The Catholic University of America

Academic Calendar for 2011–2012

Note: In the event of class cancellations due to inclement weather or other circumstances, the university reserves the right to adjust the Academic Calendar. The most up-to-date Academic Calendar for a given semester is on the Office of Enrollment Services website at

Fall (First) Semester 2011

Thursday, August 25 New student orientation begins.
Monday, August 29 Opening of classes.
Thursday, September 1 Last day for Summer 2011 graduation candidates to submit online diploma application (use Cardinal Station).
  Mass of the Holy Spirit. University Mass and Picnic; no classes between 12:10 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
Monday, September 5 Labor Day (Holiday).
Friday, September 9

Last day to register or add courses for credit, including COMPS and Internships.

Last day to drop a course without record (use Cardinal Station).

Wednesday, September 14 Class of 2015 Convocation, 4 p.m.; freshmen are excused from 4:10 p.m. classes/labs to attend Convocation.
Friday, September 23 Final date to deposit theses and dissertations for October 2011 graduation.
Monday, October 10 Columbus Day (Holiday).  
Tuesday, October 11 Administrative Thursday:  Thursday classes meet instead of Tuesday classes this day only.  
Tuesday, October 11-Friday, October 14 Faculty submit interim grades for freshmen.
Friday, October 14 Midterm. Last day to resolve grades of Incomplete from the previous semester. Last day to change to audit.
Thursday, October 27-Saturday, October 29 Comprehensive examinations for graduate students.
Monday, October 31 Pre-registration advising begins.
Tuesday, November 1 All Saints Day.
Wednesday, November 2 All Souls Liturgy. Memorial Mass for Deceased of the University Community.
Monday, November 7 Registration for Spring (second) semester 2012 begins (use Cardinal Station).
Friday, November 11 Last day to withdraw from classes with a "W" grade (use Cardinal Station).
Monday, November 14 Last day to request pass/fail option (undergraduates only with dean's permission).
Wednesday, November 23 Thanksgiving recess begins.
Monday, November 28 Classes resume.
Thursday, December 8 Patronal Feast of the Immaculate Conception (Holiday and Reading Day)
Saturday, December 10-Sunday, December 11 Reading Period. (Note: Classes that meet only on Saturdays will meet on Saturday, December 10.)
Monday, December 12 Last day of classes.
Tuesday, December 13-Saturday, December 17 Final Examination Period.
Wednesday, December 21 All final grades due by 3 p.m.
Monday, January 2, 2012 Last day for fall 2011 graduation candidates to submit online diploma applications.
Friday, January 6, 2012 Final date to deposit theses and dissertations for January 2012 graduation.



Spring (Second) Semester 2012


Monday, November 7, 2011 Registration for Spring (second) semester 2012 begins (use Cardinal Station).
Monday, January 2 Last day for fall 2011 graduation candidates to submit online diploma application
Monday, January 9 Opening of classes.
Monday, January 16 Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Day (Holiday).
Friday, January 20 Last day to register or add courses for credit, including COMPS and Internships; last day to drop a course without record (use Cardinal Station).
Thursday, January 26 Patronal Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas University Mass; 11:10 a.m. classes are dismissed at 11:50 a.m. and classes meeting at 12:35 p.m. will meet at 1:20 p.m.
Monday, February 20-Friday, February 24 Faculty submit interim grades for freshmen.
Tuesday, February 21 Administrative Monday: Monday classes meet instead of Tuesday classes this day only.
Wednesday, February 22 Ash Wednesday.
Friday, February 24 Midterm. Last day to resolve grades of Incomplete from the previous semester. Last day to change to audit.
Thursday, March 1 Last day for spring 2012 graduation candidates to submit online diploma application.
Monday, March 5 Spring recess begins.
Monday, March 12 Classes resume.
Thursday, March 15 Registration for summer 2012 begins (use Cardinal Station).
Monday, March 19 Pre-registration advising for fall 2012 begins.
Thursday, March 22-Saturday, March 24 Comprehensive examinations for graduate students.
Monday, March 26 Registration for Fall (first) semester 2012 begins (use Cardinal Station). Last day to request pass/fail option (undergraduates only with dean's permission).
Monday, March 26-Thursday, March 29 Senior comprehensive examinations.
Wednesday, March 28 Last day to withdraw from courses with a "W" grade (use Cardinal Station).
Thursday, April 5 Holy Thursday. No classes; Easter recess begins.
Friday, April 6 Good Friday.
Sunday, April 8 Easter Sunday.
Monday, April 9 Easter Monday.
Tuesday, April 10

Classes resume.

Founders Day.

Wednesday, April 25 Reading day; no classes.
Friday, April 27

Last day of classes.

Final date to deposit theses and dissertations for May 2012 graduation.

Saturday, April 28-Monday, April 30 Reading Period. (Note: Classes that meet on Saturdays only will meet on Saturday, April 28.)
Tuesday, May 1-Saturday, May 5 Final examination period.
Monday, May 7 Grades for graduating students due by noon.
Tuesday, May 8 All other grades due by 3 p.m.
Friday, May 11 Baccalaureate Mass.
Saturday, May 12 Commencement exercises.
Friday, May 25 Law School Commencement.
Monday, May 7 - Saturday, August 4 Summer Session


Summer Sessions 2012

Summer Sessions - 2012 Calendar

Pre-Summer Session  Starts on May 11th

(Featuring course offerings in Architecture, Biblical Studies, Civil Engineering, Drama, English, Library and Information Science, Nursing, Politics)

First Five-Week Session (15): May 17 through June 19

Monday, May 17

First day of classes. Last day to pay for first session classes. Students who fail to pay or make payment arrangements with Student Accounts are subject to a fee.

