New on-campus space, made possible by a grant from the PNC Foundation, will serve as a hub for academic support

With the support of a $100,000 grant from the PNC Foundation, Spalding University has established the PNC Center for Student Success, a new space on campus that centralizes and strengthens the university’s academic support services.

The new PNC Center for Student Success brings together the Writing & Peer Learning Center, the Center for Accessibility & Learning Equity’s reading support services and Success Coaches program, and the Math Lab. Located on the second floor of the university’s library, this shared space will improve ease of access and visibility to resources for students, while also fostering administrative coordination.

“Spalding University is known throughout our region for its efforts to close the equity gap in higher education, and for its contributions to the development of our local workforce,” said Kristen Byrd, PNC regional president for Louisville. “The services and resources offered at the PNC Center for Student Success will help ensure today’s students and tomorrow’s workforce are equipped to thrive.”

Integral to the delivery of the center’s services is a faculty/peer-mentor staffing model, which accommodates a variety of learning styles and is designed to reach students statistically at-risk for attrition, including first-generation and minority students.

These services include tutoring, research guidance, assistance with math and reading comprehension, study skills development, test preparation and technology use. Additionally, the center aims to foster a sense of community and collaboration, with a comfortable common space where students can connect with each other.

“I remember being in the residence halls when I was a student, and we would converse for hours and debate as part of our student experience,” said Tomarra Adams, dean of undergraduate education. “Our vision for the PNC Center for Student Success is to create that kind of synergy for students. They come to get the technical help, but they also feed off the energy of learning and the interactions that a central space fosters. Thereby, they get to share ideas and learn in a different way.”

The PNC Center for Student Success’ grand opening will be 2:00 p.m., May 11, 2022. President Tori Murden McClure, Dean Tomarra Adams, PNC Regional President Kristen Byrd and the center’s coordinators will share remarks.

# # #

About PNC Foundation: The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (, actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.

About Spalding University: Established in 1814 and located in downtown Louisville since 1920, Spalding is a historic, private institution that offers graduate, undergraduate and accelerated programs in a range of areas of study. The regionally accredited university offers an innovative schedule of seven six-week sessions per year, allowing students to earn a bachelor’s degree at their own pace. Its athletic teams compete in NCAA Division III. Spalding was recognized as the world’s first Compassionate University. More information is available at

The building will be named the Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn Fieldhouse

LOUISVILLE — The Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn Family graciously donated $500,000 to Spalding University to build the university’s first on-campus field house. The structure will reside on the northeast section of Spalding’s new Athletic Complex (910 South Eighth Street), which will host the men’s and women’s soccer and lacrosse and women’s softball teams during home games.

Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn’s gift is one in a series of large donations to athletics in Louisville. For the Lynn family, the city directly benefits from sports programs. It’s an opportunity they are eager to support.

“If you can help the athletic department, you help more than just the student athletes — you help the whole campus,” Mark Lynn said. “As you build your athletic department, so do you build your enrollment. It’s just part of the circle of being an all around student, having things to be proud of with your school.”

Not only will the gift create a shared space and source of pride for Spalding student-athletes, it will also further enhance the university’s presence and engagement in the city’s landscape. The Spalding Athletic Complex, located on a formerly abandoned industrial site and transformed into the first on-campus home for outdoor sports, was unveiled in October 2019. Along with the addition of the field house the complex is a cultural landmark connecting students and the local community.

Education is fundamental to the Lynn family. All four of their kids graduated college.The family’s philanthropy shows their kids the importance of leaving behind a good legacy.

“Education is the one thing nobody can ever take away from you,” Mark Lynn said. “If you have an education, you’ll figure out how to survive. You’ll figure out how to thrive. You will always be better off if you can have something behind you to say, ‘Look. Here’s what I did. Here’s what I accomplished. Here’s who I am.’ ”

The Lynn family believes donating to universities in the city will create a stronger workforce and creative solutions.

As the only Division III school in Louisville, and with 18 men’s and women’s sports teams, Spalding provides many paths for student-athletes who will be the next generation of educators, care providers, communicators and leaders. The Lynns recognize the importance of developing the student athlete into a productive member of the community.

“A very important aspect of this is making the city the best that it can be,” Cindy Lynn said. “I always think to myself how much money could be donated if everybody just gave a dollar.”

The construction timeline of the Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn Fieldhouse is to be determined. Once open, the field house will be available for use by all Spalding student athletes and the visiting teams who travel to play at the athletic complex.

In continuation of our Immigrant Stories, features highlighting students who identify as immigrants, we spoke with  Sahar Jamshed, a natural science major studying pre-dental. Sahar is from Afghanistan and moved to India as a refugee before coming to the United States.

