MARCH 2016
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Slideshow: Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew” Slideshow:
Taming of the Shrew
Radio Maria logo Audio: Fr. Pavone, Dr. McLean on SCOTUS Case  
“Don Rags” Blood Drive Slideshow:
“Don Rags”
Blood Drive
EWTN Interviews Thomas Aquinas Students at Walk for Life EWTN Interviews Students at Walk for Life  
Dr. Joseph Hattrup Dr. Joseph Hattrup, “Queen Dido: The Heart of Fire”  
Bishop Robert Barron Audio:
Bishop Barron’s Homily
Dr. John Agresto Audio: Presidents’ Day Lecture,
Dr. John Agresto
Video: Fr. Scalia’s Homily at the Funeral Mass of Justice Scalia Video: Fr. Scalia’s Funeral Homily for Justice Scalia  
Our Lady of Lourdes Candlelight Procession Slideshow: Our Lady of Lourdes Procession  
Spring All-College Seminar Slideshow:
Spring All-College Seminar
Ash Wednesday Slideshow:
Ash Wednesday
Mardi Gras Slideshow:
Mardi Gras
Final Version of Senior Theses Due
March 12 (11:00 p.m.)
“Friendship of Man and Woman according to Aristotle and St. Thomas”
Dr. John Cuddeback
Professor of Philosophy
Christendom College

March 18 (7:30 p.m.)
Palm Sunday
March 20
Spring Schubertiade
March 20 (3:00 p.m.)
Day of Prayer and Fasting
for success of oral argument before U.S. Supreme Court
March 23
Easter Recess
March 23-30
Holy Thursday
March 24
Student Triduum Retreat
March 24-26
Good Friday
March 25
Holy Saturday
March 26
Easter Sunday
March 27
Chrysostomos Spring Concert
April 3 (7:00 p.m.)
Spring Concert
Gilbert & Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance
April 8 (7:00 p.m.)
Anniversary of the Death of College President Thomas E. Dillon
April 15
Senior-Tutor Softball Game
April 27 (3:45 p.m.)
Senior Thesis Draft-Burning Party
April 27 (5:00 p.m.)
Second Semester Examinations
May 7-13
President’s Reception
for seniors and their parents
May 13 (4:00 to 6:00 p.m.)
Alumni & Parents’ Associations Dinner
for seniors and their families
May 13 (6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.)
Commencement 2016
May 14 (11:00 a.m.)
Residence Halls Close
May 16
Memorial Day
May 30
Roberto Gutierrez
October 10, 2015

Peter V. Leparulo
December 15, 2015
Legacy Society member

Patricia Jean Thompson
February 29, 2016
Mother of Darryl Thompson (’83)

Loraine (Ivers ’81) Hoonhout
March 5, 2016
Mother of Claire (’08); sister of Maureen Coughlin (’79), Marian Hartzell (’82), Jessica Langley (’85), and Sr. Maria Basiléa (Margaretha ’88)

College Asks for Prayer and Fasting on Day of Supreme Court Hearing, March 23

At 10:00 a.m. on the morning of March 23 in Washington, D.C., the eight justices of the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Thomas Aquinas College’s case against the HHS Contraceptive Mandate, Zubik v. Burwell. And in Santa Paula, California, where it will still be 7:00 a.m., members of the Thomas Aquinas College community will begin a full day of prayer and fasting for the College, for the justices, and for the future of religious liberty in the United States.

Ever since the announcement of the HHS Mandate more than four years ago, the College community has said the Prayer to St. Michael at every Mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel, asking for Our Lord’s protection. “With this battle now nearing its legal conclusion,” says President Michael F. McLean, “we felt the need to intensify our spiritual efforts. By God’s grace, we are hopeful that the College and its co-plaintiffs will win this case, and that employers will be able to continue to offer healthcare coverage that is in keeping with their deeply held religious beliefs.”

Dr. McLean has encouraged all students, faculty, and staff of the College to take part in the Day of Prayer and Fasting, as well as alumni, friends of the College, and supporters of religious freedom everywhere. “It would be a beautiful testimony to our faith,” he said “if believers across the country would come together in this prayerful defense of religious liberty.” 

Full story
Bishop Barron Encourages Students of Thomas Aquinas College

Thomas Aquinas College’s newly appointed regional auxiliary bishop, His Excellency Robert Barron, paid an informal visit to its Santa Paula campus one recent Monday evening. Coming at the invitation of a member of the student body, the Bishop took time to get to know students personally, offering them encouragement and spiritual fortification.

The visit, which took place on the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter, began with the evening Mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel, at which His Excellency served as the principal celebrant and homilist. The Bishop then met with students over dinner in St. Joseph Commons, before treating them to a brief “pep talk,” as he described it, and entertaining questions on topics of their choosing.