Wednesday, May 19

Final day to register or add courses for credit or drop without record, with 100% refund.

Monday, May 24

University Observance of Memorial Day. (Holiday, no classes.)

Thursday, June 10

Last day to withdraw from courses or change from credit to audit. Last day to change to Pass/Fail grading (undergraduates only with permission of the dean.)

Saturday, June 19

Last day of classes.

First Six-Week Session (16): May 17 through June 26

Monday, May 18

First day of classes. Last day to pay for first session classes. Students who fail to pay or make payment arrangements with Student Accounts are subject to a fee.

Wednesday, May 20

Final day to register or add courses for credit or drop without record, with 100% refund.

Monday, May 25

University Observance of Memorial Day. (holiday, no classes.)

Friday, June 11

President's Holiday (no classes)

Tuesday, June 15

Last day to withdraw from courses or change from credit to audit. Last day to change to Pass/Fail grading (undergraduates only with permission of the dean.)

Saturday, June 26

Last day of classes.

Second Five-Week Session (25): June 28 through July 31

Monday, June 28

First day of classes. Last day to pay for second session classes. Students who fail to pay or make payment arrangements with Student Accounts are subject to a fee.

Thursday, July 1

Final day to register or add courses for credit or drop without record, with 100% refund.

Monday, July 5th

University Observance of Independence Day.

Friday, July 16 and
Saturday, July 17

Comprehensive Exams

Thursday, July 22

Last day to withdraw from courses or change from credit to audit. Last day to change to Pass/Fail grading (undergraduates only with permission of the dean.)

Saturday, July 31

Last day of classes.



Second Six-Week Session (26): June 28 through August 7

Monday, June 28

First day of classes. Last day to pay for second session classes. Students who fail to pay or make payment arrangements with Student Accounts are subject to a fee.

Wednesday, July 1

Final day to register or add courses for credit or drop without record, with 100% refund.

Friday, July 3rd

University Observance of Independence Day. (Holiday, no classes)

Friday, July 17 and Saturday, July 18

Comprehensive Exams

Tuesday, July 27

Last day to withdraw from courses or change from credit to audit. Last day to change to Pass/Fail grading (undergraduates only with permission of the dean.)

Saturday, August 7

Last day of classes.

Officers of the University

Board of Trustees



  • Carl A. Anderson, New Haven, Conn.
  • Richard D. Banziger, Vice Chairman, New York, N.Y
  • Lee Ann Joiner Brady,Skillman, N.J.
  • Bishop Michael F. Burbidge, Raleigh, N.C.
  • Timothy R. Busch, Esq., Irvine, Calif.
  • Joseph L Carlini, Malvern, Pa.
  • Archbishop Robert L. Carlson, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Archbishop Paul S. Coakley, Oklahoma City, Okla.
  • Robert F. Comstock, Esq., Washington, D.C.
  • Bishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, Oakland, Calif. 
  • Leo A. Daly III, Washington, D.C.
  • Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio, Brookly, N.Y.
  • Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Houston, Texas
  • Sister Janet Eisner, S.N.D., Boston, Mass. 
  • John H. Garvey, President, Washington, D.C.
  • Cardinal Francis E. George, O.M.I., Chicago, Ill.
  • Edward W. Gillespie, Alexandria, Va.
  • Archbishop Jose H. Gomez,Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, Atlanta, Ga.
  • Stephen J. Kaneb, South Hampton, N.H.
  • Archbishop Joseph A. Kurtz, Louisville, Ky.
  • Bishop Paul S. Loverde, Arlington, Va.
  • Bishop Gregory J. Mansour, Brooklyn, N.Y
  • Bishop Robert J. McManus, Worcester, Mass.
  • James Moye, Fairfield, Conn.
  • Mark A. Murray, Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Archbishop John J. Myers, Newark, N.J.
  • Archbishop John C. Nienstedt, St. Paul, Minn.
  • Archbishop Edwin F. O'Brien, Baltimore, Md.
  • Anne E. O'Donnell, M.D., Arlington, Va.
  • Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted, Phoenix, Az.
  • Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley, O.F.M. Cap., Braintree, Mass.
  • Bishop Joseph A. Pepe, Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Neil J. Rauenhorst, Tampa, Fla.
  • Cardinal Justin F. Rigali, Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Andrea Roane, Washington, D.C.
  • Monsignor Walter R. Rossi, Washington, D.C.
  • Timothy C. Scheve, Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Rodger D. Shay, Miami, Fla.
  • Victor P. Smith, Esq. Burlingame, Calif.
  • Anthony R. Tersigni, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Bishop Thomas J. Tobin, Providence, R.I.
  • Mark H. Tuohey III, Esq., Washington, D.C.
  • Monsignor Peter J. Vaghi, Bethesday, Md.
  • Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron, Chairman, Detroit, Mich.
  • Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski,Miami, Fla.
  • Anthony A. Williams, Esq., Washington, D.C.
  • Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl, Chancellor, Washington, D.C.
  • Frank G. Persico, Secretary of the Board, Fulton, Md.


