April 12, 2007


  1. University to focus on Franciscan heritage during Commencement Exercises 2007
  2. First-Year Experience director, assistant director named
  3. Mark Schmidt named men's basketball coach
  4. Five education majors make a difference in the Bahamas
  5. Study abroad program members attend peace conference in Assisi
  6. Two professors awarded Fulbright grants to teach abroad
  7. Newsmakers
  8. Friday Forum
  9. Career Center



University to focus on Franciscan heritage during Commencement Exercises 2007

St. Bonaventure University’s chapter of Students in Free Enterprise is heading to the nationals for the fourth consecutive year.

The team presented at the regional competition March 26 in Brooklyn, where teams from 21 colleges and universities, divided into five leagues, competed. The top two teams in each league qualified for the national competition May 6-8 in Dallas.

Thirty-five members of SBU’s chapter attended the competition with five of them presenting to a panel of judges: Claire Collins, senior education major of Corning, N.Y. and co-president of SIFE; Diana Keller, junior marketing major of Hilton, N.Y.; Sara McCue senior finance and accounting major of Newark, N.Y.; Brendan Keating, junior marketing and management major of Buffalo, N.Y.; and Andrew Mantilia, junior business information systems major of New Canaan, Conn.

The team did a 23-minute presentation that covered the various projects and activities the organization did during the school year, including the group’s Bahamas service and entrepreneurial trip in January; local area projects, such as teaching computer skills to children and adults; and working the St. Bonaventure Shootout (women’s basketball tournament) held in Corning.

“Winning regionals for the fourth year in a row was really an amazing experience,” Collins said. “I'm very proud of what our SIFE team has accomplished this year both on all our individual projects and at the competition. I feel very honored to be part of such a prestigious group and hope our luck continues at nationals.”

Dr. Todd Palmer, assistant professor of management Sciences and adviser to SIFE, said the win at regionals was very satisfying for him and the members and was a deserving award for all the group’s hard work this year.

“This was by far the best presentation I’ve seen since I started SIFE here and certainly some of the hardest working kids I’ve had,” he said. “There was so much we did this year both locally and internationally.

“But the work isn’t done yet. We are definitely a top-20 team in the country and hopefully we can prove that in Dallas.”

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First-Year Experience director, assistant director named

The inaugural director and assistant director of St. Bonaventure University’s First-Year Experience (FYE) program have been named, announced Dr. Michael J. Fischer, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

Dr. Nancy Casey and Christopher Brown were named the director and assistant director, respectively. Both have worked with the FYE Council and played an active role in developing the program.

“I am so pleased that Nancy Casey and Chris Brown will be leading the First-Year Experience program to its next level of success,” said Fischer. “They both have already contributed greatly to ensure that St. Bonaventure’s new students transition smoothly from high school to college life.”

The FYE program is designed to help students achieve academic, social, spiritual and personal success. Integrated learning and living programs fully engage freshmen in the life of the University.

“The idea is to support students as they make this very challenging and important transition,” Casey explained. “The idea of the First-Year Experience program is for us as a University to take a look at what we offer students that will promote success.”

Casey has been an associate professor of education at the University since 1989, and she received the Faculty Recognition Award for Excellence in Teaching 2004. She also is the chair of the Department of Elementary Education and has taught a variety of courses, ranging from Instructional Design to Methods of Reading and Language Arts.

Casey holds a bachelor’s degree from the College of St. Elizabeth, a master’s degree from Rutgers University, and a doctorate from the Teachers College at Columbia University. Her own background as an educator and the challenge of developing a working program to help freshmen played key roles in Casey’s decision to apply for the position.

“This work is very much in line with what I’ve focused on as an educator, but now I am coming at it from a different perspective. At this point and time, I thought I would have something to offer the University in terms of my understanding of student development and learning,” Casey said. She will continue to hold a faculty position in the School of Education.

Casey has worked as a member of the FYE Council since its formation in January 2006. As director of the program, Casey will collaborate with the council on the status and future of the program. The director acts as a coordinator of the council, which consists of faculty, staff, administration and students.

“We (Casey and Brown) coordinate on all fronts, on program design and on program implementation,” Casey said. “We will do much of the nitty-gritty, day-to-day work. We’re assessing what we’re doing and making sure that we’re constantly making data-driven decisions.”

The director will also collaborate with academic deans, Clare College, department chairs and faculty to develop learning communities and programming for first-year students. Acting as a liaison for the FYE with the admissions and advancement offices is also among the director’s duties.

Brown will serve as the assistant director of the FYE program. Brown has served as the residence director for Shay/Loughlen halls since July 2004. He also was recently appointed interim associate director of Residence Life.

