Penn State Scranton To Host Italian Heritage Event

We are excited to welcome Italian-American Author, Louis Palazzi Jr to Penn State Scranton on Monday, April 25 at 5 p.m. in the Study Learning Center’s Sherbine Lounge. 

This event is sponsored by the UNICO Chapter of Scranton. 

Lou Palazzi Jr. lives locally in the NEPA area and in his work “The New Americans: Portraits of an Italian-American Family,” he sheds light on Italian Immigration from the perspective of a family whose origin was predominantly Northern. It follows the stories of immigrants who came during The New Immigration from 1880-1920. We will have special guests from UNICO, The Largest Italian American Service Organization in the United States present for this event who are looking forward to meeting our students. Lou will have copies of his book to personally sign for attendees. 

Food and refreshments will be provided free of charge.

Please use the links below to RSVP so we have a head count for food.

Book signing:

Pennsylvania American Water Announces Grants for Local Environmental Projects

Pennsylvania American Water announced today that 13 watershed-related projects across the Commonwealth will receive financial support through the company’s annual Environmental Grant Program. The recipients will receive a share of grant funds totaling nearly $75,000 for their community-based projects that improve, restore or protect watersheds.

A panel of judges selected the grant recipients from 50 applications, which were evaluated on environmental need, innovation, community engagement and sustainability.

“On this Earth Day, we are inspired by all of these organizations and their commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Mike Doran, president of Pennsylvania American Water. “We hope that these projects equally inspire our communities to get involved and help protect our natural resources.”

The 2022 grant recipients are:

· Berks Nature, Berks County – Papermill Dam Removal on the Cacoosing Creek ($6,476). Funding will be used to restore the riparian zone along Cacoosing Creek by planting native trees and plants. Additionally, a youth fishing program will be offered following the removal of the dam.

· Dormont Stormwater Authority, Allegheny County – West Liberty Avenue Parking Lot Rain Garden ($10,000). The Authority plans to install a rain garden at the West Liberty Avenue parking lot to provide a natural, pervious area for stormwater runoff. The garden will also help prevent flooding and debris from entering the collection system as a best management practice.

· Eastern Pennsylvania Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation, Luzerne County (EPCAMR) – Millcreek Watershed Cleanups ($3,435). The project involves stream cleanups of unnamed tributaries along Mill and Gardner Creeks, along with the installation of dataloggers to monitor flow and pollution from nearby abandoned mines.

· East Pikeland Township, Chester County – Hidden River Park & Preserve Riparian Corridor Revitalization ($10,000). Funding will go toward a riparian revitalization project with native shrubs, trees, and 95 acres of meadow grasses to reduce erosion and restore the native habitat.

· Ellwood City, Lawrence County – Phase III Five Points Community Garden ($6,300). With the grant, the borough will install additional garden beds, complete walking paths, and install signage at the Five Points Community Garden.

· Fairview Township, York County – Lawn to Meadow Conversion ($3,863). The project involves using native plants and grasses, including pollinators, to improve water quality by creating a meadow within the township to reduce runoff into local waterways.

· Indiana County Conservation District – First Waves Indiana ($6,390). First Waves Indiana plans to engage underserved youth in meaningful outdoor experiences, including tree planting, stream biology, paddleboarding, and fly fishing, with a resulting video of the program.

· Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority, Lackawanna County – Restoration Plantings ($5,200) With this funding, volunteers will re-establish a native and biodiverse ecosystem as part of a riparian buffer zone restoration planting program along the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail.

· Lackawanna River Corridor Association, Lackawanna County – Managing Stormwater/Rain Barrel Workshop ($2,500). Funding will go toward three rain barrel workshops for residents to educate them on stormwater management and demonstrate rain barrel construction.

· Three Rivers Waterkeeper, Allegheny County – 3 Rivers Watch Expanding Water Quality Monitoring ($9,850). Funding will go toward expanding the organization’s volunteer program, including training for volunteers to assess water quality, as well as increased monitoring, patrolling, and water quality sampling.

