Washington Adventist University and REACH Columbia Union Urban Evangelism School Sign Agreement to Jointly Provide Urban Ministry Training

WAU CUC agreement

 

Students May Earn up to 15 Transferable College Credits

Takoma Park, MD (December 11, 2014) The Washington Adventist University (WAU) Department of Religion will soon be offering courses in field evangelism to students interested in urban ministry who are also participating in the REACH Columbia Union Evangelism School (RCUUES) in Philadelphia, Pa. The two schools and the Columbia Union Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church signed a memorandum of understanding recently that will guide the joint training effort.

“We are pleased to work with the REACH Columbia Union Urban Evangelism School to help train students who are interested in urban ministry,” said WAU President Weymouth Spence, Ed.D., R.T. “Washington Adventist University has long been a gateway to service, offering encouragement to faculty, students and staff who participate in  mission trips locally and abroad. This agreement offers students yet another opportunity to learn how to better serve others in our North American cities and urban areas.”

“Engaging young adults is a priority for the Seventh-day Adventist Church and the Columbia Union Conference,” said Dave Weigley, president of the Columbia Union Conference. “This partnership will provide a great opportunity for us to help our young people experience the mission of our church firsthand. We’re pleased that one of our own young adults, Dr. Tara VinCross, will serve as director and help prepare young leaders for service.”

As part of the signed agreement, faculty from the WAU Department of Religion will provide leadership training in discipleship, community development, urban agriculture and various aspects of evangelism. The joint effort will provide students with the opportunity to gain a unique experience in metropolitan/urban ministry through a selection of courses that will enrich their experience in urban ministry. The REACH Urban Evangelism School’s hands-on curriculum is offered as a 12-month training and experiential program that prepares students for ministry in cities and urban areas throughout North America.

Students interested in urban ministry and participating in the Urban Evangelism School program will be able to earn up to 15 credits that will be transferrable to any college, and can be counted toward a degree. The WAU courses that will be offered include such topics as Jesus and the Gospels; Ellen G. White and the Gift of Prophecy; Knowing and Sharing Christ; Ministry in the City; The Theory and Practice of Urban Ministry; and Church Growth in the Urban Setting.

As part of the memorandum of understanding, students in the evangelism school program who take the WAU-provided courses will be required to maintain at least a 2.8 grade point average and must be recommended for the courses by their instructors and the advisory committee of REACH Columbia Union, based on classroom and field evaluation. 
 
The REACH Columbia Union Urban Evangelism School is required under the agreement to maintain a high standard of student personal integrity and academic rigor throughout the experiential learning process. The agreement also requires the evangelism school to offer its Urban Mission Year experience to WAU Theology students and those with other majors. As part of the agreement, the Urban Evangelism School will provide appropriate housing for participating WAU students at a location that is close to the school’s Ministry Center in Philadelphia.

For more information about REACH Columbia Union Urban Evangelism School, go to http://reachcolumbiaunion.squarespace.com.  For more information about Washington Adventist University, go to http://www.wau.edu 

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Washington Adventist University is Montgomery County's only four-year private college. Part of the Seventh-day Adventist system of higher education, Washington Adventist University has been educating college students since 1904 on a 19-acre campus in suburban Takoma Park, close to the nation’s capital. A total of 1,080 students of all faiths participate in the university’s eight graduate and 32 undergraduate programs. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Adventist University among the best regional colleges in the north.

Media Contacts:
Angie Crews, 301-891-4134, acrews@wau.edu

Donna Bigler, 240-286-1169, dbigler@wau.edu

Washington Adventist University Faculty and Staff Receive Recognition for Professional Accomplishments and Service

Employee Banquet

Takoma Park, MD (December 11, 2014) The Washington Adventist University Board of Trustees sponsored an employee banquet recently for the university’s faculty and staff, recognizing them for their professional accomplishments and service, and expressing appreciation for their demonstrated dedication and commitment to the mission of the university.

During the event, six faculty members were honored for their professional accomplishments, four received peer-nominated and peer-voted awards, 26 others received service awards and four retirees were recognized for their years of service.

The banquet was held at the North Bethesda Marriott Hotel and Conference Center on November 19, and it began with a welcome from Chairman of the WAU Board of Trustees Dave Weigley who also serves as President of the Columbia Union Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and WAU President Weymouth Spence. 

“It was a wonderful occasion for our WAU Board of Trustees and administrators to express appreciation for the continued excellence we’re seeing at our university through its faculty, staff, and all who have dedicated so many years to our educational ministry,” said WAU Board Chair Weigley. “We’re delighted at how they are carrying on the legacy of preparing students for service by engaging minds and transforming lives.” 

“With so many talented and hard-working faculty and staff here at Washington Adventist University, it’s nice to be able to offer appreciation for all they do,” said President Spence, Ed.D., R.T. “Those who received special awards for their contributions and professional accomplishments are role models for our students and other staff, and they are deserving of all the recognition and encouragement we can offer.”

