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10 Soldiers Among Us | 14 From Our Experts | 20 Abroad in Italy

President’s Message

Summer 2010



o matter how many times I hear the story of Catherine McAuley’s founding of the House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland, I am overwhelmed by the realization that one person can truly make a difference. Granted, it often “takes a village” to carry plans to fruition; nevertheless, the bold and risky actions of Catherine McAuley almost two centuries ago have led to promises made and promises fulfilled at Gwynedd-Mercy College. This issue of Today is filled with pictures and stories connoting the great promise of education for all our students. Over the next many months, the College will be joining with the Mercy community of greater-Philadelphia to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Mercy presence in our area. Since their earliest days in Philadelphia (and before), the Sisters and their Mercy colleagues have promised to provide a relevant education to those in need. Catherine welcomed women from the streets of Dublin and promised a practical education that would provide skills for self sufficiency. Today, the College’s Center for Lifelong Learning provides accelerated degree programs for working adults and promises to provide graduates with the knowledge, skills and attitudes essential for success in a world very different from nineteenth century Dublin. Promises come in many shapes and sizes but each is a pledge or vow that something will happen or something will be done. There are big promises like wedding vows or mortgage signings and little promises like, “I promise to cut the grass this weekend.” When I was visiting my grandchildren in Chicago recently, my grandson, Quinn, introduced me to a new type of promise, the “pinky swear.” Evidently, if we lock our pinky fingers and simultaneously agree that this event is a “pinky swear,” we are committed to making our agreement happen. In this case, it was a promise that we would play Go Fish later that evening. In June, the College’s Board of Trustees approved a new strategic plan, Focus on Excellence 2010-2015. Our plan anticipates that that our graduates will be well-prepared to live responsible, productive and creative lives in a dramatically changing world – prepared for productive careers, and for fruitful lives, as well. Our Catholic and Mercy higher education community promises to prepare students with those habits of mind and heart that will enable them to meet the great challenges of the day and to assist them in their quest for truth and knowledge. Whether the promises are big or small, they are intended to be kept. At GMC, we acknowledge that we have “promises to keep” and recognize that the valued generosity of our alumni, friends and benefactors allows us to work more productively every year to fulfill the promise of a GMC education. Every year at graduation, I am privileged to shake the hand of each graduate who crosses the stage. This year we had nearly 800 graduates. My handshake is a “pinky swear” about promises made and promises fulfilled.

Kathleen Owens, PhD President


Contents Gwynedd-Mercy College Today is published twice a year for the alumni and friends of the College. Your comments and suggestions are welcome.

Soldiers Among Us 10 GMC experiences major increase in military personnel returning to school

Gerald T. McLaughlin Vice President for Institutional Advancement

From Our Experts In…Health Care 14

Charlene DiSarlo Director of Public Relations & Marketing Editor: Megan Gilmore

Benvenuti a Brescia! 20


Students travel to Brescia, Italy, for the College’s first-ever study abroad program

Assistant Editor: Meghan Decker Creative Director and Production Manager: Donna Smyrl


Contributors: Meghan Decker Charlene DiSarlo Megan Gilmore Nicole Paleologus

President’s Message

Design: Kim Austin Graphic Design Photography: Shannon Bruno Megan Gilmore Linda Johnson Hunter Martin Mattia Masnari Chris Panter Jim Roese Donna Smyrl

Campus News




Alumni Profiles Down to a Science Dr. Margaret McLaughlin-Drubin ’97


In it Together Brian Turner ’10 and Tara Turner ’10 Class Notes

On the Cover: Students studying in Brescia, Italy, appear in the Giornale di Brescia on May 27, 2010 during their visit to an agricultural school.

Inside Cover

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A YOUNG CADET FIRST STUDENT’S SEMESTER IN THE POLICE ACADEMY manda Pfister is the first student at Gwynedd-Mercy College to enroll and graduate from the police academy before completing her degree in criminal justice.


She was able to do so because the College arranged its curriculum to allow students interested in law enforcement to save 15 credits (five elective courses), and use those credits toward the Municipal Police Academy of Montgomery County during their last semester. In doing so, the tuition cost for the police academy is incorporated into Gwynedd-Mercy College’s tuition. Since Pfister is the first student to be able to take advantage of this benefit, she closely observed how she measured up to the rest of the police academy students. “I feel like I have more of an edge than the other students because I’ve taken classes more recently,” Pfister says, even noting that she has previously learned some of the academy’s curriculum. Being able to attend the police academy while still in school has given Pfister confidence in herself, and has ultimately confirmed that she is pursuing the right field for her career. As a cadet, Pfister spent every day, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., learning about the field of

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law enforcement. She was trained on the search and seizure procedure and how to shoot targets on a gun range. She also completed a week-long emergency vehicle operator course. “We went through obstacle courses at high speeds and learned how to handle the car when there would be an obstruction or when we would have to brake around an object,” Pfister says. Pfister graduated from the police academy in July. Now, she is focused both on completing the last few courses at Gwynedd-Mercy College to earn a degree in criminal justice and looking for a job. Because she took advantage of this opportunity, the hiring process for Pfister to become a police officer upon graduation is accelerated. Police departments, especially in light of the economy, are more likely to hire someone who has already graduated from the police academy than to front the bill to send a new hire, explains Program Director Walt Zdunowski. “Many colleges want to implement this structure for their students,” he says. ❂

Above: Amanda Pfister in her police academy uniform. Left: Pfister is being trained on felony car stops. They used paintball guns to simulate real weapons. Below: Pfister’s police academy class stands in formation as the flag is drawn up. This is the class’ routine every morning.


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WHAT’S IN A NAME? “Mercy” is our middle name, but sometimes it’s difficult to explain the sense of mercy that resonates throughout the college community. For student speaker Jed Brensinger, it wasn’t a problem. Brensinger, who earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology during Commencement, said to his fellow graduates, “The small acts of professors, students and organizations on campus are far greater testaments to mercy than the largest sign we could possible erect. Sure, we talk about Gwynedd rather than Gwynedd-Mercy, but besides saving our breath, it also tells us that mercy is not separate from Gwynedd, it is a part of it. Go out into this world and take with you the mercy that resides now in you, as it does with the College. As we leave campus today, go out and show the world not only what you are, but who you are – distinguished mercy graduates.” Gwynedd-Mercy College’s Commencement speaker, Sister Karen Schneider, RSM, MD, MPH, also emphasized the importance of mercy by sharing her accounts of helping those in Haiti after the earthquake. Sister Karen is a pediatric emergency medical physician and assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University with extensive experience in international medicine. She travels to developing countries where the Sisters of Mercy minister four to five times each year with Hopkins’ residents to provide medical services. Her dedication to academic excellence, compassion and service is eminent through her efforts in both the medical and religious communities. “Sister Karen walks the talk of mercy,” says President Kathleen Owens, PhD. “Her commitment to our college-wide core values is explicitly manifested in her life’s work.”

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A Farewell to Patricia Giordano ’77/’81 Radiation therapy has been a part of Giordano’s life for 45 years. One of her major achievements is receiving the Varian Award, a national award for making significant contributions to the profession. Ironically, Giordano’s mentor and teacher at GMC, Eileen McCullough, was the first recipient of the award in 1984 and Giordano was the last award recipient in 2000. Giordano was also awarded the Gwynedd-Mercy College Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievement in 2006.

Retiring faculty member Patricia J. Giordano, MS, ’77/’81 was honored with the title of Professor Emeritus and led the procession as Macebearer during Commencement. Giordano, assistant professor and radiation therapy program director, retired after 24 years at Gwynedd-Mercy College. Giordano became interested in pursuing a medical career after breaking her ankle in high school and experiencing the kindness of an X-ray technologist. Later, while studying the allied health professions, she wrote a paper on skin cancer and then narrowed her interest to radiation therapy. A two-time graduate of Gwynedd-Mercy College, Giordano received an Associate of Science in Radiation Therapy in 1977 and a bachelor’s degree in health science in 1981. She continued her studies at Arcadia University (then Beaver College) to obtain a Master of Science in Health Education in 1985. After 18 years of treating cancer patients and working at Temple University Hospital, Giordano returned to her alma mater. In 1986, Giordano became an instructor and assistant program director of radiation therapy at GMC. Three years later, she was promoted to assistant professor and program director. Giordano has been with the College through many milestones. In 2000, the associate degree program was enriched to a four-year program. Also, psychology and theory courses were added

Campus coordinator of the radiologic technology program, Cheryl DiLanzo, shared an office with Giordano and witnessed her commitment to teaching others. “Pat is the model professional that is exemplified in the books that we share with students,” she says. “She has achieved a lot in her career through dedication and a passion for her field. She also has been a huge mentor in my career.” to the curriculum to address the stress associated with treating an ill or dying patient. As an instructor, the most rewarding moment for Giordano was seeing the light bulb go on in a student’s head when they grasp a difficult concept, she says. Giordano also enjoyed watching her students practice in a caring manner and advancing in their profession.

HONORS Honorary degrees were presented to Frances M. Maguire ’55 and James J. Maguire. The Maguires, who established the Maguire Educational Foundation, are highly-respected philanthropists in the Philadelphia area. Mrs. Maguire donated $5 million in October 2009 to name Gwynedd-Mercy College’s nursing program as the Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing. This gift is the largest-ever alumni gift in the history of the College and will form an endowment for the School, while supporting scholarships, faculty, and best-practice technology and equipment. The Tender Courage Award, in memory of Sister Isabelle Keiss, RSM, is presented to an administrator or staff member who particularly exemplifies the ideals of the charism of mercy as lived through the mission and core values of the College. This year’s recipient was Mary Lawn, who has worked in the admissions office for 21 years. As a lifelong learner, she earned degrees from the College in 1994 and 1997. ❂

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Though Giordano is excited about her decision to retire, she still plans to remain active in her field. Giordano will remain on the Radiation Therapy Advisory Committee at GMC and stay professionally active in conducting site visits for programmatic accreditation for the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT).


Passport to the Future During the spring semester, the School of Business & Center for Lifelong Learning began a project for its undergraduate students to learn more about their dean and professors, to explore careers in business and to reach out to alumni in the business world. Business majors were given a passport filled with activities they needed to complete in order to earn points. Those students who accumulated bonus points were eligible to win the grand prize – an Apple iPad! The passport project culminated with a reception for students, alumni and administration. From left to right: Sophomore Jeffrey Riling, sophomore Jessica Lloyd, Mohamed Latib, PhD, dean of the School of Business & Center for Lifelong Learning, alumna Dottie Miller ’91, grand prize winner Noreen McDonough ’10, junior Patricia Suszko and Jerry McLaughlin, vice president for institutional advancement.

Gwynedd-Mercy College’s 24th Annual Golf Tournament Monday, October 11, 2010 Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club, Fort Washington, Pa. Shotgun Start – 12:30 p.m. For questions or to register, call Mia McGlynn at 215-641-5568 Today 5

Coach Mondillo’s 300th Win With the clock ticking down and the crowd cheering, Gwynedd-Mercy College’s women’s basketball team was determined to beat the Marywood University Pacers on Saturday, January 30, 2010. Leading by only four points at halftime, Head Coach Keith Mondillo knew the Griffins had to fight to keep their lead. Time was quickly running out as the Griffins and Pacers were tied with only 12:27 left in the second half. Sophomore Bryn Cotteta ignited the flame as she scored the tiebreaking three-pointer. The Griffins were now on fire as the game swiftly came to an end. As the buzzer sounded, signaling the end of the game, it also indicated a milestone for Coach Mondillo. It was his 300th win. Coach Mondillo’s love for basketball began early as he played for Archbishop Kennedy High School and went on to play for Arcadia University. Being named captain of Arcadia’s basketball team in his junior and senior years was the launch of Coach Mondillo’s leadership abilities and his now 17 years of coaching experience. After he graduated from college, he served as assistant coach for the men’s basketball team at Gwynedd-Mercy College, returned to his alma mater to coach for the 1994-95 season, and was then asked to head the women’s basketball program at GMC. In his 15 years of coaching for Gwynedd-Mercy College, Coach Mondillo


earned five Presidents’ Athletic Conference Coach of the Year awards, reached his 100th win in 2001 and attained his 200th win in 2006. “My success as a coach is directly linked to the success of my players,” he says. The future looks bright as Coach Mondillo focuses on the upcoming season. Though he just reached his 300th win, he’s not dwelling on his accomplishments. “Now, we’re focused on striving for the same success next season,” he says, noting that the Griffins appeared in the Colonial States

Athletic Conference (CSAC) championship game for the 13th-consecutive time. Coach Mondillo has hopes of taking the team back to the NCAA championships in 2011. Seniors Jackie Dooley, Kate Wisnewski and Erica Fulforth graduated this May, leaving their basketball careers at the College. While all three seniors were starting players, Coach Mondillo has recruited six very talented first-year students. “Every season is different,” he says. “That is what makes it exciting.”