· Silver Spring Township, Cumberland County – Water Sampling and Analysis Project ($950). The project involves investigating the origin of pollution sources impairing tributaries to Conodoguinet Creek through water and soil testing. The goal is to reduce pollutants in the streams.

· Warren County Conservation District – Where Would Our Streams Be Without Trees ($690). The Conservation District plans to study the impact riparian buffer restoration has on water quality on Barton Run.

· Watershed Coalition of the Lehigh Valley, Northampton County – Restoration and Outreach Projects for Master Watershed Stewards ($9,240). The Coalition and its partners will install four native shrub nurseries for future sources for live stakes that can be used for stream bank stabilization to reduce pollution and erosion.

Pennsylvania American Water initiated its Environmental Grant Program in 2005 to support projects that protect or restore drinking water sources and surrounding watersheds. Since then, American Water has expanded the annual program to many of its state subsidiaries across the nation. To date, Pennsylvania American Water has donated more than $650,000 to fund more than 135 projects.

The Wright Center Launches Women’s Health Initiative

Dr. Erin McFadden

The Scranton Practice for The Wright Center for Community Health is launching a weekly initiative beginning in May to enable patients to catch up on their regularly scheduled women’s health care screenings.

The program begins Friday, May 6 and is available every Friday through Friday, July 29 from 1-4 p.m. at the Scranton Practice, 501 S. Washington Ave. The 30-minute women’s health care screenings will be under the direction of Dr. Erin McFadden, medical director of the Scranton Practice. The initiative will enable current patients to receive pelvic exams, breast cancer screenings and cervical cancer screenings, as well as referrals for mammograms.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of our patients have fallen behind on their regular women’s health care screenings,” said Dr. Supriana Bhandol, a resident physician in The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education’s Family Medicine Residency. “We are offering this special program to ensure that every one of our patients can schedule a convenient appointment to catch-up on these potentially life-saving screenings.”

Dr. Supriana Bhandol

Women between the ages of 21 and 29 should receive a cervical cancer screening every three years with a Pap smear, provided their last test was normal. A Pap smear can detect the presence of cervical cancer or cell changes that may lead to cervical cancer.

Between the ages of 30 to 65, women should have a cervical cancer screening every five years. The painless examinations include either a Pap smear and high-risk HPV test or a high-risk HPV test. The test can detect the presence of human papillomavirus, which are abnormal cells that can lead to cervical cancer and sexually transmitted infection.

To make an appointment for the women’s health initiative at the Scranton Practice, please call 570-941-0630. More information about The Wright Center is available at

Treasurer Garrity Announces New Director of Outreach and Marketing for Consumer Programs

Treasurer Stacy Garrity today announced the addition of Barbara Holbert to her staff to assume the new role of Director of Outreach and Marketing for Consumer Programs.

Holbert most recently worked as Senior Vice President of Professional Development & Strategic Alliances at the PA Association of Community Bankers and as the President & CEO of PACB Services, Inc. Holbert also spent two decades with the Pennsylvania Bankers Association as the Managing Director for PBA Services Corporation and as Vice President of Communications and Professional Development.

“Barbara will be an excellent addition to our team at Treasury,” Garrity said. “One of my primary focuses is outreach, and her extensive experience and background in that area will strengthen our team and ensure that more Pennsylvanians in every corner of the Commonwealth know about what Treasury has to offer them, including our great savings programs and unclaimed property program.”

“I’m thrilled to be joining the Treasury team,” Holbert said. “I’m eager to help increase awareness and adoption of the consumer-facing programs Treasury offers to Pennsylvanians. I look forward to developing innovative ways to expand outreach to inspire more Pennsylvanians to save for the financial security of their future and obtain unclaimed property that they may not be aware Treasury has been diligently safeguarding.”

As Director of Outreach and Marketing, Holbert will lead statewide outreach, community engagement, partnership development, and marketing for Treasury’s consumer programs, including unclaimed property, the PA 529 College and Career Savings Program, PA ABLE, and Keystone Scholars.