If you feel comfortable doing so, share a little about your family and your experience of when and why you came to the United States? Were there any challenges you/your family faced?

I am from Afghanistan, Kabul. At a young [age], I moved to India as a refugee with my family. Life in Afghanistan is not what my parents wanted [for] us, living in fear and being tortured by society and its diplomatic people. We came to the United States because it’s the land of opportunity. Women are free to get an education and have a better life, and great things are available to be achieved by hard work and persistence. At first, life seemed very hard In America. I could barely speak the English language. My family did not have a clear idea of what they were going to do or [to] live here and to survive, but eventually, as years passed by, we figured it all out with help of other immigrant families and friends

Why did you decide to come to Spalding?

I decided to come to Spalding University (English being my second language) because I knew that I would need the extra help and attention from my professors in order to be successful in becoming a dentist.

BS in Natural Science | Program Overview

What has your experience been like as an immigrant student at Spalding, and are you happy/proud to now be a part of the Spalding community?

It has been a great journey here at Spalding University. I have had some great professors who are always there to help out. I am very proud and grateful to be here at Spalding University and to be part of such a humble a giving community.

Are there ways people could be more supportive of immigrant students?

People can be more supportive of immigrant students by simply making them feel welcome as Spalding University has [made] me [feel]. [Just] being there for them will help them in many ways. It will give them hope, something they did not have back in their home country.

What do you hope to do with your degree from Spalding, and does your immigrant experience influence your goals for your academic career, your professional career or your life?

I hope to achieve the greatest in my life. I feel lucky that as a woman I have the opportunity here in America to pursue the highest education, while many girls in Afghanistan do not have access nor the right to education. My bachelor’s degree from Spalding University will open up many doors towards my goals of becoming a dentist in the future. Being an immigrant and aiming for such as challenging and competitive field does encourage me and motivative me towards my professional career.

In continuation of our Immigrant Stories, features highlighting students who identify as immigrants, we spoke with  Mário Gouvêa Ransan. Mário, a candidate in the EdD: Leadership program, holds two degrees from Spalding — an MA in Teaching and an MEd in Instructional Leadership. He was a graduate of the inaugural  JCPS Aspiring Leaders program at Spalding. Mario was born in Brasil and moved to the United States when he was 12.

If you feel comfortable doing so, share a little about your family and your experience of when and why you came to the United States? Were there any challenges you/your family faced?

We came to the United States when I was 12 years old and my sisters and I spoke almost no English. I did not have a good experience while in middle and high school. Unfortunately, the teachers I had did not have the tools or training to help support an ELL student and I graduated High School with a very low GPA. This experience is what inspired me to be a teacher. I strive to make sure that no child has to go through the same experience I went through.

Why did you decide to come to Spalding?

I came to Spalding after speaking with Professor Todd about the alternative certification program. I was convinced of the program due to our shared mission and vision when it comes to education, equity and expectations we should hold for our teachers and students.

EdD: Leadership | Program Overview | College of Education
MA in Teaching | Program Overview
MEd in Instructional Leadership | Program Overview

What has your experience been like as an immigrant student at Spalding, and are you happy/proud to now be a part of the Spalding community?

I’ve felt welcomed at Spalding since day one of class. I have two master’s [degrees] from Spalding and am now working on my doctorate. Every single professor I’ve ever had has been encouraging and has helped me grow as a student and as a leader. I am very proud to be a Spalding student and am very happy with the time I’ve spent here.

Are there ways people could be more supportive of immigrant students?

I think one important thing is just being aware of who the immigrants within your room are and knowing the challenges that exist for those students. Even if the student is coming from an English-speaking country, there are important cultural differences that are crucial in being able to help students find success. Awareness is key. Spalding University as a whole always strives to be inclusive in all things, with a heavy focus on equity, and I appreciate that a lot.

What do you hope to do with your degree from Spalding, and does your immigrant experience influence your goals for your academic career, your professional career or your life?

My immigrant experience is a big driving force behind my goals. I am an educator and am striving to become an administrator within JCPS. My goal as an educator has always been to be the teacher that would have helped me be successful when I was in school. My goal as an administrator is to inspire and teach new teachers to be able to help all kids from all backgrounds and cultures find success. I hope to one day be able to grow this impact even further so that no child has to go through what I went through in school.

The U.S. recently celebrated Immigrants Day. In continuing that spirit, Spalding is highlighting some of our students who identify as immigrants. We are so grateful to have these students as a part of our community, and we thank them for sharing some about their journey to Louisville and our university. First is Maria Romo-Barajas, a Business Administration (Human Resources) senior who was born in Mexico before moving to California when she was 7. Romo-Barajas began pursuing her undergraduate degree twenty-two years after graduating from high school. She is now two classes away from earning her Spalding degree. 