Milestone Coach Lane’s 100th Win Being named Coach of the Year in 2007 after her first season as Gwynedd-Mercy College’s field hockey coach was only the beginning of Laura-Ann Lane’s success. She propelled the team’s accomplishments once arriving at GMC. Coach Lane was brought in to coach the Griffins only ten days before the 2007 season started, but that would not stop her as she led the team to the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference Playoffs

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and received a national academic honor from the National Field Hockey Coaches Association. Coach Lane’s accomplishments didn’t stop there. On September 14, 2010, the Griffins defeated Cedar Crest College, awarding Coach Lane her 100th win. “I was very happy,” she says. The win was not only significant for her, but also for the team as they were then one step closer to

Coach Murphy’s 300th Win On May 10, the men’s baseball team won 14-3 against Widener University, awarding Head Coach Paul Murphy his 300th win. “I forgot all about the milestone until the team presented me with the game ball in our post-game meeting,” he says. Coach Murphy was more focused on the upcoming playoffs, and the fact that their opponent had just won their conference championship three days before the game. Though modest, he says that winning 300 games (and hopefully many more) is an accomplishment that he would love to have every player and coach on the team share. “We have had some fantastic baseball players at Gwynedd-Mercy College and I hope they realize the unbelievable contributions they have all made to the success of the baseball program,” Coach Murphy says. “If it were not for their talents, on and off the field, the program would not be where it is today.” Coach Murphy has turned a college previously without a baseball team into one of the most successful baseball programs in the Middle Atlantic Region. Beginning as the head coach in 1997, he has a coaching record of 302-198, and consequently the College’s baseball program is ranked in the Top 50 colleges and universities in winning percentage. His love for the sport started at an early age. “As a kid, I used to throw the ball against the back steps of our row home in Philadelphia and catch it while going through the Phillies lineup,” he remembers. “Every time I caught the ball

Coach Paul Murphy with player Josh Thomas, MVP of 2007 championship.

when it bounced back was an out. I rarely caught it when Mike Schmidt was up!” Coach Murphy’s family enthusiastically supported his desire to play, and eventually coach, baseball. “We would play baseball in six inches of snow with a ball wrapped in black electrical tape so we could see it,” he laughs. At age 16, Coach Murphy had his first informal coaching experience when he started helping pitchers on his younger brother’s team. Then, he went to Saint Joseph’s University on a baseball scholarship, where he played for three years and was named Rookie of the Year in 1989 while competing in the Atlantic 10 Conference. After sustaining an arm injury in college, which prevented him from playing during

his senior year, he was led to coaching. Coach Murphy started a team in the Roxborough section of Philadelphia for ages 13 to 15, some of whom ended up being recruited to play at Gwynedd-Mercy College in the early years of the program. “Once I started coaching, I loved it,” he says. Though Coach Murphy has led Gwynedd-Mercy College’s team to many NCAA tournament appearances and conference championships, he considers his biggest achievement to be the influence he has on each player. “It’s very rewarding when a player recognizes the impact you had on their lives and comes back to say ‘thanks.’ I always return the sentiment, because each and every one of my players has greatly impacted my life, too,” he says.

YEAR the championship game. Granted, Coach Lane knew she would eventually reach this high point, but that never took away from her coaching style. “As a coach, I try to be understanding to my players, but also firm while setting expectations,” she says. She also credits her success to the dedication of her athletes. “We as a team build on our success every year,” she says. Expectations for the Griffins were reached as they stayed nationally ranked in some

statistical categories for most of the season. They remained part of the national All Academic Team in 2009 and placed second in the Colonial States Athletic Conference. Sophomore Dottie O’Neil and first-year student Kelsey Deveney were chosen as First-Team All-League while sophomores Casey Dellostretto, Kayla Farrow and Ali Gurko were named Second-Team All-League. First-year student Kate Eschbach earned All-League Honorable Mention. O’Neil was an Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) All Star and

Player of the Year as well as the field hockey program’s first-ever Regional All American Selection. Looking ahead to her 200th win and the upcoming 2010 season, Coach Lane is looking forward to more team accomplishments. Though the team lost seniors Tina Kane, Olivia Wilson and Ashley McGinty last season, nine incoming first-year students and two junior captains will push the team to be the best that they can be. ❂

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Women’s Basketball The women’s basketball team appeared in the conference championship game for the 13th consecutive year and made an appearance in their third straight ECAC tournament. While the team lost in the conference finals to Neumann University, they finished with a 17-10 mark and 13-3 league record. Head Coach Keith Mondillo achieved his 300th win on January 30, 2010 against Marywood University. Senior Jackie Dooley was named First-Team All League, and junior Kristy McGrath was an All-CSAC Second-Team Selection.

Men’s Lacrosse Women’s Track & Field The women’s track & field team finished second overall at the Mason Dixon Indoor Championship. Ten women qualified for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Indoor Championships. The outdoor season produced the first National Qualifier in program history as senior Alycia Tranchitella provisionally qualified in the 1500 meter run by running 4:37:08 seconds at the ECAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

Men’s Track & Field Softball The men’s track & field program established themselves as one of the best teams in the nation during the 2009-2010 seasons. Three athletes qualified for both the indoor and outdoor NCAA Division III National Championships, resulting in four All-American performances. Sophomore Dan Dunkleberger provided the highlight of the season at the outdoor championship by earning All-American Honors in both the 200 and 400 meter dashes. The team finished 17th at the 2010 NCAA Division III National Championships.

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Speed was no match for the softball team this season as GMC was ranked fifth in the country for stolen bases. Freshman Victoria Graveley was selected to the CSAC All-Sportsmanship Team while sophomore Nicole Paleologus and freshman Morgan Birtch earned CSAC All-Conference Honorable Mention. The squad finished with an 8-25 record and an 8-14 league mark.

Head Coach Dana Lindstrom saw his lacrosse team come back with a vengeance this season as the team beat Marywood University in the playoffs after losing to them during the season. The upset landed them a spot in the championship game against Cabrini College. Even though the team suffered a tough loss against Cabrini College, they ended the season with a 10-5 record and a 5-3 league mark. Coach Lindstrom was named Colonial States Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, while sophomore Zach Richter was named First-Team All League and freshman Mason Risner was named Second-Team All League. Sophomores Nick Coan, Michael Henry and Spenser Mills, along with freshman Richard Zagari, earned CSAC All-Conference Honorable Mention.

Men’s Tennis


Head Coach Jim Holt led his team to a 6-6 overall mark and a 5-2 league mark this season. Coach Holt was named Colonial States Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, while senior Eric Trinkle and sophomore Jared Morgan were chosen as Second-Team All League Singles and Honorable Mention Doubles. Junior Ryan Murray was named All League Honorable Mention Singles, and was chosen along with sophomore partner Lou Vessels as Second-Team All League Doubles. Trinkle was also chosen for the CSAC All-Sportsmanship Team.

Head Coach Paul Murphy gained his 300th career victory during a game against Widener University on May 10, 2010. After 12 seasons, he has a coaching record of 302-198. Senior Nick Goetz and sophomore Andrew Sinon were chosen to the 2010 American Baseball Coaches Association Mid-Atlantic All-Region Team, marking the fourth consecutive year that GMC’s student-athletes have been honored by the Association. Six players were named all-conference, five were selected on the first team, and one was selected on the second team. In addition, 15 members of the 2010 baseball team were named to the CSAC All-Conference team upping the grand total of baseball players to be named to the all-academic team to 176 under Murphy’s coaching career.

Men’s Basketball Even though the men’s basketball team struggled with injuries, senior Matt Johnson and junior Jon Hogga kept the drive alive. The team finished with a 13-13 overall mark. Hogga was named First-Team All League while Johnson earned Second-Team All League as well as surpassing 1,000 career points. Sophomore Brandon Sharp was selected for the CSAC All Sportsmanship Team.

Women’s Lacrosse The women’s lacrosse team concluded this season by making a return trip to the CSAC Championship game against Cabrini College. The team had a 9-9 overall mark and a 6-2 league mark. Senior Pam Moyer earned First-Team All League, and senior Bridget Gibson and juniors Colleen Dellostretto and Trisha Timony earned Second-Team All League. Sophomores Kristie Pollock and Shannon Carabba were named Honorable Mention and sophomore Kerri Boon was named to the All-CSAC Sportsmanship Team. The team was led by Colleen Dellostretto with 57 goals, and Shannon Carabba with 69 points.


Nicole Paleologus, an upcoming junior English major, was a contributing writer to the athletics section of this issue. Paleologus lives in Bensalem with her parents and twin brother. She loves to write and hopes to pursue a career in magazine writing.

WRAP-UP Today 9

SOLDIERS AMONG US GMC EXPERIENCES MAJOR INCREASE IN MILITARY PERSONNEL RETURNING TO SCHOOL The transition from life in the military to life on a college campus can be challenging, but for thousands of veterans and active military personnel it’s a necessary venture. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), more than 270,000 veterans claimed education benefits for degree programs in the 2009-10 academic year, due largely in part to the recently enacted Post 9/11 GI Bill. These students not only need to reorient themselves to college life, but civilian life in general. Often times they arrive on campus dealing with the emotional scars of combat and the difficult time away from the lives they once knew. But their time in the military has also equipped this unique population of students with many valuable practical and technical skills that will benefit them in their studies and in their chosen profession as they begin the next chapter of their lives. The VA provides a variety of support to military personnel and their families who want to earn a college degree (see sidebar on page 13). The VA’s financial incentives have made a college education an attractive option, contributing to the recent surge our campus has seen in veteran enrollment, explains Elizabeth Howard, financial aid information technology specialist. “Over the past year, we have seen a large influx in our veteran student population on main campus and at the Center for Lifelong Learning campuses,” says Howard, who reports that our veteran population held steady at about 25 students in prior years and will likely increase to nearly 100 students by this fall. “This fast-paced growth has been a national phenomenon and is a result of the Yellow Ribbon Program, a new provision to the Post 9/11 GI Bill. This bill has made earning a college education possible for millions of military soldiers and their families.” Gwynedd-Mercy College has proven to be an ideal fit for military personnel, despite their diverse backgrounds and needs, Howard adds. “These students hail from all walks of life, typically work very hard to earn their degrees, and bring a variety of skills and experiences with them to the classroom. Gwynedd-Mercy College is working harder to welcome these students and we are looking to develop ways to support them and aid in their transition from military life to college life.”

school,” he says. It was around this time that his cousin, Michelle, had enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and was stationed at a base in Florida. One visit to see her and Murphy knew what his next move would be. He followed in the footsteps of his cousin, uncle and grandfathers, and enlisted in the military.

Robert Murphy grew up in Seaboard, North Carolina – a sleepy town of less than one thousand near the Virginia border. “Your only options for work were the paper or lumber mills, the electric company or Wal-Mart. I wanted more,” says Murphy, 29. After graduating from high school, Murphy enrolled in nearby Halifax Community College to study business administration. He took a full load of classes and worked full time at the local Firestone service station, satisfying his love for cars. But soon his desire to break free from his small town roots got the best of him. “Working at Firestone wasn’t bringing in the money. I was also burned out from

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In November 2000, he headed to boot camp, and then training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. The transition was difficult, something you can never really prepare for, he says. “They break you down and make you work as a team. You have to learn how to play their mind games. The psychological aspect was the hardest part.” The following spring he trained in aerospace maintenance at Sheppard Air Force Base, also in Texas, before ending up at Hurlburt Field Air Force Base, a special operations base in Florida. He trained and was promoted to senior airman, and got married. Murphy and his wife moved into family housing on the base and soon welcomed daughter Liana in June 2002.

Murphy poses for a photo after completing technical training at Sheppard Air Force Base, Wichita Falls, Texas, in 2001.

and that Murphy could have their support as a newly single dad. It also meant that Murphy could finally finish his college degree in a larger metropolitan area where he thought there would be more job opportunities.

Murphy’s first deployment to Afghanistan came in 2004, just before Liana’s second birthday. For 60 days, Murphy worked 12-hour night shifts, seven days a week, maintaining the combat planes that flew at night. “I remember how dark it was at night in the mountains,” he says. Rocket attacks were abundant, he remembers, but overall he tried to stay calm and focused. “One night, there were two rocket attacks very close to our base,” he recalls. “Our location was secluded from everyone else on base because we were special operations classification, but I heard the sirens and people talking on their walkie-talkies. It was so loud.” He got used to carrying the weight of a M16 on him at all times, even in blistering temperatures that would reach 130 degrees Fahrenheit by midday. He also got used to sharing a cramped wooden shack with 11 other men and having limited access to phones and computers to communicate with loved ones back home. When Murphy returned to Florida in August, things at home had changed. His wife didn’t want to live the life of a military wife and left with Liana to live with her parents in California. Because he was now single, Murphy couldn’t live in family housing and had to find housing off base. Though his personal life was going through difficult changes, his career was progressing. He was promoted to staff sergeant and trusted with even more responsibility. But since his wife and daughter were gone, he wanted to return to Afghanistan right away. “I felt comfortable there. A part of my daily life was there so I asked to be deployed again,” he says. In February 2005, Murphy embarked on his second deployment. He returned to the same remote base, worked the day shift and experienced his first winter in the mountains of Afghanistan. Three months later, he headed home to attend airman leadership school and made time for a brief trip to see his daughter. His third and final deployment to Afghanistan came in spring 2006 on very short notice. One of Murphy’s supervisors couldn’t deploy because of a family emergency so Murphy agreed to take his place. By the next morning he was on a plane to Afghanistan. The scene hadn’t changed much since his last deployment, he says, but this time he went over as his highest rank. He assisted the night shift aircraft maintenance operations and worked all night, every day. The occasional too-close-for-comfort rocket attack could be heard near the base, he says, an unnerving

Liana’s first day of school in Pennsylvania.

experience when they land no more than 100 yards away and you can’t see them coming in the black sky. Murphy returned to Florida in July and was looking forward to moving ahead in his career when he received a phone call from his ex-wife’s mother explaining that he needed to take over full custody of Liana. Within two weeks of receiving this call, Murphy had filed custody papers, set up her bedroom in the house he shared with a fellow soldier and headed to California.

