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PORTRAITS FROM X Z Telling the Stories of the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford



Pitt-Bradford Gen Z students: clockwise from top, Quentin Ellis, Dominick Giannini, Kenzie Hartle, Trilene Wisbith and Daniel Picklo; center, Izzy Johnson


Gen Xer John Schlimm ’01 pens an ode to his Gen Z students

president’s letter

PORTRAITS Telling the Stories of the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford

Life Journeys I am writing this letter, my first communication to you as Pitt-Bradford alumni and friends, as my husband, Ian, and I have made the long journey from Mauritius to our home in Bradford. Let me share with you a bit about how my journey has led me to Pitt-Bradford and why I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the community as the new president. I am a clinical child psychologist by training with a specialization in the field of trauma and inter-cultural relations. As a clinician, I have served in remote indigenous communities in northwest Alaska, Manitoba and Ontario as well as in urban medical centers serving vulnerable children in Baltimore and Los Angeles. My work has also taken me to Cauca, Colombia, where I have engaged with victims of the armed conflict, as well to Jordan to support work with Syrian refugee children. In these contexts, I have learned so much about the resilience of the human spirit and of the vital importance of community. I bring to PittBradford a truly global perspective and a lifelong commitment to building diverse and inclusive communities. As an educator, I believe in the transformative power of education, and it has been my privilege to serve at universities both large and small. Pitt-Bradford for me represents the best of all worlds. The University of Pittsburgh is a world-renowned research institution offering students phenomenal academic opportunities, and at Pitt-Bradford, it is in the context of a warm, intimate campus community. Further, Pitt-Bradford’s commitment to access and student success resonates powerfully for me as a first-generation college graduate myself. Pitt-Bradford has an incredibly capable leadership team, outstanding dedicated faculty, teams of highly skilled devoted staff, a committed advisory board, amazing students and you — our phenomenal alumni. Our unique academic programs, celebration of the arts and engagement with athletics, all within a relatively small beautiful campus is extraordinary! Building upon this solid foundation, I have unbridled optimism about the future of PittBradford, and I am so honored to be appointed as the new president. The welcome that my husband and I have received in Bradford and at Pitt-Bradford has been absolutely incredible! We can hardly wait for our daughter, Natasha, who currently lives in the United Kingdom, to come and visit. As a family that has always cherished life in small communities, we could not be happier to now call Bradford home. Wishing you and yours a lovely summer. I look forward to meeting you and hearing about your life journey! With warm regards, Catherine Koverola, Ph.D., president

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Pat Frantz Cercone EDITOR

Kimberly Marcott Weinberg COPY EDITORS

Laurie Dufford Judy Hopkins ’71-’73 ALUMNI EDITOR

Lindsay Hilton Retchless ’98 ART DIRECTOR


Alan Hancock ’07 Jason Jones Glenn Melvin ’04 PRINTER

Cohber Published by the Office of Communications and Marketing University of Pittsburgh at Bradford © 2018

NONDISCRIMINATION POLICY STATEMENT The University of Pittsburgh, as an educational institution and as an employer, values equality of opportunity, human dignity, and racial/ethnic and cultural diversity. Accordingly, as fully explained in Policy 07-01-03, the University prohibits and will not engage in discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, genetic information, disability, or status as a veteran. The University also prohibits and will not engage in retaliation against any person who makes a claim of discrimination or harassment or who provides information in such an investigation. Further, the University will continue to take affirmative steps to support and advance these values consistent with the University’s mission. This policy applies to admissions, employment, access to and treatment in University programs and activities. This is a commitment made by the University and is in accordance with federal, state and/or local laws and regulations. For information on University equal opportunity and affirmative action programs, please contact: University of Pittsburgh, Office of Affirmative Action, Diversity and Inclusion, Carol W. Mohamed, Director (and Title IX, 504 and ADA Coordinator), 412 Bellefield Hall, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15260 (412) 648-7860. In compliance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, the University guarantees that students have the right to inspect all personally identifiable records maintained by the institution and may challenge the content and accuracy of those records through appropriate institutional procedures. It is further guaranteed by the University that student records containing personally identifiable information will not be released except as permitted by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act. Christy Clark Executive Assistant to the President (814) 362-5121

BEYOND EXPECTATIONS spring/summer 2019

contents SPRING/SUMMER 2018




COV Gen ER: Z st ude invo nts ke t h eG clas sic m en X ‘The ovie Brea , kfas PHO t Clu T b.’ OGR ALA A NH


It’s a sight some students may never had a chance to see – the quad in full bloom, which usually happens after Commencement.


14 X Meets Z Teaching Generation Z students – those born after 1997 – has given Generation X alumnus and writer John Schlimm ’01 a fresh look at his own youth. While a lot of media coverage of the post-Millennial group has been negative, Schlimm says his students face and deal with their problems like no generation before them has. He believes their future is bright.

20 A World of Their Own Alumni Alton Simpson ’88, Jamie Lackey ’06 and Paul Stefko ’06 didn’t leave their imaginations in their childhood. Each regularly tell stories, but in different media – film, comics, stories, novels and even roleplaying tabletop games, creating worlds where they can be heroes and accomplish great things. “I think life is very serious right now, and people are looking for an escape where they can relax and be themselves,” Simpson said.


departments 2 First Shot There are few pictures more iconic in Bradford than that of the Bradford Area High School Marching Owls in the Memorial Day Parade.

4 The Commons A quick introduction to our fourth president; the year with interim president Lawrence Feick; Dr. Tammy Haley honored by chancellor for teaching; and Pitt increases aid for students by matching Pell grants.

24 Panther Pack Personal trainer and cystic fibrosis warrior Bradley Poole ’14, ’17 is an inspiration to his clients, and Kim Nicholas ’84-’86 founds Bradfordcentric online community.

28 Insider Q&A Sandra MacFarlane ’80-’82 gives novices the confidence to try their hand at preserving the harvest.

spring/summer 2019



first shot



spring/summer 2019

Hometown pride Members of the Bradford Area High School Marching Owls Band march in the city’s annual Memorial Day parade down Main Street. The parade ends each year at Veterans Square in front of Marilyn Horne Hall, where veterans speak and lay wreaths, and the band performs patriotic tunes. In addition to the band, the parade includes fire trucks, honored veterans and units ranging from volunteers walking adoptable shelter dogs to floats full of Daisy Scouts.


spring/summer 2019




News from Around the Quad


Dr. Catherine Koverola and her husband, Ian Commissiong, on a brief trip in April to meet the Pitt-Bradford community for the first time.

Campus names new president Koverola eager to become part of community Dr. Catherine Koverola has served at colleges and universities all over the world. However, it’s not about the places but the people, which is why she’s so excited to be a part of Pitt-Bradford and the surrounding community. “I love life in rural communities, and the vibrant engagement at a small campus is truly invigorating,” she said. “There is an authenticity and warmth that you rarely find in other places.” On April 1, Koverola was named Pitt-Bradford’s fourth president – and 4


its first woman – by University of Pittsburgh Provost Dr. Ann Cudd. Like her predecessor, Dr. Livingston Alexander, who retired last year, Koverola will serve as president of the university’s Titusville campus as well. She came to Pitt-Bradford from the African Leadership University, located on the island nation of Mauritius, where she served as the inaugural provost and chief academic officer of a multi-campus university, serving students from across the African continent. She brings more

than 30 years of experience in higher education with a commitment to academic excellence and student success. Koverola is deeply committed to building and cultivating community partnerships and has a strong track record in this regard. When announcing Koverola’s appointment, Cudd said, “Dr. Koverola’s exceptional experience in the needs of students and of rural communities, as well as relationship building and innovation within those spaces, is as impressive as spring/summer 2019

