Freshman and sophomore year I worked for Campus Ministry as an “Office Assistant,” meaning I did a lot of “behind the scenes” work that makes the department run smoothly, like making copies and running errands. It was hard to leave (I wanted more design-related work) because I worked for such an amazing group of people, but my two years of having an insider perspective taught me a lot about what you should expect from “Camp Min.”
1. You don’t need a “reason” to visit; you can just hang out in the office.
Although there is plenty of programming, a lot of how the department works is just by creating a welcoming environment for students. The office has free coffee and comfortable couches, creating a great study or hangout spot. The people who work in the office are so kind and outgoing, you’re sure to strike up a conversation with someone interesting!
2. There is no “one size fits all,” so they have plenty of options.
Some people love to pour out their feelings on retreats, others want a Bible Study group. Some prefer to reflect silently in Adoration, and others want to sing loudly in a choir. Some people just want to get free late-night breakfast food during finals week (an actual event they run). Whatever your “style,” there are things to get involved in.
3. You don’t have to be Catholic to participate.
The department has Interfaith Resources for students of different faith backgrounds, but non-Catholic students interested in learning more about faith are invited to take part in any Campus Ministry event that interests them. There is also a Prayer from Around the World Forum to provide deeper insights into global faith traditions.
4. They can literally take you around the world.
Camp Min also has pilgrimage opportunities each semester, which combine retreat experiences with travel and cultural immersion. I have personally taken advantage of this by spending Fall Break 2015 in Ireland, and it’s one of the most amazing opportunities I’ve had as an undergraduate. Destinations in the past have included Mexico, Hawaii, Rome, and the Holy Land.
5. They have highly-coveted internship position.
The Anchor Leadership Program is an amazing opportunity for someone interested in going into a ministry-based career or growing their faith. Ten to twelve rising seniors are chosen every year to work specific jobs within the department, and the group usually becomes a close-knit community. Not only is it an exceptional experience, it’s also a good way to earn some money.
6. The Coleman-Morse Center (the building that houses Camp Min) has one of only around 50 Kugel Fountains in the country.
If you’ve taken a campus tour here, they likely took you through the building just to show off this fountain. Not only is it a miracle of physics, but Kugels are a fairly rare type of sculpture. And yes, you’re allowed to touch it.