He began taking classes at Montgomery County Community College and working full time at a nearby metal spring factory. When he heard about the Post 9/11 GI Bill last year, he immediately enrolled at Gwynedd-Mercy College to complete his degree in business administration. Liana, now 7, has adjusted to life in Pennsylvania and enjoys the fact that her father is a student just like her, though she doesn’t entirely understand why he’s become so busy. “She doesn’t understand the concept of homework for me. She finishes her homework in an hour or so while I have to spend hours on mine. She’s always like, ‘Daddy, aren’t you done with your homework yet?’ She’s just now starting to get it,” he says with a smile. Murphy hopes to one day return with his daughter to the familiar surroundings of Florida (sunny beaches, less traffic), but for now the time spent on school and family is exactly what he needs. “The best part about being here is that my daughter gets to spend time with my family. I’m proud of myself for getting this far. My focus now is to graduate and get a job.”

Though he hadn’t seen his daughter in some time, he naturally fell right back into the role of full-time dad. He enrolled Liana in a private pre-school, took her to the dentist, and set up appointments with specialists to monitor her heart and kidney conditions. He maintained a typical day shift work schedule and life was finally settling into a comfortable routine for Murphy and his daughter. To continue to move up the ranks, he needed to retrain at the U.S. Air Force’s technical school. He put it off for as long as he could so he and Liana could adjust to their new life together, but in November 2006, Murphy made the difficult decision to request separation from the U.S. Air Force. “I needed to make a stable life for my daughter,” he says. With the difficult decision to leave behind a six-year military career came more challenges. Murphy decided to move to Hatfield, Pa., to live with his mother and step-father. The move meant that Liana could be closer to family she hardly knew

Cramming for exams, writing research papers and mastering her statistics class – a far cry from Patricia Suszko’s previous duties. As first sergeant for the 95th Airlift Squadron at Pope Air Force Base in North Carolina, U.S. Air Force Reserve, Suszko was responsible for supervising more than 200 personnel and advising three unit commanders. She was known for maintaining the highest standards of morale, welfare and discipline. Her military career spanned 30 years and numerous deployments including Desert Storm, Operation Enduring and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

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Suszko became familiar with the military lifestyle at an early age. Her father, Howard, was a sergeant in the U.S. Air Force and often traveled to Nicaragua working with the U.S. Embassy. It was here that he met and married Suszko’s mother, Maria Dora. For the early part of Suszko’s life, she lived with her mother, sister and brother in Managua, Nicaragua, while her father, a native of Richmond, Virginia, was on assignments all over the world. “It just seemed natural that he was always traveling because of the Air Force. His special duty assignments required him to be away on remote locations without his family,” she says.

After Suszko finished junior high school, her family moved again when her father received orders to be stationed at Albrook Air Force Base in the Panama Canal Zone. Suszko and her siblings attended a government school for dependants of American military and government personnel and they became immersed in their new exotic surroundings. “Attending high school in a tropical setting was an adventure. There were trips to the beaches, islands, rivers, oceans, tropical forests, many scenic and historical routes, and the food was amazing,” she says. Her family returned to Biloxi four years later and Suszko enrolled at Jefferson Davis Junior College. She earned an associate degree in secretarial science and began working as secretary to the mayor. But after working for a few years at Biloxi City Hall, Suszko felt a void of the familiar military lifestyle. “I wanted to travel the world and serve my country,” she says. With her parent’s encouragement, she enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1980 to carve out her own military career.

First Sergeant Suszko, with Colonel Luke Kealy (left) and Colonel Edward Jennings (right), receives her First Sergeant of the Year Award in 2007 at Willow Grove Air Reserve Station.

Suszko had a humble Latin American childhood filled with horseback riding, rodeos, religious festivals and lots of family gatherings. “My middle brother, Maurice, younger sister, Marta, and I were surrounded by grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles and extended family members throughout Nicaragua,” she says. When Suszko was nine years old, her father received assignment orders to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi. Everyone moved to America to be together as a family for the first time. “We all had to get reacquainted due to the long separations,” she remembers. It was the first time that Suszko had been to America and the transition was difficult, especially having to leave behind her extended family. Suszko’s father still traveled often and her mother had to be very independent in her new life. She taught herself to read and speak English by using a dictionary and learned how to drive a car, Suszko remembers. “She adjusted quickly by being a strong woman with a strong will. She was a military wife with children living in the greatest country in the world.”

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Her first assignment upon completing basic training was to the 351st Strategic Missile Wing as a missile engineering administrative specialist at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri. After a few months on base she met her husband, David, who worked in nuclear missile security forces. “He was tall, dark and handsome. I couldn’t resist those green eyes,” she says. They quickly became inseparable and married later that year. They had their first child, David Patrick, in 1981 and remained on

base for the next three years. Suszko had daughter Natasha in 1984 while David was going through recruiting training in Texas, missing her birth by two weeks. David became an Air Force reserve recruiter and the family transferred to Richards-Gebaur Air Force Base, also in Missouri, where they had another daughter, Teresina, in 1986. Serving more than four years of active duty, Suszko decided to join the reserves in favor of a more family-friendly career in resource management administration. In 1990, Suszko transferred to Willow Grove Air Reserve Station and joined the 913th Operations Support Flight as an intelligence administrative specialist, settling the family in Warminster, Pa. She was soon activated at home station in support of Desert Storm. Suszko spent the next few years proving her ability to lead the reservists on base and in 1997 her efforts were recognized when a board selected her for the position of first sergeant with the 327th Airlift Squadron. She became the first female first sergeant in the history of the 913th Airlift Wing, a prestigious position held only by the most revered and dedicated personnel. “I had always prepared myself to excel in a leadership role, taking any Air Force training I could. When I earned this position, my father was so proud,” she says. Subsequently, Suszko won many awards, including Pennsylvania USAF Reservist of the Year and First Sergeant of the Year. Just as her father had done for so many years, Suszko’s deployments and activations sent her all over the world.

First Sergeant Patricia Suszko (far right) poses with her support personnel on an Operation Iraqi Freedom mission in Qatar, 2006.

assignment as first sergeant for the 95th Airlift Squadron at Pope Air Force Base in North Carolina. Suszko flew to the base several weekends every month and two weeks per year, but wanted to finally complete her college degree and spend more time with her family. She enrolled at Gwynedd-Mercy College in January 2009 to study business administration. She would attend classes Monday through Thursday, then catch a plane Thursday afternoon to North Carolina, returning home Sunday night. She maintained this grueling schedule for three months before deciding to retire from her position as senior master sergeant.

David Patrick, Natasha, Teresina, Patricia and David Suszko gather at the Willow Grove Navy Orion’s Club for Patricia’s retirement ceremony, 2009.

Between 1995 and 2009, she served all over the United States, Canada, Europe, Central and South America, Panama, Puerto Rico, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Her operations included Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Southern Watch, Joint Endeavor, Joint Forge, Coronet Oak, Noble Eagle 9/11, Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. David retired from active duty in 2000, giving Suszko the ability to be deployed while he stayed home with their children. “I would not have been able to do it without him,” Suszko says. “He kept the household going, taking the kids to school, doing the girls’ hair, he did it all.” These continuous assignments meant long, difficult separations from her family when Suszko missed some major milestones in her children’s lives, she says. “Big

VA SUPPORT The Post 9/11 GI Bill provides financial support for education and housing to individuals who served at least 90 days of aggregate service after September 11, 2001 and received an honorable discharge. The Yellow Ribbon Program additionally benefits these veterans who are enrolled in a Yellow Ribbon participating institution that have tuition and fees exceeding the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition or fees. The Montgomer y GI Bill – Active Duty provides up to 36 months of education benefits for degree and certificate programs, flight training, apprenticeship/on-the-job training and correspondence courses. Benefits are payable for 10 years following release from active duty.

moments in each other’s lives were missed and understanding was essential for everyone.” When Teresina was in high school applying for colleges, Suszko could not be there to support her in the process. She was able to return from one of her deployments just in time to help her daughter move into her dorm room at Lock Haven University. When her middle daughter, Natasha, graduated from West Chester University, Suszko was unable to attend her graduation ceremony. “Because of my overseas departure schedule, I missed it by one day,” she remembers. And when David Patrick was a student at Indiana State University and in the Air Force ROTC, Suszko missed many of his special college events. In 2007, the 913th Airlift Wing experienced base closure and Suszko accepted her final

The Montgomer y GI Bill – Selected Reser ve supports members of the Selected Reserve (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Army National and Air National Guard) seeking degree and certificate programs, flight training, apprenticeship/on-the-job training and correspondence courses. It is available for up to 36 months of education benefits, ending 14 years from the date of eligibility, or on the last day in the Selected Reserve. Sur vivors and Dependents Educational Assistance provides education and training opportunities for spouses and children of veterans who died, became disabled as a result of a service-connected disability, were MIA or POW. It is available for 45 months of education benefits for degree and certificate programs, apprenticeship and on-the-job training.

Her focus is now on finishing her degree, applying all that she’s learned in the U.S. Air Force to a new career in human resources and spending as much time with her family as possible. Suszko and her husband recently celebrated their 30-year wedding anniversary and both are looking forward to a slower pace of life. “Now that we have more time together we are getting reacquainted with each other and it feels like we’re dating again,” she says. David Patrick continues the family tradition as a captain in the U.S. Air Force, based in Wyoming. Natasha, a skin cancer specialist, and her husband, Anthony, a Marine gunnery sergeant, live in San Diego, while Teresina lives near her parents and works in corporate fitness. “My children fully understand the military life and the sacrifices we all have had to make as a military family. That is why when we are all together we always find a reason to celebrate. Our motto is ‘let’s celebrate today.’ After all, every day should be a celebration.” ❂

The Reser ve Educational Assistance Program was established in 2005 as part of the Ronald W. Reagan National Defense Authorization Act to provide educational assistance to members of the Reserve components called or ordered to active duty in response to a war or national emergency (contingency operation) as declared by the President or Congress. This program ensures that certain reservists who served for at least 90 days after September 11, 2001 are eligible for education benefits, or for an increase of benefits. Vocational Rehabilitation is available for veterans with service-connected disabilities to make a seamless transition from military service to successful rehabilitation and on to suitable employment. For more information, visit

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From our experts in…


Today, we know that smoking is bad, eating fast food is unhealthy and regular exercise is important. But it wasn’t until the 1960s that the health hazards of smoking tobacco started to be reported. In the same decade, the general public began paying attention to a new term – “cholesterol.” Now, our country’s initial lack of knowledge about these bad habits is showing increasing consequences in health, especially with the looming swell of an aging population. In 2011, the first year of the baby boomer generation will reach age 65. Our campus experts weigh in on the changing population, improvements in technology and increasing awareness about disease prevention.

CARING FOR SENIOR BOOMERS The baby boomer generation was born between 1946 and 1964. As the boomers age, there is an increasing demand for specialists in the field of aging and related disciplines. The reality is that the rise in clinical demand is expected to increase at a faster pace than the health care workforce will be able to expand. Part of this unmet demand has to do with constraints imposed by the recession. Another major factor is that the health care workforce is also aging. This means that more health care professionals will retire, contributing to the shortage of care providers in a time when they’re needed most. “We’ve known the age wave was coming, but it will crest in 2030, and then the U.S. population will gradually revert to a young population,” says Barbara Jones ’70/’72, PhD, RN, professor of nursing. Specifically, by 2030, there will be 71 million American older adults, equaling 20 percent of our population. “While it’s a challenge, it’s a time-limited challenge,” she adds. The cost of providing health care for an older American is three to five times greater than the cost for someone younger. The most widely used

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resource to finance health care for older adults is Medicare, but Dr. Jones points out that funding Medicare is becoming a problem with a smaller workforce. “Even now, with high unemployment, the Medicare coffers are stressed,” she says. The future of Medicare, which pays 80 percent of the cost for health care, is linked to employment trends. “Boomers are aging differently from previous generations,” Dr. Jones says. Today, we are caring for two generations of older adults. The generation raised during the depression possessed values of thrift and independence; however, their relationships with health providers tended toward compliance with whatever the health provider recommended or prescribed. For the most part, the boomers are well-educated and aware of health issues as well as their rights and choices. They will expect to participate fully in all health care decisions. Due to increased life expectancy and high levels of activity, we now see older adults undergoing second hip replacements since they wore out the first replacement. SHIFTING PATTERNS OF DISEASE When you’re watching re-runs of your favorite TV shows this summer, pay attention to the pharmaceutical commercials, Barbara Jones ’70/’72, PhD, RN

suggests Bill Galvin, MS, RRT, CPFT, AE-C, FAARC, assistant professor and program director of respiratory care. You will find that more medications are being advertised for respiratory diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma. Respiratory diseases are affecting more and more Americans, a trend that will continue to rise. In fact, COPD is positioned to move from the fourth to the third leading cause of death in the United States by 2020, just below cancer. Diseases like asthma and sleep apnea are two other respiratory culprits that are changing the health care outlook. “Asthma, I think, has been under-diagnosed in the past,” Galvin explains of the quickly increasing numbers of asthma cases. Currently, there are 22 million diagnosed cases in the United States, with children accounting for a sizable percentage of the cases. Close to an alarming 4,000 deaths are caused each year from asthma, which is a statistic that Galvin finds completely unacceptable in light of the advances in treatment and availability of highly effective medications. The good news is that more people are seeking a diagnosis because of the progression in medicine. “The number of asthma medicines, good ones, is staggering,” Galvin says. The respiratory disease that is least recognized is sleep apnea, which interrupts the sleep cycle. Someone with sleep apnea exhibits significant snoring, restlessness and intervals of apnea (20, 30 and up to 60 second periods of time where they do not take a breath). Because they’re sleeping, many people don’t realize that this is happening, and his or her spouse is usually the first to identify the problem. Someone with sleep apnea doesn’t get the oxygen needed by the body to sustain life. And since they are getting only fragmented sleep they are always tired. Clinically significant forms of sleep apnea are defined by five or more episodes per hour each night. Untreated sleep apnea can have a huge impact on productivity at work, Galvin says, and may even lead to termination. It can also cause high blood pressure and other cardiovascular disease, memory problems, weight gain, impotency and headaches. Not

to mention that drowsiness causes 100,000 accidents each year. Galvin believes the public will hear more and more about this “under-the-radar” condition as home care companies and sleep specialists are experiencing a proliferation of newly diagnosed cases. Heart disease will remain the number one worldwide killer of men and women, but patterns of its affected population are changing. It is responsible for 40 percent of all deaths in the United States, and risk factors for women are increasing. “Women are generally protected more than men from heart disease when they are younger, due to their levels of estrogen,” says Jason Seachrist, RDCS, cardiac ultrasound instructor and clinical coordinator for the cardiovascular technology program. “However, after menopause, there isn’t this level of protection and women catch up to men quickly in terms of the amount of heart disease,” he adds.

