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Honors & Awards
May 2, 2023

Charter Day: A Celebration of Scholarship and Service

Charter Day 2023

On April 28, St. Francis College (SFC) celebrated the 139th anniversary of the granting of its charter with a convocation in the fifth-floor auditorium, marking the first time Charter Day was held at the College’s new Downtown Brooklyn campus.

Charter Day commemorates May 8, 1884, the day the Legislature of the State of New York granted a charter to the Board of Trustees of St. Francis Monastery to “establish a literary college in the City of Brooklyn under the title of St. Francis College,” with the right to confer diplomas and degrees. The annual Charter Day convocation commemorates this momentous occasion in SFC’s history.

The convocation ceremony included the induction of the newest members (see complete list below) of the Duns Scotus Honor Society. Election to membership in the Society, founded in 1935, is based on scholastic standing, participation in extracurricular activities, evidence of loyalty to the ideals of St. Francis College and demonstration of Franciscan spirit and values.

The convocation’s keynote speakers, both of whom received the St. Clare Medal of Service, were SFC alumnae Rita Joseph ’04 and Dr. Debbie Almontaser ’94. Joseph is a New York City Council Member serving the 40th District. A longtime educator, she chairs the Council’s Education Committee. Almontaser, who also has a background in education, is CEO and president of Bridging Cultures Group, Inc., as well as board secretary of the Yemeni American Merchants Association.

Charter Day also provides the occasion to recognize faculty, administrators and staff members for their years of service to the College. This year, recipients of the Pax et Bonum Award for 15 years of service as a faculty member were Kristy Biolsi, Theo Gangi, Esther Klein, Steven Mullins and Karen Wilson. Receiving the President’s Award for service as an administrator or staff member were Lauren Bertolotti ’08, Travis Clayton ’07, Dionne Dodson, Angel Perez and Mona Wasserman (15 years) and Sue Mulderrig (25 years).

Duns Scotus Honor Society Inductees

  • Airam Aguasvivas de los Santos
  • Daniyal Atiq
  • Amanda Deveney
  • Janna Ghoneim
  • Zenovia Gonzalez
  • Constantino Infante-Hernandez
  • Sarah Kamara
  • Alkida Koleci
  • Kiara Moran
  • Andrew Odnoralov
  • Nina Pluviose
  • Megi Rama
  • Natalie Roca
  • Maryam Shuaib
  • Vladislav Yegay

Honorary Duns Scotus Society Inductees

  • Meaghan Davis, Director, First-Year Experience
  • Shamard Charles, Assistant Professor of Public Health
  • Virginia A. Franklin, Associate Professor, Department of Literature, Writing and Publishing

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