Alumni Spotlight

Once a Bobcat, always a Bobcat! Below you'll find our most recent alumni interviews. Explore the successes of our alumni even deeper by clicking on one of the decades below!

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Alumni Spotlight: Dana C. Romano '96

Dana C. Romano graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 1996 with a BS in management.

What brought you to Pitt-Greensburg?

I grew up wanting to attend the University of Pittsburgh.  Pitt-Greensburg was perfect because it was a beautiful campus that was close to home.

Were you a commuter or a resident?

I was a commuter.

What activities were you involved with as a student?

I wasn’t really able to be involved as much as I would have liked because I was working full-time while obtaining my degree.

Did you have a favorite professor, staff member, coach, or mentor that really impacted your life? 

It has been so long, I don’t remember and doubt they are still with the university.

Of all the classes you took, what is the one class you would recommend everyone take? Who taught the class? Why would you recommend it? 

Human Resources (HR) courses.  An organization is only as strong as its people.  My human resources and psychology courses were my favorite and helped me decide that HR was the field that I wanted to pursue.

What do you remember most vividly from your time at Pitt-Greensburg?

I enjoyed working in teams and meeting new friends through group coursework. 

What have you been up to since graduation? 

I was a non-traditional student and worked full-time in HR for the first eighteen years of my career.  My last position was as a human resources manager at a telecommunications company called Marconi (Ericsson), where I was in charge of employee retention for North America. 

In one of my former roles, I was able to work with colleges to help retain talent in southwestern Pennsylvania and thoroughly enjoyed working with students.  I made a career decision to follow what I was passionate about-- helping others, and I started to work for the university that I love. 

I have the best job in the entire world and proudly work as the Interim Director of the Career Management Center at the University of Pittsburgh’s Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business.  I help master’s degree business students from all over the globe which currently includes 17 different countries with career-related professional development.  It is extremely rewarding to watch my students grow throughout their master’s program and know that I played a small part in what made them successful post-graduation.  

Proudly, I was nominated and recently received the Chancellor’s Award in the Student Impact category.  This is the highest honor that a staff member can be awarded at the University of Pittsburgh, and it is extremely competitive.  I am humbled and honored beyond words to be recognized for doing what I enjoy so much. 

How did your experiences and education at Pitt-Greensburg prepare you for life after college? 

My love of business was established through my undergraduate degree at Pitt-Greensburg.

As an alum, how do you support Pitt-Greensburg?

I have helped with resume reviews and recently was invited to present in a human resources class on campus.

What advice do you have for your fellow Bobcats? 

Enjoy your time at Pitt-Greensburg and build your network by getting involved in things that interest you.  Your future is yours to write; enjoy this chapter of your novel.  Lastly, my favorite quote and words to live by are this quote from Jennifer Dukes Lee: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”

For fun:

What is the last book you read?

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria by Beverly Daniel Tatum, PhD.

List 3-5 fun facts about yourself that most people probably wouldn’t know.

 

  1.  I enjoy cooking, baking, and entertaining for my family and friends.  My specialties are chicken marsala, baked rigatoni, Italian wedding soup, and chocolate chip cookies.  My girls’ cheerleading squads and son’s football teams have enjoyed baked treats after games for years.
  2.  I am currently obtaining my M.Ed. in Higher Education Management so that I can teach. 
  3. Both of my daughters, Danielle and Gina Romano, are students at Pitt-Greensburg.  Danielle is a junior and following in my footsteps studying business with an interest in HR, and Gina is a freshman entering the nursing program.

H2P!

 

Alumni Spotlight: Clint Mullen '05

Clint Mullen headshot

Clint Mullen graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 2005 with a BA in history.

What brought you to Pitt-Greensburg?

I liked the close-to-home location, the small class sizes, and the opportunity to play basketball.

Were you a commuter or a resident?

I was both a commuter and a resident.I commuted for my first year and then became a resident.

What activities were you involved with as a student?

I was a member of the basketball team, SPSEA, and intramural sports.

Did you have a favorite professor, staff member, coach, or mentor that really impacted your life?
Dr. Melissa Marks inspired me in my studies to become a teacher.  I am still using many of the lessons that I learned in her classes in my classroom today.

