Every member of our community – students, parents and alumni — experiences Alvernia in a different way. How have your gifts to the Alvernia Fund helped them? Keep reading and find out.
Johnathnael Pena believes in hard work, and he believes in pursuing his dreams. Growing up in one of the poorest cities in America, Johnathnael knew that education and perseverance were the keys to success. He is committed to his own future and the futures of the children living in his neighborhood now.
As a police officer, he hopes to be both a force for good and a role model. “By becoming a police officer in the city my biggest goal is to educate the youth and help inspire them into becoming a positive asset to society through vocalizing my struggles and life experiences.”
These are values that he has shared during his time as a peer mentor at Alvernia as well. “My most memorable moment as a peer mentor was when I was approached by a student who told me that she really appreciated me listening to her. This meant a lot to her because throughout her lifetime she had never had someone sit down with her to let her vent her frustrations and give her advice on how to alleviate them. It was definitely memorable for me because I became a safe haven for her, I gave her an outlet she never had, and most of all she found herself and was visibly more content with life after the fact.”
Jennifer Innamorato cares about taking care of people. Young or old, inpatient or out, Jennifer wants to do her part to make people’s lives better. After graduation, she will return how to New Jersey to fulfill her dreams as an occupational therapist.
As a peer mentor at Alvernia, Jennifer has already touched many lives. “My most memorable moment as a peer mentor was meeting with all of my freshman students throughout the semester and helping them with scheduling. I was able to meet and talk to students individually, and it also gave them a chance to ask me questions related to any concerns they were having. I still see the freshmen I had in my class, who are currently sophomores today. One of them is now a peer mentor, and he told me I inspired him to become a peer mentor, which was a really awesome feeling!”