A Compendium of Recent News from CIC Member Institutions

​Celebrating Achievements

The Chronicle of Higher Education released the results of its 12th annual “Great Colleges to Work For” survey in September, and once again CIC member institutions were well represented on the program’s Honor Roll. The workplace recognition program surveys faculty and staff members of higher education institutions across the United States to provide campus leaders with insights on the quality of the workplace experience and the competitiveness of their policies and benefits. More than 56,000 employees of 236 colleges and universities participated in the 2019 survey. In all, 85 institutions achieved “Great Colleges to Work For” recognition for outstanding employee feedback, best practices, and policies. Of those, 42 institutions achieved special Honor Roll status by being recognized in multiple categories, including 15 CIC members: Baylor University (TX), Biola University (CA), College of the Ozarks (MO), Endicott College (MA), John Brown University (AR), Marietta College (OH), McPherson College (KS), Nebraska Methodist College, Regent University (VA), Roberts Wesleyan College (NY), Rollins College (FL), Southern New Hampshire University, Texas Christian University, Texas Lutheran University, and University of the Incarnate Word (TX). The survey was conducted by ModernThink LLC.

Thirteen students pose for group photo
The United Nations Academic Impact program and the Millennium Campus Network (MCN) partner on the Millennium Fellowship, a highly selective national leadership development program that convenes, challenges, and celebrates student leadership that advances United Nations goals. This year, student leaders from over 1,200 campuses across 135 countries applied to join the program’s Class of 2019. Worldwide, 69 campuses were selected to host Millennium Fellows, including ten CIC member institutions: American University of Beirut (Lebanon), CETYS University (Mexico), College of Mount Saint Vincent (NY), Furman University (SC), Jarvis Christian College (TX), Lynn University (FL), Rollins College (FL), Universidad de Monterrey (Mexico), University of the Ozarks (AR), and Widener University (PA). Pictured are 13 University of the Ozarks students from six countries who, as Millennium Fellows, will work to improve food security on campus. (Photo courtesy of the University of the Ozarks)

CIC member institutions won two out of five awards of the National CyberWatch Center’s Innovations in Cybersecurity Education 2019 award program. The program showcases creative and pioneering ideas in four categories: evidence-based strategies, instruction, practice, and program development. In the program development category, Hood College (MD), Mount St. Mary’s University (MD), and Frederick Community College (FCC) were recognized for their cyber-degree pathway partnership. The partnership allows students who earn associate degrees in cybersecurity from FCC to transfer courses toward a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity from Mount St. Mary’s and then transfer relevant courses toward a master’s degree in cybersecurity from Hood College. In the practice category, Arcadia University (PA) was recognized for the GenCyberCoin web platform that teaches students about cryptocurrency and digital currency trading markets, cybersecurity principles, password management, and social and ethical norms and values related to cybersecurity.

This summer, the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation selected eight Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholars for 2019. The award provides an unrestricted research grant of $75,000 to young faculty at primarily undergraduate institutions who are accomplished researchers and committed educators. Faculty members from three CIC member institutions received the award: Mary Elizabeth Anderson, associate professor of chemistry at Furman University (SC); Louise Charkoudian, associate professor of chemistry at Haverford College (PA); and Christopher R. Graves, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Swarthmore College (PA).

California Lutheran University’s director of international admission received the International Association for College Admission Counseling’s (IACAC) 2019 Distinguished Service Award. Dane Rowley was honored for his dedication, leadership, and compassion in the field of international admissions during the annual IACAC conference, held this summer in Canada.

John Brown University (AR) associate professor of literature Jessica Hooten Wilson was awarded the 2019 Hiett Prize in the Humanities. Awarded annually by the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture, the prize is given to candidates who are in the early stages of their careers, devoted to the humanities, and whose work significantly relates to contemporary culture. The Hiett Prize includes a cash award of $50,000 to assist and encourage award recipients in their ongoing work as future leaders in the humanities.

