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The Magazine for Alumni and Friends of Delaware Valley College

Find out about the topics DelVal alumni, students and faculty are exploring.


FALL 2013


What do psychologists think of ‘50 Shades of Grey?’ Why was the book so popular, and what does it mean for women? Page 18


INTERNING WITH THE DINOSAUR HUNTER Abree Murch ’14 completed a Natural History Research Experience with the Smithsonian during summer 2013. Page 24


Sciences Building U P DAT E Page 5


Page 12 Page 28


Message from the Alumni Association Peter R. Duane ’72 ALUMNI ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT



Dear Alumni,


The DelVal fall 2013 semester is already underway. Freshmen and transfer students arrived on campus Aug. 22 and the remaining upperclassmen just a few days later. Before we knew it, thousands in the DelVal family were celebrating Homecoming and Family Day and folks were out enjoying the Golf Outing. It was great to see so many familiar faces. (See pages 16 and 17 for more on Homecoming and the Golf Outing.) There is a real excitement in the College community about the new Life Sciences Building, which is on schedule to open for the spring 2014 semester (and possibly even earlier!) and the two new graduate programs being offered. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education acted to reaffirm accreditation of Delaware Valley College. There is also a new doctoral program being developed and we are working toward attaining university status sometime in 2014. These are just a few examples that point to the continued progress DelVal is making during its transformational journey initiated by the current strategic plan. It is human nature to resist change. We as individuals and organizations become comfortable with the way things are. In many cases, it is easier to let things be. “This is the way we have always done it,” is a familiar refrain. Winston Churchill once said, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.” The progress the College has made over the last several years has resulted from recognizing, evaluating and developing ways of improving the institution as a whole. Changes and improvements in academics, facilities and branding are evident. DelVal will continue to change and improve as the institution works to give students the best possible education and opportunities. I hope everyone enjoys the rest of fall and has a wonderful winter. I look forward to seeing you at the many upcoming events listed on the website at Go AGGIES!

Matt Levy


DESIGN Tricia Kessler

PHOTOGRAPHY Allure West Studios Tricia Kessler Matt Levy Jacke Ricotta

SEND CLASS NOTES TO Delaware Valley College Office of Marketing and Communications 700 East Butler Avenue Doylestown, PA 18901 Ph: 215.489.6367

POSTMASTER ADDRESS CHANGES TO Delaware Valley College Office of Institutional Advancement 700 East Butler Avenue Doylestown, PA 18901 ________ Horizons is published two times a year for Delaware Valley College alumni, friends, parents, students, faculty, and staff by the Office of Marketing and Communications. Copyright © 2013 Delaware Valley College. Periodicals postage paid at Southeastern, PA and at additional mailing offices.


Peter R. Duane ’72

President, Alumni Association

HORIZONS MAGAZINE MISSION STATEMENT The primary purpose of Horizons is to present accurate, balanced stories that will interest our readers, elevate perceptions and awareness of the institution and create a greater sense of community.

As one channel for the institution’s marketing and communications, the magazine breaks down silos and allows for the various departments on campus to learn more about each other.

The magazine will share news and accomplishments to keep alumni connected to the institution, extending the College’s reach to wherever people live.

The publication reflects the College’s core values: respect all people; value the world of ideas and differences; pursue excellence; live each day with integrity; teach, learn and serve with passion and commitment; and act as one learning community with one purpose.

Horizons shares and highlights news related to the College and its alumni, students, faculty and staff. The intent of sharing these stories is to make people more aware of the great work that is happening because of the College, which will indirectly cultivate alumni engagement, campus visits, financial gifts and favorable coverage of the College.

4 HORIZONS | F A L L 2 0 1 3

The final decision on whether a story gets included is always based two factors: • Is it an interesting topic that will engage our readers? • Does the story help to elevate people’s perceptions of the institution or, foster a greater sense of community among our audience?


We also want to hear from you. We welcome letters in response to Horizons stories. Letters are subject to editing for space, style, clarity and civility. To submit letters to the editor, email, or mail a letter to: Managing Editor Horizons Office of Marketing and Communications Delaware Valley College 700 East Butler Avenue Doylestown PA 18901

Dr. James Diamond ’61 was inducted into the Student Government Board Hall of Fame in April at Delaware Valley College. It is a prestigious honor, not awarded annually, but given when SGB feels there is a person who deserves this special recognition.

his career with DelVal before retiring in 2008. Both he and his wife, Betty, have given time and service, plus generous financial contributions, to improve DelVal.

Dr. Diamond said he was elated and honored to be selected. “It was a humbling experience to be chosen for this recognition by a group of exceptional young people at DelVal College,” said Dr. Diamond. “I did not earn this honor alone. My wife Betty certainly played an important role in supporting and encouraging me during a 47-year career that led to this award. She believed in me and stood by my side all along the way.”

One of Dr. Diamond’s proudest contributions to the College is helping to found an

Members are inducted based on dedication to improving the lives of their fellow human beings, loyalty to the College and contributions to improving the student experience. “Dr. Diamond has shown outstanding dedication to the College, served his fellow human beings in Africa (in the Peace Corps), and has spent his life helping people help themselves,” said former SGB President Galen Weibley ’13. “Both Dr. Diamond and his wife, Betty, have been amazing mentors for me and for all of the students here.” Dr. Diamond is an honorary DelVal trustee and the national chair of the College’s planned giving committee. He has had an impressive career in agriculture, which included highlights such as serving as an international consultant for the United Nations. He served as both a faculty member and a dean of agriculture during

He said that both he and Betty believe strongly in the students at DelVal and what they will offer the world.

exchange program with the University of Podlasie, in Poland. The Hall of Fame plaque was unveiled in early October. It features a sculpted representation of Dr. Diamond’s face and is displayed in the College’s Student Center.

“I firmly believe that most DelVal students will be successful in college and their journey through life because of the amount of effort, dedication and sacrifice they exhibit toward their educational performance and activity participation,” said Dr. Diamond. “Their professors and fellow students are molding their views of their world. DelVal students are unrelenting in preparing themselves to be the best of the best.”

Life Sciences Building


The new Life Sciences Building, being built on the corner of New Britain Road and East Butler Avenue, is on schedule to be completed in time for the start of spring 2014 semester classes. In September, Dr. Brosnan announced another generous seven-figure gift from Jim ’61 and Betty Diamond. In recognition of the Diamond family’s $2.5M support of the Realizing The Vision campaign, the south wing of the Life Sciences Building will be named in their honor. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | HORIZONS 5

We’ve all wondered about a topic from time to time, but there are some who find a topic that they have to know more about. Sometimes an issue or topic piques our curiosity and entices us to go on a journey of discovery. For this issue of Horizons, we spoke with alumni, students and faculty who are diving into a variety of topics to better understand them. One of the alumni in this issue found that crime scene cleanup and emergency preparedness were topics she had to know more about to help people. Two married alumni featured in this issue are working at NASA’s Ames Research Center in the heart of Silicon Valley applying their knowledge of plant science. Another alumnus we featured explored how family history and plants can cross paths when he inherited a seed that was on the brink of extinction. You will also meet students exploring topics such as AIDS research, and ancient fossils, and a faculty member who was curious to know why a series of books by E.L. James skyrocketed in popularity. At DelVal, we offer excellent academic programs in a variety of fields. We’re hoping that something in this issue will make you curious about a field you haven’t yet explored.

THE BUSINESSMAN behind the Tom Debrowski ’72 has been the vice president and director of grocery operations for Kraft Foods, the senior vice president of operations at the Pillsbury Company, and most recently the executive vice president of worldwide operations for Mattel, Inc. How does a horticulture graduate build a successful career as a top-level executive with three of the country’s largest companies? Debrowski has a string of great sound bites related to success, advice he gave to DelVal students when he visited campus last spring as part of the Watson Executive-in-Residence program. Things like…“Don’t let perfect get in the way of better.” “Take risks, and reward risk takers.” “Measure. You have to measure what you’re doing to decide if it’s adding value.” “Commit random acts of kindness.” But it’s that last piece of advice, and the story behind it, which he credits for the start of his career. 6 HORIZONS | F A L L 2 0 1 3


Debrowski’s father helped a man get his car out of a snowy ditch one night. The two had a beer together once the car was free. The other man was a mechanic at Kraft and got Debrowski an interview with the food company. “As part of the work program at DelVal, I needed a job in the food industry,” Debrowski recalled. Debrowski cleaned bathrooms at Kraft during his sophomore year and moved to working in a lab the following year. Those positions led to a job after graduation, working the third and second shifts in quality assurance, and ultimately a 23-year career at Kraft. “I guarantee if my dad hadn’t helped that guy I wouldn’t be where I am today,” Debrowski said. And where he is today is recently retired after a 44-year career, serving as an adjunct professor at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, and enjoying more time with his family. When he started his career, Debrowski worked in Switzerland,

Germany and Australia. His international move came about when the more senior directors at Kraft didn’t want to go overseas. “Send the kid,” they said. When his career ultimately brought him back to the States, Debrowski said “all of those guys were now working for me.” After Kraft, Debrowski spent nine years with Pillsbury, where his responsibilities spanned purchasing, manufacturing, product quality and environmental affairs. In 2000, Debrowski reconnected with a former marketing colleague who worked for Mattel. “He asked me if it was time to get out of the food industry and I moved over to toys,” he said.

The leap didn’t seem like an obvious one to Debrowski. Kraft released 10 new products annually, Mattel 800. “I was convinced that these industries were completely different from one another, but what I discovered was they weren’t,” said Debrowski. “I knew if I could do for toys what I did for food, I would be successful.” On his first tour of the design center at Mattel, he said when he “saw grown people crawling on the floor with kids’ toys” he knew he was exactly where he belonged. When Debrowski returned to campus earlier this year, it was his first time back in 42 years and he was impressed with today’s

students. “These are brilliant kids who are going to make a difference,” said Debrowski after visiting campus. “This country is going to be in very good hands in the future.” He said he would advise graduates to come back to campus often, and get a mentor. His father’s example still guides his behavior today when someone reaches out to him for help. “My father was a very big influence in my life. He taught me to reach out and help somebody,” Debrowski said. “The answer when people ask if I can help their kids, who are job searching, with career advice is always ‘yes, of course, I can.’ My dad taught me that.”

WHO KNEW? • More than 63 million Barbie dolls are sold annually worldwide. • Barbie and Ken are named for the children of Mattel co-founders Ruth and Elliot Handler. • The average age of a Hot Wheels customer is 38. • At Mattel, more than 400 million cars (Hot Wheels and Matchbox) are produced each year, making them the largest automobile manufacturer in the world—bigger than GM, Ford, Honda and Mercedes combined. • The operations group, which Debrowski headed before his retirement, employs more than 100,000 people in 19 countries, serving 150 countries.

Tom Debrowski ‘72 touring a Mattel plant.

Debrowski addressing a Mattel meeting. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | HORIZONS 7



When mad cow disease was first discovered, Dr. Linda Detwiler ’80 was chosen to be part of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) team that would decide what to do to control the spread and protect the public.

Dr. Detwiler. “They were impressed by the students from DelVal because of the handson experience they brought.”

If someone had asked her to write her dream career, it would have been what she experienced.

“The people at the College, right up to the president, really cared how individual students did and what was happening to you,” said Dr. Detwiler.

“It’s been more exciting and challenging than I ever could have imagined,” said Dr. Detwiler. “I have been involved with an emerging animal disease. I’ve seen it peak in epidemic proportions, cross over and cause a human disease and then, decline because of sound control measures.”

She also formed close relationships with faculty members like Dr. John Plummer, dairy department chair at the time, who helped guide her.

