News from the President's Office
May 2006
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Stockton Spring Benefit Most Successful Ever

Spring Benefit Co-Chairpersons (from left) Mac and Kay Seelig enjoy the cocktail reception with Mrs. Dorothy Saatkamp and Stockton President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr.

The 26th Annual Stockton Spring Scholarship Benefit, with entertainment by Grammy-award winning vocalist Roberta Flack, was held April 8th at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. The Benefit exceeded its goals, both financially and in bringing the event to Atlantic City for the first time.

The Benefit raised more than $500,000 including dollars garnered from a silent and live auction that brought in a record $71,000. This year’s Honorary Chairman, Mark Juliano of Trump Entertainment, Gala Chairpersons Mac and Kay Seelig and the Benefit Committee engaged the community like never before – drawing over 850 people. Guests included business and civic leaders, public officials, and alumni from throughout the region as well as members of our faculty and administration. Proceeds from the event support the College Foundation scholarship fund, which helps Stockton to offer scholarships each year for deserving students.

Mark Juliano, CEO of Trump Entertainment and Honorary Chair of the 2006 Spring Benefit, speaks to the audience.

“We are entering a new era of collaboration in Atlantic City, and the success of the Spring Benefit reflects that,” President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. said. The President noted the College’s presence in the city with its Carnegie Library Center, hospitality management program, and community initiatives such as the free Fannie Lou Hamer Lecture Series, the professional development training programs and many other services.

The President also lauded the work of the Benefit Committee and the support of key sponsors such as Trump Entertainment Resorts, Wachovia Bank, the Press of Atlantic City, Avalon Carpet Tile and Flooring, Commerce Bank, AtlantiCare, and Atlantic City Electric, among numerous others.

Professor Michael McGarvey of the Faculty Band performs a saxophone solo during the cocktail reception.

Highlighting the evening were remarks by two Stockton College students who are beneficiaries of the College’s scholarship program. Davida Repses, a freshman majoring in physical therapy, was an honors graduate of Oakcrest High School, graduating in the top five percent of her class. Junior Jana DiCosmo, a political science major and Spanish minor, maintains a cumulative 4.0 average. She was the valedictorian of her graduating class at Pleasantville High. Both young women could have attended just about anywhere, and selected Stockton. “My experiences at Stockton have been invaluable,” DiCosmo said.

Repses spoke for many students for whom scholarships made the difference in their college careers. “Without your generous donations, many students would not be where we are right now. Perhaps one day I will be doing the same for other well-deserving students.”

Alumni Reception in Nation’s Capital
To Honor Professor Chick Yeager on May 10

Washington D.C.

Professor Chick Yeager, Coordinator of Stockton’s Washington Internship Program for the past 24 years, will be honored at the College’s first ever Alumni Reception in Washington DC. Over the years, Dr. Yeager has mentored more than 900 students through the internship program at Stockton, which is now recognized as one of the most productive of its kind in the United States. With Dr. Yeager’s efforts, Stockton currently sends one of the largest numbers of students of any college or university to our nation’s capital through the Washington Center. These students have interned at prestigious institutions including the White House, National Institute of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Justice. The program has been critical in helping to launch the careers of hundreds of Stockton alumni.

The reception takes place May 10, from 5:30 to 8:30 pm at the Willard Inter-Continental just across from the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue. The event is complimentary for Stockton alumni and their guests. The gathering comes on the heels of a successful alumni reception that attracted over 200 alumni to New York City last November.

Senator Robert Menendez, Edward H. Salmon,
Miles Lerman Speak at Stockton Commencement

Senator Robert Menendez

United States Senator Robert Menendez, and Edward H. Salmon, founder of Salmon Ventures were the keynote speakers at the Spring Commencement Ceremonies of The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. The ceremonies were held Sunday, May 7 in the Athletic Center, where the College conferred degrees on more than 1,055 students.

Senator Menendez addressed the morning commencement at 10:30 a.m. for degree candidates in General Studies, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Social and Behavioral Sciences, as well as the Masters Degree programs.

The Senator, who has represented New Jersey in the U.S. Senate since January, previously served as a Member of the House of Representatives since 1992. A product of New Jersey’s public schools, he rose to become the third highest ranking Democrat in the House and the highest-ranking Hispanic in Congressional history.

“Each of you is headed on a unique journey,” Sen. Menendez told the graduates. “As you take off on your own journey, don’t just plant one foot in front of the other. Think about where you are planting it. Don’t accept the status quo if it is not working. Seek out the hardest road because that is often where the greatest rewards can be found.”

