Nova Briefs | Villanova Magazine

Nova Briefs

Villanova seal

Board of Trustees Names New Officers

As of Jan. 1, Villanova’s Board of Trustees has new leadership. Justin G. Gmelich '90 VSB, partner and head of Global Markets at King Street Capital Management, has been elected chairperson. Gmelich has served on the board since 2011 and had been vice chair since 2017. He is also a former member of the Villanova School of Business Dean's Advisory Council.

“Justin’s vast professional experience, coupled with a demonstrated commitment to our mission, will serve him well as he takes on this new leadership role,” says University President the Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA, PhD, ’75 CLAS.

The board’s other new officers are Beth Mazzeo ’81 VSB, chief administrative officer of Bloomberg LP, who serves as vice chair, and the Rev. Francis J. Doyle, OSA, ’67 CLAS, prior of Bellesini Friary, who is secretary.

“I look forward to working closely with Justin and all of our new officers and board members to build on Villanova’s recent successes and realize our ambitious goals for the future,” says Father Peter.

VSB Meets a Global Need for Better Stewards

Committed to serving Christian churches across the US and the world through education and research, the Villanova School of Business's Center for Church Management has expanded its global reach — with students from Regina Pacis Remera Parish in Rwanda to St. Nicholas Parish in North Pole, Alaska.

With a great need for educational programs emphasizing the practical, everyday management issues that face church managers, all of the Center’s programs saw an increase in enrollment in the academic year.

presentations from Germany, Belgium, Nigeria, Ukraine, Oceania, the US and India.

church spire

Faculty Take Lead on NSF-Funded Projects

Two Villanova faculty members are co-principal investigators of research projects that were recently awarded major grants from the National Science Foundation.

Brett Frischmann, the Charles Widger Endowed University Professor in Law, Business and Economics, is part of a team that received a three-year, $350,000 grant to develop a research coordination network for knowledge commons, the digital forums through which users share and manage information, data and content.

Michael A. Posner, PhD, PStat, associate professor of Mathematics and Statistics and director of the Center for Statistics Education, is one of the leaders of a research project that was awarded a $600,000, three-year NSF grant to better instruction and improve student attitudes toward statistics and data science.

Big East logo

Father Peter Named Chair of Big East Board of Directors

On July 1, 2020, University President the Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA, PhD, ’75 CLAS took the helm as chair of the Big East Conference Board of Directors.

In this role, Father Peter's leadership has proved invaluable as the Board of Directors has worked closely with the Big East COVID-19 Task Force to make decisions with the health and safety of student-athletes and staff in mind.

He was a leading figure in the 2013 reconfiguration of the Big East, which now includes 11 members and is one of the nation’s most competitive and successful college sports conferences.

Win No. 600 for Wright

The December home opener for the Villanova Men’s Basketball team provided a trio of reasons to celebrate.

It was the first game in the Finneran Pavilion since the pandemic-shortened 2019–2020 season; the Wildcats defeated Big East rival Butler, 82-63; and Jay Wright, William B. Finneran Endowed Head Coach, achieved his 600th career win.

“I really feel like I’m lucky to be a coach at Villanova. I look back at the history, and everybody that’s been here has won,” Wright told reporters after the win. “I have a great job.”

Campus Trees Throw Award-Winning Shade

The trees dotting Villanova’s campus are iconic, majestic in all seasons—and nationally recognized.

For the fourth year running, Villanova has been named a Tree Campus Higher Education institution by the national Arbor Day Foundation.

The recognition honors colleges and universities for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation.

flowering trees

What's the Buzz?

The innovative research, which has implications for human-made flying robots that can perform surveillance and detection missions after natural disasters or chemical leaks, was awarded a prestigious $500,000 National Science Foundation CAREER grant.

Dr. Li is the eighth Villanova faculty member since 2017 to receive an NSF CAREER Award, which supports career-development activities for faculty who most effectively integrate research and teaching.

Fuel for the Journey

In recognition of its outstanding contribution to the meaning and conditions of justice and peace, Las Patronas received the 2020 Adela Dwyer-St.Thomas of Villanova Peace Award.

For more than 25 years, the Veracruz, Mexico-based group of volunteer women has fed and provided assistance to tens of thousands of Central American migrants in transit, escaping conflict or hoping to build a better future.

illustration poster of Las Patronas