After more than 50 years at Newman university, first as a student and then as an employee, Shirley Rueb, registrar, retired.
But the Newman community couldn’t let Rueb go without celebrating and reminiscing. More than 100 guests gathered on Aug. 12 in the Dugan-Gorges Conference Center for a ceremony during which Rueb was presented with an engraved crystal cross in recognition of her years of service at Newman.
Rueb started at Newman as a student and then became an employee — and has received many accolades for her hard work and dedication to the university. She received the De Mattias Alumni Award in 1993 and the Cardinal Newman Medal in 2004, along with others.
Rueb became a Sacred Heart College student in 1966, a graduate in 1970 and a Sacred Heart College full-time employee in 1971. She spent more than 38 years as registrar during her time at the university.
Sister JoAnn Mark knew Rueb from when she was a student and said she was “a fine student and did very well.”
As for Rueb’s work as an employee, Mark said, “She was so passionate about students’ rights, their needs and really stood for those with the faculty. Sometimes that wasn’t easy. She really had the students’ best interests at heart all the time. She really worked closely with the faculty and staff. She was just great to work with.”
Father Tom Welk spoke during the reception and said, “I can only think of one other item that would be appropriate to present to Shirley, and that is the seal of Newman University — the lamp of learning. Shirley enabled a lot of people throughout her years as registrar, making it possible for them to really engage in the whole gift of learning. So thank you for that, for all the many years of enlightening minds that needed enlightening. That’s a symbol for us that’s really very important. We are saying we’re also willing to reveal the light of truth … because in doing so, we foster light to so many in our world.”
Linda Sabala, former co-worker, said, “I see Shirley as the gatekeeper. She kept the rules and regulations and made everyone aware of them and did it in such a kind way. She was always friendly and approachable, but she knew what we needed to do to ensure a student’s success as far as the registrar was concerned. She was such a joy to have as a co-worker.”
Rueb gave her own thanks to everyone who attended the celebration and gave special recognition to her family, most of whom came from out of town and even out of state.
“Throughout my life, I’ve had the opportunity to meet such wonderful people and to work with them and have them as friends,” she said to those in attendance. “You have all made my life much richer and I appreciate that so much.
Rueb said she will especially miss the Adorers of the Blood of Christ. “The sisters and the impact they have had in my life and career has been tremendous. They’ve been a blessing to me.”
Although Rueb holds many special memories from her time at Newman, she said the retirement celebration has quickly become one of her favorite, most cherished memories.