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b2ap3_thumbnail_Elizabeth-Wang_20150122-184323_1.jpgIGI Global, an international publishing company of progressive academic research, books and journals, recently accepted and published the literary works of Waynesburg University associate professor of computer science Dr. Elizabeth Wang. 

The book, “Big Data Analytics in Bioinformatics and Healthcare,” was co-edited by Wang, Ruowang Li from Pennsylvania State University and William Perrizo from North Dakota State University. 

As author and co-editor, Wang’s responsibilities of editing a research reference book included organizing a list of contacts to submit chapter proposals, drafting and reviewing the proposals, creating an Editorial Review Board to assist in reviewing the chapters and preparing a final manuscript to be read by IGI Global. 

“The book project provided me a tremendous opportunity to work with many scholars and researchers all over the world,” said Wang. “Besides the authors from at least 12 countries, we worked with about 20 reviewers and the editorial advisory board members. It was a great learning and collaborating experience!”

According to IGI Global, the book merges the field of biology, technology and medicine and presents a comprehensive study on the emerging information processing applications necessary in the field of electronic medical record management. 

Aside from Wang’s book being available for purchase at a variety of U.S. outlets such as Amazon, many foreign publishers, primarily in China and Asia, have purchased rights to translate the book into their own language to benefit researchers who do not speak English. 

In addition to a master’s degree of art from St. John’s University, Minn., and a master’s degree in computer science from Minnesota State University of St. Cloud, Wang holds a Ph.D. in computer science from North Dakota State University. Her research interests include data mining, data warehouse, bioinformatics and parallel computing.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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Posted by on in Alumni

Julie Tischer, 2013

Microbiology Ph.D. student and research associate at the University of Georgia

Julie Tischer, a 2013 Waynesburg University alumna, was recently published in a peer-reviewed journal as part of a research group at the University of Georgia. 

Her article, "Proteomic Analysis of the Acidocalcisome, an Organelle Conserved from Bacteria to Human Cells," was published in PLOS Pathogens, an open-access, peer-reviewed journal published monthly by PLOS, a nonprofit organization. Tischer and the additional authors studied the proteins that are on the surface of an organelle in order to determine how it functions in the cells.

The journal addressed questions such as: 

•What proteins are associated with this organelle called the acidocalcisome? 

•What are the individual functions of these identified proteins?

•Are these proteins essential for the survival of the cell?

•How are these proteins contributing to the overall activity of the acidocalcisome?

Tischer, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology, is currently a microbiology Ph.D. student and research associate at the University of Georgia. At the university, she works in the Terns lab studying the CRISPR-Cas adaptive immune system found in bacteria and archaea. 

“During my first semester, I worked diligently on the acidocalcisome project to generate data for the journal,” said Tischer. “My results during that six-week rotation went into producing a few of the figures in the paper, making me an author.”

Tischer adds that the classes and staff at Waynesburg University helped prepare her for the research program as well as her published journal article. 

“Waynesburg University set me up for success in the field of biology research by providing me with an exceptional foundation in biology education and encouraging me to pursue research opportunities beyond Waynesburg,” said Tischer. “In addition, the professional and passionate professors really inspired me to pursue a career in research and teaching.”

 

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Jamie Piotrowski, 2014

Refugee services caseworker at Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pa.

Jamie Piotrowski has always strived to live a life of purpose.  It was through Waynesburg University that Piotrowski learned to focus her career goals on the purpose of serving others.

“I pursued my degree for the purpose of helping other people,” said Piotrowski. “Now at my job, I work with a purpose of helping those who enter our country with almost nothing but the clothes on their back. I have learned, and I am still learning, to live a purposeful life of Christ.”

A 2014 graduate of Waynesburg University with a degree in sociology (family studies), Piotrowski is a refugee services caseworker at Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Pittsburgh. While on the job, Piotrowski resettles refugees in the Pittsburgh area and helps them assimilate to the culture and lifestyle of a United States citizen. Her goal is to guide them on the path of self-sufficiency. 

Piotrowski believes Waynesburg University’s mission of faith, serving and learning guided her to be the best possible worker in her chosen career. 

“Waynesburg University has allowed me to recognize and strengthen my relationship with Christ through academics, friendships and service,” said Piotrowski. “I have had many different kinds of opportunities presented to me in my life, but I never would have had them if I did not grow mentally, emotionally or spiritually throughout my time at Waynesburg.” 

