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GCU Receives $50,000 Grant for Year of Faith Program

Lakewood, N.J., Dec. 7, 2012—Georgian Court University has been awarded a $50,000 grant for its Year of Faith program from the Council of Independent Colleges’s Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE) Program.

With the “Year of Faith: A Call to Holiness at Georgian Court University,” GCU is embracing Pope Benedict XVI’s call for a year dedicated to the renewal of faith with programs and events celebrating the universal call to holiness. The Year of Faith began at GCU on September 25 with a Mercy Day Mass celebrating the feast day of Our Lady of Mercy. The program offers opportunities for spiritual reflection, sharing of faith, and contemplation of service and vocation for the campus community.

Highlights of GCU’s Year of Faith include “Creative Expressions,” in which students express their faith through expressions of art, dance, song, video, posters, and writings; “What is Faith?” student discussions; “This I Believe,” a sharing of essays on faith, life, and religious traditions; a Year of Faith Book Club, hosted by the GCU faculty; an Advent Virtual Pilgrimage; spiritual and vocational retreats; and a speaker series. As part of the program, GCU students participated in a Day of Service on November 16, volunteering for local community projects.

The two-year NetVUE grant will support the retreats for students, faculty, and staff, the speaker series, the book club, and the Advent Virtual Pilgrimage. The grant will also enable GCU to expand its Year of Faith program for a second year.

“At Georgian Court, the Year of Faith emphasizes an individual’s contemplation of his or her life values and greater purpose in life,” says President Rosemary E. Jeffries, RSM, Ph.D. “Georgian Court is committed to the Mercy core values of justice, respect, integrity, service, and compassion. The Year of Faith will provide our students, as well as faculty, staff, and the local community, with opportunities for reflective experiences to examine purpose and meaning in their academic, career, vocation, and life choices in connection with the Mercy core values.”

“As Georgian Court becomes a fully coeducational institution by Fall 2013, the Year of Faith will allow us to further expand our Mercy Catholic mission to a broader student base,” says President Jeffries. “The NetVUE funding will assist us in this important endeavor.”

GCU has established the Year of Faith Committee, made up of GCU administrators, faculty, staff, alumni, students, Board of Trustee members, and local chaplains, to plan and implement GCU’s commemoration of the Year of Faith. To learn more about Georgian Court’s Year of Faith programs and events, visit yearoffaith.gcublogs.org.

Founded in 1908 and sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, Georgian Court University is a comprehensive university with a strong liberal arts core and a special concern for women. A forward-thinking university that supports diversity and academic excellence, Georgian Court announced in May 2012 its transition to become a fully coeducational university in 2013. Today, the university serves more than 2,500 students of all faiths and backgrounds in both undergraduate and graduate programs. Georgian Court's main campus is located at 900 Lakewood Avenue, Lakewood, N.J., on the picturesque former George Jay Gould estate, now named a National Historic Landmark. Georgian Court also offers classes at its site at One Woodbridge Center in Woodbridge and at the New Jersey Coastal Communiversity in Wall.

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