The Catholic University of America

Jan. 20, 2011

CUA Education Scholar Cites Uniqueness of Garvey's Inauguration

  Merylann Schuttloffel

According to CUA education scholar Merylann Schuttloffel, the Jan. 25 inauguration of John Garvey as the 15th President of The Catholic University of America will reflect his unique role in American Catholic life.

“His is the voice that raises the quality of Catholic scholarship,” said Schuttloffel, chair of the Department of Education and associate professor of educational administration and policy studies, in a talk Jan. 18 at the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center.
Schuttloffel, who also serves as director of CUA’s Catholic Educational Leadership and Policy Studies doctoral program, is a recognized expert on leadership in Catholic education and the formation and mission of Catholic identity in educational settings.
Part of CUA’s Dialogue on Demand series, her speech “Pomp and Special Circumstances: The Inauguration of a CUA President,” traced the unique role of CUA’s president to the historical role of Catholic University in American Catholicism in the late 19th century.
  Related Links

> Inauguration main page

> Program and Repertoire for the Inauguration Ceremony

> Inaugural Events Calendar

> Video of Schuttloffel's talk

CUA was founded by Pope Leo XIII on April 10, 1887. “At that point in American history, Catholics were not integrated into WASP society. They were a separate group, and not at the higher strata of society,” Schuttloffel said. “The idea of building a university made a statement about the importance of learning among Catholic leaders.”
Garvey has sought to emphasize CUA’s significance as a research university. According to Schuttloffel, he is following in the footsteps of the university’s founders, as CUA has emphasized research from its inception. “The founders took the emerging German research model -- a style that emphasized the practical usefulness of university learning as well as its theoretical usefulness,” she said. “The founders intentionally located the university in Washington, the decision-making center of the country.”
During a Q-and-A session after the speech, Ryan-Allen McKinney, associate director of campus activities, asked what students should look for as distinctive about the inauguration. “Certainly the fact that the inauguration takes place in the context of a Mass is a giant sign that we’re different from other universities,” she said, noting that the Mass will take place at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
Schuttloffel added that the inauguration will look different from those of other universities. “There will be a lot of gold and white colors, which are the papal colors that we saw three years ago [during Pope Benedict XVI's visit to CUA]. There will be a significant number of priests and bishops,” she said. “And certainly you will see members of the houses of study surrounding us in the Brookland neighborhood, often referred to as ‘Little Rome.’”
The lecture was presented by the Office of Campus Activities. The Dialogue on Demand series features workshops by university faculty that are tied to news events, including Garvey’s inauguration.

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