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RMU Student, President to Swap Places

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Pittsburgh -- Call it “Trading Places,” Robert Morris style.

Robert Morris University student Megan Herbstritt will get to trade places for one day with RMU President Gregory G. Dell’Omo. This Friday, Jan. 25, Dell’Omo will relive his own bygone undergraduate days when he attends Herbstritt’s classes with her. Then, on Tuesday, Jan. 29, Herbstritt, a junior sport management major, will take the reins as the university’s president.

A contest to trade places with the president grew out of a fundraising campaign held in the fall in conjunction with Colonial Chaos, when the Colonials men’s and women’s basketball teams hold their season-opening public practice.

The Sport Management Association and Student Public Relations Group organized the effort to raise money to combat cystic fibrosis, a cause close to Dell’Omo’s heart: His two grown sons, Nicholas and Vincent, live with cystic fibrosis, a hereditary, life-threatening chronic illness that affects the lungs and digestive system. Herbstritt, who hails from St. Mary’s, Pa., raised the most money of the students who participated, and thus earned the right to sit in the big chair. All told, Herbstritt raised $1,056 for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

The president’s day will start early Friday with an 8 a.m. marketing class. Next up at noon is a sports marketing course, with an exercise and health psychology class at 1 p.m. All classes take place in the Hale Center at RMU’s Moon Township campus. Reporters interested in visiting these classes on Friday, Jan. 25, should contact Jonathan Potts at 412-216-6486.

On Tuesday, Herbstritt’s official duties as the university’s chief executive tentatively include attending an event at the RMU Island Sports Center on Neville Island and a dinner that evening with donors to the university in downtown Pittsburgh.

Robert Morris University, founded in 1921, is a private, four-year institution with an enrollment of approximately 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The university offers 60 undergraduate and 20 graduate programs. An estimated 22,000 alumni live and work in western Pennsylvania.