Campus Watch

DeSales Gains University Status

DESALES UNIVERSITY, Jan. 1 — At the start of the new year, Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales got a new name, the school announced. After receiving approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Education on March 1, and approval from its own board of trustees in April, the college became De Sales University.

It has a new Web address as well,, although the mailing address and telephone numbers will remain the same.

The university, located in Center Valley, Pa., was established by the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales in 1965. It offers five graduate programs, and its current combined enrollment is 2,000 students.

Oblates of St. Francis de Sales Father Bernard F. O'Connor, president of the University, commented, “The name ‘DeSales’ pays homage to our spiritual foundation and will be an ever-present reminder of the University's purpose: to bring knowledge and faith together for the betterment of humanity.

The historical use of the word ‘university’ stresses an education that is all-encompassing and flows out of the humanities, of which St. Francis de Sales was a strong proponent.”

Fordham and Marymount to Wed

THE CHRONICLE OF HIGHER EDUCATION, Jan. 5 — Marymount College, a small liberal arts college in Tarrytown, N.Y., will merge with the Bronx's much larger Fordham University, The Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

The two schools expect that the merger will be complete by July 2002. Marymount will become the university's third campus. The college's president, Anne M. Slattery, praised the move and announced that she would step down. Fordham's president, Father Joseph O'Hare, will become president of Marymount as well.

The Marymount campus will continue to admit only women, at least for the near future. The Chronicle reported that many faculty members at Marymount had worried that the college would begin admitting men or even face closure due to its financial difficulties, but they were persuaded to support the move because the college will “keep its identity” and will be merging with a renowned Catholic university. Marymount was founded by the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary, while Fordham is a Jesuit institution.

Multimillion Donor: Anonymous

COLLEGE OF ST. CATHERINE, Dec. 14 — The College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minn., received a startling Christmas gift, the school announced.

An anonymous donor gave the school $7.5 million to build a new student center. Sister of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Andrea J. Lee, college president, announced the gift to a celebratory gathering of students, faculty, staff, alumnae and friends.

The student center will be connected to both the newly expanded library and Our Lady of Victory Chapel.

The school's statement said this design would demonstrate “the connections among the intellectual, spiritual and social aspects of the lives of our students.”

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito says of discerning one’s college choice, ‘There has to be something that tugs at you and makes you want to investigate it further. And then the personal encounter comes in the form of a visit or a chat with a student or alumnus who communicates with the same enthusiasm or energy about the place. And then that love of a place can be a seed which germinates in your own heart through prayer.’

Choose a College With a Discerning Mind and Heart

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito, assistant professor of theology at the University of Dallas (UD) and subprior (and former vocations director) of the Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of Dallas, drew from his experience as both a student and now monastic religious to help those discerning understand the parallels between religious and college discernment.