Notre Dame Alumni E-Newsletter
August 2015
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Dear , 

It's hard to believe that we are already into the month of August and that school starts in just one short week. We had a busy summer on campus! Improvements were made to Giddings Road at Walton, the advancement office expanded by adding four new office spaces, the athletic complex bathrooms were remodeled and the new William Kozyra Stadium turf update is complete. 

The 2015 Notre Dame Fund concluded on June 30, raising over $550,000 and alumni giving was up 17%! We cannot thank you enough for your continued support of Notre Dame.

As we prepare the Fall 2015 issue of IRISH magazine, we welcome all alumni to share their updates for inclusion in Class Notes. Your classmates will enjoy hearing from you! Email any updates before August 28 to or click here to update through our website.

Beth Campbell
Director of Alumni Relations 
Save the Date! Homecoming 2015  

Friday, October 9- Homecoming Game 

5:30 p.m. Pre-game tailgate at the Fr. Colin House
6:30 p.m. Alumni tent opens at the football field
7:30p.m.Homecoming game 

Saturday, October 10- 5k Fun Run

9 a.m.  Runner registration
10 a.m. 5K Fun Run
Make it Matter Day
Join Notre Dame Prep in a morning of community service

On Friday, October 2, all three divisions of Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy came together on the Pontiac campus to "make it matter."  

"Make It Matter Day," which is what the school calls the day's event, is an opportunity for more than 1,150 students and their teachers to focus on the "Christian Persons" aspect of the school mission. The goal was to make something useful for people in need in the metropolitan Detroit area and in other parts of the world.

This year we are hoping alums will join us in this fun and charitable event. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Lauren (Tuski) Snyder '09 (NDP) at 
Future Doctor Says that Notre Dame was a Big Part of  Her Academic Success

It was an unlikely combination of interests in science, French, global health and her Christian faith that came together nicely for 2008 Notre Dame alum Sajel (Tremblay) Nuwamanya when, as a student at DePauw University, she began looking at health and medical initiatives in the African countries of Senegal and Uganda.

Now a biochemistry grad with a French minor from DePauw (Indiana) and a current student in med school at Wayne State University, Nuwamanya said it was an especially busy time in Africa that solidified in her mind the direction her career was pointing, which was toward medicine and-incidentally-also toward meeting her future husband, Victor.

But it was when Nuwamanya was an undergrad that she originally began to connect with hunger and malnutrition initiatives in Africa and the work of Dr. Thomas Burke of the Division of Global Health and Human Rights at Massachusetts General Hospital after a presentation he gave at DePauw. It didn't take her long to join one of Burke's projects, the "Initiative to End Child Malnutrition," as a program coordinator. 
"And five days after graduation from DePauw, I was on a plane to Uganda, a place I had obviously heard about and was excited to see first hand," she said.
"Many big decisions were made when I was in Uganda," said Nuwamanya. "I really looked forward to working with patients and their caregivers, and I learned a lot about malnutrition-treatment protocols as well." 

She loved what she learned so much that she decided she would begin pursuing a medical degree full time when she got back to Michigan and then to eventually return to Africa at some point to make a bigger and better impact as an M.D. "I even started studying for the MCATs, the entrance exams for American medical schools, while living in rural Uganda," she said. 

To read more of Nuwamanya's story, click here.
NDHS Teachers and Staffers get Together on the Eastside

There were hugs aplenty at Gilbert's Lodge in Saint Clair Shores as more than 20 former members of Harper Woods Notre Dame's faculty and staff got together to reminisce about 20254 Kelly Road and the students and teachers who used to populate the hallways of the school, which was closed in 2005 by the Archdiocese of Detroit.

NDHS staffers and teachers at the reunion yesterday included Rick Kuhn, Duane Holmes, Ken Parent, Ron Stephens, Sr. Pat Sporer, OP, Nanette Maltz, Cindi Kelly, Nancy Malone, Anne Sepos, Dolores Lynch, Dennis Lynch, Sr. Alice Kotwick, OSM, Jim Hassett, Cathy Hassett, Doreen Vermiglio, Teri Holifield, Don Holifield, Dick Wagner, Pat Pompeo, Dave Pochmara, Mike Bilicki, Mike Reece and Roseanne Horne, all of whom worked at Notre Dame until it closed in 2005. Great to see them again!

Like Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, Harper Woods Notre Dame was operated by the Marist Fathers and Brothers, but as an all-boys school. It occupied the Harper Woods campus for more than 50 years.

The school building eventually reopened in 2007 as Chandler Park Academy, a school operating with a charter through Saginaw Valley State University.

