Monday, April 30, 2018

Nota Bene: Spring 2018 Port Day

I'd like invite each of you to take part in Virginia Wesleyan’s Spring 2018 Port Day, taking place on campus Thursday, May 3, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Port Day is a signature program of the University, designed to demonstrate and promote the academic achievements of our students who are completing capstone undergraduate research, internship, and semester study-away experiences.

On Port Day, no classes, meetings, or athletic events will be held during the day, allowing the entire campus community to celebrate the accomplishments of our students, learn about the good work completed, and hear about the transformative power of participation in capstone academic experiences. The day will be particularly important for students who would like to learn how they, too, may undertake a capstone experience at Virginia Wesleyan.

I encourage all students, faculty, and staff to participate in this important Virginia Wesleyan University tradition and to join me in congratulating our student participants for their achievements. View the complete Port Day schedule at:

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Congratulations, Lambda Pi Eta Inductees

Congratulations to Virginia Wesleyan's newest inductees to Lambda Pi Eta, the National Communication Association Honor Society. As a former communications major in my undergraduate studies, I was honored to be invited to speak about challenges of modern media. Pictured at top with Lambda Pi Eta officers Kelsi Robins, President, and Alana Peters, Vice President, and faculty advisor Dr. Stu Minnis, and pictured below are our newest inductees.

Nota Bene: Bravo, Wesleyan Singers!

Earlier this week, our own Virginia Wesleyan Singers, led by Dr. Bryson Mortensen, traveled to New York City to perform at one of the world's most famous concert venues—Carnegie Hall. This is a rare and remarkable accomplishment, and certainly warrants major bragging rights. Congratulations to Dr. Mortensen, as this was his conducting debut at Carnegie Hall, and bravo to the following student choir members:

Deidra Benn                Tamia Ponder
Shelby Emch               Tara Truax
Marissa Gross             Emily Vial
Aleigha Johnson          Amanda Waller
Yaminah Lewis            Ryan Fissinger
Marissa Phillips            Andrew Harrelson
Shannon Ponack         Nicholas Hipple
Serena Smith               Adam Kurek
Jennifer Vega               Michael McOsker
Cora Wilson                 Jackson Simmons
Nailah Alston-Izard       Taylor Simpson
Jeannie Barnes            Myles Baynard
Morgan Boyd               Dante Copeland
Kimberly DeHart          Robert Jones
Daria Ellis                    Jonathan Joyner
Patrice Glover              William Lanagan
Miah Kurtz                    Scott Lassiter
Katherine Pangborn     Thomas Reinhold
Ashaunti Parker  

This was a unique and very special experience for our students, and a collaborative one at that. The Wesleyan Singers performed alongside choirs from across the country, including some very close to home—Great Bridge United Methodist Church Choirs from Chesapeake and the Tallwood High School Choir from Virginia Beach.

An encore performance of the Carnegie Hall concert will take place this Saturday April 28, at 7:30 p.m. at Great Bridge United Methodist Church (201 Stadium Dr., Chesapeake). Admission is free and open to all.

Congratulations again!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Impressive Evening at the Marlin Prestige Internship Gala

An impressive evening at the Internship Gala for the VWU Marlin Prestige Business Conference. Six students made presentations on their internships with a wide variety of prominent businesses and organizations. Provost/Vice President Tim O’Rourke and I are pictured with Tiffany Cariker (Norfolk International Airport), Andrew Cannon (State Farm), Ashley Winslow (Anchor Reality), Tabitha Lowell (Dixon Hughes Goodman and Virginia Symphony Orchestra), and Zoe Traficante (ADP and CV International). Francesca Lanuza connected via video conference from Arizona and her internship at Intel Corporation.

Nice to Visit with James P. Toscano

How nice to visit with James P. Toscano, new president of Partners for College Affordability and Public Trust. We have many common friends from our years in education and public service, and it was a real delight to share thoughts on mutual interests.