First and foremost, Koverola wholeheartedly believes in the transformative power of higher education and the need to make it accessible to everyone. first-generation students and students from diverse backgrounds. “As a first-generation student, I personally experienced that and want to be where I can live and work and be a force for good.” Koverola thinks Pitt-Bradford is a special place. “To me, it’s really apparent. Having worked at both large research institutions and smaller colleges, I know the opportunity to now serve at a small intimate campus while also being part of a larger worldrenowned university is an absolutely incredible privilege.” Koverola has brought with her many ideas to help bolster what she calls “the phenomenal potential

that we have at Pitt-Bradford” and is looking forward to working with the community to develop programs and initiatives to support economic development as well as position PittBradford graduates for tremendous success. From a personal perspective, Koverola is in the perfect place because she and her husband, Ian Commissiong (pronounced KAHmah-jong), a mixed media artist, love the outdoors and the change of seasons and look forward to spending time outside. They are both very excited for their adult daughter Natasha, who currently lives in England, to visit and meet the Pitt-Bradford community. The two also support arts and athletic events and plan to share that enthusiasm while enjoying events in Bromeley Family Theater and cheering on the Panthers in the KOA Arena and the Kessel Athletic Complex. Koverola knows it will take time to get to know everyone and for everyone to get to know her, but she’s excited about moving forward and helping to shape the future of Pitt-Bradford and the community.


it is substantive.” In the short time Koverola has been on campus – she officially started on June 1 – she has begun building relationships and feeling the warmth that exists at Pitt-Bradford and in the surrounding community. For example, instead of having faculty and staff come to her office for meetings, she’s going to theirs, where she can get to know them in a more relaxed, comfortable setting and hear what matters most to them. Koverola is also genuinely interested in getting to know community members, attending events and being an active part of her new hometown. Coming to Pitt-Bradford was a perfect fit for her and her husband. First and foremost, Koverola wholeheartedly believes in the transformative power of higher education and the need to make it accessible to everyone. She is a champion of academic excellence and brings a global perspective and lifelong commitment to building diverse and inclusive communities. She found especially attractive PittBradford’s strength in working with

Dr. Catherine Koverola receives a copy of the university history from Dr. Richard McDowell, president emeritus, left, and chats with Dr. Steven Hardin, vice president and dean of academic affairs, right, during a welcome reception. spring/summer 2019



the commons

Professor Haley honored by Chancellor

Nursing program receives $600k gift The compassion of nurses led Wesleah Blair of Bradford to establish a new scholarship for nursing students. Blair died last year in Bradford at the age of 92, leaving a $600,000 gift to Pitt-Bradford. A 1943 graduate of Bradford Senior High School, she worked an amazing 65 years — first as the office supervisor of Rich & Co. Inc. for 27 years, then as the general manager of Herzog Oil Field Service for 38 years, retiring in 2008. In 1956, she married U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer James D. Blair, who had served part of his time in the military in Europe, where he became very ill. Attorney Mark Hollenbeck was a friend of Blair’s and helped set up her estate plan. “Mr. Blair died very young and needed a lot of care,” he said. “I think Wesleah always appreciated the compassion and quality of life that the nurses who 6


were around brought to him. “I think that’s why she wanted to create this nursing scholarship. What she envisioned was helping someone who wouldn’t be able to pursue a nursing degree without this scholarship.” Dr. Tammy Haley, assistant professor of nursing and director of the program, said, “We are incredibly grateful for the generosity of Mrs. Blair. The idea that her personal experience with nursing care was the impetus for her choice to help provide educational opportunities for nursing students makes this gift really special and proves the adage that kindness begets kindness.” The first scholarship will be awarded in the 2019-20 academic year. To learn more about establishing a scholarship at Pitt-Bradford or contributing through an estate, contact Jill Dunn, executive director of institutional advancement at 814-362-5091 or


Mary Boser, assistant professor of nursing, works with students in the nursing simulation lab.

University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Patrick Gallagher selected Dr. Tammy Haley of Bradford as a recipient of the 2019 Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award. Haley, an assistant professor of nursing, is the director of nursing and radiological sciences at Pitt-Bradford. She was one of five faculty members universitywide this year to receive this award, which recognizes teaching excellence by members of the University of Pittsburgh faculty. Gallagher cited Haley’s work as co-director of the Appalachian Teaching Project as providing students the chance to be involved in communitybased research projects. “Your integration of the Appalachian Teaching Project into the nursing curriculum has increased students’ exposure to real-life nursing research,” he wrote. Haley co-directs the Appalachian Teaching Project with Dr. Lisa Fiorentino, a now-retired associate professor of nursing. The pair have led a succession of Bachelor of Science in Nursing students through a three-year study of vaccination access in the Bradford area. Haley was previously recognized by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health with the 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award for Teaching and Dissemination; by former Pitt-Bradford president Dr. Livingston Alexander with the 2016 President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, Scholarship and Service; and by fellow members of the Pitt-Bradford faculty with the 2012 Chairs’ Faculty Teaching Award. spring/summer 2019


New Pell match program will help hundreds of students In February, the University of Pittsburgh announced the creation of the Pitt Success Pell Match Program, which will match the Pell Grant amount students receive, dollar for dollar, beginning this fall. The program will extend to students at all Pitt campuses and provide the match for any grant received through the U.S. Department of Education’s Pell Grant program. The Pell Grant program provides need-based grants – money that does not have to be paid back – to help promote access to postsecondary education. Students whose total family income is $50,000 a year or less qualify. At Pitt-Bradford, 38% of students receive a Pell Grant. That percentage is significantly higher for students from the university’s immediate service region – McKean, Elk, Potter, Warren, Cameron and Forest counties. For students from those counties alone, the total amount of Pell grants awarded during 2018-19 academic year was $450,992. The average grant award was $4,538. Beginning this fall, Pitt will match that amount as a grant as part of financial aid packages. Overall, the grant will mean $2.53 million more in aid for Pitt-Bradford students this coming academic year than in the year before. Colton Miller, a first-year student from Hinsdale, N.Y., who is studying criminal justice, will be one of the recipients of the new grant. “With this grant, it will take the burden of financial stress off my back,” he said, “and I can focus more on staying on campus rather than traveling to and from work every day after classes.” Miller works about 30 hours a week in Olean, N.Y. So far, he has successfully managed his studies, his off-campus job and his roles as treasurer of the Emergency Medical Services Club and vice president of the Criminal Justice Club. “This grant will allow me and other students to participate in events that we often miss due to work.”


Colton Miller is one of hundreds of students who will have his federal Pell Grant matched this coming academic year by the University of Pittsburgh.

spring/summer 2019

Before graduating in April, Darien Talley, a psychology major from Media, Pa., made a poster presentation at the Ethnographic and Qualitative Research Conference in Las Vegas. Talley’s presentation was “Speaking of Sex Work: How One Social Media Conversation Revealed Themes of Support and Stigma.” After noticing a conversation on the Facebook page Humans of New York about International Whores’ Day, which is about reclaiming the word and restoring dignity to sex workers, Talley and Dr. Rebecca McHugh decided to analyze the conversation. “It started a whole conversation of health and safety, legalization, sex trafficking and societal repercussions,” Talley said. They examined the thousands of comments to find patterns and themes. “It’s a quick way to take the pulse of current attitudes toward sex work,” said McHugh, assistant professor of psychology and Talley’s research supervisor. After taking in the conference, the two conducted research interviewing sex workers at legal brothels in Las Vegas. McHugh first taught Talley interview techniques during a research project last summer at Anthrocon in Pittsburgh. Anthrocon is a four-day convention held annually in Pittsburgh to celebrate the “furry” fandom – people who are interested in media and art focusing on anthropomorphic characters. McHugh and Talley will continue to process the results of their research this summer, including an additional project in which Talley plans to examine song lyrics for references to sex work for a separate publication. Talley also plans to attend graduate school.



