ESU Celebrates Latinx Heritage Month with Yai Vargas

To celebrate Latinx Heritage Month, East Stroudsburg University will welcome Yai Vargas, a career and diversity consultant, as she delivers a virtual keynote address on Thursday, October 7 at 6 p.m. The program will take place via Zoom and is open to the public at no cost.

ESU’s Center for Multicultural Affairs and Inclusive Education will host Vargas’s presentation, “Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month: Personal and Professional Branding – Leveraging Your Culture & Authenticity.”

Yai Vargas has 15 years of professional experience as a career and diversity consultant, designing inclusive programs for increased productivity, employee engagement and culture change via employee resource and business resource groups.

She has expertise in developing & delivering training for career and leadership development including topics like: allyship, cultural intelligence, diversity, equity vs. equality, intersectionality, microaggressions and more.

Vargas also focuses on leadership skills like executive presence, professional branding and thought leadership. She has led the Financial Women’s Association Emerging Leaders Network of New York, has worked to develop money investing workshops for women with Ellevest, and has been featured in MakersMoney and on CNBC, Yahoo Finance, Forbes and Nasdaq for her work on Latina Equal Pay.

Vargas also founded The Latinista, a national organization for Latinas and Women of Color invested in career and leadership development. The Latinista has chapters in Chicago, Miami, NYC and Los Angeles, serving as a resource for thousands of women focused on inclusion, professional development and financial literacy.

The link to attend the virtual Latinx Heritage Month keynote presentation via Zoom is: For more information contact L. Jamila Fleming, director of ESU’s Center for Multicultural Affairs and Inclusive Education, by emailing

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ESU Names Peter Schweyer Fellow for 2021-2022 Academic Year

Pictured from left to right: Andrea McClanahan, Ph.D., professor of communication and member of the ESU Legislative Fellow Committee; State Representative Peter Schweyer, 22nd Legislative District; Kenneth Long, interim president of ESU; and Andrea Jackson, a sophomore majoring in athletic training and president of ESU’s Student Government Association from Newark, N.J.

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania announced the selection of its 2021-2022 Legislative Fellow, State Representative Peter Schweyer, at a breakfast held in his honor on Friday, September 17. ESU Interim President Kenneth Long introduced Representative Schweyer at the event to university faculty, students, staff and special guests from the community.

The Legislative Fellow program, established in 1999, is designed to bring state legislators to campus to participate in a variety of campus activities and to meet formally and informally with students, faculty and staff throughout the year. As part of the program, ESU Legislative Fellows may also request a student intern. 

The program is co-sponsored by the university administration and the local chapter of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF). Fellows are selected by a committee of faculty and administrators, and jointly appointed by the university president and the president of APSCUF at the beginning of each academic year.

Representative Schweyer was elected to represent the 22nd Legislative District in 2014. He serves as a deputy whip in the House Democratic Caucus and is a member of the House Appropriations, Committee on Committees, Consumer Affairs, Ethics and Professional Licensure Committees. He is also Vice-Chairman of the House Democratic Policy Committee and also serves as the Minority Chair for the House Consumer Affairs Subcommittee on Utilities. 

Representative Schweyer’s legislative priorities include protecting and expanding access to health insurance, appropriately funding PA’s public schools and supporting policies to spur the creation of more family-sustaining jobs in the Lehigh Valley. He supports increasing Pennsylvania’s minimum wage, continued criminal justice reform, investment in sustainable, alternative energy and initiatives to better serve our veterans.

Schweyer also serves on several community organizations that strive to improve the quality of life in Allentown and surrounding communities. Most notably, Schweyer is a past board member and past chairperson of the Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority (LANTA).

Born and raised in Allentown, Schweyer is a graduate of Allentown Central Catholic High School and the Pennsylvania State University, State College, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the Schreyer’s Honors College. He went on to study elementary education at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia at the post-graduate level. Prior to being elected to represent the 22nd district, Schweyer worked as director of community and government affairs for Sacred Heart Hospital in Center City Allentown, directing the hospital’s community health and community development initiatives. Immediately prior to his service with Sacred Heart Hospital, he served as chief of staff to former state Rep. Jennifer L. Mann for eight years. He had also served as legislative assistant for two other members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly and had been a schoolteacher in the Philadelphia School District as a cohort member of the Teach Philadelphia program.

