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passion following her

Advocacy and the Underserved


You Know How This Happened Before

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In this issue






A Crest on the Chest There is a saying that rugby is a hooligan’s sport played by gentlemen. This juxtaposition of passion and responsibility is the exact combination that brought a new sport to Holy Family’s campus. By Sara Szymendera ’13



Ideal Coordination

Following Her Passion Patricia Velasco, student in the Division of Extended Learning, has zealously pursued education, career, and service in an impressive defiance of odds. Her motivation has led her to inspire others as she was once inspired herself. By Heather G. Dotchel



When communications technology evolves at a lightning pace, then so must the study that precedes it. Amanda McClain, Assistant Professor and Coordinator of Art & Communications, has revamped and relaunched the Communications program, all while keeping up with reality television. By Richard Rys


A message from the President

4 BRIEFLYNOTED Out and about on campus 30 1000WORDS

A visual slice of life at Holy Family

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Reports from the court, track, and field


News for the alumni community

0 MEMORYLANE 4 A nostalgic trip back in time

2 GIVINGBACK 4 Making a difference on campus 44 LASTWORD

Q&A with Danny Pirtle, PhD, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice


Photo by Michael Branscom

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A message from the President


t hardly seems possible that the school year is well underway and the holidays just around the corner, and yet, the air is crisp and midterms are past. Lately, I’ve been reflecting on community, not only as defined by the environs of Holy Family University but also our neighborhoods beyond and the world abroad. The speed of news is instantaneous, the scope boundless. Our world’s technological abilities expand, and our geographic boundaries seem to shrink. As these boundaries become less apparent, our call to help others and our responsibility to serve becomes louder and greater. Two of our features in this magazine touch upon these realities. Changing communications technologies—faster world connections and social media—require changing studies. Assistant Professor Amanda McClain examined our majors and retooled the communications program—making sure our technology was up-to-date and our course offerings current—in order to best serve students’ needs to be competitive professionals. The call to serve is embodied in the profile of Patricia Velasco, a student with the Division of Extended Learning. Patricia, herself a child of immigrants, has devoted her professional and personal life to helping others new to the United States. Between her work as a paralegal for an immigration law firm in Center City and her call to volunteer at the Sisters of St. Joseph Welcome Center, a mission serving immigrants, Patricia embodies the call to love and aid our neighbors, regardless of boundary. Love and aid for neighbors is particularly pertinent in the upcoming holy season. It is a season when we are frequently asked to help out, from food kitchens and giving trees to Toys for Tots and church offerings. While we are all feeling the current economic climate, I encourage you to remember that small gestures count. Service does not have to be grandiose to be meaningful. And prayer is needed by all. May God bless each of you,

Editor Heather G. Dotchel Art Director Jay Soda Contributing Writers Heather G. Dotchel Naomi Hall Bob Macartney Greg Pellegrino Richard Rys Sara Szymendera ’13 Kathy Warchol Robert Wetzel Contributing Photographers Susan Beard Design Michael Branscom Adam Cohn Heather G. Dotchel Allison Wogman Hibbard ’13 Scott Nibauer Greg Pellegrino Stephen Pellegrino President S. Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD Vice President for Mission Margaret S. Kelly Senior Director of Marketing & Communications Gale Martin Director of Alumni and Parents Marie Zecca Holy Family University Magazine is published semiannually. Please address all correspondence to: Editor, Holy Family University Magazine 9801 Frankford Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19114 215-637-7700

Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD President

Letters to the Editor become property of the magazine. The opinions and views expressed in Holy Family University Magazine do not necessarily reflect the official policies of Holy Family University. Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of published information.

GREENCHART These savings were achieved by the use of postconsumer recycled fiber for the cover and text pages of Holy Family University Magazine

27 trees

10,549 gallons

1,173 pounds

4,431 pounds

13 million BTUs

preserved for the future

wastewater flow saved

solid waste not generated

net greenhouse gases prevented

energy not consumed

Holy Family University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national or ethnic origin, or disability in administration of its educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs. © 2012 Holy Family University

Environmental impact estimates were made using the Environmental Defense Fund Paper Calculator. For more information, visit


FALL 2012


Out and about on campus

Class of 2012 Graduates at 55th Commencement


ight hundred and ten students were awarded degrees at Holy Family University’s 55th Commencement Ceremonies, on May 19 at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia. Holy Family bestowed honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees to nationally syndicated cartoonist and humanitarian Robb Armstrong and to Reverend Richard J. Curry, SJ, PhD, a Jesuit priest, actor, author, professor, baker, and founder of the National Theatre Workshop of the Handicapped, the nation’s only theatre school for the physically disabled. A native of West Philadelphia, Armstrong is the creator of the nationally syndicated comic strip JumpStart, which is read and seen each day in more than 450 news publications across the nation. JumpStart offers funny excerpts from the daily life of a middle-class African-American family. Father Curry is director of the Academy for Veterans at Georgetown University, which helps veterans return to civilian life through a combination of performing arts, spirituality, medical care, and education. Rever-


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end Curry’s advocacy on behalf of disabled veterans has changed the lives of countless individuals. His cousin, James Curry, accepted the honorary degree on behalf of Father Curry. In the graduate ceremony, honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees were presented to Anne M. Gallagher, an educator and volunteer and a former University trustee; Luz Duque-Hammershaimb, MD, a retired clinical research executive for MedImmune Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, MD, and a former University trustee; and George W. Nise, a retired chief executive of Beneficial Savings Bank of Philadelphia and a former University trustee, who has held many leadership roles in community and civic organizations spanning 40 years. In addition, the University honored the 50th Anniversary Class of 1962 and retiring Professor Emeritus of Communications and Theatre Kathryn Osenland, EdD.

ABOVE, TOP: Robb Armstrong,

honorary degree recipient and creator of the nationally syndicated cartoon JumpStart, addresses undergraduate students. ABOVE: James Curry accepts Doctor of Humane Letters honors on behalf of his cousin, Reverend Richard J. Curry, SJ, PhD, at the undergraduate ceremony. BELOW, RIGHT: At the graduate ceremony, Doctor of Humane Letters degrees were awarded Luz Duque-Hammershaimb, MD, Anne M. Gallagher, and George W. Nise for their years of service to Holy Family and beyond.

Free, Public, Holy Family Events Highlighted Justice and Corrections


oly Family offered a free, public conference in March that explored social justice as a path to world peace: “A Just World: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Social Justice.” Various scholars discussed social justice from the perspective of different disciplines, including economics, political science, philosophy, sociology, religion, linguistics, urban studies, and education. Sponsored by Holy Family, Philadelphia Dialogue Forum, Peace Islands Institute, and Lutheran Theological Seminary, the conference hosted speakers from all over the country.

In April, Holy Family University’s graduate criminal justice program sponsored “Corrections in the 21st Century,” a symposium highlighting changes in the state and municipal penal system. This event was also free and open to the public. “One of the goals of this symposium was to begin a dialogue between academics and practitioners in an effort to educate one another as well as the public about issues pertaining to the field of corrections and law enforcement,” said Danny Pirtle, PhD, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice and the event coordinator (see Last Word in this issue). – Naomi Hall

Fire Science and Public Safety Administration Program Accredited


he Holy Family University Fire Science and Public Safety Administration Program has earned accreditation from the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC), a rare distinction among fire science programs. The IFSAC is a governing body that accredits public fire service companies and higher education fire service related programs around the world. Accreditation is awarded to organizations deemed to have rigorous course offerings, strong institutional support, and qualified faculty fulfilling the educational mission. Holy Family’s program was granted accreditation after it went through a lengthy application process, completed a self-study, and was evaluated by a team from the IFSAC Degree Assembly. “IFSAC affiliation and accreditation provides the Fire Science and Public Safety Administration program and our graduates with international visibility, credibility, and recognition with government agencies and major, private-sector employers,” said Tom Garrity, Coordinator of the Holy Family’s program and

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Deputy Director of Fire Training Programs for Montgomery County. Offered through the School of Business Administration, the Holy Family program is now one of only 25 to achieve this IFSAC distinction. It is also the only undergraduate program of its kind offered in the Philadelphia region. Graduates serve as firefighters, paramedics, police officers, fire investigators, fire code officials, fire officers, and fire chiefs. Others work in related fields such as the insurance industry,

industrial safety, risk management, fire protection system design, and campus fire safety. – Naomi Hall

Holy Family Named One of the “Best of Bucks”


oly Family University was named one of the Best of Bucks in the colleges and universities category in Bucks County for a second year in a Bucks County Courier Times readers choice survey. Students at Holy Family University’s Newtown and Woodhaven locations were instrumental in helping Holy Family make the list by casting votes in favor of the University in a show of school pride. Each year, the Courier Times invites readers to vote for a Best of Bucks winner in more than 200 different categories. The top two winners earning the highest votes were announced in a special section of the newspaper in June. – Naomi Hall

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Out and about on campus

Holy Family Marks Milestone with Lifetime Achievement Awards


oly Family University celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Presidential Award Dinner in May by surprising five religious sisters with awards for a lifetime of commitment. The five religious sisters each had more than 50 years of religious affiliation in different congregations. Each award read “In Grateful Appreciation of a Lifetime of Commitment.” “In honoring these sisters, we’re also honoring their congregations,” said President Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD. Those honored were Sister Patrice Feher, CSFN; Sister Alma Rose Scholosser, SSJ; Sister Dorothy

L-R: Holy Family President S. Francesca Onley, CSFN; S. Alma Rose

Scholosser, SSJ; S. Bernadine Schmalhoffer, MSBT; S. Dorothy Ann Busowski, OSBM; S. Patrice Feher, CSFN

Ann Busowski, OSBM; Sister Bernadine Schmalhoffer, MSBT; and Sister Nora Dennehy, RGS. – Naomi Hall

Astronaut, Inventor, Civil Rights Activist, Business Leader, Places of Worship Honored


n April, Philadelphia City Councilman-at-Large Dennis M. O’Brien and Holy Family University President Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD, announced the new members of the Northeast Philadelphia Hall of Fame, inducted in October 2012. The goal of the Northeast Philadelphia Hall of Fame is to foster civic values, a sense of community, and a greater awareness and appreciation for the rich history in Northeast Philadelphia. The 2012 inductees were inventor and solar power pioneer Frank Shuman (1862-1918); civil rights leader

and anti-apartheid activist Reverend Leon Sullivan (1922-2001); business and community leader Ed Kelly; astronaut Chris Ferguson; and seven Northeast Philadelphia houses of worship, which were inducted as a group—Unity Monthly Meeting Frankford (founded 1682), Byberry Monthly Meeting (founded 1683), Pennepack Baptist Church in Bustleton (founded 1688), Trinity Church Oxford in Lawndale (circa 1698), Presbyterian Church of Frankford (founded 1722), and Campbell AME Church in Frankford (founded 1807). Inductees are Northeast Philadelphia residents whose lives or careers have been marked by high achievement and individuals and organizations that have had a lasting, significant positive impact on the Northeast Philadelphia community. The Northeast Philadelphia Hall of Fame is sponsored by the Mayfair Community Development Corporation in partnership with Holy Family University, Historical Society of Frankford, The Northeast Times, and Philadelphia City Councilman Dennis M. O’Brien. The public helps select candidates for the Northeast Hall of Fame Selection Committee to consider. The selection committee is composed of a 10-member panel of experts. Past inductees have included Saint Katharine Drexel; Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence; Robert Purvis, an abolitionist; and Henry and Selection committee members (clockwise from top left): Rose McMenamin, 3rd Federal Bank; Jack Mary Disston, industrialists and McCarthy, NE Philadelphia Hall of Fame Project Director; Louis Iatarola Jr., Real Estate Agent & philanthropists. – Naomi Hall Appraiser; Dr. Trudy Brown, Educational Consultant; Rev. Scott C. Dorsey, Mt. Zion Baptist Church


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What a Difference a Year Makes! Women’s 4x400 Relay Team Wins at Penn Relays

The winning Penn Relays 4x400-meter team displays their Penn Relays trophy. (L–R): Delainey Price, Zafirah Green, Latifah Porter, Dominique Thomas, Sarah Bariglio


t was a record-setting night for the Holy Family University women’s 4x400-meter relay team as they took home first place honors for the first

time in school history at the prestigious Penn Relays hosted by the University of Pennsylvania. A year prior, Holy Family had its women’s

relay team compete for the first-time ever as the 4x400 relay squad came away with a second place finish. On the night of April 26 at 6:40 pm, the quartet of senior Latifah Porter, sophomores Zafirah Green and Dominique Thomas, and freshman Sarah Bariglio made history after recording, at the time, a season-best time of 3:52.54 in the CTC Relay race to edge out Georgian Court University. The Tigers’ time also broke a 13-year record held by Albany, who recorded a time of 3:53.23 back in 1999. Less than three weeks after the Penn Relays, the relay team made history again as the quartet recorded a new school record with a time of 3:49.50 at the Virginia Challenge hosted by the University of Virginia. The Tigers’ time was good enough to provisionally qualify for the NCAA Division II Championship and was the second-best time in the East Region. It marked the first time an outdoor team from Holy Family provisionally qualified for the national championship meet. – Greg Pellegrino

Noted Afghan Journalist Addressed Students, Faculty


asim Fekrat, a leading Afghan journalist, delivered the presentation “The State of Afghanistan Today” at Holy Family University on March 13. Fekrat is a 2005 winner of the international Reporters Without Borders Freedom of Expression Award, which is given to those who report human rights news at great personal risk. Coordinated by the Division of Art, Communications, and Humanities in the School of Arts and Sciences, Fekrat’s talk focused on the current state of Afghanistan and the effect ongoing U.S. involvement has had in South Asia.

United States-led forces ousted Taliban leadership in that country a decade ago. Fekrat started his famous blog, Afghan Lord (, in 2004 at age 21. He was among the first Afghans to start a blog dedicated to providing an authentic view of daily life there. He founded an organization called the Association of Afghan Blog Writers (afghanpenlog-en.blogspot. com) and is credited with leading the blogger movement in Afghanistan and South Asia. Because of his blog and his success in getting more Afghans to share personal stories online, Fekrat has received numerous death threats over the years. Currently a student at Dickinson College, he has written freelance articles in both English and Farsi for international news outlets, such as BBC News and the NATO Review. – Naomi Hall

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Out and about on campus

Students Learn Life Lessons From the Impoverished ight students shared a lifechanging experience in May when they traveled to Duran, Ecuador, to live among impoverished villagers. Assistant Professor Kimberly Dasch-Yee and her husband Alex Yee chaperoned students on a Catholic poverty immersion program called Rostro de Cristo (, designed to help students build a sense of solidarity with people in the Spanishspeaking developing country. From May 7–16, students stayed in a Rostro de Cristo retreat house that had refrigeration, drinking water, and limited plumbing. Villagers around them lived in one-room shanties with no electricity or running water. “It was amazing to meet the people because they were the happiest

people I’ve ever met in my life and they had nothing,” said communications major Jenna Spadaccino ’13, “I just couldn’t believe that people lived under these conditions.” The students were not fluent in Spanish, but Rostro de Cristo team leaders served as translators and guides throughout their stay. The group visited the homes of villagers, played with children in an afterschool program, and visited a health clinic and recovery center. Though the people were poor, the purpose of the trip was not for the students to give them things, but for the students to experience daily life in a poverty-stricken community and build relationships with the people. Psychology of Business major Krista Zerkow ’13 said the experience was difficult because she couldn’t

BACK (L–R): Samantha Guglielmo ’14; Jenna

Spadaccino ’13; Christina Mastroeni ’13; Jessica Raichle ’13; Matthew McGlynn ’13; Assistant Professor Kimberly Dasch-Yee, PhD; Alex Yee; FRONT (L–R): Allison Wogman Hibbard ’13; Pauline Seewald ’13; Krista Zerkow ’13

provide the villagers with better things: “I learned that sometimes the best gift of all is spending time with someone and listening to their story.” By the end of the trip, students were sad to leave the people of the village and said they would never forget the experience. For Spadaccino, it’s changed her perspective on life. “I really can’t complain. I know we have problems over here with our health insurance and our economy, but over there they have nothing. I can’t complain.” – Naomi Hall

Holy Family Hosts SEPCHE Honors Conference


oly Family University hosted the 2012 SEPCHE Honors Conference in March. The Conference consisted of student music performances, academic presentations, art presentations, and a closing program. Members of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Consortium of Higher Education (SEPCHE) are Arcadia University, Cabrini College, Chestnut Hill College, Gwynedd-Mercy College, Holy Family University, Immaculata University, Neumann University, and Rosemont College. – Naomi Hall


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Holy Family Contingent Lobbies in Harrisburg


oly Family University students lobbied legislators in Harrisburg for the annual Student Lobby Day on April 3, sponsored by the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania (AICUP). This is the eighth year that Holy Family has participated. Jillian Keeve ’12, a mathematics/secondary education major; Rebecca Tett ’12, a business administration/ communications major; Frank Pepe ’13, a history major; and Jack Monari ’13, a history/political science pre-law major, spent the day meeting with Representative Gene DiGirolamo (R-Bucks), Representative Kevin Boyle, (D-Philadelphia), and Senator Mike Stack (D-Philadelphia) to discuss higher education funding and support. Led by Professor of Political Science, Stephen E. Medvec, PhD, they also toured the state capitol and watched legislative proceedings from the gallery. Each year, AICUP sponsors Student Lobby Day to give students from independent colleges the chance to meet face-to-face with representatives to talk about

the needs of their private higher education institutions and see the legislative process up close. – Naomi Hall

L–R: Professor Stephen E. Medvec, PhD; Rebecca Tett ’12; Jillian Keeve ’12;

Senator Mike Stack (D-Philadelphia); Jack Monari ’13; Frank Pepe ’13.

Lower Bucks YMCA Names Holy Family Executive/Alumna Volunteer of the Year


he Lower Bucks Family YMCA has given the Association Volunteer of the Year 2011 award to Karen Galardi, EdD, Executive Director of Holy Family University-Newtown. The Board of Directors surprised Galardi with the honor during a meeting in June for her many hours spent helping the Lower Bucks Family YMCA develop new

strategic plans for serving Lower Bucks; her support of various YMCA programs like the Strong Kids Campaign and the Send a Kid to Camp promotion; and her efforts to help the YMCA meet program goals. “It was a surprise. I didn’t expect it. It really is an honor because the Y is just a wonderful organization that is community focused,” Galardi said. “It is an honor to work with my fellow board members, and the dedication of the Y’s staff, in particular, is commendable as they are the individuals who live out the mission of the Y.” Eric Stark, chief executive officer of the Lower Bucks Family YMCA described her as extremely dedicated and deserving of the award. “Our organization has benefited tremendously from Karen’s expertise in planning, education, and training. Her leadership of the strategic planning process has helped the organization focus on the critical needs in our community that the Y can have a significant impact on through our own set of programs and in partnership with other organizations,” Stark said. “It’s the kind of commitment Karen has displayed that shows how critical volunteers are to the mission of the Lower Bucks Family YMCA.” Galardi currently sits on the Lower Bucks Family YMCA personnel committee and chairs its strategic planning committee, a position she also holds at Holy Family. – Naomi Hall

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FALL 2012



Out and about on campus

Library Reopens after Renovations


he Holy Family University Library building, which had been under construction since May 7, has re-opened with a new look, new services, and new digital offerings. Lori Schwabenbauer, Director of Library Services, said the lighting is the first thing people notice: “It is wonderful to see all the improvements in the library. I think the students are really pleased with the changes and additions. They have twice as many computers, more quiet spaces, better lighting, even a place to get a snack and a cup of coffee,” she said. “We are grateful to Holy Family and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for funding this project.” Renovations were made possible with a $1.3 million grant from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Funding helped pay for installation of new energy efficient windows, a new heating and cooling system, and other improvements. During construction, library services were provided in another building on campus.

