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Summer 2010

In Residence Students and staff offer insight into campus living, p. 8

In this Issue: Preparing for Possibilities, p. 14

• Paying It Forward, p. 16

Vol. XXIV, No. 1 • Summer 2010 Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D. President Karla Mullenax Wludyga Director of Public Relations and Communications Audrey E. Starr Publications Officer and Editor (814) 871-5817 advisory committee

Kimberly Cavanagh, DHSc, PA-C Britt Dyer Daehnke ’98, ’05M Caroline DiPlacido ’86 Kathy Felong ’83 Cathy Fresch Frank Garland Mary Carol Gensheimer Ron Kerman Joe Mattis ’69 Jerry Miele ’73, ’85M Catherine Oakley ’05M Rick Prokop, DSL Nicholas Pronko ’10M Rev. George Strohmeyer


Editor, Audrey E. Starr

Ed Bernik Rick Klein ’84 design printing

McCarty Printing special thanks

Paul DeSante, Ph.D. Jana Hunt Gannon Magazine is published three times annually (Winter, Spring and Summer) by the Office of Public Relations and Communications at Gannon University. Letters to the editor, class notes information, comments and suggestions are always welcome. Please note that Gannon Magazine is produced approximately three months in advance of the actual publication date. Submissions received after production has begun will be included in a subsequent issue. All submissions are subject to editing. class notes and address changes

Jana Hunt

This summer, Gannon took the initiative to update campus facilities and establish innovative programs. Construction began in May on a new, five-story residence hall that will offer current and prospective students modern residential amenities (p. 8). A new Student Success Center— which combines essential student resources, like career services and math and writing advising, into one convenient location—will be open when students return for fall classes (p. 2). Gannon faculty, students and alumni are all serving as leaders in their fields. Thanks to the efforts of environmental science professor Rick Diz, Ph.D., P.E., and colleagues, the University is now home to the Center for Excellence in BioEnergy, providing a vehicle for contemporary environmental research (p. 19). Gannon alumni have led the way in giving back, from starting student scholarships (p. 16) to providing cutting-edge technology (p. 24).


Tungsten Creative Group

As a resident assistant during my college days, I helped students find the cafeteria, learn to operate the laundry machines and know when final grades would be posted. But my favorite part of the job? Leadership training. From a ropes course retreat that helped me conquer my fear of heights to team building activities that pushed me outside my comfort zone, I learned that the best leaders have a clear vision and are enthusiastic in achieving it. At Gannon, enhanced programming, new facilities and a strong sense of purpose help the University lead the way in Catholic higher education.

As an institution firmly rooted in the Catholic faith and committed to serving others, members of the Gannon community lead by example. For the fourth consecutive year, the University was recognized for its outstanding record of University Apartments was volunteerism with more than 77,000 hours of community demolished in May to make way service performed in the 2008-09 Academic Year (p. 4). for a new residence hall. The apartment building housed Gannon Several Gannon students have added “role model” to their students for more than 25 years. list of attributes by tutoring high school students through Gannon’s local college preparation program (p. 14). In just a few days, more than 600 individuals will arrive on campus as members of the freshman class. With unique educational opportunities and a widespread spirit of compassion, the atmosphere at Gannon University is perfect for nurturing this next generation of leaders.

Alumnus William “Bill” Williams ’83 was erroneously omitted from the cast listing of The Wiz on p. 24 of the spring issue. He performed as the Lion in the Erie Playhouse’s hit production of the show. Gannon Magazine regrets the error.

Coordinator of Gifts and Records (814) 871-7469 Gannon University • 109 University Square Erie, Pennsylvania 16541 • (814) 871-7000

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contents Freshman Hall


The Gannon University Magazine Summer 2010

8 In Residence

What’s it really like to live on campus? Students and residence life staff showcase the highlights of being a campus resident.

16 Paying It Forward

Inspired alumni help current students make the most of their Gannon experience.

14 Preparing for Possibilities An up-and-coming high school mentoring program helps local students believe in the possibilities of higher education.

The Oz Project, written by Zach Flock ’05 and directed by Paula Barrett, communication arts instructor, closed out the 2009-2010 Schuster Theatre season. For a listing of upcoming theatrical productions, visit

Help us make Gannon Magazine a publication that’s relevant and useful to YOU. Log on to and complete a brief survey to send us your feedback that will help shape future issues.

Gannon students like Greg Radwan (left) and Pallavi Limbu (right), enjoy a walk through A.J.’s Way in the heart of campus. More than 900 students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate courses on campus this summer.


on the cover

02 18 19 20 22 29

newsnotes alumnifocus facultyfocus sportsscan alumnotes endnotes

News, Notes and Quotables

newsnotes Significant Drop in OnCampus Crime Reported

New Student Success Center Streamlines Services Construction was completed this summer on a new cluster of offices that promise to offer a one-stop shop for students. Housed on the south end of Gannon’s Palumbo Academic Center, the new 13,000-sq.-ft. Student Success Center combines several existing University offices—Academic Advising Center, Career Development and Employment Services, Center for Experiential Education, Tutorial Services/CAAP Act 101 Program, Disability Services, Program for Students with Learning Disabilities, Speech Lab, Writing Center and Math Center—into one central location. Building Systems Inc. completed the project, which began in October 2009.

The new Student Success Center, which features open space for socializing and studying, will officially open for student use in the Fall 2010 semester.


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Gannon University’s Office of Campus Police and Safety recently reported a nearly 18 percent drop in on-campus crime over the last year, the second year in a row crime has decreased within University boundaries. Part One Offenses (like homicide, rape and burglary) dropped by 17.78 percent from the 2008-09 Academic Year. Overall crime on campus dropped from 45 to 37 incidents. The drop is largely due to a decrease in violent crimes and burglaries, said James Waldon, director of Campus Police and Safety. “Members of the campus community have become more vigilant, traveling in groups and staying aware of their surroundings. We’ve also increased the number of officers performing community policing and foot and saturation patrols,” he explained.

Nursing Center Honored by City Officials Gannon University’s Nursing Center at the Senior Lindsey Rapela helps John E. Horan Garden children create personalized Apartments was among pillowcases to encourage healthy several honorees when sleep habits at this year’s the Housing Authority Nursing Community Health of the City of Erie Fair at the Horan Apartments. hosted “Meet Your Neighbor Day” on June 11. The event was a celebration of partnerships between the Housing Authority and the governmental and nonprofit organizations that have helped improve the lives of public housing residents. The Nursing Center, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, received an Outstanding Service Award. The Center provides free health services to the complex’s residents while providing Gannon’s nursing students with valuable clinical experience and servicelearning opportunities.

Bookstore to Offer Rental Option Beginning this fall, the Gannon University Bookstore will offer a textbook rental program that will save students up to 50 percent off the cost of a new book. Students simply choose the rental option (initially, the bookstore’s most popular titles will be made available), use the books and then return them on or before the last day of final exams for the semester. A valid debit or credit card is required for renting textbooks, and both new and used titles will be included in the program. “Textbook affordability continues to be an issue and leaves students scouring the Internet for textbooks at lower prices. A rental option offers students a local, lower-cost option, eliminating waiting time and shipping fees. Plus, reusing textbooks promotes recycling and encourages a green attitude,” said Anthony Marchewka, bookstore manager.

Students Ashley Rabell and Keith Yager gather their textbooks at the Gannon Bookstore (available online at

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Visits Campus A standing-room-only crowd joined the Gannon University English Department as it hosted its 33rd annual English Awards Night on April 20. This year’s event, which also honored winners of Gannon’s high school and university writing contests, featured former U.S. poet laureate Billy Collins as keynote speaker. Collins, a professor of English at Lehman College of the City University of New York, read a selection of his work. More than 400 individuals attended the reading, with another 100 viewing the event via closed-circuit television.

A $75,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development has created valuable hands-on learning opportunities for Gannon students while also fostering regional economic growth. The grant allows faculty and students to work with a consortium of six local companies on new product and process development, in turn stimulating job creation and retention. Project work began in May 2010, with completion expected within one year.


Billy Collins with Berwyn Moore, associate professor of English and Erie County’s first-ever poet laureate.

Grant Helps Strengthen Local Economy



Gannon Recognized for Service Efforts PennSERVE: The Governor’s Office of Citizen Service has congratulated Gannon University on its inclusion on the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. This marked the fourth consecutive year Gannon has been included on the list, which is the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, servicelearning and civic engagement. During the 2008-09 Academic Year, Gannon recorded 77,487 hours of community service, a nearly 7 percent increase from the previous year. Phi Sigma Sigma sorority members Annlyn Harvey and Kimberly Inscoe helped clean up Gridley Park for Erie’s United Way Day of Caring in April.

Riki Meyer and Donald Breakey were two of seven students who volunteered at Food & Friends, an organization that prepares and delivers meals for people with HIV and AIDS, during a summer service trip to Washington, D.C.

A crowd of nearly 400 people supported the University’s annual Relay for Life, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

Gannon, LECOM Renew Agreement In April, Gannon University and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine renewed the affiliation agreements that allow Gannon students to continue their studies at LECOM. Officials from both schools formally renewed the agreements, which were established in 2002, at a ceremony in Gannon University’s Old Main. “These programs accelerate a student’s path to medical and pharmacy school and simplify the acceptance process,” said Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D., president of Gannon University. “Students who meet the requirements for the programs in high school are conditionally accepted into both Gannon and LECOM’s program simultaneously. Additionally, these students earn their doctoral degrees sometimes years faster than their peers at other institutions.” More than 200 Gannon students have enrolled in LECOM programs since the founding of the College in 1993. Currently, more than 45 Gannon students are enrolled in the medical and pharmacy programs at the College’s Erie and Bradenton, Fla., campuses. Students in the 4+4 agreement for LECOM’s College of Osteopathic Medicine and the 2+3 agreement for LECOM’s School of Pharmacy were on hand to help recognize the occasion: (L to R) Bethany Dunsmore, Shalyn Quigley, Katherine Jones, Kaylee Bernardini, Karey Tyler and Hannah Tripp ’07. 04

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Up, Up and Away On a Saturday morning in April, a dozen engineering students launched their senior design project: a high-altitude, helium-gas-powered weather balloon equipped with instrumentation to collect data like temperature and air pressure. It was targeted to rise about 92,000 feet and remain airborne for around two hours. While the launch was successful, radio communication with the balloon was lost at an altitude of 72,000 feet during its ascent. The project will be analyzed and refined by students in next year’s capstone class. In addition, a student-filmed video of the weather balloon project won the Gold Award in the MTT Alive! 2010 International Video Competition, sponsored by the Microwave Theory and Techniques (MTT) Society of IEEE, a professional engineering society. The competition was open to short, student-generated videos of projects that required both a high level of systems thinking and a wireless aspect. View the winning video at

“The launch was a culmination of all the hard work we did over the past year, and we’re excited to pass on what we learned to the next generation of engineering students.” Josh Florentine, command pod leader

The weather balloon weighed 1,200 grams and rose more than seven feet tall when fully inflated. It was made of latex that could deteriorate after contacting natural skin oils, requiring the use of gloves.

Student Achievements & Accomplishments Deborah Adams ’09, a graduate student in Gannon’s master of business administration program, attended the 2010 conference for the Risk Insurance Management Society (RIMS), held April 25-29 in Boston. Adams participated in the conference through the Anita Benedetti Student Involvement Program, sponsored by RIMS. Christina Ballish was honored at the ninth annual Gannon University Social Work Conference and National Association of

Social Workers Awards Luncheon, held in March. Ballish was the recipient of the Rick Ferko Spirit of Social Work Award, presented to a junior-year social work student at a college or university in Erie County. As the honoree, Ballish received a $1,000 scholarship to continue her social work studies at Gannon. Sophomore Donald Breakey and junior Cassandra Wasson participated in the Primary Care Scholars Program, held May 17-28 at Pennsylvania State University’s College of Medicine in Hershey, Pa. The competitive program gives undergraduate students exposure to medical school and helps them become more familiar with issues in primary care through both classroom sessions and clinical rotations. Junior Anthony Firetto participated in the True Pike Challenge, a program designed for members of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. Fewer than 20 students nationally were selected for the challenge, held at the Boulder (Utah) Outdoor Survival School in June. The challenge helped participants learn how to survive in the desert and wilderness without modern conveniences and strengthened their leadership and teamwork skills.

Gannon University’s student newspaper, The Gannon Knight, was chosen for a First Place with Special Merit award by the American Scholastic Press Association. The award, representing work completed during the 2009-2010 Academic Year, indicates a score of at least 900 out of 1,000 possible points as well as outstanding scholastic publication in format, content and presentation. Senior Sara Toth served as editor-in-chief; English instructor Frank Garland is the paper’s faculty adviser.


Senior chemistry major Zachary Michael was chosen for the prestigious Chair’s Scholar Fellowship from the University of Pittsburgh’s chemistry department. The fellowship is awarded to qualified, incoming graduate students at Pitt. Michael spent the summer conducting research at the University of Pittsburgh in carbon nanosensors and carbon nanotube cups, with plans to pursue a doctoral degree in physical chemistry at Pitt this fall.


Faculty & Staff Accolades • Valerie Baker, APRN, BC ’79VMC, assistant professor of nursing, Holly Jodon, MPAS, PA-C ’83, assistant professor in the physician assistant program, and Carolynn Masters, Ph.D., RN, CARN, dean of the Morosky College of Health Professions and Sciences, collaborated on a project detailing how Gannon University has transformed its health profession curricula by incorporating simulation learning. Jodon and Masters presented the project at the second annual Northwest Pennsylvania Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Conference Workshop, held in June. • During the spring semester, Charles Bennett, assistant professor of finance, participated in an evaluation of Artificial Intelligence Software for use in economics courses. The system would assess a student’s knowledge of course content and develop a personalized study plan. He also recently retired as director of Gannon University’s Center for Economic Education.

• Michael Ganger, Ph.D., associate professor of biology, was recently published in American Fern Journal, an international peer-reviewed journal published by the American Fern Society, the largest international fern society in the world. The paper, “Nutrient levels do not affect male gametophyte induction by antheridiogen in Ceratopteris richardii,” included research performed by biology graduate Asya Ayrapetov ’09. • David Kozak, Ph.D. ’66, professor of political science and director of the Leadership Erie program, is mentioned several times in the book, In a Time of War: The Proud and Perilous Journey of West Point’s Class of 2002. The book, written by Bill Murphy Jr. and published in 2008, refers to Kozak’s teaching at West Point. Kozak was a distinguished visiting professor at the school from 2001-03, where he taught political science. Several of Kozak’s former West Point students reminisced about his courses in the book.

• Emmett Lombard ’05M, electronic services librarian, had his book, Pursuing Information Literacy: Roles and Relationships, published by Chandos Publishing, an international publisher of information science books based in Oxford, England. Lombard was approached by Chandos based upon a presentation he delivered at the International Conference of Knowledge, Culture, and Change in Organizations in London. • Pete Mannarelli, general manager for Metz & Associates Ltd., the University’s dining service, was named the Metz & Associates Manager of the Year for 2010. Mannarelli was also recognized for 15 years of service to the company. • Michael Messina, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the marketing program, earned a Best Paper award for the paper, “A generalized linear programming model for capacity acquisition in a two-stage supply chain,” which he co-authored. It was presented at the 2010 Marketing Management Association (MMA) Annual Conference,

President Garibaldi Congratulates Local Students President Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D., spent time encouraging local students to aim high and achieve their goals at two academic ceremonies this spring. In May, he served as guest speaker at the James S. Wilson Middle School Academic Recognition Awards. President Garibaldi emphasized the need for students to manage their time wisely, establish priorities, set goals, stay ahead of deadlines and always strive for good grades. On June 7, Garibaldi served as graduation speaker for Strong Vincent High School for the second time, first appearing as the event’s keynote speaker in 2004. Thirteen members of the school’s graduating class are enrolled at Gannon for the Fall 2010 semester, including the top four graduates. President Garibaldi and assistant principal Stacy Camino ’05M (left) congratulate students at James S. Wilson Middle School’s Academic Recognition Awards. Continuing a Strong Vincent High School tradition of allowing top class members to meet with the graduation speaker, President Garibaldi visited with (L to R) Jacquelyn Garcia, Brittny Ruff and Madeline Pelc. Ruff and Pelc were co-valedictorians, while Garcia ranked fourth. Tiana Ochrang, ranked third in the class, was unable to attend.


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held recently in Chicago. Messina was also a conference track chair and currently serves on the MMA board of directors. • Troy Skwor, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, had the paper, “Association of immune responses to chlamydial heat shock protein 60, protease-like activity factor and hypothetical protein CT795 in inflammatory and severe trachoma,” accepted for publication in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science. He also co-authored the book chapter, “Molecular Typing of Chlamydiaceae,” found in Molecular Typing of Bacterial Infections. Additionally, Skwor and Gregory Andraso, Ph.D., associate professor of biology, received a $1,600 environmental and research grant from the Regional Science Consortium and Presque Isle Partnership that will allow them to continue research conducted at Presque Isle State Park. • Thomas Upton, Ph.D., professor of philosophy, was appointed visiting fellow in the Department of Philosophy at Princeton University for the Fall 2010 semester. • Mary Vagula, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, recently co-authored two papers: “Hepatotoxicity of Antidiabetic Drugs” and “Osteoporosis-Understated Problem of Diabetes,” both of which were published in U.S. Pharmacist. In addition, she authored two lab manuals: Experiments in Physiology and A Laboratory Manual for Experimental Biochemistry.

Faculty Awards Convocation Celebrated Several individuals were honored in April at Gannon’s annual Faculty Awards Convocation. Recipients included: Annmarie George, associate professor of fine arts – Distinguished Faculty Award; Janice Whiteman ’01M, assistant professor and director of the School of Education – Bishop Trautman “Feed My Sheep” Award; Sara Lichtenwalter, Ph.D., assistant professor and field placement coordinator in the social work program – Undergraduate Research Award; Ellen Walsh, Ph.D., assistant professor of history and director of the liberal arts program, Mehmet Cultu, Ph.D., professor of electrical and computer engineering, and Steven Ropski, Ph.D. ’78, professor of biology and director of the science program – Excellence in Undergraduate Advising Awards; David Barker, Ph.D., associate professor and director of organizational learning and leadership and director of the sociology program, Michael DeSanctis, Ph.D., professor of fine arts and director of the Honors Program, and Berwyn Moore, associate professor of English – 25 Years of Service Awards; Anne O’Neill, business administration instructor and director of the sports management and marketing and the advertising communications programs – Award for Excellence in Service-Learning; and Barry Brinkman, Ph.D., assistant professor of computer and information science – Student Government Association (SGA) Excellence in Teaching Award.

Endings and Beginnings • Akram Bhatti joined Gannon University in May as coordinator of the Patient Simulation Center. He will be responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the Center and assisting faculty to develop and integrate simulation technology into their curriculum. He has more than 10 years of experience as a technical writer at Corel and Apple Computers and as an instructional technologist in the Buffalo (N.Y.) and Millcreek (Pa.) Public School Districts. • University Chaplain Rev. George Strohmeyer was formally named vice president for Mission and Ministry at Gannon. Strohmeyer has been with Gannon in various capacities a total of 32 years. He was preceded by the Rev. Nicholas Rouch ’83, who is the Vicar for Education with the Diocese of Erie. • Members of the Gannon community gathered to wish a fond farewell to Dick Sukitsch, director of graduate and outreach admissions, who retired in June after 34 years at the University. Other spring retirees included Mary Crane ’77M, associate dean of the College of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences and assistant professor and director of the management program (31 years), Nancy Holcomb ’96M, assistant to the provost and vice president for Academic Affairs (22 years), Richard Schauer, Ph.D., associate professor of biology (32 yrs) and Karen Weston ’82M, ’02M, criminal justice instructor (15 years).

