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College of Arts and Sciences

Alumni Testimonials

Felipe PereiraFelipe Pereira ‘20

Felipe Pereira earned his BA as an Honors student with majors in Philosophy and Religion. Felipe is now pursuing a PhD in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh, which is ranked fourth ranked of its kind in the United States and the fifth ranked program in the world. During his time at SHU Felipe presented "Libertarianism and a Counterfactual Account of Freedom" at the Undergraduate Philosophy Conference at Southern Illinois University and "How To (And How Not To) Argue Against Temporal Nihilism" at the 2020 Central Meeting of the American Philosophical Association. Felipe also published two original articles in philosophy journals, "The (Un)desirability of Immortality" in Philosophy Compass and "Non-Repeatable Hedonism is False" in Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.  

Felipe on "Why study philosophy?" 

"Philosophy fascinates me because I'm often not sure what to believe about what is good, what is bad, what we owe each other, what to hope for, and so on. And philosophy is all about critically assessing these sorts of beliefs. It's an exercise in humility, curiosity, respectful disagreement, critical thinking, and creative problem solving."

Joseph MontesanoJoseph Montesano ‘19

Joseph completed his Seton Hall education in the Fall of 2019. An honors student during his time at Seton Hall, Montesano double majored in biology and philosophy. Joseph is current at Harvard Dental School, the top dental school in the world. As a senior, he placed second in a competitive nationwide undergraduate essay contest sponsored by The Center for Bioethics at New York University. His paper, which explored the question of whether one can have a duty to die, was published in the Spring 2019 edition of the peer reviewed undergraduate journal Medical Dialogue Review (published by New York University). 

Joseph on "Why study philosophy?" 

“I strongly advocate for everyone in the sciences to take at least a few philosophy classes at the collegiate level. While it sounds incredibly cliche, philosophy really does change the way you think about the world. My interest in ethics, which stems from my philosophy courses, has helped shape how I view and understand morality and judging difficult situations — moral and otherwise. This has become important in how I view, interact with, and ultimately treat patients in the chair. It helps paint the picture that a patient isn't a disease, condition, case, or number alone; they have a history, a story, and values, all of which culminate into who they are. Philosophy helps you not only see that, but understand it in a much more real way."

Christina StanhopeChristina Stanhope ‘17

Christina graduated from SHU with a BA in Philosophy and a BS in Psychology and was a University Honors student. Having spent time working as a research technician in the Kash Lab at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she is now pursuing a fully funded Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Cancer Biology at Duke University School of Medicine. Through her research, Stanhope hopes to study chronic pain and addiction with the goal of finding pharmacological alternatives or improvements to present day opioids.

Christina on "Why study philosophy?" 

"Philosophy teaches you to reason, think critically, write clearly, and question constructively — skills that are invaluable to me as a researcher."

Gregory L. Demers '07Gregory L. Demers, Esq. ’07

Gregory L. Demers earned his B.A. from Seton Hall, summa cum laude, in Philosophy and Political Science in 2007. He earned his J.D., cum laude, from Cornell Law, one of the nation’s elite law schools. Greg is now a litigation associate and focuses his practice on complex commercial disputes and government investigations. He also maintains an active pro bono practice, including successfully representing asylum-seekers fleeing from political persecution.

Greg on “Why study philosophy?”

"Any practicing lawyer will tell you that law school is less about memorizing legal doctrines and more about learning how to ‘think like a lawyer.’ I found that studying philosophy at Seton Hall provided an important stepping stone in that it cultivates the critical thinking skills and analytical abilities that are needed to excel in law school and make for a good lawyer."

Mary Meg Donnelly pictureMary Meg Donnelly ’15

Mary Meg Donnelly earned her B.A., summa cum laude, in Philosophy and Modern Languages at Seton Hall in 2015. She was also a University Honors student, member of the SHU Ethics Bowl Team, and active in volunteer work and campus organizations, including serving as president for the Seton Hall Amnesty International Chapter, tutoring inmates at Northern State Prison in Math and English, and mentoring 3rd and 4th grade children affected by HIV/AIDS. Mary Meg received her Master’s degree in Philosophy at Georgia State University in 2018, one of the top Philosophy M.A. programs in the nation.

