Kelly Conroy


Notre Dame President: ‘Creation of the GLBTQ Group Is a big step forward’

Kelly Conroy

December 4, 2013 (The Cardinal Newman Society) - The Rev. John Jenkins, president of Notre Dame, explained in a recent article in The Observer that he created an Oversight Committee on Diversity and Inclusion to create a welcoming atmosphere on campus that “go[es] across all areas” of campus for students, faculty, and staff. 

He said that the committee “seeks to implement concrete changes on campus, but noticeable progress will not occur overnight.”

In the article, Fr. Jenkins is quoted lauding the steps already taken towards this goal:

I think that we have made progress. The creation of the GLBTQ group [Prism-ND] is a big step forward, and I hope that’s successful… But there are other areas of the University where maybe we need to think about, for instance, how to incorporate international students. … They bring great gifts, but perhaps we need to make sure that they’re fully included. … Sometimes individuals from underrepresented minorities … feel that Notre Dame could be more welcoming.

Catholic Education Daily recently reported on the Prism-ND co-sponsoring “Coming Out Day,” which celebrated GLBTQ lifestyles.

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The newly formed committee is supposed to consider diversity of race, ethnicity, nation of origin, socioeconomic class, gender and sexual orientation, according to The Observer.  Fr. Jenkins explained the reasons why he believes this committee’s existence and work will lead to a better Notre Dame, stating:

A more diverse and inclusive campus is a better educational environment… I think we learn, students and faculty and everyone on campus learns, not only in formal classes from teachers, but from one another.  And insofar as we can have a broader array of perspectives on matters, I think it’s a better education.

A professor from Gonzaga University recently questioned why so-called “diversity” seems to mean allowance for every possible viewpoint except faithful Catholicism.  He argued that in order for true diversity to exist, the authentic teaching of Catholicism should occur, just as other disciplines are treated fairly.

Reprinted with permission from The Cardinal Newman Society

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