Featured Image

Choosing a Catholic College

A Catholic university is much more than the religious beliefs and practices of Catholicism; it is about a way of life--a life dedicated to both rigorous, well-rounded education and service to the global community

Students considering a myriad of colleges may be tempted to place them all in the same mental “boxes”: Small liberal arts college. Technical school. Big state university. Catholic institutions. But a Catholic university is much more than the religious beliefs and practices of Catholicism; it is about a way of life—a life dedicated to both rigorous, well-rounded education and service to the global community. The campus community is welcoming and supportive. People of all interests, faiths, and backgrounds are invited to learn in a stimulating environment conducive to helping them grow into thoughtful individuals ready for life’s challenges.  

Catholic universities focus on the education of the whole person. Most offer strong liberal arts courses, insisting that all students explore philosophy, theology, literature, and the arts, regardless of their majors. This type of integrated learning helps students develop creativity as they learn to make connections between various disciplines and formulate multifaceted ideas. Students build the capacity to understand complex challenges and to address them from different perspectives.

More importantly, at Catholic universities, young adults of all faiths and backgrounds develop an unmatched passion for learning. In an environment where they feel free to explore new areas of study and express their ideas openly, students actually enjoy learning and interacting on an intellectual level with their peers and professors. They emerge from their classes with a curiosity for a number of different subjects, often seeking knowledge outside their course materials. The desire to learn becomes an invaluable tool as students continue their education and advance their future careers.

This intellectual inquisitiveness fosters one of the most important tenets of Catholic education: the pursuit of truth. As they exchange ideas and seek answers about God and life itself, students learn more about themselves, other faiths, and each other. Their campus becomes a tight-knit community and a safe haven in which students can freely explore their evolving ideas about spirituality with the support of the deans and other faculty members.

One of the most important principles of any faith is the promotion of the common good. Faculty and students at Catholic institutions believe all lives have value and that helping the less fortunate is a spiritual duty. Thus, these schools encourage involvement in the local and global community. Most Catholic universities have a long-standing tradition of service learning, offering rich and varied opportunities for credit-earning community service. Students learn that wanting to make a difference is not enough; creating change requires direct involvement. Traveling to near and far places, they personally seek social justice in their own communities and throughout the globe. By interacting with people from different parts of the world, students foster global connections and learn to respect all cultures and religions.

As a result of this integrated, culturally aware style of learning, students have the ability to contemplate problems from all sides and are trained to look objectively at international issues. Instilled with a sense of justice, students from Catholic institutions also learn to consider ethical objections when addressing the complex problems of the day. These qualities imbue students with the skills they need to become major leaders in politics, science and medicine, business, and many other fields.  

Choosing a Catholic university isn’t just choosing an excellent education. When you choose to attend a Catholic schoool, you are choosing the kind of person you want to be—a person dedicated to learning, service, and making the future a better place. 

Like what you’re reading?

Join the CollegeXpress community! Create a free account and we’ll notify you about new articles, scholarship deadlines, and more.

Join Now

Join our community of
over 5 million students!

CollegeXpress has everything you need to simplify your college search, get connected to schools, and find your perfect fit.

Join CollegeXpress
CollegeXpress Logo


Are you our next winner?

Register now for our scholarship giveaway

Fernando Ponce

Fernando Ponce

High School Junior

College is a way of life that helps us find out who we are as a person, and CollegeXpress is a great way to stay connected with our future, even for students with little time on their hands due to the challenges of high school we face.

Lydia Huth

Lydia Huth

Student, Campbell University; CollegeXpress Student Writer

I discovered CollegeXpress while embarking on my college search journey as an excited—but scared and way confused—high schooler without a counselor or college-bound sibling to give me advice. Let me tell you, I’m so glad that I stumbled on this community! CollegeXpress helped me find potential colleges and keep application deadlines straight. It gave me a great list of scholarships, and the blogs and emails made me feel like I wasn’t going it alone. Almost three years later and with freshman year of college down, I still love the CollegeXpress vibe so much that I’m writing for them. I’d recommend this site to anyone!

Carlie Cadet

Carlie Cadet

High School Class of 2019

CollegeXpress has helped me learn about an abundance of scholarships available to me and my situation. I was able to do research for colleges in my best interest with your website. I've had multiple colleges email me and offer me multiple scholarships and things of that nature because of this website! Thank you so much for uploading scholarships I didn’t even know existed, even if my life took a huge turn and I wasn’t able to go to college straight out of high school. CollegeXpress helped me a lot in high school to be even more motivated to get into my dream college (which I did, by the way). I'm looking forward to using the materials CollegeXpress has kindly provided me for free to look for scholarships to help pay for college.

Heather McCarty

Heather McCarty

High School Class of 2020

CollegeXpress has helped me with the college application process. The tips and tricks for important essays were so helpful. I also gained useful knowledge about college life. Even though I’m fully online, CollegeXpress has helped me develop a sense of how college is in person. The experiences from college students that were featured on their Instagram page have shown the good, the bad, and the “secret” life on campus from a reliable perspective. Not to mention, they relieved my feelings of anxiety about the workload. I can now understand how it can be stressful, but it takes self-control and willpower to get assignments completed on time and with quality.

Kory Gilbertson

Kory Gilbertson

High School Class of 2022

CollegeXpress has helped me explore my views on college in that "why do I wanna go to a certain school" way. It’s helped me explore the best fits in all of these outstanding choices. All these college admission counselors can access my accolades showing them how I could help their college. This source of information helps me show these admission directors who I am and what I'm interested in. Thanks to this platform, my experience for education will be better than most, and I'm so grateful for all that it has provided for me.

College Matches