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Donor Connection


We hope you find inspiration in our inaugural e-newsletter. Inspiration from the research being done at NSU to help people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome, Gulf War illness, autism, and Parkinson’s disease, chronicled in our Dream Profile. Inspiration from an amazing donation that enables us to take a huge leap toward providing students with elite computation skills.  Inspiration from our amazing students, one of whom you will meet in this issue. 

We hope you find inspiration here, because the common thread in all of these accomplishments is you. So let us hear from you. Please email me at We want to understand what drew you to NSU. And we want to keep you informed and engaged based on the dreams you have to better our community and people’s lives. 

Thank you for your generosity and dedication to NSU.


Jennifer O’Flannery Anderson, Ph.D.,
Vice President for Advancement and Community Relations

Faculty Profile

Nancy Klimas, M.D.

Nancy Klimas, M.D.
Professor of Medicine
Chair, Department of Immunology
Director, Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine, NSU College of Osteopathic Medicine


Nearly one-third of uniformed and civilian service members who served in the Gulf War in 1991 are currently suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome and Gulf War illness. As director of NSU’s Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine, NSU College of Osteopathic Medicine, Nancy Klimas, M.D. is out to change that.

She and her colleagues combine research, training and clinical care to advance the needs of patients suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and Gulf War illness (GWI).

Klimas believes that NSU’s virtual modeling system and the treatments it suggests will not only provide significant aid to veterans, but likely has implications for other complex medical disorders such as autism and Parkinson’s disease:

  • With an additional $1 million in research support, we could conduct several phase one studies of potential therapies for CFS and GWI, cutting two to three years off the usual grant funding process.
  • With $5 million, we could apply our modeling system to other complex medical disorders such as autism and Parkinson’s disease.
  • With $10 million, we could build a network of neuro-immune multidisciplinary clinics inside and outside Florida providing care to underserved populations with cutting-edge, research-driven treatment approaches for complex medical disorders. A strong clinical team would support the research effort and allow the introduction of technologies such as whole genome analysis to clinical practice.

Contact Ashley Sharp (954) 262-2150 to discuss further the work of Klimas and others at NSU’s Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine.

Student Profile

Emily HartEmily Hart
Class of 2016, Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences (FCAS)
Recipient, Dean’s Scholarship
Recipient, James and Nan Farquhar Performing and Visual Arts grant
District winner, Artist Awards Competition presented by National Association of Teachers of Singers (NATS)


One highlight from NSU’s Big Thank You event for scholarship benefactors and recipients comprised moving remarks and a performance by Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences undergraduate student Emily Hart.

Hart recently won at the district level for the NATS Artists Awards Competition, and she is able to travel to represent herself and NSU at the regional level this weekend thanks to the generosity of Mrs. Jacqueline Travisano, NSU Executive Vice President and COO, and Mr. Ronald G. Assaf, Chairman, NSU Board of Trustees.

In just two short years at NSU, this Trinidad and Tobago native and recipient of the Dean’s Scholarship and James and Nan Farquhar Performing and Visual Arts Grant says she found a home away from home, gained the confidence to enter a major singing competition, and discovered that music therapy might be one way to combine her love of music with a passion to help people.

“I’ve always felt in my heart that I have been given a gift to help others, and I wanted to work towards having people reach the same place that I feel when I sing,” Hart said.  “I love being able to study both psychology and music because so many options are available to me.”

Click here to view The Big Thank You photo gallery.

“My name is Emily Hart and two years ago I left my home country, Trinidad and Tobago, to begin a life here at NSU. Never would I have imagined that today I would be standing here speaking to all of you. Coming from a small island, I didn't have vast opportunities for a college education available to me. However, from a young age my parents instilled in me that I was born to be something and do something beyond my dreams. 

“After I graduated secondary school, I quickly began looking into colleges from in the United States. Florida was my first choice, of course, living in a 90 degree climate my whole life, as you can imagine I didn't want to get anywhere colder than the Sunshine state. But the real truth is that Florida is only one flight away from Trinidad and that gave my dad every opportunity to come up whenever he wanted.

