In March, the Kansas House of Representatives and the Senate unanimously passed separate resolutions commemorating the history, values, contributions to the community and 80th Anniversary of the founding of Newman University.
In the House, Rep. Ponca-We Victors of the 103rd District, a 2005 Newman graduate, sponsored and introduced the resolution (HR 6057) and presented comments about her alma mater.
In the Senate, Sen. Michael O’Donnell of the 25th District introduced the Senate resolution (SR 1797) and offered positive remarks about Newman University. He was joined by Sen. Les Donovan of the 27th District and Sen. Oletha Faust-Goudeau of the 29th District.
“It was exciting to be there and hear the legislators say such great things about Newman University,” said Newman President Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D., who was among a number of Newman representatives who attended the events at the Capitol in Topeka. “The standing ovations we received in both chambers brought us to tears.”
Donovan spoke about the positive effect Newman had on his grandsons – one a recent graduate of Newman and another a current graduate student.
“It was truly moving listening to these legislators making tributes to Newman, and saying how Newman has made a change in their families’ lives, and how the state of Kansas is lucky to have Newman University,” said Associate Vice President of Academic Services and Student Development Rosemary Niedens.
The House and Senate resolutions outlined major points in the history of Newman, and noted the university’s mission to “empower graduates to transform society” and the Core Values of Catholic Identity, Academic Excellence, Culture of Service and Global Perspective.
Newman Student Government Association Secretary and Treasurer Chase Blasi, who is now SGA president, spearheaded the effort by contacting Victors and O’Donnell. The legislators’ staff worked closely with university officials and Blasi to write the resolutions. The trip to Topeka also included a brief meeting with Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback.
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Pictured above: Representatives from Newman University met with Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback while in Topeka. Pictured with Brownback (seated) are, l-r: Newman President Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D.; Newman student Jonathan Albers; Associate Vice President of Academic Services and Student Development Rosemary Niedens; Rep. Ponca-We Victors; Rep. Roderick Houston; Newman student Chase Blasi; Director of Mission Effectiveness and Archives Charlotte Rohrbach, ASC; Associate Professor of Theology Joshua Papsdorf, Ph.D., and Associate Professor of History Kelly McFall, Ph.D.