2016 in Review: Major Campus News and Events

2016 began with a flurry of political activity and concluded with several exciting and transformational campus improvements. The Class of 2016 wrapped up their studies (hearing from alumnus Michael Sheehan at their Commencement Exercises), and departed campus in May, making way for the Class of 2020, who would arrive just a few short months later to begin their time on the Hilltop.

YEAR IN REVIEW: During this final week of 2016, join us each day for a look back at some of Saint Anselm's most memorable news, alumni, athletics, charity and more!

College Takes Center Stage During 100th NH Primary

This election year proved to be historic in more ways than one, as the New Hampshire Presidential Primary turned 100, and Saint Anselm College had a front row seat for all the action.

As the entire nation and many members of the media turned its eyes to New Hampshire, the college welcomed an array of guests including presidential candidates, political strategists, and major TV networks.

Students interned and volunteered for campaigns as well as major media outlets: ABC News, FOX News, and NBC to name a few.

Behind-the-Scenes Work Gives Students Unparalleled Experience

In addition to meeting various candidates at the NHIOP, Clare Robbins, a sophomore politics major, worked in the media room during Jeb Bush's Politics and Eggs event, worked for MSNBC's Morning Joe during their live broadcast from the coffee shop, and was also a runner for ABC News during the December debate.

"My experience with politics and media through the Saint Anselm and its role with the New Hampshire Primary thus far has been incredible," says Robbins. "I'm gaining hands-on experience here at Saint Anselm that I would not be able to get anywhere else."

President Steven DiSalvo notes that hosting the candidates and national news media and assisting media personnel offers students a unique and memorable educational experience.

"There is no better way to learn about the process than to be a part of it," says Dr. DiSalvo.

Read more about a busy 2016 for "New Hampshire's home for politics" in Thursday's 'year in review' post.

Saint Anselm Students on the Other Hilltop

Saint Anselm students in RomeThe spring semester launched the first Semester Abroad in Oriveto, Italy, sending 11 students and Classics professors David George and Linda Rulman to Italy’s Umbria region to live, learn, and travel together. The students studied topics ranging from Italy’s cultural heritage to art and architecture to Classical mythology. They also took weekly tours and field trips related to their readings.

After a trip to Assisi, Classics major Joseph Cahill ’16 reflected on the experience of visiting Italy's sites: "Everywhere you look there are layers upon layers of story and history woven into the landscape. It's daunting, I think it made all of us feel very, very small. But I'm also sure that it excited a desire to explore and question, and challenged us to not spend our time here existing but really living."

Alumnus and Boston Globe CEO Speaks at 123rd Commencement

Class of 2016 Commencement ExercisesDuring Saint Anselm College's 123rd commencement exercises on Saturday, May 21, commencement speaker and alumnus Michael Sheehan addressed 433 members of the class of 2016, asking them to bring the Anselmian traditions of compassion and kindness into the world.

Sheehan, a 1982 graduate and 2011 honorary degree recipient of Saint Anselm College, is the Chief Executive Officer of The Boston Globe and former award-winning Chairman, CEO, President and Chief Creative Officer of Hill Holliday, one of the largest advertising agencies in the country.

Saint Anselm Goes Green with Campus Initiatives

In 2016, the college instituted a number of measures to increase environmental sustainability. Multiple administrative offices and departments made simple but significant changes, from reducing paper usage to using more sustainable materials. In addition, various student clubs and organizations took strides toward decreasing waste and increasing energy efficiency.

Mike Murphy, assistant director of Residential Life and Education explains, "Part of our college mission and philosophy is to be good stewards of the community. Not just for the campus, but in a larger context. It's important for us as a community to care for the environment because there are overall benefits for everyone."

Princeton Review Ranks College 10th for Food and 13th for Community Engagement

The Family Weekend Show celebrates new rankingsSaint Anselm College was once again named among the country's best institutions for undergraduate education in The Princeton Review's 2017 edition of "The 381 Best Colleges."

The college was ranked 8th in the nation for Best Campus Food (up two spots from last year's ranking), and 6th for Most Engaged in Community Service (up from 13th in 2016), as well as being rated 20th for Happiest Students, and included on the Best Northeastern list.

Only about 15% of America's 2,500 four-year colleges are profiled in the guide.

Read more about Saint Anselm College's commitment to community service in Tuesday's 'year in review' post.

Class of 2020 Arrives on Campus Move In Day 2016

In August, the class of 2020, 402 first-year students, arrived on campus for the college’s new student orientation program. As cars rolled up to residence halls, upperclassmen cheered and unloaded cars 10 at a time. Within a few hours, the college community's newest members were settled in their residences for the next year.

