Student Life Mission

Mission Statement

The Student Life Mission Statement was updated in 2017 to reflect the University’s revised Mission and Vision statements as well as the goals articulated in the BenU2020 strategic plan. The statement serves as an inspiration to Student Life staff and forms the basis of our work.

As a way of understanding the intent and significance of the mission statement as a living and guiding document, we offer the following descriptions of its key ideas.

  • Education of the whole person – This idea acknowledges that much of the learning that takes place in a student’s university experience occurs outside the classroom and is expressed in the choices students make, the values they consider, the experiences in which they participate and how they develop as leaders. Student Life takes a holistic approach to student development that is consistent with the ideals and values that are influenced by both its Catholic and Benedictine identity. 
  • Opportunities and experiences – The co-curriculum complements classroom learning. Student Life provides a non-traditional education in the form of unique opportunities and experiences that involve hands-on, applied learning. 
  • Support academic and personal goals – Student Life acknowledges that students and families are focused on the practical, professional outcomes of a university education – the development of knowledge and skills leading to successful careers – and works to support those with appropriate living and learning environments and opportunities. However, Student Life also believes that students have personal objectives that may add richness to their lives, further their spiritual development and enhance their health and wellbeing, goals that are uniquely supported by co-curricular programming. 
  • Core principles – The four principles identified in the Mission Statement are drawn directly from the Benedictine Hallmarks as they intersect with the work of student development.

Core Principles

The Core Principles identified in the Student Life Mission Statement reflect the primary learning objectives that students gain from their Benedictine experience. Each principle is described in a way that reflects a student’s interaction with Student Life.

Commit to Community

Living and working together in community is a distinguishing characteristic of the Benedictine tradition. The hallmark of community is supported by the hallmark of stability, the commitment to the daily life of the community. Student Life upholds these hallmarks by encouraging students to actively participate in all that our community offers, promoting the health and wellbeing of community members and encouraging both individual and group contributions to community goals.

Welcome Diversity

As an inclusive community, Student Life welcomes diversity through our alignment with the Benedictine Hallmarks of hospitality and humility, and values the variety of traditions, experiences and perspectives of our students. Student Life demonstrates the Benedictine hallmark of hospitality by supporting students of various racial, ethnic, religious and socio-economic backgrounds and students with disabilities, without regard to gender identity and sexual orientation; promoting culturally identified student organizations; providing worship space for students of multiple faiths; and sponsoring programs and activities designed to meet the needs and interests of our diverse student community.

Lead with Purpose

Student Life promises to be resilient in the progression of students by helping them to develop into empowered, engaged leaders who are inspired by the Benedictine hallmarks of humility, the knowledge of self in relation to God and others; obedience, a commitment to listening and consequent action; and discipline, a way toward learning and freedom. Student Life offers a variety of leadership experiences where these hallmarks are developed and tested, including the Benedictine Opportunities for Leadership Development (BOLD) programs; leadership roles in student organizations; and as Resident Assistants, Orientation Leaders, peer ministers and members of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee.

Grow in Faith

Student Life recognizes that faith is united to the intellectual nature of the University in the pursuit of truth and promotes the spiritual growth of all students through the Benedictine hallmarks of prayer and conversatio, the way of formation and transformation. These are lived out through the hallmark of love in Christ and neighbor. Through Campus Ministry, faith-based student organizations, service opportunities and leadership development, Student Life provides a network for spiritual reflection, dialogue and service consistent with Catholic and Benedictine wisdom principles.

Learning Goals

Student Life has developed objectives and specific learning goals for each of the Core Principles identified in the Mission Statement. Learning outcomes are linked to learning goals approved by faculty for the assessment of student learning.

Commit to Community
Objective:

Students will participate in community as active members; appreciate the tradition and heritage of Benedictine; and contribute to the common good through purposeful action.

Learning Outcomes:

Through opportunities and experiences at Benedictine University, students will have the opportunity to:

  • Participate in structures and processes that enhance community life (Student Learning Outcome 7: Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility).
  • Demonstrate an appreciation of the rights and responsibilities needed to be an active participant of local and global communities (Student Learning Outcome 8: Stewardship).
  • Advocate for oneself while being mindful of the needs of community (Student Learning Outcome 9: Personal Development).
  • Access the resources and programs available for healthy, balanced living (Student Learning Outcome 4: Information Fluency).
Welcome Diversity
Objective:

Students will embrace the uniqueness of each person’s contribution to the community; expand their cultural awareness and experience; and promote the values of understanding, dignity and respect.

