Discernment is at the heart of Loyola’s Jesuit education.
"We can think of discernment as the lifelong project of exploring our experiences, naming its meaning, and living in a way that translates this meaning into action." —from A Pocket Guide to Jesuit Education
In this way, discernment is a day-by-day, moment-by-moment practice of intentional living. We also know there are particular times in our lives when we are intensely focused on decisions about our future, such as identifying an academic major, developing community connections, and exploring career options.
By providing support and guidance to students as they navigate these key transitional periods, we believe our students will be equipped with the skills and tools to successfully meet the demands of life after Loyola.
Co-hosted by the office of student engagement and the Student Government Association (SGA) class assemblies, this Loyola tradition marks the beginning of Initium in September, a time for our undergraduate community to come together to kick off the fall semester with food, fun, and giant lawn games. With games uniquely designed for each class year, participants will gain a better sense of the milestones ahead while strengthening connections with peers. Details for the Milestone Fair will be provided in The Bridge.
Each first-year student participates in Messina, our distinct living-learning program designed to instill the intellectual curiosity and self-knowledge necessary for a successful start to a Loyola education. Developing habits of discernment, exploring personal values, and understanding principles of decision-making are amongst the multitude of outcomes for Messina students.
Self-discovery and career preparation resources are available to you as often as you need them throughout your four years at Loyola. Take one of the personalized assessments, including the Strong Interest Inventory, and schedule an appointment with an advisor through the Career Center. And don’t miss out on Career Center events, such as Career Treks to visit local employers, workshops, major-specific career fairs, and networking events.
Campus Ministry supports students in exploring who you are and what you believe—and in growing into who you are becoming. You have access to Campus Ministry’s programs, retreats, events, student groups, and regular services for practicing your faith throughout your four years at Loyola. First-year students can get an introduction to discernment and Ignatian spirituality through the Ignite Retreat.
Pathfinders provides a weekly space for sophomores to practice authentic decision-making within the context of their major and career exploration. A community of peer mentors, fellow sophomores, and administrative guidance from the Career Center and office of student engagement further foster a supportive space for you to examine your path. If you have doubts or questions about your major, or simply have no clue what step to take next, Pathfinders might be for you. More information is available in The Bridge.
RoadTrip is a longtime tradition for Loyola sophomores focused on vocational discernment and designed to strengthen connections. This three-day program will introduce you to essential tools to navigate the uncertainties in ways that bring you closer to your core self. RoadTrip has a history of fostering deep and meaningful relationships with fellow sophomores, peer mentors, and faculty and administrators who serve as supportive guides. Learn more in The Bridge.
Life After Loyola
Discernment is a journey that continues after graduation. Hear the wisdom of our Loyola faculty as they offer tips through your graduate school discernment process in the Life After Loyola master class. Details will be provided in The Bridge.