Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Her Haven for Humanity

When Sarah Cunningham ’16, turned 21 while en route to Uganda, she celebrated the milestone quietly. Her gift upon landing was a brilliant sunrise that beckoned her to a land sparse with economic surplus but rich with hope.

“My grandparents are missionaries there who started their own organization to aid children,” she said. “In December, I spent three weeks with them in Uganda doing research that will be used as part of my honors thesis at BW. As a public health major, I was living my dream…to work with women and children in developing nations.

“I visited the slums and conducted interviews with young women,” she continued. “They have suffered illness, pain, surgery, poverty and unfaithful husbands. Their lives were tenuous in many ways and filled with episodes of pain. Yet, they still smiled and carried on.

“When AIDS wiped out a generation of parents, girls grew up without mothers. Conversations about maturation, pregnancy and sex were not discussed in-depth," she noted.

An aspiring OB/GYN physician, Cunningham sees her trip to Uganda as one that united her passion for women and children’s issues with her career goal and heart for humanitarian service.

“I am so grateful for this opportunity,” she said. “The Baldwin Wallace Honors Program helped fund my trip and has done a great job encouraging me to achieve my goals. So, too, have the professors in public health, my church and family.

“I am also indebted to the people of Uganda. The images I saw and the stories I heard impacted me in many ways,” she acknowledged.

Upon leaving, she took with her research data and cherished memories of her grandparents. But also resounding within her heart were images and words blurred within the confines of pain and uncertainty that cut through the slums of Uganda with barbs of poverty, disease and abandonment.

But also with hope, courage and determination.

Senior Art Student Among Nominees for Ohio EVA Award

BW Senior Studio Art major Brittney Marie Callahan '15 is one of just 27 nominees for the Award for Excellence in the Visual Arts (EVAs), an intercollegiate arts competition recognizing outstanding student artists from across the state of Ohio.

Callahan, an accomplished artist on road to a May graduation, was nominated for the award by BW faculty. You can view her exceptional portfolio on the EVA website, and also vote for Brittney for the People's Choice Award; (click her photo in the top row, right end.)

The winner will be announced at the art awards reception on April 8, 2015, at the Columbus College of Art & Design. The EVAs are sponsored by the Associate of Independent Colleges and Universities of Ohio (AICUO)

James Fell Appointed to Advisory Group on Nursing Education

Baldwin Wallace University’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (ABSN) is gaining a new distinction through its director/interim administrator and associate professor, James Fell, recently appointed to a two-year term with the Ohio Board of Nursing Advisory Group on Nursing Education.

The advisory group, comprised of distinguished nurses and nursing educators from all over the state, is selected by the Board each year to meet and propose ways in which nursing education programs can be improved.

With experience leading the growing BW program and many years of teaching and administrative experience in BSN, ND (nursing doctorate), Diploma, and Associate Degree (ADN) nursing education, Fell has been given the specific designation as the representative for Ohio accelerated BSN programs.

The decorated 28-year (retired) Navy Nurse Corps Reserve member, who served on active duty during Operations Desert Storm, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn, currently teaches courses in behavioral health, leadership and ethics, and the capstone Seminar in Professional Nursing Practice within the ABSN program, among several others. The BW program heads into its fourth year in Fall 2015.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

BW Alumnus Touts the Benefits of 3/2 IT MBA Program

From Baldwin Wallace to a Big Apple media company, that’s the path that Ben Meadors took after graduating from BW in 2012. Meadors lives in Brooklyn, New York and works as the IT Manager and Post Production Engineer for ArkMedia, an award-winning production company that creates and produces television shows for PBS.

While at BW, Meadors participated in the 3/2 program, which allows students to receive both their Bachelor and Master of Business Administration degrees with one additional year of study. Meadors focused his MBA on IT and says that the 3/2 program was what attracted him to BW.

Meadors has found that his degrees are especially beneficial in small business settings where a broad set of IT skills are needed to help run a company.Meadors is the sole IT person at Ark Media and describes his position as a “one man IT department.” This means doing a variety of jobs such as: day-to-day tech support, designing and maintaining the network and writing tech policies for the company. It all gives Meadors “a great starting place into the corporate IT world.”