President to President: Chapter 10

The tenth and final chapter of the 2017-2018 President to President thought leadership series—for which I serve as executive co-editor—is now available. In “Strategic Planning and Opportunism: Leaving Room for Serendipity,” Kevin M. Ross, president of Lynn University, explains how his institution worked to bring its strategic vision to fruition through carefully planned efforts while also maintaining enough flexibility to pursue unplanned opportunities. One such unplanned—but ultimately highly beneficial—unforeseen development was the opportunity to host a nationally televised presidential debate in 2012. Read it now:

Nota Bene: Senior Art Exhibition

Seven Virginia Wesleyan seniors will debut their final art as part of the 2018 Senior Art Exhibition in the Neil Britton Art Gallery. An opening reception will take place tomorrow, April 26, from 6-8 p.m. in the gallery, located on campus inside Hofheimer Library.

“Up Close and Personal” will feature work in ceramics, painting, photography, and sculpture by students Joshua Davis, Tatiana Eubanks, Carly Koenig, Riley Koenig, Lydia O'Connor, Aimelie Ronquillo, and Jennifer Taylor. the exhibition will remain on display until May 15.

Special thanks to Professor of Art Phil Guilfoyle and the Virginia Wesleyan Art Department for creating this valuable opportunity for students to showcase their work in a highly professional setting.

We congratulate our emerging artists, and thank them for sharing their talents with our community!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Coach Renn's Final Athletics Management Council Meeting

This afternoon we held our final meeting of the Athletics Management Council with Joanne Renn (left) at the helm as the University's Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. She retires at the end of the current academic year. Also pictured: Cori Jackson '20, AMC student representative, and Dr. Larry Hultgren, Faculty Athletics Representative.

ACCESS College Foundation Commitment Day

Great morning at the ACCESS College Foundation Commitment Day Celebration at the Ted Constant Center in Norfolk. Pictured (top) with Cheryl Jones, a 2005 Virginia Wesleyan graduate and Program Director for ACCESS College Foundation, Frank Batten Jr., a member of the ACCESS College Foundation Board of Directors, and David Waggoner, VWU Vice President for Enrollment; and (bottom left) with Congressman Bobby Scott, a good friend to Virginia Wesleyan University and higher education.

Nota Bene: Brandon Elliott, Strike Out Cancer Featured in The Virginian-Pilot

It was a proud day on campus Sunday as Brandon Elliott and the Virginia Wesleyan softball program hosted their annual Strike Out Cancer event. Not only did the nationally top-ranked team raise significant funds for the American Cancer Society, but they finished their regular season with an amazing 39-1 record, including 17-1 in ODAC play, and the top seed for the upcoming ODAC Championship Tournament.

I shared earlier this semester that Coach Elliott, just off the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championship win, was named Metropolitan Sports Person of the Year by the Norfolk Sports Club. Shortly thereafter, we received word of a $500,000 gift from the TowneBank Foundation for complete updates and upgrades to our national championship softball complex (soon to be Broyles Field in TowneBank Park).

Coach Elliott's professional successes are tremendous, but what he has overcome and accomplished personally is nothing short of miraculous. Below is a link to a recent feature in The Virginian-Pilot that highlights Brandon’s strength and perseverance. We can all learn from his positive attitude and determination.

Kudos to Brandon and the Marlins for maintaining the highest standards of performance and conduct on the field, and for exemplifying Virginia Wesleyan University's tradition of service and values off the field.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Nusbaum Lecture: Dr. Crystal Fleming

Noted author and social scientist Crystal Fleming was tonight's featured speaker for annual Justine L. Nusbaum Lecture, sponsored by the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom at VWU. Her talk was about her book, titled "How to Be Less Stupid About Race: Racism and Anti-Racism in Our Classrooms and Communities." Dr. Fleming is Associate Professor of Sociology and Africana Studies at State University of New York, Stony Brook. Craig Wansink is the Joan P. and Macon F. Brock, Jr., Director of the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom.

Opening Session of Marlin Prestige

Opening session of the week-long student-led Marlin Prestige Business Conference in the atrium of the Greer Environmental Sciences Center. Top picture with Kollin Baer, MP Chief of Staff, Pat Suttle, Dylan Ardinger, MP Chief Marketing Officer, and Annie. Bottom with Sydney Covey (Sustainability Program Analyst, Hourigan Construction), Joe Ruddy (Chief Innovation Officer, Port of Virginia), and Chris Stuart (Vice President of Top Guard Security).

