Having never traveled outside the country, Madalyn Goss made sure her first-ever international trip was worthwhile. This Political Science major, who is also pursuing a Middle East Studies minor, spent two weeks this winter studying in Saudi Arabia through a fellowship she earned through the Bloomsburg University Model Arab League, participating in the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations conventions.

Goss was among 10 selected students for this prestigious program, which extends beyond the two-week study abroad experience. Participants also engage in a variety of activities back home after their time in Saudi Arabia speaking on their experience, presenting public lectures and writing articles reflecting on their new perspective of Saudi Arabia and Middle East culture.

Making a Change, One Movement at a Time! Bloomsburg University’s newly established student organization, The Movement, has spent this past school year promoting creative arts across campus. As a dance troupe of committed, energized and passionate students, The Movement thrives on the facets of art and desire to “spread the love” to you.

Taught by renowned choreographers - Laurieann Gibson, VMA-winning choreographer and Emmy-nominated director, and Ian Eastwood, choreographer and dancer on DanceOn’s Dance Showdown and MTV’s “Return of the Superstars” - The Movement offers the ability to choreograph, teach and perform for its fellow Huskies.

Join us! We host dance classes every Friday at 5 p.m. in the dance studio at Centennial Hall 134. (L-R) Tyhera Johnson, Daryl Gatewood, Corey Webb, Dreland Goar and Shaakirah Bradshaw.

Bloomsburg University’s Forensics (Speech and Debate) Team recently placed third out of 10 schools at the CFA Harold Cox Speech and Debate Tournament at Wilkes University.  All five of the BU student competitors won speaking awards.

  • Joshua Hooks - first, Impromptu Speaking

  • Arrista Voorhees second, Communication Analysis; fourth,  informative Speaking; seventh, impromptu Speaking
Jayleen Alvarado: sixth, Persuasive speaking; sixth, Informative Speaking; fifth, Dramatic Duo with Anna Scott

  • Anna Scott - fifth, Persuasive Speaking , fifth, Dramatic Duo with Jayleen Alvarado

  • John Munchel – third, Single Dramatic Interpretation, fourth, Extemporaneous Speaking, sixth, Impromptu Speaking

Harry C. “Neil” Strine, Director of Forensics, served as a Speech and Debate Judge and ran the Extemporaneous Speaking Preparation room at the tournament. 

(L-R) Neil Strine, Arrista Voorhees, Anna Scott, John Munchel, Jayleen Alvarado and Joshua Hooks.


There are countless ways to enjoy summer in addition to beach vacations, music concerts and even part-time jobs. In fact, many Huskies took advantage of the gap between May graduation and August move-in to continue their Bloomsburg University experience in a variety of fashions. 

Among the wide range of co-curricular learning opportunities included working internships, conducting research and studying abroad.

Some of standout experiences included students placing among the top in the world in the Odyssey of the Mind competition in Iowa, students making record discoveries at a Hopewell archaeological dig in Ohio and several students showcasing their research - two who won awards - among more than 80 participants at the Susquehanna Valley Undergraduate Research Symposium at Geisinger’s Henry Hood Center for Health Research.

Among the highlights:

Bloomsburg University’s Odyssey of the Mind program was recently recognized as one of the best in the world competing in the annual World Final for Odyssey of the Mind, held at Iowa State University.

Both of BU’s teams placed in the top four out of 833 teams representing 43 states and 28 countries with more than 26,000 attendees.

Participating for BU’s two teams were Shaide Moronta, Jordan Galan, Valarie Mussey, Alea Bostic-Davey, Morgen Hatton, Mariam Sarkessian, Jamelisk, Timothy Keiper, Jacqueline Hauck, Nickolas Lloyd and Kristin Burke.

The teams were coached by Chaza Abdul, advisor, Loreen Powell, Evren Eryilmaz and Cenan Abdul-Al.

Beyond exploration for creative thinking and innovation, both teams used different skills and knowledge to solve two complex problems using arts, science, technology, literature, history, math, music, business, and other skills to create solutions.

"The team exceeded every expectation I had,” Abdul said. “We had many practices, and we were working as one family for a long-time. I am proud of them and thankful to the provost, Bloomsburg officials, parents, families and friends, our sponsors and supporters who helped us achieve this goal with every possibility with had."  

