Forming Leaders in Faith

The Notre Dame Folk Choir is seen performing.As a Catholic university, Notre Dame has a responsibility to form Catholic leaders who are educated in the faith, morally rooted, and generous in service to the Church and world. Notre Dame students and alumni are renowned for embodying these characteristics and use them to lead in their professional fields, neighborhoods, and faith communities.

Here are some of the many ways Notre Dame cultivates leaders who are guided by and lead from a strong conviction of faith.

Master of Divinity

Notre Dame’s Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree program is one of the premier ministry preparation programs in North America. The M.Div. is a professional theological degree designed to prepare students for learned and effective ministry in the Roman Catholic Church.

The Congregation of Holy Cross

The Congregation of Holy Cross is the community of priests and brothers who founded Notre Dame and continues to animate campus today. Following the vision of their founder, Blessed Basil Moreau, Holy Cross priests and brothers are dedicated to the mission entrusted to the Church by Jesus Christ, serving as educators in the faith. They work primarily in colleges and universities, parishes, and missions at home and abroad.

Master of Theological Studies

The Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.) program prepares students for doctoral work in theology and provides in-depth theological preparation for those who plan to teach theology at the high school level.


Echo is a dynamic two-year experience of service and apprenticeship that prepares tomorrow’s leaders in faith formation. Participants in Echo have the opportunity to engage in on-going academic, professional-ministerial, communal, and spiritual formation while serving at a parish in one of our partner dioceses.

Sacred Music

The Master of Sacred Music is a degree program situated in the Department of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, but it has major participation from faculty in the Department of Music. The purpose of this master's degree is to train professional musicians for work in the Christian churches, at a time when there is a well-established need for skilled musicians who understand the liturgy and know how to work with pastors/priests and within congregations.

Alliance for Catholic Education

The Alliance for Catholic Education responds to the needs of the Church’s educational mission through service to children in elementary and secondary schools and strives to sustain, strengthen, and transform Catholic schools. ACE trains principals and teachers to work in Catholic schools.

Peace Studies

The Kroc Institute is one of the few places in the world where students can earn a degree in peace studies at any level — undergraduate, master’s, and Ph.D. Coursework addresses a wide range of issues related to peace, violence, justice, and human rights.

House of Brigid

Founded in 2009 as an initiative of the University of Notre Dame Folk Choir, its mission stems from a spirit of gratitude to the missionaries of Ireland, who brought the Catholic faith to America. It is an effort to strengthen in today’s Irish Catholics the faith that sustained their ancestors and a desire to give young Americans the opportunity to immerse themselves in Irish culture and Celtic spirituality.

Notre Dame Vision

Notre Dame Vision is committed to helping young people recognize God's call in their lives and respond to that call with courage and faith.


STEP (Satellite Theological Education Program) offers six-week online courses in which a community of adult participants from around the world engage one another in discussion about our Catholic tradition. The courses are written by faculty at the University and facilitated by trained moderators, and participation ranges from adults seeking personal enrichment to parish leaders and candidates for the diaconate. STEP is a part of Notre Dame’s Institute for Church Life, which serves the University's larger mission of teaching, research, and service to society and to the Church.