Faculty members recognized for their professional accomplishments included Melissa Henley, MSW, Department of Social Work; Ralph Johnson, Ph.D., dean of the Betty Howard Center for Student Success; Mikhail Kulakov, D.Phil., Department of Religion; Grant Leitma, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Psychology; Kristin Mitas, program director for the Department of Medical Imaging; and Melinda Villanueva, Ph.D., Department of Biology.

The peer-nominated award recipients included Wanda Colon Canales, director of Admissions for dedication to teamwork; Jean Innocent, Assistant Dean of Men for modelling spiritual leadership; Ellie Barker, Director of Alumni Relations for passion for the work and for WAU; and Becky Barker, First Year Experience coordinator for outstanding service to students.

Service awards were presented to Acquisitions Technician Deborah Szasz and Assistant Registrar Anne Saggurthi for their 35 years at the university; Telecommunications Technician Welton Ingram was recognized for 30 years; Biology Professor Glenn Bennett for 20 years; Associate Dean of Student Success Fitzroy Thomas for 15 years; Assistant Dean of the School of Arts & Sciences John Gavin for 10 years; and recognized for five years of service were WGTS Senior Chaplain and Community Relations Manager Terry Johnsson, Assistant Professor of Music Daniel Lau, Department of Education Program Manager for Professional Development Schools Jamesa Lewis, and Department of Education Office Secretary and Data Manager Dorrett McFarlane.

New employees who completed their first year of service were also recognized. They included SGPS Program Coordinator Carol Cogen, Admissions Counselor Desiree Dixon, Nursing Assistant Professor Sonia Donaldson, Assistant Dean of Men Jean Innocent, Dean of the Betty Howard Center for Student Success Ralph Johnson, Chaplain for Ministries Regina Johnson, Financial Aid Advisor Joel Mercado, SGPS Program Coordinator Jessica Mihos, Junior Systems Administrator Joshua Simbolon, Maintenance Technician David Smith, Nursing Education Clinical Coordinator Windy Spence-Graham, Nursing Assistant Professor Khadene Taffe, Chaplain for Missions Kaniel Williams, Assistant Professor of Health, Wellness &  Physical Education Vashon Williams, WGTS Morning Show Host Jerry Woods and Interim Registrar Lynn Zabaleta.

Retirees who were bid farewell at the banquet and thanked for their many years of service included:  Maintenance Technician Gary Shewell; Vice President for Student Life Jean Warden; Library Director Lee Wisel; and Senior Programmer Roger Wright.

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Washington Adventist University is Montgomery County's only four-year private college. Part of the Seventh-day Adventist system of higher education, Washington Adventist University has been educating college students since 1904 on a 19-acre campus in suburban Takoma Park, close to the nation’s capital. A total of 1,080 students of all faiths participate in the university’s eight graduate and 32 undergraduate programs. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Adventist University among the best regional colleges in the north.

 

Media Contacts:
Angie Crews, 301-891-4134, acrews@wau.edu

Donna Bigler, 240-286-1169, dbigler@wau.edu

Washington Adventist University Offers the Public Affordable Addiction and Mental Health Counseling Services

Grant Leightma2

Takoma Park, MD (November 21, 2014) Thanksgiving is almost upon us, and for individuals with addiction and mental health issues, it can be the start of an often stressful and difficult holiday season. Individuals in need of affordable counseling services are encouraged to consider the Washington Adventist University Community Counseling Center, located close to Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park, Md.

The Community Counseling Center is staffed by licensed drug and alcohol counselors and graduate students in the Department of Psychology and Counseling who offer both private individual and group counseling sessions. The Center specializes in drug and alcohol addictions, behavioral addictions and mental health issues. Clients are charged on a sliding fee scale for the services they receive, based on what they can afford to pay. The Center also accepts all health insurance.

“Our counselors have considerable expertise in addiction issues, and we provide affordable services to a diverse community with a wide variety of needs, including individuals who have been charged with DUI (driving under the influence),” said Grant Leitma, Ph.D., and chair of the Washington Adventist University Department of Psychology. Washington Adventist University is one of only two schools in the state of Maryland that offers a master’s degree program for drug abuse counseling. 

“During the holidays when there are more social gatherings, higher expectations, and greater stresses, our counselors can help individuals better manage their addictions and mental health issues so they can enjoy the season and live healthier, happier lives,” said Judith Upshaw, MEd, LCADC, and clinical director of the Community Counseling Center.

The Center -- which is open year round – operates Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The Center is located on the Fourth Floor of Wilkinson Hall, 7600 Flower Ave., Takoma Park, Md. 20912. There is a bus stop and BikeShare station directly across the street, and the Takoma Metro station is 1.5 miles away. Free parking is available both behind Wilkinson Hall off Greenwood Ave. and in front of the building across Flower Ave.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 301-576-0131 or email jupshaw@wau.edu.

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Washington Adventist University is Montgomery County's only four-year private college. Part of the Seventh-day Adventist system of higher education, Washington Adventist University has been educating college students since 1904 on a 19-acre campus in suburban Takoma Park, close to the nation’s capital. A total of 1,080 students of all faiths participate in the university’s eight graduate and 32 undergraduate programs. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Adventist University among the best regional colleges in the north.