As a DelVal student, she worked at the campus dairy, and completed her required work experience hours on a Wisconsin farm, which helped her get into veterinary school. “When I went for my interview, they shook my hand when I first got there and said ‘Oh you have calluses, that means you work,’” said 8 HORIZONS | F A L L 2 0 1 3

When BSE first showed up, researchers tried to use what they knew about scrapie to develop theories and protections for BSE because the diseases appeared to be related. Scientists in the U.S. were asking questions like: “Do we have BSE in the U.S.?” “If we have it, would we know?” “Do we look at enough brains in the U.S. to find it?” So, the USDA sent people including Dr. Detwiler to the U.K. to be trained on the epidemiology and diagnostics. BSE has a long incubation period, two to eight years, and countries couldn’t afford to wait for results, possibly allowing the disease to continue to spread. So, they had to try to predict what they thought would happen. “It’s a fine line we had to walk,” said Dr. Detwiler.

Classical mad cow, formally known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), is a fatal neurological disorder that afflicts cattle. It spreads when a cow is fed the remains of an infected cow. When researchers learned cows could digest meat products, feed manufacturers started recycling ruminant meat and bone meal as a protein source in cattle rations. BSE, which first emerged in the U.K. in the ’80s, has been linked to a degenerative brain disorder in humans called variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. It is thought that some people acquired the disease after eating meat products contaminated with high-risk tissues, such as the spinal cord. Dr. Detwiler, a Delaware Valley College dairy science alumna, helped make and defend the tough choices that protected consumers. She has served on many international working groups making recommendations for BSE and related diseases and has worked with the World Health Organization, the World Organization for Animal Health, the European Union and the FDA, serving on high-level advisory committees.

nating the national BSE program.

She said safety has to be a priority, but that you have to be careful about overreaching with policies that could be unnecessary, cause panic or harm an industry. “I try to look at these issues in relationship to my children,” said Dr. Detwiler. “When the U.K. had declared to the world that they felt there were young patients that could possibly be infected from eating contaminated meat, we (the U.S. working group) asked ourselves what we would want the government to do to protect our children.”


After she earned her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from The Ohio State University, she went into private practice before accepting a veterinary position with the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). She then took a position working on scrapie, a fatal disease of the central nervous system in sheep and goats. Dr. Detwiler worked her way up to coordinating the scrapie program nationally, which led to her position coordi-

Although they had already banned live cattle and products from the U.K. and other countries with BSE in 1989, they ended up prohibiting the products from the entirety of Europe in 1997, which was a significant choice politically. Dr. Detwiler traveled to the U.K. with Dan Glickman, secretary of agriculture at the time, and other U.S. officials, to explain the ban and that it was an emergency action to EU officials. Europeans were concerned that if the U.S. banned products, other nations would follow with similar actions. “It was a tense meeting,” said Dr. Detwiler. “I was the low man on the totem pole and was

there to provide the scientific reasons for our decision. Politically, we had to explain the decision to the European Union, but we weren’t going to be talked out of it. Tracking the movement of meat and bone Teaching veterinary students at UC Davis how to remove a sheep meal within the EU, and the exbrain for scrapie testing. tended incubation time we calculated, it was likely only a matter of time before the disease would be found (in other countries).” The theory proved to be right on target when from 2000 to 2001 with increased diagnostic capabilities, the disease was found in higher




Tim Mountz ’03 is fascinated by seeds and how their history connects to human history. A jar of seeds he inherited took him on a journey through both his family’s history and the history of a plant that was thought to be extinct. “Like finding your ancestry, there’s a beautiful history to discover when it comes to food,” said Mountz. Mountz graduated from DelVal’s landscape design program. As a student he worked for the arboretum, taking care of the campus when he wasn’t in class. When his grandfather was killed in a car accident in 1993, his grandmother gave him a jar of beans from his grandfather’s shed. He

numbers and more European countries. In addition to trade bans, prohibiting highrisk tissues and establishing feed bans helped protect consumers in the U.S. She said that while classical BSE is not the risk it once was, new scientific findings still need to be monitored. She does this as chair of the FDA’s Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee. Dr. Detwiler said consumers need to be aware about other diseases that can spread from animals to humans and take the proper food safety precautions. When she looks back on BSE, she is proud of the work she was a part of. “At the USDA I worked with scientific colleagues who were very dedicated and pushed for measures that in the long run resulted in a lower risk situation for the U.S.,” said Dr. Detwiler. “I also look back and examine what

we should have done differently. Retrospective analysis is important for future decisions.” Currently, Dr. Detwiler is a faculty member at Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. The position is part of a cooperative agreement with the USDA and she travels to all of the country’s veterinary schools to educate students on public practice. She also serves as a worldwide animal health consultant for food and pharmaceutical companies and governments. Her career has taken her from farms as a consultant on diseases, to slaughterhouses and food processing plants. As a global animal health consultant for McDonald’s, she got to know Dr. Temple Grandin, a leader in animal welfare, as well as autism advocacy, and because of that relationship, Dr. Grandin spoke at DelVal in early October.

had no idea at the time, but among the beans in the jar was a Stoltzfus String Bean, a type that was thought to have been extinct. When his aunt gave him a book, “Heirloom Vegetable Gardening: A Master Gardener’s Guide to Planting, Seed Saving, and Cultural History,” by William Woys Weaver, he decided to learn more about the seeds. “I took the train to the author’s house in Lancaster County, and we became good friends,” said Mountz. When he poured out the jar of beans and went through them with the author he learned that some of the seeds in the jar had been traded from the Native Americans to the Pennsylvania Germans. “He saved one for last and put it back into my hands and said, ‘this has been extinct,’” said Mountz. “That just changed my life and I had to find out everything I could.”

Mountz has turned his passion into a fulltime job running his business, Happy Cat Farm in Kennett Square, Pa. The company ships seeds and plants all over the U.S., and sells produce to local consumers at a Philadelphia farmer’s market. Through the farmer’s market, he’s met journalists who have covered his story and his business. Mountz has been featured by outlets such as WHYY,, Grid Magazine, Martha Stewart’s magazine (Whole Living), and more.

He said discovering what he had was pretty scary at first.

He has also blogged for the Huffington Post and the Rodale Institute.

“You don’t want to mess up,” said Mountz. “We saved a few samples so that we could go back to that. Last year, we planted a sixteenth of an acre of that bean and we could start giving our chef friends pounds of these beans. That was amazingly satisfying to see something that was on the brink of extinction on the menu.”

“I really feel legacy chooses us, we don’t get to choose legacy,” said Mountz. “This has been one of the most intellectual journeys I’ve ever been on following the seed’s genealogy and my family’s genealogy.”

Mountz said his grandfather’s gift gave him something to be passionate about and a sense of responsibility.

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Christa López ’96 learns about


to serve others

When people are facing the worst times of their lives Christa López ’96, steps in to help. She’s a member of Team Rubicon, an elite disaster relief team; part of a search and rescue team; associate director of student emergency services at the University of Texas at Austin; and owner of A New Start Biorecovery, a crime scene cleanup business. López believes her purpose in life is to serve others, which is what made her to want to learn about search and rescue, disaster relief, emergency preparedness and even crime scene cleanup. After graduating from DelVal’s horticulture program, she earned her M.S. in counseling from Shippensburg University in 1999 and her M.A. in emergency and disaster management from the American Public University System in 2013.

“The advisors really encouraged us as leaders and that made a huge difference in who I am today.”

At DelVal, she was an RA, and served on the A-Day committee and Student Government Board. “The people, and the relationships you build with the faculty and staff at DelVal, you can’t beat that,” said López. “The advisors really encouraged us as leaders and that made a huge difference in who I am today.”

In 2007, the University of Texas at Austin selected her to serve as the associate director of student emergency services, which allowed her to do what she’s most passionate about full time. She works with students in crisis, as well as families, and helps the university put response plans in place to be prepared for a variety of situations from a shooter on campus to a health-related scare. If there is a student death, she works with families on any university matters and memorial services. When there was a campus bomb threat, it was her job to assist in the safe evacuation of the campus and put plans in place to protect the students. In 2009, when H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu, was a concern López worked on the response aspect as it pertained to students and assisted in the planning of how to respond had the university required shutting down. The university has a behavior concerns advice line, which is a 24hour hotline people can call with any concerns. Her department tracks the calls, as well as any concerns, and keeps track of the history of individual students. The same year that she took on her new emergency-focused role in higher education, she and her husband also opened a crime scene cleanup business called A New Start Biorecovery. “Someone shared with me that it was a growing field and my husband was really interested in the idea,” said López.

One of her first volunteer jobs after DelVal was working as a park ranger. Her horticulture experience allowed her to teach people about plants, but the position also required her to recognize when someone was in trouble, which is when she got hooked on helping people through tough situations. She spent the early part of her career in higher education, working in residence life, helping students with issues, planning during emergencies, and serving on a victim’s response team. She also volunteered as both an EMT and a firefighter, which made her want to get into emergency response work even more. 10 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

Team Rubicon during Operation Starting Gun.

After they both earned their national certifications in bio-recovery, her husband applied for a grant, which covered the cost of the tools they needed. “We’ve been operating ever since,” said López. The company responds to calls 24/7 to clean up murder scenes, suicides, and delayed death discoveries. They are even called in occasionally for extreme cases of hoarding. “Our business has actually been featured twice on the show ‘Hoarding Buried Alive,’” said López. It takes a special kind of person to do that type of work. López does it because she wants to ease some of the pain that comes with these types of situations. “Any time someone passes away there’s an emotional impact,” said López. “There’s a large impact on the family and the community, and we try to encourage the folks we’re working with to seek help. They often share stories of the individual who has passed away when we come to clean a scene. You have to compassionately make time to help those people without counseling.”

Christa López ‘96 (right) does work in emergency preparedness, disaster relief, and search and rescue.

With each client there’s a memory of what took place at the scene and the people the event touched.

As a counseling professional, she’s always focused on the emotional piece when she goes into a disaster area. When a tornado hit Oklahoma in May 2013, she deployed to the area three times with Team Rubicon.

On one family farm 69 of the family’s 100 horses were killed. She remembers walking the land and helping the family rebuild and then seeing her work come full TIPS TO PREPARE YOUR FAMILY circle when the family was able to return to operation and serving the FOR AN EMERGENCY FROM A PRO community. Prior to the storm, 1. Every family needs to be prepared. We sometimes assume the horses on the farm were used that disasters will happen to someone else, not us. Make to serve the community through sure you have food, water, toiletries, alternate shelter, and therapeutic programs. know about your community resources.

López says she gets an “emotional paycheck” by being there and taking care of something for families, especially in the cases of murders and suicides. “The family has already been traumatized, so we see our role of preventing them from being re-traumatized by having to clean up the aftermath.” She’s also been able to use her love of the outdoors and her skills to help search and rescue efforts. In 2002, she joined Travis County Search and Rescue and has held various leadership positions within that team. Then, in 2010, she joined Alamo Search and Rescue, as a search manager and ground team member.

2. Involve the entire family or household in the plan, even kids. 3. Don’t overwhelm yourself with the possibility of disaster or convince yourself “the sky is falling.” Just be prepared and try to maintain a positive mental attitude no matter what happens. That helps people in times of disaster to become resilient and it’s the most important thing during a disaster.

In 2012, she was invited to join Team Rubicon, a disaster response team that unites the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy disaster response teams. She’s currently a regional planning manager with Team Rubicon. In that leadership role, she writes and facilitates procedures and plans for the regional team. With Team Rubicon she was able to apply all of her volunteer experience and the skills she’d picked up from serving as a volunteer firefighter, EMT, and search and rescue team member.

She was also sent to New Orleans when Hurricane Isaac hit in 2012. During Hurricane Sandy, she helped out behind the scenes from home, but didn’t deploy. Disasters have a way of bringing people together.

