Mission and Values > Programs > Vincentian Mission Institute > Current VMI Cohort > Karen Cullen

Karen Cullen


I joined DePaul fulltime in the spring of 1997 after earning my MA in English. I was hired to be the assistant director in what was then the NASA Center. After six fun and interesting years working with k-12 teachers to integrate relevant mission data into their classrooms, I took a job in Finance working in the Treasurer’s Office managing the university’s real estate portfolio. I did this for two years before being hired as the Assistant University Secretary, which is the position I hold today. In this role I manage the operations of DePaul’s 40-45 member governing board, I head the Records Management division and chair the university policy creation and approval process..

Why DePaul?

I came to DePaul as a graduate student, with the intention of earning my degree and moving back to Pennsylvania to resume my career. But there is something about this place that made me feel like I found a home from my first moments on campus. I was offered a staff position at DePaul while I was in the last months of my graduate coursework. I jumped at the opportunity to stay at a place that I loved, with people who treated me like family. I have not regretted that decision for a moment. I have been able to work in the academic, operation and presidential branches of the institution and that has allowed me to learn, understand and appreciate the differences in culture and approach in each of those areas. The common thread weaving between all of them is an intense dedication to the mission. This is perhaps the strongest argument for “why DePaul”. We work for and toward a mission, and not everyone is lucky enough to be able to describe their career that way.

Why VMI?

I look forward to deepening my knowledge about those aspects of our Catholic and Vincentian identities that make us different from other religious institutions and working with my colleagues to find ways to ensure that which makes us distinctive continues well into the future.