Prez Paul Podcast

Nazareth University President Dr. Beth Paul talks with faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members on topics centered around Nazareth’s mission.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on PodBean 

Changemaker Chat

Changemaker Chat is a special podcast series honoring Nazareth University's Centennial Celebration, featuring engaging conversations with notable individuals who've changed — and continue to change — their industry, their community, and the world for the better, inspired by their personal connection to Nazareth.

Nazareth's Centennial Celebration is presented by Wellington Steele & Associates and the Leva Family.

June 14, 2024

Alicia Borrachero '90, Acting Changemaker

In this episode of Changemaker Chat, Nazareth University President Beth Paul, Ph.D. welcomes Alicia Borrachero '90, a graduate of Nazareth's theater arts program. Borrachero is an accomplished actor whose career in Europe has made her a household name there for many — most notably for nine seasons starring in the hit Spanish television series Periodistas and the Starz historical drama, The Spanish Princess, among many other roles. During this Changemaker Chat, Borrachero discusses her passion for acting, the story of how a young woman from Madrid ended up studying at Nazareth, and the significant impact the performing arts can have on a rapidly changing world.

March 22, 2024

Jeff Van Gundy '85, Sports Changemaker

In this episode of Changemaker Chat, Nazareth University President Beth Paul, Ph.D. welcomes former Nazareth basketball standout and Sports Hall of Fame member Jeff Van Gundy '85. Van Gundy discusses his deep appreciation for — and continued connection with — Nazareth, and how it prepared him for the ups and downs of an incredible career that's included  playing on the hardwood of Kidera Gymnasium, coaching the New York Knicks in Madison Square Garden, broadcasting 17 NBA Finals for ESPN, and working in team management with the Boston Celtics.

Feb. 23, 2024

John Drain '83, Media Changemaker

The first episode of Changemaker Chat features a conversation between Nazareth University President Beth Paul, Ph.D., and John Drain '83, chief financial officer of Hearst Television, Inc. in New York City, and a fascinating changemaker leader. Hear how Drain has successfully navigated his career — and the organizations he's led — through the dramatically changing media landscape, and how his experience at Nazareth has inspired and informed him along the way.

Season 3

September 27

Mental Health Across Campus

Nazareth has long made mental health a priority, and a new federal grant is helping the University expand its commitment to student's mental health and wellness. Today's podcast focuses on the new initiatives.


Kim Harvey

Kim Harvey is associate vice president of student life at Naz with 20 years of experience in higher education in the areas of residential life and student success.

John Rigney

John Rigney is assistant director for wellness outreach & education in Health and Counseling Services.

May 9

Dance with Impact

Nazareth is a community of changemakers, and senior Kyra Green '23 is a shining example of someone inspiring others every day. The dance studies and theater major joined President Paul along with Heather Roffe, director of Nazareth's undergraduate dance program, to discuss the many ways the dance program is a shining example of the Nazareth changemaker education framework.


Kyra Green

Kyra Green is majoring in dance studies and theater and has a minor in acting. She's passionate about dance theater and has found ways to use her passion to advocate for children in the education department and also perform dance and theater on and off the Nazareth campus.

Heather Roffe

Heather Roffe is the director of Nazareth's undergraduate dance program, and has performed nationally and internationally with the Garth Fagan Dance Company and the Bill Evans Dance Company to name only a few. Her choreography has been presented globally, and she is an active scholar in the field of dance presenting on pedagogy, somatics, and dance and feminism.

April 21, 2023

Removing fear of the unknown from AI

As ChatGPT makes headlines, how do the latest artificial intelligence breakthroughs affect our lives? Prez Paul talks to Silicon Valley strategist Travis Steffen and Nazareth's Institute for Technology, Artificial Intelligence, and Society Director Jeff Allan. They address fear of the unknown when it comes to AI.

ALSO: Watch video of Travis Steffen's public talk on campus April 26: AI in Marketing: Growing Your Business Into the Future


Jeffrey Allan

Jeffrey Allan is director of Nazareth's Institute for Technology, AI, and Society — an AI expert and psychologist with two decades of experience at Fortune 500 companies and Silicon Valley startups, and a proponent of "responsible AI."

Travis Steffen

Travis Steffen is a Silicon Valley strategist, best-selling author, Inc. magazine top 500 CEO, and eight-time successful startup founder who's on campus April 26 for a presentation revealing the secrets to excel in the dynamic world of AI-driven marketing.

Season 2

July 5, 2022

Changemaker Series: Access to Education Includes Inmates

Nazareth Professor Ed Wiltse taught a unique class this past spring semester, Hitting the Road: Journeys in American literature. Half of the students were based on campus at Nazareth and half were based at Groveland, a men's prison south of Rochester. Wiltse's work is part of a growing national movement that advocates for access to higher education for all, as a pathway for equity and social justice.


Ed Wiltse, Ph.D., professor of English and communication, who has been teaching at Nazareth for 23 years, and in a variety of local jail and prison settings for 20 years.

Three current students and one past student enrolled in the Hitting the Road course:

Alec Goldammer is a May 2022 Nazareth graduate with bachelor's degrees in education and English literature. He is also a part of the student-veteran community, spending five-years in active duty in the United States Marine Corps before coming to Nazareth.

Emily Denzler is a May 2022 Nazareth graduate with a bachelor's degree in business with a communications minor. She was a social media coordinator for the Center For Life's Work located on campus and is always reading in her spare time.

Joe Rossi is a former Rochester Education Justice Initiative student who was part of the first combined class in Fall 2020. He was working towards his associate's degree before being incarcerated. Upon re-entry, he earned his associate's degree from SUNY Herkimer in January 2021. He is now set to graduate with his bachelor's degree in historical studies from SUNY Empire, and plans on pursuing his master's from SUNY Empire in the near future.

Madeline Dovi is a May 2022 Nazareth graduate with a bachelor's degree in communication and media major with an English minor. She is a freelance journalist, artist, barista, and founding member of the Nazareth PRSSA Chapter. Dovi recently accepted a full time reporting position with the Daily Caller News Foundation, covering the U.S. Justice Department.

April 29, 2022

Mental health

Evidence shows that peer-to-peer discussion can significantly help young people manage their mental health challenges. Mental health is important for our entire campus community and beyond. May is Mental Health Awareness month, but this issue is a year-round priority for our community.

  • Naz senior Amanda Foster is a psychology major with minors in human resources and business. She's a four-year member of the swimming and diving team, co-chair of the class of 2022's senior class gift campaign, and a talent development intern at a leading energy company.
  • John Rigney, assistant director for wellness outreach and education at the Health and Counseling Center

Amanda worked with John to bring the nonprofit organization Morgan's Message  to Nazareth this spring, with the goal of supporting the well-being of Golden Flyers now and in the future.

On Instagram: @nazarethmorgansmessage

March 31, 2022

Women in Sports and Title IX

Two new episodes in the Prez Paul Podcast Changemaker series celebrate Women's History Month and the 50th anniversary of Title IX — a groundbreaking law that helped create gender equity in sports. The guests include Naz coaches, athletes, and more, including from field hockey, rowing, basketball, swimming, and lacrosse.

  • Women's Field Hockey Coach Tarah Christenson, returned for her sixth season as head field hockey coach in 2021.
  • Women's Rowing Coach Emily Farrar, returned for her fourth season as the head rowing coach, second season since they became a varsity sport.
  • Women's Basketball Coach Kelly Dunne, a Nazareth alumna, returned for her seventh season this past winter after capturing an Empire 8 title in the 2020-2021 season.
  • Women's Lacrosse Coach Traci Lian, a Nazareth alum, returned for her fourteenth season as head coach this spring, and she serves as senior woman administrator for Athletics.
  • Dr. Wayne Hilson, Nazareth's associate vice president for Community & Belonging
  • Taylor Robey, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) ambassador, is a graduate music education student, undergrad Naz alumna, and a record-breaking swimmer with the Golden Flyers who just finished 5th overall in the finals of the 50-yard freestyle at the NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships.
  • Maya Cox, DEI ambassador, is a junior inclusive early childhood education, psychology, and community youth development major returning for her third season on the women's lacrosse team.