“Four factors determine your health care status: Use or disuse of the health care system, environment, genetics and lifestyle.”

Heart disease is not just impacting those in old age, anymore. “We’re seeing the metabolic syndrome in younger people,” says Andrea Reiley-Helzner, MS, RCIS, RPFT, assistant professor and program director for cardiovascular technology. They are living sedentary lifestyles, feeding their probability for prehypertension and other clear risk factors for coronary disease, she says. PERSONAL HEALTH CARE STATUS “Four factors determine your health care status: Use or disuse of the health care system, environment, genetics and lifestyle,” Galvin says. A CLOSER LOOK: Health care system “The health care field is working smarter, not harder,” Seachrist says. Technology improvements enable those in the health care field to work more effectively. “Electronic medical records are still in development, but they will be a big help in terms of access and continuity of care,” he adds. Traditionally, health care workers have to spend time researching reports for each patient’s past care and treatment history. With the records moving to an electronic

Bill Galvin, MS, RRT, CPFT, AE-C, FAARC

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system, providers will be able to find this information more quickly, which means delivering care faster. There are also diagnosis and treatment changes due to technology, Seachrist says. “In the last 10 years I have seen a big change in the types and quality of imaging and surgeries. Image quality in ultrasound alone has improved very much. And now we have other imaging methods, such as cardiac MRI, which also improve imaging and diagnosis.” Environment and lifestyle In some instances, Americans’ obsession with hygiene can do more harm than good. “As a country, we have been trying to be so clean,” Galvin says. Spraying lawns, using certain cleaning products, and other chemicals associated with hygiene, can all cause asthma or make existing asthma worse. Those who work in cleaning or housekeeping, or in any industry that uses chemicals, feel most impacted.

Jason Seachrist, RDCS

“Awareness of cardiovascular health has played a leading role in the caloric intake and nutrition facts for meals at restaurants.”

Smoking is the number one behavioral cause of death in the United States. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are 5 million annual tobacco-related deaths worldwide, and that number is expected to rise to 8 million by 2030. Approximately 21 percent of the U.S. population smokes, which is actually significantly lower than the percentage 30 years ago. “COPD will become a worldwide problem because the tobacco industry is making significant in-roads in advertising cigarette smoking to the developing countries overseas,” Galvin says. “When countries adopt a lifestyle similar to the United States, they tend to adopt the bad habits with the good.” A May 2010 article in the Christian Science Monitor supports this theory, stating that the tobacco industry takes advantage of increasingly liberalized social attitudes, especially in low- and middle-income countries. A huge social change in many countries is the attitude toward women, which triggers much of the marketing, especially in the tobacco industry, to target women. Just like our bad habits contribute to increasing cases of COPD, the same goes

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for heart disease. “There are large sections of the world where rates of heart disease are much lower than in the United States, and much of that has to do with diet and exercise,” Seachrist says. “Overall, we simply eat the wrong foods and exercise less as a population than many other nations. It’s interesting to note that heart disease is on the increase in nations where the availability of American food is on the increase. China and Japan are two countries that are being watched closely.” Many unhealthy habits and attitudes have emerged at the same time. Those who were brought up in the 1950s in the United States considered a fat baby to be a healthy baby, Reiley-Helzner says. People started to use margarine during the war, followed by the introduction of fast foods and pre-packaged foods. “It’s amazing looking back over time how our eating habits have changed,” she says. Also at that time, television grew in popularity. Today, the average American watches four hours of TV per day, which reduces the amount of time that people are active or exercising, especially children. According to the WHO, “Physical inactivity, (a lack of physical activity) is an independent risk factor for chronic diseases, and overall is estimated to cause 1.9 million deaths globally.” “I think if children can get indoctrinated early into good eating habits and exercise, then it would bring down the cases of disease,” Reiley-Helzner says. The foundation for a healthy lifestyle should start in the cradle. Parents and educators have responsibilities to encourage healthy eating and exercise, leading by example. Luckily, in the United States, there’s a consumer movement to ban smoking and spread awareness about healthy eating. Twenty-six states and some cities have mandated smoking bans in restaurants, bars and other public places. Under the health-care reform bill, restaurant chains with 20 or more stores are required to display nutrition information. “Awareness of cardiovascular health has played a leading role in the caloric intake and nutrition facts for meals at restaurants,” Seachrist says. “There has been little

awareness of the amount of fat, sodium and calories in restaurant foods over the years. Seachrist points out that restaurant food isn’t expected to be completely healthy, but that restaurants have pushed it too far. “[Posting nutrition facts] doesn’t have to hurt business if the restaurants show some restraint in their use of ingredients and portion sizes, and provide information to their customers,” he adds. As for the impact that the calorie posting may have on the population’s eating behavior, it’s hard to say what will happen. People react to it in different ways. Some consumers would rather ignore the nutrition facts, and some will choose healthier options. Therefore, it will take time to see if there’s an impact on the nation’s eating habits followed by a decrease in heart disease. “The increase in heart disease in the United States didn’t happen overnight, and it’s not going to get better overnight either,” Seachrist says. Andrea Reiley-Helzner, MS, RCIS, RPFT

Changing behavior, however important it may be, is easier said than done. Reiley-Helzner addresses this in her freshman Clinical Skills I class. For the upcoming fall semester, she bought a 20 lb. fat vest for the students to try on. She also plans to ask her students to give up something for a week or two, such as salt or coffee. “This way, they can be empathetic to their patients, knowing that making lifestyle changes is hard.” Galvin stresses lifestyle behaviors and their centrality to the health care system of the

future. “We will need to become more proactive versus reactive,” he says. “There will be an enhanced interest in health promotion and disease prevention measures.” This will place much greater emphasis on patient advocacy and patient education.

DID YOU KNOW… • One extra pound of weight puts four extra pounds on your knees. • According to the American Heart

Genetics One of the biggest changes currently impacting the nursing profession is genetics. In addition to diet and exercise, risk factors for disease have a lot to do with heredity. “We’ve realized that many of our major health problems are genetically based or transmitted from generation to generation within families,” Dr. Jones says. “Such health problems include diabetes, elevated serum cholesterol, schizophrenia, and many cancers.” Since the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003, we’ve understood more about DNA, specifically genes and their effects. The results of this scientific milestone are leading to new ways of diagnosing, treating, and someday preventing many disorders.

Association, non-smokers, on average, live 14 years longer than smokers. • A healthy person should be able to walk one mile in 20 minutes or less. • Check the labels! Individuals should consume less than one percent of daily calories in trans fat. The culprit is “partially hydrogenated” vegetable oil. In the United States, if a food has less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving, the food label can read 0 grams of trans fat. • Clean teeth can reduce heart disease by 70 percent. • Abdominal fat is the root of many health disorders. • is a great resource for

The era of personalized medicine is beginning. Genetic testing is becoming increasingly available. Individuals will need the assistance of health professionals educated in genetics in order to understand the results of testing, consider ethical issues and understand treatment options. Gene therapy, now occurring primarily in research settings, is expected to become available and has the potential to repair or replace genes associated with specific illnesses. Responses to many medications can also be predicted on the basis of a patient’s genome.

healthy eating tips.

“The health care graduates of today will be practicing in settings where genetic assessments and interventions are becoming the norm,” Dr. Jones says. As a result, Gwynedd-Mercy College’s Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing introduced a genetics course for seniors in the BSN program this summer. The course includes genetic theory as well as practice in completing family genetic histories and health “pedigrees” spanning three or more generations. ❂

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SHARINGHISTORY It is not immediately apparent where the connection lies between the lives of an active resident of a retirement community and a radiation therapy student with a passion for disc jockeying. But this is a story where neither age nor interests interfere with the strong bond between two people of a different era. Though their experiences occurred six decades apart, junior Ron Stone, 28, and Foulkeways resident William C. Notley, 86, both served our country in major wars. Now they share their experiences with each other and the world. Stone served in Iraq from July 2004 to March 2005, mostly as a military police officer in Baghdad. His assignments were

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to patrol the downtown civilian population. Stone also participated in convoy missions and provided protection to those involved in transportation supply. In fall 2009, Stone, then a sophomore, was enrolled in the “Conflict and Consensus in History” course taught by Michael Clinton, PhD, associate professor of history. As part of the service-learning component of the course, students are paired with residents of the College’s neighbor, Foulkeways retirement community, for research projects. “Foulkeways is a rich source of historical information of life in the 20th Century,” Dr. Clinton says.

It only made sense to partner Stone with Notley and three other World War II veterans, Si Lewen, the late Saul Jacobsen, and Dr. George Sakheim. All four Foulkeways residents were named “chevaliers” (knights) of the French Legion of Honor for their critical roles in the liberation of France. The honor is a French order that was started by Napoleon and is the highest decoration in France. “Ron was very eager and enthusiastic to share history with these men from the get-go,” Dr. Clinton says. Though Stone never imagined that his project would evolve as it had. He went into the research project thinking that he would meet a few veterans and hear their stories of heroism, complete the project and that would be the end of it. “I was just hoping to receive an ‘A’ for my effort on the project,” Stone says. Once he got to know these extraordinary men, Stone realized that his project would be so much more.

History experts from all over the world have viewed Stone’s film, which he presented during the XVI International Oral History Conference in Prague in July. Dr. Clinton submitted a proposal to the conference even before Stone filmed the first frame. “My idea [to submit the proposal] was kind of spontaneous, based on an urge to pursue an opportunity in which a student might be a part of the international world of scholarship,” Dr. Clinton explains. Presenting together, Dr. Clinton provided an overview of the course and the project, and Stone showed clips from his documentary to illustrate what can be done when an eager and capable student engages constructively with a project, Dr. Clinton says.

The WWII veterans exchanged stories with Stone, however it was with Notley that he formed an instant bond. “It’s like being in a room full of strangers and then finding one friend that you can cling to,” explains Stone, who describes Notley as a genuine, warm and inviting person with a big heart. Notley served in four of five French campaigns as an infantryman, then as a machine gun sergeant. “Of the five men that held that position, two were killed and three were wounded,” says Notley, who was one of the wounded soldiers during his third campaign in September 1944. “You could hear the hurt and the fear in Mr. Notley’s voice as he told me about the war,” Stone says.

“It’s not often that people get to hear about the lives and stories of untold heroes on this level,” Stone says. “It was a way for me to bring their stories to light and let people get a more inside view without all the movie magic and hype.”

While in Iraq, Stone was also injured when his Humvee was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG), flipping the vehicle and trapping his leg. The roadside attack was a close call for Stone, who says he feels happy just to be alive. The gunner that was with the other soldiers in the Humvee was tragically not as fortunate. “Nobody likes to relive the scene over there or hold onto those memories,” Stone says. But he found relief and comfort in speaking with Notley and comparing wars. “There’s a connection between soldiers. It’s easier to open up to another soldier about the experience.” Some stories that Notley shared with Stone have never even reached the ears of his family. Not only would they not be able to comprehend the stories like another soldier would, but Notley also wanted to protect them from knowing the terrible things that happened. To present Notley’s and the others’ accounts, Stone decided to use a method of recounting their stories that has never been used before in Dr. Clinton’s class. “I wanted to do something different, so I came up with the idea to do this documentary,” says Stone of the film that he titled “A League of Extraordinary Men.” In the film, the veterans speak of their experiences, the fear, loss of friends and encounters with German soldiers. Dr. Sakheim provided footage from an eight millimeter camera that was taken as soldiers were liberating the Nordhausen concentration camp in Germany. It depicted soldiers bringing medical supplies, food and water to the less than 100 survivors, each weighing about 65 pounds.

