Meet the Graduate Students

Meet the Graduate Students
Current Students:


Alexander, Jacob

Education: Thomas Aquinas College—BA, Liberal Arts

Current Status: MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Natural Philosophy and Metaphysics

Publications:

Contributing Editor “Knowing, Loving, and Defending the Family” by Fr. Sebastian Walshe.  Soon to be published by Catholic Answers at www.catholic.com.

Berns, Phillip

Education: B.A. Philosophy--Tulane,2009;M.A.Philosophy--Tulane,2010;M.T.S.Theology, Notre Dame Seminary, 2013

Current Status: PhD student

Philosophical Interests: Political philosophy,ethics, philosophy of education

Recent Activities (Conferences attended, presentations, etc.):
2017 Acton University Hansen Fellow a unique, four-day exploration of the intellectual foundations of a free society. Guided by a distinguished, nternational faculty, Acton University is an opportunity to deepen your knowledge and integrate philosophy, theology, business, development - with sound, market based, economics.

Bielinski, Maureen

Education: Ave Maria University—BA, Philosophy; Center for Thomistic Studies—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: ethics; the virtues; moral psychology; Thomas Aquinas; Aristotle 

Publication: “Merit and Propassions in the De Tristitia Christi: Scholastic Perspectives,” Moreana 33 (June 2016), 73-118.

Presentations:  

“‘Omitting to Think’ and Sins Against Prudence,” presented at 52nd

International Congress on Medieval Studies at University of Michigan in Kalamazoo, 12 May 2017; “A Temperance of the Memory and the Imagination: The Thomistic Virtue of Studiositas Reexamined,” presented at 2016 Annual American Catholic Philosophical Association

(ACPA) National Convention, San Francisco, CA, 4 November 2016.

Recent activities: 

“Virtue, Happiness, and Self-Transcendence” seminar participant, Virtue Project, University of Chicago, 18-23 June 2017; 

“The Passions of Christ’s Agony in the Theology of Two Thomases,” discussed in seminar, “The Theology of More's Tower Works,” Center for Thomas More Studies, University of Dallas, Irving, Texas, 7-8 November 2014; 

“Virtue and Free Will” workshop participant, Third Annual Thomas Aquinas Philosophy Workshop, Catholic and Dominican Institute, 13-16 June 2013 

Block, Isaac

Education: University of New Mexico—BS, Pure Math; International Theological Institute, Austria—STB, Sacred Theology; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Boyer, John

Education: Thomas Aquinas College—BA, Liberal Arts; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Ancient Philosophy, Aristotle, Philosophy of Religion, Philosophy of Science, Metaphysics

Conferences and Presentations:

“MacIntyre, First Principles, and the Impossibility of Scientific Knowledge,” American Maritain Association Conference, in New York, NY, February 25-27, 2016

Commentator on Jonathan Buttaci, “Cognitive Capacities and States in Posterior Analytics B 19,” 39th Annual Workshop on Ancient Philosophy, Rice University, Houston, TX, February 19-20, 2016.

“Modeling and Aristotelian Demonstration,” American Catholic Philosophical Association Conference, Session on “Aristotelian Foundations of  Science and the Modeling of Nature: Studies in Honor of William A. Wallace, O.P.”, Sponsored by Society for Thomistic Natural Philosophy, in Boston, MA, October 8-11.

“Analyzing Divine Eternity in Aquinas,” American Catholic Philosophical Association Conference, “Satellite Session I,” Sponsored by the American Catholic Philosophical Association, in Boston, MA, October 8-11, 2015. 

Co-Authored with Daniel Wagner, “Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas on ‘Better Known’ in Aristotle’s Posterior Analytics and Physics,” 50th International Congress of Medieval Studies, Session on “Philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas I: Metaphysics”, Sponsored by the Center for Thomistic Studies, University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI, May 14-17, 2015.

“The Coherence of Divine Eternity in Thomas Aquinas,” Center for Thomistic Studies Colloquium Series, University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, February 27, 2015.

“The Coherence of Divine Eternity in Thomas Aquinas,” 3rd Marquette University Graduate Student Chapter of Aquinas and the ‘Arabs’ International Workshop, at Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI, February 20-21, 2015.

Chair of Session “Habits in Illuminative Cognition,” American Catholic Philosophical Association Conference, in Washington DC, October 9-12, 2014.

