University Celebrates 90 Years of Tradition

Brittany Hayes, Web Editor

Misericordia faculty and staff are making the 90th anniversary of the university a year to remember.

Sister Jean Messaros, Vice President for Mission Integration, formed a committee last year to ensure events  appeal to all. Members of faculty, mission integration, student affairs, athletics, student government, public relations, campus ministry and  alumni directors are involved.

Darcy Brodmerkel, Director of Student Activities, said a celebration in honor of the Sisters of Mercy will take place on the university’s 90th birthday.

“They are going to be dedicating the Founder’s Circle and the 90th celebration. We are the oldest institution in the area, so 90 years of this university…is a great tribute to this particular area, to the Sisters of Mercy, and to those who have graduated from here or have worked here over the course of the years,” said Brodmerkel.

Following this dedication, a birthday celebration will be open to the public  in the lobby of  the Banks Student Life Center  – complete with cake.

Temple Grandin, a professor of animal science, author and  expert on autism will be the special keynote speaker.   She has discovered types of animal therapies and has been the subject of a feature film.

Brodmerkel said Grandin is an inspiration to many because she has pushed past what some might call a disability to earn a doctorate degree.

“She went on to achieve her degrees, has a Ph.D. and by studying cows and horses, she has come up with different ways of dealing and treating autism.  But she has just been such an inspiration to so many people particularly because autism is such a hot topic anymore with so many children being diagnosed,  so that is going to be a really big event here.”

The lecture and book signing will take place on Wednesday, November 5 at 7:30 p.m. Due to limited seating, tickets are required.

“Those tickets are going to be distributed so students will get first crack at them and then it will be open to the general public. It’s going to be free. In light of having her come and speak here, I have purchased her movie about her life that I plan on showing in the auditorium a few times before she comes here so students are aware of her accomplishments,” said Brodmerkel.

Also in honor of the 90th anniversary,  there will be a “Throwback to the 90’s” dance, sponsored by the Student Government Association,  as well as other slated programs.

“There’s going to be several events such as a faculty panel discussion about the different things that the Sisters of Mercy really focus on. That panel has been selected. There’s also going to be a panel of former faculty that will be coming back, some of them I know, some of them I don’t, but I’m sure that they are all going to have something wonderful to say about this. It gives an opportunity for people to experience what it was like,” said Brodmerkel.

Alumni Relations is offering events for graduates.

“Alumni are invited to every event that will occur throughout the year. They have all received the Misericordia Today summer edition, which has a full list of events in it. They are invited back to campus to celebrate homecoming and alumni weekend 2015 plus events that we will be having throughout the entire year to celebrate. We have an alumni trip to Europe, we have a bus trip in December, so there will be special events all year-long encouraging them to stop by and interact with us,” said Assistant Director of Alumni Relations Amy Lingobardo.

Lingobardo believes alumni will increase their involvement this year so they can honor the Sisters of Mercy and their Alma Mater.

“With the 90th anniversary it’s really a nice time to reflect and invite them back in a very different and special way which honors their time here. It pays tribute to the university and to the Sisters of Mercy who gave so generously to build this great place which they hold so dear in their hearts.”

MU is also dedicating the 24th day of each month as Random Act of Kindness Day. This could be any kind deed, big or little, to give back to the community. Staffers will keep track of these random acts of kindness throughout the year with the hashtag #MUKindActs.

“We’re asking that it could something small, something big – you can buy a coffee for somebody behind you at Dunkin Donuts, you can do a lottery ticket, volunteer – anything really,” said Lingobardo.

Lingobardo started her random act of kindness locally by placing coupons at local supermarkets.

“On August 24th, I took random act of kindness coupons and paired them with regular coupons around Weis Markets, for things that I couldn’t use but I knew someone else would be able to. So just things like that to show who Misericordia really is.”

Brodmerkel said this year is meant to celebrate alumni, current students, and faculty who think of Misericordia as a home.

“This year there’s several people who have been here 35 years, one person who has been here 40 years. That’s the thing about Misericordia, for many of us, we get here and we stay here. It becomes a home to us.”

A full list of 90th anniversary events is in the summer issue of Misericordia Today and on the student portal under Campus Calendar.

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