B.A., Seminary of Our Lady of Providence
M.A., S.T.B., Catholic University of Louvain
M.Ed., Providence College
C.A.G.S., Salve Regina University
Among my current research and academic interests is a focus on the intersection of religion and political discourse in the United States. In particular, I am interested in the varied interpretations and applications of religious freedom and the separation of church and state in the American experience. I believe the topic is as timely and significant today as it was in the post-Reformation era, in the Pilgrim and Puritan experiences and, specifically, in Newport history with the Rhode Island colonial charter of 1663.
At this time I am also interested in furthering curriculum-based community service learning and civic engagement. In addition to the numerous initiatives already established by the University in the local community, I am collaborating with staff in the Office of Community Service and faculty in the Department of Education on a Nicaraguan initiative and partnership with the Rags to Bags Sewing Center in Managua, which is sponsored by Mustard Seed Communities. An international service trip for Salve Regina students and faculty is scheduled for spring break, March 10-17, 2012.
I have been associated with Salve Regina for more than 30 years, during which I worked in various areas within student affairs. During that time I was fortunate to hold a faculty appointment and to teach a course in religious studies each semester as an adjunct member of the Department of Religious and Theological Studies. As I begin my first academic year as a full-time faculty member, I welcome the opportunity to engage students, particularly new students in Seeking Wisdom, in the intellectual life of the University, the fundamental reason why we are all here.
I believe academics constitute the heart of the University mission - and that a sincere and rigorous study of religion represents the soul of that experience. The study of the historic role of religion, the ethical and moral challenges presented by contemporary society, and an appreciation for the great religious traditions found around the world are essential for developing "responsible world citizens."
Finally, I enjoy my roles as faculty athletics representative and faculty liaison to the Office of Community Service. Participation in athletics and service provide co-curricular opportunities for students to develop qualities such as teamwork, dedication, compassion, fair play, justice and other character traits and life skills that will make them engaged public citizens. It is personally rewarding for me to be involved with students in these ways.