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Westminster College Celebrates Commencement May 20

More than 335 students are expected to earn diplomas Saturday, May 20, during the 152nd annual Westminster College commencement ceremonies.  The 2005-2006 academic year will conclude with a baccalaureate service at 10:30 a.m. in Orr Auditorium and commencement at 2:30 p.m. on the Senior Terrace of Old Main.

The Rev. Daniel B. Merry, associate pastor to Pittsburgh Presbytery and 1977 Westminster graduate, will deliver the baccalaureate sermon, "Is God Fair?"  Merry is also the staff person to the Committee on Preparation for Ministry, Administrative Commission for Transformation and the Malawi Partnership Ministry Team.

After receiving his degree from Westminster, Merry went on to Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Va., where he served as student pastor of the Midway Presbyterian Church in Maxton, N.C.  In 1981, he went to serve as pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church in Pittston, and in 1987 he accepted the call to the John McMillan Presbyterian Church in Bethel Park, where he remained for 13 years with a congregation that grew from 85 to almost 400.  Between August 2004 and August 2005, Merry and his family served the Synod of Blantyre in Malawi, Africa.

Charles R. Burke, Westminster College Trustee Emeritus and Chairman Emeritus of the Grable Foundation, will deliver the commencement address, "Thoughts for a Lifetime," after receiving an honorary doctor of public service degree from Westminster.

Burke received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University and his law degree from the University of Virginia Law School.  He was an attorney with Reed, Smith, Shaw & McClay, a staff attorney with Westinghouse Electric Corporation, a partner with McCann, Garland, Ridall & Burke, and a partner with SCC Investment Advisors, all located in Pittsburgh.  He served on the boards of Rubbermaid, Inc., the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh, and several other smaller corporations.

Burke continues to serve area charitable associations such as The Grable Foundation and The United Way of Allegheny County.  He has previously served the Third Presbyterian Church, Eye and Ear Hospital, Better Business Bureau of Western Pennsylvania, Inc., Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Western Pennsylvania, and the Executive Service Corps of Western Pennsylvania.

The class of 2006 has chosen Nawal Rajeh to give the senior address.  Rajeh, a senior political science and individual interdisciplinary major, is a graduate of Austintown-Fitch High School and a daughter of Ghassan and Soumaya Rajeh.  

In case of rain, ceremonies will be held at the Memorial Field House.  Contact the Academic Dean's Office at (724) 946-7122 for more information.

The Rev. Daniel Merry
Charles Burke

Westminster Elementary Education Majors Intern in Mexico City

Nine Westminster College elementary education majors interned in Mexico City schools last May.

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Westminster College Music Professor Presented Paper at International Conference

Dr. Elizabeth A. Harrison, assistant professor of music and Westminster College organist, recently presented a paper at the Gotenborg International Organ Academy's (GoArt's) bi-annual conference in Gothenburg, Sweden.

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Westminster's Student Newspaper Wins First Place

The Holcad, Westminster College's student-run newspaper, has been awarded first place by the American Scholastic Press Association.

The association, which serves more than 2,000 schools, conducts this competition annually and scores are based on content coverage, page design, general plan, art advertising and illustrations, editing, and creativity.

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A Labyrinth for Sandy Edmiston

Junior Hi Youth Group from New Wilmington Presbyterian Church gathered stones for the labyrinth on June 13. Here they are selecting their "favorite stone" to be placed in the inner circle of the labyrinth. Rev. Lisa Hickman is their leader.
Friends and family of Sandy Edmiston built the labyrinth on July 15 by placing stones to line the path. The inner circle with "favorite stones" is ready to be set while excavation for the retaining wall is done by Dennis Salmon.

Anyone questioning community spirit and the outpouring of love would have benefited from an amazing accomplishment on Saturday, the 15th of July. By estimate, over 50 people moved over 100 tons of gravel and stones into a circular path that is called a labyrinth. This project, over 10 months in the planning, is a memorial to Sandra May Edmiston whose death on August 1, 2005 shocked the New Wilmington community and started an avalanche of love by those who knew her and many who only learned of her through word of mouth.

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Chemistry Major Receives Award

Recent Westminster College graduate Valerie Kokai received a College Chemistry Award from the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh. The 2007 alumna, who completed College Honors in chemistry, was one of 28 college students honored at the Society's annual awards dinner.

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"Get Real!" Series Presents Insurance Session

Westminster College's "Get Real!" life preparation series continues Thursday, March 6, with "Navigating the Insurance Policy Rapids" presented by James Giel of Dollar Bank and Roxanne Bruce, an independent insurance agent.

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Make-A-Difference Day Held Oct. 25

Lambda Sigma
Kappa Delta
Audio Visual Services
Alpha Phi Omega
Alpha Sigma Phi

Westminster College's Make-A-Difference Day was observed Oct. 25 with over 100 students completing over 335 hours of community service.

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Mathematics and Computer Science Department Holds Awards Dinner and Induction Ceremony

KME officers (l-r): April Scudere, Dr. Natacha Fontes-Merz, Heather McQuiston, Stephen Rossi
KME inductees (l-r): Emily Dolsak, Coty Hainsey, Erin Keck, Richard Ligo, Robert Rhodes
David Sarver (l), Dr. Warren Hickman (front), Craig Dimon

Westminster College's Mathematics and Computer Science Department held its annual awards banquet and Kappa Mu Epsilon induction March 25 in the Witherspoon Lakeview Room of the McKelvey Campus Center.

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English Professor's Work Wins "Best Play" Award

Dr. Andrew Ade

Language Barrier, a one-act play written by Dr. Andrew Ade, Westminster College associate professor of English, won the Best Play Award at the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company's seventh annual Theatre Festival in Black and White.

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