They Believed in Me and Never Gave Up
How Maureen Grieco Carved Out a Successful Career Thanks to the Support of Two DeSales Employees
Maureen Grieco ’01 doesn’t shy away from discussing her struggle with school. From early on, education never came easy for her.
“School was a struggle across the board,” she says. “When I actually graduated high school, my family was very excited. It was a stressful situation to figure out where I was going to go to college, if I could even get into college.”
Grieco graduated at the bottom of her class at Lansdale Catholic. Still, that didn’t stop her from trying to further her education. She applied to DeSales because of its Catholic roots and small class sizes.
But her first week on campus nearly proved to be too much. During her first English class, panic set in when she was assigned to read up to 100 pages in two days.
“I thought this isn’t for me; I can’t do college. There’s no way I’m going to be able to read this.”
She ended up dropping that class and taking a recommended reading course instead. She was also introduced to Jane Desnouee—one of the people who would have a profound effect on both her education and her life.
Grieco met with Desnouee twice a week at the Learning Center throughout her freshman year. They worked on reading comprehension, writing, and public speaking, and their sessions helped steer Grieco toward her eventual major—communications.
“It was incredible,” says Grieco. “Once I had worked with Jane, things started to fall into place where I could really be interested in the courses that I was taking. I was engaged.”
By her sophomore year, she was introduced to Lois Gadek, her advisor who would also become a mentor. The two worked together both inside and outside the classroom, and with Gadek’s guidance, Grieco branched out into business, taking courses in marketing, management, and accounting.
“[Gadek] really made sure that I was supported and had everything that I needed to do well. That’s the major thing here at DeSales—they believed in me and never gave up. They made me accountable and made sure that I was going to go someplace.”
Grieco ended up making dean’s list for multiple semesters. After graduation, she became the office manager at Particle Sciences, a small pharmaceutical company in the Lehigh Valley.
Over the years, she’s helped the company grow from just four employees to nearly 100. After the company was acquired by Lubrizol in 2015, she was named director of human resources and is responsible for everything from recruiting and interviewing to strategic planning.
Grieco also stays connected to campus as a dedicated donor to the DeSales Fund. For her, the decision to donate all goes back to the two women who made such an impact on her life.
“I honestly could not picture myself making it through college successfully and then having a successful career if it wasn’t for DeSales. I feel like DeSales has made me the person that I am today. It set me up for success.”