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                                    CAMPUS HEALTH SERVICES WELCOMES NEW DIRECTOR

By Barb Starn SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA                     When Pam Reed  lost her husband several years ago to colon cancer, she decided to start a new chapter in her nursing career–as the new director of Campus Health Services at Pitt-Greensburg. The eldest of four children, Reed discovered early in life her calling to heal people physically and emotionally. “I’ve always liked making people feel good,” she said. “It’s gratifying to see people happy.  I don’t believe I was sure I wanted to be a nurse initially, but knew that I wanted something in health care.  After much thought, I decided on nursing.  I am a natural born care giver and find much satisfaction in helping others.  It’s just something I do, it’s just me.” The ’91 Carlow College grad has held several nursing positions, including Med-Surge, ICU. and the ER. “I enjoyed working in the ER,” Reed said. “I enjoyed the variety of situations, the variety of people. I never knew what was coming through those doors.” Reed learned of this position from a friend who works at The University of Pittsburgh’s Main Campus, Pittsburgh. “This position entailed all aspects of nursing, administration, patient care –all in one department,” Reed said. “I knew that I could take this job and make it my own.” She says that there are many good points about working with the college population. “Everyone is so different. They have different goals, values. They’re all unique. Every one of them has a story.” Working with the college population also has some challenges.“These young people are learning to be independent,” Reed said. “They don’t always follow through with follow-up visits or with the physician’s instructions. They’re still trying to learn who they are.” Reed enjoys helping young people work toward their goals. “They need a support system. We’re here when they have a problem. We need to peel the layers away and learn their respective backgrounds. She says that in the three weeks she has held her post, she has dealt with minor issues, such as muscular skeletal issues, UTI issues and gastro-intestinal ailments. Reed says nurse’s roles have changed greatly in recent years. “In the past, some people thought that all we did was make beds and empty bed-pans. We are much more respected now. She says that the nursing profession offers many possibilities.  “There’s neonatal, pediatrics, geriatrics, ER, ICU. Nursing is what you make of it.” Reed looks forward to her new role at Pitt-Greensburg. “I want to make people feel welcome.” she said.  ” After my husband’s death, I realized life is short and many things are unexpected, therefore I needed to be in a job that I truly enjoyed and embraced.  I believe I have found this here at UPG.” “Doctors realize that nurses know the patients better than anyone,” Reed said.   The Campus Health Office is located at 216 Chambers Hall (above Bookstore) Phone:  724-836-9947 Fax:      724-836-7907 (September 1 through April 30)



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Adventures of a Sauerkraut Yankee: Because I’m Crazy

They complement each other nicely in their designated nook in my living room-the rocking chair crafted nearly 150 years ago by my great-grandfather and the maple bucket attempted by me this past spring at the annual coopering school at the Somerset Historical Society. If these two works of art could talk, they’d tell quite a story.

* * * *

A love of wood runs deep in my genes. It goes back at least four generations, to my maternal great-grandfather, Clyde Simon West-a master carpenter. He passed on his manual dexterity and his hand eye coordination to all of his four children, of whom my grandmother was the oldest. My grandmother passed on those gifts in turn to my mother.

I was set to inherit those gifts as well, until Turner’s Syndrome-a chromosomal disorder whose symptoms include below average visual-spatial skills and below average manual dexterity, in addition to short stature- created a  change of plans.

I recalled the day this loss became real to me. It was a beautiful  June morning, 1996.  My mother was seated at our kitchen table, setting out my father’s medication for the day. I was at the sink, washing dishes. My mother called to me’

“Barb, help me open this pill bottle.”

“Gee, Mom. Your hands are bigger than mine. If you can’t open it, I’m not sure I can.” I was trying to be funny.

“Not really, dear.” My mother replied.

“What do you mean?” I knew all to well that tone of voice and that look in my mother’s eyes-the look of the pure scientist-someone who was able to assess a situation with no emotional distraction whatsoever.

“Hold up your hand to mine,” my mother said.

I complied. I was shocked to see that although I am five feet even and my mother is five  feet five, my hands were larger.

