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May 2008
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Stockton College Hughes Center Dedication Highlighted By $1 Million Endowment

Sharon Schulman, Director of the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy looks on with former Governor James Florio as the Center is dedicated.

The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey announced the first $1 million gift of endowment in College history on May 19 as the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy was formally dedicated in ceremonies at the College.

“The Hughes Center serves as a focal point for research on public policy and economic issues facing southern New Jersey, said Stockton President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. “The Center has created a forum for public discussion of policy issues by such policymakers as engaged citizens, lawmakers and other stakeholders so as to address the policy issues that affect our area. This high profile event allowed us to raise $1 million to endow and dedicate the Center.”

The endowment includes a $500,000 gift from a private donor and matching gifts from various partners.

Close to 200 invited guests including New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine, featured speaker New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, former Governor James Florio and Center namesake longtime Congressman and former United States Ambassador Hughes turned out for the event. Major endowers attended the event as well as leaders representing area businesses and civic groups. Also on hand was a strong contingent of legislators and a large media presence.

“The great turnout and financial support tied to this event gives an indication of just how enthusiastically the Hughes Center has been embraced prior to tonight’s dedication,” Stockton President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. said. “The Center is filling a niche as a needed voice on policy matters for Southern New Jersey and the entire state and region.”

New Mexico governor Bill Richardson emphasizes a point during his remarks at the dedication of the William C. Hughes Center for Public Policy.

Featured guest, Gov. Richardson, who was one of this year’s Primary candidates for President, has held several high-level offices during his career in public service. Richardson has been a Congressman, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy, and the United States Ambassador to the United Nations. His relationship with the Center’s namesake, Ambassador William J. Hughes, has existed throughout much of their careers and he was pleased to help to launch this public policy center.

“When I was asked to attend the launch of this important Center I said ‘yes’ because of Bill Hughes,” Richardson said. “Bill Hughes represents all that is right about government and public service.”

Ambassador Hughes’ service as Congressman of NJ’s 2nd Congressional District spanned two decades and an auspicious career as the U.S. Ambassador to Panama. He also taught at the College as a Distinguished Visiting Professor, has been a Commencement speaker and holds a Stockton Honorary Doctor of Letters degree. His commitment to the advancement of the College and Southern New Jersey remains strong and active.

According to Center Director Sharon Schulman, "The Hughes Center will be a focal point for information and discussion so we can strengthen our voice in Trenton.”

Founded by Ambassador Hughes in 2006, the Center is a catalyst for research, analysis and the generation of innovative policy solutions to the social, economic and cultural issues facing Southern New Jersey.

Stockton College Spring Graduates Received Degrees at 36th Commencement Exercises, on Saturday, May 10

A masters degree candidate receives his hood as President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. looks on.

More than 1,000 students were graduated at the Stockton Sports Center on May 10 during the graduation ceremonies that took place at the College. The degrees were conferred during two separate ceremonies for the various divisions of the College.  Graduate Studies, Arts and Humanities, Professional Studies, Business and Education candidates participated in the morning ceremonies and General Studies, Natural Science and Mathematics, and Social and Behavioral Science candidates participated in the afternoon.  In addition, there was a special “Hooding Ceremony” that gave extra recognition to the Masters Degree candidates.

Paul Spyros Sarbanes, Former U.S. Senator from Maryland and the longest-serving senator in Maryland’s history with a career spanning 30 years in the Senate spoke at the morning ceremony. He served from 1977 until 2007.

Senator Sarbanes attended Princeton University, earning a bachelor's degree in 1954. He was a Rhodes Scholar and studied at Balliol College of Oxford University, graduating in 1957. He then attended Harvard Law School, and graduated in 1960.

In 1976, he was elected to the United States Senate and re-elected in 1982, 1988, 1994 and 2000. In 2002, Senator Sarbanes was sponsor of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, which reformed federal securities laws in the wake of the 2002 corporate accounting scandals. He served as a ranking or senior member on the following Senate committees: Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee; Special Whitewater Committee; Foreign Relations Committee; Budget Committee and the Joint Economic Committee.

Stockton Board of Trustees member Ms. Madeleine Deininger gave the keynote address at the afternoon ceremony. Madeleine Deininger is a 1980 alumna of The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, where she received her baccalaureate in Liberal Studies (concentrating in science and creative writing), then went on to graduate from Dartmouth College in 1985 with a Master’s Degree in Liberal Studies (with studies in comparative literature and history).

After working for a few years as a freelance writer and photographer, she and her 2 business partners started a fine wine marketing and import company. Years later she moved to Northern California to found Kismet Wines, Inc., where she helped to develop a highly successful national marketing and sales programs for Californian and European fine wines.

Currently, Ms. Deininger is a general partner at Bedrock Vineyards, which supplies premium grapes for Ravenswood, Sebastiani and Simi wineries in Sonoma County. In addition, she is a managing partner of Sunbreak Vineyard Services, L.L.C., which provides environmentally sustainable vineyard management for vineyards in Sonoma Valley.

In May of 2007, she was appointed to The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey Board of Trustees by Governor Jon Corzine. In addition, she is a member of the Board of Directors for Blue Oak School, a progressive independent day school in Napa County.

Senator Sarbanes received an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree; Ms. Deininger received an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree.

Stockton School of Graduate and Continuing Studies Celebrates 10 Years of Advanced Degrees

From left, Stockton Board of Trustees Chair, Dr. Clarence Hoover enjoys the celebration with Deans Jan Colijn, Deb Figart and Marc Lowenstein.

The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey celebrated 10 years of Graduate and Continuing Studies with a series of festivities for faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members in the F-Wing Atrium.