Office of the President

John H. Garvey, J.D. President
Frank G. Persico, M.A Vice President for University Relations and Chief of Staff
Rev. Jude DeAngelo, O.F.M. Conv., Director of Campus Ministry and University Chaplain
Lawrence J. Morris, J.D., LL.M. General Counsel
Victor A. Nakas, M. Phil Associate Vice President for Public Affairs
Christine Peterson, B.S. SPHR Associate Vice President/Chief Human Resources Officer
Suzanne A. McCarthy, B.A. Assistant Vice President for University Relations
Kyra A. Lyons, B.A Executive Director, Office of Alumni Relations
Vincent A. Lacovara III, J.D. Compliance Officer

Academic Affairs

James F. Brennan, Ph.D Provost
Sara M. Thompson, Ph.D. Associate Provost for New Programs
James Greene, Ph.D Dean of Graduate Studies
Michael Mack, Ph.D Dean of Undergraduate Studies
Brian Johnston, M.A. Assistant Vice President, Planning, Institutional Research, Student Learning Outcomes Assessment
Ralph A. Albano, M.Eng., M.B.A Associate Provost for Sponsored Research
Trevor Lipscombe, D.Phil Director, CUA Press
Tanith Fowler-Corsi Assistant Vice President for Global Education
Peter Shoemaker, Ph.D. Director of University Honors Program
Ziaeddin Mafaher, M.A., M.S Chief Information Officer
Andy Woodall, M.S.W. Director of Graduate Admissions
Harriet Anike Nokuri, M.S., M.C.P Director of Summer Sessions

Academic Deans

Randall Ott, M.Arch, AIA School of Architecture and Planning
Lawrence R. Poos, Ph.D. School of Arts and Sciences
Rev. Robert J. Kaslyn, S.J., J.C.D. School of Canon Law
Charles C. Nguyen, D.Sc. School of Engineering
Veryl V. Miles, J.D. Columbus School of Law
Dr. Ingrid Hsieh-Yee, Ph.D. School of Library and Information Science
Grayson Wagstaff, Ph.D. Benjamin T. Rome School of Music
Patricia McMullen, Ph.D., J.D., CNS, CRNP School of Nursing
John C. McCarthy, Ph.D. School of Philosophy
Sara M. Thompson, Ph.D. Metropolitan School of Professional Studies
James R. Zabora, Sc.D. National Catholic School of Social Service
Monsignor Kevin W. Irwin, S.T.D. School of Theology and Religious Studies

Enrollment Management

W. Michael Hendricks, Ed.D. Vice President for Enrollment Management
Christine Mica, M.S. Dean of University Admissions
Michael S. Allen, Ph.D. Associate Vice President and Director of Athletics
Donald Bosse, M.B.A. Director of Financial Aid
Adriana Farella, B.A. Associate Vice President for Enrollment Services and University Registrar
Deborah Harry, B.S. Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management Systems and Student Financial Assistance
Joanna Bader, M.Ed. Associate Director of Enrollment Management Systems

Facilities Operations

Carl A. Petchik, M.Arch, M.CRP Associate Vice President for Facilities Operations
Louis Alar, B.S. Director of Environmental Health and Safety
Brian Alexander, M.B.A. Director of Energy and Utilities Management
Kevin M. Petersen, B.F.A. Director of Facilities Maintenance and Operations

Financial Affairs

Cathy R. Wood, M.F.A Vice President for Finance and Administration, Treasurer
Sheri Hardison, B.S., C.P.A Controller and Assistant Treasurer
Lisa Fletcher, B.S Accounts Payable Director
Norman Brown Director of Procurement Services
Lizy T. Kannarkat, M.S., C.P.A Assistant Controller, General Accounting and Taxes
Susan Warshawsky, B.S., B.A Director of Grants and Contracts
Reginald Vieta, B.S Director of Payroll
Battles, Rachel, B.A., M.B.A. Associate Vice President, Finance
Laura J. Sweet, B.S Director of Business Systems and Support
Renell Lewis, B.A Director of Treasury Management
Donna Powell, M.P.A. Budget Director

Student Life

Susan D. Pervi, M.A. Vice President for Student Life
Jonathan C. Sawyer, M.A. Associate Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students
Timothy J. Carney, M.A. Associate Vice President for Campus Services
Kyle Wilkie, M.S.M. Associate Director of Conferences and Pryzbyla Management
Sarah M. Daniels, M.A. Senior Associate Dean of Students and Director of Residence Life
Suzanne Felder, RN, M.S.N. Director of Student Health Services
Thomasine N. Johnson, B.A. Director of Public Safety
  Director of Campus Activities
Monroe Rayburn, Ph.D. Director of the Counseling Center
Emily K. Singer, M.A. Director of Disability Support Services
Heidi E. Zeich, M.S., M.B.A. Director of Housing Services


University Development

Vice President for University Development
Assistant Vice President for University Development
Daniel Creel, J.D.
Director of Research and Prospect Management
Gail Ferris, J.D., M.B.A.
Director of Development Services
David S. McMullen, B.A.
Director of Donor Relations
Jo Anna Norris, M.A.
Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations

The Mission Statement of the Catholic University of America

As the national university of the Catholic Church in the United States, founded and sponsored by the bishops of the country with the approval of the Holy See, The Catholic University of America is committed to being a comprehensive Catholic and American institution of higher learning, faithful to the teachings of Jesus Christ as handed on by the Church. Dedicated to advancing the dialogue between faith and reason, The Catholic University of America seeks to discover and impart the truth through excellence in teaching and research, all in service to the Church, the nation and the world.

