RHODE ISLAND — The Tom and Terri Murphy Foundation marks National Catholic Schools Week 2022 with a call to action for the establishment of more inclusive Catholic education options for students of all abilities.
The Foundation uniquely challenges institutions of Catholic education, already pillars of their communities, to provide students who may have been otherwise overlooked with opportunities for personal, spiritual, and educational growth.
Leading by example, the Foundation successfully advocated for and financially supported the establishment of Villanova University’s VUnited Scholars Program . The program, a first at a Catholic institution of higher education, utilizes academic and life skills curricula to foster independence in motivated students with mild to moderate intellectual differences. The VUnited Scholars Program to date has far exceeded the University’s expectations as interest for the coming academic year continues to grow.
The combination of the VUnited Scholars Program and the continued work of the Brother Thomas R. Leto Options Program at Bishop Hendricken High School inspires the Foundation’s push for broader inclusivity among academic institutions.
“Marking National Catholic Schools Week, we ask, why should traditional students only be prepared for meaningful employment and independence?” said benefactor and Chairman of the Board, Tom Murphy, “Inclusion is truly consistent with the missions of our country’s great faith-based academic institutions.”
“Justice demands that candidates facing certain challenges be provided with their own unique opportunity for meaningful employment and independent living. Making this reality happen is what our Catholic schools are called to do,” National Director Martha Murray said, “We are now willing, ready, and able to work together with other driven partners and academic institutions in order to create a more inclusive educational experience for all.”
The Foundation welcomes strategic, dedicated partners and patrons interested in fostering the development of other inclusive, faith-forward programs at academic institutions across the United States.
The Tom and Terri Murphy Foundation, a federally-recognized 501(c)(3) charitable organization, facilities and supports the establishment of inclusive programs in Catholic high schools and colleges for motivated young adults with mild to moderate intellectual differences, allowing them to fully explore and realize both their intellectual and personal potentials.