SU Voice Alumni Blog

Recent Alumni Spotlight: Danielle Berry, '07

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on May 1, 2013 at 5:05 PM PDT

When asked about her college experience, Danielle Berry, ‘07  said, “I was raised Lutheran, I didn’t know what to expect from a Catholic University.” But after graduating with a BS in Nursing, she found it was the Jesuit classes that she enjoyed the most. Before attending Seattle U, Danielle received her BA in Comparative History of Ideas from University of Washington. Because she has attended both UW and SU, she can really appreciate the differences between both learning environments.

“I’m a strong supporter of Seattle U and the required service learning. It’s focused on building the character of its students. It makes students well-rounded and allows them to see people in a different light.” As part of Danielle’s classes, she and her classmates worked as tutors and in partnership with the local Boys and Girls club of King County. “By working with this community, I can better connect with my patients that live there now.”

According to Danielle, the values that Seattle U instilled in her shaped what she looked for in a place of employment. Danielle currently works at Harborview Medical Center in the Neurology Intensive Care Unit. “Harborview has a service mentality,” Danielle says. “We give away nearly $200 million in services to our lower income patients, including those who are homeless.”
The values of her employer are important to her, but Danielle’s favorite part of her job, are the direct connections she has with her patients.  “We see people who come in with trauma and spinal cord injuries. We work with them a lot, develop relationships and prepare them for rehabilitation. These are people who end up in wheelchairs, and need to look to someone else for all their basic needs. It can be pretty intense. However, there’s nothing more rewarding then when patients come back to visit you, and you see how they’ve continued to engage in life, and you know that you helped empower them to live their life and be a member of society.”

Since being at Harborview, Danielle has continued her relationship with Seattle University by returning to speak with graduating classes and recent alumni. “I share with them the lessons of my experience, and give them advice about getting over the transitionary hump of entering the working world, in order to help them be successful. I’ve realized that by being a mentor, giving back has just become a part of my life.”

Danielle says that when it comes to big career decisions, she still finds herself thinking about the values that Seattle University taught her. When people ask me what University I recommend, I always say Seattle University, because it’s those values and those service learning opportunities that really prepared me for my career.”

If you are interested in being a mentor to Seattle University students, visit the Redhawk Network.

If you would like to submit suggestions for our next Recent Alumni Spotlight, email Caitlin Joyce.  

SU Launches the Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on April 11, 2013 at 2:04 PM PDT

The celebration of Earth Day, April 22, is the day we set aside each year to draw special attention to the fact that all of us live somewhere – on this beautiful Earth – and that all of us depend on a healthy Earth-home, for our well-being: realities so basic we often take them for granted.


There are many among us, however, who cannot take those realities for granted, because they live, work, or play in communities that are negatively impacted by ecological degradation. This is especially true for minority and low-income populations. And, lest we forget, this is true for other species facing extinction or significant loss of habitat.

It’s become evident, that it’s time to forge a sustainable relationship between humankind and planet Earth, and that sustainability will not be achieved without fostering justice within and between societies. It is this dual, intimately connected challenge which inspired the creation of Seattle University's Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability (CEJS).

 As the first Center for Excellence developed through the SU Academic Strategic Action Plan, the CEJS will promote scholarly activity and community engagement with the specific goals of: 

  • Making SU a recognized local, regional, national, and international leader in the scholarship and teaching of environmental justice and sustainability (EJS);
  • Supporting faculty and student scholarship regarding EJS;
  • Co-sponsoring lectures, symposia, and workshops with SU’s diverse environmental programs that reflect the unique ethical perspective of our Jesuit-Catholic tradition, inspire the engagement of EJS scholars with the broader community, and lead to the advancement of public policy;
  • Fostering partnerships for scholarships that connect with EJS programs, including the global network of Jesuit universities; and
  • Serving as a clearinghouse of information for all of SU’s EJS initiatives.