Aims of the University

The Catholic University of America is a community of scholars, both faculty and students, set apart to discover, preserve, and impart the truth in all its forms, with particular reference to the needs and opportunities of the nation. As a university, it is essentially a free and autonomous center of study and an agency serving the needs of human society. It welcomes the collaboration of all scholars of goodwill who, through the process of study and reflection, contribute to these aims in an atmosphere of academic competence where freedom is fostered and where the only constraint upon truth is truth itself.

As a Catholic university, it desires to cultivate and impart an understanding of the Christian faith within the context of all forms of human inquiry and values. It seeks to ensure, in an institutional manner, the proper intellectual and academic witness to Christian inspiration in individuals and in the community, and to provide a place for continuing reflection, in the light of Christian faith, upon the growing treasure of human knowledge.

As a member of the American academic community, it accepts the standards and procedures of American institutions and seeks to achieve distinction within the academic world.

Faithful to the Christian message as it comes through the Church and faithful to its own national traditions, The Catholic University of America has unique responsibilities to be of service to Christian thought and education in the Catholic community as well as to serve the nation and the world.

Goals of the University

The Catholic University of America was founded in the name of the Catholic Church in the United States by Pope Leo XIII and the Most Reverends of this country as a national institution of learning. Given its origins and the historic role of its ecclesiastical faculties, this university has a responsibility to the Church in the United States that is special to it: It is called to be an intellectual center of highest quality, where the relation between revealed truth and human truth can be examined in depth and with authority. It seeks, moreover, to do this in the light of the American experience. It is for this reason that, from its inception, the university has enjoyed a unique relationship with the Holy See and the entire Catholic community.

Established as a center for graduate study, The Catholic University of America has evolved into a modern American university, committed not only to graduate but also to undergraduate and professional education and to the cultivation of the arts. At every level, the university is dedicated to the advancement of learning and particularly to the development of knowledge in the light of Christian revelation, convinced that faith is consistent with reason and that theology and other religious studies themselves profit from the broader context of critical inquiry, experimentation, and reflection.

The university aims to achieve and maintain in higher education a leading place among Catholic and other privately endowed, research-oriented institutions of comparable size, purpose, and tradition. In particular, it seeks to maintain a position of special excellence in the fields of theology, philosophy, and canon law.

The Catholic University of America gives primacy to scholarship and scientific research and to the training of future scholars through its graduate programs, not only in order to advance scientific work but also because it recognizes that undergraduate and professional education of high quality also demands the presence of a faculty that combines teaching and professional activity with fundamental scholarship.

The university seeks the advancement of knowledge within a context of liberal studies, a context that reflects both its concern for the whole person and the distinctive wisdom to which it is heir as a Catholic institution. This dimension of learning is reflected particularly in its undergraduate programs where religious studies and philosophy are regarded as integral to curricula that include requirements in the arts and humanities, language and literature, and the natural and social sciences. Through its professional programs, the university seeks to educate men and women who can represent their respective professions with distinction and who are formed by the learning and values inherent in its academic and Catholic traditions.

In selecting disciplines or fields of specialization to be supported at an advanced level of study and research, the university accords priority to religious and philosophical studies and to those programs that advance the Catholic tradition of humanistic learning and that serve the contemporary and future needs of society and the Church. In supporting particular programs the university takes into account the present and potential quality of programs, making an effort to maintain present academic strengths, especially when these are not represented elsewhere.

The university recognizes that its distinctive character ultimately depends on the intellectual and moral quality of its members. To create an environment that is intellectually stimulating and characterized by the generosity and mutual support required for collegial life and personal growth, the university seeks men and women who are not only professionally competent but who also can contribute to its Catholic, moral, and cultural milieu. The university seeks to preserve its tradition of collegial governance, fostering a climate within which all members of the university community have sufficient opportunities to influence deliberation and choice.

Though a research and teaching institution, the university recognizes that it is part of a larger community to which it has certain obligations consistent with its character. Its presence in the nation's capital and its unique relationship with the Catholic Church in America provide it with opportunities for influencing the resolution of the crucial issues of our time. In providing information and criteria by which public policy is shaped and measured, the university seeks to be of special service to the nation. Similarly, it seeks to be of service to the Church, not only through the preparation of clergy and other leaders for specific roles in the Church, but also through factual investigations and discussions of principles that influence policy. Thus, in dialogue and cooperation with contemporary society, The Catholic University of America sees itself as faithful to the challenge proposed by the Second Vatican Council for institutions of higher learning, namely, to put forth every effort so that "the Christian mind may achieve . . . a public, persistent, and universal presence in the whole enterprise of advancing higher culture" (Gravissimum educationis, n. 10).

Accreditation and Memberships



The Catholic University of America is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council of Higher Education Accreditation.


Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology
American Bar Association
American Chemical Society
American Library Association
American Psychological Association
Association of American Law Schools
Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
Council on Social Work Education
National Architectural Accrediting Board
National Association of Schools of Music
National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
National Recorgnition from the American Association of School Librarians in partnership with the
National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education
Nurses' Examining Board of the District of Columbia



American Council on Education
American Council of Learned Societies
Association of American Colleges and Universities
Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities
Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges
Association of Graduate Schools in Catholic Colleges and Universities
Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area
Council of European Studies
Council of Graduate Schools
Council on Postsecondary Accreditation
International Federation of Catholic Universities
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities


American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education
American Association of Colleges of Nursing
American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers
American Association of University Women
American College Center for Study Abroad
American College Health Association
Association for Library and Information Science Education Associations
Foreign Students Service Council
Institute of International Education
International Association of Universities
International Federation of Library Associations
Latin American Studies Association
Music Industry Council
National Association of Foreign Student Advisers (NAFSA): Association of International Educators
National Association of Graduate Admissions Professionals
National Association of Student Personnel Administrators
National Catholic Educational Association
National League for Nursing
North American Association of Summer Sessions
Oak Ridge Associated Universities
Potomac River Basin Consortium
Southeastern Universities Research Association
Southern Regional Education Board
University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Schools of the University

School of Architecture and Planning

Programs lead to the degrees Bachelor of Science in Architecture, Master of Architecture (professional degree, one-and-one-half to two years), Master of Architecture (professional degree, three years), and Master of Architectural Studies (post-professional degree).

