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Six new faculty members joined the Waynesburg University undergraduate teaching community as classes began this week.

“The Office of Academic Affairs is pleased to welcome our new undergraduate faculty members,” said Dr. Jamie Jacobs, dean for institutional effectiveness and planning at the University. “Each brings not only expertise in their respective disciplines, but a commitment to Christian higher education. We are excited for these new faculty members to join us in supporting the Waynesburg University mission of faith, learning and serving.”

Dr. Mark Ahlseen has been named associate professor of business administration. He received his B.S. degree from Taylor University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Texas A&M University.

Bradley Davis has joined the University as assistant professor of chemistry. He received his B.S. degree from Waynesburg University and is a Ph.D. candidate at Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Chad Keys will serve as assistant professor of chemistry. He received his B.S. degree from Ball State University and a Ph.D. from Purdue University.

Dr. Deana Mack has been named assistant professor of education. She received her B.S. and M.A. degrees from the University of Pittsburgh and her Ph.D. from Robert Morris University.

Laurel Miner has joined the University as instructor of nursing. She received her B.S.N. from Duquesne University and M.S.N. degree from Walden University.

Dr. J. Christian Ola will serve as assistant professor of business administration. He received his B.A. from Grove City College; his M.B.A. from Duquesne University and just recently his Ph.D. from Anderson University. 

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
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Matriculation_Group_20140821-200124_1.jpgWaynesburg University’s 2014-2015 academic school year officially began Thursday, August 21, 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.

President Lee spoke to the class of 2018 about his own matriculation experience at Waynesburg in 1977, asking them to remember and record their feelings about the momentous day. He went on to say that each student is a reflection of the many Waynesburg University alumni who have become leaders in education, healthcare, ministry, science, politics and more, calling students to live out the University’s motto, Fiat Lux.

“Today, Waynesburg’s history becomes your heritage. Be proud, be confident. Become the light that God intends you to be,” President Lee said. “With His abundant grace, we are here to help you do that. Fiat Lux. Let there be light.”

During the ceremony, names 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 students representing 53 different majors and a variety of different states, including but not limited to California, Colorado, Florida, Texas and Virginia.

The 2018 class includes six Scout Scholarship recipients, six Stover Scholarship recipients, 15 Bonner Scholarship recipients and one Jeffrey and Regina Taussig Ohio Honor Scholarship recipient.

The incoming class had the opportunity to participate in more than 15 different 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 21. Upperclassmen will move into residence halls Sunday, August 24, and classes will begin Monday, August 25.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
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b2ap3_thumbnail_ETC-Rankings-Logo-RGB-TopCollege-02-Small-copy.jpgWaynesburg University has been ranked a top value college in an outcome-based college rankings index compiled by Educate To Career (ETC), which 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 Index empirically determines the economic value added by each of the over 1,200 colleges ranked within our system,” said ETC founder Michael R. Havis. “We calculate the improvement in earnings and employability of persons who attended specific colleges, relative to persons who are similarly situated in other colleges.”

Waynesburg University ranked No. 104 out of the more than 1,200 schools listed in the nationwide ETC College Rankings Index. Included in the ranking are four-year colleges with annual enrollments greater than 1,000 students.

According to ETC, colleges in the top third of the ETC Index have a relatively high percentage of graduates employed in their field of study and the earnings of graduates are relatively high. In addition, a majority of students graduate in four or five years and loan default rates are very low.

Waynesburg University’s career path analysis report states that 96 percent of 2012 graduates reported working full-time or attending graduate school within one year of graduation. Additionally, according to the federal government's College Scorecard, the loan default rate for Waynesburg graduates is 4.5 percent, which is substantially lower than the national average of 14.7 percent.

The ETC Index analyzes the quality of students when they enter a given college, the total costs related to attending the college and the outcomes of the students when they enter the labor market. The rankings results are determined by which schools did the best job of improving the earnings and attainment of quality employment of their students, according to a description of the index on the group's website.

Waynesburg University was also recently selected by U.S. News & World Report as a Best Value School – Regional Universities (North) in the 2014 “U.S. News Best Colleges” ranking, which identifies the top 15 “Best Value Schools” in the northern region of the country.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_9792.jpgWaynesburg University held its annual Commencement exercises Sunday, May 18, honoring approximately 600 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students.

Laura E. Ellsworth, a partner at Jones Day and vice chair of the board of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, delivered the Commencement Address, during which she shared personal stories and words of wisdom from inspirational leaders including Mother Theresa and Maya Angelou.

Ellsworth urged graduates not to be afraid of failure, reminding them that people who have failed have learned to overcome obstacles.

“Failure makes us stronger and better,” she said. “It’s up to us to choose how we are going to learn from it.”

She also reminded graduates that every individual has the ability to bring something unique to the floor, no matter how junior or how senior they are.