Class of 2020 At a Glance

  • 39% men, 61% women
  • 21 states and 2 foreign countries represented
  • Average G.P.A.: 3.26
  • Top 5 majors: Nursing, Business, Politics, Biology, Criminal Justice

College Plants Hiroshima Tree

In a small campus ceremony behind Joseph Hall on September 17, the buildings and grounds department planted a tree grown from the seed of one which lived through the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan in 1945, leading to the unconditional surrender of Japan and the effective end of World War II.

Saint Anselm College alumnus Michael McCue '89 secured the seed from Green Legacy Hiroshima, an initiative of a United Nations organization. Green Legacy Hiroshima's mission is to spread seeds and saplings of Hiroshima's so-called "survivor trees."

College Hosts Heritage Edition of Saint John’s Bible

Beginning in September, the Geisel Library began displaying one of the seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition as Saint Anselm College participates in the program, "A Year with The Saint John's Bible."

The volume, Gospels and Acts, is a richly illustrated facsimile of the original Bible manuscript. Gospels and Acts is be on display on the main floor of the Geisel Library until October 2017.

College Breaks Ground on Roger and Francine Jean Student Center Complex

L to R: Richard Meelia, Joanne Pietrini Smith, Roger and Francine Jean, Dr. DiSalvo, Emma Bishop, Abbot Mark Cooper

View from present-day Cushing Parking Lot, showing the beautiful new entrance to the glass-enclosed Campus Store/Bookstore accessible from the lower level.

View from present-day Cushing Parking Lot, showing the beautiful new entrance to the glass-enclosed Campus Store/Bookstore accessible from the lower level.

The Saint Anselm College community will gain a dynamic new gathering place in the very center of campus, with a lead unrestricted gift making the expansion and renovation of the Student Center possible. The gift was announced in October by President Steven R. DiSalvo, Ph.D. during a groundbreaking ceremony

A significant portion of a $6 million commitment — the largest individual gift in the college's history — from trustee Roger L. Jean '70, HD ’06 and his wife, Francine, will enable the college to undertake the project, which is slated for completion in early 2018. The new facility will be known as the Roger and Francine Jean Student Center Complex.

College Announces $1 Million Gift for Diversity Scholarship Program

At a President's Convocation on September 8, Dr. Steven R. DiSalvo, president of Saint Anselm College, addressed the community on topics ranging from enrollment, and academic affairs, to the financial health of the college.

He also announced a $1 million dollar endowment grant over the course of five years to the college from a private foundation, in support of the Hilltop Scholarship Fund to provide scholarships for underrepresented, low-income, first-generation or international students.

"We believe that academically qualified students who are committed to working hard should not be denied the opportunity to succeed here," says Dr. DiSalvo. "Lowering the barriers for underrepresented students expands their opportunity to earn an exceptional undergraduate education. At the same time their presence and active engagement in our learning community will enrich the educational experience of all students. We are extremely grateful to the foundation for providing this opportunity, and we hope that it will lead to even greater support for diversity and inclusiveness in our community."

New Dr. Paul J. McNeil ’46 College Entrance Opens

Fr. Mathias Durette, O.S.B., with Dr. Paul McNeil, Maureen McNeil and Dr. Steven R. DiSalvo, president of the collegeThe college ends 2016 with a new main entrance. On Dec. 13, Saint Anselm College officially opened the entry way with a ribbon cutting ceremony honoring Dr. and Mrs. Paul J. McNeil '46, after whom the gateway will be named.

Designed to provide a dramatic first impression, in the future this new entrance (located opposite College Road, east of the "old" main entrance) will also provide a symbolic introduction to the superior educational experience to which the college is committed.

"We were in desperate need of a main entrance that was more welcoming, and signifying the arrival into our academic community," said President Steven R. DiSalvo, Ph.D., during the ribbon cutting ceremony.

"When you enter campus you will soon see in front of you the new Roger and Francine Jean Student Center Complex, which, once complete, will serve as a beacon for the future; and then you will turn and see an iconic historic building, Alumni Hall, that preserves the past. That is the moment, when you realize that Saint Anselm College is all about tradition, our mission and our history; but it's also about our growth and faith in the future."

Nursing Course Takes Students to Italy for Spring Break

During spring break, 14 Saint Anselm nursing students are learning about Italy’s historic and current healthcare system first-hand during a weeklong study-tour as part of the spring semester nursing course and global seminar, NU370: Historical Perspectives on Health, Welfare, Disease & Society. The group is accompanied by nursing professors Margaret Carson and Kathleen Cahill who team-teach the nursing elective. Staying in both Rome and Florence, students are focusing on the historical perspective of healthcare, while placing a special focus on the role of nurses.

The trip itinerary includes numerous opportunities to visit historical sites, with a heavy focus on touring historic and active hospitals. During their 10-day tour, they are exploring the Vatican museum, Sistine Chapel & Saint Peter’s Basilica, Villa Borghese, Uffizi Museum, Santa Maria Novella, San Marco Museum, as well as visiting the towns of Siena, San Gimignano, and Lucca.