“The Interrelation of Cause and Explanation”, Houston Graduate Philosophy Symposium, Co-Sponsored by University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, University of Houston, and Rice University, at Rice University, Houston, TX, May 1, 2014.

“From Effects to Causes: A Posteriori Reasoning in Aristotle’s Posterior Analytics II.2-10,” Center for Thomistic Studies Colloquium Series, University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, April 4, 2014.

“Are Cause and Explanation Coextensive Terms?”, CUA Graduate Conference, on “Cause and Explanation,” at The Catholic University of America, Washington D.C., February 21-22, 2014.

Co-authored with Geoffrey Meadows, “Thomas Aquinas: Teacher of Transhumanity?”, Houston Graduate Philosophy Symposium, Co-Sponsored by University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, University of Houston, and Rice University, at University of Houston, Houston, TX, November 8, 2013.

Co-authored with Geoffrey Meadows, “Thomas Aquinas: Teacher of Transhumanity?”, First American Conference of the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas on “Thomas Aquinas: Teacher of Humanity,” Co-Sponsored by the Center for Thomistic Studies, University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX and The John Paul II Forum, at University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX, October 17-19, 2013.

“Eternal God: Divine Atemporality in Thomas Aquinas,” Sam Houston State University’s First International Conference on Medieval and Renaissance Thought, at Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX, April 4-6, 2013

“The Primary Sense of Substance in Categories Five and Metaphysics Seven,” CUA Graduate Philosophy Conference, on “The Categories,” at The Catholic University of America, Washington D.C., March 22-23, 2013

Publications: 

Co-Authored with Geoffrey Meadows, “Thomas Aquinas: Teacher of Transhumanity?”, in Thomas Aquinas: Teacher of Humanity, edited by John P. Hittinger and Daniel C. Wagner (Newcastle Upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015).

“Eternal God: Divine Atemporality in Thomas Aquinas,” in News from the Raven: Essays from Sam Houston State University on Medieval and Renaissance Thought, Edited by Darci N. Hill (Newcastle Upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2014).

Cherny, Joseph

Education:  The Catholic University of America—BA, Philosophy

Current Status: MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Ethics, metaphysics

Conferences Attended: 

2015

  • Texas Medieval Association Conference on “Pain and the Privation Account of Evil”
  • Houston Graduate Philosophy Symposium on “Is Pain a Counter Example to the Privation Account”
  • Fifth Annual Aquinas Workshop on “Aquinas and the Philosophy of Nature”
  • American Catholic Philosophical Association

Cuen, Humberto

Education: Universidad Iberoamericana—BA, Philosophy; San Diego State University—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Metaphysics, Thomas Aquinas, and George Berkeley

Davis, Lowell

Education: Seminary of Oblates of Mary Immaculate—BA, Thomistic Philosophy; Seminary of Oblates of Mary Immaculate—MDiv, Theology; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Grimes, Andrew J.

Education:
B.A. in the Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College

M.A. in Philosophy from the University of St. Thomas, Center for Thomistic Studies

Current Status:
Ph.D. Student of Philosophy University of St. Thomas, Center for Thomistic Studies

Grimes, Rose

Education: B.A. in the Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College

M.A. in Philosophy from the University of St. Thomas, Center for Thomistic Studies

Current Status: Ph.D. Student of Philosophy University of St. Thomas, Center for Thomistic Studies

Grossheim, Joseph

Education:
Aquinas College, Nashville—BA, Theology/Philosophy

Current Status:
MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: 
Ethics, Politics, Human Person, Metaphysics, Friendship

Haines, Jon

Education: Franciscan University at Steubenville—BA, Classics and Philosophy; Franciscan University at Steubenville—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Philosophy of Science, Faith and Reason, Bioethics and Natural Law

Conference Presentations:

“Naturalistic Fallacy v. Natural Law,” Presented at Louisiana State University, April, 2011

“Veritas Intactilis” SCSP Conference, February 2014

Jacobs, Timothy

Education:  B.A. in Philosophy, California Baptist University; MDiv, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; Master of Theology, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Current Status:  M.A. Student at the Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests:  Specific interests include virtue ethics, action theory, virtue epistemology, and natural theology. General interests include metaethics, philosophy of mind, philosophy of religion, Thomas Aquinas, and Aristotle.

Publications:

“Review of C. Stephen Evans Philosophy of Religion: Thinking About Faith.” In Books at a Glance, November, 2017.