Brown earned a bachelor’s degree in religious studies from College of the Holy Cross in May 2004 and is pursuing a master’s in business administration at St. Bonaventure.

As assistant director, Brown will collaborate with the Student Life division to develop and organize programming that supports an academic environment. He will also assume major responsibility for planning and running the University’s Freshmen Orientation and Welcome Days programs.

“When the position opened, I thought it was a natural fit to my own personal interests and the involvement that I have chosen in my career here,” Brown said. “As the opportunity to develop this program grew, I became more and more interested in throwing myself into first-year student development from the student life perspective. I want to focus on what we can do to better support our freshmen and to ease their transition into the University.”

Since arriving at St. Bonaventure, Brown has been involved with the growth and development of new students. Brown organized the new student orientation program during the summers of 2005 and 2006. He enhanced the program schedule to integrate academic, spiritual and student living opportunities of the University.

Brown is a member of the First-Year Experience Council and focuses primarily on first-year residence halls and programming. He helped design the FYE mentor position and trained the student mentors. The 15 mentors serve as role models for freshmen and work with resident assistants to offer social programs and academic guidance.

“I think that our freshmen are the ones that are at the highest risk to struggle academically and socially,” Brown said. “The more we can specifically target our support for the freshmen and anticipate the issues they are going to have, the better we will be able to help them build a strong foundation they can integrate into the rest of their four years.”

Both Casey and Brown say there will be continued growth and change for FYE in the future. The changes will be made in conjunction with data gathered about the program’s success during the 2006-2007 academic year. Brown said his main focus is to examine what went well in the program while also examining what could be improved.

“My main goal is to continue to improve the training of our student staff and also to work on developing the FYE mentor position. It’s an evolving position because it is brand new, and I think it has made big strides in the past year,” Brown explained. “We’re encouraged and believe that the mentor position will continue to grow.”

Casey’s philosophy is that when you try new things, one attempt is not enough. If something does not work the first time, it is important to find out why and then make appropriate changes.

“Our plans are to tweak the things that we started with this year and make them more robust for next year,” Casey said. “The First-Year Experience at St. Bonaventure is not something that is set in stone. It will evolve based on our data and on our students.”

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Mark Schmidt named men's basketball coach

Mark Schmidt has been named men's basketball coach at St. Bonaventure University.

A proven head coach, Schmidt led Robert Morris University to back-to-back winning records the past two seasons, including a 17-11 mark in 2006-07.

Schmidt is the 19th head coach in St. Bonaventure's 87-year men's basketball history.

"We are thrilled to have Mark Schmidt as our new men's basketball coach," said St. Bonaventure Director of Athletics Steve Watson. "He is a proven, successful head coach who impressed us with his attitude, desire and passion. His teams at Robert Morris were known for how hard they played as well as how they improved. Mark also has a firm understanding of what it takes to compete and win in the Atlantic 10 Conference. We welcome Mark and his family into the St. Bonaventure family."

"I commend Steve Watson for his success in recruiting a coach of Mark Schmidt's caliber," said Sr. Margaret Carney, O.S.F., S.T.D., president of the University. "We are pleased to welcome coach Schmidt to the campus and community."

Schmidt served as the head coach at Robert Morris the past six seasons. There, he inherited a program that had managed just a 7-22 record in the season before his arrival. Schmidt quickly turned things around, leading the Colonials to the Northeast Conference Tournament semifinals in 2004 and 2006. During his six seasons at RMU, he had an overall record of 82-90, including a 15-14 mark in 2005-06, the program's first winning season since 2000. Schmidt turned the Colonials into a year-in and year-out contender in the conference, posting a 58-52 mark in league play highlighted by four seasons of 10 or more wins.

Schmidt coached six NEC All-Conference players at RMU, along with three All-Rookie team selections and one Conference Rookie of the Year in Jeremy Chappell in 2006.

Prior to Robert Morris, Schmidt spent seven seasons as an assistant coach at Xavier University under current Wake Forest head coach Skip Prosser. Schmidt served as the program's top recruiter, landing future NBA players Torraye Braggs (Houston Rockets), Lionel Chalmers (Minnesota Timberwolves), James Posey (Miami Heat), Romain Sato (San Antonio Spurs) and David West (New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets). With most of his coaching responsibilities centered around the post players, Schmidt helped develop West into a three-time Atlantic 10 Player of the Year and the National Player of the Year in 2003.

