No Stress Zone on March 25 Aims to Help Washington Adventist University Students Stay Healthy

No Stress Zone

Takoma Park, MD (March 23) In the Adventist tradition of promoting health and wellness, Washington Adventist University’s Social Work Club is hosting a “No Stress Zone” event on Wednesday, March 25 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.  The event will be held in the lobby of Wilkinson Hall, 7600 Flower Avenue, Takoma Park, Maryland.

The event is open to the public and will provide useful information about how people can stay healthier by relieving stress. The Social Work Club is sponsoring the event in honor of National Social Work Month, which is a time for social workers and emerging social work professionals to educate the public about the work that they do, and to celebrate the achievements of social workers nationwide.

Featured activities include six “Zone Out” stations where students and community members can participate in stress-relief activities. They include Karaoke Korner, Power Puff (non-violent pillow fights), African Dance, Soothing Scents & Sounds (aromatherapy), Game Station (Uno and Catch Phrase), and Ease Up (five minute shoulder massages by a licensed massage therapist for students with a current I.D.).

Studies show that students and others often fail to engage in regular self-care activities that will keep them healthy and strong. The timing of the event will demonstrate the value of taking a mid-day break to overcome the negative impacts of stress.   

The Washington Adventist University campus is located near the corner of Flower and Carroll avenues. It is 1.5 miles from the Takoma Metro station, and has a bus stop and Bikeshare station on campus.  Free parking is located in a lot behind Wilkinson Hall (off Greenwood Avenue), and lots in front of the building (across Flower Avenue). 

For more information, contact Melissa Henley at 301-891-4574 or mhenley@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. Approximately 1,100 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

Community Counseling Center Offers New Weekly Women’s Group on Thursday Evenings

JudithUpshaw-1

Takoma Park, Md. (March 16, 2014) The Community Counseling Center at Washington Adventist University is hosting a new weekly Women’s Counseling Group on Thursday evenings, 7-8:30 p.m., starting on April 23. The group offers women a safe place to discuss wellness issues, including how to maintain healthy relationships, what to do about drug and alcohol abuse, and ways to enhance personal growth. The group is open not only to students and alumni, but to the community at large, and discussions will focus on finding healthy ways to address the stresses of daily life. 

The weekly women’s group will be led by Judith Upshaw, Med, LCADC, and clinical director of the Community Counseling Center.

“This group will give women a safe place to talk about personal issues that are getting in their way of living a healthy and happy life,” said Upshaw. “Joining a counseling group with other women who understand the issues and can offer support to each other is a good first step toward overcoming obstacles and achieving the life you envision for yourself.”

The Community Counseling Center is staffed by licensed drug and alcohol counselors and graduate students in the Department of Psychology and Counseling who also offer private individual 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.

The Community Counseling 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 Avenue and in front of the building across Flower Avenue.

For more information, to join the new women’s group, or to make an individual 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. Approximately 1,100 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 Hosts Race and Justice Summit on March 26

Aisha Braveboy John-Gavin Joan-Francis

Takoma Park, MD (March 11, 2015) A Race and Justice Summit will be held on Thursday, March 26 at 6 p.m. on the campus of Washington Adventist University (WAU). The summit is open to the public, and will take place in the Richards Hall Chapel. The summit will be hosted by the university’s Center for Metropolitan Ministry and Center for Law and Public Policy.

“Race and social justice are all too often discussed in this country without ever reaching a conclusion about things we can all do to actually help improve race relations,” said John Gavin, chair of WAU’s Social Work Department and Director of the Center for Metropolitan Ministry.

“This summit is intended to facilitate a frank discussion that, we hope, will result in some concrete take-aways so that a clear roadmap can be developed to help guide individuals toward the time when racial profiling and social injustices cease to exist,” states Joan Francis, chair of the History and Political Studies Department and Director of the Center for Law & Public Policy.

Aisha N. Braveboy, who has served as chair of the Maryland Legislative Black Caucus and as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates, will kick off the summit. A panel discussion will follow, along with open and honest conversations about the issues surrounding racial profiling and social injustices.

Washington Adventist University is located at 7600 Flower Avenue (near the intersection with Carroll Avenue) in Takoma Park, Maryland. Richards Hall is located between Morrison Hall and the Sligo Seventh-day Adventist Church. The campus is Metro-accessible, with both a bus stop and Bikeshare station on campus. There is also plenty of free parking available both in front of and behind the building (off Greenwood Avenue).

