Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Cardinal Newman Society

7/6/2011 (4 years ago)

Cardinal Newman Society (

Monsignor Stuart Swetland to Lead the Society's Center for the Advancement of Catholic Higher Education

This is an exciting moment for Catholic colleges," said Cardinal Newman Society president Patrick J. Reilly. "The renewal of Catholic identity is underway, and the Center is at the forefront, researching and analyzing solutions to critical issues in Catholic higher education and identifying and sharing best practices on Catholic campuses."

Rev. Msgr. Stuart Swetland

Rev. Msgr. Stuart Swetland


By Cardinal Newman Society

Cardinal Newman Society (

7/6/2011 (4 years ago)

Published in College & University

Keywords: Catholic education, renewal, Cardinal Newman Society, Monsignor Stuart Swetland, Patrick J. Reilly

MANASSAS, Va. (Cardinal Newman Society) - The Center for the Advancement of Catholic Higher Education, a division of The Cardinal Newman Society, will relocate to Mount St. Mary's University in Emmitsburg, Maryland, under the leadership of Rev. Msgr. Stuart Swetland.

Under the terms of a three-year agreement, the Mount will staff and manage the Center for the Society.

Established in 2008, the Center ( supports mission-centered teaching, policies and programs at Catholic colleges and universities, according to the Vatican constitution, Ex corde Ecclesiae. The Center's recent projects include Assessing Catholic Identity, a handbook to help college leaders evaluate their institutions, as well as several studies helping colleges defend against threats to their religious liberty.

"This is an exciting moment for Catholic colleges," said Cardinal Newman Society president Patrick J. Reilly. "The renewal of Catholic identity is underway, and the Center is at the forefront, researching and analyzing solutions to critical issues in Catholic higher education and identifying and sharing best practices on Catholic campuses."

"We have an extraordinary partner in Mount St. Mary's University, the nation's second-oldest Catholic university. Under the leadership of President Thomas Powell and Vice President for Catholic Identity Msgr. Stuart Swetland, the Mount has demonstrated a firm commitment to a strong Catholic identity.

"For more than three years, Dr. Powell and Msgr. Swetland have been an integral part of a working group of faithful college presidents who have helped lay the foundation for the work the Center undertakes to support strong Catholic identity."

"We are honored that the Cardinal Newman Society has chosen the Mount as the new home of the Center for the Advancement of Catholic Higher Education," says University President Thomas Powell.  "The Center will provide valuable resources to aid Mount St. Mary's and other colleges and universities to strengthen their Catholic identity."

In his capacity as Center executive director, Msgr. Swetland will be tackling key issues in Catholic higher education such as formation programs for new faculty, improvements in core curricula, integrating faith and reason in particular disciplines, reinforcing a presumption of sobriety and chastity on college campuses, and facilitating collaboration among college officials. The Center will also continue to be a leader in addressing the growing threats to the religious liberty of Catholic campuses.

Reilly noted that "Monsignor has extensive pastoral, teaching and leadership experience in higher education, and is a natural fit for leading the Center."

"As Vice President for Catholic Identity and Mission at Mount St. Mary's University, I have been intimately involved with our university's efforts to implement and live in accordance with the letter and the spirit of Ex corde Ecclesiae, Blessed John Paul II's apostolic constitution on Catholic higher education," said Msgr. Swetland. "This constitution offers a beautiful vision of how Catholic universities serve both the Church and the world by being consecrated 'without reserve to the cause of truth' (ECE 4). I believe that the Center for the Advancement of Catholic Education can significantly help our universities in their efforts to fulfill their mission."

"It is crucial," continued Msgr. Swetland, "that the Church be actively present to our young adults during this vitally important stage of development by radiating Jesus Christ in word and sacrament to and for them. The apostolate of Catholic higher education, at its best, serves this purpose. The Center for the Advancement of Catholic Higher Education will aid our universities in their efforts to form the next generation of Catholic leaders."

Msgr. Swetland has three decades of experience in higher education. A graduate of the United States Naval Academy, Msgr. Swetland entered the Catholic Church in 1984 while studying at Oxford University on a Rhodes scholarship. He earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees in politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford; M.Div. and M.A. degrees at Mount St. Mary's Seminary; and S.T.L. and S.T.D. degrees at the Pontifical Lateran University, following coursework at the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1991 for the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois.

For more than a decade, Msgr. Swetland served as Director of the Newman Centers at Bradley University and the University of Illinois. He is the Executive Secretary for the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars and a former theological advisor to the Catholic Conference of Illinois. A regular personality on the Eternal Word Television Network, Msgr. Swetland recently filmed a new season for his series "Catholicism on Campus."

