Mercyhurst Magazine Fall 2017

ANNA PATRICK ’07 A Kentucky native, Anna recalls visiting campus as a child with her parents, Peggy and Guy Patrick, who had both worked in Campus Ministry at Mercyhurst during the 1970s. “I can always remember loving the feel of the campus,” she says. When she enrolled, she chose a Political Science major and a Spanish minor. About two years after her Mercyhurst graduation, Anna headed to the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. Then, with an M.A. in international development in hand, she moved to the nation’s capital. She’s held a number of jobs in Washington, but for the past four-and-a-half years has been a public afairs specialist in the Ofce to Monitor and Combat Trafcking in Persons at the U.S. Department of State. The ofce leads diplomatic engagement on human trafcking and produces the annual Trafcking in Persons Report. She works with the private sector, NGOs and others to look at how human trafcking intersects with global supply chains and afects the products we all buy. She also does research, drafts fact sheets, writes speeches and gives presentations to raise public awareness about human trafcking. A soccer player during her frst two years, Anna cut her athletic career short in order to study abroad in Costa Rica. Living in a foreign country and experiencing a diferent language and culture was just one of the Mercyhurst experiences that she says expanded her world view. “In attending speaker series and events at Mercyhurst I heard from a variety of academics with diferent, and sometimes opposite, ideas from my own. In taking courses with professors who challenged what I thought to be true, I learned to see things from another perspective. It would be hard to move through the world today without these experiences; they prepared me well and I continue to carry them with me today.” On a practical level, the hours and hours she spent at the library researching, reading, writing, analyzing and preparing for presentations proved excellent preparation for her work today. This summer Anna married Sherilyn Fraser ’08 in a ceremony performed by Karen Eade ’07. Sherilyn is a director of fnancial analysis at the University of Maryland, University College. They both love to travel, including an excursion to Machu Picchu and a sailing trip in the Greek islands. Closer to home they enjoy rock climbing, exploring farmers’ markets, and discovering what Washington, D.C., has to ofer.

SARAH KEENE ’08 It was during her senior Social Ethics class that Sarah Keene connected the dots and realized what she wanted to do with her life: to use her languages to help others fnd their voices. A French major and Russian Studies minor, she worked frst helping newly resettled refugee and immigrant families in Pittsburgh toward self- sufciency. It was rewarding, but immensely challenging work, she says, adding, “I learned more about resiliency from these families than from any other previous experience.”Then she managed a food pantry for needy families in the South Hills. In 2013, she signed on for the Peace Corps and headed to the Central African nation of Cameroon. Her primary project was teaching English to more than 400 students aged 10-22, but she also cultivated friendships between more than 30 American students and her Cameroonian students through a pen-pal program. She’s particularly proud of a weeklong youth empowerment camp she ran for 35 girls aged 10-14, which included a panel of positive female role models from the community. Returning to America when her two-year assignment ended, Sarah remained with the Peace Corps and now works at its Washington headquarters as a program analyst for recruitment and diversity. Along the way, Sarah’s passion for languages and cross-cultural exchanges has led her to learn Mandarin Chinese, Bamvele, Fulfulde, Swahili, Kirundi, Burmese—and her newest language, SQL coding. Eventually, she’d love to get back into the feld. She hopes the combination of her foreign languages and newly developed data science skills will lead her to a long life of working in international development agencies in D.C. and abroad. Sarah says she spends most of her time trying to conquer new languages and building up her savings and vacation days so she can travel to new places. She also enjoys playing on a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) community softball team, learning guitar, and taking advantage of all the fun, free events that happen every day in Washington. She says Mercyhurst provided the foundation on which she has continued to build and she’s grateful for “the friends I made, experiences I had, and the classes that exposed me to new perspectives and challenges.” Best memories? Her study-abroad term in Aix-en-Provence, France; her 2005 alternative spring break trip with Habitat for Humanity (“a great group of people working together for social good”); and her service as a Mercyhurst Ambassador, sharing her passion and love for Mercyhurst.


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