“Virtue.” Jonathan Edwards Encyclopedia. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2017.

“Review of God in Proof: The Story of a Search from the Ancients to the Internet, Nathan Schneider.” First Things 241 (March 2014): 64.

“Golden Rule.” Lexham Bible Dictionary. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2014.

“Virtue/Vice Lists.” Lexham Bible Dictionary. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2013.

Conferences and Presentations:

“Thomistic Compatibilism and Sufficient Reason.” American Catholic Philosophical Association, Dallas, TX. November 16-19, 2017.

“The Erring Conscience and Freedom of Religion: A Thomistic View of Pluralist Society,” Philosophy and Humanities Conference, Houston Community College, Houston, TX. November 3-4, 2017.

“The Moral Status of Intellectual Virtue in Thomas Aquinas,” Society of Christian Philosophers (Midwest), Houston Baptist University, Houston, TX. October 13-14, 2017.

“Expression of Intention and Final Causality.” Evangelical Philosophical Society (Southeast), New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, LA. April 11, 2015.

“Does the Bible Presuppose Natural Law?” Evangelical Theological Society (Southwest), New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, LA. April 11, 2015.

“Theological Metaethics and the Philosophical Interpretation of Scripture.” Evangelical Philosophical Society (Southeast), Beeson Divinity School, Birmingham, AL. March 21, 2014.

“Consent Measures Teleology: Peter Abelard on Assessing Bodily Acts.” Medieval and Byzantine Studies Conference, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. April 19, 2013.

Jones, Brian H.

Education: B.A. in Theology Franciscan University of Steubenville; M.A. in Theology Franciscan University of Steubenville; M.A. in Philosophy University of St. Thomas

Current Status: ABD, Center for Thomistic Studies, University of St. Thomas

Philosophical Interests: Ancient (Greek) and Medieval Political Philosophy; Modern and Contemporary Political Thought; Religion and Political Theory; Liberalism

Publications: 

Articles or chapters in books, Peer Reviewed                                                                         

Radical Disconnections: Political, Philosophical, and Theological Essays on Our Present Restlessness (Under review at Front Porch Republic Books).

“Wendell Berry, The Liberal Arts, and the Quest for Place.” Forthcoming in an anthology from the “Leisure and Labor: Liberal Arts and the Professions,” Conference at St. Gregory’s University. Ed. Anthony Coleman. Ignatius Press, 2017.

“Keeping Men Open to the Divine: James V. Schall on Modernity and Catholic Social and Political Thought.” Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly 40, nos. 1 & 2 (Spring/Summer 2017): 55-58.

“Securing the Rational Foundations of Human Living: The Pedagogical Nature of Human Law in St. Thomas Aquinas.” New Blackfriars 96 (2015): 602-620.

“Aristotelian Political Philosophy, the Wise Many, and Catholic Social Teaching,” The Catholic Social Science Review 19 (2014): 145-167.

That There Were True Things to Say: The Scandal of Philosophy and Demonstrating God’s Existence in Thomistic Natural Theology.” New Blackfriars 95 (2014): 412-429.

The Professor Who Knows our Names: A Tribute to the Man who is Schall,” Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly 35, no. 3 (Fall/Winter 2012): 7-9.

“Jacques Maritain and Dignitatis Humanae: Natural Law as the Common Language of Religious Freedom.” Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly 33, no. 1 & 2 (Spring/Summer 2010): 28-30.

Professional Print and Online Journals

“Do Ideas Matter?” Forthcoming, Catholic World Report.

“Modern Liberal Democracy and the Question of the Best Regime,” Under Review, National Affairs.

“Civic Chaos and the Myth of Autonomy ,” Forthcoming, Public Discourse.

“Contemporary Education and the Question of Upward Mobility,” Forthcoming, Catholic World Report.

“Seeing the Meaning of Sports in a Regime of Politicization.” Catholic World Report (October 8, 2017).

“Amy Barrett, Augustine, and the Relation Between Religion and Politics.” Public Discourse (October 8, 2017).

“Arguments About How to Participate in Our Broken World Are as Old as Humanity,” The Federalist (October 6, 2017).

“Political Theory, Travel, and the Love of Home,” Public Discourse (August 29, 2017).

“What is a University For?” The American Conservative (August 9, 2017).

“Tenure and the Common Good of the University.”  The Imaginative Conservative (August 1, 2017).

