WEST CHESTER – The University of West Chester has ushered in an exciting new era of research, while maintaining a commitment to its teaching priority above all else. At a time when the University is preparing to celebrate its next class of graduates who are about to graduate, the University of West Chester recently recognized another outstanding academic class – 33 outstanding faculty members whose compelling research efforts improve community decision-making issues; diversity, equity and inclusion; sustainability; student development; and leadership and innovation. A group of faculty and academics whose 23 research projects directly coincide with five specific areas outlined in the university’s strategic plan was officially recognized during an evening of focus on faculty held at the university’s new 175,000-square-foot facility. Science and Technology Center and The Commons.
“Today, as we look forward to a promising future for a research venture at the University of West Chester, we also remember the hard work and dedication of the teachers whose leadership, curiosity and experience have led us to this point,” said the Vice-Chancellor. for research and creative activity of Nicole Bennett in her introductory speech.
Bennett acknowledged that university-funded research funding is growing with an accumulation of more than $ 5 million in fiscal year 2021; increasing grant funding is the university’s highest experience.
“As part of our new era of research, the university’s external grant funding is increasing,” Bennett added. “Funding for student services and tuition actually exceeds funding for research and development. This undoubtedly reflects the commitment of faculty, staff and university administrators to improving student achievement. ”
The time of the university has certainly come, as this new era coincides with its reclassification from colleges and universities to master’s programs – broader programs (M1) to doctoral universities – higher research activities (R2) according to the Carnegie Higher Education Classification. The university’s new classification for 2021 took place during Carnegie’s last three-year evaluation cycle in the Higher Education Classification, which was published for public review in December 2021. Carnegie’s last update took place in 2018.
According to the classification, R2 universities have “high research activity” in an academic setting where teaching is a priority. At R2 University, most courses are taught by research professors and often involve students in their research work.
“R2 signals that the University of West Chester is serious about research,” said Vice-Chancellor and Vice President of Academic Operations Jeffrey Osgood to an audience of award winners and guests. “At the same time, the combination of research with teaching makes research-based teaching that provides the most robust experience for our students. We are here today to celebrate the science teachers who bring excellence to the classroom every day with their teaching. ”
Osgood presented an award with an inscription to each of the following faculty scholars during the program:
Josh Old, Associate Professor and Assistant Chairman for Biology
Michael Boyle, Professor and Chair of Communication and Media
Maria Cabrera, Coordinator and Professor of Languages and Culture
Constance Case, Associate Professor of Theater and Dance
Alex Cohen, Associate Professor of Marketing
Simon Kandliff, Professor of Economics and Finance
Laquana Cook, Associate Professor and Director of iCamp Media Academy, English
Patricia Davidson, Professor, Nutrition
Anita Foman, Professor, Communications and Media
Elizabeth Foster, Associate Professor of Kinesiology
Amir Galmakhamadi, Associate Professor of Food Sciences
Elizabeth Grill, Professor, Communication Science and Disorders
Megan Hackert, Associate Professor, Department of Geography and Planning
Lori Hayers, Professor of Psychology
Daniel Hilaria, Professor of Secondary Education
Kurt Kalasinski, professor of chemistry
Bessie Lawton, Professor of Communication and Media
Grace Liu, Associate Professor, Business Librarian of University Libraries
Rodney Maider, Professor of English; Invited researcher at the McNeil Center for Early American Studies
Lisa Marana, professor of mathematics
Rachel McMalin, Associate Professor, Librarian of the Humanities, University Library
Brendan Mitchell, Associate Professor of Physics
Paul Morgan, professor of educational foundations and policy research
Shannon Mrkic, Associate Professor of English and Director of the First Year of Experience
Cheryl Neil-McFaul, Professor and Interim Chair, Education Consultant
Mia Ocean, Associate Professor of Social Work
Amanda Alejarski, Associate Professor and Director of Public Policy and Management MPA
Matt Sabo, Associate Professor of Economics and Finance
Gretchen Studlin-Webb, Associate Professor of Dance
Jasmine Tahmaseb-Makanata, Professor of Psychology
Julie Tenil, Associate Professor of Social Work
Maria Urutia, Associate Professor of Dance
Carrie Walton, Associate Professor, Librarian of Electronic Resources of University Libraries
“All of you who received the awards today have shown a strong commitment to student success,” said Chris Fiorentina, president of the University of West Chester in his closing remarks. “You have had an incredible impact through the pedagogical workload you are carrying out and for what has been incredible over the last two years. I am so proud and proud to be among the faculty who are at the heart of this university and its mission. ”
“As you can see, research-based learning conducted by professors at the University of West Chester constantly inspires and encourages our students to be better versions of themselves in and out of the classroom,” said Executive Vice President and Vice Rector Lori Bernotsky. “We are very fortunate to work with faculty who seek to create extraordinary experiences for their students by conducting research, engaging students in this research, and creating relevant graduate programs. In doing so, this university really helps to solve some of the great problems of our world in ways that make significant differences. ”
The evening of research in focus also attracted many community partners to celebrate on campus. Leaders of the West Pharmaceutical Services, Independence Blue Cross Foundation, Alliance for Health Equity (formerly Brandywine Health Foundation), Chester County Community Foundation, Penn Medicine (Chester County Hospital), and the Chamber of Commerce were among those who encouraged the award-winning faculty and university students. Exton, West Chester Business Improvement District (BID), The Wistar Institute, Nth Solutions, Meridian Bank, Vista Today, Keiretsu Forum and Aspire Prosthetics.
Details of the reclassification of the University of R2
To be considered an R2 university, a university or college must have at least 20 PhDs and have at least $ 5 million in total research costs, according to the National Science Foundation (NSF) in Higher Education Research and Development. (HERDS). Thus, the reclassification of the university to the R2 University is based on the cost of research and development and the number of doctoral students it graduates.
The steady increase in the number of graduate students between fiscal 2010 and 2020 has been increased by the addition of university doctoral programs in clinical psychology (Psy.D.), educational policy planning and administration (Ed.D.), nursing practice (DNP), and Public Administration (DPA).
In fiscal year 2020, the year of the upgrade, WCU graduated 24 Ed.D. and DPA students pooled and invested $ 6.41 million in research and development according to a survey by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research & Development Survey (HERD). The university’s investment in research has been more than $ 5 million since fiscal 2015, so Carnegie’s new classification does reflect the fact that WCU PhDs are starting graduate students in greater numbers.
West Chester University
The University of West Chester, which has more than 17,600 students, is the most prominent member of the Pennsylvania system of higher education out of 14 institutions. Founded in 1871, the University is a comprehensive government institution offering a wide range of more than 200 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs in more than 50 fields of study. In addition to the main campus in West Chester, the University offers programs through its alumni center, campus in Philadelphia and online. The six colleges and two schools consist of the University: the University College, the College of Arts and Humanities, Business and Public Management, Education and Social Work, Medical Sciences, Science and Mathematics, and the School of Music of Wales and the Graduate School. .