“This is an obligation,” Ellsworth said. “The pace of change is astronomical, and it provides great opportunity. You have gifts to give.”

The following graduates were named valedictorians:

  • Kaitlyn Grace Berkebile, an early childhood education major from Friedens, Pa.
  • Alyssa Brooke Crile, an early childhood education major from Washington, Pa.
  • Daniel Vincent Czajkowski, a criminal justice administration major from Frederick, Md.
  • b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_9737.jpgCorin Rae Schipani, a digital design major from Duquesne, Pa.
  • Hannah Michelle Szymanik, an early childhood education major from Mount Holly Springs, Pa.

Czajkowski delivered the valedictory to the University on behalf of the valedictorians. Elizabeth Hardy represented the graduate program students.

Two graduates, Samuel A. Lombardo, a criminal justice administration major from Canonsburg, Pa., and Ryan E. Walters, a finance major from Pleasant Unity, Pa., were commissioned Second Lieutenants in the Army of the United States of America during the Commencement ceremony.

Prior to Commencement exercises, Rev. Thomas M. Hall II, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Pittsburgh, delivered the Baccalaureate Address, “Where Have All the Heroes Gone?” to graduates and their parents, during which he referenced Luke 8:26-39.

He urged graduates to let God step into their lives so that they can live out His calling.

“Heroes say ‘I will be who God calls me to be,’ in a world where others say ‘Be all you can be,’” Hall said.

He quoted Saint Catherine of Siena, stating, “Be who God wants you to be, and you’ll set the world on fire.”

b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_9321.jpgWaynesburg University awarded the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, the Master of Arts degree, the Master of Business Administration degree, the Master of Education degree, the Master of Science in Nursing degree, the Bachelor of Arts degree, the Bachelor of Management and Leadership degree, the Bachelor of Science degree, the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree, the Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology degree and the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.

To view photos from Baccalaureate and Commencement, visit

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b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_0191.jpgLaura E. Ellsworth, a partner at Jones Day and vice chair of the board of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, and the Rev. Thomas M. Hall II, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Pittsburgh, were awarded honorary Doctor of Humane Letter degrees during Waynesburg University’s commencement exercises Sunday, May 18.

The degrees were conferred upon Ellsworth and Hall for the ways in which they parallel Waynesburg University’s mission of faith, learning and serving.

Members of the Waynesburg University Board of Trustees presented the recipients and assisted with investitures.

The following citations were read:

Laura E. Ellsworth, J.D.

Laura Ellsworth, for your wholly inspirational work ethic, as evidenced by a successful career in complex litigation and a multitude of professional posts, Waynesburg honors you.
Your commitment to advancing the state of professional law practice has spanned the globe in both accolades and experience, and your work is held in the highest regard in the Pittsburgh region.

As one of the “5o Best Women in Business,” you have served as an example to young women who wish to change the world. Through your notable publications and accomplishments, you have encouraged young people, including Waynesburg University students, to pursue lives of purpose.

Your demonstrated passion for justice and ethical leadership rings clear and mirrors the efforts of Waynesburg University to instill such admirable qualities in its students.

Your heart for service shines brightest in your work with the Imani Christian Academy as a board member and co-teacher. By uniting your love for the children at Imani and your passion for workforce development, you create opportunities for students at Imani to experience success.

Your authorship and experience speaks to a high level of professional development and a desire for continued education. These characteristics align with Waynesburg University’s drive to instill a passion for lifetime learning coupled with faith and service.

For the ways in which you have illuminated issues of justice and fought for your moral convictions, Waynesburg appreciates you.

For your undeniable drive, genuine leadership ability and pronounced passion for the legal field, it is with great honor that Waynesburg University confers upon you our degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.

Rev. Thomas M. Hall II

Rev. Thomas Hall, in recognition of your unwavering commitment to the members of your congregation and all those you compassionately serve, Waynesburg University honors you.

Your passion for the heart of Pittsburgh has advanced the region in spirituality and sustainability. As your influence has shaped leaders and your words have molded Christians, so, too, have your hands helped form a city ripe with opportunity.

As you lead your community with quiet strength and example-based guidance, you create a space in which new leaders can mature and prosper. 

For your civic-minded allegiance and your talent for awakening non-believers to the wonders of Christ, Waynesburg University thanks you.

In your many years of patriotic support to your country, you served as an intelligence analyst, a chairman of the 15-nation NATO Electronic Warfare Advisory Committee and a commander of the 11th Operations Group. For your service to the United States of America as a retired Air Force colonel with many military decorations, Waynesburg University appreciates you.

Experienced and applauded by many, your civic engagement stands as an excellent example in conviction, leadership and service, the very components of a faith-based life that Waynesburg University encourages students to embody.

For your distinguished contributions to your community, your country and the Kingdom of God, it is with great honor that we confer upon you our degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.

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Contact: Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor
724.852.7675 or

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