Establishing the CEJS is a significant step in the university’s commitment to not only becoming more sustainable as an institution, but to advancing scholarship and educating the next generation of leaders -- trained and motivated to create a more sustainable, just world.
Visit us at And, check out SU’s campus sustainability efforts at:

Mentors Needed!

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on April 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM PDT


Are you looking to connect with the SU community in a meaningful and fulfilling way?  Our students and graduates need mentors with professional experience who can help them get started on their career paths.  You were once in their shoes. This is your chance to share the knowledge and insight they need to shape the world of tomorrow.  Join the Redhawk Network Mentor Program to connect with a mentee in ways that fit your schedule, whether you live near or far.

As a Redhawk Network Mentor you can:
•    Serve as a panelist on career-related forums
•    Review résumés or volunteer for mock interviews
•    Offer an informational interview or job shadow in your line of work
•    Give advice about the role of graduate education in various fields of interest
•    Be matched with a student in a structured, academic mentor program
•    Become a content contributor to one of our career-related publications
•    And more!

Participate in the Redhawk Network Mentor Program and help students and graduates unlock their potential and translate their knowledge and skills into meaningful careers.

Sign up here:

Spring Job Shadow Hosts Needed in Health Professions
37 SU freshmen and sophomores have expressed interest in shadowing a professional in a health-related career. Would you or someone you know be willing to share some time to help an aspiring student get a glimpse of a day in the life of a nurse, doctor, therapist, technician, administrator, or other health professional?  If so, please contact Monica Duke in Career Services via email or at 206-296-6177 for more information and to register.

What’s the Value of Your Liberal Arts Education?

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on April 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM PDT

Theology, philosophy, literature, science, service learning, and mathematics probably sum up your freshman year at Seattle University pretty thoroughly. Congratulations! You are the product of a liberal arts education – even if you earned a degree in science, education or business. You have an arsenal of social and professional tools that will last you the rest of your life.

Maybe your philosophy class enabled you to see the humanity in every client you deal with.  Perhaps that sophomore English class allows you to send memos that are short and concise. Did you know that 89% of employers want more emphasis on written and oral communication in their candidates?

We’d like to hear how your liberal arts education prepared you for your future. When Dean David Powers asked College of Arts and Science alumni how their liberal arts education has proven valuable to them, alumni were quick to respond.

“I believe that the future will belong to those who are flexible thinkers, who have a broad understanding of science, culture, and history.”  
“I literally had no idea how much my liberal arts education would change my life.  The broad range of ideas I encountered (some for the first time, others in new ways) incalculably expanded my beliefs about what is possible.  As well, the tools I developed for encountering (and processing) ideas and the world help me every day, in both my creative and my more pragmatic work.”
 “The term 'well-rounded individual' is often used lightly, but in a very real sense, my liberal arts education has prepared me for a career in many different fields.”

Hear more and share how your liberal arts education prepared you for your life after Seattle U.
Attend a free panel discussion and networking event titled  “Personal, Professional, Lifelong: The Return on Investment of Your Liberal Arts Degree.”  
April 12th at 6:30 p.m.
Pigott Auditorium

The event will feature a panel from the Deans Advisory Council followed by networking with prospective students and parents, students and alumni.  Questions about this event should be directed to David Chow.

How did your liberal arts education prepare you?

Recent Alumni Spotlight: Victoria Hanohano-Hong,’11

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on April 10, 2013 at 3:04 PM PDT

Victoria and Sister2
My path to Seattle University began with personal and vocational exploration. How very Jesuit!

As a freshman, I was attending culinary school, perfecting the best way to cook a chicken and create a pastry. While there, I realized that for my classmates this was a passion, and what they felt called to do. For me it was fun, a hobby, not what I felt would lead me to a fulfilled life, and not what I was called to do. That’s when I came to Seattle University.

