Three Catholic studies students in informal discussion with professor
  • Program Type
    Major, Minor
  • Degrees Offered
    B.A., B.S.
  • School
    School of Arts & Sciences

Deepen your knowledge of the Catholic faith and of yourself through the study of multiple disciplines.

Master of Arts in Catholic Studies

Strengthen your personal formation — and enhance your understanding of the Catholic tradition — by earning a Master of Arts in Catholic Studies online or in person.

What You'll Learn

Our students explore the interaction of faith and reason within multiple disciplines — exploring the interplay between Catholicism and culture, and experience how Catholic faith can enliven every facet of your life. We designed our program to be a double major and to build a close-knit community of faculty and students across multiple academic and pre-professional programs.

Learn outside the classroom.

Catholic studies at Mary is much more than a rigorous academic program. You’ll interact with faculty and students in and out of the classroom and experience a full range of co-curricular and extracurricular activities. The year begins with a Catholic studies immersion experience for our new students, providing an introduction to the program within the natural beauty and culture of western North Dakota.

Build community.

Over four semesters in the Catholic Studies Tutorial, you’ll meet weekly in small groups of no more than ten students to integrate Catholic studies into your broader academic and personal life. Central to Catholic studies life outside the classroom is our regular Convivium Mass and Dinner, as well as events by the fire at the Catholic Studies House near campus.

Get your bachelor's degree in 2.6 years or your bachelor's and master's in four years.

You can earn your Catholic studies bachelor’s in 2.6 years or complete your bachelor’s and a Master of Arts in Catholic Studies in four years through Mary’s innovative Year-Round Campus program. 

Study in Rome.

At the University of Mary Rome campus, you can live and study abroad while learning about Christian, Catholic, and Benedictine heritage firsthand. We particularly encourage sophomores and students in the Catholic studies program to participate in this opportunity. Qualified students can spend either a semester or five weeks of coursework and educational travel in Italy and other countries as well.

Study at Mary College at ASU.

In this innovative partnership between the University of Mary and Arizona State University (ASU), you can study for a semester at ASU, while enrolling in Catholic studies courses taught by University of Mary faculty on the ASU campus.

Mary College at ASU is an opportunity for Mary students with a missionary heart to take the Catholic life out into the world.

Program Information

Please visit our catalog for admission requirements and a full list of our courses.

Careers & Outcomes

Employment Trends

Because the Catholic studies major is intentionally designed as a double major, the program prepares graduates to enter a wide variety of career paths — enriched by their understanding of the Church’s contributions to human thought. From religious vocations to business to law to medicine, Catholic studies alumni are guided by Benedictine values and are servant leaders in their professions and their communities. 

Career Paths

  • Lawyer
  • Entrepreneur
  • Educator
  • Nonprofit Director
  • Engineer
  • Priest or Religious
  • Youth Ministry Director

My experience in Catholic studies is one that has blessed me immeasurably. I learned how receiving the inheritance of the Catholic intellectual tradition integrates the truth of faith with the truth of reason — it enlightens not just the academic mind, but life as a whole. Catholic studies taught me to love truth and to let it lead me to greatness.

Kayla Keller, ’18

Associate Professor of Philosophy and Director of Catholic Studies Dr. Scott Cleveland and students share what it’s like to study Catholic studies at Mary.


Headshot of Scott Cleveland

Scott Cleveland, PhD

Dr. Cleveland is the director of the Catholic studies program and a philosopher of ethics and metaphysics. His academic work focuses on virtue, emotion, happiness, philosophy of religion, and philosophical theology. View Profile


Headshot of CarolAndreini

Carol Andreini, PhD

Dr. Andreini is passionate about the Greco-Roman world and ancient poetry. She specializes in Greek, Latin, and the classics. She holds a PhD from the University of Minnesota and has taught Classics for 44 years. View Profile


Headshot of Father Dominic Bouck

Father Dominic Bouck, MA

Father Bouck was ordained to the priesthood in 2018 for the Diocese of Bismarck. Prior to becoming a priest, he spent four years in formation with the Dominicans and received his Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. He recently completed a Master of Arts in Theology from the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C. View Profile.


Ann Brodeur Headshot

Ann Brodeur, PhD

Dr. Brodeur studies the social and religious history of the ancient and medieval world. Her primary areas of interest are the history and philosophy of disability, the history and philosophy of education, and the history of marriage, family, and the home. View Profile


Headshot of Donald Bungum

Donald Bungum, PhD

Dr. Bungum enjoys researching epistemology, metaphysics, and the philosophy of religion. He earned his first degree in chemistry, which informs his work on epistemic authority and virtue, suffering, and theodicy. View Profile


Headshot of Nathan Kilpatrick

 Nathan Kilpatrick, PhD

Dr. Kilpatrick is a scholar of literature whose work focuses on the intersection of literature and Catholic culture since Vatican II, personalism, genre studies, and narrative theology. His English literature and theology training helps students cultivate a Catholic imagination. View Profile


Headshot of Kathleen Kirsch

Kathleen Kirsch, PhD

Dr. Kirsch's scholarly work is focused on fourth-century Christian Latin poetry, especially the work of Prudentius. She also has research expertise in manuscript studies, specifically paleography and textual criticism. View Profile


Philip Porter

Philip Porter, PhD

I am a theologian whose interests include philosophical theology, Latin patristics, the theology of death, and ordinary language philosophy. View Profile


Julie Yarwood

Julie Yarwood, PhD

Dr. Yarwood serves students at the University of Mary through two important roles, assistant professor of Catholic studies and assistant vice president for student development. Her academic research areas include the history of Catholics and the Catholic Church in America. View Profile.

Take Your Next Step in Catholic Studies