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Faith and Learning Scholars Program

 “At Villanova, the Spirit comes alive through the students, faculty, staff, administrators, and Augustinian Friars who are united in a passionate pursuit of knowledge and service to others. This mutual commitment to Veritas, Unitas, Caritas – Truth, Unity, Love – serves as a living embodiment of the University’s Catholic and Augustinian mission and creates an environment that fosters exciting opportunities for learning and growth.”
Fr. Peter Donohue, OSA

In order to nurture and bring this visionary statement to life, the Center for Faith and Learning hosts dinners at which the 3 communities of Student Scholars and Faculty Mentors have the opportunity to discuss assigned academic readings as they:

  • explore the vocation of the mind and the depths of the Spirit within the context of community.
  • promote critical faith inquiry through open dialogue in a supportive community.

The Faith and Learning Scholars program is divided into 3 communities: sophomores, juniors and seniors. Faculty Mentors and Student Scholars together will:

  • discuss what it means to be engaged in a search for truth,
  • be dedicated to the pursuit of the intellectual life,
  • explore ways to balance contemplation and activity, and
  • consider one’s current and future potential for service to society

These are the readings Scholars and Mentors discuss during the dinners:

2019 - 2020 Academic Year:

2018 - 2019 Academic Year:

  • Fall 2018 - "Exiles from Eden: Religion and the Academic Vocation in America" by Mark R. Schwehn (Ch. 3 - Spirited Inquiry)
    -  Leading Discussion Question for evening

  • Late Fall 2018 - "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" by Flannery O'Connor
    -  Audio of Flannery O'Connor reading "A Good Man Is Hard To Find"
    -  Leading Questions

  • Winter 2018-2019 - "The Screwtape Letters: Letters I, II, XXV, XXVII" by C.S. Lewis 
    - Leading Questions for Screwtape Letters

  • Spring 2019 - "Letter to an Aspiring Intellectual: Outlines of the Life of the Mind" by Paul J. Griffiths; First Things: May 2018

    Leading Questions for "Letter to an Aspiring Intellectual"

2017 - 2018 Academic Year:

  • Spring - "Character and Vocation" by Douglas and Rhoda Jacobsen (Ch. 10 - No Longer Invisible: Religion in University Education)
  • Winter - "Why Believe?" by John Cottingham  (Ch. 1 - Belief & its Benefits)
  • Late Fall - "Habits of the Mind: Intellectual Life as a Christian Calling" by James W. Sire  (Ch. VII - The Intellectual Disciplines)
  • Fall - "What a Student Owes His Teacher" by James V. Schall, SJ  and "Convictions" by Douglas and Rhoda Jacobsen (Ch. 9 - No Longer Invisible: Religion in University Education)

2016-2017 Academic Year:

  • Spring 2017 - "Courage & Calling: Embracing Your God-given Potential" by Gordon Smith
  • Winter 2017 - "Augustine and Liberal Education" by Kim Pattenroth and Kevin Hughes (editors)
  • Late Fall - "Faith and the Life oif the Intellect" by Curtis Hancock and Brendan Sweetman
  • Fall - "St. Augustine: Continuum Library of Educational Thought" by Ryan Topping

St. Thomas Villanova III (Current Sophomores):

  • Allison Baroni
  • Anthony Berna
  • Victoria Bock
  • Sofia Bottini
  • Jared Brewer
  • Cecelia Bushway
  • Andrew Ceonzo
  • Lucy Cobble
  • Pietro Delfanti
  • Dana Fahey
  • Lindsay Gallagher
  • Daniel C. Gorman
  • Clarissa Griffith
  • Erin Hanlon
  • Elizabeth Kelly
  • Julia Klembara
  • Elizabeth Liedtka
  • Cole Marcuccio
  • Jennie Meagher
  • Kelly Montesi
  • Julia Nema
  • Grace Ogden
  • Chiara Rego
  • Grace Roberto
  • Dylan Sawyer
  • Sydney Stewart
  • Marco Vazquez
  • Julia Woo
  • Matthew Ziarnik
St. Augustine III Community (Current Seniors):
  • Caroline Arnold
  • Alyssa Balzarotti
  • Shea Blake
  • Jack Brenner
  • Abigail Carr
  • Alexa DeLeon
  • Brad deJesus
  • Marikate Desrosiers
  • Chris Deucher
  • Christina Dietzler
  • Matthew Dinehart
  • Gianna Dolan
  • Alysia Donohue
  • Anthony Eells
  • Nicholas Felix
  • Eileen Gaffney
  • Hunter Gaudio
  • Michael Grostas
  • Joshua Guevin
  • Ryan Henderson
  • Grant Hougo
  • MacKensie Jorgenson
  • Julie Kasunic
  • Jillian Kemble
  • Margaret Liedtka
  • Jimmy Lorenz
  • Daniel McDonough
  • Madelyn McQuillan
  • Luca Mellor
  • Meagan Murray
  • Meghan O'Hara
  • Elizabeth Pace
  • Hannah Rao
  • Maura Rose
  • Paul Sarles
  • Emilia Scalaro
  • Emily Spahn
  • Frances Steadman
  • Amanda Vasilakis
  • Hannah Weiss