For more information, contact John Gavin at jgavin@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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu

April 9 Reception to Celebrate the 30th Anniversary of The School of Graduate and Professional Studies

GladstoneGurubatham

Takoma Park, MD (April 1, 2015) Takoma Park, MD (April 1, 2015) The 30th Anniversary of Washington Adventist University’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies will be celebrated on Thursday, April 9 at a reception on campus in the Student Activities Center, located next to the gymnasium. The event is part of the university’s alumni weekend activities scheduled for April 9-12.

 

The reception, from 7 to 8:30 p.m., will include a tribute to Gladstone Gurubatham, Ph.D., a life-long learner who founded the first adult evening program when the university was known as Columbia Union College. Gurubatham is one of the longest-serving faculty members at Washington Adventist University, and he continues to educate both graduate and undergraduate students at the university as a professor of psychology.

The reception will include celebrations of past, present and future. What began as an evening program for 35 working adults who were seeking undergraduate degrees grew over the years into the current School of Graduate and Professional Studies (SGPS), which enrolled a record number of graduate students this past fall. The SGPS offers 11 accelerated undergraduate degree programs and eight graduate degree programs (including two master’s programs that are fully online).

For more information about the anniversary reception or the SGPS, call 301-891-4092 or email ncurrier@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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu

Washington Adventist University to Honor Five Outstanding Alumni at Banquet on April 11

Rik Swartzwelder  Berny  Tom Hughes and Wife

Joan Francis  Mayor Williams

Takoma Park, MD (April 2, 2015) Five outstanding Washington Adventist University (WAU) alumni -- including movie actor, producer, writer and director Rik Swartzwelder -- will be honored at the annual Alumni Awards Banquet on Saturday, April 11 at the Sheraton Silver Spring as part of the university’s Alumni Weekend activities.

Rik Swartzwelder will be honored as Alumnus of the Year. He is a writer-director-actor and also a producing partner at Skoche Films, LLC. His feature film, Old Fashioned, made its debut in time for the recent Valentine’s Day Weekend, promoting the concept of old fashioned romance. Swartzwelder has directed numerous award-winning short films and worked on several other projects as a writer and producer, participated in 145 film festivals worldwide and garnered over 50 major awards. Swartzwelder grew up in rural Ohio, earned his bachelor’s degree at Washington Adventist University in 1993 (then known as Columbia Union College), and then earned an M.F.A. in Motion Picture Production from The Florida State University. He now lives in Los Angeles, California.

Berny Jacques will be honored as this year’s Young Alumnus of the Year. He moved to the U.S. from Haiti at the age of 7 and was raised in Naples, Florida. He received his bachelor’s degree in history and political studies from Washington Adventist University in 2009. During college, Jacques was a legislative intern to Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, and on the WAU campus he served as president of the Student Association from 2008-2009, and a member of both the Track and Field and Mock Trial teams. Jacques received his law degree from Stetson University College of Law, and currently serves as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Pinellas County, Florida, where he is responsible for prosecuting felonies.

This year’s Zella Holbert Service Award will be presented to alumnus Tom Hughes. Hughes was raised in Newark, Delaware and graduated from the university (then known as Columbia Union College) in 1975. He received a bachelor’s degree in theology and psychology, and then went on to earn his master’s degree in religion from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. He is a district pastor and motorcycle evangelist with the Ohio Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. He and his wife, Debbie, have an active music and media ministry, including the Bible Biker Online Radio Program, through which six people have been baptized.

Named as Honorary Alumnae of the Year is Joan Francis, who currently serves as the chair of the Department of History and Political Studies at Washington Adventist University. She is known for her challenging, creative, and rewarding classes, and she works tirelessly to enhance her teachings with the resources of the nation’s capital, exposing students to a wide variety of educational opportunities. In addition to her academic role on campus, Francis also serves as the sponsor of the Black Student Union, the 2016 graduating class, and various other programs on the university’s campus. She has a doctorate in history from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and a master’s degree from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan.

Named as Honorary Alumnus of the Year is Takoma Park Mayor Bruce Williams who has served in elected office in Takoma Park since 1993. He was a Councilmember from 1993-2007, and has been Mayor since 2007. He has had an active leadership role in many local, regional and state organizations, and served on the Chesapeake Executive Council’s Local Government Advisory Committee on the Chesapeake Bay in 2009, and the Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission in 2013. Mayor Williams has been active with the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) for more than twenty years and was recognized by the organization as an outstanding public servant in the Washington metropolitan region, receiving the Elizabeth and David Scull Metropolitan Public Service Award in 2004. He has also been active in the Maryland Municipal League and the Maryland Mayors Association, serving both organizations as president.

