Friday, March 31, 2017

Register now to audition for The First Annual Peirce Voice

Are you ready to bring your singing talent to the big stage? Now’s your chance! Peirce College will be hosting The First Annual Peirce Voice with auditions being held on Tuesday, April 18th from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. right here on campus. Wondering what I’m talking about? Let me explain a little further:

What happens at the audition? You will be singing the National Anthem for a panel of judges, which consists of Peirce faculty and staff, who will record your performance. Don’t worry – we will provide the lyrics for the audition!

What makes it Peirce Voice? The auditions are blind to the voters! Once you audition, the performance of just your voice will be uploaded to our YouTube channel, so the public can listen and help decide who will be the next Peirce Voice.

How do people vote?
Once auditions happen, there will be an email, blog and social posts sent out with a link to a survey where anyone can go on and vote! Voting is open to the public, so tell your family and friends.

What do I get if I win?
You not only win a Peirce FitBit™, but, also, you will be singing the National Anthem at this year’s 152nd Commencement ceremony!

How do I sign up? It’s easy! All you have to do is email with your name, telephone number, and your availability for April 18th between 4:00 and 7:00 pm (in 15-minute intervals) no later than April 17th at 12 noon.

Sound like something you’re interested in? No time to waste – email to schedule your audition today!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Meet Peirce's future Health Information Professionals

Peirce Offers Four Degrees in HealthcareThis week, we are taking time to celebrate current and future Health Information Professionals. Michele Green, Eunice Jones, Lilaila Villafane-Nolan, and Elvia Frederic-Williams are current seniors at Peirce College in the Health Information Technology and Health Information Administration programs. They will be leading this year’s Health Information Professionals Week at Peirce College, which will run from March 26th through April 1st. Learn a little about our future leaders’ educational journeys and why they think you should join them for HIP Week:

“My name is Michele Green. I started my journey here at Peirce College in 2011. In May of 2014, I received my Associates Degree in Healthcare Information Technology. I am in my final classes for my Bachelor of Science Degree in Healthcare Information Administration and I am so excited to graduate this June. I am currently working in the Healthcare Industry as a Pharmacy Services Technician. However, I plan on taking the RHIA (Registered Health Information Administrator) Certification to change my career to a Health Information Management position. Health Information Professionals week is a great way for me to enhance my knowledge on how health information management professionals are the best equipped to understand health data and turn information into knowledge that powers better decision making.”

“I am Eunice Jones and being a mother, my motto is education, education, and education. In my household, once you finish high school, you move on and attend college, no excuses! Unfortunately, I had a secret my children were unware of; fear. I had personal fears about going to college; a fear of failure, a fear of assignments and tests, and my biggest fear of not setting a good example. I decided to face my fears and I enrolled at the College in 2013. Peirce College is everything I needed; the College fit my schedule, my age group, helped me conquer all of my fears by giving me the support I needed to keep going. I received my associate’s degree in 18 months and in June of 2017 I will receive my bachelor’s degree. I plan to continue my educational journey by receiving a CTR (cancer tumor registrar) Certification. Health Information Professionals week, to me, is so important with the theme of “Leading the way to quality data” because it is a great resource for teaching and demonstrating the volumes of health data and information being generated, and how to manage it.”

“My name is Lilaila Villafane-Nolan and this has been one heck of a journey for the last four years at Peirce College. It all started when one day someone told me I wouldn't be able to move up in the world because I didn't have a college degree. Being who I am, I didn't like to hear those words. Despite many struggles of working full time, raising a family, all while being a student, I still kept going. I wasn’t just doing this for myself; I wanted to show my children they can do anything they put their mind to. My next step on my career path is to complete my certification and Master’s Degree. My goal is to get my dream job as a Physician Reimbursement Specialist. This journey all started because of one person and I don't think I would change anything about it now that I'm finally finishing. Health Information Professionals week is important to future leaders like me because it provides me with the knowledge I need in my new career when it comes to improving cost, quality, and population health with the ability to turn data into knowledge.”

“I am Elvia Frederic-Williams and the day I decided to continue my education was the day when I realized my daughter copied everything I did. It was the day when I decided to make a change in my life and pursue a career. Peirce College made my learning transition comfortable, easy, and convenient. From the stress-free enrollment process, to the always available and helpful advisors, and the flexibility offered with the on campus and online options, Peirce College was the right choice for me. I started my journey with the determination to complete an Associate Degree in Health Information Technology. However, now on top of completing my associate’s degree, today I find myself on the finish line to the completion of my Bachelor Degree of Science in Health Information Administration. I’m now not only the first in my family to be a college graduate, but I am also able to show my children that I did it and they can too! Health Information Professionals week gives me the knowledge and guidance on the importance of being a health information professional that I need to keep going with my future career endeavors.”

If you’re interested in learning more about any Health Information Professional degree, check out our degrees in healthcare. If you want to take part in the HIP Week, please stop by the lobby of our main campus to meet the amazing students above.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Learning Bursts Part Two: Navigating Difficult Conversations with Coworkers

Whether you’re providing constructive feedback, discussing sensitive issues like dress or hygiene or simply setting the record straight on a disputed topic, difficult conversations with coworkers can be stressful!

