Page 1


FALL 2015/WINTER 2016

Project STR EAM New academic initiative flows through Notre Dame's curriculum.

In this issue with 4 ADr.Conversation Judith A. Dwyer President Dwyer reflects on her first full year as President of the Academy of Notre Dame and shares the strategic vision for the Academy’s future.

8 Project STREAM

Notre Dame’s new cross-curricular educational initiative unifies all grade levels and departments through learning activities, service programs, and community partnerships.


Notre Dame Families Participate in Papal Visit

MISSION STATEMENT The Academy of Notre Dame de Namur, a Catholic, independent, college preparatory school, commits itself to the education of young women of grades 6 through 12 for responsible living in a global society. The Academy, rooted in the faith tradition of the Catholic Church, and the charism of Saint Julie Billiart, provides its students with a challenging academic curriculum within a rich spiritual community in order to: • inspire them to live the prophetic nature of the gospel, with a passion for justice and love for the poor, • enable them to develop the skills and desire necessary for life-long learning, • empower them to be honorable, compassionate leaders.

Learn how the lives of Notre Dame students, families, and alumnae were touched by Pope Francis’ historic visit to Philadelphia.

16 Faculty Insight

Mathematics instructor Tyler Gaspich shares how “flipped classroom” instruction matches individual learning styles.

18 25 28 30 36

Around ND Athletics Alumnae and Athletic Hall of Fame Reunion Class Notes



Jacqueline Coccia, MA


Kim Eife, MS

Academic Dean Jennifer Nobles, MA


VISIONS MAGAZINE Judy Detwiler, Editor

Director of Marketing and Communications


Director of Advancement Sally Orr

Associate Director of Advancement

Joy Antonoplos

Director of Annual Fund

DESIGN Conway Design

Marielle DuBovec Mazda ’06

Associate Director of Alumnae Relations Paula Gaughan

The Academy of Notre Dame de Namur

Alicia Mendicino

560 Sproul Road, Villanova, PA 19085 610.687.0650

Event Coordinator and Parent Liaison Jessica Turner ’06


A conversation with





full academic year has passed since Dr. Judith Dwyer was installed as the second lay President of the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur. With more than two decades

of experience as an innovator in Catholic higher education and international experience as a Fulbright Scholar, Dwyer has quickly made an impact at Notre Dame. We talked with her about her first year and what lies ahead.

Q. What excites you most about your experience at Notre Dame? The Academy of Notre Dame de Namur is an exceptional school with a great heritage, grounded in its Catholic identity and the pioneering legacy of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. When you meet our students and see their vitality, their self-confidence, their poise - when you hear their dreams - you know that we have before us the next generation of leadership. The privilege of providing the finest education possible for these talented young women is truly an honor and an exhilarating opportunity.

Q. It’s been a busy year. Under your leadership, the Board of Trustees approved an ambitious, five-year strategic plan that will set a new course for the school. What is your vision for Notre Dame?

One of my first opportunities as President was to lead a community-based planning process that invited faculty, staff, students, alumnae, parents, and trustees to envision a road map that would chart the future of Notre Dame. What would 2020, 2025, and beyond look like? What would be our priorities and how could we achieve them? The strategic vision that we call “Our Time to Inspire” came from those thoughtful conversations. The Board approved the plan last spring, and my commitment to this vision is, quite frankly, unwavering. What I appreciate deeply in the strategic plan is that it is rooted in our heritage, our mission, our hallmarks. It is our vision that the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur will be recognized as the premier independent Catholic academy for young women in North America. We shall do that through our emphasis on compassionate leadership, on global citizenship, on academic excellence.

Q. A pivotal component of the strategic plan is the design of a comprehensive STEM and STEAM program for all grades. Why is this a priority? Women have been traditionally underrepresented in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Knowing the strong track record of our alumnae in these fields, it was important to position Notre Dame as a leader in STEM education. Our faculty has worked extensively on developing a very innovative, experientially-based approach to STEM education. It’s comprehensive, interdisciplinary, and a very important combination of theory and practice. The program also interconnects science with the arts, the “A” in STEAM, so one can imagine studying dance by way of physics or music by way of mathematics, to show the relevancy of all these matters in daily life.


Through our strategic plan, we are committed to highlighting the innovation of the curriculum, the quality of our teachers, the creativity of our students, and to building a state-of-the-art facility that reflects this commitment.

Q. You’re passionate about preparing Notre Dame graduates to become leaders in a global society. How will the strategic plan address this?

“Our alumnae are leaders throughout the world, and when you meet them, you are impressed by the fields in which they work and the ways that they have emerged as leaders on the international stage.”

Our alumnae are leaders throughout the world, and when you meet them, you are impressed by the fields in which they work and the ways that they have emerged as leaders on the international stage. We want to make sure that our current students have that same opportunity to explore new cultures and new challenges within the global community. By establishing a Center for Leadership and International Studies, and creating partnerships with girls’ schools throughout the world that are well-known for their excellence, we will immediately provide our students with a dynamic, global learning environment.

As our students examine cultural, socioeconomic, religious, or geographical differences, they will deal on a deep level with the diversity and the complexity of our modern world in a way that will prepare them to be compassionate leaders in the future. This philosophy aligns with the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur who serve on five continents and who themselves have been leaders and pioneers. 6 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

Q. This summer you visited Zhuhai Girls’ Middle School in Guangdong Province, China, to lay the groundwork for new learning and exchange programs with Notre Dame. What are your plans for this new relationship?

This is our first formal affiliation for joint learning experiences with a school in Asia. We plan to create cultural immersion opportunities, exchanges, or shared learning experiences around a common theme. This school is well known for the arts and Notre Dame has a very strong tradition within the fine and performing arts, so there is common ground that we can immediately explore together. This is the first of a series of schools around the world with whom we shall align for global immersion experiences and exchanges.

Q. As part of the strategic planning process, you asked Board members to read The Third Teacher, which examines how the design of a learning environment impacts teaching and learning. Why was that important? The premise of The Third Teacher is that there are three teachers all interacting at once with a student. The first, of course, is the designated teacher; the second teacher is the student, working in peer learning environments; and the third teacher is the educational environment itself. As we thought about reshaping our curriculum, embedding it with state-of-the-art technology and state-of-the-art learning methodologies, we knew that our campus must also reflect the finest learning environments for our students. So, throughout the strategic planning process, our philosophy has been that the curriculum shapes the campus and the learning environment shapes the facilities.

Q This approach to campus planning was also an integral component of the strategic plan. Can you explain? In a bold move on the part of the Notre Dame community, we recently completed construction of state-of-the-art athletic fields on the front of the campus. Now we need to be equally bold with the campus master plan. This will be one of the foundations upon which we shall launch a capital campaign in 2016.

That’s why our strategic plan, “Our Time to Inspire,” is so rich. It’s a call to transcend the kind of day-to-day thinking that can limit our horizons. Our plans for Notre Dame are bold, but they are clearly rooted in the great academic tradition of the Academy, the mission of the Catholic Church, and the pioneering legacy of the first Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

Development of a campus master plan began in January 2015. Seven architectural firms competed to be selected as the architect of record for the campus master plan. At the April Board meeting in 2015, the Board of Trustees selected Centerbrook Architects and Planners, based on their reputation for excellence and for their community-based approach to the planning process, which was important to us. From April until September 2015, Centerbrook interviewed our students, parents, alumnae, trustees, faculty, and staff to develop what has yielded a brilliant campus master plan. The Board approved a high-level presentation of the plan in October.

Q. If you were to step on to the campus as a young woman in 2020 what do you imagine would be happening in this learning environment? I would hope that a student coming here in 2020 would experience a community of faith, a community that is vibrant, a community in which there are self-confident, poised young women, and a community in which there is compassion for the poor. In many ways it would reflect the community that we have today. These are values that prevail over any decade and, in our case, in any century. So, the heart of the school will not have changed, in fact it will have deepened with time. That said, Notre Dame will reflect a state-of-the-art environment that inspires learning. Students and faculty will collaborate in contemporary, flexible spaces that nurture creativity and discovery.


