The Catholic University of America

Andrew Miller

Doing It All in Three Years

As a freshman at Catholic University, Andrew Miller immersed himself in the First-Year Experience (FYE), a program that brings first-year students together in small learning communities that help provide the tools and skills needed for academic and college life success. The program also includes service learning activities, city excursions, a speaker series, and mentoring.

Miller caught the attention of his FYE professors, who nominated him to be an undergraduate fellow, which put him in the position the following year to serve as a peer academic skills support mentor in the Center for Academic Success, where he tutors and mentors freshmen.

“The best part,” says Miller, now a senior, “is getting to know so many other students at the University. Working with them and having open discussions about academics, work, and sometimes just life has been very interesting and rewarding.”

“The Center for Academic Success is the third largest employer of students on campus, and one with a significant footprint of student contact,” says Juliann Winn, associate director in the Center for Academic Success.

“Andrew has been a tremendous role model for other students. He understands the basic challenges of transitioning to college-level academics and has helped many students with their academics during his two years of involvement. The students he has mentored and his peers in the program have been inspired by his character and accomplishments.”

After just three years at CUA, Miller is getting ready to graduate next month. Completing his undergraduate degree in three years “just kind of happened,” says the philosophy major, who is headed to law school in the fall.

Miller came to Catholic University in the fall of 2012 with enough AP credits to forego many required credits in the CUA curriculum. “The people in the School of Philosophy were very helpful working with this situation, which allowed me to take all of the philosophy courses that met my interests.”

In three years, Miller not only completed a philosophy degree, but participated in a number of extracurricular activities and internships as well.

During his freshman year, he interned for Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Mich., and for two semesters in 2014, he interned for Sen. Mitch McConnell, majority leader representing Miller’s home state of Kentucky. “I had the opportunity to work with some policy issues, particularly related to agriculture and energy back home in Kentucky. Among other tasks, I researched and compiled reports on these issues for staff members,” says Miller.

During his senior year, Miller has served as one of three appointed student members of the University’s Academic Senate. “Participating in and listening to discussions with the provost, the President, and all of the deans about the future of the University has been really exciting. I’ve gained a lot of perspective about how much effort goes into running the University — something that may get lost in the daily shuffle of being an undergrad.”

Miller says his biggest extracurricular project during his time at CUA was founding The Crosier in 2013, a student-run journal of pro-life, academic articles, with his friend, senior Liam McDonough, who serves as the journal’s editor. Miller serves as executive editor.

“Our goal is to engage readers in a dialogue on Catholic teaching concerning salient issues in the world,” explains Miller.

In 2014, The Crosier was named “Best Undergraduate Journal of Letters” by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. The journal beat out such contenders as Harvard’s Salient, Yale’s Light and Truth, and Columbia’s Crown and Cross, among many other college journals, for the honor.

Miller, a University Honors Program student, made the dean’s list during all of his semesters and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Eta Sigma honor societies. He has accepted an offer to attend the University of Virginia School of Law, where he was offered the full-tuition Hardy Cross Dillard Scholarship.

“It was a tough decision picking between law school and a graduate program in philosophy, particularly given my satisfaction with my coursework in the School of Philosophy. Ultimately, I gravitated to law school because of my love of public policy, but I won’t rule out a Ph.D. program sometime down the road.

“My philosophy classes and teachers have challenged me to consider many subjects in a different light — everything from metaphysics to the human person as the center of any conversation about law, politics, or policy.”

As he prepares to graduate, Miller says he found in Catholic University a place to “grow in faith and knowledge, and to meet some wonderful people — friends and scholars — who pushed me and challenged me. They are what I am most thankful for and what I will miss the most.”
 

 

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Andrew Miller

Hometown: Louisville, Ky.

Major: Philosophy

Favorite course: Philosophy of Language with Associate Professor Michael Gorman

Favorite place in D.C.: The National Gallery of Art

Favorite book: The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis