Chatham University

Chatham News

Chatham University’s Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship launches online business development and mentoring community

Membership in the virtual learning community allows businesswomen to access customized programs on their own time

By: Amanda Leff Ritchie, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 28, 2011 

PITTSBURGH (November 28, 2011)… On Dec. 1, the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship (CWE) at Chatham University will launch CWE ConnectSM, an online business development and mentoring community for women in the Pittsburgh and surrounding counties.

“We developed this online membership-based business community to help women both grow their businesses and network with each other,” says Rebecca Harris, director of the CWE. “I like to think of it as a virtual golf course where great women get together, interact, and get business done in the comfort of their own homes or offices.”

Membership in the virtual learning community costs $150 per year and provides access to customized entrepreneurship programs, among other such benefits as networking and marketing opportunities, discounted admission to CWE events, personalized advice from regional experts, and access to an ever-growing online business library. More information about each membership benefit follows below.

Networking & Partnerships
Members will have the opportunity to connect with local business owners to share experiences and advice. Exclusive access to a virtual bulletin board allows members to post referrals, sales, opportunities to partner with other business owners, and more.

Marketing
Members’ businesses will benefit from free advertising and being featured on the CWE Chatham website and CWE Connect brochures and newsletters.

Ask-the-Business Expert & Peer-to-Peer Mentoring
Members can ask local and regional experts questions online and gain valuable tips and advice from handpicked experts. Members will have access to our group-mentoring program facilitated through online discussions where they exchange concerns, ideas, and receive advice and solutions from fellow members.

Business Skills Development & Education
Members will have up-to-date online documents, videos, and presentations that contain small business tips and tools at their fingertips, along with free access to award-winning Kauffman FastTrac entrepreneurial training programs. Recordings of past CWE programs and events, including our popular Women Business Leaders Breakfast Series, Small Business Basics Workshops, Business & Law Seminars, and Business & Finance Seminars, are also available to members.

Other Benefits for Members
CWE Connect members will have access to four exclusive networking events throughout the year. Members will also receive discounts to special CWE events. A 40 percent discount on admission to the Women Business Leaders Breakfast Series, a monthly series that features prominent regional businesswomen, and a 20 percent discount on admission to the 7th Annual Think Big Forum, which addresses issues of importance to the women business community and provides networking opportunities with some of the region’s top businesswomen.

A one-on-one six-month mentoring opportunity is available with a $100 membership upgrade. In this 6-month program, members are matched with handpicked mentors. This self-paced program includes online discussions and optional face-to-face meetings. Registration for the CWE Connect one-on-one Mentoring Program closes April 1, 2012; mentoring programs will start June 1, 2012.

Funded in part by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, CWE Connect is proud to be working in partnership with the Progress Fund, the Trail Town Program, and the Laurel Highlands Visitor’s Bureau to bring CWE Connect to businesses in Southwestern PA. Additional support for CWE Connect has been provided by the Alcoa Foundation.

The CWE at Chatham is hosting two free public open houses next month: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Dec. 2 at the Eden Hall Campus, 6035 Ridge Road, Gibsonia; and 5 to 7 p.m. on Dec. 5 in the Mellon Board Room on Chatham’s Shadyside Campus. Guests will have the opportunity to meet the Center’s staff, facilitators, and past participants while learning about the CWE’s services for women business owners and women in business. The open houses will discuss CWE Connect, in addition to business development classes, small business workshops, and women’s leadership breakfasts. CWE has programs for women in all stages of business development. To attend, register online at http://www.chatham.edu/cwe.

About the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University
The mission of the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University is to educate, create economic opportunities, and foster entrepreneurial thinking for women entrepreneurs, women in business, and students. The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University (CWE) provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs in both new development and growth stages of their businesses to start, develop and significantly grow their companies by utilizing Chatham resources, programs, faculty expertise, and student assistance. CWE also provides programming targeted to local and regional women in business designed to teach women in business how to think and act entrepreneurially by focusing on innovation and creativity within the context of an existing organizational environment. Current and initial funding for CWE provided by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation.  Initial funding for CWE was provided by the Lois Tack Thompson Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation. For more information about programs offered by CWE call 412-365-1253 or visit www.chatham.edu/cwe

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University is also ranked in the top five percent of graduate-intensive institutions nationally and experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region over the past decade. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

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Chatham University students selected to receive Pittsburgh Institute of Food Technologists scholarship

By: Amanda Leff Ritchie, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 17, 2011

PITTSBURGH (November 17, 2011)… Chatham University’s food studies students Arielle Burlett and Nicole Muise-Kielkucki have been selected to receive the Pittsburgh chapter of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) scholarships. Each woman will receive a $1,000 scholarship and a one-year membership to the IFT.

