Category: Alumni News

Alumni News, Featured News, News

Modern Languages Hosts Dinner to Connect Young Alumni with Current Students

Modern Language alumni, students, and faculty

On April 25, the Department of Modern Languages hosted a dinner with young Modern Language alumni, students, and faculty.  14 alumni, who have graduated since 2007, attended the event, which was sponsored by the Caldwell University Alumni Association.

According to Dr. Isabelle Genest, it is important to the department that current students have opportunities to interact with Caldwell graduates so they can see the type of jobs and success available to them as Modern Language majors.

Alumni News, Featured News, News

A Celebration of Student Success and Alumni Partnerships at “The Gathering”

Student award recipients at “The Gathering”

Student award recipients at “The Gathering”

The English Department and Caldwell University Alumni Association hosted “The Gathering” on May 1, celebrating student accomplishments in English.  Among the awards presented included the Excellence in Writing Awards, named after former English department faculty and chairs. These awards are made possible by the generosity of Caldwell University alumni.  Dr. Patricia Verrone, Caldwell University professor of English and event organizer, notes, “Engaging alumni with these awards keeps them aware of what is happening in our department and is a way for them to give back.  We hear from so many alumni who ask ‘What can we do for the English dept?’ As you can tell, we stay very connected to a number of alumni.”

Event goers were also treated to a poetry reading by Sister Elizabeth Michael Boyle, O.P. and the Tower Poets.

Matt Regan ‘06

Matt Regan ‘06

In addition to the awards ceremony, the event featured alumnus speaker, Matt Regan ’06.  Regan spoke eloquently about how majoring in English at Caldwell has helped him not only in his career but also in life, noting that those who will be educating future generations about the written word outside of the constraints of social media (beyond 140 characters in twitter, for example) will be English majors.

Additional photos from the event can be viewed here.

Alumni News, Featured News, News

Alumni Association Welcomes 2013 Grads at the Con-GRAD-ulations Party

Class of 2013 Participates in an Old Tradition

 Tim Nellegar '00, president, Caldwell University Alumni Association; Ashleigh Grenci, 2013 Class Representative, Dr. Nancy Blattner, president, Caldwell University; Amanda Perez, 2013 Class Representative)

The Class of 2013 presented President Blattner with their class tree at the Con-GRAD-ulations Cocktail Party on May 8. (L to R: Tim Nellegar ’00, president, Caldwell University Alumni Association; Ashleigh Grenci, 2013 Class Representative, Dr. Nancy Blattner, president, Caldwell University; Amanda Perez, 2013 Class Representative)

On May 8, new graduates gathered with members of the Caldwell University Alumni Association to celebrate their accomplishments at the Con-GRAD-ulations Cocktail Party.  Over 80 graduating students joined the festivities, which included the presentation of the 2013 class tree to be planted at Lady Lane.  The tradition of presenting a class tree to the college dates back to the first graduating class in 1943.  The tradition, according to an issue of The Kettle from 1944, “was inaugurated for the purpose of cementing the relationship between the alumn[i] and the College itself. In this way, former students will leave a memorial which will, as it were, unite them tangibly to the institution.”

View photos of the Con-GRAD-ulations Cocktail Party.

Alumni News, Featured News, News

Caldwell University’s Celebrates 71st Commencement with Awarding of First Doctoral Degrees in Its History

Photos by Marina Maret and Samantha Rivera

Commencement Speaker, a 9/11 Survivor, Says Teaching Is Her Way of Fighting Terrorism

Caldwell, N.J.—May 11, 2013—Denise Kerth and Eric Rozenblat made history at Caldwell University’s 71st commencement on May 11 when they were awarded the first Ph.D.s in the college’s history.

President Nancy H. Blattner presented Rozenblat, of Oakland, N.J., and Kerth, of Collingswood, N.J., with doctoral degrees in applied behavior analysis (ABA).  Caldwell is a leader in autism education, developing the first master’s and first Ph.D. programs in ABA in New Jersey.

More than 450 other graduates received degrees. Dr. Blattner presented undergraduates with their Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees, the graduate students with their Master of Arts or Master of Business Administration degrees.