Schmidt helped lead the Musketeers to four NCAA Tournament appearances and the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) twice. Xavier claimed the Atlantic 10 West Division title in 1996-97 and both the West Division and tournament championships in 1997-98. In 1997, Xavier defeated Vanderbilt in the first round of the NCAA Tournament and finished the season with the school's highest Associated Press ranking at No. 13. The Musketeers made it to the NIT Final Four at Madison Square Garden in 1999, finishing third, the school's best finish since 1958.

Schmidt served as an assistant under Prosser at Loyola College during the 1993-94 season. He helped guide the Greyhounds to the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament title and the school's first-ever NCAA Tournament berth.

From 1991-93, Schmidt was an assistant at Penn State University under Bruce Parkhill. The Nittany Lions went 21-8 in 1992 and appeared in the NIT. Schmidt's coaching career began with a two-year stint as an assistant at St. Michael's College in Vermont.

Schmidt played four seasons at Boston College, where he received his bachelor's degree in business administration and management with a concentration in marketing. In his freshman season under head coach Tom Davis, the Eagles went 22-10 and made the NCAA Elite Eight. Schmidt played his final three years under the guidance of head coach Gary Williams. Boston College advanced to the NIT in 1984 and the NCAA Sweet Sixteen the other two years.

A native of Providence, R.I., Schmidt and his wife Anita have three sons, Nicholas (11), Derek (9) and Michael (6).

At St. Bonaventure, Schmidt inherits a team that finished 7-22 this past season. Five scholarship players from that team are expected back: guard Tyler Relph and forward Michael Lee, who will be seniors; small forwards A.J. Hawkins and Tyler Benson, who will be juniors, and power forward Jourdan Morris, who will be a sophomore.

Schmidt succeeds Anthony Solomon, who coached the Bonnies the past four years.

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Five education majors make a difference in the Bahamas

For seven weeks, the beach, palm trees, dolphins and straw markets became daily sights for five St. Bonaventure University students.

Sara Pancio of Olean, Jackie Mathis of Lawtons, N.Y., Kim Phillips of Victor, N.Y., Colleen Irving of Rochester and Katie Vorndran of Gibsonia, Pa., were selected to student-teach at two Catholic elementary schools in the Grand Bahama Island during the spring semester. All five students are seniors selected from 11 education majors who applied for the program.

Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) adviser Todd Palmer, associate professor of management sciences, and Leslie Chambers, a faculty member in the School of Education, worked with Director of Field Activities Julie Hall to develop the program and encouraged the five students to be its first participants.

The five seniors arrived at the Bahamas on Jan. 4 as part of a SIFE relief trip. They stayed behind when the SIFE volunteers left on Jan. 13, participating in the SIFE program teaching business skills in Bahamian schools for a week.

The students then arrived at their main destination: St. Vincent De Paul and Mary Star Primary schools. They taught basic reading, writing, mathematics and religion to the students. They also planned recreational activities, such as a day dedicated to sporting events.

At the schools, the college students developed their own motto for trip: “We’ll sleep when we get back to New York.”

The students spent their two remaining months teaching in their own classrooms and developing many of their own resources. The children did not have a lot of resources to begin with, and many of the seniors’ teaching lessons were hand-written and cut out.

“Bring as many resource as possible, even if it’s a children’s book, because they don’t have them,” Irving recommended to future program participants. “The kids go nuts over them. They don’t have a library.”

“The teacher should be prepared to make everything,” Pancio said. “Not only visuals, but worksheets for the class.” The school only had nine computers for its entire student body. Handwriting 30 copies of one worksheet became normal for the seniors.

“We didn’t have a printer with ink until the seventh week,” Phillips said. “We had to be very inventive.” Each senior also had the opportunity to bring her class on a field trip. Vordran took her class to learn about straw weaving in the Bahamian culture. After cramming 25 students into one van, Vordran and her class went on their way to the pine forests.

“We had straw weavers come into the class before to teach us about weaving,” Vordran said. “Then we went to the straw weaving market, so we saw all aspects of it. The students thought it was great, and they thought nothing of crowding into the van to go on a field trip.”

Pancio loved the friendly environment of her school. She said students would go as far as opening doors and taking bags for her.

“The people there are amazing. They are so welcoming and inviting,” Pancio said. “They are truly the best people you will meet. Even the kids are amazing. They are so grateful and polite.”

The seniors also helped rebuild an after-school youth center in the poverty-stricken community of Hunters. The center staff provided homework help and recreational activities for students in the Bahamas. These students previously did not have such offerings in their neighborhood.

The center building had been destroyed by a hurricane two years ago, but the Rotary Club donated $25,000 to help rebuild it. For the first five weeks, the seniors painted the building’s walls, swept sawdust out of it, fixed bullet holes in the windows, brought in furniture, and hooked up computers.