What is your country of origin? 

I was born in Mexico and at the age of 7 moved to California. I started 2nd grade in the U.S. and I can still remember my first day of school like it was yesterday. The fear I felt, not being able to communicate with others, will remain engraved in my memory forever.

If you feel comfortable doing so, share a little about your family and your experience of when and why you came to the United States? Were there any challenges you/your family faced?

Being the oldest of two sisters and growing up with a single Mom was very challenging. I always had more responsibility than what was fitting for my age, including the need to translate for my Mother at the age of 7. This forced me to quickly learn the language, but it also gave me the opportunity to become bi-lingual and fluent at a very young age. There were a lot of hardships we went through, but it makes me appreciate everything I have today, especially [now that I have] a family of my own. I quickly understood that being an immigrant meant you have to work twice as hard, to prove you are a good person, deserving of living in this great country which I love. It took me years to accept that to some, no matter how much I achieve, I will always be an immigrant. And, that is ok because I know the journey to my accomplishments and that is all that matters.

Why did you decide to come to Spalding?

Recommendations from colleagues and the flexibility [that the schedule] offered is what attracted me to Spalding. It has given me the opportunity to fulfill my dream of obtaining a degree at my pace while balancing my family, work and school life.

BS in Business Administration | Program Overview | School of Business

What has your experience been like as an immigrant student at Spalding, and are you happy/proud to now be a part of the Spalding community?

The diversity at Spalding made me feel that I fit in, from day one. I have met great people from different backgrounds and cultures, which is very enriching. I am proud to attend Spalding, an inclusive school that is driven by ethical standards and has strong values.

Are there ways people could be more supportive of immigrant students?

I think the best way for others to be more supportive of immigrant students, is to be more of an active listener. Sometimes, something as basic as listening will expand our knowledge of other cultures, which not only can be interesting but also can help us understand our classmates’ struggles. [It can] give us the opportunity to help, in our own way.

What do you hope to do with your degree from Spalding, and does your immigrant experience influence your goals for your academic career, your professional career or your life?

My goal is to become part of the upper management group of professionals in the business world. I have been in management for 26 years, but not the level in management I desire. My degree, combined with my experience, will empower me to achieve this goal. Something that could make achieving my goal even better, [would be to] incorporate my bilingual skills with the management position I aspire to. That would be amazing!

Dear Spalding students,

Please join Spalding student development and campus life leaders, academic area leaders and other university leaders on our new HD Meeting platform (see link and instructions below) at noon, Thursday, Aug. 13 for a Town Hall meeting regarding the return to campus for Fall 2020.

The three of us – Dean of Students Janelle Rae, Dean of Undergraduate Education Dr. Tomarra Adams and Dean of Graduate Education Dr. Kurt Jefferson – will facilitate this candid conversation to assist you in understanding the changes to campus and academic life due to the COVID-19 pandemic and related regulations and protocols that will be implemented for all students, faculty and staff as classes begin for graduate students and undergraduate students in late August. This is an important meeting, and we request your attendance.

Students will learn about:

  • The Spalding Promise community pledge agreement regarding the importance of staying healthy, maintaining social distance, wearing a mask, and working to keep all Spalding community members safe during the 2020-21 academic year.
  • The daily student, faculty and staff health assessment via the #CampusClear app on one’s smartphone, tablet or personal communication device.
  • Classroom regulations and etiquette in face-to-face and hybrid classes and classroom hygiene.
  • Student success services and advising and how those services will be delivered in the coming year.
  • Campus housing updates, student activities, student health care via Eagle Care, and other important events, clubs, and group information and how the COVID-19 protocols affect the services of the Office of Student Development and Campus Life.
  • Campus dining and food consumption and access as the new academic year begins.
  • Academic policy updates that affect students focused on temporary and permanent academic policies that have been affected by the pandemic.
  • New classroom technologies and other features of remote, hybrid and face-to-face classrooms and learning at Spalding.

The information to join the meeting is at the very bottom of this message. Office Suite HD Meeting is a product that is new to Spalding in the 2020-21 year. To join an HD meeting you can download the plugin/app at this link: Or it will download automatically when clicking the invitation link below. There is also the option to call in only.

We are excited to see you at the Town Hall and for start the new academic year!


Tomarra Adams, Dean of Undergraduate Education
Kurt Jefferson, Dean of Graduate Education
Janelle Rae, Dean of Students

Spalding University is inviting you to a scheduled OfficeSuite meeting.

