All in the family
Legacy families are important. This elite group of individuals earned a Lourdes degree and in so doing, encouraged family members to continue the tradition. Legacy alumni believe in the Catholic liberal arts education Lourdes provides and its hallmark Franciscan values.
Our proud legacy alumni represent Lourdes in their communities and the workplace. Their contribution to the University is immense. Just this past fall, one third of the entering class indicated the person who most influenced them to consider Lourdes was a family member or friend who had graduated or was currently attending.
With a history of healthcare workers in her family, Katrina Harris chose to follow in her mother and grandmothers’ footsteps and pursue a nursing degree. “I heard great things about the nursing program. On top of that, I loved the apartment-style living and how small my classes were going to be. What I like most about Lourdes is the nursing program and how my professors and advisors have gotten to know me on a personal level. They’ve always shown me that they truly care not only about my doing well with school work but also with my wellbeing.”
Wanting to take her own path, Katera was looking to pursue nursing at another school. However, after visiting campus, she immediately “felt at home. It was clear that everyone knew everyone and they genuinely cared about each other. I also realized that the Lourdes nursing program was everything I wanted and needed to become a successful registered nurse,” she says.
Active on campus, Katera is a Residence Assistant, Treasurer of the Residence Hall Association, and is involved in several student organizations including the Black Student Union, Lourdes Events & Activities Planning (LEAP) and TRiO Student Support Services. She has played an important role as an Alumni Phonathon Caller and earned bragging rights for most funds raised during the 2017 alumni campaign. “What I enjoy most about Lourdes is having the opportunity to work within the Institutional Advancement office and raise money for students in need,” she adds.
Three siblings who are on their way to becoming legacy alumni are students and lacrosse enthusiasts Aubrey, Hunter and Conner Mishler.
Conner Mishler, a senior nursing major, was the first to enroll. A member of the Gray Wolves lacrosse team, he appreciates the academic and athletic scholarships that make his education possible. Last season, the Gray Wolves team won the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference with Conner earning an Honorable Mention All Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference selection. He also earned the distinction of being a three-time WHAC Defensive Player of the Week. Currently completing his clinicals, he looks forward to graduating soon and beginning his career as a registered nurse.
Hunter Mishler transferred to Lourdes after struggling at other universities. The Saint John’s Jesuit High School graduate and business administration major is currently completing his senior year and has made the dean’s list four consecutive semesters. Falling in love with business at a young age, Hunter set out to achieve his educational and professional goals. The budding entrepreneur recently started a consulting firm to assist individuals with personal health and common health struggles.
When not running his business, studying or serving as an assistant coach for the lacrosse team, Hunter enjoys motorsports, working on his 1991 Eagle Talon, cooking and spending time with his two rescue pit bull terriers.
Accounting major Aubrey Mishler plays on the Gray Wolves lacrosse team. As a first-year student athlete, she lives on campus and is the recipient of a dean’s scholarship. Her long-term professional goal is to be an accountant for a small business or firm. “I took an accounting class in high school and really enjoyed it. My mom, aunt and dad are all accountants so you could say the profession runs in our family,” she says.
A former Lourdes Alumni Relations & Communications Officer and Cheer and Dance Coach, Oriana (Orozco) Rife, ’12, ’10, now advises high school students as a College Credit Plus Coordinator at Owens Community College. “Lourdes provided the perfect environment for me to enhance my leadership skills. It was such a pleasure to be part of the institution throughout many transitions,” she says.
Following in her sister’s legacy, Alyssa (Orozco) Frelin, ’16, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies. She credits the small classes, location and TRiO Student Support Services for allowing her to achieve her educational goal. Today, Alyssa assists youngsters as a Pre-School Teacher at KinderCare.
As a Northview High School student, Theresa Busse, ’16, was undecided as to her college major. To assist her in making the decision, her parents Daniel and Patricia Busse scheduled an aptitude test offered through the Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation. Through the testing, Theresa discovered that her talents and abilities best fit a career in business and that she would excel at a smaller college or university. Following the advice, she enrolled at Lourdes University and achieved academic and professional success. After graduation, Theresa’s work as a Digital and Social Marketer caught the attention of a major Toledo employer. In September, she began working for The Blade as a Data Analytics and Research Coordinator shortly after enrolling in the Lourdes Master of Business Administration program.
Her sister Mary, ’17, chose to attend Lourdes as well. With a lifelong belief that she would be a good doctor, she was surprised by her aptitude test results. The advisor indicated that while she actually could achieve any professional goal she set, she would be happiest as a corporate patent attorney and all the intricacies it offered. The brilliant student quickly mapped out a plan, applied to the nation’s seventh-ranked law school – University of Michigan – and was accepted. “She is the youngest in her cohort. Most individuals have to gain actual law experience before being accepted; however, Mary’s LSAT score made her a perfect fit,” says her dad.
Dan and Patty are proud to have two Lourdes graduates in the family and look forward to 2019 when their youngest Michael graduates. A business administration major, Michael is a member of the Gray Wolves cheer team – the reigning 2017 Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference Champion. The team finished the postseason in eighth place at the national championships. The junior enjoys his time on court, in the classroom and is currently exploring internship opportunities.
A Full-Time Social Work Instructor at Southeast Missouri State University, Gina Paris, ’06, is a nationally-recognized racial and restorative justice leader and a certified workshop and restorative justice facilitator. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in sociology, she earned a master’s degree in criminal justice from The University of Toledo. Highlights of her career include planning and co-chairing the Fourth National Restorative Justice Conference and leading several grant-funded and nonprofit community organizations and initiatives. Earlier in her career, Gina held two elected positions – Mayor and School Board Member – at Ft. Stewart for the Department of Defense Schools. She also served as Chair of Education for the NAACP Toledo Unit.
Tiffany Paris, ’10, was the first of two daughters to graduate Lourdes earning a bachelor’s degree in sociology. Currently employed as the Senior Wellness & Care Coordinator for the Mercy Health Senior Wellness Center, Tiffany is enrolled in a Master of Business Administration degree program with a Health Care Administration concentration.
Kimberly Paris, ’15, has also found success after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in history. Having worked previously for Republic Services and Sunland Logistics Solutions, she is enjoying her position as Materials Supervisor for FCA – Powertrain.
Lourdes offers alumni a $1,000 scholarship if they enroll in a Lourdes graduate degree program. Those graduating with their Lourdes bachelor’s degree can earn an additional $500 if they enroll in a Lourdes graduate program immediately after graduation. The Alumni Association is currently exploring the establishment of a new alumni scholarship for undergraduate Lourdes students whose family members are legacy alumni. To learn more about all alumni scholarships, please contact Brittanie Kuhr, Director of Development and Alumni at firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-517-8990.
Meet some of Lourdes University’s Alumni Couples
Lourdes University is proud to recognize these stellar alumni couples:
Major Dawn Winter and Thomas Leonard Jr.
Tonya and Waylond Rider (pictured below)
Karl and Deidra Evanoff (pictured below)
Jerome Talton Jr. and Hannah Thompson (pictured below)
Joshua Payzant and Brooke Darah (pictured below)