Nursing students in Rome

Tuesday, March 1

The group arrived in Rome on Saturday and spent the day getting acquainted with Italy’s capital. They had a busy few days touring the sprawling cosmopolitan city; on Sunday they visited the Villa Borghese where they saw the famous Bernini sculptures, as well as the Capuchin Crypt, and St. Camillus Museum and attended an English Mass.

On Monday they toured Santa Spirito Hospital Museum and St. Peter’s in Vatican City where they went through the Holy Doors.

Tuesday was their last day in Rome where they would visit the Vatican Museum. From there, they continued their travels to Florence and several towns in Tuscany.

Each day has included class meetings. Students are keeping journals of their observations and discussing the connections they’re making with their course studies. Upon returning to Saint Anselm, students will create a project and presentation that is linked to their experience abroad.

Read the full story on Saint Anselm College's global seminar courses traveling this spring break »

Philosophy Students in the Netherlands

During spring break, philosophy professors Robert Anderson and Joshua Tepley and 12 Saint Anselm College students traveled to the Netherlands as part of a global seminar: philosophy course, PH212: Medieval Philosophy. [Read more…]

Eurochoir 2016: Updates from Ireland

During spring break, Choir Director Brandon Ring and 42 members of the Saint Anselm College Choir will embark on a 10-day journey to Ireland for their bi-annual European Concert Tour including visits to various abbeys, churches, and cathedrals.

The tour entitled, "Turas; A Global Journey Through Music," symbolizes the Eurochoir's journey through time, cultures, and countries. In past years, the group has journeyed to Hungary, Italy, Spain, and the Czech Republic. This year they will travel across western Ireland through Westport, Adare, Killarney, and Cork.EuroChoir at Kylemore Abbey

Follow the #SACChoireland2016 on Twitter.

UPDATE: Friday, March 4
From Susan Gabert, Director of Campus Ministry

Throughout our travels across this beautiful country we've enjoyed it’s “40 shades of Green,” stories and visits from our leprechaun friend Murphy, lively music and pubs, great food (Irish Stew, Fish & Chips, Tea & Scones and much much more), and the sheep, which appear to be everywhere!

Thursday morning bright and early we headed out to Cork City with the EuroChoir dressed in concert attire. Arriving at Cork's City Hall, we were greeted by the Lord Mayor of Cork who explained the history of the city hall as well as the history and politics of Cork. In appreciation, the choir treated the Lord Mayor to a few songs, of which he seemed to truly enjoy.

Following a quick tour of the Lord Mayor's building and office, we headed to St. Fin Barre Church of Ireland, Cork's Anglican Cathedral–the site of the choir's final concert in Ireland. Here the group toured the Church and held a quick rehearsal. We had a lovely crowd for the concert which was a hit, even receiving a standing ovation from the audience–a fitting and appropriate way to conclude.

This particular performance also included some special moments as Director Brandon Ring invited Bobby Aldrich`01 (tour manager) to conduct “I Love You Lord” and invited all alumni traveling with us to join the EuroChoir. Sarah Fitzpatrick, Jenn Kernan, and Kate Swider '12 along with concert visitor Elizabeth (Liz) McGloin Browne '99 – joined in for this signature piece. Liz, who lives in Naas just outside of Dublin, was a member of the choir when she was on the Hilltop. She drove two hours to Cork to attend the concert but said she truly enjoyed listening to this talented group.

Since we were spending the night in Cork, the rest of our day was spent getting settled in at the hotel and exploring the city. John, our tour guide, gave us a short walking tour of Cork City so we could get a sense of direction and then folks headed off in groups for lunch, shopping, and to discover all the city had to offer.

Friday morning we headed to Blarney where we toured the famous Blarney Castle and its exquisite grounds. Many in our group climbed to the top of the castle so they could kiss the Blarney Stone.

According to the Blarney Castle literature, legend says that the Blarney Stone was Jacob’s Pillow, brought to Ireland by the prophet Jeremiah. Here it became the Lia Fail or ‘Fatal Stone,’ used as an oracular throne of Irish kings – a kind of Harry Potter-like ‘sorting hat’ for kings. It was also said to be the deathbed pillow of St. Columba on the Island of Iona.

Legend has it that it was then removed to mainland Scotland, where it served as the prophetic power of royal succession, the Stone of Destiny. When Cormac MacCarthy, King of Munster, sent 5,000 men to support Robert the Bruce in his defeat of the English at Bannockburn in 1314, a portion of the historic stone was given by the Scots in gratitude – and returned to Ireland. Others say it may be a stone brought back to Ireland from the Crusades – the ‘Stone of Ezel’ behind which David hid on Jonathan’s advice when he fled from his enemy, Saul. A few claim it was the stone that gushed water when struck by Moses.

