CENTER VALLEY, Pa. — Graduates of the Penn State Lehigh Valley Class of 2018 were honored at a Senior Send-Off Brunch on Sunday, April 29 at the Centennial Catering and Conference Center, Center Valley.
More than 110 people attended the event, including Penn State Lehigh Valley faculty and staff, members of the Lehigh Valley Alumni Society Board of Directors, graduates, families and friends.
Tina Q. Richardson, chancellor of Penn State Lehigh Valley, welcomed the guests and commended the 2018 graduates on their accomplishments. Diane McAloon, alumni coordinator, shared that the purpose of the event was three-fold: to celebrate the new graduates; to let the soon-to-be alumni know they are part of the Penn State Alumni network, which numbers nearly 674,000 worldwide; and to encourage philanthropy in the form of giving back time, talent and treasure. Included in opportunities offered through the alumni network are involvement on committees, social and professional networking and career services.
The featured speaker was Penn State Lehigh Valley Alumna Mandy Marquardt, class of 2014, who shared her thoughts on the benefits of remaining connected to the campus after graduation.
“I don’t necessarily have all the funds, because it goes toward my cycling career, but, I found a great value through volunteering my time and continuing to help be a small part of growing the alumni network,” said Marquardt. “You can absolutely do that!”
Marquardt earned her degree at the Lehigh Valley campus after moving to the area from Florida in order to pursue a career as a professional cyclist. She serves as a member of the Lehigh Valley Alumni Society board of directors and is a strong force in marketing alumni events.
The closing speaker was Campus Director of Development Phillip St. James, who thanked those in attendance. St. James said he looks forward to working with the new graduates.
“Together, we can assist those currently seeking a Penn State education as well as continue to expand programming, resources, and the impact that the Penn State Lehigh Valley campus has in our community,” said St. James.