e-Newsletter of Moravian College and Moravian Theological Seminary | May 7, 2013 Twitter Facebook

News and Notes

More than 100 of them—students, faculty, administrators and trustees—gathered on the Quad at the Haupert Union Building, organized themselves in the shape of a peace sign and took a photograph. The effort--to send a message of peace and love to the city of Boston--was organized by Moravian women’s soccer coach Brienne Smith, a Massachusetts native who ran in Monday’s Boston Marathon and completed it just 30 seconds before the first of two bombs were set off near the finish line.


Three Moravian alumnae are participating in an art exhibit sponsored by Studio B, a nonprofit community art studio and arts organization in Boyertown, Pa., which opens May 10 with an opening reception at 5 p.m. and runs through June 15. Elisabeth Fetsurka Walakovits '04, Elizabeth R. Karhan Flaherty '97 and Darla Kovacs Rodriguez '03 are among the 17 women artists in the show titled VALUE: Woman, Artist, Mother, which was designed to showcase the work of regional artists who are also mothers. The exhibit's goal is to allow these artists to creatively express their experiences as a mother and artist and to engage the community in a dialoge about societal views toward women and mothers through the artwork.


Trash on the Patio:  Observations from Data Analysis

Samantha Bundrick '16 and her sister, Alex Bundrick '16, work with the Trash on the Patio initiative in April.

Photo by Brenda Lange

A waste audit, dubbed Trash on the Patio, was held on April 11 on the PPHAC courtyard. The goal of Trash on the Patio is to increase awareness about how much material that could be recycled or composted is being thrown away. Picking through the trash isn’t as disgusting as you think. Sorting is done outside where there is plenty of fresh air and waste is never handled with bare hands; safety is paramount.

ECO students collaborated with custodial staff to collect one day’s worth of trash from the Wilhelm trash chutes, which amounted to six bags weighing approximately 160 lbs. Each bag was then sorted into four categories:  mixed paper (office paper, cardboard, paperboard); comingled recyclables (glass, aluminum, plastics #1-7); compostables (liquid and solid); and non-recyclables (a.k.a. real trash). The weights (in pounds) of trash and of each sorted material were measured for each bag.

Roughly 54 percent of the material discarded as trash could have been recycled or composted. The breakdown of the individual components was as follows: 17 percent commingled recyclables, 10 percent mixed paper, 27 percent compostables. The remaining 46 percent was trash.

Observations from 2013 Trash on the Patio event are similar to the findings from previous waste audits conducted in 2011 and 2012 in freshman residence halls. These data serve as a baseline for measuring the effectiveness of efforts to reduce the cost associated with landfilling waste.


Diane Husic, professor and chair of the department of biological sciences, recently facilitated the second Science Summit ( for the Kittatinny Ridge—a coalition of organizations and individuals dedicated to preserving “the integrity of the Kittatinny Ridge and Corridor, a rugged, forested mountain surrounded by a mosaic of working lands, healthy streams and pastoral beauty—and to preserve, in perpetuity, this critical linkage of the Appalachian Mountain ecosystem, stretching across Pennsylvania from the Delaware Water Gap to the Maryland border.”  Locally, this ridge is known as Blue Mountain.  The College is an educational partner in this coalition.


Katie P. Desiderio, assistant professor of management, is always looking for new ways to provide hands-on learning opportunities for her students. Each semester, Desiderio engages a community partner with her class(es) while concurrently encouraging hands-on, applied learning experiences for Moravian students. This spring, Desiderio partnered with the Bethlehem Police Department (BPD), specifically the team of officers who oversee the recruiting efforts for the BPD.

Her Management and Organizational Theory (MGMT 223) class was charged with a semester-long project of employing management principles to prepare the 2014 recruitment campaign for the BPD. The class was broken up into four teams including a research team, a print team, a photo/video team, and a strategy and implementation team whereby each team had assigned roles; they learned the essence of the four functions of management (planning, organizing, leading and controlling) in bringing this campaign to life.