Schweyer and his wife, Jennifer, are the proud parents of Sarah and Erin, who both attend Allentown public schools.

For more information on the Legislative Fellow program, contact Miguel Barbosa, chief of staff in ESU’s Office of the President at 570-422-3545.

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ESU Welcomes Families to Campus

Photo: A family poses during ESU’s Family Weekend in 2019. The event was cancelled last year due to COVID-19. This year’s Family Weekend is scheduled for September 17-19 on ESU’s campus.

East Stroudsburg University invites community members to campus for its annual Family Weekend activities, Friday, September 17, through Sunday, September 19. The weekend is designed to bring campus and community together, and introduce students’ family members to the campus and surrounding Pocono Mountains region. Families can learn more about their students’ lives at ESU, as well as participate in fun events held by ESU and local businesses.

The weekend will host events on campus for all ages and interests. Legacy families are invited to a breakfast reception on the Main Quad with Interim President Kenneth Long for the annual Pinning Ceremony and their induction into the ESU Legacy Program. The Schlisler Museum of Wildlife and Natural History and McMunn Planetarium will offer tours and a film, free for ESU students. President Long will also host a reception with first-generation students. On Sunday, ESU will welcome the community as it hosts the Pocono Latin Fest.

Some events on campus throughout the weekend that will be open to the general public include:


Drag Bingo

Friday, September 17

7-9 p.m., Main Quad

Drag Queens Sharon Ann Husbands and Carol Ann Carol Ann will call BINGO.

Classic Car Show

Saturday, September 18

9 a.m.-1 p.m., College Circle, ESU

Monroe County Cruisers will provide a great show of collector cars for classic car enthusiasts.

Esports Room Ribbon Cutting

Saturday, September 18

10:30 a.m., Mattioli Recreation Center

The new esports room features 10 gaming stations that include Alienware Aurora gaming PCs, Dell monitors, Alienware gaming mice and Alienware RGB keyboards.  There are three console stations with Xboxes and Nintendo Switches, gaming chairs and headsets and much more.

Warrior Bash

Saturday, September 18

3-5 p.m., Main Quad

Celebrate your ESU pride with sand art, stuff-a-plush, and more.

Family Movie Night

Saturday, September 18

8 p.m., Main Quad

The whole family can enjoy a screening of Raya and the Last Dragon

Pocono Latin Fest

Sunday, September 19

12-6 p.m., Pit Parking Lot

ESU is proud to host a day of authentic Latin food, music, and fun


Field Hockey

ESU vs. Lindenwood

Saturday, September 18

11 a.m., Whitenight Field


ESU vs. Mercyhurst

Saturday, September 18

1:05 pm., Eiler-Martin Stadium

Women’s Soccer

ESU vs. Mansfield

Saturday, September 18

7 p.m., Eiler-Martin Stadium

For a complete schedule of Family Weekend events and event ticket prices please visit For more information about Pocono Latin Fest visit

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ESU Honors Two Faculty as Distinguished Professors

Photo, left to right: Kenneth Long, ESU interim president; Dr. Shala Davis, professor of exercise science; Dr. Nancy VanArsdale, professor of English; and Dr. Margaret Ball, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs.

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania presented its annual Distinguished Professor Awards to Shala Davis, Ph.D., professor of exercise science, and Nancy VanArsdale, Ph.D., professor of English, at the first All-University meeting of the academic year, on Tuesday, September 7.

The Distinguished Professor Award – the highest honor for ESU faculty to receive – is presented based on outstanding contributions to the academic life of the University and its reputation. The award of Distinguished Professor is conferred upon an individual by the ESU Interim President, Kenneth Long, in recognition of exceptional achievements in teaching, research/scholarship/creative activities, and service.

Dr. Davis, a professor of exercise science at ESU, has been chair of the Department of Exercise Science since 2011, and she has been with the university as a professor of exercise science since 1996.

Davis earned a B.S. in physical education and health from the University of Delaware in 1987, an M.S. in health and sport science with an emphasis in cardiac rehabilitation from Wake Forest University in 1989, and a Ph.D. in exercise physiology from the University of Virginia in 1994.

