Notre Dame Alumni E-Newsletter
June 2016
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Dear , 

What an amazing amount of love and support for our first-ever #BevsDay! Beverly Williams taught at Notre Dame from 1999 until her untimely passing in 2009. She was loved by faculty and staff, parents, and students for her energy, compassion, generosity, and infectious sense of humor. Bev taught Sociology, Psychology, and AP Psychology.

Keep your eye out for an email with the total raised and breakdown of participation by class later this week. Thank you to everyone who not only gave but those who shared memories, posted on social media and helped to make this day so special. It was absolutely fantastic to see how many people Bev touched! 
Last month we welcomed 180 graduates into the association! The alumni board hosted a BBQ for the senior class and created a photo booth at graduation for pictures. Congratulations, graduates! 

Don't forget to keep your current contact information updated in our database. So many things are happening on campus. Be sure you don't miss out.  Update here.

Have a wonderful summer!

Beth Campbell
Director of Alumni Relations


Confidence in front of crowds and a refined cognitive thought process were just a couple of the skills that 2012 Notre Dame alum Lisa Savagian gained from her high school experience. In fact, Savagian says, the things she learned at Notre Dame Prep have helped lead her toward a Ph.D. track in materials science and engineering, which she begins this fall at Georgia Institute of Technology.

"When I started college, I realized just how well my high school education equipped me with the critical-thinking skills, writing abilities, and technical acumen necessary for success in higher education," said Savagian. "But perhaps more importantly, I had developed a lasting enthusiasm for learning that will be instrumental in any discipline."

Those same skills also were likely instrumental in helping to get Savagian selected for the prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship program, which is awarded to students pursuing a research-based master's or doctoral degree in science or engineering. Savagian said the fellowship is for three years, and pays a $34,000 annual stipend and a $12,000 cost-of-education allowance each year, which will come in handy, she said, after four years as a college student. 

Now armed with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and a minor in mathematics from Hope College (May 2016), Savagian said her coursework at Georgia Tech will specialize in polymers, and her research will likely focus on developing thin film materials for optoelectronic applications.

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

Logan Verheyen, a 2015 graduate of Notre Dame Preparatory School, has been selected as a Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) research scholar for 2016. The program is for Saint Louis University (St. Louis, Mo.) students enrolled in the university's Parks College and includes summer undergraduate research positions in both engineering and aviation research. 

"This was a highly competitive process, with about eighty applications received for the fifteen available slots," said SLU's SURE coordinator Raymond P. Lebeau, Jr., Ph.D., in a letter notifying Verheyen of his acceptance into the program. He said the SURE program is 10 weeks long, beginning on May 16 and ending July 22, 2016, and each student is required to spend 40 hours per week during those 10 weeks to complete their project.  
Already well into the program, Verheyen said among a number of other things he will be studying will be the effects of macromolecular crowding on collagen deposition for in-vitro tissue engineering. 

"The use of macromolecules resembles the natural environment in which collagen-producing cells live," Verheyen added. "This stimulates faster growth than would be attained through simple in-lab growth."

Currently at SLU studying biomedical engineering, Verheyen said he found out about the SURE program during a search for summer programs at the university. "I applied to the program to explore my interests in research and to get some hands-on lab experience," he said.

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

When 2010 Notre Dame graduate Simone Amalio finishes grad school, she wants to work as a college professor, a job that no doubt will educate many young people in the coming years. But in Amalio's case, now in her second year in the Master of Divinity program at Duke Divinity School in Durham, N.C., she's hoping to not only prepare students academically, she is looking to provide the spiritual leadership necessary in the development of future ministers of the church.

"I graduated from Spring Arbor University with a BA in biblical studies and a minor in speech," she said, "and then moved into my graduate career at Duke in their Master of Divinity program where I am working toward becoming a college professor. In this way, I plan to stand in that space between scholarship and the church, preparing future church leaders academically and spiritually." 

After finishing up at NDP in 2010, Amalio knew her future would include some form of ministerial work, but it was not until she graduated from Spring Arbor in 2014 that she realized there was a calling to a career in academia as well as to the church. 

"At Spring Arbor, just like at NDP, I was heavily involved in the arts, and eventually I became co-president of our drama department," she said. "Being involved in theater, both off and on the stage, allowed me to continue to fall in love with the power of story and what it was like to take on someone else's story and tell it faithfully. It was this ability, which I first saw in my time in NDP's theater program, that helped me become a more faithful historian, theologian and biblical scholar."