Cathy Littlefield presents to corporate partner, Beneficial BankOn Tuesday, March 21st Peirce College equipped employees of one of its corporate partners, Beneficial Bank, with the tools needed to successfully navigate these discussions. Hosted by Peirce College’s expert facilitator, Cathy Littlefield, Ed.D., Associate Professor and Chair of Business Programs, this session represented the second topic in a four-part “Learning Bursts” series on self-improvement.

Littlefield opened the session by making a playful, yet relatable comparison between having a difficult conversation and having a meal. Just like eating requires you to set the table, have the meal and clean up, difficult conversations also have three distinct steps.

Preparing for the Conversation – “Setting the Table”
  • Check yourself – make sure you are calm and collected
  • Hold yourself accountable – acknowledge your role in the situation
  • Clarify your goals – know what you want as an outcome
  • Choose an appropriate time and place – timing and privacy matter
During a Difficult Conversation – “The Meal”
  • Focus on the facts – not gossip or perception
  • Only discuss things relevant to this specific situation
  • Be aware of your emotions; continuously "check in" with yourself
  • Make it a two way conversation – don’t dominate the conversation
After the Conversation – “Clean Up”
  • What happens in the office should stay in the office
  • Let it go – don't repeatedly have the same conversation with the same person
  • Where appropriate, document the conversation including date, situation and agreed upon outcome
Littlefield ended by noting difficult conversations break down when either participant resorts to verbal “flight” or “fight” responses. To help each participant understand his or her own unique style under stress, Littlefield provided a self-assessment. Through their responses, attendees discovered their natural tendencies and ways to counteract them in the future.

Be sure to join Littlefield and other Peirce staff members next month for the third topic of this four-part series.

Peirce College and Beneficial Bank have been valued partners since 2008. Beneficial employees, spouses and dependents are eligible for a 25% tuition discount at Peirce College. To learn more about enrolling at Peirce, please visit

For a complete list of all corporate partners, please visit If your company is not listed and you would like to be considered for partnership, please contact Amy Holvey, Manager of Corporate Enrollment at

Monday, March 20, 2017

Celebrating Women in Leadership at Peirce College

Despite the blowing snow, howling winds, and icy roadways, Career Development Services’ 7th annual Women in Leadership panel discussion was a roaring success!

The night started off with Uva Coles, Vice President of Institutional Advancement & Strategic Partnerships, who welcomed the crowd with rousing remarks about Peirce’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. President Jim Mergiotti followed by reminding everyone of Peirce’s long history of commitment to women’s education. Peirce College was the second college in Pennsylvania to admit women as students, along with the first school to treat women and men equally by allowing all genders to use the same doorway to enter. That legacy and commitment to equality endures as Peirce continually celebrates the accomplishments of women across all industries.

Our all-star cast of panelists included:
·  Dina Galeotafiore, Senior Vice President, Executive Search, Comcast Corporation
·  Nicole Pullen Ross, Managing Director, Investment Management at Goldman Sachs
·  Jane Slusser, Chief of Staff, Office of the Mayor, City of Philadelphia
·  Susan V. Van Buren, Former Assistant General Manager, Human Resources Division, Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA)
·  Eloise Young, Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning & Information Services at Philadelphia Gas Works

The panel was expertly moderated by Dr. Rita Toliver-Roberts, Vice President of Academic Advancement, who kicked off the conversation with a question about the number of women executives in corporate leadership. The panelists were lively and engaging when answering this question and more, and the crowd rose to the occasion, matching the panelists’ energy with questions about counteracting discrimination in the workplace, achieving work-life balance, decision-making, and other topics. 

Much of the conversation revolved around pivoting when necessary and building yourself along with your team.  When looking to find your place in the world, Nicole Pullen Ross reminded us that “if you can bring out the best in people, the view of many outweighs the view of a few.” Along that same line, Jane Slusser assured the room that “you don’t win by beating your opponent when governing, you win by working together.”

Susan Van Buren provided a pearl of wisdom about team building and goal attainment: “in order to satisfy the external customers, you must first satisfy the internal customers: your employees.” When asked about specializing or being a jack-of-all-trades, Eloise Young explained how this will vary from person to person, but no matter who you are, where you are or what you're doing, “it’s very important to be very good at where you are on the ladder.”

One of my favorite quotes of the night was from Dina Galeotafiore: “Don’t give up. Be patient. Be strategic and be thoughtful how you can drive toward that outcome.”

Thank you to everyone who joined us for Women in Leadership 2017. We look forward to seeing you next year!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Congratulations to Dr. Rita Toliver-Roberts on 20 years of Peirce College employment

At Peirce College, we not only like to celebrate our students' successes, but also our employees' successes. Dr. Rita Toliver-Roberts, Vice President of Academic Advancement, recently celebrated her 20th year with Peirce College. She has held multiple positions during her time at the College and has been an essential component of the growth, development, and achievement of students, faculty, and staff. We asked Dr. Toliver-Roberts a few questions about her time so far at Peirce:

Dr. Toliver-Roberts, please tell us about your personal Peirce College history.