Meadors reports that Ark Media, has been doing quite well with recent projects. One television project, “African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross,” was aired on PBS and won two Emmy’s and a Peabody award. Another show produced by the company, “Cancer: The Emperor of all Maladies,” airs on PBS next month (March 2015).

Friday, February 20, 2015

Student Body Voices Heard in Election of New President, VP

For many students BW's February Election Day is just another day filled with classes, commutes in the cold, and many cups of coffee or hot chocolate. However, for the representatives of BW's Student Government, this day was focused on engaging students to make sure their voices would be heard in the Student Body Elections.

This semester's election had students voting on three different ballots: Student Senator Election, Student Body President and Vice President Election, and the Ratification of the Student Body Constitution.
Ashley King '16 and Tom Jackson '16
Students elected Ashley King '16 and Tom Jackson '16 as Student Body President and Vice President.

King, a human resources management and marketing major from Ravenna, Ohio, says "Through my experiences in many different departments on campus, I have been able to see the passion and drive that not only the student have, but the faculty and staff as well. I think that this new role will provide both challenges and successes and I could not be more excited to be working with Tom to grow the campus."

Jackson, a marketing and international business major from Hermitage, Penns is looking forward to advocating for students his new executive branch role. "BW has really become my home and I couldn't be more honored to serve the community in this capacity," he says.

Along with the election of a new president and veep, students voted to ratify the following changes to the Student Body Constitution:
96th Session of Student Government
"Each Senator shall now represent 65 to 95 students rather than 85 (exact number to be determined by the senate in the fall of each academic year).

Any student wishing to become a Senator must make and maintain a 2.7 cumulative GPA.

Any Student Senator wishing to run for Student Senate President must have served in two full sessions prior, with at least one of the two having been served in the year preceding the selection.

Any student wishing to become a Supreme Court Justice must make and maintain a 2.7 cumulative GPA."
With a set of newly-elected Senators and a new Student Body Executive Branch, Student Government looks towards another exciting semester in working to improve BW's campus.

Business Plan Helps Grad Manage a Business of his Own

After graduation, Strongsville native Keith Pech '14 relocated to sunny Boquete, Panama to manage a family coffee business, Damarli Agricultural Inc. Pech has been working to move the company forward and credits his entrepreneurial success to a business plan formulated while he was a student at BW. 

As a former International Business and Sustainability major, Pech commends his professors for teaching him how to operate in an international environment and to create products for international sales. While at BW, Pech developed a business plan outlining tour designs, business pursuits and plans for improving the sustainability of Damarli Agricultural Inc. He says it's been rewarding to put that plan into action.

Pech's plan include goals to create a completely organic farm and, eventually, to have his coffee available in the United States.

As an undergrad, Pech founded BW's Coffee Club and Table Tennis Club and the first representative of BW to make the College Table Tennis National Championship.

Students Perform Oscar Songs With the Cleveland Pops

Four Baldwin Wallace Music Theatre students recently had the unique opportunity to perform with the Cleveland POPS Orchestra at Severance Hall.

Lucy Anders '15, Kelly Autry '16, Ellis Dawson '16 and Hannah-Jo Weisberg '15 performed songs from musicals such as West Side Story, Mama Mia, Mary Poppins and more.

The concert, conducted by word renowned maestro, Carl Topilow, was titled "The Academy Awards for Music" and featured musical selections recognized by the Academy over the past 80 years.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Communication Sciences & Disorders Professor Receives Award

Christie Needham, Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences & Disorders and the Director of Clinical Education at the Baldwin Wallace Speech Clinic, has been chosen to receive a Fellow of the Association award from the Ohio Speech-Language-Hearing Association (OSLHA).

The award recognizes individuals who have been in the speech-language profession for more than five years and have made significant contributions to and professional services in the field of speech, language and hearing. This year, Needham is one of two recipients in the state of Ohio who is receiving this life-time award at the organization's March convention.

