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The CNR Alumni Newsletter is published to keep the alumni community
informed of the latest news and events. 
CNR Alumni at Mercy College
December 5, 2022 submit a class note

Reflection and Introduction 

At almost every alumni gathering around the country, somewhere in her remarks, Sister Dorothy Ann Kelly, beloved president of the College of New Rochelle from 1972 to 1997, would say, “Never be in a room longer than ten minutes before mentioning the College of New Rochelle. You’ll be sure to discover connections.”

Without a doubt, this notion resonates with many of CNR’s alumni.  Over the years, many of us have had the experience of finding ourselves in a place, near or far, where a chance encounter with someone, or something, reveals a connection to CNR.  As a result, we are connected with another CNR alum, someone related to an alum, or even an item associated with CNR.  

To capture these alumni vignettes, we are introducing a new feature, “CNR Connections,” in this issue of the newsletter.  We would love to hear your stories!

As further witness to this phenomenon of “CNR Connections”, we are featuring a spotlight article on Sandra Smith Gangle SAS ’64.  While traveling on a Road Scholar cruise this past summer, Mary Ann Marriott SAS ’59, the author of the article, ran into Sandra, a fellow traveler and CNR alumni.  

Since this Newsletter will be arriving within a few days of the holidays, the CNR Alumni Communication Committee would like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a Blessed Christmas and a New Year filled with happiness, health, and hope in the coming days.

Please keep in mind Sister Dorothy Ann’s words as you gather with family, friends, and acquaintances during this holiday season.  You may be surprised to see where that may lead - perhaps to the unfolding of yet another instance of CNR connections!
  • Rosa Napoleone SAS ‘75 
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee

 Alumni Spotlight Introduction

This issue features two members from the class of 1964: Sandra Smith Gangle and Joan Fiori Blanchfield.  Two remarkable women, who have achieved notable stature in their career fields, and who exemplify the highest degree of scholarship, perseverance, catholic social consciousness and SERVIAM… which they attribute in large part to their experience at CNR.
  • Annalinda Ragazzo SAS ‘74
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee

Spotlight Interview – Sandra Smith Gangle, SAS '64


Sandra Gangle

This past May, on a Road Scholar journey up and down the Adriatic coast, my husband and I met Sandra Smith Gangle, who graduated from the College of New Rochelle in 1964, five years after my CNR graduation.  Throughout the trip Sandra told me of how her CNR education had helped her achieve milestone career goals while also preparing her for a rich personal life as a wife, mother, grandmother and community volunteer.

Like many women of our era Sandra sought a college where she could be "challenged intellectually, enriched spiritually and enjoy companionship” with women who had similar goals. Click here to continue reading the spotlight on Sandra Smith Gangle, SAS '64.
  • Mary Ann Marriott, SAS '59
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee


Spotlight Interview – Joan Fiori Blanchfield, SAS '64


Joan Fiori Blanchfield SAS 64 Just two weeks shy of her 80th birthday, Joan Fiori Blanchfield walked across the stage at the State University of New York at Albany to receive her doctoral degree in History. A sculptor, professor, museum curator, polyglot (proficiency in 5 languages), wife, mother, grandmother, volunteer, Joan shows no signs of slowing down and gives new vigor to the term Renaissance woman. Click here to continue reading the spotlight on Joan Fiori Blanchfied, SAS '64.


‚óŹ   Annalinda Ragazzo, SAS '74
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee


CNR Legacy Council Update

The first Legacy Council meeting of the year was held on September 20th

An opening prayer offered by Mary Ann Marriott was followed by Chief Advancement Officer Bernadette Wade’s report from Institutional Advancement.  Bernadette announced that the next annual Mercy College Trustees’ Scholarship Gala will be held on May 4, 2023. Click here to read the full Legacy Council update. 