Learning Outcomes:

Through opportunities and experiences at Benedictine University, students will have the opportunity to:

  • Express their beliefs, values and points of views in relation to culture and social differences (Student Learning Outcome 6: Global Awareness and Cultural Competence).
  • Articulate ideas, express thoughts and exhibit behaviors that cultivate teamwork in learning, work and service (Student Learning Outcome 9: Personal Development).
  • Exhibit techniques to address bias behaviors and engage in critical thinking and concerted action that promote equality and inclusion (Student Learning Outcome 2:  Critical and Creative Thinking Skills).
  • Students will be able to identify key themes of Catholic Social Teaching and understand the hallmarks in relation to equality and inclusion (Student Learning Outcome 7:  Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility).
Lead with Purpose
Objective:

Students will develop and demonstrate leadership skills that prepare them to be well-educated and holistic individuals in a way that is informed by the Benedictine hallmarks and consistent with the institution’s vision of shaping engaged citizens who will practice stewardship, promote inclusivity and further the cause of social justice.

Learning Outcomes:

Through opportunities and experiences at Benedictine University, students will be able to enrich their lives by:

  • Participating in a spectrum of leadership education programs that promote teamwork, professional conduct, diversity and inclusion, and service learning (Student Learning Outcome 2: Critical and Creative Thinking Skills).
  • Developign hands-on experience that applies knowledge and skills to an understanding of roles related to global society and social justice (Student Learning Outcome 6: Global Awareness and Cultural Competence).
  • Applying listening, communication, team building and project management skills through increasingly responsible leadership positions in student organizations (Student Learning Outcome 3: Communication;  Student Learning Outcome 7: Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility).
  • Connecting leadership development experiences and skills to personal goals and objectives (Student Learning Outcome 9: Personal Development).
Grow in Faith
Objective:

Students will gain an understanding of the hallmarks as they relate to spiritual growth; engage in reverent listening, reflective thinking and interfaith understanding; and participate in service opportunities that benefit others and increase stewardship.

Learning Outcomes:

Through opportunities and experiences at Benedictine University, students will have the opportunity to:

  • Practice their faith individually and communally with the support of the University community (Student Learning Outcome 9: Personal Development).
  • Broaden understanding of and respect for the richness of faith traditions present among Benedictine students, faculty and staff by engaging in interfaith cooperation and other initiatives (Student Learning Outcome 6: Global Awareness and Cultural Competence).
  • Gain knowledge of and commitment to social justice by participating in local and global  service opportunities that benefit underserved or underprivileged members of those communities (Student Learning Outcome 6: Global Awareness and Cultural Competence; Student Learning Outcome 7: Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility).
  • Discover meaning and purpose through reflection, study and action to apply to future vocations (Learning Outcome 9: Personal Development).

Learning Communities

As part of the General Education curriculum, Benedictine University has established a requirement that students participate in an approved Learning Community. While most learning communities are established within classes, they may also be approved in the co-curriculum. Current learning communities approved in Student Life include:

Arthur J. Schmitt Future Leaders Scholarship

This unique service scholarship is administered as part of a College of Business/Student Life partnership and is competitively awarded. Recipients are required to participate in supplemental learning and team building opportunities, develop a unique service project with lasting impact on the community and engage in public presentations highlighting their work.

Catholic Muslim Dialogue 

Catholic Muslim Dialogue participants develop transferable skills in interfaith dialogue, gaining techniques for dialoguing across cultural and religious boundaries while building relationships over time.

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Ambassadors

Our CRS Ambassadors program is a direct chapter of CRS’s ambassador program. CRS is one of the world’s leading organization in relief work. Students attend a CRS training and learn how to be advocates of justice for the poor and marginalized. In light of the training they run our Fair Trade programs on campus, a refugee simulation and our Lenten Lunch program.

Serving Together Engaging our Purpose (STEP) 

The STEP learning community program offers students an opportunity to go on a one week or two week long service trip to the Philippines (January) and Bolivia (June). While in the Philippines students build a home for a family in need and spend time getting to know the Filipino community and in Bolivia students serve at a soup kitchen, day cares, a hospital and a psychiatric center.

Engaged Learning Experiences

A component part of the undergraduate General Education curriculum is participation in an approved Engaged Learning experience. Activities that are approved as a designated Engaged Learning experience through Student Life-sponsored programs will be added to this area as they are approved.

Campus Ministry Cor

Campus Ministry Cor members embrace the holistic understanding of the Campus Ministry mission, serve as the student advisory committee to Campus Ministry staff, act as ambassadors of Campus Ministry to peers and the greater Benedictine community, and embody a philosophy of welcoming all.

 

Student Life

Marco Masini
Vice President for Student Life
(630) 829-6124
mmasini@ben.edu

Luba Baranivsky
Assistant to the VP
lbaranivsky@ben.edu

Krasa Student Center, Room 175
5700 College Rd.
Lisle, IL 60532
8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.