Marywood University Launches New Environmental Studies Program

As the world celebrates Earth Week, Marywood University affirms its role in environmental responsibility and advocacy, as well as its enduring commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability, by announcing the launch of a new Environmental Studies degree program.

The bachelor of arts program in Environmental Studies features three tracks, including Environmental Humanities, Environmental Justice, and Environmental Science. The tracks in the Environmental Studies program focus on environmental advocacy and encompass scientific principles, ethical frameworks, public policy, connections to the natural world, and communications skills. While Marywood offers an existing bachelor of science program in Environmental Science for those who wish to become professional environmental scientists/researchers, the new Environmental Studies program is designed for students who want to pursue a more advocacy-based approach in areas like law, journalism, or public policy versus a traditional science-only trajectory.

The Environmental Studies program reflects Marywood’s mission and core values, also aligning with its status as a member of the first international cohort of Laudato Si’ Universities by the Vatican Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development. Marywood became one of the first universities to commit to being a Laudato Si’ University in October 2021, in support of Pope Francis’ 7-Year Journey Towards Integral Ecology—an action-oriented and holistic approach that addresses seven ecological and social challenges in the world.

“Today’s complex environmental challenges call for versatile professionals who can adapt to and thrive in a variety of settings,” said Erin A. Sadlack, Ph.D., associate dean of the Insalaco College of Arts and Sciences. “Environmental Studies students at Marywood University will address real world problems, becoming well versed in the comprehensive analysis of complex environmental issues and potential solutions, oral and written communication skills, and critical thinking. The curriculum varies depending on the track of study chosen, but all Environmental Studies majors share the same foundational coursework and must do a capstone project.”

Career options include advocacy-based professions focused on environmental issues, such as education, consulting, law, urban planning, policy, public relations, and more. Students are prepared to work in the environmental advocacy sectors of these professional areas upon graduation or to pursue advanced studies if their particular career aspirations warrant additional education.

An Environmental Studies minor also is available to all students, complementing many existing majors and pre-professional programs at Marywood.

For more information about the new Environmental Studies program at Marywood University, visit or contact Marywood University Admissions by email at or by phone at 570-348-6234.

AllOne Foundation Funding to Enhance Services to Isolated Older Adults

To help older adults maintain their independence in the community, the AllOne Foundation provided a three-year grant award allowing The Wright Center for Community Health and the separately operated Telespond Senior Services to deliver critical programming such as adult day care.

AllOne Foundation CEO John W. Cosgrove recently presented a ceremonial check representing the final installment of the grant funding, which in total amounted to $1.156 million.

The joint initiative to support successful aging in place among residents of Lackawanna, Luzerne and nearby counties began in early 2020, just as the COVID-19 outbreak hit Northeast Pennsylvania. The pandemic forced Telespond to temporarily scale back or suspend many of its services, which include an in-home personal care program and a senior companion program. At the same time, concerns were raised locally and globally about the impact of the pandemic on socially isolated older adults who might be prone to developing behavioral health issues such as substance use disorder, anxiety and depression.

Since then, Telespond has better positioned itself for the long-term continuity of its services, reviving and expanding its medical model adult day care program as well as recruiting volunteers for its senior companion program. Telespond also implemented a transportation program for its clients, renovated its building on Scranton’s Saginaw Street and made many other improvements.

“With the vital support from AllOne Foundation and all of our partners, our organization has made tremendous strides toward developing into the strong nonprofit ally that area seniors and their families can rely on for services that promote dignity and provide a viable alternative to retirement homes,” said Joseph J. Grilli, president and CEO of Senior Day Services, a Telespond Company.

The Wright Center serves as fiscal agent for the grant award, providing Telespond with resources, guidance and expertise as Telespond repositions itself for growth of its service area and sustained impact.

“The Wright Center recognizes how socially isolated seniors can be particularly vulnerable to both mental and physical decline,” said Meaghan Ruddy, the organization’s senior vice president of academic affairs, enterprise assessment and advancement, and chief research and development officer. “Our team members – including our executives, geriatrics providers and support staff –

have been privileged to work with Telespond’s leadership to enhance the community-based supports available to our region’s most mature and venerable residents.”