the commons

Feick moves STEM project forward And even has a little fun doing it by PAT FRANTZ CERCONE, Senior editor



spring/summer 2019


ingston Alexander initiated, to find of a feasibility study, which showed it Larry Feick’s Aunt Nancy once told what makes Pitt-Bradford distinctive would cost $13 million more to purhim, “To rest is to rust.” to help the campus position itself more chase and renovate the school, officials Feick remembers many Aunt Naneffectively in a highly competitive decided to build new. cy-isms, but that particular one seems marketplace. That would take money, another to have more significance, almost like Those conversations focused on step Feick initiated under his leaderhis mantra, because during his year as three specific areas: technology, health ship. Pitt-Bradford’s interim president, Feick and the environment. Before he retired, Last August, Pitt-Bradford renever got a chance to get rusty. Alexander led a retreat to discuss techceived $2 million from the state to help Feick, who chaired the first presinology. Feick kept the conversations develop the facility for the labs, shops, dential search committee, volunteered moving. During discussions to serve as interim president about health and the environwhen the search failed last ment, other ideas arose. spring. He knew coming into “The differentiation exercise the job there would be a lot of was intrinsically important,” work to do. Feick said, “but in addition, it “I came in with the knowlgenerated new ideas that could edge of the big issues,” Feick strengthen and build enrollsaid. ment.” However, it wasn’t until Those spin-off conversahe had been on the job for a tions addressed the importance few months and had talked to of athletics, internships and copeople on campus that he got ops as well as student engagea clearer sense of the specifies ment in building enrollment and what it would take to tackle and improving retention. those big issues. Lawrence Feick, center, enjoys a moment with two of the president’s office Feick said he is proud of “One of the things I’m most staff members, administrative assistant Barbara Uscinski, left, and Christy what was accomplished in the proud of,” he said, “is that the Clark, executive assistant to the president. past year but disappointed it activities we did moved projects wasn’t more. classroom and other unique spaces for forward and had spin offs that generFor example, he wishes the campus the engineering technology and other ated excitement on the campus.” could have increased the diversity of STEM programs. Feick and others One of the most significant adits faculty and staff under his watch. worked on other funding proposals vancements was getting approval for As Pitt-Bradford’s student population to secure additional support and are two engineering technology programs, has diversified, he said it’s essential for hopeful they’ll be successful. one in mechanical, one in energy, the faculty and staff to reflect that diversity. “We need to make sure we don’t first in a series of steps to add those two However, Feick led the way to lose momentum on this project,” Feick majors. ensure there are processes in place to said. “At the end of the year, we’re a lot The next step was finding a locamake it easier to diversify the faculty further ahead in the program than the tion to house the new majors as well and staff, which he’s confident will start of the year. The campus was able as other STEM-related programs. show results. to maintain momentum.” Campus officials considered two pos“Good things will come of it,” he Feick also made sure the campus sibilities: purchase and renovate St. said. continued to progress with discusBernard School or build a new facility The year was a challenging one, and sions, which former president Livon campus. After reviewing the results

Feick poses at a goodbye gathering held for faculty and staff to wish him well, where he received a replica of the Dave Hodges bronze panther statue in the Bromeley Quadrangle.

spring/summer 2019



the commons


Interim president Larry Feick photobombs a gathering of student leaders and staff member Lindsay Retchless, right, at his home during the spring. Feick took his role seriously. However, he didn’t always take himself seriously, to the surprise and delight of many. He smiled easily, he joked frequently and he laughed freely. As Halloween approached, he invited the faculty and staff to a costume party and dressed as The Joker, complete with full makeup. He frequently ate lunch in the dining hall, joined by students and colleagues. He invited faculty and staff to the president’s house for holiday parties, the first time some of them had ever been inside the residence on School Street. And, he photobombed students during a reception at the president’s house. He liked us. He really liked us. “I expected to like the people and 10 PORTRAITS

the place, and I did more than that,” he said. Feick was no stranger to PittBradford when he moved into the big office in Hanley Library. For years, he was the regional campus liaison in the provost’s office in Pittsburgh and had worked with several faculty and staff members. As chair of the presidential search committee, he got to know more people. Last June, after Feick had already agreed to step in as interim president, he was on campus for the dedication of Livingston Alexander House, the campus’s newest residence hall. At the end of the ceremony, Mark Nordenberg, Pitt’s chancellor emeritus, told him, “Larry, this is really a special place.”

Feick agreed, and during his year here, his appreciation of and affection for Pitt-Bradford grew. “I’ve grown to really love the campus and the people,” he said during a late April reception in his honor. “I came here with high expectations that the people here are terrific. It’s been wonderful, and you exceeded my expectations. I didn’t expect it would touch my heart so much to talk to you.” He concluded his remarks at the reception by reminding us that he wasn’t saying goodbye but auf Wiedersehen, “until we see each other again.” Feick will keep moving, which we know will bring him back to Bradford someday. After all, he wants to make Aunt Nancy proud. spring/summer 2019

Graduating with honors


epending on when you graduated, what students wear at Commencement today may look a lot different from what they wore in your time. Black and blue gowns and caps are still there, but they’ve got a lot more bling. Take these two grads, below. On the left, Tamia Robinson, a criminal justice and psychology graduate from Philadelphia, has a whole résumé around her neck. We’ll help you break the code, beginning with the gold hood, which signifies that she earned a Bachelor of Science (her psych major). Beneath the gold collar, she wears two medals on ribbons – the gold medal is for academic honors; the silver medal for the national honor society in psychology. Next, she wears a resident advisor stole with a judicial board medal pinned to it. The white satin stole peeking out from behind that, along with the white and black cords, represent the National Society for Leadership and Success. Below that is a kente cloth stole representing the African American Student Union. Malcolm Hardie, a criminal justice major from Upper Darby, Pa., wears many of the same items, plus a white collar and hood for a Bachelor of Arts degree and a stole representing his role as president of the Student Government Association. The oval-shaped pin on his collar indicates that he gave to the Class of 2019 scholarship. Dr. K. James Evans, who served for many years as the Commencement organizer, said that the practice has become common at many institutions.

“Commencement is a celebratory event and I see the added color from stoles, cords, etc., as a nice extra touch.” —DR. K. JAMES EVANS, Commencement organizer


Tamia Robinson and Malcolm Hardie

spring/summer 2019



the commons


Junior Matt Moonan of Bradford plays in the Panthers’ first appearance at the NCAA Division III men’s golf championships since 2002.


Panthers gain great experience Five compete at NCAA DIII national championship in Kentucky With the snow barely melted, the Panthers men’s golf team was back on the links this spring preparing for its first trip to the NCAA Division III men’s golf championship in 17 years. Representing Pitt-Bradford were junior Johnny Fiore, a business management major from Marana, Ariz.; sophomore Cary Ignaczak, a criminal justice major from Derby, N.Y.; junior Matt Moonan, an accounting and business management student from Bradford; junior Cooper Cordova, a business management major from Tucson, Ariz.; and junior Jamie Rook, an accounting and business management student from Kane, Pa. Transylvania University hosted the 42-team event in May at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky. 12 PORTRAITS

Keene Trace courses have hosted professional, college and open competitions, including previous NCAA championships and the PGA Barbasol Championship. The Panthers finished tied for 36th. “It was a great experience for our players and our golf program,” said Keith Stauffer, back-to-back AMCC Coach of the Year. “We definitely learned and grew

“We definitely learned. With the entire team returning next season, I anticipate better things to come.”

from it. It will make us better golfers next season. With the entire team returning next season, I anticipate better things to come.” To get to the championships, Panthers earned an automatic bid by winning the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference championship in October by nine strokes over runner-up Penn State Behrend. Fiore finished as the AMCC Championship’s Individual Medalist, the first in school history. In addition to Fiore, Ignaczak, Moonan and Cordova earned All-AMCC status. The conference title was the program’s first since the Panthers won back-to-back AMCC championships in 2001 and 2002. spring/summer 2019


Senior infielder Maddy Hillery was one of two Panthers voted to the all-conference second team.