“You should have been at least five feet seven,” my mother pronounced her hypothesis.

So, I was short. It wasn’t the end of the world. I shrugged off my growing sense of apprehension.

Later that afternoon, I was painting my bedroom.  The sun was shining, the birds were singing. I had my radio on, and I was as happy as a clam. All of a sudden, reality hit me like a thunderbolt. Had it not been for Turner’s Syndrome, I very likely would have inherited the family gifts of manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination. I began to shake so hard with unexpressed grief that I had to sit down. Now what?



As an only child, I felt keenly this sense of alienation from the rest of my family. Desperate for a place to belong, I set out on a quixotic quest to reclaim that which had been stolen from me. So it was that in April, 2014, I participated in the annual Coopering School at the Somerset Historical Society. This workshop would last the weekend.

It was a cool, rainy Friday night when I set out for the first part of this workshop. I pulled into the Historical Society grounds and made my way to the education building, where 12 coopering benches were placed in a semi-circle about the room. Other tools were stored neatly at the other end of the shop. In all, the atmosphere was cozy. I cased my classmates. Most of them were older, retired men. There was one other female in the class.

“Help yourselves to some coffee,” said our instructor, Marc Ware, who during the day was the executive director of the Somerset Historical Society. In the corner off to my right, there was a table set with a pot each of coffee and of hot chocolate. There also was a bowl of a Somerset County treat-walnuts glazed with maple sugar. I helped myself to a cup of hot chocolate and some of the nuts.

Soon enough, class was in session.

“We’re going to make some templates to use in our project, which is a traditional keeler or bucket that was used to collect sap from maple trees during sugar-making.” said Mr. Ware. “When I attended coopering class in Williamsburg, Va, we were not allowed to use aids of any kind. We did everything by eye.”

Yes, sir, we were in the 18th century now-the no-power tools zone.

I made my way to the worktable at the other end of the shop. We cut out on pieces of cardboard the templates we would use. We then traced those template on to actual pieces of wood, which we cut out by hand.

“Do not loose these templates,” said Mr. Ware. “You will use them for every step of this project.”

Instantly, my mind flashed back to 1986. I was in eighth grade at Connellsville Junior High East. That year was the first year that girls had been able to take shop, so I had been assigned to a metal shop class. Our project had been to make miniature tool boxes. I had struggled then over that assignment. I never did finish the thing.  What had possessed me to sign up for this workshop?

“Would you mind giving me a point of contact so that I can reach you if I can’t make it to class?” I asked Mr. Ware.

“Why? What’s wrong”

“Oh, nothing.” I said. The truth was I wanted a way to contact him if I decided to quit the class.

The next step in the process was to mark our staves-that is, boards that we would use in making our buckets. Our work for the night was done.

I hopped into my 1997 GMC Sonoma and began the trip down the mountain. The rain had stopped; now, a thick fog took it’s place. It would be a long trip back to Connellsville.

Upon arriving home, I plopped down on the couch, my nerves jangled with a mixture of frustration at lacking my mother’s handiness  and sadness at seeing these family traits come to and end with me. Having nearly an hour-long drive in unpleasant conditions hadn’t helped, either.

“When are you going to  learn to stop me when I  do something  crazy?” I said to my mother.

“What are you talking about?”

“Letting me sign up for something that is completely out of my league. The idea was for you to take this class and then teach me what  you learned.  I’m a fish out of water.”

“I don’t have the stamina for that kind of work, anymore. Now stop fussing. You’ll do fine.”

I wanted very much to call Mr.  Ware to tell him that I had quit the class; however,  the next morning I found myself in my pick up once again, heading to Somerset. The rain and the fog that had passed through the area the night before was gone. The sky was clear and the sun shone.

At the workshop, our next order of business was to angle our staves. Then we beveled them. Before I knew it, lunchtime had come.

And what a spread. Ham, scalloped potatoes, green beans and a spice cake with maple frosting.

Mr. Ware gave me a glimpse into the small town life I thought had died by pronouncing grace.

Over lunch, I got to know my classmates better. Several of them were aspiring vinters from upstate New York. Their goal was to learn to make barrels in which to age their wine.