New quiet group study rooms were added to the Lower Level of the Library.

The renovations also addressed the need for more computers, more quiet spaces, and longer operating hours— three issues that were reflected in a satisfaction survey that Lori Schwabenbauer conducted last year among library patrons. In response to the survey results, the library—already open seven days a week—has increased its weekly

The new computer lab provides sound insulation.


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operating hours to 90.5, a fourhour increase from last year. The remodeled library also offers a new computer laboratory, several group study rooms, a new café area with vending machines, and bathrooms on the main floor. There are also new technological upgrades in step with the digital age. Library web pages may now be viewed comfortably using a Smartphone, tablet, or other mobile computer device. A free app from iTunes also allows users to search the University’s library catalog and manage library accounts on mobile devices. The campus library and Holy Family-Newtown’s Learning Resource Center joined Ask Here PA, a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week service that offers live chats with reference librarians from across the nation and around the world. For desktop and laptop users, the University library catalog is now available through LibX, a free plug-in program that allows users to access a college library catalog from web browsers. Local engineering firm Tantala Associates LLC., and A.T. Chadwick Co. supervised the renovations. – Naomi Hall

We’ve Got You


with Attractive Rates for Alumni

The Alumni Association is pleased to sponsor an insurance program as a service to alumni and other members of our community. The program offers a variety of insurance products, mostly available to alumni • students • faculty and staff as well as spouses, children, parents, and siblings HEALTH INSURANCE For those with a temporary or permanent need for coverage, such as the unemployed, self-employed, and recent graduates.

ANNUITIES An ideal tax-deferred vehicle for conservative investors who want guaranteed fixed interest rates for extended periods.

LIFE INSURANCE Long-term protection with great rates and fantastic features. Coverage is available to $50 million.

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LONG TERM CARE INSURANCE Intended to protect assets from serious erosion, while allowing access to quality care in the most appropriate and desirable setting.

PET INSURANCE Simple, customizable dog and cat insurance plans are available.

TRAVEL INSURANCE Travel medical or trip protection insurance options are available for individuals or groups traveling domestically or abroad.

ADVISORY SERVICES A licensed insurance professional is available, at no charge, to answer questions and provide customized guidance.

For more information, visit or contact our program administrator, Meyer and Associates, at 800-635-7801. Revenue generated by this program supports the Holy Family University Alumni Association.

passion following her

Advocacy and the Underserved Patricia Velasco, student in the Division of Extended Learning, has zealously pursued education, career, and service in an impressive defiance of odds. Her motivation has led her to inspire others as she was once inspired herself. by Heather G. Dotchel Photography by Michael Branscom

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“I guess I should start by saying that I am the daughter of migrant farmworkers,” her email began, “My family and I traveled throughout the United States picking vegetables.”


atricia Velasco is currently a student in Holy Family ’s Division of Extended Learning seeking her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice Administration. She is also a paralegal, an advocate, a volunteer, and, to those who know her, an unflagging source of inspiration. Her path to her current academic and professional success was neither easy nor even viewed as possible at times. As a child, Velasco, along with her parents and seven siblings, moved three to four times a year, following the seasons and the corresponding vegetable crops. The most challenging issue with the movement, for Velasco, was maintaining her academics. “I tried so hard to not be held back as we moved to a different school, but

often the teachers did not want to set me up to fail, so they’d place me in a prior grade,” said Velasco. One intervention that helped her to overcome this obstacle was a program designed for students like Velasco, called the “Migrant Education Program.” This program created a stable file that could travel with students and their families so new schools would know where they were in their studies. “This helped me a great deal in obtaining the credits needed to graduate from high school,” recounted Velasco. Another key to her success was a current of support from outside volunteers. When Velasco spoke of her itinerant experience, she frequently referred to those who recognized her potential, even as she worked in the fields. She pointed out that when families are immersed in a lifestyle like migrant farmwork they often do not know what is outside of that community. “There were Sisters serving the community in South Carolina. They

came out to the migrant worker camps to check on the children of the workers. They always brought us goodies, toys, school supplies, and then picked the children up to take us to catechism class. The day of our first communion they brought us white dresses and were so sweet. I will never forget their kindness,” remembered Velasco of her earlier childhood. In later years, there was a particular woman who pushed Velasco; she was a volunteer teacher with the Migrant Education program. “My last two years of high school were some of the toughest because it got really hard moving around so much. My teacher drove me around to look at colleges after school and pushed me to study at home with books. I couldn’t have done it without her help because she was one of the first persons who sparked the idea of college, something very foreign to me.” As a result of this kind of push, she was the first (and only) of her siblings

Patricia Velasco and Sister Eileen Marnien, Director of the Sisters of Saint Joseph Welcome Center, help a young man with his English language skills. The Center ministers to approximately 350 people per year.


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to graduate from high school in the United States. After graduating, Velasco sought work in a variety of fields before applying to work at a hotel, where she began her initial career in the hospitality industry. “It was the best thing that happened to me!” remarked Velasco. “I owe a great deal to the leaders of this industry, who gave me a chance to prove myself despite the lack of a college education. They helped me to increase my level of confidence and allowed me to believe in myself.” Velasco began to climb through the ranks of the hotel industry from her first job as a telephone operator to jobs at the front desk, in accounting, as front desk supervisor, and finally as a manager. During this time, she attempted to begin work on her bachelor’s degree but found it too difficult to manage the work and school load. “I thought I owed it to myself, and my community, to give college a try. However, after two failed attempts at a traditional school, I gave up and went back to work.” She moved to Philadelphia to work for a private hotel downtown but could not ignore the call to continue her education. After a year, it was time for change. “While I enjoyed the work and the industry, I felt it was important for me to use my background and experiences for the betterment of the community,” said Velasco. “I knew I would need to find a job with a Monday through Friday, nine-tofive schedule. I always loved helping people so I applied to be a paralegal with an immigration firm.”

the law


atricia was the first paralegal that we ever hired who did not have a bachelor’s degree,” stated Elizabeth Surin, partner at Surin and Griffin, P.C. (www.msgimmigration. com). “Our paralegals are not just assistants. They have direct contact with the clients and need to be well versed in immigration law to be effective in their work.”

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Surin emphasized how technical and frequently convoluted this work is and highlighted the fact that the firm’s paralegals are instrumental in assisting the attorneys to prepare cases to go to trial and managing the myriad of filings that are called for in employment-based immigration matters. This kind of attention to detail requires a level of education and training usually attained in a four-year college education,

“The DEL was the perfect fit for me as I needed to continue working. I am currently in my third year,” said Velasco. “Holy Family’s DEL provides a perfect combination of the values that I hold dear, such as working towards making the world a better place and helping adult learners find a way to incorporate this into our current positions.” “Her success is rooted in her inquisitive nature. This is the charac-

“I am very involved in advocacy for immigrants and the underserved and truly feel a great passion for this field.”

-Patricia Velasco

something that Velasco did not have. But Velasco impressed Surin during her first interview with the firm. “She had readily apparent motivation, she was clearly very intelligent, and she possessed a maturity of thought and analysis beyond her years,” remembered Surin. So they called her back for a second interview. And it was then that they found out about her background as a migrant farm worker. And that she was the daughter of immigrants. The partners at the law firm recognized that this life experience combined with drive made Velasco a fantastic fit for their work. “We decided to invest in her abilities,” said Surin.

the college education


he regular schedule that came with her new position allowed Velasco to pursue her goal of a college degree. She initially applied to Holy Family University’s traditional program but was referred to the Division of Extended Learning (DEL), as its flexibility and program were a better fit.

teristic that allows her to dive into a topic, explore it, and learn about it,” noted Chris Quinn, DEL’s Director of Academic Services. “Her determined work ethic and positive attitude enhances her ability to succeed in the classroom. There is a lot to be said about how a student approaches learning. Every time I see her, she is upbeat and smiling. With Patricia, there are no barriers when she enters the classroom.” Velasco spoke approvingly of the classes that she has completed, stating that DEL delivers on their promise to teach students not only the academic theory but also how to transfer that theory into the practical—how to find a good job and how to do that job well. “Our modules and teaching always tie in with our core values. Social responsibility is such a built-in part of the classes,” explained Velasco. “I benefitted from people who cared and had social responsibility as a priority in their lives. Education is super important because of the options it presents.” “She was truly an excellent student and a pleasure to have in class,”

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said instructor Charles Bloom. “Patricia has a strong desire to learn and to improve upon her analytical and critical thinking skills. Her keen insight and knowledge of the subject were displayed in her written assignments and presentations. Her classroom participation was greatly appreciated.”