December 15, 2021

Changemaker COVID Research

Nazareth professors Dr. Michael Chen and Dr. Lauren Brooks, along with their graduate assistant and recent Naz alumna Tatianna Trojnor-Hill, had the prestigious honor of working with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to analyze racial and ethnic disparities in COVID-19 testing in a national sample of more than 2 million patients across the U.S.

In addition to identifying significant disparities, they also found that geography and state-level political affiliations can predict individuals' risk of testing positive for COVID-19.

  • Michael Chen is an assistant professor in the Nursing & Public Health Department. He received a bachelor's degree in economics and public health from Brown University and a Ph.D. in health services research and policy from the University of Rochester. Michael's research interests include maternal and child health, father involvement, and the development of theory-based explanations to inform health practice and public policy. Michael was born in Taiwan, grew up in Toronto, and has lived in Rochester since 2010.
  • Lauren Brooks is an assistant professor in the Chemistry & Biochemistry Department, primarily teaching courses in clinical laboratory science. She received degrees in biochemistry, biological sciences, and chemistry from Virginia Tech, a Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from the University of Rochester, and completed her internship for clinical laboratory science at Rochester Regional Health. Lauren worked in the Serology and Microbiology clinical laboratory at the University of Rochester Central Labs before joining Nazareth full time. She was born and raised in the Washington, D.C., area and has lived in Rochester since 2009.
  • Tatianna Trojnor-Hill graduated from Nazareth in spring 2021 with a bachelor's degree in public health and international studies. She currently works as a project associate with JSI Research & Training Inc. and will be moving to New Hampshire for work at the end of this year. Tatianna's interests include nutrition, food accessibility, and global health. She was born and raised in central New York and has lived in Rochester since 2017.

November 15, 2021

Changemaking through Music

It's our second season, and we are starting a new series on the podcast — It's the Prez Paul Podcast Changemaker series!

Nazareth Choirs director Brian Stevens and students Jonathan Benn and Elena Parkins talk about the choirs' changemaking mantra "we sing to change lives." The choirs actively collaborate with living and under-represented composers to bring their music to the world.

  • Brian Stevens is Director of Choirs in the School of Music at Nazareth, where he focuses on changing lives through the choral arts by building diverse and inclusive choral communities, providing transformative experiences for his students, and fostering choral excellence through innovative programming.
  • Jonathan Benn is a sophomore music education major heading down a vocal track and is the current President of the Nazareth Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association. He studies voice with Dr. Kimberly Upcraft and is a member of the Nazareth Chamber Singers.
  • Elena Parkins is a graduate student in the music therapy program. She is a member of the Nazareth Chamber Singers and holds a graduate assistantship with the Center for Student Success.

Season 1

July 14, 2021

The Parent Perspective

Four Nazareth parents speak about their children's perseverance during the pandemic. They discuss positive changes they've noticed in their students from their time in college, why their student chose to become a Golden Flyer, and what they are most proud of about their child.


Barry Lyon — father to student Callahan Lyon ‘21. She graduated in May with a degree in communication sciences and disorders.

Betsy Overacker — her daughter is Emily Overacker ‘24, a rising sophomore and music education major with vocal concentration.

Graham Knowles — daughter Madison Knowles ‘23 is a junior physical therapy major who plays on the women’s soccer team.

Mona Sherron — mother to Isabella Sherron ‘24, who is a rising sophomore psychology major and a member of the Psychology Club.

April 19, 2021

The Power of Music During the Pandemic and Beyond

Music in all its forms has gotten many of us through the pandemic with its power to stir so many emotions and transport us to places near and far. Music is alive on the Nazareth campus. Hear about the School of Music's innovations that enabled our students and faculty to continue performing music.


