An Unwavering Passion

Susan Ferguson, director of UD’s Center for Catholic Education (CCE), traveled to San Diego in March to receive the 2016 Learn. Lead. Proclaim. Award from the National Catholic Educational Association. This award honors and recognizes excellence and distinguished service in Catholic school education. What a blessing it is to receive this accolade as the CCE prepares to celebrate our 20th anniversary this summer!

Susan began at the University of Dayton in 1990, and she became the director of the CCE nine years ago. She coordinates and oversees programs such as Lalanne, the Urban Child Development Resource Center, and multiple professional development opportunities for Catholic school teachers. She is described by a colleague as having “an unwavering passion for Catholic education.”

susan at nceaDirector Ferguson is highly regarded at the University of Dayton, in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, and well beyond. Following are a few of the many gracious words admirers have to say:

  • “Susan demonstrated tremendous leadership in initiating the UD Catholic Education Summit, which is now established as a new tradition and a tangible sign of our University’s commitment to the success of Catholic schools.” – Kevin Kelly, Dean of School of Education and Health Sciences
  • “She challenges educators to utilize best practices. She advocates on behalf of students and educators. She inspires others to do more, grow more, and be more. Susan embodies a vision of hope for the success of Catholic schools.” – Alana Campion, principal

  • “Susan is a committed partner in promoting Catholic identity and academic rigor.” – Sherry Gabert, Archdiocese of Cincinnati

  • “Susan truly values the ideas and contributions of others and has worked to make connections that strengthen Catholic education.”‐ Shauna M. Adams, Associate Professor, Early Childhood Teacher Education

Upon receiving the award, Susan emphasized that it was the combined effort of everyone in the Center for Catholic Education – past and present – that have helped make it what it is today. “The staff members are among the most hardworking people I have ever met,” she said. “They are faith‐filled, committed, dedicated people and it’s an honor to be recognized for the work to which we have all contributed. We stand on the good work of past directors and staff that have served for twenty years Catholic schools through teaching, mental health and social work services, professional development, leadership initiatives, and participating with other colleagues in Catholic Higher Education and the Archdiocese of Cincinnati to build frameworks and programs to demonstrate God’s love and care through Catholic education.”

Susan is an enthusiastic leader who advances the Center for Catholic Education’s mission: to promote, enhance, energize and support Catholic schools. It is her vision that “the gift of Catholic education will flourish and provide a path to further the work our God calls us to do.”

We stand on the good work of past directors and staff who have served Catholic schools for twenty years. This Center has built frameworks to demonstrate God’s love through Catholic education in teaching, mental health and social work services, professional development, leadership initiatives, and collaboration with other colleagues in Catholic Higher Education and the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. Our work would not be possible without the commitment and diligence of those who came before us.