St. Monica III Community (Current Juniors):

  • Kevin Abo
  • Sarah Baghdo
  • Lilian Bui
  • Gabriel Calvo
  • Michael Chadwell
  • Juliana Cosenza
  • Gregory Damas
  • Ha Dinh
  • Felicity Evans
  • Barbara Fiedorowicz
  • Jacob Galgano
  • Ryan Gallagher
  • Rebekah Hamblett
  • Lauren Hurley
  • Kai Ji
  • Evan Kohlsaat
  • Annelise Laughlin
  • Daphney Lebrun
  • Haley McClure
  • Erin McGarry
  • Karen McGuire
  • Lindsey McKula
  • Maria Molina
  • Alexandra Molino
  • Austin Nance
  • Tiffany Narvaez
  • Katherine (Kit) Neville
  • Anthony Petrosino
  • Kayleigh Purcell
  • Jack Riedl
  • Andrea Romano
  • Christopher Rose
  • Julia Rowan
  • Mikaela Sanson
  • Jessica Sardina
  • Dominic Sceski
  • Eliana Uriona
  • Christine Wiedenhoft
  • Shannon White
  • Grace Wittenberg
  • Dylon Wynne
  • Justin Yagozinski

St. Monica III Community (Mentors to current Juniors):

  • Luca Cottini (Romance Languages and Literature)
  • Allison Covey (Ethics)
  • Kevin DePrinzio (Theology & Religious Studies
  • Edward Fitzpatrick (Astrophysics & Planet Sciences)
  • Kenneth Fleischer (Theology & Religious Studies)
  • Brett Grainger (Theology & Religious Studies)
  • Gregory Grimes (Augustine & Culture Seminar)
  • Margaret Grubiak (Humanities)
  • Lowell Gustafson (Political Science)
  • Keith Hendeson (Geology & the Environment)
  • Jerome Heppelmann (Finance)
  • Marylu Hill (Augustine & Culture Seminar)
  • Kevin Hughes (Theology & Religious Studies)
  • Helen Lafferty (Education and Counseling)
  • James Mendez (Nursing)
  • Kaitlyn Muller (Mathematics & Statistics)
  • Manuel Nunez (Management & Operations)
  • Tracy Oliver (Nursing)
  • Michael Peters (Accountancy)
  • Theresa Rissell (Economics)
  • Ann Scheve (Nursing)
  • Juanita Weaver (Communications)
  • Carol Weingarten (Nursing)
  • Robert West (Accountancy)
  • Jennifer Yost (Nursing)
St. Thomas Villanova II Community (Mentors to current Sophomores)
  • Guy Aiken  (ACS)
  • Angelina Arcamore  (Nursing)
  • Charles Ashley  (Math & Stats)
  • Gerald Beyer  (Theology)
  • Craig Carpenter  (ACS)
  • Noel Dolan  (ACS, English)
  • David Fiorenza  (Economics
  • Fr. Allan Fitzgerald, OSA  (Theology)
  • Audra Goodnight  (Ethics)
  • Marta Guron  (Chemistry)
  • Edward Hastings  (Theology, Religious Studies)
  • Rebeka Karrant (Electrical Engineering, Computers)
  • Peter Koch  (Philosophy)
  • Jeffrey Koller  (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Stephen Liedtka  (Accountancy)
  • Katherine Lucatorto  (Nursing)
  • Linda Maldonado  (Nursing)
  • Susan Meyers (Nursing)
  • Connie Murphy (Chemistry
  • Stephen Napier (Philosophy)
  • Betty Patch  (ACS)
  • Darren Poley  (ACS)
  • Jim Reaves  (Management & Operations)
  • Kerry San Chirico  (Theology; Religious Studies)
  • Dana Saxon  (Physics)
  • Christina Whitehouse  (Nursing)
St. Augustine III Community (Mentors to current Seniors)
  • Christopher Barnett (Theology)
  • Sherry Burrell (Nursing)
  • Peter Busch (ACS)
  • Paul Camacho (ACS)
  • Fr. Francis Caponi, OSA (Theology)
  • Ian Clausen (ACS)
  • Christopher Daly (ACS)
  • Seth Matthew Fishman (Edication & Counseling)
  • Robert Giuliano (Chemistry)
  • Sunny Gaye Hallowell (Nursing)
  • Frank Hampton (Environmental Engineering)
  • Kathleen Iacocca (Management & Operations)
  • Jennifer Joyce (English, Irish Studies, ACS)
  • Nancy Kelley (ACS)
  • Mary Kelly (Economics)
  • Fr. Martin Laird, OSA (Theology)
  • Ross Lee (Sustainable Engineering)
  • Bette Mariani (Nursing)
  • Steven McGuire (ACS)
  • James Murdoch (ACS: Ethics)
  • Melissa O'Connor (Nursing)
  • Nancy Sharts-Hopko (Nursing)
  • Robert Styer (Mathematics, Statistics)
  • Joseph Toscano (Psychology)

