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sister carole riley

Carole Riley

Professor, Piano and Music Education
Mary Pappert School of Music
Music Education

Room 214
Phone: 412.396.5057


LPC #1228, Counseling, West Virginia, 1988
AAPC #6415, Counseling, West Virginia, 1988
Ph.D., Spirituality/Psychology, Duquesne University, 1983
M.M., Piano, Duquesne University, 1970
B.S., Music Education, Duquesne University, 1968

Born in Castle Shannon, PA, Sister Carole Riley grew up in Zanesville, Ohio. She began piano at the age of five with her Uncle Thomas Daube and later studied with the Sisters of Divine Providence, the Congregation which she joined. The international Congregation provided extensive experiences for ‘Sister Mary Patrick' as she was known while she was teaching elementary and secondary school classroom music, band and high school chorus before beginning her piano teaching career at Duquesne University.

While earning her degrees in Music Education and Piano Performance, Dr. Riley concertized in the tri-state area and was a frequent collaborative pianist with musicians in the Pittsburgh area. After serving as Chair of the Piano Department and Assistant Dean, she was offered and accepted a joint appointment with the McAnulty College of Arts and Sciences as Executive Director of the Institute for Spirituality. In this capacity, Sister Riley taught internationally in eight African countries, Thailand, areas of South American, Europe, North American, the Solomon Islands and Australia. Music performances and lectures in spirituality contributed to her being awarded the Emil Penet Award for Innovation in Spiritual Formation by the National Conference of Religious Formation. She was subsequently designated as a Distinguished Alumni of her alma mater, Duquesne and was inducted into the Century Club. Her work with AIDS patients and in service-learning earned her the Presidents' Award for distinguished service.

As a certified spiritual director and after the Institute of Spirituality was closed, Dr. Riley continued the university outreach to the rural areas of West Virginia where she continues to volunteer as Executive Director of the Institute of Spirituality located in Charleston, WV (www.WVIS.org)

In her full time secondary piano teaching role in the Mary Pappert School of Music, she coordinates the service-learning with the students in the piano classes taught in the 16 station MIDI-equipped lab. The service-learning reaches 5 senior citizen homes, the UPMC-hospital system, Jubilee Soup kitchen and 2 day care centers for the impoverished.

Several private piano students of Sister Carole Riley have professional performance experience while the majority of her students are skilled classroom music teachers and music therapists around the globe.

She continues scholarly research through CD recordings integrating music, emotions and spiritual experiences. These are published internationally through St. Paul's Communications, formerly Alba house (www.stpauls.us). As an international consultant to several religious communities of men and women, her influence has a global impact in mentoring the next generation of committed vowed religious men and women. Her musical influence continues through her active participation in lecturing and adjudication in the National Federation of Piano Teachers, and Music Educators National Association, Pennsylvania Music Teachers' Association and the WV Music Educators' Association.

Sr. Carole also is a member of and serves as music fraternity Mu Phi Epsilon's faculty advisor, and is also a past President of Pi Kappa Lambda.


Grieving: One Step at a Time, an audible book at

Compassion Fatigue Caring for the Caregiver, an audible book at

Living with Depression: A Call to Compassion, an audible book at

Denying Denial: Call to Spiritual Integration, an audible book at

Music and Inner Healing, an Audible Book

Fostering Integration: Acceptance and Commitment on the Spiritual Journey

Inner Rhythms: The Spiritual Call and Challenge of Anger, an audible book

Depression: Coping Spiritually With the Challenges

Music as Personal Prayer

When I Feel Guilty: Experiencing God

Developing Spiritual Leadership: Moving From Self-Deception

Good Mourning: Helping Children to Grieve Death and to Move Toward Healing

Journey of Grieving: Gravitating Toward Hope

Interpersonal Conflict: A Spiritual Challenge

Prayer in the Fallow Years: It Shall Be Holy to You

Personal Struggles, Conflict and Spiritual Growth

Scrupulosity: When Being Perfect Punishes

Worrying Is God Listening