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Update from the President

February 26, 2021

Dear Wheeling University Community, 

Spring, the season of new life, is just around the corner. The New Testament says in 2 Corinthians, “…if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: the old has gone, the new has come!” Lent and Spring prepare us for Easter when we celebrate the miracle of new life made possible by Jesus Christ. His death and resurrection give new life to every person who believes in him. As Spring and Easter approach, may you begin to feel rejuvenated by the promise of new beginnings.  

The McDonough Center is one busy place these days with Wheeling’s athletic teams in full force.  After nearly a year-long hiatus, Spring sports will begin this weekend. In addition to basketball, recently, volleyball, soccer, lacrosse, wrestling, track and field, and swimming all returned to action. Baseball and softball begin competition this weekend, and soon football, rugby, and golf will begin. Our student-athletes and coaches welcome a return to some normalcy, and it has been nice to watch more of our student-athletes return to competition and excel in their sports. As a reminder, and under Mountain East Conference protocols, spectators are prohibited at any games/matches held at indoor venues for the remainder of this year’s season.  Additionally, fans will not be permitted at outdoor competitions until after March 10, when a limited number of spectators will be permitted. Athletic Director Patrick Snively and I are working with local health officials to determine how many fans will be permitted at our outdoor sports competitions. We will share those details soon. Do not forget, many of our games are available for viewing online, so you won’t miss our teams when they are in action. 

I am excited to share the University will honor the Class of 2021 during in-person Baccalaureate and Commencement ceremonies on April 30 and May 1. Similar to last summer’s events, both ceremonies will be held outside on Bishop Schmitt Field, where we can socially distance the graduates, as well as their family and friends in attendance. Members of the graduating class will be permitted to invite up to six people to each event, and they will be seated together in an assigned group of chairs on the field. Both events will be live-streamed so that those not able to attend can watch online. We look forward to celebrating the academic achievements of the Class of 2021 and welcoming this new group of Cardinals into the alumni family! 

The University’s Biology Club continues to raise funds to support the family of Dr. Ken Rastall. With Fr. Hadi’s assistance, the Club’s President Caroline Fodor launched a GoFundMe page to raise $1,000. Donations are still being accepted, and I hope members of this Cardinal Family will support our student’s efforts by donating to honor this wonderful educator’s legacy.  

Following a rough three-game on the road tour for men’s basketball, they successfully clinched the fifth and final spot in the North Division for the upcoming Mountain East Conference (MEC) Tournament. The Mountain East Championship will be held March 5 -7 at the WesBanco Arena in Wheeling. To no one’s surprise, our Lady Cardinals have also been tapped for the playoffs with games beginning on March 4. After such a rough season plagued by COVID complications, I could not be prouder of these young men and women and our outstanding Cardinal Coaching Staff. I continue to be in awe of their resilience, perseverance, and determination. 

While Gov. Jim Justice recently eased some restrictions on certain businesses around the state, he has not relaxed COVID-19 protocols for colleges and universities at this time. I want to remind the community that all our protocols remain in place.  Your tireless work and adherence to our protocols have allowed us to keep our campus safe and healthy. 

As the month of February comes to an end, may the beginning of March bring warmer temperatures allowing each of us an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and the fresh air that accompanies Spring! Thank you to the student volunteers who pitched in to move our outdoor furniture out of storage in preparation for a warm weekend!  

My prayers and gratitude, 

Ginny R. Favede, President
Wheeling University