Parallel encounters in different eras

Prior to the conference in Prague, Stone had some practice presenting his project. In March, Dr. Clinton and Stone presented at the Capitol Building for a poster exhibit of undergraduate research. Stone and Notley also shared the documentary with faculty, staff and students at the College in April. “The project was a chance for me to share my story with someone and for Notley to share his story with me, and in turn, to share his story with others,” Stone says. Stone’s project has made waves internationally, and it continues to have an impact locally. Notley, who is legally blind in his left eye, attends a support group for blind veterans once a month. He was so touched by Stone’s story and their shared experiences that he asked Stone to share his story with the veterans that attend the support group meetings. The biggest impact of the project, however, was on each other. “The fact that he was able to trust me and open up to me – I feel like we’re family,” Stone says. ❂ (Above) Ronald Stone, taken in Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., in March 2004, upon his entry into the military. (Below) Staff Sergeant William C. Notley, Combat Infantryman, Company E, 320th Infantry Regiment, 35th Infantry Division. (Opposite page) William C. Notley, left, describes one of his experiences in World War II to junior Ronald Stone. On the computer background, Notley is receiving the French Legion of Honor, the letter of which is displayed on the wall.

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Benvenuti a Brescia! Twenty students traveled to Italy to learn the country’s language and culture as part of Gwynedd-Mercy College’s first-ever study abroad program. From May 21 to June 21, they stayed in Brescia, the hometown of Elisa Clewis, adjunct Italian instructor and program coordinator for the trip. Her husband, Robert Clewis, PhD, assistant professor of philosophy, also helped to arrange logistics for the study abroad program. Students documented their daily experiences in Italy through two blogs, complete with photos and video. One blog, “Experiencing Italy with GMC,” describes their first-hand impressions and feelings about being immersed into Italian culture. The second, “Discovering Italy with GMC,” records what the students learned along the way about the history, culture and traditions of the country, either through class or personal experiences. Here, you will read a selection of excerpts from their blogs. To view them in their entirety, visit


First full day in Italy Today was our first official day in Italy. In the morning, we met up to get our bikes, which will be our main form of transportation in Brescia. Then, we went to the biggest market in Brescia to do some grocery shopping. We all had to put our food in boxes and put them on the back of our bikes or use the basket on the bike. We are familiarizing ourselves with our new surroundings until we have class later on today. So far, Italy is beautiful, and I am so excited to see everything. – JUL IE CALVANESE, SENIOR BUSINESS MAJOR


Santa Giulia Museum Today was our second day of class and we’re beginning to learn Italian numbers and verbs. I can already tell that this class is going to help me communicate with everyone here. After class, we had lunch and went on a tour of the city museum of Santa Giulia. It was very interesting. We were able to watch a short film on how the city began and the things that still remain. I think that the best thing I was able to see today was this old temple that still stands with beautiful architecture. – SARA RAMIREZ, JUNIOR NURSING MAJOR


Agricultural school! This morning we visited an agricultural school to experience a new type of schooling offered in Italy. We were welcomed by high school students and were soon able to exchange questions with one another. The students at the school are taught how to grow crops, raise livestock, and even make wine! We were given a tour of the wine cellars, orchards, green house and more. Once we were done with the tour, we were able to mingle with the students. Although the language barrier was difficult, for the most part we could understand one another. They brought out a rugby ball and a soccer ball. We were juggling the soccer ball with them and they taught some of us how to throw a rugby ball. In return, junior accounting major Tom Reed and junior biology major Nick Coan taught the Italian boys how to play lacrosse. It was fun to exchange cultures with them. – GWE N CONTE , JUNIOR NURSING MAJOR

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Americans grace the pages of an Italian newspaper It is true. Our faces are in the paper. While visiting the agricultural school yesterday, we were asked to pose for pictures and allow a photographer to follow us as we were given a tour. To our surprise, we found this picture in the newspaper this morning. Needless to say, we are thrilled to be representing Gwynedd-Mercy College! – JORDAN DISANTO, SENIOR NURSING MAJOR


Seven crazy Americans running through Pisa! Ciao, Well this weekend was amazing. Saturday we went to Venice and it was great. We had the chance to ride a gondola and tour the city. We were very lucky to have Nick’s Italian roommate with us. He was very helpful! We climbed up to a bell tower and walked around the church. On Sunday we went to Florence and Pisa. In Florence, we trekked up a huge hill and many steps to see the replica of the Statue of David, and in Pisa, we visited the leaning tower, of course! – HE AT HE R HEMBERGER, J UNIOR EDUCATION MAJOR


Great weekends in Florence! This past weekend was my first major trip during my stay in Brescia. Prior to leaving for Florence, I met my new guide and friend named Sara, who is a citizen of Brescia, but spent a year in England, so we were able to speak to each other very well. Florence was a very busy, thriving and crowded city, more so than Brescia. There were lots of things to see and do in Florence and I was nothing short of amazed. I witnessed many events and festivals in the squares, including a gelato festival. I noticed there are lots of festivals in Italy this time of year. I also did a lot of shopping in Florence, especially in the shopping malls, which were similar to the ones back at home. Sara was very helpful to me, especially while in restaurants and in situations where there were some language barriers. I had a lot of fun with her. On Sunday morning, we left to return to Brescia. I loved visiting Florence very much. I enjoyed exploring the old historical sites as well as the new modern ones, and shopping at the stores and markets. This was definitely a weekend to remember as one of my best times in Italy. – GABRIE L L E ROSIN, SENIOR EDUCATION MAJOR

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Lago di Garda Yesterday a group of us went to Lake Garda and an amusement park called Gardaland. As much as I have loved all the beautiful places we have gone to thus far, I have to admit this has been my favorite day since I got here. Not only was it the most beautiful lake I have ever seen, but it gave me a familiar taste of home, which you can't help but miss when you’re so far away. The only difference was the scenery. In the distance you could see mountains covered with snow, yet people were standing in their bathing suits and swimming in the water, quite a contradicting scene. It was amazing. Then, the latter part of the day we spent at the amusement park. It was like a tiny Disney World only 20 minutes away from where we are staying. – CRYSTAL RICCI, SENIOR HUMAN SERVICES MAJOR


Meeting with the high school students Today in class, we were broken up into two separate groups to speak with the Italian students from the high school. The teacher then told us we could have about a half hour to converse with the students about things we wanted to know about them and things they wanted to know about us. We all sat in a circle and introduced ourselves in Italian. The students were very impressed with the way we could introduce ourselves and I was happy that finally someone could understand me. Then, Mrs. Clewis gave us our first quiz! – AMANDA HUENKE, SENIOR HUMAN SERVICES MAJOR


Lessons in Rome There are a few things you should know about Rome, and unfortunately, we have had to learn these the hard way. Though it’s not posted, pictures with gladiators cost money. A fee is required to open the door to “public” restrooms, sitting down in a café will consequently double the cost of everything you order, Coca Cola is at least 4 Euros per can, and finally, there are consequences for stepping into la Fontana di Trevi (Trevi Fountain). After a small Italian boy used my camera as his wish token, I climbed into the Trevi Fountain to retrieve it. Then, the Italian police demanded my passport while explaining that it was unlawful to set foot into the fountain. Fortunately, we were able to clarify the situation and I was only mandated to pay a fine. Now I realize that I am one of the very few people to set foot into one of the most amazing pieces of Italian art. The others were movie stars, of course. – JORDAN DISANTO, SENIOR NURSING MAJOR

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Roma, Ti Amo Our sojourn into Rome could not be described with a wider array of adjectives – exciting, exhausting, entertaining, eye-opening, awe-inspiring, the list goes on. On Friday alone, we climbed the Spanish Steps (la Scalinata di Piazza di Spagna), made wishes on coins dropped into the Trevi Fountain (la Fontana di Trevi), stood beneath the oculus of the Pantheon (il Pantheon), and saw the Colosseum and Arch of Constantine (il Colosseo e l’Arco di Costantino) in all their breathtaking glory. On Saturday, most of us toured the Vatican and the city. I Musei Vaticani, the Vatican Museums, house innumerable works of art (including Raphael’s “School of Athens,” Perugino’s “Madonna and Child with Saints,” and Giotto’s “Stefaneschi Triptych”). We saw the magnificent Sistine Chapel (la Capella Sistina). It was a gorgeous, unforgettable and exhausting trek through the beauty, art and history of hundreds of years. Buona serata! – ASHL E Y SCHEIBER, SOPHOMORE ENGLISH AND EDUCATION MAJOR


Sooo many horns! The hometown football (soccer) team has just won the playoff finale against rival Torino in grand 2-1 fashion. Brescia is now going to move up to Serie A, according to our Italian friend, Mattia. There has been non-stop honking of horns for the past two hours already. This is definitely a cultural difference between the two countries. Along with honking their horns non-stop, they are all carrying around giant flags. There are even some nationals riding motorcycles holding the giant flags of their hometown team. – NICK COAN, JUNIOR BIOLOGY MAJOR


Teatro alla Scala Before I left America, my voice teacher asked if I would visit the Opera House in Milan. Although I hadn’t given it any thought at the time, I knew I had to try to see it – just for her! When we first arrived in Brescia, Mrs. Clewis had mentioned going to see some performances at the local theater. Unfortunately, none of the performances seemed to work with our schedule. That’s when it occurred to me to check out the acclaimed opera house, Teatro alla Scala, in Milan. We saw a ballet featuring three Russian composers. The musicianship and dancing was absolutely breathtaking and the theatrical interpretations of the choreography were truly amazing. – J E NNA KUSMA, JUNIOR NURSING MAJOR


Final days in Italy I have a lot of positive things to look back on from my stay in Italy. I loved living in and attending school in Brescia while at the same time learning about its history and culture, learning the language, and visiting other cities in Italy including Rome, Venice, Florence, and Milan. Brescia was a wonderful city and a city full of history, and I loved spending time there. I will miss Italy very much, especially shopping, eating Italian cuisine, and living the Italian lifestyle in general. I received a true taste of Italy and part of my ancestral roots. – GABRIE L L E ROSIN, SENIOR EDUCATION MAJOR

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SCIENCE An insatiable passion for science and an easygoing sense of humor seems to be what keeps Dr. Margaret McLaughlin-Drubin ’97 motivated in her laboratory each day. Monitoring her experiments in the tissue culture room, writing manuscripts and grants, and mentoring graduate students is all in a day’s work for this virologist. At Harvard Medical School’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Molly, as she’s known to family and friends, has devoted her life’s research to the study of the human papillomavirus (HPV). Her enthusiasm for the virus that she has studied since graduate school is undeniable. “I dove right into studying HPV and haven't left it since. It’s a great virus to study,” she touts.

24 Today Alumni Profiles

Simply put, Molly studies the human papillomavirus E7 oncoprotein, the way in which it alters the cell and how these alterations can cause cancer. But Molly’s time is spent doing a myriad of other tasks besides performing experiments. While she waits to analyze the reactions from her experiments, Molly is writing manuscripts about her completed work or writing grants to obtain funding. Graduate and medical students from Harvard Medical School spend time in her laboratory to learn the field and Molly lends them a helping hand in their experiments. Then there’s the time spent fitting in various committee meetings and lectures around her experiments, she adds. “When I am doing experiments, I spend a good bit of time in the tissue culture room, since all of my experiments are cell-based.” Molly’s interest in science began at an early age, she remembers, but it wasn’t until her father was diagnosed with cancer when she

was in high school that she had the desire to one day perform medical research. It’s this personal experience with cancer that provides the biggest motivation for her work. “His battle with prostate cancer, and later rectal cancer, inspires me to try my hardest,” Molly says. “He died on June 26, 2009. Now I keep his picture on my desk at work to remind me to get back to work when I am having a tough day.” And tough days are abundant in science, where failure rates for experiments are high. “Experiments fail all of the time and the chance that your federal grant will be funded is less than 20 percent. The flip side of the high failure rate is that you develop a pretty thick skin,” Molly says. But with her father’s lost battle with cancer in mind, she stays positive about the nature of her work. “The best part of my work is the discovery and the knowledge that maybe someday something I learned will help a patient.”

“He died on June 26, 2009. Now I keep his picture on my desk at work to remind me to get back to work when I am having a tough day,” says Molly of her father, who serves as her inspiration.

Molly’s virology research began in graduate school at Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Hershey Medical Center. She had just graduated from Gwynedd-Mercy College as a member of the first Honors Program and was ready to take her biology studies to the next level. She took classes and rotated through laboratories, then became established in her dissertation laboratory, discovering her passion for viruses and the stresses of the field.

In 2004, Molly and Dave moved to Boston where she began working at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She became a junior faculty member and eventually was accepted into the School’s Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health Program. Dave began work as a scientist for a systems biology company that focuses on new approaches to better understand and treat complex diseases.

“Hershey was fun. Looking back, it has a nostalgic glow to it, although it was pretty tough at the time,” she remembers. “More than a tear or two was shed, although I would try to hide in the bathroom when that happened. It’s a pretty intense experience to go through, especially when most people don’t really know what you do and keep asking you when you are going to finish school and get a job. If you ever want to make a grad student mad, ask them that,” she says.

Balancing a demanding research career isn’t always easy with a husband and a 4-year old. But Molly and her husband have their schedules down to a science (pun intended) with their daughter, Maggie. “We have Maggie convinced that things like weeding the yard and going grocery shopping are fun, family activities. Don’t ask me what we are going to do when she starts to think otherwise,” she jokes.

Molly spent five and a half years performing open-ended research and immersing herself in the scientist lifestyle. But it wasn’t all experiments and cramming for exams. It was here that Molly met fellow graduate student, Dave, who later became her husband. They met on her first day and by her second semester they were dating. “We would have study dates – his grades went down and mine went up,” she says with a smile.

