Monday, February 29, 2016

Back in Delaware today for an enjoyable lunch with former Virginia Wesleyan College trustee John Lingo.

Nota Bene: Office of Information Technology Services

February 29, 2016
Today I’d like to share with you significant changes that will improve processes and bring structural clarity to Computer Services at Virginia Wesleyan College. To start, the department, led by Chief Information Officer Robert Leitgeb, has been renamed the Office of Information Technology Services, or IT Services. Over the years, the department has grown to fulfill a broader role—much more than what was reflected by the name Computer Services. This update is needed to properly reflect new and future institutional engagements and strategic alignment.
A number of internal changes have been made as well. Here is a breakdown of IT Services' functions and evolving staff roles:

Enterprise Resource Services
This division of IT Services will remain mostly unchanged in function—a strong enterprise data focus. Personnel will support enterprise applications such as Colleague and partner applications like Hobson's Radius. With Ellucian's Action Plan on the horizon, progress will surely begin to advance quickly in this area. Enterprise Resource Services is critical in the work to advance business process improvements. Staff includes:

Greg Baptiste, Enterprise Systems Administrator
George "RP" Patillo, Enterprise Resource Programmer/Business Analyst
Glen Johnson, Enterprise Resource Programmer

Technical Operations
This is the division for the physical delivery of digital services, incorporating all network and end-user support efforts at Virginia Wesleyan. Staff includes:

Terry Critser Systems, Administrator/Helpdesk Supervisor
Marcia Williams, Network Administrator/Business Analyst Lead

Business Analyst Team
Marcia Williams will oversee this charge with RP Patillo. The team will assist campus departments in discovering business process improvements that align with institution-wide strategic goals.

Project Management
As IT Services begins the process of strategically aligning with departments at the college, the inevitable outcome will be...more projects. As resources are scarce, proper management of projects will be critical to the quality and success of their implementation. This function will be led by:

John Aird, Senior Technologist/IT Project Manager

In the future, we see a Helpdesk that is separated from any system or network focus. As this area expands, the focus will be on end-user support. Eventually, we will see a more formal network services division begin to emerge. Until then, Helpdesk technicians will have a specialty focus while primary efforts extend to tier 1 support for all end-user issues (senior management serves as tier 2 support). Terry Critser will oversee this area while maintaining his system administration duties. Staff includes:

Jordan Merritt, Helpdesk Technician/Network Specialist
Scott Harvey, Helpdesk Technician/System Specialist

Should you have any questions about the Office of Information Technology Services, please feel free to contact me or Robert Leitgeb.
Great article in The Virginian-Pilot about Assistant Professor of Education Bill McConnell's project with Chesapeake elementary students and 3-D printing:

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Thanks to all the Virginia Wesleyan College fans who attended game receptions, lunches and dinners at the ODAC Tournament in Salem. The Marlins lost in the semifinals.
Lunch with Virginia Wesleyan College basketball fans before the ODAC Tournament semifinals

Friday, February 26, 2016

It will be Virginia Wesleyan College and Randolph College in the ODAC Semifinals Saturday at 8 p.m at the Salem Civic Center.
Celebrating the Marlin win with alumni and friends.
Celebrating with the Marlins after the ODAC Tournament win.
Great turnout of Virginia Wesleyan College fans at the ODAC Tournament at the Salem Civic Center.
Our Global Scholars presented their travel experiences to a group of Virginia Wesleyan trustees at a luncheon in the Boyd Dining Center.
With Roanoke College's Michael C. Maxey, Eastern Mennonite's Loren Swartzendruber, ODAC Commissioner Brad Bankston, Randolph-Macon's Bob Lindgren , and Hampden-Sydney's Dennis G. Stevens after the ODAC presidents meeting and luncheon in Roanoke. The ODAC Tournament starts this afternoon.

Nota Bene: The Lambuth M. and Alice A. Clarke Society

February 26, 2016

Virginia Wesleyan is a remarkable place because of the leadership, devotion, and good will preceding us. It is important that we honor our heritage and traditions, and it is a privilege to celebrate them and to build upon them.

My wife Annie and I are thankful every day for the opportunity to continue the tradition of leadership initiated by our predecessors. That leadership began with the leadership of our first president Joseph S. Johnston and continued through the 26 years of Lambuth M. Clarke’s presidency.  Today, I am grateful and proud to announce that Alice Clarke, along with her family, has formally approved the changing of the name of the VWC planned giving society to The Lambuth M. and Alice A. Clarke Society.

One of the College’s foundational establishments, The Heritage Society was formed many years ago by Wesleyan friends and family with the Clarkes among the inaugural founders. The Heritage Society recognizes individuals who have arranged for a deferred gift to the College through their estate plans.

Recently, in the spirit of further recognizing that legacy tradition, I asked Alice Clarke for her consideration in changing the name of The Heritage Society. In this way, we honor the contributions of one of Virginia Wesleyan’s most consequential first families, while reinforcing the College community’s awareness of the tradition of philanthropy.