At Mount St. Mary's University, Msgr. Swetland is Vice President for Catholic Identity and Mission. He also holds the Most Rev. Harry J. Flynn Endowed Chair for Christian Ethics and is Director of Homiletics and Pre-Theology at Mount St. Mary's Seminary.

The Cardinal Newman Society ( is a national organization that helps renew and strengthen Catholic identity in Catholic higher education. 


The Cardinal Newman Society is dedicated to renewing and strengthening Catholic identity at America's 224 Catholic colleges and universities.This article is used with permission.


More College & University

Comparing some students to 'Catholic jihadis,' Mount St. Mary College president comes under fire Watch

Image of Mount St. Mary University President Simon Newman said in a memo,

By Adelaide Mena and Matt Hadro, CNA News

Amid uproar over comparing struggling students to bunnies that should be drowned or shot, Mount St. Mary's University president is now under fire for criticizing expressions of the Catholic faith at the school. Emmitsburg, Md. (CNA) - Already facing turmoil, the ... continue reading

The fight for religious liberty: How one Catholic college deals with threats Watch

Image of

By Matt Hadro (CNA/EWTN News)

The future of religious freedom in the United States will one day be in the care of today's college students, so one Catholic college is working to equip them for that struggle. Washington D.C., (CNA/EWTN News) - Wyoming Catholic College is trying to form a "community ... continue reading

4 reasons Catholic education needs your help this year Watch

Image of Are America's Catholic schools being attacked? (Wordpress)


The Catholic education system is coming under attack by a plethora of policies designed to make the hiring process, acceptance of anti-Christian viewpoints, transgender issues and Catholic identity concerns. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Cardinal Newman ... continue reading

Catholic identity or education: Are the top Catholic universities falsely rated by secular standards? Watch

Image of


A list of the top 40 traditional Catholic and Jesuit colleges in America was created, but were they rated fairly? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Newsmax revealed their top forty Catholic and Jesuit colleges in America, but what were their standards?The United ... continue reading

Becoming Divine Mercy: A Mission of Mercy Watch

Image of

By Jessie Tappel, Communications Director at Divine Mercy University

God, the source of all mercy, provides us with an experience so great that we have no choice but to reflect it to our own brother and sister. Mercy calls for an outward response, which is made clear in the examples of the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. You can ... continue reading

UST Breaks Ground on New Center for Science and Health Professions Watch

Image of

By Darnell Miller - University of St. Thomas

The University of St. Thomas, a member of the world-renowned Texas Medical Center, broke ground on a new Center for Science and Health Professions on Nov. 12, 2015. The new facility, containing more than 100,000 square-feet of modern lab space and classrooms, will meet ... continue reading

Religion and Science: The Evolutionary Controversy

Image of

By Kyle Jorstad, Grove City College

Catholic Online welcomes scholarly submissions for consideration, contact Abstract: Though members of the scientific and atheistic community alike often tout science as the downfall of religion, theories regarding Darwinian evolution ... continue reading

Do you love America? What these college professors were caught doing on camera will shock you! Watch

Image of The Constitution codifies many liberties, including the right to shred the Constitution itself.


It should be no surprise that America's colleges and universities are overrun with anti-American liberals who lack all respect for the country and the principles upon which it is founded. In an age where political correctness has run amok, students are indoctrinated by ... continue reading

Catholic Colleges: Tackling Student Loans Ethically


By Caitlin Bootsma

It's almost an assumption in today's world that students will take out a staggering amount of debt to be able to attend a four year university. And, with college costs rising faster than the rate of inflation, 18 year olds are signing themselves up for increasingly ... continue reading

Franciscan nun becomes first woman head of a pontifical university Watch

Image of Sister Melone is an alumnus of the university set up in 1890 in honor of St Anthony, a 13th century saint from Spain known for his forceful preaching and expert knowledge of the Bible.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education made history last week when it nominated a Franciscan nun as the first woman head of a pontifical university. In a position held usually by priests, Sister Mary Melone will become the rector of the Pontifical ... continue reading

All College & University News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Deuteronomy 26:4-10
4 'The priest will then take the basket from your hand and lay it before ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 91:1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15
1 You who live in the secret place of Elyon, spend your nights in the ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:1-13
1 Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus left the Jordan and was led by the ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 10:8-13
8 What does it say, then? The word is very near to you; it is in your ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 14th, 2016 Image

St. Valentine
February 14: Click Here for St. Valentine Prayer's Saint ... Read More