Mary Meg on “Why study philosophy?”

“The discussions in my philosophy classes were always fascinating. I definitely suggest that students study philosophy, regardless of their major or their professional aspirations. The analytic and reading and writing skills it teaches will serve you in any career path you choose, as well as help you to better understand the kind of life you want to lead outside of your career.”

Megan Ferguson picture 2Megan Ferguson ’17

Megan graduated from Seton Hall in 2017, majoring in Philosophy and Diplomacy and International Relations, and with an Asian Studies minor. Her paper written for a class in Feminist Philosophy, "Hysteria in the Hunting Ground: Luce Irigaray and College Trigger Warnings," will appear in the Stanford Undergraduate Research Journal. Megan traveled to Taiwan to teach English on a Fulbright Scholarship. She is currently a JD candidate at the Washington University School of Law.

Megan on “Why study philosophy?”

“Holistically, my undergraduate education was not about learning facts or a particular skill, but about learning how to think critically and persuasively deliver my analysis. Philosophy was an essential component of that education, not only because I was exposed to various thinkers and means of delivering thought, but because I was asked to provide my own critical evaluations of these thinkers. In doing so, I could also better contribute to my other subjects, applying Weber to a theory about statehood to craft a more persuasive policy paper or discussing Gerard to support or criticize a national security issue. By studying philosophy, I learned how to think, and fostered a love for thinking critically.”

Picture of Jessica ThomulkaJessica Thomulka ’16

Jessica graduated Seton Hall in 2016 with majors in Chemistry and Philosophy. She also was member of the Seton Hall Ethics Bowl Team. Jessica was awarded the prestigious Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship for graduate work in STEM education and obtained her M.A. from Rowan University in 2017. While in graduate school she started teaching 10th grade chemistry in a high-need public high school in South Jersey. Jessica plans to continue to teach high school chemistry and pursue a Ph.D. in Education.

Jessica on “Why study philosophy?”

“As a chemist, when I tell colleagues I have a degree in philosophy, I always receive a puzzled look along with comments such as “That’s a weird combination,” or questions like “How did you end up picking those two majors?” My answer is simple, the two disciplines are very complementary. Philosophy allows me to communicate chemistry more effectively and present arguments that are sound and rational. By studying philosophy, I have learned to articulate my views and findings in a logical manner in both my personal and professional life.”

Mohamed El-Sayed pictureMohamed El-Sayed ’15

Mohamed earned his B.S. from Seton Hall in 2015 Summa Cum Laude with majors in Biology and Philosophy and was in the Seton Hall Honors program. He is currently a chiropractic student at NY Chiropractic College and expected to graduate 2018.

Mohamed on “Why study philosophy?”

“I chose to pursue philosophy as a second major because I believed that the hard sciences by themselves offered an incomplete perspective on life. I found that simply studying human physiology without engaging in a sincere and thoughtful conversation about what it really means to be a person deeply dissatisfying. Deeper philosophical questions should not take a back seat to the increasingly relentless pursuit of one’s professional aspirations and self-interests. Combining biology with philosophy also helped me to stand out during the chiropractic school application process.”

Richard Easson with the Bull Statue on Wall Street Richard Easson ’12

Richard earned his B.S. from Seton Hall in 2012 Cum Laude with a major in philosophy. During his time as an undergraduate, he was a member of the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity and the Phi Sigma Tau International Philosophy Honors Society. He returned to Seton Hall to pursue an MBA and graduated in 2017 with a concentration in finance. He is currently a Senior Financial Analyst in Financial Planning and Analysis within the advertising industry.

Richard on “Why study philosophy?”

