Duquesne’s Longtime Vice President for Student Life to Step Down in 2015
The Rev. Sean Hogan, C.S.Sp., will conclude his service as executive vice president for student life at Duquesne University on June 30, 2015. The longest-serving member of the University's cabinet, Hogan has led the division under three presidents since his initial appointment in 1986.
A native of County Limerick in Ireland, Fr. Hogan entered the Congregation of the Holy Spirit in 1959 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1967. The following year, he was assigned to work in the Diocese of Nairobi, Kenya, where he served as a high school principal and as pastor of a large parish, overseeing several churches, schools, hospitals and the nation's first youth center.
Fr. Hogan left Kenya due to illness in May 1975 for a sabbatical at Duquesne University. "I planned to be here for a year," he recalled. "The rest is history."
After earning a Master's in Education from Duquesne in 1976, Fr. Hogan spent three years traveling to churches throughout the United States raising funds for missions in Kenya. His fundraising experience led to a 1980 appointment as associate director of development at Duquesne, where he led the law school's capital campaign for the construction of Hanley Hall.
Two years later, Fr. Hogan was named the founding director of Duquesne's Office of International Education, where set the course for remarkable growth in the University's international enrollment. Starting with just 15 international students in 1982, the University now serves more than 625 students from 77 nations. Today, Duquesne alumni live and work in 110 different countries.
As executive vice president for student life for more than 28 years, Fr. Hogan has shaped every aspect of the student experience, including a nationally recognized, student-run orientation program; more than 180 recognized student organizations; and residence halls that house nearly 4,000 students. During that period, University enrollment has increased by nearly 50 percent, and retention and graduation rates have risen dramatically, demonstrating a high level of student satisfaction.
Fr. Hogan's tenure, however, is best defined by the relationships he has built with generations of students and alumni. He has performed countless weddings and baptisms for alumni couples, both on campus and around the world. His office is filled with photos and mementos, and his address book is a thick binder stuffed with hundreds of names and notes about former students with whom he maintains contact.
"For many of our alumni, Fr. Hogan is a member of the family," said University President Charles J. Dougherty. "He has met thousands of students who have passed through our Bluff over the past 30 years, and still keeps in touch with many. He is the personification of our mission statement-the human definition of serving God by serving students."
Fr. Hogan will remain active with the University. In the fall of 2015, he will begin service as the first president of the newly formed Duquesne University Scholarship Association, leading a network of alumni volunteers who will work to raise money for need-based scholarships.
"In his new role, Fr. Hogan will further both his Spiritan predecessors' vision and his own deep personal commitment to making a Duquesne education more affordable to all," Dougherty said.
Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.