 

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Posted by on in Internships

b2ap3_thumbnail_King.jpgGabrielle King, senior biology major

Maryland sea grant REU fellow, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science in Cambridge, Md. 

With the iconic Chesapeake Bay as her subject of study, Gabrielle King spent her summer months as a Maryland Sea Grant REU Fellow at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). 

A senior biology major from Clairton, Pa., King’s main responsibility was to characterize predator-prey interactions between copepod Eurytemora carolleege nauplii and Heterocapsa rotundata, both species that thrive in the Chesapeake Bay area. In order to determine interactions, King conducted grazing and survival experiments that she later presented to her co-workers at the end of the summer. 

Spending 40 hours a week at an internship may seem daunting for some students, but for King, she saw it as an opportunity. 

“I applied to my internship because I wanted to get real research experience in marine biology,” said King. “I read about potential mentors at the program who worked with plankton as well as other organisms, and that piqued my interest. I had zero experience with plankton, so I was really hoping I could do some research with them.”

Although not entirely sure what to expect, King felt confident and prepared heading into her internship because of the strong academics she received at Waynesburg University. 

“My courses gave me the background in biology that I needed in order to successfully participate in the program,” said King. “A general biology background in areas like ecology served as a basis from which I was able to build my research.”

Working with an organization centered around sustainability and the livelihoods of people, King was able to recognize the importance of service and relate it back to Waynesburg’s mission. 

“The knowledge I gained this summer not only fueled my passion for learning, but also contributed to my understanding of the Chesapeake Bay which can be used to help others,” said King. “The more we know, the better we can address issues and keep the Bay healthy.”

 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_chem-lab-for-academics-blog.jpgAt Waynesburg University, academic excellence extends far beyond the walls of a classroom. Top-notch instruction—that which also weaves the principles of faith, ethics and moral leadership into the course work—is bolstered by a robust array of hands-on learning opportunities, from Nursing Simulation and Marine Biology Labs to a remote TV production truck and Lasershot Firearms Simulator.

As a result of these facilities, co-curricular organizations possess the opportunity to grow and flourish, preparing students professionally. For example, the University’s American Chemical Society student chapter recently received the “Outstanding Chapter Award” for the fifth consecutive year. Additionally, the University’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America achieved Star Chapter status for the second-straight year, and President Megan Bayles, a junior, became the first ever from Southwestern Pennsylvania to earn the prestigious Betsy Plank PRSSA Scholarship, given each year to only three students in the entire country.

The University now also has an agreement with the highly-rated West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, affording students the chance at expedited application review and an early admission interview, among other benefits.

These types of opportunities and experiences provide Waynesburg students a distinct advantage upon graduation. Utilizing the knowledge imparted by committed faculty members, graduates regularly achieve 100% pass rates on national exams in fields such as Nursing and Athletic Training. Furthermore, the Class of 2013 achieved a 97% placement rate, which means 97% of responding students were either working full-time, in graduate/professional school or in the military within one of year of graduation.

Alumni such as Dr. Autumn Lemley, D.O. ('09), Daniel Czajkowski ('14) and Ryan Devlin ('07) reach new heights in their educational and professional careers as a result of their Waynesburg education. Lemley went on to graduate from West Virginia's School of Osteopathic Medicine and now practices at Cornerstone Care and Monongalia General Hospital as a Family Medicine Resident. Czajkowski used his unique experiences in Waynesburg's Stover Program for Constitutional Studies and Moral Leadership to prepare him for a job on Capitol Hill as a Staff Assistant of Congressman Keith Rothfuss. Devlin was named the 2013 Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year and became the first person ever from the state to be one of the three finalists for National Teacher of the Year.

Stories like those of Autumn, Daniel and Ryan abound among Waynesburg graduates, and so many attribute their success in large part to their time at Waynesburg. To learn more about what alumni are doing and where students are interning, visit waynesburg.edu/outcomes.

For more numbers on academics at Waynesburg, see the bulleted list below:

  • 70+ major concentrations
  • 3 five-year integrated bachelor’s to master’s programs
  • 20 students in an average class
  • 14:1 student/faculty ratio
  • 100%of academic departments offering hands-on learning, research and/or internship opportunities

 

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