Georgetown’s Jesuit Tradition

Women and Men for Others

Building upon more than 400 years of Jesuit tradition, Georgetown McDonough educates students to be principled leaders ready to tackle the world’s most complex challenges.

The Society of Jesus, known as the Jesuits, has been an integral part of Georgetown University throughout its history, united in the common spirit of learning and faith that characterize the Jesuit educational tradition of curiosity, inquiry, and reason. With a strong moral and ethical grounding, Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business continues this tradition by preparing disciplined and discerning business professionals with a clear sense of purposeful leadership.

Georgetown University began with the vision of John Carroll, an American-born, European-educated Jesuit priest who returned to the United States in 1773 to establish a preeminent institution of higher learning based in the Jesuit tradition. In 1789, Bishop Carroll acquired land overlooking the Potomac River outside the village of George-Town and founded the Academy at George-Town, later Georgetown University.

As the oldest Catholic and Jesuit university founded in the United States, Georgetown is distinctive for its longtime commitment to the values of the Jesuit tradition. These include the integration of learning, faith and service; care for the whole person; character and conviction; religious truth and interfaith understanding; and a commitment to building a more just world.

Georgetown’s Jesuit tradition is evident throughout the McDonough School of Business curriculum and student life:

  • Students take courses rooted in principled leadership, service learning, and developing a global mindset.
  • Service to others is woven into curricular and co-curricular activities, such as the Month of Volunteerism, national and international service trips, service-oriented student clubs, and recognition of MBA community fellows at graduation.
  • There is a collaborative culture where students, faculty, staff, and alumni look after one another.
  • Father Ron Anton, a Jesuit priest, serves as the school’s senior advisor for Jesuit identity.
  • The school is launching new initiatives, like the innovative Pivot Program for returning citizens or the Executive Master’s in Leadership for D.C. Public School Leaders, to be in service to our local community.
  • A new certificate program developed for the Jesuit Curia in Rome is teaching leaders within the Jesuit order and the broader Catholic Church how to be discerning leaders.
  • Dean Paul Almeida was educated in Catholic and Jesuit schools around the world, leading him to find a home at Georgetown.

[Read Dean Almeida’s Financial Times article about how the teachings of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, are relevant to business education today.]

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