Peace Studies Senior Interns at Vatican

Author: Renée LaReau

For the past six weeks, Notre Dame rising senior Sara Spittler has been living and working in Rome as an intern for the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, the Vatican office that promotes the Catholic Church’s teaching on justice, peace and human rights around the world.

Spittler, who is majoring in Italian, peace studies and theology, helped plan an international conference on the economy and social justice, which was attended by more than 50 scholars, civil society leaders, and nongovernmental organization leaders.

She also conducted research on “conflict minerals” — minerals mined in locales where armed conflict has created a humanitarian crisis — and the Catholic Church’s peacebuilding role in the Middle East.

Peace studies senior Sara Spittler interned for six weeks at the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Peace and Justice.

“Working side-by-side with church officials who have devoted their careers to peace and justice helped me see how it’s possible to combine professional interests in religion and peace.” Spittler said. “My internship brought to light the versatility of my peace studies degree.”

Spittler’s internship was funded primarily by Notre Dame's Nanovic Institute for European Studies and arranged by the Kroc Institute.