In addition to the awards banquet, Alumni Weekend will feature on Thursday, April 9 a 30th Reunion of the School of Graduate and Professional Studies at 7 p.m.; and a Kick-off Social at 7:30 p.m. On Friday, April 10, a Cherry Blossom Tour will be conducted from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; a President’s Reception at 5 p.m., and a Reflections Concert at 7 p.m. A naming ceremony for the music rehearsal hall in honor of the university’s Music Department chair, James Bingham, Ph.D., will be held at 8:30 p.m., followed by Singspiration Vespers at 8:45 p.m. On Saturday, April 11, academic department open houses will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. prior to the awards banquet.

The 5K Run/Walk on Sunday, April 12 will start at 10 a.m., the Honors Program 10th Anniversary Reunion Brunch will also start at 10 a.m., and the annual Family Fun Festival will take place outdoors from noon to 5 p.m., offering fun activities or the whole family. The Acro-Airs Home Show will cap the weekend of festivities, starting at 7 p.m.

For more information about the awards banquet or Alumni Weekend activities, contact Alumni Relations Director Ellie Barker at ebarker@wau.edu or 301-891-4133.

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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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu

 

Washington Adventist University Hosts April 12 Family Fun Festival in Takoma Park

FamFunFestfacepaint

Takoma Park, MD (March 10, 2015) A Family Fun Festival will be held in Takoma Park on Sunday, April 12, from noon to 5 p.m., on the campus of Washington Adventist University (WAU).  The annual event is free to the public and features live music, food and family entertainment. The event has been an annual tradition on campus for more than a decade, and it is the highlight of the university’s Alumni Weekend, which is April 9-12 this year.

“With the arrival of spring and warmer weather, this festival offers families a chance to get outside in the fresh air and spend a Sunday afternoon together,” said Professor Kimberly Pichot, chair of the WAU Business Department and chair of the festival. “There will be something for everyone at this year’s festival, and I encourage everyone to stop by and enjoy the day”

The festival will be staged with support from the City of Takoma Park and sponsors such as Washington Adventist Hospital, WGTS 91.9 FM radio, and the local business community. Featured will be a performance by WAU’s award-winning Acro-Airs sports-acrobatics exhibition team; a showcase of WGTS music artists; health screenings; food from local restaurants and caterers; tents filled with interesting crafts; and entertainment for children, big and small. A food drive for the Capital Area Food Bank will also be featured, and families are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to donate.

The festival will be held rain or shine.  The WAU campus is located at 7600 Flower Avenue, Takoma Park, Md. 20912, near Washington Adventist Hospital and accessible by public transportation. The campus is 1.5 miles from the Takoma Metro, and there is a bus stop and BikeShare station on campus. There is also plenty of free parking.

For more information about the Family Fun Festival, or to participate as a sponsor or vendor, call 301-891-4034 or go to www.wau.edu/festival.

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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. Approximately 1,100 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 Named Among “30 Great Small Colleges for a Counseling Degree”

Badge-Best-Psychology-Degrees-Great-Small-Colleges-300x300

Takoma Park, MD (March 3, 2015) Washington Adventist University is listed among the “30 Great Small Colleges for a Counseling Degree (Bachelor’s).”  The listing appears in the March 2015 online “Best Psychology Degrees: Your Guide to Top Psychology Degree Programs” at http://www.bestpsychologydegrees.com/top/small-colleges-counseling-degree/. The listing was compiled by Kelley Jacobs, a Midwest business consultant and former program evaluator with experience in qualitative and quantitative research, survey development and statistical analysis.

“We are extremely pleased to be included in this listing, as it validates what we’ve long known – that Washington Adventist University is a great small college, and our counseling degree programs are outstanding,” said  Cheryl Harris Kisunzu, Ph.D., MSN, FNP, RN, and Provost of Washington Adventist University.

In addition to the bachelor’s degree in counseling psychology, Washington Adventist University’s Department of Psychology also offers a master’s degree in counseling psychology. The university is currently one of only two schools in the state of Maryland that offers a master’s degree program for drug abuse counseling.

“I encourage anyone interested in a degree in counseling psychology to seek their education here at Washington Adventist University,” said Grant Leitma, Ph.D., and chair of the Washington Adventist University Department of Psychology. “All of our students receive an excellent education, and our graduate students have opportunities to gain first-hand experience helping people in the community through our Community Counseling Center.”

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

For more information about the university’s undergraduate counseling degree programs, contact gleitma@wau.edu. Applications are still being accepted for the fall semester. The university also offers both undergraduate and graduate counseling degree programs through its School of Graduate and Professional Studies (SGPS) to accommodate working adults. For information about SGPS classes, which start again the week of March 8-12, go https://www.wau.edu/academics/school-of-graduate-and-professional-studies or call 301-891-4092.

