Saint Louis University

Program Updates

Program Updates

June 3, 2009
“Ethics and Community Engagement in Mental Health Research”
Year 2 of the Conference Series, Best Practices in Mental Health Research, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health
8:00 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
Busch Student Center Room 170

October, 9 2009
The Distinguished Lecturer Series
Laurence B. McCullough, Ph.D., Dalton Tomlin Chair in Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Professor of Medicine and Medical Ethics, Baylor College of Medicine
"Taking Professional Conscience Seriously"
Noon, School of Law Court Room

November 6, 2009
Bander Endowed Lecture
William Sage, MD, JD
"Conflicts of Interest in Academic Medicine: Where We Were, Where We Are, and Where We Might Be Headed"
7:30 AM. Medical Center
Campus, Learning Resource Center Auditorium


Program Updates  

Aquinas Institute of Theology and the Department of Health Care Ethics will offer a new dual degree program, MA Theology / PhD in Health Care Ethics. It will be available to incoming students in the Fall of 2009.

The combination of the MA in Theology along with a PhD in Health Care Ethics is considered by many in the field to the be the "gold standard" for ethicists working in Catholic health care. Department faculty worked with leaders in Catholic health care, while seeking input from both alumni and current students, to determine how best to meet the evolving expectations of ethicists. The new dual degree is the result.

"Our colleagues in Catholic health care have expressed concerns about the ministry being able to meet the growing needs of Catholic health care organizations in the future. Qualified candidates will need to have a strong background in Catholic moral theology. We believe the dual degree program with Aquinas Institute addresses an educational void, and will enable our students to be better equipped and prepared for future ethics positions in Catholic health care," says Michele Langowski, Assistant Professor of Health Care Ethics.

Dr. Ron Hamel, Senior Director of Ethics for the Catholic Health Association of the United States, agrees. "The new dual degree program is indeed a very positive development. Catholic health care is theological to the core—viewed as carrying on the healing ministry of Jesus and as a ministry of the Church, and its core commitments are grounded in Catholic social teaching. In order to be effective and helpful, ethicists in Catholic health care, whether at the facility or system levels, need to be knowledgeable of the Catholic theological tradition and be able to bring it to bear on their work. This new program will better prepare individuals for a career in Catholic health care ethics," he says.

The partnership will help both programs better serve the needs of students, according to Rev. Richard Peddicord, O.P., President of Aquinas Institute. "Aquinas Institute of Theology has had a long and fruitful relationship with Saint Louis University. We are now looking forward to an even greater collaboration in offering an M.A. in Theology in conjunction with the University’s Ph.D. in Health Care Ethics," he says. "It is clear that a solid grounding in the Catholic theological tradition is essential for ethicists working in Catholic health care. Aquinas Institute offers that solid foundation and will, in turn, be enriched by the doctoral students who will be coming to us with clinical, real life questions."

The dual degree program enables the student to earn both degrees in less time than would be necessary to earn each degree separately. Further information is available on the PhD program website. Applying to the MA/PhD program is explained here; an explanation of the curriculum, with expected timeframe for completion, is also available.

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