–Dick Sukitsch, director of graduate and outreach admissions


“Gannon College may have become a University, the size of the campus may have tripled and enrollment may have grown to new levels, but what makes Gannon great has not changed. It is the people who make Gannon a special place.”


In Residence

Current student residence facilities have hovered at nearly 100 percent occupancy for the last several years, making the addition of new student housing one of the University’s top priorities. Student input was critical in the building’s design—the planning committee included student members, and a life-size model suite was constructed on campus for students to tour and provide feedback. “Because of that feedback, we made several changes to the original plans for the living space,” said President Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D. “This type of student involvement is the norm, not the exception, at Gannon.”

President Garibaldi and the Most Rev. Donald W. Trautman, S.T.D., S.S.L, Bishop of Erie, break ground for the University’s new residence hall during a ceremony held May 20. Looking on are Thomas Panighetti (left), president of the University’s Student Government Association, and trustee Thomas Guelcher ’62, ’76M (right).

This summer, Gannon University shook the earth—literally. After a groundbreaking ceremony in May and the demolition of University Apartments, construction began on Gannon’s first new student housing project in nearly 25 years: a 100,000-sq.-ft., five-story residence hall. 08

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Located on 147 W. Fourth St., the new hall will hold about 300 beds, with upperclassmen occupying the first two floors and freshmen on the third, fourth and fifth floors. All units will be suites that include kitchenettes and two full bathrooms. The building will also house a convenience store, multiple study and social lounges, community kitchens, fitness areas and stateof-the-art technology to help facilitate students’ coursework. A dedicated Web site,, has been created to allow visitors to follow the hall’s construction online. In addition, Gannon has reacquired a property near campus capable of housing approximately 65 students. The West Sixth Street property, obtained from current owners the Sisters of the Divine Spirit, was constructed in 1920 and served as a Gannon dormitory during the 1950s, known at the time as Freshman Hall. The building will retain this name and will initially house first-year students after undergoing extensive renovations, including laundry facility and heating-cooling system improvements, updates to the dining area and technology wiring. The building offers several amenities, including a chapel featuring stained glass windows and green space. Currently, more than 1,200 students reside on campus each year, living in spaces just as diverse as they are. From faith-based living-learning communities to upperclassmen apartments and everything in between, the Gannon students and staff members on the following pages share what it means to them to call campus home.

Kirk House

At the , a Christian residence for Gannon students located on Myrtle Street, students enjoy the abode so much they’re not often inside it. “Our front porch is beautiful, peaceful and it’s where everyone tends to gather,” explained Cheylan Fosmer (left), who, along with Andrew Harlan (right), served as co-director of the house in 2009-2010. This living-learning community is affiliated with Erie’s First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant and the Coalition for Christian Outreach, which partners with colleges to develop men and women who live out their Christian faith in every area of life. College students have been living in the house since 1973. How many students, on average, live in the Kirk House? 1-5 6-10 11-15 16-20 What we love most about the house is being part of a genuine Christ-centered community, which is sometimes a rare find in this generation. What sorts of activities help residents bond with each other and deepen their faith? Check all that apply.  Semester retreats  House meals  Prayer time  Community fellowship What role does music play in the Kirk House? Music is a unique gift from God, one that spreads across language, culture and place. Our worship team at ARK (Alternative Radical Kingdom), the weekly fellowship group at First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, does a spectacular job of leading us in worship. True or False: The porch swing was built by a former resident. True - Caleb Hatch ’09 and his father built it. He was graduating and wanted to leave something for the house, and he knew we were looking for one.


Hungry? If you stop by Wehrle Hall often, you won’t be. Resident campus minister Brent Heckman has been serving up snacks along with a sense of community since he arrived on campus two years ago. “I’m known for my cookies after Sunday Mass,” he said. Wehrle Hall, a freshmen residence located on West Sixth Street, is named in honor of Msgr. Joseph J. “Doc” Wehrle. He played an integral part in the founding of Cathedral College, the University’s predecessor, and served as the institution’s first president from 1933-1956. Describe how you incorporate your interest in cooking and baking into your role as resident campus minister. I do a “Night Prayer and Apple Crisp” with each floor in the fall semester, using my own recipe that I have adapted from others over the years. At the end of each year, I also host a “Wing and a Prayer” gathering. We pray together as a group in the lobby of Wehrle and enjoy hot wings and more. Each year, more than 50 students have gathered for prayer, and more usually stop by as they pass through. In what other ways do you interact with students living in your hall? Check all that apply.  Monthly Mass in the Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel  Fall cookout at Presque Isle State Park  Educational programs on topics like finances and fitness  Presentations by student faith-sharing groups List three ways resident campus ministers make a difference. 1) We help Campus Ministry have a presence and bring faith directly to students. 2) We provide opportunities for prayer, sharing of meals and community building. 3) We want to create a positive living environment where students feel recognized and respected. Which of the following is your favorite on-campus food?  Make-your-own waffles from Beyer Cafeteria  Steak sandwich on grilled Italian bread from Doc’s Landing  Specialty coffee from InterMetzo Café True or False: Food is capable of bringing people together? True – I’ve seen students experience great joy in sharing meals together, and that creates an atmosphere that makes it easier for people to open up, socialize and share their faith. 10 gannon magazine summer 2010

Freshman Ian Jeffers excelled on and off the football field as a senior defensive lineman at Springbrook (Md.) High School, so he readily handed out advice to his college roommates when they faced a new kind of challenge: laundry. Indeed, adjusting to life on your own and taking responsibility for everyday necessities can be a key part of the college experience. Jeffers resides in Harborview House Apartments, located on the corner of West Sixth and Sassafras streets. Acquired by the University in 2007, the lower level includes the offices of Campus Police and Safety and Student Health Services as well as laundry facilities for residents. What have you learned from living on campus? Living on campus has shown me how to be more independent and rely less on my parents. The most surprising thing about college life is how much freedom you have. When do you usually do your laundry, and why?  Thursday evening  Saturday mornings – Most people sleep in, so it’s not as crowded.  Monday afternoon  All of the above True or False: You’ve never accidentally washed a non-clothing item. False – I’ve washed my wallet a couple of times. As a student-athlete, which of the following have been your “lucky” clothing items? Gloves Socks Hat Shirt I never washed them because I thought it was bad luck. What laundry advice would you give to incoming freshmen? Just say no to bleach! It never turns out like you think and can affect other people’s clothes after you wash yours.


Although it’s a message often instilled from birth, sharing is one life lesson that comes full circle for resident students. From divvying up cleaning duties to always having a study buddy, sharing a living space offers both challenges and rewards. “I have learned to trust people with sharing my space, figured out how to better communicate personal problems or pet peeves and have enjoyed spending time with people I care about,” said sophomore Landis Erwin (right), seen here with friend Samantha Clark (left). The journalism communications major spent the last year in University Apartments. Built more than 25 years ago on West Fourth Street, the building was demolished in May to make room for a new residence hall. Why did you decide to come to Gannon? Check all that apply.  Great first impression  Financial aid opportunities  Terrific faculty, staff and students  Service-oriented atmosphere How has living on campus benefited your college experience? I see a lot of people every day, meet new people in my building all the time and feel more connected to campus life in general. Living in campus housing has affected my academic experience in a positive way too: I’m closer to the buildings I study in, and we can help each other with homework and projects. When gearing up for a big event, do you prefer to get ready alone or with your friends? I love to get ready with my friends because we can turn up some music and just have fun. Plus, it never hurts to have a second opinion. The story behind my shower curtain is:  I found it at a garage sale  My mom sent it as an apartment-warming gift  My roommate this past year absolutely loved rubber ducks and asked if the rest of us would mind having a themed bathroom. She made it her own little project the summer before we moved in. That’s another perk of sharing a space: someone else to help decorate it! 12

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The Gannon University residence life staff is committed to providing residents with a living experience that enhances and complements their collegiate experience, and offering living spaces conducive to academic success is one hallmark of on-campus living. You can often find student Khadafi Bizzell (left) preparing for tests and catching up on course readings in his Crispo Hall apartment along with roommate Chris Boyd (right). Bizzell’s hall, located on Sassafras Street, has housed students since 1987 and was named after Rev. Alphonse F. Crispo, a Gannon faculty member from 1948-1977.

 Fill in the blank – These are the most nerve-

I’m a sophomore majoring in accounting and my hometown is Cleveland, Ohio. On average, I study at least three hours a day.

What’s the best study tip you’ve ever received? Bite the bullet and study early. If you spend time on your classes first, you won’t be as stressed when you’re trying to fit in other activities, like spending time with friends, work or participating in student organizations.

Which of the following test formats is your least favorite?  Multiple choice

wracking, because if you don’t know the answer right then, you never will.  Essay  Any test involving algebra Most students have a preferred study space in Nash Library—what’s yours? The large table by the door on the second floor. Circle your favorite late-night study session food: Hamburgers Popcorn Ice cream Gummy worms and energy drinks


Preparing for


“Before everything else, getting ready is the secret to success.” So said entrepreneur Henry Ford after he introduced the Model T automobile to the American public. With the help of their committed teachers, one motivated program director and several supportive Gannon University students, Erie teens are receiving just the preparation they need to be successful after high school.

Established at Strong Vincent High School in 2007 through a partnership with the Council for Opportunity in Education and General Electric, the Gannon University Mentoring Services (GUMS) program is a career and college access program that encourages further discovery of options beyond high school and assists students with course tutoring, test preparation, the college search and application process and more.

“The program’s primary goal is to produce seniors who are college-bound and ready for life after high school, both academically and socially,” explained Michael Cifelli ’04M, GUMS director and high school outreach coordinator at Gannon. “We want to collaborate with educators, parents and the community to encourage the view of higher education as the expectation rather than the exception.”