Bloomsburg University’s Speech and Debate (Forensics) Team placed third out of eight schools at the Collegiate Forensic Association’s Annual Winter Tournament held at the College of Charleston in South Carolina (Jan. 31 to Feb. 1).

Individual Speaking and Debate Awards

  • Abe Freet – first, Extemporaneous Speaking; third, Impromptu Speaking; third, Informative Speaking; second, Parliamentary Debate with Madalyn Goss; first, Parliamentary Debate Speaker Award
  • Madalyn Goss – second, Parliamentary Debate with Abe Freet; fourth Place, Dramatic Duo with Arrista Voorhees
  • Delaney Hellman - third, After Dinner Speaking; fourth, Impromptu Speaking
  • John Munchel - third, Extemporaneous Speaking; second, Single Dramatic Interpretation; sixth, Declamation
  • Anna Scott – fifth, Persuasive Speaking; third, Dramatic Duo with Jayleen Alvarado
  • Jayleen Alvarado - third, Dramatic Duo with Anna Scott; fifth, Poetry
  • Arrista Voorhees - fourth, Dramatic Duo with Madalyn Goss

The other students competing for Bloomsburg University included Stephanie Kaminski, Abbey Porambo, Atle Walter and Chase Blackburn. Harry C. “Neil” Strine IV, Director of Forensics, served as a speech and debate judge at the tournament. 

(L-R)  Strine, Stephanie Kaminski, Delaney Hellman, Jayleen Alvarado, Anna Scott, Abbey Poramb. Back Row: Arrista Voorhees, John Munchel, Atle Walter, Chase Blackburn, Abe Freet, Madalyn Goss.


Bloomsburg University’s Act 101/EOP recently completed another productive and enriching summer program, helping more than 250 students — many of whom are first-generation college students — get acclimated to college life and prepared for a successful college experience. Among the courses taken and academic support provided to the students over the past six weeks included reading, algebra, college writing, public speaking, U.S. history, Spanish I, computer skills, mindfulness and college orientation.

Act 101/EOP, coordinated through the Department of Developmental Instruction, provides support and opportunities for success to students traditionally under-represented in higher education.

Through this program, students …

  • reach their potential  — Act 101/EOP assists students, who are at a financial, cultural, social or educational disadvantage, in making a successful transition to Bloomsburg University.
  •  discover the value of progress  — Act 101/EOP develops students to their fullest potential through academic advising, tutoring, mentorship and a pre-college summer program.
  • exposure to cultural enrichment activities  — avisit to the state capitol in Harrisburg and annual picnic at Town Park

To facilitate student understanding of political processes that impact nursing and health care delivery, Bloomsburg University senior nursing students annually participate in a field experience.

This experience involves a legislative analysis project and culminates with the trip to Washington D.C., where students meet with the policy analysts and lobbyists from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and the American Nurses Association to prepare for the meeting with their congressman.

Among the topics discuss this semester included the importance of appropriating funding for workforce development programs, Title VIII of the Public Health Service Act, (which includes nursing education), Title III, nurse managed health centers as part of the Affordable Care Act, and for the National Institute of Nursing Research.

Through this field experience, nursing students develop an appreciation for the legislative process and are postured in a leadership position to make the voice of nursing heard to elected representatives. 

(Pictured left) Nursing majors Stephanie Cruz, Julia Arment and Cierra Iddings with U.S. Rep. Joe Pitts (PA-16). (Pictured right) Nursing majors Madel Coole and Lauryn Davidson with U.S. Rep. Glenn Thompson (PA-5).


From team-building exercises with horses to an engaging drug and alcohol panel discussion with local court officials to a children’s activities fair with the community, it was another busy and productive summer for Bloomsburg University’s TRiO Upward Bound Program. It was also a summer of celebration, marking the 50th anniversary of the federal grant program and its 37th year on campus. Since 1965, Upward Bound has grown from 17 initial programs with 2,061 participants to today featuring 964 funded programs working with more than 80,000 students.

Upward Bound is a national program funded through the Department of Education that more than doubles the chances of first-generation students graduating college. Locally, the BU program serves students from Berwick, Mahony, Milton, Mount Carmel, North Schuylkill, Pottsville, Shamokin and Shikellamy high schools. 