Wesleyan Singers Perform at Carnegie Hall

Congratulations and best wishes to Dr. Bryson Mortensen and the Wesleyan Singers, who are performing at Carnegie Hall today! An encore performance of their Carnegie Hall concert is set for Saturday, April 28, at 7:30 p.m. at Great Bridge United Methodist Church in Chesapeake.

VWU Softball is Striking Out Cancer

Congratulations to Virginia Wesleyan softball for clinching the ODAC regular-season title while raising money for the American Cancer Society through their Strike Out Cancer event! Read more at:

Nota Bene: Army ROTC Marlin Detachment Recognized

Last week I attended the 43nd Annual President’s Review and Awards Ceremony for the U.S. Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Monarch Battalion at Old Dominion University. I’m proud to share that six Virginia Wesleyan cadets—members of the Marlin Detachment—were recognized with awards at this event.

Congratulations to the following students for these exemplary awards:

Society of the War 1812 Award
Jake Morgan '18
Daughters of the American Revolution Award
Joseph Fairbanks '18
AUSA Military History Award
Joseph Fairbanks '18
Outstanding VWU Cadet
Zachary Raymond '20
Gavin Fry '19
Joseph Fairbanks '18
Outstanding Varsity Athlete
Rolanda Taylor '18
Distinguished Military Students
Joseph Fairbanks '18
Alexander Gallant '18
Jake Morgan '18

Army ROTC Marlin Detachment operates as part of ODU’s Monarch Battalion. Through an elective curriculum, participating students receive valuable tools, training, and leadership experiences that not only may lead to military service but also become assets in any career. Students also have access to an ROTC grant of $1,000 that can be applied to tuition during their freshman and sophomore years.

Special thanks to Amy Rush, who has served as the advisor to our ROTC students since 2012. It gives me great pride to know that Virginia Wesleyan is providing outstanding leadership experiences and exceptional educational opportunities through our affiliation with ROTC.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Marlin Prestige Business Conference Starts Tomorrow

VWU’s Principles of Management class will host the Marlin Prestige Business Conference April 23-27. Read more:

Tidewater Collegiate Academy at VWU Offers Summer Camps

Keep your child's brain engaged while school is out! Tidewater Collegiate Academy at Virginia Wesleyan University offers summer camp programs. Learn more:

Happy Earth Day from Virginia Wesleyan University

Our award-winning new Greer Environmental Sciences Center is a building for all of us—it looks to the future and symbolizes our institutional commitment to environmental study and stewardship.

Photo Gallery: Employee Appreciation Breakfast

Such an honor to celebrate members of our VWU family with up to 30 years of service. View the photo gallery from our Employee Appreciation Breakfast:

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Men’s Lacrosse Senior Day

Senior Day for Virginia Wesleyan University’s men’s lacrosse team — Clay Braumbaugh, Joe Coulture, Nick Zepco, Matt Baldwin, Josh Davis, Chris McTague, and Steven Roberts.

Women’s Lacrosse Senior Day

Virginia Wesleyan University women’s lacrosse Senior Day — Symira Wilkens, Becca Winslow, Ashley Winslow, Megan Shallock, McKenzie Dowd. Thanks to Coach Kendyl Clarkson for an outstanding first year!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Norfolk Mayor Kenny Alexander Addresses VWU Political Science Students

Norfolk Mayor Kenneth Cooper Alexander spoke to VWU's first cohort of Batten Honors College students Thursday during Assistant Professor of Political Science Leslie Caughell's "Civil Rights Leadership in Literature" course. He talked about the importance of civic engagement and shared the story of local civil rights leader, Evelyn Butts, who organized in Norfolk and initiated a voting rights case eventually decided by the Supreme Court.

Nota Bene: Tina Hill Appointed as New Virginia Wesleyan Athletics Director

I am pleased to share that Virginia Wesleyan University has recruited one of the most experienced and respected athletic administrators in the NCAA Division III to serve as the successor to Joanne Renn, our retiring Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics.

Tina Hill, who is currently in her 10th year as athletics director at Randolph College and also chair of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Board of Directors, will join the Marlin family this summer as Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. In this role, she will also serve as a member of the President's Cabinet.