The grant-funded project is scheduled to continue through March 2023.

AllOne Foundation, based in Wilkes-Barre, works independently or collectively to enhance the present health care delivery system of Northeastern and North Central Pennsylvania and to be innovative, creative and collaborative in crafting new ways of improving the health and welfare of the people of our region.

Telespond, based in Scranton and serving the area since 1974, assists older adults and their caregivers through a range of programs including an on-site adult day care program, non-medical in-home personal care services and a senior companion program in which volunteers provide seniors with friendly company and help with day-to-day activities.

The Wright Center for Community Health is headquartered in Scranton and operates nine primary care practices in Lackawanna, Luzerne and Wayne counties, offering services to patients of all ages. In July 2020, it formally established a geriatrics service line, and it also has begun an Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program. The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education offers multiple residency and fellowship programs, including a Geriatrics Fellowship.

Greater Scranton YMCA Kicks Off Summer with Annual Healthy Kids Day

The Greater Scranton YMCA is hosting the Y’s annual Healthy Kids Day® on Saturday, May 21st, encouraging families to take a moment to help kids be kids and set them up for a summer of success. Sponsored by Howard Johnson®by Wyndham, the day-long event will feature activities such as a petting zoo, rides, healthy cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts, a kid’s fun run and more to motivate and teach families how to develop and maintain healthy routines at home.

“At the Y, we believe in the potential of all children and each day we work to help kids find that potential within themselves,” said Trish Fisher, President & CEO, Greater Scranton YMCA. “Healthy Kids Day is a fun, free community-wide event to kick off summer and remind us all how important it is for kids to stay active physically and mentally throughout the summer.”

Celebrating its 30thanniversary in 2022, Healthy Kids Day is the Y’s national initiative to improve health and well-being for kids and families. The Y hopes to use the day to get more kids moving and learning, creating healthy habits they can continue while they’re away from the classroom. When kids are out of school, they can face hurdles that prevent them from reaching their full potential. Research shows that without access to out-of-school learning activities, kids fall behind academically. Kids also gain weight twice as fast during summer than during the school year. With all that’s going on in the world right now, Healthy Kids Day is a reminder to families that we can help ensure all children have access to what they need to reach their full potential, even during out-of-school time.

Keeping Kids Healthy All Summer Long

In celebration of YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, the Y offers the following tips to help families develop healthy habits this summer that can have a lifetime effect:

  • High Five the Fruits and Veggies–Make sure kids get at least five servings of fruits and veggies each day, the minimum number nutritionists recommend for healthy childhood development. And to keep kids’ taste buds evolving, have everyone in the family try at least one bite of a new fruit or vegetable at least once a month.
  • Read Together –The summer is a great time to enjoy books with summer program participants—and 30 minutes a day goes a long way! Take trips to the local library or create a family reading challenge to see who can log the most minutes of reading. Encourage youth to create their own stories as well.
  • Get Moving! –Activities that require movement also help kids flex their mental muscle. Use materials in unique ways: ask youth to build models, manipulate tools or develop their own theatrical scenes.
  • Play Together –Play may be the best way to prevent childhood obesity. By putting more play into your family’s day, you will soon find yourself getting the activity that will have your family feeling energized and strong.
  • Make sleep a priority–Doctors recommend 10-12 hours of sleep a day for children ages 5-12 and 7-8 hours per night for adults. Sleep plays a critical role in maintaining our healthy immune system, metabolism, mood, memory, and learning.

TheGreater Scranton YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day will take place atthe Y’s facility, located at 706 N. Blakely Street, Dunmore, from 11:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m. The Kids Fun Run (pre-registration not required) will begin with the 3-5-year-old race from 10:30-10:40 a.m. followed by ages 6-9 from 10:45-10:55 a.m. and the 10-14-year-old race from 11:00-11:10 a.m. Additional features of the day include a petting zoo, rides, vendor fair, face painting, healthy cooking demonstrations and more.

