Who Are We?
As part of the Catholic community at RPI, the Newman Catholic Fellowship is a group where students can find fellowship and friendship with each other, with the community, and with our Lord, Jesus Christ. Together, we seek to grow in our faith, both intellectually and spiritually, and explore with great joy the presence of God in our lives and the love He has for His people.
We gather for dinner on Sundays at 6 p.m. - after the 5 p.m. mass - in the Hospitality House, 4 Sherry Road. Weekly meetings are held Thursday evenings at 8:00 p.m., also in the Hospitality House. Service, social and spiritual enrichment activities are offered throughout the academic year.
We strive to develop a closer relation with our fellow brothers and sisters by participating in many service projects including Emmaus House, Joseph's House, preparing Christmas baskets, and many more opportunities to come. Membership in Newman Catholic Fellowship is open to all RPI students, Catholic and non-Catholic alike. Spouses are welcome.
Whether you have never attended a Catholic celebration of the Mass before or are actively involved in the Church, we welcome you to participate in our meetings, dinners and activities. Please check with the Chaplains Office in the Union to find out what's happening with the University Parish of Christ Sun of Justice - located at the Chapel + Cultural Center - or contact one of the officers for information about Newman Catholic Fellowship.
John Henry Newman was born on February 21, 1801 in London. Interestingly he started not as a Catholic, but as a member of the Church of England. As a vicar, Newman exerted a strong spiritual influence on the Church of England.
In 1845, Newman converted to Catholicism from Anglicanism. He founded Oratories of St. Philip Neri in Birmingham and London, and was also the first rector at the Catholic University in Dublin. In 1879, he was made a Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII. Through his writings, he created a greater understanding of the Catholic Church. Cardinal John Henry Newman died in Birmingham on August 11, 1890. In 1893 the first Newman Club was formed at the University of Pennsylvania. They have now spread throughout the country, with over 600 colleges hosting chapters.
In 1991, Newman was proclaimed venerable after a thorough examination of his life and work by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The cause for his beatification and canonization is ongoing. At least one miracle is needed before he can be beatified.
Russell Brown | President
Mechanical Engineering, 2014
Born and raised on Long Island, Russell has been an active part of the Catholic Church his whole life. He loves the welcoming atmosphere of Newman which made him feel right at home during his first week at RPI. As an avid home chef, Russell especially enjoys the Sunday dinners (particularly the ones involving bacon). Outside of Newman, Russell has been involved with the Student Senate, Winter Carnival, Archer Center for Student Leadership, and much more. Russell enjoys writing a cooking blog, running, and most of all, lying on the beach with his toes in the sand.
Kathleen Flynn | Vice President
Information Technology and Web Science, 2015
Born and raised in Jefferson Township, New Jersey, Kathleen is the oldest of three children. She is a very active parishioner of St. Thomas the Apostle Church. Newman Fellowship gives her a sense of a “home away from home” at RPI; a friendly and faithful community which is very welcoming. Outside of Newman, Kathleen is involved in the RPI orchestra, symphonic band, pep band, and the Red & White Student Organization. Her favorite part of Newman is the weekly Sunday dinner, where people come together to relax and enjoy each other’s company before starting the week.
Christina Gilliland | Secretary & Treasurer
Machanical Engineering, 2015
The youngest of three, Christina Gilliland was born and raised in the small town Cazenovia, NY (just south of Syracuse) and is a proud of alumna of Cazenovia Central School District. As a lifetime parishioner, Christina calls St. James Catholic Church her hometown parish. Christina enjoys the Newman tradition of Sunday dinners where friendships are formed and faith is shared. Outside of Newman, Christina is involved in the Student Senate serving as the Director of Senate Communications, Class Council, the Society of Women Engineers, and Circle K.
Andrew Trovato | Facilities Manager
Aerospace Engineering, 2014
Andrew is from the town of Somers and St. Patrick’s Parish in New York, and is an alumnus of Fordham Preparatory School in the Bronx. As an Aeronautical & Mechanical Engineering major, he is also a member of RPI Design/Build/Fly, an model aircraft team that takes part in an annual competition. In his spare time, he plays the clarinet, reads science fiction, and serves as an Assistant Scoutmaster of his local Boy Scout troop. His favorite part of Newman has been learning more about his Catholic identity, as well as the dedicated group of friends he has made there.
Shannon Barra | Meetings Coordinator
Materials Science Engineering, 2015
Raised in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, Shannon is the oldest of three. She has been an avid member of the Catholic Church her whole life and part of her home parish, St. Rose of Lima Parish in Newtown, CT since she was 8 years old. Currently a sophomore at RPI, she is studying to become a chemical engineer, though thinking of pursuing material science engineering. Since she has joined Newman, her favorite activities include semesterly retreats and regular Thursday meetings, but she loves going to various events for the group all year round (yay pie baking!) Apart from Newman, Shannon enjoys attending concerts and taking care of her adorable baby bunny, Skishy. Her favorite place to visit is Kauai, Hawaii because she loves the warm weather and sandy beaches.
Matthew Kosman | Technology Director
Computer Systems and Electrical Engineering, 2014
Born the oldest of two in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Matt is an alumnus of Allentown Central Catholic High School and a parishoner of Holy Trinity Catholic Church. Currently a senior, he studies Computer Systems and Electrical Engineering. Matt enjoys Newman's many traditions, especially Sunday dinners and the semesterly retreat. Outside of Newman, Matt is involved in UPAC Sound, a representative on the Union Executive Board, and a hobby photographer and guitarist.
Geena Simila | Social Coordinator
Civil Engineering, 2016
Born and raised in Wenonah, New Jersey, Geena is the oldest of four. She is a graduate of Our Lady of Mercy Academy, a member of Incarnation Parish, and is currently studying Civil Engineering. When she is not spending time with her friends, Geena enjoys sleeping, reading, and watching British television on Netflix. As much as she enjoys Thursday meetings and Sunday dinners, her favorite parts of Newman are the activities outside of the formal meetings like Christmas caroling and pie baking. She views joining the Newman Fellowship as one of her best decisions upon arriving at RPI, for she has made many great friends.
Emily Farella | Service Coordinator
Mechanical Engineering and Design, Innovation, and Society, 2016
From wonderful Long Island, NY, Emily is the middle child of three sisters. She is a graduate from Kellenberg Memorial High School and is currently a dual major in Mechanical Engineering and Design, Innovation and Society here at RPI. Emily has been an active member in her home parish St. Barnabas the Apostle her whole life. She enjoys all aspects of the Newman Catholic Fellowship, especially dinners on Sunday after mass and the great sense of community. Outside of Newman, Emily is a member of UPAC Sound and the Creator’s Project.
Coming soon! Check out our facebook page for photos.