When St. Kate’s was founded in 1905, its curriculum was modeled on elite liberal arts colleges and universities at the time, including the University of Chicago. Majors offered then included philosophy, chemistry, art history, botany and English — to name a few — and the goals were clear:
A liberal arts education at St. Kate’s would emphasize disciplinary breadth and depth that cultivate curiosity and forge connections among disparate arenas of knowledge.
The phrase “liberal arts” is neither an expression of partisan politics nor a useless pursuit. Rather, it stems from the Latin phrase artes liberales, which means “skills for living fully and freely.”
A liberal arts education at St. Kate’s enables you to:
We live the liberal arts at St. Kate’s in the way our students claim their education at all degree levels and across disciplines, both in the liberal arts and in professional programs.
This “Claim your education” mantra comes from Adrienne Rich, whose 1977 essay “Claiming an Education” is a popular one with our first-year students in “The Reflective Woman” (TRW) course. In the essay, she writes:
“Responsibility to yourself means refusing to let others do your thinking, talking and naming for you; it means learning to respect and use your own brains and instincts; hence, grappling with hard work.” (p. 53, TRW core reader)
That’s right. At St. Kate’s, you are empowered to choose for yourself!
Here are the three faculty members bringing St. Catherine University's mission to life.