12 Xavier Grads Who are Changing the World through Service

Ever wonder what Xavier students do after graduation? These 12 alumni studied a variety of different majors, but all have one thing in common—their love for community and the desire to help others.

Xavier University is 1 of only 23 schools recognized by US News & World Report for our Service Learning Programs across the nation. Students log an average of 80,000+ hours of community service per year, helping more than 160 local, national and international organizations.

The connections these 12 graduates made at Xavier gave them the tools to succeed and the know-how to turn their knowledge into careers of service. Here's how they're changing the world today. 

1. Kevin Fleming (Psychology)

Peace Corps Country Director for Liberia

Kevin Fleming boarding an airplane.

Kevin went into Liberia to combat the Ebola virus for one non-profit and wound up becoming the country director for another—the Peace Corps. He learned of his passion to help others at Xavier and was encouraged to make the leap after listening to President Graham talk about the courage it took for him to start his path in life.

Read His Story

 

2. Craig Scanlon (Political Science, Theology) and Krista Kutz (Theology)

Making a difference in Chicago

Krista and Craig in Chicago

Craig and Krista are a married couple who met at Xavier and now live in Chicago. Both are big into giving back—to their communities, where Krista works for a program serving the homeless and Craig is a Catholic school principal, but also to Xavier, to provide students with scholarships so they can have the same educational opportunities that Craig and Krista had.

Read Their Story

 

3. Matt Pellerite, M.D. (Natural Sciences)

Saving babies in Ghana and Chicago 

Matt Pellerite helping care for a baby in Ghana.

Matt is a neonatologist at a Chicago hospital who also visits Ghana to help train midwives in best practices to lower the stillborn rate for infants.

Read His Story

 

4. Keyona Oni, M.D. (Natural Sciences) and Adeleke Oni, M.D. (Chemical Science)

Healing people in Durham, N.C. 

Keyona and Adeleke Oni at work.

Keyona and Adeleke Oni met at Xavier during their first week of freshman year and became close friends, sharing a love of both science and service. Now 10 years after graduating together in 2008, they are sharing their lives and their commitment to serving others through medicine. They were selected for this year’s Magis award for their dedication to helping others.

Read Their Story

 

5. Andrew Hermann (Philosophy, politics and the public & Land, Farming and community)

Creating markets for coffee farmers in the D.R. 

Andrew Hermann examining coffee beans.

Andrew’s service trips to the Dominican Republic in high school continued through his years at Xavier as he befriended families and coffee farmers. Wanting to help them make a livable wage growing coffee, he founded Better World Beans Coffee, eliminating the middle man and paying them four times their usual wage.

Read His Story
 

6. Sherwin Anderson (MEd Sport Administration)

Creating a basketball program for Cincinnati-based teens

Sherwin Anderson holding a basketball.

Anderson opened up a court-based athletic program for troubled teens to stay off the streets and channel their energy into something positive.

Read His Story

 

7. Megan Zarnitz (Social Work)

Helping immigrants in Cincinnati

Xavier Alum Megan Zarnitz Accepting the Magis Award at the 2017 Commencement Ceremony

Xavier honored Megan in 2017 with the Magis award for her work helping immigrants relocate in Cincinnati through the Catholic Charities program. She now works at Childrens’ Hospital as a neuroscience social worker.

Read Her Story

 

8. Kate Riley (Montessori Education)

Founding a faith-based Montessori school

Kate combined her faith with her love of Montessori when she founded Holy Trinity Montessori School in Nashville a few years after graduating from Xavier. It took failing a nursing exam to realize her calling was as a teacher, and she’s never looked back.  

Read Her Story

 

9. Bill Schwarz (Psychology)

Advocating for immigrants' rights

After attending a seminar on Xavier’s Academic Service Learning Semester in Nicaragua, Bill began volunteering at numerous charities and nonprofits, which prepared him for his role at the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project helping immigrants awaiting deportation.

Read His Story

 

10. Navdeep Kang (psyd clinical psychology)

Fighting the opioid epidemic 

Navdeep is currently the Director of Operations for Behavioral Health at Mercy Health where he is building a regional collaborative network to treat addiction and develop a comprehensive continuum of care for patients struggling with opiate addiction.

Read His Story 


 

Xavier University is 1 of 23 schools recognized by US News & World Report for our Service Learning Programs across the nation. Students log an average of 80,000+ hours of community service per year, helping more than 160 local, national and international organizations. These 12 graduates exemplify what it means to be a Musketeer—men and women living lives of service for and with others. Driven by our commitment to the common good and to the education of the whole person, Xavier University challenges and supports students as they cultivate lives of reflection, compassion and informed action.