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W&J senior Preston Evans smiles at the camera.

Leading the Way

“All the professors within the department have always been available to help me whenever I would need assistance,” he said, “and their courses provided me with the necessary skills and experiences to succeed.”

W&J senior Courtney McIntyre stands with her hands on her hips in front of a bright white backdrop.

Celebrating Seniors

Courtney McIntyre '22

What or whom was your favorite class or professor? Why?
My favorite class was ENG 250: Plantation Women, Black and White, with Dr. Jennifer Harding. Dr. Harding's teaching style was one of my favorites, and the stories she chose were an outstanding fit for the class. Those stories, particularly, “Kindred,” by Octavia Butler, ended up being on my list of favorites. I took several of Dr. Harding's classes because she was an all around extraordinary professor.
What did you plan to study when you came to W&J and what did you end up studying?
I planned on majoring in Science, but ended up majoring in English to become an English teacher in the future.
What was a favorite class project you completed while at W&J?
My favorite class project was the final project for GWS 210: Human Trafficking. I did my project/presentation on child soldiering.
What are you most proud of doing while at W&J?
I am most proud of becoming Co-President of NSLS my last semester at W&J.
A headshot of W&J senior Zoey Zentkovich.

Celebrating Seniors

Zoey Zentkovich '22

What or whom was your favorite class or professor? Why?
My favorite class was Animal Physiology with Dr. Weixel. I loved learning about all the different systems within the body, and the labs with live animals were super cool! Dr. Weixel did an amazing job peaking my interest in the subject and supporting her students.
What was your favorite on-campus event? Why?
My favorite on-campus event was Casino Night at the beginning of my freshman year, because it was a great opportunity to meet people and play games!
What inspired you to stay at W&J when things got tough?
The professors, like Dr. Kilgore and Dr. March, and my peers provided a lot of support, especially during the pandemic when online learning was necessary.
What are you most proud of doing while at W&J?
I think I am most proud of the friendships I've made with my peers and professors, as well as the work that I've done within student organizations like Kappa Kappa Gamma and Green Club.
A headshot of W&J senior Blake Melchert.

Celebrating Seniors

Blake Melchert '22

What or whom was your favorite class or professor? Why?
My favorite professor by far was Dr. Michael Shaughnessy. He was an enthusiastic and energetic professor, but is also a close personal friend. He pushed me to learn in ways I have never had another professor or instructor do. He also made it fun and helped me become more passionate about German again.
What was your favorite moment with a faculty or staff member?
While I was studying abroad in Munich, Germany, I remember going out to eat with one of my professors who was in Munich for a business trip. The restaurant had one of those historical backgrounds on the menu, and I read it with ease, so I thought it was written in English. It was only a few minutes later, after I referenced something in it, that I realized the menu was not in English. We both started laughing about my confusion and how far I had gotten in learning the language without even realizing it.
What are you most proud of doing while at W&J?
I am most proud of going abroad to study in Munich, Germany--not because of the program, or how immensely difficult it was, but because it provided me the opportunity to make more lifelong friends than I ever thought possible. I am very proud and happy knowing that I have friends in many Euro-Asian countries.
What advice would you give to incoming or prospective students?
If you have an interest in anything, look into it. It took years to find all of the places I fit in and people I wanted to be around. Do not wait for the campus or office members to do things for your, do it for yourself. You'll feel a lot better about being where you are.
W&J senior Shayla Watkins stands among greenery and smiles.

Celebrating Seniors

What inspired you to stay at W&J when things got tough?
What has kept me both engaged and motivated to continue my time with W&J has been the support and perseverance of my professors. I commend their ability to adapt to circumstances that have substantially shifted the college's expectations for both academic and personal progress. Having the opportunity to study under such a exceptional group of professors served as a huge incentive to continue my degree at W&J.
What are you most proud of doing while at W&J?
I would have to say that I am most proud of my time as a Vira I. Heinz Foundation Woman in Global Leadership. W&J gave me access to this wonderful program during my sophomore year at the college. Because of the global pandemic, I was unable to complete an in-person program with my award. However, I was given the opportunity to work as a virtual intern with the Institute for Global Dialogue, a South African non-governmental think tank. Here I was given the privilege to study the history of the African National Congress, explore cutting-edge research concerning future national and international development goals, and conduct a research analysis concerning how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted South Africa's diplomatic relations with Cuba.
What are you going to miss the most about W&J?
I will miss the sense of community the most. As a small liberal arts college, you are given the opportunity to build meaningful relationships both within and outside of the classroom setting. I value the intimacy that this school provides and the opportunities that you are given to build life-long friendships, as well as professional connections. I know that when I graduate, I will not only have the chance to take and apply what I have learned from this community, but also will always welcomed back with open arms.
What advice would you give to incoming or prospective students?
Take advantage of your resources! The beauty of a liberal arts degree lies in its ability to diversify your education. Regardless of if you know exactly what you want to study/do after school or if you have no idea, take the classes that interest you most. You will be surprised by the applicability of an interdisciplinary approach in your other courses, your professional opportunities, and most importantly your personal development. You may even surprise yourself and find your passion, as W&J has allowed for me.