The program – with the help of a mentoring and support staff of Bloomsburg University students – provides a wide range of services to prepare its participants to succeed in college. They include weekly tutoring, test preparation, college application and financial aid form assistance, cultural enrichment programs, field trips and a summer academic program.

Among the highlights of the 2014 Summer STEM Academy were:

  • a drug and alcohol panel featuring Columbia County Judge Thomas James and other county court officials
  • team-building exercises at Willow Creek Farms in Numidia
  • a STEM Activities Fair at McBride Memorial Library in Berwick
  • a Family Movie fundraiser with the Berwick Theater
  • an interactive workshop with The Actor’s Company Theatre
  • several site visits and campus tours of universities across the region.

Bloomsburg University’s new Sustainable Food Systems Outdoor Classroom recently got its first group of visitors when several Quest adventure campers stopped for a picnic, where the youngsters enjoyed freshly cut kohlrabi sticks and freshly squeezed kale orange juice.

The outdoor classroom, one of five projects awarded a Presidential Strategic Planning Grant last year, will be a working garden and sustainability education center run primarily by student workers and interns. Located behind Monty’s on upper campus, the outdoor classroom was designed in collaboration with students who also helped build the gardens this past spring.

Currently, there are two students helping John Hintz and Sandra Kehoe-Forutan, professors of environmental, geographical and geological sciences, care for the gardens over the summer. There are 30 raised beds filled with vegetables and herbs. There will be a third student starting work in July on the perennial garden.

The completed outdoor classroom will feature walking paths between well-tended raised garden beds, interactive interpretive signage, a solar greenhouse, a composting site, a rain garden, perennial plants and birdhouses around the periphery, and a seating area and educational kiosk.

Coursework, educational workshops, internships, professional development opportunities, and volunteer opportunities at the outdoor classroom will provide high impact practices new to our university. The outdoor classroom will provide a state-of-the-art showpiece of sustainable food production that helps prepare students to be confident, knowledgeable, engaged, and productive citizens.

Mariam Sarkessian, a management major, recently completed a two-week job shadow with Comcast’s corporate headquarters in Philadelphia through Bloomsburg University’s Sophomore Experiential Learning (SEL) Program.

The program, designed to give students an opportunity to see their potential career field first-hand, enabled Sarkessian to witness the daily activity of the country’s largest cable company and Internet service provider. Sarkessian described her experience as enlightening and richly memorable.

“Seeing daily activity at the headquarters has helped me confirm that I’d like to work at a large company that has a powerful role in the world,” Sarkessian says. “I’ve gained useful insight about how to level-handedly deal with problems and make decisions with customers and the company in mind.”

In addition to a possible internship opportunity, Sarkessian says her SEL experience provided her with many more business contacts. She also may have discovered a new career track.

“Being able to help out with (the Lab Week project) even though I was just shadowing was an exciting experience and opened my mind in looking for ways to make processes more efficient,” Sarkessian says. “Most importantly, … I had not known that project managing could be a career. Now I’m eager to pursue and get the right qualifications for it.”

Sarkessian shadowed Ted Hodgins, Class of 1989, senior director of technology and product: customer service.

Eight ParenteBeard summer accounting interns recently helped Habitat for Humanity of Berks County ReStore prepare for their grand re-opening slated for July.

In addition to the accounting work the summer interns are performing and observing, for the first time, the firm’s summer interns are demonstrating ParenteBeard’s mission to serve the communities where team members live and work by participating in charitable community service activities in central Pennsylvania.

Tara Boyd, of Bloomsburg University; Eric Hiser, of Bloomsburg University; Guy Lewis, of Penn State; Katelyn Macbeth, of Messiah College; April Maschke, of Albright College; Shaunna Nesmith, of York College; Jordan Sallavanti,. of Kutztown University; and Kayla Snyder, of West Chester University, assisted the store’s executive director, Tim Daley, by cleaning, painting, redecorating, reorganizing, rebuilding and moving furniture.

A group of Bloomsburg University students recently completed a study abroad experience at the Universidad del Centro Educativo, Rosario, Argentina, where they visited historical and culturally significant and studied the Spanish language and literature.