Needham has done a variety of clinical work in addition to research involving nonverbal children and patients with Alzheimer's Disease or Dementia. She currently serves as the Treasurer for OSLHA as well as the faculty advisor for the Baldwin Wallace Chapter of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

From Tears to Triumph...Grad Pursues Goals Honoring Friend

For Cynthia Kenmuir ’02, the path to success first began with a screech of tires, a frantic rush to the hospital and tears…so many tears.

“When I was in high school, one of my best friend’s was involved in a terrible automobile accident that severed her spinal cord. It left her paralyzed from the waist down I took the news very hard," she recalled. "It was at that time I developed a true interest in medicine."

Today Kenmuir, M.D., Ph.D., is chief neurology resident at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. This week she presented key research at the International Stroke Conference (Nashville) that centered on using stem cell therapy to improve cognitive function in patients who haven’t recovered months or years after a clot-caused stroke.

The Lisbon, Ohio, native, who was valedictorian at her high school, said she looked at several colleges and universities nationwide before deciding on Baldwin Wallace. She picked BW because of its strong neuroscience program and amazing hands-on learning opportunities.

Today, her BW experience is being carried forward in her career. "I am so excited to have fulfilled my passion," she noted.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

BW CIG Names First Faculty Innovation Fellows

BW's Center for Innovation and Growth

BW's Center for Innovation and Growth (CIG) recently appointed two faculty members to serve as the CIG's first Innovation Fellows beginning fall 2015 for two years.

After a rigorous application process and review from the CIG Innovation Fellowship committee, Tony Chen in the Economics department and Sean Gilmore in the Communication Arts and Sciences department were selected for this opportunity.

Through their fellowship, Chen and Gilmore will work on a variety of CIG projects and programs support the CIG's mission of "infusing innovation and entrepreneurship across the BW campus and Northeast Ohio."

Student Cyber Defense Team Wins Ohio Competition

The BW Cyber Defense Team, a collection of tech-savvy BW students who fight off strikes from nefarious hackers, took first place in the 2015 Ohio State Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC)!

Placed in command of a "realistic computer network," the team was tasked with maintaining uptime, completing business tasks, and defending the network from hackers. Winning teams were able to do all of these tasks effectively, and BW was among the most effective, placing first among 5 teams from Ohio and second overall with teams from six states entered in the showdown.

"We've worked many hours preparing for this competition," says Kenneth Atchinson, a BW computer science faculty member and advisor for the BW Cyber Defense Team. "This is as close to being in a 'real life' scenario as one can get. The experience of working as a team to secure the network, getting tasks from judges, then having hackers attack your system in ways you may not have expected - you just can't get this from a classroom."

The team will now go on to participate in the Mid-West Regional CCDC competition in Chicago on March 27-28, where the stakes are higher, the hackers "more fierce," and the judges more involved.

Friday, February 6, 2015

BW Grad Goes Global

BW alumnus, Dylan Davis '03 has recently earned an appointment as The Asia Foundation's new Country Representative in Seoul, South Korea, the latest step in a fascinating international career that was sparked by an undergraduate study abroad experience.

The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international organization that seeks to improve lives, expand opportunities and help Asian nations unite and flourish. The longstanding partnership of The Asia Foundation spans across 18 Asian countries.

Prior to his appointment, Davis was involved in 
extensive in-country work with Korean and American institutions. Davis also served in the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Seoul and most recently, as Program Director for the Center for Korean Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

While attending BW, Davis majored in both psychology and music. As an undergrad, he studied abroad in Seoul and told political science and international studies professor Dr. Judy Krutky that "I have you and Baldwin Wallace to thank for the study abroad experience at Ewha that led to a Fulbright grant, and now this new opportunity."

Davis has received many awards from high-level institutions around the globe. His tenure as Country Representative in Seoul will begin on March 2.

