A Reflection on Trocaire’s Four Key Values

It’s been less than a year since our institution completed a complete “brand refresh,” unveiling new colors, an updated logo, and more descriptive, accurate messaging. Out of this brand refresh came the identification of Trocaire’s four key values: Academics, Careers, Community, and Heritage.

4 key themes


We’ve held brand ambassador training sessions throughout the academic year, meeting with various groups of employees and discussing the facets of our new brand, how to talk about Trocaire to a member of the public, and how it all relates back to the work we all do every day to make Trocaire the college of choice for hardworking students looking for a transformative education.

At the end of the Spring 2017 semester, the Office of Institutional Advancement wanted to give our fellow Trocairians a chance to reflect on all we discussed over the last year. We posted a question to our employee community: What do the four key values of Trocaire College mean to you, and how do you translate some of them in your everyday work?” Everyone who works at Trocaire was invited to submit an essay reflecting on those questions, with a grand prize to be awarded to one submitter, to be chosen by the IA team.

On May 16, we unveiled the winner: Financial Aid Advisor Challis C. Cooks! The full text of her essay follows. 

Thank you to everyone who participated, and we hope Challis enjoys her Salvatore’s gift package! The full text of her essay follows.


Four Key Values Essay- Challis C. Cookschallis-cooks

Academics – Education is not a privilege, but a fundamental human right. Trocaire is an opportunity college to its core, and students from all walks of life populate our classrooms. While I don’t have an academic role, I do my best to make sure my students are well educated on their financial aid options so that dollar signs are one less thing they have to worry about while pursuing their degrees.  My goal is to assure that our students can devote their full attention on the engaging and experiential learning opportunities we offer, without the stress of worrying about financial aid.

Careers – Being a new professional myself, I know the value of feeling well prepared for a new career. Trocaire’s students are career-focused from the moment they walk into our doors, and through our programs they earn the potential to live lives that are comfortable, successful and fulfilling. Although I am not in the classroom with our students, I do my best to assure that financial aid does not stand in between our students and their careers.

Community & Heritage – Perhaps my favorite values, Trocaire’s sense of community and heritage are like no other. I personally work with students from the moment they show interest in the college, until the day they complete their student loan exit counseling and walk across the stage. Students and families know that I’m here to help them through every step, and it is extremely rewarding to hear the gratitude that they express when they receive the nurturing attention that they didn’t get elsewhere. Furthermore, when I get that student who is either first generation or an immigrant or a parent seeking to improve their lives, I make sure they walk away knowing that they’ve found the support that is crucial to their success.