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Attending SXU Becomes a Family Tradition

Jania Family

Saint Xavier University (SXU) has become "home" to many families through the years. With its convenient location, small class sizes and proven ability to produce successful individuals, it is easy to see why an SXU education can span multiple generations.

For alumni Geoff and Mary Jania ('93 and '92, respectively), the decision to attend SXU was based on the Catholic heritage, student to faculty ratio and, most importantly, the criminal justice program. The pair first met in a constitutional law class taught by Sister Denis in 1989. This fall, the Janias will return to SXU's Chicago campus, this time as parents. Their daughter, Shannon, has chosen to follow in her parents' footsteps and attend SXU as a criminal justice major.

Basing her decision on SXU's small class sizes, safe environment and criminal justice program, Shannon wanted a university that had accessible faculty members who value her education as much as she does. Her parents are confident that SXU will help shape Shannon into a well-rounded individual and prepare her for any future she chooses.

"Currently, Shannon is hoping to become involved with helping people reenter society after being incarcerated, to avoid being sent back to prison and have better lives," said Geoff Jania.

"Shannon feels there are not enough resources or emphasis on reentry and that the lack thereof leads to recidivism," said Mary Jania. "Shannon wants to help educate those coming back into society, to help them be better prepared for what awaits them, and counsel them should they meet resistance."

The Janias know first-hand the impact that an SXU education can have on an individual's career. Since graduating, both have worked in the criminal justice realm. Geoff was employed by the Chicago Police Department for over 17 years and now works as a sergeant for the Indiana gaming commission enforcement division. Mary worked for the Cook County Social Service Department as a counselor and is now a family case manager for the Indiana Department of Child Services. They are both thankful for their time as SXU students and hope that their daughter will have just as great of an experience these next four years.

"It brought back so many happy memories when we brought her to see the school, and knowing she will be walking the same halls that Geoff and I once did fills my heart," said Mary Jania. "I believe that her education at Saint Xavier will prepare her for future success as much as it did for me," said Geoff Jania.

Congratulations on all of your successes, Geoff and Mary! Welcome to SXU, Shannon!