Softball makes AMCC playoffs

Bowlers qualify for championship Led by sophomore Kelsey Hammons, Pitt-Bradford’s women’s bowling team qualified in March for the AMCC Championship Tournament. The Panthers finished the conference season 7-7 to qualify for the fourth and final spot in the tournament. After a pair of competitive matches, the Panthers’ tournament run ended in the second round. Hammons’ 17.004 average score per frame ranked her 14th in the AMCC, and she was voted first team all-conference. spring/summer 2019

“When I called my parents to tell them about my donor scholarship, they started to cry, and so did I.” — sophomore Alyssa Reyna, a chemistry major from Lubbock, Texas, who spoke at the annual Donor Scholarship Luncheon. Reyna was one of the first recipients of a grant from the Dean Evans Legacy Fund, which helps students pay their balances so they can continue at Pitt-Bradford.




Panthers’ softball finished their season third in the conference with a 23-18 overall record, tying the program’s most wins in a season since 2014. “We had a great season,” said Head Coach Tina Phillips. “We have accomplished so much, and I just loved this team. We were there for each other on and off the field. They played hard and together all year.” Four members of the team earned all-AMCC honors. Seniors Maddy Hillery and junior Sophia Fratercangelo were voted to the All-AMCC Second Team, while sophomore Gabby Carpenter and senior Grace Dadzaa were voted to the All-AMCC Third Team. With 15 players set to return in the fall, the Panthers look strong for continued success in the 2020 season.



788 JOBS









Author John Schlimm ’01, center, raises a little ruckus with his Gen Z former students in Hanley Library. Seated, from left, Izzy Johnson and Daniel Picklo. Standing, Dom Giannini, Kenzie Hartle, Trilene Wisbith and Quentin Ellis.



When Gen Xer John Schlimm started teaching Gen Z, he had no idea how similar it would be to his own generation – and how different PHOTOGRAPHS BY ALAN HANCOCK ’07

spring/summer 2019



DEAR MR. VERNON: had to sacrifice a We accept the fact that we for whatever it was whole Saturday in detention ’re crazy to make we did wrong. But we think you who we think we are. us write an essay telling you us, in the simplest You see us as you want to see definitions. But what terms, in the most convenient of us is a brain, and we found out is that each one e, a princess, and a an athlete, and a basket cas r question? criminal. Does that answer you This is the declaration of independence written by the teenagers to their high school principal — and, in effect, adults everywhere — in the 1980s film “The Breakfast Club.” With these characters and their parting words, writer and director John Hughes encapsulated the DNA of Generation X — the coming-of-age of my generation, born between 1965 and 1980. More than three decades later, these words would be a gut check for me, leading to the discovery of a beautiful thread and synergy — an unlikely bond that opened my mind and helped me to start better understanding myself and the world emerging around me. While normally my wheelhouse is teaching public relations courses, during the past two fall semesters at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, I’ve taught Freshman Seminar. In doing this, I was introduced to more than 100 of the 17-, 18-, and 19-year-olds who comprise the first waves of Generation Z, defined as those born after 1997. These young people instantly fascinated me. I knew there was something different about them, yet there was also something that rang very familiar. Plus, for the first time, a powerful milestone caught me: I realized that if I had kids, they’d be these kids. The parents of Gen Z are my fellow Gen Xers. Day after day, I got to really know these Gen Zers — their weaknesses and strengths, their compassion and humor, what truly sets them apart as beacons — beyond the simplest terms and most convenient definitions. They’ve also provided me with a rare lens through which to re-examine my own generation and see more clearly our strengths and weaknesses. I was riveted from the start — and, I admit, a bit jealous — by Gen Z’s ability to so honestly and with such raw poignancy write and speak about the dark, 16


painful places marking their lives. They told me about their suicide attempts, eating disorders, rapes, addictions, abuse, miscarriages, cutting, depression, anxiety, fears, bullying, struggles with sexuality, broken homes, time spent in mental hospitals, surviving cancer, dealing with disabilities, and seeing friends gunned down in front of them. For the first time in my academic career, a few students admitted to me that they were seriously entertaining thoughts of imminent suicide. I heard about deadbeat Gen X parents who have abandoned them in exchange for drug habits and other selfish, destructive pursuits; who have kicked them out to make room for new boyfriends and girlfriends, and who have foisted unreasonable responsibilities on these teenagers, like forcing them to be the breadwinners for the entire family. And my students also relayed stories about the teachers and coaches and parents who have told them they’ll never amount to anything — that they’re “too dumb,” “too lazy,” “worthless.” But to me, these young people, with all their baggage and joy, became inspirations and reflections of my own soul. For one assignment, I asked my students to write letters to their five-year-old selves, describing the journey ahead of them. I knew they’d be great, since Gen Zers are collectively very good writers, but still. Only two letters into reading them all, I was sobbing — for what they’ve already endured in such a brief lifetime, and for the similarity these letters bore to my own youth, suffering silently as a victim of bullying. Only these young people were expressing it all out loud in the here and now, something I never could do at the time. All of this —everything Gen Z was and is right now — has been set against the backdrop of a swelling mental health crisis that is sweeping across every school campus in the country. As my students granted me unprecedented access into their private worlds, I started to more closely study this national tsunami of mental health challenges, searching for even more clues about who they are. In the process, I also learned more about who I am. Across the nation, a disturbing pattern emerged. I very quickly encountered overwhelmed counseling offices with month-long waitlists where maybe two or three counselors are responsible for thousands of students in need of immediate help. I witnessed how it’s often easier for adults to reduce spring/summer 2019

Trilene Wisbith, left, a nursing major from Koppel, Pa., and Kenzie Hartle, a nursing major from Bradford, acting out in the art studio. these young people to clichés and stereotypes — weak-minded, self-absorbed, entitled snowflakes — instead of starting a dialogue and actually getting to know them. And I’ve rolled my eyes more than once at vapid one-sheeters like “10 Tips to Stress Less,” “Be Kind to Your Mind” and “Tips for Staying Healthy in College” that are punctuated with smiley faces and other stale graphics, and which are mostly ignored by these students who deserve better. These flyers often only serve as generic Band-Aids to make befuddled adults feel like they’re doing something to keep sinking ships afloat. I asked myself, if these students — who are remarkably gifted in many ways — are so willing to tell us anything we want to know about them, then why are they so misunderstood and why is the mental health epidemic — with them smack-dab in the middle of it — spiraling out of control? Why aren’t we — as the adults and professionals — doing a better job of helping them? I reached out to mental health experts and other educators in search of answers. The first group taught me the basics of brain physiology and introduced me to terms like “trauma screening,” “trauma-based counseling” and “mental health first aid.” However, alarmingly, from the second group — who is on the frontlines in classrooms with Gen Z every day — I often heard whimpers of confusion and spring/summer 2019

“It’s often easier for adults to reduce these young people to clichés and stereotypes – weak-minded, self-absorbed, entitled snowflakes – instead of starting a dialogue and actually getting to know them.