"I attended a college fair in Trinidad where universities from all over the world were represented. Out of the hundreds of schools over there that day, Nova was the first to capture my eye. I immediately knew that it was meant to be. And with the help of a recruiter that I met at the fair, I quickly formed a relationship with Nova Southeastern University.

“I immediately filled out my application and anxiously waited for a response. A couple of months later when my mom came into the house and handed me the letter, I opened it with excitement and nervousness and every emotion imaginable. I was so proud that at that moment I could call myself an NSU Shark. My parents and I came to Florida to visit NSU. I fell in love. With every minute that passed, as we toured the campus that day, I became certain that this is where I wanted to be for the next four years. Here I am today. Almost finished with my second year, studying psychology and pursuing a passion that I have had since I could talk: music. Not only am I fortunate enough to be following my lifelong dream of earning an academic degree and developing my voice along the way, but I am doing it with the support of so many people around me.

“I am truly grateful for the financial support I received through the Dean's Scholarship and the James and Nan Farquhar Performing and Visual Arts grant. These scholarships have made a little girl's dream to a young woman's reality and I'm sure every student sitting here feels exactly the way I do.

"On behalf of the hundreds of NSU students who benefit from your generosity, I want to say a Big Thank You because you have given us an opportunity to be something and do something beyond our dreams.

"I would not be here today if it were not for the support and love of my family, my teachers, the administrators, the donors, and everyone here at the university. Thank you for being a part of my journey and most importantly, thank you for the music.”

- Emily Hart, Class of 2016

Giving Highlights


> The Megalodon Lives on at NSU

Thanks to a generous gift from Centaurus Energy, the biggest shark in research can be found at NSU.  The donated IBM supercomputer dubbed “Megalodon” in honor of the largest predatory marine creature in our planet’s history, can digest complex problems and simulate “impossible” problems. With it, NSU researchers will be able to analyze data generated by experiments in a matter of weeks or months versus years, and a new wave of NSU students will graduate with skills in large-scale computing, making them even more desirable prospects in the increasingly competitive job market. 

The next step for NSU’s Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences (GSCIS) is to get the Megalodon up and running. Anticipation is great for faculty and students to receive training and start conducting experiments even before construction for the supercomputer’s permanent home, the Center for Collaborative Research, is completed. Ensuring an adequate power supply to run Megalodon just one of the challenges to be addressed, according to GSCIS Dean Eric Ackerman, Ph.D.  

Contact: Elaine Blattner (954) 262-2409, for more information about NSU’s Megalodon, NSU’s Center for Collaborative Research, or NSU’s Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences.

> Celebration of Excellence Raises $100,000 for Student Scholarships and Honors Winifred and Joseph Amaturo

NSU Looking BackNSU’s 16th annual Celebration of Excellence raised more than $100,000 for student scholarships thanks to a sold-out audience comprising top business leaders, philanthropists, and friends of the university. Philanthropists Winifred and Joseph Amatoro received the President’s Award for Excellence in Community Service. And members of NSU’s prestigious Shark Circle, the giving society for donors who have gifted $1million or more to the university, each received a limited edition replica of NSU’s 30’ Mako shark sculpture. The event also served as the official kick-off to NSU’s 50th Anniversary.

Contact: Sharon Sullivan (954) 262-2144, for information about NSU’s special events, including Celebration of Excellence.

> First Schemel Professor for Neuro-Immune Medicine Named

NSU is able to attract and retain the most dedicated and talented faculty in the world through endowed professorships like the one created last year by the Schemel Family Foundation.  As a result of the foundation’s $2 million endowment, NSU’s College of Osteopathic Medicine Dean Anthony J. Silvagni, D.O., Pharm.D., M.Sc., appointed Mary Ann Fletcher, Ph.D. as the first Schemel Professor for Neuro Immune Medicine.

Dr. Mary Ann FletcherDr. Mary Ann Fletcher is recognized throughout the medical research community as a leader in the study of the immunology of infectious diseases,” said Dean Silvagni. “We are proud to welcome her to our world-leading Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine and we are incredibly grateful to the Schemel family for their commitment to the advancement of science and medicine.”