Participating were Spanish and secondary education majors Mallie Culpepper, Adriana Berlin, Kelly Mason and Abigail Messinger, a Spanish and speech-language pathology major. Specifically they visited Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Misiones and Montevideo, Uruguay.

At Misiones they visited a Guarani village and the Iguazú Falls. In Buenos Aires they attended a Tango Night, besides touring the city and Caminitos, the Italian Argentina barrio were Maradona, famous Argentina world soccer player, was born. They also visited the stadium where he played.

Twelve members of BU’s Model Arab League (MAL) recently participated in the Model Arab League Regional Model in Washington, D.C., where they developed a deeper understanding of the Arab world and learned about the most important social, economic, cultural, and political issues facing Arab leaders and ordinary citizens. In learning the art of diplomacy, MAL prepares students to become knowledgeable, well-trained, and effective citizens as well as civic and public affairs leaders.The students represented the State of Qatar.

A.S.M. Tuhin was the Secretary General for the Model and Robert Nixon chaired the Joint Defense Council. Eric Pangelinan and Chad Haney won outstanding delegate awards for their representation on the Political Affairs Council, Eric Petrozino and Nick DeMarco won outstanding delegate awards for their representation on the Economic Affairs Council, Robert Compton and Mark Wells won outstanding delegate awards for their representation on the Join Defense Council, and Madalyn Goss and Monica Stypulkowski won outstanding delegate awards for their representation on the Palestinian Affairs Council.

The Delegation as a whole won the Outstanding Delegation Award. Madalyn Goss was selected chair of the Palestinian Affairs Council for 2014-15.  Also, Robert Nixon won the Outstanding Chair award.

BU’s Forensics Team recently won the second place team sweepstakes award at the 18th Annual Morgan State University Invitational Forensics Tournament held the Morgan State University campus in Baltimore. BU also won the first place Pi Kappa Delta Team Award for universities with a chapter of this National Speech and Debate Honor Society.

Twelve students competed at the tournament with seven students winning 13 individual speaking and debate awards.

  • Dan Clark, team president – first in poetry, fifth in impromptu speaking, sixth in single dramatic interpretation
  • Abe Freet – third in extemporaneous speaking, fourth in impromptu speaking, sixth in parliamentary speaker, second place in parliamentary debate with Zach Moore
  • Zach Moore – second in parliamentary speaker, fourth in extemporaneous speaking, second in parliamentary debate with Abe Freet
  • Joshua Hooks – second in after-dinner speaking
  • Abbey Porambo – fourth in poetry
  • Taisha Martinez – fourth in persuasive speaking
  • Anna Scott – top, non-advancing novice in prose

Other students competing included Stephanie Kaminski, Delaney Hellman, Arrista Voorhees, Madalyn Goss, and Jaylene Alvarado. Rubin Rhodes, a graduate student in BU’s master’s degree program in school counseling, and Neil Strine, director of forensics, served as judges at the tournament. 


Students of English 341 – Medieval Literature recently visited the PA Renaissance Faire to experience some approximation of the material culture and activities associated with the Middle Ages. Students have been studying the original stories of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table by writers such as Chretien de Troyes and Sir Thomas Malory.

At the faire, students witnessed a game of human chess, a board game invented during the Middle Ages; listened to talks on archery, sword-making, glassblowing, and falconry; and watched several sessions of tournament and combat jousting, a form of military training common in the medieval period. Medieval and Renaissance torture devices were on prominent display during this Halloween season.


This summer I attended the University of Oregon archaeological field school, directed by Patrick O’Grady and Dennis Jenkins of the Oregon Museum of Natural and Cultural History. This six-week program was part of the Northern Great Basin Prehistory Project, an ongoing archaeological field school that focus’s its research within the Northern Great Basin area.

The site we excavated during the 2013 summer field season was Rim Rock Draw Rockshelter, located outside the town of Riley, Oregon. The field school consisted of approximately 25 students from all over the country, and was also partnered with a geoarchaeology field school of 8 students. My experience at Rim Rock Draw Rockshelter is one that I will never forget.

The six weeks consisted of camping out in the desert of the Northern Great Basin without running water or electricity, which was not at all as bad as it may sound.

