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Alumni - Department of Human Development and Family Science

Meet our graduates

HDFS alumni

Welcome to the career profiles page! Learn about the many opportunities and career paths available to our majors through the stories of some of our alumni.

  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Amanda Fisher-
    Amanda Fisher '13 High School Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher

    Central Dauphin School District

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Amanda Lawrence-
    Amanda Lawrence '12 Program Developer & Volunteer Coordinator, The Modern Maturity Center, Dover, Delaware

    As the Program Director, Amanda is in charge of planning and implementing the activities at The Modern Maturity Center. She seeks out different activities for the members of the senior center to enjoy, such as classes, clubs, seminars, and other fun activities. In addition, Amanda supervises the instructors who lead these activities.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Ashley Ingraham-
    Ashley Ingraham '14 Sales Representative, Method3 (Business consulting firm)

    As working in the business field is not typical for most HDFS majors, landing a job with a business consulting firm was very surprising for Ashley. She decided to apply for a recruiting position with this company she found online, simply on a whim, not thinking she would even hear back. A few days later they contacted her with interest in her resume and she scheduled an interview.

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  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Becky (Kuplin) Stuckey-
    Becky (Kuplin) Stuckey '07 Middle School Family and Consumer Science Teacher

    Cumberland Valley School District

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Ben Beachy-
    Ben Beachy '10 Special Events Coordinator, HOPE International

    First and foremost, Ben is passionate about promoting and fulfilling the mission and vision of HOPE International through creating event environments that lead to a deeper engagement with the work of HOPE International.

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  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Brian Fagan-
    Brian Fagan '13 High School Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher

    Souderton Area School District

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Brittany (Kappauf) Claridge-
    Brittany (Kappauf) Claridge '09 Assistant Director of Alumni and Parent Relations, Messiah College

    Brittany oversees all events within the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations including the December Graduate Reception, Gym & Pool Night, regional events and Homecoming. She is also responsible for student engagement including Eyas, the Student Alumni Council.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Erika (Cowger) Sheaffer-
    Erika (Cowger) Sheaffer '96 Senior Child Life Specialist, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

    Erika’s interests have always been focused on children. Since graduation, she has been a preschool teacher, a Child Life Assistant, and has worked as a Child Life Specialist in a med surg unit, outpatient surgery, radiology, NICU, and oncology.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Fabienne (Doucet) Gibson-
    Fabienne (Doucet) Gibson '95 Associate Professor of Early Childhood education; Program Leader for the program in Early Childhood Education and for the program in Childhood Education in the Department of Teaching & Learning, NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development

    As a Professor of Early Childhood Education at a research university, Fabienne has three primary responsibilities: teaching, researching, and service. Fabienne teaches two courses each semester, engages in research projects and writing research manuscripts, and serves on committees in her department, school, university, as well as nationally, and internationally.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Heather Barnhart-
    Heather Barnhart '13 Lead Service Coordinator, Avanco International Inc.

    For Heather, no two work days are exactly alike. As the Lead Service Coordinator Heather supervises the customer service help desk support team, redevelops and publishes the team support manual, and develops and publishes training manuals to be used in training customers throughout PA how to use Avanco’s services and database software.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Jason Lehman-
    Jason Lehman '04 Family Development Specialist, Bethanna Christian Services

    As a non-traditional student, Jason came to Messiah with a wide range of experiences including a previous undergraduate degree in Hotel/Restaurant Management from Jefferson Community College. Jason worked in restaurants, live theater, mission organizations as well as various other businesses.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Laura (Clark) Helman-
    Laura (Clark) Helman Surgical Sponsorship Coordinator, CURE International

    Laura is working for CURE International, she still appreciates the opportunity to work in the adoption field on a contract basis. Once per month, she leads a support group for adopted children with Bethany Christian Services, which provides the wonderful opportunity to connect with and support children and their families post-adoption.

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  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Lenelle (Nesta) Roberts-
    Lenelle (Nesta) Roberts '82 Training Coordinator and Educator, Penn State Extension

    Penn State University of Agricultural Sciences

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Lindsey Fye-
    Lindsey Fye '14 Therapeutic Support Staff, Pennsylvania Counseling Services

    Lindsey’s works with children and their families, providing them with comprehensive, individualized and behaviorally focused treatment that assists them in discovering their potential in the home, school, and communtiy.

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  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Megan Dubbs-
    Megan Dubbs '14 Middle School Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher

    Classes in nutrition and child development prepared Dubbs well for her career as an FCS teacher. She uses projects and activities developed from those classes to engage the students in her own classroom. She says, “My 7th graders are learning about child development and getting ready to design their own playground…an assignment that I had at Messiah in Child Development.”

