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Westminster Celebrity Series Director Receives Commander's Award

Gene DeCaprio, director of the Westminster College Celebrity Series, recently received the Commander's Award for Public Service from the Department of the Army.

 According to the certificate, DeCaprio received this award "for outstanding public service to The United States Army Field Band while acting as a concert coordinator and sponsor for seven performances by the Musical Ambassadors of the Army' for over 12 years.  Mr. DeCaprio's enthusiastic support and tireless efforts in concert promotion have enabled the Field Band to perform its mission of strengthening ties between the civilian population and the Army by reaching more than 7,000 citizens.  His efforts are a milestone in service to The United States Army Field Band, the United States Army, and the thousands who have attended these performances."

 "We are proud of Gene for and grateful to him for the gifts of entertainment that he brings to Western Pennsylvania through the Celebrity Series and related programming," said Westminster College President R. Thomas Williamson.

 DeCaprio, who has been with Westminster College since 1989, earned his undergraduate degree from Westminster College and his master's from the University of Wisconsin.
Contact DeCaprio at (724) 946-7371 or e-mail for more information.

Gene DeCaprio, Director of the Westminster College Celebrity Series

Professional Gay Marriage Debate Coming to Westminster College

Allies, Westminster College's gay-straight alliance, will host "The State of THE Union: A Gay Marriage Debate" Tuesday, April 11, at 8 p.m. in Beeghly Theater.

  The debate will feature Robert Knight, director of the culture and family institute and a drafter of the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act, versus Jason West, mayor of New Paltz, N.Y., who performed 25 gay marriage ceremonies in February 2004 before a court order forced him to stop.

 "It is important to keep the students and the Westminster community informed on important issues," said Mariella Volker, a sophomore and vice president of Allies from York. "By bringing the debate to campus, all sides of the issue can be heard, and we can in turn bring awareness to campus."

                Keppler Speakers, a company based in Arlington, Va., that schedules speakers at corporate, civic, and academic events internationally, is providing the debaters.  According to the Keppler Web site, "This controversial Civil Rights Debate brings two notable experts to discuss the Constitutional, legal, social, and cultural implications of this landmark issue."

                Allies will be hosting the debate, but it is sponsored in part by Diversity Symposium, the Diversity Office, the Student Government Association Diversity Speaker Fund, Sociology Interest Group, Green Party, College Democrats, the Political Science and Sociology Department and the Communication Studies, Theater and Art Department.

 A question and answer session with the speakers will follow. Afterward, refreshments will be provided in the lobby of Beeghly.

 "We want to encourage open discussion on gay marriage following the event," said Bethany South, a sophomore public relations chair for Allies from Bradford. "We hope that everyone who attends will feel free to stay and discuss the issue informally."

 Faculty adviser to Allies and assistant professor of biology Joshua Corrette-Bennett encourages all who attend to go into the event with an open mind.

 "I do not expect anyone to undergo a sudden transformation during the debate and completely change their views on gay marriage," Corrette-Bennett said. "My immediate hope is that people who view this issue from one perspective or the other walk away from this forum having learned something about the opposing side that makes them stop and reconsider their position as well as their understanding of marriage."

              According to Keppler, Knight wrote and directed The Children of Table 34, a documentary about sex researcher pioneer Alfred C. Kinsey, and a video about recovery from homosexuality, Hope & Healing. He has written articles for many publications, including Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, Baltimore Sun, Washington Times, and San Francisco Chronicle. He has appeared on The O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, ABC's World News Tonight and Nightline, CNN's Crossfire and CNN News, Oprah, and National Public Radio's Fresh Air, Talk of the Nation and All Things Considered.

               According to Keppler, in addition to being mayor, West was part of the first Green Party majority elected in New York State. He has won many awards for his stance on marriage equality and honored by the New York State Senate Democratic Conference, the California State Legislature, and community organizations from around the country. West has been profiled in such magazines as the New York Times Magazine, Plenty, Out, The Advocate, and Jane.

              The event is free and open to the public. Contact Corrette-Bennett at (724) 946-7206 or e-mail for more information.

Robert Knight
Jason West

Westminster Graduate Students Inducted into Honor Society

Ten Westminster College graduate students were inducted into the Pi Alpha Chi chapter of the Chi Sigma Iota Counseling Academic and Professional Honor Society International.

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Westminster College Singers to Perform at Saxonburg Presbyterian Church

The Westminster College Concert Choir, Chorale, and Madrigal Singers will perform "The Festival of Christmas: A Time of Joy" at the Saxonburg Presbyterian Church Friday, Dec. 8, at 8 p.m.

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Students Earn Master of Education Degrees at Westminster College

Twenty-two students were awarded master of education degrees at Westminster College during commencement exercises Saturday, May 17

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Westminster College Offers Personal Enrichment Classes

Westminster College announces several personal enrichment and leisure courses for community residents. Continuing Education classes and seminars are non-credit and are open to all interested individuals. Formal admission to Westminster College is not required.

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Spring Orchestra Concert May 6

The Westminster College Orchestra will present a concert Sunday, May 6, at 3 p.m. in Orr Auditorium.

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Jazz Ensemble to Present Concert

Westminster College Jazz Ensemble

Westminster College's Jazz Ensemble will present their first concert of the spring semester Friday, Feb. 8, at 7:30 p.m. in the Berlin Lounge of the McKelvey Campus Center. The event is free and open to the public.

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Westminster College to Award Alumni Citations Oct. 17

Dr. Melva McCrory Burke
Nancy Aikman Martin
A. James Melnick
Sean Swarner

Westminster College will award Alumni Citations to Dr. Melva McCrory Burke, Nancy Aikman Martin, and A. James Melnick, and Sean Swarner will receive the Outstanding Young Alumni Award at the annual Citation Celebration Reception and Dinner Friday, Oct. 17, in the Witherspoon Rooms of the McKelvey Campus Center.

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Faculty and Students Participated at Psychology Conference

Dr. Sandra Webster, Maranda McClintock, Mikayla Barcus, Matt Facciani, Jessica Miklosovic, Cassie Treshok
Amanda Kowalczyk

Dr. Sandra Webster, Westminster College professor of psychology, and seven Westminster students participated in the 37th annual Western Pennsylvania Undergraduate Psychology Conference April 25 at Robert Morris University.

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