Liberal Arts Alumni Honored at First Annual Alumni Celebration

The John Paluszek ’55 First Generation Student of Excellence Scholarship Announced .

The School of Liberal Arts (SoLA) hosted its First Annual Alumni Celebration on May 6 to honor distinguished alumni and faculty members for their outstanding academic and professional accomplishments. A highlight of the event was the establishment of the John Paluszek ’55 First Generation Student of Excellence Scholarship that will be funded by the more than $150,000 raised as a result of the celebration. The $10,000 per year scholarship will be awarded to a liberal arts student each year for as long as the scholarship is funded. School of Liberal Arts Celebration

“The goal of the Paluszek family is consistent with the mission of Manhattan College, which is to provide opportunities for higher education to potential students who may otherwise face insurmountable barriers,” said Cory Blad, dean of the School of Liberal Arts. “The focus on first-generation students reflects John Paluszek's personal path and that of many faculty, students, and alumni in the School of Liberal Arts. We are honored to be able to financially support first-generation students in the liberal arts in John's name.

The alumni honored at the event were John Paluszek ’55, executive editor at Business In Society; Ethan Van Ness ’13, senior policy advisor and Parliamentarian for the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability; Pamela Segura ’14, who is pursuing a master’s degree at the New School for Social Research; and Cristian Gonzalez ’17, most recently media supervisor at Taylor, a marketing and communications agency. 

In addition to the alumni, faculty who recently retired or are soon to retire were honored for their years of service to the College. They included Mitchell Aboulafia, Ph.D., professor emeritus of philosophy; Michael Raymond Antolik, Ph.D., professor emeritus of political science; Joan Cammarata, Ph.D., professor emerita of Spanish; Peter B. Heller, Ph.D., professor emeritus of government (posthumously); Stephen Kaplan, Ph.D., professor emeritus of religious studies; Brother Patrick Horner, FSC, professor emeritus of English; Luis Loyola, Ph.D., associate professor emeritus of sociology; Claire Nolte, Ph.D., professor emerita of history; and Julie Leininger Pycior, Ph.D., professor emerita of history. School of Liberal Arts Celebration

“The dinner honors four alumni and highlights the work of SoLA,” said Mehnaz Afridi,  Ph.D., director of the Holocaust, Genocide and Interfaith Education Center (HGI), and professor of religious studies. “We want our alumni to know how important they are to us and to recognize that the work of liberal arts is at the core of our Lasallian mission. SoLA has never had a dinner or fundraiser celebration, and we’d like to celebrate and recognize our faculty and honorees.”

By Patrice Athanasidy