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b2ap3_thumbnail_Chad-Sherman.jpgThe Newspaper Research Journal (NRJ), the official academic publication published by the Newspaper Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), has recently accepted the works of Waynesburg University Department of Communication professors Dr. Chad Sherman, Ph.D., and Brandon Szuminsky.

Sherman, assistant professor of communication, and Szuminsky, instructor of communication, co-authored a study, “Variation in the Media Agenda: How Newspapers in Different States Covered the ‘Obamacare’ Ruling.” The literary work investigates the substantive differences in the media agenda of the 2012 Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act, as represented by newspaper front page coverage, with emphasis on differences in coverage between “red” and “blue” states.

“The NRJ is a well-regarded journal in the journalism research field and being published in it is quite an honor,” said Szuminsky.

AEJMC is a nonprofit organization of more than 3,700 educators, students and practitioners from around the globe. It is the oldest and largest alliance of journalism and mass communication educators and administrators at the college level.

Sherman noted the publication of this study helps further establish Waynesburg University as an institution conducting valuable research.

In addition to their literary news, both professors were elected to the Newspaper and Online News Division (NOND) of AEJMC.

As web editor, Sherman will maintain NOND’s website as well as work with fellow executive board members to help promote AEJMC and NOND. He will also help manage the Association’s social media channels and its overall visual brand.

As co-chair of professional freedom and responsibility, Szuminsky will work to improve the way professionals do their job through training sessions, presentations and research. 

Sherman holds a bachelor’s degree in communications media, a master’s degree in adult education and communication technology, and a Ph.D. in communications media and instructional technology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. In addition to a bachelor’s degree in communication and master’s degree in organizational leadership from Waynesburg University, Szuminsky is a doctoral candidate at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he is studying communications media and instructional technology. b2ap3_thumbnail_Brandon-Szuminsky.jpg

AEJMC’s mission is to promote the highest possible standards for journalism and mass communication education, to cultivate the widest possible range of communication research, to encourage the implementation of a multi-cultural society in the classroom and curriculum, and to defend and maintain freedom of communication in an effort to achieve better professional practice and a better informed public.

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or

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b2ap3_thumbnail_WUHC14_1085.jpgWaynesburg University will welcome alumni, staff, faculty and students alike to its annual Homecoming celebration Friday, Oct. 2 and Saturday, Oct. 3. The weekend will encompass a variety of events that invite participation from both alumni and current students.

“We want our alumni to feel special from the moment they step on campus to the last event,” said Mary Fox, event planner for the University. “For over 160 years, our alumni have been crucial to the growth of Waynesburg University. This weekend is just one of the ways we honor them."

During the two-day celebration, alumni will be invited to participate in athletic events, a reception with President and Mrs. Douglas G. Lee, a 5K run and walk, campus tours and more. Alumni will also have the opportunity to reconnect with nine academic and affinity groups, the largest number of groups present at Homecoming to date, in addition to 11 class reunions.

Current students, along with staff and faculty, will also join the celebration at athletic events and Jacketfest, where any student club or organization can host a booth.

“There are more ways than ever before for students to get involved,” said Fox. “Our alumni so often express how much they enjoy meeting current students while they are on campus.”

The University encourages alumni to reconnect with friends and network with fellow Waynesburg alumni as the campus celebrates Homecoming 2015.

Registration for Homecoming 2015 events is suggested. For a complete schedule of events or to register, visit

The Homecoming 2015 Weekend schedule:

Friday, Oct. 2

  • 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. – President’s Reception at President and Mrs. Lee’s home (reservations required)
  • 3:30 p.m. – Women’s Tennis Match vs. St. Vincent College
  • 7 p.m. – All Alumni Celebration at The Perfect Round, where alumni will celebrate reunion years (reservations suggested)

Saturday, Oct. 3

  • 8:30 a.m. – Waynesburg University Homecoming 5k Run and Walk. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. in the Goodwin Performing Arts Center.
  • 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. – All Alumni Check In at Johnson Commons or John F. Wiley Stadium
  • 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – Academic and Affinity Groups beginning in Johnson Commons. Alumni may tour their old departments and classrooms with their classmates.
  • 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – Jacketfest in Johnson Commons. Bring your family and explore the unique offerings of Waynesburg University clubs and organizations.
  • 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – Come-and-go Brunch in Benedum Dining Hall
  • 10:45 a.m. – Men’s Tennis Match vs. Fairmont State University
  • 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. – Class of 1965 Brunch with President and Mrs. Lee at their home (reservations required)
  • 1:30 p.m. – Football Game: Waynesburg University Yellow Jackets vs. Grove City College Wolverines at John F. Wiley Stadium
  • Halftime – Alumni Tent at the Back Gate
  • Post-Game – 5th Quarter Steak Cookout at the back gate of the John F. Wily Stadium (reservations required)

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

724.852.7675 or

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Posted by on in News

b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_8784.JPGWaynesburg University’s campus rang with a celebratory sound during this year’s Commencement exercises, thanks to the generosity of the Class of 2015.