The program began with 75 students in four pilot classes. Today, more than 130 individuals are taking advantage of GUMS, including 26 students who were initially recruited. While the group is a diverse bunch—honors students, underrepresented minority students and first-generation students (where neither parent has attended college)—they all have shown growth and progress across the board. During the 2008-09 year, 65 percent of participants earned a 3.0 grade point average, while sophomores—some of the program’s first students—saw a 56 percent increase in their final math grade from the previous year. “The GUMS program has pushed me to do better in everything. I now understand that in order to be successful in life, I have to invest in my education, and, more importantly, in myself,” Last year, GUMS launched an additional program, its College Bound Academy, to provide further distinction for students with outstanding academic success and program attendance. The group is seen here, along with mentors Jackie Oesmann and Becky Iscrupe (maroon and gold, far left) and director Mike Cifelli (maroon, far right), during a recent visit to the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland, Ohio.


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Strong Tricia Vincent junio T off a f heiss shows r r GUMS targets three main areas for student success: college during og she found I exposure (campus visits, interaction with professors and Specie nvasive s education on academic majors and student life), science Presqu Day at e enhancement (films, speakers and field experiments) Park . I Isle State and service-learning (volunteer activities, community field tr ncentives lik e ip involvement and leadership development). A team of seven calcula s, scientific tors, U mentors, all of whom are Gannon students, operate from flash d SB r a dedicated office space within Strong Vincent. specia ives and l motiva recognition h te GUM e “One of the first students I worked with was a freshman S stud lp ents. struggling to pass his algebra class,” said Jackie Oesmann, a senior marketing major. “He told me he wanted to go to Gannon college and major in engineering, but was worried that Hersch finance inst ru d he wasn’t smart enough. All he needed was someone concep iscusses te ctor Kurt am ts with to talk to about his goals and work with him on his juniors Strong -building academics so he could see that he could be successful Erie Te at the Unive Vincent rs if he put his mind to it. A week later, I went back to c (ETI). G hnology Incu ity’s his class, and he gave me a hug in front of the whole b U receive MS student ator room and said, ‘Thank you for helping me pass s s e v eral during my math test; I know I can do it now!’ Those little the yea opportunitie w s interactions and seeing the kids inspired to do their particip ith college f r to interac t a a c a nd tec u t best are what motivate me to go to work every day.” hnology e in hands- lty and on scie activit nce ies. In turn, Strong Vincent students have embraced GUMS the program. “I am excited for next year to see s (L to R tudents what they have planned. Thanks to the GUMS ) Shan Lewis, telle staff, I have realized that I need to start thinking B Aar’Zh riAnn Joyce about my future and preparing myself for college. a , and Sh ne Robinson I will be the first to recommend this program to e take a lby Mallon incoming freshmen. There is nothing to lose and Drake, break with so much to gain from this terrific program,” said t masco he Gannon senior Leyla Dombrowski. t, durin this ye g a Cordell Ratliff, a SVHS senior, agrees. “It’s Zone g r’s Pink a helped me to realize what I’m looking for in with ot me. Along h a college or university and find out which Vincen er Strong t school would best fit me. My eyes are very inform students, t a h open to finding a great college because of the which tion tables d e group volu h nt uring t e lp s raise program. GUMS is one of the best programs breast he ann eered at a w a ual eve c r a e ncer nes that I have been in during high school,” the th ree co . Service-le s and funds nt, re com he said. arning the GU p is one for MS pr ogram. onents of of Establishing a presence and improving said Jeannette Casiano, a senior at Strong Vincent who has been with the program since its inception.

students’ grades and attitudes are just the beginning; GUMS is always evolving, says Cifelli. Several new components will be added in the upcoming year, like peer mentoring between seniors and freshmen and a philanthropic partnership with a Gannon sorority.

“At the end of the day, the GUMS program and the Gannon University mission are one in the same: prepared students can believe in the possibilities of a college education,” Cifelli said.

A new position at Gannon will help the University foster even more community partnerships. Shay Meinzer joined campus in May as director of community development, a newly created position housed under Academic Affairs. As director, Meinzer is responsible for project development and building community partnerships. One of her first projects will be Erie-GAINS (Gannon Alliances to Improve our Neighborhood Sustainability), an effort to enhance and improve the downtown area. 15

Paying It Forward All college students recognize one truth: that getting here didn’t happen overnight. Between hours spent on SAT practice tests to time invested in extracurricular activities, preparing for college is no small feat. Add to the equation the complications of funding this education, and the task can seem downright overwhelming. Thankfully for Gannon University students, several alumni have stepped up to ensure that today’s students receive the same quality education they did years before. “Receiving a scholarship helped me so much. It allowed me to focus my attention more on my schoolwork and activities and helped ease my financial burden,” explained Megan Weis, a junior occupational therapy major. “I’m not sure I would have been able to attend college without this help.” Weis was the 2009-2010 recipient of the Pfingstler Family Endowed Scholarship, established in 2006 by Dick Pfingstler ’72. The award is presented to academically deserving students with demonstrated financial need who graduated from Elk County Catholic High School or are a native of St. Marys, Pa. The scholarship was created in honor of his parents, Regis and Dolores Pfingstler. 16

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“I didn’t receive any financial aid when I was a student, so I know how difficult it can be to have to take out loans or work multiple jobs. I felt that starting this scholarship would be a win-win for everybody: it was a good opportunity to help Gannon and its students while honoring my parents and helping the people of St. Marys, where I grew up,” Pfingstler explained. He is the owner and CEO of Atlas Pressed Metals in DuBois, Pa., a manufacturer of powdered metal components. Like Pfingstler, alumnus and trustee Christopher Snyder ’81 wanted to give back in a way that benefitted Gannon students as well as his community. As a longtime supporter of Emmaus Ministries—a social service agency operated by the Benedictine Sisters

of Erie that provides meals, activities, information and advocacy for area residents—Snyder envisioned a partnership that would help a student and the sisters. “Gannon has a goodness about it that is everywhere—it permeates the whole organization,” said Snyder, an Erie native and co-founder and CEO of Spectrum Direct Insurance Services. “When I began thinking about financially supporting students,

I knew that I also wanted to help steer that contribution in such a way that those resources would also help support an organization I really believe in.” The Christopher Snyder Sponsored Social Work Internship, created in 2009, presents a unique opportunity for a Gannon student to receive financial aid while earning internship credit, a core requirement for many of the University’s academic programs. Senior social work major Chris Frye was the scholarship’s inaugural recipient. He spent nearly 500 hours this past year at Emmaus, primarily working with Sister Gus’ Kids Café, where

“Receiving this scholarship will enable me to bounce back financially after graduation,” Weis said. “It will also help me remain connected to the University, because I will always remember the generosity of this family’s gift. Hopefully, after I have advanced in my career, I will be able to pay it forward to another struggling student.”

he planned and instructed recreational activities, tutored and provided counseling services.


Leonard Walkiewicz ’70, ’87M had one final wish: to leave behind a gift that would allow future students to receive the same high-quality Gannon education he obtained. After Walkiewicz passed away in February, his family honored this desire to give back by gifting his house to the University. Proceeds from the sale of the house have since been used to fund an endowed scholarship in math in his memory. Walkiewicz was a traffic engineer with GTE/Verizon prior to retiring in 1993. He was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, serving during Vietnam. He enjoyed rock and roll music from the 1950s and 1960s, gardening and collecting science fiction books. “He was also a master of trivia,” said his brother, Ron Walkiewicz. “In fact, everyone wanted Len on their team for their regular Trivial Pursuit games since he was so good. Our family is honored to have Len’s legacy live on at Gannon through this new scholarship.”

Frye and Weis are not alone; more than 90 percent of fulltime undergraduate Gannon students qualify for financial assistance through various grants, scholarships, loans and employment opportunities each year. During 20092010 alone, the University provided more than $26 million in assistance.

“I would hope that anybody who has graduated and had some success would look back and do something to help somebody else along the way. Gannon gave me a good education that prepared me well for my future career, and I still think the values I learned while a student play into some of the success I have had. Giving back is just a small way of trying to help somebody else through that process,” Pfingstler said.

Leaving A Legacy


“Without his generosity, none of this would have happened, but this scholarship meant more to me than the money that was invested,” Frye said. “This scholarship gave me the means to go beyond regular internships and really immerse myself in my career field. It connected me to the Erie community and allowed me to see social issues from the viewpoint of local citizens. It was an opportunity that has left a deep imprint on my life and career.”

Likewise, both Pfingstler and Snyder are optimistic that their fellow classmates will continue to be inspired to give back.



Students have benefitted from alumni generosity for many years. Beneficiaries of the Thomas M. and Christine B. Li Scholarship Endowment Fund Matthew O’Donnell (far left), Heather Stoner ’06 (left) and Ruslan Zakharchuk ’07, ’08 (right) spent time with Thomas Li ’55 during a visit to campus in 2006. Li established the scholarship in 1983 to aid health sciences and engineering students.

For more information on helping Gannon students through an endowed scholarship or planned gift, contact Tony Fulgenzio ’82 in University Advancement at (814) 8717786. 17

Featured Alum


Jill (Soroka) Gore ’03, ’04M

By Melanie Cherry


For some, work means getting up early, doing a variety of humdrum tasks and sprinting out the door the moment the clock hits 5 p.m. For Jill (Soroka) Gore ’03, ’04M, work means lending a comforting and healing hand while giving others a better quality of life.

“The PA Program at Gannon is well-established and has a reputation of educating PAs who are ready to participate in the care of patients upon graduation,” she said. Gore believes giving back to the profession enables clinicians to better understand the job’s achievements and challenges while helping colleagues and the community.

Gore is a physician assistant in San Antonio at the Texas Transplant Physician Group (TTPG), which performs both solid organ and marrow transplants for adults and children. Gore works in a division of the group that transplants bone marrow for adult patients with various malignancies, most commonly leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma.

