Advisory committee formed to connect Marywood Heights and University


According to Persico, every bed and apartment is filled in the facility and there is now a waiting list. Photo credit: Erin Kane

Briana Ryan, News Editor

Marywood University is taking steps to help integrate campus with the newly purchased Marywood Heights.

When the university bought the senior living facility from the Little Sisters of the Poor, it was agreed that the university would change the facility’s name. According to Marywood President Sr. Mary Persico, IHM, Ed.D. the university established a committee which suggested the name Marywood Gardens.

“There are other nursing homes in the area that have “gardens” attached to them and we didn’t want people to think that we are attached to them because we’re not,” said Persico.

Persico said the committee then came up with the name Marywood Heights because the facility is at the highest point of campus. This name was approved by both Persico and the facility’s Chief Operating Officer David Klingerman.

According to Klingerman, an advisory committee will be formed with members from the facility and the university who will meet regularly to talk about how the two can collaborate.

“We see tremendous potential for integration. We ultimately want to bring a quality of life with the university based retirement community,” said Klingerman. “We think this advisory committee is really going to be able to take our vision and turn it into reality.”

Persico said one of the committee’s first tasks will be to develop a connection between the university and the facility.

“We are thinking about getting the architecture students involved in designing a way that we could maybe level that hill a little bit or add a sidewalk,” said Persico.

The university is also looking into hiring a part-time consultant that would work to unite the campus with not only Marywood Heights, but with the NativityMiguel School of Scranton, the Fricchione Day Care Center and the African Sisters Education Collaborative (ASEC) as well.

Despite the move to help integrate the campus with the facility, the foremost concern is still the care of Marywood Heights residents. According to Klingerman, his goal is to offer a continuum of care for residents with a variety of needs.

According to Persico there is still one challenge that has yet to be overcome.

“The Little Sisters of the Poor were there, and they had a different nursing style,” said Persico. “They were very much around day and night because they lived there their presence was something that everybody got used to.”

Although Persico said the shoes of the Little Sisters of the Poor can never be filled, IHM sisters are regularly visiting the facility to help residents get used to a new normal.

Klingerman said he feels the spirit of the sisters still lives on in the hallways of the facility.

“They have been a tremendous help with helping us understand the culture,” said Klingerman.

Marywood President Sr. Mary Persico, IHM, Ed.D. said that since the university bought the senior living facility in the fall semester, things have been going well both socially and financially.

“Every single bed and apartment are full and there is a waiting list now,” said Persico.

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