To read more of Amalio's story, click here.

Connor Verheyen, a 2013 graduate of Notre Dame Preparatory School and current student at the University of Miami in Florida, has been chosen for admission to the 2016 Amgen Scholars Program, which encourages aspiring scientists by giving them the chance to conduct hands-on research under leading academic scientists at one of 17 institutions in the U.S., Europe and Japan. 

Verheyen, who is majoring in biomedical engineering at Miami, joins just over 350 students worldwide, or 7 percent of the more than 5,000 students who applied in 2015 from nearly 1,000 universities and colleges across 60 different countries. 

For Verheyen, he will be working at St. Louis, Missouri-based Washington University, which is one of the 10 host universities scattered around the U.S. He began his program on May 31 and will conclude it on August 5.

"My Amgen work will take place at the Washington University School of Medicine, in Dr. Jennifer Philips' lab in the Department of Infectious Diseases," Verheyen said. "Though most of the work will be in St. Louis, there is also a mid-summer symposium at UCLA where all of the Amgen scholars present their findings and discuss their work."

To read more of Verheyen's story, click here.

Eoghan McGreevy graduated from Wayne State University's School of Medicine on May 16 in a ceremony held at Detroit's Fox Theatre. Around the same time, he had just returned from a honeymoon that had been delayed since a fall wedding so he can finish up a very hectic last few months of a medical degree. It's a medical degree that also brought him the  "Robert J. Sokol, MD/Medical Alumni Association Endowed Prize," a prestigious honor given annually to a fourth-year, med-school student or students whose professional activities and/or research accomplishments "have brought distinction to themselves and the WSU School of Medicine." 

In addition, this 2006 Notre Dame Prep graduate served as president of his class at medical school and now is preparing for a residency in emergency medicine/trauma at Henry Ford Health Systems Detroit beginning in June. On top of all that, he and his wife, Caitlyn, an OB/GYN doctor at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, are in the process of finding a new home.

So, crazy busy time for McGreevy to be sure. But he was kind enough to spend a little of his crazy busy time with his high school alma mater to discuss his Notre Dame experience as well as talk about what looks to us like a pretty bright future.

In addition to his just-finished medical degree from WSU, McGreevy has a BS in microbiology and a master's in public health (MPH) from the University of Michigan. He said after his residency is complete, he plans to explore a number of options, including a fellowship in a fairly new field.

To read more of McGreevy's story, click here.

Notre Dame alum Walt Szymanski, a 1972 graduate of Notre Dame and a world-renowned jazz composer and musician currently living in Ecuador, said a month or so ago that fortunately he was not affected very much by the devastating earthquake that hit his "adopted" country, which is located on the Pacific coast of South America.

"We felt and experienced the earthquake here in the Quito area, three rapid-succession quakes, and my house was really rocking," he says. "But thankfully my architect incorporated new seismic technology into the structure, so nothing happened. But lots of terrible damage and casualties west of me. Thousands affected on the coast, unfortunately."

On April 16, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 struck off Ecuador's central Pacific coast. Strong aftershocks have been felt since then. 

Currently a full-time resident of Quito, Ecuador, Szymanski has been serving as a professor of jazz studies at the University de San Francisco de Quito/IMC in Quito, Ecuador. He also writes and composes music for a varied clientele worldwide. 

Quito is located a little more than 100 miles southeast of the epicenter of Saturday's earthquake.

Last December, Szymanski was back in Detroit to play a special New Year's Eve concert with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

He also said that he recently finished up a concerto/symphony for the Orquestra Sinfonica Nacional del Ecuador and performed it with the symphony on May 19.

One hundred eighty seniors walked across the stage Sunday, May 22, and received their diplomas after four years at Notre Dame's upper division. Not only will the Class of 2016 leave behind a beautiful campus and a very proud faculty and staff, they will leave behind a number of impressive statistics as a group.

According to figures released by Notre Dame Prep's counseling department, this year's class of graduating seniors earned an amazing total of $16,099,162 to date in academic scholarships from colleges and universities. That total amount of dollars works out to nearly a $90,000 average for each member of the class, which surpasses the average of two of the last three Notre Dame graduating classes.

In addition, the Class of 2016 averaged 27.2 on the ACT, matching the record set last year by the Class of 2015. Also, the counseling department said this year's graduates include 56 who scored a 30 or above on the ACT, which was a bigger number than last year's class, and averaged a 1674 on the SAT. The 2016 grads also finished the year with an overall grade-point-average (GPA) of 3.76.

