Campus Watch

Innovative Tradition

THE WASHINGTON POST, April 6 — Catholic school innovations in several dozen cities such as the four (soon to be nine) Cristo Rey schools that provide students with part-time clerical jobs to defer the cost of tuition “are blossoming,” reported the Washington daily.

Initiatives at other schools have included a longer school day, supervised homework at the school or low enrollment to keep costs down.

John Convey, provost of Catholic University of America and a national expert on Catholic schooling, said these efforts continue a tradition of “clear goals and high expectations concerning student performance, attitudes and behaviors.”

He said they “aggressively socialize the students to the school's norms and expectations” in a structure that produces “a caring and supportive environment.”

Suit Settled

CHRONICLE.COM, April 3 — New Jersey's Rutgers University has approved the constitution of InterVarsity Multiethnic Christian Fellowship, including a provision that allows the religious beliefs of candidates seeking leadership roles in the group to be taken into account as part of their selection.

The group filed a lawsuit in December after Rutgers decided to end the group's eligibility for student-activity funds because of alleged discrimination due to the group's requirement that its leaders affirm the Christian faith.

For its part, InterVarsity recognized the right of any student to seek a leadership position in the organization while preserving its right to choose leaders based on their religious beliefs.

Founder's Award

FORDHAM UNIVERSITY, March 28 — Jesuit Father Joseph O'Hare, who will retire as president of Fordham University in New York on June 30, is the first recipient of the Founder's Award, a new annual award established by the university last year.

Cardinal Edward Egan of New York said Father O'Hare's most important contribution as president was arranging for “four of Fordham's most distinguished Jesuit scholars,” including Cardinal Avery Dulles, to teach courses at the archdiocesan seminary.

Father O'Hare served 19 years as Fordham's 31st president, the longest tenure of any Fordham president.

War Resignation

THE RECORD, March 26 — Deacon Gary Tankard resigned as a religion teacher at Bergen Catholic High School in New Jersey rather than agree to remove a button that read, “War is not the answer” while teaching, reported the Newark, N.J., newspaper.

Joseph Fusco, the principal of the 850-student boys school, said the student dress code bars slogans on clothing and that the rules generally apply to faculty as well. He had no objection to Tankard's views, but said, “I just feel a button is not a vehicle to teach.”

The school is administered by the Irish Christian Brothers.

Laetare Couple

UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME, March 28 — Catholic commentators Peter and Margaret O'Brien Steinfels will receive the University of Notre Dame's Laetare Medal at this year's graduation ceremony.

Peter Steinfels covers religion for The New York Times while Margaret Steinfels is the editor of Commonweal, a liberal Catholic magazine.

The award, which Notre Dame hypes as “the oldest and most prestigious honor given to American Catholics,” was announced March 28, two days before Lent's Laetare Sunday, for which it is named.

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