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ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT An Education That Shaped Her Life




or Marisa Mandos Hardy ’07, being educated by Sisters of Saint Joseph was a rare and valuable experience and helped form the woman she is today.

After moving to the West Coast to attend law school, the business major became a consultant for Ernst & Young and works in the firm’s Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services practice out of their Los Angeles office. In today’s business climate, most industries find that it has become a necessity to establish an effective ethics and compliance program. Hardy advises clients – including Fortune 500 companies – about the increasing complexity and importance of their programs and helps them understand their ethics and compliance risks.

Marisa Mandos Hardy ’07 spends quality time at the beach with her husband, Mike, and their daughter, Sloane.

It’s no wonder Hardy ended up in this particular career. She was inspired and motivated by a philosophy and business ethics seminar she took as part of the Interdisciplinary Honors Program (IDHP) at CHC, including case studies about businesses that had made unethical decisions and speakers who talked about their experiences with white collar crime. This program led her to work in Comcast’s business integrity line for a time (thanks to an internship she had while a student) and then attend California Western School of Law in San Diego. Fortunately for Hardy, that IDHP seminar was taught by Sister Pat O’Donnell, Ph.D., who insists on the highest-caliber thinking and writing from her students at all times. “Having my papers so closely scrutinized really honed my writing skills,” remembers Hardy. “It was my favorite class because Sister Pat was straightforward and clear about her expectations. Having her really prepared me for the toughness of law school because my professors there had similar expectations. I looked back and said, ‘Thank God I had her.’ I even sent her thank you emails from law school!”

HELP ALONG HER JOURNEY Hardy’s path began at Mount St. Joseph Academy, where she was taught theology by Michelle Lesher, SSJ, CHC’s former assistant director of Campus Ministry, and other SSJs, which she says is the only reason she ended up at CHC. “I became very involved in community service and ministry,” she says. “That all became such a big part of me and treating everyone

like the dear neighbor became a large focus of my life. There is an intangible about being taught by the SSJs that I couldn’t have gotten anywhere else. “Pairing community service, mission and ministry and student government with my business degree was the perfect mix for me. They were interwoven and couldn’t exist without each other. I didn’t leave one behind to go into the other, rather I pursued something that was all about ethics and fairness and equality.” Kathy Duffy, SSJ, Ph.D., remembers Hardy as a joy to have in the Interdisciplinary Honors Program she directs. “She was a bright, creative and a truly interdisciplinary thinker,” says Sister Kathy. “In the Honors Seminar, Art as a Lens for Science and Religion, that Sister Margie Thompson and I co-taught, Marisa would draw mind maps, instead of taking conventional notes, and would share them with all of us at the end of the class.” Although Hardy would love to attend campus events, living on the opposite coast makes that nearly impossible. But she doesn’t want that minor detail to derail her desire to mentor students genuinely interested in a business career. “My experience could be so beneficial to students on the high cusp of academic ability, those with real potential, who are interested in

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Chestnut Hill Magazine, Spring 2016  
Chestnut Hill Magazine, Spring 2016