I knew of Seattle University because my sister was a student. When I transferred there as a sophomore, it felt right. As if I were coming home. It’s where I became aware of God’s presence. From that moment I longed to build that relationship. Choosing theology as a major was a way that I could selfishly pursue my own spiritual questions while earning a bachelor’s degree.  One of the memories that stands out most from my time at Seattle U was the Easter Vigil mass in my senior year where I was baptized Catholic.

Most who study theology are expected to go on and minister somewhere, maybe join the Jesuit Volunteer Corps.  But I took a different path; currently I reside in Korea, where I teach English.  The faith and trust in God that I developed at SU gave me the strength and courage to follow God’s call across the world.  And the only thing I could think when I got off the plane at Incheon International Airport was, “Here I am. Now what?”  
I remembered a professor once telling me that if I wanted to see the face of God, I should work with the poor.  If I was looking for direction that seemed like a good place to start. While my elementary school students are definitely in a very low tax bracket, I’m not sure those are the type of poor she intended.  But the usage of poor in that statement was vague and I thought, “Maybe this is why I’m here!”  
Despite wanting to see a confirmation of my calling in these kids, they made it difficult.   During cold season they sneezed and coughed all over without covering their mouths, and as a germophobe, that was a struggle.  During the hot summer, they would come into class after recess smelling strongly of sweat because deodorant is relatively unheard of in this country. As a super smeller, that was another obstacle to seeing them as something greater than myself.  I tried and tried  for a while, but couldn’t understand why God had called me here.
Then one day in self-reflection, a very Jesuit thought struck me. In my theology classes we had focused on Jesus the teacher. He had tried to convey difficult concepts to a community that included children. Here I was in Korea, teaching children, and looking out on a sea of faces who often had no clue what I was saying. I imagined that we must have had similar experiences, looking out at those faces, hoping and praying to see that unmistakable look of dawning comprehension. When I saw that look of a light coming from their eyes and realized that they actually understood what I said, I was filled with joy and realized that I had my answer. This is why I attended SU, why I studied theology, and why I was called to Korea.   

Do you want to tell your story and be featured in a recent alum spotlight?
Comment below or send an email to

Upcoming Events Calendar

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on March 6, 2013 at 8:03 PM PST

March 2013 Events

Search For Meaning Bookfest
Saturday, March 9th|Seattle University Campus
Alumni Relations Open House (During Bookfest)
10AM - 2PM
Admissions and Alumni Relations Building

Choirs - Lenten Prayer Concert: An Instrument of Peace
Saturday, March 9, 2013| 8-9:30PM

WAC Tournament
March 12-16 | Las Vegas
Men and Women's Basketball

Alumni Relations Happy Hour in Las Vegas
Tuesday, March 12th, 2013| 4-6PM
Stardust Suite| Orleans Hotel and Casino 
RSVP now!

"Cracking the Codes: Systems of Racial Inequity" Premiere Film Screening and Community Conversation
Wednesday, March 13, 2013| 6:30 - 9PM

Surprising Resignation of the Pope Throws 
the Door Open

Thursday, March 14, 2013|12:30-1:30PM
Wyckoff Auditorium with Fr. Pat Howell, S.J. 

Student Chamber Music Concert
Thursday, March 14, 2013 | 7:30 - 9:30 PM

Alumni Day of Prayer with Pat O'Leary, S.J., 
and Cissy McLane
Saturday, March 16, 2013 | 9AM - 3PM

Spirituality on Tap Featuring Brendan Busse, S.J.
March 19 & 20, 2013| 7-9 PM 

San Diego Alumni Reception 
Thursday, March 21, 2013| 6 - 8PM
RSVP for directions!

San Francisco Alumni Reception
Friday, March 22, 2013| 6 - 8 PM 
RSVP for directions!

Stay Tuned For These Events

Portland, OR Alumni Chapter Reception
Wednesday, April 3, 2013| 5:30 - 8:30PM 
Cha Taqueria & Bar
RSVP now!

