Clarks Summit University Students Travel for Professional Intensive

Clarks Summit University students traveled to Orlando, FL, after being selected to participate in the Reclaim Today 2023 Professional Writing and Design Intensive. 80 students from nearly 160 member institutions of the Association for Biblical Higher Education across the United States and Canada applied for the program. Three of the final 30 students selected were from CSU.

Lydia Peters, of Allentown, PA, and Josh Fowler, of Chillicothe, OH, both participated in the writing portion of the intensive while Sam Ford, of Montrose, PA, participated in the design portion. These students received a three-year contract to submit work to Reclaim Today with the opportunity to have their work published.

Part of Our Daily Bread Ministries, Reclaim Today appeals to the Gen Z and Millennial generations by providing biblical truth and encouragement that allow readers to “connect with God in the ordinary, extraordinary, everyday moments of life.”

CSU Associate Professor Sarah Scranta was instrumental in assisting the students during the application and travel process for the Intensive. She says the Intensive poured into the lives of young people who will build the content that points people to Christ. Reclaim Today plans to have two more years of the Intensive in partnership with ABHE.

Peters, a sophomore Communications-Writing major with a minor in Youth Ministries, has a heart for missions and a desire for her words to encourage and help others. Peters is an editor and a writer for “Vantage Magazine,” a digital magazine for creative expression, career preparation and community interaction, produced by CSU students. She particularly enjoys writing poetry. 

Scranta said, “Lydia is dependable, flexible and open to challenges in her academic pursuits. She is a careful thinker and highly regarded by her peers.”

A sophomore Accelerated Counseling major, Fowler writes to encourage and to provide hope. Fowler writes primarily journalistic nonfiction pieces and devotionals and is a contributing writer for Vantage Magazine.

He said, “I love using my writing to help other people. I want for my creative pieces to teach lessons that you do not hear very often. I want my journalistic nonfiction pieces to inspire those who are going through hardship. I want for my devotional pieces to challenge people to grow in their relationship with Christ.” He continued, “the conversation on mental health is growing in popularity, and it is important that the voices involved in the conversation are speaking the truth of the gospel.”

Fowler aspires to use his writing and his counseling training “to publish material in the future that would help families and churches grow in their ability to converse on difficult topics like grief, brokenness, sexuality, forgiveness and identity.” He said, “I believe that I can use my skills to ask questions to bring about discussion, which in turn could bring about change.”

Scranta said, “[Fowler] is dependable, flexible, willing to take on learning and writing challenges and is a source of encouragement for his peers.”

Ford, a junior Communications major with a minor in Pastoral Ministries, believes design is the best way for him to communicate a message of hope to a culture hungry for it. 

He said, “I really enjoy design, because although it is a very corporate branch of art; it is effective in its reach, as it can be printed onto anything. A painted canvas in an art gallery is beautiful, but we only view it occasionally; whereas a design, printed onto our favorite item, we will see daily. In summary, ‘art communicates.’”

Ford works at CSU’s Underground Café. He served as an intern and produced digital designs for Lincoln Lake Baptist Youth Camp. He also designed his residence hall’s apparel. Scranta said, “[Ford’s] sense of humor and creativity contribute to his academic success. He is also a careful thinker who seeks to serve others through his design work.”   

Waverly Community House Seeking Volunteers

The 2023 NEPA Film Festival is April 14th-16th at The Comm! Volunteers are still needed for 2 hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday. Please call Kathy at the Comm office if you are interested: 570-586-8191.All volunteers will receive a free Day Pass.

Filmmaker Reception & Opening Night Party Friday, April 14th at The Comm, 6:00-9:00PM! Unique, original film screenings and WVIA workshops at The Comm Saturday, 11:00AM-7:00PM and Sunday, 11:00AM-4:00PM.

For more information and to purchase tickets, please click HERE or visit

Johnson College Earns Military Friendly® School Designation

Johnson College has earned the 2023-2024 Military Friendly ® School designation.

Institutions earning the Military Friendly ® School designation were evaluated using both public data sources and responses from a proprietary survey. More than 1,800 schools participated in the 2023-2024 survey with 665 earning special awards for going above the standard.

The 2023-2024 Military Friendly® Schools list will be published in the May and October issue of G.I. Jobs magazine and can be found at

Methodology, criteria, and weightings were determined by Viqtory with input from the Military Friendly ® Advisory Council of independent leaders in the higher education and military recruitment community. Final ratings were determined by combining the institution’s survey scores with the assessment of the institution’s ability to meet thresholds for Student Retention, Graduation, Job Placement, Loan Repayment, Persistence (Degree Advancement or Transfer), and Loan Default rates for all students and, specifically, for student veterans.