School of Arts and Science

Programs lead to the degrees Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Master of Arts, Master of Fine Arts, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy. The departments of the school offering graduate degrees are anthropology, biology, business and economics (international political economics), chemistry (chemical education), drama, education, English, Greek and Latin, history, modern languages (Spanish), physics, politics, psychology, Semitic and Egyptian languages and literatures, and sociology. Interdisciplinary programs are available in early Christian studies and medieval and Byzantine studies.

School of Canon Law

Programs lead to the pontifical degrees of Licentiate in Canon Law, J.C.L., and Doctor of Canon Law, J.C.D. A dual degree program, J.D./J.C.L., is also conducted in conjunction with the Columbus School of Law.

School of Engineering

Programs lead to the degrees Bachelor of Biomedical Engineering, Bachelor of Civil Engineering, Bachelor of Electrical Engineering, Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering, Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Master of Biomedical Engineering, Master of Civil Engineering, Master of Electrical Engineering, Master of Mechanical Engineering, Master of Science in Computer Science, Master of Science in Engineering, and Doctor of Philosophy.

Columbus School of Law

The law school offers the LL.M. and the Juris Doctor degree, with a broad curriculum that prepares graduates for a range of professional career opportunities. The school also has joint degree programs with the schools of arts and sciences, library and information science, philosophy, social service, and canon law. Concentrated certificate programs are available in communications law, securities law, law and public policy, and international law. Through a number of clinical programs, students can gain professional service and skills experience.

School of Library and Information Science

Programs lead to the degree Master of Science in Library Science and to a post-master's Certificate of Advanced Study. Concentrations include archives and records management, biomedical information, book arts, information resources management, information systems, law librarianship, library and information services, music librarianship, school media services, special collections and services for children and young adults. Joint degree programs with the schools of law, music, and religious studies, and the departments of history, biology, English, and Greek and Latin in the School of Arts and Sciences lead to the master's degree in library and information science and the related degree in a shorter time than required for the two degrees pursued independently. Through the school's practicum, students earn academic credit for 120 hours of work in an area library or archives. Graduates assume professional positions as librarians, archivists, records managers, and school media.

School of Nursing

Programs lead to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing program prepares the student for both beginning professional nursing practice and graduate study. The Master of Science in Nursing program prepares the student for advanced practice nursing roles in adult/geriatric, family, pediatric (pediatric primary care, pediatric acute care and a combined pediatric primary care/acute care tracks are offered), and community/public health nursing. The Doctor of Nursing Practice program prepares the student for roles involving the development and modification of health care systems and health care services as well as the direct care component of the advanced practice role. The Doctor of Philosophy (Nursing) program prepares clinical nurse researchers who can teach, administer and contribute to policy formulation in the private and community health care sectors. The focus on the Doctor of Philosophy program is on clinical issues and applications.

School of Philosophy

Programs lead to the degrees Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, and Doctor of Philosophy, to the ecclesiastical degrees Bachelor, Licentiate, and Doctor of Philosophy, and to the Certificate in Pre-Theology Studies. The school offers a joint M.A./J.D. degree program with the Columbus School of Law and a joint Ph.B./S.T.B. degree program with the School of Theology and Religious Studies.

Benjamin T. Rome School of Music

Programs lead to the degrees Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Arts; Master of Arts, Master of Music, Master of Music in Sacred Music; Doctor of Philosophy (Musicology), Doctor of Musical Arts, Doctor of Musical Arts in Sacred Music. Also available are a joint degree program in music librarianship (Master of Arts in Musicology and the Master of Science in Library Science); a Graduate Artist Diploma (offered in cello, piano, violin, voice, and orchestral conducting); a minor in Latin American music within most graduate degree programs; and a nondegree Music Teacher Certification Program.

School of Theology and Religious Studies

Academic areas of study: Biblical Studies, Church History, Hispanic/Latino Studies, Historical Theology, Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology, Moral Theology/Ethics, Pastoral Studies, Religion and Culture, Religious Education/Catechetics, Spirituality, Systematic Theology, and joint degree programs in Catholic Education Leadership, and Religious Studies and Library Science. Academic and ministerial programs lead to the degrees Master of Arts (M.A.), Master of Divinity (M.Div.), Master of Religious Education (M.R.E.), Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) and to the pontifical degrees of Bachelor (S.T.B.), Licentiate (S.T.L.), and Doctor of Sacred Theology (S.T.D.). Ministerial field training and seminars are provided in the Pastoral Formation Program. Theological College, under the direction of the Sulpician Fathers, provides for diocesan seminarians the spiritual formation and the opportunity for personal integration that are necessary for ordination to the priesthood in the Roman Catholic Church. The school also provides the academic formation for a number of other seminaries in the Washington area.