Sixteen graduates fill out this year's valedictory court for the class, which also features 31 candidates for the prestigious International Baccalaureate diploma. In addition, many colleges and universities across the country will welcome these graduates in the fall, including the University of Michigan, Stanford University, the University of Notre Dame and the United States Naval Academy. 

And finally, perhaps most importantly, this year's graduating class again logged more than 15,000 hours in community service-once again proving that besides turning out "academic scholars," Notre Dame continues to graduate "Christian people and upright citizens."

To see a list of schools where graduates had been accepted and other achievements, click here.


Nineteen kids and their families made the trip to Louisville, Kentucky to participate in the VEX IQ Challenge segment of school robotics competitions known as the 2016 VEX Worlds.

The various Notre Dame teams from the lower and middle divisions, collectively known as the Bumble Bees, did very well with Team #3333A, comprised of 5th-grade boys, finishing 20th in the world. Team 3333A is Dylan Davis, Oliver Kayi, Aaron Palardy, Vlad Lovin, John Milback and Jackson Krieger. It was the third year in a row that a Notre Dame team made the finals.
"What a great experience," said Louise Palardy, who along with her husband, Jerry, helps mentor Notre Dame's teams. "The event was held at the Kentucky Expo Center in a space larger than Cobo Center in Detroit. There was non-stop activity from morning to night."

"All of our teams did well representing our school and the State of Michigan at VEX Worlds last week," Palardy said. "Standing on that stage, under the bright lights, and in front of that big crowd can be scary and intimidating for anyone. But our kids showed that they could handle the pressure, and when things didn't go their way they recovered gracefully."

To see more of the story, click here.

The various groups that are part of Notre Dame's choruses, choirs and ensembles recently earned a number of awards and accolades at competitions in March- which they managed to squeeze into a fairly short time frame. 

According to Dave Fazzini, who directs the schools choir program, the four-day intensive schedule of concerts and competitions began with a State Solo and Ensemble Festival on March 19, which led to six awards, including Joe Issac (12), who received a superior at district and an excellent at state; Rowland Scheessele (9), who received an excellent at district and an excellent at state; Emily Macks (10), who received a superior at district and an excellent at state; Emily Finn (10), who received an excellent at district and a good at state; Laura Lund (11), who received an excellent at district and an excellent at state; and Faith Knill (10), who received a superior at district and an excellent at state. 

The following day, on March 20, choir members were back at work performing and tuning up at the Notre Dame Pre-Festival Concert in the school's cafeteria. On the following Tuesday, March 22, three groups, The Women's Chorus, The Band of Brothers and the Chamber Choir participated in the MSVMA (Michigan School Vocal Music Association) district choir festival at Waterford Kettering High School. 

About 125 students participated at this event, which involves choirs performing for judges evaluate them based on various aesthetic and technical abilities, including tone, pitch, rhythm, diction, expression, presentation and sight reading. 

The Women's chorus received a good rating (93 out of 120 possible points), the Band of Brothers received an excellent rating (101 out of 120 points) and the chamber choir participating at the intermediate level received an excellent rating (106 out of 120 points). The chamber choir missed a superior rating by just six points. 

To read more, click


Notre Dame junior IB visual art student Kate Joslin traveled to Brighton with her mother and art teacher Sandra LewAllen to meet with U.S. Congressman Mike Bishop (Mich.-8th District) and to find out if her artwork was chosen to be displayed in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. 
Joslin and other student participants in the The Artistic Discovery Contest (Congressional Art Competition) from Bishop's district met with the congressman at the Brighton Chamber of Commerce where the winning art was announced. Joslin's drawing, titled, "Petey," did not win the competition, but earned her an honorable mention, according to LewAllen.  

At the reception, which was part of the annual nation-wide high school arts competition sponsored by the U.S. House of Representatives, is an opportunity to recognize and encourage artistic talent across the nation. Since the competition began in 1982, more than 650,000 high school students have participated.

Open to all high school students, the winner typically has his or her artwork displayed in the U.S. Capitol for one year and receives two round-trip airline tickets to attend a special awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. in June. The exhibit in the U.S. Capitol Building will include all the winning artwork from participating districts around the country, and can also be viewed on's Congressional Art Competition page.