“Johnson College remains committed to helping our servicemen and women and their families further their education,” said Bill Burke, Vice President of Enrollment and Student Affairs at Johnson College. “The College’s dedicated staff assists with needs specific to military students. We provide dedicated space as well as priority scheduling and registration for our service members and veterans.”

“Military Friendly® is committed to transparency and providing consistent data-driven standards in our designation process. Our standards provide a benchmark that promotes positive outcomes and support services that better the educational landscape and provide opportunities for the Military Community. This creates a competitive atmosphere that encourages colleges to evolve and invest in their programs consistently. Schools who achieve awards designation show true commitment in their efforts, going over and above that standard.” – Kayla Lopez, National Director of Military Partnerships, Military Friendly®.

For more information about Johnson College’s student veteran programs, visit

Settler’s Hospitality to Host 7th Annual Wally Wine Fest

Settler’s Hospitality invites you to Sip back and relax! Visitors to The Waterfront at Silver Birches, April 14-16, will enjoy three days devoted to all things wine. Wally Wine Fest features a variety of domestic and international brands from wine regions across the globe. A Slab and Cab Wine Dinner on Friday, April 14 at The Settlers Inn kicks off the event. On Saturday and Sunday festival goers can drink in all the festivities from wine tastings and food pairings to a marketplace all offered lakeside at Silver Birches.

There are two seated wine tastings scheduled on Saturday and Sunday. During the two-hour sessions, attendees will be seated at communal tables to enjoy four small plate tasting courses accompanied by three wine samples per tasting. Ticket holders will select their top three sampling choices from eight different wines for each course. Settlers Hospitality Sommelier, Claude Briere personally chooses the featured wines, which include domestic and international labels. Tastings are scheduled from noon to 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

Bottles of every wine featured are available for sale. Prices range from $10-$100. Fine food, gift items and decor fit for wine lovers overflow at The Marketplace. Visitors may shop offerings from places such as Art on the Edge, which features home/wine décor. The Silent Auction benefits Lake Wallenpaupack’s fireworks display and features overnight stays at area accommodations plus gift cards to local restaurants and businesses. Golf and spa packages, as well as boat and paddle board rentals, are also up for grabs. Live entertainment rounds out the weekend-long festivities. Guests may bookend a Wally Wine Fest experience with the Bubbly Brunch offered at The Settlers Inn on Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 am. to 2:30 p.m. Visitors  may savor a prix fixe brunch menu, live music and a tasting flight of sparkling wine.

“Now that we’re seven years in, Wally Wine Fest is firmly established as spring’s hallmark event in the Lake Region. We relish the opportunity to showcase world-class wines to novice and connoisseurs alike,” explains Justin Genzlinger, CEO/Owner, Settlers Hospitality. “It’s a real privilege to witness the outpouring of enthusiasm for the festival, and welcome thousands of visitors to the Pocono Mountains. The fact that it helps support a beloved tradition at Lake Wallenpaupack like the Independence Day fireworks, make it all the sweeter.”

Everyone who attends the festival at Silver Birches receives a commemorative wine glass. General admission is $60 in advance and $75 at the door. Designated drivers may attend for $30. A $200 platinum ticket includes the Slab and Cab Wine Dinner at The Settlers Inn on April 14. For $125, guests may attend the Slab and Cab Wine Dinner only. Visit to purchase tickets. Visitors may opt to stay over and take advantage of a $199 Sunday Night Lodging Special offered at the Hawley properties of Settlers Hospitality.

Special thanks to Champagne Level event sponsors Silver Birches Resort, Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau and E. & J. Gallo Winery as well as Cabernet Level sponsors, AM Skier Insurance and Chant Realtors. Organizers also acknowledge the participation of Sauvignon Blanc Level sponsor, Comprehensive Physical Therapy and Rose Level sponsors Dime Bank, Lighthouse Harbor Marina and Wayne Bank. Settlers Hospitality would also like to thank Media and In Kind Sponsors Moka Origins, Lake Region IGA , Bold Gold Media Group and Adams Outdoor.

PA Route 6 Alliance to Hold Informational Webinar

Join PA Humanities and the PA Route 6 Alliance on March 17 from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. to learn about Community Heart & Soul™, an innovative community planning process that engages residents in identifying hopes and ideas for their town.