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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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu

Washington Adventist University Enactus Team Applies Business Strategies to Local Businesses with Notable Results

Enactus-small-business-symposium2

Takoma Park, MD (March 10, 2015) Washington Adventist University (WAU) students who serve the community as members of the university’s Enactus Team are making a difference in the local business community. The students are applying their knowledge of business strategies and best practices to small Takoma Park businesses, with notable results.

The team recently hosted a Small Business Seminar for local business owners at the Takoma Park Community Center. They offered presentations on how to develop branding, create strategic marketing plans for maximum results, and use social media.

In the past year, the team’s Flower Facelift project – supported by a $1,500 grant from the “Sam’s Club Step Up for Small Business” project -- helped small business owners in the Long Branch area to boost sales through marketing and improved operations.

“I am very proud of our students’ efforts and the results they’ve achieved,” said Kimberly S. Pichot, chair of the WAU Business Department. “Last year, the WAU Enactus team started helping the nearby Rainbow Coin Laundry, which was struggling to stay afloat.  Since the team rebranded the business, painted and cleaned the store, and helped the owner attract some media attention, the enterprise is currently breaking even and on the path to success.”

The students also worked on a Job Quest project, in conjunction with Adventist Community Services of Greater Washington and Walmart, which provided the team with a $1,500 grant as part of its “Walmart Women’s Economic Empowerment” project to help unemployed and underemployed individuals find and land jobs. Two years ago, at the 2013 Enactus Nationals competition, the team won 3rd place and $4,000 from Walmart to help support the project.

Working with women-owned businesses in the Long Branch area of Takoma Park, the WAU Enactus team used another $1,500 grant – this one from Coca Cola’s “Uncap Opportunities for Women” project -- to help the owners of such businesses as El Golfo Restaurant on Flower Avenue with the marketing of the restaurant’s events during the year.

“Washington Adventist University has long been considered a gateway to service, and the students who volunteer their time as members of our Enactus team see the benefits of that service first hand,” said Pichot. “It’s a great opportunity for them to gain valuable experience in entrepreneurship, marketing and management, while helping our local businesses boost their sales and increase profitability.

The university’s Enactus team is part of an international non-profit organization that brings student, academic and business leaders together to develop projects that improve the quality of life for people in need by applying business concepts.  The WAU team has volunteered more than 3,700 hours of time.

Nationwide, there are 518 Enactus teams with more than 17,000 students, working on more than 2,000 community team projects. 

For more information about the WAU Enactus team, contact Professor Kimberly Pichot at kspichot@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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu

Father Michael Lapsley Will Be the Honored Speaker at Washington Adventist University’s Convocation on March 4

FatherLapsley

Takoma Park, MD (March 3, 2015) South African Anglican priest and social justice activist Father Alan Michael Lapsley, best known as “Father Michael,” will be the honored speaker at Washington Adventist University’s weekly convocation on Wednesday, March 4 at 11 a.m. Open to the public, the convocation will take place at Sligo Seventh-day Adventist Church, located at 7700 Carroll Avenue in Takoma Park, Maryland.  

Father Michael will also be honored on Saturday, March 7 at 6 p.m. at the Living Legends Awards, hosted by the Human Symphony Foundation at the University of Maryland’s Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center.  

Born in New Zealand, Lapsley was ordained into the priesthood in Australia, where he joined the religious order of the Society of the Sacred Mission. In 1973, Lapsley travelled to Durban, South Africa where as an undergraduate student, he became chaplain to students at both black and white universities during the height of the apartheid repression.

When Lapsley began to speak out on behalf of schoolchildren who were shot, detained and tortured, he was expelled from the country. He went to live in Lesotho and continued his studies there, while supporting the liberation struggle. 

Lapsley is a graduate of the Australian College of Theology, the National University of Lesotho and the University of Zimbabwe. He was the subject of Priest and Partisan: a South African Journey, written by fellow South African priest and theologian Michael Worsnip, with a foreword by Nelson Mandela.

In September 2006, on the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attack on America, Lapsley joined more than 30 terror victims from around the world -- including families of those killed in the September 11 attacks -- to create the International Network for Peace to promote effective and nonviolent solutions to terrorism.

Lapsley is the author of Redeeming the Past: My Journey from Freedom Fighter to Healer with Stephen Karakashian, which includes a foreword by Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu. The book details Lapsley’s struggle against apartheid in South Africa, and how a letter bomb nearly killed him, taking both hands and one of his eyes. With an entire nation in need of healing, Lapsley discovered that his own experience with trauma could help promote the healing of others.

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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. Approximately 1,100 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@wu.edu