For the past several months, four Thomas More students—sophomore Mary Fahey, senior Anthony Mioni, and juniors Elijah Moorman and Eva Solak—have been serving as interns at Sophia Institute in nearby Nashua, New Hampshire. Sophia Institute is a non-profit organization that operates several Catholic apostolates, including Sophia Institute Press and Sophia Institute for Teachers. The internships are part of a broader program that has included students from Catholic and secular colleges across the country.
The Thomas More Sophia Institute interns have been engaged in various communications projects within the organization, particularly the development of online resources for Catholic schools. The paid internships, which have been undertaken by the students while they have all carried full-time course loads, have helped the students gain valuable workplace skills that complement their academic pursuits in the liberal arts.
“I am interested in pursuing a career in business and management after I graduate from Thomas More College,” says Junior Elijah Moorman, “so it has been indispensable to see how all the pieces come together at a place like Sophia Institute Press. It is an amazing company—it is far and away the most well-ordered working environment I have ever encountered. Morale is always high and it is a pleasure to work with everyone there.”
Junior Eva Solak agrees. “I am interested in working in publications, journalism, or business after I graduate. From practical office skills to editorial work to developing a project, the internship work at Sophia has helped me cultivate certain skills which are essential in the workplace. The company is run seamlessly, and I have been privileged to observe closely the operations of a well-functioning organization.” Rather than placing a burden on her academic work, the internship “provides a healthy break from the rigorous academic environment of Thomas More College,” says Eva. “Combined with the fruits of the Catholic liberal arts education provided at Thomas More, the skills I am acquiring at Sophia will leave me well-positioned to pursue similar opportunities after graduation.”
“Thomas More graduates prove that a liberal arts education enables them to think creatively and prioritize effectively the many tasks they must accomplish. They consistently demonstrate a firm knowledge of and commitment to the Catholic Faith, bringing an enthusiasm for advancing Sophia Institute Press’s mission.”—Sophia Institute President Charlie McKinney
The President of Sophia Institute, Charlie McKinney, notes that the “spiritual and intellectual formation Thomas More College students receive gives them a significant advantage over other candidates.” “Time and again,” he says, “Thomas More graduates prove that a liberal arts education enables them to think creatively and prioritize effectively the many tasks they must accomplish. Thomas More students consistently demonstrate a firm knowledge of and commitment to the Catholic Faith, bringing an enthusiasm for advancing Sophia Institute Press’ mission.”
Sophia Institute Press employs a number of Thomas More College alumni in positions ranging from Managing Editor of Sophia Institute for Teachers (Anna Maria Mendell ’08) to Editor of Catholic Exchange (Michael Lichens ’09). Alumni point to the solid Catholic mission, strong leadership, and organization, and meaningful work as reasons why Sophia Institute is an ideal place to put their Thomas More liberal arts education to work in the service of the Church. As Anna Maria Mendell notes, “You can feel God’s Providence directing this rapidly-growing Catholic press, and it is humbling. I work for the Sophia Institute for Teachers, and our team labors to support the too-often-neglected and undervalued Catholic teacher and catechist. The Catholic liberal arts education I received at Thomas More College is an ever-present guide and resource for every lesson I write and chapter I edit.”
Other Thomas More Alumni working at Sophia include Sabina “Brady” Adams ’15, Carley Cassella ’15, Ethan O’Connor ’17, and Ethan Thibodeau ’16. These young men and women work daily alongside the many other faithful Catholics at Sophia too, in the words of Sophia Institute, “nurture the spiritual, moral, and cultural life of souls and spread the Gospel of Christ in conformity with the authentic teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.”
The student interns have been supervised by Brady Adams, ’15, who works with Sophia Institute for Teachers. “As an alumna of Thomas More College,” says Brady, “it has been extremely gratifying to work with current Thomas More Students at Sophia Press and to witness them gaining the experience of working with a wonderful Catholic company. The work the interns have been doing has supported the efforts of other employees and created real value in the workplace. I have been impressed with their constant hard work, and delighted by their presence in the office.”