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Waynesburg University recently executed two affiliation agreements with Chatham University in order to provide more opportunities for graduates as they approach their chosen career paths. 

Established with Chatham University’s Master of Occupational Therapy Program (MOT) and Chatham’s Doctor of Physical Therapy Program (DPT), the agreements will guarantee interviews to participants for consideration into the MOT or DPT program, providing that they maintain a specified GPA and receive satisfactory GRE scores.

Of the interviewees, up to two Waynesburg University students will be guaranteed acceptance into the MOT and DPT programs, respectively, provided they meet the academic criteria. 

“We are thrilled for our students to have secured paths into graduate school,” said Dr. Jacquelyn Core, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at Waynesburg University. “Guaranteed admission removes pressure from our students during their undergraduate education, allowing them to focus on their studies. It’s wonderful to already know where you will end up before you ever start, something not every university can offer prospective students.” 

Beginning in the fall of 2015, students who declare intent to complete the Master of Occupational Therapy Program or Doctor of Physical Therapy Program will have the opportunity to meet with a faculty member from Chatham University during their sophomore or junior year for guidance and information about the program.  

For both the MOT and DPT programs, the bachelor’s degree will be awarded by Waynesburg University and, upon completion, the graduate degree will be awarded by Chatham University. 

The goal of these agreements is to improve placement opportunities for Waynesburg students by allowing them to form relationships with the leaders of these regional programs. 

Chatham University’s entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program is a clinical doctorate degree designed to prepare its graduates for practice in physical therapy at the successful completion of seven terms of study. For more information, visit

The goal of the Chatham’s Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) program is to educate competent occupational therapy practitioners to assist individuals of all ages to achieve maximum independence in daily life activities. Upon completion of this program, graduates are prepared to practice evidence-based occupational therapy in a variety of healthcare and community settings, provided that they pass the national certification exam and obtain state licensure as needed. For more information, visit  

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Bill.jpgWaynesburg University has promoted two senior administrators, effective July 1. 

Bill Dumire has been named Vice President for Information Technology Systems and Chief Information Officer, and Heidi Szuminsky has been named Vice President for Institutional Advancement and University Relations.

“These two individuals’ vision and leadership have been invaluable,” said Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee. “Not only do they show commitment to our mission, they embody it. Their innovative thinking will continue to enhance the strategic direction of our University.” 

Dumire joined the University in 2013 as the Executive Director of Information Technologies with more than fifteen years of information technology support and leadership experience in higher education, healthcare and private sector environments. 

He directs the overall management and operation of campus-wide information technology resources. Among his accomplishments since joining Waynesburg, he has led the design, planning and implementation of a new information system infrastructure to better support the current and future needs of the University.

Dumire holds a bachelor’s degree in business information systems and a Master of Information Systems.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Heidi.jpgIn her ten years of employment at Waynesburg, Szuminsky has served in various leadership roles. In her most recent role as Executive Director of Institutional Advancement, she has guided the alumni relations and development team to inform and engage graduates of the University and to promote philanthropic giving. 

Active in the community, Szuminsky serves as the President of the Rotary Club of Waynesburg and as a member of the Southwest Regional Medical Center Advocacy Committee. She previously served on the Board of Directors for the Waynesburg Area Chamber of Commerce and the Greene County Tourism Promotion Agency.

Szuminsky holds a bachelor’s degree in communication and a Master of Business Administration degree from Waynesburg University. She is also a graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh’s Leadership Development Initiative, earning a certificate in Leadership Development.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
724.852.7675 or

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Waynesburg University is now accepting applications for its new Master of Arts in Criminal Investigation (MACI) program, which will begin in the fall of 2015. 

“The MACI program was created to enhance the investigative abilities of working law enforcement officers, as well as those aspiring to have a career in criminal justice,” said Adam Jack, chairperson for the Criminal Justice and Social Sciences Department and assistant professor of criminal justice. “The course instructors are experts in their various fields, providing the students with valuable insights from years of casework and training.

Criminal Investigation is a 500 level graduate program for professionals and students who have completed the requisite undergraduate courses in Criminal Justice Administration or have comparable training, skills or professional experience relating to the field.

