Catholic colleges in Florida... Need help deciding


Its my last year in high school and I have been discerning where to go to college next year. my ultimate wish is that I go to Fransiscan university of Steubenville, probably for graduate studies, but since I may not go out of state for the first four years, it was best to look at the options available for me here in Florida (partially for bright futures, a desire to stay near family, etc.). Id like to study theology, but up until recently i was not aware that there are different kinds(systematic, pastoral, practical… what do those mean anyways?).

As far as I know, the four Catholic universities in Florida are Ave Maria (naples), St Leo’s (tampa), Barry University (miami shores), and St Thomas University. (miami)

Does anyone here know about how each school approaches theology? How orthodox are they? It seems lke some are more oriented to contemporary matters and social justice, while others tend to be traditional (this is what ive seen in colleges around the USA).

i myself am particularly interested in an approach that looks towards the scriptures (this includes studying scriptures in its original languages) and church wrtings throughout our 2000 year history, combined with philosophy (which menas that I am not too big on post Vatican II thought only, nor in pre Vatican II thought only… hermeunetics of rupture has done too much damage). I consider consitency with church teaching to be very important and am not looking for the prestige of university itself, but that it has solid Catholic teaching. Has anyone here been to these universities? If so, how good are they? (I know many have comments already about Ave Maria, but Id like to also know more about the others as well).

I checked the sites, but very often the language seems carefully chosen so I dont know what to expect. First hand experiences would be helpful. Anything about scholarships would be nice too (considering my college fund is a big load of nothing) :smiley:

Thank you, and God bless you all


Sorry, all I can tell you is that you’d probably like (or love) the theology program at Ave. Talk with Fr. Matthew Lamb or Dr. Bill Riordan. It’s all about the dialectic of ancient and modern theology.

Ave has other issues, such as campus life and faculty-administration strife. But the grad students there are great and so are the teachers. In terms of social justice, there is a lot of activity with the town of Immokalee, which is the poorest city in Florida.

Oh - I do believe the grad students all get some form of scholarship, ranging from full to partial.


thank you anyways… ive heard much about Ave Maria, some of it having to do with law school issues, but im not looking into law but theology…


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