Briar Cliff University sophomore Olivia Matz, right, is presented with her National Catholic Daughters Scholarship Essay Contest award from Darlene Moritz, Iowa State Regent for the Catholic Daughters of the Americas.
SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Olivia Matz, a Briar Cliff University sophomore from Altoona, Iowa (Ss. John and Paul Parish), was recently awarded a $2,000 academic scholarship for winning a national essay contest sponsored by the Catholic Daughters of the Americas.
I’m attending a private, Catholic college to live out my faith; while going to a school that also caters to my educational needs.
—Olivia Matz '19, Altoona, Iowa
Iowa State Regent Darlene Moritz presented Matz with the award in September, during a monthly meeting of the Briar Cliff’s campus Catholic Daughters group.
Briar Cliff is home to one of the only Catholic Daughters Campus Courts in the entire state of Iowa. The University chartered the student group in May of 2007. Every member is eligible for the annual scholarship contest, so Matz decided she’d give it a try this year.
“I’m attending a private, Catholic college to live out my faith; while going to a school that also caters to my educational needs,” Matz wrote in her scholarship essay. “We have done many activities through Catholic Daughters that have really developed my faith throughout my first year in college.”
During the past year, Matz and the BCU Catholic Daughters have marched for life in Des Moines, participated in the faith-building Antioch Retreat for BCU students, hosted a spring formal for autism patients, served lunch to homebound senior citizens, and held a monthly rosary gathering on campus; among various other service and community outreach projects.
Matz is majoring in biology at Briar Cliff, with an emphasis on pre-medicine, and a minor in Spanish and criminal justice. She is also an active member of campus ministry, the Briar Cliff University singers and the Charger dance team. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine and become a forensic pathologist.
Formed in 1903, the Catholic Daughters of the Americas is one of the oldest and largest organizations of Catholic women in the world. The Daughters, whose motto is “unity and charity,” embrace the principles of faith working through love in the promotion of justice, equality and the advancement of human rights and dignity for all mankind.