“You only turn 10 once, so we thought we should have a party,” said Dr. Deb Figart, Dean of the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies.

Event attendees met and networked with fellow alumni, faculty and staff; participated in professional development sessions; dined on hors d’oeuvres and danced to the music of Package Goods Orchestra.

“It was exciting to celebrate our graduate programs, which have become integral to Stockton,” Figart added.  “We saw a large number of familiar faces, as well as some new ones and some we haven’t seen in a while.”

Stockton’s Largest Construction Effort in College History

The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey broke ground Wednesday, May 7 on what will be a 150,000 gross-square-foot Campus Center, and renovation of the Elizabeth B. Alton Auditorium as well as cut a ribbon to recognize completion of its innovative Aquifer Thermal Energy Storage (ATES) system. The ATES system helps to heat and cool campus buildings in an environmentally sensitive way.

Officials prepare to break ground for Stockton’s new Campus Center

The ceremonies began with the ATES ribbon-cutting at 5:30 p.m., in front of the West Quad building followed by the groundbreaking for the Campus Center, the largest single building project in Stockton history.  Attendees then walked to the Alton Auditorium ribbon-cutting, which occurred outside A-Wing and near the Arts and Science Building courtyard.

In concert with the planned expansion and renovation of the Holocaust Resource Center, improvements to existing campus buildings and new signage and beautification efforts, the groundbreakings and ribbon-cuttings signified the most ambitious building programs in the 37-year history of the Galloway Twp. campus.

“This was a wonderful day for Stockton,” President Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. said. “We have embarked on a significant construction project that will help to transform our campus.”

The construction activities are slated to take place throughout this year are anticipated to exceed $150 million in construction value. All of the projects represent significant steps toward advancement and implementation of the Facilities Master Plan covering a period beyond the next 10 years. The Master Plan is available online at and addresses the need for facilities upgrades to serve the needs of the state’s fastest growing region.

Stockton Board of Trustees members were on hand for the groundbreaking and ribbon-cutting events along with Dr. Saatkamp and representatives of KSS Architects, designers of the Campus Center. Michael C. Shatken, partner in charge for the project and a founding KSS partner said: “It is a pleasure working with Stockton. The new Campus Center will lead the College in a new direction by providing an engaging social center right at the heart of the campus.”

The Campus Center will feature meeting spaces, dining facilities, a bookstore, Wi-Fi and retail destinations. The building will nestle in Stockton’s existing campus footprint and will reflect the College commitment to the environment and specifically its location within the New Jersey Pine Barrens. It will work in concert with the ATES and geothermal energy systems, and the College will seek the coveted “Gold” certification through the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system. The design incorporates organic, nature-inspired design elements including soaring columns topped by outstretched trusses reminiscent of tree limbs, and drop-ceiling canopies of wood panels to be complementary to glass and steel building materials.

“The architects have assembled a good team to deliver the answers to our needs, and they have done a good job in integrating sustainability into this project in a cost-effective manner,” said Donald Moore, Executive Director of Facilities Planning and Plant Management at Stockton. “The building will be a unique centerpiece to the campus.”

Stockton Student Emily Heerema Wins Prestigious Maude Dahme Award for Series of Articles on Human Rights Issues

Recent Stockton graduate Emily Heerema with President Herman J. Saatkamp., Jr.

Emily Heerema, a recent Stockton graduate has been selected as the 2008 Maud Dahme Award Recipient by the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education for her work in genocide education, including a series of articles in The Argo, Stockton’s student newspaper.

Heerema, from Brick Township, is a graduate of Monsignor Donovan High School who earned her Bachelor of Arts in Literature with two minors, one in Holocaust and Genocide Studies and one in Political Science.  She was nominated for the honor, which is usually reserved for professional educators, by Holocaust Resource Center Director Gail Rosenthal.

“To say I was surprised would be an understatement,” Emily said. “I was honored to be nominated but to be honest had forgotten about it when the letter came announcing that I had actually been selected.  I was really happy the Commission saw me as an educator on the topic of genocide.”

As a sophomore, Heerema was chosen to be part of the Campus Editors’ Mission to Poland and Israel, an event which was sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League.  Since then, she said, her goal has been to educate herself, her peers and the community about human rights violations, both past and present.  To that end came the series of articles, a leadership position in the group Students Take Action Now: Darfur (STAND), and a series of talks at local schools about genocide in addition to other activities.  These volunteer activities included a spring break trip Emily made to Louisiana following Hurricane Katrina to help the cleanup and re-building efforts while many of her peers were on vacation. She also volunteers with the environmental group Water Watch on campus.

Now that Heerema’s Stockton years have passed, she will continue on with her volunteer efforts. “I hope to work with AmeriCorps and help in an inner city area such as the Bronx in New York City or in Washington, D.C.” she said.  “New York is a great place to be for writers, activists and artists, and D.C. is where policy is often decided,” she said.

Her love of activism and helping people “began in the classroom and extended to the real world,” Heerema said.  She mentioned Stockton faculty members such as Patrick Hossay, EvaMarie DiGiorgio, Carol Rittner and Lisa Honaker as being among those individuals who have inspired her.  “It’s hard to single people out because so many have been supportive,” she added.

Stockton Fun Fact:
Who is Stockton’s most recent Track and Field All-American?

(Click here to reveal the answer)


Lisa Shepherd, a sophomore from Mays Landing, unfurled her season-best high jump of 1.67 meters (5 feet, 5.75 inches) in the NCAA Championships at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh to finish second in the nation. Lisa broke her own school record with the jump and earned All-American honors for the third time in her career. Previously she set the All-American standard in the 2007 outdoor and 2008 indoor championships.

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