Jan. 16, 2019

Jan. 16, 2019

Creighton University President, the Rev. Daniel Hendrickson, SJ

As we begin a new semester today, I have campus updates regarding three Jesuits who are temporarily joining our community, the upcoming spring Convocation, the presidential task force announced last month, the Creighton Cupboard, and the GoMove Challenge.

I am pleased to share that Dzao Isaac Jogues Vũ, SJ, PharmD, MPH, who is a native of Omaha, will be joining the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions (SPAHP). Dzao is a Jesuit scholastic of the Jesuits’ West Province, and he joins us during his time of regency in the process of Jesuit formation.
 
Dzao’s background in the health sciences, including his professional training in pharmacy and public health positions, will be a wonderful addition to SPAHP and, in particular, the Doctor of Pharmacy program. He will be teaching and also assisting with the professional development of students. As a Jesuit leader, Dzao can contribute in diverse student support activities, mission and identity programs, ministry opportunities, spiritual direction, and student mentoring.
 
Dr. Vũ received an MA in Public Health from Loyola University Chicago; a Doctor of Pharmacy from Nebraska Medical Center; an Associate of Science Pre-Pharmacy degree from Truman College in Chicago; and a BA in philosophy and religious studies from the University of the Incarnate Word.

Also, Henry D’Almeida, SJ, PhD, is the new Anna and Donald Waite Endowed Chair in Jesuit Education. Dr. D’Almeida is currently teaching philosophy at Jnana-Deepa Vidyapeeth, which is a Pontifical institute for philosophy and religion located at Pune, India. The institute primarily focuses on the formation of future Catholic priests in India.

Dr. D’Almeida has a doctorate degree from the University of Pune; a master’s in theology from Vidyajvoti College of Theology in Delhi; a master’s in Sanskrit and Pali from the University of Pune; and three bachelor’s degrees. 

The Waite Chair brings visiting Jesuits to Creighton to invigorate the Jesuit and Catholic intellectual tradition across the University. The Waite Chair is not restricted to a particular school or college; it brings bright Jesuit scholars to Creighton to pursue writing, research and teaching on law, philosophy, business ethics, health care, and more.

While Dzao and Henry will be on campus for longer periods of time, we are also welcoming the Rev. Francis Xavier Perianayaga, SJ, who will soon leave his position as vice president for academics and research at Jesuit Worldwide Learning in Geneva, Switzerland. Fr. Perianayaga will live on campus in March and April during a transition period to a new assignment. 

I am looking forward to sharing campus updates with you during the annual Founders Week Convocation on Tuesday, Feb. 5, beginning at 3:30 p.m. in the Hixson-Lied Auditorium in the Harper Center. This is my opportunity to provide information regarding important initiatives occurring on campus, so that you remain aware of the fine work being done by so many of you every day. A few of the updates concern existing projects, but I will also be announcing new initiatives that are getting underway, and I look forward to your feedback and questions.  

Too, and after my campus update, distinguished faculty, staff, and administrators will be recognized for their service to the University, and we will also celebrate the new Joella Cohen Endowed Chair in Journalism. I hope you can also attend the faculty and staff reception in the Ahmanson Ballroom immediately following Convocation. 

Regarding Founders Week, there will be numerous events occurring to celebrate, including the annual Mass and separate Interfaith Prayer Service. The Mass will be held on Sunday, Feb. 3, at 10:30 a.m. in St. John’s Church. I will preside, and the Rev. James Pribek, SJ, PhD, associate professor in the Department of English, will offer the homily. The Interfaith Prayer Service will occur on Wednesday, Feb. 6, beginning at 3:30 p.m. in St. John’s. 
 
As I announced in a campus update on Dec. 5, I have established a small and representational presidential task force on issues related to Catholic clerical sexual abuse. The focused objective is to discern programming options to occur in 2019 for our campus community, including an openness of such programs to the Omaha community. 

In addition to the members previously listed, Timothy Dickel, EdD, NCC, director of School Counseling at Creighton, has accepted my invitation to join the committee. In 2009, Prof. Dickel was appointed to the Archbishop’s Review Board by Archbishop Curtiss, and continues to serve on the board today. The Archbishop’s Review Board is charged with investigating allegations of sexual abuse of minors by clergy within the Archdiocese of Omaha.  

Information will be shared soon regarding the committee’s plans to host campus listening sessions for faculty, staff, and students.

Beginning today, Creighton will open the Creighton Cupboard on-campus food pantry in lower McGloin Hall for currently enrolled students.  

According to a study by the University of Wisconsin HOPE Lab, 36 percent of students at four-year institutions identify as having “low” or “very low” food security. Acknowledging that Creighton enrolls students nationally and internationally who may share similar struggles, the Division of Student Life reviewed how we could help remove a barrier to student success.  

Creighton wants to ensure that students have a nutritious meal, so they can achieve in the classrooms, clinics, labs, work, etc. As a Jesuit, Catholic institution, we are called to be men and women who are for and with others. Opening a food pantry on campus is one small way that we can walk in solidarity with our students who face low and very low food security.
 
For additional information, including Cupboard hours, how to register as a guest to shop in the Cupboard, or how to host a food drive, please visit studentlife.creighton.edu/wellness/creighton-cupboard or email Cupboard [at] creighton [dot] edu.

Finally, Creighton will once again be competing with other Jesuit universities during the Go Move Challenge, which runs Feb. 1-28. This is a physical activity challenge to see which school can be the most active during the month of February, and you use the aforementioned website to track your activity and contribute to Creighton’s time accumulation.  

We are kicking off the Go Move Challenge with the annual Cardio-Thon on Friday, Feb. 1, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Kiewit Fitness Center. Teams will take turns keeping the cardio machines running for the event’s entire six hours. To register for the Cardio-Thon, fill out this survey.

As is evident, there is a great deal of activity the first few weeks of the new semester. I look forward to seeing you on campus and, especially, at Convocation.

Sincerely,

Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