As an RA, Gore handed out a Mark Twain quote to her residents at the beginning of each year. She said this quote helped her achieve success throughout college and beyond, and it offers good advice to every college student:

The Buffalo, N.Y., native began her physician assistant journey in 1999 as a freshman at Gannon. During her time as an undergraduate, Gore served as a resident adviser (RA) for two years and was a member of the Gannon University Society of Physician Assistants (GUSPAS). “Gannon is a friendly, close-knit community. I remember walking to class through A.J.’s Way and feeling as though I said hi to almost every third person,” Gore said. “I always felt welcomed and encouraged to share my ideas, explore my talents and grow as a person.” After graduating with a bachelor of science degree in health sciences in 2003 and a master’s of physician assistant studies in 2004, Gore worked in general pediatrics in New York. She moved to San Antonio in 2006 and began working with an adult hematology/ oncology (blood disorders and cancer) group. About a year ago, she accepted an offer to work at TTPG. Gore said working with patients who are very ill or terminal is not always easy, but is incredibly rewarding.

“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

“Gannon is a friendly, close-knit community… I always felt welcomed and encouraged to share my ideas, explore my talents and grow as a person.”

“I try to focus on the many patients who are doing well and have lived far beyond their once-grim prognosis,” she said. “I am also treating patients who are going through one of the worst times in life. It’s rewarding to help them cope with their illness 5 MINUTES, 5 QUESTIONS and treat them so that they can live long enough I was the first in my field to use OnControl, a powered device used for bone to see the birth of a grandchild or to spend marrow biopsy procedures. another Christmas with their family.” In addition to her 9-to-5 job (give or take a few hours), Gore has authored manuscripts published in scholarly journals and has spoken at national medical conferences. She sits on the board of directors for the Bexar County PA Society and serves on the editorial board for the Journal of the Advanced Practitioner in Oncology. She also peer-reviews the Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants. None of these would be possible, Gore said, without the credentials she earned at Gannon.

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In my downtime, I enjoy gardening, baking, sewing and decorating. When we have a rare free weekend, my husband and I enjoy exploring the San Antonio, Texas, region. Times have changed all over campus! The PA classes I used to attend in the Palumbo Academic Center are now housed in the Morosky Academic Center, where students learn in the Patient Simulation Center. The Gannon people who influenced me the most were my PA professors. They served as role models and taught me not only the didactical information, but also how to continue lifelong learning. My advice to current college students is make the most of your college years; they are definitely some of the best years of your life.

Cherry is a junior journalism communications major and intern in the Communications office.

Pop quiz: what do grape juice, horse manure and grass seeds have in common? They’re not just commonplace materials—they all play a part in some of Gannon’s newest environmental science research projects. With the help of Rick Diz, Ph.D., P.E., associate professor and chair of the Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, and the newly created Center for Excellence in BioEnergy at Gannon University, faculty and students are turning the everyday into the extraordinary.

Featured Faculty

“[Renewable energy is] a lively and exciting field that I personally can get very passionate about and I hope that transfers into the students’ interest.”

“Renewable energy is a strong focus for our department; we’re very interested in the interplay between energy and environmental quality,” he said. “It’s a lively and exciting field that I personally can get very passionate about, and I hope that transfers into the students’ interest.” Diz’s passion helped him spearhead the Center, which receives grant funding from Ben Franklin Technology Partners, one of the nation’s longest-running technology-based economic development programs. “Our mission is to promote activity and interest in converting biological waste materials as well as energy crops into bio-fuel and to connect with companies in need of these services to provide them with low-cost research and development,” Diz said. The Center—which entered its second year of operation in July—is currently home to five research projects, with nine students directly involved for either course or internship credit. In addition to Diz, environmental science professors Michelle Homan, Ph.D., and Johnson Olanrewaju, Ph.D., are conducting energy-related studies, with support from biology professor Troy Skwor, Ph.D., as well as mechanical engineering professors Hamid Torab, Ph.D., P.E., and Karinna Vernaza, Ph.D. It all began when a small biotech company, Nanologix, approached Diz’s department for research assistance, spawning a microbial hydrogen production project at Welch’s Foods in North East, Pa., using waste juice as food for bacteria to produce hydrogen. That research was such a success that Nanologix filed a patent with Diz as co-inventor. Soon, Diz was looking for even more ways to create energy from organic materials, like large animal operations.

Rick Diz, Ph.D.


Diz and graduate student Shane Krause test horse manure as part of a renewable energy research project. “Manure can be converted into large amounts of methane, and methane can be burned to produce heat and electricity. Biogas digesters burn methane so the noxious gases aren’t released into the atmosphere,” Diz explained. “To be economically feasible, an operation must have 700 animals or more, so we are looking into creating a small-scale version.” Other bioenergy projects that the center is involved in include research on how glycerin can be used as part of biofuel production and whether switch grass can be used in bioenergy conversion processes. “Environmental science and engineering is a very broad field. It ranges all the way from global climate change and oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico to workplace health and safety and lots of things in between. At Gannon, we try to offer our students an introduction to all those areas, and branching out into the study of renewable energy just complements that,” Diz said.

Education Ph.D., Civil Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University M.S., Environmental Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University M.A., Biology, Northern Arizona University B.A., Zoology, Duke University

Professional Certification and Memberships American Society of Civil Engineers Water Environment Federation International Association for Great Lakes Research International Association for Hydrogen Energy Association of Environmental Engineering & Science Professors

Hobbies Horseback riding, sailing


Athletic Accomplishments


BY DAN TELISKI ’97, director of athletics media relations

Gannon concluded its second year as a member of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) with another successful season. Its 14 intercollegiate programs which accumulate won-loss records produced a .584 winning percentage with a 377-267-7 combined record during those two years. The teams have secured 20 winning seasons out of a possible 28 during that time span.

Women’s Lacrosse One year

after narrowly missing the postseason during its inaugural PSAC campaign, the Gannon women’s lacrosse team advanced to the conference semifinals and finished 12-7 overall. The Lady Knights opened the PSAC tournament with a convincing 15-9 victory at local rival Mercyhurst College in the quarterfinals, before bowing out to national finalist West Chester University 19-18 in the semifinals. Gannon recorded 12 victories for the second consecutive season, reaching double digits in wins for the sixth straight campaign. The Lady Knights have never posted a losing record during their 15-year history. The program was tabbed eighth in the final Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) national rankings. Seniors Taryn Millerd and Kayla Nelson were selected to participate in the 2010 IWLCA North-South Division II All-Star Game. Millerd was Gannon’s leader in goals (77) and points (95).

The senior midfielder led the PSAC in game-winning goals (6) while ranking second in goals per match (4.05). Nationally, she was the best among NCAA Division II players in goals, ranking fifth in points. Nelson was Gannon’s top feeder with 67 assists, 17 goals and 84 points. The senior attacker led the PSAC and ranked second among all NCAA Division II players in both assists (67) and assists per match (3.53). In addition, Rachel DerCola and Mary Eshenour earned All-PSAC Western Division second-team accolades. Jess Fugate was named PSAC Western Division Freshman of the Year.

Softball The Gannon softball team opened and concluded the 2010 campaign strong under second-year head coach Tom Jakubowski. The Lady Knights won 11 of their first 16 games. Following a tough PSAC schedule, Gannon never quit and ended the regular season with a twin bill sweep at rival Edinboro University.

Kelsey Fedell was named to the All-PSAC Western Division second team. The freshman centerfielder Kelsey Fedell led Gannon in doubles (5), home runs (7), RBIs (27), total bases (57) and slugging percentage (.606). She hit .330 with a .379 on-base percentage and .971 fielding percentage. Defensively, Fedell committed only one error in 32 games. The Wexford, Pa., native hit .383 (18-47) with runners on base and .361 (13-36) with runners in scoring position. She led the team in multiple-hit games (10) and multiple-RBI games (8). She produced a season-high six-game hitting streak during the trip. Fedell had a pair of four-game hitting streaks later in the season.

Women’s Water Polo The

Gannon women’s water polo team finished the 2010 season among others receiving votes in the final Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Top 10 poll. The Lady Knights were one of only two non-NCAA Division I programs to receive votes. The program has recorded only two losing seasons during its 10year history. Head coach Don Sherman’s squad concluded Annie Greenhill the campaign with a 9-21 record. The Lady Knights finished fourth at the CWPA Western Division Championships. Annie Greenhill and Colleen Harriger were named to the All-CWPA Western


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Women’s Lacrosse Team

Division teams. Greenhill was selected to the first team for the third consecutive season, while Harriger landed a spot on the second team.

University (Pa.) on the final day of the regular season ended Gannon’s campaign with a 21-22 overall record and a 12-12 PSAC mark.

Greenhill, a senior, led Gannon in goals (49), earned kickouts (91) and steals (40) while sharing the team lead in assists (25). She shattered the school’s single-season record for earned kickouts by 36. The Brea, Calif., native is Gannon’s all-time leader in earned kickouts.

Head coach Nate Cocolin’s squad recorded the program’s most victories since 2004, and its 12 league wins equaled the program’s most in eight years. The Golden Knights increased their victory total for the third consecutive season, posting 11 more wins than a year ago.

Harriger earned all-conference accolades for the first time during her collegiate career. An ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District 2 third-team selection, the sophomore tied for the team lead in assists (25) while being the team’s second-leading scorer with 46 goals. The Erie native added a team-high 24 field saves.

Brandon Crum was named to the AllPSAC second team. Crum hit .270 with a .315 slugging percentage and .386 onbase percentage in 43 games. The senior catcher started every game, scoring 20 runs and driving in 17. He also led the team in sacrifice hits (12). Defensively, Crum produced a .976 fielding percentage. He committed only six errors in 253 opportunities behind the plate.

Baseball The Gannon baseball team

was one of the Atlantic Region’s most improved teams in 2010. A split against PSAC Western Division champion Indiana

Greg Radwan By Melanie Cherry

Kolten Hoffman was one of five male student-athletes listed among the PSAC

Spring Top 10 award winners, which recognize student-athletes who excel in both the classroom and in the area of competition. Hoffman maintains a perfect 4.0 cumulative grade point average while majoring in mathematics. A two-time ESPN The Magazine All-District 2 firstteam selection and a PSAC Scholar-Athlete, Hoffman led Gannon in average (.349), hits (44), doubles (11), RBIs (26), total bases (61), slugging percentage (.484) and on-base percentage (.461).

