There is an ever-growing fear amongst young people of losing one’s faith during the college years. As schools become more and more secular, more and more young Catholics are abandoning their beliefs for the latest fad of the day in between college classes. For incoming freshman Gianna Coffey, that possibility was not even an option for her. She discovered Christendom during her junior year of high school and has never looked back, ready to study the liberal arts in an authentically Catholic environment.

Hailing from Havertown, Pennsylvania, Coffey has been studying the liberal arts since grade school. She went to Cardinal O’Hara for her high school education, continuing that tradition. While there, she began thinking — as all high schoolers do — about her next steps following high school graduation.

One of her teachers, Andrew Youngblood, saw Coffey’s background and her desires for collegiate education and recommended his own alma mater to her: Christendom. He told her about the college’s Experience Christendom Summer Program and she quickly registered for it.

While on campus for a week, she was impressed by the integration of Catholicism and the liberal arts, and how seamlessly each of the classes built on each other. The education and the culture of Christendom attracted her so much that the college quickly became her number one choice.

“The pressure of being told that I had to know where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do for the rest of my life had me completely overwhelmed before I was even three-quarters of my way through high school,” says Coffey. “However, as little as I knew about my future and my college decision, I did know certain things: I knew I wanted to go to a school where I could grow in my knowledge of history and the liberal arts. I knew I wanted to go to a school somewhere in this crazy, confused world where truth exists and is not relative to an individual. Most of all, I wanted to spend my college years where I could grow in my Catholic Faith and find friends who would encourage me to do so. Once I realized all this and I experienced Christendom at the summer program, I knew my choice was clear.”

While Christendom became Coffey’s number one choice, college is still an expensive venture. Thankfully, she was able to take advantage of Christendom’s unique Price Match Program. By showing Christendom a competitive offer from another school, Coffey was able to get the financial aid assistance necessary to make her dream of attending Christendom come to life.

After scoring highly on the CLT, Coffey was admitted to Christendom for the fall of 2019. Now, she is set to leave home and become a member of the Christendom community. Coffey has a variety of interests, from performing in musicals, to being a member of the National Honors Society, to playing four different instruments, including the harp. She wants to share her musical talent with the Christendom community, giving back to the school that has already given her so much inspiration.

Lucky for her, when she arrives on campus this August, she will be joining a family of musicians, scholars, and Catholics that will encourage her to be the best that she possibly can be. While the college decision was initially overwhelming for her, now it has become something endlessly exciting.

“When asked to describe my ideal college, I could give no better answer than Christendom. With its small class sizes, beautiful campus, exceptional education, and enriching Catholic environment, I know Christendom is the place where I will best thrive in my school work and grow as an individual,” concludes Coffey. “As my high school career comes to a close, I am trying to grow into the woman of greatness God is calling me to be, and I believe that Christendom is the school where I can best do that. At Christendom, I can truly dare to be great.”

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