Project STR EAM These days, you can find Notre Dame students routinely taking water samples at the Darby Creek, drawing macro images of those samples in art class, discussing the sacramental role of water, and examining issues of water scarcity. Why all this talk of water? The answer is Project STREAM.



roject STREAM began in a faculty meeting in early 2015, according to Academic Dean Kim Eife. “There was an overriding interest in developing a schoolwide theme to support our curriculum. The theme needed to work with every discipline,” says Eife. “When the subject of water was mentioned, all of the department chairs jumped in with enthusiasm and ideas of ways to use the topic.” The theme for this cross-curricular project is, Water Sustains All Life. “That’s the message we want to get out,” says Eife, “but we also wanted something a little catchier, so we decided to name the initiative Project STREAM.”

With STEM and STEAM education a focus at Notre Dame, is STREAM also an acronym? “Project STREAM is tied to STEM and STEAM in the integration of technology, engineering, mathematics and arts, but the R doesn’t necessarily stand for religion,” says Eife. “However, the ‘water sustains all life’ theme applies well to other disciplines, like social studies and religion.” Josephine Gandolfo, a teacher in the religion department, has always been involved in service projects with the students, and service is a key component of the Notre Dame mission.

“We explore the seven themes of Catholic social teaching,” says Gandolfo, “and the final theme is stewardship of the Earth.” “The Church teaches that water is a fundamental human right and Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur around the world focus on water poverty and clean water for those in need,” says Gandolfo. “I hope to work with the students to begin a fundraiser to provide water-cleansing tablets to the Sisters and the impoverished people they help.” Science teacher Emily Giannantonio reinforces the fact that Project STREAM is not just a science department initiative. “Everything’s about water,” says Giannantonio. “You can tie almost any project into it with many different learning opportunities.” In November, the AP Physics and AP Calculus classes traveled to Darby Creek to measure the flow rate of the water and will work on calculations based on their data collection. The Environmental and AP Environmental classes went to the creek to monitor and collect water from three different locations. “When I approached the Darby Creek Valley Association (DCVA) about working together, I asked how we could help them,” says Giannantonio. “They asked us to do regular VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 9

monitoring on the Darby, so we will send a small group each month to monitor the creek. The DCVA has an annual meeting at the end of January, and we plan to present the results of everything that we’ve done so far. They have also asked us to do an oral history of the Association and maybe even work on a coffee table book.”

The project will continue as the art students look for changes and growing microorganisms. Students will use different media for the drawings; some will use pencil, others pen and ink, and others pastels, all of which combined with the scientific annotations will make a beautiful exhibit of art and science when the project is complete.

The sixth and seventh grade students went to the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge to study water fowl and aquatic environments. “John Heinz is actually where Darby Creek ends, so it brings sixth graders through seniors together in the same theme and location,” says Giannantonio.

“I’m so excited to do something cross-curricular, and sometimes others have a hard time seeing the connection with art, but it’s huge!” says Rupertus. “The girls see a real-world application of their skills, since these drawings will be similar to artist renderings seen in textbooks.”

Kate Rupertus’ upperclass art students are using Darby Creek stream samples to create works of art. “The students are studying water samples under microscopes, taking pictures, and doing sketches and polished drawings,” explains Rupertus. “They’ll be detailed macro drawings to scale. The science classes will then take them and dissect and label them.”

Foreign language class might seem to be a more difficult way to integrate the water theme, but that’s not the case here. Spanish teacher Rosemary Guarino is using infographics from the UN to teach about global water issues. The infographics are in Spanish. “Whatever is going on in any subject matter, we can do it in Spanish,” says Guarino. “The students just need the vocabulary. This is a real-life application of the language they’re studying.”

Art students are making scientific drawings of microorganisms found at Darby Creek.


With all the enthusiasm and possibilities surrounding Project STREAM, what does the future hold? “What’s most exciting are all the connections being made between departments and with outside organizations,” says Dean Eife. “I’m just so thrilled that this has blossomed in the way it has. It started as a schoolwide theme and it’s really taken off beyond that.” “We were initially thinking Project STREAM would just be this year’s theme, but when we saw the creativity of our faculty, we knew this could be a successful learning theme for the next few years,” says Eife. “The ideas our teachers have had are more than I ever could have imagined!” Article contributed by Notre Dame alumna Jessica Turner ’06

Middle school students explore Project STREAM through Japanese art. The sixth grade students were taught Gyotaku, a traditional Japanese art of printing images of fish from an actual fish. They studied examples and made their own versions, painting on a fish and laying paper over it to get a print of the scales, fins, eyes, and everything the pigment covered. This proved to be a fun (albeit smelly!) lesson not only in an art technique, but also in sea life and oceanography.


Celebrating a

ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME OPPORTUNITY Notre Dame Families Participate in Papal Visit


or the estimated 850,000 people who traveled from across the country and the globe to experience Pope Francis’ historic visit to Philadelphia in late September, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. For several members of the Notre Dame community, his holiness’ visit was even more extraordinary, thanks to unique opportunities to serve and celebrate their Catholic faith in the holy Father’s presence. The eighth World Meeting of Families (WMOF) Conference, held for the first time in the United States since 1994, kicked off the week-long festivities marking the momentous occasion. One of the earliest celebrations came on the first evening of the WMOF


conference at a “Club Francis” event at The Philo on Market Street in Philadelphia. Notre Dame sophomore Emily Kinka found herself performing with her father’s liturgical worship band, The Offering, based out of St. Maximilian Parish in West Chester. Emily was asked by her father to add extra vocals for the two sets, which ran almost two hours. “I was so excited, and I had no idea what to expect since it was the first night,” she said. The crowd, which she estimated was between 100-200 people, was a mixture of clergy, fans and family. “The energy was amazing,” Kinka recalled. “Everyone was there for a reason and it was great to see people singing the Christian songs we love.”

Musical performances afforded several other members of the Notre Dame community the opportunity to participate in the WMOF and Papal celebrations. Anne Liebeskind, mother of Katherine ’18, sang with the Philadelphia Archdiocesan Choir for the opening Mass of the WMOF. “What a thrilling experience it was to be with 15,000 people and to sing the official anthem of the World Meeting of Families, written by one of our own choir members,” said Liebeskind.

Both the adult Archdiocesan Choir and the Girls and Boys Choirs came together to celebrate Sunday’s Papal Mass on the Parkway. Anne’s morning began at 3:00 am with the security checks and secret service escort. “There was a lot of waiting and a little bit of chaos,” she remarked. But “when the Pope arrived, it was absolute jubilation! It was a thrill and a very great privilege to sing for the Pope, everyone there, and people around the world.”

Courtesy: Kraus Communications

“When I saw Pope Francis exit his tiny black car, he

The Archdiocesan Girls and was no longer a person Boys Choirs of Philadelphia also gave their own remarkable who lived in faraway performance at Thursday’s WMOF Mass, and had the place, but now, real to me, privilege of singing for in a way indescribable, Pope Francis at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and as truly our Holy Father.” Paul on Saturday, September 26. As members of the Archdiocesan Girls Choir, Notre Dame middle school students Catherine Chapman ’22 and Eva Kraus ’20 were two of only forty children to sing for the Pontiff during his visit. Eva, who has been a member of the Archdiocesan Girls Choir for four years, was thrilled by her proximity to the Pope. “The entire thing was exciting. When we sang Saturday, he walked right by us and waved to our choir.” Catherine remarked, “At that moment when I saw Pope Francis exit his tiny black car, he was no longer a person who lived in a faraway place, but now, real to me, in a way indescribable, as truly our Holy Father.” Vanessa Kraus, Eva’s mother, was fortunate enough to be asked by the Cathedral to photograph his arrival and the choir’s performance. “I was within feet of him. His energy and his holiness is profound. He is really from God! Every moment was wonder-filled. To be in his presence was like nothing I could have ever imagined.”