In her new role, Fletcher will oversee the research lab and conduct proteomic and genomic research at the NSU College of Medicine’s Institute for Neuro Immune Medicine. Located at NSU’s main campus in Davie and led by Nancy Klimas, M.D., the Institute is the first in the nation to study neuroinflammatory and neurodegenerative disorders such as chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis, Gulf War Illness, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis using the newest proteomic, genomic and computational techniques.

Contact Ashley Sharp (954) 262-1510, for more information about NSU’s Institute of Neuro-Immune Medicine or endowed professorship opportunities in the Health Professions Division.

> NSU Welcomes New Executive Director of Development 

Terry MularkeyTerry Mularkey, CFRE, is NSU’s new executive director of development.  In this role, Mularkey will oversee the university’s comprehensive major gift fundraising program.

“Terry brings a wealth of successful fundraising and management experience to NSU,” said Jennifer O’Flannery Anderson, Ph.D., Vice President for Advancement and Community Relations.  “His expertise will be instrumental in connecting donors with opportunities to realize their dreams through philanthropy at NSU.  This in turn will help the university to reach our Vision 2020 goals.”

Mularkey possesses a unique combination of private industry, higher education, health and military experience. He arrives at NSU after having served as senior director of business development for Sodexo, a food services and facilities management company.   He has held several leadership positions during his tenure at Halifax Health Hospice, including as chief development officer.  In the education industry, he served as president for Father Lopez High School in Daytona Beach; as vice president and chief development officer for The Citadel Foundation in Charleston, S.C; and as executive director for alumni relations at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Prior to starting his fundraising career, Mularkey served as a U.S. Army Officer on active duty for 21 years until retiring at the rank of lieutenant colonel.  He served and led at every level in the military, including the Joint Staff in the Pentagon.  His numerous assignments and deployments included positions in Italy, Germany, Panama, Grenada, Turkey and Iraq.  His numerous awards and qualifications include  the Legion of Merit, the Joint Meritorious Service Medal (3x), the Army Meritorious Service Medal (2x), the Department of Defense Humanitarian Service Medal (3x) the U.S. Army Ranger Tab, the U.S. Army Special Forces Tab, Master Parachutist Wings, U.S. Army Aviator Wings, Air Assault Badge, and the Joint Staff service badge. 

Contact: Terry Mularkey, (954) 262-2064.

> Oceanographic Center Scholarship Awarded to Four Ph.D. Students

Oceanographic Center Scholarship

All proceeds from the annual Oceanographic Center Scholarship Billfish Tournament fund scholarships for Ph.D. students at NSU’s Oceanographic Center. Most recently, the event helped fund the thesis projects for four oceanographic research students:

Andrea Bernhard uses genetic tools to understand stock structure of recreational and commercial fish species, including billfish, groupers and sharks. Anastasios Stathakopoulous is investigating the response of southeast Florida coral reefs to global environmental change including sea level and climate. Andia Chaves-Fonegra is studying reproduction, genetics and ecology of sponges, and their degradation from climate change. Matthew Johnston is researching the spread of marine invasive species in the Caribbean basin using cellular automata and agent-based computer models. His work has already yielded fundamental insight into the voracious spread of lionfish through this delicate ecosystem. 

Contact: Wendy Wood (954) 262-3600.

> New Scholarships (FY’13 Q2 & Q3)

New Scholarships$1,800,000 scholarship dollars were provided by generous donors last year. Below are lists of benefactors who added new scholarships during the second and third quarters of Fiscal Year 2013. Each new scholarship advances NSU’s goals to attract the best and brightest students and to ensure NSU’s growth in teaching, research, service, and learning.

To discuss establishing or expanding a scholarship, please call (954) 262-2109.

