Update from the President
February 5, 2021
Dear Wheeling University Community,
Although the pandemic clearly poses challenges and limitations for our students and employees, it hasn’t slowed us from our educational mission. Face-to-face learning continues in classrooms around campus thanks to the dedicated faculty who will not allow COVID-19 to deter them from the important work of instilling knowledge and values in our student population. I applaud each member of this community for all they are doing to serve our students and support one another. Your commitment to serving this community is inspiring!
Service to others is evident on campus with more than 30 employees and Resident Assistants (RAs) taking care of our students who are in quarantine. They deliver meals each day, perform wellness checks and make sure the students exercise daily. This wonderful outpouring of support is proof that Wheeling University is truly a family – a family that supports each other and gives of its time and talent to help those in need.
Congratulations to Head Men’s Basketball Coach Chris Richardson on his first win! His Cardinals beat West Virginia Wesleyan on Wednesday night 85-77, marking his first win as a head coach. We hope Coach Richardson and his team continue their winning ways and capture another victory this Saturday when the Cards play host to Davis and Elkins. You can watch the men’s and women’s teams beginning at 2:00 p.m. at https://mountaineast.tv/wheeling/.
Many members of our community have been blessed to have received COVID-19 vaccines thanks to the generosity of West Virginia Governor Jim Justice. The state began inoculating university and college employees statewide in early January. We are grateful funding was made available to vaccinate our staff and recognize this will provide an added layer of protection for all members of the campus. Surveillance COVID-19 testing continues to take place each week, also funded by the State of West Virginia.
In celebration of Black History Month, campus events are planned throughout the month of February. A variety of programs will take place that will allow us to recognize and celebrate the history, culture, and contributions of people of African descent in the United States. I am grateful for Wheeling alumni who have agreed to participate in a virtual conversation with our current students on Thursday, February 25 at 6:30 p.m. to share their challenges, goals, victories, and life lessons on what it takes to succeed after graduation. For a full listing of activities, please see the Black History Month 2021 Calendar of Events.
As a result of the shortened Fall semester, many students were unable to expend all their meal plan swipes and flex dollars. Effective immediately, all unused swipes and unused flex dollars from the Fall semester will be available to students, via the Cardinal ID card, for use through the end of this semester.
Next Thursday, February 11 marks Founder’s Day. It was on this day in 1957 that Bishop John J. Swint turned over the deed to the college property to the Society of Jesus. The first Founder’s Day was celebrated in 1958. This year we carry on the tradition and will celebrate Founder’s Day with a special Mass for members of the campus community at 12:10 p.m., Thursday, February 11 in the Chapel of Mary and Joseph. Fr. Richard McCouch, S.J. will be the celebrant. I encourage our students and employees to attend this Mass and celebrate this special day.
This week’s snowfall that blanketed the Ohio Valley provided picturesque images of our beautiful campus. While many of us took in the sights, our students made good use of the snow – tubing on the hillside behind Sara Tracy, making snowmen on Bishop Schmitt Field and hosting some friendly snowball battles. It was wonderful to see them enjoying some outside activity after being cooped up inside. Judging from what Punxsutawney Phil had to say, we can expect six more weeks of winter weather to enjoy! We are anticipating frigid temperatures over the weekend and next week, with the thermometer to dip into the single digits some mornings. Please exercise caution during these weather conditions.
As we begin February, I ask each member of this community to continue wearing your mask, not gather in groups and follow our protocols. Keeping one another safe and healthy takes each of us.
Your support and dedication are what make our University a special place to work and learn. Please continue to keep our beloved University in your prayers and be assured you are always in mine.
With gratitude and appreciation,
Ginny R. Favede, President