The Clarke name has long stood for admirable values and extraordinary service. We thank the family for the commitment and pride they continue to demonstrate in Virginia Wesleyan’s progress.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Nota Bene: ODAC Tournament

February 25, 2016
Today marks the start of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Tournament that will be held through Sunday, February 28 in Salem, VA.  With a strong basketball tradition here, Virginia Wesleyan's men and women are poised for another run at the NCAA post-season.
If you're planning to attend, Virginia Wesleyan will host receptions at the Salem Civic Center during half-time of each women's and men's game during the tournament. The women's team will face #1 seed Lynchburg College today at 1:00 p.m. (Feb. 25). The men's team will play in the quarterfinals on Friday, Feb. 26 at 6:00 p.m. Look for Marlin signs to direct you to the appropriate banquet room. 
Go Marlins!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

We kicked off nine months of comprehensive campus planning today facilitated by ARAMARK Engineering Solutions (Philadelphia) and Derck & Edson of Lititz, PA. Our campus planning team will work with facilitators from both organizations to create a Corrective Maintenance Plan a 10-year Campus Master Plan. Pictured with: Ed Clark (ARAMARK Engineering Solutions), Steve Sproles (Derck & Edson), Suzanne Morris (ARAMARK), Laynee Timlin (Chair, VWC Strategic Planning) and Bruce Vaughan (VWC Vice Chair).
Attending the winter meeting of the Board of Directors of the Virginia Tidewater Consortium for Higher Education. Dr. Larry Dotolo, center, is President of VTC.
Steve Sprouls of Derck & Edson discusses the planning process/timeline at the kick off of the Virginia Wesleyan College 10-year master planning team.

Nota Bene: Alumni Association Board Meeting/Legacy Luncheon

February 24, 2016

This past Saturday, I had the pleasure of meeting with the Virginia Wesleyan College Alumni Association Board of Directors.  I shared a number of campus updates with them, including our master planning process and the forthcoming public launch of our $60 million capital campaign. It was also a time to introduce Dr. Mort Gamble, Vice President for Advancement.  Dr. Gamble led a discussion regarding the importance of alumni connections to campus, engagement of all alumni age groups, and increasing alumni participation in annual giving.

Following the Alumni Board meeting, the Alumni Association hosted the Alumni Legacy Endowed Scholarship Luncheon.  Alumni donors to the scholarship had an opportunity to meet the current legacy students who receive the scholarship.  The Alumni Legacy Endowed Scholarship was established in 2004 as a permanent endowment at the College. In 2014, an alumnus offered a fundraising challenge which raised another $30,000 for the endowed fund. Dan Mason '88, former alumni board chair and signer of the endowment agreement, shared the history of the scholarship.

It is through gatherings like this that we build and sustain our community.  Each alumnus and legacy are connected to the campus in a very special way. As we plan for the future of the College, it is imperative that we honor the traditions that have meant so much to our Virginia Wesleyan family since our founding, while also charting an aggressive course for enrollment and fundraising in the years ahead.

The current legacies are:
Elizabeth Marie Brisson            Victoria Nichole Laughlin
Lafayette C. Campbell, Jr.        Ulia Elizabeth Grace Nelson
Madalyn Noelle Chevalier         Connor Travise Pederson
Alese Cassandra Herbert          Virginia Elizabeth Peery
Savannah Anne Jones              Frederic Glen Pizzanello
Cameron Reid Kessler              Meaghan Elizabeth Rawls
Corey Kyle King                        Quinci Marie Rockette
Regan Leigh Kirwin                  Christian Michael Spivey
Ashley Anne Kline                    Olivia Jordan Staul
Mary Lynne Kurzenknabe        Margaret Abigail Tuthill

Our special thanks to Amy Mallett Rickard '98 for her outstanding leadership of the Alumni Association.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Leaders of the five colleges and universities of The Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church met with Bishop Young Chin Cho today in Ashland, VA. Pictured: Robert Lindgren (Randolph-Macon), Bradley Bateman (Randolph), Jennifer Braaten (Ferrum), Bishop Cho, and Tracy Fitzsimmons (Shenandoah).

Nota Bene: NSSE Student Survey for Students Opens Tomorrow

February 22, 2016
Virginia Wesleyan, like many colleges across the country, participates in a comprehensive national student engagement survey. Every three years, we extend an invitation to freshmen and graduating seniors to participate in the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE).
Through this survey, NSSE collects information at hundreds of four-year colleges and universities about first-year and senior students' participation in programs and activities that institutions provide for their learning and personal development. The results provide an estimate of how undergraduates spend their time and what they gain from attending college.

Beginning tomorrow, Virginia Wesleyan freshmen who started in the fall and graduating seniors will have an opportunity to participate in the NSSE survey. These two classes of students will receive an invitation and a link to the survey.  Students who complete the survey by April 1, 2016 will receive a $5 Wawa gift card. In addition, they will be entered in a drawing to win one of four $25 Starbucks gift cards.