Behind the crowds of thousands were people like Sandy Boyd, mother of Notre Dame junior Marion Boyd. Sandy, a physician’s assistant in emergency medicine at Riddle Hospital (Main Line Health) in Media and Lower Bucks Hospital in Bristol, represented the American Red Cross and Medical Reserve Corps at the main medical tent for the Papal visit. Sandy was one of forty other doctors and physician’s assistants who slept on a cot in a local gym and worked twelve hour shifts over the weekend to ensure visitors received prompt medical attention. “We saw a lot of people who didn’t drink enough water and collapsed in line, and some people who just had panic attacks from seeing the Pope.” As a member of the American Red Cross’ Disaster Action Team for the Philadelphia region and the National Disaster team, Sandy found it more interesting to work behind the scenes. “We met so many people from different agencies…Secret Service, Homeland Security. It was a very well-coordinated … people don’t realize how much planning and man-power was needed.” Planning was how sisters Lauren ’08 and Katie Willis ’18 found themselves with perhaps the most intimate encounter with the Pope during his visit. Lauren was serving on an event committee for the WMOF whose task was to coordinate Pope Francis’ formal meeting with organizers, volunteers and benefactors involved with the World Meeting of Families on that last evening before departing for Rome. Katie was going to be one of 500 guests attending the event thanks to her grandmother, Josephine Connelly Mandeville P’88 GP’08’13’18, who had two tickets in the front row. “I wasn’t sure that we’d be meeting the Pope,” said Katie, “but Lauren said we were, so I started thinking about what I wanted to say.” Katie prepared all day to say something in Spanish, the Pope’s native language. She grew more nervous as the time grew closer, and suddenly the Pope walked in and everyone “was in awe.” As he moved down the row, shaking people’s hands, Katie recalls being so nervous. “I shook his hand and said ‘Gracias por venir a Filadelfia. Rezo por ti.” (Translation: Thank you for coming to Philadelphia. I pray for you.) As the cameras flashed, the Pope smiled and chuckled. “He told me I had beautiful Spanish and thanked me.” Learn more about Class of 1999 alumna Meg Kane’s experiences with the Papal visit on the next page. VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 13

Behind the Scenes What was your official role?


My role was to oversee the day-to-day communications needs, operations and planning for the World Meeting of Families –

to ask Pope Francis to attend WMOF. In June 2015, a delegation led by Archbishop Chaput and Mayor Nutter, traveled to Rome for planning meetings. My role was to manage press corps requests so that the story could be covered fully at home. During both visits, we were blessed to have an audience with the Holy Father. In March 2014, the Pennsylvania Delegation had the opportunity to personally greet Pope Francis, individually, in front of 100,000 in Saint Peter’s Square. To shake Pope Francis’ hand and to have him ask me to pray for him was a moment of a lifetime.

Did the WMOF live up to expectations?

Notre Dame Alumna Meg Kane ’99 helps Share the WMOF with the World Meg Kane ’99, Senior Vice President with Brian Communications, played a key role in sharing the Pontiff ’s visit with the world. here are her thoughts on this once-in-a-lifetime event. What was your official role? My role was to oversee the day-to-day communications needs, operations, and planning for the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 (WMOF) and Papal Visit in conjunction with the Director of Marketing and Communications for WMOF and the Director of Communications for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

What did you do? The most important thing to note in answering that question is that I was blessed to have an extraordinary team who consistently delivered outstanding work. I managed and helped to oversee organizational messaging, media relations as well as planning/ coordination for the event itself. Our agency also created, launched and oversaw the “I’ll Be There” public awareness campaign as well as created and oversaw the city-wide banner initiative, which was the largest in the City in 15 years, and the development of the “Papal Visit Playbook,” which was printed as an insert by The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Daily News.

Did you travel to Rome? Yes, I traveled to Rome twice with the leadership delegations for WMOF serving as the press liaison. In March 2014, Archbishop Chaput, Governor Corbett, and Mayor Nutter led the delegation 14 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

I certainly hope so! There were so many expectations placed on the Papal Visit from so many different entities. Throughout the planning, we were always attentive to how people would experience WMOF and the Papal Visit in person, through television and via social media. If I look at what was accomplished – a million attendees on the Parkway, live international TV coverage and one of the more extraordinary uses of a hashtag in recent memory (#PopeInPhilly) – I do believe the visit lived up to expectations – and perhaps even exceeded them!

What were your most memorable parts of the Papal Visit? The roar of the crowd as the Pope’s Fiat came into sight was unlike any noise I have ever heard. It enveloped the City. As I waited on 18th Street in front of the Cathedral and the police motorcycles turned with the American and Papal Flags flying, the crowd was in a full-throated roar and when the Fiat turned, it reached a completely different decibel. I don’t think I will ever forget that sound. I was watching Mass in an outdoor tent near the tarmac with about 30 members of the press corps assigned to Papal Departure. When Mass started, it looked beautiful, but what struck me was when Pope Francis opened Mass in English! He said to the crowed, “Peace be with you.” And to hear one million people respond to him, “And with your spirit…” It took my breath away. I found myself with tears streaming down my cheeks. What a moment!”

What are your reflections on this experience? Having the opportunity to work on the World Meeting of Families and the Papal Visit was a humbling and amazing experience. As a young woman at Notre Dame, I could have never imagined that my life would bring me to such a moment. I am incredibly proud of the work that we delivered. I not only learned so much – professionally and personally – but I remain awed by the fact that I had the chance to be part of history – even if just a small part. Notre Dame helped to make this moment possible. I would not be the woman I am today without the faith and confidence that was instilled in me during my years there. I often called upon that in the most difficult moments. I could also almost hear Ms. Monck telling me, “Public relations was a much better choice than chemistry for you, Meg!”

Making Known God’s Goodness. Educating for Life.

Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur Mark 175th Year in US


n October 31, 1840, eight Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur arrived in Cincinnati, Ohio from Belgium. They were called to do the work founder Saint Julie Billiart called, “The most important work on earth.” They came to teach.

More than 100 guests attended the anniversary celebration, including Sisters from throughout the Philadelphia area, Notre Dame graduates from the Academy’s original Rittenhouse Square location, and leaders from the Ohio Tri-Province Development Program of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

As the Sisters’ reputation for Catholic education spread, they were invited to establish schools all along the eastern seaboard, including the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur. The Sisters also founded schools in Moylan and Wyncote and taught at Philadelphia Archdiocesan schools.

“It was wonderful to meet graduates from the different Notre Dame schools, including some schools that are no longer open,” said Sister Rita Sturwold, SND, Chair of the Steering Committee for the 175th Anniversary. “I was inspired to see their loyalty to their schools, their education, and to their teachers.”

The Sisters of Notre Dame recently marked 175 years of service in the US with commemorative events across the county and the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur was selected as the host location for the Philadelphia-area celebration. Notre Dame flourishes today as an affiliated institution of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

The celebration included a video presentation on the history of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur and concluded with a Eucharistic Liturgy. “The interpretive dancing and uplifting music by the women of Notre Dame did my heart good,” said Sister Rita. “It was wonderful for the older graduates to see the beauty and talent of your students.”

Over the course of the congregation’s 175 years in this country, the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur have taught in more than 200 schools in 22 states, shaping the lives of millions of students; always sharing the message of the goodness of God.


