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School of Arts and Sciences

Humanities and Human Sciences Success Stories

Meet our Humanities and Human Sciences Alumni and Students

In the profiles featured below, meet alumni and students from the Department of Humanities and Human Sciences at Point Park University. These alumni and students discuss why they chose Point Park and talk about their experiences with course work, class sizes, field experience, faculty and student interaction, campus life and how earning or pursuing a degree is helping them to reach their career and life goals.

Alumni

Pictured is Melissa Bender, psychology alumna, occupational therapist, yoga instructor and fitness blogger. | Photo by Chris Rolinson Melissa Bender

B.A. in Psychology, 2007
Occupational Therapist, Masonic Village of Sewickley


"To this day, I love Point Park’s psychology program. I learned so much about the different psychological approaches and philosophies. The teachers presented the material in a way that offered more than rote memorization. They fostered understanding and learning."

"Point Park prepared me for graduate school. The educational foundation I entered grad school with, including my research and writing skills, helped set me up for success. I also utilize my background in psychology in both my blogging and my career as an occupational therapist."



Pictured is Emily Petsko, a 2013 journalism and global cultural studies alumna who landed a job as a staff writer at the Observer-Reporter. | Photo by Jim McNutt Emily Petsko

B.A. in Global Cultural Studies and Journalism, 2013
Staff Writer, Washington Observer-Reporter


"I’ve always wanted to be a writer of sorts, and I also sought a career where I could inspire positive change, so journalism seemed like the best of both worlds. I stumbled into global cultural studies when I took a modern language elective taught by Professor Channa Newman, Ph.D. and immediately loved it. Every class in the program was so thought provoking, and I knew it would help me become a more globally aware reporter."

"The global cultural studies program equipped me with critical thinking skills and the ability to delve deeper into issues that affect the communities I serve as a reporter."


Pictured is English alumna and attorney Elizabeth Soucek. | Photo submitted by Elizabeth Soucek. Elizabeth Soucek, Esquire

B.A. in English, 2007
Attorney, Sergovic, Carmean & Weidman, P.A.


I was extremely fortunate at Point Park to have wonderful professors who encouraged me and helped me to grow. Dr. P.K. Weston in particular helped me to develop my talent for writing, and hone my skills in the area of literary analysis. All of the professors I was privileged to learn from in the English program were passionate about their subject matter, and about their students."

"Point Park gave me a solid foundation to build upon when I went to law school."





Pictured is global cultural studies major Julia Franzen. Julia Franzen

B.A. in Global Cultural Studies, 2011
Logistics Coordinator, Back to the Roots


“I was so blessed at Point Park to have such stellar professors. They taught me to see the world through many different lenses and fostered in me a hunger for knowledge and truth."

"GCS opens a lot of doors. My educational background has given me a bigger vision for life than I could have ever imagined.  The global cultural studies degree has equipped me not just for my job, but for life.”





Pictured is psychology alumnus Dr. Nick Williams. Nick Williams, Ph.D.

B.A. in Psychology, 1998
Program Director, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic


Williams credits the humanistic style of psychology taught at Point Park for giving him a strong foundation in the field.

“The humanistic perspective taught me that psychology is at the heart of all inquiry, whether it’s in the natural sciences, computer science, social sciences and so on.”

“Being at Point Park was great. I got exactly the kind of exposure to psychology that I needed to get."



Pictured is psychology alumna Dr. Marcia Sturdivant. Marcia Sturdivant, Ph.D.

B.A. in Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, 1978
Deputy Director, Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Office of Children, Youth and Families

"I liked that Point Park offered small class sizes where you can get one-on-one attention.  Also, there was just something about the atmosphere at Point Park that intrigued me.  It was such an inviting, friendly environment and had a real 'family feel' to it."

"I got a good foundation at Point Park that encouraged me to continue my studies.  The professors were very forward thinking.  I believe positive undergraduate experiences encourage students to want to continue learning."




Pictured is global cultural studies alumnus Eric Probola. Eric Probola

B.A. in Global Cultural Studies, 2010
Administrative Assistant to Community Planning, Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

"The staff at the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh liked that I had a degree in global cultural studies since they do a lot of work overseas.  My work-study job with Point Park’s Office of International Student Services also played a role in helping me to land the job."

"I had professors who really challenged me and took the time to give me real feedback, which definitely prepared me for my current job.  The professors are also a great intellectual resource."





Pictured is English alumna Amanda Lynch Morris. Amanda Lynch Morris, Ph.D.

B.A. in English, 1997
Assistant Professor and Director of the University Writing Program, Kutztown University

"I would not have thrived at a huge, four-year research school. There were schedules at Point Park, but the professors and the small class size provided one-on-one attention."

"At Point Park, you are not a number, but a name. The professor really cares about what you learn. I knew I wanted to teach.”






Pictured is political science major Anthony Costulas. Anthony Costulas

B.S. in Political Science, 2012
Assistant Community Director and Graduate Student, University of Maryland Baltimore County

"At Point Park University, you have a good combination of courses that deal with theory and courses that are very focused on the 'real-world approach.' For example, I took two courses from Professor Paul Costa who also serves as a state representative in the Pennsylvania Legislature."