Whatever the truth of its origin, we believe a witch saved from drowning revealed its power to the MacCarthys. Those who “kiss the stone” are said to gain the “gift of gab.”

The afternoon was spent at Blarney Mills enjoying lunch and shopping. The Blarney Mills are particularly famous for their wool and the group certainly supported the economy of Ireland today, purchasing items for themselves and gifts for their loved ones. We headed back to Cork City for the early evening where folks are on their own for dinner and evening activities.

Tomorrow, Friday, we had another change in plans and will be headed to Cobh, a picturesque port town where many who immigrated to the United States would have left by boat. This is also the last port where immigrants loaded the Titanic for their journey to the U.S. We look forward to the Titanic Museum, Immigration Center, and Cathedral.

We have enjoyed our time in this beautiful country and it is hard to believe that we will be headed back to the Hilltop soon.


UPDATE: Wednesday, March 2
From Robert Aldrich '01, Assistant to the Director and Susan Gabert, Director of Campus Ministry

The weather in Ireland has thrown us for a loop and we've been doing a lot of adjusting to the itinerary. Wednesday was one of those days.  The original plan was a boat tour through the Lakes of Killarney and an afternoon of either visiting the gardens at Muckross House or a hill walk up Torc Mountain. Let me tell you a little about what actually happened on Wednesday!

With high winds predicted the boat tours were cancelled.  The entire group boarded the bus and headed into Killarney National Park to see the Gap of Dunloe. This incredibly picturesque spot is named in Irish Dun Loich, meaning Loich’s stronghold. It's a narrow mountain pass between two peaks in County Kerry, Ireland.

A "short" walk into the national park, most of the group walked right up to the mountain gap (approximately 3 miles each way). We walked a few miles to the “wishing bridge” and stopped for a group photo with the Gap in the background. With the sun starting to peak through we thought we would enjoy the views and the fresh air – until the heavy rains, wind, and hail started to come down!  Despite getting soaked the group pressed on (without any complaining). It's hard to be upset with anything when surrounded my such beauty.

We returned to Killarney and had an opportunity to dry off, get a hot shower, find a quick bite to eat in town, and then boarded the bus in the afternoon to go out to Muckross House. Although the weather was still far from ideal the group had an opportunity to walk along the lakeside, see the gardens, and go through the house. The evening was free for the group to enjoy Killarney, and enjoy it they did!


UPDATE: Tuesday, March 1
From Robert Aldrich '01, Assistant to the Director

The group woke up on Tuesday morning and left Adare and headed to Glenstal Abbey, which is an abbey founded by a group of Benedictine monks who run a school on the property (sound familiar?). The monks were forced to leave Belgium in the 1920s, and their Abbot, who was Irish, found the property in County Limerick. They were embraced by the community and in the early years were cared for by the locals and in return started to educate the kids. Now, over the last 80+ years the school has grown into an all-boys boarding school for more than 225 students from all over the world.

With true Benedictine hospitality, we were welcomed by Brother Padraig. After coffee, tea, and scones we were given a tour of the Abbey Church and had the opportunity to watch a brief DVD on the history of the famous Glenstal Icon Chapel. We had a chance to visit the chapel, located in a crypt underneath the Church (sorry, no pictures allowed) and then went to daily Mass with the monks. Glenstal is famous for the musicality of their monks (CD's available for purchase) and the Choir had a chance to hear the Gregorian Chant used in the Abbey Church. Following Mass the choir performed a 30-minute recital for the monastic community and about 50 local parishioners, including members of a local choir. We were then treated to lunch at the school, a tour of the gardens and monastic cemetery, and finally hot chocolate before boarding the bus and heading south to Killarney.

A real treat to weave in the Benedictine connections on our tour of Ireland!

Following our visit to Glenstal Abbey we continued south to Killarney, in Ireland's County Kerry. Upon arriving in Killarney we unloaded the bus, changes into our concert attire and headed to St. Mary's Church in the center of town to rehearse for our evening concert. A benefit concert for the church restoration fund, our's was the first concert in their spring concert series. We had a small (but very appreciative) audience of about 50 people. The kids really enjoyed performing in the space and even did a "flash mob" type performance in the city center prior to the concert to advertise for the event.  Following the concert we had a group dinner to celebrate!

PS: It didn't rain today!

UPDATE: Monday, Feb. 29
From Susan Gabert, Director of Campus Ministry

Sunday we journeyed to a Benedictine Abbey called Kylemore Abbey – just stunning!  The Abbess and sisters were so gracious to our students.  We toured the beautiful grounds, attended the monastic community's Mass (where the choir provided the music) and then we headed to the Gothic Cathedral (also on the grounds) for rehearsal and a 1:15 concert to a very full church. The choir performed a variety of songs which were truly impressive and senior Billy Endicott conducted one of the pieces.