When Team Rubicon helped a woman from New Jersey during Hurricane Sandy, the woman decided she needed to return the favor. So, the woman traveled to Oklahoma to help Team Rubicon help other people. She brought sand from New Jersey with her when she came to help people in Oklahoma. “She came out to help in Oklahoma because we helped her when she needed assistance,” said López. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 11

DelVal Undergraduate Helps with

PEDIATRIC HIV RESEARCH At just 18 years old, Tatiana Tway ’16 was selected from a national pool of undergraduates and graduate students to help with important pediatric HIV research. She spent the past summer at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute’s Southwest National Primate Research Center working in Dr. Marie-Claire Gauduin’s laboratory.

Tway wrote an opinion piece for the Huffington Post’s college blog about her internship describing how much of a stretch it was to work in the lab and how much she loved being challenged. She offers some great advice for an intern from any field in the piece, telling students to, “embrace their ignorance.”

About six students from around the country were chosen for the competitive, paid eight-week summer program.

She tells students to let their guards down and accept that they aren’t going to know everything going in—that’s why they are there. “Being an intern, especially a young one, it is the general expectation that you are ignorant,” she wrote in the opinion piece. “Internships were created for a rea-

As an intern, she helped run tests and assisted Dr. Gauduin’s team on a project that is critical to the development of effective vaccines. Tway, a dual major in chemistry and animal science at Delaware Valley College, said she felt honored to be chosen and to have the chance to make a contribution to HIV research at such a young age. “I feel honored that they’re going to let me do it… I still feel like I’m too young for this,” said Tway, when she was selected. “I keep thinking, ‘OK I’m going to be in the real world doing things that are going to make a difference.’ It’s not just ‘Can I get an A in a course?’” Gauduin’s laboratory is working with simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), which causes a disease in monkeys similar to AIDS, and is closely related to HIV. They are using SIV as a lab substitute to better understand HIV in humans. The team there is looking at the early stages of transmission of SIV, using a genetically modified version of SIV, which is tagged with a “green fluorescent protein” that allows researchers to monitor the infected cells in the monkeys. Using this tag, the team is able to see which cells initially become infected; look at the timeline of the spread of the virus from the initial site of infection; the mechanisms and routes involved in the spread of the virus; and the initial SIVspecific immune response. 12 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

“Simply being chosen is a testament to your intelligence; the opportunity now is to learn everything you can from those around you.”

son; quite frankly, if you weren’t ignorant, you wouldn’t be there. Nobody expects the intern to be perfect; they just expect you to learn. Simply being chosen is a testament to your intelligence; the opportunity now is to learn everything you can from those around you.” To participate in the summer program, interns submitted an application, recommendation letters and a statement of interest. Tatiana stood out to the team because of her strong interest in understanding HIV. “We look at students who are already studying at the master’s level and some undergraduates,” said Dr. Gauduin. “Tatiana was one of the younger ones, most are already finished their undergraduate degrees.” When Tway found out about the opportunity to be involved in the research she worried about asking for letters so close to the deadline. “The faculty members were so great with recommendation letters,” said Tway. “They were happy to do it, and I don’t think that’s an experience I would’ve gotten if I had gone somewhere else.” She is considering pursuing a career in research after DelVal.


Win Cowgill ’74, has had an impressive career in fruit production and has built an international reputation for himself in the field. He’s been involved in countless research projects, but what producers really care about aren’t his awards, or even his process. They’re most interested in the results he gets and how those results can be applied to solve everyday problems.

Cowgill is currently a faculty member at Rutgers, New Jersey’s state apple expert, editor of Horticultural News, a publication by the New Jersey State Horticultural Society, an agricultural consultant and a researcher.

“They say, ‘Win, just tell me what type of rootstock I should put on my trees,’” said Cowgill.

One of the most important challenges he’s working on there is helping farmers produce apples that will appeal to consumers.

DelVal’s horticulture program gave him the hands-on experience he needed to make a career out of something he loves.

He spends a lot of his time at Rutgers Snyder Research Farm in Pittstown, N.J., which often serves as a second testing site for projects that look promising.

“Employers are looking for that hands-on experience you get at Delaware Valley College,” said Cowgill. “I don’t ever want to see that go away. If I didn’t have that hands-on program I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

He enjoys attending meetings because he gets to “bring back what the best guy in Europe is doing” and gets exposed to innovative, new research. “I was honored to get that award because the best farmers in the world choose the winners,” said Cowgill.

Cowgill also does apple samples each year to test when crops are ready to be picked and sends his results out by email along with alerts about insects and diseases.

Getting more young people in agriculture is one grower problem that his guide doesn’t provide the answer to. “One of the biggest problems for growers is getting skilled employees,” said Cowgill.

After completing his master’s degree, he became a Warren County agricultural agent and then became the New Jersey fruit expert for the Extension.

In February, he was selected for the International Fruit Tree Association (IFTA)’s “Extension Award.” IFTA, an organization, which Cowgill has been a member of for 33 years, brings together researchers and producers from all over the world.

He funnels information from researchers to farmers using several channels including a Tree Fruit Production Guide he publishes, which helps farmers choose rootstock, the varieties they plant, when to plant, which products to use to fight different types of pests, and helps answer any other questions they may have.

This information helps farmers who don’t have time to test methods and products themselves figure out how to have a better crop quickly.

After earning his B.S. in horticulture from DelVal, Rutgers offered him a scholarship and he earned his M.S. in horticulture from the university.

When Rutgers received the Snyder Farm as a gift in 1988, Cowgill was instrumental in putting together a plan for the approximately 400-acre property. Today, it’s a research extension facility that focuses on solving farmers’ problems.

He also helps with everyday challenges in production by getting the information that researchers have on what works and what doesn’t out to the producers.

Cowgill runs an internship program, which DelVal students like horticulture major Jake Peterson ’17, have participated in. Honeycrisp is a particularly popular variety with consumers, but producers in warmer climates were struggling to get the apples to turn red. Cowgill worked on a research project to find a type that would get the most color or “blush” to help producers in warmer climates produce apples that would catch shoppers’ eyes. Another quality the consumer wants is a nice crunch and there’s a lot of science that goes into achieving that crunch. Cowgill said producers have been going with varieties that have double the number of cells to produce crunchier apples and researchers are working on hybrids, taking types of apples with more cells and combining them with other varieties.

“I think my favorite part about it was picking peaches because they were so delicious,” said Peterson. “I also liked working with Win because he is very knowledgeable and he taught me a lot throughout the summer.” Cowgill also came to DelVal to help install the educational orchard and visited a pomology class at the College. He wants to stay as involved as possible at the College. “If you’re not teaching the next generation how to get into production agriculture you’re losing out,” said Cowgill. “I don’t want to retire in a few years and have no one coming up the pipeline. There is always a need for good students with strong backgrounds in agriculture.” To learn more about Cowgill’s work visit: and F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 13

A Couple of NASA SCIENTISTS Husband and wife, Dr. David Bubenheim ’80, and Debra Reiss-Bubenheim ’81, are applying their backgrounds in plant science working for NASA. Dr. Bubenheim has had a chance to see his experiment with growing dwarf wheat applied on the Russian Space Station and ReissBubenheim, has trained astronauts and observed the impact of weightlessness on small organisms. They are both working in the heart of California’s Silicon Valley at NASA’s Ames Research Center, where they are taking on the challenges of sustaining life in space when teams can’t resupply and, developing ways for people to live more sustainably on Earth. Reiss-Bubenheim is an associate chief of the Space Biosciences Division and Dr. Bubenheim is a senior research scientist. They met in band as undergraduate students at Delaware Valley College when she was an ornamental horticulture and environmental design student and he was a horticulture student. “When you leave Delaware Valley College, you have a really broad education and you never know where that is going to take you,” said Reiss-Bubenheim. After DelVal, they went to Virginia Tech, where they each completed graduate degrees in horticulture. Dr. Bubenheim earned his Ph.D. through a NASA-funded program at Utah State University and then did a year of NASA-funded postdoctoral work at Purdue University, before taking a position at the Ames Research Center in 1987. Reiss-Bubenheim stayed at home for a year with their son before coming to work for the Center as well. When he first started, Dr. Bubenheim worked on life support systems; developing capabilities to use plants to purify air and water and produce food. Collaborating with the Russians on an experiment to grow dwarf wheat on the Russian Mir space station in the late ’90s is a milestone he thinks about often. “We were really trying to understand plant growth in the closed atmosphere of the spacecraft and the full life cycle,” said Dr. Bubenheim. “That was one science experiment of about 150 that the cosmonauts were working on; our stuff wasn’t listed very high, but the first thing they wanted to do in space was to look at the plants. It was green and you can imagine what it would be like to be cooped up in a tin can in space without fresh air for months.”

Astronaut Shannon Lucid is photographed looking at wheat growing in the Svet or greenhouse, in the Mir space station. Courtesy of NASA.

and nutrients. A clay substrate, which looked like kitty litter, helped keep water attached to the surface. One of the most exciting times for Reiss-Bubenheim was having crew members on the dedicated life sciences missions do experiments for her team in space. Her work looks at the effects of space travel on animals and plants and ways to improve the health of astronauts. “We investigate the effects of space on plants, bacteria, yeast, rodents, fruit flies, you name it,” said Reiss-Bubenheim, who helps manage the non-human biological payloads that fly up. For long-term space travel, the team is looking at how to produce crops in space. The team trains astronauts and works on hardware to house the astronauts and their plants. She’s watching synthetic biology closely and is interested to see how it can be applied in space for building habitats, shielding astronauts, or other needs.

The team had to design methods to deliver water to the roots, which helped them better understand how water moves in microgravity.

“In space you’re not going to be able to resupply,” said Reiss-Bubenheim. “You’re going to have to figure out how to live because you can’t take everything with you. We’re hoping that years from now this can be applied to help teams do that.”

The cosmonauts kept the dwarf wheat in a controlled environment box with lights at the top and a container at the bottom for water

Often people think of space first when NASA comes to mind, but a lot of the work at Ames has on-Earth applications.

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Dr. Bubenheim has been involved in the early development of sustainable communities, working on energy as well as plant science. He originally developed a combination of using solar power and wind turbines to help meet the need for energy for missions. Now, the wind turbine he developed for space missions is being used on Earth. He’s currently in the Earth Science Division at Ames, using satellites to help the USDA manage conservation efforts for large areas of land more efficiently. They both feel educators should encourage students to remain curious about subjects outside of their majors. “NASA is really bringing out the need to integrate disciplines,” said Dr. Bubenheim. “We can’t look at traveling into space and just continue to do things the way we did them on Earth. We have to combine fields like engineering and biology and not have the walls between disciplines that were there in the past.” They are enjoying watching the College’s progress and are looking forward to seeing the Life Sciences Building open. “I think Delaware Valley College is on a great trajectory,” said Dr. Bubenheim. “The new science building has been key and was really needed for academic space and also, to help the College reach out and embrace the Bucks County community.” He’s also pleased to see the core of DelVal, the part that made it a good experience for him, remains the same. “The focus on teaching science and technology, along with close relationships with the faculty provides a good base,” said Dr. Bubenheim. “You have to have a good background (in the sciences) to build on. That’s been Delaware Valley College’s strength and what they should continue with.”