We began the field season with a two day lithic analysis workshop taught by specialist Mike Rondeau, which was then followed by our first days “in the field” learning how to precisely measure and prepare our digging unit. The remaining time included field trips, lectures by visiting archaeologists, and LOTS of digging. I was honored to work at such an exciting site and under the most prestigious archaeologists of the region. We had a terrific field season and I am proud to say that I took part in discovering aspects of North American archaeology.  

    – Michelle Mattar, anthropology major


Bloomsburg University’s Center for Leadership and Engagement (CLE) recently honored students who completed different levels of leadership training this year. The CLE facilitates and provides intentional opportunities through supporting and providing resources for student growth, development, involvement and learning through leadership education, engagement and service.

By participating in the leadership development program, students gain knowledge of core leadership skill sets, enhance their co-curricular experiences and build meaningful and sustainable relationships to positively impact a diverse campus community and beyond.

The CLE’s vision is to provide a dynamic center for the pursuit and integration of student leadership practices that fosters and sustains a culture of organizational effectiveness, community engagement and social justice.

Level 1 Certification - Kristina Adornetto, Justine Albright, Dana Alexander, Kelsey Allison, Giovanna Andrews, Rachel Andrews, Kate Armstrong, Emily Baker, Kristina Balla, Tiara Bartol, Carl Basore, Diamond Bass, Hanan Bennacef, Patrick Berridge, Nathan Binder, Kamal Bloodsaw, Leann Bowman, Darian Brenner, Kristi Brittain, Emily Broadbent, Kyle Brosh, Ambria Brown, Aaron Brown, Tyler Buckwalter, Megan Burke, Christina Calvo, Catherine Campbell, Troy Cannon, Miranda Carrasquillo, Kahli Castagnera, Stephanie Celio, Iane Charles, Alyssa Chelso-Brown, Domenic Ciccolini, Aigner Clarkson, Claudia Clerger, Jennifer Comstock, Wade Cooper, Alison Craig, Sarah Crumling, Anthony Cucchi, Kevin Cummins, Jake Dabashinsky, Robert Dalius, Melissa Dean, Anthony DeHaarte, Jon Dekovitch, Brittany Dekrell, Becca DeMuth Nicholas Diak, Erin Ditro, Amy Dobson, Qi Dong, Sharnise Dozier Stephanie Dressler, Elyssa Eckert, Amber Elsner, Brooke Esbenshade, Jose Escarfullery, Michelle Etzel, Mon-Jay Fahnbulleh, Carley Fox, Paige Friesema Trevor Gauntlett, Nora Gomez, Jasmine Gonzalez, Kylie Goodling, McKenzie Gosciminski, Samantha Goslee, Garrett Grant, Alyssa Greco, Hadiyah Grove, Morgan Guarino, Kelsey Hamer, Amanda Hangeland, Brittany Hardy, Kyle Hartman, Olivia Hazzard, Delaney Hellman, Page Herto, Colleen Hickey, Courtney Hollenbach, Caleb Jackson, Brooke Jamgochian, Janet Jimenez, Jessica Jones, Welsey Kearney, Timothy Keiper, Nicole Keiser, Stardasha King, Kayla Koch, Cole Kresch, Steve LaFrance, Zirconia Lake, Amanda Leamon, Cristian Lemus, Zavala Christopher Leonard, Morgan Lewis, Lucas Liberacki, Aaron Lichtenwalter, Quadirah Locus, Alyssa Lombardo, Tiffany Long, James Madden, Brandon Majikas, Lawrence Marinovich, CJ Martin, Joshua Matz, Haleigh McDonald, Gabrielle Meister, Yesenia Mercado, Morgan Miller, Talehia Miller, Melissa Miller, Brittany Mohl, Madelyne Morrison, Michael Morton-Brown,  Samantha Moss, Ashley Muchler, Olivia Naugle, Shirley Neequaye, Linda Ngohe-Ehabil, Sarah Niedrist, Olivia Novak, Craig Obelinas, Austin Olson, Olivia Olver, Anthony Patrick, Laura Peiffer, Eric Petrozino, Nicole Pfizenmayer, Alexis Pompa, Gregory Quarles, Kristen Rebovich, Henry Reynoso, Breyuan Robinson, Virginia Rodriguez, Dana Rooney, Alexa Roma, Dianaliz Rodriguez-Ortiz, Dean Salmon, Michelle Sandoval, Cody Sanford, Cassidy Sangrey, Gabrielle Santana, Mariam Sarkessian, Brandon Savarese, Tara Scarcella, Jenna Schell, Marisa Schonhaut, Tyler Schreckenstein, Madison Scripture, Cody Seachrist, Corey Shirk, Grace Sipler, Shelby Slaughter, Elizabeth Smith, Chelsea Smith, Megan Smith, Hayley Sparks, Sarah Spaulding, Nifeace Stevens, Jordan Stimeling, Chloe Stine, Brittany Stokes, Danielle Stopper, Amanda Strain, Michelle Swartz, Narali Taglialavore, Zoey Tarantino, Ranesha Todd, Kristi Torres, Tiffany Truesdale, Stephan Vajdic, Toi Veal, Jasmin Velez, Richard Viteritto, Shelia Vitruk,  Shana Wagner Kelsi Washburn Nate Weaver, Victoria Weimer, Tyler Wenger, Sloane White, Khadijah Williams, Octavia Williams, Heather Wivell, Danielle Wood, Aubrey Wydock, Casey Young, Kristina Young, Mark Yurkovich, Lauren Zahour, and Arnela Zeljkovic