We had lunch in the abbey's café, and enjoyed wondering throughout the walled gardens, Castle, gift shop, and rest of the grounds before heading back to Westport and our hotel. Many groups headed into town for dinner and to have experience the lively music in traditional Irish pubs. Some of our students even got to sing for the patrons!

Monday we left Westport and journeyed to Adare. It was a full day of travel as we made several stops along the way. While we had enjoyed a beautiful, dry day on Sunday, we were not so lucky on Monday. When we arrived at the Cliffs of Mohr it was raining quite hard and it was very windy. This did not deter our students one bit; they spent a good amount of time outside enjoying the magnificent sights of the Cliffs. Completely soaked, they warmed up inside where they checked out the gift shop and enjoyed lunch and the exhibit in the visitor center.  They said it was worth it–a once in a life time experience. While I did not spend as much time outside I certainly concur that seeing the Cliffs of Mohr was a once in a lifetime experience. And after all it was just rain!

Next we headed to Bunratty Castle where we traveled back in time to this formidable castle built in the 15th century. It has been preserved just as it would have looked in the 1500s. Our tour of the castle included the great hall, main guard and south solar. Then we visited the Folk Park, an authentic re-creation of life in Ireland at the turn of the 20th century.

Finally we headed back on the road to Adare, a beautiful, little town; we are staying in a lovely hotel just outside downtown. We have a very short stay here, but headed into town for dinner.  Most of our group went to Collins on the recommendation of our bus driver Bill.  It was a great call – delicious food, wonderful service, and very reasonable prices. Thanks Bill!

Throughout our stay we are blessed to have John as our tour guide from World Strides. He shares wonderful stories and history of this incredible country and it's people. He is taking very good care of us.

Tuesday we head to Glenstal Abbey (I’m so excited to be at another Benedictine Monastery!) where we attend Mass and the choir performs an informal concert.  The monks have planned a schedule that truly demonstrates Benedictine hospitality with tea, lunch, and an afternoon snack. BTW – I am loving all the tea and scones. Then we head to Killarney where we will spend the next two nights. This evening the students will perform a formal concert which I am certain will impress this community.


Members of the Saint Anselm College choir have arrived in Ireland and have already sang at Mass and performed a concert.

The group of 42 students and several members of the college staff arrived in Shannon, Ireland bright and early on Saturday morning. They boarded a bus to Galway and then another to Knock where they visited a special Holy Site: the Shrine and Museum at the Basilica of Our Lady, Queen of Ireland.

The story goes, in 1879, an apparition of the Virgin Mary, St. Joseph, and St. John the Evangelist appeared at an altar on the south gable of the church and was witnessed for more than two hours. The tour of the Shrine grounds included the Apparition Chapel and original Gable Wall, the Papal Cross, the Basilica, and the Chapel of Reconciliation.

After an eventful bus trip and several hours exploring Knock, they continued on their way to Westport where they'd spend a couple nights.

On Sunday morning, the group explored Kylemore Abbey, a Benedictine monastery and walled garden in Galway. After viewing the gardens and abbey, the choir sang at Mass for the Nuns of the Monastic Church of Kylemore. An informal concert followed.

Tomorrow the group will explore the Adare area traveling to the Cliffs of Moher.

Touring Google: Students Visit Media Filing Center

For the latest round of GOP debates, Google has partnered with the Republican National Committee (RNC) to bring a new and improved interactive media filing center to debate venues. This week, the venue is Saint Anselm’s Sullivan Arena. Professor Jonathan Lupo and fifteen Communication majors had a fun and rare opportunity to tour the transformed facility and see the tech innovations Google provided to journalists here covering the Republican Primary Debate at the college.

Communication students tour the Google spin room at the GOP Debate“This was a great way for students to get a sense of how the space was transformed and gives them a new understanding about the debate process,” says Lupo. “It’s amazing to see how a school this size has access to these opportunities.”

Led by Jesse Suskin, Manager of Government Relations and Public Policy at Google, the 40-minute tour included a close-up look at the filing center’s interactive video walls, 360-degree virtual-reality equipment, YouTube setups, the spin room, and Google café.

Students were able to take a closer look at video walls showing current Google search trends and the results of their consumer surveys. These show in real-time what Google users are searching, as well as top issues for swing states. This provides journalists with background on the issues that are most important to viewers, as well as how a debate can potentially changes their opinions.

Following the tour, students had the opportunity to ask Suskin questions about the set-up of the media filing center, the type of information that Google provides to journalists, and even future job prospects at Google.

“This is such a creative and innovative process,” said freshman Meghan Schmitt. “It’s amazing to see all the technology in one place and see the amount of work that goes into the set-up of the spin room.”

Added sophomore Hayley Pettinato, “Google is bringing the campaign process to life. Knowing that this is happening on campus is incredible.”