David Davies is a composer whose music has been performed at festivals and major venues such as Carnegie Hall in New York City, the Moody Performance Hall in Dallas, and at historic venues in Belgium, Argentina, and Brazil. He is an enthusiastic educator and came to Nazareth as director of the School of Music in July 2020. He serves on the national board of the Christian Fellowship of Art Music Composers, is vice president of the Northeast Chapter of the College Music Society, and the vice chair of Region VI of the National Association of Schools of Music.

Compositions by  David Davies:

Brandan Parks is a senior music/business major with voice as his primary instrument and minors in legal studies and in communication and media. He is from Herkimer, N.Y. Brandan is president of Nazareth's National Society of Leadership and Success chapter, Class of 2021 vice president, Class of 2021 gift committee co-chair, a student ambassador, an orientation leader, and an Academic and College Success peer mentor. Within the School of Music, Brandan is a part of the School of Music student advisory board, serves as American Choral Directors Association chapter vice president, Nazareth Chamber Singers section leader, and is a member of Opera Workshop and Rock Ensemble. After graduating in May, Brandan will be attending law school with aspirations to practice entertainment law.

Sydney Fina is a junior music therapy major from Syracuse, N.Y. Her primary instrument is the piano, and she also plays clarinet in the Nazareth Wind Symphony. She is a music theory tutor and a member of both the School of Music student advisory board and AMTAS Naz (American Music Therapy Association — Students).

Nazareth Chamber Singers recording: of "The Sun Never Says" by Dan Forrest

April 6, 2021

Return of Athletics Competition

The Golden Flyers athletics teams are back competing this spring! After the pandemic hit our world in March 2020, sports, along with everything else, came to a halt.

We are happy to welcome all the athletes and coaches back to competition this semester, and it is inspiring to see that Athletics is managing to combine three seasons into one: all fall, winter, and spring sports. I talked with some Nazareth student-athletes and coaches about their triumphant return, and about some exciting initiatives taking place with all our Golden Flyer teams.

  • Taylor Robey is a senior music education major with a minor in piano and the honors program. She has been on the Nazareth women's swimming and diving team for four years, and a team captain for three seasons.
  • Emma States is a sophomore biomedical science major, and she competes on the women's lacrosse team.
  • Coach Gail Mann is the longest tenured coach at Nazareth, leading the Nazareth women's soccer team for 29 years. She has served as the senior women's administrator for the last five years and advised the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) for the last 20.
  • Kaleb Lutton is a two-sport athlete, in track and volleyball. Lutton placed in four of five events he competed in during the Empire 8 Indoor Track and Field Championships. He hopes to win the UVC conference championship and earn a bid to the NCAA Men’s Division III Volleyball Championship.  
  • Coach Chris Baudo is coach of the Nazareth women’s ice hockey team

March 19, 2021

Nazareth's Civil Rights Journey

We shine the light on Nazareth's Civil Rights Journey, an extraordinary immersive learning experience that we have been offering for several years. Meet guide Reggie Harris, who partners with Nazareth to lead this life-changing trip. Hear from Nazareth students who have attended the journey and their transformative take-aways. Harris also talks about his week-long fellowship at Nazareth that starts Sunday, March 21.