Kolten Hoffman

Gannon University promises a well-rounded education, and student-athlete Greg Radwan exemplifies that promise both on and off the field. A starting pitcher, designated hitter, dean’s list member and scholar-athlete, the Farnham, N.Y., native knows the importance of hard work.

Radwan, a senior early childhood/elementary education major and son of Sherry and Greg Radwan, played for head coach Paul Bartell at St. Francis High School. He began his baseball career at Gannon in 2007 and earned the sixth-highest single-season sacrifice hit total in school history. In 2008, Radwan started in 44 games. He earned All-GLIAC honorable-mention accolades, and he was named to the GLIAC All-Academic team. He was also named a preseason All-American. Radwan started in 45 games in 2009 and was named a PSAC ScholarAthlete. In 2010, Radwan landed a spot on the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District second team. He said his proudest athletic achievement occurred when the team won 21 games in his senior year. When Radwan steps off the pitcher’s mound, he continues his success in academics. A regular on the dean’s list, Radwan holds a 3.69 cumulative grade point average. “Off the field, Greg’s intelligent and responsible. He always takes care of his schoolwork,” Cocolin said. “As hardworking as he is, I know he’s going to be successful.” Although Radwan enjoyed accomplishments on the field and in the classroom, Radwan said he believes the University community more than anything made his experiences at Gannon memorable. “The one thing I will remember from my time at Gannon is all the great people I have met,” he said. “I have met many people who I have close relationships with, and I will cherish meeting those people forever.” Cherry is a junior journalism communications major and intern in the Communications office.



“He’s very dependable and always someone I can count on,” baseball head coach Nate Cocolin said. “He’s our best pitcher and one of our best hitters. He works extremely hard, and other people notice it.”


Gannon University Alumni

’60s CHARLES A. MARGETTA ’61 was asked by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to be a member of the newly formed not-for-profit resource group. He is a certified public accountant with Plum & Company, P. A. certified public accountants in Sarasota, Fla. FRANK D. VONA ’67 of Erie is a retired engineer with Zurn Energy Division (now known as Indeck Keystone Energy). JOANNE (ZENTIS) AUERBACH ’69 is president of the New York State Therapeutic Recreation Association.

’70s JOSEPH P. KARPINSKI, CPA, CFA, AIF ’70 joined Yanni Partners, a division of GBS Investment Consulting LLC, as senior director of business development/ senior consultant.

alumnotes WILLIAM J. PEPICELLO, PH.D. ’70 was appointed to the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity. The committee is composed of leaders in higher education and advises the U.S. Secretary of Education on matters related to accreditation and the eligibility and certification process. Pepicello is president of the University of Phoenix. KAREN A. LAPAGLIA ’73 was honored as Director of Admission of the Year for 2009 by Education Affiliates, the parent company of Tri-State Business Institute in Erie. She is general manager of the admissions team at the school. STEPHEN M. DANCH ’75, ’85M was named chairman of the board of trustees of Marquette Savings Bank. He is the chief financial officer and senior vice president of Hamot Health Foundation in Erie.

WILLIAM S. SAPONE ’76 was named market trust director for PNC Wealth Management Group in the northwestern Pennsylvania market.

’80s SUSAN M. NEDZA, M.D. ’80 joined HealthyCircles LLC as vice president for strategic clinical solutions. HealthyCircles is a first-of-its-kind online health platform that offers an integrated suite of products and services to connect patients, healthcare professionals and family members. WILLIAM F. HARRIGER ’82 was named chief financial officer at Erie Homes for Children and Adults. SISTER JUDITH L. JACOBUS, M.D. ’82 celebrated her religious consecration on July 17, 2010, joining the Little Sisters of the Poor congregation in Queens Village, N.Y., where she assists the residents of the Queen of Peace Residence.

Personal Experiences Inspire Alumni to Give Back When Jenna Rippert ’09 needs motivation to help her local chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS), she just looks in the mirror. As a survivor of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, she has been an active force for the organization; this June, she raised funds for the nonprofit while competing in the Lake Placid Half Marathon with fellow graduate Becky Sheehan ’05 as members of the LLS’s Team in Training. Alumni Sam ’97 and Kelly (Talbot) Minney ’99 and their daughter, Mackenzie, have spent the year sharing their story as the 2010 Pittsburgh Chapter March of Dimes Ambassador Family. Mackenzie was born three months early on Feb. 1, 2004, weighing just 1 lb., 9 oz. and measuring 12 ¾ inches long. She spent the first 37 days of her life in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC, where she received surfactant therapy to enable her to breathe successfully on her own. March of Dimes funded the research on surfactant therapy to treat respiratory distress syndrome, common in preterm infants. 22 gannon


summer 2010

Rippert (right), seen here with classmate Aja Firestone ’05 during the 2007 Light the Night walk in Pittsburgh, has participated in several such events to raise funds for cancer research and patient assistance. She and Sheehan raised more than $4,000 during the Lake Placid Half Marathon. Kelly and Sam Minney with daughter Mackenzie, a healthy, happy six-yearold. When she was born three months premature, Mackenzie’s arm could fit through her father’s wedding ring.

SUSAN M. SIPPLE, PH.D. ’82, ’85M is the recipient of the 2010 Mrs. A.B. “Dolly” Cohen Award for Excellence in Teaching. Sipple is an associate professor of English at the University of Cincinnati’s Raymond Walters College. DARLENE (ELLIS) PETERS ’84 is the new town clerk for the Town of Century, Fla. She was previously an education instructor at the University of West Florida and is an adjunct instructor at Pensacola Junior College. DAVID G. SANNER ’84 was named to the Visiting Nurse Association of Erie County’s board of trustees. He is president of Sanner Office Supply in Erie. VANCE L. DUNCAN III ’86, ’88M is the deputy chief of training for the City of Erie Fire Department. He has been with the Erie Fire Department since 2000 and had previously served with the Kearsarge (Pa.) Fire Department and with EmergyCare as an EMT-paramedic. He has been included in the Biltmore Who’s Who listing of executives and professionals three times since 2008. JOHN J. PASERBA JR. ’87 was named the Pittsburgh Area Outstanding Power Engineer for 2010. He is product line manager in the medium voltage circuit breaker department at Mitsubishi Electric Power Products Inc. in Warrendale, Pa. He resides in Cranberry Township with his wife, Marie (Denuna) Paserba ’87, ’88, and their children, Nikkolas, Vincent and Miya Rose. JOHN B. BOWEN ’89 was inducted into the Metropolitan Erie Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame’s Class of 2010 during a ceremony held in June. Bowen averaged 15 points and 11.8 rebounds during his senior year as a member of Gannon’s men’s basketball team.


Congratulations to the Class of 2010! This year, 1,067 Gannon students joined our alumni community. If you are receiving this magazine for the first time, welcome to the Gannon University National Alumni Association. If it has been a few years since your first alumni magazine arrived in the mail, thanks for continuing your interest and involvement with Gannon. The class of 2010 is not much different from past classes: among the ranks of all graduates are successful men and women who are ready to represent the quality of a Gannon education to the world. In fact, the recently released 2008-09 Placement Report, conducted by the Office of Career Development and Employment Services at Gannon, stated that 88.6 percent of graduates indicated they were employed in a major-related field or were continuing their education. Each year, the National Alumni Board recognizes student leaders who are prepared to become alumni leaders. The Inspiration for the Next Generation Award is presented to a graduating senior who most exemplifies exceptional academic achievement, high moral character, leadership, service and commitment to the University. The recipient of the award, Hannah Kirby, exemplified all these characteristics. The senior mechanical engineering major served as president of the campus chapter of the Society of Women Engineers and was secretary for the campus chapter of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Kirby’s commitment to her fellow students and dedication to her education is an inspiration and reminds us that the next generation of Gannon alumni is certainly poised for great things. The National Alumni Board is excited to see the quality and spirit of our fellow young alumni continue to grow. We encourage them—and all alumni—to remain connected to the University and with each other. The relationships and connections made at Gannon and Villa Maria College are invaluable, both personally and professionally, and last long after graduation.

If you have questions about the Alumni Association or how to connect with fellow alumni or students, please contact me at


ANTHONY J. BERDIS, PH.D. ’90 was guest editor of a special issue of Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (Proteins and Proteomics). The issue, “DNA Polymerase: Structure and Function,” explored the molecular properties of DNA polymerases as extraordinary biological catalysts. Berdis is an assistant professor of pharmacology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

National Alumni Association President, Dana Kennedy Fallon, Esq. ’91



Alumni Lunchtime Lecture: Tall Ships

Sept. 2, 12-1 p.m. Dr. Jeffrey Bloodworth, Gannon History Department

Quail Hollow Golf Outing Sept. 13, 11 a.m. Quail Hollow Country Club Painesville, Ohio

Donor Appreciation Dinner Sept. 23, 6-9 p.m. Waldron Campus Center


Sept. 25, 8 a.m.-noon 12 locations nationwide

Executive on Campus

Sept. 30 Ben C. Askew Jr., Ph.D. ’83

Gannon Is All Over Cleveland Nov. 3

For more information or to register for any of these events, contact Tracy Stolz at or 1-877-GU-ALUMS (1-877-482-5867), ext. 1. Visit the online alumni community at www.gannonalumni. org for additional updates.

DOMINIC A. FRISINA, J.D. ’95 opened a new patent trademark and copyright law firm in Akron, Ohio. The firm focuses on creating wealth for clients through strategic use of intellectual property. LT. CMDR. RONDA L. HARTZEL ’95 was selected for the rank of commander in the U.S. Navy. Hartzel is currently stationed at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., where she works as a nurse in the main operating room. JOHN P. GRAZIOLI ’97, ’99M was named vice president and investment officer for PNC Institutional Investment Group. He also serves as president of the board of trustees for Gannondale residential center for girls and is chairman of the finance committee for St. Peter Cathedral and St. Peter Cathedral School in Erie. SCOTT M. WHITE ’97 is the new head football coach at Strong Vincent High School in Erie.

DR. JAMES H. MITCHENER ’99 opened his own dental practice in Falconer, N.Y. He was previously a manufacturing manager for SKF Aeroengine, but after losing his job following Sept. 11, 2001, he returned to school to prepare for a new career.