National Catholic School of Social Service

Programs lead to the Bachelor of Social Work, Master of Social Work, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The Bachelor of Social Work Program prepares students for direct entry into social work practice, under supervision, working in a wide range of social service settings. The Master of Social Work program prepares students for advanced entry into the social work profession with theoretical knowledge, practice skills, research utilization, and professional values. M.S.W. candidates choose from 3 concentrations, clinical, social change, and combined (clinical and macro practice), as well a clinical health specialization. The program leading to the Doctor of Philosophy degree is comprised of a foundation curriculum common to all students, a choice of electives to meet individualized specializations, and the dissertation as the capstone. The Ph.D. prepares graduates for active scholarship, research, and leadership positions in social work. A Master of Teaching in Social Work (MTSW) program is offered in Mindanao in the Philippines, directed to social workers working in conflict-affected areas. This program is sponsored by NCSSS, Community and Family Services International (CFSI), and a consortium of Mindanao-based academic institutions.

Metropolitan School of Professional Studies

The Metropolitan School of Professional Studies extends the resources and expertise of the university to the Washington area community by offering professional development, certificate, baccalaureate, and master's degree programs for adult students. Reflecting the tradition and educational values of The Catholic University of America, degree programs are based on a strong core component of study in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Individual programs are designed with a maximum of flexibility to meet the special needs of adult students, while classes are offered evenings and online to accommodate nontraditional schedules.

Graduate Programs of CUA

Anthropology M.A.
Architecture M.Arch., M.Arch. S., M.C.R.P., M.S.D., M.S.S.D.
Biblical Studies M.A., S.T.L., S.T.D., Ph.D.
Biology M.S., Ph.D.
Biomedical Engineering M.B.E., M.S.E., D.Engr., Ph.D.
Business and Economics M.S.B.A., M.S.A., I.E.D.M.
Canon Law J.C.L., J.C.D.
Chemical Education M.S.
Church History M.A., Ph.D.
Civil Engineering Certificate, M.C.E., M.S.E., D.Engr., Ph.D.
Classics M.A.
Computer Science M.S.C.S., Ph.D.
Drama M.A., M.F.A.
Early Christian Studies M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Education Certificate, M.A., Ph.D.
Electrical Engineering M.E.E., D.Engr., Ph.D.
Engineering Management Certificate, M.S., M.S.E.
English M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Greek Certificate
Greek and Latin Certificate, M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Historical Theology S.T.L., S.T.D., Ph.D.
Historical/Systematic Theology M.A.
History M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
History of Religions M.A.
Human Resource Management M.A.
International Political Economics M.A.
Irish Studies M.A.
Latin Certificate, M.A.
Law LL.M., J.D.
Library and Information Science Certificate, M.S.L.S.
Liturgical Studies M.A., S.T.L., S.T.D., D.Min., Ph.D.
Management M.S.M.
Mechanical Engineering M.M.E., M.S.E., Ph.D.
Medieval and Byzantine Studies Certificate, M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Moral Theology/Ethics M.A., S.T.L., S.T.D., Ph.D.
Music M.A., M.M., M.M.S.M., D.M.A., Ph.D.
Nursing Certificate, M.S.N., D.N.P., Ph.D.
Pastoral Studies Certificate, M.Div., D.Min.
Philosophy M.A., Ph.L., Ph.D.
Physics M.S., Ph.D.
Politics M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Psychology M.A., Ph.D.
Religion and Culture M.A., Ph.D.
Religion and Religious Education M.A., M.R.E., Ph.D.
Sacramental Theology S.T.L., S.T.D.
Semitics M.A., M.A./Ph.D., Ph.D.
Social Work M.S.W., M.T.S.W., D.S.W., Ph.D.
Sociology M.A.
Spanish M.A., Ph.D.
Spirituality M.R.E., Ph.D.
Systematic Theology S.T.L., S.T.D., Ph.D.
Theology M.A., M.Div., D.Min., S.T.B., S.T.L., S.T.D., Ph.D.



The decision to found The Catholic University of America was made by the bishops of the United States on Dec. 2, 1884. Pope Leo XIII, who was a source of encouragement from the beginning, gave the decision his formal approbation on April 10, 1887. The anniversary is commemorated annually as Founders Day. A certificate of incorporation was registered in the District of Columbia on April 21, 1887. After papal approval of the university's first constitutions was given on March 7, 1889, and what is now called Caldwell Hall was completed, the university opened with 37 students of the sacred sciences on Nov. 13 of the same year.

At the time, the modern American university was still in its infancy. The opening of The Johns Hopkins University in 1876 had marked its beginning. This institution in Baltimore was the first in the country to dedicate itself, not only to the preservation of learning and to teaching, as universities had been doing since the Middle Ages and as American institutions had been doing since the foundation of Harvard College on an English model in 1636, but also to the advancement of knowledge through research. In this it was following the example of the Prussian universities of the 19th century.

Very soon the conduct of research and the training of graduate students to carry it on became the hallmark of university status. By 1900, 14 institutions offering instruction for the doctorate, The Catholic University of America among them, considered themselves ready to form the Association of American Universities. In 1904 the university began to offer undergraduate programs as well.

As the article in its name suggests, The Catholic University of America was founded when it was thought that for some time to come American Catholics would be able to maintain only one institution of university standing. There had been occasional demands for such an institution for several decades. Meeting in their Second Plenary Council, in 1866, the Bishops, who were interested especially in the higher education of the clergy, had expressed a desire to have under Catholic auspices a university in which "all the letters and sciences, both sacred and profane, could be taught." Although some Catholic colleges of the period had announced graduate offerings in the 1870s, they had defined them by adding courses rather than by the pursuit of investigation that graduate work is understood to entail.