Topic: Back to School Student Townhall

Time: Aug 13, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join OfficeSuite Meeting

Meeting ID: 112 672 0193

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In times of strife, it is easy to pull away from others to focus on self and family and let outside concerns fall by the wayside. In the case of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, often we are not given a choice. We are being asked – sometimes mandated – to isolate ourselves from others. Self-isolation, quarantine and social distancing can feel challenging and lonely, but we must remind ourselves why we are taking these steps – not only to protect ourselves, but most importantly, to protect those in our community that are most vulnerable to contracting the virus.

By acknowledging this, it is clear that at the core, even acts of physical isolation, such as social distancing, are acts of service and compassion for our friends, neighbors and community members who are at the highest risk.

SPALDING COVID-19 PAGE | Resources and info for the students and employees 

Compassion and service, values Mother Catherine Spalding and the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth promoted fiercely, are alive on Spalding’s campus today. I am confident that our students, faculty and staff can harness these ideals in the midst of this difficult and often unpredictable pandemic. In fact, we’ve already witnessed students combating the spread of the virus through acts of compassion, by relocating from the residence halls to off-campus housing and by foregoing athletic competitions that require interstate travel. I’m sure there are countless more examples that I am not even aware of.

These students are truly living out Spalding’s mission statement and “meeting the needs of the times in the tradition of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth.” Therefore, I challenge you to heed the call of service – to not only consider your own well-being, but to actively fight for the well-being and safety of your community as a whole. Because, isn’t a sense of community the thing we are truly craving during this time of isolation?

The steps necessary to halt the spread of COVID-19 have highlighted how physical isolation and solitude can overwhelm and dishearten us, but we must remember that now, more than ever, we need to stay connected to each other and to our communities.

During this turbulent time, please consider offering your time in service of others, to the degree you are able. Below are some opportunities for community service surrounding the spread of COVID-19.

Dare to Care Food Bank

Dare to Care Food Bank is closely following developments with the COVID-19 challenge, especially for individuals who are food-insecure. The organization prioritizes the health and safety of our community, volunteers, and staff, and is taking extra precautions to safely respond to increased food needs during this time.

Dare to Care is accepting monetary donations (every $1 donated helps provide three meals) as well in-person volunteers. Dare to Care has limited volunteer shifts to 10 volunteers at a time and adjusted their usual volunteer model in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. All volunteers must be at least 14 years old. Learn more about how to support Dare to Care here:

Kentucky Blood Center

Are blood donation sites safe to visit? Yes! Blood donation is an essential medical service and, therefore, blood drives are not considered a mass gathering. As a healthcare organization, safety is KBC’s top priority. KBC is taking extra precautions in light of the coronavirus, including social distancing, disinfecting donor beds and surfaces after each use, making hand sanitizer available at all donation sites and offering prepackaged snacks for donor refreshment. Schedule an appointment to donate blood here:

Mutual Aid

Many cities and states are setting up comprehensive Mutual Aid networks to support their communities. Mutual Aid networks support communities in taking care of each other through sharing resources and skills, checking in on one another, and supplying family-like structure and support to those that may not have support otherwise. Learn more at the following links:

Lexington Mutual Aid:

Louisville Mutual Aid:

Kentucky Mutual Aid:

Youth Mutual Aid Fund:


As the global coronavirus pandemic continues to upend our everyday lives, it can be easy to give in to fear, frustration and acts of selfishness. Humans are wired for self-preservation (which is a good thing!), but we must be careful not to let greed and self-interest get in the way of one of humankind’s most profound strengths – community

Spalding University’s new freshmen were encouraged to get involved and make the most of their college experience during Thursday’s annual Convocation ceremony for first-year students at the Columbia Gym Auditorium.

The entire new freshman class gathered to hear words of advice and encouragement from Spalding Board of Trustees Chair Jim Rissler, Undergraduate Education Dean Dr. Tomarra Adams, Psychology Professor Dr. Steven Kniffley, alumna Chrystal Hawkins, Student Government Association President Haley Nestor, student leader Victor Edwards, University President Tori Murden McClure and adviser Jimmy Rowland.

They were given an explanation of the Spalding mission statement, and McClure presented each freshman with a mission coin to serve as a reminder of the importance of diversity, learning, spirituality, service, peace and justice at the institution. Years from now, when the same students graduate, they’ll be encouraged to give the coin to a person who influenced them and helped them on their college journey.

Nestor, a junior, said she has felt drawn to Spalding’s mission and sense of community since she began college.