School of Law 40th Anniversary Celebration
Thursday, April 11,2013| 5:30 - 7:30PM

Career Expo
Wednesday, April 10, 2013| 11AM - 2PM 

Awards Ceremony and Artists' Reception - Imagining the World: Study Abroad Photography Exhibit
Thursday, April 11, 2013 | 5 - 7PM 

Brahm's Music Series
April 11 & 13 | 7:30PM
April 12 & 14| 3:00PM

28th Annual Alumni Awards
Tuesday, April 16th|5:30pm
Register now!

Alumni Day of Service
Saturday, April 27, 2013| 8:30AM - 1:30PM

Albers Executive Speaker Series
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013|5:30 - 6:30PM 
With Spencer Rascoff, CEO of

Arts and Sciences Alumni Seminars 
Re-visioning Classics of our Literature
April 9 - June 4, 2013 

SU Athletics Red Tie Celebration
Saturday, May 18, 2013| 5:00PM

Career Services:
Tools for Career Transition:
A Workshop for SU Alumni Looking for a Job,
a Career Change, Or a Re-Start.
April 23, 30| May 7, 14 |6:30-8:30 PM

Vocational Discernment: Living Into Questions
Thursday, June 6, 13, 20 and 27 | 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Visit our athletics site to stay up to date on SU Sports.

A Message from Career Services for March 2013

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on March 6, 2013 at 5:03 PM PST

Recently Seattle University invited two national leaders, Dr. Sharon Parks and Chris Lowney, to campus to speak with students, faculty, staff and community members about leadership and meaning making. Former Jesuit and JP Morgan executive, and author of the book,Heroic Leadership, Lowney said “A true leader respects the dignity of others while unlocking their potential.” Dr. Parks, best known for her book Big Questions, Worthy Dreams reflected, that a true mentor is one who sees you and recognizes your gifts even before you do. She challenged Seattle University with the question, “Is a mentoring community available to all students?”

As Career Services prepares to relaunch the Redhawk Network Mentor Program this month, we are asking alumni to sign up to be a mentor to a Seattle University student. Below is the link to sign up and let us know the ways you are available to mentor,  e.g. offer an informational interview, talk with a student by phone or in person, participate in a workshop or on a panel, etc. You can select the amount of time and the way in which you want to mentor. Thank you for being a part of developing the next generation of Seattle University leaders! Below the “Login” button, click “Click here to complete your mentor profile!

Career Services Benefits for Alumni:

Career Services offers support to our alumni who may be seeking a change. Whether a change of perspective, position, employer or career path, we are here to assist you. Below you will find a list of career services we offer to alumni:


  •   4-Part Career Development Workshop Series  
  •   3 one-on-one advising appointments per year
  •   Access to the Redhawk Network, a database of employers and job  postings
  •   Involvement in career fairs and other professional networking events


Visit Career Services to get more details and register for professional development events today!


A Message from Magis for March 2013

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on March 6, 2013 at 5:03 PM PST

What do a full time high school teacher, bike aficionado, Contemplative Leaders in Action participant and brewery founder/owner have in common?  A Jesuit education.  This month’s Alumni Living the Mission is Seattle University alumna Haley Woods who though crunched for time, finds meaning among her commitments.  Thanks to her roots in Ignatian pedagogy, gleaned from her time in the Masters in Teaching program at SU and ongoing participation in Magis’ Contemplative Leaders in Action program, Haley integrates reflective practices throughout her day, be it while driving to work, building a barstool or concocting a new IPA.  Click here to read her reflection

Upcoming Magis Programs:

Alumni Day of Prayer with Pat O'Leary, S.J., and Cissy McLane – Saturday, March 16, 2013  (9:00 AM – 3:00 PM)

Spirituality on Tap with Brendan Busse, S.J. – Wednesday, March 20, 2013  (7:00 PM – 9:00 PM)

National Jesuit Alumni Day of Service - Saturday, April 27, 2013  (8:30 AM – 1:30 PM), registration opens March 12th!

To register for these or to read about our other programs, visit the Magis website or email us.


Alumni Day of Service

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on March 6, 2013 at 5:03 PM PST

A Jesuit education implores one to go forth and ignite the world, and to share our compassion and commitment to the world as members of a global community. No event encompasses this idea of community and engaging the world better than the National Jesuit Alumni Day of Service.

The Alumni Day of Services invites all those who are the product of a Jesuit education across the country to come together and serve their local community. Last year was Seattle University’s first year participating in the National Alumni Jesuit Day of Service. Seventy five Jesuit-educated alumni from all over the Puget Sound region came together to serve their community and live out their Jesuit values.

 “I enjoyed the opportunity to put my hands where my checkbook usually goes. I usually go by giving; occasionally it’s nice to give by going. I also enjoyed the opportunity to work with alumni from other SJ campuses.” said one alum who attended last year.  

The mission of this event is to foster the ongoing formation of men and women for others. Those who participate can see the life-changing and enduring impact of their Jesuit education first hand. Participants may have come from different backgrounds, states, and universities but all share the same core values of a Jesuit education. Another attendee from last year, felt deeply engaged by that shared purpose saying, “I felt a sense of mutuality in the demonstration of care. It was the first SU service experience I’ve had where I palpably felt like I was ‘engaging the world.’”   

Seattle University is again filled with a sense of passion and excitement as we prepare for the National Jesuit Alumni Day of Service on April 27th, from 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. This year our focus is on food justice and all of our volunteer locations reflect this in some way. Come join us in this unique service opportunity.  Learn more and register!


March Recent Alumni Spotlight: Santa Maria Rivera

Posted by Caitlin Joyce on March 6, 2013 at 5:03 PM PST

We’re excited to introduce a new monthly column we’re calling the Recent Alumni Spotlight.  We could think of no better way to kick off this column, then to feature our 2013 Outstanding Recent Alumnus Award winner, Santa Maria Rivera.

Santa grew up in Yakima as a first generation Mexican American. In Santa’s family he was the first to graduate from high school, so college educated role models were not readily available. Santa’s path to Seattle University was an unconventional one. There were no online college applications filed during senior year, or group tours to explore the urban oasis that is the Seattle University campus.

Santa began his college career at Wenatchee Community College where he took to the soccer field. Soccer would act as a key to Santa, opening up doors and opportunities.

“I come from a very tough place,” Rivera said in a brief documentary about his life. “I would not be the person I am today if it weren’t for the opportunities that this sport was able to give me.” It was Santa’s skills on the soccer pitch that caught the attention of Seattle University soccer coach Pete Fewing.

When Pete saw Santa play, he knew he had someone special on his hands. He took Santa under his wing, and convinced him to transfer to Seattle U so that Santa could play for the Redhawks. During his junior season playing for the Redhawks, Santa led SU to a National Championship and went on to play for the Sounders for two years. After his two year stint as a Sounder Santa returned to Seattle University to complete his History Degree and graduated in 2008.

After his graduation from Seattle University, he went on to embody the values of his Jesuit education, as a mentor to at-risk middle school students and youth coach for C Alliance. He’s able to provide encouragement, educational support and coaching to the next generation of soccer players. Santa coached the C Alliance team to their first undefeated season in 13 years. He acts as the spokesperson for Golazo, an all-natural sports drink company that encourages youth soccer players to pursue their dreams and fulfill their potential. In his minority outreach role at Redept, Inc., Santa  develops and administers a program to give young Latinos access to athletic programs and higher education to help them develop leadership abilities and strong decision making skills.  

 While nominating Santa for this award, David Chow , of Seattle University’s  College of Arts and Sciences, called him the voice of hope for the Washington State Latino community.”  We are very proud to be able to honor someone who gives so much of themselves, with an alumni award. If you’d like to join us in honoring Santa Maria Rivera, and other outstanding Seattle University community members, we invite you to attend the Alumni Awards Celebration on April 16th.

Would you like to be featured in our Young Alumni Spotlight?  Do you know someone we should highlight?  Comment here or send an email to