Monday Morning Update

April 20, 2015

Exploring Space: From her room on campus, Ashley Horan ’15 has been conducting research for NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Collaborating with top scientists, Horan remotely logs into a super computer to produce potential atmospheres that could induce a greenhouse effect to keep a planet above freezing temperature. Upon graduating, Horan, who is a Clare Boothe Luce (CBL) Scholar at the College, will enter a doctoral program in Planetary Geosciences at Brown University. The CBL program is the single most significant source of private support for women in science, mathematics and engineering. For more on Horan’s research and her career goals, visit here.

Doing Big Things: When she graduates next month, Ashley Horan (above) will be following many alumni who are already out in the world doing big things whether in banking, finance, nonprofit work, research, teaching, marketing, engineering, medicine, sales and other fields. Highlighting alumni who are doing big things, the College is running a campaign appealing to prospective students and their families. If you haven’t seen the print ads or heard the radio pieces, check out the supporting video, which features alums discussing their education at Stonehill and how it proved critical to their career success. To see it, visit here.

Good Investment: A Stonehill education represents a good investment, according to PayScale. In a recent report, the salary information company ranked Stonehill 15th out of 76 liberal arts colleges for the best return on investment (ROI). Based on PayScale’s methodology, the College has a net $314,100 20-year return on investment. Of the top 15 schools listed, Stonehill’s $198,900 four-year cost, covering tuition, room & board, books and supplies, was the fifth lowest. For PayScale’s list of liberal arts colleges with the best ROI, visit here.

Selfless Act: Before Christmas, third grade teacher Nicole Bollerman '10 made a wish for her students at UP Academy in Dorchester. Her wish turned into a gift that kept on giving and Bollerman’s generosity in donating that $150,000 gift to UP Academy landed her on page one of the Boston Globe and on television with Ellen DeGeneres. In the new Stonehill Alumni Magazine (SAM), Bollerman talks about her love of teaching, her students, her favorite professor and more. The magazine, which features many other great alumni stories, went in the U.S. Mail to more than 24,000 alumni and friends last week. However, it is also available online.

Commencement: Attorney Kenneth Feinberg, who guided the One Fund after the Boston Marathon bombings and the compensation fund for September 11th families, is this year’s commencement speaker. Born in Brockton, he has been central in helping to resolve America's most challenging and tragic events, from terror attacks to faulty ignition switches. For his service to victims, he will receive a Doctor of Humane Letters degree. The other honorees are: award-winning journalist and humanitarian Rev. Elizabeth “Liz” Walker, Harvard Medical School Psychiatry Professor Robert Strecker and alumna Arlene McNamee ’68, the Executive Director of Catholic Social Services. For more on Commencement and our honorees, visit here.

Student Speaker: At graduation, Abigael Bongaarts ’15, a history and German major from St. Louis Park, Minnesota, will give the student address. Bongaarts spent her junior year in Munich taking classes in German, researching her senior history thesis, and interning at an environmental humanities nonprofit research center. On campus, she served as a Resident Assistant, Teaching Assistant, Writing Tutor, and German Tutor and also volunteered at My Brother's Keeper and the Stonehill Farm.

Local Hero: While reading a book during lunch in the Roche Dining Commons earlier this semester, Stonehill Police Chief Peter Carnes felt something nudge him from behind. Turning around, he saw a student choking on a piece of food. Moving swiftly, Carnes performed the Heimlich maneuver and successfully prevented the student from suffocating. In recognition, Chief Kevin Partridge of the Easton Fire Department nominated Chief Carnes for an Easton Lions Club heroism award and presented him with the honor at the Easton Country Club on April 8. For more, visit here.

Memorial Mass: In the Chapel of Mary this Saturday, April 25 at 10 a.m., there will be a Mass for the late Professor Ray Pepin who taught economics for over four decades. He also chaired the Economics Department and contributed to computer studies at the College. In lieu of flowers, consider supporting his family’s plan for a bench in Ray’s memory, to be located in a new garden being created behind Duffy Academic this summer.  For more, contact Sharon Doyle at or call 508-565-1319.