After lunch, I began to assemble my barrel. I put on the bands, riveted them into place. I then made the bottom for my barrel.My work was done.

I realized that nobody had laughed at me. There was such a difference between the industrial world in which I was raised and the agricultural world. These farmers respected continuing education. They also valued independence. In Fayette County people would have laughed me out of the room.

I arrived home that afternoon, proud of the barrel that I had made.

“Check it out,” I said to my mom.

“It’s nice.”

“You could have done a far better job.” I said.

“I can tell what it is. Most folks couldn’t have done that well.” said my mother, ever the pragmatist.

“So, what will you do with it?” she asked.

“Oh, I think it will be a nice conversation piece.” I said.


It now sits beside my great-grandfather’s rocking chair. I am glad that I didn’t  quit the coopering class. I met some wonderful people. I spent a beautiful afternoon in Somerset County, Pa. I have a barrel to show for it. All is well.


MacBeth Follows Shakespeare;s  Vision

The Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre Company(PICT) recently staged a production of Shakespeare’s  ‘MacBeth’,directed by Alan Stanford, at PICT’s home theater-the Charity Randall Theatre at the Stephen Foster Memorial,  Pittsburgh.   With a well imagined set, good costumes and attention to the storyline, this production would have made the Bard proud.

The setting, designed by Michael Thomas Essad, was minimal, as it would have been in Shakespeare’s day. It had mountains and fog to represent the Scottish highlands where MacBeth would have lived. At the same time, it could have been anywhere-representing at once MacBeth’s personal quest for power and the universal lust for power that lies in many of us. This production balanced well through its set the universal and the personal.

The costumes, designed by Michael Montgomery, also exhibited successfully this balance-simple military style tunics for the men and Elizabethan style dresses for the women. I would have preferred  more explicitly Scottish attire, with the plaids representing each clan. Again, this story is as universal as it is personal. It is meant for all audiences. The toned down costumes broadened the play’s appeal.

The actors did a good job in conveying MacBeth’s transformation from a reticent underling to a would-be King and also Lady MacBeth’s transformation from a ruthless powermonger to a person wracked with guilt. In the beginning, when Duncan, king of Scotland, played by John Henry Steelman, appoints MacBeth, played by John Whalen, thane of Cawdor, Lady MacBeth, played by Gayle Pazerski, urges MacBeth to seize the crown. MacBeth urges patience, saying, “Duncan hath honored me of late.” MacBeth was willing to pay his dues, and become king down the road. Lady MacBeth chides him for ‘being too full of the milk of human kindness’. Later in the play, MacBeth is the one who has lost his conscience completely, while Lady MacBeth trembles at the realization of what she’s started.

The actors also did a good job conveying the universal message of MacBeth, which is that good prevails. MacDuff, former colleague of MacBeth,  is angry over the murder of his wife and children at MacBeth’s hands. His righteous anger compels him to defeat MacBeth, allowing good to triumph over evil.

The PICT staff did a good job in conveying Shakespeare’s original vision for this play. It conveyed the universality of Shakespeare’s work, which is that good triumphs over all.