  • Charles W. Daniels Scholarship by Robert S. Lafferty of The Lafterty Family Foundation so all undergraduate programs can recruit and retain outstanding students. 
  • Lori and Seth Wise/BBX Scholarship by Lori and Seth Wise (additional consideration: students studying real estate), H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship, Dean: Preston Jones, D.B.A.
  • Travisano Family Endowed Scholarship for Undergraduate Students by Peter and Jacqueline Travisano, NSU Vice President and COO, H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship, Dean: Preston Jones, D.B.A.
  • McDonald Family Scholarship by The McDonald Family Foundation, Inc. Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Dean: Don Rosenblum, Ph.D.
  • East Florida Physician Alliance Medical Foundation Endowment (additional consideration: To make it possible for students to participate in medical conferences), College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dean:   Anthony J. Silvagni, D.O., Pharm.D., M.Sc., FACOFP
  • Chartwells Endowed Scholarship by Compass Group USA, Inc. by and through its Chartwells division will support undergraduate students. Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Dean: Don Rosenblum, Ph.D.
  • Sandy Roberts Learning Abilities Scholarship by Scott Roberts (additional consideration: Students with learning issues so they can achieve academic excellence), H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship, Dean: Preston Jones, D.B.A.
  • Diane Whitehead R.N. to B.S.N. Changing Lives Scholarship by Linda Strommen (additional consideration: single parent students in the last two years of the program), College of Nursing, Dean: Marcella Rutherford, Ph.D.
  • Kaufman Lynn Construction Changing Lives Scholarship by Kaufman Lynn Construction. Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Dean: Don Rosenblum, Ph.D.
  • Changing Lives Scholarship for Aviation Students by Dean Kimberly Durham, Psy.D. (additional Consideration: Students pursuing an aviation administration concentration), Institute for the Study of Human Service, Health, and Justice, Dean: Kimberly Durham, Psy.D.
  • JMS Construction Services Changing Lives Scholarship by Jason Shlimbaum for JMS Construction Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Dean: Don Rosenblum, Ph.D.
  • Rothman-Reis Family Changing Lives Scholarship by Alyssa Rothman, Director of Office of Information Services (additional consideration: demonstrated excellence in research) Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Dean: Don Rosenblum, Ph.D.
  • Changing Lives Scholarship for Aviation Students by Dean Kimbery Durham, Psy.D. (additional consideration: pursuit of an aviation administration concentration) Institute for the Study of Human Service, Health and Justice, Dean: Kimberly Durham, Psy, D.
  • David Spector Memorial Scholarship by Howard D. Spector (Additional consideration: interest in treating drug and alcohol addiction.) Center for Psychological Studies, Dean: Karen Grosby, Ph.D.
  • Marta and Jim Batmasian Genocide Prevention Fund by Drs. Jim and Marta Batmasian, member of H.Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship Board of Governors. (Additional consideration: commitment to genocide prevention) NOTE: Fund will also support teaching and research in the field of genocide prevention. One of the first benefits is a new lecture seriesGraduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dean: Honggang Yan, Ph.D. 
  • Interiors by Steven G. Scholarship will support children enrolled in early intervention programs at Mailman Segal Center for Human Development, Dean: Roni Leiderman, Ph.D.
  • Students in grades 10-12 can earn an opportunity to attend the Creative Summer Art Academy by participating in the Merit Scholarship Competition. NSU Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale.

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University News


Center for Collaborative Research (CCR) groundbreakingArti Patel, a Ron & Kathy Assaf Endowed Scholarship recipient, National Science Foundation (NSF) Green Chemistry Student Scholar, and Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences biology major, was among the speakers at the recent Center for Collaborative Research (CCR) groundbreaking.

The revolutionary new focal point for research and discoveries will house some of the world’s most accomplished researchers and advance NSU’s goal to offer undergraduate and graduate students research-based opportunities.


  • One of Florida’s largest wet labs1
  • A clinical research center and outpatient facility
  • An IBM supercomputer (“Megalodon”)
  • NSU’s Technology Incubator2
  • NSU’s Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine
  • NSU’s Rumbaugh-Goodwin Institute for Cancer Research
  • NSU’s Emil Buehler Research  Center for Engineering, Science and Mathematics
  • United States Geological Survey (USGS), home to the Everglades restoration project

Contact: Elaine Blattner (954) 262-2409.

1. Dry labs are for computational and applied mathematical analysis. Wet labs are designed with direct ventilation and specialized piped utilities allowing researchers to work with chemicals or biological matter in liquid solutions or volatile phases.