Gulay Maffia, of Vernon, N.J., who received her master’s degree in special education learning disabilities teacher consultant, was one of two students to give commencement speeches.  She shared her story of surviving the 9/11 attacks while working in New York and how that horror caused her to rethink her life’s direction.  “I felt that I had to do something better with my life for me, but also for those who perished,” she said. Her parents were teachers and she knew “how they brought about change and made many people’s lives better as a result of their dedication.”   She decided to pursue teaching, and today she teaches children with special needs.

“Teaching is my way of fighting terrorism,” she said.

Maffia urged graduates to “Believe that the difficulties you may face along the way will only bring you great strength” and to “go out and find those who need your help and, along the way, carry peace in your heart and share it with everyone you come into contact with.”

Chelsea Loscalzo, of Bayside, N.Y., delivered the undergraduate commencement remarks. She received a bachelor’s degree in marketing.  She reminded her classmates that the professors at Caldwell were a big part of their success and said that students could be assured that “what we’ve learned here has given us the right tools to move on to this next step of the journey.”

Caldwell University presented a Bachelor of Arts in Social Studies and Social Studies Education honoris causa to the late Mitcha Desilmar and a Master of Arts in Counseling honoris causa to the late Dianne J. Colburn.

Dr. Blattner told members of the class of 2013 that she had a special affinity for them since she joined the Caldwell community the same year they did. “Together we walked around campus, becoming familiar with the community that would soon become our second family,” she said.  “Together we experienced the richness of the mission of the Sisters of St. Dominic and of Caldwell University as we spent time in study, prayer, community and service. Together we have grown as individuals, developed new skills and expertise and served this place we have grown to love so much.”

“You, the class of 2013, are the class of my heart,” Dr. Blattner said.

Caldwell University was the first in the state to develop a master’s degree and a Ph.D. degree specifically in applied behavior analysis, a scientific approach to learning highly effective in treating children on the autism spectrum. The college’s Center for Autism and Applied Behavior Analysis provides clinical training to undergraduate and graduate students.

Caldwell University has announced that it is pursuing university status.

Alumni News, Featured News, Library, News

Alumna Speaks at ‘Bridging Cultures: Muslim Journeys Bookshelf’ Program

Joan Reamer from Caldwell University Jennings Library and Alumna Enfel Haddouche ’12

Joan Reamer from Caldwell University Jennings Library and Alumna Enfel Haddouche ’12, who was a speaker at the Jennings Library’s “Bridging Cultures: Muslim Journeys Bookshelf” program.

Alumna Enfel Haddouche ’12 was a speaker at the Jennings Library’s “Bridging Cultures: Muslim Journeys Bookshelf” program on April 12. The Bookshelf is a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association. Caldwell received the Bookshelf, which includes 25 books, four videos and the Oxford Islamic Studies Online database. The program is aimed at engaging the power of the humanities to promote understanding of and mutual respect for people with diverse histories, cultures and perspectives within the United States and abroad.

Participants viewed excerpts from the “Art Spots” video on mosques, calligraphy, textiles and gardens and discussed “The Butterfly Mosque”by G. Willow Wilson. This selection from the Bookshelf is the memoir of a young American woman who converts to Islam and moves to Egypt where she encounters the difficulties of entering a new culture and faith. Haddouche shared her experiences as a young Muslim woman encountering the culture of the United States, allowing the audience to explore the theme of bridging cultures from two very different perspectives.

The National Endowment for the Humanities is awarding many libraries and state humanities councils with the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf—a collection of books, films and other resources.

A master’s candidate in European history at Seton Hall University and a graduate of Caldwell University with a bachelor’s degree in history and English, Enfel came to the United States in 1996 with her family from Algeria. She was raised a Sunni Muslim, and while a student at Caldwell University she worked to create understanding and dialogue between the Muslim and Christian communities.

The Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys is a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association. Support was provided by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York. Additional support for the arts and media components was provided by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

The next Bridging Cultures program, featuring Beth Citron of the Rubin Museum in New York, will be held on September 19 at 6:30 p.m.

Alumni News, News

Alumni Honored for Professional Excellence at Veritas Awards

 Justin Cece, Rosemary Buczek, Barbara Detrick, and Kevin Boyle

Appearing from left are Justin Cece, an Emmy-Award-winning television editor for NBC and resident of Bloomfield, N.J., who received the Excellence in Media Award; Rosemary Buczek, a lettering artist and illuminator from Milford, N.J., who was presented with the Excellence in Calligraphy Award; Barbara Detrick, Ph.D., a professor of pathology and laboratory director at Johns Hopkins University, who received the Excellence in Immunology Award, and Kevin Boyle, vice president for development and alumni affairs at Caldwell. The awards are the highest honor the college bestows on its alumni for their professional excellence in diverse fields.