passing the buck when it comes to mental health. Slowly an answer to my original questions came into focus. While, yes, these young people are open to sharing their highs and lows unlike any generation before them, it’s the adults — their Gen X parents and teachers and even some counselors — who simply don’t know what to do with that level of blood-and-guts, no-holds-barred transparency and brutal authenticity. No judgment here, I get it. In our youth, we Gen Xers — including many of those current parents, educators, and counselors cited above — suffered many of the same atrocities as Gen Z, but we didn’t talk about them like those “Breakfast Club” characters based on us so gloriously did in their high school library one Saturday during detention. It was an unspoken — and sometimes explicitly expressed — rule perpetuated by parents, educators and other adults that we shouldn’t lay bare our battles with suicidal thoughts, depression, bullying, sexuality, addictions and so on. We were taught to internalize and mask them, and to smile our way through what we were told were the best years of our life. Guidance counselors, teachers, school administrators and parents back then were often inept at understanding or dealing with any of these issues, perhaps because they chose not to for fear of exposing their own fragility and scars. They had yet to see PORTRAITS 17

the brain as an organ of the body rather than as some untouchable enigma. My one saving grace was the realization a few years ago that no matter how viciously I was bullied — for the way I walked, talked, gestured, dressed, you name it — when I was in middle school and high school, I never once tried to change myself. Talk about a light bulb moment! I took the abuse quietly, yet I still continued to be me authentically. To understand that about my younger self was akin to inhaling the purest oxygen. It now helps me to listen without reservation or stigma to my Gen Z students tell their stories. It has also allowed me to recognize myself in their stories, which has been key in facilitating my connection to them. While there are great Gen X parents and teachers and counselors — I know and respect many of them — my Gen Z students have described many of 18


these adults in their lives as “close-minded,” “judgmental,“ “unhinged,” “homophobic,” “checked out,” “immature” and even “hateful.” Are we Gen Xers that messed up? I wondered as I listened to these young people in my classroom. Turns out, yes, in many ways we are that messed up. During a roundtable discussion, I asked these teenagers, “If your parents and other adults are like this, then how did all of you learn to be so openminded and vocal?” In near unison, they replied, “Social media.” Having instant access to other Gen Zers around the globe and hearing them share their experiences has been a positive game changer for this new generation, they told me. In trying to better understand the Gen Z brain (and, for that matter, my own), the trauma experts I spoke with drew what many times is a direct line from issues like depression, social anxiety and stress back to previous traumas. This concept was revolutionary for me — a new starting point — and this area is only now in recent years being more actively researched and understood by professionals, but it has yet to fully trickle down to where it needs to be in the grassroots. I’m still only at the beginning of my misWe asked our Gen Z models to tell us what sion to grasp all of this, for my own benefit and that of my students. they want others to In this promising new light and motivated by know about their my students’ courageous candor, I more mindfully generation. These were their responses. examined my own current triggers that induce anxiety, anger and fear. With surprising ease and clarity, the links back to the bullying and other challenges that I once suffered and internalized and masked emerged. The results of this exercise have been relief and healing, and empowerment. While it’s taken me more than four decades of living to fully understand and openly express that I, too, am a brain, and an athlete, and a basket case, a princess, and a criminal, and then some all rolled up into one big Gen X bundle, Gen Zers already know spring/summer 2019

this mantra by heart. Without letting the shame or hang-ups of adults shade them, they embody this rally cry in everything they do. In real time, they very publicly endure and process their challenges, and use them to strengthen and propel themselves and others forward. Just as John Hughes transformed the flat clichés and stereotypes of Gen X into multi-dimensional human beings in whom we kids of the 1980s can find kindred spirits even all these years later, Gen Zers are doing that for themselves. They already know that they’re composed of many ingredients — good and bad — and that the world is theirs for the taking, one rung of the ladder at a time. I see so much of us in them, and them in us. I only hope my fellow Gen Xers can see it too — for all our sakes. Bearing witness to the birth of this new universe right there in my classroom has further freed my mind. In encouraging my Gen Z students to continue telling their stories wherever, whenever, and however they can in order to move the world ahead in a more open and productive direction, my own

“In our youth, we Gen Xers suffered many of the same atrocities as Gen Z, but we didn’t talk about them like those ‘Breakfast Club’ characters based on us so long ago.

voice has been amplified and energized. I told my students how recently I set out on a solo, two-week road trip through the American Heartland — the first time in 47 years that I ever did anything like that on my own. The pinnacle of this 1,000-mile journey was a very familiar-looking building on a quiet side street in Des Plaines, Ill. It once served as the exterior and interior of Shermer High School in “The Breakfast Club.” After the fan-boy selfie, I rolled down my car windows and slowly drove past the iconic facade, blasting the movie’s title track — Simple Minds’ anthem “Don’t You Forget About Me” — a full-circle, fist-pumping note to self. My students all smiled, totally getting it. —John Schlimm is a Harvard-trained educator, artist, activist and international award-winning writer. His essays and other writings have been widely published, including at The Huffington Post and as an “Architect of Change” for We’re also proud to call him our own. He earned his teacher certification in English and speech communication through Pitt-Bradford.

Pitt-Bradford Gen Z students channel the Gen X characters from John Hughes’ iconic movie, “The Breakfast Club.” From left, Quentin Ellis, Trilene Wisbith, Daniel Picklo, Izzy Johnson, Dominick Giannini and Kenzie Hartle. spring/summer 2019


A WORLD OF THEIR OWN Alumni find fulfillment through creation


by KIMBERLY WEINBERG, Portraits editor


book addiction during his childhood in Philadelphia and belonging to a band in high school. At his mother’s request, he majored in social science and business management at Pitt-Bradford. “Before my Ph.D. and M.B.A., I was horrible in business,” Simpson said. “I had a class where we were supposed to be a company. It never felt connected with real life.” It took running his own media company, 3 Heads Productions, for him to understand what his professors had been trying to teach him. In the early 2000s, Simpson was a cubicle dweller working as a mortgage loan officer. “The guy in the next cubicle had written a script, and we both knew a friend in common who had gone to film school,” he said. “We decided to have the three of us shoot the script. That was a debacle, but I learned a lot from the fact that we didn’t finish the short film.” With what he learned on that project he, his wife and a spring/summer 2019


lton Simpson ’88, Jamie Lackey ’06 and Paul Stefko ’06 have found a healthy and sometimes even profitable way to escape the substantial stresses of today’s world. They make their own worlds where they can vanquish mobsters, dragons or gorgons as creators of fantasy short films, comic books, short stories and roleplaying games. “I think life is very serious right now, and people are looking for an escape where they can relax and be themselves,” said Simpson, the creator, writer, producer of films streaming on Amazon Prime and comic books. “It’s why people are interested in different types of fantasy and sci-fi.” The genres are bigger than ever. In 2018, the five top grossing films were either superhero movies or sci-fi. Simpson has been attracted to the genre since he was young. He has always been creative, beginning with a library

Alton Simpson ’88 shows off some of his comic titles at one of his favorite stores, the Plunder Palace in Cherry Hill, N.J.

