Education news briefs

Staff Reports

Rep. Boggs announces ODE Summer Food Service Program for Ohio’s youth

Children may receive free nutritious meals during summer break

COLUMBUS— State Rep. Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus) announced the Ohio Department of Education’s Summer Food Service Program is underway to ensure children ages 18 and under receive free nutritious meals during the summer months when school is not in session.

Additionally, young adults ages 19 through 21 that are currently enrolled in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) are also eligible to use the Summer Food Services Program. The program is free and there is no sign up required.

To find participating sites in your community, please call 1-866-3-HUNGRY (486479), visit or download the free Ohio Department of Education mobile app to view available locations and times.

News from University of Findlay

Rachel Renz Performs in UF’s Spring Instrumental Recital

FINDLAY, OH (05/24/2017)— Rachel Renz, of Galena, recently performed in a spring instrumental recital at the University of Findlay.

Renz performed “Concerto in C minor” by Benedetto Marcello on the oboe.

Rachel Renz Performs in UF’s Spring Band Concert

FINDLAY, OH (05/30/2017)— Rachel Renz, of Galena, recently performed in a spring band concert with the University of Findlay’s Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble. “Myths and Legends,” the theme of the program, featured pieces based on myths and legends of the Greek and Roman empires

Joshua Javery Performs in UF’s Spring Piano Recital

FINDLAY — Joshua Javery, of Westerville, 43081, recently performed in a spring piano recital at the University of Findlay. Javery performed “Malaguena,” a traditional song.

The University of Findlay is one of the largest private colleges in Northwest Ohio. With a total enrollment of more than 4,000 students, the University of Findlay has nearly 80 programs including bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs. UF has been nationally recognized by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review. For more information, visit

News from Champlain College

BURLINGTON, VT (05/23/2017)— Andrew Millsap of Westerville has been named to the Champlain College Dean’s List for the Spring 2017 semester.

Students on the Dean’s List have achieved a grade point average of 3.5 or higher during the semester.

Millsap graduates from Champlain College

Millsap graduated from Champlain College with a BS degree in Game Programming on May 13, 2017.

Champlain College’s 139th commencement was held at Edmunds Field in Burlington, Vt. A total of 516 undergraduates received their associate and bachelor’s degrees during the ceremony.

Champlain College President Donald J. Laackman lauded the students with a long list of achievements the Class of 2017 has accomplished during their years at Champlain.”Your success in the face of change, combined with your radically pragmatic Champlain College education, positions you to successfully enter a changing world,” he said.

In addition, an honorary Doctor of Humanities degrees was presented to Today Show weatherman and founder of Roker Media Labs Al Roker. Samantha Brehm ‘14 offered the alumni welcomed the graduates and their families. Julian Lopez ‘17, an international business and finance major in the Stiller School of Business, delivered the Senior address.

Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Quebec and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain offers a traditional undergraduate experience from its beautiful campus overlooking Lake Champlain and more than 60 online undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates.

Champlain’s distinctive career-driven approach to higher education embodies the notion that true learning occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review’s The Best 381 Colleges: 2017 Edition. Champlain College is featured in the “Fiske Guide to Colleges” for 2017 as one of the “best and most interesting schools” in the United States, Canada, and Great Britain. Champlain was named one of the “Most Innovative Schools” in the North by the U.S. News and World Report’s 2017 “America’s Best Colleges and #91 in the overall list of “Best Regional Universities in the North.

For more information, visit

Local students graduate from John Carroll University

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, OH (05/30/2017)— John Carroll University is pleased to announce the following local students who graduated on May 21, 2017. Their majors are listed with their names.

  • Leah Ross of Westerville: Marketing
  • Abigail Svitana of Westerville: International Business with Language & Culture

John Carroll University highlights local students named to Spring 2017 Dean’s List

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, OH (05/30/2017)— John Carroll University has announced its Spring 2017 Dean’s List.

Students eligible for the Dean’s List must have completed a minimum of 12 semester hours within one semester and have a quality grade point average of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

Local students who earned this recognition are listed below:

  • Joseph Murnane of Westerville: Class of 2020
  • Leah Ross of Westerville: Class of 2017
  • Abigail Svitana of Westerville: Class of 2017

John Carroll University, founded in 1886 as Saint Ignatius College, is located in University Heights, Ohio, in suburban Cleveland. Its Jesuit Catholic mission inspires individuals to excel in learning, leadership, and service in the region and the world. John Carroll University is recognized nationally for an exceptional four-year graduation rate, teaching excellence, and a commitment to living a faith that does justice as central to its mission. John Carroll is one of 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States.