Reporting from the Hilltop: Alumna Covers Republican Debate

The Republican Presidential Primary Debate and N.H. Primary have brought journalists from near and far to Saint Anselm College including alumna Ashley Pratte '11, a senior political reporter for LifeZette, who is happy to be returning to her home on the Hilltop.

Saint Anselm College alumna Ashley PrattePratte's back in Manchester covering candidates' events and the debate.

No stranger to the primaries, she was a student worker for CNN and CBS in 2007. “Nine years ago I was a runner at the debates so it’s been fun to be back on campus to see the other side of it all,” she said.

Pratte moved to Washington D.C. after graduation, where she was the spokesperson for Young America’s Foundation. There, she was introduced to the media and began to take an interest in journalism. Today as a Senior Reporter, she proposes her own article ideas and meets daily with the political editor of Lifezette to discuss the topics. Read her story, "Behind the Scenes at the GOP Debate" »

As a politics major at Saint Anselm, Pratte was involved in a range of extracurricular activities that prepared her for her career today. She was a Kevin B. Harrington Student Ambassador at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, class president for three years, and student body president her senior year. Also involved in community service, Pratte was a volunteer with Campus Ministry's Service & Solidarity Missions spring break alternative program for three years, once as a participant and twice as a group leader

LifeZette is a website reporting on a variety of cultural topics, from politics and faith, to parenting and health, and more.

Standing-in for the Presidential Candidates

Education. The economy. Foreign relations. These are all subjects of tonight’s Republican Presidential Primary Debate but during Saturday’s rehearsal Saint Anselm students were the ones answering the questions. Seven students – Cody Aubin ’18, Abdelaziz “Zizo” Alsharawy ’16, Brian O’Connor ’16, Nicholas Petromelis ’16, John Robinson ’18, James Messner, Joshua Gagne ’19 – were standing-in as the presidential candidates and they came prepared with their gloves on.

Republican Primary Debate rehearsal at Saint Anselm CollegeJohn Robinson acting as Chris Christie said he was ready to take a few jabs at Rubio. “The kid who played Rubio really gave it to me in the previous rehearsal and I look forward to giving it back to him,” said Robinson.

Stand-ins for ABC News talent David Muir and Martha Raddatz, Brad Greenland ’17 and Kristine Adams ’16 respectively, introduced the debate and peppered the candidates with relevant questions.

In response, the students answer as their respective candidate might. They’ve spent time researching the issues and the answers. Several of them have met the candidates at NHIOP events or from volunteering and interning for the candidate campaigns.

Students are also standing-in for participants in the live pre-debate show including George Stephanopoulos, Donna Brazil, Cokie Roberts, and Bill Kristol to name a few.

Sophomore Garrett Meyer has been acting as ABC News’ Chief Anchor, Stephanopoulos during several rehearsals the last few days. “It’s been very cool,” says Meyer. “We’re enacting the show; they have to get commercial cuts and timing.”

Meyer said that the debates and the access to politics is the reason he chose Saint Anselm College. “I knew I wanted to do something related to politics,” he said. “It’s far from home [California] but it’s been absolutely worth it.”

Grace D’Antuono ’19 stood in for FOX News contributor, Mary Katharine Ham in rehearsal. “I prepared for my role as a journalist by becoming more aware of current issues,” said D’Antuono. “I especially researched education, energy, and prison reform. I wanted to ask what the network journalists might not ask.”

The ABC News rehearsals are wrapping up, but the students won’t forget these experiences anytime soon—enjoying learning about behind-the-scenes production, meeting ABC News anchors, and being part of the debate and N.H. Primary politics.

2015 in Review: Major Campus News and Events

2015 brought several major political events to campus (those will be reviewed later this week) in addition to the many annual campus events that are observed on our academic calendar. In May Gov. Mitt Romney addressed the 471 members of the class of 2015 at Saint Anselm College's 122nd Commencement Exercises – and 533 first-year students arrived to campus in August to begin a new academic year.

2015 Commencement

122nd Commencement Exercises: Mitt Romney Urges Graduates to Engage in Citizenship

During Saint Anselm College's 122nd commencement exercises on Sunday, May 17, commencement speaker Mitt Romney addressed 471 members of the class of 2015, and Dr. Steven DiSalvo presided over his second commencement as president.

After noting that they were graduating in a special year, the 125th anniversary of the college's founding, Dr. DiSalvo said, "Looking back, not only over your four years here, but over 125 years of tradition and distinction, our unique history is what makes us all part of something truly special.” Read the full story »

College Welcomes Class of 2019

The countdown to college ended this morning as 413 members of the class of 2019 (533 total incoming students) moved into their new home at Saint Anselm College. They arrived on campus with boxes upon boxes but luckily had plenty of help from parents, siblings, friends, orientation leaders, resident assistants, and athletic teams. Move In Day 2015

Dr. DiSalvo welcomed and congratulated the newest members of the community, offering them advice on their imminent journey.