2006 alumni Jamie Lackey and Paul Stefko friend – the original three heads with their publications, which range from of his company – were able to self-published role-playing games to start making some commercials fantasy novels. for Philadelphia-based Comcast. Stefko manage to pursue creative He taught himself to score the work outside of full-time jobs. music for the commercials and The two even work for the same was never afraid to teach himself online fashion company – Lackey the skills needed for a new project. in customer service and Stefko in He’s taught himself editing, stopshipping. motion animation and a skill that One night a week though, Stetransfers really well to the busifko makes sure she’s set aside time ness world – project management. for her passion – writing fantasy short stories and novels. Next came 48-hour film festivals, which are the film “I don’t really understand the appeal of more realistic equivalent of a hackathon. Participants get a theme and 48 fiction,” she said. “The real world is out there, so if I want hours to write and shoot a movie. Those judged the best to do things in the real world, I can just go do them. Writare shown at a final film festival. One of his most successful ing fantasy is a nice escape. It’s a clear distinction between entries combined his experience as a father with his experifiction and reality.” ence in finance. Joining a writing group helped her negotiate the world “Mystery of the Hedge Fund Manager” was a kid-detecof physical and online publishing. She has also participated tive black-and-white noir film featuring his own children, in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America’s who would be nominated as best young actors. You can see it Annual Nebula Conference, where she met on YouTube. the publisher of her short story collection. While working on films, he frequently Just the act She begins her stories with just a vague uses a technique called storyboarding – of sitting down idea, she says, calling herself a “discovery drawing scenes in a way similar to comic writer” who discovers the story as she books. So similar, in fact, that that became with your his next adventure. He hired a former friends for two works. “I have some themes that I find popMarvel artist to draw them. or three hours ping up throughout my work,” she said. Simpson has two comic book series “I tend to write a lot about free will.” that are selling out in local stores in Philaand imagining Free will and choices have a lot to do delphia and New Jersey – “Blackjack,” together is a with the kind of writing Stefko does in about a scientist superhero whose powers lot of fun. the unique world of tabletop role-playing change without his control, and “Vampires games. The most famous of these is Dunof New Jersey,” in which stylish bloodsuckgeons and Dragons, but there are hundreds. ers battle a mobster family with a mysterious connection. In these games, a group gets together, and each player Remarkably, Simpson wrote most issues of Vampires takes on a character. One person is in charge of presenting while working on his doctoral thesis in management of infora world and posing challenges and adjudicating what does mation systems. and does not work. Players respond with what actions they “I write scripts to let off steam,” he said. After turning in want to take. There is an element of chance – like dice – and a portion of his thesis (which examined unique ways small a rule book. businesses are dealing with increasing healthcare costs), he That’s where Stefko often comes in. Playing the games would unwind with a completely different kind of writing. is his hobby, but so is writing new characters and rules for Now he’s on the comic book circuit signing books and established games, which publishers purchase from him. meeting fans. “I take an interest in a lot of things, and I like “I like working with a publisher because they handle a to see where they go.” lot of the more tedious aspects like finding artists and getJamie Lackey and Paul Stefko both took an interest in ting things shipped,” he said, leaving him free to imagine. role-playing games as part of the Secret Adventure Society “Games give people a creative outlet for themselves,” he at Pitt-Bradford in the 2000s, and it led them to love and said. “Just the act of sitting down with your friends for two marriage. or three hours and imagining together is a lot of fun.” The couple lives in Forest Hills, Pa., and both Lackey and


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ALUMNI & FAMILY WEEKEND SEPTEMBER 27-29, 2019 Friday, September 27 11:30 a.m. 6 – 7 p.m. 7 – 8:30 p.m. 8:30 – 10 p.m. 10 p.m.

Alumni & Student Networking Luncheon Alumni Donor Reception NEW! Light Up The Quad Alumni-Athlete Kickball Game NEW! Alumni-Athlete Post-Game Tailgate Party

Saturday, September 28

Alumni Emeritus Society Brunch NEW! Town Hall Meeting with Dr. Koverola Alumni Swim Meet Alumni Men’s Basketball Game Friends of Hanley Library Book Sale Pumpkin Fest & Pitt Kids Zone Esports Tournament NEW! Alumni Baseball Game African-American Student & Alumni Networking Reception All-Greek Gathering LGBTS Student, Alumni & Family Reception Alumni & Student Veteran Gathering NEW! 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. PBAA Awards Dinner & Athletic Hall of Fame Induction 8 p.m. All-Alumni Gathering 9:30 p.m. Young Alumni Gathering 10 – 11 a.m. 11 a.m. – Noon 11 a.m. 11 a.m. 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Noon – 4 p.m. Noon – 4 p.m. 1 p.m. 4 – 5 p.m.

Sunday, September 29 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Farewell Brunch

Updates to schedule can be found at

PA N T H E R PA C K 1960s Ralph Bailey ’67-’69 was appointed Western New York Group Deputy Commander of Civil Air Patrol. Also, at the recent annual awards ceremony and military ball, he received the Senior Member of the Year Award. Anthony Sundstrom ’66-’69 started his own antique auto service in Hickory, N.C.

1970s Judy Hopkins ’71-’73 was named third runner-up in Proximity Magazine’s recent personal

essay contest judged by Hanif Abdurraqib. Her essay was titled “The Diagnosis.” Dr. Larry Schardt ’72-’74, aka Rock ‘n’ Roll Larry, received the Good Scout Award from the Shawnee District, Juniata Valley Council, of Scouts BSA (formerly known as the Boy Scouts of America). The scouts honored Schardt for his “Success that Rocks” messages of inspiration, encouragement and hope.

1980s Dennis Bradley ’87 started work as director of client support ser-

vices at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in February. Anita Hunt Dolan ’88 has a new job as the community/economic development manager for the City of Bradford’s Office of Economic and Community Development. Previously, she was responsible for the city’s Main Street program. Michael Taylor ’89 was promoted in April to executive and event security manager at Intel Corp. He lives in Gilbert, Ariz. Michael Werick ’89 started a new job at Fives Intralogistics Corp. in February. He lives in Louisville, Ky.


Cystic fibrosis warrior

Chris Mackowski’s ’91 latest book is “The Great Battle never Fought: The Mine Run Campaign, Nov. 26-Dec. 2, 1863.” The book recalls the fall of 1863, when George Meade, commanding general of the Union army, makes one last attempt to save himself and the union. The book is part of the Emerging Civil War series edited by Mackowski.

Bradley Poole ’14, ’17 inspires as trainer

Kevin Bauer ’93 began a new job in February at Cetera Advisor Networks, LLC. He lives in Hudson, Ohio.


radley Poole’s workout routine is an inspiration to his clients, but it’s far more than running, squats and lunges. The personal trainer also works out his lungs each day through nebulizing treatments and by wearing a vibrating vest to shake mucus loose. He also takes about 50 pills each day to fight the cystic fibrosis he was diagnosed with as an infant. The condition thickens all bodily secretions, often damaging lungs and making it hard for patients to absorb adequate nutrition. The average life expectancy of patients is 37. At Core Performance Fitness in Ellicottville, N.Y., where he is an instructor and trainer, Poole’s enthusiasm and example have doubled the enrollment in the classes he teaches. Exercise, he says, has kept him alive. “I have seen how much it has benefited my life, and I want to help others make changes.”



Michelle DeStefano ’93 started work at ICON Clinical Research in April. She lives in Berwick, Pa. Dominic Rogers ’93 is the director of information technology at Cutco Corp. in Olean, N.Y. Joshua Trust ’93 started work in February as the president/publisher at River Valley Media Group. He lives in Lacrosse, Wis. Scott Bell ’94 began working in January as deputy director of marketing sales training and development at Sanofi Pasteur. He lives in Cresco, Pa.

If you have an update for Portraits magazine, visit and click on “How to update your info” or email us at

Patricia Fitzsimmons ’94 began work as a housing case manager at the McKean County Housing Authority. She lives in Bradford. Ruthanne Herzing ’94 is a legal assistant in the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General. She lives in Harrisburg, Pa. Marcie Schellhammer ’96 was promoted to assistant managing editor at The Bradford Era. In May, she was honored with a first place honor for column writing by the Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors. Schellhammer has been with The Era since 2001. Annie Wolfe ’96 began working in April as a Big Brothers/Big Sisters case manager for The Guidance Center. She lives in Mount Jewett, Pa. Dr. DorothyBelle Poli ’97 has been promoted to full professor of biology at Roanoke College. “None of that would have been possible without the love and guidance I received at UPB!” she wrote. Aww, shucks. Ed Gunkle ’98 is a gifted support teacher for Middlewest School District. He lives in Middleburg, Pa., with his wife, Karie (Young) ’98, and their son, Brady. Lynn Murray ’98 was promoted to director of the Bradford-Sullivan Counties Intellectual Disability Program. She lives in Columbia Cross Road, Pa. Amanda Perkins ’99 was promot-



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PA N T H E R PA C K ed in April to director of finance training and communications at Carnegie Mellon University. She lives in Pittsburgh. John Peterson ’99 began work as a chemist at American Refining Group Inc. in April. He lives in Bradford. Cory Shay ’99 has been selected director of Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Military Resource Center. He lives in Clymer, Pa. Rob Swales ’99 and his wife, Kellie, adopted a baby daughter, Lily. She joins two siblings at home.

