Learning to look at the world differently

Members of the Loyola community share what it means to be Jesuit educated

By Kelly Mueller, '18

Having attended public school all my life, I didn’t know what to expect from a “religious” school, let alone a Jesuit school. Today I’m thrilled to attend Loyola University Maryland, because I completely stand by the concept of a Jesuit education.

The Jesuits approach their students as people, not categories. It doesn’t matter where you come from, how much money you make, or even what you believe spiritually; Jesuit education is focused on creating a well-rounded, thoroughly educated person who can contribute to the greater community.

I’ve always felt challenged to do better academically, but at Loyola, the challenges were different. They no longer came from the expectations of the peers with whom I had grown up, the teachers who knew my older siblings, or the constant urging from my parents to do well…

They came from within me.

I discovered early on that my Jesuit education was encouraging me to engage with the world around me. The environment at Loyola Maryland is unique, filled with dedicated and passionate students. I met so many people on campus acting with a passion and a vigor I had never seen before. All around me, students were engaged in service, social justice campaigns, athletics, and their studies—and they were all doing what they loved. I knew that I had to find something that I loved just as much…

I threw myself into my studies and, for the first time, I was enthusiastic about my schoolwork. I was excited to learn Ancient Greek. I was eager to read St. Augustine’s City of God. I was looking forward to writing a research paper about the history of weaving and femininity. It was a weird sensation at first, but I recognized it as a good sensation—and I definitely knew that it was connected to the kind of education I am receiving at Loyola.

Jesuit education means more than just learning new things; it means learning to look at the world differently, and I thank God every day that He brought me here.

Kelly Mueller is a member of the Class of 2018 and the Honors Program at Loyola. Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, she is studying Classics and history and contributes regularly to Loyola’s student blog, A Hound’s Life.

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