Latino Leaders

This program is designed to recruit and form a new generation of Latino students in the Catholic intellectual tradition, in order to develop their potential for service and ministry within their communities.

2013-14 Latino Leadership Scholarship Recipients

Latino Leadership students on retreat. Pictured are: (back) Juan Ferreras, Renee Estrada, Jace Bravo, Alison Paz, Nolan Gutierrez, (front) Alex Castano, Laura Stierman, Stacy Lona.

Our Mission

With the growing Latino population in the United States, we find it necessary to prepare a new generation of leaders in the Latino community who are able to draw upon their own deep cultural roots within the Catholic faith. Our students will then bring these insights to embrace the opportunities and solve the problems which the Latino community confronts in the larger American society.
The program offers students the opportunity to receive an education that is both intellectually rigorous and faith filled. It fosters within students a deep sense of their vocation to promote justice in the world. As an interdisciplinary program, Catholic Studies encourages students to explore the Catholic tradition through literature, philosophy, theology, art, history, the social and natural sciences and a range of professional studies.

The interdisciplinary nature of Catholic Studies gives students insight into the Church's dynamic interaction with and interpenetration of cultures, traditions, and intellectual life.  Rather than serve as a ticket out of the community, the scholarship is designed to produce people dedicated to the service of their community.

In order to fulfill these goals, the Latino Leadership Program offers two distinct initiatives. The first initiative is the Latino Leadership Scholarship Program.  The primary goal of this scholarship is to create a community of Latino students at the University of St. Thomas who will work together to become the future leaders in the Latino community. Demonstration of this goal will be shown by academic success in the classroom, spiritual growth, attendance at monthly meetings of the Latino Leaders, and monthly service to the larger Latino community. This scholarship is an opportunity for future leaders of the Latino community to acquire skills in their chosen profession and to understand their profession in terms of vocation to the Latino community.  Students double major in Catholic Studies and another field of their choice.

Applicants are required to show that, in addition to academic achievement, they have been involved in their parish and in the Latino community.  While they hold the scholarship, Latino Leadership Scholars remain active in the life of the Latino community of the Twin Cities.

Outcomes of the Latino Leadership Scholarship Program:

1. To help Latino students develop a deeper understanding and experience the integration of their Catholic faith and their professional goals.

2. To form our Latino students both in the Catholic intellectual tradition and in additional leadership skills, in order to better prepare them for their contributions to their communities following graduation.

3. To provide a community of Latino students who support and encourage each other.

4. To strengthen the relationship between Latino Catholic organizations in the Twin Cities and the University.  By working with Catholic Latino organizations, the university can provide opportunities to develop their education within a faith-based context, which will strengthen and serve the community.

Applications for the 2016/17 year are still available.
To apply, click here on the Application Form.
In addition the applicant must have two Letters of Recommendation.
The priority deadline for the FAFSA to be sent to the University of St. Thomas is April 1, 2016.  

For further information, contact: Ms. Jess Ferro, Coordinator, at Center for Catholic Studies Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership (651) 962-5864


The second initiative is the Latino Leadership Lecture Series. Each year the Center for Catholic Studies hosts a speaker who highlights one aspect of the growing Latino influence in the United States, and the role that the Church and faith should play in Latino culture, professional life, and faith communities.