I came to Peirce as an opportunity to give back. As a first-generation undergraduate student, I was successful because of the dedicated staff and faculty who were invested in students’ success and so, I wanted to be part of a community that wanted to make a difference. 

I started at Peirce as an academic counselor/advisor in the Success Center. This center supported at risk students and was supported (in addition to the College) by two grant programs, Act 101 and Student Support Services. During my tenure, I have held the position of Act101 Counselor (academic advisor); Manager, WCAE; Assistant Dean of Students; Dean of Students; and Vice President of Academic Advancement. 

What has kept you at the College for all these years?

There are three points that come immediately to mind,
  1. I genuinely appreciate the people I work with. Peirce employees are hardworking, dedicated individuals who are committed to achieving the mission.
  2. Peirce’s work-life balance culture – as a young professional and for a time, a new parent, Peirce made it possible for me to balance my priorities at work and home without compromise.
  3. Peirce’s work hard/play hard environment. The community pulls together to achieve goals but then takes pause to celebrate achievements and one another.
What are you most proud of during your time here at Peirce College?

Offering graduate education—this was such a wonderful milestone and historic moment for Peirce College. Furthermore, witnessing our first students graduates from our Master of Science in Organizational Leadership & Management (MSOLM) program [in 2015]. 

Additionally, I am proud that I worked under the leadership of great leaders and mentors, Dr. Patricia Rucker and James Mergiotti.

What advice do you have for students who are looking to find a career, not just a job?

The importance of having a strong work ethic should not be underrated. Your work ethic is basically your professional character and it tells the story about what you will do (or not do) with your skills, experience, and abilities. Let your professional story be positive and promotable and speak for you. 

Congratulations, Dr. Toliver-Roberts, on this memorable landmark in your career! Thank you for all you have done and continue to do for the College each and every day.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Spring is right around the corner - so are Peirce College events!

March and April are full of excitement as the springtime weather starts rolling in, the flowers begin to bloom, and Peirce College offers a variety of events! There are many opportunities available for Peirce students and the community throughout the next month. Below is a list of a few of the events being held on campus –

  1. Women in Leadership Panel Discussion – This event is open to Peirce students, alumni, faculty, staff, and the entire community! Five of the region’s renowned executive women will speak about their experience with leadership in all facets of their lives. This event will be held on Wednesday, March 15th from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the College in Room 51. Spots are limited for this event, so RSVP today at
  2.  Leadership Symposium – The Walker Center for Academic Excellence is proud to host the Leadership Symposium for all Peirce students. This is a day full of learning and developing different leadership skills to use in your personal and professional life. There will be guest speakers, workshops, and breakfast and lunch will be provided. If you are looking to continue growing in your leadership abilities then this is an event for you! It will be held on Saturday, March 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the College. To RSVP, visit
  3. Business Conference – All Peirce students are invited to the 5th Annual Business Conference. This year’s conference is titled, “Facing Forward: Creating Your Career Identity.” This day-long event will include different vendors, a panel discussion, and keynote speakers on a variety of topics. This is open to ALL Peirce students, so you do not need to be a business major to find value in this opportunity. The Business Conference will be held on Saturday, April 8th from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the College. To RSVP, visit

Each of these events offers many valuable lessons, growth opportunities and unbeatable experiences. To learn more, below are the contacts for each event along with the link to the Peirce Community Calendar for even more upcoming opportunities.

WIL – Career Development Services: 215.670.9202 or

Leadership Symposim – WCAE: 215.670.9251 or

Business Conference – Professor Brooke Quigg: 215.670.9317 or

Peirce Community Calendar –

See you there!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Peirce College President Jim Mergiotti to retire in June 2018

For nearly 30 years, it has been my honor and privilege to witness the outstanding achievements of our students and graduates as they earn their degrees. I have also had the extraordinary opportunity to work with an exceptional group of faculty, staff, alumni, trustees, partners, and volunteers, all in support of Peirce’s wonderful mission. Now, after careful consideration and discussion with my family, I have decided to retire from Peirce College as of June 30, 2018.

This announcement does not mean my work here at the College is finished – quite the opposite! Careful execution of the College’s strategic plan will continue for the next 16 months, and I look forward to achieving these goals. At that point, the timing will be perfect for me to transition to the next phase of my life and for Peirce to move forward with new leadership and the rejuvenation that change will bring.

The Board of Trustees is currently forming a search committee that will be responsible for finding Peirce’s next leader. Details regarding the search process will be forthcoming, and we will share the plan on Peirce’s website.

Being a part of the Peirce community has been a great honor, as I’ve been fortunate enough to work side-by-side with a tremendous group of faculty, staff, trustees, alumni, and partners. We accomplished great things for Philadelphia's adult learners together, and the future for them – and for Peirce – is bright.

If you have questions about this transition, I encourage you to reach out via email at Thank you for sharing this journey with me, and I look forward to what the next year and half have in store.