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Meghan (VanHine) Sensenig-
    Meghan (VanHine) Sensenig '08 Medical Social Worker, Ephrata Community Hospital

    Part of the excitement and fun that comes Meghan’s position is that she is able to work with families who have newborns in the NICU (neo-natal intensive care unit) to older adults looking for nursing home placement. Most days are spent working with doctors, nursing staff, case managers, therapists, patients and families to coordinate a patient's discharge plan from the hospital.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Nicole Hahnlen-
    Nicole Hahnlen '97 Nurse Care Coordinator, Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital

    The majority of Nicole’s day is spent interacting with patients and families in the inpatient or outpatient care settings. Much of the support she provides to her patients and families is done via telephone.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Nora (Gerhard) Neidlinger-
    Nora (Gerhard) Neidlinger Human Relations Representative, Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (Commonwealth of PA)

    As a Human Relations Representative for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Nora conducts intake assessments in English and Spanish with individuals who want to file a discrimination complaint in housing, employment, education, and public accommodations related to the individual’s age, sex, race, national origin, ancestry, disability, religion and/or retaliation.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Paul Boyed-
    Paul Boyed '13 Children’s Mental Health Targeted Case Manager, Case Management Unit of Dauphin County

    During his last year as an undergraduate student at Messiah, Paul worked at Shining Light Thrift Shop in Harrisburg, which functions as a clothing assistance program for individuals on fixed or low incomes. After Paul graduated, he continued his work at the thrift shop, until he started as a Therapeutic Support Staff member for PA Counseling Services, approximately three months after graduation.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Rachel (Schmuck) Eshbach-
    Rachel (Schmuck) Eshbach Resource Home Coordinator, COBYS Family Services

    Rachel’s first job after graduation was an HR position with an in-home nursing care agency. She was responsible for reviewing applications, interviewing, and checking references of all potential employees (personal care aids, CNAs, LPNs, RNs), along with holding orientations once a week for new employees that she hired.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Rachel Shenk-
    Rachel Shenk '13 Admissions Counselor, Messiah College

    A large part of Rachel’s job is recruiting students to Messiah and building relationships with them and their families. Rachel interacts with families every single day, so being able to understand family dynamics at work helps her to communicate more effectively with them.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Sarah Daniels-
    Sarah Daniels '06 Housing Manager, Domestic Violence Center of Chester County

    Daniels was selected for her bold advocacy for vulnerable individuals and families in the West Chester area. Following her graduation in 2006, Daniels was hired as a housing manager for the Domestic Violence Center of Chester County where she helped 14 women and their 36 children navigate paths toward self-sufficiency.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Stephanie Vacek-
    Stephanie Vacek '11 Parent Educator and Home Visitor, Early Head Start

    As the Early Head Start parent educator and home visitor, Stephanie lends support to low income and high-risk pregnant women, and children under the age of 3 in the community. As a grant funded program, Early Head Start accepts 12 families at a time, all of which receive one home visit from Stephanie each week.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Susan (Risden) Wesner-
    Susan (Risden) Wesner '92 Assistant Professor, Human Sciences Department Chair, and Director of Adjunct Faculty Services, Judson University

    Susan has three distinct roles at Judson University. As an Assistant Professor, she teaches a variety of courses, oversees internships, and advises students. She also serve on several University committees to ensure compliance with assessment and curriculum standards.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Tabita Vacareanu-Quashigah-
    Tabita Vacareanu-Quashigah '09 Human Development and Family Science, Spanish minor

    Tabita has two roles: one as a Family Engagement Meetings Coordinator and Facilitator and the other as a Cultural Celebration Task Force Member. The first role involves Tabita coordinating and facilitating family group conferences, safety plan meetings, pre-court meetings, blended perspective meetings as well as family engagement meetings to assist families in developing solution focused plans.

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  • Human Development and Family Science
    Tawny (Smay) Bernhart-
    Tawny (Smay) Bernhart '08 Pastor of Congregational Care, Christ United Methodist Church, Lansdale

    With combined passions to serve families and work in ministry, Tawny found herself well prepared for the ministries that she would be involved in after graduation. She pursued further education at Duke Divinity and received her Master’s in Divinity in 2011.

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  • Family and Consumer Sciences
    Wesley Popp-
    Wesley Popp '06 Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher at Susquenita School District

    Susquenita School District

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Alumni Profiles

We have compiled career profiles from our alumni that contain current job title, employer, position description, salary range, previously held positions, additional education, Messiah College courses that were most helpful and how the HDFS Department helped to prepare the graduate for future career/schooling ventures. These profiles are also posted on the HDFS Department bulletin board outside Boyer 351 on a rotating basis.

Alumni Booklet (PDF file)

HDFS T-shirt day

This booklet presents information about the career journeys of 20 Messiah College alumni who graduated with a degree from the Department of Human Development and Family Science [HDFS]. Their experiences of choosing a major, finding a job after graduation, and continuing their careers can provide valuable insight as you discern God's call for your life. These alumni also offer advice on how to make decisions concerning your career and ways to get the most out of your college experience. The PDF files takes a little longer than most files to load so please be patient. If you are interested in getting a hard copy of this booklet, contact Dr. Raeann Hamon, Department Chair.

List of our Entry-Level Positions

The Messiah College Career Center conducts post-graduation surveys with our graduates six to ten months after graduation. By following this link, you will be able to access the information that our department has been provided as a result of the information gathered from those surveys.

Alumni Career Panels

Each semester our Department presents themed panel presentations and career discussions for alternate chapel credit. Department graduates share about their jobs, how the HDFS Department programs prepared them for this career, and how their faith interfaces with their work. For the specific dates, times, and places, check the department events calendar.

Messiah College Career Center

The career center has compiled several alumni career profiles and vocation snapshots, some of which feature our department alumni. Be sure to check these out at the Career Center's website.

Information on Our alumni