HPI 303: Professional Development provides the venue for weekly networking opportunities.  Students learn and practice "soft skills" including dining etiquette and informal conversation as they enjoy a catered meal with a visiting professional. 

Speakers for the 2018-19 Series

Alumna returns to lead discussion at first HPI seminar of 2018

Speech and language pathologist  Kayla Thornburg ’11  was the first speaker for last week’s first Health Professions Institute speaker series. Thornburg met with students over dinner and discussed her career path from Thiel College to the Mt. Lebanon School District. Also in attendance was Thornburg’s undergraduate advisor and Chair of the Department of Communication Science and Disorders  Nancy Antonino, Ph.D.   “She told us of how the professors here at Thiel helped her during her time here, and she kept reiterating for us to make strong bonds with our professors and to study for our exams, like the GRE.” - Thiel Student

Speech and language pathologist Kayla Thornburg ’11 was the first speaker for last week’s first Health Professions Institute speaker series. Thornburg met with students over dinner and discussed her career path from Thiel College to the Mt. Lebanon School District. Also in attendance was Thornburg’s undergraduate advisor and Chair of the Department of Communication Science and Disorders Nancy Antonino, Ph.D.

“She told us of how the professors here at Thiel helped her during her time here, and she kept reiterating for us to make strong bonds with our professors and to study for our exams, like the GRE.” - Thiel Student

Veterinarian provides career and graduate school insights

Sarah Barefoot, D.V.M. ’08  spoke on Oct. 3 to the HPI 303: Professional Development seminar class. She gave a frank assessment of the world of veterinary medicine and, more broadly, issues many students will deal with in graduate school including self-care, stress management, and financial health. Barefoot was a chemistry major and her advisor,  Kathy Frantz, Ph.D. , joined Director of Alumni Relations  David Hummel ’83  and  Greg Q. Butcher, Ph.D. , for the dinner and presentation.  “Dr. Barefoot spoke about her experience at Thiel and how they impacted her life after college. She advised us to make sure we take the full advantage at Thiel and make our marks at the College.”— Maggie Nee ’20   “Overall, I enjoyed how passionate she was for her job, patients and workers. Dr. Barefoot’s behind the scenes presentation was inspiring.”— Courtney Campbell ’20

Sarah Barefoot, D.V.M. ’08 spoke on Oct. 3 to the HPI 303: Professional Development seminar class. She gave a frank assessment of the world of veterinary medicine and, more broadly, issues many students will deal with in graduate school including self-care, stress management, and financial health. Barefoot was a chemistry major and her advisor, Kathy Frantz, Ph.D., joined Director of Alumni Relations David Hummel ’83 and Greg Q. Butcher, Ph.D., for the dinner and presentation.

“Dr. Barefoot spoke about her experience at Thiel and how they impacted her life after college. She advised us to make sure we take the full advantage at Thiel and make our marks at the College.”—Maggie Nee ’20

“Overall, I enjoyed how passionate she was for her job, patients and workers. Dr. Barefoot’s behind the scenes presentation was inspiring.”—Courtney Campbell ’20

Albert Kasenter offers perspectives on medical career at HPI series

Health Professions Institute students enjoyed a lesson on the history of medicinal physics (radiology and nuclear medicine, for example) from  Albert Kasenter ’64  on Oct. 17 in the Sawhill-Georgian Room. He discussed overcoming challenges both personal and professional such as balancing family and career and being a life-long learner. Associate Professor of Physics  Eugene Torigoe, Ph.D. , also attended the event.  “We learned about his experience working in various hospitals including a teaching hospital in Ireland. This was especially interesting to me because I have always wanted to spend time studying or working abroad in the medical field.”— Lexxie Helbig ’20

Health Professions Institute students enjoyed a lesson on the history of medicinal physics (radiology and nuclear medicine, for example) from Albert Kasenter ’64 on Oct. 17 in the Sawhill-Georgian Room. He discussed overcoming challenges both personal and professional such as balancing family and career and being a life-long learner. Associate Professor of Physics Eugene Torigoe, Ph.D., also attended the event.

“We learned about his experience working in various hospitals including a teaching hospital in Ireland. This was especially interesting to me because I have always wanted to spend time studying or working abroad in the medical field.”—Lexxie Helbig ’20

HPI students get experience in speed interviews

Health Professions Institute students participated in a multiple mini-interview session last week. Every seven minutes students rotated to a new station and interacted with a new interviewer. Stations included an active listen scenario, issues in medical ethics, rural healthcare, and others. HPI members want to thank, Executive Director of Communications and Marketing  Richard Orr , Professor of Philosophy and Dietrich Honors Institute Director  Matt Morgan, Ph.D. , Senior Admissions Counselor  Morgan Steiner ’16 , Director of Greenville Neuromodulation Center  Ben Beck ’10 , Healthcare Consultant  Anne Butcher ,  TJ Fisher ’19  and  Joelle Reitz ’19 .