the law, part two


work with cases ranging from asylum, abused spouse petitions, and employment-based visas. I basically do much of the legwork that is involved in getting immigrants legal status to live and work in the U.S. I do a lot of client interviewing, research, and case preparation for the attorneys. I compile all supporting documents to prove their case in court or with the immigration service,” explained Velasco. Surin spoke glowingly of Velasco’s dedication to the clients that the law firm serves. “There was a case last March that received much attention in the

press that you can look up,” she said. “There was a tragic fire in Allentown, PA, that killed a mother and three children. Patricia was instrumental in making sure that the father of the young boy who died was allowed into the United States for the funeral.” The case was extensively covered by the media. Fidelmar MerlosLopez, father of the young boy, was in Mexico at the time of his son’s death as part of his process to gain U.S. immigrant status. Lopez applied for humanitarian parole, a measure that allows for temporary entry into the United States for compelling emergency, but he was denied. “We were at our wit’s end,” said Surin, who represented Mr. Lopez. “Patricia’s assistance was invaluable throughout the week’s ordeal.” On Tuesday, Lopez was informed of his son’s death and that the funeral would be the following Monday. When his appeal for humanitarian parole was denied, Lopez was beside himself as he waited at the U.S.-Mexico border near Laredo, Texas. Through Friday, Surin and

Velasco kept appealing to Border Patrol, climbing through the bureaucratic ranks, trying to find someone who could help them. They were told that they would have an answer shortly. The hours ticked by with no response: 10 am, 11 am, 12 pm, no response, 2 pm, 3pm, 4pm, no response. That weekend, Patricia brought the case to the attention of the Associated Press, all the time keeping in close contact with the Lopez family and working tirelessly with various media outlets. Finally, at 1 am on Sunday morning, Border Patrol relented and gave Mr. Lopez the OK to come into the United States. On Sunday evening, Patricia was at the Philadelphia airport to meet Fidelmar Merlos-Lopez and his family and to translate for them as they made their way to northeast Pennsylvania. “She didn’t have to do that,” said Surin. “It was a weekend; it was her own time. But she stuck with it with courage and fortitude. The family would not have made it in time for the funeral without her.”

New Holy Family Immigrant Scholarship This year, the Janet V. Mackiewicz Merit Scholarship was established to support a values-oriented senior or graduate student of good character, with an inspiring gift for learning. This scholarship is strictly available for immigrants or children/grandchildren of immigrants in recognition of the unique struggles and dynamic of world citizens within this group, no matter the country of origin. “Growing up in Philadelphia, I experienced a confusing cross-dynamic between the hard-working yet joyous culture of my Polish immigrant family and U.S. cultural ideals and expectations about becoming a good citizen—this included finding a way to ‘fit in’ with both,” said


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Janet Mackiewicz, founder of the scholarship. “At Holy Family, those feelings of ‘other’ dissipated. My strong desires to learn, integrate, and contribute were encouraged. Thus, I fulfilled my immigrant family’s dreams for the next generation: ‘I did better.’ Holy Family’s volunteer opportunities encouraged strong values about service. With gratitude, I created this scholarship to inspire and support a great resource within our university, city, and country: the next generation of immigrants—world citizens!” If you have interest in helping this scholarship continue in perpetuity, please contact Michael Domer at 267-341-3244.

others. She is generous and committed to the good of the people. She’s a gem.” Velasco thinks that her early experience with the Sisters who helped her as a child in South Carolina is why she feels such a closeness with the Sisters of St. Joseph. “It’s amazing how God works,” said Velasco, as she explained how different periods and facets of her life intertwined later. “When I have some free time, I try to volunteer with other organizations that help provide information to the immigrant community. In early January 2012, I was so happy to spend some time with the Philadelphia Legal Assistance program that went out to the labor camps in Kennett Square. We spent all day giving information to the mushroom workers about their rights, as well as tax information,” said Velasco. It is exactly this kind of intervention that inspired Velasco as a teenager in the fields to look beyond her current world to see what else she could do. “I benefitted from people who cared and had social responsibility as a priority in their lives,” stated Velasco, simply. “Intervention made all the difference. Now I try to do the same.”

the volunteerism


elasco doesn’t just spend her work time advocating and serving the immigrant community. Encouraged by her law firm to reach out, Patricia started volunteering with the Sisters of Saint Joseph Welcome Center ( in 2007 after contacting the Center looking to “give back.” Her bilingualism was immediately useful, and she began as an English tutor, working with the newest arrivals at the center. She helped to prepare the Center’s clients for the citizenship exam and for jobs in the United States. Soon, her skills and enthusiasm were called to serve in a more formal manner as a member of the Center’s board. “When we first started the Center, we thought we were starting a happy

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little ministry to welcome immigrants to America,” said Sister Eileen Marnien, Director of the Welcome Center. “But then the political climate exploded, and we had to become advocates for the immigrants. It was eye-opening.” As the Center grew, the Sisters started to put together a board to help guide the ministry and knew that they needed someone who had life experiences similar to the immigrants who could help guide them. Patricia’s experience as a migrant farmworker allowed her to connect with the immigrants who came to the Center. “Patricia has a million thoughts and ideas,” stated Sister Eileen. “She has so many contacts in Philadelphia through her paralegal work. This was another piece I found so wonderful. She’s on the ground making connections and she uses them to benefit

the future


elasco’s ultimate goal is to finish up her undergraduate degree at Holy Family University and then proceed to law school. “I genuinely believe it is a possibility for me; I know that if I put forth the effort then I can do it,” said Velasco, “My only concern is the financial aspect of law school. But my friends and my employers have already donated their LSAT study books—it’s amazing how much support I’ve received from the community to go ahead with this.” She hopes that she will be able to contribute, as a lawyer, to those without a voice in our society, perhaps in victim services, at a non-profit or a think-tank or research center. “I believe this would be the ultimate way for me to contribute back.”

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Student Commitment Brings Rugby to Campus By Sara Szymendera ’13 Photography By Adam Cohn

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“Rugby is a hooligans’ game

played by



o play with abandon and passion while main-

taining personal responsibility—this challenge captures how all of the members of the newly formed Holy Family Rugby Football Club strive to conduct themselves, both on the field and off. Although the sport may be dangerous at times, the men must act civilly and play each game with dignity and respect for themselves and their opponent. Rugby is a full-contact sport in which strength, speed, and strategy are needed. Evolved from football, the objective of the two games is essentially the same: to get the ball, often called the “egg,” into the opponent’s territory. Unlike football, there are no field goals in rugby, and points are awarded for a try, a conversion goal, a penalty goal, and a drop goal. However, while rugby is a full-contact sport, the players wear little or no protective gear on the field, in contrast to football. The club unofficially began during the 2009–2010 school year. Numerous men who were committed to the team would spend their time at optional practices, which were held in the Stevenson Lane Residence parking lot. Although these practices were not mandatory, 25 to 30 men would show up week after week to commit their time to a club that was not officially recognized on campus. The plan was to develop a Rugby 15s team at the University during the 2009–2010 school year. When it became clear that a 15s team would not be possible at Holy Family due to insurance reasons and funding, the founders of the rugby football club, Timothy “Bear” O’Driscoll ’12 and John “Jack” Monari ’13 went back to the drawing board. Some time later, Bear and Jack decided to start working

on a Rugby 7s Team for Holy Family. Rugby 7s was originally founded as a tournament sport, mainly for charities. Rugby 7s is much like Rugby 15s, except there are fewer men on the field, and their halves are much shorter, lasting only seven minutes. Jack stated, “Creating a 7s team at the University seemed more logical because it is easier to fund, and we do not have a large male population at the school.” The adventure began for both Bear and Jack to have the 7s rugby football club officially recognized on campus. The two attended the Senior Administration meeting on the first Wednesday of school during the 2011–2012 school year. Jack recounted, “Going into the meeting, we knew the cards were stacked against us, but something we said must have changed their minds!” Nervous because the 15s

The formation used to restart play is called a scrum. An explanation of often-colorful rugby terms can be found at


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team didn’t work out, Jack and Bear walked out of the meeting in Holy Family Hall and headed toward the Campus Center on the Northeast Campus. By the time they reached the Campus Center, they had their answer; the Holy Family Rugby Football Club was approved, and they could officially move onto the next step. “I went from a moment of shock to pure excitement,” recalled Jack.


oly Family University is the first offi-

cial Collegiate Rugby 7s team. Currently there are also two other official teams, Neumann University and DeSales University. Scranton University is also working toward having a 7s team in addition to their 15s team. Jack and Bear have not only impacted the University through their perseverance, but they have also impacted collegiate rugby on a local level. The two men have given schools with smaller male populations the chance to partake in a new sport and expand their horizons. Rugby was a new sport for many of the players who signed up to play. Only four to five of the members who signed up had played the sport before. Furthermore, only two of the members of the team graduated in 2012. This makes for a very underclass-heavy team—a boon for the future of the team. Douglas Ulrich ’12, stated, “I knew most of the kids that were coming out for the team: most of them were my close friends—now all of them are.” The Principles of the International Rugby Board (IRB), which governs all rugby leagues, are Integrity, Passion, Solidarity, Discipline, and Respect. Many of the principles set forth by the IRB tie directly into the core values at the University. These principles, like the core values set forth

The 2011-2012 Holy Family University Men’s 7s Rugby Team. Sevens rugby was invented in Scotland and is a popular form of the sport world-wide. The shorter halves, combined with fewer players, lead to a brighter atmosphere and a more relaxed feel to the game.

