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Waynesburg University has been ranked in the top 100 of a national Social Mobility Index (SMI), which rates schools based on how well they help students improve their economic status.

Ranked at No. 66, Waynesburg University is the only school in Pennsylvania to break the top 100 on the national list.

Developed by CollegeNET and PayScale, the SMI ranks schools based on access, affordability and the ability to advance students’ economic mobility. Gaining international attention, the SMI has been featured in the Daily Mail, a British daily newspaper.

“This ranking sheds light on the affordability of a Waynesburg University degree, and equally as important, the value of a Waynesburg University education,” said Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee. “Our students graduate with the knowledge necessary to lead fiscally sound lives and with the résumés necessary to secure their desired jobs, fully equipping them to become contributing members of society.”

More than 900 colleges and universities were compared based on criteria that included tuition, the economic background of the student body, the graduation rate and early career salary for graduates.

According to the study's statement of purpose, the SMI shows that “through wise policy-making, colleges and universities can be part of improving both economic opportunity and social stability in our country.” Waynesburg’s high ranking and the supporting data indicate that the University is already fulfilling that need. 

These findings have also led to recognition for Waynesburg University in a ranking index compiled by Educate To Career (ETC), which has consistently ranked Waynesburg’s value in the top 10 percent of colleges nationwide.

ETC describes its rankings as an effort to deliver on the promise of the federal government’s College Scorecard by providing “actual college outcomes data.” The University ranked No. 104 out of the 1,224 schools listed in ETC’s College Rankings Index for 2015.

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

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b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_1627.JPGDr. Shari Payne has joined Waynesburg University as vice president for enrollment, the University announced today. Payne will oversee all recruitment aspects of the admissions process.

“With 20 years of experience in admissions, financial aid and academic affairs, Dr. Payne and her innovative leadership will be a valuable asset to Waynesburg University,” said Douglas G. Lee, Waynesburg University president. “Her dedication to service and to having a positive impact on the lives of others aligns with our mission, making her a great fit for the University.” 

In her role, Payne will direct an overarching recruitment plan in order to bring a high achieving and diverse student body to Waynesburg, with the goal of maintaining the academic excellence of the University. 

Prior to joining Waynesburg University, Payne served as the vice president for enrollment management at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, where she was responsible for student enrollment, including the recruitment of new students and the retention of continuing students. 

She previously served in various roles at Robert Morris University, including dean of engaged learning, director of academic of operations and director of financial aid. 

Payne holds an Ed.D. in higher education administration from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Science in communications and information systems from Robert Morris University and a Bachelor of Arts in English writing from the University of Pittsburgh. 

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations

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b2ap3_thumbnail_BPTW-LOGO-GOOD-with-button.jpgWaynesburg University has been selected as a finalist for the 2015 Best Places to Work Awards by the Pittsburgh Business Times, based on the results of an employee engagement survey completed by employees in June. 

“We are proud to be recognized by the Pittsburgh Business Times as a 'Best Places to Work' finalist,” said Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee. “It’s a privilege to serve alongside the dedicated faculty and staff at the University. This recognition is a result of the enthusiasm and commitment each one brings forth.”

Waynesburg University is one of ten finalists in the “150+ Employees” category. To be eligible for selection as a finalist, companies must reach a minimum level of employee participation, based on total number of employees. Responses from completed surveys are compiled and evaluated. 

Companies are ranked and finalists are chosen in each size category according to their overall engagement score. Finalists are chosen based on the results of the survey and, in essence, by the employees themselves. 

Finalists will be honored and winners will be announced at a luncheon Friday, Oct. 30. 

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Ashley Wise, Assistant Director of University Relations
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b2ap3_thumbnail_Matriculation-2015.jpgWaynesburg University’s 2015-2016 academic school year officially began Thursday, August 20, with the University’s annual Matriculation Ceremony. President Douglas G. Lee and other University leaders welcomed the freshman class at the 2 p.m. ceremony in Roberts Chapel.

“We are an institution committed to educating students to make connections between faith, learning and serving so that they might faithfully transform their communities and the world,” said President Lee. “Essential to this task is perseverance. In the words of former Waynesburg president A.B. Miller, ‘The great work of turning a life to good account cannot be accomplished by dreaming, by hoping, not even by solemn resolution but by earnest, laborious, persevering effort.’” 

During the ceremony, the names of matriculating students were announced by Lanny Frattare, assistant professor of communication, and Doug Wilson, lecturer of communication.

Matriculation marks the beginning of an eventful weekend organized to introduce freshmen to their new home at Waynesburg University. The incoming class will meet with faculty, participate in activities that allow them to meet other new students and attend numerous informational meetings.