The final recruitment campaign was presented to the BPD as an end-of semester presentation where Desiderio witnessed the delight of this learning opportunity for both Moravian's community partner and students. The campaign will run in 2014.

Conferences and Presentations

Diane Husic, professor and chair of the department of biological sciences was a speaker at the March meeting of the Society for Ecological Restoration, Mid-Atlantic Section, at the University of Maryland. Her presentation was titled Climate-induced changes in habitat and community compositions:  how do we begin to adapt the fields of ecology and restoration?

Husic also presented at the Inaugural National Adaptation Forum in April in Denver, Colo. Her presentations were titled Lessons from the international stage:  making adaptation policy and case studies relevant at the regional level and Engaging public audiences in climate science through citizen science, nature journaling and art workshops, and community dialog about local adaptation priorities.


Bob Brill, associate professor of psychology, attended the 28th Annual Conference of the Society for Industrial / Organizational Psychology in Houston, Texas, in April.   As part of the conference, Brill served on a panel presentation, Overcoming Teaching Challenges in Undergraduate Industrial-Organizational Psychology Courses with colleagues from Butler University, East Carolina University and Ramapo College of New Jersey. 

In the News

Krista Steinke, associate professor and chair of the art department, was interviewed for the online magazine about her hew photo series, Purgatory Road. Read the story here.


Diane Husic, professor and chair of the department of biological sciences has published an article titled On the Value of Raptors in American Hawkwatcher.

She also has co-authored a paper (with Dan Kunkle) titled Ecological Monitoring and Adaptive Management of the Lehigh Gap Wildlife Refuge/Palmerton Superfund Site, for the meeting of the Society for Ecological Restoration, Mid-Atlantic Section, Pieces of the Puzzle: From Backyard Habitat to Landscape Scale, held in March at the University of Maryland.


Katie P. Desiderio, assistant professor of management, was informed that the co-authored manuscript Functional Considerations for Gender and Experience as Predictors of Sales Performance in Business-to-Business Sales Organizationshas been accepted for publication in Performance Improvement Quarterly; this work will appear later this year in the journal. Desiderio presented this manuscript at the Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD) International Research Conference in the Americas in February. She played a key leadership role in the conference as the Associate Proceedings Editor on the conference team while also serving as a symposium chair for manuscript presentations.

Student News and Notes

Moravian's Annual Leadership Awards Ceremony was held April 25 where recognition was given to outstanding student and faculty leaders through Moravian's chapter of Omicron Delta Kappa, the National Leadership Honor Society.

Awards celebrate a multitude of leadership activites from recognizing the outstanding leaders in each year (freshman, sophomore, junior, senior), organizational awards, faculty acknowledgement and other, unique categories.


Read about what Shane Burcaw ’14 has been up to as he laughs his way through life, encouraging others to join him. He has been written about recently in the Huffington Post and in The Atlantic Wire.


For the first time, two teams from Moravian, comprised of students from an array of different majors, competed in the Fleming Ethics Bowl at DeSales University in March. This is the third year Katie P. Desiderio, assistant professor of management, has advised teams from Moravian in the event. The majors represented were biology, math, computer science, psychology, sociology, management and health care management.

“These students came together to respond to an ethical case study presented to local business leaders,” she says. “I believe that their efforts really depict the essence of the liberal arts and the impact on our students.”

One of the teams, the Ethical Hounds, advanced to the final round and won third place, overall. Fernando Cifuentes ’14 is a biopsychology major and believes the fact that his team came up with a different approach to the ethical dilemma they were assigned is part of the reason they advanced as far as they did.

“Every group was given a case study on fracking with five questions,” he explains. “Based on the study and using general source information, we had to come up with five answers that involved ethical dilemma and how we would deal with different issues.”
In the first case study, the teams were asked to act as owners of a fracking company. For the second round, they were given a twist to the dilemma and given an hour to work out how to present their case.

“In the second case, we were told to be politicians who had to consider their constituents concerns,” he adds.

Although Alexandra McNamara ’13 is personally against fracking, her team, Moral Moravian, determined that if the procedure is done correctly and monitored properly, it is ethical.

