Catholic Relief Services Releases Book on Migration

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) recently released a book on migration entitled Global Migration: What’s Happening, Why, and a Just Response, as a part of their newest Faculty Learning Commons academic modules on migration. The book, written by Elizabeth Collier from Dominican University and Charles Strain from DePaul University, unpacks the complex issues surrounding modern migration, including the reasons people might need or choose to leave their country of origin, and the laws, treaties, and resources that dictate the opportunities of migrants, refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced people upon resettling.


This text offers personal narratives, principles for critical thinking drawn from Catholic social teaching, and opportunities for action from the individual to the international level.  Focused on the humanitarian work of CRS throughout the world, Global Migration inspires reflection, provokes discussion and empowers students to respond to today’s greatest humanitarian crisis.

This book is a part of the Faculty Learning Commons, online course materials for use in existing college and university classes to enrich the understanding of pressing issues in light of Catholic social teaching. The latest modules for Fall 2017-Spring 2018 are focused on migration.

DePaul hosts Death Penalty programming

In the week of April 22-29, 2015, Sister Helen Prejean, C.S.J., activist and author of Dead Man Walking, will once again visit DePaul for a week’s worth of programming inspired by her work against the use of the death penalty in the United States. Departments from around the university will host panel discussions, class activities, and performances on the topic of death penalty abolition and Sister Helen’s novel. Events include conversations with the Catholic Studies department, the College of Law, the Peace, Justice & Conflict Studies department, and the social work department. For more information, click here.
Want more information?  Read more about ACCU member colleges’ work on the issue of the death penalty and see a compiled list of resources.

Courageous Voices: Giving Voice to the Voiceless

More than 900 people were murdered in Chicago in 2011 and 2012. Seeking to raise the victims of violence beyond mere statistics,  English professor Miles Harvey and his students from DePaul University set out to collect their stories. With the help of faculty, the students’ efforts resulted in a documentary play, “How Long Will I Cry? Voices of Youth Violence.” It premiered at the Steppenwolf Theatre and toured through several Chicago neighborhoods, reaching thousands of Chicagoans.

A book of victims’ oral history narratives was later published, with over 13,000 copies printed by Big Shoulders Books press.  Big Shoulders engages graduate students in DePaul’s Master of Arts in Writing and Publishing program to publish books that engage the Chicago community and contribute to discussions around injustice and inequality.  To order the free book, let the editors know how you are helping fight youth violence in Chicago or your local community.  To learn more about Big Shoulders Books, visit their website and follow their blog.

Over the next few weeks, we will continue to release short stories about the courageous voices of our member colleges and universities.  Stay tuned to hear about how students, faculty, and staff are responding to Pope Francis’s call to social justice and a culture of encounter.  If you are still curious about how Catholic colleges and universities are promoting social justice on campus, read the original blog post on the Courageous Voices series, or check out ACCU’s inventory of promising practices, which includes many examples of our members engaging with Catholic Social Teaching.

ACCU members rated in STARS annual review

The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) just released their annual report through the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, & Rating System (STARS). STARS is a self-reporting framework through which colleges and universities can showcase their sustainability initiatives. ACCU member colleges Santa Clara University, Loyola University Chicago, University of Dayton, and University of San Diego were featured in the 2014 annual report. Learn about the efforts of these institutions by reading the excerpts below, or browse the entire report for ideas on how to make your own campus more sustainable.

Santa Clara University – STARS Gold

Required of all Santa Clara University students, the Pathway experience provides interdisciplinary and integrative learning across the four years of a student’s college experience, culminating with a synthesizing essay about their Pathway theme and how it connects with a student’s major and other experiences. Students opting to participate in the Sustainable Pathway theme will learn about sustainability from multiple disciplinary perspectives.

Loyola University Chicago – STARS Gold

Loyola University Chicago’s student-run biodiesel program provides hands-on experience for making biodiesel while offering lab fellowships and project opportunities to students. The program is one of few student-managed biodiesel programs in the country, and has received the federal, state and local permits necessary to produce and sell biodiesel on the retail market. Student participation in the Biodiesel Program occurs through lab fellowships, project proposals, or a biodiesel lab course.

University of Dayton – STARS Silver

The Rivermobile at the University of Dayton provides education outreach about local rivers to the greater Dayton community. Developed by River Stewards, students lead the Rivers Institute along with faculty, staff and community partners. Through the use of five mobile classrooms, the RiverMobile travels across the Great Miami Watershed visiting K-12 schools, festivals and other special events. The RiverMobile is an experiential and interdisciplinary experience on topics related to Dayton’s river history, the local aquifer and municipal water cycle, life in and around local rivers, social and global responsibility, and river safety.

University of San Diego – STARS Gold

The University of San Diego has partnered with the City of San Diego and other government organizations, foundations, and utility offices to establish the San Diego Climate Collaborative. This initiative works to advance sustainable development in the region and implement solutions to sustainability challenges. Partners work to: 1. Address and prevent the harmful effects of climate change; 2. Promote a high quality of life for the San Diego region; and 3. Foster a green and growing economy.

Other ACCU members who reported to STARS:

College of Saint Benedict – STARS Silver

DePaul University – STARS reported

Loyola Marymount University – STARS Silver

Marquette University – STARS Silver

University of Notre Dame – STARS Silver

Saint Louis University – STARS Bronze

Read more!