Patrick Furlong is the director of the Pam Rector Center for Service and Action (CSA) at Loyola Marymount University (LMU), a student hub for service, justice, and advocacy. CSA fosters kinship with others that will lead to intellectual inquiry, moral reflection, and social action. As the director, Patrick champions a dynamic team of seven professional staff and 30 student advisors, providing community-based learning, student engagement programming, as well as local, national, and international experiential learning immersion trips. He works to build local, national, and international partners with nonprofit agencies that will be symbiotic for the community and students alike.
Patrick is really passionate about Jesuit higher education and knew that if he wanted the tools and credentials to progress in his leadership and impact the field in the way he would like, a doctoral degree was a must. He knew he wanted to pursue the degree at a Jesuit institution, and chose to enroll in LMU’s Ed.D. Program because of its commitment to social justice.
Patrick’s dissertation research is focused on Jesuit pedagogy and spirituality and how it is applied to the organizational culture, particularly of staff that are directly serving students. He is interested in studying the impact of staff on the student experience at Jesuit colleges and universities.
The quantitative and qualitative research methods courses that Patrick took as a student in the Ed.D. Program were particularly important to him in his personal and professional development. In those classes, he learned best practices with both types of data collection, as well as how much he is interested in not just getting a degree, but really engaging in action research to be a better practitioner in his field.