The senior class gift funded the restoration of the bell that once hung in the cupola of Hanna Hall, and on Sunday, the Class of 2015 became the first class to have that bell mark their graduation in more than a century.

Cast in 1875, the bell once proclaimed each new day of learning at Waynesburg University – welcoming both men and women to an institution of higher learning that was one of the first in the nation to educate both equally. Today, Hanna Hall remains one of the two oldest buildings in America with that historic distinction.

Now on display next to Hanna Hall in Cusick Court, the bell was removed from the cupola more than a century ago because it was too heavy for the structure. Emblazoned on the bell is the Latin phrase “Pro veritate et virtute,” which translates to “For truth and courage.” A plaque will accompany the bell in its new, permanent location to explain its history, the meaning of the Latin phrase and the significance of the generosity of the class of 2015.

“The whole thing behind the bell is that it ties our history into the present day,” said Joshuah Dains, Student Senate president and a member of the senior class gift committee. “To me, this reaffirms the school's mission by returning a landmark to our campus that existed in the University’s early years and connects current students to that rich past.”

Vincent Allen Inc. Metal Restoration in Pittsburgh returned the bell to its original state by shining the bell’s metal surface and removing the grime that developed during years of storage.

“I'm extremely proud and overwhelmed by how many seniors and their families have given to make this project possible,” said Vikki Beppler, assistant director of Alumni Relations. “We’ve had more student gifts given than in years past. I'm really proud of the seniors stepping up and raising the money on their own.”

This year’s senior class gift of $8,000, which included donations from future alumni and their families, funded the entire project.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
724.852.7675 or

Tagged in: Alumni News
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Posted by on in Alumni

Picture1.jpgNicole Briggeman, 2010 Forensic Science 

Assistant district attorney at Buncombe County District Attorney’s Office in Asheville, N.C.

An average day at work for Nicole Briggeman begins with her looking through the district court calendar of Buncombe County, N.C., and examining what type of cases she will be handling that day. She then takes notes and prepares herself for any curveballs that might be thrown her way. 

As an assistant district attorney at Buncombe County District Attorney’s Office in Asheville, N.C., Briggeman handles misdemeanor and traffic cases where she negotiates pleas, dismisses cases and conducts trials. Briggeman said she encounters a variety of charges on a daily basis, such as individuals who drive while intoxicated, possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia and simple assaults. 

Briggeman graduated from Waynesburg University in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in forensic science. Looking back on her decision to choose Waynesburg University, she realized her alma mater has aided in her transition from college to her current job as assistant district attorney. 

“Waynesburg University prepared me for the workforce by showing me the value of having a small community that can support you,” said Briggeman. “Waynesburg has also helped me learn the important lesson that you can do anything and everything you put your mind to.”

Briggeman also holds a Juris Doctorate from Campbell University.


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Posted by on in Achievements

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Isaiah Cochran, a Waynesburg University junior from Akron, Ohio, was elected the pre-medical trustee for the 2014-2015 American Medical Student Association (AMSA) Board of Trustees. The election was held in New Orleans in March, and the biology (pre-med) major assumed his position May 1.

Waynesburg University hosted its fourth annual Undergraduate Research and Scholarly Work Symposium April 26, 2014. The event showcased 54 student presenters. It featured two oral presentations and 24 poster presentations. Topics covered a variety of research and scholarly work from students of many majors and class years. A sample of the presentations included research about Alzheimer’s, artificial sweeteners, Christian community development, effects of fatigue, food chain length and nutrition awareness.

Dr. Chad Sethman, assistant professor of biology at Waynesburg University, recently contributed to a report stating that SARM, one of five innate immunity adaptors, stabilizes cell proteins and protects the nucleus from self-destructing during stress brought on by inflammation in response to various types of infections. Sethman and his research partner’s report, published in August of 2013 in PLOS ONE, began with the cloning of the gene into various forms.

In the spring of 2013, Waynesburg University alumna Stacey Pavlik (’09, science/biology) became a Woodrow Wilson Ohio Teaching Fellow. She is one of only 77 Fellows chosen from approximately 2,000 applicants to the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.

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