In heated hearing, DeVos doesn’t rule out federal funds for private schools that discriminate

CNN — Education Secretary Betsy DeVos refused to say Wednesday (May 24) whether she would deny federal funds to private schools that discriminate against admitting students based on sexuality, race or even special needs.

DeVos has made expanding school choice the centerpiece of the Trump administration’s education policy, and recently called opponents of school choice “flat Earthers” who have “chilled creativity” and held American students back.

During a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing, Massachusetts Rep. Katherine Clark brought up a school in Indiana — Lighthouse Christian Academy — that receives more than $600,000 in state voucher funds and explicitly denies access to students with LGBT parents in its literature.

President Donald Trump’s budget proposal, released on Monday, proposes $250 million for vouchers that would help students get into similar private and religious schools.

At the hearing, Clark asked DeVos whether if Indiana applied for that federal money DeVos would “in this case, say ‘we are going to overrule and you cannot discriminate, whether it be on sexual orientation, race, special needs, in our voucher programs.’ Will that be a guarantee from you for our students?”

DeVos responded, “For states who have programs that allow for parents to make choices, they set up the rules around that.”

“So that’s a no,” Clark followed up.

Clark narrowed down further, and asked DeVos, “What if (a school) said we are not accepting African-American students, but that was OK with the state… Do you see any situation where you would step in?”

DeVos answered that the Department of Education’s “Office of Civil Rights, and our Title IX protections, are broadly applicable across the board.”

With her five minutes of questioning ticking down, Clark clarified, “there is no situation of discrimination or exclusion that if a state approved it for its voucher program that you would step in and say that’s not how we’re going to use federal dollars. … Is that your testimony?”

DeVos began her response by referring to the real case of Lighthouse Christian Academy as a “hypothetical,” before being corrected and adding that, “the bottom line is that we believe that parents are the best equipped to make choices for their children’s school and education decisions, and too many children today are trapped in schools that don’t work for them. We have to do something different.”

“I am shocked that you cannot come up with one example of discrimination that you would stand up for students,” Clark finished.

Response to DeVos

Here is a statement from Human Rights Campaign in response to a hearing with Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, where she refused to say whether or not federal taxpayer dollars would be used to discriminate against LGBTQ students:

“Taxpayer funds should never be used to discriminate against LGBTQ students, and it is shocking and disappointing that Secretary DeVos won’t make this basic commitment,” said HRC Government Affairs Director David Stacy. “Secretary DeVos has failed again to stand up for all students and ensure every child is able to receive an education free from harassment and discrimination.”

News from Oklahoma City University

O’Daniel, Gillian Named to the Spring 2017 Dean’s Honor Roll at Oklahoma City University

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (05/25/2017)— Oklahoma City University is proud to announce that Gillian O’Daniel of Galena, OH has been named to the Spring 2017 Dean’s Honor Roll.

Dean’s Honor Roll status is awarded to students who successfully complete a minimum of 12 credit hours and maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.

Founded in 1904, Oklahoma City University is a non-profit, comprehensive, private United Methodist university that is consistently ranked among the best in its category. OCU students pursue academic excellence through a rigorous liberal arts & sciences core curriculum that focuses on their intellectual, moral and spiritual development.

For more information visit

Oklahoma City University is a coeducational, urban private university located in Oklahoma City, in the Uptown district. The university is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and offers a wide variety of degrees in the liberal arts, fine arts, sciences and business. The only Oklahoma institution listed in the top tier of the regional, master’s-level university category by U.S. News & World Report, Oklahoma City University is also listed in Forbes’ “Best Christian Colleges” and “100 Best College Buys.” OCU offers more than 70 undergraduate majors and 23 graduate degrees (including a law degree, MBA and doctoral programs in nursing).

News from University of Mount Union

University of Mount Union Class of 2017 Graduates

ALLIANCE, OH (05/24/2017)— The University of Mount Union celebrates the graduation of the Class of 2017.

  • Kerri Migliore of Westerville, Ohio has graduated from the University of Mount Union with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in Nursing.
  • William Doermann of Westerville, Ohio has graduated from the University of Mount Union with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science.

