Justice Education

Virtues & Vocations is a national forum for scholars and practitioners across disciplines to consider how best to cultivate character in pre-professional and professional education. Virtues & Vocations hosts faculty workshops and monthly webinars, and engages issues of character, professional identity and moral purpose through our publications.


2023-2024 Events & Webinar Series

Rana Awdish

Healing with Intention

Rana Awdish, MD

Thursday, September 28, 2023, 7pm – McKenna Hall Auditorium, University of Notre Dame

Rana Awdish, MD, is a pulmonary and critical care physician serving as the Director of the Pulmonary Hypertension Program at Henry Ford Hospital. She also serves as the Medical Director of Care Experience for Henry Ford’s Health System, where she has integrated compassionate communication strategies and Narrative Medicine practice into the curriculum. She is the author of In Shock, a critically acclaimed, bestselling memoir based on her own critical illness. Her talk will include time for audience questions, and there will be a reception immediately following. This talk is co-sponsored by the Hillebrand Center for Compassionate Care in Medicine at Notre Dame and Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities and History of Medicine at the Duke University School of Medicine. 

Universities, Democracy & Lessons from HBCUs

John Silvanus Wilson

Monday, October 9, 2023, noon – 1 pm, webinar

John Silvanus Wilson, Former President, Morehouse College & Executive Director of the Millennium Leadership Initiative for AASCU discusses Universities, Democracy & Lessons from HBCUs.

Education & Vocation

Parker J. Palmer

Monday, November 27, 2023, noon – 1 pm, webinar

Parker J. Palmer, bestselling author, teacher & activist, discusses Education & Vocation.


2024 Virtues & Vocations Conference

Higher Education & Human Flourishing

We will host a conference on Higher Education & Human Flourishing June 3-5, 2024 at the University of Notre Dame. Sign up here to receive more information about registration as soon as it is available.

Cover artwork: “Upside” by Jed Dorsey © 2021

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Norman Wirzba

It is easy to become paralyzed by sorrow and fear in the face of the many forms of eco-socio-systems collapse. I suppose this is why these conversations almost always make their way to the question, “What gives you hope?” A compelling answer, presumably, will help us all feel better.

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Lydia S. Dugdale

As a medical doctor who cares for older and ailing patients, I have long struggled with how to inspire hope when the medical facts paint an otherwise grim picture. In the face of imminent death from cancer, a fatal drug overdose, or a devastating injury—what can a doctor say about hope in such cases that is not mere platitude?

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Radical Hope: Ethics in the Face of Cultural Devastation by Jonathan Lear was first published by Harvard University Press in 2006. In the years since he wrote Radical Hope, he has expanded his relationship with members of the Crow tribe, and has continued to explore the themes of the book. His most recent book, Imagining the End: Mourning and the Ethical Life, picks up some of these threads. We sat down with Lear to talk about radical hope, the philosophical imagination, and the Crow.

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Mary C. Gentile

After decades of working at top business schools and with corporations, I have followed the litany of public scandals, and know the ugly realities that never make headlines. There is reason for cynicism. And yet, every day I do work that is driven by hope, and I continue to be inspired by how many people are eager to join me.

This Month's Newsletters

Benjamin Elliott argues that the position of educator is much more than a deliverer of intellectual virtue and in order to change education for the better, we must understand that a more noble purpose than knowledge transfer exists.


Life Worth Living is a book based on the popular Yale University class by the same name. As with the course, the book challenges readers to ask questions about what matters in life.

This month we are featuring an art essay with pieces by incarcerated men from Westville Correctional Facility. This was featured in the Summer 2023 issue of Virtues & Vocations: Higher Education for Human Flourishing.

Contact Us

Erin Collazo Miller
Project Director

Wes Siscoe
Postdoctoral Fellow