  • Reggie Harris is co-president of the board and director of music for the Living Legacy Project, Nazareth’s community partner for the Civil Rights Journey. He has earned distinction as one of the foremost interpreters and song leaders of the music of the Underground Railroad and the modern Civil Rights movement. Most recently, Reggie received the Folk Alliance International Spirit of Folk and W.E.B. Du Bois Legacy awards.
  • Jamie Fazio is Nazareth’s Catholic chaplain and has been on several Civil Rights Journeys.
  • Rameen Copeland ‘20, ‘21G is a graduate student studying global business & leadership. He holds graduate assistantships with both the Center for Spirituality and the Center for Service-Learning.
  • Serena Viktor ‘20, ‘21G is in the final semester of her master’s of social work program at Nazareth; she also holds a bachelor’s of social work from Nazareth. She co-facilitates an empowerment group for Women of Color. She also has been awarded the Nazareth Presidential Civic Engagement Award for her tireless work in campaigning for racial justice, solidarity, and equity within the Nazareth community and the Rochester area. Ms. Viktor plans on pursuing a law degree and establishing a non-profit organization in Zambia to advocate for mental health services for women and girls. She is a board member for Worker Justice Center New York, helping to raise funding and advocating for effective policy solutions rooted in research-based policy innovation.
  • Carolyn Carlic ’23 is a sophomore majoring in environmental science and sustainability and minoring in religious studies. She traveled on the Civil Rights Journey in January 2020 and this has shaped her career goals toward work in environmental justice.
  • Nate Allen '23 is a sophomore majoring in finance. He's currently taking courses in economics and leadership & ethics and is part of the men's tennis team and volleyball team.

March 10, 2021

Why AI? Tech needs ethics now more than ever; Nazareth is answering that call

In this episode: Big news from Nazareth. We've formed the Institute for Technology, Artificial Intelligence, and Society (ITAS), a pioneering initiative in higher education to train future professionals to guide and develop technology toward equitable and just ends.


Dianne Oliver, Ph.D., is co-director of Nazareth's Institute for Technology, AI, and Society (ITAS), and since 2015 has been dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Sciences, Business, and Education. Her background includes degrees in both computer science and in religion and ethics, deeply connecting her experience and work to this initiative at Naz.

Yousuf George, Ph.D., is the other ITAS co-director and associate to the president for strategy and momentum. He joined Nazareth in 2008 as a faculty member in the Mathematics Department and later served as the associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Sciences, Business, and Education.

Wendy Norris, Ph.D., is an assistant professor and founding faculty member for ITAS. Wendy’s doctorate is in information science from the University of Colorado Boulder. She brings expertise in the design of humanitarian crisis response technologies to her teaching and research. She joined the Mathematics Department in 2020 to help launch Nazareth’s new ethical data science major. 

Chelsea Wahl, Ph.D. — another founding faculty member for ITAS — joined Nazareth’s Sociology & Anthropology Department as an assistant professor of sociology in 2020. She earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from Hamilton College and her doctorate from University of Pennsylvania. She specializes in technology, inequality, work, and organizations.

Student Nate Ancona ‘21 is a senior majoring in business management and a four-year member of the swim team. He is currently taking several ITAS courses that explore programming, AI, and the ethical and societal impacts of technology and is looking at graduate schools.

The book mentioned in the podcast: Automating Inequality by Virginia Eubanks

February 19, 2021

Part II: HHS students and faculty innovate for the Rochester community during pandemic

This time students and faculty from our social work, nursing, and public health programs join me to discuss the many ways they are continuing to support wellness for people in the Rochester community — despite the pandemic.

  • Leanne Charlesworth is professor and chair of social work and the director of the undergraduate social work major. She received her B.A. from Cornell University, M.S.W. from University of Albany, and Ph.D. from Virginia Commonwealth University. Leanne's scholarly interests include poverty and homelessness. She is deeply invested in a campus-community partnership called Project Homeless Connect, which includes ongoing work with Rochester's Homeless Services Network. She loves advising and teaching social work students in both the B.S.W. and M.S.W. programs at Naz.
  • Student Izzy Kimber is a senior social work major with a business minor. She’s an office coordinator for Partners for Serving, president of the social work club on campus, and a third-year resident assistant (RA). If she were to describe herself in three words it would be outspoken, motivated, and passionate. She strives to promote social justice and a safe, empowering environment for people with whom she works. Izzy is currently applying to Master of Social Work programs.
  • Michael Chen is an assistant professor in the public health program. He has his bachelor’s in economics and community health from Brown University and a doctorate in health services research from University of Rochester. Prior to joining Nazareth, Michael was a community organizer, a project coordinator at a public health consulting firm, a youth group leader, and a research assistant. Michael is broadly interested in health policy and outcomes research in the context of children, family, and health systems.
  • Mary Dahl Maher is the chair of the Nursing Department and founding program director for the Public health undergraduate degrees. She earned her B.S.N. at D'Youville College; M.S.N. at Case Western Reserve University; and M.P.H. and Ph.D. at University of Rochester.  Mary is a certified nurse-midwife who has worked in urban and rural settings and has a strong commitment to global education. Her passion for improving the quality of healthcare access and equity led to work in Haiti and a Fulbright award to Finland.
  • Vicki Arena is a senior double major in nursing and public health who anticipates graduating in May. She is completing her senior nursing capstone. She completed a public health internship in summer 2020 with the Genesee-Orleans Health Department. 