2000s Kevin Miller ’00 had a third information technology course, “Managing IT: Metrics and Measurements,” published at the training website Pluralsight.

equal employment opportunity officer for Glenn O. Hawbaker Inc. She lives in Bellefonte, Pa. Kate Kennedy Wadsworth ’02 is the new executive director of the Kane (Pa.) Area Development Center. In January, she joined alumni Tim Rooke ’11, a Pennsylvania state trooper, and Stephanie Vettenburg-Shaffer ’98, McKean County district attorney, to give a program in Kane on the opioid crisis in Pennsylvania. Jessica Kramer ’05 left her position as a payroll specialist at PittBradford to stay home with her five young children. She is married to Joshua Kramer ’16, who is a programmer analyst at KOA Speer Electronics in Bradford. During her 10 years at PittBradford, Jessica was active with the campus’s Relay for Life team.

Dr. Pamela Frenz ’02 opened her own veterinary practice, Large Animal Veterinary Care in Bloomsburg, Pa. Her practice specializes in treating cows, horses, goats, sheep, pigs, llamas and alpacas.

Jennifer Lewke ’05 won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Best News Series. The award was for her coverage on the conditions inside the Sodus Rehabilitation and Nursing Center – a story that she covered for nearly two years, tracking down the owner, the inspectors and the commissioner of the health department as problems persisted inside the facility. She is an investigative reporter with WHEC in Rochester, N.Y.

Kristi Liptak ’02 was promoted to

Danielle Newman ’05 began

Melissa Clayson ’02 started work in January as an accounting manager at Cutco Corp. She lives in Rixford, Pa.

working as a pre-K-12 library media specialist at Fillmore (N.Y.) Central School. She lives in Gifford, Pa.

on East Main Street in Bradford.

Hillary Perkins ’05 is a budget director at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She lives in Bluemont, Va.

Brian Sansom ’08 married Erikka Rosplock ’13. Brian is the head women’s basketball coach and assistant professor of physical education at Bethany (W.Va.) College. The couple lives in Follansbee, W.Va.

Christina Burkhouse ’06 started work as a vice president and senior portfolio manager at Northwest Bank. She lives in Kane, Pa.

Susan Vaughn ’08 began work in April as a K-12 English as a Second Language teacher for Education Management Corp. She lives in Pittsburgh.

John Rover ’06 and Kevin Rose ’07 were promoted to unit specialists at American Refining Group in Bradford. They lead their units’ training efforts, new-hire orientation and qualification testing. Rover has been at ARG since 2010. He lives in Bradford. Rose has worked at ARG since 2011 and lives in Gifford, Pa.

Tiffany Washington ’08 is director of residential services for Community Options Inc. in York, Pa.

Brandon Nelson ’07 was promoted to associate director for recruitment and training at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. Ryan Race ’07 was named area manager of Northwest Bank. In addition to the oversight of five Northwest branches in Bradford, Race also will manage the Main Street office. He joined Northwest in 2010 and was most recently manager for the Northwest office

Mollie Hollebeke ’09 is an account executive with the CBS affiliate in Marquette, Mich.

2010s Sarah Lorya ’10 has a new position with the Environmental Justice Team at the New York Power Authority, where she is responsible for developing and executing education programs for energy education and the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. Kristin Ball ’11 has a new job as a certified nurse midwife at UPMC Cole in Coudersport, Pa.



Creating a virtual town

Kim Nicholas ’84-’86 uses Facebook to keep Bradford near


im Nicholas was an early adopter of Facebook while living in Wisconsin. “I was just missing home and had seen someone else’s hometown group. I started my own and thought maybe 50 people would join.” The group, “I Grew up in Bradford, PA,” features Bradford history, good news, Zippo sightings (which is its own Bradford hobby, if you don’t know) and lots of pictures from Nicholas, her three co-moderators

spring/summer 2019

and nearly 3,000 members. She likes to keep posts in the group positive. There are plenty of other places to complain. “You carry Bradford in your heart,” she said. “It’s the people. It’s the memories. I think that’s what a lot of our members feel like. IGUIBPA (as its known to its members) is a way to open up this window on Facebook and get to revisit our hometown.”



PA N T H E R PA C K Karen Costello-Pecht ’11 was honored in March by the Bradford YWCA with its annual leadership award for her work with the United Way of the Bradford Area, the Pitt-Bradford Alumni Association, Bradford YMCA, Beacon Light Adult Residential Services, Bradford Area Public Library, Zonta Club of Bradford, Pumpkinfest and St. Bernard Parish Council. Beth Christman ’12 began working in January as an on-site health safety executive for Keane Group. She lives in Bradford. Molly Butler ’13 recently accepted a position as school psychologist for the Sheffield (Pa.) Area Elementary and Middle/High schools in the Warren (Pa.) County School District. She lives in Ashville, N.Y. Nuwangi Dias DeNault ’13 began working in April as a registered nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit at Golisano Children’s Hospital-Strong Memorial Hospital. She lives in West Henrietta, N.Y. Brittany Keck ’13 was promoted in February to director of human resources at Futures Rehabilitation Center in Bradford. Benjamin ’15 and Erin Goodwin DeNault ’14 live in New Albany, Pa., where Erin is a senior production underwriter for Tuscarora Wayne Insurance Co. Benjamin is a certified public accountant and is a partner at Carmalt, DeNault & Thompson PC.

Snapshots from various Pitt-Bradford Alumni Association events




1. Jason Tobias ’04 presents to 2.

3. 4. 5. 6.

students at Backpack to Briefcase. Donor scholarship luncheon – Jerry Harvey ’92, president of the Kiwanis Club of Bradford, meets Kiwanis scholarship recipient Mackenzie Yurkewicz. New alumna Elizabeth Wright at PBAA’s Graduation Central. Chris Napoleon ’86-’88 received the PBAA Alumni Award of Distinction at Commencement. John Foerstner ’79 met up with Ed Tanack ’71-’73 at the Philadelphia alumni gathering. Soccer alumni took on the current team during soccer alumni weekend April 13.




Bradley Miner ’14 earned his Master in Business Administration from the Katz Graduate School of Business at Pitt. Christopher Salerno ’14 married Katlyn Nelson in Bradford. He is a firefighter/paramedic for the Bradford City Fire Department. Zachary Tarbell ’14 was named



spring/summer 2019

PA N T H E R PA C K the Olean (N.Y.) Area Young Professionals Member of the Year. He is an applications developer for St. Bonaventure University in Allegany, N.Y. In January, Sara Bova ’15 married Trevor Brady in Allegany (N.Y.) State Park. She is a medical office assistant at Susquehanna Family Practice and Gender Wellness Center for individuals transitioning genders. She and her husband live in Oneonta, N.Y.

Kaleidoscope Family Solutions. She lives in Allentown, Pa.

opment technician for Abraxas Academy in Morgantown, Pa.

Meagan Hillard ’16 was first-year head softball coach of the State University of New York at Delhi Broncos this spring.

Jasmine Adams ’19 is a registered nurse in the intensive care unit at Penn Highlands DuBois, Pa.

Justin Martinez ’16 moved from Miami to New York to take a promotion with OHL USA, one of the world’s largest construction companies.

