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Founders Village Dedicated

Date: 3/25/2011

(From left to right) Sister Florence, Sr. Madonna, President Flynn, and Sister Jacinta enjoy a moment after dedicating Founders Village to Sisters Zygmunta and Pacelli.

Alvernia University dedicated Founders Village today, and unveiled the names of buildings one and two — now called Zygmunta Hall and Pacelli Hall, after two very recognizable and memorable members of the Bernardine Franciscan Sisters.

Groundbreaking for two more Founders Village residence halls is expected to begin later this year.

The dedication kicked off with a Mass celebrating the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord (in the Motherhouse’s Sacred Heart Chapel), and was followed by a dedication ceremony outside of the Founders Village Apartments. Students, Bernardine Sisters, faculty, staff, and members from the community who were instrumental in the construction of Zygmunta and Pacelli Halls were in attendance.

Sisters Jacinta, Florence, and Madonna Harvath from the Bernardine Franciscan Order spoke about the lives and legacy of Sisters Zygmunta and Pacelli. Student Ambassador Marissa DeLucia (active in SGA, Campus Ministry, and Students Teaching Others Peace) also offered a few words.

Sister Zygmunta, who among many other accomplishments was the founding President of Alvernia. She is also responsible for asking Sister Pacelli to join the Alvernia English department two years later (in 1960). Click here for an oral history of Sister Zygmunta and click here to read Sister Pacelli's biography.

As part of the Campus Master Plan, ground-breaking for the Halls began in September of 2008. One hundred fifty four upper-class students filled the roughly 27,000 square foot facilities, which overlook the new turf field, in August 2009.

Click here to see more photos from the dedication ceremony.

  • 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.