Tina has spent the past 28 years in the field of NCAA Division III athletics. In addition to Randolph, she has worked at Cornell College, California Lutheran University, and Elizabethtown College. As the Randolph College athletics director, Tina coordinates the daily operations and long-term objectives of the school’s 19-sport intercollegiate athletics program.

Prior to Randolph, she served for five years as the director of athletics at Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa. As the college’s first full-time athletics director, she was responsible for the complete administration of 17 NCAA varsity sports and the intramural program. She served as the associate director of athletics at California Lutheran University from 1997-2002, assisting with the administration of the university’s 15-sport athletics program. She worked at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania from 1990-1997, beginning her career as an intern before eventually serving as the associate director of athletics and as a staff instructor in physical education during her final four years at the college.

Tina received her B.S. in physical education from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and her M.S. in sports management from the University of Richmond. As an undergraduate at Wisconsin-Stevens Point, she was a two-time, first-team, all-conference volleyball player and earned academic honors including The Chancellor's Leadership Award, Outstanding Senior Student and Outstanding Female Athlete Award.

She is a member of the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and has served on various NCAA and conference committees—including a term as the chair of the NCAA Division III Women’s Volleyball Committee. She currently serves on the NCAA Division III Financial Aid Committee and, as I mentioned earlier, as chair of the ODAC Board of Directors.

I wish to thank Mort Gamble (Senior Vice President), David Black (Executive-in-Residence), and Joanne Renn for their assistance with this important search. With 22 sports and a distinguished record of academic and athletic achievements by our students, Virginia Wesleyan looks forward, under Tina's leadership, to building on a prominent list of athletic successes and facility improvements in recent years. Committed to the excellent tradition of Division III student-athletes on campus and within the ODAC, we welcome Tina as our newest Marlin and an accomplished professional in this significant area of campus life.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Hampton Roads Volunteer Achievement Awards

Wonderful evening at the 43rd annual Hampton Roads Volunteer Achievement Awards sponsored by VOLUNTEER Hampton Roads. Pictured (top) with members of the VHR Board of Directors Melissa Burroughs (VWU Class of 1986) and Mort Gamble (VWU Senior Vice President); (middle) with Kate Meechan (CEO of Volunteer Hampton Roads) and Mike Herron (Publisher of Inside Business); and (bottom) with good friends Cece Tucker (Assistant to the President at ODU) and John Rowe, Mayor of Portsmouth.

Nota Bene: Virginia Wesleyan Athletics Director Joanne Renn to Retire

It is with mixed emotions that I share that Joanne Renn, Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics for the past 11 years, will retire at the end of the current academic year. A good friend and colleague, Joanne played an instrumental role in the implementation of several important initiatives during my early tenure at Virginia Wesleyan. She is the ranking female administrator at the University and serves on the President’s Cabinet.

I am particularly grateful for her active leadership in the expansion, updates, and improvements of our athletic facilities. Birdsong Field, the Betty S. Rogers Track and Field Center, development of the outdoor athletic complex (including relocation of The Alpine Tower), upgrades and naming of Kenneth R. Perry Field, the new East Gate entrance and Marlin Way, and the forthcoming TowneBank Park and Broyles Field have all been made possible with her assistance. She also was instrumental in the initiation of men’s and women’s swimming, the Harlaxton College (England) relationship, and the establishment of the Batten Honors College.

At the time of her appointment as athletic director in 2007, Joanne was the first female AD at a co-educational institution in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC). 2018 marks Joanne’s 25th year as a coach and administrator at VWU, where she currently oversees 22 intercollegiate sports programs and a staff of more than 55 coaches, administrators, and support personnel.

Virginia Wesleyan’s athletic program has seen many successes under Joanne’s leadership. During her tenure, the men's basketball team won the NCAA Division III National Championship in 2006 and the following year returned to the championship game; the women's soccer team made it to the final four in 2006 after winning the ODAC tournament for the first time in program history; Evan Cox was the Individual NCAA National Champion for men's golf in 2016; the Virginia Wesleyan softball team won the NCAA Division III National Championship in 2017 with a national record 54 wins; and senior Marissa Coombs is a four-time All-American in cross country and track and field.