FACULTY INSIG Tyler Gaspich, Mathematics MOVE OVER BEN FRANKLIN If Ben Franklin stepped into most math classrooms today, he would probably feel at home. There would be an instructor at the board presenting a lesson, with students listening intently, taking notes, and trying not to miss any key points. In Tyler Gaspich’s math classes, Dr. Franklin might be a bit confused. The Notre Dame instructor is “flipping” the way math concepts are presented and practiced in his Algebra 2 and Trigonometry classes. In the flipped classroom, student learning is paced to match individual learning styles through the use of short, topic-specific videos which are viewed by students at home in place of traditional homework time. Classroom time is used to clarify concepts that have already been introduced, and students work through practice problems alone or in small groups, while the teacher moves through the room, ready to answer questions. Gaspich has been refining this teaching method since introducing the concept at Notre Dame last year. “Flipped classroom instruction is more student-centered,” says Gaspich. “Each student controls when and how often she reviews a lesson. When students come to class, they are already familiar with a concept and ready to ask questions. We use class time to discuss a topic in more detail, and if they need more help to master a concept. I’ll work with them one on one while the other students work on practice problems.” Kenzie Irvine ’17 is a student in Gaspich’s Algebra 2 class. “You can learn at your own pace. I like that I can pause a lesson, do some practice problems and then go back to watch the lesson again.” Gaspich, who holds an MS from St. Joseph’s University with a concentration in the use of technology in math classrooms, prepares all of his own video lessons. “The instruction is consistent, because students see me presenting the topics online and then I follow through with the same topic in the classroom the next day,” says Gaspich. “Because students access the learning modules online, their progress is trackable and accountable.” Another one of Gaspich’s math students, Autumn DiLullo ’17 is a fan of the flipped classroom. “I like learning this way. You can follow the video lesson step-by-step and I feel like I have a better foundation about the concepts.” Gaspich has been invited to share this instructional approach at educational conferences. "The students’ attitude toward math completely transforms from the flipped classroom, specifically in a subject many fear,” says Gaspich. “They are embracing challenges and problem solving in math class, simply because the methods of instruction have changed. When a student tells me that she is starting to love math again, that really says it all.”






Recognizing Achievement

On September 17, proud parents and families gathered to celebrate the induction of 77 students into the National Honor Society. Students are recognized for their academic achievement, community service, and participation in school activities and programs. The National Merit Scholarship Program recognizes students for their exceptional academic promise. Commended students place among the top 5% of the 1.5 million students who took the test and Semifinalists represent less than 1% of the state’s high school seniors. We congratulate Notre Dame Commended Students Olivia Chow, Catherine Cullen, Casey McCoy, Alexis Odgers, Jordan Pietrafitta, Alison Rae, Mary Stevenson, Johanna Tomkiewicz and Semifinalists Brianna Heffernen, Anne Marie Crinnion, and Janet Wu.


Notre Dame Juniors Bridget Pyott and Marina Ruiz are currently participating in Notre Dame’s Spanish Exchange Program at the Real Colegio Alfonso XII, a school run by the Augustinian fathers located in San Lorenzo de El Escorial. The school is located outside the capital city of Madrid. This is the seventh year for the program, which places students in Spanish III or above with a Spanish high school student and her family to experience Spanish culture firsthand. San Lorenzo de El Escorial is located in the main attraction of the region, the monastery/palace complex built by King Philip II in 1584. The Royal Site of San Lorenzo de El Escorial was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984. Notre Dame will host two Spanish exchange students in the spring.

On October 22, faculty from Notre Dame’s Committee for the Center for Leadership and International Studies accompanied students to the World Affairs Council in Philadelphia to attend a lecture titled, “How Beijing is Preparing Chinese Students for the Global Job Market.” Guest speaker Robert Daly, Director of the Kissinger Institute on China and the United States at the Woodrow Wilson Center, (shown at center) discussed ways Beijing is preparing Chinese students for the global marketplace and what lessons the US can learn from China’s educational reforms.

Notre Dame Senior Carly Dagit and Junior Caroline Beck completed a four-week study of broadcast journalism as participants in the KYW Newstudies Program in Philadelphia. The students are interested in pursuing a career in journalism and were selected to represent Notre Dame. The program gives students the opportunity to learn about interviewing, newswriting, and reporting from KYW Newsradio and CBS3 editors, reporters, and anchors. As a final project, the students researched, wrote and recorded their own news reports. “I love to write and having the chance to explore broadcast journalism has helped me focus on the area of journalism I plan to study in college,” said Carly.

Notre Dame student Christine McGinn ’18 has been selected as Notre Dame’s ambassador to a student leadership seminar which will be held in Taiwan in August 2016. The seminar, which gathers high school students from throughout the world, is hosted by the Sacred Heart High School for Girls, located in New Taipei City, Taiwan. Social Studies teacher Sally Gallagher will accompany Christine. Christine was selected to represent Notre Dame based on her thoughtful essay application and interviews with Notre Dame faculty and administration. We are pleased that she will represent the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur and Notre Dame’s new Center for Leadership and International Studies.

The first of our scholar-athletes formalized their college intentions at a signing ceremony in November. Kaitlin Perni (Drexel University, Swimming) and Julia Dambly (University of Delaware, Lacrosse) signed their National Letters of Intent. Caroline Allen (Cornell University, Lacrosse) and Mikayla Schneider (University of Pennsylvania, Track and Field) announced their verbal commitments to continue their athletic careers at the Division 1 level. Congratulations to all, we are so proud of your accomplishments! VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 19



Living Our hallmarks The Academy welcomed 43 middle and high school students into Notre Dame’s Campus Ministry Team for the 2015-2016 academic year. Campus Ministry includes senior executives who lead one of eight student committees which serve the school and community in the spirit of Saint Julie Billiart. Campus Ministry is responsible for faith-based programs, liturgies, service projects, prayer services, and the collection of special intentions of the community.

Notre Dame students are guided by the Academy’s seven Hallmarks every day. They show their commitment to Hallmark Four, “We commit ourselves to community service,” through acts of generosity to those who are less fortunate. The Respect Life Club collected hundreds of diapers, baby food and other infant care items to donate to the Patrician Society in Norristown. The Patrician Society provides help for elderly people on fixed incomes, homeless persons, parents who receive public assistance while caring for children, residents of boarding homes, recently unemployed and underemployed family breadwinners, and others in need. 20 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

Fifteen Notre Dame high school students traveled with faculty members to New Vision, a day homeless shelter located in Camden, NJ. Faculty and staff donated a meal of shepherd's pie, salad, fruit cocktail, rolls, and soda while the students donated desserts. Students socialized with the residents before serving nearly 100 nutritious meals.

Notre Dame students participate in the Academy’s Meals for Many outreach program by preparing complete, nutritious meals for the elderly and homebound. Students prepare the meals and add a note of friendship for the recipient, which are stored in freezers in churches throughout the region and then distributed by Aid for Friends volunteers. The Aid for Friends program serves more than 2,000 homebound friends weekly.


Celebrating Community

Notre Dame’s fall musical, “Anything Goes,” featured 66 student actors, dancers, singers and stage crew. The talented cast brought the unforgettable lyrics and music of the great Cole Porter to life on the Academy’s stage.

SPOTLIGHT Spirit Day, a longstanding Notre Dame tradition, brought everyone together for a day of fun challenges, skits and cheers. The big winners of the annual Halloween skits were the Seniors and the winners of the annual banner contest were the Juniors. Spirit Day holds a special place in the hearts of all Notre Dame students and alumnae.

Mothers and daughters spent a sunny day enjoying the beautiful grounds and pool at the Mansion for the Academy’s annual Mother-Daughter picnic.

Mondays with Sister Nancy Notre Dame’s new alumnae program brings Notre Dame graduates together to learn about, discuss, and explore topics under the guidance of Sister Nancy Bonshock, SND. “What excites me most about this new program is the opportunity to meet students I taught during my years at the Academy,” says Sister Nancy. “Alumnae of all ages have been joining us. For our first meeting we explored Pope Francis’ Encyclical Letter, “Laudato Si” (On Care for our Common Home). This was a perfect start to our series, as the Encyclical focused on the threats of climate change and other environmental challenges, especially the critical issue of fresh water. This tied in perfectly with Notre Dame’s new cross-curricular program, Project STREAM.” At another meeting, Notre Dame alumna and physician Trish Henwood ’98 discussed her work to fight the Ebola outbreak in Liberia. “In the winter, we will discusss the need to appreciate art and beauty in our lives,” says Sister Nancy. "This new program is a wonderful way to strengthen the bonds between our Notre Dame alumnae and come together for prayer and thoughtful discussions.” For more information on future programs, please contact Marielle DuBovec Mazda ’06 at VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 21


NOTRE DAME SPOTLIGHT College Board Invites Chemistry Teacher to Write AP Chemistry Test Questions Advanced Placement Chemistry teacher Mary Monck has been selected by the College Board to serve as a writer of AP Chemistry test questions. “While I was in Salt Lake City as an AP Chemistry test grader, I was approached by the College Board to see if I was interested in writing questions for future tests,” said Monck. “They were impressed with the quality of Notre Dame’s AP Chemistry course. Of course, I said yes!”