“I strive to have the success that men and women from Spalding have had in previous years,” she said. “I share in being spiritually grounded in my everyday tasks, and I take huge pride in wearing ‘Spalding University’ across my chest when I’m off campus or going through the finish line at a cross country meet when I can’t breathe. So my question to you is, ‘How will you live it, share it and take pride in being a Golden Eagle?'”

Edwards said he had no idea what to expect when he moved from Florida to Spalding his freshman year, but he made a point on taking on new responsibilities and experiencing new things, including volunteering for a nonprofit, taking difficult courses outside his major, and becoming a residence hall adviser.

“I want you to notice opportunities that come up for you as a college student and take a leap of faith and decide to say yes to some of those opportunities,” he said.

Tanner Dewitt, a freshman secondary education major from Hancock County High School, said Edwards’ message stood out to him.

“It was really motivating,” Dewitt said. “He told us to go out there and explore things, not just go with our usual routine and go to classes and go back to the dorms and study but to also get involved with stuff, different clubs and activities. (Convocation) motivated me to do that as well as to learn more about the community, enjoy it and learn from my mistakes while I’m here.”

Jillian Moorefield, a criminal justice studies major from Indiana’s Floyd Central High School, had a similar takeaway from Convocation.

“I think the main message that I found interesting was getting involved in things you’re uncomfortable with,” she said. “That’s something that my dad has always told me, ‘Get involved, and push your boundaries so that you can better yourself.'”


Spalding University’s new class of first-time first-year students spent part of last week’s Engage student orientation helping out a neighbor while also getting an introduction to Spalding’s mission.

The freshmen completed a community service project to benefit the clients of the Wellspring mental health organization, which offers housing and psychiatric rehabilitation services for those struggling with mental illness.

The students gathered in the lower level of the Morrison Hall dorm, which is just across South Third Street from Wellspring’s Bernie Block Wellness center, and the freshmen assembled hundreds of hygiene kits and bagged meals that Wellspring distributed to individuals who are facing homelessness and mental illness.

“The work these students are doing is going to positively affect the lives of hundreds,” said Kim Johnson, Director of Development and Communications at Wellspring. “We so appreciate them taking the time to serve those in our community who need our help most.”

TODAY IS A GREAT DAY TO CHANGE THE WORLD | Meet more students making a difference

Spalding Director of Student Leadership and Service Learning Anna Foshee, who organized the service project, said the choice to work with Wellspring was a deliberate one because the organization is located adjacent to campus and because students may encounter those in need of services.

And Anita Hall, User Experience Librarian at Spalding, said that “being a good neighbor” is a core belief held by the university’s faculty and staff.

“We want to eliminate the stigma around those struggling with homelessness and mental illness,” Foshee said. “Instead of being fearful of them, we want students to feel compelled to do their part to help them in their time of need.”

Spalding freshmen conduct a service project every year as part of Engage. While the group of about 100 students packed the lunches and hygienes kits for Wellspring, another 30-40 did landscaping work around Morrison Hall, planting raised flower beds. Last year, Spalding’s freshmen stuffed back-to-school backpacks with school supplies that were distributed to young students through Kentucky Refugee Ministries.

“(At Spalding), you get to have the opportunity to actually make a change,” freshman accounting major Will Costello said. “It feels really good to get to do that. I think that young people are the key to making a change in the world.  It’s a great atmosphere here. Being a leader is about getting involved and being active in the community.”

LEARN MORE | The Record’s story and photos about the service project 



Got everything you need to start college?

With our new group of first-year Spalding University students set to arrive on campus in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, it’s a good time to remind our newcomers of the residence life department’s recommendations of what to pack for school and your life in the Spalding dorms.

Spalding’s beSU Move-In for new students is Wed, Aug. 19, the first day of Engage. (Here’s your checklist of what to get when you’re making those trips to the department store. We’ve put them in categories for items related to studying, sleeping, cleaning, eating and bathing/self-care, plus and a catch-all “miscellaneous” category.)

Be sure to check the student handbook for which items NOT to bring or which aren’t allowed in the dorms, as well as other information and rules regarding residence life.

If you have other questions about the dorms, email Residence Life Director Aaron Roberts at [email protected]








Index cards




Mattress cover


Throw blanket



Storage containers


Damage-free hanging strips


Laundry basket

Detergent/fabric softener

Small trash can

Trash bags

All-purpose cleaner

Paper towels/tissues

Broom and dustpan


Mini fridge




Travel mug

Water bottle




Shampoo/conditioner/body wash

Shower shoes/shower caddy





Nail clippers/tweezers

Other needed personal hygiene items



Small first-aid kit

Small sewing kit


Alarm clock

Checkbook/driver’s license

Prescription and over-the-counter medicines