1. You will Dialogue with the Catholic Intellectual Tradition. Salve Regina University has a Catholic identity, and a proud heritage rooted in the mission of the Sisters of Mercy. Salve Regina welcomes people of all beliefs. It is a learning community of Catholics, students from other religious traditions, and students who profess no religious affiliation.
If you are a student who shares a Catholic identity, the Core offers you an opportunity to develop it more deeply, and expand it in conversation with your own tradition as well as other religious and secular perspectives. If you do not share a Catholic identity, the Core gives you an opportunity to develop your own worldview more deeply, and expand it in conversation with a variety of secular and religious perspectives, including the Catholic and Mercy traditions.
2. You will Seek Truth, Pursue Goodness, Encounter Beauty. A Catholic liberal arts education involves not only education to ground you for the world of work, but integrates skills and concepts of your intended major to a broader experience, one that includes exposure to grand ideas and training in the areas of research, analysis, and rhetorical argument. You will find that expertise in these areas will complement and enhance other marketable skills that you will develop in your major. Study in this curriculum also involves more than reassurance of your strengths, or those subjects in which you may already have an interest. You will be challenged to look for hidden curiosities and talents. This will require some daring on your part, an open-mindedness to exploring new ideas and activities, leaving your comfort zone, being humble, and so, finding out more about yourself. You will discover who you truly are and the vast potential that you hold.
Salve Regina’s Core Curriculum prepares you for a lifetime of challenges and opportunities. In addition to learning essential concepts in a number of disciplines, you will be taught how to think and learn from the perspective of each of these disciplines, improving your capacity to understand the world and its people. The liberal arts core also will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to participate fully and effectively in addressing issues faced by your community, state and the world.
3. You will Refine your Liberal Arts Skills of Inquiry, Analysis and Communication. Traditional liberal arts skills, dating back to medieval Catholic universities, include: critical reading, clear writing, and being able to articulate your thoughts orally. They also include quantitative and empirical skills. In the 21st century, they include the ability to pursue inquiry, using tools available in this age of electronic information.
The student of the liberal arts does not just “know things,” whether facts or procedures, but knows how to learn, how to grow and adapt, through lifelong reading, conversation, and inquiry. The liberal arts is not just a label for a set of courses; your grounding in the liberal arts will be fundamental to the person you become.
4. You will Link the Past, Present and Future. We study the liberal arts not simply out of curiosity, but in order to expand our imaginative possibilities for the present and future. Knowing where humans have been helps us think about where we can be. Knowing where we are today requires looking beneath surfaces or interrogating our immediate impressions in order to grasp the underlying forces that currently influence our lives and to understand our present context more deeply.
Insight into who we are, both as individuals and as a society, is enhanced by an open-minded exploration of who others are. The mission of the University, in part, is to help create a world that is harmonious, just, and merciful. The individual, the society, and the natural world are interconnected. Changes in one impact the others.
The Core Curriculum offers each student opportunities for intellectual, aesthetic, moral and spiritual development. It challenges each student to pursue responsible citizenship and civic engagement for the sake of the common good. It calls us beyond the horizon of our local and national identity in order to address pressing global issues, from poverty and ecological degradation to human rights and international conflicts.
The Salve Regina Core Curriculum challenges you to cultivate intellectual freedom and responsibility by making your own curricular choices through conversation with others. The conversation occurs with your advisor, professors, fellow students, and the subject matter itself. The path you chart through the Salve core is your own. You are free to choose much of it, and also responsible for your choices. You are not only responsible to yourself in the sense of owning your own choices, but you are personally responsible in the formation of your own views, to do justice to the views of others, to the material that you study, and to wider realities of the social and natural world.