Most Reverend John Lancaster Spalding of Peoria, Ill., became the principal champion of the Catholic university cause. In the Third Plenary Council of the Bishops, in 1884, he was able to persuade a majority that so long as they would "look rather to the multiplying of schools and seminaries than to the creation of a real university," the progress of American Catholics would be "slow and uncertain. A university," he said, "is the great ordinary means to the best cultivation of mind." A gift from Mary Gwendoline Caldwell of Newport, R.I., made possible the foundation of a faculty of the sacred sciences as the nucleus around which a university could develop. Seen in the context of the development of American higher education as a whole, the institution that began with the decision of the Bishops in 1884 became the principal channel through which the modern university movement entered the American Catholic community.

The life of The Catholic University of America has been more or less co-terminus with the movement, which now extends on an international scale. A particularly visible contribution of the university to the Church in the United States and to the nation at large has been its preparation of teachers, many of them diocesan priests or members of religious communities of men and women, for service in schools, seminaries and colleges throughout the country.

The expansion of the university into the arts and sciences began with the opening, in 1895, of what were called at the time the "faculties for the laity." Instruction in law and in technology was included. A structural evolution led to a comprehensive academic reorganization in 1930. In that year, in accord with patterns that had become general in the United States, the College and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences were established. The School of Engineering and Architecture was also a product of this reorganization.

The School of Law had been established early in 1898, in the third year after its beginning as a department. The addition of several professional schools since 1930; the incorporation of the National Catholic School of Social Service in 1947 and the former Columbus University in 1954; and the establishment of the School of Religious Studies in 1973. The integration of the College and Graduate School into a single School of Arts and Sciences in 1975; the return of the School of Education to departmental status in 1986; and the re-establishment of canon law as a school within the university in 2002 have resulted in a complex of 12 faculties or schools: architecture and planning, arts and sciences, canon law, engineering, law, library and information science, music, nursing, philosophy, religious studies, and social service; in 2006 the Board of Trustees approved the establishment of Metropolitan College as a separate school. Metropolitan College focuses on the admission of nontraditional students to its undergraduate degree programs and on the development of professional master's degree programs.

Undergraduates are admitted to the schools of architecture and planning, arts and sciences, engineering, music, nursing, and philosophy. A common admissions authority applies the same general standards to all six schools. To a considerable extent, undergraduates participate in the same classes in general subjects, share in other features of undergraduate life, and are governed by common regulations.

The composition of the university's student body has changed several times during its first century. At present, it resembles more than ever before what would be regarded as a typical American institution. About 50 percent of all students are undergraduates. Of the other 50 percent who are post-baccalaureate students, roughly two-thirds are in professional schools. The latter have gained in proportion as the number of clerics and religious, who once constituted a large segment of students in arts and sciences, has declined.

When the university was established, its governance was delegated by the bishops to a board of trustees of 17 members. An act of Congress in 1928 amended the original certificate of incorporation to allow, among other things, an increase in the membership of the board.

Lay membership, however, was minimal until 1968. Under bylaws that it adopted in that year, the board, which now has 49 members, has equal numbers of clerical and lay members.

An official statement of the aims of the university that the trustees promulgated in 1970 transmits consistently the goals of the founders of a century ago. The first rector, Most Reverend John Joseph Keane, gave succinct form to these goals when he portrayed the institution that he was chosen to head as "a living embodiment and illustration of the harmony between reason and revelation, between science and religion, between the genius of America and the church of Christ." His words have been a guide for a century and will be a continuing challenge as long as the university endures.

Academic Resources

University Libraries

The libraries of The Catholic University of America provide resources and services integral to the intellectual endeavors of the university's students, faculty and staff.

Collections in the humanities, social sciences, theology and religious studies and philosophy are located in the John K. Mullen of Denver Memorial Library, along with the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections and the Semitics Library/Institute of Christian Oriental Research. Separate campus libraries have specialized collections in architecture, engineering, mathematics, music, library science, physics, biology and nursing. Records of the university as well as manuscripts and artifacts that document the heritage of American Catholics are organized, preserved and made accessible through the American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives, located in Aquinas Hall. Mullen Library and campus library collections total more than 1.3 million volumes of journals, books, dissertations and other research materials.

Graduate students have access to ALADIN as a benefit of CUA's membership in the Washington Research Library Consortium. ALADIN includes the online library catalog for CUA and other consortium members, as well as electronic journals, full-text and article citation databases, image collections, and Internet resources. Students with valid, updated borrowing privileges may access ALADIN from off campus. Additional databases on CD-ROM may be searched at workstations in Mullen Library.

For materials not available at CUA, eligible students may borrow directly from the Washington Research Library Consortium or request books, articles and other items through the Consortium Loan Service. Many articles can be delivered electronically to the student's myALADIN account.

PC workstations for ALADIN access are available in all libraries. Students also may connect to the Internet through the wireless network in Mullen Library and may borrow laptops and wireless network cards.

Assistance with research is available at reference desks in Mullen Library and the campus libraries, by e-mail, instant messaging, and over the phone. Instruction in library research and the use of electronic resources is sponsored by Reference and Instructional Services, with hands-on sessions held in Mullen Library's computer-equipped classroom.

Students also have convenient access to the library resources of the Washington metropolitan area. These include the Library of Congress and many specialized public and private collections such as The Dumbarton Oaks Library, The Folger Shakespeare Library, The National Archives, The National Library of Medicine and the libraries of the Washington Theological Consortium.