According to NSSE’s website, student engagement represents two critical features of collegiate quality. The first is the amount of time and effort students put into their studies and other educationally purposeful activities. The second is how the institution deploys its resources and organizes the curriculum and other learning opportunities to get students to participate in activities that decades of research studies show are linked to student learning.

NSSE reports that more than 1,500 different colleges and universities in the US and Canada have participated in the survey since it was first administered in 2000. Like many institutions, we will use data from the survey to identify aspects of the undergraduate experience inside and outside the classroom that can be improved through changes in policies and practices more consistent with good practices in undergraduate education.

I encourage all freshmen and seniors to take the survey and I hope our faculty and staff will also encourage them to do so.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

With students and donors at the Alumni Legacy Scholarship luncheon.
I thoroughly enjoyed visiting with the Virginia Wesleyan College Alumni Association Board of Directors this morning.
Dr. Mort Gamble, Vice President for Advancement, addresses alumni participation and the new capital campaign with the Virginia Wesleyan College Alumni Association Board of Directors.

Friday, February 19, 2016

This week's "@vawesleyan":

Nota Bene: VWC Winter Board of Trustees Meeting

February 19, 2016

The Virginia Wesleyan College Board of Trustees held its winter meeting on Wednesday, February 17, in the Shafer Room of the Boyd Dining Center.
Highlights of actions by the Board include:
Elected New Officers of the Board (Effective July 1)
  • David Kaufman, Chair
  • Jon Pruden, Vice Chair
  • William Thumel, Jr., Secretary
  • Ann Shumadine, Treasurer
  • Henry Watts, Parliamentarian

Elected Trustee Emeritus
  • John Trinder

Approved advancement from Assistant to Associate Professor and Conferral of Tenure
  • Dr. Thomas F. Brown (Criminal Justice and Sociology)
  • Dr. Audrey Malagon (Mathematics)
  • Dr. Alison J. Marganski (Criminal Justice)
  • Dr. Taryn A. Myers (Psychology)
  • Dr. Wayne M. Pollock (Recreation and Leisure Studies)

Approved advancement from Associate to Full Professor (with Tenure)
  • Dr. Kevin Kittredge (Chemistry)

Approved advancement from Associate to Full Professor (Faculty Already Hold Tenure)
  • Dr. Susan E. Larkin (English)
  • Dr. Travis B. Malone (Theatre)
  • Dr. Sara A. Sewell (History)
Advancement from Librarian II (Assistant Librarian) to Librarian III (Associate Librarian)
  • Mr. Stephen G. Leist

Approved a new fundraising capital campaign

  • A $60 million capital campaign with a completion date of December 31, 2020

Approved Tuition and Fees for 2016-17

Approved updates to the By-Laws of the College

Heard progress reports:
  • FY 2016 Budget
  • Construction of the Greer  Environmental Sciences Center
  • Construction of the YMCA Partnership Building
  • Authorizing a “Request For Proposal” for auditing services
  • Authorizing the Executive Committee as the screening committee for the review of real estate development proposals for the 12.68 acres owned by VWC directly across from the College
  • Timeline and objectives for the Space Utilization Study, Facility Assessment, Corrective Maintenance Plan, and 10-year Campus Master Plan
  • Preparations for the re-affiliation visit by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church

Heard committee reports and approved their actions:
  • Executive Committee
  • Audit Committee
  • Joint Committee Finance and Buildings & Grounds
  • Educational Policies Committee
  • Enrollment Committee
  • Development & Public Relations
  • Student Affairs Committee   

The next meeting of the Board of Trustees is scheduled for May.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Greeting all VWC faculty and staff who contributed to this year's fundraising campaign, with nearly $52,000 raised and 72 percent of employees participating.

Nota Bene: VWC Board is #JodiStrong

February 18, 2016

Today I’d like to express my gratitude to Virginia Wesleyan College Board of Trustees member Jon Pruden, co-owner and president of local specialty food favorite, TASTE.

On behalf of TASTE, Jon generously supported the women’s basketball team’s recent t-shirt fundraiser for Jodi Bryant, a VWC staff member battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma for a second time. Jodi is the Administrative Assistant to the President and the Assistant Secretary to the Board of Trustees.

During a break in their winter meeting yesterday, the Board of Trustees and senior administration donned their #JodiStrong t-shirts, courtesy of Jon, in a show of support for this remarkable member of the Marlin family. (see photos below) Every day I’m reminded how special the Virginia Wesleyan community is, and yesterday was no exception.

