Jocelyn always knew that she wanted to help others, but as someone struggling with addiction, she had to help herself first. In 2012, two years before entering Bridgewater State as a social work major, she began attending 12-step meetings and completed two intensive outpatient programs for treatment of her opioid addiction. Once she achieved a solid foundation in recovery, she began giving back, assisting other recovering addicts in her community. In 2015, her only sibling died of an opioid overdose. The tragedy almost derailed her, but she persisted in her studies and will graduate this May with a 3.8 GPA. She also began working for a treatment facility and serving on the Bridging Lives committee, providing education and resources to families and individuals seeking help from opioid dependency. She recently held a position as Program Coordinator for the East Bridgewater Police Department’s Police-Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative where she helped build capacity to address the epidemic across Plymouth County. After graduation, Jocelyn plans to obtain her License in Social Work (LSW) and work at the recovery house that she recently helped open in honor of her brother.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Jocelyn chose to recognize Dr. David John O’Malley, Associate Professor and Family Advocate, School of Social Work. “Dr. O’Malley has shown me compassion in my time of grief and made a continuing effort outside of classroom hours to guide and support me. He provided me with a linkage to the Bridging Lives committee and the BSU’s Opioid Task Force and encouraged my engagement, helping me heal and fueling my passion to help others.”
Samantha Magnarelli immersed herself in FSU’s leadership development programs, helping train other students to maximize their own potential. A dean’s list student, Samantha used her skills in film/video production to support a critical campus initiative: the university’s updated sexual assault prevention and response course. She produced videos with students, faculty and administrators delivering appropriate messaging surrounding issues like consent, legal and policy guidelines, and the importance of being a positive bystander. Her work will be the backbone of the university’s updated course that all incoming students will take starting this summer. Samantha plans to pursue a career in film/video production.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Samantha chose to recognize Henry C. Parkinson, Ed.D., Associate Dean of Student Development, Student Affairs. “I met Hank during accepted students’ day, and ever since then he has always been there for me whenever I needed a mentor. Without having him on campus I would not be anywhere near where I am today, and I thank him for supporting me since day one.”
Tasia has excelled in numerous campus leadership roles, including peer tutor, supplemental instructor, student admissions representative, orientation leader, Title IX student facilitator, and Administrative Resident Assistant (ARA). She has also spent time volunteering as a “reading buddy” at Bethany Hill Place, a MetroWest housing development for 150 low-income families. Having come from a low-income household and been the first in her family to attend college, Tasia formed a unique bond with the kids and encouraged them to view college as something that was not out of reach. Tasia, along with fellow senior Eunice Owusu, also created a unique course at Framingham State entitled From Margin to Center: Women of Color in Public Policy. The course involved study and personal contact with at least ten leaders from public policy organizations in Washington, DC. Tasia has been accepted into multiple graduate schools and plans on pursuing a master’s degree in student affairs with a focus on issues of inclusion in higher education.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Tasia chose to recognize Virginia Rutter, Ph.D., Professor, Sociology. “Virginia Rutter has been the professor to push me to my greatest potential. She has reminded me never to doubt myself, to always challenge myself, and not to follow my dreams, but to chase them. Working with Virginia has been an extremely invaluable experience and the fact that I have had the privilege to know such a caring human being proves that I ended up in the right place when I chose Framingham State University.”
Amanda’s work through MassArt’s art education department and Center for Art and Community Partnerships (CACP) have provided her with countless opportunities to help others. An art education major, Amanda has served in MassArt’s Saturday Studios program, creating eight-week drawing studios for Boston-area youth as well as intergenerational “family studios.” She is currently completing her Massachusetts initial teacher license through a practicum at McKinley Prep in the Boston Public Schools, where the curriculum provides individualized education and clinical support for learners with diverse needs. As chapter representative for the National and Massachusetts Art Education Association, she has encouraged peers to participate in relevant protest marches for education equity and against gun violence. Amanda has been accepted to graduate school for art therapy at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Amanda chose to recognize Adirana Katzew, Professor, Art Education. “Adriana Katzew is a woman who somehow does it all; she is an astonishing educator, artist, and mother. She has modeled that being a great teacher is about more than content knowledge, but also building authentic relationships with our students. After four years, she is more than a professor and advisor to me; she is a friend and colleague. She has supported me and shown confidence in my ability to succeed and reach my goals.”