Level 2 Student Organizational Leadership Track - Page Herto, Jessica Jacquet, and Mariam Sarkessian.

Level 2 Community Engagement Leadership Track - Sarah Crumling, Becca DeMuth, Linda Ngohe-Ehabil, Laura Peiffer and Heather Wivell.

Level 2 Group Leadership Track - Nathan Binder, Stephanie Celio, Jennifer Comstock, Jake Dabashinsky, Brittany Hardy, Amanda Leamon, Brittany Mohl, Samantha Moss, Olivia Novak, Kristen Rebovich, Henry Reynoso, Mariam Sarkessian, Marisa Schonhaut, Chloe Stine, Brittany Stokes, Stephan Vajdic, Victoria Weimer, Danielle Wood and Arnela Zeljkovic.

Level 2 Social Justice Leadership Track - Nathan Binder, Aaron Brown, Delaney Hellman and Megan Smith.

Mathletes, an after-school program at Greenwood Friends School, recently finished its third year. Under the direction of Paul Loomis, associate professor of mathematics, and Bloomsburg University students Lara Cesco-Cancian, Martina Drew, Zach Malett, Casandra Miller, Selena Phillips, Jon Thomas, and Dylan Weiss traveled to Greenwood each Thursday for the last six weeks for the hour-long program of math-related games, puzzles, and activities.

The students worked at stations with a group of four to six students at a time; every 10 to 15 minutes the students would rotate to another activity. Mathletes began in fall 2011 with five BU students and 12 to 15 Greenwood students; this semester between 30 and 35 students from first to eighth grade took part each week. 

It was a highly successful trip to the Pennsylvania Phi Beta Lambda State Conference in Gettysburg for BU’s Phi Beta Lambda students, who collectively won awards in 10 different categories.

At the recent conference, the club took awards such as second place in the Gold Seal Chapter Award of Merit and was recognized for being the eighth most active chapter in the country.

  • Accounting Analysis and Decision Making: 3rd place team of Erin Ditro and Kara Meyer
  • Accounting for Professionals: 2nd place Nicole Jubin
  • Accounting Principles: 1st place Ryan Kassees
  • Cost Accounting: 2nd place Tyler Rutt
  • Economic Analysis and Decision Making: 2nd place team of Evan Simpson and Ryan Kassees
  • Impromptu Speaking: 3rd place Erin Ditro
  • Marketing Analysis and Decision Making: 1st place team of Sydney Paige and Kara Meyer
  • Project Management: 3rd place Kelsi Washburn
  •  Public Speaking: 3rd place Elena Alfano
  • Word Processing: 3rd place Amanda Barber

There are approximately 600 PBL members in about 30 chapters across the state. Other participating schools included Alvernia University, Bucknell University, Drexel University, Elizabethtown College, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Lebanon Valley College,  Penn State – Main Campus, Shippensburg University, University of Pittsburgh, and Wilkes University among many others.