IFT is a nonprofit national scientific society with members working in food science, food technology, and related professions in industry, academia, and government. For more than 70 years, the IFT has supported the food science community by facilitating a global forum where members from more than 100 countries can share, learn, and grow.

The Pittsburgh IFT’s scholarship program supports the organization’s goal to foster student interest in the food industry. Ms. Burlett and Ms. Muise-Kielkucki, are both part of Chatham’s first Master of Arts in Food Studies cohort and display high academic and extracurricular achievements.

Ms. Burlett entered the food studies program after earning her bachelor’s degree in public communications and a minor in Environmental Science from American University. After spending time in West Africa and South America, Ms. Burlett developed an interest in food security and the agricultural impact on environmental degradation.

Ms. Muise-Kielkucki earned her bachelor’s degree in politics and philosophy with a focus on Latin America at the University of Pittsburgh. She is currently working with the Winchester Thurston School’s senior class on developing a project related to food security and history, including constructing a High Tunnel, or unheated greenhouse, on the school’s campus to extended its growing season—the product of which is donated to the Jubilee Soup Kitchen.

On Tuesday, December 6, Ms. Burlett and Ms. Muise-Kilkucki will receive their awards during a dinner hosted by the Pittsburgh IFT at Chatham’s Eden Hall Campus.

About Chatham’s Master of Arts in Food Studies
The Master of Arts in Food Studies is one of the few graduate food studies programs in the United States and the only one to offer both sustainable agriculture and culinary arts and cuisine within a liberal arts environment. The Master of Arts in Food Studies at Chatham University takes a holistic approach to food systems, from agriculture and food production to cuisines and consumption, providing intellectual and practical experience from field to table. As part of Chatham’s new School of Sustainability and the Environment, the program emphasizes the global and the local in economic, social, and environmental aspects of sustainable food and agriculture.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University is also ranked in the top five percent of graduate-intensive institutions nationally and experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region over the past decade. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

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Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program presents Words Without Walls
Black Writers Reading Series

The series is made possible by a grant from the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation

By: Amanda Leff Ritchie, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 16, 2011 

PITTSBURGH (November 16, 2011)…Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program presents the Words Without Walls Black Writers Reading Series.  Funding for the project titled “From Prison to MFA and Back,” was provided by the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation. The grant supports the visits of five black writers to Pittsburgh throughout the next several months. Each writer will present their work at the Allegheny County Jail to inmates studying creative writing through Chatham MFA in Creative Writing program’s Words Without Walls initiative; the writers will also present their work to the public.

The first writer in the series was Faith Adiele, who presented her work the first week of November during the MFA program’s Bridges to Other Worlds festival. Upcoming public readings are as follows:

December 2: Dwayne Betts
February 24: Tyehimba Jess
March 23: Tim Seibles
April 6: Patricia Jabbeh Wesley

All public readings will take place at 8 p.m. in Welker Auditorium in the James Laughlin Music Hall on Chatham’s Shadyside Campus.

About Words Without Walls
Words Without Walls is a creative collaboration between Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program and the Allegheny County Jail. It fosters and supports creative expression and personal growth by exposing men and women at the jail to literature, award-winning visiting authors, and the opportunity to publish their work. Words Without Walls grew from a residency program started by artist Sandra Gould Ford. Because of the program’s reach, Chatham University committed to continuing the program’s creative writing classes at Allegheny County Jail in June 2010. Because of its innovative approach to learning and teaching, Words Without Walls has received support from the A. W. Mellon Education and Charitable Trust Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation and the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Fund, a partnership of The Heinz Endowments and The Pittsburgh Foundation.

About Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program
Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing allows students to focus on tracks in creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, screenwriting, and writing for children, while encouraging them to explore two tracks simultaneously. Students take innovative field seminars that include travel to such places as Costa Rica, Ecuador, India, and Germany. In 2007 Poets & Writers named the MFA one of “Nine Distinctive Programs” and The Atlantic Monthly named it one of five innovative/unique programs in the country in its “Best of the Best” graduate program listings. In 2009, The Writer named it one of ten programs that offer a specialty focus. Chatham University also offers an undergraduate BFA in Creative Writing, an online Master of Professional Writing, and a low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. For more information, visit www.chatham.edu/mfa or contact Sheryl St. Germain at sstgermain@chatham.edu.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University is also ranked in the top five percent of graduate-intensive institutions nationally and experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region over the past decade. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

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Author and Poet R. Dwayne Betts to give reading at Chatham University about his past of crime and imprisonment

By: Amanda Leff Ritchie, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 16, 2011 

PITTSBURGH (November 16, 2011)…Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program will host author and poet R. Dwayne Betts for a free public reading and book signing at 8 p.m. on December 2 in the Welker Room, James Laughlin Music Hall, Shadyside Campus. Betts will read from his memoir A Question of Freedom: A Memoir of Learning, Survival, and Coming of Age in Prison (Penguin/Avery, 2009), for which he won the 2010 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Debut. In addition, he will read from his collection of poems Shahid Reads His Own Palm (Alice James Books, 2010), which won the publisher’s Beatrice Hawley Award.

The event is part of Chatham’s Words Without Walls Black Writers Reading Series, funded by the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation. The grant supports the visits of five black writers throughout the next year, who will present their work at the Allegheny County Jail for the inmates studying creative writing there through Chatham’s Words Without Walls program. Each writer will also give a public reading of their work while in Pittsburgh. More information about the series is available on Chatham’s news page.

At the age of sixteen, R. Dwayne Betts, a good student from a lower-middle-class family, was arrested for carjacking. He had never held a gun before, but within a matter of minutes he had committed six felonies. In Virginia, as in many states, minors who commit carjacking are tried in adult courts, resulting in harsher penalties. He served a nine-year sentence in some of the harshest adult prisons in the state. A Question of Freedom chronicles Betts’ years in prison, during which he confronts profound questions about violence, freedom, crime, race, and the justice system.

An advocate for juvenile justice and prison reform, Betts is the national spokesperson for the Campaign for Youth Justice. He has been profiled in numerous media outlets, including The Washington Post, USA Today, and The Baltimore Sun, and has appeared on CNN, NPR, and Tavis Smiley on PBS. In addition, his poetry and essays have been published in Ploughshares, the literary magazine at Emerson College; the Crab Orchard Review, a literary journal published by the Department of English at Southern Illinois Carbondale; The Washington Post; and the ABA Journal, among other publications.

Throughout the past two years, Betts has lectured or appeared on panels at Georgetown Law School, Howard Law School, and American University. He has also been a featured speaker at the 2009 National Association of Counties legislative conference, the 2009 Coalition for Juvenile Justice annual conference, and the 2009 American Bar Association conference.

An accomplished poet, Betts is a Cave Canem Workshop Fellow, recipient of the Holden Fellowship to attend the MFA program at Warren Wilson College and a scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and was a 2010 Soros Fellow.

Betts received his MFA from Warren Wilson College and is a graduate of Prince George’s Community College.

About Words Without Walls
Words Without Walls is a creative collaboration between Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program and the Allegheny County Jail. It fosters and supports creative expression and personal growth by exposing men and women at the jail to literature, award-winning visiting authors, and the opportunity to publish their work. Words Without Walls grew from a residency program started by artist Sandra Gould Ford. Because of the program’s reach, Chatham University committed to continuing the program’s creative writing classes at Allegheny County Jail in June 2010. Because of its innovative approach to learning and teaching, Words Without Walls has received support from the A. W. Mellon Education and Charitable Trust Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation and the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Fund, a partnership of The Heinz Endowments and The Pittsburgh Foundation.

About Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program
Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program allows students to focus on tracks in creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, screenwriting, and writing for children, and encourages them to explore two tracks simultaneously.  Students take innovative field seminars that include travel to such places as Costa Rica, Ecuador, India and Germany. In 2007 Poets & Writers named the MFA one of “Nine Distinctive Programs” and The Atlantic Monthly named it one of five Innovative/Unique Programs in the country in its “Best of the Best” graduate program listings, while in 2009 The Writer named it one of ten programs that offer a specialty focus. Chatham University also offers an undergraduate BFA in Creative Writing, an online Master of Professional Writing, and a low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.  For more information visit www.chatham.edu/mfa.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University is also ranked in the top five percent of graduate-intensive institutions nationally and experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region over the past decade. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

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Into the Furnace: Chatham lecturer encourages writers to harness Braddock’s creative energy

Sherrie Flick

Inspiring creativity through the visceral energy of Braddock, Pa., is the idea behind a new writer-in-residence program, organized in part by Sherrie Flick, a lecturer in Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program and artistic director of Gist Street Reading Series.

Braddock’s atmosphere and ongoing revitalization efforts seem like the right environment for creative production, says Sherrie.

Sherrie, along with John Fetterman, mayor of Braddock; Jeb Feldman, owner and co-manager of Braddock artist haven Unsmoke; and others, collaborated to turn a two-room suite in the former St. Michael’s parochial school convent into a breeding ground for the art of the written word. “The residency is about giving one writer the gift of time,” says Sherrie. “Time to write.”

Named for its proximity to active steel mill Edgar Thomson Steel Works, “Into the Furnace” is a molten opportunity for writers.

“The name of the program also references Thomas Bell’s amazing book Out of This Furnace, so it’s a play on words in a couple different directions,” says Sherrie.

Braddock already has a supportive writers’ community, says Sherrie. It is home to the Biblipolis writer-in-residence Eliza Griswold and has several writer studios in UnSmoke, a gallery/events venue with classrooms and artist studio space—housed in a repurposed Catholic school building. “We thought we could help cultivate a community that was already in place,” says Sherrie.

Josh Barkan is the inaugural writing resident. He is the author of the short-story collection Before Hiroshima and the novel Blind Speed, which was named a finalist for the 2009 Paterson Fiction Prize. Josh was awarded a literature fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and has taught writing at Harvard, New York University, and Boston University.

“Braddock is a place full of contrasts—the old machinery of industry, against the new mosaics and murals of arts revitalization; the beautiful detail of brick on structures that have been abandoned and fallen apart; the positive energy of youth service programs and of AmeriCorps and many other social service groups with the tough poverty the children in the community are born into,” says Josh.

“All of these contrasts heighten my awareness of my surroundings—a sense of place—that is so necessary for writing well. What I see more clearly is the history of the city, the strong effort of the mayor John Fetterman, Sherrie Flick, Jeb Feldman, and many others to bring positive experiences to the Braddock community,” continues Josh.

Much of Josh’s childhood was spent abroad, living in Kenya, Tanzania, France, and India. After attending Yale University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa, he spent a year teaching in Japan and received his Master of Fine Arts from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His writing has appeared in Esquire, and he is a contributor to The Boston Book Review. Most recently, he called New York City and Mexico City home.

“Josh is a perfect fit for the program,” says Sherrie. “He’s lived all over the world and so has learned, I think, to adapt to his surroundings, to see and appreciate beauty in the unlikely.”

“I find Braddock exciting because of the freedom there,” says Josh. “There’s a sense of being in a place where you can try whatever kind of artistic creation you want. Nothing is censored and there is no preconceived outcome. There is a strong willingness to experiment in Braddock, a willingness to try anything as long as it is done with passion, intelligence, and with genuine quality.”

There is currently no application process for the writer-in-residence program. Sherrie and Marc Nieson, assistant professor in Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing Program, collaborated to articulate the kind of writer that would be a good fit. They decided the opportunity is best suited for someone mid-career “who would enjoy and embrace the pioneering sense of adventure that Braddock has to offer,” says Sherrie.

Sherrie is pleased with how the residency is unfolding, and though the future of “Into the Furnace” is unwritten, Sherrie notes the residence does have enough space to expand in years to come.