Notre Dame Dancers Celebrate Music and Dance through the Decades From the swinging tunes of the Benny Goodman Orchestra, to the mellow sounds of Simon and Garfunkel, to techno and beatbox, Notre Dame’s dance classes and dance company celebrated the movements and rhythms of American music and dance with their winter dance performance. More than 180 dancers took to the stage throughout the evening.

Monck took trainings through the College Board and is now officially an OTW (outside test writer). “My first five questions were accepted by the College Board review board in August,” said Monck. Through her association with the College Board, Notre Dame will now also become an official site for SAT II Chemistry practice questions. “The College Board will send me practice tests that I can administer to any Notre Dame student planning on taking the SAT II in the future and get feedback from the College Board.” Anna Noblitt ’17 has been selected to attend the Temple University High School Summer Program in Tokyo. Anna will spend 10 days at Temple’s Japan campus, where she will take courses in Japanese language and an elective of her choice. She will also visit various cultural landmarks, including excursions to Nikkō Tōshō-gū (a Shinto shrine) and Disney Sea.


Students Selected for All-Catholic Music Festivals Three Notre Dame Sophomores have been selected to participate in upcoming All-Catholic Music Festivals. Singing with the AllCatholic Chorus are Emily Kinka and Emily Apadula (left and center). Sophomore Christine Stavish (right) was selected as First Chair saxophone with the All-Catholic Band. Congratulations! On January 5, Notre Dame welcomed more than 60 of our college-age alumnae back to campus for a wonderful luncheon in the Mansion. After lunch was served, the alumnae led panel discussions with current Juniors and Seniors on a variety of topics pertaining to their college experiences.

Inspiring Careers in • Science • Technology • Engineering • Mathematics

Notre Dame Students Aim high with Planned Balloon Launch Notre Dame STEM research students Daniella Jose ’17 and Julia Scanlon ’17 have high ambitions – to build, launch, track, and recover a high-altitude balloon and scientific payload this winter. The two students presented a grant proposal to the Notre Dame administration in October that outlined their plans to test the effects of extreme cold and low pressure on materials that may someday be used in a Mars expedition.


ach student has a particular area of responsibility for the project. As launch specialist, Jose is responsible for finding an appropriate launch site, choosing a suitable launch date, and communicating with the Federal Aviation Administration. In addition, she will be testing the effect of change in altitude on the force of gravity. Scanlon, the payload specialist, is responsible for programming and operation of the data trackers and GPS as well as designing the physical payload package.

“This is their project,” said STEM teacher and adviser Emily Giannantonio. “They are responsible for everything from constructing the tracking devices, to payload design, to post-flight data analysis. It is a great, hands-on introduction to aerospace science for these talented young women.”

“The encouragement and help we have received from our teachers and peers is overwhelming.”

With their proposal approved, Jose and Scanlon began assembling the components needed for the project, which included building GPS trackers, learning how to program Arduino microcontrollers, open-source platforms used for building programmable circuit boards, and writing computer code. They are working with Mr. Don Medon, an engineer with AGF Manufacturing who is volunteering his time to provide guidance on the programming aspects of the project.

Aside from tackling the technical aspects of the project, the two students have learned far more than they expected, including how to solicit funding, maintaining a budget, communicating with business professionals, and more. Scanlon has mastered the basics of amateur radio and has earned her technician’s license. “We came into this knowing nothing about high altitude ballooning, so we started from scratch. The project has evolved - it is much more sophisticated than originally intended,” said Giannantonio.

When launched, the balloon will reach nearly 100,000 feet in altitude, which will simulate space-like conditions in terms of Continued on the following page.


The team is mentored by their coach and science teacher Deb Gleeson and Anthony DiGregorio, Manager of Information Systems, but the students are responsible for all aspects of the challenge. The program involves more than just the design and programming of a robot; teams are expected to conduct outreach activities, consult with professionals in the field, and prepare business and marketing strategies, all of which is documented in an engineering notebook that is presented to judges at the competition. Continued from previous page.

pressure and temperature. The balloon will expand as it rises due to lowering pressure and will eventually burst. GPS trackers will record the bursting point and help the students identify the landing site and retrieve the payload. Although the launch date is dependent on wind and weather conditions, the students hope to launch this winter. “We are so fortunate to have the opportunity to conduct an experiment of this caliber; and the encouragement and help we have received from our teachers and peers is overwhelming,” said Scanlon. “This project has become so multifaceted that it has allowed us to focus on our individual areas of interest, while working towards a common goal. We cannot be more excited to launch this high altitude balloon and see all of our hard work pay off.”

The Sparks tested their first prototype for the season under game conditions at the Ramp Riot Scrimmage in the fall. The scrimmage provided the students with the opportunity to determine the strengths and weaknesses of their current design. The team moved on to the first qualifier of the season in December and will compete again at the end of January, with an eye to moving up to State and Regional Championships. The team demonstrated their robot to engineering professors and students at a Penn State Great Valley robotics class. Captains Johanna Tomkiewicz, Becca Gleeson and Olivia Chow spoke about their design and programming accomplishments. Dr. Kathryn Jablokow, Penn State Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Design followed up their visit with this note, “All I can say is ‘WOW.’ They are incredibly bright, articulate, and motivated young women.”

Jose agrees, “This project has allowed us to delve into topics that, under normal circumstances, would be hard to complete. Mrs. G. has been wonderful in providing guidance as we get closer to our launch date. It has been an eye-opening experience and I can’t wait for our high altitude balloon launch!”

Notre Dame Team Prepares for Robotics Challenge


otre Dame’s 18-member high school robotics team, the Sparks, have been putting their engineering and design skills to the test at qualifying rounds for the Pennsylvania FIRST Tech (FTC) Challenge. The annual competition involves designing, programming and operating robots to perform a specific challenge. This year’s challenge, called Res-Q, is modeled after rescue situations faced by mountain explorers, such as delivering climbers to a shelter or retrieving debris - all conducted by robots. 24 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

Notre Dame introduced more than 30 area middle schoolers to science fun and discovery at the Academy’s first STEAM event held in December. Students explored robotics and coding, engineering design, creative problem-solving, chemistry, and kinesiology with activities led by Notre Dame staff and middle school students.


THREE-PEAT FOR VARSITY VOLLEYBALL For the third straight year, Notre Dame’s High School Varsity squad claimed first place at the Pennsylvania Independent Scholastic Athletic Association (PAISAA) Tournament. Coach Mike Sheridan is only the second coach in Notre Dame’s history to achieve this record. The team was anchored by a strong and experienced group of seniors, many of whom had played on the varsity team since their sophomore year Madi Brennan, Ashley Haas, Dana Kieft, Katie Leyden, Katy McCullough, Shannon Quigley, Ali Rae and Kristen Rogers. Co-captains Haas and Rae were recognized as Main Line Athletes of the Week. Congratulations, Irish! The Middle School Volleyball team had a winning season this year with wins over InterAc rivals Agnes Irwin and Baldwin.

CROSS COUNTRY TEAM CELEBRATES INTERAC TITLE With an undefeated 6-0 record and a win at the Inter-Athletic Championship meet in October, Notre Dame’s Cross Country team celebrated their first league title since 2011. The varsity team finished second in the PAISAA meet.

Both Varsity and Junior Varsity teams finished in fourth place at the Delaware County Cross Country meet and the varsity team finished in ninth place out of 39 teams at the Paul Short Invitational at Lehigh University. The High School Junior Varsity squad won both the InterAc Championship meet and the PAISAA meet.