HELPING CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS Debora Childs ’10 (B.S.) ’12 (MBA) and Navy Chief Logistics Specialist Louis Childs ’12 (MBA) have an interest knowing everything they can find out about helping kids with special needs to thrive. They are the proud parents of five children, three biological and two adopted brothers, and three of their children are in The Navy’s Exceptional Family Member Program. Their family includes: Scottie, who is in elementary school, Deseree, who is in middle school, Jordan, who is in high school, Curtis, who just joined the Navy, and Keonte, who attended DelVal for food science and is planning to come back to finish her degree. Their youngest daughter, Deseree, requires frequent hospital visits because she has asthma, failure to thrive, and sickle cell anemia (SS), a disorder that causes the body to make crescentshaped red blood cells. Sickle cells don’t move through the body as well as typical round blood cells, which leads to blocked blood flow. The condition causes pain, can damage organs, and raises a patient’s risk for infections. Two of the boys also have emotional and behavioral needs and Jordan, their high school student, has autism and a mild case of Dandy-Walker Syndrome, a brain condition that affects the area that controls movement. She said families should remember not to be ashamed of a diagnosis. “It’s an honor to raise children with special needs,” said Debora. When her family lived in Pennsylvania, Debora educated military families in Willow Grove, Pa., about programs for children. Then, in 2011, she was part of a panel sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense on families with special needs.


facilities they were going through were often affiliated with different branches where processes were different. The panel helped make sure families would get the same level of care from one branch to another by standardizing the process and helped the military realize the programs needed a new look and feel. “We needed to find a way to get rid of the stigma,” said Debora. “Which is why the program chose a new name, the Exceptional Family Member Program, and created a new logo.” Debora said being a part of the panel and seeing positive change because of her participation has been satisfying. “I loved it and I felt like it was an honor,” said Debora. “The people involved really cared about what we thought and making the program better.” She is currently staying home with her children, but she is looking to get back into food science. She enjoyed DelVal, both as an undergraduate food science student and as an MBA student. She said her DelVal experience set the foundation for her work to help families with children who have special needs. “DelVal was really supportive,” said Debora. “The faculty members, especially Dr. Pierson, were always flexible when I needed to take care of my children as long as I let them know what was happening. I was not given a handout, but understanding and encouragement to not give up. DelVal taught me to speak up. If you speak up about your needs, people are always willing to help.”

“The panel allowed the military to address the chinks in the chain that we as families were coming across,” said Debora. “It gave the military a chance to hear about the problems real families were dealing with.” One of the issues was that the military required parents to go to the nearest military facility for care. When families relocated, F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 15


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Generations of alumni came back to campus to watch the Delaware Valley College football team beat Stevenson University on Sept. 28. The alumni tent was filled with family, friends and smiling faces. If you missed the fun this year, we hope to see you at next year’s Homecoming celebration.


The foursome of (from left) Steve Luczak, Chuck Alpuche ’81, Steve Alpuche and Dave Quinn took first place among the golfers playing the “Old Course” at Saucon Valley Country Club Oct. 7. They shot a 10-under. At a silent auction later in the day, Chuck Alpuche, a retired Pepsi executive and College trustee, placed a $4,000 bid and won a round of golf at the famed Merion Golf Club, which hosted the U.S. Open this year.

Outfitted in pink is the threesome (from left) of Linda Rutkosky, Holly Mullin and Melissa Bond. Holly and her husband, Bill, a College trustee, were among the sponsors of this year’s Delaware Valley College Golf Classic, which raises money for scholarships. The title sponsor was IMC Construction, which is building the Life Sciences Building.

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What do psychologists think of ‘50 Shades of Grey?’ WHY WAS THE BOOK SO P O P U L A R, A N D W H AT DOES IT MEAN FOR WOMEN? When E.L. James’ erotic novel “50 Shades of Grey” hit shelves it created a national phenomenon. Just from March through December 2012, Random House sold more than 70 million editions worldwide, making it the fastestselling series in the company’s history. The book is the first in a three-part series about a naive young literature major who falls for a controlling, wealthy CEO and gets caught up in his world of sexual dominance and submission. As Dr. Audrey Ervin, academic program director of the graduate counseling psychology program and assistant professor of counseling psychology at Delaware Valley College, watched the book grow in popularity, she wondered what the craze meant from a psychological standpoint and what it said about the state of women. Was it liberating or another modern example of oppression? To answer that question, she worked with Dr. Julie Shulman of Sonoma State University to examine the book through various feminist lenses. In March, they used their research to lead a discussion at the Association for Women in Psychology’s national conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. “Feminists usually agree around issues of work, political freedom, access to resources and healthcare,” said Dr. Ervin. “Sexuality is an issue that feminist viewpoints diverge radically on.” Depending on the feminist lens, the book can been seen as liberating or oppressive. Some argue that focus on dominance and submission really only perpetuates violence against women, objectification and inequality. Others feel women are told that certain expressions of sexuality are okay, while others aren’t; 18 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

that there is a double standard for women who are sexual. So for some, problematizing any sexual desire, even submission, feels like a form of oppression.

“We need to untrain women that they are going to save this emotionally flawed male,” said Dr. Ervin, who feels this idea contributes to the cycle of violence.

The discussion included professors, psychologists, graduate students and DelVal counseling psychology students.

So what made the book so appealing?

Dr. Ervin said another participant noted that the novel is “out of the mainstream, alternative and a little bit dangerous.”

accessed books.

“The appeal is not that it was a well-written novel or a literary masterpiece, “One woman worked with but that it opened the door to Just from March victims of sex trafficking and aspects of sexuality that are probthrough December made some excellent points ably widely practiced and inter2012, Random House about how problematic the esting to people because they are objectification of women can out of the mainstream,” said Dr. sold more than be,” said Dr. Ervin. “Another Ervin. “What the book does say 70 million editions described herself as a sexfor sure is that there are women worldwide. positive activist. She stated who want to explore sexual that diverse sexual themes themes that aren’t mainstream should not be pathologized. She didn’t agree and that books are giving those women who with objectification, but said there are ways are curious an avenue to do that.” to educate women without problematizing She said women haven’t historically accessed sexuality.” pornography as much as men, but they have

The love interest in the book, CEO Christian Grey, is obsessive and controls his partner, Anastasia Steele’s career, money and time. These traits are concerning to Dr. Ervin because this type of behavior is common in unhealthy relationships. “It is an example of the cycle of violence,” said Dr. Ervin. “In the world of sexual fantasy that’s OK, but it’s how you analyze that. In many cultural contexts, that’s probably not a healthy template if equality is a value.” Dr. Ervin also finds it troubling that Anastasia “saves” a moody, unpredictable man who has a hard time controlling his anger in the book.

The e-reader allowed women who might have felt uncomfortable buying the books in stores to privately purchase electronic copies, which Dr. Ervin feels helped boost sales. “People want a simple answer to a very complex phenomenon,” said Dr. Ervin. “The book is sort of like a symptom and the causes may involve systems of gender, sexual and economic oppression.” She said the popularity of the series raises more questions than it answers, but it does say for sure that women’s sexual selves are seeking an outlet. “If it’s curiosity, it does, to some extent, comment on how women’s sexuality is still largely controlled and pathologized,” said Dr. Ervin.

DELVAL WRESTLING COACH STEVE CANTRELL SELECTED AS THE NEW ATHLETIC DIRECTOR Steve Cantrell, DelVal’s wrestling coach for the past two seasons, has been named as DelVal’s new athletic director. Cantrell started in his new role on July 1.

He is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy, he received his MBA from National University and he is a Ph.D. candidate in environmental economics from the University of Maryland. Prior to becoming the wrestling coach at DelVal, Cantrell served as the assistant wrestling coach at the Naval Academy. “Steve will bring a tremendous strength of leadership and character to the role as athletic director,” said College President Dr. Joseph Brosnan. “He will play a key role in continuing to build on the success of the College’s athletic programs.”

Cantrell has served as an economics professor at both the Naval Academy and DelVal, and will continue to teach and coach in his new role. In his two years coaching wrestling, he has had an overall record of 19-14 and has had two Scholar All-Americans, four AllAmericans and eight national qualifiers. “I am honored and humbled to serve as the athletic director for an institution that I’ve grown to love already,” Cantrell said. “I’m excited about the potential and am going to work extremely hard to build on the legacy that Frank [Wolfgang] has created.” Cantrell replaced Wolfgang who left the College in August after a storied 45-year career as a former baseball and basketball coach and, for the past 26 years, athletic director. Cantrell retired from the United States Marine Corps as a lieutenant colonel after 25 years of service as a combat pilot.

DR. APRIL VARI NAMED NEW VICE PRESIDENT FOR STUDENT AFFAIRS Dr. April L. Vari, former senior student affairs officer at Dickinson College, began her tenure as the new vice president for student affairs at DelVal in July. At Dickinson, Dr. Vari served first as dean of students and then as the vice president for student development. “Dr. Vari brings a high level of expertise and leadership to our student affairs division,” said College President Dr. Joseph S. Brosnan. “From a candidate pool of more than 110 student affairs professionals, Dr. Vari’s credentials made her stand out. She has extensive accomplishments in creating and sustaining innovative student programs, and a deep understanding of the trends in higher education and how students are impacted.” Addressing the needs of students and continuing the progress and momentum achieved by retiring VPSA, John Brown, in supporting student success are Dr. Vari’s immediate goals. With the recent move of intercollegiate athletics and intramurals to the student affairs area, Dr. Vari will also work very closely with newly appointed Athletic Director Steve Cantrell. They will work together to more fully and intentionally integrate athletics into the College’s commitment to academic quality and to find ways to involve more studentathletes in the campus community and activities. “I am impressed and inspired by our students. I am enjoying learning about the unique interests and commitments that they bring to the campus,” said Dr. Vari. “We have many clubs and organizations that really support and extend students’ academic and professional interests and that’s exciting to see. Whether it’s through athletics, a club,

or some other kind of cocurricular experience, our students seem to find ways to translate their interests and passions into practice.” In her leadership role at Dickinson, Dr. Vari served as a senior officer of the college, developing and advancing the college’s strategic objectives. As the chief student affairs officer, she was responsible for overseeing 15 departments and functional areas including health services, intramurals and recreation, residence life, diversity initiatives and community service. “Dr. Vari is a woman with a mission and she is willing to do anything to get any job done,” said Jade Orth, president of the class of 2015. “In the short time she has been here so far, she has participated in many campus events and is more than willing to meet with any and all students. Dr. Vari is always willing to listen to any and all concerns and is eagerly seeking to make the students’ time here at DelVal the best it can be.” F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 19

John R. Rodgers Creates a New Endowed Scholarship at DelVal Hard-working dairy science students at Delaware Valley College will now have the opportunity to earn a new scholarship. John Reed Rodgers, the father of David Rodgers ’87, was so impressed with what he saw when he toured campus in April 2013, that he decided to invest in the future of the College. Rodgers has established a $50,000 endowed scholarship through his estate plans as part of the College’s Realizing the Vision capital campaign.

practices. He worked at Plum Bottom Farm in Belleville, Pa. for much of his career, on land his family has owned since 1755. His family has raised prize-winning Ayrshires, which have had an impact on the breed at a national level. “In my family, we all helped on the farm,” said Rodgers. “I’ve been involved with Ayrshires since 1951, and ultimately became president of the American Ayrshire Breeders’ Association.”

The John R. Rodgers Endowed Scholarship for Excellence in Dairy Science, will be open to students majoring in dairy science at DelVal with a GPA of 2.5 or higher. Students must also be gaining hands-on experience in the dairy industry, be actively involved in collegiate skill and leadership development opportunities, and demonstrate financial need. Rodgers contacted Russell Redding, dean of agriculture and environmental sciences, in April 2012 because he wanted to find out more about scholarships at the College and the dairy science program. As a friend of Redding’s and the parent of a food science alumnus, he stayed connected to the College, and wanted to see how he could help students.

He is an eighth-generation farmer who believes in leaving the land he uses better than when he found it by using innovative 20 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

“I met some nice people over there,” said Rodgers. “I liked the people. Many are coming over to see what we do here now.” Rodgers was also heavily involved in The Penn State Agricultural Council. He continues to be involved in farming by helping his daughter, Gay, as a consultant for her herd. His daughter runs a camp to teach young girls about dairy farming at Hameau Farm in Belleville, Pa. “They leave the camp with a greater understanding and appreciation for dairy farming,” said Rodgers, “which is her goal.” He is the proud parent of five children; two daughters and three sons. Through his role as a father, he visited campus a number of times.

