A Fresh Approach to Teaching

Brother Michael J. McGinniss, F.S.C., Ph.D., ’70
Director of La Salle Honors Program
President of La Salle University 1999-2014
Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award

As the Director of the Honors Program and previous President of La Salle, Br. Michael McGinniss, F.S.C., ’70 is naturally one of the first people you’ll meet here at the University. But as you later pass by his office or see him in the halls, don’t be at all surprised when he remembers your name.

Br. Michael humbly chalks up the recognition to his “gift of recall.” But those who are closest to him know the truth: Br. Michael cares. Not just about La Salle, not just about the Honors Program–he cares about each individual student.

“Being the Director of the Honors Program provides me with a deeper insight getting to know the freshmen from day one,” he says. “These are exceptional students. But they’re adjusting to college. I take it as my job to help guide them and make sure that they’re not just academically prepared and able to juggle their course load, but that they’re also happy. That’s very important to me.”

Br. Michael embodies a true Explorer. His studious academic and professional career after graduating from La Salle in 1970 took him around the world as he both learned from and taught some of the brightest minds and scholars. He returned to La Salle to serve as President for fifteen years and now as the Director of the Honors Program, has seen his career come full circle and is back to his roots and doing what he loves: inspiring students in the classroom.

“What happens in education isn’t just teaching,” Br. Michael says. “It’s seeing the potential in each student. It’s seeing what drives each student and helping to draw that out. But most of all, it’s helping students to see it in themselves.”

 “What the Honors Program does for students is that it provides a learning opportunity that tests all of their human skills, inside and outside of the classroom. It does this in a very intentionally intense way: students thrive in an environment of constant intellectual stimulation. Some is driven by the cohort of the unique freshman experience and then it continues on each year after. It’s that intense cohort that is the core of the Program. It’s the strong community. Students develop an intellectual integrity, in themselves, their major, and fellow students.”