Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture hosts fourth annual Vita Institute


O. Carter Snead O. Carter Snead

The University of Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture hosted the fourth annual Vita Institute at the Notre Dame June 7-14. The week-long event brought together current and emerging leaders in the national and international pro-life movement with world-renowned scholars for a unique opportunity to study the fundamentals of the life issues at the highest academic level and across a wide range of disciplines.

“This year’s Vita Institute was our most successful yet,” said center director O. Carter Snead. “Between the world-class faculty and the impressive roster of amazingly accomplished participants, we were able to equip the next generation of pro-life leaders with the tools needed to articulate the truth about the cause for life, no matter the arena.”

Participants in the 2014 Vita Institute studied biology, philosophy, law, theology, communications and social science with such distinguished scholars as Maureen Condic, associate professor of anatomy and neurobiology at the University of Utah; Rev. Michael Sherwin, O.P., of the University of Fribourg; Richard Doerflinger, associate director of Pro-Life Activities at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB); Rev. Kevin Flannery, S.J., of the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome; David Solomon, associate professor of philosophy at the University of Notre Dame; Rev. Peter Ryan, S.J., executive director of the Committee on Doctrine for the USCCB; Daniel Philpott, associate professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame; Michael New, assistant professor of political science at the University of Michigan-Dearborn; and Snead, professor of law at the Notre Dame Law School.

Among the participants at this year’s Vita Institute were dedicated and highly qualified professionals in law, health care, counseling, the sciences and public policy, including Ovide Lamontagne, general counsel for Americans United for Life, and Mallory Quigley, communications director for the Susan B. Anthony List.

“I’m so grateful to the Center for Ethics and Culture team for putting together such a wonderful event,” Quigley said. “It was an honor to spend a week at Notre Dame with such distinguished faculty and to participate in its rigorous, comprehensive and engaging program. I left the Vita Institute with new knowledge, new friends and renewed passion for defending life.”

The Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture works to share the richness of the Catholic moral and intellectual tradition through teaching, research and dialogue, at the highest level and across a range of disciplines. It promotes the exchange of ideas among the world’s leading thinkers, both Catholic and those from other traditions, on the most pressing and vexed questions of ethics, culture and public policy today.

Contact: Ryan Madison, associate director, Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture, 574-631-1167,