“Our intelligence is our greatest gift from God, and our minds are meant to know. In undertaking the program of liberal studies offered here, our students have an opportunity to engage in the highest kind of activity and the most worthwhile in itself. By putting away for a while the transient, the inconsequential, and the mundane, they reach for the enduring, the noble, and the divine.”
— Dr. Thomas E. Dillon
A former student of Founding President Ronald P. McArthur, Dr. Thomas E. Dillon first came to Thomas Aquinas College as a member of the teaching faculty in 1972, one year after its founding. From 1976 to 1981, he served as assistant dean for student affairs, and then as academic dean from 1981 until his first appointment as president in 1991.
Over the course of his 18-year tenure, Dr. Dillon labored to secure the College’s financial well-being, raising some $100 million and building nine new structures, including the library, the laboratory building, five residence halls, the faculty and administration building, and, of course, Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel. He also worked to strengthen the faculty, and with his fellow tutors refined the academic program, reaffirming the College’s commitment to classical liberal education and its discipleship to St. Thomas. All the while, his uppermost priority was to preserve Thomas Aquinas College’s fidelity to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church.
“Everything Tom did for the College was for the sake of our students: to provide them with an education for the mind and the soul,” says President Michael F. McLean. “We can think of no more fitting way to honor him than to ensure that our present and future students can benefit from that same education.”
In Dr. Dillon’s memory, the College has established the Thomas E. Dillon Memorial Scholarship Fund, an endowment that will help provide for the long-term needs of the College and its students. Would you please contribute today? Please use the secure, online-giving form below.
“When you first arrive here, the upperclassmen are almost like your heroes because they’re at the place — or approaching the place — where you want to be, both intellectually and spiritually. It promotes friendship in a way that I have never seen before.”
– John Jost (’17)
“Thomas Aquinas is already the preeminent Catholic college in the country.”
– John Cardinal O’Connor (†)
Archbishop of New York