On Thursday, November 3, 2022, St. Thomas Aquinas College (STAC) celebrated its 70th Anniversary at The Rockleigh, in Rockleigh, NJ, at the Annual Tribute Dinner. Among the honorees were Irene Pappas (Aquinas Medal), Reverend Monsignor Kieran Harrington (Mission Impact Award), and Dominican Sister of Sparkill, Susan Dunn (Founders Award). The presence of Cindy Hsu, WCBS News Anchor as emcee, student ambassadors, Sisters, college family and supporters participated in the festivities.
Sister Susan, a 1972 alumna of St. Thomas Aquinas College (STAC), received the Founders Award for her dedicated efforts as an educator, administrator, and minister to students for more than 30 years serving at STAC, Notre Dame University, and Siena College. While at STAC, Sister Susan served as Assistant Director of the Higher Educational Opportunity Program (HEOP) as well as the Assistant Director of Student Affairs. Sister Susan has tirelessly promoted the Dominican Sisters’ mission by improving student success for underserved populations and continues to contribute her expertise as a member of the Board of Trustees since 2019 where she is a member of the Campus Planning Committee and Committee on Trustees.
In her acceptance, Sister Susan remembered the numerous staff members, teachers, Sisters, and friends who mentored and challenged her along her journey. She expressed her sincere gratitude for their help and continued friendship, framing her remarks with the following quote from Abby Wambach.
“Sometimes you will be the goal scorer. Every goal belongs to the entire team. So, when you score, you better start pointing.”
The evening’s program also featured an uplifting video about the depth of compassion with which St. Thomas Aquinas College
supports students who have difficult family concerns. This is an aspect of STAC’s mission that has closely resonated with Sister Susan and in her roles, she has been able to reach out and walk with those in most need of support and compassion.
Throughout the evening, many speakers, including STAC’s President Kenneth Daly, highlighted the vital, 70-year bond between the College and the Dominican Sisters of Sparkill. He said, “Their legacy and ongoing support are an inspiration.”
You may view the STAC Annual Tribute Dinner Flicker photo album here.