Mission and Vision of the Roche Center
The Roche Center for Catholic Education forms Catholic school educators to become agents of change who work to create excellent PreK-12 schools. Through the four strategic initiatives detailed below, the Roche Center strengthens and transforms Catholic schools and improves student outcomes.
Leadership Programs—The Roche Center acknowledges that the quality of Catholic schools begins with leadership, which is why significant resources are dedicated to training, coaching and mentoring sitting and aspiring administrators. Great attention is devoted to the spiritual, intellectual and communal aspects of leadership, providing participants with the tools and resources necessary to innovatively lead and address the needs of the whole child in the 21st Century.
Development of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Schools—As the United States continues to become more diverse culturally and linguistically, the Roche Center advances the Catholic tradition of excellence by empowering Catholic schools to systemically transform from monolingual to multilingual models of education. The Two-Way Immersion Network for Catholic Schools (TWIN-CS) developed in 2013 by Boston College faculty supports 21 Catholic schools nationally and is grounded in research and supported by dual language experts from around the country.
Professional Education Opportunities—In collaboration with experts and educators across Boston College and beyond, the Roche Center offers innovative professional education opportunities throughout the year to support Catholic educators in the sacred work of formation. Within a supportive communal context, participants are invited to reflect not only on pedagogy, but on the personal and spiritual understanding of teaching and formation as a Christian vocation. Designed with teachers in mind, courses provide accessible yet challenging content that can be immediately applied to culturally and linguistically diverse classroom contexts.
Roche Center Research Fellows—The Roche Center offers semester-long and year-long fellowships to conduct research, advance the practice in Catholic education, and support the leadership programming of the Center. As appropriate, fellows collaborate with staff and faculty from professional schools and centers across Boston College, including the Roche Center, the Lynch School of Education and Human Development, the Carroll School of Management, and the School of Theology and Ministry. During their time with the Roche Center, fellows conduct research and publish scholarship on Catholic schools.
Animating Beliefs & Core Values
Drawing on our Catholic and Ignatian traditions, the following beliefs animate the work of the Roche Center for Catholic Education:
We believe education is about forming the heart, mind, and soul. Our programs are designed around Boston College’s formation triangle, in which we attend to the spiritual, social, and intellectual dimensions of formation. We strive for this holistic development as we attend to the heart, mind, and soul.
We strive for the Magis. Magis translated means “more,” signifying that we strive for excellence in all we do, and recognizing that all we do is for the greater glory of God.
We are companions on the journey. We accompany others on the journey of life, sharing our gifts and honoring the talents of others, while pursuing equity and justice. As we are women and men for others, we do this with special attention to the needs of the poor and marginalized.
We see God in all things. Cura Personalis means we “care for the individual person.” We respect each person as a Child of God and we reverence all of God’s creation.
We are committed to bringing about a socially just and equitable world. We form and educate persons as agents of change who engage in critical thought, dialogue on moral and ethical issues, and contribute to excellence and equity in Catholic education.
We develop Catholic educators to be adaptable, attentive, visionary, humble and joyful.
History of the Roche Center
Established by the Boston College Board of Trustees in 2007, The Barbara and Patrick Roche Center for Catholic Education of the Lynch School of Education and Human Development builds on more than a half-century of research, teaching, and outreach related to Catholic schools at Boston College. It brings under one banner strategic initiatives to develop vibrant and revitalized models for the future of Catholic education as an apostolate of hope.
The Roche Family
In March of 2010, long-time friends of Boston College Barbara and Patrick Roche ’51, H ’01, donated a $20 million endowment to the Center for Catholic Education, which was later named in their honor. Patrick E. Roche, co-founder of Roche Brothers supermarkets, passed away on May 27, 2012, at the age 83. The couple said they made the transformative donation because Catholic education had such a profound effect on their lives, as Mr. Roche was a graduate of Boston College. "Catholic education was a great gift in my life,” said the late Patrick Roche. “When Barbara and I saw the number of Catholic schools that were closing, we wanted to do something. BC gave us an opportunity to do so through this Center."
Headquartered in Wellesley, Roche Bros. has 18 Massachusetts locations, from Burlington to Cape Cod. Barbara and Patrick Roche are natives of Boston and ardent supporters of Catholic education. The Roches are noted philanthropists to worthy causes, including Catholic and public education, the Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese of Boston, the American Ireland Fund, the Parkway Boys and Girls Club, food pantries, elder assistance programs, and more. At BC, they established the Patrick E. and Barbara A. Roche Scholarship Fund for talented students with financial need, and the Barbara A. and Patrick E. Roche Chair in Economics, an endowed professorship.