Tona Boyd graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2003 with majors in government and Spanish and a peace studies minor. During her junior year she oversaw the student peace conference, and after graduation she went on to Harvard Law School. She's currently a clerk on the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia and will be working next year as a trial lawyer for the civil rights division of the U.S. Department of Justice.
The peace community at Notre Dame nurtured Boyd's interest in human rights, and she says that in particular the passion and commitment she observed in the international peace studies students there continue to inspire her: "I really try to integrate that commitment to service and the approach to conflict resolution into my own life."
Amanda Zurface, a 2009 graduate of Ohio Dominican, also took the law school route, but with a bit of a twist: Zurface is a first-year canon law student at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome. She says her double major in peace and justice and theology has been helpful, not because she's more prepared than her peers, but because "I'm able to remind myself more easily why I'm here studying canon law. I am studying for the sake of being able to really assist the church in helping all people, and in particular the vulnerable and marginalized."
Zurface hopes to work for the church in some capacity, either as an advocate or in a diplomatic position, focusing on peace and justice, humanitarian relief work, and developing peace and justice education programs.
This article appeared in the March 2010 issue of U.S. Catholic (Vol. 75, No. 3, pages 12-17).