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Spotlight — Mohamad, Thole Loewus, Togno and Winters


MohamadMutiara Mohamad

Director, Programs in Language, Culture and Professional Advancement
Metropolitan Campus

How long have you been at FDU?

A total of 15 years if my adjunct instructor time is also counted, but 11 years if only my full-time staff time is counted.

If you could meet anyone in the world, whom would you pick? Why?

Rosa Parks for her dignified, peaceful, resolute and significant role in the American civil rights movement.

What book or film did you recently enjoy? Why would you recommend it?

Book: Gary Klein’s Seeing What Others Don’t: The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights, for its intuitive description of the various ways we yield insights. Film: “Hidden Figures,” for its little-known and inspiring historical narrative.

Something I’ve always wanted to learn is …

… several other foreign languages.

My first job was …

… cleaning dishes in a university cafeteria.

One of the things I have in my refrigerator all the time is …

… soy milk and mochi ice cream.

Complete the phrase: People would be surprised to know that I …

… would have lived half of my life in the U.S. by 2018. My hybrid life would be at a temporary equilibrium next year.

My biggest challenge is …

… finding better ways to achieve a more intentional work/life balance.

What profession other than your own would you most like to attempt, and what profession would you want nothing to do with?

A socialpreneur. I would also love to become a furniture or landscape designer. I would not want to be a race-car driver, ever.


LoewusCynthia Thole Loewus

Clinical Assistant Professor of Musical Theater
Florham Campus

How long have you been at FDU?

I started as an adjunct dance teacher and guest choreographer in 2007 and became a full-time faculty member in fall 2011.

If you could meet anyone in the world, whom would you pick? Why?

I would like to meet the Dalai Lama. I would love to hear him speak about “living” life.

What book or film did you recently enjoy? Why would you recommend it?

A Man Called Ove is a novel by Fredrik Backman, which frames life as an ever-changing journey, where loss doesn’t need to be the final image, instead purpose and joy can shine through in the most unlikely places in hope and human connection.

Something I’ve always wanted to learn is …

… Italian.

My first job was …

… as a ballet dancer in a regional professional ballet company, the San Antonio Ballet. Then I went straight to a national tour of “Sugar Babies,” a burlesque musical, that was quite a transition.

One of the things I have in my refrigerator all the time is …

… almond milk and cheese.

Complete the phrase: People would be surprised to know that I …

… get really nervous every time a plane flies overhead near the Florham Campus, heading to land at the airport in Florham. I live near the old World Trade Center and the sounds of the planes flying overhead before they crashed into the towers is with me always.

My biggest challenge is …

… casting the shows at FDU because I never want to disappoint a student who is working hard and wants to grow. Wearing two hats, one the director and one the teacher, is a conflict of interest and very often a “Sophie’s Choice.”

What profession other than your own would you most like to attempt, and what profession would you want nothing to do with?

I would like to write musicals, the music, script and lyrics, or become an architect or farm a wine vineyard. I would want nothing to do with corporate administrative organization.


TognoMatthew Togno

Head Athletic Trainer, Athletics
Florham Campus

How long have you been at FDU?

One year and three months.

If you could meet anyone in the world, whom would you pick? Why?

If I could meet anyone in the world, it would be Inky Johnson, a former collegiate football player at the University of Tennessee who is now an inspirational speaker. He suffered a traumatic career-ending injury and transformed it into a career of inspiring others. It is a great story.

What book or film did you recently enjoy? Why would you recommend it?

I recently watched a small documentary called “Jack and The Kid.” I would recommend it, because it shows the impact that sports have on people’s lives.

Something I’ve always wanted to learn is …

… how to cook.

My first job was …

… a cashier at ShopRite.

One of the things I have in my refrigerator all the time is …

… bottles of Gatorade.

Complete the phrase: People would be surprised to know that I …

… am colorblind. People are always surprised when they find out.

My biggest challenge is …

… educating people that athletic trainers are more than just handing out water and taping athletes. We are health care professionals who work with physicians to provide health care to the student athletes at FDU.

What profession other than your own would you most like to attempt, and what profession would you want nothing to do with?

I would like to attempt teaching, and I want nothing to do with the restaurant business.


Winters"Laurence “Larry” Winters

Senior Lecturer of Interdisciplinary Studies and Director, Interdisciplinary Studies Program
Metropolitan Campus/Florham Campus

How long have you been at FDU?

Seventeen years, going on 18.

If you could meet anyone in the world, whom would you pick? Why?

The Pope … or Jessica Chastain … both for the wrong reasons.

What book or film did you recently enjoy? Why would you recommend it?

Most interesting book recently, Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States, by James C. Scott, a wonderful revision of the process of state formation in early history. (I like this sort of stuff.)

Something I’ve always wanted to learn is …

… to play guitar.

My first job was …

… a stock-room boy at Sears Roebuck.

One of the things I have in my refrigerator all the time is …

… fancy mustard.

Complete the phrase: People would be surprised to know that I …

… am at school two hours a day, every day, at the gym. Elsewhere, I really do know a lot about traditional philosophy, Descartes and the like and studied with world-famous philosophers.

My biggest challenge is …

… the truth, getting along with people with authoritarian personalities. A more comfortable suggestion, getting through a workday without a nice nap.

What profession other than your own would you most like to attempt, and what profession would you want nothing to do with?

I would love to be a garden designer, and I would hate to have anything to do with banking, hedge funds or stocks and bonds.