Mikulski Honored with Presidents Award for Leadership on Higher Education by Maryland Independent Colleges and Universities Association


February 5, 2014

“I am so proud to represent Maryland and the people of the educational mosaic that’s in our great state,” Senator Mikulski says.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee and a senior member of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, has been awarded the 2013 Presidents Award from the Maryland Independent Colleges and Universities Association (MICUA) for outstanding leadership on behalf of higher education in Maryland.

“I am so proud to represent Maryland and the people of the educational mosaic that’s in our great state,” Senator Mikulski said. “It is my job to help Maryland’s colleges and universities do what they’re best at – which is educating our next generation. Education is the opportunity ladder of this nation. Every child deserves their chance to climb that ladder. I will continue fighting to ensure that Maryland students have access to quality, affordable higher education.”

In her roles on the HELP and Appropriations Committees, Senator Mikulski has been an advocate for access to quality higher education through programs like the federal Pell grants program, which provides need-based grants to lower-income undergraduate students to promote access to higher education. As Chair of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Mikulski worked to ensure that the FY14 government spending bill supported a maximum Pell Grant award of $5,730 (an $85 increase). In addition, Senator Mikulski has also been a vocal advocate of examining and eliminating duplicative, unnecessary, or overly burdensome higher education regulations. To that end, she worked to ensure FY14 funding for a study to examine higher education regulations.

MICUA is a member-driven organization devoted to serving the interests of independent higher education and supporting the work of campus leaders throughout the State. Established in 1971, the Association provides services to meet the needs of independent higher education and fosters cooperative efforts among its member institutions and all segments of higher education. As the voice of independent higher education in Maryland, MICUA seeks to inform the broader public about its member institutions and the vital importance of independent colleges and universities to the future of our State and nation.

Representatives from MICUA and its member institutions include MICUA President Tina Bjarekull, MICUA Vice President Bret Schreiber; Michael Wood, President of Capitol College; Sanford Ungar, President of Goucher College; Fred Lazarus, IV, President of Maryland Institute College of Art; Roger Casey, President of McDaniel College; Thomas Powell, President of Mount St. Mary’s College; Joan Develin Coley, President of Notre Dame of Maryland University; Christopher Nelson, President of St. John’s College; Charles Simmons, President of Sojourner-Douglass College; Kevin Manning, President of Stevenson University; Weymouth Spence, President of Washington Adventist University; Mitchell Reiss, President of Washington College; Allie Laban-Baker, Vice President for Communications at Goucher College; Joan Flynn, Vice-President for Administration at Loyola University; Herb Smith, Director of Government Relations at McDaniel College; Paula Whetsel-Ribeau, Special Assistant to the President for Community Leadership at Mount St. Mary’s University; Candace Caraco, Senior Advisor to the President at Notre Dame of Maryland University and Sharon Markley, Vice-President of Public Affairs and Strategy at Stevenson University. Ner Israel Rabbinical College and St. Mary’s Seminary & University are affiliate members.

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On Tuesday, February 4, 2014, Senator Mikulski was presented with the 2013 Presidents Award by MICUA, including Tina Bjarekull, President of MICUA; Bret Schreiber, Vice-President of MICUA, and representatives of Goucher College, Maryland Institute College of Art, McDaniel College, Mount St. Mary’s University, Notre Dame of Maryland University, St. John’s College, Sojourner-Douglass College, Stevenson University, Washington Adventist University, Washington College and Loyola University.

Washington Adventist University Launches Homeland Security Program

Takoma Park, MD (Feb. 7)—Washington Adventist University (WAU) is entering the arena of Homeland Security education this March with the launch of three new certificates in Cyber Security, Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, and Disaster Response.

The homeland security certifications can be completed in six months compared to a year for similar programs at other area schools. Students in the WAU programs take two courses every eight weeks, and classes meet weekly for three hours.

The director of the program is Dr. Herma Percy, a member of the Maryland Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council that advises the Maryland Governor’s office. She will teach courses, along with other experienced instructors who combine relevant theory with real-world experience. The faculty for the homeland security program includes industry insiders from the public health, law enforcement, military, government, and cyber security experts.

“We are seeing that there is an urgent need for training security professionals in both the government and in the private sector because of the frequency and severity of natural and man-made disasters and cyber-attacks,” said Percy. “So there’s a strong demand in the workplace for employees who are skilled in helping to prepare, respond and recover from man-made, and natural hazards.

With flexible start times, convenient schedules, experienced faculty, and easily transferable credits, the program is designed for working professionals who wish to advance their careers and students who want to add a homeland security concentration to their studies.

“Our three certificates focus on helping people, communities and businesses prepare and respond to natural, and man-made disasters,” says Percy. “We offer a unique curriculum so our students will be learning to do, not just learning about,” Percy added.

Homeland Security Press Release

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Acro-Airs Perform at Pacers Halftime

TAKOMA PARK, Md. (Jan. 30) - Washington Adventist University’s award-winning Acro-Airs sports-acrobatics exhibition team recently performed for the Indiana Pacers National Basketball Association (NBA) team in Indianapolis during the team’s January 30 game against the Phoenix Suns. The Acro-Airs team was invited by the Pacers to perform during halftime and throughout the game. The cost of the four-day trip was paid by the Pacers, and the halftime performance marked the continuation of the Acro-Airs’ 19-year relationship with the Pacers. The trip also provided the Acro-Airs an opportunity to participate in clinics and vespers programs at Indiana Junior Academy and Mount Vernon Academy.

