Summer Reading Program

Members of the Class of 2025 should read five articles and complete a writing assignment before you arrive to campus. These articles were chosen by Ben U professors and reflect our Benedictine Hallmark of Hospitality.


Hospitality is a patient and generous call to openness. We experience hospitality in two ways, as hosts and as guests. As hosts, we practice hospitality when we welcome others in, both friends and strangers; as guests, we wait and listen for our invitation to join. In the spirit of Benedictine Hospitality, we present this selection of summer reading to welcome you to the intellectual culture of the University.


  • An article by philosopher Christopher Kaczor on the close link between faith and reason, religion and science, introduced by Professor Tim Marin, College of Science & Health.
  • An excerpt from Gerda Lerner’s Why History Matters on the collective memory of history, introduced by Professor Susan Mikula, College of Liberal Arts.
  • A report on diversity and inclusion in the workplace, introduced by Professor Robert Rebman, College of Business.
  • An article from Chicago-based Injustice Watch on the impact of family photographs for incarcerated women, introduced by Professor Chez Rumpf, College of Liberal Arts.
  • An article from Outside magazine on Emily Ford’s journey on the Ice Age Trail, introduced by Professor Regina Schurman, College of Science & Health.

Your professors encourage you to think critically over the summer about the importance of hospitality. At the freshman orientation, Ben Beginnings, you will attend a panel discussion among those professors and then break into small groups of classmates, orientation leaders, and first-year faculty to continue the conversation.


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