“Culture and Divine Revelation,” Those Catholic Men (July 29, 2017).

“Truth or Happiness? A Proposal on Teaching Young People.” Those Catholic Men (July 22, 2017).

“Capitalism and The Quest for Community.” Public Discourse (July 20, 2017).

“Attached to Our Places: The Foundation for Citizenship,” Strong Towns (July 18, 2017).

“City or Countryside?” Those Catholic Men (July 15, 2017).

“What Happens When Socialization Shifts From Front Porches to Coffee Shops,” The Federalist (July 3, 2017).

“An Ancient Lesson for Understanding Contemporary Politics and Religion,” Anamnesis: A Journal for the Study of Tradition, Place, and ‘Things Divine,(June 2, 2017).

“Seeking Holiness and Wholeness in an Age of Technology,” Catholic World Report (May 30, 2017).

“Do You Want to be Educated?” Those Catholic Men (May 20, 2017).

“Does Contemporary Technology Discourage Thought?” Crisis (April 3, 2017).

“On Giving Too Much To the Human,” Anamnesis: A Journal for the Study of Tradition, Place, and ‘Things Divine,(March 13, 2017).

“Losing Our Roots and Ourselves: Structural Flaws in Contemporary Education,” Catholic World Report (March 3, 2017). 

“Why Americans Need Philosophy,” Those Catholic Men (February 28, 2017).

“Technology vs. Reality,” Those Catholic Men (February 20, 2017).

“Choosing Tyranny,” Those Catholic Men (February 10, 2017).

“As the Family So the Church,” Those Catholic Men (January 23, 2017).

“Counter-Cultural Home: Lessons from Chip and Joanna Gaines,” Anamnesis: A Journal for the Study of Tradition, Place, and ‘Things Divine,(December 28, 2016).

“Political Form and Modern Liberalism,” Those Catholic Men (November 15, 2016).

“Politics and the Inherent Dilemmas of Liberal Democracy,” Catholic World Report (September 23, 2016).

“How Modernity Undermines our Need for Rootedness,” Crisis (September 21, 2016).

“Metaphysics as an Act of Mercy,” Catholic World Report (August 27, 2016).

On the Relationship between Catholicism and Science,” Crisis (June 15, 2016).

Recent Activities:

Home and the Paradox of Political Philosophy: Modern Liberal Democracy and the Question of the Best Regime,” Colloquiuum at the University of St. Thomas, Houston, November 3, 2017.

“Political Liberalism and the Search for Associative Forms of Life,” Harvard Graduate Conference in Political Theory, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts. October 28, 2017.

“Wendell Berry, The Liberal Arts,and the Quest for Place.” Paper presented at “Leisure and Labor: Liberal Arts and the Professions.” Conference at St. Gregory’s University, Shawnee, Oklahoma. March 20, 2017.

Jacques Maritain and James V. Schall on Liberal Democracy.” Paper presented at the American Maritain Association Conference, New Orleans, LA.  March 3, 2017.

Fr. James Schall on Political Philosophy and Modernity.” Paper presented at the Society for 21st Century Thomism, Satellite Session for the American Catholic Philosophical Association, University of San Francisco. November 6, 2016.

Modern Social Theory.” Paper presented with Clifford Staples at the Society for Catholic Social Scientists Conference, Aquinas College. October 29, 2016.

Lambert, Keaton

Education: University of Notre Dame – BA, Philosophy and Theology; University of St. Thomas, Center for Thomistic Studies – MA, Philosophy.

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Political Philosophy, Metaphysics, Existentialism, Philosophy of Religion, and Logic.

Recent Activities (Conferences attended, presentations, etc.): Attended The Catholic and Dominican Institute’s Seventh Annual Philosophy Workshop, “Aquinas on Metaphysics” at Mount Saint Mary College, June 29 – July 2, 2017.

Langley, Catherine

Education:

Thomas Aquinas College—BA, Liberal Arts

Current Status: 

MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Lomanno, Matthew

Education: St. Anselm College—BA, Liberal Studies; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: ABD, Center for Thomistic Studies.  Dissertation Title, “The Philosophy of Art in Aristotle and Aquinas”

Philosophical Interests: Philosophy of Art, Moral Philosophy, Applied Ethics, Medical Ethics, Aristotelian and Thomistic Philosophy

Publications: 

“Health Care Proxies and Advance Directives,” in Catholic Healthcare Ethics: A Manual for Ethics Committees, Second Edition, 2009.

