The Loyola University Maryland community is mourning the death of Sr. Helen Christensen, RSM, professor emerita, who died on Aug. 2 at Mercy Villa in Baltimore. She was 85 years old and had been a Sister of Mercy for 66 years.
Sr. Christensen received her M.S. in mathematics from the University of Notre Dame and went on to teach mathematics at Mount Saint Agnes College and what was then Loyola College in Maryland. During her 35-year tenure at Loyola, Sr. Christensen was asked by former president Rev. Joseph A. Sellinger, S.J., to take over the fledgling National Fellowships Office and build it into a resource for outstanding Loyola students seeking national fellowship and scholarship opportunities on both the undergraduate and graduate level. Loyola students have since won more than 80 major awards, including a Rhodes Scholarship in 1999.
Sr. Christensen authored and taught from a mathematics textbook geared toward non-science majors in an effort to make mathematics more accessible to students of all academic strengths. She was named professor emerita when she retired in 2006.
Sr. Christensen was born on June 2, 1927, in Pensacola, Fla. A Mass of Christian burial was offered on Aug. 6 at Mercy Villa. Loyola will hold a Memorial Mass in the Alumni Memorial Chapel in fall 2012.