"Among you are our future leaders. Some of you will go on to become class presidents, star athletes, politicians, actors and actresses, scientists, nurses, writers, educators, business leaders, innovators just to name a few. You have been selected to come here because each of you brings something unique to our campus community. Today we celebrate your minds and voices, your high schools and hometowns. You can do anything." Read the full story »

College Ranks Highly for Food, Community Service and Return On Investment

At #112, Saint Anselm College is once again included in the top tier of best national liberal arts colleges by U.S. News & World Report's Best Colleges, 2016 edition. Read the full story »

Alumni Hall on the campus of Saint Anselm CollegeThe Princeton Review named Saint Anselm among the country’s best institutions for undergraduate education in The Princeton Review's 2016 edition "The 380 Best Colleges" where it also named the college 10th in the nation for Best Campus Food and 13th for Student Engagement in Community Service. Read the full story »

This year the college was once again recognized for its value. Payscale.com ranked Saint Anselm #18 for return on investment (ROI) among liberal arts colleges. Read the full story »

In The Economist’s first-ever rankings, Saint Anselm was placed at 171 for economic value out of 1,275 colleges and universities. Read the story »

History Class Visits Cuba to Study the Cold War

A dozen Saint Anselm College students visited Cuba with Professors Philip Pajakowski and Matthew Masur during spring break March 1-7.

Ben Plante '15 in CubaThe students explored the origins of the Soviet-American conflict, the two countries' struggle for global influence, and the effects of the Cold War on American and Soviet domestic affairs. They heard from local lecturers and visited historic sites such including Old Havana, the colonial settlement of Trinidad, and the memorial to Cuba's national hero, Jose Marti. Read the full story »

College Approves Pilot Program in Orvieto, Italy

In January 2015, Saint Anselm College announced that students may live, learn, and travel with fellow students and faculty in Orvieto, Italy, through a pilot study abroad program: A Semester in Orvieto beginning in spring 2016.

Available to sophomores, juniors and seniors interested in a unique journey abroad with their very own Saint Anselm community, this semester-long program offers courses covering topics ranging from classics, history, art and architecture, to Italian culture, politics, and theology. Read the full story »

New Exhibition Space Extends Learning to Residence Hall

The Living and Learning Commons (LLC), Saint Anselm College's newest residence Hall, continues the innovative blending of living and learning through new exhibition space in the form of six art cases installed on all three floors.

Fr. Benet talks with students in the LLC exhibition areasThe cases provide additional exhibition space to showcase fine arts student, faculty, and even community work while also making art accessible to students 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Additional workshops, programs, and future exhibitions hosted in the LLC integrate art into everyday campus life, giving students an audience, and making art education available to the entire college community. Read the full story »

College Offers Summer Courses Online

This year Saint Anselm College's summer school offered six online courses, including core curriculum requirements for theology, philosophy and Spanish. This was the first time that the college has offered online courses, which were available to Saint Anselm students only.

Students learned about the intersection of American politics and education in Getting Schooled: Education Policy and School Reform, or completed a theology requirement in The Pentateuch. Other online summer courses included: Understanding Suffering (nursing), social statistics (sociology), Spanish seminar, and an ethics seminar (philosophy). Read the full story »

125th Anniversary Finale Celebrated at Reunion Weekend

Saint Anselm College 125The final 125th Anniversary Celebration was held on Saturday, June 6. Alumni, family, friends, faculty and staff were invited for an evening of live entertainment, dancing and fireworks on the Campus Green in front of Davison Hall.

Alumni represented graduating classes from 1942 to 2014 traveled from as far as Australia, California, Florida, and Washington. Anselmians reunited with old friends, attended mass at the Abbey Church, enjoyed live music at the pub and participated in talks and tours throughout the weekend.

For more information about the 125th Anniversary of the college, including history lessons and opportunities to read and share Anselmian stories, visit www.anselm.edu/125.

The conclusion of the college’s 125th year coincided with Reunion weekend June 5-7, and the return to the Hilltop of the classes of '65 '70, '75, '80, '85, '90, '95, '00, '05 and '10. Read the full story »

Editorial support for this post provided by Jared Nichols '18.

2015 in Review: Alumni Success Stories

2015 offered several memorable moments for Saint Anselm alumni as Anselmians around the country were recognized for their skills, talents and contributions to their respective fields. They’ve received awards and promotions, and were featured in the news for their success.

Alumnus F. Marc LaForceAs a global health leader alumnus F. Marc LaForce '60 has been recognized nationally and on the Hilltop for his work.

He received the 2015 Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Humanitarian Award for the positive impact his work has had on the health of humankind. In May, he received an honorary degree from Saint Anselm College at the 122nd commencement exercises. At the college’s Academic Convocation in September, he addressed the community, talking about "Distributive Justice and International Childhood Immunization."

