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Pharmacy Professor KarenBeth Bohan Receives Fulbright Grant 

Getting out of the classroom and into Africa has helped Wilkes pharmacy associate professor KarenBeth Bohan develop a greater appreciation for things we take for granted about healthcare in the United States.  Pharmacy training that includes clinical experience in a hospital and the safety and effectiveness of drugs are just two differences that Bohan has noted in her work as a Fulbright Specialist working at Makere University in Uganda.

Bohan was recently awarded a Fulbright Specialist Grant in public/global health work. The grants pair experts in a variety of fields with organizations and educational institutions to work on educational or administrative projects. The goal is that projects funded by the grants will be something that the sponsoring institution can continue after the consultant ends his or her work.

"I am working with professionals to develop clinical pharmacy skills..." - KarenBeth Bohan Associate Professor, Pharmacy

“I am working with professionals to develop clinical pharmacy skills…” – KarenBeth Bohan, Associate Professor, Pharmacy

“I am working with professors to develop clinical pharmacy skills, including patient counseling, making dosage recommendations, researching drug interactions and learning how to interact with and talk to health-care providers,” Bohan explains, adding that training received by Wilkes pharmacy students already emphasizes those skills.

The process to become a pharmacist in Uganda is much different than in the United States, Bohan explains. Unlike the pharmacy program at Wilkes, which awards students a doctor of pharmacy degree at the end of six years of study, the pharmacy program at the African university awards a bachelor’s degree. It provides minimal hands-on experience in hospitals and other health-care settings, primarily emphasizing theory and classroom instruction. Bohan’s project will expand clinical practice for the Makere students.

Bohan’s work is an outgrowth of earlier trips to Uganda and Tanzania, which began in summer 2011. Since then, she has made several trips with Wilkes students. In addition, Wilkes hosted two pharmacists from Uganda for eight weeks in November and December 2013, helping them to become certified in advanced pharmaceutical care training.

Under the grant, Bohan completed her first trip in March, and will travel two more times to Uganda.  Readers can follow her progress at her blog “Out of the Pharmacy Classroom and Into Africa,” by clicking on the blog link on the homepage at http://www.wilkes.edu.

Anne A. Skleder Joins Wilkes As Provost And Senior Vice President 

Anne A. Skleder became Wilkes' new provost and senior vice president this month.

Anne A. Skleder became Wilkes’ new provost and senior vice president this month.

Anne A. Skleder has joined Wilkes as its provost and senior vice president. In the position, Skleder is responsible for leading the University’s academic programs and initiatives, working with the deans of its five schools and colleges and its faculty. She also will have a major role in implementing initiatives outlined in its strategic plan.

Skleder comes to Wilkes from Cabrini College in Radnor, Pa., where she served as provost and vice president for academic affairs and professor of psychology since July 2010.

President Patrick F. Leahy cited Skleder’s more than two decades of higher education experience.  “Dr. Skleder is a dedicated and extremely knowledgeable member of the higher education community who has had many years of successful experiences as an academic leader,” Leahy says. “She embraces Wilkes’ unique mentoring culture and our belief in the benefits of a liberal arts education.”

Skleder was selected for the position following a national search.  In speaking about what attracted her to Wilkes, she says, “First and foremost, I felt there was a ‘mission match.’ I am a champion of mentoring, as I have had, and continue to have, amazing mentors who have helped me learn and grow and have pushed me to extend my reach beyond my grasp.  I have studied mentoring, and I have tried in as many ways as possible to mentor others.

“Second, I felt there was a match between my background and experience and the responsibilities and goals of the position—I am committed to collaborative work, collegial governance, innovation, student success, and strategic growth.  I saw all of these in the position description.”

Before joining Cabrini, Skleder was dean of Chatham College for Women at Chatham University in Pittsburgh, Pa. She also served Alvernia University in Reading, Pa., in a number of administrative positions, including vice provost, associate vice president for academic affairs and enrollment management, department chair of psychology, director of the Honors Program, and founding director of the Center for Community Engagement.

Skleder received her doctorate and master’s degree in social and organizational psychology from Temple University and her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Pittsburgh.

University Announces Plans for Sidhu School, South Campus Gateway

The Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership will have a new home in fall 2014 as part of a $4.5 million project announced by the University this spring. The multi-phase project includes transforming its University Center on Main (UCOM), located at 169 S. Main Street, into the new home of the Sidhu School and renovating 141 S. Main Street, the former Bartikowsky’s jewelry store, located next door.

Above, an artist’s rendering shows the new home of the Sidhu School of Business and Leadership on South Main Street. Courtesy Borton-Lawson.

Above, an artist’s rendering shows the new home of the Sidhu School of Business and Leadership on South Main Street. Courtesy Borton-Lawson.

The project also will create the South Main Street Gateway – a dramatic entrance to the heart of campus from South Main Street that would stretch through South Franklin Street onto the main campus greenway, the Fenner Quadrangle. The gateway project is expected to be completed some time during the 2014-2015 academic year.

Renovation of the University Center on Main, which now houses administrative offices, a café and a recreation center, will be completed in time for the start of the new school year in August. Renovations are estimated to cost about $3 million. When completed, the building will include a financial market trading room that simulates a New York Stock Exchange trading room, smart classrooms, faculty offices, meeting rooms for students and student club space.

The project is expected to be completed in time for the Sidhu School’s tenth anniversary, which will be celebrated during the 2014-2015 academic year. For more photos of the project, visit www.wilkes.edu/capitalprojects.

Wilkes Football Fans Follow The Colonels Year-round On Social Media

Alumni don’t have to wait until the fall to follow Wilkes football. When appointed as the new head coach of the Wilkes University men’s football team, Trey Brown stated that he wanted to rally players, coaches, students and alumni around the team and build a social community on and off campus. He is tackling these aims through a social media campaign initiated this spring.

Brown has taken the football team to Facebook and Twitter, posting videos and photos from team practices and competitions to garner support from players, students and alumni. His players have embraced Brown’s excitement, retweeting and sharing their favorite posts on their own social media accounts. Brown plans to use social media during the season to rouse support from fans at home and in the bleachers.

Brown became the Colonels eighth coach in February. As the quarterbacks’ coach/special teams’ coordinator at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, he was instrumental in helping the Mules program to one Centennial Conference championship, one NCAA Division III National Playoff berth and two ECAC South Atlantic bids.

Be sure to check out Wilkes’ YouTube channel for a video of the team’s latest weightlifting competition. Alumni can “like” the team’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/WilkesFootball and follow them on Twitter at https://twitter.com/WilkesFootball to show their support for the Blue and Gold.

Enactus Team Wins National Recognitions 

The Wilkes Enactus team placed in the top five out of 100 schools across the United States participating in the Sam’s Club Step Up for Small Business Project Partnership competition. The team also placed second runner-up in its league at the Enactus national competition.

The Sam’s Club competition required participating teams to partner with small businesses and provide consultation and marketing services. The team worked with Phil Daniels of Daniels Contracting, an independent firm located in Wilkes-Barre that renovates apartments for student housing and provides emergency contracting services.

Sam’s Club issued the students a $1,500 grant, which they used to purchase QuickBooks for Mac and arranged for the Small Business Development Center to teach Daniels how to use the software. The students also purchased and renovated an enclosed utility trailer to provide Daniels with a portable equipment storage container and eliminate the need for multiple trips between job sites. They also provided him with marketing assistance.

At the Enactus 2014 National Competition, the team placed second runner-up in its league in the quarter final round for five projects that the students completed during the 2013/2014 academic year. In addition to the Sam’s Club competition, the projects included assisting the Thrive Wellness Center, a holistic healing center in Kingston, Pa., the Wilkes University Entrepreneurial Experience Business Plan Competition, the Campbell’s Let’s Can Hunger project partnership, and volunteering at the Ruth’s Place women’s shelter to provide job training and professional development skills to residents.

Wilkes Students Spend Semester In Mesa

Wilkes undergraduates, above, took a trip to the Grand Canyon as part of their Semester in Mesa. Pictured, front row from left, Assistant to the Dean for Strategic Initiatives Kristine Pruett, J. Brandon Carey, Ryan Joyce, Dan Lykens. Second row, from left, Doug Cowley, T.J. Zelinka, Alexis Gildea, Joseph Zack, Sara Hagenbach, Andrew Polzella and Alex Planer.

Wilkes undergraduates, above, took a trip to the Grand Canyon as part of their Semester in Mesa. Pictured, front row from left, Assistant to the Dean for Strategic Initiatives Kristine Pruett, J. Brandon Carey, Ryan Joyce, Dan Lykens. Second row, from left, Doug Cowley, T.J. Zelinka, Alexis Gildea, Joseph Zack, Sara Hagenbach, Andrew Polzella and Alex Planer.

Ten Wilkes University students from its Pennsylvania campus participated in a pilot program, Semester in Mesa, allowing them to pursue internship and cultural opportunities in the Arizona city. The program is similar to the University’s Semester in Washington program. The students – all business and engineering majors – are interning with companies that include the City of Mesa Engineering Resources Department, Visit Mesa, the Phoenix Mesa Marriott and Entrepix, a company that provides service to the semiconductor industry.

As part of their experience in Mesa, the students also are taking classes at the Mesa Center for Higher Education, where Wilkes is offering classes.  The Semester in Mesa builds on Wilkes’ participation in the H.E.A.T. (Healthcare, Education, Aerospace, Technology/Tourism) Initiative for Economic Development in Mesa.

The students and their host companies were recognized at a reception held May 5 in Mesa.

Christopher Jagoe Is New Director of Public Safety 

Christopher Jagoe, Director of Public Safety.

Christopher Jagoe, Director of Public Safety.

