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SXU Transfer Student Experiences Journey with the Sisters of Mercy


Coming from a secular college with a very large student population, the experience for Emily Malchow of transferring to Saint Xavier University (SXU) not only helped her identify values that were important to her education but also her life.

"I wanted to be a part of an institution that would encourage my faith as well as allow me to connect to faculty and peers on a deeper level," said Malchow. "Saint Xavier's Catholic roots and small, intimate community were two crucial factors that attracted me to transfer."

Malchow is junior English major with a dual-minor in environmental and sustainability studies and international studies. For a long time before attending SXU, she had possessed a deep passion for foreign cultures and knew that she wanted to work for the environment, but remained hesitant to pursue studies in these fields. That hesitation changed when Malchow had the opportunity to travel abroad to Dublin, Ireland as part of an SXU pilgrimage focused on the Sisters of Mercy. Earlier that year, she had experienced the opportunity to travel to South Africa as part of a delegation with the International Scholar Laureate Program but it was the trip with SXU that not only gave her a new viewpoint on the SXU community but also gave her the needed courage to pursue her dreams in academia.

"Traveling to Ireland gave me courage and curiosity in multiple ways," explained Malchow. "I decided to pursue an international studies minor and to contribute to my peers and SXU on a deeper level. Upon returning to the United States, I reached out to my advisors and they worked with me to see how I can work abroad after graduation."

Since that trip, Malchow has actively worked to develop her leaderships, culminating on Spirit of Mercy Day by delivering a homily during the noon mass. She spoke about overcoming her own fears of public speaking, the deepened closeness she felt to her faith, her appreciation for her growing bond with the SXU community and how being able to both observe and participate in Ireland's care for the environment made her choice to study the environment that much easier.

"As an aspiring environment attorney, it was exciting to see how this part of the world functions and contributes to sustainability," said Malchow.

Any type of study abroad trip has incredible benefits to a student. But the Ireland conference was unique in the fact that it combined traveling to a foreign country with the study of the Sisters of Mercy. This means that SXU students in attendance had the rare opportunity to not only experience the unknowns of a new culture but also the theological perks.

"For me, the theological component was important because it allowed me to explore and enhance my faith, and connect to other Catholics who were on the same journey," said Malchow.

Saint Xavier University is proud to continuously service transfer students and offer new pilgrimage opportunities to its students. To learn about the many ways available to get involved with Campus Ministry or to attend future events, email campusministryFREESXU. For more information on transfer to SXU, perspective students are invited to attend one of the many Transfer Days held throughout the year, the next being hosted on January 8, 2019.