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Rugby is derived from football played in the English public school system in the 19th century. BELOW: Timothy “Bear” O’Driscoll ’12 (left) and John “Jack” Monari ’13 (center) motivate teammates.

by the University, challenge the men to be better players on the field and better human beings in their everyday life. In addition, the men reflect on their spiritual values before each game praying, “Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, bless this field we play upon. For all the blood we shed this day, to earn it back for this we pray.” Bear described, “The bonds formed on the rugby field are like no other. I think it has to do with the respect you have for the people on the field.”


to pay for their uniforms, as well as pay to participate in several of the tournaments the team has entered. In addition to paying, the men show up for many practices even though they are optional. This dedication paid off. In July, the team learned that they had been accepted in the Mid-Atlantic Rugby Conference. During their first year as an official club, the team played most of their games in tournaments; now that they have been accepted into a conference, the team will play more regularly. This could mean a game every Saturday, and more regular practices, something the club is excited about. Playing in this conference will not only have the club playing against other colleges, but also other organizations with rugby teams. Hard work, determination, and perseverance are just some of the qualities this group of men embodies. Doug, like most of the members of the club, commented, “Wearing the Holy Family crest on my chest when we are about to play is a great feeling.”

he Rugby Football Club benefits both the

players and the student population at Holy Family. Zachary “Zach” Victor ’14, the club President, stated, “Students on the team get an opportunity to represent their University and definitely get to be a part of the camaraderie that comes with being on a team. The students off the team get to see that you don’t need to be given a scholarship to play a sport at the college level.” The men finished their first season 11-6-1, an outstanding feat for a team that began practicing in their school’s parking lot. The dedication of the members of the team was tremendous. Everyone had to reach into their own pockets


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Create a Scholarship

It’s kinda like this, but different. The Sister Francesca Onley President’s Scholarship, first presented in 1998, was established to honor Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD, President of Holy Family University and former principal of Nazareth Academy High School. The scholarship is awarded to an all-around student of high character, who excels academically, is service-oriented, exhibits commitment to an academic discipline or professional career path, has potential for success, and needs financial assistance. It is not difficult to set up your own personalized scholarship, honoring those important to you and helping those who might continue that legacy. While many named scholarships were established by individuals, a large percentage were established by groups of friends, families, or employees, coming together in honor of those, both living and passed, who touched them.

For more information, please contact Michael Domer at 267-341-3244 or


Coordination Communications, Media Evolution, and Pop Culture by Richard Rys Photography by Michael Branscom

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manda McClain is not your typical pop culture junkie. We’re sitting in a computer lab on the first floor of Holy Family Hall, which is mostly empty on this scorching afternoon—one of those sleepy summer days when the campus exhales, as students and faculty take a break from academia. At 5’2”, with a youthful face and usually a bookbag in tow, you might mistake McClain for an overachieving undergrad who couldn’t pry herself away from the classroom. Her television habits imply the same, considering she’s logged untold hours watching shows like American Idol and Keeping Up With The Kardashians. But when talk turns to this year’s blockbuster films, specifically the comic-book superhero hit The Avengers, McClain isn’t concerned with the quality of the special effects or the charm of Robert Downey Jr. “I’m thinking the whole time about corporate ownership and branding,” she explains. “And there’s only one woman in the whole movie and she’s wearing a skintight body suit.” It’s partly that inability to shut off the left side of her brain—even while watching a popcorn action flick or reality TV—that’s made McClain, at just 33 years old, one of the University’s rising faculty stars. Since her arrival last fall, she’s helped to revamp and modernize the School of Arts & Sciences communication program, and like a rookie providing a spark for a veteran team, her energy and enthusiasm are infectious. “She’s really distinguished herself in a short time,” says Michael Markowitz, Dean of the School. “She’s a go-to person. When there’s something to be done, she’s involved, and no one has any doubts that she’ll be able to do it.” Such is Markowitz’s trust in McClain that he asked her to overhaul the major and serve as its coordinator, along with overseeing the TV club and the school newspaper. It’s a dizzying workload and a challenge that McClain is prepared to tackle head-on, which is why she’s here in a stuffy lab when most folks are on a beach somewhere. “It’s very rare


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Assistant Professor Amanda McClain stands in the TV studio in Holy Family Hall. McClain evaluated and overhauled the communications program last year.

to come into a program that needs revision and to be trusted by the administration to do it,” she says of the motivation for her efforts. “They said, ‘Figure out what needs to be done and do it,’ which is amazing. I’m really lucky to think, what cool new course can I propose?”


cClain leads me on a tour of the TV studio across the hall from the computer lab, and there’s an impressive array of production equipment— digital video cameras,

a green screen for creating backdrops, and a makeshift newsdesk. Instructions for voice-overs are posted to the wall near an iMac that’s loaded with Final Cut Pro and GarageBand, software that’s essential for recording and editing. The first challenge that University Communications Program faces is keeping up with the evolution of media. Before the internet and Steve Jobs, that was a manageable task; today, it can sometimes feel like trying to chase down Usain Bolt with one good leg. The next problem is the costly technology that new media demands. McClain

herself is Holy Family’s one-woman solution for the former, someone with both a sparkling academic pedigree and a keen awareness of everything from Twitter to brand identity. As for the equipment her students require, she says Markowitz and the University couldn’t be more supportive. “I said I need cameras that record on memory cards, not tape,” she recalls of a conversation with her Dean. “He said ‘Let’s do it.’ When we need a new Mac, they say ‘Great!’” The path to Holy Family and the push to sharpen its communications major into a cutting-edge program wasn’t a direct one for McClain, despite growing up in Bensalem, just north of campus. After graduating from Abington Friends, she majored in communications at the University of Pennsylvania, where a theorybased curriculum helped lay the groundwork for her future in higher education. McClain was working in San Francisco as an elementary school librarian when the events of September 11, 2001, left her longing to return home. Temple University’s graduate program in mass media and communications drew her back to Philadelphia, and there on North Broad Street, she realized her interests in popular culture and media, combined with her theoretical background, were pointing her toward an academic career. With a doctorate in hand and a number of adjunct teaching opportunities on her resume, McClain was working for Medaille College in Buffalo when Markowitz began a national search for a new faculty member with transformative potential. “Amanda clearly stood out,” he says. “Not only was she an excellent student, but she works with students in an activist sense. She doesn’t just teach; she reaches out. You don’t just learn about television; you make a video. We had technological resources that I didn’t even know about, and she was able to take those, utilize them, and link them to the curriculum.” McClain’s vision was realized this fall, when incoming freshmen will

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were given their choice of two tracks within the major—either digital communications or public relations, with a number of shared electives between the two. Some courses have been combined, others have been cut, and new offerings—including Research Methods and American Popular Culture—are expanding the program’s scope. Another significant change is the addition of a capstone course for seniors that will focus either on one journalistic story or a PR campaign throughout a full semester. The goal is to inspire each undergraduate to become a media “jack of all trades,” capable of handling whatever challenges the marketplace demands. In other words, says McClain, “Someone who can do it all with good writing skills and research skills but is taking video, writing for the web, has a Twitter account. That’s the type of student we’re endeavoring to produce.” Outside of the classroom, McClain is helping students take full advantage of the University’s resources, including a unique partnership with a public access channel based in Bucks County. News stories about graduation and entertainment options for the under-21 crowd have already aired, and McClain hopes to create more synergy between the

cable channel, the TV club she oversees, and the University’s YouTube channel, Tiger Vision. She’s also co-moderating the school newspaper, Tri-Lite, which she intends to publish at least twice a semester this year. McClain’s impact at Holy Family was felt immediately, says junior Brittany Nugent. “She’s like a breath of fresh air and has this positive energy that inspires us to be even more than we imagine. She wants our input and is very interactive.” That progressive attitude is reflected in a new course on the spring schedule—Digital Media, in which iPads will be utilized as teaching tools. All of the reading for that class will be online, and students are required to tweet and blog using the device. McClain also plans to designate a different “in-class Googler” each week to research topics that come up during conversation. Her active learning approach ties into her interest in American Idol, a show she watches less as a fan of Mariah Carey cover songs and more like Jane Goodall, peeking through the cultural jungle in search of understanding. Her doctoral dissertation on the subject led to a book, American Ideal, which explores issues of celebrity, race, gender, and societal norms as depicted on the

(L–R): Communications students Jenna Spadaccino, Clarissa Chiclana, and Sara Szymendera work

the TV board in the Studio Control Room as McClain watches.

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What’s the motivating factor? It’s interesting to take a step back and think about it.”


In addition to the TV studio, communications students use Final Cut Pro X, Garageband, and the full complement of Adobe Creative Suites.

show. She’s applying the same keen eye to the Kardashians and plans to finish her research on their reality TV empire later this year. It’s all part of McClain’s passion for deciphering the why behind our pop cultural fixations, and she aims to instill that same curiosity in her students. “They’ve grown up with digital media and know how to download music, but some of them don’t know a good source from a bad source,” she says. “Why is it not ok to cite Wikipedia? Why do people write Yelp reviews?


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efore our tour of the television production studio, a pair of power washers blasting water through high-pressure hoses outside Holy Family Hall made for a loud, comical pause to our interview. It was fitting in a sense, considering McClain has done similar work with the communications department, minus the wet stuff—she’s given the program a good scrubbing and made it shine, with new classes, improved technology, and a unique way of keeping students engaged, beyond the traditional lectures and theory. “If I’m talking about stereotypes on TV and I bring up Jersey Shore, they all go, ‘Oh, right!’” she says. “You can see a flash of understanding. That’s the moment I live for as a teacher—when you can see the connection between something conceptual and something they’re familiar with.” At first, it may seem a little unsettling that Snooki is sparking intellectual epiphanies in the classroom, but that’s exactly McClain’s strategy. Don’t shy away from what’s happening in the media, be it new smartphone app or the celebrity flavor of the month—use them as teaching tools and look at them from a new angle you’ve never considered. Take the film The Devil Wears Prada, for example; what some see as a cute Anne Hathaway vehicle, McClain presented as part of a “Careers in Communications” movie series, with the focus not on Hathaway’s wardrobe, but on her character’s job in the magazine industry (along with free pizza, of course). As we move next door to the editing suite, McClain shows me an empty room reminiscent of a producer’s booth in a radio station, with expansive counters and a window that looks out to the computer bays. McClain isn’t worried that it’s underutilized at the moment. Instead, she’s excited for what the future may hold. “This is a great space,” she says. “What can we do with it?”

can you

Inspire? How many years

By remembering Holy Family in your will, you can shape your legacy for years to come— illuminating the paths for future students through your generosity. A bequest is a simple, purposeful, and effective way to ensure future Holy Family students learn to create and discover, just as you did.

