Popular Majors, Sports, and Activities at Newman Guide Colleges

At a U.S. residential college recommended in The Newman Guide, you can receive a faithful Catholic education and…

…major in engineering.

Several colleges combine engineering with a solid liberal arts core curriculum.

“Catholics need to succeed in the sciences to make an impact on the most important developments of our time,” said Dr. Stephen Minnis, president of Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan. “Students don’t just learn information or a skill—they become the person God wants them to be and the world needs.”

Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, University of Dallas, University of Mary, University of St. Thomas-Houston, and Walsh University offer programs in engineering.

Both four- and five-year programs are offered.  Some are cooperative or dual degree programs.  Choices include degrees in aerospace, biomedical, chemical, civil, computer, electrical, mechanical, petroleum, and software engineering.

…compete in intercollegiate athletics.

Participating in sports is a great way to grow in mind, body and spirit at a faithful Catholic college.  The recommended colleges offer a wide range of athletic opportunities for students.  Belmont Abbey College, University of Mary, and Walsh University compete at the Division II level of the NCAA.  Colleges that offer Division III athletic programs include The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, the University of Dallas, and the University of St. Thomas.

Additionally, Ave Maria University and Benedictine College participate in NAIA athletics, and Christendom College is a part of USCAA collegiate athletics. The University of Navara has a “Sports Talent Program” to help athletes manage their academic workload while competing in their sport at a competitive or professional level.

Many colleges also offer club and intramural athletic opportunities.  Some have programs that integrate faith formation and athletics.  At NewmanGuide.org, you can use our college-search option to see which recommended colleges offer a specific sport.

…excel in a nursing program.

In a society that does not respect the dignity of all human life, it’s extremely important for Catholic college nursing programs to integrate Church teachings and prepare students for the ethical dilemmas they may face in the workplace.

Not only are Newman Guide preparing nurses with a grounding in Church teaching, but they are having great success in doing it. For example, 100 percent of the graduates of the University of Mary’s nursing program have passed their NCLEX-RN licensure exam on the first try, several years running.

In addition to the University of Mary, many other Newman Guide colleges have schools of nursing or offer nursing majors, including Ave Maria University, Belmont Abbey College, Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, University of Dallas, University of Mary, University of St. Thomas in Houston, and Walsh University.

Belmont Abbey College recently announced that Caromont, a local health care system, will be building a hospital adjacent to campus. The lease agreement with the Benedictine monastery will ensure that “nothing contrary to the Church’s teaching will be done at the hospital,” says Dr. Heather Ayala, chair of the college’s biology department. Additionally, the partnership will help support the College’s growth in offering health related programs.

Many graduates of other colleges in The Newman Guide that offer a liberal arts education have found success in nursing and other health fields.

…prepare for military service.

Serving our country is a noble calling, and several faithful Catholic colleges help put students on the path for careers in the military.

Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) is offered at a number of our recommended colleges, sometimes in partnership with other local universities.  ROTC-colleges include Belmont Abbey College, Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, University of Dallas, University of St. Thomas-Houston, and Walsh University.

The Marine Corps highlights Thomas Aquinas College and The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts as preparing graduates with the critical thinking skills that are necessary for this profession.

…become a teacher.

Graduates of liberal arts programs at our recommended colleges are not only well-prepared for a teaching career but are also found at the helm of a number of faithful Catholic schools across the country.

Michael Van Hecke says that the liberal arts education at Thomas Aquinas College instilled in him “a love of learning” and a desire to be an educator “to provide joy and hope to younger students.”  Van Hecke is now the headmaster of St. Augustine Academy in Ventura, Calif., which he helped to found.  Grammar, logic and rhetoric serve as “the philosophical basis” of St. Augustine Academy’s educational efforts.

A number of institutions in The Newman Guide provide a liberal arts education, while others prepare students to become teachers through a specific education program.  Many of these stress the critical responsibility that educators have in teaching the faith to students.

“We don’t want just ‘math’ teachers or ‘history’ teachers,” said Dr. Dan Guernsey, who has served as a professor in Ave Maria University’s education department and is a senior fellow at the Newman Society. “We want Catholic teachers— teachers of faith and versatility who by their example and commitment can attract their students to the great banquet of knowledge and who themselves have eaten and drunk deeply of all the best that humanity has discovered.”

Education programs are offered at Aquinas College, Ave Maria University, Belmont Abbey College, Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, University of Dallas, University of Mary, University of St. Thomas, and Walsh University.

…explore the visual and performing arts.

Taking part in the visual and performing arts is different at a faithful Catholic college, because it’s often designed to help students come to a deeper understanding of the human person as made in the image and likeness of God.

Fine and performing arts majors and minors are available at Ave Maria University, Belmont Abbey College, Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, John Paul the Great Catholic University, University of Dallas, University of Mary, University of St. Thomas-Houston, and Walsh University.

Additionally, extra-curricular offerings are popular at Newman Guide colleges that offer a liberal arts education.

…study business.

Recent reports indicate that corporate executives increasingly list the liberal arts as a great background for jobs in business.  This is good news for students attending the faithful Catholic colleges recommended by The Newman Guide, many of which challenge students with a rigorous liberal arts curriculum rooted in the Catholic tradition.

Sean Kay, a husband, father of ten, and partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the largest professional services firms in the world, says that he uses the skills he learned during his undergraduate years at Christendom College “much more frequently” than the ones he used in graduate school.

“I love that graduate who has a Catholic, liberal arts perspective, because that individual has a discipline associated with seeking the truth,” says Kay. “They have a set of skills around having a view, articulating that view and defending that view.”

For students looking to major specifically in business, programs are offered at Ave Maria University, Belmont Abbey College, Benedictine College, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, John Paul the Great Catholic University, University of Dallas, University of Mary, University of St. Thomas, and Walsh University.

Dr. Andrew Abela, founding dean of the Busch School of Business at The Catholic University of America, believes that Catholic values are directly applicable to a career in business.  “All of business, including accounting and finance, is properly understood to be oriented to serving the human person, whether that person be customer, employee, supplier, investor or neighbor,” he said.

…and so much more.

The individual Newman Guide college profiles online include much more information about the different majors, clubs, and other extracurricular opportunities awaiting you at a faithful Catholic college.

Copyright © 2021 The Cardinal Newman Society. Permission to reprint without modification to text, with attribution to author and to The Cardinal Newman Society, and (if published online) hyperlinked to the article on the Newman Society’s website. The views expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Cardinal Newman Society.