Dr. Cecilia “Ceil” Welna
Saturday, March 10, 2012 8:26 PM EST
Dr. Cecilia “Ceil” Welna, 84, died at home in Kensington on Thursday, March 8, 2012. Ceil, a New Britain native, was born on July 15, 1927, to the late Joseph and Sophie (Roman) Welna.
After earning a bachelor’s degree in mathematics at Saint Joseph College (1949), Cecilia went on to earn a Master of Arts degree (1952) and a doctorate (1960) at the University of Connecticut. During her teaching career she taught at the University of Connecticut (1950-55), the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (1955-56), and the University of Hartford (1956-91).
In 1968, she was named chair of the Mathematics Department at the University of Hartford. In 1982 she was named dean of the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions, a position she held until 1991.
Cecilia was recognized with many honors and awards throughout her career. Those honors included Sigma Xi and the Distinguished Alumna Award from St. Joseph College (1982). In 1980, she was the first recipient of the prestigious University of Hartford Roy E. Larsen Award for Excellence in Teaching. The University of Hartford also honored her in 2000 at their Annual Alumni Awards Ceremony as an Honorary Alumna. She was a member of the Institute for Effective Teaching and the Mathematics Association of America. At the time of her death, Cecilia was co-chair of the University of Hartford Emeriti Association.
Ceil loved “the beach” spending many summers in East Beach, Rhode Island. Her hobbies included tennis and the theater. She was an avid reader and was fluent in English, Polish and Esperanto.
Cecilia is survived by two brothers Henry Welna of Kensington, and Dr. Joseph Welna and his wife, Marianne, of New Britain and West Palm Beach, Fla. , a sister, Irene DeVivo and her husband, Louis A. DeVivo, of Kensington, a niece, Mary W. Brown, of Rochester, N.Y., a nephew, Henry Welna of Maine, a nephew, Joseph B. Welna and his wife, Marcia, of Boston, Mass., a nephew, Donald A. DeVivo and his wife, Patricia M. DeVivo, and a niece Diana I. DeVivo, all of Kensington, and several great-nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be held Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. from Porter’s Funeral Home, 111 Chamberlain Highway, Kensington, with a Mass of Christian burial at 9:30 a.m. at Sacred Heart Church, 158 Broad Street, New Britain. Burial will be in Sacred Heart Cemetery, New Britain. Calling hours will be held at the funeral home on Monday from 5-8 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be sent to the Dr. Cecilia Welna Endowed Memorial Scholarship Fund at the University of Hartford, c/o Ms. Toni Robinson, Institutional Advancement, 200 Bloomfield Ave., West Hartford, CT 06117.
Directions to the funeral home can be found at www.portersfuneral.com