Dr. Jon Froula
Personal Academic History: Ph.D. in Theology, Ave Maria University; Bachelors in Sacred Theology, Pontifical University of St. Teresa; B.A. in Liberal Arts, Thomas Aquinas College
What current areas of writing/research are you working on? Currently I am writing two papers: one on C.S. Lewis’s understanding of ‘joy’ and how it is related to Heaven, and another on the Christology of Hugh of St. Victor.
What drew you as a student to theological graduate education? I really wanted to learn more Theology. I was a High school teacher before going on to grad school, and was happy doing that. I was reading Theology a lot, and thought that if I really wanted to understand it better I needed help. Theology was a keen interest that grew into a profession.
What advice would you offer students who are thinking about or just starting graduate school? Sometimes it takes a while for the big picture to gel, but when it does it is worth all of trouble. While there is plenty of wonder and amazement in Theology, sometimes it comes only after the hard work inspired by love and dedication.
What is a distinguishing factor about the intellectual formation students receive at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity at the University of St. Thomas? I have been extremely impressed with how gifted my colleagues are as teachers, not just academics. There is also a real spirit of comradery among the students.
Dr. William B. Stevenson
Personal Academic History: Ph.D. Boston College
Courses you are teaching in Summer 2015: The Christian Theology of God and the Human Person.
What current areas of writing/research are you working on? I have an article coming out this June in Moreana (the international journal of Thomas More studies) on St. Thomas More’s Dialogue of Comfort Against Tribulation. I’m also working on an article about tragedy and nature in Aristotle’s Poetics.
What drew you as a student to theological graduate education? Nothing terribly profound, I’m afraid. When I finished my B.A., I thought, “Really, that’s it?” I knew I wasn’t done learning and I had a hunch that there was a lot more to the great books I’d merely sampled as an undergraduate. As it turned out, I also had a vocation to be a lay theologian.
What advice would you offer students who are thinking about or just starting graduate school? Opportunities for reading serious books and then thinking about them in solitude and in conversation with others are increasingly rare. If you have the opportunity, take it! Also, be sure to avail yourself of conversation with the professors you find most helpful or congenial. We love what we teach and we especially love talking about it with students.
What is a distinguishing factor about the intellectual formation students receive at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity at the University of St. Thomas? A couple of things come to mind. First, we tend to steer away from the ephemeral; that is, the sort of theology du jour that is interesting now and irrelevant in twenty years. Permanent books and perennial questions are the foundation of what we do. Also, I think we’re pretty good at integrating the academic formation with the spiritual formation.