Davis has dedicated her considerable talents to serving ESU across many areas of the university. She developed ESU’s doctorate (D.H.Sc.) in health sciences, and she serves as the program’s coordinator. She also developed ESU’s Master of Science (M.S.) in exercise science. In addition, she has served as chair of the Institutional Review Board at ESU since 2001, guiding to fruition most of the research studies undertaken by faculty and students at the university. She has also served as interim dean of the College of Health Sciences. Through her active participation on a regular basis at all levels of university deliberations, she has been a reliable source of information and perspective for formulating university policy.

Davis is especially dedicated to serving needs of doctoral students in the College of Health Sciences, who she regularly communicates with and advises. For example, she meets with her doctoral students on weekends before the start of courses that other professors are teaching in case any issues need addressing.

Davis has a prolific publication record. Her research interests include weight maintenance strategies and training, and nutrition knowledge. She has over 70 referred publications that she has co-authored with a variety of scholars from ESU as well as other universities. The title of her most recent co-authored publication in 2019 is “Upper Body Training Methods and Their Effect on Lower Body Performance Tests.” She also has published five book reviews, and she has delivered 45 presentations while collaborating with other scholars on more than 130 presentations at professional conferences.

Davis has secured over $500,000 in grants for her research, including an $84,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health, for her study to “Enhance Exercise Self-Efficacy and Improve Fitness Among Black and Hispanic College-age Women.”

Davis has served her profession as a peer reviewer both for the journal of Medicine Science Sports Exercise and for the journal of Gerontology, and she was a reviewer for three guidelines and professional standards books by the leading organization in her profession, The American College of Sports Medicine. She also regularly advises NCAA Division I teams on educating athletes to eat for performance.

Through her teaching of nine undergraduate courses, 13 graduate courses, and three doctoral courses, Dr. Davis’s dynamism and organization continue to be integral to the conferral of three levels of degrees
at ESU.

Dr. VanArsdale, a professor of English at ESU, joined the university in 1990.

She earned a B.A. in English from Bucknell University in 1979, a Graduate School Business Administration Certificate from New York University in 1983, an M.A. in English from NYU in 1981, and her Ph.D. in English from NYU.

VanArsdale has dedicated her career at ESU to collaborating with faculty, administrators and students to help set the direction of the university. In her capacity as the president of the faculty union APSCUF, a position she has held since 2000, as well as her position as a member of the APSCUF negotiations team, her leadership has been crucial in guiding the university through contract negotiations, scholarship fundraising, recruiting students, communicating with statewide APSCUF, and implementing new instructional modes necessitated by the pandemic.

As the chair of the Department of English from 1999-2014, VanArsdale oversaw implementation of the ESU Writing Studio, as well as the English department’s Professional Writing Master of Arts degree, for which she developed coursework. In addition, she collaborated with the Department of Communication to create a concentration in public relations sharing coursework from both departments.

VanArsdale is an internationally recognized scholar and she is widely admired as a teacher by her students and peers. She has taught 15 courses at both the undergraduate level and the graduate level. She has 19 publications, and she has delivered more than 80 presentations at professional conferences. She is an expert on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, having co-authored a book called Approaches to Teaching The Great Gatsby. She is a Fulbright Scholar Award recipient, which she received to teach English literature in Belgium and Luxembourg. As a teacher, she has a reputation for effectively blending classroom knowledge with workplace experience in such courses as Workplace Writing, and Professional Writing: PR. Students in her courses have benefited her role as a consultant for Time magazine, which she worked for full-time as a manager and writer prior to coming to ESU.

Dr. VanArsdale has generously served in leadership roles on many committees significantly impacting university operations including chairing the Distinguished Professor Selection Committee, chairing the Middle States Task Force on Publications, and chairing the University Calendar Committee.

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ESU Alumni Invited to Pick Up the Poconos

Calling all Warriors! Help keep the Pocono Mountains beautiful by volunteering to Pick Up the Poconos on Saturday, September 25, 2021 from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Registration deadline is Monday, September 20, 2021 at 5 p.m. For more information, call 570-422-7956.

Register to volunteer!

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Homecoming Weekend 2021: Registration Now Open!

Welcome back, Warriors! Registration for our exciting Homecoming Weekend events is now open!

Check out the website today!

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Alumni Class Notes

What’s new with you? New job, promotion, married, or have a new addition to the family? We’d love to know! Share your achievements with your classmates through Class Notes. They will appear in the upcoming edition of the Alumni Herald magazine.

Please send to and include a photo, too!