For details,

call 267-341-3428 or send an email to


A visual slice of life at Holy Family

The Holy Family at Holy Family The 2012 senior class chose, as part of their legacy gift, to refurbish the gazebo area on the grounds of Holy Family University. The gazebo was originally a gift from Dr. Dora Pruna (Spanish, 1990–1994) and her students, supplemented by the University. A father of a member of the 2012 senior class student committee completed the landscaping project and made repairs to the wooden structure. The Facilities Staff repainted the Gazebo. The Senior Class of 2013, which began their fundraising campaign in their sophomore year, agreed to donate funds for the purchase of a statue of the Holy Family (below). A dedication ceremony was held on Monday, September 17.


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5 6







Reports from the court, track, and field

Quick Change: Pursuing Greatness By Bob Macartney


ne month. That is how long it took women’s lacrosse coach Elizabeth Weber to transform the Tigers from a good team to a championship team. Weber, the third head coach in the four-year history of Holy Family’s newest program, brought a different attitude to the field. Being a good team was nice, but it was not enough. At the end of March, the team’s record was 3-4, but behind the scenes, the players knew how good they could be, and their opponents were about to find out. Weber had instituted an intense training program to get her team ready for the season, and despite the on-field results through the first month, the team had high expectations for the rest of the year. “The ultimate goal as head coach


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is to be at the top of the Conference year after year, not to just win one title,” Weber said. “We want to be considered the best. We set goals for ourselves at the beginning of the season. I knew what I wanted, and they knew my expectations. We did a lot of work in the fall to prepare for the upcoming season.” After a winless inaugural season in 2009, the Tigers had been competitive in the CACC, making the post-season tournament in 2010 and 2011, including an appearance in the Championship Game in 2010. As a rule of thumb in women’s lacrosse, success is usually measured in baby steps, and that was the blueprint the team followed those first few seasons. When the calendar flipped to April, Weber’s team started taking giant

strides. They ended Georgian Court’s 39-game Conference winning streak on April 1 with a 12-11 win when senior goalie Melissa Jenkins made a game-saving stop in the final 30 seconds. “We knew we were strong this year, but once we beat Georgian Court, we realized we had a great opportunity,” junior midfielder Maria Mattioli said. “We have been the underdog in the Conference because we are a new team,” CACC Player of the Year Stephanie McNesby, a junior, said. “Our coaches this year did a lot to encourage us. We saw their passion, and it inspired us to work hard and win.” Holy Family would not lose again on the season, reeling off 11 straight wins and capturing the CACC Championship.

The Tigers proved their first victory over Georgian Court wasn’t an April Fools’ joke in their second meeting of the regular season, winning 17-14 behind five goals from senior Gina Mansi. Despite those two wins and their place atop the standings at the end of the regular season, Holy Family still entered the championship game as the underdog. Just two years prior, Holy Family faced Georgian Court for the Championship on the same field, falling 17-4. However, this set of Tigers was determined to prove this time the outcome would be different. After an early goal by Georgian Court, Holy Family scored three straight times to grab a 3-1 lead. Georgian Court responded with a run of their own, taking a 5-4 lead late in the first half. After Holy Family’s Samantha Cornely tied the game with 1:42 remaining in the half, Sarah Kelly scored a huge goal just six seconds prior to intermission, giving Holy Family a 6-5 halftime lead. “Although the score was close, I just had a feeling we were going to win,” McNesby said. Using the momentum generated by the late first-half goal, Holy Family started the second half strong, netting

Junior Lauren Greco attacks the Chestnut Hill College’s defense on her way to one of her 34 goals on the season.

four consecutive goals to extend their lead to 10-5 and take control of the contest. Georgian Court would make one final push, pulling within three goals, but they would never get closer. For some of the student-athletes who had helped transform Holy Family from a new program to a champion in such short time, it was an exhilarating feeling. “It was amazing,” said Mattioli, “Nobody else had beaten Georgian Court. Everyone thought it was a fluke, even though we beat them twice during the season. We knew we could do it, but to prove to everyone else that we could was just a great feeling.” While the Championship may have been won on the field in May, the seeds were planted before the season, when Weber was hired as coach. “The change in staff was huge,” Mattioli said. “The new coaches were focused on winning the championship, and we worked harder than ever

The women’s lacrosse team captured the program’s first CACC Championship in just its fourth year of existence.

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to prepare for the season. We had a personal trainer working us out, and we got in our best shape ever. Everything just clicked for us as a team, and the coaches knew how to pull us together.” According to sophomore Brianna Lancetta, the team knows that next year the bullseye will be on their back, but they will be ready for the challenge. “We are just going to keep improving more in our second season with the coaching staff. Our goal is to be one of the top ranked teams in Division II,” Lancetta said. “The coaches are building a program that everyone wants to be a part of,” McNesby said. “The University is growing and we are winning. We have high hopes for next season.”

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Reports from the court, track, and field

SPORTS ROUNDUP Men’s Basketball

The men’s basketball team had their best season record-wise since the 2007–08 season. This year, the Tigers finished 12-14 overall and 8-9 in the CACC, while advancing to the CACC Tournament for the first time since 2008–09. First year head coach R.C. Kehoe had three players receive AllCACC honors, including senior Rickie Crews and junior Khiry Hankins who both were named to the third team. Sophomore Alberto Munoz was named All-CACC Honorable Mention. Crews topped the Division II leaders as he led the nation with 3.85 blocks per game. He was one of two players to finish the season with a Division II-best 100-blocked shots. Hankins finished sixth in the CACC in scoring as he averaged a careerbest 16.8 points per game and third in the CACC with 81 three-pointers. The men’s basketball team also defeated Merrimack College for the first time in program history in November. It marked the team’s first ever victory at a Northeast-10 Conference institution.

Kelly Brady ’13

Women’s Basketball

The women’s basketball team advanced all the way to the NCAA Division II East Region Championship Final for the third time in program history. The Tigers finished 26-8 overall and 17-2 in CACC action. The Tigers won their fifth straight CACC South Division Regular Season Title and 12th consecutive overall. In ad-


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dition, Holy Family won the CACC Championship for the sixth time in program history, and the Tigers earned their ninth straight NCAA Division II Tournament bid. Juniors Erin Mann and Kelly Brady earned All-CACC honors. Mann was named to the first team for the first time in her career, while Brady received Honorable Mention accolades. Mann finished second in the conference in scoring (18.1 ppg) and was also named to the Daktronics, Inc. All-East Region second team for the first time in her career. Brady led the conference with a .610 shooting percentage, which is also a career-high.

Women’s Lacrosse

The women’s lacrosse team capped the year with their first-ever CACC Championship. Holy Family defeated the two time reigning champions, Georgian Court University, 15-10, in the championship final. The Tigers finished with a 14-4 record and 11-1 mark in conference play setting new program records for wins in a season. The team also won a program-best 11-straight games. Holy Family had five student-athletes receive postseason honors from the CACC, the most in the team’s four-year history. Junior Stephanie McNesby highlighted the list as she was named the CACC Player of the Year and received All-CACC first team honors. Seniors Melissa Jenkins and Gina Mansi along with sophomore Marissa Lawson were named to the All-CACC second team, while freshman Brianna Lancetta was named All-CACC Honorable Mention. Mansi ended her career as the program’s all-time leading scorer with 184 points and 166 goals. McNesby became the third player in program history to score over 100 goals. She will enter her senior season with 110. Furthermore, McNesby finished the

season third among the Division II leaders with 7.17 draw controls per game and led all players nationally with 129 draws.

Danielle McDevitt ’13


Holy Family finished the year with its first 20-win season under secondyear head coach Davon Ortega. The Tigers (21-26) went 13-13 in conference play to earn the eighth seed in this year’s CACC Championship. Holy Family began the season with an impressive trip to Florida where the Tigers defeated nationally ranked #14 Saginaw Valley State, 4-3. Sophomore Victoria Reuscher pitched a no-hitter during game one of a doubleheader against Nyack College on March 17. Reuscher went on to shutdown the Warriors offense, surrendering zero hits in the seven-inning complete game shutout. Sophomore Rachael Alligood was named All-CACC Honorable Mention. She appeared in 21 games, including ten starts, and went 5-4 in 75.1 innings of work. Alligood also led the team with 43 strikeouts and had a career-low .258 batting average against this season. Senior Cassandra Fitzgerald-Black capped her career as the program’s all-time leader in home runs with 21. Fitzgerald-Black also recorded her 100th career hit this season, along with fellow classmate Bianca Robinson and junior Lindsey Iden.

