Misericordia Welcomes First COVID Compliance and Testing Coordinator


Alyssa Stegura, Reporter

Kyle Kenney, a recent Misericordia University graduate, has been named the university’s first COVID Compliance and Testing Coordinator.

Kennedy received a Bachelor of Science in Biology degree with minors in Chemistry and Philosophy in May 2021.

Being a Misericordia alum and employee of the university means so much to Kenney.

“First, it demonstrates the education and skills that I obtained during my time at Misericordia satisfies essential requirements employers are looking for which is reassuring me I made a beneficial choice for my undergraduate,” said Kenney.

This job is helping open Kenney’s eyes to what he wants to do in life, whether it be in research or teaching.

“Working on campus is great since I’m familiar with the people, places, and campus environments which reduces stress,” he said.

Kenney is grateful to Misericordia for this opportunity to give back to the university.

“Helping the school and community after it supported me for four years feels like a great honor,” he said.

There are many tasks involved with being a COVID Compliance and Testing Coordinator, whether it is working with the COVID surveillance lab, working with the Cougar Care Team or monitoring the health and safety of everyone on campus.

“On a typical day, I am running samples from King’s and Misericordia in the lab with student helpers, as well as interacting with the community in the sample collection center, reporting results in the medical database, and doing contact tracing,” said Kenney.

This is a new job title to Misericordia as well as a new responsibility for Kenney. Prior to taking on this position, he worked as one of the first three students helping to establish a COVID-19 surveillance lab last spring. He has been actively involved in helping protect and test the campus university so the community can have a safe year.

“When I worked in the lab as an undergrad, I was tasked with testing the students, staff, faculty at Misericordia as well as King’s College athletes,” he said.

Kenney is used to running samples between the campuses of Misericordia and King’s College and explained how he enjoys his job immensely.

“I really enjoyed taking part in this work since it was relevant to my field and I felt like I was providing a huge contribution to my community,” he said.

Kenney is grateful for this job and how the opportunity to help Misericordia was a no-brainer. While this job is very time consuming, there is no doubt Kenney puts his all into it and is willing to lend a helping hand when needed.

Kenney has many hopes for this job and sees this experience as allowing  him to learn and grow.

“I hope with this position I’m able to grow more as a professional, specifically by refining my lab techniques and developing better communication skills,” he said.

Kenney is also interested in becoming more knowledgeable about public health.

“I would also like to learn more about public health since it is such a crucial and interdisciplinary field,” he said.

He is taking the crucial lessons he learned at Misericordia and applying them to his current position.

“I learned to expect the unexpected, ask for help from others when needed, and be passionate in your work,” he said.

Kenney says all of these lessons are allowing him to be successful thus far in his career and will help him be the best he can be.

Kenney is looking forward to getting back into his second home – the lab – and where he will work with friends and mentors.

Kenney also offers important advice to the campus community to have a safe and healthy year.

  • Get your COVID and flu shot when you can.
  • Keep wearing your mask.
  • Eat healthy and stay hydrated.
  • When you fell burned out and need rest, listen to your body and take time to yourself.
  • Wash your hands and practice social distancing and good hygiene.
  • Be safe when off campus and make good choices.”

He believes following these six simple steps could make a difference and help ensure a safe year and a prosperous one for the community.

Kenney is an avid reader as he has read 24 books this year and is currently reading, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”

“One thing people might not know is although I am heavily involved in science, I love to paint,” he added.

A native of Long Island, New York, Kenney plans to further his education by obtaining a graduate degree in Cell Biology and Biochemistry and credits his research with Dr. Asirvatham for that desire.

When Kenney is not working, he likes to hang with friends or watch a Marvel movie and enjoy Thai food.