Caldwell, N.J.—April 5, 2013—Caldwell University celebrated the professional accomplishments of three of its alumni at its 28th Veritas Awards Dinner on March 22 at the Essex Fells Country Club.

The Veritas Award is the highest honor the college bestows on its alumni for their professional excellence in diverse fields.

Justin Cece ’99, an Emmy-award-winning television editor, received the Excellence in Media Award. Barbara Detrick, Ph.D., ’65, professor of pathology and director of the Immunology Laboratory and Cytokine Laboratory at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, was presented the Excellence in Immunology Award. Rosemary Buczek ’71, a lettering artist and illuminator, received the Excellence in Calligraphy Award.

Justin Cece, of Bloomfield, N.J., was among a group of editors to receive a 2010 Emmy Award for Outstanding Editing, Quick Turnaround for “Inside the Obama White House.” In 2011, he won another Emmy as part of a team for his work on the “Dateline NBC” series “America Now: Friends and Neighbors,” which focused on rural Ohio families facing chronic poverty. The show won in the category of Best Continuing Coverage in a News Magazine.

More recently, he has edited programs for “Rock Center with Brian Williams.” He edited a segment for the show’s “Inside the Situation Room,” spotlighting Williams’ unprecedented access to the White House Situation Room and offering interviews with President Obama and members of his national security team who were present as the operation against Osama bin Laden was carried out. He worked on the London Olympics in New York and edited for “Dateline” and “Rock Center’s” extensive coverage of Hurricane Sandy and the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Cece’s previous experience included working in Rome on the coverage of the beatification of Mother Teresa in 2003, the death of Pope John Paul II and the conclave to elect Pope Benedict XVI. He has worked on NBC sports and news specials and has done work for the BBC, CNN, CBS and Peacock Productions. He received a bachelor’s degree in communication arts from Caldwell.

Barbara Detrick is professor of pathology and director of the Immunology Laboratory and Cytokine Laboratory at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. There she pursues the university’s threefold mission: clinical service, research and teaching. Detrick’s research on the eye has identified some of the key immune responses in retinal degenerative diseases seen in age-related macular degeneration and multiple sclerosis. She also helped to discover a critical ocular protein that is now the basis of gene therapy for retinal diseases. For 25 years, she explored immunity in the eye at the National Eye Institute and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health. She has authored more than 100 scientific papers, 20 book chapters and two books. She is the editor in chief of the seminal immunology book “The Manual of Molecular and Clinical Laboratory Immunology.” In addition to her clinical and scientific roles, Detrick is a dedicated teacher. She previously served as the chief of diagnostic immunology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the George Washington University Medical Center.

Rosemary Buczek is a lettering artist and illuminator whose work has been appreciated around the globe. At her studio, the Gilded Quill, in Milford, N.J., she combines her calligraphic skills with illuminations including gilding techniques to produce resolutions, certificates, hand-lettered books and illuminated manuscripts of her own design. Buczek’s love of medieval manuscripts has influenced her designs and use of color. She has taught many classes and workshops around the country and in her home.

Buczek’s clients have included the White House, the Association of the United States Army, Prudential Financial, Sony, AT&T, Exxon, Rutgers University, the American Petroleum Institute, the Society for Scientific Exploration, and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. One of her creations was presented to Pope Benedict on his visit in April 2008. She reproduced the Gettysburg Address on calf vellum, a work presented to President and Mrs. Obama in February 2009. She creates high-end greeting cards and unique gifts for the luxury market.

Buczek’s work is held in private collections around the world, and a piece titled “San Giuseppe” was awarded third place in an international competition in Italy. She wrote the foreword for the book “The Bible of Illuminated Letters” by British author Margaret Morgan and will be featured in a book titled “101 New York Calligraphers” by Cynthia Dantzic.

In addition to honoring professional excellence in alumni, the Veritas Awards Dinner provides networking opportunities among alumni, the business community and the college. Alumni are recognized by the college and their peers for upholding the finest values of the founding Sisters of St. Dominic of Caldwell and the Caldwell University mission.