“I appreciate the fact that they are endeavoring to help young people become grounded in real agriculture.”

“John has dedicated his life to improving agriculture – here at home and around the world,” said Dean Redding. “He knows firsthand the benefits of science, good stewardship and working as a team to improve a community and people’s lives. Having John endorse our progress and invest in the future of DelVal is very important and gratifying.”

times since that first visit.

He is a past president of the Pennsylvania Forage and Grassland Council and the American Forage and Grassland Council and a member of the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture.

Rodgers believes famers need to maintain a connection to their communities and to the land they farm. During his career, he gave back using his skills through work in Kazakhstan, in Central Asia. He helped bring Kazakh farmers to the U.S. to learn about farming practices, helped start educational programs, worked with farmers to start agriculture-based businesses, and helped veterinarians get equipment they needed to better care for their livestock. He first visited Kazakhstan in 1993 with an exchange program, and has been there 24

“I was always impressed with the way they did things,” said Rodgers. “It’s a small college and I liked that. I’ve always been aware of what they do, and maybe even more so how they do it. I appreciate the fact that they are endeavoring to help young people become grounded in real agriculture.” He knew Dean Redding through Penn State and through his position as a former Pennsylvania secretary of agriculture. He liked Dean Redding’s approach to agriculture and was pleased to see him join the College. Rodgers still lives on the family farm and helps his daughter with her herd. He wants to see dairy science students leave college with an appreciation for agriculture and make a contribution to the business aspect of farming. He recently met a young woman who bought one of his animals when she was just a high school student. “She even remembered the name of that Ayrshire,” said Rodgers. “Now she has her own well-known reputable Holstein herd. I was happy that she was involved in the business of farming. I find it satisfying to see students investing their lives in farming.”

DIVING INTO THEIR QUESTIONS DDE tends to build up in fat in the body and is rarely excreted, so, levels tend to increase over a lifetime. Studies with mice and hamsters have reported an increased incidence of liver tumors from oral exposure to DDE and it is classified as a Group B2 probable human carcinogen.

Students in the College’s Student Research course spent the semester exploring topics such as solar energy, perceptions of diversity, strategies for teaching, how horses learn, estrogen content in natural waters, and more at DelVal. In April, they presented their work on campus for peers, faculty members and other guests. The topics explored were as different as the students, which is the appeal of the course for a lot of undergraduates. Students choose their own topics and work on research related to the topic with the help of a faculty mentor. They design a research project with a question, present their results and take questions.

Barb Krier ’14, a counseling psychology student, presented “Making Diversity Work on Campus: A Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of Campus Culture.” She spent her semester examining attitudes toward diversity on campus with a team.

Joseph Capece ’14, an environmental science major, presents his research on solar power.

Bristol-Myers Squibb provides funding for the Student Research Course to help make the projects possible. Other students presented on a variety of topics such as: the effects of feline urinary diets, students’ perceptions of effective teaching strategies and techniques, and equine cognitive learning behavior.

Victoria Oravec ’13, a chemistry major, presents on estrogen content in natural waters.

The course is open to students from all majors. Students who participate gain experience that is valuable for graduate school, professional school or a career in academic or industry research. Joseph Capece ’14, an environmental science major, presented “New Dyes for Nanocrystalline Solar Cells.” He worked to see if he could increase efficiency of solar cells with new dyes. His goal was to synthesize an improved dye. Victoria Oravec ’13, a chemistry major, presented, “Estrogen Content in Natural Waters.” She spent her semester studying water samples from both Pennsylvania and Florida to see how levels of environmental estrogens compared. She found that the samples from all the locations in both Pennsylvania and Florida were above the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) limit for DDE, a chemical compound formed by the loss of hydrogen chloride from DDT, an insecticide.

Did you fall in love at DelVal? Are you married to your college sweetheart? We want to know! Tell us your DelVal love story and send us a picture of you and your sweetie. Submissions can be sent to Use “DelVal love story” in the subject line. We’ll share your stories on our website and on Facebook leading up to Valentine’s Day.

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Delaware Valley College selects Art Goon as vice president for enrollment management Art Goon, most recently the chief enrollment officer at Holy Family University, has been named as the new vice president for enrollment management. “Art’s more than 30 years of experience reflects the level of expertise, dedication and skill we were seeking. His strong background in recruitment will serve DelVal well as we move forward,” said College President Dr. Joseph S. Brosnan.

With demographic shifts in the marketplace, Goon’s immediate goals will be to implement an enrollment and financial aid strategy as the College moves toward university status. The plan will maximize net tuition revenue and create an optimal composition of a class to include all academic programs. Goon will also play a significant role in the continued implementation of the strategic plan.

“Delaware Valley College is clearly an institution with a broad, visionary and dynamic strategic plan,” Goon said. “I am particularly impressed with its historical commitment to experiential learning in preparing students to meet the challenges of our global society. I am excited about becoming part of such a high-performance campus and eager to advance the mission and vision of the institution.” Prior to his position at Holy Family, Goon served as the vice president of enrollment management at Felician College, where he led the College to new levels of success, increasing freshman, transfer and international enrollment. He was also responsible for enrollment services at the University of New Haven, Arcadia and Chestnut Hill College. In addition to his experience in the private sector, Goon has served public institutions, such as the State University of New York at New Paltz. Goon began his new position at DelVal on Monday, October 7.


by Paul Frenkel ’55

Frenkel’s “Life Reclaimed: Rural Transylvania, Nazi Camps, and the American Dream,” tells a story of courage and hope. It’s 1944 and 14-year-old Frenkel is living a happy life with his family in rural Hungary, when his life takes a drastic turn. Given no explanations, his family is rounded up by Nazis and taken to Auschwitz. His book takes the reader through his happy childhood, the four Nazi camps he was in as a teenager, the grief of losing family, his brave escape and his ultimate success in America.


Why stop gardening just because the summer is over? In this book, Ondra shares tips for creating gardens that move gracefully from season to season. The book also includes 10 plans for colorful, vibrant gardens and a garden care calendar. To learn more about the author and to check out some of her other books visit:

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by Jennifer Thorson ’97

In “Lunch in the Park,” a novel about love and family, Kate, a strong, independent young woman, takes care of everyone else around her until she discovers you don’t always have to take on the world on your own. Thorson has taken the reader’s experience to a new level with this novel. On her blog, readers can learn to make the foods that the characters eat in the story. Recipes like “Kate’s Black Bean Soup” and “Better than Coffee Shop Ginger Scones” are available at

I DID WHAT I HAD TO DO! by Dr. James Diamond ’61

Dr. Diamond’s memoir about serving in the Peace Corps with his wife, Betty, in Africa, may inspire you to answer your own call to serve. The couple helped people in Chad, a poor country in Africa, gain skills to help themselves. Dr. Diamond taught people there about agricultural practices to get them through the dry season, while his wife, Betty, taught skills like bread making. Both were forever changed by the experience.

STUDENTS IN ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGY CLASS “I was first forced into prostitution when I was 11 by a 28-year-old man. I am not an exception…,” wrote a 17-year-old girl in a letter featured by The Polaris Project, a leading organization in the global fight against human trafficking and modern-day slavery. She goes on to say, “I am 17 now, and my childhood memories aren’t of my family, going to middle school, or dancing at the prom. They are of making my own arrangements on Craigslist to be sold for sex, and answering as many ads as possible for fear of beatings and ice water baths.”

“We had a few speakers come in and discuss topics NOVA deals with and how to help in the community,” said Cristina Carosiello ’15, a counseling psychology major who helped lead the project. “We learned how to report issues and hold people accountable. Reporting is really important for fighting this issue.”

Delaware Valley College students in Dr. Allison Buskirk-Cohen’s Adolescent Psychology class spent the spring 2013 semester studying this problem. For their final project, they partnered with the Network of Victim Assistance (NOVA). NOVA counsels and empowers victims of sexual assault and other serious crimes in Bucks County and works to prevent and eliminate violence in society through advocacy, training, community education and prevention programs. The student-run project included three teams: education, volunteering and donations.

Volz interned with the District Attorney’s office in York County, Pa., over the summer. She decided to take advantage of a training program on trafficking through her internship because of the class project. Volz is considering pursuing a master’s degree in psychology and would like to eventually work to help adolescents.

Sex trafficking, when people are forced or coerced into the commercial sex trade against their will, is a problem in the U.S. and worldwide. The Polaris Project estimates that there are at least 100,000 children in the sex trade in the U.S. each year.

“It’s a topic that people need to be more aware of,” said Volz. “One of the speakers talked about an issue that happened in Philadelphia the day before she presented. That’s so close to us, people really need to realize this issue is a problem.”

Nicole Fournier ’15 and Sarah Stout ’14 volunteer at a thrift store that supports Network of Victim Assistance.

Carosiello wants to work in marriage and family therapy and is interested in how family support can help with this issue. She said that people often think of sexual exploitation as something that happens to other people, but that it does not discriminate by location. Erin Volz ’14, a criminal justice major, helped lead the team that brought the speakers to campus.

What is sex trafficking? Sex trafficking is when people are forced or coerced into the commercial sex trade against their will. Often people who are victims of trafficking are misled about opportunities, taken advantage of and controlled for the monetary gain of the perpetrator. Look for signs: employees who are not allowed to come and go freely from work or speak for themselves, employees living close by or in the same building as the employer, employees being transported in groups by their employer, nervousness when law enforcement is mentioned, unease about questions related to their backgrounds, physical signs of malnutrition, neglect or abuse. How to report a concern: Call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) at 1.888.373.7888 or contact your local police department.

Dr. Allison Buskirk-Cohen’s Adolescent Psychology class partnered with the Network of Victims Assistance (NOVA) on a project during the spring 2013 semester. The students worked with NOVA on education related to sex trafficking, held a clothing drive that collected more than 700 items for the organization, and volunteered in NOVA’s thrift store. From left: Shannon Barlow ’15, Sarah Stout ’14, and Cristina Carosiello ’15.

The class also volunteered and held a drive to support NOVA. Counseling psychology majors Sarah Stout ’14 and Shannon Barlow ’15 helped to lead the service part of the project. They organized a team from DelVal that volunteered for NOVA and also organized a clothing drive on campus to support the organization. “I’m so excited to see the students dedicating themselves to such a worthwhile cause; it truly captures the spirit of DelVal’s mission,” said Dr. Buskirk-Cohen. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 23

INTERNING with the


When Abree Murch ’14 was in kindergarten she could spell “paleontology.” To say she loved dinosaurs wouldn’t begin to cover her fascination with the ancient giants. “I was obsessed when I was very little,” said Murch, a Delaware Valley College biology major. “My parents still tell stories of me hauling my dinosaur books around the house as a child and being able to spell words they couldn’t pronounce. I think dinosaurs are so interesting because we don’t know that much about them for sure. There is still a lot that needs explaining. There’s nothing really similar to them alive today on that scale. And, it’s that scale of size that also fascinates me.” During summer 2013, she had the opportunity to revisit that interest. Murch was selected for the Smithsonian’s highly competitive Natural History Research Experiences (NHRE) program at the National Museum of Natural History. The program, which ran from May through August, selected just 18 students out of more than 550 applicants. Dr. Elizabeth Cottrell, who helps direct the internship program at the NHRE, said the selection committee looks for “a strong record of achievement and the potential to go on to be a leader in the natural sciences.” Each student is assigned a staff mentor and works with a curator or researcher on a project. Murch worked with the curator of Dinosauria, Dr. Matthew Carrano, in Washington, D.C., in the paleobiology department at the National Museum of Natural History. “Matt is awesome, he’s been really supportive,” said Murch of her mentor. “He made a lot of 24 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

Abree Murch ’14, a DelVal biology major, in front of the skull of a blue whale during a tour of the Smithsonian’s whale warehouse. Murch completed a Natural History Research Experience with the Smithsonian during summer 2013.

some of the answers to questions about the past can be found in unexpected places. organ“Sometimes it’s the smallest organ isms that can tell you the most about an ancient ecosystem or environment,” said Murch. For her project, she studied small, ancient amphibians from the Albanerpeton genus, which superficially look like salamanders, to help determine if the specimens were evidence of species that hasn’t been classified yet. “Albanerpetons don’t have any living descendants that are known,” said Murch. “They were some of the most abundant organisms during their time, which makes them pretty important in their ecosystems. They were also an important part of the food system and maybe even an indicator of the quality of the habitat.”

