All posts by nplucinski

Hilbert’s Director of Counseling Loves Helping Young People


Phyllis Dewey
Director of Counseling, Hilbert College

By Nicole Plucinski

“I love what I do, I never dread a moment of going to work.  Each day is different.”


Phyllis Dewey initially went to business school and worked for about ten years in the real estate industry, buying and selling houses.

But she always had an interest in psychology, and one day, decided to pursue it.

“I woke up on my birthday, got dressed, and went directly to Erie Community College and registered to pursue a degree in Counselor Education.”

On her new career path, she completed her associate degree at Erie Community College. Then, she received a bachelor degree  at SUNY Fredonia, and completed her master’s degree right here on Hilbert’s campus, through St. Bonaventure.  She was asked at her master’s graduation to be the first grad student speaker at St. Bonaventure.  After completing her schooling, she had heard that the current counselor at Hilbert was retiring and that they would soon be looking for a replacement.  She was hired for the position of counselor right away.

She says that working with students is the best part of her job, and she keeps in touch with many former students.

Dewey also has a private counseling practice, which she opened in 2003.

She enjoys crocheting in her free time, and even had a side business called The Knotty Ladybug — a reference to the “knotted” look of crochet, and “Ladybug,” a special name shared with one of her granddaughters. She crochets necklaces, baby booties, blankets, and slippers.

She is a mother to two children, and has four grandchildren.  

“Every mother has an age in which she deals better with, and I have always loved teenagers.  At this age they are becoming individuals.  Coming to Hilbert and working with teenagers felt like a really good fit for me,” she said.

Kelly Starchok named AMCC Coach of the Year

By Nicole Plucinski

Lady Hawk’s head coach Kelly Starchok earned the title of Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference’s Coach of the Year Award for all her hard work the Fall 2016 season.
“I am very humbled and honored to have received the Coach of the Year award in the conference. Let me be completely honest, this award is a team award and it is about the intangibles that you each possess,” Starchok said, in a speech she delivered at an end-of-season banquet held at Ilio DiPaolo’s restaurant in Hamburg.
“Every single one of my players took a pre-season 10th place pick and wrote our own future…and to that I owe each member of this team a personal thank you.”

The women’s soccer team was predicted to be last in the conference, but surprised critics with a fifth-place finish.

The 2016 team received five honors from the AMCC this past season, the most in the program’s thirteen-year history in the AMCC league. The Lady Hawks were recognized and rewarded by the nine other league coaches who vote annually. ALong with Starchok who won Coach of the Year, Jennifer Colvin and Brooklynn Gormel were picked to the 1st Team All-Conference, Jenna Castricone was placed on the 2nd Team and Shannon Rogers took a spot on the 3rd Team.

Overall, this season has been a very exciting considering it has been the first winning season in 10 years for Hilbert Women’s Soccer. The Lady Hawks had a 7 game winning streak, with 6 clean sheets (shutouts). The women scored 27 goals, which is 8 more goals than last year. Lastly, they set a new AMCC mark with a record of 9-7-1, establishing the program’s best winning percentage in the AMCC league at 4-4-1 with a 5th place finish for the program’s third postseason tourney.


If you didn’t get to check out the moon on monday November 14th, you missed out on a beautiful sight. On that night, it was considered to be the closest full moon to earth since 1948. Its speculated that the next “supermoon” will not happen again until 2034. A supermoon happens when a full moon or a new moon synchronizes with the moon’s closest approach to Earth, which also can be called perigee moon, according to NASA. Even if you did miss this exciting phenomenon, don’t worry, there about 4-6 supermoons a year, just not this large. This is the second of three supermoons in a row. The first was Oct. 16. The next is due Dec. 14.

Hilbert Devises “Buffalo Cup” to Raise Competitive Stakes

By Nicole Plucinski

With each new school year, comes new opportunities.  One exciting new feature that’s set to begin as a new tradition this year is something called the Buffalo Cup.

Hilbert’s athletic director, John Czarnecki, came up with this idea to promote an extra layer of competition between the three Buffalo schools, Hilbert, D’Youville and Medaille.  “All three of these schools are considered the “Buffalo” schools in the AMCC Conference, and since there is already a friendly rivalry between the schools, this idea was created to up the ante for the various athletic competitions the three schools compete against each other in,” Czarnecki said.

Czarnecki had been in contact with D”youville and Medaille’s athletic directors to see if they were on board with promoting the existing rivalries with this added incentive, which was successful.  The name “Buffalo Cup” stems from Hilbert, Medaille and D’Youville being the only three Buffalo schools in Conference, so keeping it close to home with the name was only fitting.

How the Buffalo Cup works is through a points system.  A point is received for winning a conference game.  This point system will continue year round throughout the Fall, Winter and Spring athletic seasons, counting only for the athletic teams all three schools have in common.

Czarnecki created this in hopes to promote the rivalry in an exciting way as a new tradition for many years to come.  The winners of the Buffalo Cup, which is a trophy that will be allowed to be displayed at the winner’s school for the entire following school year, will be awarded at the conclusion of the Spring Athletic Season.

The winners of the cup will not only have their names engraved on a Buffalo Cup trophy that will be displayed at the winners’ school, but they will also earn their bragging rights until the next winner of the cup is announced for the following season.