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College of Liberal Arts

Committed to inclusion and equity, the College of Liberal Arts is the intellectual home of dialogue across difference. As stewards of the Benedictine tradition, we cultivate wisdom and prepare students for meaningful life and work. We make an exceptional education in the arts, humanities and social sciences accessible to all.

The “liberal” in ‘liberal arts’ refers to what allows you to be free liberated! And the “arts” refers to how to create things well in this case how to make a life and develop yourself. Taken together, liberal arts disciplines allow you to swim rather than float through your life. They do this by helping you be adaptable and flexible in the face of change; enabling you to communicate across differences in culture, nation and creed; allowing you to navigate what is based upon what was; and providing intellectual self-defense against anyone seeking to take advantage of you. These goals also complement Benedictine values celebrating purposeful living, inclusivity and social justice.

When the only constant is change, what best prepares you for a meaningful career in an uncertain future is an education that makes you flexible and resilient precisely the education the liberal arts provides. We teach skills that don’t have an expiration date.

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These skills are also the ones employers prize. We call them the 5 Cs:

  1. Critical-thinking and ethical problem-solving
  2. Communication skills
  3. Collaboration, teamwork and leadership
  4. Competency in intercultural and global relationship
  5. Cultural and civic literacy

Within the College of Liberal Arts, we seek to educate the whole person. We want our graduates to both see connections across disciplines and encounter diversity productively, And respectfully, we want them to be both sharp and well-rounded, and to learn skills to make a living and a life.

  • Sharpen your mind
  • Strengthen your character
  • Enrich your life
College of Liberal Arts Faculty Directory
Click HERE for Upcoming Events in the College of Liberal Arts
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Discover CoLA

For students who have an intended major or minor in the College of Liberal Arts, Discover CoLA is a one-year course of study that brings together people, programs, and resources in order to explore college and career opportunities and build connections with faculty and students. Discover CoLA creates a sense of belonging to the College of Liberal Arts and to Benedictine University, and prepares students for lives of purpose and meaning.

Discover CoLA is made possible by a generous grant from The Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE).

“Discover COLA invites our students to realize that they are change makers. Particularly in LCOM 1105 we focus on the way we see our own vocations making difference. We bring this into the real world through service experiences, dialogue, and meaningful conversations about what it means to be Benedictine.” – Carrie Ankeny, Director, Campus Ministry

Questions? Please contact the Discover CoLA Program Director
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The Scholars Program

This program offers academically talented students from across the University special opportunities to develop their skills as thinkers, readers and writers through a coordinated program of seminar-style coursework that emphasizes discussion and debate about vital intellectual questions.

Tell Me More About the Scholars Program

Find Out What Our Alumni Say


“A COLA degree has enabled me to vastly expand my sense of culture — and in a time when business so regularly operates on the global scale — an appreciation for other ways of thinking, working, and interacting is invaluable.”

Alison Dufour, Scientific Project Manager at AMICULUM - B.A. in Spanish and B.S. in Biology


“My liberal arts education at Benedictine University prioritized educating the whole person, opening my mind to learning about more than just my chosen path and profession while constantly encouraging me to seek empathy and embrace diversity while approaching my career and life.”

Anthony Gonzalez, Teacher, Nazareth Academy College Prep High School - Degree: Social Science, Secondary Education


“Benedictine University not only gave me the tools to succeed in my undergraduate studies, language and communication skills and study abroad opportunities, but also to succeed in my career in China and fulfill a lifelong path to learning. I will be forever grateful for my professors and COLA for their genuine dedication to my success.”

Rebecca Trettenero, Owner of an international trading company located in Zhejiang, China - Degree: Spanish language and literature, Chinese language

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