Since 2015, PA Humanities has been working with Community Heart & Soul to engage residents across the Commonwealth in planning for their town’s future. Twelve (12) communities have gone through the process and seen:

●     New volunteers and leaders emerge

●     Updates to zoning ordinances

●     Valuable community feedback for comprehensive and local community plans

●     New businesses emerge

●     Town beautification efforts launched (facades, updates to parks, community clean ups)

….and so much more. Learn about how PA Heart & Soul can help spark community into planning and development efforts – and how to bring the process to your community!

PA Heart & Soul Information Session is to learn more about Community Heart & Soul, please join for a webinar presented by the PA Humanities to discuss the benefits of this program and how interested communities can start the applications process. Below you will find information about the program, including the link to join the webinar.

PA Route 6 Alliance will be applying for funding for communities within the Route 6 Corridor who wish to apply to become a PA Heart & Soul community.

The University of Scranton to Host Engaging Events

Two engaging Collaborative Programs are on tap for The University of Scranton’s Schemel Forum this spring.

On Wednesday, Mar. 29, the Schemel Forum will partner with Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine to present “Mozart: The Mind and Music of a Genius,” featuring Richard Kogan, M.D., professor of psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College and artistic director of the Weill Cornell Music and Medicine Program. The program will begin at 5:30 p.m. in WVIA Public Media Studios’ Sordoni Theater, with a reception to follow. Admission is $35 per person.

At the program, Dr. Kogan, a Julliard-trained pianist and Harvard-trained psychiatrist, will explore the mystery of creative genius through an examination of the life, mind and music of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791). To illustrate his points, Dr. Kogan will perform some of Mozart’s most sublime musical compositions on the piano.

Then, on Thursday, Apr. 27, the Schemel Forum, the Theology and Religious Students Department and the Weinberg Judaic Studies Institute will co-present “Only in America? Religion, State, and a Hasidic Town in Rural New York,” featuring David N. Myers, Ph.D., distinguished professor of history, Sady and Ludwig Kahn Chair in Jewish History, and director of the Luskin Center for History and Policy at UCLA. The event will take place at 7 p.m. in the Pearn Auditorium of Brennan Hall. Admission is $15 per person.

At the program, Dr. Myers will discuss the remarkable case of Kiryas Joel, a town in New York state populated entirely by Satmar Hasidic Jews. What, Myers will ask, does this town of religiously observant Jews tell us about the “wall of separation” between religion and state of which Thomas Jefferson spoke? And, has that Jeffersonian ideal given way to a new vision of religious liberties as the paramount constitutional right?

To register for the programs, contact Brooke Leonard at 570-941-4740 or Or, to pay online, visit the Schemel Forum’s webpage (

Marywood University Wind Symphony Earns National Recognition

The Marywood University Wind Symphony is being nationally recognized as a featured ensemble at the Small Program Showcase during the 2023 College Band Directors National Association Conference, which will be held February 15-18, 2023, at the University of Georgia in Athens, GA.

Selected by blind peer review, audio excerpts of the Marywood Wind Symphony’s performances from recent concerts will be played, and F. David Romines, D.M.A., director of bands and co-chairperson of the Music, Theatre, and Dance department at Marywood, will be speaking about specifics related to the band program during the “Small College Program Audio Performances” session at the conference on Saturday, February 18, 2023.

“This is a great way to recognize the wonderful music we are making that might otherwise go unnoticed,” said Dr. Romines.

Marywood University is the only educational institution in Northeast Pennsylvania that offers Bachelor of Music degrees, and students are given the opportunity to perform locally, regionally, nationally, and globally. For more information on music programs at Marywood University, please visit or contact the Office of University Admissions at or (570) 348-6234.

Northeast Pennsylvania Film Festival

Established in 2016 by the Waverly Community House, The Northeast Pennsylvania Film Festival is supported by the F. Lammot Belin Arts Foundation and its mission to “build community through the arts.” Dedicated to nurturing emerging and independent filmmakers from Northeast Pennsylvania and around the world, the three-day festival correspondingly promotes cultural awareness and appreciation of film as an art form by exposing local audiences to unique and original cinema. For more information or to purchase tickets for events scheduled April 14 through 16, 2023, visit

More information on the WVIA Education Student Showcase can be found at

WVIA will present three workshops and as well as the winners of the first WVIA Education Student Showcase at the 2023 Northeast Pennsylvania Film Festival. The 2023 Northeast Pennsylvania Film Festival (NEPAFF) hosted by the Waverly Community House in partnership with WVIA will take place at the Waverly Community House the weekend of April 14th-16th.