“The Smithsonian is a place I’ve always admired and the National Museum of Natural History is a pretty spectacular place.” time for me, which I really appreciate. And he helped me network with other scientists.” She said the staff there was really friendly and welcoming. “They were willing to take time to talk to me about graduate school or just to show me something cool in the collection,” said Murch. “If someone was doing a seminar I was always invited, even if it wasn’t related to what I was working on.” She said the internship taught her that

Murch examined specimens under a microscope and compared them to pictures and descriptions in existing scientific articles and journals. She recorded her observations into a character matrix, assigning a number to the presence or absence of a feature or bone and comparing across all the species. The end result of her project was a family tree generated by a computer program, which will help with classifying the ancient salamander-like creatures.

She said she is grateful to have been chosen for the opportunity to see the collections, collaborate with researchers, and to work at such

a high scientific level. “The Smithsonian is a place I’ve always admired and the National Museum of Natural History is a pretty spectacular place,” said Murch. After she graduates, she plans to further her education and work in research. Murch chose DelVal because of its small size and the emphasis on hands-on application of knowledge.

Murch overlooking the Missouri River while prospecting for new sites on a trip she took with her internship mentor (Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument, Mont.).

Steve Jabo (NMNH Fossil Lab) oversees as Abree Murch ‘14, applies a plaster cast to a specimen to prepare it for transport (Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument, Mont.).

“Having that small school interaction with professors has really been a bonus for me,” said Murch. “I don’t think I would have chosen anywhere else.” NHRE is a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Site and is funded by the

National Science Foundation (EAR-1062692). Murch blogged about her internship for the Huffington Post’s College section. To read her post visit:

Dr. Gina Wesley-Hunt, assistant professor of biology at Montgomery College, and Murch canoeing on the Missouri River on their way to base camp (Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument, Mont.). Murch traveled to Montana to look for potential dig sites as part of her Natural History Research Experience through the Smithsonian during summer 2013. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 25


MEN’S BASKETBALL WINS FREEDOM CHAMPIONSHIP FOR SECOND TIME IN LAST THREE YEARS The setting was Billera Hall on the DeSales University campus on a cool February afternoon. The match-up was for the Freedom Conference championship and the conference’s automatic berth to the NCAA Division III playoffs. It was also a rematch from the 2011 title tilt when DelVal used a big second half to run away from the Bulldogs for their first-ever men’s basketball conference championship. Both teams came in on highs, especially the Aggies as they had won 10 of their previous 11 games and set a school record for victories in a season (they finished with a 19-9 record). Playing on the road didn’t bother DelVal, especially since DeSales was just 45 minutes from Doylestown and that meant that a large group of fans, including a bus full of students, were there for the game. DelVal got off to a 14-6 start as Freedom Player of the Year

Men’s Basketball Coach Casey Stitzel cuts down the net.

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Jeremy Beckett had seven points, three rebounds and two blocks in the first eight-plus minutes. The Bulldogs came back to tie it up at 23-23 and then controlled the rest of the half to take a 33-28 lead at the break. DelVal shook that off in the second half and opened with a 14-5 run, including 10 points from Francis Arnold, to regain the advantage. Arnold then got his third foul and backcourt mate Zach Sly, the Freedom Rookie of the Year, got his fourth with 14:07 remaining and he had to come out of the game for a long stretch of time. DeSales tied the game at 44 a minute later and it could have slipped away right there. However, DelVal took control with a 12-4 run. The Bulldogs tried to get back in the game and got to within three with 3:29 to go. Both teams hit two from the foul line before the Aggies scored eight of the next 11 for another eight-point lead. DeSales never got back to within one possession again and when the final buzzer sounded, the group of DelVal students who made the trip joined the team on the Bulldogs’ homecourt to celebrate a conference championship and NCAA berth (they would fall at Virginia Wesleyan in the first round). Beckett, who later in the year would be named an AllAmerican, finished the game with 25 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks, and was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament. Two years ago, he was the “Robin” to DelVal’s “Batman” in All-American guard James Jones. This time, it was his squad and he was the first to climb the ladder to snip another twine of a championship net. After the rest of the team, managers and assis-

tant coaches followed, the last to go up the ladder was head coach Casey Stitzel. Five years ago, he took over a program that had struggled mightily for decades and had no championship karma to speak of. Now, with the net in one hand, the two-time Freedom Conference Coach of the Year raised two fingers on the other hand in the air for the celebratory photos. Delaware Valley College had two men’s basketball championships in the last three years. And this one may have been sweeter than the first.

DELVAL’S MAYLOR WINS INDOOR MAC TITLE, QUALIFIES FOR NCAAS IN OUTDOOR SEASON Alexis Maylor had a junior year to remember for the Delaware Valley College women’s track and field team. In February, she successfully defended her pentathlon title at the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) Indoor Championships as she racked up a total of 2,984 points. Then came the outdoor season in the spring. Maylor finished up just 30 points shy of her second straight MAC crown in the heptathlon. The next week, she went to Massachusetts to compete at the ECAC Championships and set a new school record (breaking her own mark from last year) with 4,435 points. That total was enough for Maylor to qualify for the NCAA Division III Championships for the

first time. At the NCAAs, which were held in Wisconsin, she finished in 18th place. Maylor was also recognized for her outstanding work in the classroom as she was named to the Philadelphia Inquirer Women’s Track and Field Academic All-Area Team.

DELVAL TO ADD FIVE NCAA DIVISION III SPORTS In June, the College announced that it was adding five NCAA Division III intercollegiate sports in: women’s golf, men’s lacrosse, women’s lacrosse, men’s tennis and women’s tennis. All five will begin competition starting with the 2014-15 season. DelVal analyzed how adding intercollegiate sports would enhance enrollment at the school and discussions were held by the admission office, the athletic department and president’s cabinet. A five-year plan was developed for start-up costs, potential new student-athlete enrollees, yearly operation costs, overall yearly net revenues and return on investment. The recommendation was then made and approved to add the five sports. “This decision reflects the continued commitment to athletics from the College,” Athletic Director Steve Cantrell said. “I believe that it not only strengthens the athletic department, but it strengthens the institution as a whole through enrollment, academic success and student life.”

WRESTLERS HAVE ANOTHER STELLAR SEASON A 9-3 record, a second-place finish at the East Regionals, a top 30 finish at the NCAA Championships, five national qualifiers, two All-Americans and a Scholar All-American. A year that would go in the history books as the best ever for some programs, but it was just your typical season for second-year head coach Steve Cantrell and his DelVal wrestling team. In fact, the two All-Americans upped the total to 71 in program history. It also marked the 18th consecutive year that the Aggies put at least one wrestler on the national podium for a top eight finish. Sophomore 197-pounder Aaron Karns reached the NCAA semifinals without having given up a point in his first two matches. He dropped an overtime heartbreaker in the semis, but still went on to finish in sixth place for his first All-America honor. Karns, who qualified for nationals as a freshman in 2011, had a 31-6 record on the year. Emmanuel Ajagbe had quite a senior season as he moved all the way to the number one spot in the country for the 149-pound weight class midway through the season. He returned to the NCAAs for the first time since he was a freshman in 2010 and was seeded fourth for the tournament. Ajagbe went on to place eighth for his first All-America and finished the year with a 33-6 mark. Charlie Frankel (125 pounds), Dale Fava (141 pounds) and Dallas Winston (174 pounds) also made the trip to Iowa and competed at the national championships. For Frankel (a 2012 All-American) and Fava, it marked the second time that each qualified for the NCAAs, while Winston, a freshman, made his first journey to nationals. After the season, Frankel was named a Scholar AllAmerican by the National Wrestling Coaches Association, and for the third straight year that DelVal had a wrestler earn the distinction.

The major expansion will increase the number of intercollegiate offerings at DelVal to 22 with 11 men’s sports and 11 women’s sports. DelVal will have the third-highest sponsorship total among the 18 institutions that comprise the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC). DelVal has already hired its full-time coaches in both men’s and women’s lacrosse. On the men’s side, Gary Mercadante was named head coach after spending the last four years at Ursinus College. For the women, Ramona Walters was named the first coach in program history. She has six years of Division III experience, including a stint as head coach at North Carolina Wesleyan College. F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 27

DELVAL DEDICATES A NEW, MULTI-SPORT ARTIFICIAL TURF FIELD Trustee Robert Lipinski ’80 made the renovation of the field possible through a seven-figure lead gift.

Delaware Valley College has converted the Robert A. Lipinski Field at James Work Memorial Stadium from grass to a multi-sport artificial turf field, which is allowing the College to add new sports and better serve its students. The College dedicated the new turf field at the first home football game of the season on Saturday, Sept. 7. During the ceremony, DelVal honored Lipinski for making the renovation possible. Lipinski, whose name was on the field from a previous gift, made a seven-figure lead gift to the College’s Realizing the Vision capital campaign to fund the renovation. “It makes me so proud to be part of Realizing the Vision and moving this College forward,” said Lipinski at the ceremony. “Let’s break in this field right and bring home a win.” The football team performed well during its first game on the new field, beating Rowan University 35-27. The College decided to upgrade athletic facilities because sports are an important part of the experience for nearly 40 percent of DelVal students. “The field is going to improve the experience for all of our students and will be used by intramurals and for recreation for students, as well as staff and faculty,” said DelVal Athletic Director Steve Cantrell. “It’s about much more than a nice, new playing surface; the turf field is going to help us with attracting and retaining top students.” The new field includes a three-lane recreational jogging track and can be used for several sports including: men’s and women’s soccer, field hockey and football, plus intramurals.

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Cantrell said the project has addressed the needs of existing sports and is allowing the College to add new sports. “The sport of field hockey has moved almost exclusively to turf, and we were facing scheduling problems without having a turf field,” said Cantrell. “This field gives those studentathletes a place to compete and practice. We’re also adding men’s and women’s lacrosse for the 2014-15 season, which we couldn’t have done without the artificial turf.” The College worked with architecture and

engineering firm Taylor Wiseman & Taylor of Chalfont, Pa., and Clark Companies of New York on the project. Clark Companies has installed fields for clients such as Princeton University, the United States Military Academy at West Point, and World Cup and Olympic venues. The field is just one part of the College’s plan to upgrade athletic facilities. Future phases include improvements such as: renovating the stadium with better seating and media spaces, and a second turf field on the other side of the SEPTA line with an eight-lane NCAA-regulation track.



