Students help children navigate court system

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Peoria offers Bradley students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to support the safety and well-being of abused and neglected children who are moving through the judicial system. CASA is a national volunteer organization. Student volunteers can build their resumes with real-world experiences, be involved in the community, and earn internship hours through the program. Upon completion of 30 hours of training, volunteers are sworn in as officers of the juvenile court. 

PAM PERRILLES ’03 EMBA ’13, executive director of CASA of Peoria, and attorney Nicole Meyer, director of Bradley’s Pre-Law Center, met last spring to discuss involving Bradley with the program. “Our students can gain a great deal from this program, and this program can gain a lot from Bradley students,” Meyer said.


Visit for more information about the organization, including how to become involved.

AVRIEN ANDERSON ’13, a German language major, completed CASA’s training program last winter and is an active volunteer. Anderson said the training was thorough and included an explanation of the court process, reasons a child may be taken from a home, and the responsibilities of a CASA volunteer. After the training, she felt prepared for a case and recommends this program to “anyone who wants to be in education, social work, or wants to see kids do well.” 

A volunteer’s responsibility includes meeting with the child to observe and ask questions. The volunteer then reports the findings to the judge, who takes that information into consideration when issuing a ruling. Unlike the general public, CASA volunteers can observe juvenile trials and hearings; the only other people allowed in the courtroom are the child, the guardian ad litem, attorneys, social workers, and the judge. 

CASA training is open to students who are juniors or seniors, or over the age 21. By the end of 2012, four more Bradley students had completed the training: DEREK CANTU ’13, CASSANDRA THOUSAND ’14, CAMILLE BOONE ’14, and CORINNE STUBER ’14

Once trained, volunteers are asked to give 10 hours each month, but most give more. “CASA is known for being that constant in the child’s life, and that’s what the Bradley student is,” Meyer said. “Some children don’t have any constants. They have relatives or friends in and out of their lives, but if they know that CASA is going to be there throughout the legal process, it helps.”

Since students may graduate before a case is complete, Bradley volunteers are always paired with another CASA volunteer who can continue with the case. “I haven’t seen a case to the end yet, but I can imagine there being a feeling of accomplishment — a feeling like you’ve done something right in the world,” Anderson said.

– Molly Dahlquist ’15



Recruiting Bradley talent at job fairs

Bradley University 2013 Job Fairs

Spring Job and Internship Fair
February 6
11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Public Service and Summer Employment Fair
April 4
Noon – 2:30 p.m.

Part-time Employment Expo
August 27
10 a.m. – Noon

Fall Job and Internship Fair
September 19
11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Nursing and Physical Therapy Career Fair
November 12
Noon – 3 p.m.


Visit to register to recruit at a job fair or to create an eRecruiting account.

Bradley’s 2013 job fairs are under way, and the Smith Career Center is soliciting employers’ participation. “Employers have the opportunity to find young Bradley talent with fresh ideas. Bradley students have learned the latest approaches, they’re experienced working in teams, and they’re strong communicators,” said JANE LINNENBURGER, MA ’79, executive director of the Career Center. Bradley also offers employers access to a free eRecruiting service that can be used to promote job openings or view Bradley candidates’ resumes.

The 2012 Fall Job and Internship Fair attracted 160 employers. Of the more than 300 representatives, 151 recruiters were Bradley alumni. “We encourage alumni to come back to identify students who have similar qualifications as they do,” Linnenburger said. “We receive very positive feedback from employers about the talent of Bradley candidates they currently employ, and that’s why many employers return here time and time again.”

If employers cannot attend the job fairs, Bradley offers other ways to engage with students. An account can be created in eRecruiting through the Career Center’s website, which employers can use to post jobs and internships. In addition, employers can request access to the online resume book that enables them to search for Bradley candidates who fit their job openings. They can also set up interviews with students on campus and conduct employer information sessions. 

– Molly Dahlquist ’15



Kiplinger’s places Bradley in top 100


View Kiplinger’s complete list at 

For the fourth consecutive year, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance ranks Bradley among the nation’s top 100 best values in private universities.

Ranked 86th based on academic quality and affordability, Bradley offers the 10th lowest total annual cost of all the institutions on the list at $38,164. The University is one of only five schools in Illinois to be included in the top 100 and the only one outside of the Chicago area.

In addition to cost data — tuition, fees, room, board, and books — Kiplinger’s also factors in admission rates, test scores of incoming freshmen, graduation rates, and financial aid.