Catholicism and the Common Good Summer Seminar

When: Thursday, June 25 to Saturday, June 27, 2020 
Where: University of Pennsylvania and Penn Catholic Newman Center
Seminar Description
The Collegium Institute is excited to introduce Catholicism and the Common Good, the summer session of CI’s Young Catholic Leaders Initiative for advanced high school students at the Penn Catholic Newman Center and on the University of Pennsylvania’s campus. 
Each day will focus on one of the ‘three necessary societies’ stipulated by Catholic Social Teaching, namely, the family, the state, and the Church. Through a combination of keynote lectures and seminars with Penn faculty, panel discussions and city tours with experts in local history, we will explore the principles undergirding Catholic thought on the common good by engaging with thinkers ranging from Augustine and Aquinas to Weil and Wojtyla, as well as seeking to apply those principles to our contemporary American context. 
This seminar is open to high school students who will be entering their junior or senior year in the Fall of 2021, and rising college freshmen.
Application Information
Applicants are required to submit the following: a cover letter explaining your interest in the seminar, your current unofficial transcript, and the email addresses of two faculty member references.The priority application deadline is Friday, May 15th, and the final application deadline is Wednesday, May 29th at 11:59pm. 
Collegium will continue to monitor the unfolding coronavirus situation.  As it stands, we are capping the number of admitted students to 20 in order to keep the gathering small as well as to facilitate optimal seminar conditions.  If, however, it proves impossible to host Catholicism and the Common Good as currently scheduled, the Collegium Institute will postpone the seminar. Any admitted applicants will be given the choice to attend Catholicism and the Common Good at the rescheduled date, or Collegium will refund the cost of the registration fee.  Please note that there is no cost to apply; students that are admitted and plan to attend will be required to pay a registration fee of $30. To apply, please click below.
Accepted students are expected to arrive at the Penn Catholic Newman Center at 9am on Thursday, June 25th for registration and breakfast. The Collegium Institute will provide breakfast and lunch on June 25th and June 26th, as well as breakfast, lunch, and dinner on June 27th. The Collegium Institute will not provide overnight housing; students must coordinate with their parents to return home by the end of programming at 5:30pm on June 25-26, and 7:30pm on Saturday, June 27th.
Every morning after breakfast, students will participate in a two hour seminar on the philosophical and theological underpinnings of each of the three necessary societies: family, state, and Church.
Students will have the option of attending daily Mass at noon every day of the seminar, followed by lunch. 
After lunch, students will participate in a two hour seminar on the practical applications of the principles explored in the morning seminar, viewing the family, the state, and the Church through the lenses of intellectual history and political thought. 
Following the afternoon seminar, there will be a different activity every day ranging from scavenger hunts and poetry recitations to tours of the city and local museums. 
Below is a general outline of what students can expect each day. 
Day 1
Thursday, June 25th
The First Necessary Society: The Family
Persons and Relationships: On Friendship and Family
9:00-9:30am, Registration and Breakfast
9:45-11:45am, Morning Seminar: On Personhood, Friendship, and Marriage
12:00-12:30pm, Mass
12:30-1:30pm, Lunch
1:30-2:30pm, Guided Tour of Penn’s Campus
2:30-4:30pm, Afternoon Seminar: The History of the Family in America
4:30-5:30pm, Scavenger Hunt on Penn’s Campus
Day 2
Friday, June 26th 
The Second Necessary Society: The State
Souls in the State and the State of Souls: Community of Persons
9:00-9:30am, Breakfast
9:30-11:30am, Morning Seminar: On Justice and the State
12:00-12:30pm, Mass
12:30-1:00pm, Lunch
1:00-2:00pm, A Guided Tour of Sacred and Secular Philadelphia
2:00-4:00pm, How Americans Became Catholic
4:00-5:30pm, A Guided Tour of Sacred and Secular Philadelphia
Day 3
Saturday, June 27th
The Third Necessary Society: The Church
The Church in Society: Communion of Saints
9:00-9:30am, Breakfast
9:30-11:30am, Morning Seminar: The Church as Necessary Society
12:00-12:30pm, Mass
12:30-1:30pm, Lunch
1:30-3:30pm, Afternoon Seminar: Catholicism in Contemporary America: Religious Liberty and Incipient Integralism
3:45-4:45pm, Guided Tour of Renaissance Manuscript Exhibition
5:00-6:30pm, Panel Discussion on How Catholics Became American
6:30-7:30pm, Dinner
Students are required to have done the readings prior to their arrival on campus. Admitted students will receive a hard copy of the readings one month before the beginning of the seminar. Authors may include Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas, Leo XIII, Weil, Anscombe, and John Paul II, among others. 
The faculty members for this seminar are affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania and the Collegium Institute under the leadership of Prof. Daniel Cheely, Executive Director of the Collegium Institute, also the Executive Director and Perry Family Scholar of History, Religion & Culture, Program for Research on Religion & Urban Civil Society, at the University of Pennsylvania. Faculty members include Dr. Michael Breidenbach, a research associate at the McNeil Center for Early American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and Professor Janice T. Chik, Barry Foundation Fellow and Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania.
Admissions Information
Admitted students will be notified of their status by June 4th. A $30 registration fee is required of all admitted students.
Please email Jose Perez-Benzo at