“The Possibilities and Problems of Transhumanism,” The National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly 8:1 (Spring 2008), pp. 59-68

McCloskey, Patrick

Education: Pontifical University of the Holy Cross—BA, Philosophy; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Moore, Matthew

Education: University of Dallas—BA, Philosophy; University of Dallas—MA, Theology; University of Dallas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Nguyen, Thao

Education: St. Mary’s University of Minnesota—BA, Philosophy

Current Status: MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Peters, Catherine

Education: Sacred Heart Major Seminary—BA, Philosophy (summa cum laude); The Center for Thomistic Studies—MA, Philosophy.

Current Status: PhD Student, The Center for Thomistic Studies.

Philosophical Interests: Metaphysics, Natural Philosophy, Greek & Arabic Sources of Thomism (with an emphasis on Aristotle and Avicenna), Aristotelian Logic & Demonstration, Natural Law.

Recent Activities:

Catherine Peters is currently working on her dissertation exploring “The Causality of Nature in Avicenna’s Physics of the Healing” under the direction of R. E. Houser. 

Ms. Peters was an invited graduate student presenter for the The Catholic and Dominican Institute's Seventh Annual Philosophy Workshop, "Aquinas on Metaphysics,” in June of 2017.  

In May, 2018 Ms. Peters attended the 53rd International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University. Kalamazoo, MI. 

Most recently, Ms. Peters travelled to Athens, Greece to present on “The Aristotelian Foundation for the Finality of Form in the Thought of Thomas Aquinas” for the 2018 Symposium Thomisticum.

Her paper on “The Objective Relativity of Goodness: a rapprochement between Peter Geach and Thomas Aquinas” has been accepted as a contributed paper for the upcoming meeting of the ACPA. In addition to having her work published in the proceedings, Ms. Peters has also been named the 2018 ACPA “Young Scholar,” an award given to the best paper submitted by a scholar under 36. 

Her review of Pasquale Porro’s Thomas Aquinas: A Historical and Philosophical Profile is forthcoming in The Chesterton Review.

Plaza, Francisco

Education: Palm Beach Atlantic College—AA, Pre-Engineering Studies; Palm Beach Atlantic College—BS, Mathematics/Philosophy

Current Status: MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Modern political philosophy, existentialism, phenomenology, personalism, philosophy of religion, St. Thomas Aquinas, Jacques Maritain, Korol Wojtyla, and Etienne Gilson

Poage, Nathan

Education: San Diego State University—BA, Philosophy/Classics; San Diego State University—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: ABD, Center for Thomistic Studies; Dissertation in Progress: Aristotle, Avicenna and Aquinas on the Subject and Principles of Metaphysics (Dr. Houser, Director, Dr. Sommers and Dr. McGinnis—Professor of Philosophy, University of Missouri).

Polsky, Elliot

Education: University of St. Thomas (St. Paul): BA: Philosophy, Economics, Catholic Studies

Current Status: MA Student

Philosophical Interests: Natural Philosophy, Metaphysics, Logic, Philosophical Theology, Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

Schaff, John Michael

Education: Seattle University—BA, Philosophy/German; University of St. Thomas—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Smalley, Annie

Education: Denison University—BA, Philosophy and Political Science; SUNY Center Stony Brook—MA Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Candidate—Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Aquinas, Aristotle, Heidegger

White, Brandon K.

Education: Louisiana State University—BA, Philosophy

Current Status: MA Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Philosophical Interests: Platonism

Williams R., Evan

Education: Hillsdale College—BA, Philosophy/Classical Studies; Marquette University—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: PhD Student, Center for Thomistic Studies

Zents, Jeffrey

Education: University of Texas, Dallas—BA, Philosophy; Washington University—MA, Philosophy

Current Status: ABD, Center for Thomistic Studies; Dissertation in Progress: Abstractive Thomism and the Pyrrhonian Skeptical Tradition (Dr. Martin, Director, Dr. Knasas, Dr. Osborne).

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The Center for Thomistic Studies at the University of St. Thomas is the only graduate philosophy program uniquely focused on the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas in the United States. The Center is founded on the Church’s insistence of the perennial value of the thought of Aquinas as the new millennium proceeds.
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713-525-3591

Email us: thomistic_center@stthom.edu

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