Thank you to Jon and also to Head Women’s Basketball Coach Stephany Dunmyer, who organized the fundraiser for Jodi. In total, the team raised $4,375 for the Bryant family.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Nota Bene: VWC to Host 2017 VFIC Ethics Bowl

February 17, 2016
I’m pleased to share that Virginia Wesleyan College will host the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges (VFIC) Ethics Bowl in 2017.
In 1997, the VFIC Ethics Task Force initiated the Ethics Bowl in an effort to involve students at the 15 VFIC colleges in lively debate and consideration of applied ethics—real world dilemmas that affect people’s lives in increasingly complex ways. At that time the Task Force was co-chaired by Roger Mudd, History Channel—Journalist (retired) and VFIC trustee and Phillip Stone, President of Bridgewater College (1994 – 2010).
This event will bring students and faculty from other colleges to our campus. In addition, many distinguished professionals serve as judges and moderators. We look forward to hosting the 2017 Ethics Bowl, in partnership with the VFIC. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

I had a wonderful visit with the editorial staff of The Marlin Chronicle.
Visit the National College Learning Centers Association's new website ( and you'll see this image of Virginia Wesleyan's Learning Center on their homepage (watch the rotating banner).

Enjoyable breakfast and discussion with Virginia Wesleyan College's Black Student Union.

Nota Bene: Private College Priorities in Washington D.C.

February 16, 2016
Over the last couple of weeks, I've had the opportunity to visit with our Virginia delegation in Washington, D.C. Based on recent developments on Capitol Hill, and issues expected to be discussed and debated going forward, there are many challenges ahead that will have an impact on private, nonprofit higher education that will need to be addressed in the very near future.  
Click here to view a concise summary of the top 16 federal higher education issues and where independent, private, non-profit colleges and universities stand as of February 2016.
Thanks to my long-time colleague Dr. David L. Warren, President of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, for coordinating national advocacy for our sector.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Enjoyable visit today with Melanie Sweeney Fetzer, Vice President for Business Development of Sodexo.

Nota Bene: VWC Athletic Hall of Fame Induction

February 15, 2016

Despite brisk weather, Saturday was a banner day on campus as we celebrated six new inductees into the Virginia Wesleyan College Athletic Hall of Fame. A large crowd, including alumni, faculty, staff, trustees and friends of the inductees, packed the Pearce Hospitality Suite for the induction luncheon.  We also had a strong turnout for the annual alumni basketball game, which long-time former coach Don Forsythe attended.

Kudos to our 2016 Athletic Hall of Fame honorees:

Kevin J. Flanagan ’04
Baseball (1996-99)
Kevin Flanagan is No. 7 in VWC history in career batting average (.372). He ranks No. 2 in season triples, No. 3 in career RBI (133), No. 2 in career runs scored (126), No. 4 in career triples, and No. 5 in career total hits. During his career, he was named All-South Region 1997-99; All-State honoree 1998, All-ODAC honoree 1997-99. He is the only player in school history to be named first team all-conference three times at two different positions. Kevin signed as a free agent with the New York Yankees organization in 1999, playing Single A in Staten Island and Triple A in Columbus. Kevin lives in Annapolis, Maryland with his wife, Stephanie, and children, KJ and Olivia.

Lawrence D. Hultgren
NCAA Faculty Representative
Larry Hultgren, VWC Professor of Philosophy, has been a strong supporter of student-athletes since he came to the school in 1969. He has served as the NCAA Faculty Representative for more than 40 years. In the College’s early years, he often assisted Athletic Director Don Forsyth by coaching teams, driving vans or providing counseling to the athletes. Hultgren serves as the official score keeper of the men’s and women’s basketball teams. He frequently serves on search committees for vacant coaching positions and was recently named to the President’s Athletic Management Council. Hultgren is VWC’s longest tenured faculty member and lives in Virginia Beach with his wife.

Jacquelyn Griffin Koch ’04
Field Hockey (2000-04)
Jackie Griffin Koch played in 70 career games, scored 25 goals, 17 assists, 67 points, and recorded 183 shots. In VWC history, she ranks No. 5 in career shots, No. 6 in assists, No. 9 in goals and No. 9 in points. During her career, she was named National Field Hockey Coaches Association second team All-American 2003, National Field Hockey Coaches Association All-Region first team honoree 2003, All-Virginia first team 2003, All-ODAC honoree 2000 and 2003. Koch helped VWC to a program-record 18 wins (18-2) overall in 2003 and to a record 9-0 ODAC finish, helping the Marlins its first NCAA tournament berth in 2003. She lives in New Jersey with her family and is expecting her first child in April.

Anna Bowers Ratcliff ’93
Softball (1990-93)
Anna Bowers Ratcliff is No. 1 in VWC history in single-season triples (11) and in career triples (28). She ranks No. 2 in career steals (105), No. 3 in single-season runs scored (54), No. 4 in career runs scored (145), No. 3 in career batting average (.406). She led Division III in triples with 11 in 1992. During her career, she was named All-ODAC first team honoree 1990-93, 1990 ODAC Player of the Year, and played on three ODAC championship teams. She lives in Florida with her family.

