On Wednesday, March 21, College of St. Joseph will celebrate Founders’ Day 2018 with a special program and awards ceremony in Tuttle Hall at 2 PM. Founders’ Day commemorates the Sisters of St. Joseph, who had the vision and perseverance to establish the college as a Catholic teachers’ college in 1956. The annual celebration is held in March to coincide with the Feast of St. Joseph. It is also an occasion to honor members of the community for their service to others, and to remember deceased members of the CSJ family.
The ceremony includes the presentation of the Pour le Merite Award, and the Mother Teresa Student Service Award, as well as the traditional alumni candlelight ceremony honoring deceased alumni, faculty and staff.
The Pour le Merite Award honors an outstanding individual from the community who has exhibited care, support and leadership through substantial engagement in volunteer activities that have contributed to the betterment of society. This year, two alumnae have been selected: Carol Barbagallo ’72, and Sandra Casey ’04.
Barbagallo spent thirty-five years teaching at Rutland Town Elementary School, influencing generations of local students. She is extremely active in the community still—volunteering for Rutland Dismas House, The Mentor Connector, Relay for Life, and Wonderfeet Kids’ Museum. Carol serves an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion in her parish, St. Peter Church, and is a member of the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International’s Alpha Lamba Vermont chapter. She is a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. Carol is also a very proud alumna of CSJ.
Sandy Casey, who receives the award posthumously, was one of the fifty-eight victims killed in the Las Vegas shooting last October 1st. She is being honored, however, not for the tragic end to her life, but for the way she lived: as an especially effective special education teacher who had a gift for getting through to students; a devoted friend and relative; someone who still inspires others to be their best selves; and someone who dearly loved her years at CSJ, staying very close to the friends she made here.
The college also chooses one student who goes above and beyond in the CSJ and Rutland communities. CSJ senior Jane Cretella is the recipient of the 2018 Mother Teresa Student Service Award. Jane is being recognized for her tireless involvement in community service outside the college environment; her academic standing; and her commitment to CSJ and its mission.
There will be a reception in the student lounge in Tuttle Hall immediately following the ceremony. The ceremony and reception are open to current students, alumni, faculty, staff and trustees, and the wider community.