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ESU Welcomes New Students to Campus

On Friday, August 27, 2021, students, faculty, staff, and alumni volunteers helped 1,100 freshman and transfer students planning to live on East Stroudsburg University’s campus this year move in to their residence halls.

Among the volunteers was Interim President of ESU, Kenneth Long.

Approximately 1,725 students will be living on ESU’s campus, their home away from home for the academic year.

Classes began, today, August 30.

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Madelon Powers Gallery to Present Joni Maya Oye: 25>

East Stroudsburg University’s Madelon Powers Gallery will feature Joni Maya Oye: 25>, a survey of work by artist Joni Maya Oye, August 30-October 1. 

Gallery hours are 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Friday.  

A reception for the artist will be held Wednesday, September 8 from 4 – 7 p.m. in the gallery, located in the university’s Fine & Performing Arts Center, Normal and Marguerite streets. Both the exhibit and reception are open to the public at no cost.

The work will include sculptures from Oye’s major series: window, niche, and dwelling as well as vessel forms. Her work is primarily raku and sawdust fired, and often incorporates other materials. Her work is a meditation on the constantly changing impermanence of life. 

Joni Maya Oye was born in Philadelphia. She graduated with a bachelor of fine arts from Washington University in St. Louis School of Fine Arts and received her masters of fine arts from Tama Fine Art University in Tokyo, Japan. She has participated in numerous group shows, invitationals, and has had several solo exhibitions. 

Oye recently retired from the faculty of ESU where she taught for 25 years. Much of the work displayed at this exhibit will be for sale with a portion of the proceeds benefiting scholarships for ESU art + design students.

For more information about the exhibition or reception, email or call 570-422-3483.

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ESU Welcomes Two Frederick Douglass Scholars for the 2021-2022 Academic Year

Photo: left to right: Wesley T. Brown and Dr. Hanif M. Bey      

East Stroudsburg University will welcome two Frederick Douglass Scholars to campus this academic year, Hanif M. Bey, DSW, instructor of social work in the Department of Sociology, Social Work & Criminal Justice and Wesley T. Brown, instructor of ceramics in the Department of Art + Design. 

Dr. Beyis a licensed social worker with a Doctor of Social Work degree from the joint program at Kutztown-Millersville Universities. He has taught part-time at ESU for the past seven years, which has included coursework in Crisis Intervention, Child Welfare Services, Helping Philosophies and Methods for Social Work, and Human Behavior & the Social Environment. Dr. Bey’s research interests and passions include dismantling white supremacy and racism, social and economic justice, and social work education. In addition, for the last 17 years, he has been a full-time hospital social worker at Lehigh Valley Health Network-Pocono. His three decades of practice experiences include the NYC Child Welfare Administration, specializing in child sexual abuse protection, NYC Legal Aid Society-Criminal Defense Division as a forensic social worker, and preventive services supervisor at the Lower East Side Family Union. He is an active member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), and a member of the Emerging Baccalaureate Social Work Educator-Scholars Initiative with the Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors (BPD). He was born and raised in the South Bronx, is a husband, father, and loves to read and cook. 

Brown is a ceramic artist from Dayton, Ohio. He holds an Associate of Arts degree from Sinclair Community College, a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Bowling Green State University, and a Master of Fine Art from Indiana University-Bloomington. During his schooling, Brown sought out and worked for such potters as Mark Goertzen, Daniel Johnston, Alex Matisse, and Daniel Evans. Since graduating from Indiana University, Brown has worked to develop bodies of work from large-scale ceramic sculptures weighing several hundred pounds to everyday functional pottery. He has exhibited work both at the national and international levels. He has been a long-term resident at Baltimore Clayworks and a short-term resident at East Mitchell Clay. Through clay, Brown conveys both struggles and triumph through cracked surfaces, striking silhouettes, and bold compositions. 

The Frederick Douglass Institute (FDI) at ESU is a collaborative organization with a mission to enhance and support diversity through the recruitment of graduate students from underrepresented populations. It also provides opportunities for FDI graduate student scholars to participate in diversity research, outreach, to involve the greater community in diversity programming, and to sponsor an annual diversity forum. In addition, FDI encourages faculty diversity through collaborative initiatives to recruit visiting scholars/artists who are committed to the ideals of the institute.

For more information about the Frederick Douglass Institute at ESU contact the office of the provost by calling 570-422-3539.

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