President's Report 2018-2019

dark blue map with 33 white dots

A Message from Father Peter

Dear Friends,

As an Augustinian, a professor and president of Villanova, many of my favorite moments have been those I have spent with students. They are at the heart of all we do.

This past year, I got to know two of our graduating students particularly well. They were applicants for the Fulbright U.S. Student Grant Program, one of the most prestigious post-baccalaureate programs in the world. I joined many fellow faculty and staff members as mentors for our Fulbright applicants, guiding and encouraging them as they polished their applications and navigated the complex process.

The students I mentored are now both Fulbright English Teaching Assistants, two of a remarkable and record-setting 33 Villanovans earning Fulbright U.S. Student Grants this year.

As I reflect on a year of so many exciting developments at Villanova, the story of this year’s Fulbright recipients stands out to me not only because of the historic significance for the University and the prestige of the program, but also because it says so much about what matters to us as a community. Our students are drawn to that program because its goals of global partnership and intercultural engagement reflect our Augustinian Catholic mission.

On the following pages, you’ll meet six faculty members who make a difference every day in the lives of our students, and whose work has also been enriched by the personal connections they’ve made with students. Some were mentors to Fulbright recipients this year, and others have been named Fulbright Scholars themselves. All are examples of our teacher-scholar model, which is a hallmark of a Villanova education.


Faculty Fulbright Mentors

Silhouette of Samantha Chapman

Samantha Chapman, PhD

Associate professor, Biology

A Biology professor helps grow a new generation of scientists

Silhouette of Maghan Keita

Maghan Keita, PhD

Professor of History and Global Interdisciplinary Studies

This globally minded professor travels with students on an intellectual journey that bridges many disciplines and cultures

Silhouette of Bridget Wadzuk

Bridget Wadzuk, PhD, '00

Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

An Engineering professor engages her students to take a hands-on approach to stormwater management


Faculty Fulbright Recipients

Silhouette of Tuan Samahon

Tuan Samahon, JD

Professor of Law

This legal scholar’s Fulbright to teach in Croatia developed stronger bonds between our countries

Silhouette of Ruth McDermott-Levy

Ruth McDermott-Levy ’96 MSN, ’08 PhD, RN

Associate professor and director, Center for Global and Public Health

How this nurse scientist advances environmental health internationally and with her students

Silhouette of Garrett Clayton

Garrett Clayton, PhD

Associate professor of Mechanical Engineering

This Engineering professor discovered a passion for humanitarian robotics and deepened it through Fulbright


Mentoring at Villanova: Investing in the Journey

The Villanova experience is rooted in the collaborative pursuit of knowledge, in which professors and students are true partners in learning. This environment allows for the opportunity to engage in a wide range of academic endeavors, from groundbreaking research and thought leadership to experiential learning and interdisciplinary projects. With such collaboration among faculty and students, we are invested in each individual’s journey, in preparation for both successful careers—and rewarding lives. Read more about Villanova mentors Jeremy Kees and Susan Leighton.


More In This Report