HONORING NEUMANN COLLEGE ACHIEVING UNIVERSITY STATUS; Congressional Record Vol. 155, No. 74
(House of Representatives - May 14, 2009)

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[Pages H5639-H5640]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




          HONORING NEUMANN COLLEGE ACHIEVING UNIVERSITY STATUS

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the 
gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Sestak) is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. SESTAK. Madam Speaker, I rise to honor a remarkable institution 
of higher education focused on developing graduates, who understand 
that true reward comes not only through acquiring knowledge, but also 
the use of that knowledge in the service of others.
  In the fall of 1965, the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia 
opened Our Lady of Angels College, based in both liberal arts and 
Franciscan traditions, with just 115 female students in Aston, 
Pennsylvania. In 1980, male students were admitted for the first time 
and the board of trustees approved changing the college's name to 
Neumann as a tribute to the significant role former Bishop, and now St. 
John, Neumann played in the order's early formation.
  Forty-four years later, through the tireless efforts of the Sisters 
of St. Francis of Philadelphia and their many supporters, the Seventh 
Congressional District of Pennsylvania is home to a new university. On 
April 30, the Pennsylvania Department of Education recognized more than 
2 years of research, planning, applications, and campus

[[Page H5640]]

evaluations by issuing a certificate of authority to elevate Neumann 
College to university status.
  The process of converting from a college to a university is lengthy 
and complicated, requiring the addition of full undergraduate studies 
in the arts and sciences, professional graduate programs, a doctoral 
program, and cultural programming open to the community. Neumann 
College's visionary and perseverant leaders, President Rosalie Mirenda 
and Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Sister Marguerite 
O'Beirne, OSF, have worked tirelessly with the entire Neumann staff to 
make the conversion possible.
  In addition to schools of business and nursing, Neumann offers a 
college of arts and sciences, as well as six graduate and two doctoral 
programs. What sets Neumann apart from other colleges and universities 
is its unparalleled ability to educate its students outside of the 
classroom through programs that sharpen social awareness and ethical 
concern, which I have observed myself.
  As Dr. Mirenda so eloquently writes of Neumann, ``We will give you 
the opportunity to experience the reality that learning and living are 
one; that education is truly the combination of the intellect, the 
body, the heart, and the soul, and that education is about 
relationships, going deeper into your being to discover the special 
gift of yourself and all creation that surrounds you.''
  As part of its mission, Neumann University has a very strong minority 
recruitment program. Neumann works aggressively to see that a values-
based private education is affordable to as many young men and women as 
possible. Neumann imbues each student with the notion that learning is 
a lifelong process.
  Achieving university status marks the culmination of a remarkable 
transformation for Neumann. It is a living testament of the decency, 
hard work, and absolute commitment of the Sisters of St. Francis of 
Philadelphia.
  Madam Speaker, today I acknowledge the 8,327 living alumni, the 3,037 
current students, and the 507 faculty and staff, board of trustees, and 
President Mirenda especially on achieving their goal of advancing 
Neumann University as a recognized institution of higher education in 
the Catholic Franciscan tradition. I commend their dedication to making 
ours a better community, Nation, and world with so many better students 
and people.

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