Senior Awards and Honors

maria_suratMaria Surat, 2012 Recipient of the Gertrude Austin Marti Award and Prof. Matt Ashley

Each year the Department of Theology presents awards to our most outstanding graduating seniors.

The Gertrude Austin Marti Award

The Gertrude Austin Marti Award in Theology is given to a graduating senior who has given evidence of qualities of personal character and academic achievement in theological studies. Traditionally, the Marti Award recognizes the successful combination of extraordinary service to Church and community, along with academic excellence.

The award commemorates Gertrude Marti, who died in 1984. Gertrude Marti was head of the French department at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, Ill., prior to moving to South Bend with her husband, Fritz Marti, in 1976. She became very active in the Notre Dame community, taking courses in the Theology and Philosophy departments, and becoming very active in the Sacred Heart Parish.

The Reverend Joseph H. Cavanaugh, C.S.C. Award

The Reverend Joseph H. Cavanaugh, C.S.C. Award is given to the senior who has evidenced high qualities of personal character and academic excellence in theological studies. The Cavanaugh Award was established in 1960 in honor of Father Joseph H. Cavanaugh, C.S.C., former head of the Department of Theology, who died prematurely in 1954.

During the time when all Notre Dame students were required to take four courses in theology, students from all of the colleges were considered, and the first winner was from the College of Engineering. This changed with the establishment of the theology major in 1965. Former Cavanaugh winners include Mary Beckman (1975), Associate Director of Notre Dame's Center for Social Concerns, Joseph Incandela (1982), now Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at St. Mary's, and Paul Kollman (1988), now a C.S.C. priest and associate professor in Notre Dame's own Department of Theology.