When LMU was created, its founders embraced a philosophy that students should strive to be useful to the world. And for 100 years, as renowned California historian Kevin Starr noted at LMU’s recent Mission Day celebration, the university’s students and alumni have upheld their end of the bargain.
“The Jesuit and Marymount traditions urge us to look long and deep within ourselves and to look with equal intensity at others embarked on the same pilgrimage to meaning,” Starr told the gathering Jan. 26 in Sacred Heart Chapel.
Starr knows Loyola Marymount like few others. He spent the past two years researching and writing the the book Loyola Marymount University: A Centennial History, available for purchase here. He is also a professor at USC and best known for his multi-volume series on California history, collectively called America and the California Dream.
He framed his lecture within a historical context that highlighted the intellectual, social, political and spiritual aspects of Jesuit and Marymount education. The pursuit of higher value in higher education wound its way from St. Ignatius in the 1500s to the Jesuits starting Los Angeles College in 1911 to present-day LMU, Starr said.
“Higher value, by definition, then must take into consideration everything: one’s own personal survival, one’s own hope for happiness, for professional development, for finding one’s place in the world and for becoming a contributing member of society,” he said.
The video below includes the full Mission Day address.