BW's Greek Council Gathers New Ideas at Conference

Greek Council at the AFLV Awards Banquet
Despite the snowy weather in the Midwest, members of BW's Greek Council (including yours truly) recently made the trek to Indianapolis to attend the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values (AFLV) Central Conference. As an annual tradition for the recently elected Greek Council, this conference connected our Greek Council leadership team to a network of more than 2,000 Fraternity & Sorority Life professionals and students.

The Greek Council delegates attended workshops on topics such as battling negative stereotypes, and improving community service efforts. They also found time for some fun, cheering on their favorite teams at the Stroll Competition. Strolling, a form of line movement, is traditionally done by chapters in the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC).

After a phenomenal weekend, BW's Greek Council members returned campus with the knowledge, ambition and confidence to make this a successful year for BW's Fraternity & Sorority Life community.

BW Alum Leads Esperanza to Success

The incredible success of a nonprofit effort to increase low Hispanic graduation rates in Cleveland has put BW alumnus Victor Ruiz '99, executive director of Esperanza,  in the media spotlight. As explained in Crain's Cleveland Business, and La PrensaEsperanza is a nonprofit organization that focuses primarily on guiding Hispanic students toward graduation. Ruiz has played a key role in the program's success in addressing what the Cleveland Metropolitan School District declared "a crisis" in 2011. In just two years of ambitious programming, the Hispanic graduation rates in Cleveland doubled.

Esperanza provides test prep, one-on-one mentoring, tutoring and student scholarships to Hispanic high school students. Over the past six years, Esperanza's budget has greatly expanded and by next year, it is expected to reach $2 million. Down the road, Ruiz hopes that the program will expand and begin to work in elementary and middle schools in addition to high schools.

In an earlier interview with Crain's, Ruiz discussed how as a young Hispanic child in Cleveland, he was helped by nonprofit and public social service organizations. This made attending college at BW a possibility for Ruiz, who was awarded BW's Alumni Merit Award in 2014. Ruiz says it's his duty to give back to his community.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

BW Seniors Offered Elite Fellowships with Cleveland Clinic

2015 Cleveland Clinic Finance Fellows Tom Kasper '15, Josh Ingle '15, and Eric Gase '15
After a rigorous application and interview process, Tom Kasper '15, Eric Gase '15 and Josh Ingle '15 have each earned one of the six positions in the competitive Cleveland Clinic's Finance Fellowship program

The program lasts a full year, according to mathematics and economics double major Josh, rotating fellows through several areas of business operations within the Cleveland Clinic, including financial planning and corporate accounting, with the aim of preparing candidates to handle a wide range of operational facets of a healthcare organization.

Tom, a finance and economics double major and accounting minor, credits BW for helping him to develop the analytical skills that made him stand out: "There is a tremendous demand for employees who can understand, interpret, and make business decisions based on the data through statistical and trend analysis," Tom said.

All three seniors also commended the assistance of BW Career ServicesBeth Ehrbar who helped them lock down the positions. "I met with [Beth] about two times for each interview and she went over possible interview questions, how to answer interview questions, and overall tips for improvement," said Eric, a finance and international business double major.

When the program concludes, all three aspire to be hired into a full time position in one of the departments where they will be gaining experience over the next year. To date, the Cleveland Clinic has hired all former Finance Fellows into different finance roles, so the future is looking bright for these three BW students.

BW Professor Emeritus, Alumnus Earns Hospital Service Award

Through dedication and hard work, BW professor emeritus and alumnus Robert Ebert '65 recently earned Fairview Hospital's Community Service Award.

Following in the footsteps of his parents, who were involved with the fundraising campaign for the hospital, Ebert devoted his time and energy to the improvement of health care since he was asked to serve on the board of Fairview Enterprises in the 1980s, going to serve in various capacities including the Fairview Hospital Board of Trustees and the Community West Foundation.

"I am committed to excellence in health care," says Ebert, "as I believe it is vital to the well-being of the community."

The 1965 BW graduate completed a doctorate in economics at Case Western Reserve University and went on to teach the subject at BW for many years, earning many teaching and faculty awards. Ebert became a professor emeritus in 2010.