Alumni News, Featured News, News

Celebrating Thank a Giver Day at Caldwell University

Students at TAG Day
Cougar Mascot with two Caldwell Students
A Caldwell Students writing a Thanking Note
Students Volunteers for TAG Day

March 4, 2013 – Caldwell University students, faculty, staff and administration came out for the 1st annual T.A.G. –Thank a Giver Day — on Feb. 28. Sponsored by the Development and Alumni Affairs Department, participants signed postcards to be mailed to donors who support Caldwell University throughout the year.

“It was a fun day to celebrate philanthropy and a great opportunity for students to become more aware of the ways donor generosity has impacted their Caldwell University education,” said Kevin Boyle, vice president for development and alumni affairs.

Students stopped by the Student Center and signed thank you cards and got to have their pictures taken with Cooper the Cougar at the thank you message chalkboard. They were treated to hot chocolate and gourmet chocolate goodies and had a chance to win an i-Pad mini or an i-Pod Touch.

Sharon Dwyer, director of the annual fund, who spearheaded the event, said over 300 students came out to show their gratitude to the donors whose philanthropy supports students in the classroom, lab, library, and all over campus.

Leading up to the day, purple TAGs were placed around campus showing students the ways that donor generosity has supported their Caldwell University education.

CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education) nationally sponsors this initiative. Caldwell hosted its event on the same day to join the national wave of enthusiasm.

Dr Blattner with Caldwell Mascot Cougar Two Caldwell Students with Caldwell Mascot A Caldwell Students writing a Thanking Note A Caldwell Students writing a Thanking Note

Alumni News, Featured News, News

Alumnus Says Success in On-Air Radio Comes From Earning Trust of Local Audiences

Joe Catenacci Joe Catenacci ’06 knows being a successful on-air broadcaster means more than just reporting the news. He insists it includes caring about the audience you serve and earning the trust of the community—your listeners and readers. An alumnus of the Caldwell University Communication Arts program, “Joe Cats” has become a well-known on-air personality in the Wilmington, North Carolina market. He was recently named host of “The Sports Connection”, a radio talk show produced by The Big Talker radio stations 93.7 and 106.3 and the Port City Daily, an online daily newspaper.

A native of Helmetta, NJ, he has been a morning news anchor and a sportscaster for stations WBNE/WLTT/WUIN/WSFM the last six years in the Wilmington market. The most rewarding part, he says, is going out in the field and getting to meet the listeners and readers and receiving their feedback and “getting to know the coaches and players”.

“We’re all about local”, says Catenacci, of his station and program that can be heard Mondays from 6 to 7 p.m. The show’s format begins with high school athletics and then moves on to professional sports. It includes coach interviews, comprehensive game analysis and the latest scores. Some of the most recent guests include two NFL players–Khary Campbell of the Washington Redksins and Connor Barth, the current kicker for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a native of Wilmington. He can be heard the rest of the week doing sports updates on four of the 14 stations in the Wilmington market. Part of his ability to uniquely “see” the sports story, comes from his own background as a player for the Caldwell University’s Men’s baseball team.

Recently, Catenacci connected with one of his former Caldwell classmates, Salhedin Gary, who produced the music for “The Sport Connection”. He knew Sal’s talents from their days back in the Caldwell University edit room and he was happy that he found him on Face book and they could work together.

Catenacci’s knack for talking sports started when he was a child. His mother would hear him in his room “broadcasting the video game,” he says.

He looks back with appreciation for the curriculum in the Communication Arts program at Caldwell, which included courses on radio broadcasting and broadcast journalism. He is grateful for how Professor Bob Mann pushed him and for his blunt, valuable professional advice. His success is of no surprise to Mann, chair of the Communication Arts department, who says he knew Catenacci had what it takes to make it in the media. “I could tell that Joe not only had talent but the drive to make it in radio. A lot of students get discouraged by having to move to another area, but he understood that it is tough to start here in the New York market. Joe is a perfect example of what our Communications program at Caldwell can produce.”

After graduation, Catenacci looked for media work between Richmond, Virginia and Charlestown, South Carolina and was happy to land in Wilmington, a place he says has lovely beaches and a community where the listeners “appreciate it when we cover them.”