Notre Dame Alum Releases Important Study on Automotive Industry


John W. Henke, Jr., Ph.D., a 1958 graduate of Notre Dame, says Ford, General Motors, FCA US and Nissan collectively would have earned $2 billion more in operating profit last year had their supplier relations improved as much as Toyota's and Honda's did during the year. 


That's one of the significant conclusions from Henke's 15th annual North American Automotive/Tier 1 Supplier Working Relations Index® Study released by Birmingham, Mich.-based Planning Perspectives, Inc., that looks at the automakers' supplier relations and how they impact OEM profits. This year, 435 suppliers participated.


The study is watched carefully in automakers' boardrooms because an OEM's supplier relations rating is highly correlated to the benefits that a supplier chooses to give an OEM - including which OEM is first to see a supplier's newest technology, is provided a supplier's best personnel for support, and gets their best pricing - all of which impacts an OEM's competitiveness and operating profit.


For the past 25 years, Henke, who is CEO of Planning Perspectives (, and his team have specialized in studying and reporting on buyer and supplier relations in the automotive and 17 other industries. Henke is also a professor of marketing at Oakland University, Rochester, Mich., and a research fellow at the Center for Supply Chain Management at Rutgers University.


For more on Henke's 2015 study,  click here. 

Notre Dame Alum and Journalist Covers State and Politics for Michigan's Largest Digital Media Company



You would think a very shy teenager might not pursue a career that requires talking to a lot of people-particularly political people-on a daily basis. But for Shannon Murphy, who graduated Notre Dame in 1998, her career and love of journalism forced her out of her shell.

"Surprisingly for someone in my business, I was pretty shy growing up," said Murphy. "But interviewing people helped bring me out of my shell, especially at Michigan State, where you could easily get lost with the thousands of people there. And, you definitely have to love learning a little bit about everything, and sharing that knowledge with others to be successful in my field."


Murphy's "field" is journalism, and she's been sharing her skills as an interviewer, writer and editor with Michigan residents since graduating from MSU with a degree in journalism in 2002. She now works for MLive, a digital-media company that owns numerous local newspapers and operates, a web-based news site serving readers and businesses in Michigan. She currently serves as managing producer/community engagement specialist at MLive and, as part of her job, she helps manage and direct coverage for digital newsrooms in Lansing and Detroit, working with a reporting and photography staff of 11 who cover the state Capitol, statewide issues, the automotive industry and Detroit police, among other beats.


To read more on Murphy's story, click here.

Notre Dame Alum (2006) and Detroit City FC Goalkeeper Featured by Club

By Detroit City FC


When Detroit City FC fans arrive at Cass Tech, Bret Mollon '06 (NDP) is one of the most recognizable figures. His neon green jersey radiates the northern penalty box, and as his teammates pound shot after shot his direction during warm-ups, City's go-to goalkeeper flies between the pipes.


Mollon's commanding presence behind the defensive line has earned him the starting job for Le Rouge for the past few summers, but when he isn't shutting down NPSL forwards, the Washington, Mich. native has another job.


Since August of 2013, Mollon has been an assistant coach at Coastal Carolina University (CCU). After his first season for DCFC, Mollon began his coaching career for the Chanticleer men's and women's programs. When he played in the Premier Development League, prior to joining Le Rouge, one of Mollon's friends was an assistant at CCU, and invited him down to Myrtle Beach. Soon after, Mollon became Coastal's goalkeeper coach.


Already a top-notch keeper, Mollon has found that his experience as a coach advances his game even further. "It helps me get a lot better just sitting through all the meetings with the coaches, organizing practices, going through film, and realizing formations," Mollon said. "It's helped me transition between a coach and a player."


To read more on Mollon's story, click here.

From Northern Michigan to South America and Back Again




Carly Joseph has always been an athlete. She loves to run and her time at Notre Dame included significant contributions to Irish softball and cross-country teams. But it seems her physical endeavors are picking up the pace even more just as her academics demand more and more of her time and attention.


Joseph is currently pursuing degrees in biomedical engineering and international Spanish from Michigan Tech, located in the state's upper peninsula. However, her studies now have her in Valparaiso, Chile, where she's taking Spanish at the Pontifical Catholic University. When her day is done in the classroom, Joseph heads to the nearest mountain.

"Rock climbing is one of my newer hobbies, and it nicely complements my other mountain passions, which include snowboarding," she said. "Some of my favorite times while living here in Valparaiso have been climbing and chatting with locals on and around the mountains. I've been doing both outdoor and indoor climbing here. I've met some incredibly talented climbers and made lots of new friends there."


