Three signal conferences at the Lynch School

The Lynch School of Education built on its long-standing commitment and contributions to “whole-person” education this fall, convening three pioneering conferences on student development across intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and ethical dimensions. 

The conference themes covered topics of interest to professionals working with K–12 students as well as those who focus on undergraduates. They explored fields—integrated student support, measurement and evaluation, and “whole-child” practice—in which Lynch School faculty are particularly well regarded for their expertise and research. 

“We’re a place that thinks differently about education, in that we think about it as encompassing the many dimensions of people’s lives,” says Stanton E.F. Wortham, Charles F. Donovan, S.J., Dean at the Lynch School. The conferences, he explains, were a way “to open up that vision to a larger audience.” 

With support from major foundations and national and international education associations, the fall colloquia brought to campus scholars, practitioners, and policymakers from the US and abroad to present and share scholarship, address pressing practice and research concerns, and establish national priorities based on whole-person approaches to education. Led by prominent Lynch School faculty members Mary E. Walsh (integrating comprehensive supports for students), Henry Braun (measuring meaning and purpose), and Andrew Hargreaves and Dennis Shirley (whole-child practice), the events emphasized “a broader view of education,” reflecting Boston College’s mission as a Jesuit, Catholic university, says Wortham. 

Wortham also points to a larger, long-term goal. “When we focus on developing and understanding students as whole people,” he says, “we help to facilitate their success in school and in life.” 

One Vision, Three Events