Morristown, N.J. (April 25, 2016) – The Annunciation Center was transformed into a splendor of spring colors for the 15th annual scholarship gala, Mission in Motion, held April 21, 2016. The event is held annually to honor community partners, alumnae, and benefactors who generously support scholarships for CSE students, allowing them to start – and finish – their education.
In her welcoming remarks, Dr. Helen Streubert, president of CSE, spoke of the bold moves the College has taken in the past year, including becoming a coeducational institution and moving forward with the five-year strategic plan. She lauded the alumni who have gifted the College with scholarship funding and cited several examples of students' success as a result of scholarships.
"Your generosity supports fulfillment of their dreams," she explained. "I give you my word, these young women will make the world a better place as a result of your commitment to this great institution. Today there are not very many things you can count on – however, one that I know personally is the difference we make in the lives of many young women who would not otherwise have had access to a higher education."
Sister Rosemary Moynihan, chair of the board of trustees talked about the theme of the evening, Mission in Motion.
"The College of Saint Elizabeth has a well-defined mission," she explained. "In this Easter season, we see the motion, the renewal of life, and the changes. We are looking forward to this year of change, finding new ways to bring leadership skills to women and welcoming young men into our community."
This year's honorees are Dr. Damion Martins, community partner, and alumnae honorees, Dr. Judy L. Banks, '71 FACOG, and Dr. Michelle O'Shea, '92 FACS.
Dr. Damion Martins is the team physician for CSE athletes and the New York Jets, and directs the orthopedics and sports medicine department for Atlantic Health System. He was a team physician for the NFL's Baltimore Ravens, the National Hockey League's New York Islanders, and Arena Football League's New York Dragons. He teaches at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He earned his medical degree and a Master's degree Exercise Physiology and Biophysics from Georgetown University School of Medicine.
Martins thanked the alumni for their generosity to the scholarship funds. "Without you, many CSE students would not be here," he noted. "And now that the College is becoming coed, I will be very busy as the team physician!"
Dr. Judy L. Banks, '71, received her B.A. from CSE, her M.D. from Meharry Medical College in Tennessee, and continued her training at the UMDNJ. She has been a trustee and medical advisor with Dayspring Ministries in Haiti.
Banks received the 2013 Physician Excellence in Clinical Practice Award from Overlook Hospital Foundation and a National Faculty Award from the Council of Resident Education in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Banks said that she is a proud graduate of CSE for a number of reasons.
"I am a proud graduate of CSE because the College has a mission to educate women and I am proud of the CSE commitment to diversity, community, and values," she extolled. "CSE brought out the best in the students, even when the students weren't confident in themselves."
Dr. Michelle Tracey O'Shea graduated from CSE in 1992, Summa Cum Laude, with a B.S. in biology and a chemistry minor. She received her M.D. from UMDNJ in 1996. She is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and specialist in breast diseases. O'Shea is president of Summit Breast Care. She received the Project Self Sufficiency 2015 Mosaic Award and the Emerging Physician Leader from Newton Medical Center.
O'Shea spoke of a recurring theme at CSE of "You've got this!" "From the time I received a scholarship, I felt as if the school was telling me 'You've got this!'," she said. "As a student, my teachers would tell me 'You've got this!' until one day I said to myself, 'I've got this!' I am part of the CSE family and this family member thanks you from the bottom of my heart!"
Junior Grace Bailey, a chemistry major, delivered an address with a deeply personal story of the benefits of scholarships. This very ambitious young woman has been on the Dean's List since she came to CSE, is a member of both the Honors Program and the Chemistry Honors Society, was one of the poster presenters at the Independent College Fund of New Jersey Science Symposium, and is the president of the math and science club.
Grace is also a three-sport athlete and as she noted, "I know Dr. Martins very well as he has patched me up a number of times so I could continue with the schooling!" She explained to the audience that without a scholarship, she would not have gone to college, as there was no financial support elsewhere. She thanked the donors saying, "Without all of you sitting here I would not be a CSE student on the road to fulfilling my dreams. Thank you for your contributions to my success and education, I am truly grateful for this experience."
The evening ended on a high note with the Newark Boys Choir, under the direction of Donald Morris, as they sang Give us Hope, Barter, Walk in Jerusalem, I am Yours, Mood Indigo, and Newark 350 Medley.