It's not the first time she's been on the mountains in South America.  


After many years of competitive snowboarding, she made a transition into backcountry snowboarding toward the end of her time at NDP. Since then, she said she's grown to love mountain sports in a whole new way. "In 2013, I took my first avalanche safety certification course. In 2014, I became a Wilderness First Responder. This year, 2015, started with an unsupported 35-day mountaineering expedition in the back country of Chilean Patagonia."


To read more on Joseph's story, click here.

Notre Dame's Annual Fund Tops Half  a Million Dollars for the First Time

Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy announced today that it has raised a record $550,000 in gifts for its 2015 Notre Dame Fund campaign, which began July 1, 2014, and wrapped up last week on June 30.
The fund total, which is comprised of gifts from nearly 1,000 alumni, parents, faculty and other friends of the school, represents a 17% increase over 2014 and is the highest amount in school history.

Head of school Fr. Leon Olszamowski, s.m., said he was very pleased with the results. "Our annual fundraising team, led by Gregory Simon and Andy Guest, has done a great job surpassing the goal we set by more than $50,000. Hooray for all of us at the Prep and Academy! We're on a roll, so it's 'onward to victory!'"
Simon noted that the total number of gifts from alumni set a record with a 17% increase over last year's number, which itself was substantially higher than during any previous annual fund at NDPMA.

To read more, click here.
Portraits Created by Former Notre Dame IB Art Students are Received in Ghana

Special hand-drawn portraits created by eight NDP Class of 2015 graduates as part of the worldwide program known as The Memory Project were delivered recently to orphans in the West African country of Ghana.


According to Notre Dame's art chair Sandy LewAllen, the eight former students worked on the drawings as their final art project before finishing up their Notre Dame careers. She said during the previous school year, NDP students sent portraits to Haiti children as part of the same program.

The Memory Project is a unique initiative in which art students create portraits for children and teens around the world who have been neglected, orphaned, or disadvantaged. Given that kids in such situations tend to have few personal keepsakes, project organizers aim to provide them with special memories that capture a piece of their childhood - portable pieces of their personal history. As much as possible, the Memory Project also wants to help the kids see themselves as "works of art." 


To read more, click here.

Notre Dame Still the Only Catholic 'Full IB' School in the U.S

Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, which remains the only Catholic school in the country with all three levels of International Baccalaureate, announced last month that 92% of those enrolled in the school's IB Diploma Program (DP) successfully earned an IB Diploma, an outcome ahead of last year's IB-Diploma Program graduation result of 85%.
Also, Notre Dame DP students in 2015 averaged a 30 score for all components of the diploma examination, which surpasses the worldwide average of 29.8.

 Statistics about Notre Dame and its IB programs:

* NDPMA is one of only 17 schools in the U.S., public or private, with "full IB," which means offering the three main levels of the innovative curriculum: Primary Years Program (jr.-kindergarten through 5th grade), Middle Years Program (for students in grades 6-10) and the Diploma Program (for juniors and seniors).

* Notre Dame is the only full IB school, public or private, in Michigan.
Notre Dame is one of only two faith-based, full IB programs in the U.S., the other being St. Andrews School in Florida, which is Episcopal.

Notre Dame is the only Catholic full IB school in the U.S.

Notre Dame is one of 23 PYP programs in Michigan.

Notre Dame is one of 28 MYP programs in Michigan.

Notre Dame is one of 34 DP programs in Michigan.

Notre Dame Names Four New Head Coaches


The athletic department of Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy announced today that Rob Suffredini has been named head coach of Notre Dame Prep's boys soccer team. In addition, Andy Guest, who is Notre Dame's executive vice president and director of advancement, will take over head coaching duties for the boys and girls cross country teams.


Suffredini, who is a Notre Dame High School alum, Class of 1986, comes to NDPMA after serving as coach of the Vardar Soccer Club's boys U13-U16 and girls U11-U14 teams. He also has previous experience as a coach and player development director with Michigan Burn, Gators and Carpathia soccer clubs. His high school coaching experience includes positions with Fraser, Lamphere, De La Salle and Cranbrook Kingswood schools. Suffredini, who replaces former boys soccer head coach Ryan Elchuk, is a graduate of Adrian College where he earned a BS in business administration.

For more Notre Dame news,  click here.
 2015 Notre Dame Prep Football Schedule

Fri., Aug. 28 vs. Redford Thurston, at Notre Dame Prep, 7:30 p.m.