SENIOR MIKALYA SCHNEIDER NAMED OUTSTANDING HIGH SCHOOL SCHOLAR ATHLETE Mikayla Schneider was honored at the Delaware County Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame banquet as an Outstanding High School Student-Athlete for Fall 2015. Schneider is vice president of the National Honor Society and has earned Distinguished Academic Honors each semester at Notre Dame. She has been a top-five runner and all-league selection in cross country, indoor and outdoor track state meet championship medalist, and has set school records in the 400- and 800-meter runs as well as qualifying for the national championship meets. Mikayla will be attending the University of Pennsylvania next fall.

VOLLEYBALL TEAM HELPS FIGHT BRAIN CANCER The Fourth Annual Spike Down Cancer fundraiser, hosted by the Notre Dame volleyball team in October, raised $1,500. Proceeds from the event support Miriam’s Kids Research Foundation and brain tumor research at Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia.


SPORTS HIGHLIGHTS TENNIS The High School Varsity Tennis team finished their very successful season with a 2nd place in the InterAc Championships. Grace Leasure (second singles); McKenna Bramlage (third singles); Sarah Crinnion and Makenzie Irvine (fourth doubles) all won their respective flights. Both the varsity and junior varsity teams finished their seasons with 9-2 records. The Middle School Tennis team had a great season this year with a record of 6-3 improving from 2-9 the previous year.

FIELD HOCKEY The High School Varsity Field Hockey team finished their season with a 15-4 overall record. They finished in second place in the InterAc League and advanced to the semifinal round of the PAISAA Tournament. The Middle School Varsity Field Hockey team finished their season with an overall record of 13-1 and the team won the Catholic Academy League (CAL) Championship with an exciting win over Rosemont School of the Holy Child. This is the second year in a row that the team has won the Championship. In addition to the CAL Championship, the Middle School Varsity team won the Eighth Annual Shamrock Invitational Tournament for the first time.

SOCCER The High School Varsity Soccer team was awarded the 2015 Eastern PA Soccer Officials Association Harry Rodgers/Jimmy Walder Fair Play Award for the fall season! The award recognizes fair play and sportsmanship for girls’ high school soccer. The Middle School Soccer team had a young and enthusiastic squad. They started and ended their season with big wins against the Montgomery School.

Fall Interac all league Honors VOLLEYBALL 1ST TEAM Ashley Haas Allison Hendrick Shannon Quigley


FIELD HOCKEY 1ST TEAM Colleen Kearney Ryan Loftus Quinn Maguire Mary Kate Neff

FIELD HOCKEY 2ND TEAM Caroline Allen Tina D’Anjollel Emily Lambert

CROSS COUNTRY Madison Gaffney Katie Lennon Mikayla Schneider Sydney Stribrny

SOCCER 1ST TEAM Phoebe McClernon

SOCCER 2ND TEAM Claire Nappi Lexie Odgers

TENNIS 1ST TEAM Anne Marie Crinnion Grace Leasure

TENNIS 2ND TEAM McKenna Bramlage VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 27

“The more I experienced this whole new world inside of THE GATES, the more I embraced it, the more I never wanted to leave it, and a part of me never did leave. I built a foundation for life here, at a time when I, and many young girls, were starting to become who they are as individuals, and who they would be as women. Here at Notre Dame, I sensed the high bar for achievement – with an unwavering moral compass – but it was delivered as an INSPIRATION to be YOUR best self.” Cathy Chermol Schrijver ’79 Distinguished Alumna Award Recipient Presented by Kimberly Tierney Pegg '88 Treasurer of Alumnae Association

Notre Dame Alumnae Receive

Highest Honors Alumnae Awards and Athletic Hall of Fame

On Friday, November 13, five outstanding individuals and one team were honored at the Notre Dame Alumnae Awards and Athletic Hall of Fame Ceremony. More than 175 alumnae, parents, faculty, and friends gathered in the Aimee Willard Gymnasium to honor Notre Dame alumnae for the many ways they serve our community and recognize Notre Dame athletes for their leadership and accomplishments. This was the first time the two award recognitions were combined into one meaningful ceremony. Each recipient shared brief remarks of gratitude when they accepted their award. 28 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

ALUMNAE AWARD RECIPIENTS Cathy Chermol Schrijver ’79 The Distinguished Alumna Award The Distinguished Alumna Award is presented to an alumna who has distinguished herself in her personal or professional life, in her intellectual pursuits, or in her dedication to service of community, country or society. Cathy is a three-time Emmy and Peabody Award winning executive producer with decades of experience producing news, talk, and magazine shows.

Joan Sammartino Turner ’77 P’06 The ND Award The Notre Dame Award is presented to an alumna whose ongoing commitment to the Academy is exemplary in scope, enthusiasm, and diligence. Acknowledging the value of a Notre Dame education, she offers her time, energy, and resources to ensure the future of the Academy and expand its influence. As a cherished faculty member at Notre Dame, Joan has devoted her time, love, and energy to the Academy and her students.

ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES Deirdre McGlynn Kelly ’84 Deirdre was recognized for her accomplishments in field hockey, basketball, and lacrosse. She continues to give back to the athletic community as a coach for local youth basketball teams.

Danielle Dunn O’Connor ’01 Danielle was recognized for her accomplishments in field hockey, lacrosse, and golf at Notre Dame. She continued her athletic career at Cornell University, where she was named to the First Team All-Ivy in 2004.

The 1999-2000 Basketball Team This is the first team to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, recognized for winning the InterAc Championship in 1999. Thirteen players, five coaches and five managers contributed to the team’s winning season.

Melissa Bemer ’04 The Saint Julie Award The Saint Julie Award is presented to an alumna of the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur whose life contributes to the recognition of the goodness of God in all creation, and who commits herself to the service of others. This woman is chosen by her peers as a model of faith, optimism, integrity, and unselfish dedication. Melissa has volunteered for Project Home, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital, and Centro San Jose. Giving back to her community and to others is not Melissa’s hobby, but her life.




hank you to our alumnae for making Reunion 2015 a success! On October 23 and 24, we welcomed back nearly 200 alumnae from the class years spanning from 1955-2010. From the student faculty panel to the alumnae field hockey game, there were several new additions to Reunion that we hope all who attended enjoyed.

The class of 1965, who celebrated their 50th Reunion, had a special “Greet and Treat” with their seventh grade pen pals. During the summer, alumnae were paired with a seventh grade student to exchange letters about their experiences at Notre Dame. At Reunion, they were able to meet one another face-to-face and share some time together. On Saturday, President Judith Dwyer welcomed alumnae to join her for a presentation and discussion. Alumnae learned more about academic and campus updates, as well as the campus master plan. The student faculty panel led by Academic Dean, Kim Eife, was a huge success. Students shared what they value most about gaining a Notre Dame education. Alumnae who participated in the discussion were extremely impressed with our current students and happy to learn that Saint Julie’s mission of “teach them what they need to know for life” is still such a strong presence here. The Alumnae Mass was held in the chapel of the Mansion, which has not been done in many years. Alumnae participated as readers, Eucharistic Ministers, and even musicians during this Mass. Classes from 1950-1970 celebrated their Reunions with a luncheon in The Mansion, while the classes from 1975-2010 celebrated with a cocktail party in the evening. The weekend was filled with laughter, joy, and a strong sense of community.

Save the Date! Reunion 2016 Notre Dame will begin celebrating class reunions in the spring instead of the fall. Please save May 6 and May 7 for the 2016 Spring Reunion. We will celebrate the class years of 1946, 1951, 1956, 1961, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1981, 1986, 1991, 1996, 2001, 2006, and 2011. In addition, we will also incorporate our annual Sunflower Run into the weekend festivities, which will allow our entire Notre Dame family to participate in the celebration. 30 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

ION at Notre Dame


Why We Give Robert and Susan Carney Fahey ’77 P’17

“Our family supports the Notre Dame Annual Fund each and every year. Our daughter Meghan, Class of 2017, started at Notre Dame in 6th grade. She loves her school and we have seen her grow both academically and emotionally as a result of all Notre Dame does and is. We believe it is our responsibility, and are blessed that we are able to give back to the school through the Annual Fund. We are honored and proud to be this year’s Annual Fund Co-Chairs and strive to enhance a sense of community and encourage participation by all Notre Dame families, alumnae and friends. Together we can ... do it for the girls.”