2. The CCR will house Broward County’s only private incubator for cyber security and other high-tech businesses.


Hall of FameManuel D. Medina, founding and managing partner, Medina Capital; James Donnelly, founder and CEO, Castle Group; and Guy Harvey, Ph.D., artist, scientist, cinematographer, Guy Harvey, Inc. and the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation will receive the highest honor bestowed by H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship.  The three South Florida business leaders will be inducted into its Entrepreneur Hall of Fame in a special ceremony on April 30.


In the first two months of 2014, NSU stories were circulated to nearly 3 billion viewers in the U.S. and abroad, which translates to an estimated advertising value equivalency of $25.5 million.

The expert opinion of NSU professors contributed to articles regarding eating disorders, school crisis and safety, conflict resolution, violence warning signs, addiction, oral health, avoidable fall risk, gulf war illness, depression among seniors, autism, diabetes, keeping children warm, teaching children to problem-solve, treating special-needs children, juvenile justice, voting rights, energy law, bioethics, minimum wage, small business outlook, the NHL’s growth strategy, shark-tracking research and more.


NSU Women's Basketball WinsNSU’s women’s basketball scored a second consecutive South Region title, taking the lead with under a minute left in the game.  The NSU Sharks were led by Jessica Russi (psychology) who net a season-high 19 points, and added eight assists, four rebounds and three steals. Jasmine Wilkins (accounting) made nine points and eight rebounds, and Amanda Burakoski (sociology) made two free throws at the 5.0 second-mark to put the Sharks up by three for a final 56-53 win.

NSU’s back-to-back champions move on to the NCAA Elite Eight when they will take on the Central Region’s No. 7 seed, Concordia-St. Paul.


NSU Law Center Ranks No. 5 for DiversityNSU’s Shepard Broad Law Center ranks No. 5 nationally for diversity, according to U.S. News & World Report. The special report released this month, “Best Graduate Schools for Law,” also indicates that the Law Center ranks first for diversity among all law schools in Florida. 

The Diversity index is designed to identify law schools in which students are most likely to encounter classmates from a different racial or ethnic group, not simply laud law schools enrolling a large proportion of students from any one ethnic group.

“As a minority-majority university, as well as a designated Hispanic serving institution, we are very proud of our ranking by U.S. News and World Report,” said NSU President George L. Hanbury, Ph.D. “Our students have the opportunity to learn not only in the classroom, but to learn how to live in a competitive global economy. Diversity is one of NSU’s eight core values and our student population is reflective of a global society with many different cultures, races, values and nationalities.”

The ranking was based on data collected by U.S. News. To be included, each law school must be accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). There are currently 203 ABA-approved law schools across the U.S.

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Upcoming Events

The Big Thank You

Scholarship Benefactors and Students Honored at The Big Thank You

Excitement rippled through the crowd at NSU’s Big Thank You luncheon.  The annual event allows scholarship recipients to meet the benefactors who make it possible for them and other NSU students to pursue their dreams.  As part of this year’s celebration, NSU undergraduate student Emily Hart addressed attendees and sang, Thank You for Music by ABBA. A student studying both psychology and music at Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences, Hart advances this month to the regional level of the Artist Awards Competition presented by the National Association of Teachers of Singers (NATS). 

In the last fiscal year $1.8 million scholarship dollars were provided by generous NSU donors. Read Emily Hart’s remarks or click here to view the photo gallery.

Contact: Donor Relations, 954-262-2111.

Upcoming Events

April 22, 2014
Sponsor’s Dinner

April 25, 2014
29th Annual Scholarship Golf Classic
Proceeds go to the student-athlete scholarship endowment fund. Support is essential to the success of NSU’s NCAA Division II athletic program.

May 6, 2014
President’s Associates Event
A thank you event for donors who gift $1,000 or more for the current fiscal year. (This includes Changing Lives Scholarship donors.)

May 09-12, 2014
New York Trip with MOA Director
*RSVP by Apr. 15*
Open to members at the Director’s Circle ($2,500) level and above

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