Prez Positivity

W&J History

Addition of Centers for Ethical Leadership and Professional Pathways

The Center for Ethical Leadership and the Center for Professional Pathways launched during the fall semester.

Renovations to Clark Family Library

A complete interior renovation and exterior upgrades to the Clark Family Library, formerly U. Grant Miller Library, were completed in May. The project was funded by a leading gift from Richard (Class of ’68) and Angela Clark, with contributions from other generous donors to the College.

James David Ross Family Recreation Center

The James David Ross Family Recreation Center opened in April. The 30,000-square foot facility features a walking/running track, multi-sport athletic courts, a new wrestling room, and a general exercise room, plus new offices and recruiting spaces for the athletics department. It is named for the family of lead donor David A. Ross ’78.

Dr. John C. Knapp Joins W&J

Dr. John C. Knapp became the 13th president of Washington & Jefferson College. Dr. Knapp is an internationally known author and speaker with leadership experience spanning the education, non-profit, and business sectors.

Dr. Tori Haring-Smith Retires

Dr. Tori Haring-Smith retired as president.

Janet Swanson Tennis Center

The Janet Swanson Tennis Center opened in September and serves as the home site for the W&J men’s and women’s tennis teams.

John A. Swanson Science Center

John A. Swanson Science Center was opened and dedicated to the physical sciences, including Physics, Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Bioinformatics.

Uncommon Achievements

Tori Haring-Smith became the first woman to serve as president of Washington & Jefferson College. Under Haring-Smith’s leadership, the College initiated the award-winning Magellan Project, built the state-of-the-art Janet Swanson Tennis Center, surpassed the $100M goal laid out by its Uncommon Bond capital campaign, established the English Language Institute…

The Burnett Center

The Burnett Center houses the Departments of Economics and Business, Modern Languages, and Education. It was named after Howard J. Burnett.

Increased Enrollment

Student enrollment grew from 830 in 1970 to 1,100 in 1998.

Growth and Community Engagement

Under Brian C. Mitchell, who served as president from 1998 to 2004, the college experienced a growth in construction and an effort to improve relations with the neighboring communities.

Retirement of President Howard Burnett

Howard Burnett retired as president.

Program Expansion

Howard J. Burnett took office as president and hired the college’s first female faculty members and the first female dean. The college also adopted a new academic calendar to include intersession and expanded its academic programs to include the Entrepreneurial Studies Program, the Freshman Forum, and several cooperative international education programs.

Women Admitted

The Trustees authorized the admission of women as undergraduate students.

Curriculum Revisions and Construction

Boyd Crumrine Patterson assumed the presidency and oversaw curriculum revisions and the construction of a number of buildings, including the Henry Memorial Center, ten Greek housing units in the center of campus, the U. Grant Miller Library, the Student Center, The Commons, and two new dormitories. His fundraising abilities grew the college’s endowment from…

New Dorms Constructed

James Herbert Case, Jr., who was president from 1946 to 1950, constructed several new dormitories to handle the influx of veterans under the G.I. Bill.

Renovations to McMillan Hall

James D. Moffat personally paid for the renovations of McMillan Hall.

W&J Grows

James D. Moffat led a period of growth when the college constructed The Old Gym, Hays Hall, Thompson Memorial Library, and Thistle Physics Building. Also purchased was the land known as the “old fairground.”

Consolidation Upheld

The United States Supreme Court upheld the consolidation, allowing the newly configured college to proceed.

Effort to Overturn Consolidation

Before the merger could be completed, Canonsburg residents and Jefferson College partisans filed a lawsuit known as the Pennsylvania College Cases, which sought to overturn the consolidation plan.

Jonathan Edwards

On April 4th, Jonathan Edwards, a pastor from Baltimore who had been president of Hanover College, was elected the first president of the unified Washington & Jefferson College.

Washington & Jefferson College

Following the Civil War, both colleges were short on students and on funds, causing them to join together as Washington & Jefferson College.

Washington College

Matthew Brown petitioned the Pennsylvania General Assembly to grant Washington Academy a charter, allowing it to be re-christened as Washington College.

Canonsburg Academy

Canonsburg Academy was reconstituted as Jefferson College, with John McMillan serving as the first President of the Board of Trustees.

Whiskey Rebellion

During the Whiskey Rebellion, portions of David Bradford’s militia camped on the hillside that would later become home to the unified Washington & Jefferson College.

Founding of College

The Beginning: Three Log Cabins

Washington & Jefferson College traces its origins to three log cabin colleges established by frontier clergymen John McMillian, Thaddeus Dod, and Joseph Smith.

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