The Use of Place in Sustaining Ursuline Identity


Author/Creator ORCID





MA in Cultural Sustainability

Citation of Original Publication


Collection may be protected under Title 17 of the U.S. Copyright Law. To obtain information or permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Goucher Special Collections & Archives at 410-337-6347 or email


At one time, Ursuline sisters represented a notable share of faculty and administrative positions within the educational ministries they founded, Sacred Heart Schools (Louisville, KY). Over the last fifty years, the number of sisters has declined significantly, and active Ursuline participation within the schools is now minimal. When living examples of an organization’s purpose are no longer present, how can a connection to place and interpretive experiences serve to convey the culture, legacy and values of such individuals? The purpose of the following paper is to discuss the importance of place in the cultural interpretation of the Ursuline sisters and to recommend mechanisms for keeping their legacy meaningful and relevant to community members. This will be accomplished through (1) a brief history of the Ursulines and Sacred Heart Schools, (2) current interpretive challenges (3) a discussion of the importance of place in Ursuline identity, (4) examples of campus places with interpretive value and (5) recommendations for better interpretive use of such places.