Trinity Sisterhood: Rotterman Scholars

Trinity Sisterhood

Rotterman Scholars

By Ann Pauley

For Natalie Prince ’16 and Anna Roland ’16, the power of the Trinity sisterhood began long before they applied to college. Brenna Doherty ’13, who had already graduated from Chaminade Julienne High School in Dayton, Ohio, and was enrolled at Trinity as a Rotterman Scholar, encouraged them to consider Trinity.

When Roland visited campus, she immediately liked the experiences and opportunities that Trinity offers. “I liked the fact that Trinity is a small college in a big city,” said Roland. “I really enjoyed the classes I visited and Washington is such a great place to go to school.”

At first, Prince was less sure Trinity was a good match for her. Before her campus visit, she thought Trinity might be too small. “But I felt so welcomed by everyone, and I realized that in a big university, with big classes, the professors would not know my name – would not know me,” Prince said. “Trinity was the right choice for me.”

As Prince and Roland sifted through different college choices, they were thrilled to learn that they had been selected to receive the prestigious Rotterman Scholarship.

Established through a trust created by Marie Rotterman, the Helen and Marie Rotterman Scholarship is one of Trinity’s oldest, continuing endowed scholarships. Marie Rotterman was a member of the Class of 1904, the very first class to graduate from Trinity, and Helen was her sister.

Mildred Hubler ’49, one of the trustees of the Rotterman Trust, has played an active role in identifying promising candidates for the scholarship. Rotterman Scholars have a great tradition of continuing on to successful careers and giving back to their communities. Brenna Doherty is a nurse in Ohio; Marianne Hemmeter ’94 was recently appointed to serve as a trial court judge in Ohio after a distinguished career as a prosecuting attorney.

Roland is a biochemistry major with a minor in political science. This summer, she was engaged in research on Alzheimer’s through a highly selective internship at Harvard University School of Public Health. In summer 2014, she was a research intern on a breast cancer project at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. These internships are helping her decide the path she will pursue when she applies to doctoral programs.

Prince is planning on a career in health care and is majoring in nursing. “I always wanted to do something in the medical field,” said Prince. “As a little kid, visiting family in the hospital, I saw that the staff who spend the most time with patients and their families are nurses. I could see what a difference they made and now I want to make a difference.”

Prince is particularly interested in working in mental health, geriatrics and veterans health care. “I have lots of family and friends who have been in the military, and I want to give back to those who have fought for our country,” she said.

Prince appreciates the many ways that Trinity faculty both challenge her and are committed to her academic success. “My professors really want me to do well,” she said. “They motivate me to try harder and they motivate me to learn.” She particularly likes learning from faculty who bring their own nursing experiences to the classroom. “They give us real life examples and they connect them to what we learn in our textbooks – and then it all clicks!”

Roland also values the support of her professors, particularly Dr. Patrice Moss, Clare Boothe Luce assistant professor of biochemistry. “Dr. Moss has mentored me and inspired me,” said Roland. “She groomed me to apply for competitive research internships. The first year, when I did not get an internship, I was disappointed, but she helped me learn from the process. She encouraged me to keep applying and to sharpen my focus, and I landed amazing research internships at Johns Hopkins and Harvard.”

Both Roland and Prince traveled to Selma, Alabama, this past spring for Campus Ministry’s alternative spring break trip, which combines community service projects with lessons about the civil rights movement.

“Natalie said to me, ‘We need to do this,’ and I am so glad we did,” said Roland. “It was an amazing experience that I will never forget.”

Before they began their first semester at Trinity, both Prince and Roland were excited about their decision to attend Trinity, but were unsure about being at a women’s college. Today, they can’t imagine being anywhere else. “The sisterhood of Trinity, the empowerment, the mentoring I get from my professors who are accomplished women scientists – Trinity is an incredible community and I am so glad I am here,” said Roland.

Prince added, “I am so grateful for this scholarship and I feel a special connection to Helen and Marie Rotterman. Anna and I are following in the footsteps of their sisterhood.”