His Excellency advised students to be mindful of the great good that they, by the grace of God, can achieve in the world. “I see a place like this, it’s small, but talk about a mustard seed! It’s small, but talk about the little bit of leaven — small but powerful in the life of the Church,” he said. “I want to encourage you along those lines. You have a key role to play in the culture.”

Full story 
Audio of Bishop Barron’s Homily 


Bishop Barron gives his pep talk.

Bishop Barron rasies the Host at Mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel
Dispatches from the Cardinal Newman Society, Forbes, Newsmax & More 

• A recent story from the Cardinal Newman Society recounts the early days of Thomas Aquinas College, exploring its founders, their vision, and the fruit of their efforts — an “‘antidote’ for the educational crises of the ’60s and ’70s.”

• Following high ratings from various secular and Catholic college guides, Thomas Aquinas College has earned the accolades of, being named to the news organization’s list of the “40 Best Colleges for Conservative Values.”

The College’s High School Great Books Program has made Forbes magazine's list of “Notable Summer Short Courses for High School Students” who are “interested in the ideas embedded in the institutions of Western civilization.” 

• A thoughtful story on the Priests for Life (PFL) website describes the College, its commitment to providing healthcare in accordance with the Church's teachings, and its spiritual preparations for its Supreme Court case against the HHS Contraceptive Mandate. The story follows President Michael F. McLean's recent appearance on Radio Maria’s “Gospel of Life” program with PFL's national director, Rev. Frank Pavone.

• Our Sunday Visitor has profiled Thomas Aquinas College as an example of a school where “Catholic identity drives [the] mission of learning,” and which “strives to keep Christ and His Church at the center.”

•  A website dedicated to college life,, has ranked Thomas Aquinas College No. 6 on its list of the Top 10 Most Beautiful College Campuses.

Cardinal Newman Society Logo

Newsmax logo

Forbes logo

Priests for Life logo

Our Sunday Visitor logo

The Top 10 Most Beautiful College Campuses

Highlights from the College’s Alumni Blog 

• John Patrick Shanley, the Tony and Pulitzer award-winning author of Moonstruck and Doubt, has written and is directing a new off-Broadway play about two late members of the Thomas Aquinas College family, Louise and John Schmitt. The Schmitts were the parents of seven graduates and the grandparents of six graduates and six current students. Mr. Schmitt, a member of the teaching faculty from 1974 to 1979, was previously the founding president of a boarding school in New Hampshire, where one of his students was a talented but rebellious boy who found his time on campus to be transformative. That student was none other than Mr. Shanley, who has now written about the experience in his new show, Prodigal Son.

• A recent concert at the University of British Columbia (UBC) featured a father-daughter performance of two Thomas Aquinas College alumni, Mark (’89) and Colleen Donnelly (’14). The concert, billed as “Love Songs Old & New,” in honor of St. Valentine’s Day, included masterpieces by Mozart and Beethoven, Broadway favorites, and the premier of Mr. Donnelly’s musical setting of Alfred Noyes’ classic ballad “The Highwayman.” An opera singer, teacher, and composer, Mr. Donnelly is most famous for leading crowds in the singing of “O Canada” at Vancouver Canucks’ home games. Since graduating from the College two years ago, Miss Donnelly has enrolled in the UBC’s School of Music, where she is studying opera performance.

Faith in Action blog 


Louise and John Schmitt
Louise and John Schmitt

Colleen (’14) and Mark (’89) Donnelly
Colleen (’14) and Mark (’89) Donnelly


College Hosts Talks for Students Interested in Careers in Law & Business

On February 7 two prominent Southern California attorneys visited campus to meet with students who are interested in pursuing careers in law. The meeting, which covered topics ranging from the LSAT to law schools to areas of practice, was the first installment of the semester in a series of events sponsored by the College’s Office of Career Advisement.  

The next event came two weeks later, when the College hosted a
Career Strategies Workshop on the subjects of job discernment, networking, résumé- and cover-letter writing, and interview preparation. Leading the discussion were three graduates of the College who — having worked at such corporations as Kinko’s, Anthem, Google, and DHL — were able to share their wisdom about how best to apply the benefits of a Catholic liberal education in the marketplace.

“One of the things [my employer] saw about Thomas Aquinas College was that there was a difference about this place,” said Kayla Six (’12), a strategic sourcing manager at Anthem, Inc. “I didn’t have specific training for business, but what I did have was the critical-thinking, the analytics, the problem-solving skills that led them to say, ‘You know, that’s what we want. That’s what we can’t teach. We can teach you all the business items. We can’t teach you some of the skills that are developed here at the College.’”


Catholic attorneys offer professional advice to pre-legal students.
Catholic attorneys offer professional advice to pre-legal students.

Alumni professionals advise students at Career Strategies Workshop.
Alumni professionals advise students at Career Strategies Workshop. 
  Thomas Aquinas College