Feature Documentary Production with Alexander Monelli

Producing a feature-length documentary can be an overwhelming process. Learn tricks and tips so you can go out and shoot your own feature with or without a budget – and with or without a crew. Award-winning filmmaker Alexander Monelli has shot, edited, and directed four feature-length documentaries and will provide practical examples of shooting, editing, and what goes into producing a feature film. 

Presenter bio:

Alexander Monelli is a producer/director at WVIA where he creates short and feature-length documentaries (“Agnes 50” and “Roar”). He earned a BFA in Film from Long Island University. Prior to WVIA, he produced the award-winning documentary “At The Drive-in” which opened the 2017 NEPA Film Festival and is now available on Amazon Prime and iTunes. Al resides in Clarks Summit with his wife, Amanda, and daughters, Mila and Nora. 

Telling the Story with Kelly Dessoye and Kris Hendrickson

The tools available to today’s visual storytellers are many, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed before you even click “record”. It all comes down to the story and how you want to tell it.  What do you need (and what do you really need) to begin the journey, and how does the story inform your approach, your choice of gear, and your message?

Presenter bios:

Kelly Dessoye is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and video journalist with over 12 years of experience. With a belief that video is the best way to give stories the dignity and nuance they deserve; she leverages technical skills gleaned from years as a cinematographer and editor in the advertising world with an insatiable curiosity and desire to amplify stories that are pushed to the wayside. 

Kris Hendrickson began his career directing live television at WYOU-TV in 1989 and, since 1999, has served as a producer, videographer, director, editor, and graphic designer of long-form and short-form content at WVIA. He has been recognized by the Mid-Atlantic Emmy Awards and the Pennsylvania Association of Broadcasters for his work in the areas of documentary film, series television, live broadcasting, entertainment programs, promotions and digital short-form content.

Enhancing Productions with Animation & Graphics with Neil Prisco

Think quality animation and graphics are unattainable for the independent filmmaker? Think again as we show you how to enhance your story with special effects on any budget. Whether you are shooting a piece on your phone, or have a crew of 20 people, there are opportunities and options for you. In this workshop we will provide attendees with the resources and information you need to create help you put your imagination on the screen.

Presenter bio:

Neil Prisco is the Creative Director for WVIA, overseeing the branding, marketing, and overall look of the station. Over his 15-year career he has received multiple awards and nominations for his graphic design work, production, directing, editing, sound design and more. A native of the Hudson valley in New York, Neil graduated received his undergraduate degree in communications from Marywood University.

Details and free reservations are available at

The Chamber Hosts International Women’s Day Luncheon

Keynote address offered by Dr. Damary Bonilla-Rodriguez speaks on women’s equity in the workplace. Athena International Award presented to Laura Ducceschi.

Scranton, PA —The Greater Scranton of Chamber of Commerce hosted their International Women’s Day Luncheon, sponsored by The Honesdale National Bank at Marywood University. Keynote speaker Dr. Damary Bonilla-Rodriguez offered a stirring challenge to step up and lead while focusing on the international theme, Embrace Equity. The luncheon included the presentation of the ATHENA Leadership Award, sponsored by Michael A. Barbetti LLC, to Laura Ducceschi, president & CEO of The Scranton Area Community Foundation.

Dr. Bonilla-Rodriguez commented, “Women’s History month is an opportunity to acknowledge the circumstances that women face in the workplace and in terms of achieving a level of economic success, educational attainment, and other opportunities to climb the leadership ladder as it relates to their livelihood.”

“International Women’s Day means so much. The importance of women’s contributions all over the world, to our community right here in Scranton. In terms of the workforce, women play such a key role, and we need to be able to continue supporting women so they can overcome barriers and become what they want to be,” stated Ms. Ducceschi.

The keynote speaker, Dr. Damary M. Bonilla-Rodriguez, a national leading authority on leadership development, especially as it pertains to diversity and inclusion. Dr. Bonilla-Rodriguez delivers keynote addresses from roles in the non-profit, private, and government sectors and her doctoral research. 

The ATHENA Leadership Award, sponsored locally by Michael A. Barbetti LLC Certified Public Accountants, honors an exceptional individual who has achieved excellence in their business or profession, has served the community in a meaningful way, and has assisted women in their attainment of professional goals, and leadership skills. “Laura Ducceschi embodies these characteristics wholeheartedly,” shares Mr. Durkin.