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Loyola University Chicago to Confer Honorary Degrees on Two Renowned Scholars During Commencement Week

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CHICAGO, IL – March 8, 2023

At Commencement ceremonies in May, Loyola University Chicago will confer honorary degrees on Emilce Cuda, PhD, STD, a leading Vatican scholar, and Vincent Rougeau, JD, President of the College of the Holy Cross, for their contributions to the advancement of knowledge, their examples as models of achievement and commitment to the common good, and dedication to the values and ideals of the University’s Jesuit, Catholic heritage. 

Cuda, an Argentine social and moral theologian, university professor, and Roman Curia official, will receive the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa. A noted advisor to Pope Francis and one of the highest-profile women in leadership at the Vatican, her most recent book, Reading Francis — Theology, Ethics, and Politics, has helped countless people better understand the first Jesuit Pope. As Secretary of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, she was instrumental in the planning of Building Bridges North-South, a direct encounter with Pope Francis and university students across the Americas hosted by Loyola in February 2022. 

An adjunct professor at Loyola and professor of theology at the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Cuda has also served at Boston College, Northwestern University, DePaul University, Arturo Jauretche National University, the Pontifical Catholic University, and the University of Buenos Aires. She received her PhD in theology from the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina, a master’s degree in business administration from the Commercial and Economic Sciences University, and has studied philosophy at the University of Buenos Aires. 

Rougeau, a nationally respected expert in legal education and Catholic social thought, will receive the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa. A renowned scholar of racial justice and legal education, and a leader in Jesuit higher education – his research considers the relationships of religious identity, citizenship, and membership in highly mobile and increasingly multicultural democratic societies, and his work has been published in books and peer reviewed journals for almost 30 years. 

Prior to becoming president at Holy Cross, Rougeau served as dean of the Boston College Law School and was the inaugural director of the new Boston College Forum on Racial Justice in America. He also served as director of the Center of Law and Government at the Notre Dame School of Law. Rougeau was an assistant and associate professor of law at Loyola University Chicago from 1991 until 1997. He has written extensively on law and religion, with a particular focus on Catholic social teaching and the law. Rougeau received his bachelor’s degree magna cum laude in international relations from Brown University in 1985, and his JD from Harvard Law School in 1988, where he served as articles editor of the Harvard Human Rights Journal. 


About Loyola University Chicago
Founded in 1870, Loyola University Chicago is one of the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic universities, with nearly 17,500 students. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy, as well as course locations in Vernon Hills, Illinois (Cuneo Mansion and Gardens), and a Retreat and Ecology Campus in Woodstock, Illinois. The University features 15 schools, colleges, and institutes. Ranked a top national university by U.S. News & World Report, Loyola is also among a select group of universities recognized for community service and engagement by prestigious national organizations including AmeriCorps and the Carnegie Foundation. To learn more about Loyola, visit or follow us on Twitter via @LoyolaChicago