Judges in this year's competition for Rep. Bishop were John Sauvé, a local sculptor based in Brighton, and Ellie Ingram, who is director of art education at the Paint Creek Center for the Arts in Rochester, Mich.

Joslin's "Petey" also earned her a Silver Key award in the most recent Scholastic Art & Writing Awards competition.

For more Notre Dame news,  click here.
Building Bridges needs you!
Building Bridges is a scholarship fund that offers opportunities for qualified students with great financial need to attend Notre Dame Prep. There are currently 27 students on full scholarship, and many of them will be the first in their families to go on to college. Building Bridges works hand in hand with our admissions office and Kala Parker '00 (NDP)  identifying and guiding qualified students through their Notre Dame experience.
Each student is assigned an "Advocate" who will stay with them for the four years they are at NDP. Typically, Advocates have contact either by phone or in person twice a month, and there are three or four Building Bridges events per year.
We will be adding up to ten new students for the 2016-17 school year and are looking for new advocates for these kids. We currently have alumni from Notre Dame Prep and Notre Dame High School serving as Advocates and their experience makes them uniquely qualified.
The role of an Advocate is to assist the students as they make their journey socially and academically through the school. Advocates do things ranging from helping the students figure out how to find resources they need (ACT prep classes, tutors, etc.), proofreading papers, sharing lunch or coffee, listening or offering advice, or even just being the student's biggest cheerleader. Every relationship is different. 
The Building Bridges program not only opens doors for great kids who need a little support, it offers the opportunity for you to change someone's life! 
If you are interested in learning more about this program, please contact Beth Campbell, or 248-373-2171. 
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:
Ruth Butler-'54 (SM) 5-30-16
Fernando Roma- Father of Daniel '80 (NDHS) 5-28-16
Rosalie Bieniek- Grandmother of Nicholas '06 (NDP) 5-26-16
Sean McInnis- Son of Esther McInnis '49 (SF) 5-25-16
Camille Martin- Mother of W. Daniel Martin '79 (NDHS) 5-20-16
John Hackett Sr. - '53 (SM) 5-13-16
Leonard Barr II- Father of Paul '85 (NDHS) 5-18-16
Mary Carr- Sister of Mike Durkin (President of the NDP Booster Club), aunt of Thomas, '00 (NDP) Michael '01 (NDP), Kathryn '06 (NDP), Daniel '12 (NDP), James '14 (NDP), Andrew '16 (NDP) and Matthew '16 (NDP) 5-17-16
John Dondanville- Father of Christopher '06 (NDP), Matthew '09 (NDP) and Peter '12 (NDP) 5-13-16
Marietta Fons- '44 (SF) 5-9-16
Grace Frances Larrison- '53 (SM) 5-8-16
Mary Ann Dabrowski- Grandmother of Lisa Dabrowski Davis '02 (NDP) 5-7-16 
Rose Marie Ranzilla- '47 (SM) 5-5-16
William Forrester- Father of Michael '93 (NDHS), Patrick '93 (NDHS), Charles '97 (NDHS) 5-5-16
Genevieve Bruchanski- Grandmother of Patrick '04 (NDP) 5-2-16
Paul Lunarde- '60 (NDHS) 4-26-16
Jeffery John Ruth- Brother of Edward '77 (NDHS) 4-26-16
John Marotta- Father of Daniel '74 (NDHS) and Kenneth '76 (NDHS) 4-25-16
Annia Joseph- Grandfather of Paul Joseph '00 (NDP) 4-25-16
Joseph Dabrowski- Grandfather of Lisa Davis '02 (NDP) 4-19-16
Julia Saksa- Grandmother of Stephen '12 (NDP), David '13 (NDP), Stephanie '15 (NDP) 4-19-16
Patrice Manion- '46 (SF) 4-16-16
George Henry Weertz- Father of George Jr. '65 (ND) 4-15-16
Giovanni D'agostini- Father of Cesido '90 (NDHS) and Antonio '90 (NDHS) 4-14-16
George Harchuk- Father of Michael '76 (NDHS) and Kenneth '74 (NDHS) 4-13-16
Brian Namee- Son of Michael '72 (NDHS) 4-9-16
Christina Locricchio- Wife of Michael '70 (NDHS) 4-6-16
Thadedeus (Ted) Buda Sr. - Father of Terrence '71 (NDHS) 3-24-17
Jean Louis Mielke- Husband of Rose '51 (SM) 3-17-16
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.