Samuel B. Snow ’77
Men’s Soccer (1973-77)
Sam Snow was a captain of the 1976 men’s soccer team that won the first conference championship in school history. He lettered in soccer during his four years and began a legacy of good soccer at VWC. In his professional career, he has coached at every level -- high school (Norfolk Catholic High School), college (Florida Southern College, University of South Florida and Virginia Wesleyan College), state (Florida Youth Soccer Association and Louisiana Soccer Association) and regional (U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program Region III). Snow serves as the Director of Coaching for U.S. Youth Soccer, the largest youth sports organization in America, in Frisco, Texas. He is known throughout the country for his ability to teach players and coaches.

Laura E. Wallace ’06
Women's Lacrosse (2002-06)
Laura Wallace played in 68 career games and caused 71 turnovers. Wallace is No. 1 in career goals (230) and season goals (75), No. 2 in draw control wins (192), No. 2 in career ground balls (280) and season ground balls (101), No. 4 in career points (302) and No. 5 in career assists (72). During her career, she was named third team All-American 2004 and 2005, All-Region honoree 2004-06, All-Virginia honoree 2004-06, All-ODAC honoree 2004-06, and 2003 ODAC Rookie of the Year, the first in women’s lacrosse history.  Wallace was selected to play in the 2006 North-South All-Star game. She helped guide VWC to a 52-17 overall record, a 26-6 ODAC mark and three top three ODAC finishes, including runner-up status in 2004 and 2006.

Congratulations to the 2016 VWC Athletic Hall of Fame Class. We’re proud to honor their accomplishments.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Celebrating the induction of six new members of the Virginia Wesleyan College Athletic Hall of Fame at halftime of the Marlins v. Washington & Lee game today. With: Joanne Renn, Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, And inductees Sam Snow '77, Ann Bowers Ratcliff '93, Larry Hultgren, Laura Wallace '06, Jacquelyn Griffin Koch '04, and Kevin Flanagan '04.
Annie with Fann Greer and Sue Birdsong at the Athletic Hall of Fame reception
With former Virginia Wesleyan president Billy Greer and Vice President for Advancement Mort Gamble at the Athletic Hall of Fame reception.
Good to see all the alums back today for the alumni game! This is part of the reason VWC is such a special place.
With AD Joanne Renn, Coach Dave Macedo, and former coach Don Forsyth (the court is named in his honor) at the Virginia Wesleyan alumni game.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Sam Snow '77, captain of the 1976 Virginia Wesleyan College men's soccer team that won the college's first ODAC championship, spoke about trends and issues in coaching to a group of aspiring coaches in the Cunningham Gymnasium. He lettered in soccer during his four years and began a legacy of good soccer at VWC. In his professional career, he has coached at every level -- high school (Norfolk Catholic High School), college (Florida Southern College, University of South Florida and Virginia Wesleyan College), state (Florida Youth Soccer Association and Louisiana Soccer Association) and regional (U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program Region III). Snow serves as the Director of Coaching for U.S. Youth Soccer, the largest youth sports organization in America, in Frisco, Texas. He is known throughout the country for his ability to teach players and coaches. Joining Sam and Me for the picture --head women's coach and Chris Mills, head men's coach.
Lunch at No Frill Grill with the recruiting team.
Serenaded for Valentine's Day by Alpha Sigma Alpha
News from the Baltimore Ravens

VWC grad Ryan Monastra Named Rookie of the Year by Baltimore Ravens -- It is not every day that a team can claim one of its alumni received a major award from a professional sports franchise, but that is exactly what happened to the Virginia Wesleyan cheerleading squad recently.

Ryan Monastra, a 2009 graduate from Virginia Wesleyan and collegiate cheerleader, was recently named Rookie of the Year of the Baltimore Ravens cheer squad, an award that speaks to the skill level and potential of the former Marlin.

"Thank you Virginia Wesleyan College cheerleading," Monastra said. "It has been an incredible journey indeed, and I would never have had this opportunity without your support so many years ago when this journey began. So, again, thank you...and Go Marlins!!!"

Head Coach Desiree Ellison said that she is looking forward to having Monastra back on campus. With so many teams having alumni functions this weekend as part of Hall of Fame festivities, Ellison said that Ryan will be back on campus as well for cheerleading alumni activities.

He will be at practice Friday night and will be with the team Saturday during the men's and women's basketball games.

Nota Bene: Campus Master Plan

February 12, 2016

Recently I shared that Virginia Wesleyan College received a $350,000 grant to assist with our Master Planning needs. In order to shape the vision of the College moving forward, there is a need for a Facility Assessment and comprehensive 10-year Campus Master Plan to complement our Strategic Plan that was developed during the SACS re-affirmation of accreditation. 

It is my desire to have a comprehensive Master Planning effort that includes the following:
  • Facilities Condition Assessment
  • Space Utilization Study
  • Facilities Master Plan
  • Parking Study
  • Action Plan and Timeline 

This Master Planning effort will require collaborative work with many stakeholders, including President's Cabinet/Executive Staff, academic leaders, faculty, and staff. Two national firms will facilitate the process over the next 10 months -- Aramark Engineering Solutions of Philadelphia, PA, and Derck & Edson Associates, LLP, of Lititz, PA. Their combined experience includes clients such as Franklin & Marshall College, Washington College, Bridgewater College, Dickinson College and the University of Scranton. Both will assign dedicated program managers for this project. 

