you were to ask McDaniel College alumni and parents to describe Barbara Horneff,
former associate dean of the first-year program, they would use words like
legacy and loyal or a term of endearment like campus mother. Of her retirement
from the college in March 2005, Theo Sebekos-Williams ‘07 said, "I feel as if
she has empowered me. Through her wisdom I feel that I have a piece of her
always with me."
To Becky Martin, women’s basketball coach at McDaniel College, Barbara
Horneff was the "Mother Theresa" of campus. That’s how Ms. Martin always
introduced her to prospective student athletes and their parents. She
deliberately chose that term to define someone who "worked miracles" by
caring—treating each student as if he or she was the most important person in
the whole wide world.
Students and staff at Winters Mill had just one year, 2005-06, to get to
know how much Barbara Horneff cared about working with them. For a dozen or
more teachers in this Carroll County high school, Ms. Horneff had been their
college academic dean. With one of them, Wes Winters, she agreed to serve as
co-adviser to the WMHS Class of 2009. With Katie Tolliver, a student in her
Algebra I class in fall 2005, she planted a lasting friendship. At the end of
the academic year, Katie presented Ms. Horneff with the cross-stitched verse,
"Everything is possible with God." Little did she know that this special
stitchery would be among the first framed pieces Barbara Horneff would hang in
her office of institutional advancement at Mother Seton School in August 2006.
Ms. Horneff has been employed as an educator at several levels of learning
for more than 30 years. Her career began with teaching three-year olds at the
Christian Pre-School and third grade at William Winchester Elementary School in
Westminster, MD. At McDaniel College (formerly Western Maryland College) for 22
years, she taught and supervised prospective teachers; coordinated and
implemented student academic services for undergraduate students; and developed
a nationally recognized orientation program for first-year students. In May
2004, she was chosen by graduating seniors to be inducted into Omicron Delta
Kappa, "the national leadership honor society that recognizes and encourages
superior scholarship, leadership, and exemplary character."
Ms. Horneff brings each and all of her teaching and learning experiences
into the position of director of institutional advancement at Mother Seton
School in Emmitsburg, MD. Of her personal and professional work ethic, she
said, "I thrive in environments that give me opportunities to listen
discriminately, to think creatively, and to solve problems efficiently and
effectively with win-win outcomes. I have used good intuition, successful
motivational strategies, and the empowerment of responsibility to develop
exceptional leaders and to design award-winning programs."
As she immerses herself in the mission of
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton,
Barbara Horneff will walk the walk and talk the talk—finding her spiritual
center and in each task the necessary grace to fulfill her responsibilities in
institutional advancement. On her wall hangs an old treasured stitchery made by
her mother, Clara Schaeffer: "My day is complete; I heard a child laugh."
Mother Seton would approve!
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