Saint Mary's College Hires National Expert on Service Learning

For Immediate Release

Media Relations
(925) 631-4222
[email protected]

MORAGA, Calif. (Sept. 4, 2007) – Marshall Welch, Ph.D., a national leader in service learning, has been named as director of the Catholic Institute for Lasallian Social Action (CILSA) at Saint Mary's College of California. He assumes the position on Dec. 3.

Welch comes to Saint Mary's from the Lowell Bennion Community Service Center at the University of Utah, where he has served as director since 2001. Previously, he was a professor in the university's Department of Special Education. Welch has written articles and made numerous presentations on service learning and civic engagement at conferences nationally and internationally.

CILSA was established in 1999 to promote a culture of service by imbuing members of the Saint Mary's community with the values of faith, justice and charity. CILSA offers a variety of course-based and co-curricular social action programs that encourage leadership development and civic engagement.

"Dr. Welch has a deep personal, intellectual and spiritual understanding of social justice issues," said Saint Mary's College President Brother Ronald Gallagher. "I am confident that Dr. Welch will strengthen CILSA's mission to make service on behalf of social justice a vital component of community life and learning at Saint Mary's College."

Earlier this year, Saint Mary's College of California was selected by the Association of American Colleges and Universities as one of 18 institutions of higher learning to participate in a program promoting personal and social responsibility among undergraduates. Each member of the Core Commitments Leadership Consortium received a $25,000 award and committed $25,000 in matching funds toward the two-year project.

In its winning proposal titled "Walk the Talk," Saint Mary's demonstrated how the college integrates social justice and civic engagement into its curriculum and student life, including public service internships, campus-wide dialogues and community building projects through its Catholic Institute for Lasallian Social Action.

Saint Mary's College, founded in 1863, is a residential learning community in Moraga, California based in the Catholic, Lasallian and liberal arts traditions. The college currently enrolls more than 3,500 students in undergraduate and graduate programs. The Christian Brothers, an international Catholic teaching order, guides the academic growth and spiritual character of the school.