Joanne has held a variety of positions, including president of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. She was instrumental in securing VWU bids to host NCAA tournament games in women’s basketball and field hockey, and she has served as tournament director for countless post-season events. She has served on numerous state and national committees, including service with the NCAA, the Board of Directors of the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame, the Hampton Roads Hall of Fame Committee, the Virginia Beach Sports Grant Committee, and the Hampton Roads Sports Facility Authority.

Joanne began her career at VWU as the head women's tennis coach in 1995, a position she held through 1999. She also served VWU as the head women's basketball coach from 1997 through 2003. She is a former teacher and head girls' basketball coach at Norfolk Academy, where her teams compiled a 250-128 record and won two conference championships and two tournament titles. At Norfolk Academy, she was the former girls' tennis coach where she led her teams to a 107-10 dual-match record and seven consecutive Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools championships.

Joanne is an accomplished wood-wind musician, an avid hiker and climber who has ascended 48 North American peaks, including Mount Rainier, Mount Hood, and the highest point in the USA, Mount Whitney; she has backpacked the entire Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, the John Muir Trail in the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California and the Colorado Trail; and she completed her trek through the Camino de Santiago (The Way of St. James) in northwestern Spain in June 2013. She hiked the Camino del Norte in the summer of 2015 and England's Coast to Coast in 2016, and she attended the Harlaxton Summer Conference in Grantham, England, in the summer of 2016.

Joanne received a bachelor's degree in psychology from Old Dominion University, where she was one of six original female athletic scholarship recipients, competing in basketball and tennis, and received her master's degree in human resource management from Troy University.

A search for Joanne's successor has been ongoing for several months and an announcement of a new executive director will be made tomorrow. Please join me in expressing to her our appreciation for her years of service to our institution along with our warmest good wishes as she embarks on this new phase of her life.

43nd Annual President's Review and Awards Ceremony

It was an honor to attend the 43nd Annual President's Review and Awards Ceremony today for the U.S. Army ROTC Monarch Battalion at Old Dominion University. We were proud to be there for the recognition of several outstanding Virginia Wesleyan students. Pictured (from left): Amy Rush, Advisor to the Army ROTC Marlin Detachment, Rolanda Taylor, Zachary Raymond, Gavin Fry, Joseph Fairbanks, Alexander Gallant, Jake Morgan, and Keith Moore, Vice President for Student Affairs.

Nota Bene: Celebrating Employee Milestones

This morning we will hold an Employee Appreciation Breakfast honoring 39 members of our community who have arrived at special milestones in their Virginia Wesleyan careers—from those who have reached a decade of service to those who have been here for 30 years. Congratulations to these employees, listed below, and thank you for all that you do for Virginia Wesleyan every day. We look forward to celebrating you this morning!

30 Years of Service

Elaine Aird '07, Accounts Payable Coordinator
Dwight Bolling, Adjunct Associate Professor of Sociology
Karen Hill, Media Coordinator
Doug Kennedy, Professor of Recreation and Leisure Studies and Chair of the Recreation and Leisure Studies Department
Michele Obenour '94, Administrative Assistant to the Vice President for Student Affairs
Deborah Otis, Professor of Chemistry and Chair of the Interdivisional Major Program
George Stone, Applied Music Specialist and Accompanist, Piano

25 Years of Service
Russell Barone, Cook
Pamela Paramore '96, Coordinator of the Evening and Weekend Program
Ehsan Salek, Professor of Management, Business, and Economics
Craig Wansink, Joan P. and Macon F. Brock, Jr. Director of the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom, Professor of Religious Studies, and Chair of the Religious Studies Department

20 Years of Service
Kirsty Green, Applied Music Specialist, Violin
David Macedo, Head Men's Basketball Coach
Maynard Schaus, Associate Provost and Professor of Biology
Steve Sparks, Maintenance Mechanic
Ginny Videll '91, Assistant Director of the Physical Plant for Conferences and Special Events