I have asked Laynee Timlin, Chief of Staff, who led the development of the highly regarded "VWC 2020: Pathway to Prominence" strategic plan, to lead this effort. She will be assisted by Bruce Vaughan, Vice President for Facilities and Operations.  

The Campus Master Plan team will consist of:

Dr. Tim O'Rourke, Vice President for Academic Affairs
Cary Sawyer, Vice President for Finance
Dr. Keith Moore, Vice President for Student Life
Dr. Mort Gamble, Vice President for Advancement
David Waggoner, Vice President for Enrollment
Bruce Vaughan, Vice President for Facilities and Operations (Vice Chair)
Laynee Timlin, Executive Assistant to the President & Chief of Staff (Chair)
Joanne Renn, Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics
Robert Leitgeb, Chief Information Officer
Donald Stauffer, Senior Researcher and Policy Analyst
Dr. Travis Malone, Chair, Associate Professor of Theater and Chair of the Division of Humanities
Dr. Maynard Schaus, Professor of Biology and Chair of the Division of Natural Sciences and Math
Dr. Robert Albertson, Professor of Management, Business, and Economics and Chair of the Division of Social Sciences
Amy Mallett Rickard '98, President, Alumni Association Board of Directors
Patrice Glover, Student Representative

There will be facilitated discussions and updates with all stakeholders prior to submission to the Virginia Wesleyan College Board of Trustees next October.  

This plan will capture many of the aspirations of our students, faculty, staff, and trustees, organized around the theme of "Pathway to Prominence." I am confident that we will have the talent and resources to seize the opportunities that this planning will create.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

With Dr. Aaron Spence, Superintendent of Virginia Beach City Public Schools, and Dr. Richard Homan, President of Eastern Virginia Medical School, at today's State of Virginia Beach Address at the Virginia Beach Convention Center.
With Dr. Aaron Spence, Superintendent of Virginia Beach City Public Schools, and Dr. Richard Homan, President of Eastern Virginia Medical School, at today's State of Virginia Beach Address at the Virginia Beach Convention Center.

Nota Bene: VWC/SU Pre-Admittance and Joint Degree Options

February 11, 2016
I am pleased to share with you that Virginia Wesleyan College has established an articulation agreement that will offer pre-admittance and joint degree options for VWC students at Shenandoah University’s Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy (BJD).
BJD will give Priority Status to a maximum of five Virginia Wesleyan students per year who have completed at least 64 semester credit hours, provided they meet the following criteria: A PCAT composite score in the 50th percentile or greater with no individual score less than the 30th percentile in combination with a cumulative GPA at VWC of 3.25 on a 4.0 grading scale; Completion of all current pre-requisite courses and credits required by BJD with a grade of “C” or better; A cumulative pre-requisite GPA of no less than 3.2 on a 4.0 scale; Interview with and a letter of recommendation from the Dean of BJD or his designee; Two favorable letters of recommendation from VWC faculty members; And one letter of recommendation from a healthcare provider.
A Dual Enrollment Bachelor’s Degree Option will also be offered through the agreement. Students who have completed designated coursework at Virginia Wesleyan will be awarded a bachelor’s degree from VWC upon their successful completion of the first year PharmD curriculum at BJD.
Virginia Wesleyan has a long history of providing strong preparation for students heading down focused career paths. Our other pre-professional options include the Pre-Engineering Program with Old Dominion University, the Joint Program in Medicine with Eastern Virginia Medical School, the Peace Corps Prep Program, the Duke Cooperative Degree Program in Forestry and Environmental Management; Army ROTC, and a partnership with the U.S. Marshals Office.
Learn more about our pre-professional and other academic programs at

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

My career advice column in today's "Inside Higher Ed":

Nota Bene: February VWC Day

February 10, 2016
On Saturday, February 6, nearly 75 prospective students (the second largest VWC Day in five years) and their families visited the Virginia Wesleyan campus for our VWC Day Open House, making it the largest turnout so far in the current recruitment cycle. I would like to thank faculty, staff and student ambassadors for their hard work in making this VWC Day a success.
For our enrollment counselors in particular, Saturday was an exciting opportunity to meet the students with whom they have been building relationships over the last several months. Since the fall, our counselors have been engaged in an extensive, unprecedented outreach program via phone and text messaging. They have been sharing information about the quality and breadth of our academic programs and co-curricular opportunities as well as the many successes of our graduates.
Their dedication in this endeavor was evidenced in the many productive conversations and positive interactions that took place throughout the day. Their work will continue to be a critical part of our recruitment efforts as we build toward welcoming the Class of 2020.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Enjoyed lunch with Gabe Higgins '16 and Dick Wright. Gabe is the recipient of the Gladys H. Wright Endowed Scholarship, which is named in memory of Mr. Wright's mother and supports a student who plans a career in the ministry.