Time for everyday household chores is rare, and when Molly and Dave aren’t in their respective labs, it’s all about spending time together, she explains. “I have to admit that we’ve had to let some things go. Sometimes it becomes a choice of, do I play with Maggie or do I fold the laundry? Needless to say, the laundry doesn’t get folded very often.”

and attempting to keep her work to a 10-hour a day schedule, the most difficult part of her job, she explains. “If an experiment doesn’t work, then you just start it again. This doesn’t really work when the daycare is about to close. Sometimes I just have to put something off until the next day,” says Molly, who anticipates that both her schedule and her husband’s schedule will fill up more as they progress in their careers. Molly plans to continue to publish her findings as she furthers her research, but she also has some loftier goals in mind. “My main short-term goal is to make myself a competitive applicant for a NIH R01, a type of funding mechanism from the government. I would need to publish more before I would consider myself a competitive candidate,” she says. “My ultimate goal is to run my own independent academic research laboratory in the field of viral oncology. Oh, and to win the Nobel Prize. I shouldn’t forget about that,” she jokes. ❂

Molly with husband, Dave, and daughter, Maggie.

Research is a 24-hour job which seems to never end. When Maggie is in daycare or asleep, Molly is tending to her experiments

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“Together, we have guided and encouraged each other to pursue positive goals. It’s that simple. If one of us wants to set a goal, the other gets on board to make it happen. Whatever life presents – health, money, children, work – we just provide each other with the support and encouragement to accomplish anything,” Brian says.

Together In it

A couple’s journey to graduation


hese days, college students aren’t always fresh out of high school. Many adults with families and jobs manage to fit college classes into their busy schedules. This is something Brian and Tara Turner ’10 are very familiar with. For this couple, getting to graduation was a dual effort based on the kind of support and understanding that comes from a long relationship like theirs. Brian and Tara were just 14 when they met in the pits of a racing track. Racing cars was a family-loved hobby for Brian, who maintained a car with Tara’s older brother, Eddie. Brian caught his first glimpse of

26 Today

Tara one night when she ventured into the pits with Eddie’s fiancé. A few weeks later, Eddie got married and at the wedding reception Tara didn’t have a dance partner. “So I was recruited,” Brian recalls. “We danced to ACDC’s ‘You Shook Me All Night Long.’ Odd first dance,” Tara says. “From that point forward, we have been together,” Brian adds. Together, they’ve tackled everything – career transitions, having three children, training for triathlons. So when it came time to complete their college degrees it seemed only natural to do it together. Tara, now 31, saw her husband advancing in his career and knew that he needed to learn the skills

to move into upper management. He was (and still is) working in IT operations at NCO Financial Systems, Inc. He had spent five years working his way up in the company, beginning as an IT analyst, then supervisor, manager, and finally, director. With his wife’s encouragement, Brian, also 31, enrolled in Gwynedd-Mercy College’s Center for Lifelong Learning (CLL) in 2006 to complete a bachelor’s degree in business administration. Soon he realized that his wife was right, he says. Being taught by instructors with corporate experience, learning alongside other business professionals and gaining insight on aspects

of business that he could use in his office were all reasons why he excelled. “I was really psyched to get to some of my classes. There were times when I realized I needed to learn something that night to use directly at work the next morning on a project,” explains Brian, who was awarded the Alumni Association Award for Outstanding Center for Lifelong Learning Graduate at the Honors Convocation. His enthusiasm did not go unnoticed by Tara. “I really had a great time with the students and faculty at CLL,” Brian says. “I think that is one of the major reasons why Tara enrolled.” At the time, Tara was a stay-at-home mom with their children, 2-year-old Aidan, and newborn twins Mackenzie and Oliver, while working part time in promotions. She had spent many years working in real estate and title insurance but always longed to finish her college degree, she says. “Brian initiated and pushed me to go back and get my degree,” Tara says. “Even though I had many credits coming into the program, I was hesitant to go back to school with just having twins and also a toddler at home. Brian was so confident in the program and that together we could do it and be successful.” Tara enrolled in 2008 and they began their crazy schedules of juggling work, kids and school. Nights were spent in class or studying together and time to just relax with the kids was at a premium. “The biggest challenge was managing all aspects of my life in a 24-hour window. There needs to be time to come up for air and some days that just never presented itself,” Brian remembers. “There were many late nights that we would be sitting at the table helping each other with homework and studying,” Tara says.

But keeping up this momentum isn’t always an option when family issues occur. When Tara had the twins in February 2008, they were premature and had to stay in the NICU. Then, Tara suffered a post delivery pulmonary embolism. “We realized at that time that we needed a break and Brian had to step away for a class or two,” Tara recalls of the only time that Brian took a break from his classes. “That was a time that came with medical struggles and family was more important than anything,” Brian says. When graduation day came, life for the Turners finally slowed down – temporarily. They came to realize that earning a bachelor’s degree is only the first step and that their education will need to continue, Brian says. “For us, Gwynedd-Mercy College became a stepping stone instead of a final destination.”

Brian will begin a MBA program in the fall and hopes to advance his career at NCO Financial Systems, Inc. or one day move on to another company. Tara also has plans to earn a MBA, but for now they’re both looking forward to spending more time together as a family. “I want to enjoy this time while my kids are still young. They are only going to be small for a short time and I don’t want to lose this time with them,” Tara says. “I have sacrificed a lot of time with the kids and just need some nights of playing on the floor and eating ice cream cones,” says Brian, who is planning a family trip to Disney World in the fall. ❂

“We want to be the best for our children and lead by example. We want to show them that they can do anything they set out to do. We tell them to reach for the stars and hopefully they will,” Tara says.

Tara and Brian’s children: (left to right) Aidan, Oliver and Mackenzie.

It took a lot of Tara’s coordination to keep things running smoothly. “It was difficult to always be in multiple places at once, but Tara runs a tight ship,” Brian says. “She coordinated baby-sitting, dinner and study time very well.” “Our biggest challenge was making sure that the kids were not shuffled around or put out in any way because of our decision,” Tara adds. “Finding someone to be there to watch the kids every week was difficult. Fortunately, Brian’s mom, Pat, was there for the kids and for us, which made all of this possible. We come from a great family who gives us the support and encouragement that we need.”

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Class Notes 1951


Mar y E. (Ruane) Larkin, of Ventnor City, NJ, recently retired from her job working for the City of Ventnor after 26 years.

Joan M. (Povilaitis) Suders, of Mechanicsburg, Pa., is happy to announce that her daughter married in December 2009 and her son recently graduated from medical school.

1955 Peggy Anne Ferguson, of Ambler, Pa., recently returned from a vacation to Australia.



Louise (Schirmer) Smith, of Pipersville, Pa., retired last June from the Souderton Area School District where she was a teacher and counselor.

Mar y (Adams) LaRouech, of Calabash, NC, is retired and enjoying spending time with her grandchildren.



Mary Ann Sley, of Elkton, Md., was recently nominated for Counselor of the Year at Howard High School in Ellicott City, Md.

Jeanne (Hitchcock) Browning, of Waverly, Pa., is still enjoying being a silversmith. Carole Hurst, of Doylestown, Pa., recently purchased a vacation home in the Hilton Head, SC, area.

1963 Kathr yn (Doyle) Dougherty, of Fairfax, Va., is enjoying spending time with her seven grandchildren. Lorraine Sugra, of Lancaster, Pa., is happily retired and enjoying her eight grandchildren.

1969 Kathleen (D’Amore) Buehler, of Yardley, Pa., recently retired.

28 Today Class Notes

1974 Kathleen M. (Bienas) Wasong, of Lancaster, Pa., is the Lancaster Township Supervisor for the Lancaster County Planning Commission.

1975 Colleen Corbo, of Boulder, Co., is happy to announce that her daughter, Lili, recently completed her Fulbright Scholarship in Vienna and is now working with AmeriCorps in Boston. Barbara J. Turzer, of Willow Grove, Pa., is currently working as a teacher’s assistant for kindergarten and first grade in the Upper Dublin School District.

From the Director of Alumni Relations, Shannon Bruno...

Gwynedd-Mercy College Alumni Association Board – 2010 New Inductees Kalik Booker ’08 Melissa Dziedzic ’10 Ashleigh Houck ’09 Elizabeth “Bettie” Iaquinto ’80 Noreen McDonough ’10 Matthew Poli ’94 Janet Steiner ’08

Alumni Welcome to Attend GMC Alumni Association Meeting The Gwynedd-Mercy College Alumni Association invites all alumni to attend an informational meeting and reception with the Alumni Association Board on Monday, September 13, 2010 at 6 p.m. in Assumption Hall. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback for the Board on upcoming events and alumni planning. If you’d like to attend, please contact Shannon Bruno, at, or 215-641-5554.

1977 Elizabeth A. Allen, of West Chester, Pa., is currently working as a triage nurse at Great Valley OB/GYN Mainline Healthcare. Colleen (Taylor) Francescangeli, of New Britain, Pa., is proud to announce that her daughter, Mari Rose, graduated from GMC this spring with a bachelor’s degree in education.

1979 Suanne Bernacki, of Cape May, NJ, recently achieved board certification in Nursing Professional Development from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Susan B. (Bennis) Kristiniak ’77/’79, of Oreland, Pa., was recently accepted into a doctoral program for healthcare administration. Janet (Grogan) Snyder, of Oakford, Pa., is happy to announce that both her son and daughter graduated from college last May.

1981 Wendy A. (Bockman) Spaide, of Lansdale, Pa., is still teaching first grade in the Souderton Area School District.

1982 Jill Lewis, of Havre de Grace, Md., is currently working as an ultrasound sonographer.



the Sisters of Mercy’s 150th Anniversar y In honor of the 150th anniversary of the Sisters of Mercy, alumni and friends of Gwynedd-Mercy College are invited to accompany a bus trip (date TBD) to the “Women & Spirit: Catholic Sisters in America” exhibit on display from September 24 to January 22 at the Statue of Liberty National Monument/Ellis Island Immigration Museum, NY. Discover the amazing history of the Sisters of Mercy, foundresses of Gwynedd-Mercy College, and their journey from Ireland to Philadelphia. The exhibit will also cover the 300-year history of other Catholic Sisters in America and their contributions to society by establishing schools, hospitals, colleges and various social services. For reser vations, please contact Victoria Miller at, or 267-448-1400. For more exhibit information, visit CIRCLE OF MERCY CONCERT October 18, 2010 • 7 p.m. • Kimmel Center 260 South Broad Street, Philadelphia The Voices of Gwynedd will perform with more than 10 choirs from other mercy institutions to honor the Sisters of Mercy in the Circle of Mercy Concert. The concert will commemorate the Sisters of Mercy and their 150 years of dedication to helping others. Led by Patricia Brown and Kimberly Baxter, the concert will include stories of the Sisters of Mercy in Philadelphia blended throughout the concert. Ticket prices for the performance are $25, $50 and $75. They can be purchased online at, at the Kimmel Center Box Office or by calling Ticket Philadelphia at 215-893-1999.

Carolyn (Corley) Braithwaite, of Maple Glen, Pa., is currently working as a realtor for Keller Williams Real Estate. Juanita Jones, of Philadelphia, Pa., recently enrolled in GMC’s master’s in management program. Leonard Lieberman, of Palm Bay, Fla., is working this summer at a camp ground near Bar Harbor in Maine.

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Laura A. (Sowisdral) Schmidt, of Kewadin, Mich., was recently appointed as Director of Nursing at Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City, Mich.

1984 Rosemarie (Pignatelli) Ronvick, of Warminster, Pa., is currently working as a clinical quality manager for Mercy Home Health.

1986 Rebecca H. Br yan ’84/’86, of Haddonfield, NJ, recently published an article in the Journal of Nurse Practitioners about vitamin B12 deficiency.

Don’t Let a Slow Economy Dampen Your Generous Spirit! Leave a lasting legacy for your alma mater by including Gwynedd-Mercy College in your estate plans. There are countless ways to remember the College in your estate planning by becoming a member of the Mary Bernard Graham Society. Your gift, no matter how large or small, will make an impact on our students for many years to come. Special benefits of membership include: • An invitation to the Mary Bernard Graham Society annual reception • Recognition at the annual Founders’ Society reception for major donors • Exclusive correspondence from President Kathleen Owens, PhD • VIP invitations to select College events For more information, contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at 215-641-5550, or visit the “Giving to GMC” section of

Donna M. (Mattia) Fiorini ’81/’86, of Reading, Pa., is currently working as a cardiology nurse practitioner at The Heart Group in Lancaster, Pa. Nancy Hensler, of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., recently retired from her position as a children’s librarian in the Huntingdon Valley Library after 20 years. Janet B. (Ergino) Sommers, of New Brighton, Minn., was recently appointed as Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Northwestern College in St. Paul, Minn. Kathr yn E. (Minihan) Wilson, of Lansdale, Pa., is still teaching second grade at St. Rose of Lima in North Wales, Pa.

1987 Reverend Dr. Herbert H. Lusk II, of King of Prussia, Pa., is currently the CEO and developer of People for People Inc. federal credit union, and making trips to Africa to work with the Stand For Africa organization. Gar y Scarpello, of Dresher, Pa., recently published a book of math puzzles titled Math Wizards at Work.

1988 Nancy L. (Moyer) Werner, of Lititz, Pa., recently became a real estate agent for Prudential Homesale, in addition to nursing.

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1989 Eileen M. (Dougherty) Censullo, of Phoenixville, Pa., is currently serving as vice president for Pennsylvania’s Society for Respiratory Care. Stephanie C. (Maksymyk) Mangigian, of Aston, Pa., is currently working as an officer for the Food & Drug Administration.

