Important Information: Coronavirus (COVID-19)

All academic instruction will continue online through the end of the spring 2020 terms. Residence halls, and faculty and staff offices are closed. All events and activities are cancelled until further notice. Read more here for up-to-date resources and communications. For questions or to provide information that might be useful to the College, please email

Monday, March 23, 2020 - 2:45pm

Dear Mercy College Community,

Mercy College is proud to highlight students, faculty, staff and alumni who have been making a difference during the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, each contributing their expertise and unique skill sets to aid industries, organizations and populations in need of additional support. Without hesitation they have gone above and beyond to ensure the well-being, safety and security of countless individuals, and have taken this opportunity to demonstrate exceptional leadership in their fields and dedication to helping others. I hope you will enjoy reading these three inspirational profiles of Mavericks Making a Difference. We look forward to sharing more in the future.

Tim Hall



Gail Lavin Murphy, Assistant Professor, Physician Assistant Program School of Health and Natural Sciences


Assistant Professor Gail Lavin Murphy is devoting her spring break to work on the front line of the COVID-19 public health emergency, providing critical physician assistant (PA) services in Westchester and Rockland County hospitals.

Lavin Murphy will be working 10 consecutive days, not only completing her routine shifts, but filling in for health care workers who are in self-quarantine or whose family members need increased care. Lavin Murphy did not think twice about lending a helping hand since hospitals necessitate additional staff. “In this profession we protect one another. I feel obligated to work more,” Lavin Murphy explained. “We are watching each other’s backs to make sure everyone remains healthy so that we can continue to be able to provide the best care possible.”

A superstar all around, besides working in the field, Lavin Murphy is operating around the clock to ensure Mercy PA students are accommodated. In collaboration with her department colleagues, she is exploring innovative ways of instruction so that students’ degree pathways remain uninterrupted. She is confident that students will ultimately benefit from remote learning as it promotes discipline and self-reliance.


Rossi Hassad, PhD, MPH Professor, Psychology Program, School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

In this environment, where public education of COVID-19 is vital to disease prevention, mitigating the disease impact, and quelling community concerns, Dr. Rossi Hassad is doing what he does best. Recently featured in numerous health publications and local news broadcasts, Hassad is educating health care professionals, the medical community and the media regarding certain basic public health concepts so that they can communicate clearly and accurately regarding the virus.

“That’s where I come in as an epidemiologist – I work with reporters, health care professionals and others to clarify and provide context around what statistics and research evidence may mean,” explained Hassad. “My goal is that they, in turn, communicate accurate and nuanced information through their respective channels, so that the public becomes aware of their level of risk, and how to adopt protective measures into their lives,” explained Hassad.

By sharing evidence-based information about the virus, Hassad reassures audiences that the public health, scientific and health care communities now have a reasonable picture of what to expect in future months. “We can now gear our resources to the people who are most at risk,” said Hassad.

Additionally, Hassad believes that the momentum toward finding a vaccine and therapeutics is advancing well, and he notes that there are many scientific lessons that will come out of this public health emergency.


Mary Sherman, Mav Friendly Market Program Coordinator

Mary Sherman, who oversees pantry operations for all three of Mercy’s Mav Market locations, has risen to the occasion to meet the holistic needs of the Mercy community. For the past two weeks, she has ensured the Mav Market’s functionality so that students, faculty and staff can still get wholesome foods and personal items in an inclusive and confidential manner.

If there’s anyone primed to lead Mav Market operations during this time, it is Mary. An advocate for access to food security and safety net programs, Sherman is passionate about breaking down barriers to basic needs. "While this time is challenging, the Mav Market is coming up with new and innovative ways to approach basic needs and food security on college campuses,” said Sherman. “Sure COVID-19 gave us a run for our money, but we’re fully prepared to serve the Mercy community and provide 360-degree support, - we're ready for this. The Mav Market Team is prepared to face any challenge to come our way."

In response to COVID-19, Sherman and her team have created a list of food pantries and other resources spanning Westchester, Hudson Valley, New York City, Connecticut and New Jersey. Even though the physical pantry space is closed, Sherman continues to engage members, volunteers and student leaders through email and social media, sharing information about available health care and counseling services, how to apply for assistance if necessary and even healthy recipes. To support The Mav Market and other vital funds at Mercy, please visit us at:

Mercy is a strong community and by working together we will make our community even stronger. If you are a Maverick making a difference, or you know of someone, let us know at

DONATE HERE to support Mercy students.