Michael C. McCarthy, S.J., former vice president for mission integration and planning and associate professor of theology at Fordham University, has been named dean of the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry, effective July 1. He will succeed Thomas Stegman, S.J., who announced in January that he would step down at the end of the semester to focus on his ongoing battle with glioblastoma.
A distinguished theologian and teaching scholar and experienced university administrator, Fr. McCarthy brings more than 30 years of academic, administrative, and ministerial experience to his new position. Most recently, he advanced university-wide mission integration and strategic planning in his role as vice president at Fordham. In this capacity, he collaborated with all university divisions to strategically promote and cultivate Fordham’s Jesuit, Catholic mission, and provided oversight for multiple programs and departments including Campus Ministry, the Fordham Center on Religion and Culture, the Global Outreach Program, and the Fordham Center for Community Engaged Learning, which he founded in 2018. He also taught courses in Religion in the Modern World, and Sacred Texts and Traditions within the Department of Theology.
In announcing the appointment, Provost and Dean of Faculties David Quigley lauded Fr. McCarthy as a leader with the experience and commitment to direct the school in the years to come.
“Fr. Mick McCarthy's career, spanning faculty and administrative appointments at peer Jesuit universities, has prepared him well for the opportunity to lead the School of Theology and Ministry,” said Quigley. “I am excited to welcome him to campus this summer and to build on Dean Stegman's remarkable legacy. Mick is committed to extending STM's reach in service of the local, national, and global Catholic Church.”
Added STM Professor Andrew Davis, who served on the dean’s search committee, “Fr. McCarthy is the perfect leader to guide the STM into its next chapter. In addition to his extensive experience in Jesuit higher education, Fr. McCarthy brings to the school a passion for academic excellence and ministerial formation. His passion will inspire the faculty, staff, and students of the STM to live ever more fully into its mission of preparing the next generation of leaders for the Church and the world.”
Fr. McCarthy said that he welcomed the opportunity to serve as dean of the School of Theology and Ministry.
“I am thrilled to be joining colleagues who are as committed to theological education and ministerial formation as the faculty, staff, and students at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry,” said Fr. McCarthy. “I am especially grateful to Tom Stegman, for whom I have immense personal respect. He leaves office with the STM in a terrific place, and I look forward to building on the school’s remarkable success under his leadership. Being asked to succeed Tom in this important work gives me joy.”
“Fr. McCarthy is the perfect leader to guide the STM into its next chapter. In addition to his extensive experience in Jesuit higher education, Fr. McCarthy brings to the school a passion for academic excellence and ministerial formation. His passion will inspire the faculty, staff, and students of the STM to live ever more fully into its mission of preparing the next generation of leaders for the Church and the world.”
Prior to his work at Fordham, Fr. McCarthy served as executive director of the Ignatian Center for Jesuit Education, assistant to the president for mission and identity, and the Edmund Campion Professor at Santa Clara University, where he held joint appointments in the religious studies and classics departments. He has also held teaching positions at Loyola University Chicago and the University of San Francisco, and his writing and research have appeared in multiple publications including the Harvard Theological Review, the Journal of Early Christian Studies, Theological Studies, and the Journal of the American Academy of Religion.
A native of San Francisco, Fr. McCarthy entered the Society of Jesus in 1983, after a year as an undergraduate at Stanford University. He received a B.A. in classical languages from Santa Clara University, a B.A./M.A. degree from Oxford University in philosophy and classical literature, a M.Div. degree from the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in theology from the University of Notre Dame. His main areas of academic interest are Jesuit higher education in the United States, historical theology focusing on early Christianity, religious belief, and Augustine.
“As a Jesuit, there are few things I can imagine more important for the Church or the work of the Society of Jesus than developing the next generation of leaders,” said Fr. McCarthy. “So I approach my service as dean with my whole heart and with trust in God. My first order of business will be to listen and to learn.”
Founded in 2008 when the Weston Jesuit School of Theology reaffiliated with Boston College and merged with the Institute for Religious Education and Pastoral Ministry, the School of Theology and Ministry is an international academic theological center dedicated to forming scholars, ministers, and leaders for the Church. Ranked among the best theological schools in the world, it attracts some 400 students annually from throughout the United States and more than 30 countries.
Jack Dunn | University Communications | April 2022