue of the Journal of Catholic Education devoted to the topic of immigration and its impact on the Church.
Commenting on the conference, Dean Henk noted, “The event represented a superb opportunity for Drs. Maney, Scanlan, and me to learn from some of the finest minds in Catholic education today. We also had the chance to share our work with the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium informally, and it was gratifying to see how enthusiastically our partnership was received.”