July 22, 2022
Update from the President
Dear Wheeling University Community,
I have known for some time that the alumni at Wheeling University are extraordinary and care deeply for their alma mater. This week, those thoughts were re-affirmed once again. The University received a thoughtful note and gift from Kevin Laird, class of 1985, who purchased a complete set of vestments for Rev. Praveen Kumar Mallela, our new Chaplin and Director of Campus Ministry. He was “thrilled” with Bishop Brennan’s commitment to assign a full-time priest in residence at Wheeling. Mr. Laird said, “To celebrate the occasion, I ordered new vestments as a welcoming present to Fr. Mallela. I ask that you present them to Father upon his arrival … I believe it is important to Wheeling University to promote its Catholic tradition, and I further believe that this is a very positive step in that endeavor.” I am so very grateful to Mr. Laird for these beautiful vestments that I know Father will wear proudly.
Today, the OVAC football and band camp wrapped up with a bang! Coaches, football players, band members, Queen of Queen candidates, and cheerleaders held a high-energy pep rally on Bishop Schmitt Field. It was a perfect send-off for the football players playing at Wheeling Island Stadium on Saturday night. The stands were packed with the parents and members of the community, who watched the band perform, be introduced to the Queen of Queen candidates and players, and hear from the coaches in advance of the All-Star Football game. I am so pleased with this group and how it ran this camp – it speaks volumes of OVAC Executive Director Dirk DeCoy, Game Director Corey Murphy, the coaches, and the band directors. The OVAC athletic conference is the largest high school athletic conference of its kind in the country and is certainly impressive. Our campus community, as always, stepped up and provided a fantastic experience. My thanks to Donna White, Director of Conference Services, who worked for months to coordinate every aspect of the camp with the OVAC officials and our internal departments – Student Services, Campus Safety, Athletics, Resident Life, Aladdin Food Service, Housekeeping, and Maintenance. Through everyone’s collective efforts, I believe these 200-plus campers and coaches had a wonderful week on our campus. I am confident the week ended up being exactly what we promised the OVAC in recognition that for these young men and women, it was about the memories they would make this week. Thank you to everyone who played a role in making this camp a success. I’m already looking forward to the OVAC All-Star Camp 2023!
Monday, the University will host its final New Student Orientation, when we will welcome students and families from several states. As with our previous sessions, this is a chance for the incoming students to meet classmates and become acclimated to what to expect when they arrive in August. We will hold sessions specifically for the students and family members so that each group can learn how specific offices can assist. The student and alumni panel is an excellent opportunity for those attending to ask questions and get an inside view of campus life. I’ve invited Batson Sheets, Student Government President (SGA), to welcome the students and families on Monday. No one speaks better for this university than our students!
Once again, our student-athletes show that they excel in their sport and are winners in the classroom. Two athletic teams and several individuals recently received academic recognition. The Cardinal Volleyball team won its ninth consecutive USMC/AVCA Team Academic award. The team had a combined GPA for the 2021-2022 academic year of 3.5. Not to be outdone, the women’s track and field squad was chosen by the United States Track & Field and Cross-Country Coaches Association (USTFCCA) as an All-Academic Team. One member of the team, sophomore Keala McCurry, was named a USTFCCA All-Academic Athletic. Five men’s basketball team members were chosen to the National Basketball Coaches Association (NABC) High Court for maintaining a 3.25 GPA last year. Those players include Alex Humphreys, Dozie Enyosiobi, Jay Gentry, John Korte, and Jorden Reid. I know I more than frequently acknowledge our student-athletes; I do hope you know that a substantial portion of our students are athletes, and they are hard-working, athletic, and incredibly smart kids. I can’t help but be proud of these young men and women for their achievements, as I am sure you all are as well.
As we enter the final week of July, we know the end of Summer break is approaching quickly. Author Kelly Dwyer once said, “August is like the Sunday of Summer.” August marks the final month of Summer and a time when students prepare for the upcoming academic year. Soon our Fall sports athletes will be moving onto campus, with student leaders, new Cardinals, and returning students to follow. Yes, the time has flown by this summer, but everyone at Wheeling University looks forward to seeing our students in class and on campus very soon. We’ve missed you!
Ginny R. Favede, President