This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 25, 1859

It was on this day that Fr. Pamfilo da Magliano, O.S.F., marked the beginning of a new Congregation of Franciscan Sisters in the United States by giving to Mary Jane Todd the habit of the Third Order of St. Francis and the name Sister Mary Joseph.

The reception was also the first congregation in the ten-year-old Buffalo Diocese.

In 1861 the first convent was built on the hill across from St. Bonaventure University. By the 1930s, the building became very overcrowded.

So exactly 100 years after the foundation of the Sisters of St. Franciscan of Allegany, the new Motherhouse was built as the new convent.

School of Business Leaving Murphy Opens Vacant Offices

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. (April 18) – Carole McNall watches the new business building slowly come together.

Workers lay brick atop the façade. The green insulation steadily disappears behind it. But a journalism and mass communication professor at St. Bonaventure University has one question: What will happen to her building when the new business building is completed?

“I am curious as to what decision will be made about the vacant space in Murphy Professional Building once the business school moves out,” she said.

The school of journalism and mass communication and the school of business both share Murphy. But a building to be used solely by the business school will be finished by July.

And even though the business school, which occupies roughly two-thirds of Murphy, moves into the new Swan Business Center in three months, a decision has not been made about what to do with the vacant space in Murphy, said Pauline Hoffmann, dean of the journalism and mass communication school.

Hoffmann said that the journalism and mass communication school may get the majority of the vacant space.

“I know that we are going to get probably the bulk of the building, but it’s still unclear,” said Hoffmann. “I think the administration is still talking about whether or not another department might join us.”

The decision will ultimately be made collectively, Hoffmann said, but that decision may take up to two years, since planning for the vacant space only started recently.

McNall said now would be a good time to begin the conversation about relocating departments.

Many English, classics, philosophy, theology, sociology and political science professors have crammed spaces in the 50 offices in the basement of Plassmann Hall. But the conversation about moving to another building hasn’t even come up yet, said Lauren Matz, an English professor.

Phil Winger, associate vice president for facilities, said the university still has not decided what to do with the two dozen soon-to-be-vacant offices in Murphy.

“There isn’t going to be a whole lot of change for the fall semester,” he said. “People don’t want to be moving their offices during school. Then there is the planning process which runs through the summer. It will lead to some changes over Christmas break.”

Because of these circumstances, Winger said the university decided to take its time to come to a decision about the changes.

“We’re going to get Cannon Design, our architects, to come up with a master plan,” said Winger. “Cannon Design is going to help us look at proposals for the use of that space. That’s going to happen over the summer.”

Hoffmann said she would be meeting with Michael Fischer, provost and vice president for academic affairs, and Brenda McGee, chief financial officer, about ideas for the building. Afterwards, she said they would meet with the architects and faculty to make sure everyone has a say in the process.

Hoffmann said one of her plans would be to use most of the building to expand the school’s curriculum.

“My hope is to expand the broadcast/film aspects altogether,” she said. “In the next couple years I would love if that’s its own major. But right now I’m not quite sure what that is either or how that’s going to look. That’s certainly something we would have in the plans.”

Also, a way to further incorporate current technology such as the television truck next to the Reilly Center would be part of the new curriculum, Hoffmann said.

Joe Phelan, a sophomore journalism and mass communication major, said he wants a building more accommodating to the students.

“I wish Murphy would be used only for journalism and mass communication,” he said. “It would be nice if the old business rooms could be made into a film lab or a larger broadcast lab.”

In the meantime, Hoffmann said the journalism and mass communication school plans to overhaul the journalism curriculum by the fall.

But Winger said for right now, the offices from the basement of Plassmann that may get the chance to move into Murphy might not wish to.

“The offices in Murphy are all in a common hallway and they aren’t all grouped together like how the Plassmann basement is mostly set up,” said Winger. “And I’m not sure necessarily that everyone would like the change.”

Matz said she hadn’t put much thought into possibly moving her office, but that she enjoys the current location of it.

McNall said she likes the idea of Murphy being used only by the journalism and mass communication school, but she said that may be unrealistic. The office of communications, currently located in Francis Hall, might be a good fit for the vacant space, she said.

At least her office hadn’t been leaking lately, McNall said. The ceiling occasionally leaks – another reason she would like to know what her building will or will not look like by next spring.

This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 18, 1943

World War II set off many changes in the United States. Most notably, women and African-Americans were able to take over jobs once held by men, and colleges began to admit them because of low enrollment.

Before the war, St. Bonaventure University only allowed women to take night classes or summer programs. But once the war began, women were finally admitted as full undergraduate day students for the first time in the eighty-four year history of the school.

It was on this day that six women received degrees, becoming the first co-eds to ever participate in commencement at Bonaventure.

Though the move to enroll women was deemed only temporary at first, the school decided to continue it. It dramatically changed the makeup of Bonaventure.

This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 11, 2007

For a liberal arts school, St. Bonaventure University has historically had a rather small theater department. At one time the only theater on campus had been the Garret Theater located in Devereux Hall.

That all changed with the construction of the Quick Arts Center, which included the Regis Family Theater.

Bonaventure then slowly began to build up its theater department. And after over ten years, a bachelor of arts in theater was added to the curriculum on this day.

The new degree offers a balance of theater text, production history, performance technique and technical theatrical application in 15 courses.

“Practical studies in acting, voice and movement, period styles, directing and technical theater and design provide students with a true ‘hands-on’ understanding of how theater is created and presented,” said Dr. Ed. Simone, chair of the department of visual and performing arts and director of the theater program.

