Mount professor: Desire to help others should come from within

April 25, 2017

Dean Goldberg, associate professor of communication arts and film studies at Mount Saint Mary College. 


According to Dean Goldberg, associate professor of communication arts and film studies at Mount Saint Mary College, service to others is neither strengthened nor hindered by a person’s religious beliefs.

The latest Investigating Research on Campus (iROC) lecture, titled, “Objectivism, Atheism, and Service: An Impossible Alliance?” provided a brief history on atheism stretching back to the ancient Greeks, and focused on Ayn Rand’s objectivist philosophy.

Atheism does not impede an individual’s desire to serve others, said Goldberg. He illustrated his point using what Rand says about helping others: “you are not required to bend down to someone else’s level. What you are required to do is model the best behavior you can and bring those around you, up.”

Goldberg closed his lecture by noting that, “we need to step up as individuals and start thinking about helping people.” The idea of being inspired to serve others through what is learned in churches or synagogues is “wonderful, but that is not the only way,” he added. “Part of what I want to do is to say that we can help others under the rubric of the Newburgh Ministry, or Mount Saint Mary College, but we can also do it for ourselves.”

Research on this topic stems from Goldberg’s work with underserved communities in Newburgh, N.Y. Among other volunteer efforts, he serves as vice president of the Newburgh Ministry Board of Directors. Through this research, lectures, and firsthand experience, Goldberg intends to write about the Catholic educational experience through the eyes of a secularist and atheist.

Goldberg also heads Mount Media, a creative agency made up of media studies students who produce films for non-profit organizations in Orange County. Their client list includes the Nora Cronin Presentation Academy, The Newburgh Ministry, and Habitat for Humanity of Newburgh.

Mount Saint Mary College is ranked a Top-Tier University by U.S. News & World Report, and offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for careers in healthcare, business, education, social services, communications, media, and the liberal arts.