The roots of education are bitter, but its fruits are sweet,” said Aristotle. Individuals who are ambitious, put effort into their work, and are truly interested in learning understand the meaning of this quote. The hard work, time, money, and every day sacrifices put into everything concerning their education is truly worth it when they come to a deeper and clearer understanding of the challenging concepts of ancient philosophers and theologians, by brilliant men of today, and most importantly of the true faith of the Catholic Church. But where is there a school that encourages its students and drives them to discover truth?
Christendom College is a Roman Catholic liberal arts college where “academic excellence and rigor are expected” and preparation is made for the students’ goal of “restoring all things in Christ.” “The college has a clear vision,” says President Timothy O’Donnell, “We stress academics and Catholicism. …” In 1977, author and historian Dr. Warren Carroll founded this institution during a time when Catholicism was greatly declining in order to provide a truly Catholic education to the students at its four campuses: Front Royal and Alexandria, VA; Donegal, Ireland; and Rome, Italy.
This fully accredited institution (through Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) offers many great opportunities to those looking for an unmistakable Catholic education. Every professor and student is Catholic and 70 percent of the students attend daily mass along with confessions and adoration. “Emphasis is placed on both religious and married vocations,” according to the Cardinal Newman Society, and roughly five percent of graduates go into religious life. But although every person on campus is bound together by the Catholic faith, are they all against things such as LGBT organizations? Yes! Christendom does not at all support or have LGBT organizations on campus thus proving how genuinely Catholic this college truly is and how it differs from most other “Catholic” colleges in the nation.
Although a person’s life should be based on Catholicism, Christendom has many other great features. Unlike some other liberal arts institutions (such as Thomas Aquinas College), it is not a Great Books College but a Scholastic Liberal Arts school with some seminar based but mostly lecture based classes. Classical and Early Christian Studies, English Language and Literature, History, Mathematics, Philosophy, Political Science and Economics, and Theology are the 7 majors offered. But every student takes philosophy, theology, history, literature, math, and science over a two and a half year course regardless of the major they have chosen. Opportunities are available to earn a Masters Degree in Theology. But despite these seemingly odd majors and required classes, after college, many students go out and immediately find jobs. “Generally following, by the next fall (after graduation), job placement is very very high,” said Sam Phillips, Director of Admissions.
But how much would school like this cost to attend? For tuition alone, it costs $24,710 the full 2017-18 academic year. But along with room and board, the total cost is $35,556. But for those who cannot quite afford it, Christendom offers its own independent financial aid. “The College offers financial assistance through its need-based aid and merit-based academic scholarships. Need-based aid consists of loans and the Christendom scholarship,” says Christendom website.
According to the Cardinal Newman Society, “For close to 40 years, Christendom College has made a vital contribution to American Catholic life through its solid spiritual formation.” Here is why IHM students should deeply consider attending this institution: It provides a strong Catholic education rooted in tradition, exposes students to a valuable Catholic setting, and sets a standard to how Catholics should conduct themselves in the oppressive anti- Catholic world that lies before them.