How-to Assignment: Learning to Drive a Rig

                              LEARNING TO DRIVE A RIG
                 A Writer Goes Where Few Writers Have Gone Before
                You’re unemployed/underemployed. You need a full time job with some benefits. You have few marketable skills. You’ve seen many newspaper ads for truck drivers. You think, ‘I can earn nearly $50,000 with only four weeks of training,’ These  thoughts are what compelled me in 2001 to earn my Commercial Driver’s License(CDL). Take these following steps to financial security.
  •               Understand your role as a trucker. You will be the lifeblood of this nation’s economy. You will be  the vessel that carries goods from the producer to the consumer. Without you, the economy would come to a standstill.  This role also entails good customer service. You must get your load to it’s destination on time. Develop a good rapport with your receiving agents. They have the final say over whether to accept or to reject your delivery.
  •             Establish a good support system at home. You will be on the road for weeks at a time. Have at home people you can trust to keep the home fires going.
  •             Select a training facility. Many vocational schools, including the Central Westmoreland Vo-Tech, offer CDL training. Also, many companies, such as Schneider, Covenant and US Express, have their own training programs. There also are schools that specialize in CDL training, including Truck Driving Institute in Irwin and All-State Career School, North Versailles. Jamie Zugaro, CDL Program Coordinator for All-State Career School, offers an overview of the school’s program. “We have a six- month program,” he said. “Students spend 10 weeks in class, learning the rules of the road. They then spend 10 weeks on backing skills. They learn the straight line back, the reverse lane change, parallel parking and alley dock. They spend another month on driving.
  •             Secure funding. Most training facilities want their money up front and in full, so this step is important. Many vocational rehabilitation programs, including the Private Industry Council (PIC) and the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) offer grants to pay for job training. Many companies reimburse their drivers for their tuition to trucking school.
  •             Get a Department of Transportation Physical All trucking companies  require their drivers to carry their physical card at all times.
  •             Head to the Classroom.  During your training, you first will learn the rules of the road for a CDL driver. You also will cover such topics as carrying hazardous materials. You also will learn the standard operating procedures for a break-down.
  •             Head to the Range.  You will learn to do a straight-line back, which is backing up the truck-and trailer-in a straight line.  You then will learn the reverse lane change, in which you will cross lanes while in reverse, again with a tractor and trailer. You then proceed to the serpentine, in which you navigate a series of obstacles while driving in a serpentine fashion. Then, comes the big day-your driving test at the D.O.T. Just stay as calm as possible. Remember that you made it this far. You can handle this last test between you and your CDL.
  •              Find a Company to Drive for.. Find a company that suits your needs in respect to pay and hometime. Many companies will run you until you specify otherwise, so communicating with your dispatcher is important. Zugaro said that All-State Career School tries to host at least one recruiter a week.
  •              Take a camera. You will be seeing parts of this country that you otherwise never would have seen. Don’t miss a moment of it. Take the time to talk to the locals as much as possible. Get copies of local newspapers to get a feel for the issues at hand.

Assignment 2-Question and Answer



Local Chiropractor Heals Patients, Forges Relationships

Dr. Brian Moreland, University of Pittsburg-Greensburg Class of 1998, remembers the day a chiropractor helped relieve him of severe allergy symptoms. Now, the 38 year old owner/operator of Back in Motion Chiropractic Office in Latrobe uses the psychology background he gained at Pitt-Greensburg and the Chiropractic training he received at Logan College of Chiropractic to offer a holistic approach to medicine and to forge relationships within the community.

1.   What made you choose chiropractic medicine over traditional medicine?

I started out with a pre-med curriculum. Once I started investigating the differences in lifestyles, I knew at some point I wanted to have a family. Working sixty to eighty hours a week would not allow me to spend as much time at home as I wanted. Chiropractic medicine allowed me more opportunities to set my own hours.

Also, as a doctor in private practice, I develop my own business and determine my own success.

       During my senior year in high school, I went to go see a chiropractor in Shadyside who was a friend of the family in order to shadow him to see what a day in the life of a chiropractor might be like.  After several hours of watching him treat patients, there was a short gap in his schedule, so the doctor asked me if I had any type of aches, pains or health ailments.  I stated that I was perfectly healthy as I had no symptoms that I considered to be chiropractically-related.  The doctor then had me lay on the adjusting table for him to palpate my spine to see if I had any areas that didn’t feel normal.  When the doctor felt around at the top of my neck, he asked me if I ever got sinus headaches or suffered from allergies. I looked at him oddly as I didn’t understand the connection at the time, but admitted to him that I never had allergies as a child, but that I had developed a serious allergy to freshly-cut grass when I was a teenager. The chiropractor just smiled at me, as though his suspicions were verified, and he then proceeded to adjust my neck.  
       Several years prior to my visit to the chiropractor, I used to mow several neighbors’ lawns as a summer job, but then out of the blue, I began to have horrible sneezing episodes, my eyes would water and it became a real chore to mow for even 5 minutes, let alone hours on end like I had done in previous years.  As a result, I was forced to give up these jobs to take a different job that didn’t aggravate my allergies.
      Low and behold, the chiropractor explained the correlation between the nervous system, spinal misalignments, and dysfunction in the body, and then told me that the adjustment he had just provided should substantially reduce my allergies.  Sure enough, I was able to mow my parents’ entire yard the next day and didn’t have any eye irritation, and I didn’t sneeze a single time.  My very first chiropractic adjustment had made my grass allergy virtually disappear.  To this day, I am almost always symptom-free in the presence of freshly-cut grass, but if I do notice myself sneeze, then I immediately schedule an appointment with one of my chiropractic colleagues to get adjusted, as this is a sign of an upper cervical misalignment causing dysfunction in my body. 
     As a result of the amazing results that I saw with my first chiropractic adjustment, I had all of the confirmation that I needed to act on my thoughts that I might like to become a chiropractor.