"Take advantage of the size of this institution, get involved, and stay involved. There are so many incredible ways to participate outside of the classroom at Point Park."



Pictured is psychology alumna Veronika Panagiotou. Veronika Panagiotou

B.A. in Psychology, 2011
Graduate student in applied developmental psychology, The University of Pittsburgh
 

“My graduate advisor at Pitt was really impressed with my academic background and the practical experiences I gained at Point Park. Like Point Park, Pitt’s psychology program also teaches qualitative research methods.  Not many college programs teach this more humanistic style of research."

"Psychology has so many different niches. When you find the niche that is right for you, you'll know it because it will no longer seem like work."





Pictured is behavioral sciences alumnus Anthony Sanchez. Anthony Sanchez

B.A. in Behavioral Sciences, 1982
Attorney, Andrews and Price

"The small classes and personal attention from professors were important to me.  I first began to see myself as someone that could succeed professionally because of the encouragement of some of my professors.  I also learned a great deal from many friends that attended Point Park."

"Take advantage of the unique opportunities that Point Park provides – smaller classes, the opportunity to interact with your professors and make great friends, and the access to everything that Downtown Pittsburgh has to offer."




Pictured is global cultural studies student Holly Kuhl. Holly Kuhl

B.A. in Global Cultural Studies, 2012
Teaching English classes abroad

"The program (global cultural studies) facilitates the development of a critical lens that exposes the power dynamics that direct the formation and operation of these cultural constructs. It is a mindset and a lens that is relevant and applicable in all professions and fields of study."

"The professors are extremely intelligent and very engaging. Each professor has a very cultivated range of knowledge and applies it to a specific area that is unique to their interests."


Students

Pictured is Carlene Morgan, global cultural studies student and intern for the Allegheny County Department of Economic Development. | Photo by Chris Rolinson Carlene Morgan

Pursuing: B.A. in Global Cultural Studies
Expected graduation: May 2016
Save Your Home Program Coordinator, Allegheny County Department of Economic Development

"My internship has helped me learn how to assist people who need housing, especially those in the area of refugee resettlement who will need housing when they come to America. This internship also has given me skills in general to help people who are in crisis."

"What I like about Point Park is that the professors are always there to challenge you even when you want to stay in your comfort zone. This has helped me to grow and get out of my own comfort zone. Also, I have met some really good friends at Point Park. You never know who you’ll meet here."


Pictured is psychology senior Angelica Audia, who spent a semester at sea. | Photo submitted by Audia Angelica Audia

Pursuing: B.A. degree in psychology
Expected graduation: December 2013
Completed Semester at Sea program

"The psychology program at Point Park is really different than most other psychology programs. It doesn’t teach you that diagnosing and medicating people is the best method to help them. We are taught to think critically about common methods of therapy that essentially tell the client the problem lies within them and not their social or cultural context."

"Study abroad! Our world is globalizing so quickly. Even if you’re not interested in other cultures and countries, chances are you’re going to have a lot of encounters with people much different than you."



Pictured is psychology student and Allegheny General Hospital intern, Robert Novia. | Photo by Connor Mulvaney Robert Novia

Pursuing: B.A. degree in psychology
Expected graduation: December 2013
Internship: Neuropsychology intern at Allegheny General Hospital

"The philosophy that Point Park’s psychology program is grounded on was right for me. I really enjoyed the way in which this program is taught and has prepared me for the field I will be entering in the workforce. The professors I had the pleasure of learning from in this program were amazing and really made coming to class enjoyable."

"The friends I have made, the experiences I’ve had and the knowledge I have gained here at Point Park are things I will never forget and will cherish for the rest of my life. It's been truly amazing and I am so glad I took that leap of faith to come here."


Pictured is Sara Payne, a journalism and global cultural studies double major who interned for the Downtown Community Development Corporation. | Photo by Chris Rolinson Sara Payne

Pursuing: B.A. degrees in global cultural studies and journalism
Expected graduation: May 2015
Internship: Downtown Community Development Corporation

"Classes in the global cultural studies program have shown me how to look at a situation from different angles in order to think critically and be able to make an informed decision."

"My internship has given me the experience of working at a nonprofit organization, and I have learned how to apply the skills I acquired as a journalism major to a different field. I have always considered nonprofit work, and now I know what it is like and what I can bring to the table."




Pictured is English/creative writing major Jesse Padjune. Jesse Padjune

Pursuing: B.A. degree in English/creative writing
Expected graduation: May 2014
Internship: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"I knew that one of the major tie-breaker qualities in a university for me was the class size. I did not want to sit in a room with 100 other students. I wanted to get close to my mentors and let them really see who I am as a person and for them to see my writing grow."

"One of the most outstanding facts about a lot of the professors in the English/creative writing program is that they do not just drone through lectures and forget about the students once they’ve left the room. They care about their students as human beings and are great mentors."