Chatham University

Chatham News

Chatham University receives two grants to support infrastructure initiatives at Eden Hall Campus

PITTSBURGH (July 30, 2012) … Chatham University has received grants from the J.B. Finley Charitable Trust through the PNC Charitable Trust Grant Review Committee and the Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation totaling $35,000 to support infrastructure initiatives relating to sustainable agriculture at Eden Hall Campus. The grants, $20,000 from the J.B. Finley Charitable Trust through the PNC Charitable Trust Grant Review Committee and $15,000 from the Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation, will support the development of the 5-acre organic farm at Eden Hall, which is the future home of Chatham’s School of Sustainability and the Environment (SSE).

Funds from the J.B. Finley Charitable Trust through the PNC Charitable Trust Grant Review Committee will primarily support the construction of a deer fence, and the Snee-Reinhardt grant will fund a moveable Gothic-style High Tunnel Greenhouse. The combined funds will provide the means necessary for Chatham to develop a four-season farm on which to plant crops that will be used in food studies and sustainability courses in the 2012-13 school year. By the 2013-14 school year, Chatham plans to implement the student-run teaching garden as well as develop plots for more complex projects such as compost, permaculture, vermiculture, and a heritage fruit tree orchard. As the farm continues to develop, it will be both an academic resource as well as a community resource and will be able to accommodate farm-to-school programs and partnerships with local community food banks.

About the Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation
The Pittsburgh based, Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation strives to provide funding and grants to a wide array of programs that assist in furthering community development. Some organizations that have received funding from Snee-Reinhardt include academic institutions, senior citizen facilities, and community centers.

About the PNC Charitable Trusts
PNC Charitable Trusts manage personal trusts set forth by individuals, and insure that the region or organization receives assets in the way that the benefactor intended. PNC Charitable Trusts’ funds are distributed to organizations that display a commitment to giving back to the community both locally and regionally.

About Chatham’s new School of Sustainability and the Environment
The School of Sustainability and the Environment (SSE) offers a Master of Arts in Food Studies program and launching this fall is the Master of Sustainability program. Both masters programs take a transdisciplinary, systems-based approach to issues concerning sustainability and the environment. The SSE also offers an online Certificate in Sustainable Management, which provides a practical foundation in the fundamentals of sustainability and their application in diverse settings — government, the private sector, not-for-profit organizations, and educational institutions.

About Chatham’s Eden Hall Campus
Eden Hall, gifted to Chatham University in 2008 by the Eden Hall Foundation, will integrate sustainable development, learning, and living throughout its design. Located in the township of Pine-Richland on a 388-acre site 20-miles north of Chatham’s historic Shadyside Campus, Eden Hall Campus will serve more than 1,500 zero net energy integrated facility.

By protecting valuable watersheds, incorporating existing land and agricultural resources, and rehabilitating existing farm structures alongside developing new, green buildings, Eden Hall will be a one of kind venue for education, conferences, community outreach, and ecotourism. As the future home of our School of Sustainability and the Environment, Eden Hall will be a place of learning, research and practicing sustainable behaviors that can be replicated elsewhere to make the world a better place.

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 to host Words Without Walls reading and reception on Aug. 5

PITTSBURGH (July 25, 2012)… Chatham University’s Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program will host a free public reading and book signing by graduates and instructors of the Words Without Walls prison writing program, a collaboration between Chatham and the Allegheny County Jail. William Arrington, John Nau, and Eric Boyd will be among the program’s graduates who will give readings that evening; others will read works on behalf of those currently enrolled in the Words Without Walls classes. Writers who attended Chatham’s community writing workshop Voice CATCH will also give readings at the event, which will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 5 in the Mellon Board Room, Shadyside Campus. A reception will follow.

Books that will be available for purchase at the event include the 2012 and 2011 Words Without Walls anthologies, respectively titled “The Thing With Feathers” and “Look Here;” “Flying Squirrel and Other Stories” by Lynne Agnew, winner of the 2011 Sandra Gould-Ford Prize and second-place winner of the Prison Writing Award; “Whiskey Sour” by Eric Boyd, who took second place in the 2011 PEN Prison Writing Awards.