How have the readings helped you?

  • "The readings helped me to delve deeper into issues of faith and reason that I had not previously thought about."
  • "Depending on the reading, it has given me some new perspectives to think about and explore more for myself."
  • "The readings, though often not fully thought provoking, are a great jumping off point for discussing how faith is involved in my everday life.  The most helpful part of the program is realizing how there is always room for faith in the day to day happenings of life."
  • "The reading has helped me reflect on various aspects of my life that I otherwise typically overlook. Whether it be vocation, calling, prayer, or centering, the readings help provide insight on topics that are hard to bring up and harder to force yourself to think about. They also help make a starting point for a conversation during dinner."
  • "The readings have provided me with an insight as to how to live a faith-filled life while going about my daily activities and pursuing my passions in school and work."

What is your favorite part of being a Scholar?

  • "Getting a chance to discuss faith with people from all different backgrounds."
  • "Intergenerational dialogue with other members of the Villanova community - a real conversation over good food.

How has being a scholar in the Faith and Learning Scholars community helped you?

  • "Being a scholars in the Faith and Learning Scholars community has given me the ability to develop relationships with faculty mentors as well as other students who are interested in discussing matters of faith and reason."

How has the Scholar and Mentor relationship helped you?

  • "My mentor helped show me how these discussions will remain important in the years beyond graduation and how to keep them a part of my
  • "My mentor has allowed me to gain an understanding of how you can definitely live a principled life regrdless of occupation. Honestly, my mentor has been an immense inspiration as a woman committed to her faith and job. Faith is something that appears ever present to her regardless of how busy or overwhelmed she may become."

How has the spiritual support the Center for Faith and Learning provided helped you?

  • "The Center for Faith and Learning has cultivated my faith by challenging me and offering me opportunities for prayer and discussion. I have found the prayer trees during Advent to be especially meaningful, as I pray for another member of the community, and someone prays for me.
2019 Senior Scholars were recognized at the program's final dinner-dialogue of the year on April 2, 2019. Congratulations to our Graduates and many thanks to our Faculty Mentors who have completed their 3 year service to our program.
Center for Faith and Learning  Logo

Beth Hassel, Director
Suzanne Teleha, Admin. Asst. (parttime)

Corr Hall, Rooms 3 and 4 
(610) 519–3261

Student Applications for the
CF&L Scholar program:

The Application Process is now closed for
the 2020-2021 academic year.

We continue to accept
FACULTY MENTOR Applications:
Please Click HERE
to continue this process.