Senior Project: The Grande Project

The Grande Project was borne in 2020 from a moment of necessity.  Faced with shuttered service agencies around St. Louis during the COVID-19 pandemic, Campus Ministry faced a choice: cancel Senior Project, or design an alternative.  We chose the latter.  Knowing the power of direct service in disturbing a self-centered aura among our students, we created an alternative project that challenged seniors to safely engage with an outside, marginalized population, in a time when so many students were forced to isolate or withdraw.  It is a project generated and sustained by a spirit of hopeful trust and optimism.  Then in 2021, with service agencies still not ready to welcome a critical mass of volunteers, Campus Ministry revised and renewed the Grande Project for the Class of 2022.

Anchoring this year’s project was a two-week intensive period in January 2022, where senior classes were cancelled, presentations and seminars were organized, and full attention could be given to the project.  Named after Saint Rutilio Grande, SJ, friend and inspiration of Archbishop Oscar Romero, the Grande Project is an advocacy project with four goals:

  1. Demonstrate care and concern for a marginalized population;
  2. Listen to those living the experience, to those on the frontline, to Catholic Tradition, to their heart, to their conscience, and to their own experience;
  3. Exercise their God-given privilege (gifts, talents, and opportunities) to give voice to the voiceless by becoming an engaged advocate in today’s world; with the ultimate goal of:
  4. Awakening seniors’ God-given ability to bring about a more loving and equitable world.

St. Rutilio Grande, pray for us.

We are once again proud of how our seniors adapted to some challenging circumstances. The issue embedded below highlights award-winning projects that emerged after two rounds of adjudication: first from faculty & staff project advisors, then by the Campus Ministry Grande Project organizers. To the many adult project advisors and presenters, we send our humble thanks for so generously working with the seniors on the ground level.

FR. RUTILIO GRANDE ADVOCACY AWARD WINNERS:

  • Elias Dernlan
  • Tanner Dougherty
  • Jack Figge
  • Jude Fucetola
  • George Henken
  • Nicholas La Presta
  • Gavin Lawhorn
  • Peter Mueller
  • Tucker Thomas
  • AJ Thompson & Gus Tettamble
  • JP Torack
  • Matt Windler & Niko Nadreau

HONORABLE MENTION:

  • Charlie Bieg
  • Luke Brown
  • Jack DuMont
  • Sam French
  • Andrew Kessler
  • Baker Pashea
  • John Peretz
  • Danny Phillips
  • Zach Renner
  • Nathan Sewell
  • Will Shorey & Richard Taylor
  • Mac Southern
  • Charlie Stewart
  • Alex Wentz

Senior Project Coordinators: Mrs. Simonie Anzalone (sanzalone@sluh.org) and Mr. Brian Gilmore (bgilmore@sluh.org)

"Today our prime educational objective must be to form men-and-women-for-others; men and women who will live not for themselves but for God and his Christ - for the God-man who lived and died for all the world; men and women who cannot even conceive of love of God which does not include love for the least of their neighbors; men and women completely convinced that love of God which does not issue in justice for others is a farce."

- FR. PEDRO ARRUPE, S.J.

Superior General of the Society of Jesus, 1965-81