Bachelor of Arts – Social Justice & Catholic Studies

4 Year Degree

“More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe, while at our door people are starving… none of us can think we are exempt from concern for the poor and for social justice: ‘Spiritual conversion, the intensity of the love of God and neighbour, zeal for justice and peace, the Gospel meaning of the poor and of poverty, are required of everyone’. I fear that these words too may give rise to commentary or discussion with no real practical effect. That being said, I trust in the openness and readiness of all Christians, and I ask you to seek, as a community, creative ways of accepting this renewed call.”

– Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, 49 & 201.

Students in the Bachelor of Arts in Social Justice and Catholic Studies (SJCS) explore history, politics, faith, Indigenous culture, society, the arts, and much more. You will choose an emphasis in Social Justice or Catholic Studies. Through an emerging awareness of how these areas of study impact real-world issues, you can positively engage in social justice.

Grounded in the mission of St. Mary’s University to care for the whole person and rooted in the Catholic intellectual tradition, a degree in SJCS offers you an interdisciplinary and integrative approach to making a real difference in the world. By choosing a degree in Social Justice and Catholic Studies, you will be eminently prepared to handle complex problems in both the non-profit and private sectors.

SJCS is designed for students who want to integrate intellectual development and real world issues with matters of faith and practice.

If you are interested in making a difference in your community and working for justice then this degree is for you!

You will learn History, philosophy, and religious ideas in the Catholic tradition alongside critical political, social, and ethical issues confronting society and the environment. You will also learn how to integrate multiple perspectives and develop effective responses to complex social issues.
Here are just some of the occupations this degree helps prepare you for: Catholic school teacher (together with a BEd), Indigenous outreach officer, social services case aid, child and youth worker, life skills coach, community centre worker, community liaison worker, development service worker, drop-in centre worker, family service worker, group home worker, halfway house worker, peer support worker, residential counsellor, settlement worker, social assistance officer, social welfare officer, street outreach worker, transition home worker, veteran’s field worker, women’s centre officer, youth worker, religious outreach worker, community organizer. The SJCS degree can also be used for admission to a BEd after-degree program for teacher certification, especially suited for the Catholic school system.
Students work closely with professors who are recognized experts in their fields! Teaching will include classroom experiences and individually mentored projects. You will explore ideas in conversation with your professors and fellow students and put these into practice in the real world.
SJCS students take an experiential learning course in the final year of study. Put your learning into practice, establish community relationships, and gain meaningful work-related experience with a community partner.

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St. Mary’s University is a dynamic, welcoming teaching and research institution. We offer fully accredited, affordable and rigorous degrees that are recognized the world over. We invite you to take this journey with us. We hope that your adventure will be an amazing one, and that you will remain connected to St. Mary’s for a lifetime.

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Social Justice Stream Program Guide
Catholic Studies Stream Program Guide
Student Aid
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Meet Our Professors!

Dr. Tim Harvie

“A degree in Social Justice and Catholic Studies is a great way to become engaged in important global issues and help shape your community in meaningful ways. It opens up new worlds of faith and practice.”
— Dr. Timothy Harvie, Program Coordinator for Social Justice and Catholic Studies

Dr. Peter Baltutis

“This innovative degree gives equal attention to the Gospel imperative to love God (through a strong foundation in the Catholic intellectual tradition) and to love our neighbour (by providing the practical tools to build a more just and peaceful society). Students in the SJCS program explore how Catholicism draws creatively upon its rich heritage to encounter the challenges and problems facing our contemporary world.”
— Dr. Peter Baltutis, CWL Chair of Catholic Studies

Dr. Michael MacLeod

“Come to learn about your part in the journey of all Canadians to imagine our way forward together as Indigenous and non-Indigenous people living on THIS land.”
— Michelle Scott, Director of Indigenous Initiatives