Update from the President
Dear Wheeling University Community,
Today we have been making all the final preparations to honor the Class of 2020 during the Baccalaureate Mass tonight and the Commencement ceremony tomorrow. The stage is set and the chairs are socially distanced on Bishop Schmitt Field – and we can’t wait to welcome the graduates back to campus to celebrate their accomplishments in the classroom. We are excited we can finally recognize this extraordinary group of young men and women. For those who can’t join us in person for Baccalaureate and Commencement, you can watch both events online. Moving the events outdoors took a lot of work and planning. I am so very grateful to all those who had a part in making the campus look so wonderful and all those who were part in planning the events – your hard work and dedication to our University never goes unnoticed.
During Saturday’s ceremony, Joe Munhall ‘93, president of the Alumni Council, will offer congratulations to the class and welcome them to the alumni. Additionally, when each graduate exits the stage, Joe will be there to hand them their alumni pin and card of congratulations from the alumni.
Following Commencement Saturday, members of the Alumni Council will host a Career Connection table, offering career and job referral information to the graduates. They are willing to talk to the graduates about what skills they have, what type of job they want, and advice on how to find a job. Look for their table inside the McDonough Center Lobby. I hope the members of the Class of 2020 take advantage of this opportunity to network with these men. And, thank you to the members of the Alumni Council for providing our graduates this valuable resource.
The second part of the 50 Year Club Lecture Series – This Land is Home to Me — was held this week. During this virtual discussion, Fr. Richard McCouch, S.J. offered perspectives on “Bridges to & from ‘This Land and to Our Common Home’ – our contextual theology and ministry in Appalachia bridging universal Catholic theology to the Appalachia context.” More than 40 alumni participated in this interactive presentation.
On Tuesday, all 27 college and university presidents in West Virginia met virtually with Governor Justice and WV Higher Education Policy Commission Chancellor, Sarah Armstrong Tucker, to discuss reopening plans for the fall semester and how to ensure the safety of West Virginia’s students, teachers, faculty members, and communities amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. He said we will have the resources of the National Guard, DHHR, and the State will support when we need it. Gov. Justice expressed confidence in each institution’s ability to chart the correct course for their campus communities.
We welcomed our new Men’s Basketball Coach, Chris Richardson, to the Cardinal Family on Monday. A Charleston, WV native, Chris’ experience at a strong program like Central Missouri, and the direction he wants to take our program is what made him stand out from the near 200 applications we received. We believe Chris will ensure our continued success on the court and develop our players to succeed in the classroom and community. You can watch the entire press conference on our website.
This week, the Mountain East Conference announced changes in the Fall sports practice and competition schedules. The updated “Return to Play” plan pushes the start of Fall sports competition until no earlier than Oct. 1st. The MEC’s adjusted plan demonstrates the Conference’s commitment to the health and safety of our student-athletes and campus community.
The campus is excited that we can celebrate with our newest graduates this weekend. Let us keep these young men and women in our prayers and ask that they follow St. Ignatius of Loyola’s call to “go forth and set the world on fire.” And I ask for your continued prayers for Wheeling University.
Ginny R. Favede
President, Wheeling University