“We worked really long and hard on this,” Phillips said. “[The Rotary Club] couldn’t believe people from the United States care more about the future of their children than some of the people there do.”

The seniors are currently planning a summer program at the rebuilt center. After the seniors left, nobody was available to continue running center activities. The five proposed to the Rotary Club a program from June 10 to Aug. 18 that would run five days a week.

Dr. Peggy Burke, dean of the School of Education, visited the seniors during their last week of student teaching. On their final day of teaching, the student-teachers participated in a feast members of their classroom community had put together for them. The financial sacrifice of preparing these meals by people who had so little money let Burke know that they had done the right thing.

“Their teachers were very sad to see them go,” Burke said. “Every one of the teachers we talked to wants another St. Bonaventure student teacher. Every principal said they were wonderful.”

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Study abroad program members attend peace conference in Assisi

On March 17, members of St. Bonaventure University's Franciscan Heritage Program participated in a roundtable discussion, "The War in Iraq: A Challenge to Christians."

The conference was organized by Rev. Adam Bunnell, O.F.M. Conv., the director of the Franciscan International Centre for Dialogue in Assisi. Presenters included Catholic Peace Fellowship (CPF) founder Tom Cornell, Mike Griffin (also part of CPF) and Iraq war veteran, Joshua Casteel, who had been an interrogator at Abu Ghraib.

The three speakers were fresh from a visit to the Vatican in Rome, where they had shared with Pope Benedict their experience working with Catholic conscientious objectors and to urge stronger support for them and their opposition to war.

The Franciscan Heritage Program (FHP) was represented by Dr. Michael Chiariello, program director, as well as several students in his course on the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition.

The Franciscan Heritage Program is a semester study abroad program at the Umbra Institute in Perugia, Italy, sponsored by St. Bonaventure University. For more information, contact Chiariello at mchiarie@sbu.edu or visit www.sbu.edu/italystudy.

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Two professors awarded Fulbright grants to teach abroad

Two St. Bonaventure University professors have been awarded grants from the prestigious Fulbright Scholar Program to share their areas of expertise abroad during the 2007-2008 academic year.

The recipients — Dr. Patrick K. Dooley and Dr. Christopher D. Stanley — are the University’s first Traditional Fulbright Fellows.

“This recognition of not one, but two, distinguished faculty members further exemplifies the tremendous quality of our faculty,” said Dr. Michael Fischer, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

“We couldn’t be happier for Dr. Dooley and Dr. Stanley for their accomplishments and recognition. I’m sure the students fortunate enough to have them in class in Singapore and Ireland will reap the benefits Bonaventure students have enjoyed for so many years,” Fischer said.

Dooley, the Distinguished University Board of Trustees Professor of Philosophy at St. Bonaventure, has taught at the University since 1969. His grant is in the English department at the Nunyang Technological University in Singapore, where he’ll be teaching in the department’s American Studies concentration.

Nunyang is transforming itself from a technical to a comprehensive university and the first area to strengthen is in the humanities. The English department’s strength currently is in English as opposed to American literature. During his four-and-a-half months at the university, Dooley will be teaching one section of American Literature Survey, lecturing and advising master’s level students in American Studies, and working with the department on curriculum matters in American Literature and American Studies.

Dooley plans to utilize several chapters from his upcoming book as the basis for lectures. “A Community of Inquiry: Conversations between American Literature and Classical American Philosophy” will be published this summer.

Since 1980, when three of his articles on Henry David Thoreau, Nathanial Hawthorne and William Dean Howells were published, Dooley has been hard at work examining the fertile and fascinating overlap between philosophy and literature.

“My Fulbright project amounts to extending the rippling effect and further spreading the good news that there is much to be gained by both philosophy and literature by reading these two disciplines in tandem,” Dooley said.

Dooley is the recipient of a number of grants and honors and is the vice president (and president-elect) of the Stephen Crane Society. From 1996 to 1999, Dooley was the Distinguished Visiting Professor of English and Philosophy at the United States Air Force Academy.

He has authored four books, more than 75 articles and dozens of book reviews. He has delivered more than 125 papers at regional, national and international meetings, most recently at the American Philosophical Association Eastern Conference and the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy. In May, he will present “Dorothea Lange and John Steinbeck: Concrete Lessons in Treating Marginalized Persons Properly” at the annual meeting of the American Literature Association; and in October will present “Are All Religious Experiences on Par: Religion and the Sacred in Willa Cather and William James” at the annual conference of the Western American Literature Association.

Dooley joined St. Bonaventure as an assistant professor of philosophy in 1969, was named an associate professor in 1973 and became a full professor in 1977. He holds a Ph.D. and master’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and a bachelor’s degree from St. Paul College and Seminary.