The University welcomed over 400 students representing 57 different majors and 21 states, including Alaska, California, South Carolina, Vermont and Wyoming.

More than $4 million in institutional sponsored scholarships and grants have been awarded to the incoming class, including five Stover Scholarships, 17 Bonner Scholarships and seven Scout Scholarships.

The incoming class had the opportunity to participate in more than 20 events that the Waynesburg University Admissions Office hosted throughout the year in addition to personal visit opportunities. 

Jessica Sumpter, director of admissions at Waynesburg University, said that the Admissions Office staff and campus community is excited to welcome the many students with whom they aided in the college search and selection process.

“We are excited for the students to finally be able to experience all that Waynesburg University has to offer,” said Sumpter. “We could not be more thrilled that the incoming students have chosen to come to Waynesburg University!"

Freshmen moved into their residence halls Thursday, August 20. Upperclassmen will move into residence halls Sunday, August 23, and classes will begin Monday, August 24.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor

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b2ap3_thumbnail__OR_8252.jpgWaynesburg University held its annual Commencement exercises Sunday, May 3, honoring approximately 730 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students.

The Most Rev. David A. Zubik, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, delivered the Commencement Address. During the ceremony, the Bishop received a Papal Blessing from Pope Francis as well as an Honorary Doctorate degree from the University.

The special blessing from the Pope, presented to Bishop Zubik by Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee and Laura Ellsworth, a University trustee and partner at Jones Day, honored Bishop Zubik on the day that marked the 40th anniversary of his ordination, which was May 3, 1975. 

Presented with the blessing was a letter from Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, from which Ellsworth read a few lines:

“On Sunday, May 3, you will celebrate your 40th anniversary of priestly ordination as you also give the Commencement Address at Waynesburg University and receive an honorary doctorate. It is a great pleasure for me to offer you fraternal congratulations on this day that renews for all of us the joy of your ordination and at the same time to offer heartfelt best wishes as you receive this distinguished academic recognition.”

During his Commencement Address, Bishop Zubik referenced the University’s motto, Fiat Lux, or “let there be light,” and urged graduates to never forget that as their calling. 

He also referenced Pope Francis’s top ten tips for bringing greater joy to one’s life, which include working for peace, respecting the beliefs of others, letting go of negativity, respecting and taking care of nature, investing in youth, keeping the Sabbath holy, developing a healthy sense of leisure, proceeding calmly in life, being giving of yourselves to others and to live and let live.

“To sum up Pope Francis’s top ten tips to bring joy into life – Fiat Lux,” Bishop Zubik said. “My hope and prayer for all of you is that you truly live the motto of this great institution.”

The Bishop also encouraged graduates to strive to live in God’s grace.

“Every day is a point of grace, and grace will be encountered in the people we share that day with. You and I live in a world that challenges us each and every day. The key is to not let those challenges overwhelm us.

b2ap3_thumbnail__OR_7983.jpgThe following graduates were named valedictorians:

  • John Evan Allison, a biology (pre-med) graduate from Hickory, Pa.
  • Isaiah Antoine Cochran, a biology (pre-med) graduate from Akron, Ohio
  • Sara Marie Faiad, a psychology graduate from South Fork, Pa.
  • Quincy Alexander Hathaway, an environmental science graduate from Jefferson, Pa.
  • Carolyn May Highland, a biology (pre-med) graduate from Allentown, Pa.
  • Jeremy Scott Hinkle, a forensic accounting graduate from Washington, Pa.
  • Gina Marie Robinson, an English (literature) graduate from Lower Burrell, Pa.

Cochran delivered the valedictory on behalf of the valedictorians. Laura A. Smith, who received a Master of Arts degree in clinical mental health counseling, represented the graduate program students.

Prior to the commencement exercises, The Rev. Dr. Peter J. Paris, the Elmer G. Homrighausen professor emeritus of Christian social ethics at Princeton Theological Seminary, delivered the Baccalaureate Address, “On Becoming a Good Person.”

He urged graduates to consider how they can embody the mission of the University in their respective careers and to strive to use their achievements for the good of the world at large.

“The good you achieve for yourself can also be for a greater good – the good of others – the greatest good a human can do,” he said.

b2ap3_thumbnail__OR_7917.jpgRev. Dr. Paris encouraged graduates to never underestimate their power as young individuals, stating that the young have the energy and vision necessary for constructive social change.

Rev. Dr. Paris was awarded an Honorary Doctorate degree for the ways in which he parallels Waynesburg University’s mission of faith, learning and serving.

The University awarded the following degrees to graduates:  Doctor of Nursing Practice, Master of Arts, Master of Arts in Teaching, Master of Business Administration, Master of Education, Master of Science in Nursing, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Management and Leadership, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology and Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
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