In a recent article featured in Forbes Magazine, a columnist wrote, “…when students and parents ask, ‘What can I do with a liberal arts major?’ the right answer, grounded in the evidence, is ‘A lot. A whole lot.’” Christendom alumni are part of the evidence to which the columnist referred. Filling positions across a wide spectrum of professions, Christendom grads find themselves in the business of developing young minds or corporate plans, creating marketing strategies or running businesses, and sometimes, they can be found in that seemingly very non-liberal arts related field of web development.
Bryan Hadro, a history major from the class of 2004, is a front-end web developer for ESPN. He was drawn to the industry by a desire to be creative and “design something that hundreds, even thousands, of people will see and use.” Hadro says that his Christendom education has helped in creating a “framework to lead a balanced life.”
“I can keep things in perspective and focus on what is important,” he says. “Secondly, the education I received at Christendom has helped stoke intellectual desire. In work and life, it’s imperative to continue learning. I find that especially important in the web and tech fields, where the technology advances so rapidly that you really have to have that desire to keep up. I find that challenge appealing, and I attribute that desire very much to my Christendom education and, especially, the faculty there.”
Matthew Gelis, who double majored in philosophy and theology, has had the same experience as a long-time web developer.
“The logical and analytical framework developed during my time at Christendom provided me with a firm foundation for acquiring new skills as a programmer and database application developer, in an environment that required self-instruction,” he says.
A member of the class of 1987, Gelis is the owner and Director of Site Development for Veraprise Incorporated. In 1996, he recognized the internet phenomenon as an emerging technology that offered excellent opportunities for a new career that he called “challenging, interesting, and financially promising.”
Gelis says that his liberal arts education has benefitted his career tremendously.
“It gave me the confidence and intellectual capacity to pursue an entirely new career and advance within it independently,” he says.
Both Hadro and Gelis say that Christendom’s motto, “to restore all things in Christ,” remains a part of their lives.
“I may not be preaching the Faith everyday—though sometimes clients ask me about it,” Gelis says. “But in all my dealings with clients, I witness to my Faith, by being professional, honest, and reliable.”
Hadro says that he tries to lead by personal example in his workplace and also notes that his presence in this profession is helping to foster a Catholic media presence in the new millennium.
“Contrary to what many might think, the Church has had a very rich tradition of fostering the arts and sciences,” Hadro says. “Working in what has fast become the new means of commerce and communication gives me the opportunity to do good work for the Church—whether it be primary work or on the side.”