The program consists of courses such as Advanced Criminal Investigation, Advanced Crime Scene Investigation, Advanced Interview and Interrogation, Research in the Justice System and Effective Criminal Profiling.

Students pursuing a master’s degree in Criminal Investigation will learn about ethical decision-making and leadership in the field as well as build upon their investigative skills. 

The Criminal Investigation courses will be offered at Waynesburg University’s main campus as well as the Southpointe, Monroeville and Seven Fields centers. Select courses can be completed online. 

For more information, contact James Tanda, instructor of criminal justice at Waynesburg University, at or Jack at

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
724.852.7675 or

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b2ap3_thumbnail_6-17-community-bank-pledge_20150617-152722_1.jpgWaynesburg University has received a pledge from Community Bank toward the renovation of the University’s Paul R. Stewart Science Hall. 

“We are grateful for the generous support from Community Bank,” said Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee. “This gift will certainly help us to provide a quality science facility for both the community and the region."

The $23 million renovation of Stewart Science Hall is the University’s largest renovation project in its history and will provide students with new laboratories and classrooms. The extensive six-year renovation project began in 2012 and is currently in its fourth phase. Phase four involves the full demolition and renovation of the third floor, which will house the Department of Mathematics, Computer Science and Physics.  

Located near the center of downtown Waynesburg, Stewart Science Hall is an integral part of the continued development of the Borough of Waynesburg. The building’s location improves the mixed-use nature of the commercial district and provides a steady source of economic activity.

Stewart Science Hall also makes possible community outreach activities such as monthly labs for homeschooled students, a Haunted Lab open to the campus and local community and the Food Chemistry and Green Chemistry programs offered to local Girl Scout members, among many others. 

Over the past 50 years, the number of students attending class in Stewart Science Hall has nearly tripled. Similarly, the number of academic programs offered within the building has grown to include more than 15 areas of study. 

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
724.852.7675 or

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Posted by on in Alumni

Julie Tischer, a 2013 biology alumna, is a Ph.D. candidate in the Microbiology Department at the University of Georgia.

Beginning her third year in the program, Tischer is studying the CRISPR-Cas system, an adaptive immune system in bacteria and archaea, and is fascinated by the ways tiny organisms influence the planet and public health. Specifically, Tischer is studying the function of the system and how it integrates small fragments of invading genetic elements, such as viruses, into its own genome. These fragments, according to Tischer, are then used to detect the invader if it ever returns again, recruiting proteins to chop up the foreign nucleic acid.

“Microbiology in general has so many broad impacts on the world, from industry to health care,” Tischer said. “CRISPR research, specifically, is revolutionizing science through its use as a gene editing tool. The CRISPR field is rapidly moving towards possibly one day being able to cure genetic diseases, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Studying the foundational mechanisms involved in the CRISPR-Cas immune system is allowing us to try things we never knew were possible.”

Tischer’s interest in the field dates back to her seventh grade life science teacher who inspired her to study biology in college. Years later, Tischer’s interest grew into a calling as a result of the support and encouragement of Dr. Chad Sethman, associate professor of biology at Waynesburg University.

“I was particularly inspired by Dr. Chad Sethman, from whom I took many courses, including microbiology. That was my favorite course by far, and sparked my enthusiasm to pursue the field for my graduate research,” she said.

From her microbiology course, Tischer developed an interest in becoming a part of discovering how organisms function, and how they can be useful to humans, she said. According to Tischer, “each and every one of [her] professors at Waynesburg University led [her] to where [she is] today,” but scientifically speaking, she said, her biology professors, and the personal relationships she shared with each of them, helped her to develop into a “competent research scientist.”

Tischer also credits her Waynesburg University education for granting her the opportunities necessary to be accepted into a selective graduate school program.

“Choosing Waynesburg University allowed me to have a variety of experiences I probably wouldn’t have been exposed to at a large institution,” she said. “Waynesburg University provided me with all the foundational tools necessary to have a successful graduate career in research.”

Upon graduation, Tischer plans to pursue a career in teaching — a career that she says will allow her to give back to future students.

“I have had so many influential mentors and teachers in my scientific career, and I really want to make a similar impact on developing scientists. I have such a passion for helping people get excited about science and research, and love to see that moment when something finally clicks in a student,” she said.

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