“The establishment of the bachelor’s degree in theater is the realization of a dream of offering a degree to complement our century-long theater production history and the strong presence of the arts in our liberal arts curriculum,” said Sr. Margaret Carney, O.S.F., S.T.D., university president.

Spring Weekend Softball Is Now Kickball

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. (April 8) – After a nearly three-year process, Rob DeFazio announced on Monday that the St. Bonaventure University Spring Weekend Tournament has been changed from softball to kickball.

DeFazio, director of the Center for Activities, Recreation and Leadership (CARL), said many factors went into the decision, but none more important than student safety.

“We have had some pretty bad injuries (during the tournament) before, and we are just trying to provide a safe and fun environment for everyone,” said DeFazio. “We think kickball will provide that.”

Registration forms will be made available Tuesday and registration will be on Wednesday, April 17 at 8 p.m. in Murphy Professional Building, said DeFazio. In addition to the sport change, the tournament will only take place on Friday, April 26 and Saturday, April 27.

Thursday games have been tough to get in the last few years because of the inconsistent spring weather, said DeFazio. Since kickball games generally run shorter than softball, the limit of teams will be moved up to 80.

Also, the games will be six innings long instead of five. All other previous rules still apply to teams:

*Each roster can have no more than 20 players

*Each roster must have at least four members of the opposite sex

*Each player must play the field for at least two innings.

DeFazio said besides player safety, the university looked for ways to make the tournament more inclusive and fairer for everyone.

In previous years, he said, teams would consist of students who had many years of baseball or softball experience and that those teams would use expensive bats and gloves, giving themselves an unfair advantage.

Those issues should be addressed with the switch to kickball, he said. DeFazio said he spoke with many students, faculty, coaches and athletic trainers about playing kickball instead of softball and he said the feedback was that softball would be a better choice.

Even last year’s tournament champions agreed that kickball would be a better choice. The team said they would play basically anything. The university will continue to evaluate the tournament to see if it can be improved in the future.

DeFazio said a snap decision will not be made. One of the positives of playing kickball is that bad weather (except thunder and lightning) will not stop the games – unlike softball.

Besides the tournament, Spring Weekend will stay mostly the same as last year, with the exception of more inflatables and even a zip line. Lastly, DeFazio said anyone who has a suggestion for the future can contact the student-run Campus Activities Board (CAB).

This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 9, 2012

After guiding the St. Bonaventure University Bonnies women’s basketball team to the program’s first NCAA Tournament berth and being named the ESPN and Atlantic 10 coach of year, Jim Crowley received a long-term contract extension from athletic director Steve Watson on this day.

Crowley had previously signed an extension in June 2011 through the 2016-17 season.

“We are pleased to have Jim remain at St. Bonaventure,” Watson said. “This extension represents our commitment to him and likewise him to us. Jim has built a program which represents our university well on the court, on campus, in the classroom and in the community. We anticipate continued success under his guidance and leadership.”

A Binghamton-area native, Crowley helped the Bonnies to the Sweet 16 with a 31-4 record; even though Bonaventure had been predicted to finish sixth in the conference.

“I’m honored the university has made this commitment to our program, staff and to me,” Crowley said. “We are all very excited about the future of our program, and this certainly adds to our enthusiasm. The campus and local communities are very special places and I’m thankful that I will be able to continue coaching here.”

The Bonnies also won the A-10 regular-season title with a perfect 14-0 mark. It became the second-smallest school to reach the Sweet Sixteen (Cheyney State, 1980s), and among active Division I members it is the smallest ever to reach that round. Over the last four years, Crowley has led SBU to a 98-37 record, including four postseason trips.

Crowley and his staff had a tough rebuilding year in 2012-13 after losing four seniors. But it appears the foundation has been laid for future success.

This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 8, 2001

The Canticle Farm in Allegany, N.Y. was started on this day by community members and Franciscan Sisters. 

The mission of the non-profit organization is to protect and honor the sacredness of God’s creation. It is committed to connect all peoples, to practice Earth-friendly habits and to realize a Creation-centered spirituality. The ministry is still sponsored by the Sisters and is supported by the community. 

The farm is able to provide naturally grown produce and sell at a reasonable price. It is very popular in the Olean area. 

This Day In Bonaventure History

By Joe Pinter, News Editor, @JPinter93

This Day in Bonaventure History

April 5, 2005 

The Rev. Alphonsus Trabold, O.F.M., was born in Rochester on Aug. 19, 1925. From the minute he was young, he had a keen interest in the paranormal. He joined the Franciscan order in 1951 and sought to integrate his two passions – Christ and the paranormal.

He taught many classes in this area during his time at St. Bonaventure University. He – only half-jokingly—always left the front row of seats open in his “spooks class” in case any spirits wanted to sit in.

He was known internationally in his field and wrote numerous articles and even contributed to some novels. He had been consulted by professionals on many paranormal cases, including the events that inspired the 1979 movie The Amityville Horror.

“I suppose all kids kind of have an interest in the scary and the occult,” he said in a 2003 interview. “I’ve been interested in magic and witchcraft and the occult, both from the point of view of the paranormal powers and history.”

“He was an incredible friar and was an absolute joy to live with,” said the Rev. Thomas Blow, guardian of the St. Bonaventure friary. “His gifts of storytelling and his experience in the field of dealing with the paranormal will always be remembered. He helped shape our local community, as do all friars, into who we are. We will definitely miss him and his wonderful, gentle presence.”

Fr. Alphonsus passed away on this day. He was 79.