Gannon University (PA) and Maryville University (MO) are two of seven organizations nationwide selected by Aetna to receive its 2019 Changing the World award for creating a healthy workplace environment. Aetna, a CVS Health company, uses its annual Workplace Well-Being Award program to celebrate companies and institutions that show a commitment to creating a healthier workplace for employees through innovative programs. In addition to the Changing the World awards, Gannon received an “Above and Beyond” silver-level award and Maryville received an “Inspiring Change” bronze-level award.

America’s National Churchill Museum, located on the Westminster College (MO) campus, received a GEMmy Award from the Midwest Travel Journalists Association. The GEMmy award recognizes attractions, tours, facilities, accommodations, and experiences that exemplify the joy, discovery, and education that travel can bring. Churchill delivered his famous “Sinews of Peace” (“Iron Curtain”) speech on the Westminster Campus in 1946; the museum was established in 1969 and is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Westminster College and the museum were two factors that recently landed the city of Fulton on Budget Travel’s 2019 list of “10 Coolest Small Towns in America.”

Creating Partnerships

Four students talk to each other in an engineering lab
North Central College (IL) marked the opening of its Molex Advanced Electronics Lab with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in September. Designed to serve students in the college’s undergraduate engineering programs, the high-tech lab includes 28 work stations. The lab is a collaborative effort between North Central and Molex, a leading provider of electronic solutions headquartered in neighboring Lisle, to prepare future electrical engineers. (Photo courtesy of North Central College)

The College of Saint Rose (NY) will offer its students additional study abroad opportunities beginning in spring 2020 thanks to an agreement with the Universidad de Alcalá (UAH) in Madrid, Spain. Under the agreement, Saint Rose students will be eligible to spend a semester studying at the UAH Instituto Franklin, a hub for the university’s programs in American studies and bilingual education.

Charleston Southern University (SC) and Kangnam University in South Korea recently established a partnership that will allow up to 40 Kangnam University students to study in the Charleston Southern University Horton School of Music beginning in spring 2020.

Hamline University (MN) increased the study abroad opportunities for its students this summer by partnering with Webster University’s (MO) Webster International Network of Schools (WINS) program. Hamline students are now eligible to study abroad through WINS campuses in Austria, China, Ghana, Greece, Netherlands, Switzerland, and Thailand.

St. Norbert College (WI) and the Concordia University Wisconsin School of Health Professions established a new partnership in September. Current St. Norbert students and alumni who have completed their undergraduate degree can now receive priority admission status in occupational therapy, physical therapy, and physician assistant programs at Concordia.

Two college leaders sit at a table to sign an agreement
In early October, Mars Hill University (NC) and Blue Ridge Community College leaders signed an agreement—the Promise Program: A Direct-Entry Admission Program. The agreement guarantees eligible Blue Ridge students admission into Mars Hill following completion of an associate’s degree and streamlines the transfer process. (Photo courtesy of Mars Hill University)

St. Edward’s University (TX) and Austin Community College (ACC) signed an articulation agreement in July that will make it easier for ACC students to transfer credits to earn a bachelor’s degree at St. Edward’s. Students also will be encouraged to reverse transfer credits back to ACC to receive an associate’s degree.

Ohio Dominican University (ODU) and Columbus State Community College (CSCC) recently created a pathway to help students prepare for and secure employment in the insurance industry. Through the CSCC-to-ODU Risk Management Program, qualified students who complete an associate’s degree in business management at Columbus State will be guaranteed admission to Ohio Dominican to pursue a bachelor’s degree in risk management and insurance. Eligible CSCC students also will receive scholarship and job search assistance.

Alderson Broaddus University (WV), in conjunction with area community and technical colleges, began offering new bachelor’s degree programs in three regions in West Virginia this fall. Alderson Broaddus’s criminal justice, health care management, and interdisciplinary studies degree-completion programs will be taught on the campuses of BridgeValley Community and Technical College in South Charleston, New River Community and Technical College in Beaver, and Pierpont Community and Technical College’s Advanced Technology Center in Fairmont.