Health Professions Institute students participated in a multiple mini-interview session last week. Every seven minutes students rotated to a new station and interacted with a new interviewer. Stations included an active listen scenario, issues in medical ethics, rural healthcare, and others. HPI members want to thank, Executive Director of Communications and Marketing Richard Orr, Professor of Philosophy and Dietrich Honors Institute Director Matt Morgan, Ph.D., Senior Admissions Counselor Morgan Steiner ’16, Director of Greenville Neuromodulation Center Ben Beck ’10, Healthcare Consultant Anne Butcher, TJ Fisher ’19 and Joelle Reitz ’19.

Alumnus discusses his postgraduate experiences

Students in the Health Professions Institute seminar class met with Tenzin Kunkhyen, Ph.D. ’07, a Postdoctoral Fellow in the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Neurobiology. Kunkhyen discussed the value of a liberal arts education and commented how the information he learned as part of his core curriculum provided him with a life-long love of classical music and an appreciation for western culture and art.  “His main lesson being that life may not always go the way you want it to… but that we must embrace it.”– Sydney Turner ’21

Students in the Health Professions Institute seminar class met with Tenzin Kunkhyen, Ph.D. ’07, a Postdoctoral Fellow in the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Neurobiology. Kunkhyen discussed the value of a liberal arts education and commented how the information he learned as part of his core curriculum provided him with a life-long love of classical music and an appreciation for western culture and art.

“His main lesson being that life may not always go the way you want it to… but that we must embrace it.”–Sydney Turner ’21

HPI students interact with an alum talking about “pearly whites”.

Barry Foster.png

This month students in HPI 303: Professional Development met with two Thiel College alumni. Dentist Barry Foster, D.D.M ’86, owner of Egypt Road Dental Associates in Eagleville Pa., discussed his experiences as a dentist, small business owner and mentor of a future dentist.

 “I learned a lot about the field of dentistry from Dr. Foster. He also taught us a lot about private practice. He explained how he became a dentist and eventually owned his own practice.”—Lexxie Helbig ’20

“The biggest lesson I seemed to take away from the presentation is one that originally stemmed from the conversation at dinner. Dr. Foster mentioned how dentistry was never really on his radar until it was brought up in conversation by one of his coaches. And the lesson I took away from this is that you never really know for sure where your life’s events will take you and where your final position will be.”—Dante Vaniel ’21

Shawniece Boss, D.P.M. ’12, a podiatry resident at New York–Presbyterian/Queens. 

Shawniece Boss.png

“Dr. Boss said a lot of things that really stuck with me. She talked about keeping your mind open and following your dreams.”—Sydney Turner ’21

“I was even more impressed with her during her presentation.  She can really command a room and give a great presentation.  That is something that I am working on personally.  She was so funny when she brought up the fact that she has an intimidating name and she is a little tiny person with a high voice.  She had a good point, which was to let the knowledge speak for itself, then that will make up for the first impression.”—Maggie Nee ’20


Speakers for the 2108-19 series

Alex McClurg (‘12)   Physician Assistant, Obstetrics and Gynecology

Alex McClurg (‘12)

Physician Assistant, Obstetrics and Gynecology

Dow Owrey (‘89)   President, UPMC Jameson & Horizon

Dow Owrey (‘89)

President, UPMC Jameson & Horizon

Mark Benninghoff (‘82)   Director, Physician Enterprise Services, Navigant Consulting

Mark Benninghoff (‘82)

Director, Physician Enterprise Services, Navigant Consulting

Dr. Heather Ambrose (‘00)   Director of Nursing, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, UPMC

Dr. Heather Ambrose (‘00)

Director of Nursing, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, UPMC

Mark Schweitzer (‘79)   Global Head Analytical Science and Technology, Novartis

Mark Schweitzer (‘79)

Global Head Analytical Science and Technology, Novartis

Rachel Wills (‘12)   PH.D. Candidate in Cell Biology and Molecular Physiology Interdisciplinary Biomedical Graduate Program at the University of Pittsburgh

Rachel Wills (‘12)

PH.D. Candidate in Cell Biology and Molecular Physiology Interdisciplinary Biomedical Graduate Program at the University of Pittsburgh

David Lauffer (‘82)   Medicinal Chemistry Leader at Crowdout Therapeutics

David Lauffer (‘82)

Medicinal Chemistry Leader at Crowdout Therapeutics

Dr. Syrell Rodrigues (‘08)   Surgical   Resident, York Hospital

Dr. Syrell Rodrigues (‘08)

Surgical Resident, York Hospital

Dennis Yates (‘71)   Senior Scientist, Perkins Elmer

Dennis Yates (‘71)

Senior Scientist, Perkins Elmer