What does it means to be a Catholic thinker and leader in today’s world?

The Breitbach Catholic Thinkers & Leaders program is comprised of sixty students engaging in academic work and servant leadership. As you learn and grow you are encouraged to discover how you can meet the needs of the church and world through sharing your own talents. The program put Catholic teachings into action. Up to fifteen students are invited to join each year.

Breitbach students take several courses together—including a term in Italy paid by the program—and earn a Catholic studies minor. Students pursue a variety of majors while participating in activities ranging from athletics to music to student government.

Through the program, you attend monthly dinners with speakers on faith and leadership, plan and attend retreats and events, and serve the community. One of the best parts of the Breitbach program is the strong community of students who support and challenge each other to grow as faithful and reflective leaders during your four years at Loras College.

Made possible by a generous $15-million donation from Paul (’60) and Frances Breitbach, students have made a big impact at Loras and beyond, since the first class of Breitbach scholars entered in the fall of 2007.

Program Hallmarks

  • Receive a $4,000 annual scholarship in addition to your acceptance award
  • Travel to Italy for a May Term course—with all course fees paid
  • Selected applicants are invited on-campus to interview in February
  • Program acceptance is announced late-February
  • Applicants who complete the interview who are chosen for the program, will receive a $1,000 one-time award


  • Apply and be admitted to Loras College
  • You must be Roman Catholic to apply
  • Submit the Breitbach Catholic Thinkers & Leaders program application and supporting materials by December 13
  • Because of program travel requirements, candidates accepted into the Breitbach program are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by the fall semester of their first year, and to submit documentation of your vaccination to the Loras College Health Center.