Several more CIC member institutions recently established or expanded partnerships with technical colleges. Anderson University (SC) and Piedmont Technical College (PTC) signed an agreement in August that will provide eligible students a seamless transition from Piedmont to Anderson. The agreement includes acceptance of transfer credits from PTC associate of arts and associate of science degree programs and establishes pathways for PTC students seeking majors in the following degree programs: bachelor of arts, bachelor of business administration, bachelor of early childhood education, bachelor of human services, and bachelor of science in nursing. Claflin University (SC) and the South Carolina Technical College System (SCTC) signed a memorandum of understanding in July that links their nursing programs. The agreement allows registered nurses who have earned an associate’s degree from one of the 16 SCTC institutions to transfer into Claflin’s existing RN-to-BS in nursing program. And Southern Wesleyan University (SC) and Tri-County Technical College (TCTC) formed a partnership designed to enhance the transfer of students from TCTC to Southern Wesleyan. Qualified students who complete associate degrees at TCTC will be guaranteed admission to Southern Wesleyan and can complete their bachelor’s degree by taking courses online, on-campus, or in a hybrid format.

Whitworth University (WA) and Spokane-based Rockwood Retirement Communities are partnering to offer students, residents, and alumni access to educational, social, and entertainment opportunities on their respective campuses. The affiliation aims to result in mentorship programs, intergenerational classes, student-led seminars, and career opportunities. In response to the agreement, Rockwood Hawthorne, one of Rockwood Retirement’s senior-living communities located within walking distance of university grounds, has changed its name to Rockwood at Whitworth.

Through newly amended state legislation, this summer, Husson University (ME) became the first private college or university in Maine eligible to accept state financial assistance provided to National Guard members. The benefit amount National Guard members are eligible for is equivalent to in-state tuition at a public university in Maine.

Hiram College (OH), in conjunction with Girl Scouts of the USA, recently announced new scholarships that recognize personal motivation, service to others, and high achievement. As part of the agreement, exemplary Girl Scouts who have earned a Gold, Silver, or Bronze Award, and have been referred by their troop leader as a strong match for the college, will be awarded a scholarship worth at least 50 percent of tuition and mandatory fees.

The Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges (VFIC) recently established a partnership with Real World Playbook to provide financial literacy resources for students at VFIC colleges and universities. Real World Playbook is an online platform that helps students and recent graduates transition into life after college by providing students with critical knowledge and skills on such issues as paying off student loans and saving for retirement.

Major Gifts, Grants, and Campaign Successes

In September, while celebrating its centennial anniversary, John Brown University (AR) concluded its seven-year fundraising campaign. The Campaign for the Next Century raised $156 million—exceeding the university’s goal by $31 million. Through the gifts and pledges, the university will build or renovate eight facilities and fund programs in nursing, computer science, art, entrepreneurship, track and field, and archaeology. In addition, over $42 million has been designated toward financial assistance for students through the JBU Scholarship Fund and endowed scholarships.

Gordon College (MA) recently unveiled Faith Rising: The Campaign for Gordon College, a five-year, comprehensive campaign to raise $130 million to meet student needs related to affordability, academics, and campus community. While announcing the public phase of the campaign, the college also announced receipt of a $75.5 million gift from an anonymous donor, one of the largest donations ever given to a Christian liberal arts college. The gift was designated for the college’s endowment and directed to fund student scholarships.

In September, Alma College (MI) launched the public phase of the most ambitious comprehensive fundraising effort in the college’s 133-year history. Our Time Is Now: The Campaign for Alma College aims to raise $120 million by June 2021 to enhance the institution’s endowment, support key programs, and modernize campus facilities. Alumni and friends of the college committed more than $105 million during the initiative’s quiet phase, raising 88 percent of the overall goal.

This fall, Colby-Sawyer College (NH) announced the completion of the Power of Infinity Campaign—the largest fundraising effort in the college’s history. More than 7,000 donors helped the college raise $45 million for support of internships and engaged-learning opportunities, endowment growth, scholarships, a new endowed chair in the arts, and facilities improvements including the new Center for Art + Design.

