Published April 16, 2019
Wittenberg Alumni & Friends,
In just a few weeks, we will welcome our newest alumni to the Wittenberg family as the Class of 2019 celebrates its Commencement on May 11. Our alumni will be well represented at the ceremony with the chair of our Board of Directors, The Rev. Jonathan Eilert '93, the president of our Alumni Board, Allison Scaia '09, and our honorary degree recipient, Dr. P. Kay Carl '59, all sharing some brief remarks with the senior class.
Hearing their words and seeing alumni who continue to stay engaged with their alma mater are both critical for the Class of 2019, and every graduating class, as they speak to the lifelong connections alumni have with Witttenberg. They also show the power of a Wittenberg degree in the world just as our #LifeAfterWitt stories continue to do. Thank you for staying engaged with us, not just on occasion, but for a lifetime.
I also want to take a moment to provide a brief update on the leadership of our Office of Advancement and Alumni Engagement. We are currently in the final stages of the search for our next Vice President of the division, and based on my conversations with potential candidates to date, I am confident that the division will have a leader committed to our mission who will bring innovation, excitement and a strong desire to partner with you in our future success. As alumni and friends, you are our ambassadors, and I look forward to updating you more on this search in the next communication.
Lastly, Sharon and I are excited by the plans of the senior class to support our sustainability efforts. As its class gift, the seniors want to install two water bottle refilling stations on campus. The goal for this effort is $2,019, and classmates who give a gift of $20.19 will receive a special token of appreciation at the Senior Send-Off on May 8. To help encourage contributions, Sharon and I will give an additional $219 when 25 classmates give; $519 when 50 classmates give, and $1,019 when 100 classmates give. When 219 classmates give, we will give $2,019. We will keep you posted on the results.
Spring has finally arrived on campus, and the energy around the last remaining weeks of the 2018-19 academic year is palpable. Thank you for reminding all of us about the Wittenberg experience through your stories and for continuing to share your time, talents, and treasures with us. I hope you will take time to give back again next Wednesday during our annual Commit to Witt Day of Giving.
Michael Frandsen, Ph.D.
Twenty-four hours, one celebration, and a long-lasting impact – that’s the opportunity waiting for you on Commit to Witt day. Show your Tiger pride and pass your light on to future students with a gift on Wednesday, April 24.
As noted above, Wittenberg is excited to welcome Dr. P. Kay Carl ’59, an innovative educational leader, who will receive an honorary doctorate of humane letters and share a few words with the class of 2019 at Commencement. Carl served as assistant superintendent for the Clark County School District in Nevada during a period of phenomenal growth, overseeing the opening of 68 new elementary schools.
Designed to showcase students’ talents across different academic departments and co-curricular activities, the 7th annual Celebration of Learning united students, faculty, and staff around this year’s academic accomplishments. The day-long event featured panel discussions, paper presentations, poster sessions, and artistic performances, all capped off by the annual Honors Convocation, where Elizabeth George, professor of physics and 2014 Ohio Professor of the Year, was named the 2019 recipient of the Alumni Association Award for Distinguished Teaching.
Shades of Pearls
Shades of Pearls, a minority female organization dedicated to engaging, empowering, and encouraging African American and Hispanic women, hosted its first-ever symposium titled "Speak Your Truth, Sis!: Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality Symposium." The event schedule included speakers, round table discussions, and a spoken word/comedy show.
In recognition of the high academic achievements of first-generation students and the challenges they often have to overcome to earn a college degree, Wittenberg has established a chapter of Alpha Alpha Alpha (also known as Tri-Alpha), an honor society dedicated to first-generation students.
For students wishing to make meaningful change in society and be a voice for the voiceless, Wittenberg has announced a new sociology concentration in cultural anthropology that will focus on social justice and cultural understanding.
NACUBO Honors Alum
Doug Schantz ’04, director of the Office of Student Financial Services, has received the 2019 Student Financial Services Award from the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). Founder of CheapScholar.org and a sought-after speaker, Schantz is a nationally recognized expert in financing a college education.
Megan Porter ’96, associate professor of biology at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, is featured in a new PBS documentary titled Living Volcanoes. In collaboration with Annette Summers Engel ’95, Porter has discovered new species of animals that live inside lava tubes on Hawai’i Island. Photo: University of Hawai’i
Larry Baker ’71, who was the highest scoring collegiate player in Ohio in 1970-71, will be inducted into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame in May. Baker was drafted by Cleveland and Indiana of the National Basketball Association and was elected to Wittenberg's Hall of Honor in 1971. He will be joined in the Class of 2019 by Steve Moore '74, a key player for the Tigers and an assistant coach at Wittenberg who went on to become one of the most successful coaches in NCAA Division III at Muhlenberg and the College of Wooster.
Refer a Student Today
It’s time to start recruiting the class of 2024 (current high school juniors) and beyond! Please refer students you think would be perfect at Wittenberg. It’s never too early to refer a student, and you can refer as many students as you would like. By referring now, the student will receive a $1,000 annual award should they choose to attend Wittenberg.
Guild Style Show
The 63rd Annual Wittenberg Guild Scholarship Style Show will be held on May 18 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Benham-Pence Student Center Dining Room. With a theme of “The Pursuit of Style – J’Adore Paris,” the event will include silent and live auctions, lunch, and style show featuring summer fashions from local boutiques. Shop, eat, and benefit local students by helping provide scholarship funds to students from Clark County attending Wittenberg. For more information about attending or sponsoring this event, call Sophia Vandiford, director of donor relations and stewardship, at 937-327-6405.
In recognition of his excellence in scholarship, teaching, and mentoring, Professor of History Scott Rosenberg was named the H. Orth Hirt Chair in History, a position endowed in memory of the 1911 alumnus and founder of Erie Insurance Company.
Cliff Brown, professor of psychology, is the new Paul Luther Keil Chair in Psychology, established by Keil in loving memory of his parents, Luther F. Keil and Mary Ruth Slater Keil. Interim Provost Mary Jo Zembar noted Brown’s commitment to every student’s personal and professional success.
Assistant Professor of Education Michael Daiga was recognized for his work during the Honors Convocation with the Omicron Delta Kappa Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award. Daiga's primary research interest focuses on mathematics education, specifically looking at teachers' statistical knowledge in graphical representations.
Meet The Alumni Board
As the governing body of the Wittenberg University Alumni Association, the Alumni Board regularly returns to campus to interact with current students, highlight faculty excellence, foster alumni engagement, support fundraising, and partner with admission in encouraging prospective students to make Wittenberg their college choice. As the former president of the Alumni Board, A.S. Vikki Hooper '78 understands the importance of this work firsthand, having coordinated or attended multiple events on behalf of Wittenberg, and having served on the presidential search committee, which brought President Frandsen to Wittenberg. Vikki earned her MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and is a certified professional development trainer working part-time at IBM. She continues to serve on the Alumni Board, inspiring future generations to stay engaged with Wittenberg.