  • Rosa Napoleone, SAS '75
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee

CNR Connections

As we launch our new feature, CNR Connections, it seemed appropriate 
that the first article go back to Mother Irene Gill, OSU, founder of the College.
  • Pat Keegan Abels, SAS '73
    CNR Alumni Communications Committee


Mother Irene Gil


Dr. Bessie W. Blake

Bessie Blake AutobiographyDr. Bessie W. Blake, former Dean for the School of New Resources (SNR) at the College of New Rochelle (CNR) recently published her third book, a perceptive, insightful, and an inspirational autobiography titled Love Lifted Me…from sharecropping to Harvard.

Dr. Blake spent 25 years as Dean for CNR. She is a fierce educator, lifelong learner, thought-provoking leader, and award-winning author.


Mercy College's MavCast

Mercy Mav Cast MavCast is Mercy College's student-run podcast. Students will host five shows, Monday through Friday. These digital broadcasts offer insights into Mercy College's student life, sports and athletes, academics and professors, alumni (including CNR), and much more.

Below are two podcasts featuring CNR Alums:

Bernadette Wade, SAS ’80 – Listen Here
Dr. Shango Blake, SNR '93, GS '96, GS '11 – Listen Here 


Mav Market

Mav Market, a food and resource pantry at Mercy College is an inclusive and confidential environment where Mercy students, faculty, and staff can get wholesome foods and personal care items.

There are many ways you can support this initiative, whether it is through volunteerism, making a direct contribution, donating items or purchasing items off the Amazon Wishlist. For more information or if you have any questions, please contact Tara Alfano SAS '02, GS '04, Director of Development - CNR at or 914-446-0207.


Click here to learn more about Mav Market 
Click here
to make a direct contribution to support the Market or make a gift through the Mav Market Amazon Wishlist.

mav market grocery

CERTIFi by Mercy College

certifiThe Network and Career Development Committee of the CNR Legacy Council would like to remind alumni about the Mercy College CERTIFi program.  

CERTIFi provides employment-ready certificate programs and non-credit courses, both in person at Mercy College campuses and online, so that professional development can fit into your life.  CERTIFi courses are available and open to all ages and careers. 

The curriculum currently features certificates and non-credit courses in areas such as Business and Finance, Health and Fitness, Information Technology, Languages, and Teaching and Education.  CERTIFi working in partnership with White Plains Hospital is featuring two 6-week certification programs: Revenue Cycle Administration and Clinical Medical Assisting classes which will run from January 7, 2023, to March 25, 2023. Interested individuals must complete an application online for one of these three positions:
To learn more about CERFIFi, please go to



Did You Know?


To request a CNR transcript from the Mercy College Registrar’s Office complete and submit the following form: CNR Transcript Request Form 


If you have any questions, please email the Mercy Registrar’s Office at


Tech Corner

As you continue, or perhaps increase, your online activity during this holiday season, remember some basic security guidelines. 


Protect your personal information with strong passwords.  Keep your personal information private.  Do not overshare on social media; doing so may divulge information that makes it easy for your identity to be compromised.


Here is a playful reminder of “what not to do”:


Where did you grow up: STOP

Favorite color: GIVING

First pet's name: PEOPLE

Street you grew up on: YOUR

Favorite child’s Name: PERSONAL

Favorite sports team: INFO

High school mascot: TO

Favorite food: GUESS

What was your first car: YOUR

Mom’s name before she married: PASSWORD

First job: AND

Favorite band: SECURITY

Favorite food: QUESTIONS

Prayer of Mother Teresa of Calcutta


Lord, open our eyes
that we may see you in our brothers and sisters.
Lord, open our ears
that we may hear the cries of the hungry, the cold, the frightened, the oppressed.
Lord, open our hearts
that we may love each other as you love us.
Renew in us your spirit.
Lord, free us and make us one.

Update Info

Mercy College is Hiring

Mercy College is always looking for talented, driven individuals to join as faculty
or support staff.  
Click here for all open faculty and staff positions.

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