“At the onset of my time as an undergraduate student, I pursued a degree in philosophy, because it was my desire to become a lawyer and I felt that it would help me in the field. Toward the end of my college career, I came to the conclusion that the legal field was not for me and ended up working at a company that got me highly involved with its financial team. With my interest sparked, I decided to go back to school to pursue an MBA. Philosophy has helped me in so many ways in the business field. Not only has it aided me in thinking outside the box when devising ways to create better business processes, but it has also helped me to rationally think about how to reach goals and objectives efficiently. Employers love the degree and know that they’re commissioning someone with exceptional logic and reasoning skills.”

Gus Glazov Augustine Glazov ‘17

Gus graduated Summa Cum Laude from Seton Hall in 2017 with a major in philosophy and a minor in music, and delivered the valedictorian address at the undergraduate commencement ceremony. During his time at SHU he attended prestigious summer institutes on natural law at The Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, attended several prominent national conferences, and was a leading member of the SHU Ethics Bowl Team. Gus regularly performed in musicals and operas, including performances at Carnegie Hall and on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. He is currently in the Teach for America program, teaching under-privileged high-school students in rural Appalachia.

Gus on “Why Study Philosophy?”

“Studying philosophy is an essential journey towards self-discovery and the discovery of this beautiful reality that we find ourselves in. It is an endeavor filled with fascinating theories and thoughts, concocted by the greatest of human minds. Many of these thoughts have been transcribed with the greatest passion and rhetoric, allowing you to vividly witness the extent to which each author felt the urgent burdens of existence, life, and death. Other texts are obscured in puzzles and riddles... confusing, but nonetheless entertaining and worthy of observation. And despite the interminable journey that the major turned out to be, I feel fulfilled and authentic because I made the effort. Today, despite my lack of certainty in answering fundamental questions, I have attained a definitive ability to think critically, act genuinely, and embrace the occasional existential crisis rather than succumb to it.”

Deysimara Hubner ‘12 headshotDeysimara Hubner ‘12

Deysi graduated Magna Cum Laude from SHU with a minor in Political Science. After graduating she obtained her JD from the University of Iowa College of Law, a top 20 law school. I obtained my law degree from a T20 law school, the University of Iowa College of law in 2017. Deysi is current licensed in New York and New Jersey and is a first-year Associate at Rainone Coughlin Minchello, LLC.

Why Study Philosophy?

“The skills I acquired from studying philosophy have been very valuable to me, especially during law school and in the legal field in general. The study of philosophy teaches you to question your surroundings; to think practically, logically and precisely. You will be able to explain your arguments in innovative ways, backed by facts, logic, and reasoning. Your writing will become concise and logical, and these are transferable skills that are valued in any field. Most importantly, the professors in the Seton Hall University’s Philosophy Department are great mentors and will most certainly prepare you well to succeed in your future endeavors whatever they may be.”

William MooreWilliam Moore '19

William C. Moore earned his B.S., Summa Cum Laude, in Business Administration and Philosophy. During his time at Seton Hall, William was active in on-campus organizations, including the Ethics Bowl Team, which placed 6th in the nation under his leadership, the Stillman Exchange, and the Gentlemen of the Hall and several theater productions. He was also a member of the University Honors Program and the University Leadership Development Program. William is currently working as an auditor in New York and plans to attend law school in the coming years. 

William on "Why study philosophy?" 

"Philosophy is a unique discipline in that it strikes at the heart of the learning process. My philosophy classes at Seton Hall pushed me to develop and regularly expand the boundaries of my critical thinking skills in ways that no other classes ever had before. Regardless of what field you hope to pursue, philosophy will make a great complement to your course of study, because it gives you the tools and methods to approach even subjects you know very little about with a critical mindset that will help you excel. Outside of your professional life, philosophy will shape the way you view and interact with the world around you by introducing you to the long and storied tradition of humanity grappling with life's greatest questions."