Hampden-Sydney College (VA) recently announced receipt of a $30 million gift from Stanley F. Pauley via the Pauley Family Foundation. The largest gift in the college’s history will support the construction of a new, state-of-the-art science facility. A former member of the Hampden-Sydney board of trustees, Pauley is the chair and CEO of Carpenter Co., a large producer of polyurethane materials that was founded by a 1929 Hampden-Sydney College alumnus.

Two college leaders stand at a podium on stage announcing a gift
DePaul University (IL) recently announced the receipt of a $20 million gift from anonymous benefactors to establish the Grace School of Applied Diplomacy. Housed in DePaul’s College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, the school will emphasize transprofessional diplomacy. The gift will endow the school and support faculty and students. Pictured are DePaul University President A. Gabriel Esteban and Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Guillermo Vásquez de Velasco announcing the gift and founding of the school at a ceremony on September 10. (Photo courtesy of DePaul University/Randall Spriggs)

In October, Cedarville University (OH) announced the largest financial commitment in its 132-year history—a $10 million pledge made by 1997 graduate Mark Scharnberg on behalf of his father, Lorne C. Scharnberg, and their family business, Katecho and Surmasis Pharmaceuticals. The gift was announced during the president’s annual state of the university address when Lorne Scharnberg received Cedarville’s prestigious medal of honor, celebrating his significant contributions to the institution and his 25 years of service on the board of trustees. Cedarville’s new school of business building will be named the Lorne C. Scharnberg Business Center.

Furman University (SC) recently received nearly $5 million from the estate of Thomas C. Turner (1930–2018), class of 1951, to expand academic scholarships. The gift is designated for the Eleanor B. Turner Scholarship, established by Thomas Turner in 1995 in honor of his sister, and the Thomas C. Turner Scholarship Fund, an endowment he created in 1996.

The late Harlene Jones Lee ’51, an educator and professional skater, left Hiram College (OH) $3.4 million as a gift from her estate. The gift will support student health and athletics, as well as three new endowed scholarship funds that will support (separately) students preparing for law school, students bound for medical school, and high-achieving students.

In September, Dominican University (IL) announced the naming of the Elizabeth T. MacNeil School of Nursing in honor of a $3 million gift from David MacNeil, an alumnus and the CEO of MacNeil Automotive (WeatherTech). The gift was made in honor of his late mother, a pediatric nurse and teacher.

This summer, Gannon University’s (PA) Institute for Health and Cyber Knowledge (I-HACK) was awarded $2 million through Pennsylvania’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program. The grant will be used to renovate I-HACK, a six-story, 99,784-square-foot building located in Erie’s economic district that will serve as a headquarters for academia and industry to design, integrate, and protect cybernetic intelligence and data systems worldwide. In September, Gannon received multiple private donations to support I-HACK, including a $1 million donation from 1979 alumnus Pierre McCormick; his donation will create the Pierre McCormick Cyber Learning Center, which will serve as the academic heart of I-HACK.

Rosemont College (PA) was awarded $1.5 million through Pennsylvania’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program. The funding will help the college expand Cardinal Hall to create a new community center for use by students, faculty and staff members, and the general public. The Sr. Mary George O’Reilly, SHCJ Community Room, a 4,000-square-foot multi-purpose space within the community center, will be able to host 400-person lectures, 250-person seated dinners, and other large scale events. The community center also will include five smart classrooms, an expanded dining area, a new bookstore, and gathering and study spaces.

In July, Trine University (IN) received a $1.5 million pledge from James Foundation Inc. toward the $8.5 million expansion of Fawick Hall, home to several of the university’s engineering departments. The expansion will provide added space and resources for Trine’s biomedical, chemical, civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering programs, as well as the design engineering technology programs. The addition also will house the university’s new School of Computing.

In September, Wilberforce University (OH) received a $1.2 million gift from an anonymous donor to launch a matching gift initiative for the #WilberforceUnite campaign. Campaign funds will support student aid, facility enhancements, faculty and staff development, and academic programs.