Edward H. Salmon spoke at the afternoon commencement. He is founder of Salmon Ventures, a national consulting firm. The firm provides professional consulting services to utilities, industry, government and education, government, and the utilities industry. Dr. Salmon has had a long career in public service, having previously served as President of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, a member of the New Jersey General Assembly, Freeholder Director of Cumberland County, and Mayor of Millville.

Dr. Salmon offered words of inspiration to the graduates. “Each and every one of you can be successful if you implement seven words: Goal, motivation, work, education, persistence, compassion and faith,” he said.

Miles Lerman, a Holocaust survivor from Vineland who was instrumental in founding the United States Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C., received a Doctor of Humane Letters degree.

“I humbly accept this honor in the name of the million and a half children who were consumed by the fires of the Nazi inferno,” Dr. Lerman said.

Stockton Serves: Students Give of Themselves to Help Others

Richard Stockton College students helping repair homes for needy residents in Beards Fork, West Virginia.

This spring, many Stockton College students gave of themselves to help others less fortunate by participating in community service projects.

Two examples: a group of six students under the direction of Assistant Director of Student Development Jennifer Forman helped repair a home for a needy resident of Beards Fork, West Virginia. Members of the Stockton softball team volunteered time in a “Read Across America” event at Ocean Acres Elementary School in Manahawkin.

Forman’s group of six students raised their own funds to finance the trip and worked 10 hour days upon their arrival, painting, building and repairing homes for those less fortunate.

“Not all of us had construction skills when we arrived, but we did have a willingness to learn and to help,” Forman said.

Taking part in the program were Mary Lehr of Cinnaminson, Tom Sunchuck of Toms River, Rhiannon Napoli of Westville, Andrew Tobin of Bridgeton, Nick Sena of Moorestown, and Kristen Rasinya of Hazlet.

Stockton softball team members conduct a “Read Across America” event at Ocean Acres Elementary School in Manahawkin, NJ.

According to Forman, the satisfaction of the final result served as the students’ ultimate reward. By the time the week was out, the Stockton volunteers had reconstructed a back porch on the home, put on a roof and completed extensive interior work.

“It was a lot of hard work, but I think everyone appreciated the time and effort they put in,” she said. The man who lived in the house commented on how hard our students worked.”

Stockton’s softball team, under the guidance of Coach Val Julien, took time out from their busy season and their studies to participate in national Read Across America Day. A total of 25 players and coaches read Dr. Seuss books to the children at Ocean Acres. Along the way, the players provided some goodwill to the children and helped get them excited about reading.

“I think it’s important to do positive things in the community, to be role models for the younger ones and good representatives of the College,” said Julien, who earlier in the season racked up her 300th career victory with a 14-2 win over New Jersey City. “I think this group of women is doing a special job at that.”

The Ospreys posted a 22-18 final regular season record.

Stockton to Offer First Doctoral-level Degree Program;
Doctor of Physical Therapy to Debut in September

Stockton will offer its first-ever doctoral degree this coming fall with the debut of a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program.

The new program was recently approved by the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education and will be the only degree of its kind in New Jersey offered in the state college system.

“This is the new terminal degree that will be the standard in the field for Physical Therapists,” said Deborah Figart, Dean of Graduate Studies. “It is very smart of the administration to establish the program at this time. The job market is healthy in Physical Therapy and we expect a strong student demand.”

Stockton will offer two different versions of the program: an entry level program for students who are not currently licensed physical therapists, and the Post-Professional Doctor of Physical Therapy, a transitional program for those who are already licensed.

These programs will be open to Stockton students, high school graduates and college transfer students. Requirements for the Post-Professional program will vary, depending on the student’s experience in the field and level of currently-completed credits.

Dr. Figart said the program is pending its final approval this August from the Commission on Middle States Accreditation, which is expected in August, in time for the DPT to be offered in September. For more information about the traditional program, call (609) 652-4501. For information about the Post-Professional Program please call (609) 652-4261.

“We’re proud to be offering Stockton’s first Doctoral level degree,” Figart added.

Stockton Fun Fact:
Stockton’s award-winning Arts and Sciences Building, designed by renowned architect Michael Graves, was named one of the state’s “architectural treasures” by New Jersey Monthly magazine. How did Graves pay tribute to Stockton’s Pine Barrens location when he designed the building?
(Click here to reveal the answer)
Answer:  Graves clad the exterior of the Arts and Sciences Building in terra cotta, ochre and blue-gray brick and cast stone to reflect the colors of the sandy soil, indigenous vegetation and waterways of the Pine Barrens.

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