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Westminster has record fundraising year: $10.1M

Thursday, July 11, 2024

Westminster College is celebrating the most successful fundraising year in recent college history after receiving more than $10 million—including four gifts of $1 million or more—during the 2023-2024 fiscal year.

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Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Rising senior and honors student Erin DaRe is one of 10 students selected for the 2024 Summer Research Fellowship at Westminster. The history major from Mars, Pa., is researching “Do Hobbyists View History Differently?” with Dr. Angela Lahr, associate professor of history. Outside of the classroom, DaRe is a peer tutor, a peer success coach and has been an active member of the campus’ Gaming Guild.

Why did you apply for the summer research fellowship?
I applied to this fellowship because I think that humanities research deserves a little extra love—it’s much different than working in a lab, and people from other fields may not understand what research in history looks like. It’s not just reading books—it’s about exploring and looking for connections that might have never been noticed before. We go in with a question, but we don’t necessarily have a hypothesis, and that makes the research more fun, in my opinion. I also wanted to further my career in the hopes of writing a paper that can be published. Additionally, Dr. Lahr is wonderful, and I love working with her, so having a faculty mentor to help guide my research was greatly appealing.
Can you briefly describe your project?
My project is an oral history, meaning I am conducting interviews regarding a group of people who are interested in a specific antique car—the Tucker 48. I’m looking to see if their hobby has any impact on how they view history—especially since the car was produced right after World War II and at the onset of the Cold War—and if there are any patterns in their viewpoints.

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ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Kyle Mitcheltree '17

Tuesday, July 9, 2024

As a 29-year-old CEO, Kyle Mitcheltree '17 is carving out a name for his family business, Mitcheltree Brothers Logging and Lumber, and sparking innovation with unlikely business acquisitions in the process.

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Westminster receives national acclaim as a College of Distinction

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

Westminster College has been named a 2024-2025 College of Distinction, recognized for offering a high-quality undergraduate education that focuses on experiential learning, its exceptional business, education and nursing programs, and strong student-teacher relationships that encourage student success.

Colleges of Distinction, a unique guide for college-bound students, has a rigorous selection process and chooses schools that adhere to four distinctions: engaged students, great teaching, vibrant community and successful outcomes. According to Tyson Schritter, chief operating officer at Colleges of Distinction, Westminster College has demonstrated exceptional performance in each area, ensuring a supportive and enriching environment that equips students for future academic and career success.

“A college degree opens the door to many opportunities, but a truly worthwhile education prepares students to thrive once they walk through that door,” said Schritter. “Westminster College’s curriculum encourages meaningful student-faculty collaboration through experiential learning that is relevant and applicable to the real world.”

Unlike traditional ranking systems based on numerical data, Colleges of Distinction conducts extensive and detailed interviews with members of the institution.

“No student is alike, so there can’t be a number-one school for everyone. We are much more focused on the innovative ways that colleges are offering their own brand of a truly rich undergraduate education,” said Schritter. Westminster’s individual approach to education helps students achieve success in unique ways that cannot be ranked against others.

“We are so impressed to see how Westminster brings life to the traditional undergraduate experience,” said Schritter. “With a welcoming community, an immersive curriculum and strong support networks, Westminster College is undoubtedly nurturing the growth of tomorrow’s leaders."

Additionally, Westminster has been named a Pennsylvania College of Distinction and was cited for excellence in business, education and nursing programs.

To become a Business College of Distinction, Schritter said they look for qualities such as accreditation, program breadth, advising and mentoring, integration of career services and successful student outcomes. Westminster College, with its well-rounded curriculum and a liberal arts foundation, successfully prepares its students to enter the workforce with strong leadership skills and the ability to succeed in an ever-evolving society.

“Thriving in a precarious economy requires one to be agile in the face of chance,” he said. “We applaud Westminster’s emphasis on educating ethical, agile and competent leaders.”

Recognizing Westminster’s stellar curriculum and outcomes for education majors, Colleges of Distinction noted the impactful ways students are prepared to lead their own classrooms after graduation. As an Education College of Distinction, Westminster is a testament to the quality of its hands-on approach to learning, leading and succeeding.

“An impressive undergraduate education is marked by its stability, practical experiences, advising and mentoring, high-impact practices and successful student outcomes,” said Schritter. “It's inspiring to see the next generation of teachers graduating from Westminster College with confidence.”

As a Nursing College of Distinction, Westminster has proven its commitment to training well-rounded, thoughtful and skilled nurses of tomorrow.

“Westminster College’s undergraduate nursing program blows us away,” said Schritter. “These young adults are entering the medical field with such a strong skill set. Westminster embodies the qualities we value in a high-impact education.”