Of all the classes you took, what is the one class you would recommend everyone take? Who taught the class? Why would you recommend it?
I think everyone should take writing courses.  It’s such an important professional skill in many fields.

What do you remember most vividly from your time at Pitt-Greensburg? 
I have fond memories of meeting many new people. As a student and athlete, I made several lifelong friends at Pitt-Greensburg.  We have stayed in touch through life’s milestones, and I’m looking forward to attending one of these friend’s weddings this fall.

What have you been up to since graduation?
I am a middle school social studies teacher at Ligonier Valley Middle School.  My wife and I have two children, a daughter and a son.

How did your experiences and education at Pitt-Greensburg prepare you for life after college?
Pitt-Greensburg provided me with a well-rounded education and showed me how to collaborate well with others.

As an alum, how do you support Pitt-Greensburg?

I attend a few alumni events and follow the basketball teams.

What advice do you have for your fellow Bobcats?

I hope that students are able to realize that while college is such a short period of their lives, it is one that can have such a huge impact.  Make the most of it.

For fun:

What is the last book you read?

The Innovator’s Mindset by George Couros

List 3-5 fun facts about yourself that most people probably wouldn’t know.

  1. I enjoy hunting pheasants with my dog, Nutmeg.
  2. My wife is also a teacher.  She teaches 7th grade ELA at a neighboring school.
  3. In September, I will be participating in a three-day 70-mile hike to raise money for the Veterans Leadership Program of Western PA.

Alumni Spotlight: Michael Spadafore '18

 

Michael Spadafore Jr. graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 2018 with a BS in management and a minor in actuarial science.

What brought you to Pitt-Greensburg?

I wanted to play baseball in college, and I also wanted to go somewhere that wasn’t close to home. I looked at a few branch campuses since I wanted a Pitt degree, and I ended up falling in love with Pitt-Greensburg the second I stepped foot on campus.

Were you a commuter or a resident?

I was a resident all four years.

What activities were you involved with as a student?

I was a member of Spanish Club my freshman year, Resident Student Council for two years, a three-year member of the baseball team, and a Community Assistant. I was Vice President of the Student Athlete Advisory Council my senior year.

Did you have a favorite professor, staff member, coach, or mentor that really impacted your life?

Definitely Professor McCarthy. I had him for Business Ethics, and believe me, I wasn’t a fan of ethics, but he made it so easy to understand. The passion he has in making sure he is available to all students is admirable.

Of all the classes you took, what is the one class you would recommend everyone take? Who taught the class? Why would you recommend it?

Business Writing with Professor Lutz. It was a tough class for sure, but it taught me how to sound professional when I send emails to co-workers, clients, bosses, etc. It also helps you construct the perfect resume and cover letter with the changing technology that big-name companies use to narrow down their search for the right candidates.

What do you remember most vividly from your time at Pitt-Greensburg? 

It was the Spring of my Freshman year, and we were down in North Carolina for a baseball trip. It was around the time when they were releasing who got hired to be a CA for the 2015-2016 year. I got an email from Sarah Young that said I was hired for Westmoreland Hall, and I remember I was more excited for that letter than I was to be playing baseball.

What have you been up to since graduation?

I’ve been working in financial services helping the people I grew close to over my four years at Pitt-Greensburg manage their debt, as well as educating them on the importance of saving for retirement. I’ve also been coaching a lot of baseball. In the Fall, I coach at Seneca Valley; in the Spring, I coach JV baseball at Plum High School; and in the Summer, I help coach a 15U travel baseball team called the Steel City Select.

How did your experiences and education at Pitt-Greensburg prepare you for life after college?

Juggling the duties of a CA and student-athlete in addition to being involved outside of these two time-consuming activities was very tough at times, but that has helped me manage my time with my job and coaching.

As an alum, how do you support Pitt-Greensburg?

I follow all sports and watch the live feed when I have free time. I also was recently elected to the Pitt-Greensburg Alumni Association Board of Directors, so I am excited to give back and help put on great events for other grads.

What advice do you have for your fellow Bobcats?

Get involved in extracurricular activities early on. Do more than just go to class, eat, sleep, and then do it all over again. College was the best four years of my life so far because of all the people I met, and that doesn’t happen by staying in the resident halls. 

For fun:

What series do you recommend alumni binge watch?

I’m throwing it back a little bit, but (assuming everyone has seen The Office which is the greatest show of all time), I would say Breaking Bad.

List 3-5 fun facts about yourself that most people probably wouldn’t know.

  1. I can kind of sing… not too well, but if peer pressured into doing karaoke with a group I would step up and take one for the team.
  2. I am a Dunkin addict.  My favorite flavor is Butter Pecan.
  3. Although I like the Pens and Steelers, I was born and raised a Boston Red Sox fan.

 


Alumni Spotlight: Ashley Brocious '06

Ashley (Milchak) Brocious graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 2006 with a BA in criminal justice.

What brought you to Pitt-Greensburg?

Several of my family members, including my mom and dad, were Pitt alum so growing up we always participated in Pitt events. When my great uncle went to Pitt, he was actually the Pitt Panther mascot! Since I can remember, I always wanted to go to Pitt, but did not want the large class sizes at the main campus so I chose Pitt-Greensburg.

Were you a commuter or a resident?

During my freshman year, I was a resident and lived in Robertshaw Hall. After my freshman year, I started working full time, moved off campus, and started commuting.

What activities were you involved with as a student?

As a student, I was involved in many of the art and drama activities and productions that took place on campus.

Did you have a favorite professor, staff member, coach, or mentor that really impacted your life?

During my junior year, one professor, who no longer teaches at Pitt-Greensburg, stands out as one of my favorite professors. This particular professor taught drama/acting classes that I took while majoring in Art History. The professor not only made the classes fun, but she also encouraged and challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and try new things. If it was not for her, I would not have participated in many of the activities as I did while in school.

Of all the classes you took, what is the one class you would recommend everyone take? Who taught the class? Why would you recommend it?

I am not a fan of public speaking, and while in school I dreaded taking any public speaking courses. Looking back, I wish I would have taken more classes that involved public speaking, and would highly recommend everyone take one and push temselves to become comfortable speaking to large groups! Throughout my career, I have found that more often than not you will need to speak in front of groups, and this is a skill I wish I would have mastered or at least become more comfortable with before graduating.

What do you remember most vividly from your time at Pitt-Greensburg?

My most vivid memory from my time at Pitt-Greensburg was working on the set of Faust and making the costumes. It was such a fun opportunity, and I met and worked with so many talented people.

What have you been up to since graduation?

Since graduation, I married my husband Jesse (Brocious) ‘05, who I met at Pitt-Greensburg. We have two beautiful children, Evan James and Amelia Rose. I am currently employed as a Senior Cyber Defense Analyst for Citizens Bank and am the acting liaison with the National Cyber-Forensics and Training Alliance in Pittsburgh. In 2017 my husband and I, along with a long-time friend, opened an automotive garage, West Point Auto Works, in Greensburg PA.

How did your experiences and education at Pitt-Greensburg prepare you for life after college?

All of my experiences and education at Pitt-Greensburg allowed me to quickly obtain a management position right after graduation in retail loss prevention.  Due to the flexible class schedules I was able to work full-time while going to school full-time. Between the education I received and the real-world experience I obtained, I was well-prepared for my career.

As an alum, how do you support Pitt-Greensburg?

Over the years we have attended several events held on campus, and most recently, since we opened West Point Auto Works, we hosted a carwash with the Pitt-Greensburg Habitat for Humanity organization and plan to continue this in the future.

What advice do you have for your fellow Bobcats?

My advice for current and future students would be to participate in as many activities as you can both on and off campus so you have the opportunity to meet people at school as well as in the community. The most important thing I learned along the way is that the connections you make both personally and professionally carry the most value.  I would encourage any students to engage in the community and network with professionals as much as possible.

For Fun:

What series do you recommend alumni binge watch?

One of my all-time favorite shows that I recommend to binge watch would be Psych with James Roday and Dule Hill.

List 3-5  fun facts about yourself that most people probably wouldn’t know.

  1. My husband and I currently own and are restoring a 1973 Datsun 240z. 
  2. I listen to Indie Hip Hop, and my favorite group is DoomTree from Minneapolis, MN. My husband and I have traveled all of the country to see them live, have met each member on more than one occasion, and are known as the “married couple from Pittsburgh.”
  3. I saw 5 countries in 5 days and drove 1500 miles across Europe.