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Faculty and Staff Appeal 2012: Chelsea Christine Bernardi

Posted: March 7, 2012

Chelsea Christine Bernardi chose Buffalo State for its excellent reputation preparing students to enter the classroom because she thought she might teach high school French one day. During her time at Buffalo State, her career dreams have evolved and expanded. Now the junior majoring in French language and literature and minoring in Spanish is planning for a career as a linguistics professor.

In addition to her terrific language classes at Buffalo State, the opportunity to study in Paris last fall through the SUNY study-abroad program significantly influenced her decision.

“I was exposed to so many different types of cultures and languages while in Europe, either through people I met or other countries I visited,” said Bernardi, who grew up on Grand Island. “Those experiences only reinforced that I love languages.”

Bernardi said she couldn’t have made that trip without the help of the Dr. Eliane McKee French Education Scholarship Fund, which provides a one-time scholarship of $500 for students studying French.

Numerous faculty and staff members contribute to the McKee Fund, along with other scholarships, to continue to help Buffalo State students each year either through one-time gifts or payroll deductions.

“Every bit helps,” said Bernardi, who also receives a Dean’s Scholarship each semester and works part time to finance her education.

To be considered for the McKee scholarship, students are required to write an essay about their goals and how they would use the scholarship. Bernardi conveyed how she wants to teach French and possibly other languages in the future. Applicants also need to maintain at least a 3.5 grade point average in their major and 3.0 overall, a qualification Bernardi definitely meets. Her current GPA is 3.98.

“Getting this scholarship makes me proud of my accomplishments and proud that people recognize my hard work,” Bernardi said. She is now working with Michael Vermy, assistant professor of modern and classical languages, to explore her opportunities for graduate school.

Won’t you consider helping students like Bernardi by participating in the 2012 Faculty and Staff Appeal? A complete list of funds is available at

For additional information about giving to the Faculty and Staff Appeal, please contact Louis Noce.

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Modern and Classical Languages

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