15 Years of Service
Terry Critser, Systems Administrator/Helpdesk Supervisor
Stephany Dunmyer, Assistant Athletic Director and Head Women's Basketball Coach
Paul Ewell '89, Batten Associate Professor of Management, Business, and Economics, Chair of the MBE Department, and Director of the MBA Program
Scott Liverman, Associate Professor of Criminal Justice and Chair of the Sociology/Criminal Justice Department
Andre Marshall, Utility
Margaret Reese, Thomas R. Fanney Distinguished Associate Professor of Mathematics and Director of the General Studies Program
Ronda Rothwell, Cashier
Carlyn Vincent St. John, Adjunct Instructor of Recreation & Leisure Studies

10 Years of Service
Larry Barnard, Grounds Service Worker
Bill Bennett, Lead Maintenance Service Worker
Murrell Brooks, Assistant Professor of Political Science
Wynter Edwards '00, Adjunct Faculty, Sociology and Criminal Justice
Ben Haller, Associate Professor of Classics, Chair of the Classics Department, and Chair of the Comprehensive Liberal Studies Program
Rebecca Hooker, Batten Associate Professor of English and Director of First Year Experience
Maury Howard, Batten Associate Professor of Chemistry
Susan Larkin, Professor of English
Denise Makowski, Adjunct Faculty, MBE
David Nieves, Campus Safety Partnership, Virginia Beach Police Officer
Shannon Ponack, Writing Center Instructor
Tamika Ricks, Cook
Lena Rudolph, Cook
Malleri Santiago, Data Records Manager
Alvina Wallace, Housekeeper

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Nota Bene: Justine L. Nusbaum Lecture

I write today to invite each of you to attend our annual Justine L. Nusbaum Lecture, sponsored by the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom. In this year’s presentation, esteemed author and professor Dr. Crystal Fleming will illustrate why Americans of all ethnicities are ignorant about race. “How to Be Less Stupid About Race: Racism and Anti-racism in Our Classrooms and Communities” will take place next Monday, April 23, from 7-8 p.m. in the East Dining Room of Boyd Dining Center. The event is free and open to the public, and I am pleased to be hosting a dessert reception following the event.

The lecture will preview Dr. Fleming’s forthcoming book, How to Be Less Stupid About Race: The Essential Guide to Confronting White Supremacy, highlighting how institutions and patterns of thinking systemically reinforce racial ignorance on all sides of issues. It will show how, if we are to be “less stupid about race,” we need to take concrete steps toward deeper understanding. Dr. Fleming is an associate professor of sociology and Africana studies at SUNY Stony Brook. She is an award-winning writer, speaker and educator committed to empowering individuals and communities with the conceptual tools needed to understand, confront and challenge white supremacy.

Earlier in the day on April 23, Dr. Fleming will lead a workshop for VWU students, co-sponsored by the CSRF, the President's Council on Inclusive Community, and the Office of Student Activities. “How to Be Less Stupid About Race: A Workshop for Students of All Backgrounds” will examine how U.S. citizens of all racial and ethnic backgrounds are socialized to be ignorant about race. It will offer practical steps for removing barriers created by assumptions and misconceptions and provide a roadmap for building a more civil and inclusive community. This event will take place in GESC 155 from 4:00-5:30 p.m.

Robert C. Nusbaum, Founding Fellow of the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom, and his brother, V.H. Nusbaum, established the Justine L. Nusbaum Endowed Lectureship in honor of their mother and her lifelong volunteer service and dedication to humanitarian causes. For more information on this event and other programming coordinated by the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom, visit, call 757.455.3129, or email

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Photo Gallery: Spring Alumni Weekend

Great friends, great events, and great fun at Spring Alumni Weekend! View the photo gallery:

Nota Bene: Omicron Delta Kappa

Earlier this semester, a tapping ceremony was held for those selected for membership in Omicron Delta Kappa (ΟDΚ). This national leadership honor society recognizes not only academic achievement but also leadership across five phases of campus life: scholarship; athletics; community service, social or religious activities, and campus government; journalism, speech and the mass media; creative and performing arts. I was proud to attend the spring ΟDΚ induction ceremony in Pearce Hospitality Suite on April 11 (view photo).

Virginia Wesleyan's Circle of ODK was installed on April 5, 1981. Membership in this society is regarded as one of the highest collegiate honors that can be awarded to an individual. In order to be selected, one must be in the top 35 percent of students on their respective campuses and hold a leadership role in one of the five phases of campus life mentioned above. The spring 2018 inductees join an impressive list of current ΟDΚ members made up of VWU Board of Trustees members, faculty, staff, and students.