2.   What are the differences between traditional medicine and chiropractice medicine.

As a chiropractor, I seek to find the underlying cause of people’s problems and fix that cause. Traditional medicine provides medicines to minimize the symptoms and often overlooks the root cause. For example, if somebody has bad back spasms, a PCP would prescribe painkillers and muscle relaxers. The reason for that spasm can be an irritated nerve. My approach identifies where that irritation is. I adjust the bone. Basically, the body heals itself.

I have good working relationships with most local medical professionals. I get referrals from them. Traiditonal medicine has limitations, as does chiropractice medicine. Chiropractic medicine compliments traditional medicine. We can co-manage back pain. Each of us heals a different component. We work  hand in hand.

3. What made you decide to attend UPG?

I spent my first two years of college at Pitt-Main. Being in the city, I missed the country. I was shy back then. I didn’t go out much. Also, living in Greensburg would allow me to work while I attended school. I worked at Masso’s Medical Supply, mostly in customer service.

4.     What made you choose Psychology as a major?

I wanted to have a B.S. so that I could go on to chiropractic school. Psychology interested me because I liked the faculty. Deborah Evans-Rhoades inspired me a lot. I served as her teaching assistant. Diane Marsh and Dan Millberg also inspired me. I enjoyed the coursework and I had outstanding faculty.

5.  How does your background in Psychology help you as a chiropractor?

There is more than a physical component to pain. My background in Psychology allows me to understand patients’ pain. It makes me a better doctor in that I recognize other issues. I am more attuned to underlying causes. I can refer my patients to counselors



6. How/Why did you become involved in the  Pitt Greensburg Alumni Association?

Because I was a commuter, I wasn’t that involved on campus while I was a as student My affinity for Pitt came later. I realized what a gem we have. We are extended family here. We have over 1,000 students, but we still have a very intimate campus.

I very much appreciate everyone who helped me get where I am. Pitt Greensburg had a lot to do with my success. I knew that I wanted to get involved. I didn’t know how exactly. I attended an alumni board meeting. I quickly joined the board.  I soon rose through the ranks. I kept moving through the offices until I was president.

7. You have won the Alumni Distinction Award and  the PGAA volunteer award. Of which award are you the most proud?

The Alumni Distinction Award recognizes my professional achievements in addition to my volunteer work at the university. I’ve learned my work ethic and how to give back while at Pitt-Greensburg.

Being involved with the Pitt Alumni Association has been very rewarding. It has allowed me to become active on campus that I wasn’t active on as a student. I’ve made some wonderful friendships. I also have made a lot of successful business contacts through my volunteer work. It also has allowed me to strengthen ties between the Pittsburgh and Oakland campuses. It’s nice to be able to expand what Pitt-Greensburg has to offer.

I introduced an idea that I saw in Oakland-the idea of a Student-Alumni Association. It’s a wonderful program that incubates future alumni leaders.

We also have a leadership breakfast. We brought in local legislators and federal officers in Congress. We educated them on what we have to offer as well as the challenges we face in an effort to improve our campus.

8.  What would you like to see at UPG in the future?

I’m amazed at the improvements and the expansion on campus. We’re striving to add when neeed while preserving our older facilities. It’s a well-maintained campus. The leaders at Pitt-Greensburg should  keep doing what they’re doing.