On January 31, 2020, Manor College held its annual Founders’ Day ceremony, a yearly tradition where the College community gathers to honor its founders, the Sisters of Saint Basil the Great. Manor College President, Jonathan Peri commenced the service on Friday with a speech about Manor’s recent accomplishments and all the exciting updates on the horizon. Peri discussed the College’s goal of becoming a graduate degree offering college in only two years. This timeline is significant as Manor will be celebrating its 75th anniversary in two years. The keynote speaker of the ceremony, Archbishop Borys Gudziak, gave a heartfelt speech about the importance of remembering one’s roots. He discussed the Sisters of Saint Basil’s impact on the College. Each year on Founders’ day, two prestigious awards are given out — the Mother Josaphat Medal and the Educator of the Year. The Mother Josaphat Medal is given out to a student who demonstrates strength of character and generosity of spirit. Students are nominated by faculty and staff members. The Educator of the Year is given to a professor whose dedication and commitment goes beyond the classroom. This student nominated award honors the selected faculty member who received the most votes. The winner of the Mother Josaphat Medal was Privish Sadaqat, a Pre-Science major who is involved in a variety of clubs and organizations on campus. Her kind spirit and dedication to Manor position her as the perfect recipient of this award. The list of nominees for this award included Sadaqat, Jenny Araujo, a Healthcare Management major; Cassie Keepfer, a Veterinary Technology major; Melissa Peters, a Pre-Nursing major; Sheresa Palmer, a Criminal Justice major; and Megan Davis, a Paralegal major. The recipient of the Educator of the Year award was Professor Mike Landis. Landis, well-loved by all, has been a Liberal Studies professor at Manor for 25 years. His dedication to students is known by all at Manor and he is more than deserving of this prestigious award. He stated, “It has been an honor to serve the Manor students in the realization of the Manor College Institutional Basilian Mission for over 25 years now.” Watch Professor Landis receive his award. This year, the College also introduced a brand new award, The Anna Kiczula Award, for members of the Manor community who demonstrate the Manor mission and transcend their call of duty. This year’s recipient was Anna Kiczula, a staff member for over 50 years. Kicaula has held numerous positions throughout the College including secretary, bookstore manager, Physical Education Instructor, telephone operator and receptionist. Kiczula is known among everyone at the college for her kind heart. Watch Anna receive her award. Nicholas Rudnytzky, Dean of Academic Services, stated “It is particularly poignant that we had our new Metropolitan, Archbishop Borys Gudziak, give the Founder’s Day Keynote Address on the same day that we honored a Manor College living legend, Anna Kiczula, for her lifetime of service. Thus, in one wonderful event, we honored our past traditions and continued dedication to service, along with reflecting on the present and illuminating the new path forward. President Peri used the occasion to remind all that we are just two years away from our 75th anniversary. This year, the College community collected toiletries, as part of the Founders’ Day charity. 208 items were collected in total. To conclude the ceremony, a choir composed of faculty, staff and students sang the alma mater, written by Shirley Beahan in 1986. Read the story about the alma mater here.
Privish Sadaqat, a Manor College student, has been selected as the winner of the Mother Josaphat Award at the College, a prestigious award given out each year to a student who demonstrates strength of character and generosity of spirit, on Founders’ Day, Friday, January 31. Founders’ Day is a campus-wide tradition that brings together the Manor community to celebrate its founders, the Sisters of Saint Basil the Great. With a backstory filled with dedication and perseverance, Privish Sadaqat, has accomplished a great deal and experienced many tribulations in her lifetime. Born in Toba Tek Singh, Pakistan, Privish is the oldest of four children. She began her education with the Convent of Jesus and Mary School, run by nuns, including Sister Mariam, who instilled in Privish the importance of faith and tenacity. Sadaqat’s life in Pakistan was not without struggle; her father had to leave their village and moved to the United States, alone, in 2015. A poignant moment in Sadaqat’s life occurred on April 19, 2018 when she, her mother and siblings arrived in the United States and were reunited with her father. An unforgettable moment, she stated, “I was thrilled to see my dad after four years and tears of joy were in my eyes.” The difference between living in Pakistan and the United States is extreme, according to Sadaqat. She explained, “Living in Pakistan was definitely not comfortable, especially for women. There were not opportunities like education and other rights.” Cut to the present, Sadaqat is a student at Manor, thriving as a pre-science major. With a bright future ahead, Privish plans on completing her biology degree and pursuing a career as a doctor or physician’s assistant. Sadaqat is heavily involved in many areas of the college and serves as a campus chaplain. She also is involved in several community service initiatives on campus. She was recognized for her academic success in the Freshman Excellence Awards ceremony and was inducted into the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. An intelligent, humble, and respectful student, Sadaqat is admired among faculty and staff at Manor. She has also recently been selected as a semifinalist for the highly selective Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. Allison Mootz, Vice President of Student Affairs, stated, “Privish fully embodies what the Mother Josaphat Medal stands for. She is involved in many campus groups and activities, such as Campus Ministry and Student Senate. She is always helping other students and shows great kindness towards others. She is very passionate about women’s rights and equality. I’ve personally seen her leading other students with care and compassion. She is a pleasure to have on campus.” Sadaqat believes that Manor College has not only helped her with academically, but also with life skills including confidence and making friends. She stated that Manor gives her comfort and freedom to achieve her dreams. Privish stated, “This is my best choice. I enjoy every day at Manor. It feels like home.” Sadaqat’s kind spirit and dedication to the school position her to be the perfect recipient of the Mother Josaphat medal. She embodies everything that the medal stands for through her service and generosity. On Friday, January 31, Privish and the other Mother Josaphat award nominees were acknowledged at a liturgy and reception at Manor College.