VWC Honors VWC Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

February 9, 2016
On Saturday, February 13, we will host a reception and luncheon in the Pearce Hospitality Suite of the Jane P. Batten Student Center for the 2016 Class of the Virginia Wesleyan College Athletic  Hall of Fame. The induction luncheon will honor the following outstanding individuals who are a part of the eighth class of inductees and who represent the best of the best from Virginia Wesleyan’s athletics  history:
Kevin J. Flanagan '04 (Baseball)
Lawrence D. Hultgren (NCAA Faculty Representative)
Jacquelyn Griffin Koch '04 (Field Hockey)
Anna Bowers Ratcliff '93 (Softball)
Samuel B. Snow '77 (Men’s Soccer)
Laura E. Wallace '06 (Women’s Lacrosse)

Read more about these talented Marlins on our website at

The VWC Athletic Hall of Fame was established by resolution of the Board of Trustees on May 16, 2007 to honor those who, by outstanding achievement in athletics, by service to athletics, or through significant contributions to athletics have made lasting contributions to Virginia Wesleyan’s intercollegiate athletic program.

Should you wish to join us at the event honoring this year's class during the Induction Luncheon, please contact Suzanne Savage at or  757.455.8736 to pay for your registration.

Congratulations to the 2016 VWC Athletic Hall of Fame Class. We’re proud to honor your accomplishments.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Nota Bene: Play4Kay Game Honors Jodi Bryant

February 8, 2016

On Saturday, Virginia Wesleyan College's Women's Basketball Team hosted its annual cancer awareness game in a match against Washington and Lee University. The event was especially special because the Virginia Wesleyan family -- faculty, staff, and students -- came together to support one of our own.

Jodi Bryant, administrative assistant to the president, is battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma for the second time. Jodi has been a huge friend and supporter of the women's basketball program and she is an important part of the Marlin family. Members of our community wore pink "Jodi Strong" t-shirts and in a true display of sportsmanship and humanity, the visiting W&L team wore them too. When the starting lineups were introduced, players from both teams presented Jodi with pink roses.

The game is part of the national Play4Kay movement which was initiated in 2007. Since its inception, Play4Kay has helped the Kay Yow Cancer Fund raise $5.18 million in women's cancer research and related projects.

All the funds raised on Saturday go to support Jodi and her family. Our thoughts and prayers are with them in the challenging weeks ahead. I know they are appreciative of the wonderful care demonstrated by our community.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

State Farm/VWC Scholar Athlete Recognition of Fall President's List (4.0 GPA): with AD Joanne Renn and Amanda Gilbert, representing State Farm agent Pierre Granger. Six student-athletes are not pictured because they are competing with winter teams.
With Jodi Bryant (center) and Athletic Director Joanne Renn at today's women's basketball game against Washington & Lee University. The game is the annual cancer awareness game which is a part of the national Play4Kay movement. Since its inception in 2007, the Play 4Kay initiative has helped the Kay Yow Cancer Fund support $5.18 million in women's cancer research and related projects. The Marlins are using the cancer awareness game to show support to one of our own, Jodi Bryant, who is battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma for the second time. She works in my office as Administrative Assistant to the President.
Recording the halftime show for today's basketball game with Washington and Lee University on Cox Communications.
Big day for VWC enrollment. Check in now with your college deposit for fall 2016!
I always enjoy visiting with prospective students and parents at VWC Day.
Greeting Bob Marlin during our campus open house at VWC!

Friday, February 5, 2016

I had a wonderful time visiting with all in attendance at the 11th annual National Board Certification Recognition Ceremony in the Jane P. Batten Student Center. Pictured with Nancy Winter Traynor, SE Virginia NBCTRN, Eleanor Joyce, Coordinator for National Board Certification, Virginia Department of Education, and Elizabeth Edwards, Director of Outreach and Engagement, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
Virginia Wesleyan College's women's basketball team will host its annual cancer awareness game on Saturday at 2 p.m. against Washington and Lee University.

The game is part of the national Play4Kay movement which was founded in 2007. Since its inception in 2007, the Play 4Kay initiative has helped the Kay Yow Cancer Fund support $5.18 million in women's cancer research and related projects.

The Marlins will also be using the cancer awareness game to show support to one of Virginia Wesleyan's own, Jodi Bryant, who is battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma for the second time. Jodi has been a key supporter of the women's basketball program and an important part of the Marlin family. She works in my office as Administrative Assistant to the President.

The team encourages everyone to wear pink as a show of support.

Attendance will be free for those wearing pink. Adults not wearing pink will be $5. There will be a bucket available for donations as fans enter the Batten Center. All of the funds raised Saturday will go to support Jodi Bryant and her family in her battle with cancer.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Heavy rain didn't scare off a large crowd for tonight's stellar performance of Cantus vocal ensemble at the Hofheimer Theater.
Nice ranking for Virginia Wesleyan College athletics:
Busy day in the Virginia Wesleyan College Learning Center. Kim Fahle, Coordinator of Writing Services, is discussing processes with students. #vwcwalkabouts

Nota Bene: NASCUMC

February 4, 2016

Last week I attended the Winter Meeting of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church (NASCUMC). Service on this Board is an opportunity to reconnect with some old friends and with many higher education and church leaders who I worked closely with during my nearly 11 years as president of Wesley College.

