.- A new foundation is working to raise $10 million to open a new Catholic liberal arts college next year, after Ave Maria College in Ypsilanti announced that it will close and move to Florida this summer.
The new foundation, largely comprising professors, priests and professionals, will hold a benefit dinner March 16th to help raise the funds needed to establish the College of Saints Peter and Paul, reported The Detroit News.
Henry Russell, Chairman of the Department of Literature at the soon-to-be defunct Ave Maria College, is president of Saints Peter and Paul Educational Foundation. He told the Detroit News that the new college would likely be funded through many small donations that would create "a broader sense of ownership to all the Catholics in Michigan.”
Foundation members have looked at more than 20 locations in the Archdiocese of Detroit and the Diocese of Lansing, Russell said. They hope to open the school by fall 2008 and grow to 425 students and 28 faculty.
The College of Saints Peter and Paul would be unique to the state, Russell said. Faculty and students would be almost exclusively Catholic. Exceptions would be made for students still searching in their faith.
While students will study economics and biology, they will be taught through the lens of the Catholic faith and the reasoning behind the faith, Russell said.
While the Archdiocese of Detroit welcomes the new Catholic college, the archdiocese will not finance it, spokesman Ned McGrath told the newspaper. The college would be an independent organization.
For more information on the College of Saints Peter and Paul and the benefit supper, go to: www.sspeterandpaulfoundation.org.