Erin Marasco ’15 was promoted in April to sales manager of H&R Group. She lives in Bradford.

Sadeeq Abdullah ’17 began work in January as a medical laboratory technologist for the Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine.

Sara Matzner ’15 is the new Main Street/Elm Street project coordinator for the Bradford Office of Economic and Community Development.

Lisa Marie Cook ’17 began work in April as a drug and alcohol treatment specialist for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services Inc. in Bradford. She lives in Rixford, Pa.

In April, Kyle Meserole ’15 started a new job as a loan officer and collections officer at Hamlin Bank & Trust Co. in Olean, N.Y.

Mikhalla Cooper ’17 is an intellectual disabilities support coordinator with the Center for Community Resources in Butler, Pa.

Michael Moran ’15 completed law school at Michigan State University and accepted a yearlong judicial clerkship with the Hon. Christopher R. Kazlau of the Superior Court of New Jersey.

Michelle Harvey ’17 has entered the physician assistant program at Temple University.

Bryan Nelson ’15 began working in March as a technology systems specialist at Smethport (Pa.) Area School District.

Christina Brunecz ’18 is an associate microbiologist at Eurofins Lancaster Laboratories. She lives in Lancaster, Pa.

Mark Torrey ’15 is the new director of the Mount Jewett (Pa.) Memorial Public Library.

Kate Colella ’18 started working in January as an accountant at LabelPack Automation Inc. She lives in Bradford.

Joshua Blotzer ’16 joined the Emmaus Young Professional Advisory Board. Emmaus Community of Pittsburgh is a nonprofit organization that provides homes and in-home services to individuals with intellectual disabilities and autism. Sarah Cohen ’16 started work as a direct support professional at

spring/summer 2019

Evelynn Maze ’17 earned her Master of Environmental Law and Policy degree at Vermont Law School.

Nathan Lawyer ’18 is the executive director of the McKean County Arts Council and works with the YWCA Bradford. Haley Ward ’18 was accepted into the master’s program in pathology at the University of Buffalo (N.Y.)

Beyleigh Duda ’19 is working in information technology at Seneca Gaming Corp. Scott Pattison ’19 is a client associate with RBC Wealth

Management in St. Marys, Pa. Mike Skaggs ’19 is an academy technical solutions analyst with Cerner, a major healthcare solutions company. He is based at company headquarters in Kansas City, Mo. Matt Young ’19 is a computer tech representative with IBM in the Harrisburg (Pa.) region.

In Memoriam Edwin “Ed” Clemens died in December in Palm Harbor, Fla. Clemens came to Bradford from Oklahoma in 1956 to serve as financial vice president and director of Forest Oil Corp., retiring in 1983. He was an active fundraiser for the university, receiving the Presidential Medal of Distinction in 2002. He and wife, Ruth, established the Edwin and Ruth Clemens Scholarship, which has helped 71 students attend Pitt-Bradford since it was established in 2002. Ruth Gregory Cooney ’91 died in January, following an illness. She and her husband owned Dave’s Saw Shop and R. Cooney Logging in Ridgway, Pa. Abagail “Abby” Dobson ’18 died as the result of a car accident. She was a behavioral health worker for Dickinson Center’s Community Behavioral Health Program. She had been planning her wedding to Cory Reitz this fall and loved the outdoors and her dog, Gus Gus. She lived in Kersey, Pa. Jay Monti died in December. Monti was Pitt-Bradford’s first dean of men when students lived in the former Emery Hotel at the head of Main Street. He was on duty for the infamous Night of the Iguana, when male students purchased a four-foot-long iguana and let it loose in the stairwell outside the door of the female students on campus. Monti managed to capture the iguana in a garbage can and send it to a sanctuary, but never told the students, who worried for weeks about it unexpectedly appearing. We will miss Jay and the stories he shared with us about Pitt-Bradford’s early days. Mary Blaine Prince died in January in Bradford. She began teaching biology at Pitt-Bradford in 1982, when the major was first established. Originally hired to teach labs, she taught an assortment of courses, including non-major courses and freshman forum cluster and worked with young students in the summer through X-treme Science Camp and the Seneca Highlands Summer Academy. Dr. Kimberly Young died in February in Lehigh Acres, Fla. Young taught psychology at Pitt-Bradford from 1995 until 2002 and was among the first psychologists to identify Internet addiction. She founded the Center for Internet Addiction in 1995, was the author of several books on Internet addiction, and was frequently featured by national media outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and USA Today. She and her husband, James E. O’Mara ’96, were generous donors to Pitt-Bradford.

Amber West ’18 is a youth devel-



insider Q&A

Sandra Macfarlane ’82 Farm girl and canning goddess

place to start, because you do not have to seal it in hot water. Buy some liquid pectin (which makes the jam set up), jars with special plastic freezer lids and use the recipe that comes with the pectin. The strawberries do not even have to be cooked, just stirred. It tastes just like fresh strawberries. What is a good next project?

Everything beyond freezer jam will require a few basic tools. For those with none of the tools, a good bet is to purchase a home canning kit, which will include special tools for lifting jars in and out of boiling water and pouring hot liquid into the jars. “The Ball Blue Book” is the Bible of canning. Buy one and you will find not only recipes, but also information behind the science and techniques of the canning. Follow directions exactly. Other tips?

Strawberry freezer jam is perfect for beginners.

Sandra Macfarlane ’82 grew up on a dairy farm in Troy, near Mansfield. She spent many hours in the kitchen with her mother and grandmother preserving the harvest from her family’s large garden. She was not happy about it. “I did not enjoy canning when I was a child,” she said. Now, however, she is practically a canning evangelist and has taught a group of friends her ways in the kitchen. Those friends are the backbone of the Rocky Ridge Canning Club, which meets several times a summer and into the fall to create large 28 PORTRAITS

batches of jams, jellies, salsa, spaghetti sauce, pickled peppers, applesauce and more. According to a study conducted by the Ball brand of mason jars, canning is becoming more popular among baby boomers, who have the time to do it, and millennials, who would rather make fresh foods. We asked Macfarlane how to try it. If someone has never canned before, where is a good place to start?

You cannot cut corners. Do not try to double a batch or substitute one thing for another. Wash the fruit before beginning. Always wash the jars and keep hot before using; keep the lids in boiling water. Never use fake sweeteners, and make sure the pectin has not expired. I always seal the jars in a hot water bath whether or not the recipe calls for it. Wipe the lip of the jar before sealing to make sure “Follow the that the seal is recipe. Don’t good. The jars must be fully improvise.” covered in the hot water bath. What do you do with all your canned goods?

Eat them! We haven’t purchased spaghetti sauce in years. I also give a lot away as gifts and as auction items for charity events. I just enjoy making things.

Strawberry freezer jam is the perfect spring/summer 2019


James Crescenzi ’20 experiences virtual reality in the lab you helped to provide.

Maya Bingaman ’19 traveled to Peru, an experience that would have been impossible without you.

Jessica Jordan ’21 thanks you every time she steps out on the renovated tennis courts.

Karman Masown ’19 presented his research at a national conference, thanks to you.

Your gift today to the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford will give students the chance to create their own unique Pitt-Bradford experience. Thank you for believing in the possibilities!


Office of Institutional Advancement 300 Campus Drive Bradford, PA 16701 ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED

Tyler Morris, a computer information systems and technology major from Bradford, accepted his diploma from Dr. Larry Feick in April. After beginning work toward his degree at Pitt-Bradford in 2011, he was diagnosed with a chronic illness, myasthenia gravis, which weakened all of his muscles. He had to cut back to taking classes part time, but graduated in December, having served as president and co-founder of the Pride Alliance and as an ambassador for the Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation.


Profile for Portraits Magazine

Portraits Magazine -- Spring-Summer 2019