Men’s Basketball 19-9 11-3 (2nd/8 teams) * Freedom Conference Champions, NCAA Division III Playoff Qualifier Women’s Basketball


5-9 (6th/8 teams)

Men’s Indoor Track

invitationals only

8th/10 teams

Women’s Indoor Track

invitationals only

10th/10 teams

Wrestling 9-3 * Tied for 28th Place At NCAA Division III Championships

2nd/17 teams (East Regional)



6-15 (8th/8 teams)



4th/8 teams



0-14 (8th/8 teams)

Men’s Outdoor Track

invitationals only

12th/12 teams

Women’s Outdoor Track

invitationals only

10th/10 teams

D 1960s Lee Thompson ’64 was elected as an emeritus member of the Delaware Valley College Alumni Association. He spent more than 20 years filling many positions as an alumni committee officer, director of the Alumni Association and six years as an alumni representative on the College’s Board of Trustees. DelVal Hall of Famer Lou Coppens ’65, won a total of five gold medals this year for running. He earned two gold medals in the USA Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships in March. One in the 3,000-meter run and the other in the mile run. Then on Aug. 4, he earned three more gold medals at the State Games of America track meet in Harrisburg. His medals were in the 1500-meter, 800-meter and 5000-meter runs. They are considered national championships for the over-70 age group. Bill (Liam) Mitchell ’67 just finished shooting two commercials including: a commercial for Verizon FiOS where he plays a football coach and another for The New England Credit Union, where he plays a corrupt banker. He also starred in a short film called “Libby,” with Emmy Award nominee Colleen Zenk. Mitchell also had workshops in New York for his play “Prairie Coteau,” which won Best Play at The Last Frontier Theatre Conference and participated in readings of new plays in New York. Henry Wetzel ’67 retired from St. Davids Golf Club in Wayne, Pa., in January

2013. He was the golf course superintendent there from 1976 to 2012.

1970s James Spindler ’79 graduated from St. Leo University in St. Leo, Fla., with a master’s in theology.  In June 2012, he was ordained by the bishop of Orlando as a permanent deacon in the Roman Catholic Church, and assigned to serve at the Church of the Resurrection in Lakeland, Fla. He also celebrated 25 years of marriage to his wife, Melissa, in February. They celebrated with their three daughters as well as family and friends.

1980s Linda A. Detwiler, DVM, ’80 has been named chairperson of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies Advisory Committee. John Mendozza ’83, president of Morning Dew Tropical Plants, was inducted into the Plantscape Industry Alliance Hall of Fame in Las Vegas in August. John currently serves on the board of directors for both the National Foliage Foundation and the Tropical Plant Industry Exhibition. Carl (Chip) Zerr ’85 was named director of international food safety and quality assurance for the Rastelli Foods Group. RFG is a primary supplier for the U.S. military, as well as several national chain restaurants such as TGI Friday’s,

Left to right: Plantscape Industry Alliance Chair Tim Konig, Michelle Mendozza and John Mendozza ’83

Chili’s, Ruby Tuesday’s and Steak-nShake.

1990s Lou Caggiano ’99, owner of LCC LANDSCAPES of Fairfield, N.J., was selected to provide landscape design and installation services for the new HGTV show “Cousins Undercover.” His company’s work will be featured on three of the six shows in the fall season of the show. Show hosts, Anthony Carrino and John Colaneri, provide home renovations for local heroes and deserving families.

Lou Caggiano ’99 (center) with “Cousins Undercover” Hosts Anthony (left) and John (right).

Joshua Mangle ’98 is serving as an assistant wrestling coach for the Division III Wrestling Cultural Exchange wrestling team that went 2-2, and won the Kalchev International Tournament. He was also continued on next page

Linda and Jerry Mulnick ’61, in Amsterdam on one of the bridges crossing the Singel Canal; visiting Machu Picchu, “The Lost City of the Incas”; and with native Peruvian women and their animals at Cuzco’s gateway to the Sacred Valley.

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selected to attend the 2013 National Wrestling Coaches Association’s Leadership Academy.

2000s Christi (Corl) Smith ’00 was hired as the director for the criminal justice program at Rosemont College. Prior to that, she worked as an adjunct faculty member at DelVal from 2002 to 2008 and then 2010 to 2013. She is still employed as a Bucks County Domestic Violence Investigator. Tony D’Amico ’00 and Joe D’Amico ’02, of To-Jo Mushrooms, appeared on the reality show “Farm Kings” on the GAC channel in April. They are fourthgeneration mushroom farmers. The show contacted them to do a farm visit to see if it would be feasible for them to grow mushrooms on their farm in Butler County, Pa. Christina Fortin-Maurer ’09 was hired as a veterinary technician supervisor at Good Hope Animal Hospital in Mechanicsburg, Pa. She joins two other DelVal alumni at the hospital.

Michelle Drains ’09 graduated from the University of Bridgeport in Coastal Connecticut with a doctorate in naturopathic medicine and a master’s in human nutrition. She hopes to eventually establish her own practice in Concord, N.C.

Calif., to visit the California Wolf Center, San Diego Zoo and various other zoological institutions.

Amira Moore ’12 is enrolled in a physician’s assistant program at The Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Ralph Pinkus ’37 died Sept. 1. He studied ornamental horticulture and environmental design at the College. His horticultural career started at the New York Botanical Garden, where he was in charge of the tree and shrub collection. During World War II, he managed a quinine plantation for Merck in Guatemala after the Japanese captured Java, the main source of quinine. The quinine was used to treat malaria. He moved to Dallas in 1950, where he shared his love of plants with the local residents. He helped found the Dallas Arboretum. He also founded North Haven Gardens in 1951, and Tawakoni Plant Farm. He helped found Associated Landscape Contractors of America (ALCA), the Texas Israel Exchange (TIE) and maintained a strong commitment to supporting horticultural relations with Israel. During his career, he introduced many new plants to both Israel and Dallas. He was an Eagle Scout, and scouting was a key influence in his life. He

Steve Dombroskie ’08 married Erin Fitzgerald on Oct. 17 in Baltimore, Md. The couple met at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore where both are full-time animal keepers. For their honeymoon, they traveled to San Diego,

Jared and Elizabeth (Hart) Hinkel ‘06 are pleased to announce the birth of their first child, Luke Warren. Luke was born on August 14, 2012. Bethany (Justice) Badesso ’05 and her husband, Gabe, had their first child July 8. Jackson Gabriel Badesso was born at 1:20 a.m., weighing 9 pounds 12 ounces and measuring 22 inches. He was also welcomed by proud uncle Dylan Badesso ’09.

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Craig Dieffenbach ’02 and Stacy Dieffenbach ’02 had a baby boy, Owen Robert, on April 1.

served as scoutmaster of Troop 729 in Dallas. He was a teacher and mentor to many. He also learned all he could from everyone he met, and acted as a conduit of business and horticultural knowledge to many. He is survived by his wife, Muriel Vivian Pinkus, sons David Ralph Pinkus (Carol Phyllis Pinkus) and Jonathon Aaron Pinkus (Lillian Rabinowitz Pinkus), daughter Tamar Michelle Horn (Kenneth Robert Horn), and grandchildren Justin Grant Pinkus, Hunter Tex Horn, Hudsyn Shay Horn, Jared Ben Pinkus and Aaron Michael Pinkus.

William G. Lutterer ’42, of Cape Coral, Fla., passed away March 6. He moved to Cape Coral from Dublin, Pa. Lutterer graduated from SellersvillePerkasie High School. He studied dairy science at Delaware Valley College. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church of Deep Run, Perkasie, the Dublin Volunteer Fire Department, the Bucks County Police Association and the Sellersville Moose. The husband of the late Mary A. (Crouthamel) Lutterer, who died in 2011, he is survived by daughter, Carolyn S. (John) Ziemer; son William G. (Bernadette) Lutterer Jr.; grandchildren, Brian G. Ziemer, Matthew J. (Melissa) Ziemer, Stacey A. Ziemer, Kimberly (Mike) Panasuck and Kristine Lutterer; and great-grandsons Anthony W. and Landon M. Ziemer.

Philip Hoffman ’46 passed away Oct. 21 at age 87. He was an animal husbandry major and met his wife, Ruth Leese Hoffman, at a school dance in 1944. They were married 50 years before

By Andrea Strain Nicole Strain ’06, a large animal science alumnus, found out she had leukemia after getting some routine blood work. She went right from her student teaching job to the emergency room, where she was admitted. Her mother wrote to Horizons to share her courageous daughter’s story of overcoming this devastating news. After graduation, Nicole got accepted into a teaching program at Rowan University and got her biology teaching degree after completing a two-year program. On Dec. 2, 2009, when she was student teaching, and 12 days away from completing her final semester, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). After getting routine blood work done the day before, Nicole’s doctor called to tell her to go to the emergency room immediately. Nicole was teaching when she got the phone call and was devastated. We went to the emergency room and waited hours to be told she had ALL and would have to be admitted. They started Nicole on her first session of chemotherapy and she was in the hospital for five weeks. Her first session of chemotherapy went well, but she had a setback from one of the tests that put her in a wheelchair for months. As her hair was falling out, she decided to shave her head. We made trips daily back and forth to hospital for years. At this time, Nicole has to go back every two months and is cancer free! Nicole is a participating in studies on ALL in young adults to help other people. In October 2012, she married Billy Spirit. He had been dating Nicole before she got sick and has been by her side every day through the good times and bad. They had a beautiful wedding on my parent’s farm in South Jersey and their reception at the Red Pine Inn in Glassboro, N.J. Nicole finished her student teaching and earned an award from Rowan University while undergoing chemo. She is teaching biology at Shawnee High School in Medford, N.J., where she oversees the Animal Welfare and Biology clubs. Nicole lives life to the fullest, exercises daily and believes that is the key to staying healthy. She also loves animals and has chickens, dogs and cats. She just got two goats and hopes to get a couple calves and eventually a horse to enjoy on our farm. She is growing her own vegetables and hopes to have an organic farm. Nicole learned many life lessons while at DelVal. This has given her the foundation she has to build upon today. I wanted to share this story with all of DelVal’s alumni for a long time.

continued on next page F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 31

she passed away in 1998. Hoffman was a proud alumnus and even showed his grandchildren the new dairy in the ’90s. He was the beloved father of Sandy, Randye and Cyndee.

Gail (Hart), wife of John Karahuta; daughter-inlaw, Eva (Watt) Hart; two sisters Miriam O. Peffley and Helen L. Hart; seven grandchildren, Jennifer Hart, Elizabeth Hart, Taylor Hart, Colleen Harold C. Hart ’47, of Berks Snyder, Heather Mast, County, Pa., passed away on Erin Karahuta andEvan Aug. 19 at age 91. He studied Karahuta; and four ornamental horticulture and Philip Hoffman ’46 great-grandchildren. He environmental design at the was predeceased by a son, College. David Lee Hart, and a brother, Orville Hart. He was an ornamental nursery grower and co- Glen G. Wrigley ’56, known to family and owner of The Buddies Nursery since 1947. A friends as “Wrigley,” passed away on May 23. veteran of WWII, he served in the U.S. Army He studied animal science at the College and Air Corps. He was a member of Harmony also played football as a student. He was a resiUnited Methodist Church. dent of Perkasie, Pa. He traveled the world and enjoyed life. His degree in animal husbandry set the foundation for his career with Merck, as an animal colony manager and took him to the wilds of Africa and India in search of primates He is survived by his son, Glenn G., for Merck’s measles vaccine program. Years husband of Nancy Hart; his daughter, later when he bought Buckshire Corporation, he travelled to France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland, Japan, After seeing the story on Alex’s Lemonade Indonesia, Myanmar, Stand in the last issue, Steve Bereznai ’75, the Philippines and who started at DelVal and transferred to the lastly, in 2009, to University of North Carolina, wrote to Horizons to China. Wrigley share some more information about the fire company was a country boy Hart was the widower of Virginia Arlene (Sell) Hart and the son of the late Elmer and Pauline A. (Schuez) Hart.


in the story.