Gold Mass for Catholic Scientists

Join us for a special Gold Mass for Catholic scientists on November 14th!*

Gold Masses are for Catholics who are or have been involved with science, including scientists, retired or former scientists, science teachers at any level, science graduate students and undergraduate science majors, as well as all of those with an interest in science, formal or informal.

The patron of this Mass is St. Albert the Great, a Dominican friar, born around 1206, noted for his great works in the natural sciences. Among his students were St. Thomas Aquinas. St. Albert is the patron saint of scientists.

There will be a reception following the Mass. All are very welcome to attend.

*Due to the coronavirus outbreak and restrictions, this event is being postponed until November 14th 2020.

Young Catholic Leaders Initiative: On Reconciling Science and Religion

Register for the Inaugural Workshop of the Young Catholic Leaders Project on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. The first session, On Reconciling Science & Religion, will take place on Monday November 14th*, featuring two keynote lectures by world-renowned Catholic scientists and speakers, breakout seminars with peers and Collegium Institute facilitators, an interactive activity on science-faith-and-modern film, and a panel discussion on vocations in science, medicine, and engineering, along with a special Gold Mass for Catholic Scientists at midday!

Continental Breakfast, Lunch, and Light Dinner included with registration.

Not only for students with STEM interests, this workshop is geared toward all advanced high school students seeking to become Catholic leaders who are able to appreciate the harmonious relationship between the faith and the sciences. Registration will be limited. Preference will be given to Junior and Seniors who register by the deadline of Friday, March 13th. The system may close before either date if the program already has reached capacity.

After registration and breakfast, Dr. Daniel Cheely will kick off the day’s events with opening remarks on the mission of the Collegium Institute and his vision for the Young Catholic Leaders Initiative. Dr. Cheely is the Executive Director of the Collegium Institute, Resident Senior Fellow of the Fox Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania and Lecturer in Penn’s History Department.

Following Dr. Cheely’s remarks, Prof. Stephen Barr, President of the Society for Catholic Scientists and Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the Unversity of Delaware, will give his keynote lecture at 9:45am. Breakout discussions will follow the lecture, after which there will be a Gold Mass for Catholic Scientists at St. Agatha-St. James Church at 12:15pm (click here to read more about the Gold Mass).

There will be a lunch reception immediately after the Gold Mass for Catholic Scientists. After lunch, at 2:00pm Dr. Marisa Cristina March, a cosmologist from Imperial College London and senior lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania, will lead an interactive workshop on the topic of science and faith as presented in film.

At 3:15pm, Professor Peter Dodson, Professor of Anatomy at Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine as well as Professor of Paleontology at Penn’s School of Arts and Sciences, will deliver his keynote lecture, followed by breakout discussions.

Finally, at 5:30pm there will be a panel discussion on the Vocation of Catholic Scientists, Engineers, and Medical Professionals moderated by Prof. Janice Chik, Barry Foundation Fellow and Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania.

The Collegium Institute’s Young Catholic Leaders Initiative is co-sponsored by the Penn Catholic Newman Center and the Society for Catholic Scientists and is made possible by a generous grant from the Connelly Foundation. 

Please see below for the link to RSVP and the full schedule of events. 

*Due to the coronavirus outbreak and restrictions, this event is being postponed until November 14th 2020. More details will be announced when available.