Congratulations to the Omicron Delta Kappa inductees for spring 2018:

Peyton Auxt                           William Harrell
Frances Barnes                     Hayley Heath
Isabella Blackney                   Nicole Holmes
Taylor Cain                            Wade Jernigan
Lafayette-Chase Campbell    Francesca Lanuza
Tiffany Cariker                       Stephanie McDermott
Dale Cawthorne                     Amber McDonald
Luke Chiasson                       Christopher McTague
Rachel Connolly                     Austin Obenour
Riley Conrad                          Emilee Pierson
Iyana Downie                         Kirsten Powell
Dr. Steven Emmanuel            Colleen Smith
Darlene Flucker                     Tayler Wilson
Shae Geary                           Ashley Winslow
Alexandra Ghazaleh

Monday, April 16, 2018

Spring Weekend with Alumni Council Leadership

Great to visit during Spring Alumni Weekend with leadership from Virginia Wesleyan's Alumni Council. Pictured with (from left) Troy DeLawrence '93, Vice Chair, Mavis McKenley '11, Chair, and Lori Simpers Harris '94, Executive Director of Annual Giving and Alumni Relations. We value the Alumni Council’s role in advocating for VWU and offering support for the enrollment and advancement programs of our growing institution. Be on the lookout tomorrow for the full spring weekend photo gallery!

Nota Bene: Spring 2018 Business Conference

Our campus community and guests from the Coastal Virginia region are invited to participate in Virginia Wesleyan University’s student-led business conference April 23-27. “The Marlin Prestige” will feature workshops, presentations, and interactive panels that embrace the spring 2018 theme, “Business Reimagined Through Globalization, Innovation, Leadership, and Diversity.”

The Marlin Prestige represents months of hard work by students in the Virginia Wesleyan business course, “Principles of Management.” Students coordinate all elements of the event, exercising key management skills such as product development, networking, project and financial planning, and more.

Throughout the semester I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with many of our conference participants, including student leaders Julie Manning, Chief Executive Officer, Faith Auad, Chief Operations Officer, and Dylan Ardinger, Chief Marketing Officer. Together with their classmates and Virginia Wesleyan business faculty, this group has worked hard to create a conference that focuses on the importance of globalization, innovation, leadership, and diversity as essential components of a successful business model in today's marketplace.

I am proud to share that among this semester’s guest speakers are Virginia Wesleyan graduate Joe Ruddy '83, Chief Innovation Officer for the Port of Virginia and a member of the University's Corporate Leaders Council, and alumna Sydney Covey '15, Sustainability Program Analyst at Hourigan and recipient of VWU’s 2017 Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD) Award.

They join presenters Chris Stuart, Vice President of Top Guard Security, Dr. Tony Astro, a United States Navy veteran and Founder/CEO of Mvoss Creation LLC, Maxine Williams, Human Resource Manager/Employee Relations Lead at Busch Vacuum Pumps and Systems, Heidi Brinker, '18, Strategic Planner at VisualZen, Inc., Patrick Suttle '19, Public Relations Correspondent for The Marlin Prestige, Douglas Jackson, Assistant Professor of Visual and Performing Arts at Elizabeth City State University, and former Peace Corps volunteers Emily Nuss and Jennifer Jiggetts.

Daily activities will once again include the popular “Shark Tank” presentations, which closely mirror the ABC television series, and presentations by “Information Systems Programs” (ISP) students. For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit
The Marlin Prestige webpage.

Many thanks to Dr. Paul Ewell, Batten Associate Professor of Management, Business, and Economics, and all business department faculty and students for hosting this educational event for our community.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Great Turnout for Spring Alumni Weekend

Great weather, great events, great turnout for everything. Kudos to alumni and friends for making this an amazing Virginia Wesleyan University Spring Alumni Weekend. Pictured at the Pig Pickin’ Picnic with Jim Cooper (Vice President for Finance and Administration), Larry Hultgren (Professor of Philosophy), Joanne Renn (Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics), and Mort Gamble (Senior Vice President).