Franklin College (IN) recently received an estate gift from the late Jerry Greenlee, class of 1967. Funds generated from the gift, that includes a 220-acre farm in Decatur County, Indiana, will be used to establish the Jerry W. Greenlee Endowed Scholarship. The scholarship will provide need-based support for future Franklin College students.

Alvernia University (PA) recently received a $2.3 million Title III grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Strengthening Institutions Program. The grant will enable Alvernia to boost student achievement, persistence, and retention, focused on the formative first two years of a college career, by developing academic programs, constructing instructional facilities, and supporting faculty development.

The College of Saint Rose (NY) received a $1.1 million federal grant for its Thelma P. Lally School of Education to develop teachers and school psychologists who are skilled at working with school-age children with disabilities by viewing their needs through the lens of cultural diversity and mental health. Beginning in fall 2020, 24 master’s degree students from Saint Rose’s school of education will benefit from the five-year Project THRIVE (Targeting Healthy Resiliency in Vested Educators) grant.

Several CIC member institutions recently received large grants from the National Science Foundation’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, which encourages talented STEM majors and professionals to become K–12 mathematics and science teachers. Sacred Heart University (CT) received a $1.2 million grant for the Scholars Integrating STEM in Elementary Classrooms program. In partnership with Norwalk, Bridgeport, and Stratford school districts, the program will prepare 18 scholars over a five-year period to teach STEM in high-need, multicultural elementary schools. Reinhardt University (GA) received a nearly $1 million grant to create the STEM Teacher Education and Development Program. The program will serve Reinhardt students as well as Cherokee County School District and Pickens County School District teachers and will fund student scholarships, teacher stipends, research, and a STEM summer camp.

In July, the National Science Foundation awarded St. Norbert College (WI) a nearly $1 million grant for a project on community-building, mentoring, and research experiences to develop undergraduate STEM majors’ scientific identities and career preparation. Over its five-year duration, the project will fund four years of scholarships to 18 students who are pursuing bachelor’s degrees in any of the STEM fields of biology, chemistry, computer science, environmental science, geology, mathematics, and physics.

New Institutes, Programs, and Majors

Alverno College (WI) has partnered with Arizona-based Synergis Education to launch in January 2020 a doctorate in education (EdD) program and a direct entry master of science in nursing (DEMSN) program. Designed for working professionals who hold a master’s degree, the EdD program offers concentrations in higher education leadership and K–12 leadership. The DEMSN program is designed for graduates who hold a bachelor’s degree in any field; full-time students can earn BS and MS degrees in nursing in 18 months.

Starting in fall 2020, Rider University (NJ) will offer a new master’s program in higher education assessment, analytics, and change management. The online program is designed for college and university staff and administrators who work in institutional effectiveness and will cover higher education administration, change leadership, organizational performance, data analytics, and outcomes assessments.

Our Lady of the Lake University (TX) launched an online PhD program in social work this summer, becoming only the second private nonprofit college or university in the U.S. to offer this degree online. The program is designed to train educators who are especially skilled for employment within minority-serving institutions.

Two photos: 1. A new nursing program is announced from a podium to seated audience; 2. Three people inspect a mannequin patient on a hospital bed
Part of the university’s expansion into health sciences education, Averett University (VA) will launch a new graduate-level nursing program in 2020. The master of science in nursing degree program will offer two focus areas: family nurse practitioner (FNP) and emergency nurse practitioner (ENP). Pictured: Averett University held an event announcing the new nursing program in July. (Photos courtesy of Averett University)

California Lutheran University will offer an ethnicity and race studies major beginning in fall 2020. The interdisciplinary program is designed to help students gain a deeper understanding of dynamics in communities of color in the United States and to build cultural competence in working with diverse groups. California Lutheran also recently launched a graduate program in cybersecurity. An option in the master of science in information technology program, the cybersecurity track covers both technical knowledge and managerial skills to prepare graduates to assess security risks and develop and implement solutions to protect systems.