Washington Adventist University to Award Sullivan Medallions

TAKOMA PARK, Md. (Dec. 11) - Washington Adventist University has been unanimously selected by the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation to join the family of schools awarding the Algernon Sydney Sullivan and Mary Mildred Sullivan medallions. WAU is the only school in Maryland and the only Seventh Day Adventist institution in the country to ever receive this honor. The university was selected based upon its commitment to service and for the outstanding work it has accomplished serving both local and international communities. The award may be presented to full-time undergraduate students and community leaders who have demonstrated a passion for community service and who are known for their unwavering integrity.

The foundation will provide a display apparatus so that the ensuing listing of recipients of the award can be prominently displayed on the campus. A representative from the Sullivan Foundation will be present in the Spring when the university selects and presents its first recipient(s) of the award at the annual Academic Awards chapel on April 23, 2014. For more information about the Sullivan awards, please contact Dr. Ralph Johnson, Dean, Center for Student Success.

Breaking Old Ground for a New Athletic Field

ground group smTAKOMA PARK, Md. (Nov. 25) - According to the Creation story in Genesis, God created the world ex nihilo:  out of nothing. Then He broke the ground, gathered the dust of the earth, and made the first man. Breaking ground for a new athletic field at Washington Adventist University (WAU) is also an act of creation. This new field will be one means of recreating our students by helping them experience true education – “the harmonious development of the mental, physical and spiritual powers.” (Ellen White)  It is the goal of WAU to help its learning community develop a balanced life in every dimension of living.

Groundbreaking for the new athletic field signals the start of an extreme makeover that has been needed for decades.  The new field will be made of AstroTurf® and will allow for a variety of activities by students, staff, and members of the local community.  Men’s and women’s soccer, intramural activities, and community group activities will enjoy a safe and aesthetically pleasing field during all the seasons of the year. “On this new field, we will not only build muscles, but also character and good sportsmanship.” (Patrick Crarey)

The WAU President, Dr. Weymouth Spence, officiated at the groundbreaking activity. He was assisted by Dave Weigley, Chair of the WAU Board of Trustees. Congratulatory comments were made by Patrick Crarey, Athletic Director of WAU; Jarrett Smith, Takoma Park Council Member; and Terrill North, candidate, County Council. It is estimated that refurbishment of the new athletic field will be completed April 2014.

Religion Professor Publishes New Book

OliveHemmingsTAKOMA PARK, Md. (Aug. 20) - Professor of Religion Olive Hemmings, Ph.D., is the author of a newly release work, Sacred Texts and Social Conflict, exploring the debate over women’s ordination within the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

“Here stands a dynamic faith community whose founding prophet and major source of authority outside the Bible is a woman,” a description on Amazon.com reads. “Thirteen decades after a resolution to ordain women, it continues to search the Bible for reasons to ordain or not. And yet, throughout its history, women have always functioned as ministers of the gospel. There must be some supra-biblical force driving the resistance. Hemmings goes behind the scenes of the debate to examine the profound and age old drama—the human struggle to find its best self.

The review calls the book “a surgical work of removing a tight, well fitted mask to reveal the real social fears and inhibitions driving the hermeneutics.”

bookcoverIt is described further as helpful for students of sacred texts wishing to observe the social dynamics driving interpretation, and even formation of sacred texts. Hemmings describes it as “a great starting point for any research on the issue of women’s ordination.”

Hemmings has been teaching in Seventh-day Adventist higher education since 1983. In the teaching of New Testament Bible, Ethics, and World Religions, she tends to call attention to the essential co-relation between religious ideologies/convictions and human civilization.

Major Milestone for Russian Bible Translation Project

russian8 sm crpTAKOMA PARK, Md. (Aug. 28)- Printing of the first North American edition of the Russian New Testament and the Psalms, produced by the Washington Adventist University (WAU) Bible Translation Institute in partnership with Zaoksky Theological Seminary in Russia, has been completed by Pacific Press, Nampa, Idaho.

A dedication service was held, August 26, at the Press’ headquarters, and on September 5, 3ABN taped a special program to mark the new development.

“This summer has been immensely profitable and both our inter-denominational teams in Zaoksky, Russia, and here at WAU, are working around the clock to stay on target,” said Michael Kulakov, professor of theology, history and philosophy at WAU; chief editor for the translation project and director of the Russian Bible Translation Institute. “By God’s grace, we have completed work on the poetic books of the Bible and are currently working on the books of Joshua and Judges. The books of the Major and Minor prophets have also been completed.”

“We appreciate continued prayers from the WAU family for the work of our teams during this most decisive year,” he added.

Kulakov is currently in the fourth year of a five year sabbatical to complete the translation of the entire Bible into Russian by 2015. Seeing the first North American edition of the New Testament and the Psalms in print, was particularly moving for him, Kulakov said, since it was his late father, Dr. Mikhail P. Kulakov Sr. who founded the Institute at Zaoksky and worked tirelessly for over a decade to produce the translation of the New Testament and the Psalms.

University Enjoys Best Credit Rating Ever

farley smTAKOMA PARK, Md. (Aug. 8) - Washington Adventist University is enjoying its best credit rating ever, thanks to its improved working capital position. An August 5 report from Dun & Bradstreet upgraded the University’s Supplier Evaluation Risk Rating has been improved from a 2 to a 1. T

The current scale is from nine to one with nine being the lowest—high risk—and one being a low risk. Moving from a 2 to a 1 is the best possible rating.

The rating is based on past payment history and the ability to pay or availability of working capital.

“To achieve the most favorable risk rating is further evidence that the financial position of Washington Adventist University has been remarkably improved over the past five years and, at this moment, our vendors view us with a great deal of confidence,” said Patrick Farley, vice president for finance and administration.

According to its website, Dun and Bradstreet (NYSE:DNB) is the world's leading source of commercial information and insight on businesses, enabling companies to decide with confidence for more than 171 years. Its global commercial database contains more than 225 million business records.

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