For additional information about NASCUMC visit

For additional information about related UMC global education associations visit

Our relationship with the Church is important. Virginia Wesleyan College was founded by the Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church and chartered in 1961. We continually seek to strengthen the relationship between the College and the Church in order to maintain that strong historical connection that is important to our affiliated ministry.   We receive direct financial support from the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church and the United Methodist Church Foundation.

For additional information about the United Methodist Church Foundation visit

I also had the opportunity to talk with Amos Nascimento, Director of Global Education and New Initiatives, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, about expanding international opportunities through the International Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church.  Additional information about this program will be made available to the campus community in the coming weeks.

For additional information about the International Association of Schools and Colleges of The United Methodist Church visit

Finally, our involvement with NASCUMC appropriately connects us to the 119 schools, colleges and universities in the United States recognized by the University Senate of The United Methodist Church. The University Senate is an elected body of professionals in higher education created by the General Conference to determine which schools, colleges, universities, and theological schools meet the criteria for listing as institutions affiliated with The United Methodist Church.

NASCUMC and the University Senate exist to:

*Advance the work of education and scholarship in member institutions.

*Work cooperatively with conferences, boards and agencies of The United Methodist Church to address issues of mutual concern to the church and the academy.

*Work in partnership with the church to educate students for leadership and service to the global community.

*Foster and encourage the common good of member institutions;

*Strengthen the collegiality and camaraderie among member presidents, deans and heads of school.

In the coming months you will hear more about re-affirmation of our affiliated status with the Church. A visiting team from the University Senate will visit our campus within a year of our SACS re-affirmation to verify our compliance with the criteria for affiliated status.

We have a vibrant campus ministry under the leadership of a talented chaplain, Rev. Greg West. We are fortunate to have him as part of our campus community.

I hope you'll take time to learn about our church relatedness and support these mission driven programs.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Enjoyable meeting with Bob Nusbaum, long-time friend and supporter of Virginia Wesleyan College. Dr. Mort Gamble, left, our new Vice President for Advancement, joins us for the picture. Mr. Nusbaum is a former Trustee of the College.

Nota Bene: AAC&U Annual Meeting

February 3. 2016
Winter storm Jonas didn't prevent colleagues from private and public institutions from throughout the country in gathering in Washington, D.C. in January for the annual meeting of the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U).  I participated in the Presidents' Agenda Day while Dr. Sally Shedd, Associate Dean of the College, and Debbie Hicks, Associate Dean for Academic Support, attended the main sessions of the meeting.
AAC&U is the leading national association concerned with the quality, vitality, and public standing of undergraduate liberal education. Its members are committed to extending the advantages of a liberal education to all students, regardless of academic specialization or intended career. Founded in 1915, AAC&U now comprises more than 1,300 member institutions—including accredited public and private colleges, community colleges, research universities, and comprehensive universities of every type and size.

The meeting focused on higher education’s most pressing educational challenges—those centered on the intersections of equity and quality with topics such as:

*How can higher education provide equitable access to high-quality liberal education to all students?

*How do we as a community advance equity-minded practices that provide a liberating educational experience for New Majority students who have been previously underserved and less engaged with high-impact practices and clear learning pathways?

*How do we ensure that all students are prepared for work and life in a turbulent and globally connected environment?

*What is higher education’s role in reversing the deepening divides and disparities in our society?

The meeting also highlighted innovative ways to provide students with clear guided pathways (dual credit, advanced scholars, accelerated study, on line) and meaningful learning opportunities to prepare them to tackle complex global problems in the workplace and society. 

I’m including a link to one of the more interesting media accounts from the meeting:

The President's and Foundation Leaders agenda included discussions on:

*Acting with a sense of urgency to provide equitable access to quality education for all students

*Developing guided pathways to support students educationally and socio-culturally from first to final year and across transfers

*Implementing evidence-based educational practices that support student success at all levels

*Preparing students with a sound liberal education to address the workplace and global challenges identified by employers

*Integrating global learning and civic engagement into the general education curriculum in a meaningful way to prepare students to address unscripted questions prior to entering the globalized workforce

*Scaling practices “that work” to increase student persistence and achievement in STEM fields

*Building effective integrative and interdisciplinary curricular pathways for the humanities and social sciences

*Using digital and connected learning in meaningful ways to ensure inclusive excellence and expand student participation in high impact educational practices

*Creating successful institutional models where students from all backgrounds are finding academic and professional success

*Building educationally generative alliances with employers and policy leaders.

We also had the opportunity to recognize and thank Dr. Carol Geary Schneider, president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities since 1998.  She will be retiring in June and will be replaced by Dr. Lynn Pasquerella, president of Mount Holyoke since 2010.