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From the Alumni Association:

Mary Small Poore, President—Alumni Association Board of Directors
Mary Small Poore, President—Alumni Association Board of Directors

Harness Your Potential

I have had the privilege of participating in the SHU First Year Experience (FYE) dinner-and-book discussion for the past four years. Annually, FYE students are instructed to read a particular book over the summer and write a paper in response. During Welcome Week, the students meet in a faculty home with their FYE instructor to share dinner and their thoughts on the book. Alumni have been invited to participate the past several years—and this is one of my favorite alumni activities. Not only do I feel like a college student again () but this experience re-energizes my faith in younger generations. These students give me so much hope for the future! They never fail to impress me with their thoughts, insights and energy. This year was no exception. It also warmed my heart to see their interest in meeting me and hearing my alumni story. They recognized that many alumni have given time, talent and treasure to make Siena Heights the university it is today. I have never heard so much gratitude from incoming students. I was humbled.

I share this because I want you to know the difference you can make in the lives of our current and prospective students. Try something simple like wearing alumni gear in your community or using a Siena coffee mug in your office; you’ll be surprised at the conversations you spark and the SHU ambassador you become. You could serve as an active Alumni Association Board member, coming to campus several times a year to promote activities that engage alumni with their alma mater. You might connect with former faculty or staff and offer to be a mentor to current students, or speak to a class about how Siena Heights has influenced your experience, personally and professionally. Perhaps, as you look to hire someone, you would consider contacting the SHU Career Development Office—where you might find that graduating senior who is a perfect fit for your business.

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From the Heights—Fall 2014 Campus News

Siena Heights Spanish Students Featured in Chicago Tribune

A group of SHU Spanish students and “Maestro” (A.K.A. Associate Professor of Spanish) Nick Kaplan (below) were featured last spring in the Chicago Tribune after completing the Fox River Taco Challenge. Maestro Kaplan and Siena alumnus Lee Rincon invented the challenge based on an article written by Tribune writer Kevin Pang. Following a map of taquerías (taco restaurants) along the Fox River (west of Chicago), the students ate one taco at each of the 11 restaurants before returning to Siena.

Siena Serves Group Travels to Jamaica

A group of five students and two advisors from Siena Serves traveled to St. John Bosco Home for boys in Jamaica in May. Bosco is a home for orphaned and homeless boys. Karin Barbee Has Two Poems Published Assistant Professor of English Karin Wraley Barbee recently published two poems, “The Young Pictographer” and “Diving Lessons,” in the Spring 2014 issue of “Natural Bridge: A Journal of Contemporary Literature.” Natural Bridge is a publication of the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Rickinger Named New Director of Residence Life

SHU named Rachel Rickinger as its new director of Residence Life. Rachel previously served as a residential learning coordinator at Valparaiso University. She began at SHU June 16.

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Rising Stars—Fall 2014

“Rising Stars” is a new feature in Reflections. It profiles Siena Heights University alumni who have graduated within the past 10 years and who excel in their careers, occupations or community service accomplishments. To be considered for the “Rising Stars” piece in an upcoming issue of Reflections Magazine, please fill out the online form at Those who are selected to be included in an upcoming issue of the magazine will be contacted by the Reflections staff.

Amy Francoeur

Graduation year: 2009

Current title/position: Hospice Regional Director, Great Lakes Caring.

What Amy is doing: A Registered Nurse, she received an offer to join Great Lakes Caring’s sales/marketing team in 2007. As a Patient Care Coordinator for its Adrian branch location, she worked with the community, physicians and healthcare facilities to educate and coordinate medical home health care services. In January 2013, she was promoted to Sales Training Team Leader, and was given the opportunity to facilitate the training and onboarding of new and current sales team members. In August 2013 she was again was promoted to Manager of Business Development for GLC’s Jackson and Adrian sales teams. During her time working in Lenawee County, she has had the privilege of working with older adult population, their families and health care providers. She has been active member of the Lenawee Department on Aging’s Older Adult Coalition, chairing the Selma Larson Caregiver Conference since 2008. She also is a member of the Walk to End Alzheimer’s Committee, a Board Member of Daybreak Adult Day Services, volunteer at numerous Lenawee County Senior Center activities and is an active member of the Adrian Chamber of Commerce. In April 2014, she received another promotion to her current position for HLC’s Ohio operations. She said “it is truly an honor and a privilege to be part of such a quality, innovative and caring company.”

Favorite moment/story while a student at SHU was: The flexibility of Distance Learning allowed me to “attend” my classes anywhere, even while on vacation in Las Vegas!

Favorite person at SHU was: Former Director of Academic Advising, Rene Teater.

Ultimate goal in life: To educate everyone on what the Hospice benefit is and how it helps patients and their loved ones at the end of life so that the word is no longer feared by those who hear it, but rather embraced.

Best advice for SHU students is: Never pass up an opportunity to learn. Set goals and work hard to achieve them. You can do anything you set your mind to!

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