MU assists Catholic education and institutions

Marquette launched a new Institute for Catholic Leadership at the beginning of the semester aiming to further support Catholic K-12 education and communities.

The institute, housed at 1618 W. Wells St., will provide training and consultative services to Catholic leaders through conferences, targeted workshops and individual consultations. The institute wants to provide the tools, looking out for new ways to help recruit and develop the next generation.

“The main goal is that Catholic schools and institutions will be able to form a sustaining model and strong leadership within the communities,” said Thomas Kiely, director of the institute, who has held many leadership positions within Catholic institutions including being principal at Camden Catholic High School in New Jersey.

This year, the institute plans to focus on developing leaders within the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

“There is an imperative that we intentionally and systematically form leaders at all levels of our Catholic Schools and organizations who understand the nature of the Catholic institute,” said Kathleen Cepelka, superintendent for Catholic schools for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. “We are thrilled to have this opportunity.”

Bill Henk, dean of the College of Education, said that focusing on having a strong leader is crucial for these schools.

“You would be hard pressed to find a school that doesn’t have a strong leader,” Henk said. “The leader is the one who sets the tone for the entire school.”

Aside from schools, the institute also plans on building leaders within hospitals, ministries and parish councils. In the past, individual colleges within Marquette worked with these groups. The institute hopes to combine the efforts and take one giant step forward together in a university-wide effort.

“All the colleges have human and material resources that they can bring centrally to this institute, and these can be used to facilitate Catholic schools or Catholic hospitals,”  Henk said. “The business school can provide financial support and the communication school bring marketing expertise. The institute can harness all of these abilities into one effort.

“It is exciting to think of the possibilities,” he continued. “It really does take resources to make the difference.