February 8, 2021

Part 1: HHS students and faculty innovate for the Rochester community during pandemic

In this episode, we engage in a fascinating conversation about the innovative ways our students and faculty overcame challenges during the pandemic and are still helping clients maintain their health when they couldn't visit Nazareth's on-campus clinics. Guests: Lisa Hiley, assistant professor in communication sciences and disorders; Mary Therese Novak, director of clinical education in physical therapy; Michaela Cardone, occupational therapy graduate student; Heather Coles, clinical assistant professor in communication sciences and disorders; and Sophie DiCarlo, graduate student in communication sciences and disorders.

January 19, 2021

What Would Our Founders Do?

In this episode, I am joined by Tim Kneeland, Ph.D., professor of history and political science and Susan Nowak, Ph.D., SSJ, professor and Shannon chair of religious studies. They help us look forward to the upcoming Nazareth centennial celebration in 2024, and look back to the lessons our founders can teach us today.

January 8, 2021

Reflections on Citizenship and Events of Jan. 6, 2021

In this special episode of the "Prez Paul Podcast," I share the audio from a virtual forum for the Nazareth community held Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021. It was a way to connect with faculty, staff, and students, to reflect on the events that unfolded at the Capitol on Jan. 6. I am joined by Tim Kneeland, Ph.D., Nazareth professor of history and political science; Devparna Roy, Ph.D, Nazareth assistant professor of sociology; and Ana Gomez Parga, Ph.D., assistant professor in English and communication. The Nazareth community engaged via Zoom with thought-provoking comments and questions for the panelists.

January 7, 2021

Lessons Learned During the Pandemic and a Look Ahead

On today's podcast, I have asked three Nazareth students to join me to think together about the meaning and significance of 2020 - what a year! What sense can we make out of our collective experience in this extraordinary year, and what insights, lessons learned, and ideas will we take forward into 2021? Join my guests, Jake Kwiatkowski, a graduate student in the School of Business and Leadership, and a 2012 undergraduate alum; Amelia Johnson, a junior studying communication and media with a minor in legal studies, and Tegan Wright, a junior studying sociology with a minor in business management.

December 14, 2020

The Learning Journey: Helping Each of us Find our Part in our Movement for Racial Equity

I invite you to listen to the conversation with my guests Lisa Durant-Jones, Nazareth’s vice president for Community and Belonging; John Mordaci, assistant vice president for Undergraduate Admissions; Nazareth student Isa Reese, a senior legal studies major, and Nazareth student Sarah Schuler, who is studying for her master’s degree in speech-language pathology.

November 23, 2020

Gratitude and Well-being

In this inaugural episode, Nazareth President Dr. Beth Paul discusses coping skills and gratitude with Brigid Noonan, dean in Health and Human Services, and Kathryn DeVinney, assistant director of counseling services.

Centennial Changemaker Chat

Share Feedback

Your comments and any suggestions for future podcasts are welcome. Please call “The Prez Paul” voicemail at 585-389-4500 to share your ideas, or use the Ask a Question form.