For four Adelphi graduates, long odds are just the beginning of their noteworthy stories.

Fewer than 10 percent of young people from the foster care system graduate from college,* which makes the success of TaLona Holbert ’12— a former foster child, a shining star of Adelphi’s political science department and now a second year law student—all the more remarkable.

For thousands of other young people, their chances of success have gotten a tremendous boost from Don Ryan ’66. Since his freshman year at Adelphi in 1961, Ryan has been coaching youth basketball in Hempstead—a 55-year legacy that reaches far beyond the court.

Widespread layoffs of teachers might have deterred most people from pursuing a career in education, but against the odds, Jill Hoder, M.A. ’93, found her way to a classroom and from there to many passion-fueled years as a New York City school leader.

Slim chance that a between-semesters job maintaining a bathhouse at Jones Beach in 1977 would lead to anything more than a fun summer, but for Susan Giuliani ’76 (physical education) and ’94 (nursing), her season at the beach became a 38-year career, with more than a decade spent directing the park.

For these Adelphi graduates, long odds are just the beginning of their noteworthy stories.

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This piece was published in AU VU, Spring 2016 issue.

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