More than 487 graduate and undergraduate students participated in the University of Mount Union’s 171st Commencement Ceremony held in the Peterson Field House of the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex.

This year’s commencement speaker Rev. Dr. Kenneth W. Chalker ‘72 currently serves as the senior pastor at University Circle United Methodist Church, is a graduate of Leadership Cleveland, a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Mount Union, and an active member of the Board of Trustees of University Circle Inc. Chalker is a graduate of Garrett-ETS at Northwestern University (D.Min.), Duke University Divinity School (M.Div.) and the University of Mount Union.

During his speech, titled “Avoid Stepping in It”, Chalker focused on the pursuit of passion and avoiding falling victim to the status quo. Chalker concluded his speech by urging graduates to spread their gifts across the country, to different communities and families, and to not become comfortable with ‘the way things are’. He pressed the idea that they are needed, that they are powerful, and that they have the tools to make great things happen.

Following Chalker’s address, Dr. Patricia Draves, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the University, began the presentation of the candidates for degrees.

University of Mount Union The University of Mount Union, founded in 1846, is a four-year, private institution grounded in the liberal arts tradition. The University is located in Alliance, OH, 80 miles of both Cleveland and Pittsburgh. Mount Union offers an array of broad-based and career-specific undergraduate and graduate programs to its 2,200 students who experience outstanding opportunities for success after graduation. Among members of the 2014 graduating class, 99% of those self-reporting started a degree-required career or were accepted to graduate school, all in an average of 20 days after graduation. The University is committed to providing a student-centered approach and an exceptional educational experience. For more information, visit

Anne Vanbuskirk Graduates from Marist College

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY (05/25/2017)— Anne Vanbuskirk of Westerville, OH received a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Marist College the weekend of May 19.

Marist College is located in the historic Hudson River Valley and at its branch campus in Florence, Italy. It is a comprehensive, independent institution grounded in the liberal arts. Marist is dedicated to helping students develop the intellect, character, and skills required for enlightened, ethical, and productive lives in the global community of the 21st century. The College is consistently recognized for excellence by top organizations like The Princeton Review, which included it in its latest book, Colleges That Create Futures: 50 Schools That Launch Careers By Going Beyond the Classroom. It has also been recognized by U.S. News & World Report (13th Best Regional University), Kiplinger’s Personal Finance (Best Values in Private Colleges), and others. Though now independent, Marist remains committed to the ideals handed down from its founders, the Marist Brothers: excellence in education, a sense of community, and a commitment to service. Marist educates 4,700 traditional-age undergraduate students and more than 1,300 adult and graduate students in 46 undergraduate majors and 13 graduate programs, including fully online MBA, MPA, MS, and MA degrees.

Shuttered Columbus Charter School Owes State $340,770

Columbus – A charter school shut down by its sponsor in 2015 has yet to repay any of the $340,770 it owes to the state, according to a closeout audit released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.

The FCI Academy (Franklin County) never repaid $324,694 in foundation payments it received from the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) in July and August 2015 for the 2015-16 school year.

The academy did not open for instruction that school year because its sponsor, the Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West, ordered it to suspend operations on Aug. 24, 2015, just before classes were scheduled to resume. ODE sent a letter to the academy later that week, notifying its treasurer of the $324,694 owed, but none of the money was returned.

“Poor management ran this charter school aground,” Auditor Yost said. “The financial losses to taxpayers are significant, but the biggest victims here are the students and parents who had the rug pulled out from under their feet at the start of the school year.”

The audit also determined the academy failed to repay $16,076 in overfunding that ODE identified in its full-time equivalency (FTE) adjustment for fiscal year 2015, which was finalized on March 3, 2017.

Auditors issued $340,770 in findings for recovery against the academy in favor of ODE. As of Feb. 29, 2017, the academy had a bank balance of $86,110 and outstanding liabilities totaling $632,339, including the amount owed to ODE.

A full copy of this report is available online.

The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.


COLUMBUS – Cardiovascular scientists at The Ohio State University Heart and Vascular Center, Dorothy M. Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute and the Department of Physiology and Cell Biology have been awarded nearly $900,000 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to help ensure that young, eager scientists are prepared to carry on life-saving work in a multi-disciplinary setting.

“We’re very fortunate to have a highly collaborative and multi-disciplinary scientific infrastructure at Ohio State. We want to foster this and build upon it,” said Jill Rafael-Fortney, a professor in physiology and cell biology and recipient of the grant.