 

 

 

 

Chatham University Trustees renew contract for President Esther L. Barazzone

By: Amanda Leff Ritchie, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 8, 2011

Dr. Esther L. Barazzone

PITTSBURGH (November 8, 2011)… The Chatham University Board of Trustees unanimously voted to extend the contract of President Esther L. Barazzone, Ph.D., according to an announcement by Trustee Chair S. Murray Rust III. Dr. Barazzone accepted the extension of her contract as president of Chatham University for an additional two years, assuring her continued service to Chatham through June 30, 2015.

“During Dr. Barazzone’s tenure as President, Chatham has made remarkable strides transforming itself from a struggling women’s college to a thriving cutting edge university,” Mr. Rust said in his statement. “Chatham College for Women has been revitalized and the College for Graduate Studies and the College for Continuing and Professional Studies have been created and are now well established. The Woodland Road campus has been substantially improved, the Eastside location has been established, and now the School of Sustainability and the Environment at Eden Hall Campus is being created, all under her leadership.”

About Esther L. Barazzone
Esther L. Barazzone became President of Chatham University in 1992, after a career as a faculty member and administrator at Hamilton and Kirkland Colleges, the University of Pennsylvania, Swarthmore College, and Philadelphia University. A relatively small women’s college of under 500 undergraduate students in 1992, all studying on the historic Woodland Road campus, Chatham under Dr. Barazzone’s leadership today has nearly 2,300 undergraduate and graduate students from around the world studying on two campuses – both on-site and on-line – and at four sites, including the country’s first bilingual Physician Assistant program (located in Puerto Rico).  Chatham’s remarkable growth has been accompanied by remarkable praise from its peers, with Chatham hailed by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (regional accreditors) as being a “place of strong intellectual values joined with an impulse for innovation” with the “potential to become a vibrant new national model for the transformation of higher education in the years to come.”

During her presidency, Dr. Barazzone also has led Chatham through a period of major institutional renewal and expansion leading to national recognition and elevation to university status in 2007.  Major program development under her leadership has included the creation of many new degree and certificate programs (undergraduate, graduate and continuing education), a Division III athletic program, outstanding graduate programs (including nationally renowned creative writing and health care programs), and University-wide initiatives such as the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship; the Pennsylvania Center for Women & Politics; the Rachel Carson Institute; The Regional Women’s Initiative; and the Global Focus program, which received the Institute of International Education’s Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education in 2003.  The tradition of innovation and excellence continues at Chatham’s new Eden Hall Campus, the first campus in the world to be built sustainably from the ground up and the future home of Chatham’s new School of Sustainability and the Environment.

Dr. Barazzone is an active leader in the national higher education community and has served on many boards, including the Council for International Exchange of Scholars (CIES), the Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN), and the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania (AICUP).  She is a member of the Boards of the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Dollar Bank, Allegheny Conference on Community Development, Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania, the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh and the YWCA Greater Pittsburgh.

Dr. Barazzone has received many honors for her work at Chatham and in the community, including History Maker in Education, Senator H. John Heinz III History Center (2006); the Vectors Pittsburgh Woman of the Year in Education (1999); and the YWCA Leadership Award in Education (1999).   Her work in international education has been recognized with the University Medal from Fatima Jinnah Women’s University in Rawalpindi, Pakistan (2001) and honorary doctorates from Seoul Women’s University in Seoul, Korea (2000) and Doshisha Women’s College in Kyoto, Japan (1999), as well as the Gandhi, King, Ikeda Award for Outstanding Leadership for Peace and Humanitarianism from Morehouse College (2004).  She has also been recognized for her work on behalf of the advancement of women by the Susan B. Anthony Leadership Award from the Women’s Leadership Assembly (1999).

Dr. Barazzone holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in European Intellectual History from Columbia University, where she was a Fellow of the Faculty. Dr. Barazzone was a Charter Scholar in the first graduating class of New College in Sarasota, Fla., where she earned her B.A. in philosophy and history. She received a U.S. Student Fulbright award to Spain and studied at the Wharton School of Business Administration and at Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management.

About Chatham University
Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University has a deep institutional commitment to sustainability and the environment, global and intercultural education, and women’s leadership.  Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.