The Praxis Program – Tenth Anniversary
In celebration of its 10th anniversary, the Praxis Program of Seton Hall University announces the publication of an article in the most recent issue of the Journal of Catholic Higher Education, Volume 40, Number 2, Summer 2021, (JCHE) entitled “Faculty Development: Mission and Methods for Practical Integration,” authored by Linda Garofalo, Director of the Praxis Program, Danute Nourse, Co-Director, and Mary Garofalo, Research Lead at Kean University.
The Praxis Program is an advanced faculty development program designed to foster personal, professional, organizational and institutional growth for faculty and administrators who are alumni of the two previous mission seminars, the University Seminar and the Advanced Seminar on Mission. This interdisciplinary ongoing learning community is an innovative and distinctive approach to integration of the university’s Catholic mission, to inquiry into the Catholic Intellectual Tradition, and is a model for critical thinking.
The Praxis Program is sponsored by the Center for Vocation and Servant Leadership of the Office of Mission and Ministry, and is the third in its mission seminar series. The program is co-sponsored by the Center for Catholic Studies, who shared the Toth-Lonergan Endowed Visiting Professor to facilitate monthly sessions of the Praxis Program. In fall 2022, Fr. Brian Cronin, noted professor and author, newly retired from Duquesne University, came from Dublin, Ireland as the resident Toth-Lonergan Scholar.
Since 2013, nearly 100 faculty and administrators have participated in the ongoing Praxis Program. They have aimed to appropriate and integrate the meaning of the Catholic mission of the university into their areas of responsibility, using a philosophical method which represents the Catholic Intellectual Tradition, i.e., the thought of Bernard J. Lonergan, SJ, especially the Generalized Empirical Method (GEM). Additionally, a practical project or application is required. Faculty have reported fruitful results that have affected changes in many academic and co-curricular areas of the university, which is a major topic in the current JCHE article.
Additionally, other Catholic universities have implemented the Praxis model in their faculty development programs. This sharing of knowledge and experience has resulted in a Praxis Program Consortium which currently includes three additional universities: Boston College, the University of San Francisco, and St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. Resources and programming are shared, including a Praxis Program/ATM (Applying The Method) Ambassador outreach in which SHU faculty and administrators share their experience in the practical application of GEM to their disciplines.
The spring 2023 Praxis Program continues with 40 participants and welcomes Professor Patrick Byrne of Boston College as the lecturer on the topic of “Educating for Cosmopolis: Encountering the Good/Doing the Good.”
The Praxis Program’s Sixth Summer Workshop abroad will be held from June 11-19, 2023 in Burgundy, France. The theme is “Educating for Cosmopolis: Mediating Mission and the University Culture.“ Several participants from other universities in the Praxis Program Consortium will join the Seton Hall group, and local professors from Burgundy will also join to discuss issues in faculty/administrator development at Catholic universities.
Gregory Floyd, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Catholic Studies and Faculty, Department of the Core commented: “The Praxis Program has been a tremendous gift to Seton Hall and is a model of ongoing and integral faculty development in Catholic Higher Education. It has become a model for other universities looking to revitalize faculty engagement in mission, teaching, and research. We are grateful, in particular, to Linda Garofalo and Danute Nourse, for their work over the past ten years and look forward to the next ten!”
Categories: Faith and Service