Dooley’s appointment in Singapore begins in January 2008.

Dr. Christopher D. Stanley, professor of theology, will spend the fall semester of 2007 in Limerick, Ireland. While in Ireland, Stanley will teach an undergraduate course at Mary Immaculate College, an affiliate of the University of Limerick, and supervise the research of Ph.D. students at the Dominican Biblical Institute, another program associated with the university.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to spend time with students from another culture who are pursuing degrees in theology and religious studies,” said Stanley. “I’m especially eager to work with the Ph.D. students.”

In addition to his teaching duties, Stanley will assist the staff of the Dominican Biblical Institute in developing and recruiting students for their graduate program in biblical studies. The Institute is one of two programs in Ireland that offers a master’s degree in biblical studies.

“I am excited to be able to play a role in developing a program that will attract students from across Ireland and around the world,” Stanley said.

The grant also calls for Stanley to organize non-credit lay education classes and speakers for residents of the Limerick area and to create a summer program that will equip high school religion teachers from across the country to teach the biblical segment of a new national religious education curriculum.

Stanley is the author of three books and numerous scholarly articles and reviews on the social history of early Christianity. His first two books have become standard reference works for scholars who study the apostle Paul’s use of Scripture. His most recent book, “The Hebrew Bible: A Comparative Approach,” will be published by Prentice Hall in November.

He has presented papers and given talks at conferences, universities, seminaries, and churches around the world, including South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, and Ireland. He has also taught summer graduate courses in Vancouver, Canada, and Auckland, New Zealand. This coming summer he is scheduled to deliver papers at professional conferences in Vienna, Austria, and Sibiu, Romania.

Stanley holds a Ph.D. in religion from Duke University, a master’s degree in Christian Studies from Regent College in Vancouver, Canada, and a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Virginia. In 2005 he was elected to membership in the Studiorum Societas Novi Testamenti, an elite international organization of New Testament scholars. He is a member of the St. Bonaventure Faculty Senate and chairs its Enrollment Management Committee.

For more than 50 years, the Council for International Exchange of Scholars has helped administer the Fulbright Scholar Program, the U.S. government’s flagship academic exchange effort, on behalf of the United States Department of State. Dooley and Stanley are two of approximately 800 American faculty and professionals who will travel abroad through the Fulbright Scholars Program.

In 2005, Dr. Charles Gannon, associate professor of English at St. Bonaventure, received a Fulbright Senior Specialists grant to teach at Palacky University in the Czech Republic.

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Dr. Alva Cellini, professor of Spanish, and Dr. Lauren De La Vars, associate professor of English, presented papers at the conference on Humor and Laughter in Literature and Film at Binghamton University on March 24, 2007. Cellini’s presentation, “Anti-Analysis of Nicanor Parra’s Poems,” discussed humorous elements in the work of the contemporary Chilean poet. De La Vars spoke on “Ironic Imperialists in Kipling’s Indian Gothic Fiction,” focusing on narrative ambivalence and detachment in two stories from the 1890s, “The Man Who Would Be King” and “The Mark of the Beast.”

Dr. Anne Foerst, professor of theology and computer science, will be giving two upcoming talks. On April 12, 2007, she was invited to give the lecture “Are Robots Part of the Covenant?” at the Center for the Study of Science and Religion at Columbia University, New York, N.Y. On April 19, 2007, Foerst will give the keynote lecture, “The Generation Gap in the Internet,” at the Internet Global Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

Darwin L. King, professor of accounting, and Dr. Carl J. Case, professor of management science, had a paper titled "A Brief History of the United States Auditor's Report" published in the Business Research Yearbook. This journal is published annually by the International Academy of Business Disciplines (IABD). The paper was also presented at the 19th Annual Meeting of the IABD held in Orlando, Fla., on March 29, 2007.

Dr. John Mulryan, Board of Trustees Professor of English, delivered a paper on alchemy and classical mythology at the Renaissance Society of America conference, which met in Miami, Fla., on March 22-24, 2007.


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Join us for next week's FRIDAY FORUM!

All SBU faculty, staff and administrators are welcome to all the Friday Forums.

Date: Friday,April 13, 2007
Speakers: John Mulryan and Steve Brown
Time: Lunch starts at noon, Forum goes from 12:35 to 1:30 p.m., including Q&A
Place: University Club - Above Hickey; please sign in and pay $3 at the front desk before proceeding upstairs.
Title: “The Big Book: Thirty-Five Years in the Making.”


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Career Center news...

Check out details concerning skill-building video workshops, on-campus recruiting and more. For more information visit our Web site.


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