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Seniors College pushes the “Bar”

Date: 11/19/2010

Alvernia Seniors College member, Doris Glick, questions a witness in a Berks Country courtroom, during a mock trial this week.


Seniors College pushes the “Bar”

Arriving early, eighteen members of an Alvernia Seniors College class sat quietly in the back of courtroom #9 as Berks County Prison inmates stood before the Honorable Judge Scott D. Keller one-by-one. Their teacher, Eleni Dimitriou Geishauser, Esq., — no stranger to the court room — quietly whispered to her students about the criminal precedings and the people taking part in them. She pointed to the bar separating the court room from the audience. “That’s the bar. Lawyers earn the right to cross it by taking the bar exam,” she explained.
Half an hour later, the bar doors opened and Judge Keller invited the members of the “Moot Court 102” class to set up for their mock murder trial. Students, who had been preparing for this moment for five weeks assumed the roles of prosecutors, defense attorneys, witnesses, and defendant. Judge Keller presided over the trial as Geishauser offered advice to the prosecution and defense. Immediately after the session ended, and before a shuttle returned the class to Alvernia, students asked Geishauser if she would be willing to teach another course.
Alvernia’s Seniors College offers three semesters of academic classes each year. The next session (beginning in January) will include classes on global warming, the history of books in the Bible (exploring if people will continue to read and learn from them), basic computing, and a course with State Trial Judge Judge Linda Ludgate — a 1977 graduate of Alvernia.
Annual Membership to the Seniors College is $50 — a great Christmas gift for anyone 55 years-of-age or older. Contact Sally Reading (610) 796-8357 or visit the Seniors College website for more details.

Click here to see photos from the Moot Court class event.

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Eleni Dimitriou Geishauser, Esq., prepares her class for its mock trial.

  • History: Established as a private four-year liberal arts college in 1958, Alvernia celebrated its 50th year by being awarded university status in 2008.
  • Heritage: Founded by the Bernardine Sisters, a Catholic religious order, the university embraces the Franciscan core values of service, humility, collegiality, contemplation and peacemaking.
  • Motto: “To Learn, To Love, To Serve”
  • Campus: The main campus in Reading is 121 acres, with two satellite campuses in Philadelphia and Pottsville (Schuylkill County).
  • Location: Our residential campus is situated three miles from center-city Reading, in the scenic Blue Mountain area of Eastern Pennsylvania.
  • Enrollment: 3,000 students attend Alvernia including 1,500 traditional undergraduates, 600 continuing education students, and 780 graduate students. Over 77% of first-year students live on campus.
  • Faculty: Our professors are accomplished scholars, experts in their fields, and supportive mentors. The student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1. Most classes are 20 students or fewer.
  • Athletics: NCAA Division III, member of the Commonwealth Conference of the Middle Atlantic States Athletic Corporation and member of Eastern College Athletic Conference, 8 men’s and 10 women’s intercollegiate sports.