Friday, April 13, 2018

Live Skycam: Goode Fine and Performing Arts Center

A beautiful week and much progress on the Susan S. Goode Fine and Performing Arts Center. Pictured (top), an aerial view of the construction site from the Oxblue skycam, and (below), work proceeds on the foundation. The 23,200-square-foot facility is scheduled for completion in February 2019.

Great Visit with Dee Branch Oliver '82

Great to visit this morning with Dee Branch Oliver, a 1982 graduate of Virginia Wesleyan. Dee has served as a funeral director and authored two books, "The Undertaker's Wife" and "Going Out in Style." She currently serves on the Virginia Beach Planning Commission and is a candidate for an at-large seat on the City Council. We're pictured in the Barclay Sheaks Gallery on campus—Dee studied under Professor Sheaks and earned her degree in art education.

The Wesleyan Review: April 13, 2018

Hope you enjoy today's edition of The Wesleyan Review:

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Gateway to Virginia Beach

The City of Virginia Beach has provided a beautiful "Gateway to the City" in the center lane island from the western property line of Virginia Wesleyan University to our eastern border on Baker Road. Wynn Nursery is pictured completing some of the plantings. Oxford Village, located on University land across from the main campus on Wesleyan Drive, will break ground this summer. When completed, that section of Wesleyan Drive will become the Virginia Wesleyan University corridor.

Marlin Softball Still No. 1 in the Country

Virginia Wesleyan Softball still at No. 1 in the NFCA Division III Top 25 Poll.

Nota Bene: Solar- and Human-Powered Phone Charging Stations Coming to Campus

Virginia Wesleyan keeps getting greener. I am proud to share that the University has been selected through the PepsiCo Recycling Zero Impact Fund program to receive funding for two solar-powered umbrellas and two human-powered desk bicycles that will function on campus as sustainable cell-phone charging stations for students.

The umbrellas and bicycles are expected to arrive this summer and will be situated in and around the Greer Environmental Sciences Center. The GESC already contains a number of specific elements designed to engage students in the natural environment and sustainable forms of technology. These include solar panels, a green roof, constructed wetlands, geothermal wells, LED lighting, a building dashboard, and more. The charging stations will provide an engaging way for students to apply sustainable technologies to something that is of interest to them—their cell phones and other mobile devices.

Special thanks to Associate Provost Maynard Schaus for pursuing this engaging and cost-effective sustainability effort for our campus. Dr. Schaus is featured along with Dr. Katrina Henry, Assistant Professor of Physics and Earth and Environmental Sciences, in a recent Inside Business article about the award:

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Congratulations to VWU's Omicron Delta Kappa Inductees!

Congratulations to Virginia Wesleyan University’s inductees into the Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society: Peyton Auxt, William Harrell, Frances Barnes, Hayley Heath, Isabella Blackney, Nicole Holmes, Taylor Cain, Wade Jernigan, Lafayette-Chase Campbell, Francesca Lanuza, Tiffany Cariker, Stephanie McDermott, Dale Cawthorne, Amber McDonald, Luke Chiasson, Christopher McTague, Rachel Connolly, Austin Obenour, Riley Conrad, Emilee Pierson, Iyana Downie, Kirsten Powell, Dr. Steven Emmanuel, Colleen Smith, Darlene Flucker, Tayler Wilson, Shae Geary, Ashley Winslow, and Alexandra Ghazaleh.

Marlins Way Nearly Complete

Crews from Hourigan, Chesapeake Bay Contractors, and Mac's Electric installing street lights and doing final clean up and seeding along the new Marlins Way at the outdoor athletic complex at Virginia Wesleyan University. The roadway leads to the new East Gate (entrance/exit) on Baker Road.

State of the Port Address

Wonderful afternoon at the 37th Annual State of the Port Address, presented by the Hampton Roads Global Commerce Council. We are proud to offer programs in the dynamic field of supply chain management and logistics, and Virginia Wesleyan University students often participate in internships with The Port of Virginia. Pictured with Port leadership (top) John Reinhart, CEO and Executive Director, and his wife, Mary, and (bottom) Joe Ruddy (VWU Class of '83), Chief Innovation Officer and a member of the University's Corporate Leaders Council.