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b2ap3_thumbnail_1-19-Benito-Stallings.jpgWaynesburg University celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a ceremony in Roberts Chapel, Monday, January 18. 

Introduced by Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee, Benito Stallings, philanthropy advisor at Waynesburg University, served as the speaker. In his address, “Loving One Another as Christ Has Loved Us,” Stallings explored the questions of “What is love?,” “Why do we love?” and “How do we love?” 

Turning to Scripture to answer these questions, Stallings stated that the message of the gospel is a message of love. He focused his exploration of how to love on laying down one’s life “for the justice and well-being of our fellow brothers and sisters who may be different from us.” 

Stallings recounted King’s great example of love and service towards all individuals, both through the Civil Rights Movement and through his life in general. He also shared a few examples of the Civil Rights Movement with ties to Waynesburg University. 

“[Waynesburg] University’s faith in Christ inspires its students to learn about the world around them and leads them to seek to lay down their lives in service,” Stallings said, referencing the University’s mission of faith, learning and serving.

Through traveling on behalf of the University, Stallings has met an array of Waynesburg alumni, and has been touched by the stories he has heard from 1950’s and 1960’s graduates.

“I must have talked to a half dozen ministers who graduated from Waynesburg and decided to integrate their churches during a time when integration would get you harassed by the Ku Klux Klan,” Stallings said. “A retired history professor told me the story of how he helped integrate Florida State University in the early 60’s.”

Stallings also noted that the University’s tradition of loving one another goes back further than the 50’s and 60’s, citing Waynesburg’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and women’s suffrage. 

“To the student body, I say keep pursuing Christ and loving others in the way that you’re doing, and I firmly believe you’ll change the world. By God’s grace we’ll see senators, governors, doctors, nurses, lawyers, teachers coming from Waynesburg who will lay down their lives and challenge and inspire others to do the same.”

Stallings’ background includes community outreach, fundraising, budget management, organizing and motivating volunteers, preaching and teaching. Currently, he is seeking ordination into the priesthood within the Anglican Church.

Stallings is active within his church in Pittsburgh as a leadership figure for outreach and evangelism, primarily to college students and recent college graduates, and as a co-founder of the Southside Anglican Church Forum on Race Relations. 

Civically engaged in the city of Pittsburgh, Stallings was selected to become one of 50 young professionals to participate in the Leadership Development Initiative XXIII (LDI) last year. LDI is an extension of Leadership Pittsburgh, both of which are highly selective leadership training programs designed to improve the city of Pittsburgh.

Prior to joining Waynesburg University, Stallings was the associate director of development at Penn State University. Stallings earned his bachelor’s degree in communication arts and sciences with a minor in meteorology from Penn State University.

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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b2ap3_thumbnail_1-18-Central-Greene.jpgWaynesburg University and the Central Greene School District (CGSD) have established a mutually beneficial partnership, through which University students begin gaining real-world experience as early as their freshman year while supporting CGSD kindergarten teachers with larger-than-normal enrollment.

“This partnership between Waynesburg and CGSD is one of a kind,” said Annette Vietmeier, director of curriculum, instruction and technology for Central Greene School District. “It provides opportunities to grow and impact our community in ways not being done anywhere else. The commitment of the pre-service teacher is incredible as they gain the ability to put theory into practice.” 

The partnership, which began four years ago, has enabled Waynesburg students to gain valuable field experience and has helped CGSD support the class sizes and needs of their students with no additional cost to the district.

In return, Central Greene faculty and administration have made themselves available to facilitate mock interviews and offer various training and professional development sessions for Waynesburg students. Staff members from Waynesburg’s Department of Education have also offered their service to the district’s literacy and strategic planning teams.

Waynesburg students have been afforded a substantial amount of hands-on learning from Central Greene’s mentors who have engaged them in classroom activity from the first day. Students also participate in Central Greene’s teacher training and professional development sessions throughout the school year.

“This experience is unlike any other college or university in the region,” said Yvonne Weaver, interim chair of the Department of Education and field placement coordinator and certification officer for Waynesburg University. “Our students spend significant time in the classroom during their freshman, sophomore and junior years, ultimately allowing them to be career and profession ready.”

The partnership has grown from nine student teachers at the kindergarten level to 47 student teachers kindergarten through 12th grade. Waynesburg University also supports field experiences in school districts throughout Greene, Washington and Fayette counties.

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) and is one of only 21 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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The Waynesburg University Department of Fine Arts will display a guest art exhibition Monday, Jan. 25, through Thursday, Feb. 18, in the Benedum Fine Arts Gallery. Hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with an opening reception January 25 from 6 to 8 p.m. Admission to the gallery is free, and the public is cordially invited to attend.

The exhibition, “The Art of Clay,” will feature the work of local and national artists such as Andrew Heisey, assistant professor of art and art director at Waynesburg University; Jim and Linda Winegar, owners of Winegar Pottery in Waynesburg; and ceramic artists Christine Colby from Florida and Susan Phillips from Pennsylvania. Two Waynesburg University alumni, John Joseph Smith (’15) and Jimmy Law (’15), will also have some of their work displayed at the exhibition.

