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2012 Alumni Stars

Making the World a Better Place

Recent Graduate Award
Lacey Wilmot Rao ’02
Lacey Wilmot Rao ’02

Lacey Wilmot Rao ’02
An orthopedic surgeon and active community volunteer in Tucson, AZ, Lacey credited Siena Heights with some important lessons. “You don’t go to college to learn ‘things,’ you go to learn how to learn,” she said, noting how quickly things change in medicine. “The faculty at Siena do a tremendous job of teaching more than facts; they teach you how to seek knowledge. I encourage today’s students to remember that much of what we know now will change. Try to focus on refining how to think and learn, as opposed to only memorizing facts.” Her experiences as a student and athlete at SHU taught her that “working hard, knowing how to think, and working well with others will make you successful in life. But what will make you happy? The simple answer is, doing what you love and sharing your talents with the world. Choose to do the thing that excites you, that makes you feel proud of your work, and that makes you smile.”

Traci Stewart ‘02
Traci Stewart ‘02

Traci Stewart ‘02
An advance practice nurse and doctoral candidate in Northville, MI, Traci majored in biology at Siena, certain she wanted to be a doctor despite her frustration with senior research. “On a few occasions, Prof. Carl Kaster, who knew me well, mentioned there were other things I could do with a biology degree, but I had my mind set. But it turned out medical school was not for me and I did not want to be a doctor. Not until I was sitting in a research nursing class did it hit me: ‘I understand what they are talking about—this is how you use research in the real world—and I like it!’ Suddenly, all the hours spent on my senior project became useful and everything I had learned working toward my biology degree was applicable. All those experiences formed a strong foundation—strong enough to make me successful now as a nurse practitioner and in the future as I continue my work—and research!—in women’s health and health care disparities.”

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From the Heights—Spring 2013 Campus News

Siena Bids Farewell to Longtime Employees

Siena Heights University bids farewell to several longtime employees who are retiring or moving on to different careers.

Pat Palmer is retiring in June after more than 30 years at Siena Heights. He has served the University in many ways over the years, including as a coach, athletic director, faculty member, dean and most recently as the vice president of Enrollment Management.
Pat Palmer is retiring in June after more than 30 years at Siena Heights. He has served the University in many ways over the years, including as a coach, athletic director, faculty member, dean and most recently as the vice president of Enrollment Management.

English faculty member Saleem Peeradina retired in December 2012 after more than 23 years at SHU.
English faculty member Saleem Peeradina retired in December 2012 after more than 23 years at SHU.

Rick Smith retired in March 2013 as director of the custodial staff after more than 10 years at SHU.
Rick Smith retired in March 2013 as director of the custodial staff after more than 10 years at SHU.

Director of Admissions Sara Johnson ‘02 took a new position at Jackson Community College after nine years of working in the Siena Heights Admissions Office.
Director of Admissions Sara Johnson ‘02 took a new position at Jackson Community College after nine years of working in the Siena Heights Admissions Office.

 

 

SHU Chaplain Father Tom Helfrich is also leaving the University after accepting his new role as pastor of St. Rita’s Catholic Church in Clarklake, Mich.
SHU Chaplain Father Tom Helfrich is also leaving the University after accepting his new role as pastor of St. Rita’s Catholic Church in Clarklake, Mich.
Anne Hooghart is also pursuing a different career path after serving as a faculty member and most recently as dean of the SHU Graduate College.
Anne Hooghart is also pursuing a different career path after serving as a faculty member and most recently as dean of the SHU Graduate College.

English faculty member Davin Heckman is leaving SHU after accepting a similar position at Winona State (Minn.) University.
English faculty member Davin Heckman is leaving SHU after accepting a similar position at Winona State (Minn.) University.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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