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New Student Success Center at Wheeling University Sets Positive Tone for Campus Community

  Monday, November 4, 2019 10:45 AM
  WU News


New Student Success Center at Wheeling University
Sets Positive Tone for Campus Community

November 4, 2019, Wheeling, WV– Wheeling University, West Virginia’s only Catholic institution of higher learning, will be introducing a new Student Success Center as an on-campus option for students seeking solutions to academic challenges, an encouraging study environment, emotional support, or simply a place to relax during trying times. The grand opening with a special ribbon cutting ceremony was held on the morning of Monday, November 4, 2019 at 9 a.m.

The Center is focused on four primary ideas: Creating a warm, welcoming, inclusive environment for students; providing an array of academic and personal support programs; peer tutoring; and success-coaching sessions based on the needs of students. 

Under the leadership of Devon Leonard, Director of Student Success, the campus community has welcomed the Student Success Center with open arms, offering support, encouragement, and creative ideas. Departments on campus have helped spread the word, and students are taking advantage of the new resource.

“I want the Student Success Center to become a ‘home away from home’ for students,” said Leonard. “I want them to feel welcome and comfortable. I have been in their shoes, and I understand their struggles. Everyone at the Student Success Center is anxious to lend a hand to students during this transitional and important phase of their lives.” 

With a background in academic counseling, transfer counseling, financial aid assistance, major exploration, career counseling, and various other aspects of student support, Leonard spent much of her career working with at-risk students. She is experienced in the struggles many university students face. “I have a keen eye for identifying and overcoming student barriers,” she adds.

Students, faculty, staff, and administration may each look at the Student Success Center a little differently, but Leonard embraces these different viewpoints. “I want students to think of the Student Success Center as their refuge,” she said. “Faculty should think of it as a supplement to their teaching.  Staff and administration should view the Student Success Center as the embodiment of the Wheeling University spirit – the kindness, openness and supportiveness that makes our campus community special.”

Just recently, the Student Success Center received notice of a student struggling in all of their classes. The student was experiencing what many students go through at one time or another: They missed home and were experiencing a difficult time. After several meetings with the Student Success Center and talking through their struggles, the student developed an academic success plan. One day they Leonard proudly says, “Wheeling University students are smart, but everyone needs a little guidance and support from time-to-time. Seeing them get back on track and overcome life’s challenges, whatever they may be, that’s what we are all about.”


Founded in 1954, Wheeling University is the only Catholic institution of higher learning in West Virginia. Its mission is to provide a high-quality Catholic education to the men and women of the Ohio Valley region and beyond. By integrating education, research, and economic development with classical knowledge and Christian revelation, Wheeling University seeks to equip its graduates with the critical, creative, and empathetic tools they need to pursue rewarding careers and enrich their local communities.