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Master of Liberal Studies

Jeff Lobo ’16 Found Flexibility and Inspiration in MLS Program

Jeff Lobo enrolled in the MLS program after receiving a Fellowship from the James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation, an independent agency of the Executive Branch of the federal government whose mission is improving teaching about the United States Constitution in secondary schools.

The program awarded Fellows (one secondary-level Civics/Government teacher per state, per year) funds to complete a Master’s level course of study with a concentration in constitutional studies following two graduate courses taken at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. “The MLS program at Lake Forest College offered a course of study that allowed me to take a multi-disciplinary approach to my constitutional focus that, as a high school teacher, I greatly appreciated. As part of my Fellowship, I had the honor to work with the Robert R. McCormick Foundation Civic program which enabled me to help organize, lead, and attend sessions at McCormick and with the Illinois Civic Mission Coalition (part of the larger national Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools) with the goal of restoring, as a core purpose of education, the preparation of ‘America’s youngest citizens to be informed and active participants in our democracy.’” Jeff  hopes to continue working with the McCormick Foundation and the Illinois Civic Mission Coalition to institute high-quality civic learning in school through supporting the enactment of legislation and engaging with constitutional scholars and community members to realize that goal in his own school community of Zion, Illinois and throughout the state.

One of the courses he took in the program was the MLS seminar, Religion: An Interdisciplinary Approach, with Professors Carla Arnell and Ben Zeller.  Inspired by this course, Jeff’s future plans include writing a high school level course that takes an analytical and multidisciplinary approach to understanding world religions.  To aid him in this, he hopes to obtain a certificate in Religious Studies and Education at Harvard University.  

“Earning my degree through the Lake Forest Master of Liberal Studies program was a remarkable experience and a highlight of my academic career.  The courses of study were challenging, fascinating, and thought-provoking.  I would like to thank all of the dedicated and engaging professors who made learning at Lake Forest so incredibly rewarding along with all of my peers with whom I partook in a great variety of broad-minded dialogues that I will never forget.”