In 1986, Shirley Beahan, a music teacher at Manor Junior College (now known as Manor College), was asked to write the lyrics and music for an alma mater. Beahan and two women who worked for Manor College at the time, recorded it on a tape deck, and then never heard it again…that was until this past Friday. 34 years later, on January 31, 2020, the entire Manor community gathered together during the 16th Annual Founders’ Day, a tradition on campus where we honor members of the faculty and staff for their service and dedication to the College and celebrate our founding, to hear a performance of the Manor College alma mater for the very first time. When Manor’s 4th President, Dr. Jonathan Peri, contacted Tarra Raspanti, Office and Events Manager, inquiring about the creation of an alma mater back in October, Raspanti learned that one had already previously existed. Raspanti did further digging in the Basileaid Library archives and found the song that was written and recorded in 1986. Surely enough, she was determined to get in contact with Beahan, and after reaching out to many people, she found Dennis, Beahan’s son on Facebook. Beahan was delighted to come back to campus and participate in the Founders’ Day Ceremony where after 34 years, she would see her alma mater . She stated, “I am honored to know that the college still finds it appropriate.” A group of students, faculty and staff performed the song for the audience during the Founders’ Day ceremony. Beahan along with her son and daughter, Chris and Eileen, were present at the ceremony for the unveiling of the song. The audience joined in and sang as one together with the choir. Watch the video and listen to the song here! Raspanti stated, “Singing the Alma Mater in front of Shirley who wrote the song 34 years ago, was a moment I will never forget. It was an honor to be a part of Founders’ Day in such a unique way and I look forward to seeing how the Alma Mater is shared with the Manor Community at events and graduations.” The community plans to continue using the song at events and special occasions at the College.
The Pennsylvania Department of Education announced on Thursday, January 16, that Manor College is one of the recipients of the It’s On Us grant, a national initiative championed by President Barack Obama and Governor Tom Wolf who said that he is a steadfast supporter of campus safety and established It’s On Us PA, the nation’s first statewide campaign, four years ago. Most recently, Secretary of Education Pedro A. Rivera announced the awarding of nearly $1 million in grants to combat campus sexual assault at 36 colleges and universities. Manor College was one of these 36 institutions awarded the It’s On Us grant across Pennsylvania. Programs with this grant are centered around raising awareness about and to stop sexual assaults. It unites college presidents, administrators, faculty, staff, students, families and community members as they reevaluate the conversation around sexual violence. The programs that will arise from this grant will be both interactive and informative. “The Clothesline Project” and self-defense classes are two initiatives that will be made possible on Manor’s campus because of this grant. The College will also implement educational forums such as “Sex Signals” and Bystander Intervention workshops. A training titled “One Love” will be added to provide information about healthy relationships. The It’s On Us committee is already busy at work planning to streamline students’ reporting ability by creating a mobile app named STOPit. This app will allow students to anonymously report incidents and will provide real-time help and support. Vice President of Student Affairs, Allison Mootz, says that, “Receiving the Governor’s It’s On Us Grant for a second year is both an honor and a blessing. With the continued support, the College will be able to continue providing quality training and education to the students and staff of Manor College. We are very excited to add additional support in 2020, such as self-defense classes, enhanced anonymous reporting options and safe transportation options for students. It truly is on us as faculty, staff and administration to help students have a voice in self-advocacy, bystander intervention and their safety both on and off campus.” The entire college community is thrilled to receive this grant. This grant will allow Manor College to continue to educate the community about the Manor Assault Prevention Program and much more.