“I took Artists as Activists and understand the environmental side,” she says. “But from the other side, it creates jobs and builds the economy. We had to set our own beliefs aside and come to a common consensus.”

“The beauty of competitions, like the Ethics Bowl, is that it stimulates students to think deeply about the wide-ranging implications of decision making while concurrently defending their stance on a sensitive issue, like fracking," Desiderio added. "Witnessing the team(s) of voices come together to take a stance warmed my heart on so many levels. The liberal arts was certainly alive as Moravian students took the floor on March 21st – they are the reason I love what I do!"


The 2013 Student Writing Prizes were awarded last week. The winners are:

Poetry (judged by Bill Trub ’03, poet)
Winner: Khera Rufino—In the Woods
Honorable Mention: Briana VanBuskirk—Present for an Old Lover
Khera Rufino—Eavesdropping on Ash Wednesday

Short Story (judged by a panel of alumni judges)
Winner:  Kyle Vargo—Gramps' Money
 Honorable Mention: Caitlin Campbell—New Years Eve at the OQ
                                       John Jesse McHugh—My Dear Acquaintance
Personal essay (judged by a panel of alumni judges)
Winner:  James Zengerle—Dad Died
Honorable Mention: Erica Konczyk—The Cemetery of Our Memories

Academic essay (judged by professor emeritus George Diamond)
 Winner:  Steve Delturk—Madonna Images and the Construction of Femininity in Modern Art (written for ART 229: Modern Art)
 Honorable Mention: Caitlin Campbell—In Such Manner and by Such Means (written for BIO 370: Conservation Biology Seminar) and Chelsea Mursch—Encouraging Remyelination  (written for NEUR 367: Neuroscience Methods)


Members of Moravian’s United Student Government (USG), Patrick Foose ’14 and Erica Stiefel ’14, met with State Representatives Marcia Hahn (138th District) and Mario Scavello (176th District) and Senators Pat Browne (16th District) and Gerald Mullery (119th District) this spring during Student Lobby Day in Harrisburg. During their meetings Foose and Stiefel urged legislators to support Senate Bill 420, the Middle Income Student Debt Reduction Act (MISDRA). The response from legislators was positive and each encouraged students to follow-up when the bill is up for vote or moves between the Senate and House.

The MISDRA is designed to help middle income families ($80,000 to $110,000) whose students are taking on the most debt for postsecondary education.  MISDRA would establish a grant program in which students could use their grant at all Pennsylvania postsecondary institutions.  MISDRA seeks $36 million in state appropriation, which is the amount the state appropriation cut from the PHEAA Grant Program in this fiscal year, and is designed to let middle income families know that the state is directly supporting their need to pay college bills. Students also took time to observe the PA House of Representatives in action.


Alyssa Tallon '13 explains her poster presentation about Effects of Celebrity Endorsements.

Photo by Brenda Lange

This year, 70 students, representing 26 different areas of study participated in the Student Scholarship and Creative Endeavors Day on April 22. They had 34 faculty sponsors. This event was begun eight years ago. Since then 509 students have shared their scholarly accomplishments with the Moravian College community. The day was dedicated to the memory of Priscilla Payne Hurd, who established the Rokke Endowment for Student Research, which has supported dozens of student and faculty research endeavors.




Moravian’s Eco Club (Environmental Coalition) participated in the Earth Days on the Greenway event sponsored by the Sierra Club last month. The group created a mock homestead with displays for the house and backyard, demonstrating what people can do at home to help make a difference toward sustainability. The overlying theme was that even doing something as small as turning off the lights can have a massive impact, and that, when it comes to sustainability, everyone has a part to play.



Students, faculty and staff enjoyed end-of-the-semester festivities on April 26. Goodbye to the Bowtie was a way to wish President Thomforde and Kathy Thomforde well as he retires from Moravian College in June. The day's events--memorialized in photos on Moravian's Facebook page--included the Spring Carnival in the Quad behind Comenius Hall; the unveiling of the big chair behind the HUB; Senior Reception; and the Senior Dance on the PPHAC patio.