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Advocacy and Activism: Grand Trinity Traditions


Thanks to the great work of Christina Miller and her colleagues among the College Democrats and with the support of many other students, Trinity will host a “primetime” debate of all of the D.C. Mayoral candidates on Tuesday, April 25 at 7 pm in the Trinity Center. With critical elections for the Mayor and D.C. Council looming this year, the leadership of Trinity students in bringing candidates to campus last fall, and now sponsoring this debate, is a true public service to the citizens of our city.

Other students have been out on the front lines of the immigration reform debate. Their comments reveal a passion for justice and commitment to social change that are hallmarks of a Trinity education. Such advocacy and activism are essential dimensions of faithful citizenship, a vital component of the social justice teachings of the Catholic faith tradition.

Many Trinity students are enrolled here because they and their families experienced the hardships that result from pervasive discrimination in its many ugly forms. Racism, sexism, prejudices rooted in language and culture — all feed into the conditions for poverty, illiteracy, violence and oppression that diminish human life. Trinity students understand that education is the most powerful tool they can acquire to create the kind of social change that will lead to a more just society, a more peaceful community, and greater economic security for their families.

During Founders Day last week, on the day we honor the great Sisters of Notre Dame whose courage made our work in education possible today, some students, faculty and staff gathered to discuss plans for a Fall symposium on the topic of Immigration Reform. We agreed that we need to start by educating our own campus community about the public policy issues at stake, and the ways in which these issues affect our own Trinity family. We also can use this opportunity to illuminate the vast array of nationalities and cultural traditions within our own student body: more than 40 nations are part of the immediate heritage of our students, with many languages and faith traditions. We need to share these more broadly so as to understand the great gifts the Trinity family can bring to the public policy discussions.

We will keep all students, faculty and staff informed as the plans for the Immigration Symposium develop. Meanwhile, if you have ideas for the program, please send them to me by clicking on the envelope below, or email me at

Thanks to all Trinity students whose advocacy and activism honor our grand Trinity Traditions!

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Patricia A. McGuire, President, Trinity, 125 Michigan Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20017
Phone: 202.884.9050   Email: