Student wins SGA raffle to become 'President For A Day'

Alexandra Flormann talks with BOT member Pat Finan-Castellano '73.
Misericordia University student Alexandra Flormann, a junior nursing major from Prospect, Conn., recently won the Student Government Association-sponsored raffle, “President For A Day,’’ and participated in a full day of meetings and discussions in which she learned how an institution of higher education is run and managed.

The Student Government Association’s raffle benefited the United Way of Wyoming Valley. The “President For A Day” event is one of many prizes the University offers as incentives to students, faculty and staff to support the worthwhile program that assists many people in need. “We are proud of the fact that Misericordia University students, faculty and staff contributed more to the local United Way than any other college or university,’’ said Misericordia University President Michael A. MacDowell. “‘President For A Day’ helps the student president understand the complexities of a small university and then shares these experiences with other students.

“All of us at Misericordia also are interested in improving the student experience, so we also learn from the student president during the daylong event. Ms. Flormann had excellent insights into the University and, while she was very pleased with MU, she had some good suggestions of how to make a good university even better,’’ the president added.

Being “President For A Day’’ allowed Flormann to meet with special internal and external constituents of the University while operating out of the president’s office in Mercy Hall. Her day began at 8:15 a.m. and did not end until after 5 p.m. after she attended a Back Mountain Chamber event.

“I think this was a great opportunity to get to know what’s going on with the institution,’’ said Flormann, whose twin sister, Victoria is a speech-language pathology major at Misericordia University. “I was able to get the nitty-gritty details. I think it was a lot of fun.’’

Flormann worked with the director of facilities to learn about the work being done on the University’s historic archway, which is located at the main entrance and also acts as the institution’s logo. The University is spending about $14,500 to replace the missing cross that used to be situated atop the archway. It disappeared for unknown reasons about 40 years ago, she learned.

“I feel the cross is important because that’s one of the major pieces of the institution,’’ she said, while talking with Peter Calkins, project manager. “We are known for the archway. It’s a major part of the University as it’s on all the T-shirts and brochures. I am excited to see it unfold.’’

Shortly thereafter, Flormann had a meeting with Pat Finan-Castellano, a member of the Misericordia University Board of Trustees and a graduate of the institution. During the hour-long meeting, the MU student reviewed the most recent Board Book and learned about the unique roles and responsibilities of board members and how trustees and universities assemble these vital managing bodies.

“The board is made up of a lot of different talents,’’ Finan-Castellano said during the meeting, explaining that the board has legal experts, educators, community leaders and more on the board. “You need that breadth of expertise on the board. You need the various talents, whether it’s marketing or fundraising, and you need those who are talented in the financial area and who have worked with governments and other agencies.’’

Flormann also posed for pictures during a ceremonial check presentation with representatives of the Citizens Bank Foundation, while she held meetings with the vice president for University Advancement and members of the Marketing Communications Office later in the day.

During their college search, the Flormann sisters wanted a college that featured solid health and medical science programs. They found that at Misericordia and are scheduled to graduate together in May 2014. “Misericordia fit us both the best,’’ Alexandra said. “The nature of the school; the character of the students and the professors … they were so welcoming and nice.’’