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New rector for the Jesuit community at SCU

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - May 27, 2004. Fr. Gerdenio “Sonny” Manuel, S.J. will become rector of the Jesuit Community at Santa Clara University on July 31. Fr. Manuel is vice-provost for university programs and multicultural education and dean of the School of Education, Counseling Psychology and Pastoral Ministries.

Appointed rector by the Very Rev. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, superior general of the Society of Jesus, Fr. Manuel says that his primary responsibility is “to support and promote the Jesuit community's work of higher education paying particular attention to the universal mission of the Society of Jesus: the service of faith and the promotion of justice.”

Fr. Manuel's appointment also comes at a time when the Santa Clara Jesuit Community is planning a new living space adjacent to the SCU campus that is designed to better meet the priorities of fostering collaboration and dialogue with university colleagues and sharing their Jesuit and Ignatian legacy and tradition.   Funding for the new Jesuit residence is a major goal of the current campaign at the university.

“Twenty-five years ago, the Jesuit community numbered about 60-plus Jesuits and Nobili was designed in the traditional cloistered style of that time,” said Fr. Manuel. “Returning Nobili Hall to the university will provide much needed space for classrooms, living spaces, and meeting facilities and also offer the Jesuit community the opportunity to build a smaller but more open and intimate residence."

A licensed psychologist in California, Fr. Manuel completed his clinical internship at Cambridge City Hospital, Harvard Medical School where he was also an advanced clinical fellow.  He earned his his bachelor of arts from the University of San Francisco, a master of arts in divinity at the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley in 1978, and a doctorate in psychology from Duke University in 1985.   

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located in California’s Silicon Valley, offers its 8,047 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master’s and law degrees. Distinguished nationally by the fourth-highest graduation rate among all U.S. master's universities, California’s oldest higher-education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. More information is online at






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