Heisey believes the concept behind the art exhibit can best be described through the words of Susan Peterson, a nationally known and former ceramics instructor: “Claywork is full of paradoxes. It is one of the most technically challenging of art media, and yet it is used by children. It is one of the most ancient media, made of the stuff of the Earth itself, and yet it is also at the forefront of modern materials science.”

For more information or to make an appointment, call 724-852-3247.

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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During Christmas break, 47 Waynesburg University students will travel domestically and abroad to serve others. University faculty and staff will lead four Faith, Learning and Service Immersion Trips covering a variety of academic and professional interests. 

Crossroads Coalition – Wynne, Arkansas

Dr. Evonne Baldauff, chair of the Department of Chemistry and Forensic Science and associate professor of chemistry, and Dr. Heidi Fletcher, assistant professor of chemistry at the University, will lead a team of six students to serve in Wynne, Arkansas during the students’ break. The students will serve Monday, Jan. 4, through Saturday, Jan. 9. 

While serving, the students will volunteer at a public school and educate elementary students on the fundamentals of science. 

Mission Academy Ministries – Nassau, Bahamas

Eleven students from Waynesburg University’s Department of Education will travel to Nassau, Bahamas, during their Christmas break for a mission service trip. From Sunday, Jan. 3, to Saturday, Jan. 9, the students will work in conjunction with Mission Academy Ministries to assist public school classes and build relationships with teachers and students from a different culture. They will also spend time with the children during recess and lunch and can observe in the classrooms. 

Dr. Julia Bausman, assistant professor of education, and Frank Pazzynski, associate professor of education, will lead the team of students.

Nutritional Center – Patzun, Guatemala

Seventeen Waynesburg University students will spend Thursday, Dec. 31, through Friday, Jan. 8, serving a nutritional center in Patzun, Guatemala. Pat Bristor, associate dean of students at the University, and Ryan Smith, graduate assistant at the University, will lead the team. 

Students will spend time with the children at the center teaching them the English language as well as about oral hygiene. Other service responsibilities will include center repairs and manual labor. 

Trans World Radio – Island of Bonaire

Thirteen Waynesburg University students will spend part of their Christmas break working with Trans World Radio (TWR), an international broadcast ministry, on the island of Bonaire in the Netherlands Antilles. The students will spend Saturday, Jan. 2, through Sunday, Jan. 10, serving the radio station in both communication and history capacities. 

The students will assist TWR in creating production schedules, radio lines, videos and promotional materials. Students will also have the opportunity to archive the station’s documents and basic island archaeology. 

Dr. Karen Fisher-Younger, assistant professor of history; Abby Pittinaro, academic event planner; and Dr. Rea Redd, director of the Eberly Library, will co-lead the students. 

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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Seventeen Waynesburg University students will spend Thursday, Dec. 31, through Friday, Jan. 8, serving a nutritional center in Patzun, Guatemala. Pat Bristor, associate dean of students at the University, and Ryan Smith, graduate assistant at the University, will lead the team. 

Students will spend time with the children at the center teaching them the English language as well as about oral hygiene. Other service responsibilities will include center repairs and manual labor. 

“I am thrilled that God has afforded me the opportunity to once again serve the people of Guatemala,” said Bristor. “The children there hold a special place in my heart, and to experience again their unending love and witness their warm smiles is overwhelming. I cannot wait to be back and hold the children in my arms.”

Students participating in the trip include:

  • Sadie Breon, freshman nursing major from Lock Haven (Central Mountain High School)
  • Audrey Domasky, sophomore public relations major from Pittsburgh (North Hills High School)
  • Kara Forse, junior nursing major from Venetia (Upper Saint Clair High School)
  • Alyssa Fratto, junior marketing major from Melcroft (Connellsville Area Senior High School)
  • Amelia Graves, junior secondary education major from West Falls, N.Y. (Orchard Park High School)
  • Sarah Kirk, senor nursing major from Valencia (Plum Senior High School)
  • Matthew McDermott, junior biblical ministry studies major from Pittsburgh (Shaler Area High School)
  • Jennifer Miller, senior biology/pre-med major from New Brighton (New Brighton Area Senior High School)
  • Emily Nowakowski, junior psychology major from Bridgeport, Ohio (Bridgeport High School)
  • Christopher Oblinger, junior criminal justice administration major from Aliquippa (Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School)
  • Tiffany Owad, junior international business major from Aliquippa (Hopewell Senior High School)
  • Bethany Peng, senior nursing major from Indiana (Indiana Area Senior High School)
  • Cullin Piatt, junior early childhood education major from Pittsburgh (Mount Lebanon High School)
  • Janelle Sistek, freshman nursing major from New Stanton (Hempfield Area Senior High School)
  • Emily Stowell, freshman nursing major from Havertown (Haverford High School)
  • Elizabeth Trump, freshman biology/pre-med major from Fairchance (Albert Gallatin Area Senior High School)
  • Victoria Whitty, senior biology/pre-med major from New Wilmington (Wilmington Area High School)

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

Tagged in: service service news
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