Raven Gives Special Needs Students Faith and Song

The Benedictine mission of community, faith and scholarship transformed culture in Europe at the dawn of Western Civilization and Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, believes it can do the same in America today. To Transform Culture in America, Benedictine College plans to Form its students deeply in the mission, Advance its mission through alumni in every walk of life, and Extend its mission regionally and nationally.

“The only two beings that sing are angels and humans,” said Nicole Buchman, who has become both to special needs students.

Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, features the Made for Greatness story of the junior from Stillwater, Minn., in a video released online in May. Watch it above or on YouTube here.

I grew up singing in my church choir back at home and my director told me that the only two beings that could sing are angels and humans. The reason I love sacred music so much is that it combines my passion with my faith, and is a gift I’ve been given and I’m asked to give back.

My senior year at high school, I started teaching in the special education department and the students that I encountered there were some of the most authentic people I’ve ever known. On days when the students were upset or I was having a hard time, I’d go play piano or we would sing and we all felt connected. I realized that we all communicate through the gift of faith.

Benedictine is the first college I wanted to go to . It combined faith and knowledge which are the two things I long for in my life. But I knew without scholarships I wouldn’t be able to go here. I received the dean’s scholarship and a music scholarship as well as becoming a Gregorian Fellow. When I first came to school, I was planning on doing some form of music therapy. But then I started venturing more into the music education field and I started taking special education classes, realizing I really love special education but I also really love sacred music.

I want to use my degree in music and theology to go into sacred music and work with those who receive special education in the Church. Unfortunately a lot of families don’t bring their children with disabilities to Mass because of the distraction that they believe that they cause. I want to be able to create an environment where all feel welcome to praise the Lord.

So whether it’s teaching in the private school system or conducting choirs at Church, I want to be someone who is well equipped to encounter all people — because the Catholic Church is for everyone.

I’m Nicole Buchman, I’m a junior from Minnesota, and I’m majoring in vocal performance and theology.

Benedictine College

Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas. The school is honored to have been named one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report, the best private college in Kansas by The Wall Street Journal, and one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation by First Things magazine and the Newman Guide. It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging. Benedictine College is dedicated to transforming culture in America through its mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.