Rafael-Fortney and her team developed a new training program to address two fundamental problems they see on a national level. While there are pockets of multidisciplinary collaborative work happening, it’s not the norm, she said. In general, biomedical scientists haven’t been taught how to reach outside their area for help.

This fall, the program will start teaching doctoral cardiovascular students skills for working with multidisciplinary teams – from fellow basic and translational scientists to engineers, pharmacists and physicians.

“We need translational researchers exchanging ideas sooner and more efficiently. We’ll also emphasize career and leadership development, such as learning how to write grant proposals or manage a lab. Science can’t afford to wait while they learn these skills on the job,” Rafael-Fortney said.

The second issue is a lack of women scientists advancing to leadership roles in the field. While the post-doctoral graduation rate is 50-50 among men and women biomedical scientists, only 20 percent of the women go on to become full professors. Just 15 percent of department chairs in medical schools are women, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges.

“That’s a tremendous loss of talented scientific investigators, which hinders the development of novel tests and treatments for cardiovascular disease,” Rafael-Fortney said. “Our program is the first to directly address this issue and do so early on.”

Brandon Biesiadecki, an associate professor in physiology and cell biology, serves as co-director of the training program. He said men and women both need to shift their thinking to improve the culture and foster success.

“It could be something as small as moving a standing meeting away from 5 o’clock, so no one feels pressure about missing family events,” he said. “That’s just one example, but different expectations will help advance and retain the brightest investigators in translational cardiovascular science.”

Rafael-Fortney and Biesiadecki are encouraged, not only by the backing they’ve received from professors and chairs, but also the interest in the training from outside cardiovascular science.

Funding from the NIH covers training up to 24 doctoral candidates over a five-year period.

“Soft Skills” Have Hard-Hitting Value In Today’s Workplace, Research Shows

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 31, 2017 — Students will be better prepared for fast-growing jobs in all career sectors if they develop an academic mindset, learn how to communicate effectively and take an analytical approach to solving problems while in school, according to a new study by the Center on Education Policy. Other skills that are essential for a wide range of jobs include learning how to learn, developing self-control and working collaboratively, the study found.

“While these skills and abilities are often called ‘soft skills,’ our study shows they have tremendous value in the workplace. Ideally all students should be given the opportunity to develop these skills and abilities as they progress through school,” said Maria Ferguson, CEP’s executive director.

The CEP report, Building Competencies for Careers, drew on information from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) database sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor. O*NET uses surveys of job holders and occupational experts to determine the characteristics of more than 900 occupations. To conduct the study, CEP researchers and other experts “linked” the knowledge, skills, abilities and workstyles required for a diverse sample of 300-plus O*NET occupations to the deeper learning competencies as defined by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Using these matches, researchers analyzed how relevant each of the six deeper learning competencies were for individual occupations, specific categories of jobs and for the whole sample of occupations.

While all of the jobs analyzed by CEP require one or more of the deeper learning competencies, experts found several competencies to be most important. Developing an academic mindset, a competency about which prominent education researchers like Carol Dweck and Angela Duckworth have written extensively, was highly prized across all of O*NET’s jobs and occupations. Also important were personal initiative and the ability to communicate and collaborate effectively.

These competencies were found to be most important for what O*NET calls Bright Outlook occupations — those that are expected to grow rapidly, have a large number of openings or are new or emerging. The deeper learning competencies also were more important for occupations requiring higher levels of experience, education and training than for entry-level type jobs.

“As the study suggests, elementary and secondary schools that consciously teach these kinds of competencies along with subject area content will better prepare their graduates for careers,” said Matthew Frizzell, one of the study’s authors. “But this isn’t just the responsibility of schools. Families, communities and business leaders also play a role in ensuring that all students have the opportunity to develop these important skills.”

The report, Building Competencies for Careers: Linking O*NET’s Occupational Elements with Deeper Learning Competencies, can be downloaded from A technical appendix with the methodology and raw data is also available.

Based in Washington, D.C., and founded in 1995, the Center on Education Policy at The George Washington University is a national advocate for public education and for more effective public schools. The Center works to help Americans better understand the role of public education in a democracy and the need to improve the academic quality of public schools. The Center does not represent special interests. Instead, it helps citizens make sense of conflicting opinions and perceptions about public education and create conditions that will lead to better public schools.

Staff Reports