A signature component of Loyola’s 2008-2015 strategic plan, Messina supports and enhances a vibrant campus climate that engages students, faculty, administrators, and the broader community in distinct and meaningful ways, including especially an emphasis on academic excellence and intellectual inquiry.
In the fall of 2012, the Living Learning Initiative was named Messina - a name we believe captures the spirit, intent, and ambitions we have for the program. Messina, a city in Sicily, Italy, was the site of the Jesuits’ first college to welcome lay students. It represents the foundations of the Jesuits’ commitment to education, much as our living learning program will represent the foundations of our students’ educational experience at Loyola. The college at Messina set the tone for how Jesuit education has continued and evolved throughout its nearly 500-year history—through a commitment to academic excellence attained across a range of disciplines, and to the development of the whole person.
At Loyola, Messina - the first-year seminars, the enrichment hours, the establishment of communities around learning—will offer a similarly distinctive beginning for our students today, the first steps toward encountering these disciplines, appreciating their interconnectedness, and taking to heart the continuing importance of learning in their personal and intellectual growth. Messina connects our faculty, administrators, and first-year students with the rich Jesuit tradition of innovation, academic excellence, and a commitment to community. From students’ earliest days on campus, they will be connected to a support network that challenges them to think critically, discover their God-given talents, and find ways to connect their passions and gifts to the needs of their campus, local, and global communities. While few students will recognize the name at the outset of their studies, by the end of their first year at Loyola, they will view Messina as having contributed to their development as whole persons, prepared both academically and socially to continue their journey at Loyola and in the world.