Thurs., Sept. 3 vs. Tecumseh, at Notre Dame Prep, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 12 vs. Michigan Collegiate, at Bishop Foley, 7:00 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 18 vs. Divine Child, at Crestwood High School, 7:00 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 25 vs. Loyola, at Notre Dame Prep, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Oct. 3 vs. Fr. Gabriel Richard, at Fr. Gabriel Richard, 1:00 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 9 vs. River Rouge, at Notre Dame Prep, 7:00 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 16 vs. Owosso, at Owosso, 7:00 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 23 vs. Chelsea, at Notre Dame Prep, 7:00 p.m.
Sat., Oct. 24, Prep Bowl, at Ford Field, TBA
Fri., Oct. 30, MHSAA Districts, TBA
Fri., Nov. 6, MHSAA Districts, TBA

Notre Dame Alumni Association on Facebook, Twitter


"Like" the Notre Dame Alumni Association Facebook page to receive news and updates. Follow us on Twitter too! 


All alumni are encouraged to join the conversation and post your own memorable photos and videos from your time at Notre Dame or one of the predecessor schools. Or you can post recent status updates and photos to let other alumni know what you're up to!  

Don't forget to utilize the alumni business directory


Be sure to check out our alumni business directory. If you would like to add your business to our list please contact Beth Campbell at

For a list of upcoming class reunions   

Considering planning a reunion for your class? The alumni office can help you get started. Call (248) 373-2171, ext. 3, or email for details. 

We pray for those who have died:

Bernetta Seling- Grandmother of RyanTrobaugh '05 (NDP) 8-8-15

Albert Meneghin- Father of Albert Jr. '92 (NDHS) 8-7-15

David Raggio- Grandfather of Samantha '14 (NDP) and Nicholas '16 (NDP) 8-3-15

Mary Ann Zych- Wife of Ed '67 (NDHS) 8-1-15

Sarah Lezotte- Grandmother of Lindsay'02 (NDP), Jonathan '06 (NDP) and Michael '08 (NDP) 8-1-15

Ingrid Niemi Verna- Grandmother of Lauren '06 (NDP) 7-30-15

Lenore Troy- '65 (SM) 7-25-15

Leonard Pellegrom- Father of Dennis '75 (NDHS) 7-25-15

Kathleen Skwarczewski- Sister of William Christopher '03 (NDP)

Kelly Patterson- '76 (NDHS), brother of Kevin '80 (NDHS) 7-20-15

Jeanette Martin- '45 (SM), wife of Leo '46 (SM) 7-18-15

Edward "Eddie Zee" Mijewski- Father of Kenneth '82 (NDHS) 7-12-15

Rita Marcero- '50 (SM) 7-9-15

Larry Kanarek- '73 (NDHS) 7-1-15

James Seibert- Grandfather of Alexander '15 (NDP) and Christopher '17 (NDP) Fitzpatrick 6-30-15

Thomas Nicosia- Father of Robert '77 (NDHS) 6-30-15

Roy DeRoche- Father of Greg '90 (NDHS) 6-30-15

Michael McEntaggart- '71 (NDHS) 6-25-15

Arthur Avian- Father of Richard '75 (NDHS)

Lillian Genna- Mother of Angelo '63 (NDHS) 6-17-15

Fred Lennox II- Father of Sara '93 (OC) 6-15-15

Sylivia Barbu- Grandmother of Sarah '02 (NDP) 6-14-15

Dennis Pesta- '62 (NDHS), brother of Terry, ND '68 6-12-15

Shirley Tomayko- Grandmother of Jaclyn Borgiel '12 (NDP) 6-10-15

Denise C. Prinzivalli- Mom of Rocco '76 (NDHS) 6-10-15

John Cauley- '40 (SF) 6-9-15 

Marian Caroselli- Mother of Tom '68 (NDHS) 6-7-15

William Wylie Sr.- Father of William '86 (NDHS)

Petrella Giuseppe- Grandfather of Joseph '08 (NDP) and Rebecca '16 (NDP) 6-5-15

Joseph Tolari- Father of Jeff '74 (NDHS) 6-5-15

John Wargel- '64 (SM) 6-3-15

Robert Mikonowicz- '60 (NDHS) 6-3-15

Sandy Rusch- Mother of Jeff Schwartzenberg '88 (NDHS) 4-16-15

Prayer List: click here
Email your prayers and petitions to
NDP = Notre Dame Prep; NDHS = Notre Dame High School; OC = Oakland Catholic; PC = Pontiac Catholic; SM = St. Michael; SF = St. Frederick.