Locally, Healthy Kids Day is sponsored byHighmark Blue Cross Blue Shield,Community Bank,Johnson,Matrix Fitness,Rainey & Rainey CPA,Topp Business Solutions,Northeastern Rehabilitation Associates,Brucelli Advertisingand NET Credit Union.

For more information, contact Brandon Whipple, Wellness Director, at or call (570) 828-3116 or visit the Y online at

Johnson College Receives $1,000,000 Gift

Today, during an on-campus event to celebrate Ideal T. and Frances P. Saldi Day at the College, Johnson College‘s President & CEO, Dr. Katie Leonard, announced a $1,000,000 gift from Johnson College graduate Ideal T. Saldi and his wife Frances P. Saldi (formally Frances Prutisto).

The Saldi’s gift is a milestone for the College, as it’s the largest gift from an alum and one of the most significant gifts in Johnson College’s history.

“Johnson College kept me out of the coal mines and provided me the skills that allowed me to earn money to pay for college,” said Mr. Saldi. “Whatever success I have enjoyed, I owe to Johnson College. We look at this donation as a payment of a debt.”

“Ideal and Frances’ gift will have a direct and lasting impact on our students and the College,” Dr. Leonard added. “It inspires us to deliver the best real-world, hands-on, industry-driven education that our students, industry partners, and community expect from Johnson College.”

Mr. Saldi is a graduate of Johnson College, class of 1949, Jessup High School, The Pennsylvania State University, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Mrs. Saldi is a graduate of Archbald High and earned a Liberal Arts degree from The Pennsylvania State University.

Mr. Saldi started his professional career at the General Electric Company and was employed there for 18 years, rising through the ranks to become General Manager of one of their businesses. He left General Electric to start several companies beginning with Integrated Display Systems, which he later sold to Refac Electronics in New York City and became president of the combined companies. He later became president of C-Cor Electronics in State College, Pennsylvania, and AM Communications.

In all, he started a total of 18 companies during his professional career and continues to run two he started in 1981. Mr. Saldi has served on several Board of Directors and has been awarded 18 patents during his professional career.

After raising four children, Mrs. Saldi began her career as a real estate agent – first with a retirement community, then moving on to private residential sales.

The Saldi’s have three surviving children, six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.

Johnson College provides real-world, hands-on learning in a supportive environment and prepares graduates to enter into or advance their careers. Johnson College degrees become essential careers. Johnson College was founded in 1912 and is the region’s only technical college, offering 17 associate degree and 4 academic certificate programs. A low student-to-instructor ratio supports an emphasis on hands-on learning. Located in Scranton on a 44-acre campus, the College is an accredited, private, non-profit, co-educational institution with a strong tradition of working with regional businesses and industries to ensure a skilled and qualified workforce. For additional information on Johnson College, please call 1-800-2-WE-WORK, email, or visit

PennDOT and the Pennsylvania State Police Highlight Litter Enforcement Corridors

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) have collaborated to discuss penalties of littering and littering in a Litter Enforcement Corridor.

PennDOT and PSP held a press event today in Lackawanna county to explain what Litter Enforcement is, why it’s important and what the penalties are for littering.

“PennDOT District 4 is proud to partner with the Pennsylvania State Police and Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful today to highlight our efforts to reduce littering in northeast PA.  PennDOT relies on volunteers in the Adopt a Highway program to help us keep roadways clean and free of litter”, said PennDOT Assistant District Executive Jonathan Eboli, P.E. “We encourage everyone to get involved with the Adopt-A Highway Program in their community.”

Litter Enforcement Corridors have a high aesthetic or historic value worth preserving or need some additional help with litter issues. Approved segments are marked with signs to notify motorists of additional litter fines: doubled penalties for motorists caught scattering rubbish and tripled when it is done by a commercial business. Litter Enforcement Corridors also offer increased safety for workers or volunteers who are picking up trash in a designated corridor.

When drivers in these areas see traffic control devices, they must yield the right of way, as in a construction work zone. For this reason, it’s important to plan a cleanup event with local or state authorities involved when possible.

For more information on establishing a Litter Enforcement Corridor, consult PennDOT’s Roadside Enforcement Manual on PennDOT’s website.