“You are like light for the whole world.

A city built on top of a hill cannot be hidden, and no one would light a lamp and put it under a clay pot. A lamp is placed on a lampstand, where it can give light to everyone in the house.

Make your light shine, so that others will see the good that you do and will praise your Father in heaven.”

-Matthew 5:14-16

It’s a cliché for people to say, when looking up into the night sky, that they feel small. But if we want to feel really, really small, we can contemplate the physics of light.

‘Optical light’ — the wavelengths that the human eye can perceive — is a vanishingly thin slice of the electromagnetic spectrum, which ranges on one hand from waves that are fractions of the size of atoms, and on the other hand, waves so vast that they can be as long as the universe itself.

How marvelous to know that beyond our human senses extends a vast reality that surpasses our understanding! How marvelous to know that though our sight is finite, we are the beloved beneficiaries of a generous God who sheds light so lavishly.

As followers of Christ, God asks us to be people of light. That inner illumination should shine forth in the entire spectrum of our lives — in private spaces and in public places. It is vital that this inner light encompasses the workshop and the boardroom, the office and the break room.

The University of Mary is continually inspired by the courageous example of our founders and sponsors, the Benedictine Sisters of Annunciation Monastery, in their unswerving commitment to meeting the needs of our time and place. Today’s intricately connected world has an urgent need for leaders who are models of good, who shine with a true light, whose lives counter the insidious and pervasive message that success in business means – requires! – dishonesty, ruthlessness and exploitation.

This is why the university’s Gary Tharaldson School of Business has created a new MBA with a concentration in Virtuous Leadership and intentionally integrates the teaching of virtuous leadership throughout the curriculum. We believe there is a moral law that undergirds all things, a moral law that flows from the will of God. We believe that God’s will is that humans treat one another with kindness and honesty, with generosity and compassion.

The workplace is not an exception. No justifications such as ‘everyone does it,’ or ‘that’s what it takes to make it in this world’ will do. We are not excused from living Christ’s values between the hours of 9 to 5.

‘Success,’ in the workplace as everywhere, in the eyes of God, is the uncovered light of love shining through us in acts of mercy, honesty and fidelity to the good. Integrating virtue into our curriculum is this university’s wholehearted rejection of the cynical acceptance of callousness and deceit as ‘business as usual.’

At the University of Mary, our daily work includes instilling in our graduates the conviction that virtue, in spirit and in conduct, carries the light of Christ into all corners of our lives. Living in the light as servant leaders, as virtuous leaders, must be, and become, the true standard of ‘business as usual.’