Loyola University Maryland


Common Text Events


Book Cover Picture of Dear America by Jose Antonio VargasEach year, the University chooses a Common Text for all first-year students to read before arriving at Loyola. In addition to discussing this Common Text with your academic advisor and other students enrolled in your Messina course during Welcome Weekend, Messina sponsors events throughout the year to address themes raised by the book. 

Friday, August 28

Common Text Convocation

We welcome you, Loyola’s newest scholars-in-residence, to our intellectual community by examining a text common to all of us. During this session, members of our Loyola community will reflect on Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen by Jose Antonio Vargas.

Recording Available Here

Wednesday, September 30

Common Text Panel Presentation: Dear America and Ethnic Anti-racism

Representatives from organizations working on the US Border and with immigrant communities in the United States will discuss the intersections of immigration and racism in their daily work.

Recording Available Here

Sponsored by Messina
Common Text event
7 p.m.

Thursday, October 22

The Refugee Crisis: Why So Many People Are on the Move and What We Can do About It – Lecture by Elizabeth Kullen Dunn, PhD., Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar

Today, more than 71 million people---a population larger than the population of France---are refugees, asylum seekers, or internally displaced people. Why are so many people displaced today, and why do the numbers keep skyrocketing? Can the UN system aid them, and what happens to the countries that host them? Most importantly, what can be done to help people start their lives again after displacement, rather than waiting in limbo? In this lecture, I will talk about the causes and effects of mass displacement, why attempts to help keep failing, and what can be done to help both displaced people and their host countries.

Register Here

Sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa and Messina
Common Text and theme-wide event
6 p.m.

Week of November 16 (Exact Date TBD)

Common Text Panel Presentation: Baltimore and Immigration

The panel will discuss the history of immigration in Baltimore and current efforts underway to welcome and support Baltimore’s newest residents.  The panel will include Nick Fessenden (Baltimore Immigration Museum) and representatives from local organizations that serve the Baltimore immigrant community.

Sponsored by Messina
Common Text event
7 p.m.

If you are a member of the Loyola community who has an idea for an event associated with the Common Text, please visit our co-sponsorships page and submit an event proposal. 

Persons with disabilities who may require special services should contact the Office of Disability Support Services at 410-617-2062 at least 48 hours prior to the event. As noted below, some of these events are free and open to the public.


Two students talking with eachother next to a laptop
Advising and Support

7 ways Loyola helps ease the transition to college

A student shares seven ways her first-year experience was enhanced by the people and programs at Loyola.

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