Hood College (MD) has launched online programs in cybersecurity and information technology to make these programs more accessible for working professionals. The college will continue to offer its popular master degree programs in cybersecurity and information technology.

Westminster College (PA) began offering an environmental studies major this fall. The interdisciplinary, combined-major program is designed to prepare students for jobs outside of science-related careers such as in environmental policy, environmental law, and corporate sustainability.

In January 2020, Hilbert College (NY) will begin offering an online master of science degree in criminal justice administration. The college will continue to offer a hybrid version of the degree.

New and Recently Renovated Facilities

Ribbon-cutting ceremony in front of new building
Gannon University (FL) formally opened a new academic building at its Ruskin, Florida, campus with a dedication ceremony in August. The $20 million, 80,000-square-foot building will support the expansion of the university’s program offerings, student enrollment, and faculty and staff members. The building will house additional classrooms, laboratories, and faculty offices that integrate new amenities, including a fitness center and a student gathering area. (Photo courtesy of Gannon University)

In September, Mars Hill University (NC) held an open house and ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Cothran Center for Career Readiness. The center provides opportunities for students to explore internships and careers, work on their résumés, and practice interview skills—with the goal of helping students discover more about themselves and their true calling in life. The university also dedicated a major new addition to its athletics facilities in September: the Jo Ellen Ammons Field House. The 14,500-square-foot structure sits at the south end of the main athletic stadium and supports all football operations, women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s tennis, with coaches’ offices, weight room, and locker rooms.

Husson University (ME) marked the official opening of its Wellness Learning Center with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in September. The university’s Student Health Services and Counseling Services units share the building. Some of the most innovative learning spaces in the center are devoted to experiential learning, including four new simulation bays with programmable, lifelike manikins to teach students how to work with acute care patients.

Three people cut a ribbon in front of new greenhouse
During Founders’ Day events attended by local, state, and federal leaders in September, Sweet Briar College (VA) held a ceremonial ribbon-cutting for its new 27,000-foot greenhouse. In addition to the greenhouse, the college has recently made significant investments in agricultural enterprises such as two vineyards, an apiary, and a 20-acre wildflower meadow for pollinator habitat. Pictured (from left to right) are U.S. Senator Mark Warner, Sweet Briar College President Meredith Woo, and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. (Photo credit: Cassie Foster)

Gwynedd Mercy University (PA) in October celebrated the completion of the first phase of its Loop Road Project with an official ribbon cutting ceremony—attended by state and local legislators, civic leaders, university trustees, and other officials. The Loop Road Project is a part of the university’s Pathways to Success initiative, launched to promote multimodal transportation and increase safety on campus. The university received a $1 million grant through the Commonwealth Finance Authority’s Multimodal Transportation Fund to complete the project.

Brescia University (KY) held the grand opening and blessing ceremony for its newest addition, Saint Ann Hall, in September. The more than 10,000-square-foot, two-story residence hall provides 38 new beds for Brescia’s expanding enrollment.

A professor instructs at a whiteboard to seated students in a new classroom
Augustana College’s (IL) $8.5 million, 22,000-square-foot expansion of the Robert A. and Patricia K. Hanson Hall of Science opened on time and on budget in September 2019. Features include five studio-style flexible class/lab learning spaces, five interdisciplinary research labs, and four faculty offices with adjoining space for discussion and collaboration. (Photo credit: A.J. Brown.)

Name Changes

In August 2019, Lasell College (MA) officially changed its name to Lasell University.

In July, Calvin College (MI) changed its name to Calvin University, Life Pacific College (CA) changed its name to Life Pacific University, and Wheeling Jesuit University (WV) changed its name to Wheeling University.

Dordt College (IA) changed its name to Dordt University in May.

Have a Potential News Item for Campus Update?

Please email news items for review to Paula M. Miller, CIC editorial and communications director, at pmiller@cic.nche.edu. CIC also is interested in receiving “action” photos for possible inclusion.