’00s PETER J. THOMAS ’01 is global commodities manager for Oshkosh Corp. in Oshkosh, Wis. The company manufactures severe duty vehicles for defense, fire and emergency response, concrete placement and refuse hauling applications. He spent the previous 12 years with General Electric. PAUL W. CANFIELD ’02 is a special education teacher at Jamestown (N.Y.) High School.

Alumni Gifts Benefit Science Students Two of Gannon’s science alumni enjoyed their time on campus so much they recently gave back to help current students have the same positive experience. Alumnus Robert Janosky ’64, president and chief operating officer  of NanoInk Inc., presented the University with one of his company’s state-of-the-art NSCRIPTOR Dip Pen Nanolithography (DPN) systems. The system goes beyond the magnifying capabilities of an atomic force microscope, viewing and even printing molecular patterns. Only about 75 DPN systems currently exist in the world at some of the most prestigious institutions, positioning the University to become a leading resource for nanotechnology in the Erie region.

After receiving the 2010 Biemann Medal from the American Society  for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS) in May, David Muddiman, Ph.D. ’90 used the accompanying award to fund the David Muddiman Annual Award in Chemistry, given to a rising senior chemistry student who is financially deserving and holds the highest grade point average among all award applicants. The Biemann Medal acknowledges outstanding achievement by a young scientist who has attained significant accomplishments in basic or applied mass spectrometry early in his or her career. Muddiman is currently a chemistry professor at North Carolina State University.

The Biemann Medal was presented to Muddiman (center) at the annual ASMS meeting held in Salt Lake City in May. On hand to congratulate him were his Ph.D. adviser, David M. Hercules (left) and his postdoctoral adviser, Richard D. Smith (right). 24

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Donato Ceres, Ph.D. (back), senior applications and support engineer at NanoInk, and Gannon chemistry professor Carl Hultman, Ph.D. (center), watch as Qing “Julia” Zheng, Ph.D., assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, learns how to operate the new NSCRIPTOR DPN system. The device is housed in Gannon’s Zurn Science Center.

JACOB C. MCBRIDE ’02, ’04M joined the staff of Chautauqua PT, OT & SLP Professionals in Jamestown, N.Y., as a physical therapist. SARAH (DUNMYRE) MOOR ’02 is environmental coordinator for Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Okinawa, Japan. COLLEEN M. CONNOLLY ’03M is student support coordinator in the Office of Judicial Affairs and Student Advocacy at the University at Buffalo – The State University of New York. SUSAN M. MERSKI ’03 is a certified registered nurse anesthetist with North American Partners in Anesthesia at Hamot Medical Center in Erie.

in memoriam

KRISTY L. MILLER ’03 is a radiation therapist at the Yolanda G. Barco Oncology Institute at Meadville (Pa.) Medical Center.

GREGORY J. STONE ’04M is a secondary math teacher at East Aurora (N.Y.) High School. JASON J. STUBENHOFER ’04 is an applications analyst at Hamot Medical Center in Erie. JOSEPH A. DAOUST ’05, ’07M is a special education teacher for the Millcreek (Pa.) School District. JENNIFER S. GWIN ’06 joined the coaching staff at Youngstown State University in Ohio as an assistant coach for the women’s basketball program. She spent the past two seasons at Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y. DEMONDI M. JOHNSON ’06 is a youth counselor at a Minnesota YMCA. He is also serving as a part-time

manager and personal assistant to a hometown friend, Jonny Flynn, who is currently playing with the Minnesota Timberwolves. DOMENIQUE N. NARDONE ’06 is a cardiac catheterization lab nurse at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. JANEEN M. PERETIN ’06M is the new assistant principal at Bethel Park (Pa.) High School. She previously served as assistant principal at Baldwin High School in Pittsburgh, where she was also a math teacher and department chairperson for six years. LINDSEY K. ROACH ’06 was awarded a doctor of osteopathic medicine degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in June.



Nathaniel J. Lemock Alan I. Renkis Michael Yarbenet

New Affiliation Program Offers Perks, Benefits Students Want to put more money in your pocket while helping current and future Gannon students achieve their academic goals? Several new partnerships between Gannon University and local and national businesses will offer a way to do just that. The first affiliation agreement, between Gannon and Howard Hanna Real Estate, will provide all members of the Gannon community (including alumni, faculty and staff, parents, trustees and donors) access to the Hanna Gold Advantage discount. By indicating an affiliation to the University, home buyers and sellers using Howard Hanna Real Estate services are entitled to a five percent cash benefit on the commission rate of the home sale price, with an equal five percent Howard Hanna matching contribution to the Gannon University Alumni Association Legacy Endowed Scholarship. Additional partnerships are already in development. For more information, contact the Gannon University Human Resources Office at (814) 871-7351.


Henrietta (McElwee) Holtz ’38VMC Angelina M. Fabrizio ’44 Carmella (Bongiorno) DiAngi ’45VMC Sgt. Leo I. Davis ’49 William L. Anderson ’50 Francis J. Palkovic ’50 Peter G. Schaaf, Esq. ’50 Gordon D. Gill ’51 Joseph Temple ’51 John P. “Jack” Marmion ’55 James E. Moffatt ’60 Anthony J. Principe ’62 John T. Bula ’63, ’71M Gary E. Eichelsdorfer ’63 Joseph D. Passerotti ’63 Sister Joanne Crawford, S.S.J. ’65VMC Cecilia J. Gallas ’65 Dewey P. Thompson ’66 Martha (Garrett) Gauly ’67, ’70M Kenneth M. Lawrence ’72 Paul F. Wernicki ’72, ’75M Donna-Jean Hunt, Ph.D. ’73VMC James S. Lesko ’74 Carl R. Johanson ’76 Wanita A. Wawrzyniak ’77 Timothy J. Heberle ’78 Frederick J. Eckert ’79M Robert E. Pietsch Jr. ’89 Francis R. “Frank” Porter, M.D. ’89 Harold N. Cohn ’94 Karen L. Consla ’94 Lela (Atkin) Martin ’94


Marcia A. Dall of Erie is executive vice president and chief financial officer of Erie Insurance Group. Prior to joining Erie Insurance, she served as chief financial officer for the healthcare division at Cigna Corp. She is a certified public accountant and holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Indiana University and a master’s degree in management from Northwestern University’s J.L. Kellogg School of Management. She is married to Roger Dall and was named one of “25 Women to Watch” by CFO Magazine in June 2008. Kiran K. Rajasenan, M.D. ’93 of Wexford, Pa., is a medical oncologist associated with UPMC Cancer Center. A 2007 Distinguished Alumnus of Gannon, he received a bachelor’s degree in health sciences from the University and obtained his medical degree from Hahnemann Medical College (now Drexel University College of Medicine). He is boardcertified in internal medicine and medical oncology. He is a member of the Alumni Executive Board of Gannon’s Delta Chi fraternity and is married to Rosemarie (Mankosky) Rajasenan ’93. Rev. Nicholas J. Rouch, S.T.D. ’83 of Erie is vice-rector and associate director of seminarians at St. Mark Seminary and vicar for education for the Diocese of Erie. Rouch served at Gannon for many years, as a theology professor, campus minister, chaplain and vice president for Mission and Ministry. He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Gannon, a master of divinity degree from St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore and a master’s degree in Christian spirituality from Creighton University. He has received both a licentiate and doctorate in spiritual theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas in Rome.


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VICTORIA BORUSIEWICZ, R.N. ’07 is a registered nurse at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. SEAN P. HOFFMAN ’07 is an account executive with VertMarkets in Pittsburgh. JANINE M. RINDERLE ’07 of Downington, Pa., is employed as an intensive outpatient counselor. LYNDSEY M. ZAFFINO ’07 is an office support specialist at First Presbyterian Church of Allentown, Pa. MICHAEL L. HILLIARD ’08M was a 2010 Red Apple Award recipient, given by the United Way of Butler County, Pa. He is an eighth grade language arts teacher with the Slippery Rock School District.

RONALD KEELS JR. ’08 was signed by the Canadian Football League’s Calgary Stampeders as a receiver. He is currently ranked 9th all-time at Gannon for allpurpose yards and holds the record for most career kickoff returns (77). AIRMAN 1st CLASS ANDREW J. LINTELMAN ’08 completed basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. WILLIAM R. HENDERSON III ’09C is the new superintendent of the Southeastern Greene School District in Greensboro, Pa. He was previously a middle school principal with the Bethlehem-Center School District in Fredericktown, Pa.

LAUREN A. HOPKINS ’08 received a master’s degree in higher education administration and student personnel from Kent State University in Ohio.


Board of Trustees Welcomes New Members

Logan Michael (born Dec. 17, 2009), son of Deborah (LaChapelle) Foley ’02 and her husband, Kevin.

a daughter, Kaelon Roads (born Oct. 5, 2009), to Sarah (Progar) Connolly ’00, ’03M and her husband, James. She joins older brother Braxton and sister Madison.

a daughter, Isis Andromeda (born Feb. 26, 2010), to Amber (Schiele) Simecek, MPT ’03, ’05M, ’06DPT and her husband, Brian. She joins big brothers Avery Alexander (4) and Orlin Aurelius (2).

a son, Connor Richard (born April 5, 2010), to Chrissy (Muzia) Fortin ’01 and her husband, Phil. He joins big sister Lacie Ann (1).

a son, Alexander Jason Juniewicz (born Oct. 6, 2009), to Melissa F. Leyh ’05.

a son, Luke Francis (born Dec. 4, 2009), to Kenneth J. ’02 and April M. (Schultz) Bober ’02. a son, Evan Michael (born Oct. 26, 2009), to Nicole M. (Elia) Connolly ’03 and her husband, Patrick.

a son, Connor Patrick (born Dec. 11, 2009), to Angela (Canovali) Walsh ’06 and her husband, Pat. a son, Asher Cornelius (born June 3, 2010), to Gretchen K. Griffin ’07M and her husband, R.C.