1990 Judith Ann (Torma) Lopacki ’61/’90, of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., is currently working in fundraising for the Academy of the New Church in Bryn Athyn, Pa. Mar y C. Walker ’89/’90, of East Point, Ga., is currently teaching nursing at Christian City non-profit organization near Atlanta.

1992 Curtis R. Cockenberg, Jr., of Lansdale, Pa., is currently teaching at St. Joseph’s Preparatory School in Philadelphia. Last year, he won the school’s Ignatian Award and served as the honorary referee for the school’s track team during the Penn Relays. Mar y Stec, of Chester Springs, Pa., is currently attending Widener University in Chester, Pa., for her doctorate.

1993 Alice Anne Andress-Babinetz, of Doylestown, Pa., recently began a position as chief compliance officer at Albert Einstein Healthcare Network in Philadelphia. Charmaine R. (Roman) Fedick, of Phoenixville, Pa., is currently running her own consulting business, Clinical Trial Consultants, LTD. Nancy L. Kashlak, of Tamaqua, Pa., recently returned from her sixth pediatric cardiac surgery medical mission to Hospital de Niños – Dr. Roberto Gilbert Elizalde in Guayaquil, Ecuador. Barbara (McHenr y) Tournier, of Horsham, Pa., recently lectured on research ethics for GMC’s graduate nursing program.

Congratulations! Engagements, Marriages and Anniversaries Andrea L. (Scherer) Allen ’06, of North Wales, Pa., was married on December 19, 2009. Nicole E. (Andreacchio) Amelio ’06/’08, of Aston, Pa., married Rich Amelio on October 10, 2009.

Nicole E. (Andreacchio) and Rich Amelio

Mar y Jo Daley ’69, of Narberth, Pa., married Bob Winkleman in July 2009. Tamara G. (Walton) DeMeno ’05, of Royersford, Pa., was married in July 2009. Stephanie A. Fisher ’08, of Royersford, Pa., is engaged to Brian Mokriski. A May 2011 wedding is planned.

Amy R. Grebe ’89, of Okinawa, Japan, married Cmdr. David Byman, U.S. Navy, in a July 2010 military wedding. Jennifer L. McCoy ’08, of Hatboro, Pa., married Mark Lewis on June 12, 2010. Elizabeth (Faust) McElroy ’02/’04/’09, of Boyertown, Pa., married Joshua McElroy on October 6, 2009.

Mar y M. Foley ’06/’08, of Dallastown, Pa., is engaged to Joseph R. Wilson ’09. Elizabeth (Faust) and Joshua McElroy

Melissa M. (Burks) Banes ’07, of Harleysville, Pa., married Thomas Banes in August 2009. Robert E. Barnhart III ’07, of Willow Grove, Pa., is engaged to Susan J. Winski ’07. A July 7, 2012 wedding is planned. Megan (Ayling) Binns ’04, of Hatboro, Pa., married Jamie Binns on July 18, 2009. Alana C. (Rapine) Crotzer ’04, of Harleysville, Pa., married Ian Crotzer on July 25, 2009.

Mary M. Foley and Joseph R. Wilson

Shannon M. Murphy ’09, of Langhorne, Pa., was married in October 2009. Alyssa R. Frank ’08, of Warrington, Pa., is engaged to Chris Walters. A March 26, 2011 wedding is planned. Jennifer (Poserina) Gobbi ’05, of Philadelphia, Pa., married Alexander Gobbi on June 20, 2009.

Jennifer A. (Moyer) Petrucelli ’04, of Langhorne, Pa., married Dan Petrucelli on September 12, 2009. Edward Pratt IV ’09 and Nicole S. (Tumolo) Pratt ’07, of North Wales, Pa., married on August 8, 2009. Michelle C. Radaszewski ’81, of Indian Harbor Beach, Fla., married Tom Eason in July 2008. Jeremiah D. Thomas ’06/’07, of Doylestown, Pa., married Caitlin on December 28, 2009.

Jennifer (Poserina) and Alexander Gobbi Alana C. (Rapine) and Ian Crotzer

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Harr y Emmerich ’91/’94, of Harleysville, Pa., is currently working as director of medical education for Aria Health.

Sandra M. Gelet, of Spring City, Pa., is currently working as a behavioral health therapist at Devereux in Phoenixville, Pa.

Sarah Kersey, of Deptford, NJ, is happily retired and doing volunteer ministry work.

Gar y G. Messner, of Souderton, Pa., recently established the non-profit organization, Lyfe Dynamics.

1995 Tar yn S. Mason-Jones ’81/’95, of Norristown, Pa., was recently promoted to chief social rehabilitation executive at Norristown State Hospital in Norristown, Pa. Janice E. Stearns, of Roslyn, Pa., is currently studying for her master’s degree at Cabrini College in Radnor, Pa.

1996 Cleo M. (Mickel) Gaston, of Charlotte, NC, recently enrolled in the University of Phoenix online health administration bachelor’s degree program. Monica Grace Simon ’92/’96, of Roslyn, Pa., recently earned the Grant Professional Certified (GPC) title conferred by the Grant Professionals Certification Institute, Inc. Robert F. Smith, of Hatfield, Pa., is currently working as assistant dean of humanities and social sciences at Northampton Community College in Bethlehem, Pa.

1997 Danielle Vattilana, of Churchville, Pa., is currently working as the director of education for The Malvern School.

1999 Justine A. Caracappa, of Collegeville, Pa., is currently doing research in pharmaceutical services. David C. Page, of Telford, Pa., recently retired from his position as director of elementary education for the North Penn School District.

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2001 Jennifer R. Jones, of Perkiomenville, Pa., recently began a learning and development specialist position at First Niagara Financial Group. Brian Loving, of Doylestown, Pa., recently achieved National Board Certification from The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. He is a math teacher at New Hope-Solebury High School in New Hope, Pa.

2002 David Brinson, of Royersford, Pa., recently started his own company, WareSoft, LLC, which designs Web sites for pharmaceutical companies. Rachael M. Giuliante, of Mays Landing, NJ, is currently working as a nurse manager in a trauma surgical unit at AtlantiCare near Atlantic City. Kathleen Marie Larkins, of Willow Grove, Pa., is currently teaching nursing at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.

2003 Daniel J. Balek, Jr., of Levittown, Pa., recently began working for AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), working with students in the academic middle who have a desire to attend college. W. David Bowman, of Langhorne, Pa., recently earned his doctorate in education and superintendent certification from Widener University in Chester, Pa. David F. Doose, of Harleysville, Pa., is still working as a remote support engineer for Motorola, Inc.

Nancy K. Matteo, of Langhorne, Pa., was recently recognized as a distinguished principal in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Elaine M. Russo, of East Norriton, Pa., is currently working as a regulatory coordinator at Merck & Co., Inc. Diana Spangler, of Souderton, Pa., is currently working as a Spanish teacher at North Penn High School in Lansdale, Pa., and studying for her doctorate at Immaculata University in Malvern, Pa.

2004 Andrea N. Baker, of Cordova, Tenn., earned a master’s degree in healthcare administration from the University of Memphis this May, and is now commissioning to become a naval officer. Brenda K. DiNenno, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently working as a Level 4 NICU nurse at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Clifford J. Maloney, of Collegeville, Pa., recently became principal at Rainbow Elementary School in Coatesville, Pa. Karen J. McCarter, of Telford, Pa., recently accepted a position as an accountant for the Penn Foundation. Karl R. Scheibenhofer, of Quakertown, Pa., is currently working as assistant principal at Palisades High School in Kintnersville, Pa., and studying for his doctorate in education at Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Indiana, Pa. Chris M. Seasholtz, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently working as a behavior specialist in Chalfont, Pa.

2005 Thomas E. Askins, of Montara, Calif., is currently working as a special education teacher at the Spectrum Center, working with children with severe emotional disorders and autism. Diane C. Cooney, of Horsham, Pa., was recently hired as a business manager at Carson Valley. Christopher M. Fagan, of Claymont, Del., was recently promoted to sales manager for DCI Products.

Thais R. Fultz, of Philadelphia, Pa., recently retired and is substitute teaching at Stephan Girard Elementary School in Philadelphia. Veronica Goodwin, of Reading, Pa., is working as a nurse at her hometown hospital, Phoenixville Hospital. Laura A. Heineck, of West Rockhill, Pa., is currently working as a literacy coach in the Boyertown Area School District.

Timothy J. Robbins, of Roslyn, Pa., is currently working as a nurse in the Intensive Care Unit (cardiac surgery) at Abington Memorial Hospital in Abington, Pa. Amanda L. Stewart, of Boothwyn, Pa., is currently working as a NICU nurse at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She also volunteered in Africa for four months and is currently going to school for her master’s degree.

Trenay Y. Parker ’03/’05, of Pine Hill, NJ, is currently working as an adjunct professor, teaching culinary courses at Wilmington University.

Jena M. Zenszer, of Hatboro, Pa., is currently teaching at an elementary school in the Philadelphia School District.



Tondeleyo L. Claybrook, of Ambler, Pa., recently accepted a new position in customer relations for US Airways.

Shawna Barr y, of Clifton Heights, Pa., is currently working as a nurse for Crozer-Chester Medical Center.

Jonathan C. Cole, of North Wales, Pa., is currently studying medicine at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Ryan P. Bidden, of Telford, Pa., is currently studying nursing at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.

Robert L. Dann ’03/’06, of Horsham, Pa., was recently promoted to executive vice president at Max Spann Real Estate & Auction Co. in Annandale, NJ.

Anthony J. Capella, of Philadelphia, Pa., was recently promoted to sales manager at L.A. Fitness in Warrington, Pa.

Jennifer L. Derstine ’95/’06, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently working as a library media specialist.

Donna D. Gill, of Lansdale, Pa., recently began working as a school nurse in the Norristown Area School District.

Steven J. Harrell, of Lansdale, Pa., recently began a new position as Philadelphia manager for

Laura M. Graeber, of Warminster, Pa., is currently working as an autistic support teacher in the Council Rock School District.

Regina A. Hebert, of East Norriton, Pa., recently launched two new online businesses – Nature Buttons and Crafty Ewe.

Salvatore Guzman, of Telford, Pa., recently became a supervisor of sterile manufacturing at Merck & Co., Inc.

Cr ystal L. Hogate, of Penns Grove, NJ, recently earned a bachelor’s degree from Immaculata University in Malvern, Pa.

Richard M. Haas, Jr., of North Wildwood, NJ, is currently teaching eighth grade math in the Philadelphia School District.

Michael S. Kennedy, of Hatfield, Pa., is currently working as a teacher in the Philadelphia School District and working on a master’s degree at Pennsylvania State University.

John D. Krohn, of Warrington, Pa., is currently enrolled in law school, studying education law.

Mindy A. LaBar, of Warrington, Pa., is currently working as a homecare nurse for Bayada Nurses. Joann S. McDonald ’05/’06, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently studying for an associate degree in human services, and enjoying time with her son, Michael, who recently returned from a tour of duty in Iraq.

Keep in touch! Check us out on Facebook and Twitter Alums

How to submit Class Notes and update your contact information • “Update Your Information” form • E-mail your message and photos to • Contact Shannon Bruno, director of alumni relations, at 215-641-5554

Class Notes Policy Gwynedd-Mercy College welcomes updates from alumni to include in this section of Today. We make every effort to ensure the accuracy of this information. If there is an error or omission of any kind, please accept our apology and notify the Office of Alumni Relations of the mistake immediately. It may take two issues of Today for your information to appear. Class Notes have been edited for space and clarity.

Jessica L. LeGrand, of Reston, Va., is currently working as a veterinary technician and assisting service dogs. Kyle B. Leyrer, of Royersford, Pa., is currently working as a police officer. Mar ylou Nace ’06/’07, of Hampton, NJ, is currently working as a nurse practitioner in the field of pulmonary care, as well as studying for her doctorate.

Today 33

Congratulations! Griffin Babies Colleen Anderson ’04, of Philadelphia, Pa., a daughter, Brynn, on January 5, 2010. Jamie E. Antosh ’09, of Harleysville, Pa., a daughter, Raegan, on February 26, 2010.

Jamie E. Antosh’s daughter, Raegan

Kelly L. (Halteman) Chandler ’02, of Harleysville, Pa., a daughter, Greta, on September 15, 2009. Joy E. Davis ’05, of Lansdale, Pa., a daughter, Kaitlyn, on August 29, 2009. Linda R. Detterline ’88, of Chestertown, Md., a granddaughter, Samantha Paige, in April 2009. Caitlin DiLanzo ’07, of Warrington, Pa., a daughter, Olivia, on August 1, 2009. Melissa D. Emmett ’01, of Wellsville, Pa., a son, Wesley, on May 28, 2009. Mar yann (Regner y) Fisher ’65, of St. Petersburg, Fla., a granddaughter, Malena Elizabeth.

Lisa D. Guy-Britt’s twins, Aubrey Elisabeth and Xavier Antiney

Rebecca S. (McMurtrie) Mann ’06, of Lansdale, Pa., a daughter, Vera Mae, on October 9, 2009. Joanne M. Massa ’01, of Lafayette Hill, Pa., a son, Liam, on February, 18, 2009.

Joanne Bilocur ’09, of Glenside, Pa., a son, Oscar, on December 29, 2009.

Sandra V. Fisher ’99/’09, of Philadelphia, Pa., a son, Gerald, in June 2009.