Rosy has a passion for helping those with mental health and behavioral issues. Her personal experiences have inspired her to help others so that they can live better lives. She wants to spread the message that, no matter your socioeconomic status or race, you should never abstain from seeking help. Rosy aspires to earn her Ph.D. or Psy.D. in clinical psychology and certification in behavioral analysis. She would like to work in a hospital or mental health institution, and perhaps one day to launch her own practice. She is grateful for and proud of her experiences with Bottom Line and the MGH Youth Scholars Programs, which have helped along her higher education path, from filling out financial aid forms and choosing classes to providing internship experiences and SAT preparation. Rosy is serving an internship in MCLA’s Student Affairs division, where she is working on a project to facilitate focus groups comprised of fellow students, to promote higher retention rates.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Rosy chose to recognize Maria Bartini, Professor, Psychology. “Maria Bartini was my lacrosse coach before she became my adviser and mentor. Because she was my coach first, and then also became my adviser, we have a close and comfortable relationship. As a result, she was able to push me harder. She gave me advice that has helped me make good decisions with my academics and my life.”
A natural leader in the classroom, athletic field, and in the community, Mikayla has earned the top leadership position within the MMA Regiment of Cadets. Mikayla oversees the safe and proper day-to-day operation of MMA’s 1,600+ student body. She also has earned and maintained throughout her four years the Emery Rice scholarship, the highest academic achievement the Academy has to offer. Mikayla has also excelled as an NCAA athlete participating in lacrosse and was named co-captain for the spring 2018 season. She spent a semester in Panama working closely with the Panama Canal Commission. After graduation, Mikayla is planning a career in business.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Mikayla chose to recognize Michael Kelley, Assistant Director of Student Services. “As a 3/C sophomore cadet at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, LCDR Kelley provided me with my first leadership role on campus. I learned so many lessons from working under his command including how to effectively manage a team and how to keep calm when confronted with a challenge. In my pursuit of senior leadership at the Academy, LCDR Kelley encouraged me to strive for the top leadership role of Regimental Commander. I admire how much LCDR Kelley has given back to the MMA community and I hope to one day do the same. Go Bucs!”
Alicia graduates with a 3.82 GPA and a degree in criminal justice. In addition to her studies, Alicia has been volunteering with the Salem Police Department Community Impact Unit. She conducts follow-up outreach to individuals struggling with mental illness, opioid addiction and homelessness. She has also volunteered at a number of community events including National Night Out and The Walk to End Opioid Addiction. She serves as treasurer of the Salem State Criminal Justice Academy. This month Alicia became an official employee of the City of Salem. She will be working, as partners, with the Police Department’s victim services officer in an outreach role to victims of domestic violence. Alicia hopes to attend law school.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Alicia chose to recognize Eric Metchik, Professor, Criminal Justice. “Dr. Eric Metchik has positively impacted my life and the lives of many other students at Salem State University. His dedication, passion, and commitment to his students make him a remarkable professor and mentor. Dr. Metchik has always encouraged me to challenge myself, and he taught me I am capable of doing anything I put my mind to. I am grateful to have crossed paths with him, as he is a major influence on the person I have become today.”
Jessie is a two-time NCAA All-American cross country runner. She competed at several NCAA Championship meets for indoor track and track & field during her Westfield State career. She became the first person in the history of the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference to win the championship race all four years and earned the Conference’s Runner of the Year award each season. Jesse served as cross country team captain for two years and played a pivotal role in the community as a student athlete through her participation in the University’s Think Pink Breast Cancer Awareness events, as well as Secret Santa and Special Olympics events for the Student Athletic Advisory Council. Jessie has used the leadership skills she gained as a team captain to assist English Language Learners in the classroom. She graduates with a 3.94 GPA and will teach elementary school in Holyoke.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Jessie chose to recognize Bill Devine, Men’s and Women’s Cross Country Coach. “Coach Devine has probably taught me more about what it means to be a quality individual, contributing to society in the best possible ways that I have to offer, than he has about running. He is an inspiration to me every single day.”
Janet is dedicated to helping her community through support of at-risk youth. At Girls, Inc. in Worcester, Janet focused on improving the futures of young women, in part with self-created, hands-on STEM lesson plans for eighth and ninth grade girls. Janet also supported Worcester students as a tutor at North High School. In the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) program at North, she devised personalized success strategies with students focusing on time management and study skills. Janet also volunteered with the Boston Debate League teaching low-income students critical thinking skills. She was a Girls Who Code volunteer at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. On campus at Worcester State, Janet worked with the Alternatives for Individual Development (AID) program as a mentor for at-risk, first-generation college students. At the University’s Math Center, she has tutored almost two hundred students. Janet plans to earn a Ph.D. in quantitative methodology of sociology. She hopes to teach and research sociological statistics at a Massachusetts state university, with a specialization in income-based and gender inequality and quantitative methods.
Faculty/Staff Mentor: Janet chose to recognize Jayne A. McGinn, Director, Financial Aid. “Jayne has offered me unwavering support and confidence to succeed. With her guidance, I’ve been able to explore the world through study and travel.”