President's Office

President Jagger

In the succession of leadership at Newman, I recognize I am standing on the shoulders of giants. In particular, special thanks to Dr. Noreen Carocci and Sister Tarcisia Roths, ASC, — two presidential giants who preceded me and have been most helpful in continuing to shape my leadership. It is a privilege to learn from the university’s founders, the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, imagine the future for Newman and meet the challenges of today alongside such creative, committed and faith-filled women.

I never aspired to be a college president, but sometimes the Lord has to get your attention in a dramatic fashion in order for you to see his plan clearly. On my first visit to the Newman University campus, I realized God had been preparing me for this presidency for some time.

Newman University attracted me because of its mission, core values and Newman Code. To empower students to transform society is an action-oriented objective that requires we educate students, expand their frames of reference, and introduce them to some of the great thinkers of all time. Not only is it our collective mission to teach students valuable critical thinking, speaking and writing skills, but also instill in them the responsibility that comes with that education — to change the world through a lens of critical consciousness that hungers for peace and justice.

I truly believe there is no better education for these times than a Catholic, values-based, liberal arts education. Liberal arts students are known to be inquisitive, quick learners who do not think in narrow, siloed manners. Asking students to explore their own faith tradition, or lack thereof, is an essential part of a liberal education and becoming an adult who is focused on serving the needs of others.

We hold that Newman’s Degree of Difference’ is a valuable and life-changing pursuit. It should be available to all. The world is in much need of faith-informed solutions that our graduates contribute to their communities.

Our collective job is to cultivate in our students a love of learning that will transcend their time at Newman. Christ ministered to the marginalized, the undervalued and the unrecognized. Only by practicing humility and self-criticism can we effectively serve the next several generations of college students. Only by doing so can we follow in the footsteps of our founders.

It is both a privilege and a tremendous responsibility to educate the next generation of saints and leaders and we need the grace of the Holy Spirit to do so. I continue to see great promise for Newman University and its students to soar to new heights. I look forward to leading through whatever the future may bring.

Kathleen S. Jagger, Ph.D., MPH
President, Newman University