University News

University of New Haven Hosts First Event to Commemorate Upcoming Centennial

In advance of its Centennial in 2020, the University of New Haven is hosting a series of regional events to commemorate the anniversary, bringing alumni, parents, and friends together to celebrate the start of the University’s second century of success. The first event was in Boston at the Museum of Science.

May 8, 2019

Photo of Matthew Sheehy ’19 and Charlie the Charger.
Matthew Sheehy ’19 (demonstrating his propulsion device) and Charlie display their Charger pride.

When Neil Valentino ’75 left the U.S. Navy in 1970 and applied to the University of New Haven, he remembers a friend telling him that “college teaches you how to think.”

“My education gave me the knowledge and information that I needed to make better decisions, and it opened doors to more opportunities,” said Valentino, who majored in economics and enjoyed a rewarding career as an employment counselor. “The University provided me with the environment I needed to succeed, and I will always be grateful for that.”

Valentino was one of nearly 200 alumni and friends who attended a celebration at the Museum of Science in Boston to commemorate the University’s upcoming Centennial in 2020. It was the first of several regional events that will take place in the coming months. As part of the event, which was hosted by Herb Chambers ’16 Hon., president and CEO of the Herb Chambers Companies, alumni reconnected with their alma mater – and with each other – to look back on their past and to celebrate the University’s future.

“The University provided me with the environment I needed to succeed, and I will always be grateful for that.”Neil Valentino ’75

Guests also met current students, including Lynnsey Spader ’22 and PJ Tucker ’21, who represented WNHU, the University’s award-winning campus radio station. Spader and Tucker, with Bruce Barber, the station’s general manager, interviewed alumni about their favorite memories of being Chargers for a series of upcoming podcasts.

Image of inside the Museum of Science in Boston
Nearly 200 alumni and friends attended the celebration at the Museum of Science in Boston.

“Attending the event in Boston was such an honor,” said Spader, a music industry major. “I learned more about the University’s wonderful alumni, and I was fortunate to meet someone who worked at WNHU when it was just starting out. It made me even more proud to be working with the radio station today.”

Students and faculty members in each of the University’s colleges and schools presented research and innovative projects underway at the University. Showcases included a presentation by Matthew Sheehy ’19, a mechanical engineering major, who demonstrated a propulsion device he invented, to motorize unpowered modes of transportation.

“The student-led expositions truly show the imaginative and entrepreneurial spirit of the student body. I was amazed by what they have been able to accomplish."Dave Galla ’99, Alumni Association President

Dave Galla ’99, president of the University’s Alumni Association, enjoyed the celebration, and he hopes alumni are looking forward to the University’s next event in New York City in May.

“The student-led expositions truly show the imaginative and entrepreneurial spirit of the student body,” said Galla. “I was amazed by what they have been able to accomplish. It was also great to reconnect with some friends I hadn’t seen in years, and to hear about all of the great things that the University is doing.”