“I contribute to the Annual Fund so that current and future young women will be able to benefit from the same quality education and foundation that I was fortunate enough to receive. Skills cultivated at Notre Dame, such as learning how to think critically and independently, as well as how to collaborate with peers, have been essential to my growth and success both professionally and personally.”

Amanda Zajdel Perwien ’05

Notre Dame Donors Recognized at President’s Club Reception The Academy and President Judith A. Dwyer recognized loyal benefactors for their leadership and generosity at the President’s Club Reception held in The Mansion on December 3. The Women’s Chorale, Malvern Men’s Chorus, and the Notre Dame Dance Company entertained guests with festive dancing and carols of the Christmas season. The Academy of Notre Dame is grateful to all of our donors for their generous support. 32 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

have you made a gift this year to support the Notre Dame Annual Fund? Your gift powerfully enhances academic opportunities for all students and supports our mission. Particpate Today!

Additions to 2014-2015 Annual Report Faculty/Staff: Sharon Valentine Class of 1970: Christine McAndrew Neeson ’70 P’05 Friend: Dolores Sajeski

2015 Golf Classic

Raises $115,000 for Notre Dame

The sun was shining on the 84 golfers who took to the links at White Manor Country Club on September 14, 2015 for Notre Dame’s annual Golf Classic. The event was co-chaired by Notre Dame parents Frank Hallinan P’11’15’17 T and Andrew Willis P’08’13’18 T. Proceeds from the annual event support the Academy. Student golfers from Notre Dame’s stellar golf team attended to support and thank golfers for their support. The Academy of Notre Dame is grateful to our golfers and planning committee for making this event such a success.

Save the Date!

The 2016 Notre Dame Golf Classic will be on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 at Applebrook Golf Club.


Notre Dame


inspire, advise Career Exploration Program President’s Advisory help Students Discover Council Expands to Include Career Opportunities NY and DC Alumnae


ifty Notre Dame seniors, 25 alumnae and three parents participated in the Career Exploration Program November 18-20. Career Exploration, formerly known as Senior Inquiry, was enhanced dramatically this year under the leadership of alumnae volunteers Susie McKernan ’83 and Shannon Connolly ’05. The alumnae volunteers worked closely with Jennifer Nobles, Dean of Students and Marielle DuBovec Mazda ’06, Associate Director of Alumnae Relations to develop a comprehensive three-day program that included an orientation day on campus where students learned the necessary tools for entering a professional work environment, a day shadowing an alumnae or parent mentor in the workplace, and a half day of reflection back at Notre Dame. The orientation day featured an alumnae panel discussion where participants reflected on the influence Notre Dame had on their career success. “Notre Dame told me I could, so I did,” remembered Jennifer McBride Altamuro ’90. The next Career Exploration will be held February 24, 25 and 26. We are looking for alumnae and parents to host seniors in their workplace on Thursday, February 25. Please contact Marielle DuBovec Mazda ’06 at, if you are interested in participating.



n early priority of Dr. Judith Dwyer’s presidency was to significantly enhance opportunities for our alumnae to engage in the life of the Academy. To that end, Dr. Dwyer expanded the reach of the President’s Advisory Council by establishing two regional chapters – one in New York City last May and the other in the nation’s capital in September, 2015. The Council draws on Notre Dame graduates from diverse professions and experiences. At each regional chapter, the council met for two-hour meetings during which Dr. Dwyer presented a brief “State of the Academy,” followed by discussions designed to solicit alumnae input on the key goals formulated in the 2015-2020 strategic plan. Notre Dame alumnae enthusiastically provided valuable feedback and offered new ideas on a variety of topics, including exploring ways alumnae can contribute to the vitality of the new Center for Leadership and International Studies and foster student-alumnae collaborative partnerships.

Leaving a Legacy

for Future Generations Who are some of the 25 people already in the Saint Julie Society? Among these thoughtful individuals is a former board member who was a great friend of Sister Regina, who has added a codicil (an addendum) to his existing will to direct a specific amount of money to the Sister Regina Fund for Financial Aid, to underscore his admiration for her extraordinary leadership and to continue her legacy.


he Saint Julie Society of the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur was created in spring 2015 to recognize and honor alumnae, parents and other members of the Notre Dame family who establish a planned gift arrangement that will benefit the Academy. To date, more than 25 members of our community have informed us that Notre Dame is included in their estate plans. What is a planned gift arrangement?

A planned gift arrangement is when you set up a way to give a gift to the Academy after you have gone home to God. Planned gifts include bequest intentions, such as naming Notre Dame in your will to receive a percentage of your estate, or listing Notre Dame as a beneficiary of your life insurance or your retirement plan. There are many other ways and some can give you income during your lifetime. Is it hard to do? While there are many options - from the very simple to the quite complicated most people choose to create a bequest in their will naming Notre Dame as a beneficiary. This is one of the easiest and most satisfying ways to leave a legacy.

Another is a fairly young alumna who attended Notre Dame on a full scholarship. She has already distinguished herself in a successful career and wants to give back by creating a full scholarship for a future student. She is working with us to include a bequest for this specific purpose as she updates her existing will with her attorney. What will happen to these thoughtful gifts when Notre Dame receives them? First of all, they will last forever! They will go into the Academy’s endowment in perpetuity and the school will draw only the income that they generate each year to support current needs. Like a family, Notre Dame needs both income to meet today’s cash expenses and a solid investment account for financial strength and from which to draw revenue for future cash needs. The draw from the Academy’s endowment falls primarily into two buckets: financial aid for eligible students and funding for faculty so that we can hire and retain the best teachers and offer them opportunities for their professional development. The Office of Advancement is here to help make the process of including Notre Dame in your estate plans feasible, easy and rewarding. There are many ways to do it; it is a very personal process and takes thoughtful planning (and always, in consultation with your estate or tax advisor).

You can be assured that we will make your experience rewarding and that it just begins with membership in the Saint Julie Society. The best part will happen when you drive by campus on Sproul Road, or come back for a reunion, or even just flip through a Visions magazine, and you can envision the student, imagine the teacher or visualize the program that your planned gift will support some day, and for all the days yet to come. For more information, please contact Sally Orr, Associate Director of Advancement, 610-971-4919 or

Founding Members of the Saint Julie Society We are pleased to recognize the following individuals who have informed the Academy that as of September 30, 2015, they have established a planned gift arrangement to benefit Notre Dame or whose bequest has already been gratefully received. Anonymous (3) Rita Biancarelli SQ ’36† John L. Broughton SQ ’64† Mai Dinh ’88 Josephine DiSanto ’87 Carol Calpin Haas ’55 Dr. Gina Henry, Esq. ’81 James and Charlotte Hyer Margarete Landwehr ’75 Anne Taylor Lumley ’49† R. Diane McGrath ’57 Victoria Margolis McGuinness ’85 Thomas and Marge McParland P’82’84 GP’13 Catherine Stewart Miller P’58’64 GP’88† Sally Orr FS Madeleine E. Reinhardt SQ’22† Marjorie McNally Roddy SQ’41† Kathleen M. Shay ’70 T Dr. Jean Ogden Swihart GP’09 Heather Margolis Warner ’91 John† and Dolores Wood P’71’72 GP’99’06 †deceased List incomplete VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 35


Catherine O’Donoghue Helwig recently retired as a professor at Villanova University after 18 years of teaching.


Alumnae from the classes of 1966 and 1967 gathered together for a mini-reunion at Azie in Villanova, PA. Mary Mellors Parsons’66, Mary Jo Rooney Hitz ’67, Mary Garty ’66, Joan Anderson Tarka ’66, Pat Calahan ’66, Chris Lammer DiCioccio ’66, Candy Cotter Kane ’66, and Becky Rhinehart ’66 had a great time!


