Stories

Celebrating the Class of 2019

Nazareth College celebrated its graduates at the 92nd Commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 12.

Nazareth is proud of each of its graduates. Here are some of the #NazGrad19 successes and memories that shaped their Nazareth experience.

Why do students choose Nazareth?

Nazareth students canvassed other students about their experiences at Nazareth and what made them choose the College.

They repeatedly heard 4 common reasons »

Errika Brooks in cap and gown from @life.of.errika on Instagram

Errika Brooks '19G

Grad program: higher education student affairs administration (HESAA)

Quote: "I am now walking away with newfound knowledge and growth in so many areas."

Work: Program manager, Monroe Community College, for a higher education transition program for students with an intellectual disability

Andrea Alati '19 leaps in the air in the Nazareth cloister walk

Andrea Alati '19

Major: dance studies

Favorite experience: Making professional connections. "The great opportunity of having industry professionals and residencies here on campus to work with us one-on-one is super beneficial when going into the performing industry. Those bonds/relationships are very important and will help guide you in future endeavors and connections with jobs!"

Post-grad plans: Broadway Dance Center Professional Program Semester in New York City.

After that: "I would love to be a backup dancer for a famous performer, perform for a cruiseline overseas, or be in a national tour for a show."

See story & videos about her college experiences »

Melissa Wade

Melissa Wade ‘19G

Grad program: integrated marketing communications

Memorable experience: "One of the things that helped me the most during my time at Nazareth was having access to professors who were industry professionals. This gave me a realistic scope of what to expect in
the marketing landscape.

Post-grad plans: "I'm hoping to work with an agency that can nurture my passion for marketing. I have a
few companies I have been interviewing with and things are looking very promising."

Olivia Staff

Olivia Staff '19

Majors: legal studies and communication and media

Minor: history

Best experience: "I can't name just one experience that prepared me for my future because there were so many — my internships, student government participation, meeting with my advisor to plan my future, and all the skills I learned in my courses."

Post-grad plans: Working full time as a copywriter, technical editor, and marketing communication coordinator at Lite Coms, LLC in Rochester

Daniel Jacob

Daniel Jacob '19

Major: accounting

Memorable experience: "Playing on the basketball team and winning the Empire 8 championship. It was great to win it in front of the home crowd and have everyone storm the court."

Post-grad plans: Working at Deloitte in the fall, one of the "Big Four" accounting firms

Mark Lysiak

Mark Lysiak ‘19

Major: biomedical sciences

Memorable experience: "My study abroad trip to Chile allowed me to explore, shadow physicians in a hospital, build remarkable friendships, and further inspired me to continue on with my goal of going to physician assistant school."

Post-grad plans: Attending the physician assistant program at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences - Boston

Joel Touranjoe

Joel Touranjoe ‘19

Major: music education

Memorable experience: Student teaching in Pittsford and Webster. "I saw that my determination and perseverance helped me adjust to different grade levels and students, to the various needs of the diverse student population, to provide them the best musical experience possible."

Post-grad plans: Pursuing a master's in choral conducting from Syracuse University

Sarah Balch

Sarah Balch '19

Majors: social work and community youth development

Memorable experience: Her internship at Bivona Child Advocacy Center. "I have had the privilege of working with the CPS impact team, directly interacting and intervening with children and families who have experienced severe abuse. I have learned so much from the many diverse experiences I have had that will impact my understanding of the system, and the importance of support and advocacy for the rest of my life.

Post-grad plans: "I will be participating in a year of service in Houston, Texas, with a program called Casa De Esperanza. During this experience, I will be acting as a foster parent for children ages birth-6 years old that have experienced severe abuse, neglect, and/or are HIV positive."

Aubrey Baldauf and Leanne Charlesworth

Aubrey Baldauf '19

Major: social work

Memorable experiences: Proposing an innovative nutrition project accepted by Clinton Global Initiative University, taking a service trip to Jamaica, interning with Metro Justice and Sisters of St. Joseph, and pursuing advanced work in her field practicum at a non-profit serving homeless people. "Doing things that aren't comfortable to you is what makes you grow as a person," she says, adding she's grateful for mentoring by professors such as Leanne Charlesworth (at right in photo).

Post-grad plans: Joining the Peace Corps to promote maternal and child health in Zambia for the next 2½ years

Jessica Byrnes

Jessica Byrnes ‘19

Major: inclusive early education and psychology

Minor: cognitive neuropsychology

Memorable experience: "My student teaching this past fall is something I will never forget. Having the opportunity to implement everything I have learned into a classroom I could call my own was an amazing learning experience and reassured me that teaching is my passion."

Post-grad plans: Pursuing a literacy specialist master's degree at Nazareth. "Nazareth has given me an unforgettable undergraduate experience. I am so lucky to continue my educational journey at the school I love."

Jenna Zajac

Jenna Zajac ‘17, ‘19G

Grad program: physical therapy

Memorable experience: "The inter-professional trip to the Dominican Republic was able to prepare me for my future in many ways, both related and not related to physical therapy. It taught me the importance of communication, compromise, and understanding. Your patients are the most important, and we all have the universal desire and determination to improve the quality of life for the people we are working with."

Post-grad plans: Pursuing a Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Science from Boston University

Abigail Farnham

Abigail Farnham ‘19

Major: Spanish

Minors: Italian and history

Memorable experience: Studying abroad in Valencia, Spain. "I had to adjust immediately to help my roommate. She didn't speak Spanish, and I was always interpreting and translating for her."

Post-grad plans: Pursing certification to become a medical interpreter while working at Paychex as a national bilingual sales representative