Robert E. Hoffman ’48 and his

Colleen Margaret Connolly ’03M

wife, Bette, celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on March 1, 2010.

married Anthony Francis DiCerbo on June 19, 2010.

Donald Joseph ’56 and Sarah Anne (Gehringer) Vallimont ’92

married Donald McQueen on April 6, 2010.

celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on June 18, 2010.

Jessica L. Kerry ’06 married

Frank D. Vona ’67 and his wife,

Carol, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on April 30, 2010. Paul William Canfield ’02 married

Alyssa Brooke Cari Denzel on Aug. 22, 2009.

Jennifer Dobbs-Woods ’03M

Adam Yonley on Aug. 8, 2009. Erin K. Gaydos ’08, ’09M married Ryan R. Carlisle ’08, ’10DPT on May 15, 2010. Michael J. Kauffman ’08, ’10DPT

married Jessica Sheakley on June 26, 2010.

Kaitlyn Renee Benedict ’08 married Robert Austin McNerney ’07 on Aug. 22, 2009.

Six Alumni Work on NASA Project

Posing outside the NASA Glenn Research Center during a recent Critical Design Review for the CoNNeCT project are GU alumni (L to R) Daniele, Spayd, Kacpura, Ignaczak and Dolce. All are electrical engineering graduates, except for Spayd, who received a communications-English degree from Gannon, and Politi (not pictured), who is a mechanical engineering alumnus.

Gannon University was well represented when six alumni found themselves as colleagues on a recent project at the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. Carl Daniele ’67, James Dolce ’66, Louis Ignaczak, P.E. ’67, Thomas Kacpura ’85, Michael Politi ’90 and Laura Wagner Spayd ’92 have all played important roles in the development of the CoNNeCT project, a flight experiment manifested to launch on a Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) rocket in January 2012. The experiment will expand scientific knowledge of S-band Software Defined Radios (SDRs) and will include the first-generation NASA Ka-band SDR.


Daniele, Dolce and Ignaczak are all retired from the Center. Daniele has served as a member of the Standing Review Board of CoNNeCT since 2008 and provides independent evaluation of flight, ground and waveform software development and integration into the CoNNeCT system. Dolce served on the CoNNeCT team two months in 2009, lending expertise in software systems engineering and providing analysis and synthesis of flight software requirements. Ignaczak was appointed to the Standing Review Board in 2007 and reviews avionics issues and provides general system engineering consulting. Kacpura has been a member of the CoNNeCT project team since its inception in December 2006 and is the lead communication systems engineer and serves as software defined radios lead. Politi was recently enlisted to assist the Standing Review Board, helping with mechanical aspects for the Critical Design Review this spring. Spayd joined the CoNNeCT project in 2009 and provides editorial, written, logistical and administrative support.


Remembering… Michael “Mina” George ’74 Alumnus Michael “Mina” George ’74 passed away May 30, 2010. While at Gannon, George played baseball for his father, the late Ivan George, who coached baseball for 23 years and golf for 12 years at the University. George was a social studies teacher at Girard (Pa.) High School, where he was head football coach, track coach and senior class adviser. He coached at Cathedral Prep from 1980-1995 and is Erie County’s winningest high school football coach, with a combined Mina George will be remembered as a loving father and record of 230-126-2. George dedicated teacher, mentor and coach. Coach George was an was honored in 1991 as the original. Even beyond his wins on the field is the impact he had on the youth of the area. He had an innate ability to get Pennsylvania High School the most out of the people he taught and coached. He will be Coach of the Year and was sorely missed in the community, and his close to 40 years of posthumously inducted this June into the Pennsylvania service to others will not soon be forgotten or diminished. Football Coaches Hall of Fame and the Erie Chapter of --Michael Mischler, Cathedral Prep head football coach and the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. former player and coach for George John S. Rouch, Ph.D. Gannon retiree John S. Rouch, Ph.D., passed away May 22, 2010. He came to Gannon in 1959 and retired in 1991, continuing to teach part-time until 2004. Among other duties, he served as chairman of the Department of English, dean of graduate studies and director of the Liberal Studies Program. In addition, he John hired me in 1968, nurtured my development, mentored me and took me on some great fishing trips. And by example, was named a professor John taught me about teaching, especially the importance of emeritus and received passion for the subject—and his passion was infectious. Every the Distinguished Faculty literature professor loves teaching English majors, but the real Award and the Archbishop measure is instilling the non-majors with a passion for the Gannon Medal of written word—that was one of John’s strengths. I still encounter Distinction. He is survived alumni who recall a class with John and how he taught them to by his wife, Sally Buseck love literature. After he retired from full-time teaching, he had his pick of courses to teach on a part-time basis; John chose to Rouch, and six sons, all of teach only introductory literature courses to non-majors. whom attended Gannon: J. As a faculty member, administrator and opinion leader, he Christopher ’77, Matthew was a solid contributor to the entire University enterprise. ’78, Jeffrey ’80, Jerome ’82 (and --Phil Kelly, Gannon English professor wife Susan [Grant] ’83), Jacob ’89 and the Rev. Nicholas ’83. Rev. John P. Schanz

Gannon Archives

The Rev. John P. Schanz passed away April 16, 2010. He graduated from Cathedral Prep in 1942, spent three months at Gannon as a student before entering the seminary and was ordained in Erie in 1950. He spent the majority of his years in active ministry as a faculty member at Gannon, teaching theology and German, and served as director of the Gannon College Institute of Continuing Education from the mid-1950s until 1970. He retired in 1994 and continued to teach part-time for two years. “Make me an aisle.” These were the words we heard in Sacramental Worship as Father Schanz walked through the classroom, asking questions about the readings and our understanding of the assignment. With a smile and glimmer of humor, he demanded our full attention. More than just a teacher, he was there as a priest and friend to the students living in Wehrle Hall. Since he lived next door at Barr Faculty House, he was a familiar face, always stopping in to visit students with a word of encouragement, a joke or just to see how we were doing. I remained in contact with him over the years with Christmas cards, postcards from places I went, phone calls and visits. I was always thrilled to hear his voice on the phone, just as I remembered it during my years at Gannon. He had lived a life as he wanted it to be, in the service of God. To me, he was that guiding light and example of faith. --Henry Blenke ’64, former student (seen here, on right, with Father Schanz)


gannon magazine

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A Word from the President


New Campus Facilities and ServiceFocused Programs Confirm Gannon’s Historical Commitment to the University and Erie Community Fall 2010 will live in Freshman Hall, which you can read about on page 8. Some of our seasoned alumni will remember that this was originally a Gannon dormitory in the 1950s. As summer winds down, another Academic Year is about to begin. Since our May graduation, we have had three summer school sessions, numerous academic and athletic camps for youth and five orientation sessions for first-year and transfer students. And with all of that activity, construction has begun on a new residence hall. The University has acquired several buildings over the last two decades for student housing, but this is the first new residence hall built on campus since 1987. Because we had to demolish University Apartments to build the new residence hall, some members of the freshman class of

Moreover, Erie-GAINS will help students as well as faculty and staff members focus their efforts on the neighborhoods around campus as Gannon continues to make downtown a more vibrant place to live, work and learn. We are working hard to achieve the goals laid out in the Strategic Plan while remaining true to our Mission to prepare students for leadership roles in their careers, society and churches, and this initiative fits well within our plans.

Gannon students take full advantage of both a high-quality education and extensive opportunities for service on campus and in the community. From winning awards for writing in The Gannon Knight student newspaper to earning accolades for research (p. 5), Gannon students perform well in and beyond the classroom. And the numerous stories of student accomplishments in this issue of Gannon Magazine not only demonstrate that, but they also give us many reasons to Believe in the possibilities.


You are probably already aware that you can read this magazine online at, but I encourage you to take another look at the Web page to see recent improvements in the way it is displayed online. New software allows readers to turn the virtual pages of the magazine, search for topics of interest and e-mail articles to friends and former classmates. I hope that many of you will determine that you want to receive future issues of Gannon Magazine in only the electronic form. Cutting back the number of printed issues will save students’ tuition dollars and reduce paper waste in the environment.

As many of you know, Gannon has always been a major anchor of downtown, and the University has been very committed to serving the community. That commitment has become more demonstrable recently with the initiation of the Erie-GAINS (Erie-Gannon Alliances to Improve Neighborhood Sustainability). Gannon’s new director of community development, Shay Meinzer—who is profiled on p. 15—has been selected to lead the project. Gannon students, like those on p. 4, who are very actively engaged in service-learning in the city of Erie and around the world, will play a pivotal role in this initiative.

As Erie-GAINS becomes more established in this 180-block area, the entire University community will be dedicating their time and talents to enhancing our neighborhood and strengthening relationships with long-term partners. Raising funds for these activities will be important. For example, a recent $75,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development has created valuable hands-on learning opportunities for students and is stimulating job creation with a consortium of six local companies, three of which are housed in the Erie Technology Incubator on campus (p. 3).

President, Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D. 29

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Gannon University 109 University Square Erie, PA 16541-0001

Want to help Gannon go green? E-mail to be notified when the online edition of Gannon Magazine has been posted, and we’ll stop sending you a print copy.

By the Numbers*

Approximately 170 faculty, staff and students celebrated Mass on the Grass on Friendship Green this year. The Mass is an annual part of the University’s Springtopia celebration, held the week before final exams each spring.

180+ Masses celebrated, including Sunday Mass, Weekday Mass, Community Mass and Masses held at the Catholic House and Wehrle Hall 2 Full-time resident campus ministers 3 Faith-based house coordinators 9 Faculty and staff who are Diocesan clergy and men and women religious 2,106 Students who identify themselves as Roman Catholic 6 Faith-sharing student groups *During the 2009-2010 Academic Year

Profile for Gannon University

Summer 2010  

Stay in touch and see the history of Gannon as it’s made! Gannon Magazine is published three times annually (winter, spring and summer) by t...

Summer 2010  

Stay in touch and see the history of Gannon as it’s made! Gannon Magazine is published three times annually (winter, spring and summer) by t...