Independent Public Mission Schools

College of Saint Elizabeth Students Demonstrate Scientific Knowledge at ICFNJ Symposium

Four CSE students demonstrated their impressive scientific knowledge at the Independent College Fund of New Jersey’s (ICFNJ) Undergraduate Research Symposium at the Liberty Science Center this March. These students, pictured, front row from left: Grace Bailey, ‘17, Fiorella Vasquez, ’17, Kiersten Hendricksen, ‘17, and Sean Mahoney, ’17. CSE faculty members who oversaw the research projects are: from left: Peter Dobbelaar, Ph.D., Tara Cominski, Ph.D., and Kimberley Grant, Ph.D.

The goal of this symposium is to expose participating students to potential careers available to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors, and strengthen engagement in a STEM area specific to each student. Participants are chosen through a competitive selection process as well as from scholarship recipients regulating research.

Bailey’s project, “The Determination and Analysis of the Properties of Biodiesel,” was awarded fifth place at the symposium. She proposed that biodiesel derived from edible oils, including grapeseed, flaxseed, and safflower oil, could reduce the negative environmental impact of fuel. Bailey went on to suggest that these edible oils were best suited for New Jersey’s climate due to lower viscosity, or thickness, properties. This could have a great impact on the research of renewable energy sources.

Bailey will continue her education at the University of California, Berkeley, and study nuclear engineering.

Other CSE student research was: “The Impact of Over Fertilization on Barnegat Bay-Little Egg Harbor Estuary,” by Hendricksen; “The Expression of Cytokines in Blast-Induced Mild Traumatic Brain Injury,” by Mahoney, and “Stress Hormone Responsiveness and Perceived Anxiety in College Students,” by Vasquez.

According to Regina Hartley, chair of the ICFNJ, “this symposium offers students an opportunity to pursue research in areas of interest to them and helps spark a lifelong journey of innovation and discovery.”

Transformative Bequest to the College of Saint Elizabeth

Dr. Antoinette M. Anastasia

A $5 million bequest was awarded to the College of Saint Elizabeth. The donor is Dr. Antoinette M. Anastasia, of Elizabeth, N.J., an alumna. Dr. Anastasia passed away on December 2, 2016.

“Dr. Anne was a wonderful friend to the College,” said President Helen J. Streubert. “Early in my tenure she worked closely with me to envision what could be the future for the College, specifically in the sciences. Anne was always generous in spirit. Her gift is transformational at this time in the College’s history as we continue to serve those who have not traditionally had access to higher education”

The College of Saint Elizabeth community was honored to recognize Dr. Anastasia as its 2015 Mother Xavier Award recipient, the highest honor bestowed upon an alumna of the school each year on Founders Day for recalling the vision, courage and faith of the founder of the College of Saint Elizabeth, Mother Mary Xavier Mehegan. In 2012, Dr. Anastasia anonymously gave the College the largest outright gift in the college’s history, to renovate its biology labs in Henderson Hall. The biology wing has now been named in her honor.

Dr. Anastasia graduated from the College of Saint Elizabeth in 1951 with a B.S. in Biology. She went on to earn her M.A. and Ed.D. from Columbia University. Dr. Anastasia started her career as a research assistant, first at Schering Plough Corporation and then Merck & Co. Inc. She taught human anatomy & physiology at a local hospital’s school of nursing and then became a professor of biology at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, N.J., where she taught throughout her long career.

Dr. Anastasia described herself as an educator. As an administrator, it was important for her to remain a teacher in the classroom to give students personal attention. She attributed the College of Saint Elizabeth with giving her a firm foundation and preparing her well for her life as an educator.