December 17, 2021
Update from the President
Dear Wheeling Community,
The fall semester of 2021 has officially ended, and our students have finished the last of their final exams, packed up their cars, and headed for home to enjoy their holidays with family and friends. Andrew Lewis, VP of Student Services, kept up the tradition of providing what most consider the best part of finals – Wheeling’s infamous late-night breakfast! As always, our staff and coaches showed up to volunteer as servers for the night. Hats off to CAB for hosting a very competitive game of bingo and to the Student Senate for the addition of a darling gingerbread competition
The fall semester also celebrated 36 Doctorate of Physical Therapy students completing their coursework and a formal pinning ceremony on Sunday, December 5. Each has one more hurdle before they can begin their professional careers – passing the licensure exam. After a 2020 virtual ceremony, it was emotional to have the opportunity to watch their families’ pride and joy in person as they witnessed the hooding ceremony. On behalf of the DPT faculty, Dr. Mark Dnarch and Dr. Rhonda Haley hosted a beautiful ceremony in front of a packed Troy Theatre filled with friends and family. I know that these up-and-coming physical therapists will go forward in your profession as men and women in service, for and among others, as graduates of a great institution that has prepared them for life, leadership, and service.
The Cardinal Rugby team ended the Fall season with an outstanding victory on a national level. Last Saturday, the squad defeated Iowa Central at the National Collegiate Rugby 2021 Rhino Bowl in Houston. After falling behind early, the team held a 24-5 lead at halftime. However, in the second half, Iowa Central mounted a comeback, but our Cardinals hung onto capture at 29-24 win over the defending 2019 Division I AA Champions. Although I couldn’t attend, I was, of course, glued to my cellphone watching the game! Congratulations to Coach Geibel and the team on this impressive victory and an outstanding successful Fall season. I was beyond proud of our guys. Bailey Brunner and Chief Chipfumbu handled their interviews with such professionalism and class. I was, of course, beaming pride. Not only are our Rugby guys amazing athletes who know how to complete at the Division I level, they are all first-class polite young gentlemen who share accolades and praise of their teammates, even in the spotlight. Chief Chipfumbu was named MVP after turning in an extraordinary performance.
Our Wheeling University Year-End Giving Campaign letter should be arriving in your mailboxes this week. Since our fundraising efforts launched in September, we have seen a remarkable uptick in donations. I cannot remember a day over the past several months where we have not received a check in the mail. I am profoundly grateful for this generous outpouring of support for our beloved University and its wonderful and deserving students. I love seeing friends, family, alumni, and friends rise to the occasion in strong support of this amazing University. Donations from alumni and friends allow us to make a private, Catholic education grounded in Ignatian principles more affordable for this generation of Wheeling students. Please keep in mind that gifts must be postmarked by December 30 (December 31 is a bank and USPS holiday) to receive tax benefits. Donations can be made online through the Wheeling website at https://secure.qgiv.com/for/wju/ or by clicking the GIVE button on the homepage.
Over Christmas Break, Mass held on December 19, and January 2 will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. only. Additionally, the Chapel will be closed December 24-26, and our regular Sunday Mass schedule will resume on January 9. Please note, all University offices will be closed Friday, December 24 through Monday, December 27 for Christmas, and Friday, December 31 through Monday, January 3 for New Year’s to allow our employees time to celebrate the holidays with their families.
With the campus closed next Friday, this will be my last update for 2021; however, you can expect my December Newsletter on December 31.
As Christmas nears, let us take time during the holidays to remember those less fortunate among us, and in the words of Pope Francis, “Let us pray for peace: peace in the world and in each of our hearts.” I wish you a holy and blessed Christmas and a very Happy New Year from my family to yours!
With deep appreciation,
Ginny R. Favede, President