Trustees Approve Faculty, Financial Aid Increase

by Mark D. Weinstein, Executive Director of Public Relations

Faculty decisions and the 2015-16 budget were the two main items when Cedarville University’s Board of Trustees convened its January 2015 meeting. The Trustees approved the hiring of four faculty members, its 2015-16 budget, which includes tuition, room and board costs.

Cedarville’s operating budget for 2015-16 will rise to $112.6 million--$890,000 higher than the current budget. The new budget includes an increase of $3.145 million for financial aid and a three percent increase for tuition, room and board. The 2015-16 cost will be $33,748.

During the past five years, Cedarville’s average tuition increase was 2% (compared to 3.9% national average for private colleges). Meanwhile, the university’s commitment to financial aid has increased 52%.

“In a time where college affordability is a national talking point, we’ve worked diligently to create a budget that attempts to help students make a Cedarville education more affordable,” said Thomas White, president of Cedarville University. “With the increase in financial aid, we believe we are making college more manageable for those who want a rigorous, Christ-centered education.”

Students who graduate from Cedarville University leave with lower-than-normal debt and a lower student loan default rate than national statistics. The default rate for Cedarville students is 1.4 percent, while the national average is 13.7 percent and 16.7 percent for students from Ohio universities.

Two faculty members were hired to join the school of theological and biblical studies. John (J.R.) Gilhooly, Ph.D., will be an assistant professor of theology, and Michael Shepherd, Ph.D., will become associate professor of biblical studies. They will join Tracy Collins, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, and Brenda Pahl, Pharm.D., assistant professor of pharmacy practice, as the new faculty approved by Trustees.

Gilhooly has been teaching for the past 18 months at Cedarville University, and has received high marks from students and colleagues. In his time at Cedarville, Gilhooly has taught in the school of biblical and theological studies as well as the honors program. Gilhooly earned his doctoral degree in philosophy of religion and historical theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He holds a master’s degree in theology from the University of Dallas and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Texas A&M. Prior to coming to Cedarville, Gilhooly was an adjunct professor at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Weatherford College, and Richland College.

Shepherd joins the faculty of Cedarville University with 9 years of teaching experience at Louisiana College, where he served as associate professor of Christian studies. During his time at Louisiana College, Shepherd also played a key role in the development of master’s level courses in their Caskey Divinity School. Shepherd has published 5 scholarly monographs with Peter Lang, as well as several essays and articles in scholarly books and journals. He earned his doctoral degree in Old Testament studies from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He holds a master of divinity degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and a bachelor of fine arts from New School University in New York.

Collins brings more than 13 years of scientific research and eight years of teaching college-level biology courses to Cedarville University. She holds a doctoral degree and master’s degree in biology from the University of Dayton. Her undergraduate degree is in microbiology and pre-medicine from Ohio State University. She formerly taught at Kettering College of Medical Arts and the University of Dayton before coming to Cedarville.

Pahl earned her doctor of pharmacy degree from Ohio State University and a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from Ohio Northern University. Since 2002 she was the pharmacy manager for MedCentral Health System in Mansfield, Ohio.

In addition to the new hires, the Trustees approved the promotions of the following:

  • Austin Jaquith, D.M.A, to associate professor of music theory and composition
  • Julie Furj-Kuhn, M.S.W., to associate professor of social work
  • Suzanne Lefever, R.N., M.S., to associate professor of nursing
  • Susan Terkelsen, M.A., to associate professor of information technology
  • Amy Voris, R.N., D.N.P., to associate professor of nursing and assistant dean
  • Sandra Yang, Ph.D.,  to associate professor of music history
  • Anne Rich, M.S., CPA, to professor of accounting
  • Mark Caleb Smith, Ph.D., to professor of political science, and director of the Center for Political Studies
  • Barbara Loach, Ph.D., to senior professor of Spanish
The trustees also granted tenure to the following faculty members:
  • Elisha Injeti, associate professor of pharmaceutical science, and director of research and development
  • Austin Jacquith, D.M.A., associate professor of music theory and composition
  • Sandra Yang, Ph.D., associate professor of music history
Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,620 undergraduate, graduate and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings and leading student satisfaction ratings.