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"It is most helpful to have the opportunity to learn about how the position and responsibilities of Mission Officers are evolving on campuses."

—Past Mission Officer Conference attendee

Mission Officers Conference

Mission officers are among the most active leaders on campus in developing the Catholic identity of their university. Entering its seventh year in 2018, the Mission Officers Conference gives both thoughtful and practical tools to these leaders. Information about the 2018 event will be available in fall 2017.


2017 Mission Officers Conference

Complementing the theme of ACCU’s 2017 Annual Meeting, the sixth Mission Officers Conference carried the theme "One Faith, Many Expressions." Speakers focused on the diversity of approaches in understanding and enacting an institution’s Catholic identity. Among the many engaging conversations was a plenary session facilitated by David Rehm of Mount Saint Mary's University, Maryland, which explored the question, "What is distinctive about Catholic higher education?" Here is a summary of participant responses:

In light of reading passages from Newman and Pope John Paul II:
  • Search for Truth (knowing the fount of Truth)
  • Sacramental quality of all relationships
  • Purposefulness of Catholic higher education: Serve the world; aim for the betterment of humanity
  • Assemblage of strangers: Openness of Catholic higher education to the stranger; conscious consideration of how to welcome the stranger
  • See Catholic higher education as a wheel with spokes: Liberal arts, service learning, spiritual dimension, among others
  • Challenge of including Christ in our accounts of this distinctiveness


In light of reflections on the possibility of Catholic colleges and universities disappearing tomorrow OR never having been:

  • Education of immigrants in the United States: Catholic colleges and universities have played a huge role in that work
  • Catholic colleges and universities do a marvelous job at blending the liberal arts with a pre-professional focus
  • Catholic higher education has significantly involved the voices of women, both through women religious as founders and through education of women
  • Political figures have been significantly influenced by Catholic higher education
  • Faculty trained in Catholic institutions have gone on to make significant contributions in public higher education


More Resources for Mission Officers

Support for Catholic Mission and Identity
Read about the programs and events that ACCU offers to support Catholic campus identity
Strengthening Catholic Identity
This series of brochures — or single volume — can be used as a campus primer to discuss Catholic identity
Mission Leadership Institute
This summer event promotes networking and shared learning among campus mission officers