Melinda R. Boyle ’04, of Harleysville, Pa., a son, Seth, on January 27, 2010.

Kathleen (Diehl) Fluss ’67, of Princeton, NJ, a granddaughter, Aubrey Claire, on April 30, 2008.

Eileen M. O’Rourke ’75/’07, of Gibbsboro, NJ, a grandson, Tristan, on February 2, 2009.

Timothy Foley ’02, of Arlington Heights, Ill., a son, Tyler, on November 12, 2009.

Marla M. Pellegrini ’96/’98, of Doylestown, Pa., a son, Daniel, on March 17, 2009.

Bonnie L. Fuller ’73, of Collegeville, Pa., a grandson, Hunter, on May 16, 2009.

Noelle (Romanzo) Plajer ’05, of Lansdale, Pa., a son, Braydon, in April 2010.

Stephanie J. Bratcher ’01/’02, of Telford, Pa., a son, Filas, on August 1, 2009. Megan A. (Wiley) Brosso ’01/’05, of Hatboro, Pa., a son, Ryan, on February 11, 2009. Beth Burleigh ’02 and Derek Burleigh ’03, of Perkiomenville, Pa., a son, Luke, on May 16, 2009.

Dorothy (Taylor) Gamble ’98, of Rydal, Pa., a great-grandson, Aidan, on September 4, 2009.

Dana M. Castello ’07, of Warminster, Pa., a daughter, Giuliana, on November 26, 2009.

Kelly L. Giovinazzo ’01, of Pottstown, Pa., a son, Dominick, on January 12, 2010.

Monica C. Michetti ’07, of Trooper, Pa., a son, Tyler, on February 19, 2009.

Ethel (Frank) Glackin ’53, of Souderton, Pa., a great-granddaughter, Mackenzie Shea. Kelly L. (Halteman) Chandler’s daughter, Greta

Lisa D. Guy-Britt ’05, of Elkins Park, Pa., twins, Aubrey Elisabeth and Xavier Antiney, on April 17, 2010. Helen E. Leatherman ’09, of Sellersville, Pa., a daughter, Brooke Elizabeth, on February 17, 2010. Abha (Das) Mallik ’90, of Lansdale, Pa., a granddaughter, September 2009.

Noelle (Romanzo) Plajer’s son, Braydon

Jennifer (Licata) Rafter ’92/’94/’96, of Souderton, Pa., triplets, Avery, Alyssa and Peyton, on September 14, 2008. Milton C. Robinson ’09, of Philadelphia, Pa., a daughter, Taylor, on March 11, 2010.

34 Today

Reshma Patel, of Mansfield, NJ, recently became a U.S. citizen, taking her oath in front of students and staff at Eleanor Rush Intermediate School in Cinnaminson, NJ, where she teaches third grade. Patel immigrated to the U.S. in 1998 from Mumbai, India.

Timothy J. Sarzynski ’08 and Nicole M. Shuttie ’08/’09, of Bensalem, Pa., a daughter, Hailey, on May 11, 2009. Stephanie N. Taylor ’07/’08, of Newtown, Pa., a daughter, Keira, on January 22, 2010.

Carl J. Pfefferle, Jr., of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working as a music teacher at Lewis Elkin Elementary School in Philadelphia. Patricia Pomroy, of Croydon, Pa., is proud of announce that her daughter, Patricia, recently traveled to Haiti for a humanitarian trip. Kari A. (Miller) Willauer, of Quakertown, Pa., was recently promoted to operational steward at Merck & Co., Inc.

2008 Stephanie N. Taylor’s daughter, Keira

Pamela J. Waldron ’06, of Harleysville, Pa., a son, Lucas Richard, on January 11, 2010. Tazia White ’09, of Sanatoga, Pa., a daughter, Ava Lee, on July 5, 2009.

Brenda L. (Steigerwalt) Andreas, of Willow Grove, Pa., is currently working at Abington Memorial Hospital in Abington, Pa., and Pennsylvania Orthopedics Associates in Huntington Valley, Pa. Emily I. Bomba ’07/’08, of Lawrenceville, NJ, recently travelled to Costa Rica to volunteer with children. Kalik D. Booker, of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working as an operations manager at West Philadelphia Preparatory Charter School. Kristina M. Candeloro, of Blackwood, NJ, is currently a teacher at The Goddard School. Brianna C. Canelli, of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working as a nurse in neonatal intensive care. Lauren M. Douglass, of Baltimore, Md., currently works at Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Tazia White’s daughter, Ava Lee

Amy L. (Dougherty) Wolverton ’07, of Quakertown, Pa., a son, Tristan, in September 2009.

Shaun P. Gallagher, of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working in accounting for the City of Philadelphia. Angela G. (Mayers) Georgiadis, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently working as a customer care associate for Health Advocate. Megan E. Gill, of Philadelphia, Pa., recently accepted a nursing position at Hahnemann University Hospital, in Philadelphia, working in oncology.

Erica R. Hampton, of Norristown, Pa., is currently studying for her doctorate in education at Immaculata University in Malvern, Pa. Jacklyn A. Monteiro, of Philadelphia, Pa., is proud to announce that her son, Anthony, recently graduated from Temple University and will become a dentist. Michele E. Nikander ’06/’08, of Maple Glen, Pa., is currently working as a nurse at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. Ashley Oleszewski, of San Antonio, Texas, is currently studying for her doctorate in educational leadership at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Mark E. Pappadakis, of Doylestown, Pa., is currently working as an emergency room technician at Doylestown Hospital, and applying to medical school. Kim O. Rodgers, of Wyncote, Pa., is currently assistant principal at Philadelphia Middle School. Kaitlin E. Santarelli, of Glenside, Pa., is currently studying for her master’s degree in elementary education at Holy Family University. Maren S. Schofer ’05/’08, of Bethlehem, Pa., recently joined the Peace Corps. Monica D. Taylor, of Southampton, Pa., recently received her nursing license. Tamika D. Washington, of Upper Darby, Pa., recently passed her educational leadership test.

2009 Ashley M. Becker, of Reading, Pa., is currently working as a full-time nurse at Reading Hospital and Medical Center in Reading, Pa., on the medical surgery floor. Stefanie M. Bingham, of Norristown, Pa., is currently teaching third grade at Enfield Elementary School in Oreland, Pa. Lawrence J. Bowler ’03/’09, of Chalfont, Pa., is currently teaching social studies at Central Bucks High School South in Warrington, Pa. Kathleen Cummins, of West Chester, Pa., is currently teaching middle school English in the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District.

Today 35

Kailee M. Davis, of Cheltenham, Pa., currently works in customer service for Prudential. Victoria A. Edelman ’05/’09, of Lansdale, Pa., recently began a new career as a nurse practitioner for Evercare. Noelle C. Hartzell, of Gwynedd, Pa., currently works as an administrative assistant at Johnson’s Controls in Spring House, Pa. Sheri Monique Johnson ’07/’09, of Philadelphia, Pa., currently works as a clinical care coordinator. Kimberly Ann Kennedy, of Hatfield, Pa., is currently teaching grades nine through 12 American history at a charter school in Philadelphia. Stephanie A. Maggio, of Hatfield, Pa., is currently working as a special education teacher in the Souderton Area School District. Tina L. Mandarano ’05/’09, of Hartsville, Pa., recently became a guidance counselor at Bucks County Community College. Ruth A. (Crossman) McDevitt, of North Wales, Pa., is currently teaching sixth grade in the North Penn School District. Ryan J. McNamara, of Westmont, NJ, recently became a sales representative for Global Sports Publications. Lauren M. Michniewicz, of Lansdale, Pa., is currently working as a primary learning support teacher in the Owen J. Roberts School District in Pottstown, Pa. Jessica M. Mroz, of Horsham, Pa., is currently teaching seventh grade math at Abington Junior High School in Abington, Pa. Cecilia Nguyen, of Ambler, Pa., is currently working as a nurse at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Stephanie N. Paine, of Langhorne, Pa., recently began working as a special education teacher for Woods Services in Langhorne, Pa.

Amanda M. Perr y ’07/’09, of Media, Pa., is currently working as a respiratory therapist for Grand View Hospital and Riddle Memorial Hospital. Nicole M. Quigley, of Warrington, Pa., is currently working as a preschool teacher at the Malvern School in Horsham, Pa. Christina (Horan) Reinmiller, of North Wales, Pa., is currently teaching second grade at John Wister Elementary School in East Germantown, Pa. Sean M. Romano, of Plymouth Meeting, Pa., is currently working in applied behavior analysis and studying for his master’s degree in psychology at Drexel University in Philadelphia. Carla (Ferreira) Schleinkofer, of Hatboro, Pa., is currently studying for her master’s degree in nursing at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. Erin C. Schlitzer, of Arrot, Pa., is currently studying for a master’s degree at Mansfield University in Mansfield, Pa. Joseph W. Schneider, of Philadelphia, Pa., recently began working at Life Cycle Engineering in Philadelphia. Sarah A. Schroding, of Hatfield, Pa., is currently working as an eighth grade special education teacher. Andrew F. Severns, of Warrington, Pa., is currently running a small cleaning business and working as a floor trainer at a YMCA. Virginia E. Shea ’07/’09, of Milton, Vt., is currently working as a respiratory care therapist at Ephrata Hospital and Grand View Hospital. Cheryl T. Slaughter ’07/’09, of Philadelphia, Pa., recently began working as a nurse at Aria Torresdale Hospital in Philadelphia. Danielle M. Snyder, of Perkasie, Pa., is currently teaching in the Northampton School District. Lindsay M. Tizol, of Bellmawr, NJ, recently began working as a prison nurse.

Courtney B. Palmer, of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working as a nurse at Abington Memorial Hospital in Abington, Pa.

Elizabeth M. Walton, of Havertown, Pa., recently began teaching kindergarten at Ithan Elementary School in Wayne, Pa.

Lenore E. Payton-Lyles ’06/’09, of Philadelphia, Pa., is currently working as an accounting analyst for Reger, Rizzo & Darnall LLP in Philadelphia.

Amanda M. Weber, of Conshohocken, Pa., is currently working in the catheterization laboratory at Lehigh Valley Hospital.

36 Today

James M. Woodard, of Lansdowne, Pa., is currently working as a district manager for SEPTA. Lyndsay E. Wright, of Warminster, Pa., is currently working as a support associate at BARC (Bakersfield Association for Retarded Citizens).

In Memoriam Dr. Michael Bevilacqua, of Miami, Fla., passed away on July 12, 2010. His daughter, Sister Linda Bevilacqua, OP, PhD, served as president of Gwynedd-Mercy College from 1993 to 2002, during which her father and mother, Nora, attended many campus events. Dr. Bevilacqua’s brother, Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, is Archbishop Emeritus of Philadelphia. Condolences may be sent to Sister Linda at: Barry University, 11300 NE Second Avenue, Miami, FL 33161 Kathleen J. DeCecco ’55, of Thorndale, Pa., passed away on January 12, 2010. Evelyn F. Eldridge ’84, of Ambler, Pa., passed away on April 5, 2010.

Nancy (Devine) Eva ’69, of Philadelphia, Pa., passed away on March 16, 2010. Marianne H. Fischer ’75, of Warrington, Pa., passed away on May 16, 2010. Noel C. (Callahan) Haas ’60, passed away on May 10, 2010. Richard M. Keller ’94, of Harleysville, Pa., passed away on May 9, 2010. Mar y S. (Smith) Mahr ’91, of Lower Pottsgrove, Pa., passed away on March 10, 2010. Sally N. Scheuling ’59, of Philadelphia, Pa., passed away on March 5, 2010.

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 24 Beginning at 7:30 p.m., join us for an evening of comedy, casino games and cocktails!


Homecoming SEPTEMBER 24 - 26, 2010

The day is packed with events, including athletic games, a salute to the championship teams of 2000, an all-alumni reunion and FallFest.

ATHLETIC GAMES, 11 AM - 4 PM Show your team spirit and cheer on our athletes at the following games: women’s volleyball, men’s soccer, women’s tennis and women’s field hockey. During half time at the men’s soccer game, we will salute the Class of 2000 champion baseball and women’s basketball teams.


Add these homecoming events to your calendar and look out for your invitation in the mail.

Enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while you mingle with the faculty, administration and friends at this all-alumni reunion.

FALLFEST, 2 - 6 PM Bring the whole family to enjoy an afternoon of fun activities with game booths and prizes, bingo, food, music and so much more.

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, MASS, 11:30 AM Join us for our Sunday Mass with Father John Collins, CSsR, campus minister/chaplain.

SIGMA PHI SIGMA INDUCTION AND REUNION, 3 - 5 PM Were you a member of Sigma Phi Sigma? Watch the induction ceremony of new members and enjoy cake and refreshments afterwards.

Office of Institutional Advancement 1325 Sumneytown Pike P.O. Box 901 Gwynedd Valley, PA 19437-0901

Changing Lives

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Lansdale, PA Permit No. 444

Supporting the Annual Fund Nearly every campus initiative that makes a significant impact for our students is supported by the Annual Fund, including scholarship support for those students who need it most. Last year, Gwynedd-Mercy College awarded $12.6 million in scholarships, which benefited more than 92 percent of our students. The future of our campus is bright with the help from caring alumni like you.

Support Gwynedd-Mercy College students with a gift to the 2010-2011 Annual Fund today.

215-641-5550 • Tara Sochalski, senior cardiovascular technology major Steven Bocchese, junior nursing (BSN) major Anna Candeloro, junior education major

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