50 Acacia Avenue
San Rafael, CA 94901
“I am fascinated by people, the world, and what makes it all tick. I knew that Humanities would be a strong foundation and would provide a rich array of scholarly pursuits that would provide plenty of options and great flexibility in my current and future life and career choices,” Leona says.
“I chose Dominican because of proximity and reputation -- and I wanted to get the highest quality education possible.”
On May 17, Leona, at age 50, graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Humanities and Cultural Studies which included a track in Communications. She also delivered the senior address for the Class of 2014. She had a long list of people to thank among Dominican faculty, led by Professor of Communications and 2012 Teacher of the Year, Stuart Horne, whose energy and enthusiasm introduced her to the radio industry through Dominican’s Penguin Radio and who propelled her toward the goal of becoming a teacher.
“I love everything about Dominican,” Leona says. “While my decision to enter the Adult Degree Completion program was based on my personal desire to gain confidence and knowledge to better myself, it also included my desire to be a good role model in showing that love of learning, joy of life, and fulfillment of giving back to the community is valuable - at any age.”
As a freshman at Dominican, Leona, thanks to a nomination by Chase Clow, director of Humanities and Cultural Studies, received an American Association of University of Woman scholarship. Leona was inducted as a member of Alpha Lambda Sigma, Gamma Sigma and Alpha Chi honor societies the next two years.
At Dominican, she has been a teaching assistant for the internet radio program where she spearheaded, developed, and managed Penguin Radio’s internship curriculum; has worked as lab instructor for the multi-media journalism class, operating their online newspaper The Dominican Beat, both of which put her in contact with students in a coaching/mentoring role. She also has worked as an assistant in the School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, and as a mentor in the TORCH Leadership Program with Dr. Melba Beals and Dr. Henry Shreibman.
Leona’s experience at Dominican has been valuable both professionally and personally. She is founder and director www.LifeSupportM.org, a non-profit that helps young people learn life skills to last a life time through mentorships, community service, and house building missions to Mexico to help families in need. She wants to do more international volunteer work and aims to pursue the teaching profession by enrolling in a Master's Degree program in Communications and Leadership.
“With the help of my family here at Dominican, I have arrived at realization that I am a capable person and that my own curiosity and my love of empowering others to engage their curiosity are valuable assets that I never have to give up and that I can use in all areas of my life now and forever.”