Christopher Jagoe has joined Wilkes as its new director of public safety. In this new position, he will direct the University’s  public safety officers and will lead efforts to strengthen campus safety and security.

Jagoe joins Wilkes with three decades of experience working for the University of Maryland Police Department in College Park, ending his career there as the deputy chief of police.

“I look forward to forging strong relationships with local law enforcement, the fire department, and leaders on campus and in the surrounding community,” Jagoe says. “In partnership with local law enforcement, I will work on issues concerning off-campus student conduct and crime prevention. In everything I do, the safety of our campus community is the primary goal.”

Jagoe earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Maryland and also attended the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va.

Wilkes Partners To Bring Kids For Cash To The Screen

Hillary Transue is now a student in the Wilkes graduate creative writing program. PHOTO BY VICKI MAYK

Hillary Transue is now a student in the Wilkes graduate creative writing program.

Hillary Transue says she has something in common with one of her favorite fictional characters.

“I’m like Harry Potter: I’m famous for something that I wish never happened,” Transue says.  While Potter survived an attack by the make-believe villain Voldemort, Transue survived a real-life ordeal.

She’s referring to her role in the largest scandal ever uncovered in America’s juvenile justice system. At 15, Transue was sent to jail for creating a fake MySpace page about her high school’s vice principal. When Transue was convicted for what many would say was a typical teenage prank and sent to a wilderness camp for delinquents, her mother sought help from Philadelphia’s Juvenile Law Center. An investigation revealed that the judge sentencing her had received millions of dollars in payments from the privately-owned juvenile detention centers where he sent the kids he convicted. Transue’s case is one of those highlighted in the new documentary, Kids For Cash, released Feb. 7 by SenArt Films.

Today Transue is enrolled in Wilkes University’s master’s degree program in creative writing, where she has a graduate assistantship in the program’s office. She’s studying fiction and creative nonfiction and plans to write a novel for her creative thesis. Wilkes has been a supporter of the Kids For Cash documentary, which was produced and directed by Robert May, a member of the creative writing program’s advisory board. Students profiled in the film were offered opportunities to enroll at Wilkes. Transue is the first to do so.

Wilkes’ support of the film also included providing office space for May’s company, SenArt Films, as well as office and editing space and housing for members of his crew. Graduate assistants from Wilkes’ creative writing program, provided hundreds of hours of labor and gained valuable experience, working as researchers and production assistants on the film. The Wilkes facilities and public safety departments, among many others on campus, provided additional support for the film.

Balancing Act

Ally Kristofco Balanced Tennis And Two Majors On Way To Degree

By Bill Thomas ’13

As captain of Wilkes University’s women’s tennis team, senior Ally Kristofco has plenty of experience keeping balls in the air. It’s a skill that’s come in handy throughout her college career, as she’s balanced athletics with the academic responsibilities of double-majoring in marketing and Spanish.

“It’s been a juggling act, but I’m really happy I was able to make it work and finish on time,” Kristofco, who graduates this spring, says. “Knowing I had to juggle both things helped me because I would actually use the free time I had to focus on my school work. If I didn’t have anything else to do I might have gotten lazy. In having that structure, if I had two hours I knew I should start on something or read something or be more active.”

Ally Kristofco '14 scored in the classroom and on the court. PHOTO BY CURTIS SALONICK

Ally Kristofco ’14 scored in the classroom and on the court.

Driven as Kristofco is, however, the importance of giving back remains a major motivating factor for her. This April, she spearheaded efforts to create the Pink Day tennis charity event, raising money to benefit breast cancer research.

“My mother had battled breast cancer and, so far so good, she’s a survivor. That’s the motivation behind it. There’s another girl on the team whose mother had breast cancer, so it’s something we’re passionate about and believe in,” Kristofco says.

“The tennis team hasn’t really done something like this before, and I’d wanted to do something like this for a while, so it seemed like a great way for us to get involved and give back. It’s a team effort, not just mine. I think this is something that can be passed on and really grow into something that Wilkes tennis can be proud of and continue to do in the future.”

With graduation just around the corner, it’s hardly surprising the future is on Kristofco’s mind.

Her tireless work ethic certainly seems to have paid off, earning her a 3.75 grade-point average, a spot on the dean’s list every semester and membership in the Delta Mu Delta business honor society, among other honors. Kristofco believes the achievements and education she’s received at Wilkes will continue to open doors for her as she decides whether to go first to grad school or directly into the job market.

Ideally, Kristofco said, she hopes to find work that will allow her to use both of her Wilkes degrees. Her participation in Wilkes’ 2012 study abroad program in Rome only whetted the adventurous Hollidaysburg, Pa., native’s appetite to see the world.

“I love to travel,” she said. “I would definitely like to go to Brazil someday. I would love to see Rio and some of Latin America, because I’ve never been there. I’d love to go places where I can use my Spanish and really see the culture firsthand.”

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