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Crossing the divide: Students and faculty who switched

Those brave enough to switch between Cabrini and Eastern have found that the two schools are not as different as they sometimes appear.

Two Eastern professors who came from Cabrini certainly find deeper similarities than differences among the students.

“They don’t walk around with a big ‘C’ on them,” biokinetics department chair Michele Monaco said. “They could blend in here at Eastern.” Monaco came to Eastern from Cabrini in 2001 to develop Eastern’s athletic training program.

Cabrini students have, in fact, blended in. According to Monaco, a kinesiology class she once taught at Eastern was half-full of Cabrini students who were not detected as Cabrini students until they were revealed as such two weeks into the course.

Biokinetics professor Tracey Greenwood also finds little difference between the students. She said Eastern students made her feel at home this semester when she joined the biokinetics faculty, but also said that Cabrini students still call or come over to chat with her.

“I think the students are very respectful, and so were the Cabrini students,” she said.

Eastern students who take classes at Cabrini also tend to blend in. They are not eager to reveal their Eastern status, and said that no one guesses. The few people they do tell accept them anyway.

“The only thing is I get questions from the girl in the lab group, ‘Why do you go there? They’re so strict,’ junior Ryan Birch, who is taking physics at Cabrini, said.

Junior Leah McCarrick, who took geometry over there last semester, agreed.

“In class, it wasn’t very apparent,” she said. “Nothing was vocalized.”

While Cabrini students often think of Eastern as a strict religious school, Eastern students are not completely innocent of misconceptions either. One such misconception, according to the professors, is the idea that Cabrini students are poorer students.

“You have the same challenges with students,” Michele Monaco, a biokinetics professor, said. “Those who really want to succeed will succeed.”

Senior Julia Knudsen, who transferred from Eastern to Cabrini in 2004, said that although some Eastern ideas about Cabrini are correct, such as the fact that there is more drinking at Cabrini, there are also many positive aspects of the school that Eastern students do not see, such as an excellent internship program and required service learning.

“We have a huge program and what we foster in everything we do is community outreach,” she said.

Ultimately, students on both sides are just that.

“By the end of the semester, they were all around,” Monaco said of her kinesiology class. “They were students. There were no labels.”

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