Christine Doherty Kondra and her husband Nick recently opened Cornerstone Cheese & Charcuterie in Wayne, PA. Sister Nancy Bonshock, SND, Elise Wilson ’06, retired faculty member Dolores Sajeski, and Marielle DuBovec Mazda ’06 had the pleasure of dining there.


Erin Doherty Kreszl and her husband Doug welcomed a daughter Emma Jayne on September 6, 2015.


Mary Emma Reilly Clendenny and her husband Ryan welcomed a son, Henry John Clendenny on September 24, 2015.

In Memoriam 1955

Judith Butler Easter’s husband, Stuart Rogers Easter, Jr. passed away on June 15, 2015.

1984 Cecilia Sullivan Blanche, mother of Nicole Blanche Guerin ’84, passed away on August 12, 2015.



2003 Mary Emma Reilly Clendenny

1999 Erin Doherty Kreszl

2004 Alexandra Burtoft Gilroy

Richard S. Rueda, father of Rebekka Rueda ’13, passed away on September 29, 2015.

1996 Chrstine Doherty Kondra 36 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR


Maral Avetian married her veterinary school classmate, Michael Sheruda, on June 6, 2015 in the Poconos. Maid of Honor was her sister, Alene Avetian ’07, and bridesmaids included Laura DerKrikorian Hunsberger’04 and Katherine Corkhill ’04. Also present were class of 2004 friends Ehren Vigliotti Goren, Patty Candiotti Elias, Lindsey Zimmaro Falco, Meghan Acker O’Brien, Veronica McMahon, and Bianca Wilson Tamagnini. Michelle Markwith married Teddy Berlin on June 13, 2015. Maureen Carroll Purcell and her husband Nick welcomed Norah Purcell on June 14, 2015. Alexandra Burtoft married Shane Gilroy on September 19, 2015. 2004 classmates Courtney Collins and Michelle Markwith Berlin were bridesmaids and Molly Kelly-Joyce, Bianca Wilson Tamagnini, Cristin Farrell, Melissa Bemer, Jennifer Harvey, Katherine Corkhill and Lindsay Gosnell were all in attendance.

Michele Muller Legnini and her husband Sean welcomed daughter Sylvia Ruth Legnini on October 19, 2015. Kristen Snyder married Matt Miller on October 24, 2015. Sally Brosnan Smith and her husband Dray welcomed daughter Daley Jane Smith on October 17, 2015. Bianca Wilson married Todd Tamagnini on October 17, 2015 at Epiphany of Our Lord Church in Philadelphia. The reception was held at the former site of Notre Dame Rittenhouse Square - the Rittenhouse Hotel. 2004 Classmates Molly Kelly Joyce and Julie Hutton were two of her bridesmaids. Bianca and Todd currently reside on the Upper West Side in New York City.

2004 Michelle Markwith Berlin

2004 Kristen Snyder

2004 Maral Avetian Sheruda

2004 Bianca Wilson Tamagnini 2004 Sally Brosnan Smith

2004 Maureen Carroll Purcell

2004 Michele Muller Legnini VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 37


Kelly Snow married Brian Blacker on June 27, 2015.

Courtney Gallen was a post-baccalaureate IRTA for two years at the NRB. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Neuroscience at the University of California, Berkeley in Dr. Mark D’Esposito lab. Courtney is currently studying development using fMRI. Lauren Katona, Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney, won the conviction in a high-profile stalking case involving CBS3 anchor Erika von Tiehl on November 12, 2015. Lauren England married Daniel Shope on June 13, 2015. The bridal party included maid of honor Kate England ’11, and bridesmaids Lauren Katona ’05, Kate Devlin ’05 and Marita Blackney ’05.


Christine Agnello married Scott Ellis on October 10, 2015. Jackie McCabe married Patrick Flanagan on October 10, 2015 at Dahlgren Chapel of the Sacred Heart at Georgetown University. Elise Wilson was the maid of honor and kept everyone laughing through her amazing speech. Guests included fellow ND 2006 class members Marielle DuBovec Mazda, Domenica Giuffrida, Lisa Burger, Katie Kersavage and Kate Novak, along with Amelia Phillips’12. Caitlin Orner married Patrick Gallagher on November 14, 2015.

Kristin Condi Toto and her husband Kevin welcomed daughter Brooke Hannah Toto on November 22, 2015.

2005 Lauren Katona


2005 Lauren England Shope

Kelly Snow Blacker

2006 Kelly Pucillo Gilbert

2005 Kristin Condi Toto

2006 Caitlin Orner Gallagher 38 ACADEMY OF NOTRE DAME DE NAMUR

2006 Shannon McKenna Missimer

Kelly Pucillo married Brian J. Gilbert, Jr on August 22, 2015. Shannon McKenna Missimer and her husband Matthew welcomed Madelyn Lindsay Missimer on August 30, 2015.


Katherine Mang married Daniel Barry on Saturday, September 12, 2015 on Nantucket Island. Katie’s maid of honor was her sister, Natalie Mang '13. The couple met while studying at Loyola University in Maryland. Devyn DiBona gave birth to a baby boy, Thomas James Greto, on August 6, 2015. Tara Meissner Flexon and her husband Tom welcomed Avery Lynne Flexon on August 26, 2015.


Tara Connolly married Brandon Durkot on October 10, 2015. Mary Emily Pagano recently passed the Bar Exam in PA and NJ. Missy Pohlig was named one of LifeHealth Pro’s 30 under 30 millenials who are transforming the insurance industry. Missy currently works as a Product Manager, Solutions Team for SEI.

Kara Schultheis married David Brown on July 25, 2015. Members of the bridal party included 2008 classmates Lauren Willis, Danyelle Lishon, and Kaitlin Smith. Kara also recently started working at Gwynedd Mercy University as the Associate Director of Career Development.

2008 Missy Pohlig


Elizabeth Gallagher graduated from the Georgia Institue of Technology and is working as a Software Consultant for Manhattan Associates in Atlanta, GA.


Emily Bellwoar graduated from the Schreyers Honor College at Penn State University and is teaching English to middle school students in Madrid, Spain.

2008 Kara Schultheis Brown


Chloe Bellwoar is a senior in the Schryers Honor College at Penn State University and is studying abroad in Morocco.


Rachel French visited Peru for five weeks, where she lived and volunteered in a town in the Andes called Otuzco. While visiting, she volunteered in a hospital and a primary care facility with one other volunteer. This experience was certainly a once in a lifetime opportunity for her and she is grateful to have been given the option of visiting Peru.

2007 Katherine Mang

2006 Christine Agnello Ellis

2008 Tara Connolly Durkot

2006 Jackie McCabe Flanagan

2013 Rachel French VISIONS FALL 2015/WINTER 2016 39


Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage PAID Permit No. 129 19464

The Academy of Notre De Namur 560 Sproul Road,Villanova, PA 19085

Follow ND Online NDAVillanova NDVillanova ND1856

Calendar of Events BLAST A Night in Venice Saturday, March 19 Springfield Country Club

Reunion Weekend & Sunflower Run Friday, May 6 & Saturday, May 7 Academy of Notre Dame

Eighth Grade Graduation Thursday, June 2 Aimee Willard Gymnasium

Class of 2016 Baccalaureate Mass Friday, June 3 Aimee Willard Gymnasium

Class of 2016 Graduation

Saturday, June 4 The Mansion

2016 Golf Classic Tuesday, September 27 Applebrook Golf Club

Academy of Notre Dame de Namur Visions Magazine-Fall 2015/Winter 2016  

Visions Magazine is published by the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur, Villanova, Pennsylvania, and reviews academic innovations, student ach...

Academy of Notre Dame de Namur Visions Magazine-Fall 2015/Winter 2016  

Visions Magazine is published by the Academy of Notre Dame de Namur, Villanova, Pennsylvania, and reviews academic innovations, student ach...