News Archive

Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society announces study abroad grant recipients

Published June 22, 2023

A trio of Nazareth University students earned 2023 Phi Kappa Phi study abroad grants from the nation’s oldest and most selective all-discipline collegiate honor society — and two students who recently returned from using their grant in Italy called their experience life-changing and an ”incredible period of growth.” Carolyn Carlic ‘23 studied in Rome, Assisi, and Florence, Italy, from June 3-16. Katherine Markello ‘24 took part in a short-term program to Florence, Italy, from May 22-June 22. Matthew Roberson ‘26 will participate in a semester-long program at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland in fall 2023.

Carlic graduated in May with degrees in environmental science and sustainability and religious studies. She says without her PKP grant, she would not have benefited from many moments that “sparked hope, curiosity, and inspiration.” Carlic and other Nazareth students on the trip visitedfamed sites such as the Grand Mosque of Rome, the Great Synagogue of Rome, Saint Peter’s Basilica, Michelangelo’s David in Florence, the Basilica of Saint Francis of Assisi, tombs of saints, and the Sistine Chapel. One moment stands out to Carlic above all others.

“We had the privilege of meeting with Sr. Raffaella Petrini — the first woman in the history of the Church to be appointed secretary general of the governorate of Vatican City State — in a private area of Saint Peter’s not typically open to the public. When I asked her how we find common ground in such a polarized time in the world, she answered with both kindness and empathy, expressing the importance of remembering how we are all human at the end of the day and that we need one another’s connection.”

Before starting a graduate program in education to teach grades 7-12 biology, she is substitute teaching, will coach modified tennis this fall, and plans to travel to the Castile and León region of Spain to teach English. She says she feels well prepared for the future after her time at Nazareth.

Markello says her program in Italy was her first time studying abroad and an unmatched experience. “It was an incredible period of growth — much of the learning happens outside of the classroom,” said Markello. “I enrolled in the course Discovering Florence: Culture and Lifestyle of its Neighborhoods that exposed me to more local, less touristy facets of Florence. While I was discovering the city, I simultaneously discovered more about myself through the experience at large — gaining confidence, independence, and problem-solving capabilities.”

Markello, who’s double majoring in communication & media and dance, studied at the Santa Reparata International School of Art (SRISA) while in Florence. “It allowed me to genuinely interact with and learn from the city and its people, helping me grow in my capabilities as a communicator. I will enter my senior year at Naz with a newfound global perspective that I am confident will bring multifaceted benefits.”

Roberson, who is currently exploring majors in Nazareth’s Open Path program, will take a diverse array of courses in Scotland such as Arts for a More Sustainable Planet,Politics and International Relations, and Oceans and Society, that reflect his broad academic interests. He is looking forward to his experience, supported by his PKP grant. “It is important to be an informed global citizen and I am excited to learn about the people and culture of Scotland, along with the country’s architecture and environmental ecosystems.” Also, Roberson was one of 120 young adults from 57 countries selected to represent the United States in the World YMCA Change Agent Programme.

Established in 2001, the Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grant Program is part of the Society’s robust portfolio of award and grant programs, which gives more than $1.3 million each year to outstanding students and members through graduate and dissertation fellowships, funding for post-baccalaureate development, and grants for local, national and international literacy initiatives.


For More Information

Julie Long | Senior News & PR Officer | | (585) 389-2456 | (585) 781-8186 (cell)

Nazareth University is an inclusive community of inspired learners, educators, and changemakers who for nearly 100 years have been driven by a bold commitment to action, empathy, equity, and leading innovation for the common good. Impact experiences are at the heart of a Nazareth education, preparing each student to discover within themselves the potential to cultivate positive change in their life's work, in any career field, and in a world that is constantly evolving and infinitely interconnected.

Our broad academic offerings present a range of study options typical of larger universities, yet achieved in our supportive campus culture. Nearly 2,100 undergrad and 600 graduate students enroll in degree and certificate programs and engage in collaborative, transformative learning experiences, preparing for the professions and society of today and tomorrow. In a learning community that purposefully integrates liberal arts and professional programs, Nazareth University graduates are able to launch a lifetime of impactful leadership in communities and workplaces near and far.