Bereznai and Marty Shurr ’82, who also attended DelVal, are members of the Woolwich Fire Company in Swedesboro, N.J., where Mario Carpino, a boy who is battling cancer, is an honorary member. The Carpino family held their annual fundraiser at the fire company in June, which both Bereznai and Shurr were able to be a part of. Neither Bereznai or Shurr graduated from DelVal, but both enjoyed their time at the College and give their best to their former classmates and friends. 32 H O R I Z O N S | F A L L 2 0 1 3

From left: Steve Bereznai ’75 (transferred to the University of North Carolina), Anna Carpino, Lorenzo Carpino, Mario Carpino, Marty Shurr and Pat Carpino.

at heart. He loved his horses, his dogs, hunting, rodeos and his truck. He leaves behind his wife Sharon, his daughter Jennifer, his grandson J.W., and his friends. Manuel Rodriguez ’67 passed away on May 28, 2012. He studied animal science at the College. He enjoyed coming to A-Day when he was able to and was living in Florida before he passed away. His roommate for all four years, Chung C. Huang ’67 wrote to Horizons to share the news of his passing and described him as a “funny guy who would help anyone out” and a “great guy and a great roommate.” He said he loved to dance, was kind and very social. Rodriguez is survived by his wife, Jannett, and their children. Theodore R. Rounsaville ’69, of Groton, N.Y., died of cancer June 9 at age 66. He was born in Clinton, N.J. and was the son of the late Theodore Linden Rounsaville and Georgina Edna Queen Rounsaville. Rounsaville grew up on a large dairy farm and had a great love for all animals and nature. He earned his B.S. in animal science from DelVal and his M.S. and Ph.D. at Cornell University. He spent 18 months in Canada at the University of Guelph, working to develop new techniques of evaluating swine for improved production. He returned to Cornell’s Department of Animal Science in 1977 to manage all aspects of microcomputer use in the department. He also supported the efforts of Cornell Cooperative Extension and worked with the 4-H group for 25 years. He retired in 2009 after 32 years of service. He enjoyed family camping trips, RV travel with the Seneca Sams club, collecting tin toys and cow creamers, attending concerts and especially involving his grandchildren in his hobbies. He is survived by his loving wife since 1986, Lynnette Diane Wickham Rounsaville, his

son, Michael (Beth Ann) Wickham, as well as his grandchildren, Jessica Mae and Joshua Daniel Wickham. He is also survived by his siblings, Ruth (Bernie), June (Fred), George (Betty), and James (Pam) and in-laws, Audrey Rounsaville, Fredrick (Sharon) Wickham and Jacqueline (Edward) Pellien, as well as several nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his brother, Frederick Wayne Rounsaville. Jay R. Schulmann ’69 died April 5. He was the husband of Alice Maloney. James M. Smith ’70, of Collingswood, N.J., died May 8 at the age of 66. He studied business administration at the College. He was a football star in high school and record-setting quarterback at DelVal. Smith taught marketing for 32 years at Collingswood, Rumson-Fair-Haven and Vineland high schools. He coached both football and track and created school “stores,” where students worked and shopped. In his later years, he became the jobs-to-career coordinator, and wrote $2 million worth of grants for low-income students and students with disabilities. Smith is survived by his wife, Kathryn; children Jacquelyn (Tony) Casadei, Andrew (Tanya) and Jillian (Erick) Keller; grandchildren Lindsay, John, Nicole, Jake, Kaleb, Tristan, Ravella, Alden and Jamison; and brothers Joseph and Jeffrey (Gail), and many other family members and friends. Fred C. Harteis ’71 died June 1. He studied dairy science at the College. He grew up one of 14 children in the small town of Ebensburg, Pa. He graduated from Bishop Carroll High School, where he excelled in athletics, academics and 4-H. After graduating from DelVal, he earned his master’s degree from Penn State University. He is survived by his wife, Linda, and his children Tonya, Freddy and Annie, his brothers Jim Harteis ’65 and Jerry Harteis ’68 and his grandchildren. He was a talented and avid hunter and marksman, he liked to travel,

and he enjoyed giving back to his community and helping others.

Houston, Texas and his two nephews, David and Michael Gehris.

Charles Volpe ’72 passed away in December 2012. He was an agronomy and environmental science major at DelVal, and was a member of the Agronomy Club as a student. Volpe was the beloved husband of Jane Volpe, son of Shirley and the late Arthur Volpe, father of Kathleen Marie Volpe, Christine Nicole Volpe-Fischer and her husband, Mathew C. Fischer and Aubrey Michelle Volpe-Tester and her husband Justin D. Tester; grandfather of Magdalene Grace Fischer, Matthew Christopher Fischer, Jr. and Ruby Jane Tester. He is also survived by his four brothers, Arthur, Michael, Thomas and Frank.

Michael E. Morris ’90, of Elizabethtown, Pa., died July 16. He studied animal science at the College. He was born in York, Pa. and graduated from North Harford High School before earning his degree in animal science from Delaware Valley College. He also earned a graduate degree from Virginia Tech. Morris was a clerk with Manheim Auto Auction and a ringman with ABC Auto Auction. He was a member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church and a former member of Fawn United Methodist Church. He was also a longtime 4-H member as well as a 4-H All Star. Surviving are his wife Karen S. (Yeagley) Morris; his mother Carolyn (Duncan) Morris of Norrisville, Md.; his sister Susan M. Birchfield and her husband Larry of Norrisville, Md.; a nephew Jacob Birchfield; two nieces Bethany Birchfield and Julia Birchfield; his mother-in-law Carol Yeagley of Elizabethtown; his father-in-law Harold S. Yeagley of Calhoun, Ky.; and his loving golden retriever Duke. He was preceded in death by his father Donald E. Morris.

Jesse B. Gehris ’77, of Hatfield, Pa., passed away on Feb. 11 at age 73. He studied business administration at DelVal. He was the companion of Valentin Figueora, Jr., for 41 years. Gehris was born in Sellersville, Pa., to the late Russell Roland Gehris and the late Beulah Irene (Wasser) Gehris. He graduated from Souderton High School in 1958 and served in the U.S. Army from 1964 through1966. In addition to his degree from DelVal, he also had a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Penn State University. He was employed as a Hydraulics Engineer for the former Lexco Engineering & Manufacturing Company for 25 years. Gehris was an accomplished artist, enjoyed traveling both nationally and internationally. He loved dining out and entertaining guests at his house. Gehris enjoyed having breakfast at Towne Restaurant every morning with his companion. He loved architecture and enjoyed building and designing his own home. He was a member of New Goshenhoppen Reformed Church, of East Greenville, Pa.. In addition to his companion, he is survived by his brother, Russell Gehris, Jr. (Nancy) of

Frank A. Canalichio III ’95 died of cancer June 19 at 41. Canalichio studied food science at the College. He last worked for the USPS, before he was diagnosed. He was an avid “Star Wars” fan and had an extensive collection “Star Wars” memorabilia. He also followed the Philadelphia Flyers and Eagles faithfully. He is survived by his mother, La Verna (Wagner) and father, Frank Jr.; his sister, Annette Worthington and her husband, Stephen; a nephew, Aaron and niece, Rebecca; his fiancé, Christina Geserick, and her children, Christopher and Jenna; his uncle, Joseph Canalichio (Cynthia Sue); his aunt, Anna McMichen; and nine cousins. James L. McGee III ’06 died May 18 in Concord, Mass., at age 59. He grew up in Bristol, and was the son of the late James and Mary McGee. He earned his B.A. in English at DelVal. McGee lived for many years in continued on next page F A L L 2 0 1 3 | H O R I Z O N S 33

Doylestown before moving to Massachusetts two years ago. A talented writer and musician, he had a love of literature, poetry, music, philosophy and reading.

three sports Emmys. MLB Network won Outstanding Studio Show-Daily, Outstanding Sports Personality-Sports Reporter, and Outstanding Graphic Design.

He is survived by his brother, Michael McGee; his sisters, Karen Blocher, Patricia Cellini, Eileen McGee, Denise Stroebel, Regina McGee Cochran and Ann McGee, as well as his uncle and aunt, Charles and Joan McGee, and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

College Community Deaths

College Community News Tony Petitti, a member of the President’s Advisory Council at the College, and president and chief executive officer of MLB Network has some good news! His company won

Karen Krzyzkowski (known to DelVal as Karen Kay) passed away Aug. 27. She started at the College in 1987 as assistant director of Act 101, and continued until this past May when she retired from the College as Director of Student Support Services. She worked to help students cope with any issues they had and influenced many students. She is remembered for her caring support and dedication to the College’s students.

She loved the beach, nature and the arts and spending time with her family and friends. She is survived by her husband, Robert; her sons Robert, and his wife Amber, and Andrew; her brother, Frank, and his wife, Eileen. Ronald R. Thoma, a long-time College trustee, died March 19. Thoma was employed by Crown Cork & Seal, a packaging firm in Philadelphia, for 46 years. He retired from the company as senior vice president in 2000. In addition to his service to the College, her served for 20 years on the board of Aria Health. He is survived by his wife, Mary, son, Ronald E.; daughters Mary Ellen Bradley, Ann Gensbauer, Karen, and Patty Curran; and eight grandchildren.

Thank you Dr. Linda Detwiler ’80, for helping to bring Dr. Temple Grandin, animal welfare and behavior expert and autism advocate to campus Oct. 2-3. Dr. Grandin gave a sold-out public lecture on autism Oct. 2 and spent Oct. 3 visiting with Delaware Valley College students. She spoke about animal welfare and behavior the morning of Oct. 3 and then, visited with student leaders and faculty and even stopped into one of our classes. The experience gave students in our animal science, counseling psychology and secondary education programs a chance to interact with one of the people they have read about.

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Did you know?

Thanks to the Gemmill family, the College now owns a document older than the Declaration of Independence. The new addition, a deed to the College’s 398-acre Gemmill Farm, even includes the original signature of William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania.

We were thrilled to hear from alumni who shared memories of Ernest Purnell, a college employee who knew our founder. Purnell passed away at 93 in 1988 after a long career with DelVal. To the Editors: …I saw Ernest daily and often, starting in 1948 and then, after graduation because I stayed and worked in Doylestown. The following is what you would see when meeting Ernest Purnell and each time you saw him: 1. The broadest of smiles and a very infectious one. 2. A wonderful, warm, hearty laugh. 3. In all my years, I always saw him in a jacket, tie, dress shirt and cap hat and dress shoes.

Doug Christie ’67 managed the farm before it was donated to the College and is now managing the land for DelVal. He found the document in a building on the property and brought it to the main campus. “William Penn isn’t signing his name to a lot any more,” joked Christie. “I figured I had better get it over to the archives.” Christie said Helen Gemmill was the family historian and was very active in the Bucks County Historical Society. She was the person who tracked down the original deed to the farm. Do you have a favorite piece of college history? Tell us about it at Or, if you have items you would like to donate to our archives, contact

4. When you left Ernest after a talk, your spirits were always so lifted. 5. When I was a 19-year-old freshman kid from Brooklyn, N.Y. and had never been away from home, Ernest would take time to talk with me and direct me. I know I was richer for having Ernest Purnell as a friend for the years I knew him. Thank you so much for bringing Ernest Purnell back to my life... With respect and appreciation, Frankie La Rosa ’52

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700 E. Butler Ave. Doylestown, PA 18901

Change Service Requested

Help put tomorrow’s alumni on the path to success! You can help DelVal students reach their professional goals. Do you have research, internships, community service or other opportunities for DelVal students? Contact the Center for Student Professional Development (CSPD) at or at 215.489.2448. Kayla Romberger ’15, Kelsey Zook ’15 and College Trustee Emily Keggan ’01 connecting at Ag Progress Days. Zook worked for Keggan this summer at Nationwide Agribusiness, and the internship was a terrific experience for both of them!

Connect on LinkedIn through the Delaware Valley College Alumni & Student Mentoring / Networking Group.

Horizons - Fall 2013  
Horizons - Fall 2013  

Fall 2013 Horizons, the magazine of Delaware Valley College