Center for Planning and Information Technology

Zia Mafaher, Director

The Center for Planning and Information Technology provides computing and network facilities to students and faculty for their educational and research activities, supports the university's information systems, manages the campus network and provides information resources and telecommunication services. The center provides leadership on the ethical use of computing. Numerous public lab areas and classrooms are equipped with desktop computers. All residence hall rooms have network connections via a gigabit ethernet campus backbone.

The center supports Internet tools such as Web browsers (, Telnet, FTP and electronic mail. Numerous Web tools are also available for instructional and research purposes. Popular software programs for Microsoft Windows and Apple Macintosh are supported in the public computing areas.

The campus network consists of Sun Microsystems servers and Intel servers running Solaris, VMS, Windows NT and Linux operating systems, numerous workstations and more than 1,500 networked Windows-based Intel powered and Macintosh desktop computers, with direct access to the Internet and Washington Research Library Consortium. The central systems are accessible via direct connections on campus and remotely via the Web.

CPIT issues a VMS and an NT account to all faculty, staff and students. CPIT provides students, faculty, and staff with an extensive computer education and training program. The CUA Computing Web site provides details about computing at CUA, including information about training, computing resources available, a knowledge bank, a computing guide and activities underway.

The CUA Computing Information Center, located within CPIT, provides service and support to the campus community. It provides answers to technology questions and fields telephone calls regarding assistance needed on campus. The information center has become a very effective clearinghouse for receiving, tracking, and resolving problems and issues with technology on campus.

In addition, CPIT provides service and support for all technology classrooms and computing areas on campus.

A general computing area in Leahy Hall, with both MS Windows and Macintosh machines, is open 24 hours a day during the semesters. Other computer-equipped classrooms and computing areas are open and monitored by CPIT, and available for use by any CUA student, faculty member, or staff.

Further information on CPIT is available at Students with special ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) technology needs should contact the director of academic services by email sent to

Consortium of Universities

Cooperation among the institutions of higher education in the metropolitan area is provided by the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area. The consortium consists of 14 universities: American University, The Catholic University of America, Corcoran College of Art and Design, Gallaudet University, George Mason University, The George Washington University, Georgetown University, Howard University, Marymount University, National Defense Intelligence College, National Defense University, Trinity Washington University, University of the District of Columbia, and University of Maryland at College Park.

Students following an approved program leading to a degree, who need a course which is not offered at The Catholic University of America and is needed for the degree, may select the particular courses which best meet their needs from the combined offerings of all the institutions. Students provisionally admitted to a degree program and non-degree students are not eligible. Students in certain degree programs are excluded, and some courses are not open for participation. Students may not enroll in off-campus courses offered by participating institutions. Courses taken through the Consortium may not be used to replace a grade of D or F earned in another course.

In order to register for a course through the consortium, a student must be currently registered at Catholic University. Students may take a maximum of one course per semester through the consortium. Students may take consortium courses for credit only and must have the approval of the adviser, chair, dean, and consortium coordinator. As other universities in the consortium may have different grading deadlines, students are strongly advised against cross-registration through the consortium during their final semester prior to graduation as doing so could result in delayed graduation.

The student registers and pays tuition at the home institution where the record of academic achievement is maintained in accordance with its policies. However, special fees for specific courses are paid by the student directly to the institution offering the course.


Oak Ridge Associated Universities

Since 1946, students and faculty of The Catholic University of America have benefited from its membership in Oak Ridge Associated Universities, ORAU. ORAU is a consortium of 96 colleges and universities and a contractor for the U.S. Department of Energy, DOE located in Oak Ridge, Tenn. ORAU works with its member institutions to help their students and faculty gain access to federal research facilities throughout the country; to keep its members informed about opportunities for fellowship, scholarship, and research appointments; and to organize research alliances among its members.

Through the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, ORISE, the DOE facility that ORAU operates, undergraduates, graduates, postgraduates, as well as faculty enjoy access to a multitude of opportunities for study and research. Students can participate in programs covering a wide variety of disciplines including business, earth sciences, epidemiology, engineering, physics, geological sciences, pharmacology, ocean sciences, biomedical sciences, nuclear chemistry and mathematics. Appointment and program length range from one month to four years. Many of these programs are especially designed to increase the numbers of underrepresented minority students pursuing degrees in science- and engineering-related disciplines. A comprehensive listing of these programs and other opportunities, their disciplines, and details on locations and benefits can be found in the ORISE Catalog of Education and Training Programs, which is available at, or by calling either of the contacts below.

ORAU's Office of Partnership Development seeks opportunities for partnerships and alliances among ORAU's members, private industry, and major federal facilities. Activities include faculty development programs, such as the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards, the Visiting Industrial Scholars Program, consortium research funding initiatives, faculty research and support programs as well as services to chief research officers.

For more information about ORAU and its programs, contact Ralph A. Albano, associate provost for sponsored research and director of technology transfer, ORAU councilor for The Catholic University of America, or Monnie E. Champion, ORAU corporate secretary at 865-576-3306; or visit the ORAU Home Page at

Summer Sessions

In summer 2012, The Catholic University of America will offer more than 250 courses in all schools and departments, to qualified high school, undergraduate and graduate students. In addition to academic courses for credit, CUA offers special programs in Hispanic pastoral leadership, spirituality, workshops for teachers and computer applications. Pre-college programs will include architecture, engineering, debate, video and media production, opera, and percussion. For more information, contact the Office of Summer Sessions, at 202-319-5257 or visit