As director of the Meningitis Vaccine Project at PATH (Program for Appropriate Technology for Health), he guided an international effort to eradicate one of Africa's most devastating epidemics, meningitis A. Presently, he is director of technical services for the Serum Institute of India, Ltd. He earned his medical degree at Seton Hall College of Medicine and Dentistry.

Alumni Association Honors Anselmians for Good Work »

Seven Anselmians were honored October 2 at the 2015 Alumni Association Awards. At the annual dinner, alumni, faculty, staff, and friends are recognized for their achievements and contributions to the college or academic field.

2015 Alumni Award RecipientsChosen by the Alumni Council, this year's recipients were Elizabeth A. Condron '04, Doria "Woody" Dubois Ph.D '64, Michael "Mick" F. Flynn '89, Evelyn (Lord) Gaudrault '62, James and Eleanor Golden P'86, P'87, P'92, P'03, Kenneth A. Perkins, and Frank A. Stabile Jr. '68.

Alumni Save Lives with Transplants »

From Boston to Bangladesh–by the bedside, in the operating room, and in the halls of the Legislature–alumni help people of all ages and walks of life who need a bone marrow or stem cell transplant in order to fight a life-threatening type of cancer »

Alumni Save Lives Through TransplantsNursing grads like Jenna Moran ’08 work on patient units. Dr. Kellie Sprague ’86 directs a transplant unit at Tufts Medical Center. As a student, Kristen MacNeil ’12 gave her bone marrow to a baby. Born with a rare condition called Wiskott Aldrich Syndrome, the boy would have died without a transplant.

Saint Anselm has held 18 bone marrow registry drives, resulting in 1,500 additions to the worldwide registry. According to the Delete Blood Cancer headquarters, 43 matches were found through our drives, and 11 donations were successfully completed (including that of Katelyn D’Entremont ’09, whose donation to three-year-old Gregory was featured in the Spring 2013 issue of Portraits.

The way John Gallivan ’01 and Gina (Meneses) Gallivan ’01 see it, joining the National Bone Marrow Registry — and potentially saving a life — should be an easy thing to do. Gina’s life was saved by a bone marrow stem cell transplant, and the pair of English teachers could not be more grateful. They turned their personal experience into a political cause. They proposed and supported a bill in the Connecticut Legislature that brought about a law requiring insurance companies to cover the cost of bone marrow testing for anyone joining the registry.

Read the full story »

Four Alumni Recognized for Good Work » Saint Anselm Collgee alumni named Forty Under 40

In January, four Saint Anselm College alumni, Carey Cahoon ’98, Kate Giaquinto ’10, Alexandra Puglisi ’11, and Keith Raho ’07, were named to The New Hampshire Union Leader's "40 Under Forty" list, which recognizes local citizens for their service and talent to New Hampshire.



Alumnus Named Director of U.S. Army Chemical and Biological Center » Saint Anselm College Alumnus Joe Corriveau

Joseph Corriveau, a 1981 biology graduate, was appointed director of the federal laboratory that oversees research and development of solutions for chemical and biological defense of American soldiers and the nation. He directs the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC), which has sites at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.; Pine Bluff, Ark.; and Rock Island, Ill.



Fr.-Jonathan-600x400Father Jonathan DeFelice Recognized with State Merit Award »

The New England Board of Higher Education (NEBHE) awarded Father Jonathan DeFelice, O.S.B., a member of the class of 1969 and former president of Saint Anselm College, with the New Hampshire State Merit Award. "We are proud to honor a true champion of the liberal arts in Father Jonathan," said NEBHE President and CEO Michael K. Thomas. A member of the Benedictine community that founded and governs the college, Father Jonathan is also a graduate of the college's Class of 1969. Before becoming president, he served his alma mater as a faculty member and in a number of administrative roles.

Read more alumni stories on the Portraits blog »

Editorial support for this post provided by Jared Nichols '18.

Students Work Behind the Scenes at the Democratic Debate

Behind the scenes at the ABC News Democratic Presidential Debate, Saint Anselm College students have been working around the clock in preparation for tonight’s event. More than 50 Saint Anselm College students are working for ABC. They’re standing-in for candidates during test shots, acting as ushers, meeting and greeting the media, and even acting as Martha Raddatz’s personal student-assistant.

Saint Anselm students assist in debate preparationSince Monday business major and politics minor Brian Pickowicz '16 has been working as the ABC News production manager’s assistant running errands, assisting with set production, and providing any necessary support to the ABC team. “The cool thing about being his shadow is how much I saw and learned,” says Pickowicz.

“I learned first-hand how everything in production works,” he says.

Politics major Ashley Motta '17 has also been assisting in the debate preparation as a runner for the engineering team. She unloaded trucks, ran cables, and set up the debate hall—all while also taking her final exams. She’s attending the debate tonight, seeing all her work come together during the live broadcast.

“I didn’t imagine all the roles that needed to come together to make this happen,” she says.