2011-12 CACC Winter All-Academic Team

Men’s Golf

The men’s golf team finished seventh overall at this year’s Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) championship as the Tigers carded a two-day score of 673 (340-333). Junior Robert Moratti led Holy Family as he finished 12th overall among 55 competitors. After scoring an 83 on day one, Moratti improved by six strokes on the final day (77) to finish with a two-day score of 160. Junior Daniel Costello (81-83--164) and fellow classmate Charles Prendergast (80-85--165) finished in the top-20, finishing 18th and 20th respectively. Costello and Moratti each averaged a team-low 79.9-stroke average during the course of the season. Costello tallied the team’s lowest individual score of the season after shooting a 73 on April 3 in a tri-match hosted by Philadelphia University. Daniel Costello ’13

Track & Field

During the indoor season, the women’s 4x400 relay team of senior Latifah Porter and sophomores Zafirah Green, Delainey Price, and Dominique Thomas provisionally qualified for the NCAA Division II Championship after finishing sec-

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Men’s Basketball Ben Badeen

Sam Mushman

(Sr., 3.82, Management Marketing)

(Sr., 3.53, Communications)

Women’s Basketball Kelly Brady

Mary Ellen McCollum

(Jr., 3.96, Elementary/Special Education)

(So., 3.71, Undecided)

Katie Duma

(Sr., 3.83, Biology)

(So., 3.90, Management Marketing)

Carolyne Heston

Lauren Peters Devon Spirka

(So., 3.93, Management Marketing)

(So., 3.68, Biology)

2012 CACC Spring All-Academic Team Men’s Golf Jonathan Burns

(Jr., 3.60, International Business)

Women’s Lacrosse Maria Mattioli (Jr., 3.72, Nursing)

Softball Cassandra Fitzgerald-Black (Sr., 3.77, History)

Bianca Robinson

(Sr., 3.71, Sport Management/ Marketing)

Lindsey Iden

(Jr., 3.71, Communications)

ond at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational with a season-best time of 3:53.58. It marked the first time in program history that a team from Holy Family provisionally qualified for the national championship. Two weeks later, Green became the first individual to provisionally qualify. Green recorded a season-best time of 7.73 seconds in the 60-meter dash at the Princeton Invite. On the men’s side, graduate student Fred Tuwei recorded three top-five finishes in the 5,000-meter run, including a first place showing at the Frank Colden Invitational. He won the event in a season-best time of 15:50.05. During the outdoor season, the women’s 4x400 relay team again provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championship as Porter, Green, Thomas, and freshman Sarah Bariglio finished third overall at the Virginia Challenge in the team’s final meet of the season. The quartet recorded a school record time of 3:49.50, which ranked the Tigers 47th nationally. The team also made history becoming the first Holy Family relay team to win at the prestigious Penn Relays. On April 26, the team recorded a winning time of 3:52.54, breaking a 13-year record.

CoSIDA/Capital One Academic All-District

Holy Family had two additional players receive CoSIDA/Capital One Academic All-District 1 first team honors for the winter and spring seasons. Junior basketball player Khiry Hankins and senior track athlete Latifah Porter were both recognized for their academic and athletic accomplishments. The Academic All-District 1 teams are selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America members in the East Region.

WBCA Academic Top-25

The Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) announced the Academic Top-25 Team Honor Roll for the 2011–12 season. Holy Family, with a 3.558 team grade point average, was among 25 teams honored as the Tigers were ranked ninth in the nation among Division II institutions. This marks the third straight season that Holy Family has been ranked in the top-10 in the WBCA Academic Honor Roll. – Greg Pellegrino

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News for the alumni community

Class Notes

What you do is news to your fellow alumni and your alma mater! Tell us if you have moved, changed your phone number, updated your e-mail address, become engaged, gotten married, had or adopted a baby, reunited with a group of classmates, received an award or promotion, or changed jobs—or if you just want to say “hello!” Please forward details to the Office of Alumni & Parents, Holy Family University, 9801 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19114-2009. You can also fax your information to 215-637-2110, e-mail us at, share at (you must be registered to access the site), or use the form at our new online magazine:


Joanne Nicolai Clothier ’73 represented Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, ’59, PhD, University President, at Arcadia University on April 28, 2012. The occasion was the inauguration of Carl Oxhom III as the twentieth President of Arcadia University. Joanne, who received her master’s degree from Arcadia in ’77, enjoyed representing Holy Family and visiting her “other” alma mater.

In Memoriam Josephine Stecher, mother of JoAnn Stecher Tier ’68, died on May 8, 2012 Jane A. Lydon, mother of Jane Lydon Saile ’80, died on May 12, 2012 Margaret P. Dolezal ’88 died on February 15, 2012 Margaret Macrina Weitzel ’88 died on February 21, 2012 Margaret Price ’94 died on May 6, 2012 Philip Donald Herrmann, father of Nancy E. (Herrmann) Bradley ’88, died on July 27, 2012.


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Tony Renzi ’86 was recently hired as chief operating officer of Citigroup Inc.’s North American mortgage business. Tony spent two years as head of Freddie Mac’s single-family home business, and prior to that, he worked at GMAC Mortgage for 25 years. Catherine Lynn Markel ’88 was awarded Clinic Excellence in Leadership during nurses’ week at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in May of 2012. Catherine has been married for 32 years and has three children, Larry, Jake, and Cassie.


Robin Skubin Nolan ’94 was recently named the Director of Institutional Advancement at St. Hubert Catholic High School for Girls in Philadelphia. Raymond W. Price of Marlton, NJ, wrote to say that his mother, Margaret Price ’94, passed peacefully in May: “My mother was honored to be a member of the Holy Family alumni and was pleased to contribute to its

mission. Your cause mattered greatly to her and I believe I speak on her behalf as I encourage you to continue your great efforts in making a difference in the world through your dedication and service to others.” Brian Spector ’94 recently accepted the position of Vice Chair for Administration at Duke University in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Brian worked for 19 years in academic medicine managing physician practices at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Chicago, and the last 11 years at Northwestern University in the Emergency Department. He and wife, Nancy, are relocating from Chicago, IL, to Durham, NC, for his new position. In addition, Brian began running in 2007 and has since successfully completed five marathons. Katherine Butler ’95 was recently named principal of Bishop John King Mussio Central Elementary School in Steubenville, OH. Katherine, who worked for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for 21 years in various positions, most recently worked at a parish in the Archdiocese of Pittsburgh. Timothy McKenna M’98 was recently named president of Central High School, the oldest public school in Philadelphia.

Carina Holzman, great granddaughter of Jaye Grochowski,

Office of Alumni and Parents staff member. In 1991, a scholarship was established in Jaye’s name at Holy Family University, The Jaye Grochowski Scholarship.



Ted Qualli ’00 was selected as one of the “40 Under 40” Stars this year by the Philadelphia Business Journal. Caroline Neville M’04, Spanish teacher at Parkway Center City, was among this year’s Philadelphia School District High School distinguished teachers named by The Christian R. and Mary S. Lindback Foundation, celebrating excellence in education. Caroline is the world language department chair, peer mediation group leader, and a senior sponsor at her school. Meghan Grissell ’06 and Rick Sabol M’12 are engaged and planning a summer 2013 wedding. Meghan is a first grade teacher in the Council Rock School District and Rick is a fourth grade teacher in the Morrisville School District. Additionally, Rick is the boys’ basketball coach at Conwell Egan Catholic High School. Lindsey Lehman ’07 is currently a private Special Education Teacher for a family with a child with disability on the island of Bermuda. She has renewed her contract and will continued to reside there. She relocated there in August 2011.

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Bridget Collins-Greenwald M’08 recently became Commissioner of the Department of Public Property for the City of Philadelphia. Kelly Killion ’08 recently became an assistant coach of the women’s basketball team at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. Sara Michaels M’08 recently joined Advanced Clinical Concepts (ACC) as Vice President of Client Services. In 2008, the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association recognized Sara as a “Rising Star.” She received her MBA at Holy Family in 2008. Mark Bartholomew ’09 is currently an E3 Seaman, United States Navy recruit, and after basic training, he will continue on to a school in the nuclear field with the goal of becoming an officer in the Navy. Thomas Wolfinger M’09, a French teacher at Lankenau High School, was among this year’s Philadelphia School District High School distinguished teachers named by The Christian R. and Mary S. Lindback Foundation, celebrating excellence in education. Thomas sponsors the French Club, Environmental Science/Recycling Club, and Junior Class at his school.


Charles Vogt ’10/M’12 was featured in Philadelphia City Paper, announcing Charles’ promotion to command the City’s 24th Police District. John Pardini M’10 was recently named Dean of Information Services at Salem Community College in Carneys Point, NJ. John is an adjunct instructor at Holy Family. Lindsay Schafer ’11 is engaged to Justin Reinheimer. Lindsay currently works as a nurse at Capital Health. Britany Vespe ’11 and her mother, Debbie, opened shops in Cherry Hill and Ocean City, NJ. Named “Love on a Hanger,” the clothing stores are geared towards women from tween to mom. Sam Mushman ’12 is a sales representative for Katz Media Group in New York City. Douglas Ulrich ’12 recently started a position as an Admissions Counselor at Cabrini College in Radnor, PA. David Young ’12 recently began working at Holy Family University as Assistant to the Director of Cooperative Education.


Classes of 2000-2012 We Need You!

If you live in NY, CT, MA, TX, CA,or AZ and are willing to go to college fairs to represent Holy Family, please contact Michelle Foley, Senior Associate Director of Admissions | 215-637-3050

FALL 2012



News for the alumni community


Celebrated 50th Anniversary


embers of the Class of 1962 returned to Campus on Friday, May 18, to celebrate their 50th Anniversary. Many of the group toured the campus before attending the 2012 Baccalaureate Mass. The next day the group attended commencement at the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts in Philadelphia, where they were given special recognition during the graduation ceremony.

SEATED (L–R): Bernice Burcz Gutman, Theresa Romanowski, Margaret Dickert Foust, Linda Tinelli Sheive; STANDING (L–R): Kitty Didyoung

Wright, Mary McFadden Lutz, Mary McCafferty, Louise Dombrowski McCafferty, University President Sister Francesa Onley, CSFN, Anne Marie McCabe McGahan, Helene Thierjung Boess, Sister Frances Veitz, CSFN, Carol Holt Schuler, Jeanette Narcisi Lacovara.