For nearly 175 years, Westminster College has been committed to making a quality higher education affordable and attainable to all students, regardless of race, ethnicity, sex or religion.

To view Westminster College’s College of Distinction, please visit

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Monday, July 1, 2024

Rachel Brady is one of 10 students selected for this year’s Summer Research Fellowship at Westminster College. Rachel is a rising junior honors student majoring in biology from Columbus, Pa. She and her faculty mentor, Dr. Adam Blumenthal, assistant professor of mathematics and computer science, are working on “System to Measure Indoor Shotput Throws” for their research partnership. Brady is on the track and field and volleyball teams on campus. She is also a member of the Lambda Sigma Honors Society, Book Club and Chemistry Club.

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Harris Kohl '23 earns National Science Foundation grant for graduate work

Monday, July 1, 2024

A 2023 Westminster College alumnus recently earned a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF-GRFP) grant to conduct research at Texas A&M University.

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Environmental science major awarded Helen R. Ferguson Scholarship

Thursday, June 27, 2024

Tannah Hendrickson, rising senior environmental science major, was awarded the Helen R. Ferguson Scholarship at the annual awards night of the Bartramian Audubon Society on May 13 at the Jennings Environmental Education Center in Slippery Rock, Pa.

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Westminster’s weekly carillon concerts begin July 12

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

The 2024 Carillon Summer Concert Series at Westminster College will host four guest carillonneurs to perform on the College’s 42-bell Duff-Armington Memorial Carillon on select Friday afternoons in July and August.

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Students travel to Old Order Amish community

Friday, June 21, 2024

Students from Westminster College Religion and Society class traveled to Middlefield, Ohio, this past spring to learn about the fourth largest Old Order Amish settlement in the country, the Geauga County Old Order Amish Settlement.

Sixteen students and Dr. Kristin Park, professor of sociology, toured the Geauga Amish Historical Library where they learned about 16th century Bibles and 18th century Ausbunds—hymnals—used in Europe by the relatives of Geauga community members. During the tour the group learned of the Anabaptist persecution in Europe and their migration to the United States and Canada.

The Geauga County order was founded in 1886 by settlers from Holmes County, Ohio, located 80 miles south. Since 1960, the Old Order Amish community of Geauga County in northeastern Ohio spilled over into Ashtabula and Trumbull counties. This expansion made the order the second largest Amish settlement in Ohio and the fourth largest in the United States. Early families of the settlement noted that the land initially was in poor condition for farming. Through hard work they nourished the soil to make the land productive for agriculture and created a thriving community around it. Today, dairy farming, cheese and maple syrup have become the primary products of Geauga County farmers.

During the visit, contemporary ways of life became the focus of discussion. They spoke about modes of transportation, internet usage, popular leisure time activities, child adoption within the settlement and how an Amish family’s past and present needs are mostly self-sufficient.

Park focuses much of her research on Amish communities, examining the perceptions that non-Amish individuals have relating to their interactions with Amish community members. Park uses Maslow’s Motivational Theory to analyze content expressed in an Amish scribes’ letters to Amish and English newspapers. She identifies themes and uses the theory to provide a model to better adapt it to a collectivist culture.

"I arranged the field trip so my students and I could learn about life in a more change-oriented settlement and from Amish community members themselves. This fits in with my emphasis in the class that there are hundreds of Amish ‘societies’ which can be quite different from each other depending on their affiliation.  I think we all felt more deeply the value and enactment of community among the Amish and how that affects most young people's decision to join the church," said Park.

The day ended with a traditional Amish-themed buffet at Mary Yoder’s Amish Kitchen.

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SUMMER RESEARCH FELLOW: Alexandria Bender ’27

Friday, June 21, 2024

Alexandria Bender is one of 10 students selected for this year’s Summer Research Fellowship at Westminster College. Alexandria is a sophomore honors student and biology major from New Castle, Pa. She and her faculty mentor, Dr. Helen Boylan ’95, are examining “The Effects of Nature Theory on Stress,” for their research partnership. Bender is an active member of the Agape Bible study group on campus as well as a member of the Treble Choir, Concert Choir and the Lambda Sigma sophomore honor society. She also volunteers as a youth group leader at her church and is a choreography assistant for New Castle Regional Ballet’s annual “Nutcracker” production.

Why did you apply for the summer research fellowship?
Throughout my freshman year, I realized that I felt the most pride in my work whenever it made a difference in the lives of community members. Research without impact is fun, but research with impact is rewarding. At the time, I was enrolled in one of Dr. Boylan’s new classes called Changing the World, a class built on strengthening communities. After talking with her about the program, we decided to submit a proposal about a project that would not only bring new and exciting ideas to the world of science but would positively impact the lives of the people living in our community.

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