Posts Tagged 'Jesuit'

Getting to Know Dr. Jeffrey LaBelle



Dr. LaBelle enjoying his spring break in Maine as he visits his sister and brother-in-law.

The College of Education is excited to continue allowing students to better know its faculty and staff. Dr. Jeffrey LaBelle, S.J., is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Educational and Policy Leadership (EDPL). In order to get to know him a little better, we sat down to chat.

Tell us about yourself! Where did you grow up?

I was born in Detroit, Michigan, but (moving with my family at age four) grew up mainly in Phoenix, Arizona, where I attended Catholic elementary and high schools. After graduation, I studied at the University of the Pacific, in Stockton, California, where I had a fantastic undergraduate education in the bilingual Elbert Covell College, from which I graduated in 1976 with majors in Spanish and ESL, with a single-subject teaching credential.

It sounds like you’ve been to many places! How long have you been in Milwaukee?

I’ve lived in Milwaukee since 2007, except for last fall semester when I was on sabbatical in San Francisco.

What drew you to Marquette and the COED?

Back in 2007, I was motivated to accept a position in Marquette’s College of Education because of the warm welcome of the people here, the fine faculty and staff, as well as the enthusiastic preservice teachers. Our mission to serve urban education and to teach for social justice fits my personal philosophy quite well.

I’m glad that our mission fits well with you! What do you see as an exciting opportunity for this upcoming academic year?

Currently, I look forward to another opportunity this year to teach and share the coordination of a faculty-led summer abroad program in Peru, “Education in the Americas.” I enjoy returning to Peru where I taught high school for three years in the mid-80s.

What do you like to do when you are outside of the classroom?

Outside of teaching in the College of Education, I enjoy reading popular fiction, listening to classical music, and solving New York Times crossword puzzles, especially the Sunday one.

Currently I am reading the last of 26 novels by Donna Leon from her bestseller Commissario Guido Brunetti mysteries. I got hooked on these during my sabbatical in San Francisco when a few Jesuit friends recommended her writing. Working the crossword puzzles helps keep my mind sharpened, especially on Sunday mornings when I enjoy waking up a little more slowly (unless I have an early mass that day).

I suppose that words, language, and literature have always been and will always continue to be a large part of my life. Beyond that, what motivates me most is my love of God, my love for humanity, and my love for nature. I enjoy taking walks outdoors, especially in natural settings, no matter where I am.

You can learn more about the College of Education along with our undergraduate and graduate programs by visiting us online!

Cura Personalis = “People First”

By Amanda Lloyd, First Year Teacher Blogger — I’ll admit that I’m quite biased.  I’m a big fan of Marquette University.  

Though I could write a novel about all the positive aspects of the university in general, my experience there was truly special because Marquette is a institution that truly personifies the philosophy of Cura Personalis—care for the entire person.  

I was elated when I saw this past week that there was another university that had staff who emulated the same care and qualities that I saw so often in the staff at Marquette.  This university is a fellow Jesuit institution—go figure.  

Photo by Austin Kurtz


My fiance—Bill—is a first year medical student at Loyola University of Chicago.  I’ve noticed in a few ways that they seem to care about their students, academically speaking of course, but also personally.  They demonstrated this carin last week, however under some of the most tragic circumstances.  

One of my fiance’s fellow students lost her father and younger sister in a plane crash.  The two were flying in a small, personal aircraft to pick up Bill’s fellow first-year-medical student to bring her home for the Easter weekend.  Their plane had problems immediately, and only a few seconds into flight, an attempt to land the plane failed, and it exploded.  Both lives were lost.  

I cannot begin to imagine the pain that this medical student and her mother must now be going through.  I am certain that the grief is unfathomable.  The school told the rest of the first year students about the tragedy on Monday when classes resumed, knowing that many of her fellow students would likely want to travel to attend the funeral services.  What surprised me, however, was hearing that many of the deans, professors, and doctors—some who knew the medical student well and others who did not—would also be traveling across multiple states to attend the services of her father and sister.  

I am certain that there was probably little that was able to console this young woman and her mother in the days that followed their family tragedy.  Still, I could also imagine that seeing my fellow medical students, professors, deans, and doctors of the hospital would have been comforting or gratifying in some way.  To feel that sort of support from what would be considered a “professional” domain was probably an unexpected presence, but a welcome one—and hopefully one that will help her return to classes as she plans to do so next week.  

These deans, doctors, and medical professors have demonstrated one of the most important aspects of teaching.  Though I am not a student of theirs, and they are not all licensed educators, they demonstrated the care and compassion of  top education professionals and taught others—like me—in the process.  

They reminded me of the importance of paying attention to each student as a person first and foremost.  I’m sure they couldn’t have cared less that she was missing lectures or tests, though both of those are important in their domain.  What they knew is that something much more important and immediate was happening, and that to have any hope of this young girl continuing on successfully in life, let alone successfully as a student, they needed to show her unconditional support as a person.  

I don’t know if it provided much comfort to her or her mother, but I know that their presence there reminded me how important it is to consider my students as people first as well.  

And if there was any doubt that these deans, professors and doctors taught care and compassion by their own model to their medical students, one only had to look to the jerseys of the first and second year students in their annual basketball competition this past Friday.  

Every single student, sadly yet proudly, sported a band on their left shoulder with the initials TKH—the initials of their fellow student’s father and younger sister.  

Photo by Austin Kurtz

Dwyane, Zo, and Fellow Pros “Dish” Hope To Haiti

By Bill Henk — For some readers what I’m about to report will be old news — seven days to be exact.  To me, it’s timeless.  That’s because being a “person for others” in the finest Marquette tradition will always be a cause for appreciation.

Had it not been for the horrific natural tragedy in Haiti the news of this humanitarian gesture might be a cause for rejoicing.   But the devastation this island nation endured recently renders this act of caring and kindness as simply the right thing to do. Continue reading ‘Dwyane, Zo, and Fellow Pros “Dish” Hope To Haiti’

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