University of St. Thomas, Minnesota and Lewis University Named University Partners
University of St. Thomas, Minnesota and Lewis University Named University Partners

University of St. Thomas, Minnesota and Lewis University mark the 55th and 56th four-year universities committed to the Cristo Rey Network's national University Partner program.

June 16, 2020 - CHICAGO - Today, the Cristo Rey Network announced that University of St. Thomas, Minnesota and Lewis University were named new University Partners of the movement. These institutions mark the 55th and 56th four-year universities committed to the financial and programmatic support of Cristo Rey graduates through the organization's national University Partner program.

As the official 55th partner, University of St. Thomas has been enrolling Cristo Rey students for several years. Based on National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) data, 71% of Cristo Rey graduates enrolling at University of St. Thomas complete college. While matriculating students primarily come from Cristo Rey Jesuit High School – Twin Cities, as a national University Partner, the Cristo Rey Network expects the university to see an increased enrollment of graduates from more Network schools in the coming years.

"Our partnership with the University of St. Thomas is about offering students across the academic spectrum multiple rigorous and comprehensive programs that will provide a pathway to using that degree and creating the conditions through which students can successfully navigate their academic environment and explore their professional options with ease," said Cristo Rey Network Director of College Initiatives Stephanie Arias. "We welcome the University of St. Thomas and the Dougherty Family College, the university's new two-year college, and are confident in their commitment to the Cristo Rey Network."

The Cristo Rey Network seeks to ensure that new national partners enrich the diversity of placement opportunities for Cristo Rey students at all levels of achievement and are reflective of a regionally diverse college network.

With a nationally recognized aviation program and a locally known commitment to Chicago-based students, Lewis University signed on as the 56th partner. Student-centered, Lewis demonstrates a proven success rate of 68% for Cristo Rey students who are currently persisting in their degree or have already graduated. Lewis combines a liberal arts focused education with practical and relevant professional learning that complements the education of Cristo Rey graduates from across the network.

"The talented students at Lewis University benefit from small classes taught by exceptional faculty, and we are eager to connect more Cristo Rey students with the level of rigor and close engagement that they offer," remarked Arias. "The team at Lewis recognizes the richness of a Cristo Rey Network education, and we are thrilled to partner with a university that will support our graduates every step along their journey."

Pioneered more than a decade ago, the University Partnership program was established as a collaborative platform for colleges and universities that demonstrate an informed appreciation of Cristo Rey graduates. These colleges and universities also share a commitment to educating and supporting students with limited economic means, many of whom are first generation college students and/or students of color. Learn more.

About Cristo Rey Network
The Cristo Rey Network of 37 high schools delivers a career focused, college preparatory education in the Catholic tradition for students with limited economic resources, uniquely integrating rigorous academic curricula with four years of professional work experience and support to and through college. Cristo Rey partners with educators, businesses and communities to enable students to fulfill their aspirations for a lifetime of success: students are three times more likely to complete a bachelor's degree by age 24, compared to the total U.S. low-income population.

About the University of St. Thomas
Located in St. Paul, Minn., the University of St. Thomas is a private, liberal arts university that emphasizes values-based education and career preparation. With more than 10,000 students, it is Minnesota's largest independent college or university. The university welcomes students of all ages, religions, races and financial backgrounds. Inspired by Catholic intellectual tradition, the University of St. Thomas educates students to be morally responsible leaders who think critically, act wisely and work skillfully to advance the common good. The university has three campuses: St. Paul, Minneapolis and Rome, Italy.

About Lewis University
Sponsored by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, Lewis University is a comprehensive, Catholic university where the traditions of liberal learning and preparation for professional life give the university its educational identity and mission focus. Providing a practical, goal-oriented education, Lewis offers more than 80 undergraduate majors and programs of study, 35 graduate programs, and accelerated programs for working adults.