Student Memories

Student Memories

Creighton alumni share memories of their ties with faculty members

Dale Hoeffel, BA’15

When Dale Hoeffel, BA’15, of the Twin Cities area, left Creighton to travel to many campuses as a sorority adviser, she learned how fortunate she had been.

“Creighton is different and special. You don’t have to be scared when you need help,” she said. “I’ve seen a lot of students (at other universities) be afraid to talk to their teachers. It’s amazing how many kids could call it quits if they couldn’t figure out things on their own.”

In contrast, Hoeffel noted that her professors were there for her when she needed them most. “Creighton challenges you and makes you grow. It gave me a better understanding of who Dale is.”

Kassaundra Hartley, BA’14

Kassaundra Hartley, BA’14, a project associate with Paul J. Strawhecker of Omaha, has particularly fond memories of her freshman theology class with Thomas Kelly, Ph.D. Hartley, who grew up in Spaulding, Neb., (pop. 500) said Kelly was one of the main reasons she “stuck it out at Creighton.”

“I only took his class once first semester freshman year, and he still remembered who I was second semester senior year. He caused me to think outside of my small-town box and view the world in an entirely new way. He challenged my beliefs and made me stronger in my faith as a result,” she said.

Tammi Spiezio Creed, BSChm’02

Tammi Spiezio Creed, BSChm’02, who juggled playing varsity softball with her chemistry major, remains grateful to her favorite professor, Juliane Strauss-Soukup, Ph.D., BSChm’93, for sharing her own undergraduate struggles. One professor had even told Soukup that he didn’t believe in her ability.

“She told me no one can stop you if you want to persevere,” said Creed, of Washington, Ill., who did research with Soukup. Creed later earned an MBA at Bradley University and worked for Caterpillar before becoming a stay-at-home mother to four children, one of them with special needs.

Rita Peterson Foral, BA’64

Rita Peterson Foral, BA’64, was an English major and a member of the De Porres Club that fought for civil rights. She recalled picketing a real estate board with the Rev. John Markoe, S.J. A St. Louis native, she has especially high regard for the Jesuits she knew, such as the Rev. Ed Sharp, S.J., of the math department.

“I hated math, but my husband, Jerry, was a math major. Fr. Sharp maintained contact with us and would come out to our house,” she said. Both Rita and Jerry Foral eventually taught at Marian High School in Omaha. “My Creighton days were wonderful.”

Javier Argamasilla, BA’96

Javier Argamasilla, BA’96, of Miami, also has fond memories of the Jesuits from his work in the Jesuit kitchen. He recalled the flexibility of professors who helped him graduate on time despite taking a semester off to do service work in the Dominican Republic.

However, Argamasilla, whose parents are natives of Cuba, discovered that he could not fool a Spanish professor into letting him take a remedial Spanish class. “It would have been an easy A, but he knew I wasn’t remedial in Spanish.” Argamasilla is state sales and marketing manager for Bacardi USA, his family’s firm.

Sara Gentzler, BA’14

Sara Gentzler, BA’14, credited Carol Zuegner, Ph.D., of the Department of Journalism, Media & Computing (JMC) for forming her as a “professional, a student and a person.”

Gentzler, a native of Gretna, Neb., who is now a graduate student in social psychology at the University of Washington in Seattle, said Zuegner mentored her through a website on child soldiers in Uganda that won first place nationally for Online In-Depth Storytelling from the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ). Gentzler did her research under Zuegner’s supervision on the Backpack Journalism trip to Uganda co-sponsored by JMC and theology. Later, Zuegner guided her through applying for a grant to attend the SPJ Conference in Anaheim, Calif., so she could receive the award in person.

Zuegner also helped Gentzler obtain one of 30 American Society of Magazine Editors internships in New York.

“Without Carol’s relentless support and encouragement to push my boundaries and discover my potential, none of the unique experiences that I had in undergrad would have been brought to my attention, let alone achieved.”