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 January 2012, The Writer named it one of the “4 top schools you should consider” and in 2009, 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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BikePGH! recognizes Chatham assistant professor as Advocate of the Year

PITTSBURGH (July 24, 2012) … Michael Boyd, Ph.D., a Chatham assistant professor of music, was recognized as Bike Pittsburgh’s Advocate of the Year. He was also recognized for his work in Wilkins Township, where he’s earned a seat on the Board of Commissioners. As one of the founders of advisory committee Share the Road East, Boyd wants to identify bike-friendly routes between eastern communities and routes that utilize bike trails into Pittsburgh.

Boyd’s involvement and leadership in Chatham’s environmental sustainability and employee initiatives played a large role in Chatham being among the first to be named a Bike Friendly Employer by BikePGH. Last year, Chatham was also recognized as Pennsylvania’s first Bike Friendly University and a national Bike Friendly Business by the League of American Bicyclists.

At Chatham, Boyd is on the Climate Committee and now chairs its Bicycle Work Group. He has worked with the committee, the Office of Sustainability, and the students’ Bike Collective to make the tax credit available to faculty and staff, re-establish a bicycle repair shop on campus, and host a Bike to Work Day site.

“We are continuing to work on other issues, such as increasing bike parking, hosting other events, and possibly establishing a campus bike share program,” says Boyd.

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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Scott Russell Sanders, acclaimed essayist and fiction writer, will give a free reading and lecture at Chatham University on Aug. 3

PITTSBURGH (July 17, 2012) … Scott Russell Sanders will give a free public reading and lecture at Chatham University in the Mellon Board Room on Friday, Aug. 3, at 7:30 p.m. The lecture titled “The Way of Imagination” will be delivered as the keynote address in conjunction with the nonfiction workshop for Chatham’s Low-Residency Master in Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program. Launched in 2008, the Low-Res MFA is a 39-credit program that can be completed in two years with two summer residencies of ten days each. The program grew from Chatham’s highly acclaimed residency program and maintains the same innovative focus on nature, environment, and travel writing.

Sanders is currently at work on a novel, a collection of short stories, and a book about the meaning of wealth. His writing examines the human place in nature, the pursuit of social justice, the relationship between culture and geography, and the search for a spiritual path.

Sanders is the author of 20 books of fiction and nonfiction, including “A Private History of Awe” and “A Conservationist Manifesto.” Among his honors are the Lannan Literary Award, the John Burroughs Essay Award, the Mark Twain Award, the Cecil Woods Award for Nonfiction, the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2012, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a distinguished professor emeritus of English at Indiana University, where he taught from 1971 to 2009.

Sanders studied physics and English at Brown University, graduating in 1967. With the aid of a Marshall Scholarship, he pursued graduate work at Cambridge University, where he completed his doctorate in English in 1971.

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.

Poet Patricia Jabbeh Wesley to give reading at Chatham as part of the Words Without Walls Black Writers Reading Series

PITTSBURGH (July 12, 2012)… Chatham University will host poet Patricia Jabbeh Wesley for a free public reading and book signing at 8 p.m. on July 24, in the Mellon Board Room, Shadyside Campus. The event is the final reading 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 year, who present their work at the Allegheny County Jail for the inmates studying creative writing there through Chatham’s Words Without Walls program. While in Pittsburgh, writers give public readings of their work. More information about the series is available on Chatham’s news page.

A Liberian civil war survivor, Patricia Jabbeh Wesley’s most recent book, Where the Road Turns (Autumn House Press, 2010), is a lyric exploration of what it is to be a survivor and an immigrant. Her previous works include The River is Rising (Autumn House Press, 2007), Becoming Ebony (Southern Illinois University Press, 2003), and Before the Palm Could Bloom: Poems of Africa (New Issues Poetry & Prose, 1998). Currently at work on her memoir of the Liberian Civil War, Patricia teaches English, creative writing, and African literature at Penn State University, Altoona.

Wesley has been honored with a World Bank Fellowship, a Crystal Award 2006, and the Liberian Award for her documentation of the Liberian Civil War experience in poetry. Her work has been anthologized in Europe, South America, Africa, and the United States.

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 January 2012, The Writer named it one of the “4 top schools you should consider” and in 2009, 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.