Deborah Talarico '73 Joins the Callaghan Society

I joined the Callaghan Society because it's important to make it possible for this university to thrive and make a Carlow education attainable for young people.

Deborah Talarico's reach as an educator has touched thousands of students who have gone on to apply their communications knowledge in a wide range of fields, from the arts to the sciences to business.

At Carlow in the early 1970s, she fulfilled many roles as a resident advisor, the student representative on the alumni association, a member of the theater group, and the student manager in the cafeteria. In 1973, she earned a communications arts degree and became a teacher.

She taught in Hookstown, Pa., during her first year after college and then accepted a position in the Woodland Hills School District located east of Pittsburgh.

Deborah"In only four years of studying liberal arts at Carlow, I received a very broad education. When I became an educator, I taught new topics without hesitation. I had the courage to create my own classes on many interesting subjects such as Othello, Taming of the Shrew, journalism, and philosophy," she said.

Talarico holds dear her memories of the Sisters of Mercy as brilliant professors and forward-thinking role models. She was in attendance at the funeral for Sister Jane Scully in February.

"We need to encourage students to follow service-oriented profession—teaching, counseling, social work, nursing—without feeling burdened by too much student debt. I joined the Callaghan Society because it's important to make it possible for this university to thrive and make a Carlow education attainable for young people," she said.

At Woodland Hills, Talarico taught language arts from 1974 until her retirement. She remains active in the arts, theater, and education.



In Her Own Words: A Callaghan Society Member


One spring, I volunteered to cover the desk in Frances Warde Hall for Tuition Freedom Day. As busy students passed by, we asked them to write notes to alumni to thank them for their support. Many students were surprised to learn that after March 28 the rest of their tuition is covered by generous donations. 
They were all truly grateful for the financial aid that made their education possible. 

I was also thrilled to run into many of my former students from Woodland Hills. These young women were as happy with Carlow as I was long ago. In their rush between classes, they took the time to share with me how happy they were at Carlow and how hopeful they felt for the future awaiting them upon graduation. 

As we know, with a solid education anything is possible especially for students whose education is enriched by the spirit of humility, service, and excellence, which is ever the mission of Carlow.

After that day, my late husband and I decided to become members of the Callaghan Society. The Venerable Mother Catherine McAuley founded the Sisters of Mercy through the legacy of her adopted Callaghan family. The continued generosity of the Callaghan Society members will keep the spirit of Carlow alive for generations to come. In the words of Mother McAuley, "No matter how small the gift, God gives the increase."

~Deborah Talarico, Class of 1973

About the Callaghan Society

Callaghan Society members are part of the Carlow University tradition that began in 1822, when the Callaghans, for whom Catherine McAuley, founder of the Sisters of Mercy served as caretaker, made her the sole heir of their estate in Dublin. At that moment, they could not possibly have imagined the enormous good which would result from their bequest over the next two centuries. Today, legacy commitments from Callaghan Society members through their wills, trusts, or other estate gifts ensure the vitality and development of Carlow University and its Mercy-based mission from one generation to the next. 

To learn more about how you can join the Callaghan Society and make a difference in the lives of students, please contact Nicole DeMartino, Director of Major Gifts at 412.578.6343 or nmdemartino@carlow.edu.