 

Media Contacts:
Angie Crews, 301-891-4134, acrews@wau.edu
Donna Bigler, 240-286-1169, dbigler@wau.edu

Washington Adventist University’s Faculty, Staff and Students Mourn the Death of Adjunct Professor of Public Policy Dick Wolfe

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Takoma Park, MD (November 25, 2014) Washington Adventist University (WAU) is mourning the sudden death this week of adjunct professor of public administration and health care administration Richard Wolfe, who taught both undergraduate and graduate level courses at the university for nearly two decades.

Earlier this semester, Wolfe was a key participant in the Dialogue on Ferguson, Mo. that WAU held in conjunction with Saint Louis University to discuss ways for the community to move forward after the shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown.  Wolfe was also an expert on the topic of protected health information. As co-founder of the Public Health Information (PHI) Protection Network, he was organizing a PHI conference for February 2015 in Anaheim, Ca. at the time of his death.

"Dick Wolfe was an energetic and committed educator who inspired students, faculty and staff alike,” said WAU President Weymouth Spence, Ed.D., R.T.  “He brought his real-world experience into the classroom, and challenged students to find ways to effectively apply their knowledge to current issues and events. He was an outstanding individual, and his loss will be profoundly felt on this campus.”

“Because he knew a lot about so many things and was wise in so many ways, Dick Wolfe was a good conversationalist and fun to be around,” said Nicole Currier, dean of the WAU School of Graduate and Professional Studies. “He was the kind of person who was always there for others, and his consistent and valued presence will be missed.”

Since September 1996, Wolfe has taught courses in the WAU School of Graduate and Professional Studies, including undergraduate organizational management classes, as well as graduate courses in public administration, business administration and health care administration.  He was also an associate with Booz Allen Hamilton from June 2006 to November 2011, and was a retired Captain from the U.S. Navy Medical Service Corps, where he served from June 1983 to August 2004.

At Washington Adventist University, Wolfe routinely demonstrated his commitment to improving opportunities for students and teachers, and he had recently been tapped to advise on the creation of new courses that will become part of the university’s growing master’s program in public administration. As a result, Wolfe’s legacy at Washington Adventist University will continue well into the future.

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Washington Adventist University is Montgomery County's only four-year private college. Part of the Seventh-day Adventist system of higher education, Washington Adventist University has been educating college students since 1904 on a 19-acre campus in suburban Takoma Park, close to the nation’s capital. A total of 1,080 students of all faiths participate in the university’s eight graduate and 32 undergraduate programs. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Adventist University among the best regional colleges in the north.

 

Media Contacts:
Angie Crews, 301-891-4134, acrews@wau.edu
Donna Bigler, 240-286-1169, dbigler@wau.edu

December 5 Christmas Concert Launches New Paul Hill Memorial Choral Scholarship

christmasconcert

Takoma Park, MD (November 19, 2014) Washington Adventist University’s annual Christmas Concert on December 5 at 7:30 p.m. is free and open to the public. Students from the university’s Music Department will perform traditional Christmas music, along with pieces that reflect the spirit of the season.

There will be performances by the Pro Musica of Washington Adventist University, the Columbia Collegiate Chorale of Washington Adventist University, and the New England Youth Ensemble of Washington Adventist University. 

This year’s Christmas Concert event will launch a new scholarship for choral students – The Paul Hill Memorial Choral Scholarship Fund – and donations are welcome. The scholarship will honor the legacy of one of Washington Adventist University’s renowned faculty members – Paul Hill, the choral program director from 1962 to 1970 and founder of the university’s Pro-Musica choral performance group. Hill was also founder of the acclaimed 160-voice Paul Hill Chorale that performed in 1971 at the opening of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and continued to perform there under his leadership for more than two decades until his death in 1999.

The concert will be held at Sligo Seventh-day Adventist Church, 7700 Carroll Ave., Takoma Park, Md. 20912. Free parking is available directly across Flower Ave. and behind the church along Greenwood Ave.

For more information about the concert, call 301-891-4133 or email alumni@wau.edu.

This year, Washington Adventist University is celebrating its 110th anniversary. The institution was established in 1904 as the Washington Training College to educate young men and women in the liberal arts. Over the years, the institution has been known as the Washington Foreign Mission Seminary, Washington Missionary College, and during the past half century as Columbia Union College until 2009, when the school attained university status.

 

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Washington Adventist University is Montgomery County's only four-year private college. Part of the Seventh-day Adventist system of higher education, Washington Adventist University has been educating college students since 1904 on a 19-acre campus in suburban Takoma Park, close to the nation’s capital. A total of 1,080 students of all faiths participate in the university’s eight graduate and 32 undergraduate programs. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Adventist University among the best regional colleges in the north.

 

Media Contacts:
Angie Crews, 301-891-4134, acrews@wau.edu

Donna Bigler, 240-286-1169, dbigler@wau.edu