Family and Friends of Holy Family University 2nd Annual Bingo and Luncheon School of Education Reunion


oly Family University recognized five alumna at the first annual Alumni Association School of Education Alumni Reunion and Recognition Event, held on September 21, 2012, in the Education and Technology Center. Patricia Erickson M’00, Kimberly Klemmick M’96, and Georgia Trantas-Weiss ’76 were presented with the 2012 Alumni Educator of the Year award. Nancy Matteo ’79 was named as the 2012 Distinguished Educator. The Lifetime Achievement in Education was given to Lorraine Murdocca ’58.

L–R: Nancy Matteo ’79, Lorraine Murdocca ’58, School of Education Dean Leonard Soroka, Georgia Trantas-Weiss ’76, Patricia Erickson M’00, Kimberly Klemmick M’96


FALL 2012


n April 15, 2012, the Family and Friends group hosted their second annual Bingo for the benefit of student scholarship funds. Held this year at Cannstatter Volksfest–Verein in Philadelphia, the event sold out and was an overwhelming success in raising scholarship funds. Pictured are alumni and current students who worked tirelessly all day along with the Bingo committee members.

L–R: Piotr Kopinski ’11, David Young ’12, Staci Altomari ’09,

Jerry Wutkowski ’13, Meghan Meyers ’11, Rob Fiorentino (son of Joan Fiorentino ’83), Jonathan Dick ’13.



APRIL 27, 2013 Benefiting Student Financial Aid


Beneficial Bank and Gerard P. Cuddy

President and CEO

Sheraton Society Hill Hotel One Dock Street Philadelphia, PA 19106 For additional information, contact Michael Domer at 267-341-3244.


A nostalgic trip back in time

Twisted Sister Rocks Many thanks to archivist Sister Brendan O’Brien for the following information: “This photo was taken in the former chapel (currently the area occupied by the offices for the Dean of Arts and Sciences and staff: Holy Family Hall 323). Sister Consolata Pylilo, Professor of Spanish, was involved with the music ministry so it is likely that the photo was taken during Mass or other liturgical activity.” When asked about Sister Consolata’s white habit, Sister Brendan explained that during the warmer months, many Sisters prefer to wear white because it is cooler and that Sister Consolata worked for many years in Puerto Rico where the Sisters wore white. Sister Consolata currently resides at Mount Nazareth, the retirement home for the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth. (If you are in this picture, we’d love to know; please email us at


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Your Portal to Connectivity Keeping track of social media can be time consuming; let us do that for you. The above QR code will take you to a page that lists all official Holy Family University social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, and our YouTube channel. Review the list and then like, tweet, friend, subscribe, join, pin, or link. holyfamilyuniversity HolyFamilyU holy-family-university holyfamilyuniversity


Making a difference on campus



Scholarship Ball 2012 Holy Family University was thrilled to have an extremely successful Scholarship Ball benefitting student financial aid. The 19th annual event was held at the Sheraton Society Hill on April 28, 2012. John Conway, CEO of Crown Holdings, was honored with the 2012 Corporate Leadership Award. 1) Dawn Timmeney, news anchor of NBC-10, and Dr. Luz DuqueHammershaimb, Holy Family Trustee  ohn Conway, CEO of Crown Holdings 2) J and 2012 Corporate Leadership Award honoree  osephine Mandeville, President and 3) J CEO of the Connelly Foundation, waves to the Scholarship Ball guests.  ary Burgess, Senior Vice President of 4) G Human Resources at Crown Holdings, honoree John Conway, Holy Family University Trustee Robert Truitt, and Holy Family Professor James Higgins 5) D  awn Timmeney and University President S. Francesca Onley, CSFN  . Francesca Onley with 6) S William Gallagher, Esq., Senior Vice President and General Counsel, and Michael Dunleavy, Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Public Relations, of Crown Holdings



7) J  onathan Dick ’13 and Dawn Timmeney  pecial Events Director 8) S Linda DiGennaro and students






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Small Commitment, Big Rewards: Creating Scholarships at Holy Family


our Holy Family faculty are “giving back” to Holy Family in a special way, funding named scholarships for deserving students. Scholarships provided by Professor Jim Higgins and by Dr. Mary Wombwell and her husband Robert were awarded for the first time this academic year. New scholarships being created by Dr. Ana Maria Catanzaro and Dr. Kathieen Van Dyke Hayes will be awarded for the first time next year. Higgins, longtime accounting professor, has funded an award for business students. The others, all nursing educators, are providing support for students in nursing and the allied health professions. Two of the nursing awards are available to graduate

students, for whom aid is more difficult to find. According to Bob Wetzel, Interim Vice President for Development, “Contributors are often surprised to learn that a named scholarship at Holy Family can be created with an annual commitment of as little as $1,000. Students commonly finance their educations with funds from multiple sources. A thousand dollars can be important.” Financial Aid Director Janice Hetrick agrees, “College savings, parent income, student income from part-time jobs, loans, grants, and scholarships are all important pieces of the financial aid puzzle. Here, a named scholarship is often the

crucial final piece of that puzzle for a student.” New named scholarships are announced each year at the Scholarship Stewardship Dinner. This year’s dinner was held on September 27. 

(L–R): Catherine Schlaich, Krista Zerkow ’13,

Dr. Catherine Akel, Lauren Pepito ’13: The Dean Anthony Akel Scholarship

Magazine 2.0

our brand-new online site is live online scoop: exclusive or ahead-of-print content

• • • • • interact with magazine staff and comment on articles

• • • • • submit class notes online

• • • • • access wherever there is an internet connection

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FALL 2012



Questions and answers with…

Danny Pirtle, PhD Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Danny Pirtle has been instrumental in Holy Family University’s graduate Criminal Justice program and organized a symposium highlighting changes in the state and municipal penal systems this past spring. Bob Macartney sat down with him not only to talk about the symposium but also to get sartorial tips. I was very pleased with the community response. Very often policy comes from a knee-jerk reaction to a certain situation that occurs. In many instances, when those policies are made, they do not rely on the educational research, which may say the opposite. If nothing else, I think our symposium did a good job of informing those who participated. I received some tremendous feedback. The graduate program in criminal justice is still young. What has been the biggest success of the program so far, and what is its biggest challenge moving forward?

How did you choose the topic for the criminal justice symposium on “Corrections in the 21st Century” at the Newtown campus in April?

I was teaching the correctional management class in the graduate program, and as part of the class, I had lined up several speakers from the course. I think it benefits the students when they get their information from the practitioner’s standpoint. I had them all lined up, so I thought it would be a great opportunity to get all of them together. The students helped me, and we located a warden, someone from probation, someone from parole, a juvenile justice administrator, and it all came together. Some of the topics you covered in the symposium were offender re-entry, specialized programming, mental health, and staff recruit-


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ment and retention. In your opinion, which are the biggest of those issues our society faces today?

They are all important issues, but the priority is offender re-entry. Many people do not realize that a huge percentage of those who are incarcerated will one day return to the community. There needs to be specific programs for those who have issues detrimental to them recidivating. We have to provide programming because we have to let a lot of them go short of their sentence due to Pennsylvania’s high incarceration rate. One of your goals for the symposium was to create dialogue between academics and the practitioners in the field in an effort to educate each other about specific issues. Do you think you achieved that goal?

Easily, the greatest successes are the students we are graduating from the program. When you receive feedback from students who have been out of the program, and they say ‘I finally found the job I always wanted,’ then that is a huge success when students are satisfied and are proponents of your program. We are providing them with training, academic information, and experience. You have your own specific style when it comes to clothing. You always come across as well dressed. Have you always been that way?

Yes. I don’t spend a lot on my wardrobe, but I do take it seriously. Anybody who has money can go into a store and buy an expensive blazer, but the challenge is making it different from the mannequin, or different from the next guy who buys that same blazer. I like that challenge of putting pieces together. I don’t subscribe to the typical dress code. If it feels right, I will try it.



Annual fund



A cup of coffee. It not only invigorates you but the cost of one cup can keep Holy Family University going too. You may think that such a small amount couldn’t possibly help, but when you combine your “cup” with others, we form a pot from which the University can draw to serve our students. So please give us a cup today—your venti pumpkin latte with a double shot of espresso will be used where the University needs it the most. And for that, we thank you!

Show your support by giving online using our secure website at or contact or 267-341-3340 for more options.

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9801 Frankford Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19114-2009




Following Her Passion:

Advocacy and the Underserved

Patricia Velasco, student in the Division of Extended Learning, has zealously pursued education, career, and service in an impressive defiance of odds. Her motivation has led her to inspire others as she was once inspired herself.

A Crest on the Chest:

Student Commitment Brings Rugby to Campus There is a saying that rugby is a hooligan’s sport played by gentlemen. This juxtaposition of passion and responsibility is the exact combination that brought a new sport to Holy Family’s campus.

Ideal Coordination: Communications, Media Evolution, and Pop Culture

When communications technology evolves at a lightning pace, then so must the study that precedes it. Amanda McClain, Assistant Professor and Coordinator of Art & Communications, has revamped and relaunched the Communications program, all while keeping up with reality television.

Quick Change: Pursuing Greatness The Holy Family Women’s Lacrosse team has mastered the art of the quick transitions. Just as they whip the ball up the field and into the goal, the women and their coach, Elizabeth Weber, have radically transformed a new team into CACC champions in a few short seasons.

Holy Family University Magazine Fall 2012  

Holy Family University is a fully accredited Catholic, private, co-educational, four-year comprehensive university located in Philadelphia,...

Holy Family University Magazine Fall 2012  

Holy Family University is a fully accredited Catholic, private, co-educational, four-year comprehensive university located in Philadelphia,...